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kailash shastri

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The Confidante
By kailash shastri
Thursday, December 06, 2007

Rated "G" by the Author.

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a short story based on trust, love and unconditional friendship...
hi guys, this is my first ever entry in this site... hope you like it...

The Confidante

Scene-I

21st June,2007
[Focus on table and pan slowly] Some pens scattered (without refills), a strip of tablets, a wallet and the mobile phone. A tone is heard. A message arrives.

Subhayu. He walks slowly towards the table. He reaches the table. Holds up the phone. it shows that one message has been delivered. he presses the 'read' button and reds the message.

the message flashes:

Aniruddha
How are you? Is everything alright? Why are you not picking up the phone? Please reply…

He cancels it and keeps the phone down on the table. He traipses towards the bathroom. Gets in and closes the door. [Long shot from within the bathroom.]

Subhayu washes his face in the basin. He looks at himself in the mirror and wipes his face with his hands. A tone is heard. Subhayu turns towards the door.

Scene-II
6 months back
[ 24th December, 2006]

The door opens. Subhayu comes out. He walks hurriedly and picks up the phone.

Subhayu reads the number. it is apparent from his face that the numer cant be recognised.

S: Whose number is this? Hello?

Aniruddha is standing in front of the window. Looks out in the darkness.

A: Subho…?

S: Yes..

A: Annu… Arrey yaar… I lost your number. I just dialled what I remembered. Thank god it’s your number.

S: Oh! Arrey, I couldn’t identify your voice at first. What happened to it?

A: Yes, my throat is choked yaar. That’s why I won’t be going today.
S: What has your throat got to do with your going-out tomorrow?

A: I know. But mom won’t let me go out.

S: hmmm… but what about Mandira?

A: Who?

S: Mandira…

A: Mandira Bedi?

S: Ha ha… good joke! Be serious, weren’t u supposed to pick her up?

A: What are you saying? Who Mandira? I don’t know anyone by that name.

S: Really? Now, you would say that you are not Anirban…

A: Who Anirban? I am Aniruddha.

S: Aniruddha? Who Aniruddha?

A: Who are you?

S: Subhayu.

A: That means you are not Subhobrata? Ley… that’s why even your voice was sounding different but I didn’t say coz that would sound as if I am copying you…

S:on the top of that the nick-names matched so accurately. Nice co-incidence.

A:Ya.By the way I am Aniruddha Sarkar.

S: Subhayu Ganguly.

A: Merry Christmas in advance.

S: Same to you. So, you are going to be a mother’s pet and stay at home?

A: No. this is just an excuse for my friends. I don’t feel like going out.

S: Even I don’t feel like. But my friends wont let me go off. Aquarian?

A: Sorry…

S: Your zodiac. Is it Aquarius?

A: How do you know?

S: All the Aquarians I know are very lazy. Even I am so. 30th Jan.

A: 14th February for me.

S: Great. Valentine ’s Day!

A: Ya…

S: Ok. Chalo… it was nice talking to you.

A: Ok bye.

Subhayu puts the mobile back on the table and enters the bathroom.

Scene-IA (continuation of Scene-I)

Subhayu picks up the phone. the caller is Ranjan-- one of Subhayu's closest friend.
S: Hmm.

R: Where are you?

S: Where am I supposed to be?

R: Come down. I am waiting downstairs.

Subhayu turns and sees the clock. It clock shows 12:30.

S: It’s 12:30 Annu.

R: So?

S: Wait. And please don’t shout.

R: Fine. Be quick.

Ranjan cancels the call and sings ‘Its my life’

The guard comes running and says, ‘please don't shout, everyone is sleeping.’

R: Everyone is sleeping? How could you say that? You are not sleeping, neither am I and not even my friend!

Ranjan signals at Subhayu.

Subhayu is seen scampering towards the spot. Subhayu runs up to the guard.

S: You may leave, I will handle this.


The guard goes away.

S: Why are you shouting? And where are you coming from?

R: Tantra… you don’t know?

S: Oh! I forgot.

R: Why didn’t you come?

S: I was not feeling well. I told Mandy, didn’t she tell you?

R: Ya. Ya. So, happy?

S: Who am I to feel happy?

R: Right. But at least you should feel satisfied…

S: Ya. But right now I would feel satisfied if you go home. We will talk about it later.

R: Okkiiess.

Ranjan enters his car and drives away.

Subhayu turns and goes into the building.

Scene-III

14th February, 2007

Subho sits on the bench in the park and smiles to himself.
He sees a couple holding hands passing away.

Subho takes his phone, checks his phone and dials a number.

Aniruddha comes out of his bathroom. He is wearing a towel and is shivering in cold. He hastily goes and picks up the phone.
He reads the number and receives it.

A: Hello?

