Tuesday, October 21, 2008

A strange meeting

I was in love

insanely in love with another

blind to everyone and everything

around me

nothing mattered or made a difference

except for him

no man could compare to my love

until that night

when I met you

you took my breath right away….
All the while you spoke
I just stared at you ….

Unable to tear my gaze from the demonic incarnate of handsomeness

In front of my eyes
First time in my life I felt this way….
Like some naive, nervous teenager
confused, afraid and overpowered by a stranger

clad in black

Your eyes so disturbing
Your image still burns in my vision
What was it about you that totally

mesmerised me

Your perfect physique
..honey tan complexion
The color of your eyes…

that dark lock on your forehead

matched outside with darkness of the night

Your deep voice so sensual

That genuine slight smile playing often on your lips

Your concern for me deeply touched me
Your honesty


Or the fact that a stranger

Was going out of his way for me…

We both could feel the growing


Amidst everything

I reminded myself I belonged to another

Suddenly I was in a rush for our meeting to end

as these emotions were disturbing and alien to me

yet what was it about you

that I still can’t forget

The impression you have left behind
is so hard to forget
I wonder if I ever cross your mind

as every now and then I often think of that night
There is something about you…
This tells me
our paths are destined to cross again
you and me

shall meet once again….

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

The Indian Bride -- A clip on death

The shadows fear his presence

as he stands flawlessly created
the angel of death

His purpose?

To take your life away

no matter what you do or say

there is no avoiding him

he'll attend this appointment with you

whether you're sleep or awake

whether you’re in the middle

of an important business seminar

on the road

at work

in the house doing your daily chores

or in the arms of your beloved

No amount of bribes

nor that money you make

can tempt him from performing his daily duty

He won’t show you any mercy

when it's your time to go
You can’t turn back time then

delete any crimes you have done

its too late

The angel of death

will take us all
his mission

to bring back

every soul back to see

to see

who they were

to know they were seen

Seen in this world

for all their deeds

by the greatest of all

our Supreme Being

The angle of death you know not my fate

until my Lord commands

I be dead

My heart Allah

it feels your mercy

from every hardship came ease

I tell you I'm lonely

as I cry on my knees
I raise my hands up towards you my Lord

in a state of fear

I beg of you my Lord

lift me high before I fall
Let my appointment

with angle of death be sweet and of beauty

On my day

let kindness and mercy be his only duty

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Essence of The Indian Bride - who danced in Shackles

Betrayal is a conspiracy

I feel nothing but all dead inside

You've already lost my trust

Destroyed my faith in you thus all my feelings are gone

Whenever the shadows of times cast its

darkness around me

It's like repeatedly stabbed by a knife

your razor sharp lies still cuts like a double edge sword

deep into my soul
your betrayal

pushed me to the edge

How could you?

And if I do answer that incessant ringing in my soul

would the old wounds disappear?

can I ever bring myself to trust you again?

I find I remind myself again and again

that betrayal is a conspiracy

And then in the darkness once more I hear you cry out my name

its like an echo which slowly fades into the night

an eerie doleful resonance

But is that really you I hear

Or is that yet just another figment of my imagination

Betrayal is indeed a conspiracy

You are good as dead for me now!

Copyright Raveena Khan 2008

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Extracts from Part 3

Time seems to stand still. In the far background, Raza Khan Pahlavi, stunned and livid witnessed the scene playing before him. His fists clenched then unclenched as the other man’s lips traveled over his wife’s throat with such passion that she moaned with deep pleasure and then trembling, she pressed herself hard against him in total surrender. He watched as her lips parted and his mouth descended upon her.
The wavering faint light in some corner of his heart, ignored most of the time yet its existence undoubtedly real ,now flickered one last time before dieing out like a candle in some ferocious wind. His body shook with unrestrained violence.

His wife in the arms of her lover!

His wife?

He swallowed the uncomfortable knots of saliva which gathered at the back of his throat and said tremulously, “Maa there isn’t a day which goes by when I don’t miss you - you are forever in my heart.”

