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Maan has just completed his 11th grade now, he was been 16yrs and was returning to his Village Hoshiyarpur and have decided to complete his study for 12th from home in village and come back to delhi school for exam. They were a very reputed family and Maan was a brilliant and responsible boy so teachers have to agree, they could not loose their brilliant student after all. He can affect the grade of school ranking.
Maan has heard his mother’s coughing problem has increased and thus decided and convinced everyone that he do his study for a year from home.
Khurana’s were a Big name in business all over India but loved keeping their base in their native Village Hoshiyarpur and their joined family lived in Hoshiyarpur Khurana Haveli.
Those who managed business would stay in city or abroad, where their office was but would be back in turns to Hoshiyarpur.
Few kids would study in City and would always be back in holidays and few would stay here. Khurana’s got a school opened here for Kids of their village but it had its own standard and all talented teachers. In Village but facilities would never be less. They were Khurana’s after all. Women generally stayed at home and managed things in village or city. They were unanimous leader in whole village and would be called as Thakurs.
Maan was eldest of his generation and as he was growing the villagers and family were so excited to get their Chote Thakur back for a year at least. His mother Kamini, Dadima Savitri Devi and two chachis Mohini and Padma were happy two. He was leading example for the new generations.
So were his cousins and siblings. Bhai was here for a year. Maan always had a little different outlook to the things compared to his traditional family but he carried out both very elegantly from very childhood, his modern thought and his family culture.
Maan entered village and had a huge welcome from his villagers ‘ Chote Thakur, Chote Thakur. Maan for his young age of 16 took the welcome pretty elegantly and his parents and family were so proud of him.
He was at home and servants were all busy coz of chote thakur coming to stay for a year. Today would be a feast day in Haveli, means servants running on their foot.
Maan settled in the main hall of huge haveli and his mother called
“Geetu,Pani le aa beta” Maan knew all servents by name but this name
A very fair girl but very thin, must call her weak came with her head bowed down. She was wearing one of Annie’s, Maan’c cousin’s, old dress, he could recognize that.
She looked somewhat 8 yrs old and she was too skinny. “Who is she? ”
“She is Geet, with love whole haveli call her Geetu.. Geetu namaste karo chote thakur ko”
Geet still looked down “Namaste chote thakur” and Maan felt his heart will tear apart as he heard her voice and saw her big brown hazel eyes. There was something in those eyes’such a small girl and he could in just one flash feel the pain hidden behind those silent eyes.
He felt uncomfortable “hmmm” is all he could utter. He was surprised that everyone else was OK with this girl. He did not like her presence; she stirred the environment of pain around him.
“But she is so small”
Then one of his chachi “Maan now get freshen up dear, whole family is gathering for grand dinner for you today, kids are so excited too. Geetu why are you standing still, get chote takur’s shoes off” and Geet bent down to do as directed but as she touched his shoe’s lace Maan immediately backed off “Just leave it“
At lunch time, while his mom and whole family were busy welcoming him, siblings gathered, ladies serving sweets and what not but Maan’s heart, felt disturbed, he wanted to be happy after so many days of arrival at home but this small girl’s presence around dining area, running and serving everyone at one call.
Geet was then called by someone and she disappeared. Maan was then able to get busy with is siblings and cousins.
At dinner time whole family was having grand dinner and he again saw Geet, she was running around at everyone’s order. All the servants were running around but they were adults and knew what they were doing but this girl, she was so small.
She was mostly running around with kids order, sometimes Annie ordered something, sometimes Dev or sometimes Nandini. Maan somewhere felt relieved that rest of siblings studied in the City.
But Geet was efficient and was running at every ones order with perfection. As if kids of the house have got a new robot which they could order.
Maan had in city too saw a little girl working at his friends’ house and he did not like it there too but why, why did this girl gave him more pain. He felt like someone is tearing a part of him. Though whenever he saw small kids working, some strong repulsion always happens within him.
Talks were going on in the dinning table but Maan eyes waere fixed on the girl who at last got scolded by Annie for getting 2 mints late coz her long frock got stuck on chair’s nail.
“now will you bring my water when my food get stuck in my throat and I start coughing“
Padma chachi immediately got up “Are you Ok beta, Geet how long are you taking.”
“Mamma I am fine. I said if it stuck then“
Maan had now lost is patience “why is this girl even working in our haveli. Just get her out of this place. “
His frustration was due to different reason but everyone took it to face value.
“Geetu what did you do to make him so upset” all accusing eyes went on small girl who now looked all confused and scared, more scared of this chote thakur. Dev Thakur gave work but was sweet and never showed such anger.
“I- I nothing” “then why is chote thakur angry on you ” asked a lady who herself looked scared and Maan remembered her as a worker, she is Rano.
Chote thakur being angry on first day became a big issue and all accusing eyes went on small girl, Geet. Maan now realized his mistake, he had made the situation worse for this girl.
Rano immediately sat on her knee near Maan’s chair “chote thakur, she made a mistake, I will explain her not to do anything wrong now, forgive her for once, don’t throw her out. “
Maan felt completely uncomfortable. Maan was generally very easy with all servants and never threw tantrums and thus everyone loved him and respected him even at this young age. So all blame naturally went on Geet. Where as small girl did not know her mistake but held her head down taking all blame on herself.
“Its OK, she did noting wrong, she will stay here” Rano took a relief breath and immediately sent Geet away from Maan’s sight.
After dinner everyone retired for their work, Kids in there room. Maan too wanted to rest now and was leaving when he heard his elder chachi’s voice “Rano explain Geetu to behave herself, first day Maan is here and she spoiled his mood “
Rano bent her head “I will explain her”
Maan rushed to his room, feeling guilty of making little girl’s situation worse.