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Few days passed with Geet almost trying to keep her self away from Chote thakur as much as she could. His anger on her the first night has earned her slaps from her mom who wanted to know what Geet did to upset Maan on his first day here and Geet had no answer.
On dining table or anywhere when she was needed where all kid were there, she would make sure to be as far as possible. He would too, avoid asking anything from her, actually he hated to see how each day she would run here and there at kids each small or big demand. His eyes would go on her as she would be serving the other kids and when Geet would sense it, she would become even conscious on that, why was he looking at her, is he again angry, did she do anything wrong.
Maan would feel pain seeing the condition of small girl but he would shrug her off when she was not n front of his eyes.
Why she was working here was mystery for him.
On day, while Gee was serving something to Nandini, who was busy watching TV, he called and asked for water from someone and then his aunt asked Geet to serve him water. Maan did not like it, he did not like her serving anyone and today she had to serve him too.
Geet was so scared, when she was handling him the water glass, her hands were shaking.
Maan immediately took the glass from her and freed her. She left but his heart was filled with pain. He being so young, did not know why it pained so much.
It was one winter morning, Maan took chocolates for his younger siblings in Annie’s room. It was winter morning and everyone – Annie, Nandini, Dev were inside the quilt and were having fun with chocolate sharing.
Then Annie saw Geet thru door “Geet come here” and Geet came with a bucket in her hand…
Maan saw, small girl, this winter early morning bare leg, with no slippers on leg almost wet with water and with bucket in hand..
Maan did not know why he felt uncomfortable seeing her like this and he himself cozy in bed.
“Geet press my clothes, my bus will be on time” said Annie
Dev called her. He held her arm and Maan somehow did not like that at all.
Maan felt uneasy, why for this girl he did not know “Dev, just leave her” he said in English. Nothing got into Geet’s head, only more fear of this new chote thakur, due to whom she was beaten up by her mom the other day.
“Bhai,these girls are thick skinned, don’t think about them. Did you get my bathroom ready girl” he said still moving his hand on Geet’s arm
“Dev,I said just leave her, don’t you hear.” Maan was now in anger. Dev moved his hand seeing Maan’s angry eyes. But as he again said in English nothing went to Geet’s mind except more fear due to his angry tone.
She quietly started moving out of room, when Annie said “Geetu press my clothes” Maan could feel not very good vibe, how nobody cared if she was wet and this early winter morning.
Geet soon came back and started to press Annie’s cloth, while all other kids were playing with chocolate and few eating them, while Maan’s eyes was on Geet, how this girl who was younger than Annie and her too petite form was pressing every kids school dress. As others were busy, he observed Geet’s eyes which now and then quietly went on chocolates that kids were playing with or relishing on them. Maan was about to eat his one but somehow he could not.
Which small child does not love chocolate and that too one who always get in hand an empty wrapper while cleaning the room and just satisfy her with the yummy smell of chocolate in wrapper.
After a while, all kids were off to school , while Geet was walking, someone suddenly pulled her to the room by her arm and closed the door. Geet turned to see the scary Chote Thakur. She shivered with fear and her throat started to go dry.
“j –j-ji” he placed his hand on her lips, Geet got more scared while Maan felt jolt with the touch of her lips on his hand. He immediately removed his hand. He forwarded his chocolate to her
“Yeh lo, tumhare liye hai“
Geet said nothing, just kept looking down, her hands rubbing each other in fear. Maan was so irritated, why this girl don’t even speak anything, just stand like statue. He did not want to lose his temper again and thus said in stern voice.
“I don’t eat chocolate, you can have it” and he gave his favorite chocolate to her.
She hesitatingly took the chocolate “now open the wrapper and eat it.”
Geet was so hesitant, no one has ever offered her chocolate, that too someone from haveli and how could she opened in front of him and eat, she didn’t have that much guts. She kept playing with the wrapper, thinking, when will he order her release from this room.
