Spark & Spice: Chapter 36: Unstoppable Us

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The bliss of their kiss was disturbed when the emergency light went on with the siren and beep sound inside the elevator.

“Damnnn!!” Manik whispered, moving away from Nandini. Nandini stared at him at first and turned her eyes away with a blush… Already she was mortified and tongue-tied!! He turned around with a grin on his lips and twisted the key to start the elevator which began to move and stopped with the thud at their floor.

The doors opened and they were surprised to find around 7-8 people standing outside the elevator, wondering what had gone wrong with the system. When they found a couple coming out of the elevator, the crowd gave them knowing looks. Manik was hardly bothered. He grinned at them. Nandini was deeply embarrassed.

“Shitt!!! That was so… so… awkward…” She murmured, trying to walk ahead in the corridor, looking into her bag to find the room keys.

“Relax!! They must be glad that we were not kissing in the corridor making a public display of it… though… even ‘that’ is normal here!!”

“Still…!!”

“Why bother?? Do you know any of them??”

“No!! But…”

“Then forget it…”

“You don’t care about anyone?” She asked him. She had found the keys.

He leaned his back at the wall of the corridor, just before her room. Fixing his eyes on her face, he stretched his hand to tuck behind her ear, a lone curl of her hair, falling ahead on her cheek. A simple act like this made her forget what they were talking about, until he clarified, “I don’t care about people who are not a part of my life…simple!”

She smiled subtly and turned her key to enter her room.

“Aren’t you inviting me in??” With his back still tucked to the wall, he leaned just his face towards her and asked with  a naughty smirk on his lips. She was clueless about what exactly made her blush when he spoke such simple, non romantic sentences.

Was he really teasing her or was she thinking more between the lines?? No wonder, She had become a nutcase when with him. She looked at his adorable face and wished, she could keep staring at him even at the risk of being considered shameless… wished she could hold him close to her heart and make him hear her heart beats and how they went out of bounds with him around her… wish she could tell him… that…

Her trance was broken by a snap of his fingers before her eyes, as he teased her, “Hey!! Where are you lost? Do you often daydream when people are talking to you??”

She nodded, turning away and blushing hard, with a subtle smirk on her lips, “No…it’s a newfound disorder…”

He sighed. “So, I’ll re-frame my question… What are your plans for tonight?”

She coughed with a blank, terrified look on her face. What exactly did he mean? She cautiously  studied his face and shrugged, “Tonight??”

“Come with me for dinner!” He chewed the inner side of his lower lip, hoping for her to say yes to his offer.

“I would love to…but I’m dead tired. You know, I was woken up pretty early today! All I want to do now, is to crash on the bed and be dead to the world!!”

That was not even the fraction of the truth. They both knew that none of them would be able to sleep early tonight, just like last night… especially after the kiss in the elevator, just like last night! It was impossible to shrug it off as nothing happened at all…

Since morning 6 am, they had been together, except for the few moments they had taken to get ready for the conference and festival. Now, she needed some time away from him… to compose herself… to stop being affected so much by him… to get a grip on herself and get her act together. No matter how badly she wanted to go out with him, she didn’t want him to think that she was being desperate and throwing herself all over him. All this was happening for the first time with her. She didn’t want to start behaving weird with him, after being so overwhelmed with him.

He stared at her face for a long moment when she told him that she needed to crash to sleep. He wished he didn’t read between the lines. But he did!! How he wanted to stay with her, for all the reasons that she wanted to stay away from him… to ensure her that he wasn’t going to judge her if she spent more time with him… to make sure that she didn’t go back to her shell after being so comfortable with him at this stage… to make her feel special and cherished, exactly the way he felt about her… to calm her nerves if at all she was getting nervous around him…

But it appeared that she needed some time off for herself. He decided to give that to her!

He shrugged and leaving a huge breath, made a fake sad face, “Okay…it seems you got bored after spending the entire day with me!”

She laughed at that and replied, “Tch… tch… you got that right!! I was super bored… How about getting bored all over again tomorrow!”

He grinned, walking away to his room, turning the key in his door,  “I’ll wake you up at 6 am…”

“6 ?? No, Manik, please!! Not so early…”

He grinned more, “I’m definitely going out at 6 tomorrow morning. If someone doesn’t want to come, I promise, she’ll be missing something, out of this world!!

…………………….

He didn’t have to say all that. She knew that she won’t be missing going out with him, for anything in the world!!

Excited for the lovely time they were about to spend the next day, she changed into her nightwear and hugged the cat she had been holding to sleep since childhood. This cat was not her stuffed toy, it was her best friend till now!

They had had a decent meal at the conference meet so even he didn’t feel hungry either. Asking her out for dinner was another excuse to spend more time with her. And when she asked for some time alone, he retired to his bed too.

He changed into comfortable tee shirt and tracks, already missing holding her in his arms. Her lips had felt like burning lava, when she had kissed him back! He smiled remembering that and then he frowned at himself, unable to believe that he was the same person who was known for his stern stares and angry outbursts.

He received a call from Cabir at the same time and Manik tried hard to get back his serious, quiet, sober tone back but he had to struggle for that and Cabir, being the best-friend-cum-reality-check, noticed it in one word from Manik.

“Hey Cabir!!” Manik tried hard to speak normally. “What’s up?”

“Heyyy Cabirrrrr???!!! Now… What’s that ‘zing thing’ in your voice??”

“Shut up, Cabir!!” Manik frowned.

