Next morning I woke up, got fresh and went to the kitchen. I was surprised to see Darpan preparing breakfast.
"Hey, good morning," he greeted.
"Morning," I said in a lazy tone.
"The breakfast is ready and tea as well."
"Great. So what's for breakfast?"
"I just know how to prepare Maggie and sandwich. So I just prepared sandwich today."
"Oh, that's good. But why didn't you wake me up? I could have prepared the breakfast."
"You seemed tired yesterday, so I thought not to wake you up so early."
"Ok. Honestly, I actually was tired."
"I knew that. Let's start the breakfast now."
We had our breakfast and Darpan got ready for office, and before leaving he updated me with the routes of nearby places where I can go for window shopping, just in case if I get bored. Actually I also wanted to explore the place and know more about it. This place gives a pleasant feeling. When he left for office, I was left alone at home. I got ready in a while and sat on the couch in the hall. I found the flower vase kept on the round table empty, so I thought to buy good flowers to place in it. I bought beautiful orchids for that. Later, I proceeded to my window shopping, I bought some necessary groceries.
I went back home soon as the scorching heat was burning my skin. I might have cursed the sun hundreds of time for showering so much of heat. I washed my face immediately after reaching home and switched on the fan. Finally I felt relaxed. I prepared sandwich and sat on the couch to watch TV. I was just changing the channels when I came across some documentary on wildlife. That seemed a little interesting to me, so, I stopped switching the channel and watched it nearly for an hour. After that I went to the corner table that was stuffed with books. I went through few of them and found 'Like The Flowing River' by 'Paulo Coelho'. I randomly picked it up and went to my bedroom. I rested on my bed and started reading the book. After a while my eyelids felt a bit heavy which meant I need to sleep. So, I kept the book aside and slept. I woke up after about an hour and prepared ice tea. Then I took the book and went to terrace. I sat on the swing and started reading the book. As the sun started setting down, the sky seemed like a canvas on which some painters had spread crimson red color on it. It was a very pretty sight. After a while, I decided to go for a walk in the park which was just nearby, opposite to our house.
The park was very widespread with a small pond in the center. The shadow of the sun setting slowly in the water seemed like a photogenic moment. There were lot of children playing in the park. The sound of their laughter appeared very musical to my ears. There were couples walking hand in hand in the park. I sat on the nearby bench and observing everything. There were few kids cycling in the park, few skating, and few others enjoying games with friends and families. I don't know why, but this brought smile on my face. I then went back to home and started preparing dinner.
Darpan reached office and met Sankalp. Most of the staff inquired him about his health but he was shocked by his boss' behavior - being humble. It's normal for me to understand that any cruel boss would behave mildly with the employee who attempted suicide. But for Darpan, it was very unbelievable, because his boss was never humble to him in past three years. So, he started working as usual. Previously, he used to go around, greet everyone and crack jokes. But now, the situations changed him. He became more serious. He talked to his colleagues but not the way he used to. Even Sankalp tried to make him laugh a couple of times but everything was in vain. He smiled a bit but not the way he enjoyed in office prior to this. They went for the lunch together in the canteen where used to enjoy the most. Even the canteen boy would enjoy Darpan's jokes and pranks. In fact he would've waited for their break time. But everything had changed now. Darpan's friends tried to make him laugh, but to their disappointment he just responded merely with a smile. After having lunch, they got back to work. His boss even asked him if he wished to leave early. But Darpan denied saying he was good enough to complete the day. Even his boss was shocked by his changed behavior.
After someone hurts you, you're not the same anymore. And Darpan was proving this. No doubt, he was coping up with whatever happened in his life. But there was a very little sign of progress. Sankalp went to Darpan after a while and saw him sitting in front of his computer, covering his eyes with his hands.
"Hey. Everything OK?" Sankalp asked with concern.
"Yeah. Just a bit tired after spending couple of hours continuously staring at the computer," Darpan explained.
"Oh, no... em.. just.. tell me what's up?"
"I'm going on vacation for fifteen days to my home town of course. So, just thought to spend some time with you."
"When are you going?"
"So soon? I mean... you should have informed me prior."
"Yeah, but Shruti is missing her family badly. So just thought to visit her as well as my parents. She will feel better. On yesterday, I had this conversation with her and decided to go. And luckily, my leaves were approved."
"Good to know. So, shall we go for coffee after office?"
"Sure. Catch you later."
After the office, they met at the nearby coffee shop.
"By the way, don't you think our boss is behaving a little weired after I attempted suicide," Darpan asked.
"Yeah, I too feel so. I think he started having concerns about his employees' personal life problems," Sankalp replied.
"In that case, I think I should have attempted it earlier," Darpan chuckled.
"Shut up." Sankalp said in anger.
"Hey, chill. I was just kidding."