Maan was losing his patience with her, does she even hear what he was saying
“Did you hear what I say” with little more higher tone. Geet took a step back with his strong tone. She really was not very happy with the arrival of chote thakur. Maan realized he again scared her. But he was young boy, so controlling anger was not what he had learnt yet and being the eldest in generation his all temperaments were acceptable to family.
But seeing Geet all scared he calmed down, he quietly took the chocolate from her and unwrapped it and handed it to her.
Geet looked at him, he signaled chocolate to her and as she hesitantly had the first bite a smile formed on her face, Maan got lost in that innocent smile. She looked a complete different girl. She was a child like all other child and the chocolate brought the most precious smile. Her happiness, her smile gave a different kind of satisfaction to him.
He was a tall boy, he sat on chair to come up to her level “now you won’t fear me” Geet looked up and Maan laughed looking at her face. Just one chocolate and girl has forgotten all her pain and she looked so much a child.
He forwarded his hand “Doshti” Geet looked all confused, no one asked her for friendship and that too Chote Thakur. And she was already scared of him coz of his anger.
“See I gave you chocolate, haina” she nodded her head in yes now “Phir dosht” he again forwarded his hand but Geet did not know what to do with forwarded hand. She looked at his hand and then his face “ohh achcha” he took her hand and placed it in his hand “aise ho gayee hamaree doshti”
Geet did not know how to feel. Chote thakur had his hand in her’s, she only knew this was not her place
“don’t fear, no one will say anything and again, this is between just us,hmm” This girl was so innocent like this, he could not believe how she handled all the kids work in Haveli.
Geet had half of the chocolate and Maan was just enjoying looking at her. He could not realize what connection he had with this girl, but he liked making her happy.
“Ok,tell me, did your mother scold you that night, when I was angry“
Geet did not say anything, just stayed quiet. Maan took half eaten chocolate from her hand and took the bite from it.
Geet looked at him in surprise and shock. She did not have position to stand near him and here he was eating her jhoota. Maan just ignored her look, she even looked so cute when she was in shock. Her big brown eyes had almost captivated him.
“we are friends na, then tell me” after looking for long at his waiting eyes she spoke in very low voice “I did wrong, so she have to teach me lesson“
“What wrong did you do” “you were angry, so I must have done something wrong” she said in such low voice that he had to put his ear near her.
“But you know, you did nothing wrong.. anyone say you are wrong and you will accept”
But Maan did not know that this was safest thing for this small girl to do and she has learnt it since her childhood. The more she does her self defense, the more they will put force to make her accept her fault.
And he was chote thakur, naturally she was at fault.
“aise galti nahi mante apni” Not to argue with him, Geet just nodded her head in Ok.
Then Maan’s chotee chachi’s voice came “Geetu” “go go, I will catch you later, abhi padai kernee hai mujhe“
Geet have then to make all the beds, room ready before kids come from school. She has to get their milk and snack in room the moment they come.
Then Maan was busy in his room studying and later went to his mother, who was feeling better just by his presence while Geet got busy with orders of kids and taking their bags to room, keeping their shoes in place, getting their fresh clothes out, all this kids being elder to her in age, made it more easier for them to order her.
Maan had been studying whole day so in evening came out for some sports along with kids.
Annie just wanted to do balling and not run around in the field, but all kids denied so she called Geet as an assistant to run for her.
Maan again saw Geet, seeing this girl gave a nice peace in his heart and along that came the pain, how she was to run like robot at Annie’s order and when she could not do what was expected in game, she was equally blasted.
Geet eyes went to Maan when she was being blasted for throwing ball in wrong direction, she did not know why her eyes went to him, he gave her an assuring look
“Now if you all are here to shout, I am not playing with anyone“
Everyone wanted to play with Bhai…. They immediately went to their place, leaving Geet.
Just two meeting and somewhere Geet started feeling secure in his presence. Definitely she was hell scared of his sudden anger but she also felt somewhere secure in his presence.
Next: Maan’s anger again