He bend and brushed the dead leaves and earth from his mother’s grave. Then straightening as he turned to leave he felt that recognizable hand clap of reassurance descend slowly down his right shoulder. His eyes shut for a split second.

He’s mother’s touch of support.

Raza then turned back sharply. All he could see was a quiet grave yard and rustling tress in the wind. A wan smile on his lips, he turned back again. A mother held her children’s hands for a while but their hearts forever.

Even death couldn’t break that tie between Mother and Son.

Khalida locked her fingers together and took a deep breath which was audible to everyone in the room and which expressed that she was finding the whole ordeal a struggle.

“Raveena…instead of me explaining it’s best you read this dairy for yourself. She paused then resumed, “Aunt Sakeena gave this dairy to us just before we left for Melbourne. In there she has a lot to say - which involves us and our lives – I suggest you read it immediately.”

The saying is so true – what goes around, comes around. They say writing is a form of therapy, question is, do I need a therapist?

Perhaps I do. Perhaps I don’t. ……………..

The sun’s warm rays streaked from the gap between the hastily drawn drapes, over onto the bed quilt and seem to hit directly upon Sadiya, stirring her awake, as she lay on her side with Raza Khan Pehlvi’s muscular dark arm encircling her waist. Slowly turning on her back, she leaned on her elbow and gazed at the dark, handsome sensual face.

Hmmm…she licked her lips greedily. She could never have enough of him. She had had several discreet flings before meeting him two years ago at the Oxford where she was studying to be a fashion designer, but he was the ultimate.

He was her Lion. Her Lion king. In and out of bed. In a few months he would be her husband. Her husband! Hmmm….Mrs Sadiya Pahlavi, now that sounded perfect.

And incredibly handsome man. His name Raza, perfected his personality. Powerful, handsome and smart with a witty sense of humor but lately, strangely he had become moody and irritable, which lead to a lot of argument and tension between the couple. Then in a few days he would cool off, and show up at her doorstep with roses in his hand apologizing for acting like bear with a sore head and instantly she would find herself forgiving him. Afterwards they would make love for hours end.....


“Powel’s man were doing some coverage in Dubai on the late oil baron Adil Dawud, apparently moments ago they also covered the formal wedding of his son, Anwar Dawud …to.Sadiya Sidqi from central London, United Kingdom.”

In the depth of his heart it was there and also present around him in spite of people, his true companion now, silence. He could hear it crying like a dying owl, self-conscious, desolated, desperate and alone, silence.

He coughed slightly as though to clear his throat. He coughed again and then again. Wow…the pain lifting from his chest up to his throat, neither sharp nor stabbing, neither faint nor shallow…how could he describe it? He lifted Geoff’s unfinished scotch from the bar drank it all one gulp as though it was some sort of medicine which would provide him with instant relief. Raza’s whole being seemed to be on raging fire. Yet it was distinct from the conflagration rapidly spreading inside his chest. God help him, how would he saturate that.

Coughing he turned and without a word started towards where the car was parked. The driver quickly held the door open for him with respect. He climbed into his seat at the back at the same pushing his dark sunnies over his eyes.

“Hey dude I am sorry. I’m so sorry?” Geoffrey murmured miserably not knowing what to else to say.

Still coughing Raza wiped the corners of his mouth with his white with blue strips handkerchief on which were engraved his initials.

Depression was a constant visitor now

Pain was unavoidable

Deafening noise swirled around him like gigantic angry ocean waves

Trying to reason a single voice speaking inside his head was like trying to catch a snowflake

His impaired fate suddenly very quiet.

Destruction total and absolute.

Life and love lay in ruins.


Raveena flopped on her bed over which was strewn her text books and once again stared at his picture taken beside Stephanie inside some Royal Yacht in Mumbai India. He seemed to be enjoying yet his eyes…something about his eyes, they seemed remote as though as something was bothering him. Almost immediately she chided at herself for been silly and over imaginative.