"That was not so funny."
"Ok. Let's talk about something else. So, have you done with the packing?"
"Not yet. Will do after reaching home. Leaving by eleven tonight."
"Ok. Come soon."
"C'mon don't be so sentimental. We'll be in touch. Don't worry. And take care of yourself and Angel as well."
"Sure. You too take care of yourself and Shruti."
After a brief chit-chat session, they departed. Darpan was finally back to home. And I was glad to see him back with a smile. I asked him to get fresh, meanwhile I would serve the dinner. After a while we settled down to the dinning table for the delicious meal.
"So, how was your day?" I asked.
"Pretty good. And Yours?" He replied.
"Pretty boring. There was not much to do as such. Just read the book and spent time sleeping and cooking. That's it."
"So, missed me?" He asked with a grin.
"No, not even a little."
"To be honest, yes, I missed you. I had no other option."
"Yeah, I know. But trust me, I missed you too. Even though I had so many other things, options rather, to do."
"I am so obliged to hear this Mr. Darpan." I said laughingly.
"Hey, is there any tax that you pay for laughing?" Darpan chuckled
"Ha ha ha, very funny."
"Then why are you saving your smile for? You can laugh out loud. I mean no one is going to kill you for that."
"I know. Now let me eat, else I'll definitely die out of hunger... if not for not - laughing."
We had our dinner and went to the terrace to get some fresh air. I sat on the swing and Darpan stood near the wall looking at the neon lights on the road.
"Darpan, I am sitting right here," I said.
"I know. So?" Darpan asked looking toward me.
"So, we can talk right. I mean I am not alone or neither are you. We can have a conversation. Right? I was bored all day long staying alone in the house. Now please, you don't bore me anymore."
"Shut up. I am not boring ok."
"And not so interesting either."
"Seems like you don't know me."
"Then let me know."
"What do you want to know, hah?" He asked giving a cunning smile and came toward me.
"What are you up to?" I said looking at him from the corner of my eyes.
"I'll let you know." He said and rushed towards me.
I ran away from him and he followed me. The chase continued for five minutes and finally when he exhausted, he dashed into the swing.
"Hey, are you alright?" I went to him worried.
He held my hand and pulled me toward the swing and made me sit beside him.
"Caught you." He said in excitement still holding my hand.
"No. You cheated. Cheater Cock." I yelled at him and tickled him.
He laughed a little and winked. It felt like a small pretty bud of his smile just grown into a blossoming beautiful flower of his laughter. He was still holding my hand and his face had an amazing glow which I had never seen in past several days. Our eyes met and he smiled.
"You look good with that," I said.
"I know. I have not laughed like this may be in months."
"Yeah, I understand. It's good to know that you are coming out of it."
He just responded with a smile.
"I was bored the whole day. But you made my day. I was wondering why can't I do a job?" I asked.
"A job?" Darpan said in perplexity.
"Yeah. I mean I am a really good cook. Don't you think so?"
"Yeah.. em.. just a minute I'll be back." He said and rushed downstairs.
He went down and called Sankalp.
"Hey," Sankalp said.
"Hi! Sorry to disturb you in packing."
"Oh, come on. Don't be so formal. Tell me."
"You said that you have a friend who is manager in some hotel."
"Yeah, he is the HR head, Malvick. And the hotel's name is The Royal. What happened?"
"I was wondering if we could get Angel into it as a cook. I mean she is a good cook. Correct me if I am wrong."
"Yeah, she is indeed. And fortunately, I got a call from Malvick saying that they do require good chefs for their hotel."
"Oh, that's great. So, will you talk to him about her?"
"Sure. In fact, I'll call him now and let you know the status."
"Ok. Sure. Call me soon. Bye."
Darpan came back to terrace and notified me about conversation that he had with Sankalp. We both desperately waited for Sankalp's call. After fifteen minutes, we got a call from him informing that I had to go for interview the next day. We both were equally tensed about the interview for the next day. But Darpan assured me that he would take me over there and be with me until I finish the interview. I was relaxed on hearing this. Finally we departed to out respected room wishing each other good night.
It was a good day. I saw him laughing a while after a long time. The corners of his lips hooked themselves to my heart. I feel eternal happiness by seeing him happy. After all, that is the only reason I am here. But, right now, I am little nervous about the interview. I know I can be a good chef. But I don't know what is making me so nervous. I mean, I don't know the people over there, the place or even the work environment. I am just nervous may be because this would be my first exposure to the world, which I used to look from the very homely place called heaven. This could be something exciting. I believe life is like a novel written by God. I was really very excited to read the next page of my life. And so are you. Correct?
Rockstar21898: Here is the next chapter. Hope you like it. Let me know how do you feel about it.
Honey: Good to know that. Hope you like this too. Enjoy.