“Now that’s like my boy!! Who was the one who answered the phone before you??” Cabir chuckled.

Manik threw a heavy breath out, “Ho gaya?? I’m too tired for your silly jokes tonight…”

“Okay, so we’ll try to manage with your sensible jokes tonight??!!”

Manik yawned with a loud sound so that Cabir could hear it over the phone, “Ha!!… Ha!! … This is how funny it was… Anyway… how was the business deal for which you went to Singapore?”

“Oh it went perfect. I bagged that deal!!”

“Awesome!! You are too good! So, up for a raise??”

“I hope so!! … and What about you?? Up for a raise at personal front??”

“Gawddd!! When you are bored with your sales stuff you find amusement in lives of people closest to you!!”

“You know me …buddy!! Bravo!!” Cabir grinned, “So???”

“So, nothing… And now, if you are done, I would like to crash to the bed and be dead to the world!”

Cabir couldn’t stop laughing after this. “Dude, tell me this was not ‘her’ dialogue… coz you don’t talk like that!!”

Manik was dumbfounded, “Who ‘her’…??”

“Don’t try to act smart with Cabir, bacchhuu!! I called up Dhruv today when your phone was not reachable. You never told me that you are in Switzerland… with… tadaaaa….”

Manik laughed, “Yeah..yeah… I ALWAYS call you and inform you about every trip I make, before every official business outing and all my routines… Oh… I’m sorry I didn’t know that!!!”

Cabir laughed more with him. “Don’t get angry yaar!! I didn’t know you were on a ‘business trip’…”

This time Manik gave up, “I wish it was!! But no… she has to drive me so crazy that I have hardly any concentration left for the official meets. Only I know, how I survived the panel discussion today!”

“Good going!! I like this Manik… so much better than the other dreadful version, with all his mind in business!!… Now that you are making full use of this time with her, do not forget to tell her ‘exactly’ everything you feel about her!”

Manik closed his eyes with a helpless knot forming at his brows, “If only…”

“If only??” Cabir pestered him to talk more.

Manik cleared his throat, “If only I could sum up in words, what exactly I feel about her!!”

…………………..

Manik knocked at her door, exactly at 6 am and was surprised to find her at the door, perfectly ready to go out with him, in a green-blue sports suit.

Manik knocked at her door, exactly at 6 am and was surprised to find her at the door, perfectly ready to go out with him, in a green-blue sports suit

“Interesting!!” He twisted his lips up in admiration, “I’m impressed. Ready already??!!”

She was much composed and in her element once again, after a peaceful night. She chuckled, “I couldn’t risk letting you in my room while you waited and I got ready. You begin to snoop around…”

“Haha!!” He laughed and continued in a husky whisper behind her when she locked her door and began to walk, “You have no idea what I can do, if I really decide to snoop around!!”

There!!!! He did it again!!!!

All the hard work done last night, trying to coach herself to be calm and composed around him and remain unaffected by his charms went down the drain by one sentence from him. He just knew how to unsettle her!!!

She coughed and cleared her throat and turned to him, keeping a straight face, “So where are we going today? Walk?? Or boating?? This is what they said was amazing here in Swiss apart from biking…”

He laughed, “You haven’t done your home work well!!”

She wondered what he meant by that before they actually reached that place – Highest point at the Alps, near Lucerne, with a view overlooking the snow-capped mountains and the conifers laden with snow over every leaf and thorn that was left on them. Then she saw beyond the view of the forest, the snow and the mountains…there were real people floating in air, one after the other.

“Bungee jumping???” She opened her eyes wide at the setup, he had brought her to and turned to walk away, as fast as she could.

"Bungee jumping???" She opened her eyes wide at the set up, he had brought her to and turned to walk away, as fast as she could

He stretched his hand and grabbed her wrist to pull her back, “You are not going anywhere, missy!!”

“Manik!!!!” She spoke with a terrified look in her eyes, and stammer in her voice, “No…no…no…no… you are getting me all wrong… I appear brave and all confident… but honestly, I am not… and I can never ever do this… I can’t!!!”

“You can !! It’s not so difficult, Nandini… see even kids are doing it!!”

“Oh, they are swiss kids!!” She waved a hand to dismiss that statement.

He rolled his eyes at that, “What does that even mean??”

“Whatever…” She shrugged, “Is this your idea of a date??”

“This is my idea of making you feel out of the world. I’m sure you have never done this before. Not in Delhi!”

“Of course not… we have sensible places to go when we go out with…”

“With??” He raised his brows and teased her, waiting for an answer.

She blushed and she turned away.

“People you kiss??”

Mortified, she turned around and placed her palm flat on his mouth, “Please??!! …You are impossible!!”

He smirked and removed her hand from his mouth, “Okay… If you don’t want to do this, I won’t force you…I’ll do it. You stay here and watch!!”

She pressed her lips together. “Okay!!”

He turned around to walk towards the edge of the cliff from where they tied the rope around someone so that a person could jump off the cliff heads down. After taking two steps, he said, “Trust me Nandu, if you don’t do it today, you’ll be missing something… you may never get a chance again… a chance to the most liberating experience of your life… a chance to face your fears and embrace the vastness of  nature, leaving every negative thought away… a chance to show everyone and to yourself that you are unstoppable!!! That nothing can stop you from doing what you want, if you decide to do it!!

…………………….

2 thoughts on “Spark & Spice: Chapter 36: Unstoppable Us

  1. I just wanna say one think.. After reading this I feel like I will keep reading this chapters throughout my whole life…. ❤

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