This post is a part of 24-day Marathon fiction called Yaariyan.
Saturday, April 16, 2011
A farewell party was organised by juniors for the fourth year students in VJTI campus in the evening. It was the most anticipated event of the year. Things will change post that- they’ll have the last semester exams in May, some will start working and get practical exposure, some may decide to study further and go abroad for masters, some may get married! But tonight was a night of celebration – an ode to these four years of awesomeness spent in a second home called VJTI. The dress code was suits for men and indo-western for girls.
Arpit, Madhu and Niket got ready in the apartment. All had done jugaad for their suits – borrowing from friends or hiring it – except Niket – he was wearing the suit he got stitched last year for his sister’s wedding. Madhu came up with a snappy wisecrack, ‘Looks like you’re going to get married! This flamboyant suit suits you Niket.’ Niket was quick enough to get back, ‘At least its better than wearing an ill fitted one!’ Arpit didn’t comment anything. As much as they were trying to get Arpit into conversation, he had off late been aloof. He had been cranky in the past four months; not yet been able to come to terms with what had happened on new year’s eve. They proceeded towards the college which was 5 km away from their apartment.
The campus seemed like a corporate venue today – with all the guys in their formal attire, dressed to impress; they appeared mature enough now! 😛 Sun was about to set – Everyone was clicking selfies in the last rays of light. Girls looked delightful – though they were few in number – everyone was at their best.
They met Swami near the canteen, having his favourite mayonnaise frankie. He was wearing a formal suit with tie and cufflinks. With a mouthful, he muttered – ‘I’m going to miss Raju the most, once I leave the college.’ Raju made frankies in the canteen and was famous for it. Swami took time to try out cuisines other than south Indian once he came to Mumbai, but once he tried the mayonnaise frankie, his taste buds changed forever!
She walked past him, in a black one piece dress and high heels. He didn’t see her as she kept walking ahead, but knew it was her – her scent gave her away. Her hair was tied in a french bun; how he wished she had kept it open; he liked her that way. Soon, Abhinav followed behind her and Niket gave a shout out to both of them. They turned around awkwardly, joining the group. Arpit didn’t look him in the eye. He still wasn’t ready to talk. But he still couldn’t take his eyes off Latika.
The farewell started; the principal congratulated everyone for reaching this stage where their future beckoned – she spoke something on motivation, trying to make an impact. But the students were too occupied awaiting the farewell program to actually begin. 😛 Most of them who were planning to take up a job had already got placed through the campus placements, like Madhu and Latika. After the speeches, the juniors had organised a cultural programme followed by DJ session.
The moment the DJ session began, Niket pulled Arpit on the dance floor. Madhu and Swami joined in. Arpit loved dancing, but he was in no mood for it. As he grooved minimally, his roving eyes tried to find Latika in the crowd – he finally found her, talking to Abhinav.
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