Yet she couldn’t prevent her heart knotting inside her breast. She shut her eyes and rested the newspaper on her breast then stared up at the ceiling and the voice inside her head cried……

♪It’s been a million years since♪

I touched you,

I thought time might help me win this game

But been away from you is slowly driving me insane…♪


“I…see…” She tried to console the other woman not really knowing really what else to say, except empathize with her. Raveena put her arms around the other woman. “I do understand.”

“No!” The woman shrugged her off. “No you don’t understand.” Her face crumbled. Clutching her boy tightly against her heart. she started to weep loudly “You are not the one with a handicapped child!.”

Sometimes humanity and appreciation of every good life bestows no matter how big or small shines brightest under harsh and inhumane conditions.

And that moment Raveena’s whole course of life changed though she realised it much later.

Happiness….a rare blessing to mankind.

Love…the surrogate name for pain.

The lonely walk in the path of life a reality.

She took a very deep breath and then turned her head up towards the sky.

“Since the heart is a place where love comes from, now where does this love go when the heart dies? Back to the dead heart where it came from or turn into blood cascading from the eyes?”

Copyright Raveena Khan 2008

You are my sunshine,
My only sunshine.
You make me happy
When skies are grey.
You'll never know, dear,
How much I love you.
Please don't take my sunshine away

I'll always love you
And make you happy
If you will only say the same
But if you leave me
To love another
You'll regret it all some day
You are my sunshine
My only sunshine
You make me happy
When skies are grey
You'll never know, dear
How much I love you.

Please don't take my sunshine away

Friday, June 27, 2008

Extracts From Part 2

Salman closed his eyes briefly then without warning, in one movement with the back of his hand, he swept the dishes off the counter and they scattered onto the floor, shattering to bits.

“You don’t like me touching you because your heart is still with him! I don’t know how much of this I can take anymore!”

Raveena gazed at the pieces of broken plate near her feet, then back at him in bewilderment. She had never seen this side to him.


Tonight, those usually gentle green eyes flashed like raging fire.

“I feel like choking you when you take his name, you have no idea what goes inside my chest, when you talk about him, when you gaze at him with your heart in your eyes. Now I’m beginning to wonder how long my so called relationship with you can last under the shadow of the great Raza Khan Pahlavi!”

Outside the night was cool, and strangely quiet. Tress on the nature strip swayed eerily in the gentle northerly gust. The full moon shone brightly in the partially clouded sky.

The streetlight near Raveena’s window blinked twice and then made a buzzing noise before dying out.

A black cat from nowhere crossed the road.

The cat looked straight up at Raveena’s bedroom window, her ears pointy as if on alert. Her eyes were shinning like gems in the darkness; she drew her teeth back into a snarl. She then bounced her way up to Raveena’s windowsill and started to moan softly, followed by deep throaty cries.

Back in her bed, Raveena was in deep sleep when suddenly she started to thrash around in her bed restlessly.

The recurring dream she hadn’t had for sometime returned with an unusual sense of terror. This time acutely, she could hear herself laughing chaotically as she gazed down at the ferocious waves. “Take me,” she whispered, looking into the waves and laughing, while the intense gust of wind pulled her sari tighter around her body.

“Die Raveena Die! Die! Die! Kill yourself now!”

“What time are we expecting to be landing in Mississippi Tom?”

“Tomorrow morning by 8 am local time sir.” Tom lifted his cap in a polite acknowledgment of Raveena then went back inside his cabin

Her heart aching, she turned to Raza as the jet roared to life. He looked at her visibly upset face and a shadow fell across his face. It was almost like he wanted to say something but then once more his profile hardened. A tear escaped from her lashes and slid down her face. She bit her lip to stop it from trembling.

“I love you,” she said, flicking her hair from her face as the wind from the jet pushed it back in her eyes again.

“Take care, I will be in touch.” He touched the side of her face in a tender gesture and disappeared inside the cabin without a backward glance.