S: Aniruddha Sarkar, isn’t it?

A: Yes.

S: Happy Birthday.

A: Thanks. but sorry I couldn’t identify you.

S: Subhayu Ganguly, remember 24th December, wrong number.

A: [thinks] Ya yaw, I do. You remember my birthday?

S: Actually I was going through my call list. I saw an unidentified number. I saw the date and realized it were you. And suddenly it struck me, that you have such a romantic birthday.

A: [laughs]. That’s great! Thanks. So, you have a girl-friend?

S: Well…

A: Oh my god, well. The most confusing world in the entire universe. [laughs]

S: [smiles] Actually I have but one-sided. She loves someone else.

A: O! O! that’s sad. Well its better to forget someone who is already in a relation.

S: Not exactly. Coz Chirag, that guy, doesn’t love her. He is in love with another girl.

A: Well, a love quadrangle.

S: But that girl loves someone else.

Aniruddha bursts out laughing.

Scene- IB

The lift door opens. Subhayu gets in. he turns. The door gradually closes.

Scene-IV
Present day, 10 pm

Subhayu is lying on bed. Titas is feeding him from a plate with a spoon. Titas is subhayu's elder brother.

T: You have got a bit too much of liberty in this house. From today onwards you will do only what I say. No going out, no parties, no movies. Just rest for entire 2 weeks. Not even college. And I don’t want your good-for-nothing friends calling you up all the time. Just take your medicines on time. And give rest to your body as well as mind.

Titas finishes feeding him and keeps the plate on the table. He gets up and moves around the room. He brings a strip of medicines and a water bottle.

T: You took sleeping pills? You know its completely forbidden with your medicines.

Subhayu swallows the pills.

T: Are you dumb? Can’t you reply?

S: Thanks Titas.

Subhayu and Titas hug each other. They cry. They part up.

T: I don’t want to see my brother crying like this. Forget all that has gone by. I know its easier said than done. But that’s the way life goes. [pause] Go to sleep.

Titas gets up and walks towards the door. [side of bed] he turns at the end.

T: I will tell you something that life has taught me. Never make someone so indispensable in your life that you seem incomplete without that person.

The door closes.


Scene- IC

The lift door opens.
Subhayu gradually climbs up the stairs. Finally he opens a door and goes in.

Scene-V
18th April, 2007

Subhayu sitting on the tank of the roof. The phone rings.
He picks up the phone and presses the button.

S: Hi…

Aniruddha is standing in the balcony.

A: Did you tell Mandira about your feelings?

S: No, I will…

A: Every week you say the same thing and every week you repeat it again. What makes you scared?

S: That’s because she is my good friend and I don’t want to lose her by saying this.

A: Why would you lose her by saying this? She is your friend and there is nothing unnatural in loving your friend. But you know what, that’s not exactly your fear. You are afraid that she would refuse your proposal and you won’t be able to do that.

S: Perhaps… And anyways, she still loves Chirag.

A: But Chirag doesn’t.

S: Still, I don’t think she is ready to accept me.

A: At least give her the chance to do so… By the way, can I ask you a bit of personal question?

S: Hmm.

A: Did you go to Dr. Arindam Sarkar?

S: How do you know?

A: I am his son.

S: I see…

A: Please don’t take this otherwise.

S: It’s ok.

A: I just checked dad’s patient list. I saw your name. so, I thought… What’s your problem?

S: Nothing as such. I was just feeling very anxious for the last few days. My b.p. had gone up very high. I don’t know, I just had a strange fear as if…

A: As if?

S: As if I am losing someone…

A: So, what did Dad say?

S: He recommended certain medicines.

A: Any effect?

S: Not much.

A: If the patient doesn’t want to get well, no medicine can have effect!

Aniruddha cancels the phone.

Subhayu sighs and keeps the phone back.

Scene-ID

Subhayu trudges down the stairs. At the final step he sits down. he reclines on the steps and bursts out.


Scene-VI
3rd June,2007
[Station, stairs] Subhayu is sitting on ne of the stairs. Ranjan is standing in front.

R: I just can’t believe this?

S: What?

R: Mandy actually believed what that arsehole Chirag said?

S: What happened?

R: Today I went to Mandy’s house. I just said ‘What’s new on your Chirag front’, just as we say…

Subhayu nods his head.

R: You won’t believe she actually started crying. Says, ‘Oh, he is so emotional. You know why he doesn’t accept my proposal.’ So I said, ‘coz he loves another girl.’ So, she says, ‘no, it is written in his horoscope that if he falls in love with a girl, she will die.

S: The girl will die if he just falls in love. This is just too much.

R: Same with me… I said, ‘I have a very good solution, Attach a wind chime to his neck. It will shoo away the bad luck from him.

