The Moonstruck Columns

In Some Parallel Universe…

“Mom! He called me a cow!” she shouted at the top of her voice, over the railings of the staircase, to the kitchen below.

“No Mom! I didn’t call her a cow! Because she is a fat cow!” I bellowed, imitating her. She became more furious and I swear anybody could have managed to fry an English omelette on the top of her head.

“YOU LITTLE WEASEL! YOU ARE GETTING EXTERMINATED TODAY! AND I SO MEAN IT!” She shouted, lethally waving her hairbrush at me as if that was her lightsaber. I was upstairs and was equally livid with her. She had creased my favourite book, on its cover. She was ever so careless and I hated that!

“Uff! How old are you two! One is twenty-three and the other is twenty-seven for god’s sake! Are you ever gonna grow up or what! I spent thirty years doing this! I can’t take it any more.” The two-storied house rang with our voices. Mostly her and mine. Mom’s was usually quenched beneath ours.

“Mom! It’s her fault! She can’t even read a book without ripping it apart!”

“What the hell! It was just a minor fold and I didn’t mean to do it! You have lost me my nail polish remover bottles countless times! I never find them when I need them” she cried out.

“So, it’s revenge, is it? Did you hear Mom, are you sure this is what you taught her?” I shouted down to Mom.

“Give me a break! Leave me out of it this time!” Mom sighed loudly from the kitchen amidst the clanging of the utensils.

I had just stepped inside my room when I heard quick silent steps. I knew it was her. She wanted to knock me flat on my back for calling her a cow, which by the way, she deserved. My room was never my choice of floor to fight and incidentally, her favourite. I anticipated her motives and dashed for the door to the adjacent corridor. Her room was just across it and I had to get there – to abduct a promising hostage, perhaps one of her favourite dress or lip-gloss – for letting me go! You know girls, they always have a lot of stuff they won’t ever need but still treasure it as if gemstones. When I reached my door I saw her at the top staircase at the other end of the corridor. She obviously thought I won’t hear her tiptoeing.

“Oh you idiot! NOT MY ROOM YOU MONSTER!” she shouted at disbelief.

I smirked at her and broke into a run towards her room and she after me. This was my usual defence and she knew it. I got to her room, pulled open her wardrobe and grabbed one of her dresses. She froze at the door.

“Bhai please! Not that one! I will kill you if a single thread is tampered!” she threatened. Her voice quivered and I picked up the indication instantly. I smirked and began my negotiation.

“Leave me alone then. Say you are sorry you wrinkled my book.” And I took a step forward towards the door where she was still standing frozen.

“Okay! Okay! I am sorry.”

“Say it will never happen again!”

“Okay, I swear it won’t happen again. Just give me my dress back.”

I picked my steps cautiously towards the door, holding the dress like a hostage being used as a human shield. She stood in rapt attention and didn’t take her eyes off mine. I crossed her and after taking a few steps away, I threw the dress at her and ran for the stairs. She tried to chase me but tripped over her dress and – CRASH! She fell on her knees and moaned painfully. I dashed back to pick her up.

“Tell me nobody broke any bones!” Mom called from below. She was thoroughly familiar with incidents like these.

“No Mom, I am okay.” she called back to her.

I put my arms around her gently and picked her up to sit on the floor. She rolled up her pajama she was wearing and rubbed her knee while I examined it.

“Didi, come I will take you to my room and will get some ice.” I said gently with a smile. I melted on the way she didn’t try to blame it on me.

“Naah, I will be fine, just fetch me that tube of pain relief cream from my wardrobe and it will do” she said, massaging her knee.

I didn’t know she kept medicine in her wardrobe but I did as I was told. I rummaged through her wardrobe and my fingers caught something hard. It didn’t seem like a dress, nor the tube of cream she was talking about. I carefully took it out and my eyes went rolling and tumbling, probably out of the solar system. It was the Calvin & Hobbes hardbound collection – Rare edition.

“Tell me you like it! It was very difficult to find, I tell you!” she grinned as she stood on the doorway, fondling a few strands of her hair. I ran and hugged her tight. She giggled away like a little girl.

When I let her go I saw her eyes, sparkling like a little baby, caught on it’s happiest moment.

“After all it’s Raakhi, bhai!” she beamed.

I asked her to fetch my pen from my drawer. I always wrote didi’s and my name on the books.

I watched her as she limped away towards my room, and a while later, it was my turn to treat my ears to a scream. An overjoyed one, of course.

She had been goggling at a beautiful turquoise dress, which was on display in a shop a few weeks ago, and when she had saved up enough and had gone to get it, it was gone.

Well, guess who bought it!

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Dear Hypothetical Didi,

If you were my Didi in this lifetime, I swear I would take you for granted, but love you like a gem. I swear I would fight with you every day, pull your hair, shout at you, but be there when you need me and (even if like a pinprick on your neck) when you don’t. World would have been such a different place, wouldn’t it? But I guess, I didn’t deserve you enough. When I think about the limitations, I blame it on God and comfort myself. But the most perplexing irony lies in the fact that, at the same time, the limitations are the exact things, for which, I don’t wish to believe in God. I wish I knew which side I was on. For now, I just wish you existed. I promise I will meet you someday, in some parallel universe…

Hypothetically yours,

Know The Writer!