They both laugh.

S: But, do you think she actually believed him.

Scene-VII

A: No.

Aniruddha is walking, talking over phone.

Subhayu is also walking.

S: She might…

A: Be logical Subhayu. A 21st century girl can’t ever believe that. She is just consoling herself because even she has realized that she has made a big mistake. So, just do what I have been asking you to do for so long.

S: Aniruddha, you are impossible. You never get tired of saying that same old thing.

A: No, because you never listen to me. Tell me Subho, do you really want to see the girl you love crying for some other guy who is doing nothing more than using her.

S: No, but I am just a friend to her. I don’t think she has any such feelings for me.

A: That’s because she doesn’t know about your feelings for her. Trust me Subhayu, no one else in the world can make us feel happier than our friend, and when our friend loves us there is nothing better to ask for.

S: God, Ani. You have taken this entire issue a bit too seriously.

A: I hope so. Ok, talk to you later.

S: Bye.

Aniruddha and Subhayu walk in the same line but in the opposite directions.

They walk closer.

They go past each other.

Scene-IE

Subhayu enters the room. He walks towards the bed and sits.


Scene-VIII
Today morning

The door opens and Ranjan rushes in.

He sings, ‘I just called to say, "I love you, I just called to say, "I care" ....’

Subho keeps smiling throughout.

R: I am on the top of the world.

S: Why? What happened?

R: You know what happened today. I just proposed to Mandy, and you know what she said ‘yes, yes, yes’!

Ranjan hugs Subho. I am so happy. Subhayu is shocked but he controls his grief from his friend.

S: I am happy too.

R: Thanks man. I am so happy today. and tonight I am giving out a party for everyone. At Tantra. 9 pm sharp.

S: Great!

R: So, you are coming. See you there.

Ranjan goes out.

Subho drops on the bed. He lies down, his head bent on the other side of the bed. He shrieks.


Scene-IX

Focus on clock--- 2:30.

He takes up the phone and dials.

Focus on mobile phone. Aniruddha comes and takes it up.

A: Thank god you finally called.

S: Were you sleeping?

A: Not at all. I sleep pretty late.

S: Oh!

A: You didn’t tell me.

S: About?

A: Mandira.

S: There is nothing left to talk about.

A: What?

S: She loves Ranjan now. Ranjan proposed to her and she said yes. Now, I have no place in her life.

A: Did you ever have? You never gave her the opportunity to think about you the way you think about you.

S: I know I deserve this.

A: Don’t take it that way. Perhaps she was never meant to be yours. We can’t change what’s already decided for us.

S: And we are to accept it everytime?

A: What else can we do? Perhaps god does what’s best for us.

S: You believe that?

A: [smiles] Sometimes. I hope you didn’t try doing anything silly.

S: Nothing as such.

A: Trust me, you won’t gain anything by harming yourself. You would just lose further. Sometimes, it’s better to show life that you have balls to face him, even when you know you don’t.

S: [smiles] I feel like I am not talking to my friend but to Dr. Arindam Sarkar’s son. The would be Psychriatist!

A: I am sorry Subhayu, I lied.

S: What is that supposed to mean?

A: I am not Arindam Sarkar’s son. I am just his patient too. When I was registering my name in the evening section, I saw your name in the morning section. That’s why I called you thatday.

You know why I insisted you so much? Because you repeated the same mistake which I committed a couple of years back. The difference is that you visited a doctor before you actually lost your love and I, after facing the crisis.

I was in school when I fell in love with one of my classmates, Tasneem. Her friends told me that even she loved me. My friends kept on insisting but I postponed it every time. Finally, one day I decided that I would tell her all that was in my heart. Somehow, even she seemed to realize that.

She gave me lift that day in her car from school to home. But, in the entire journey we kept on talking about other things- consciously and perhaps conspicuously. As I got down from the car, I realized I was failure again. Even her eyes seemed to rebuke me for disappointing her again.

As I entered through the main gate, there was suddenly a large crashing sound. I rushed out. A lorry had struck Tashu’s car—her car had crushed like a matchbox. And my Tashu lay on the street, soaked in blood.

My mistake, my cowardice, my hesitation--- it took her life. Had I been able to tell her, probably it would have taken more and she might escaped death. I killed her, Subhayu, I killed her.’

A: I had lost all interests in surviving.

Aniruddha sees the marks on his wrist.

A: But perhaps I was destined to live and die every second remembering that moment.

S: There is nothing I can tell you.

A: Don’t feel bad for me. Even I don’t feel bad for myself. It’s just that I saw you in the same position where I was once.
Move on Subho, life doesn’t stop for someone. Go to sleep. Tomorrow is a new day. Who know what it has in store for you.

S: Thanks. Good night.

A: Good night.

They hung up.


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