She stood there watching the doors roll back with a heavy heart. She stepped back as the jet accumulated the speed required to take off from the ground. She couldn’t stop the tears from running down her face as the jet raced down the runway ready to fly now. The fuselage of the aircraft, sleek and smooth, lifted up, causing the long curved wings to tilt and then powerfully the aircraft rose high into the air heading towards the sunset horizon. Though the sun felt hot on her face, she shivered uncontrollably and hugged herself as a strong gust of wind blew her clothes tightly against her body.

He had left…and once more, she was alone, left with only his memories.

“What do I call you now?” Her eyes glittering akin to something which could only be termed close to insanity run a chill down his spine as she let the rain from the heavens mingle on her face with her tears.

Bhaiya like Khalida does?”

He shut his eyes very tightly and held his face up against the rain, letting the drops batter onto his face relentlessly. When he finally opened them, they were bloodshot.

“Raza,” he shouted against the roar of the rain, his eyes now smoldering. “Just Raza.”

She stepped closer to him and cried against the roar of the rain, thunder and the wind. “I still see the world in your eyes and your eyes everywhere in this world.”

Brushing the rain back from his face with his hand, he said slowly as the rain grew torrent, “Love is a language spoken by everyone, but understood only by a heart.”

Copyright Raveena Khan 2008

Thursday, June 19, 2008

BraveHeart -William Wallace

Death is the final measure of a man.

Every man dies. Not every man really lives.”

~ William Wallace ~ – the Braveheart

Death smiles at us all. All a man can do is smile back.

~ Maximus Decimus Meridius~

and thus begins the saga in
The Indian Bride -Who danced in Chains

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Extracts from The Indian Bride - who danced in chains - Part One

It was 12:10 pm exactly when Raveena parked her car alongside the street at Riverside Quay South bank and stepped inside the elevator pressing for the 14th floor. The elevator was jam-packed with people, some who worked there in the building and others who just wanted to tour the building and try out the Eureka’s sky deck. Raveena, scared of heights, couldn’t possibly imagine herself journeying up to the sky deck. Her thoughts drifted back to Yaseer and her heart started to race once more. Only two more days left! Oh she couldn’t wait to see her darling. As the elevator began its ascent, she was pleased to note that her thoughts were as they should be.

The elevator door opened at the 5th floor and a young tall and handsome man stepped in. He had his arms around a young woman and it was obvious to her they were besotted with each other from they way they held onto each other.

Raveena shut her eyes momentarily and wished with all her heart, that when she opened them a miracle would happen. She would find the man she loved the most in this world beside her. Oh wistful thinking again, she reproached herself silently. There is only two more days left…just two more days, she consoled herself with forced gaiety.

“Now reaching level ten, the automated voice on the lift sounded almost musical. She slowly opened her eyes and realised she was staring straight into those dark and now so familiar features.

Oh Lord no, not him!

Raza in his tan business attire, carrying a leather briefcase, stepped into the elevator. If he was surprised to see her that certainly didn’t register on his profile, which left her musing so to how controlled the man’s expression always were. He gave her a brief nod in acknowledgment that she ignored on purpose, instead feigning interest in her fingernails.

She didn’t want to speak to the man. She absolutely resented his arrogant presence. As the last remaining four occupants beside them filtered out on the 11th floor, Raveena realised she was now alone with him. Her heart was racing so madly against her ribs, that she was almost positive he could hear it. Nervously she coiled a lock of her hair around her finger, wishing with all her heart that they reached the 14th floor in next to no time.

She couldn’t understand, nor could she explain to herself why she felt such a desperate need to get as far away from him, as humanly possible.

“Relaxxxxx, I don’t touch married women.” His lazy tones cut through the silence.

Her face burned. It was as if this man could actually read her befuddled bundle of thoughts and then map them out for her. Furthermore, he had an uncanny knack of making her understand precisely what it was that really disturbed her.

But today she wasn’t going to give him the contentment of knowing he was right, that would only add to his already over-inflated ego! The doors opened on the 13th floor and she looked around hoping against all odds that this stop might bring some passengers in, but alas her heartfelt hope remained unanswered. Anyway she reassured herself, just one more floor, not long now.

“What’s that got to do with me?” she couldn’t resist asking him as her chin lifted in impertinence.

His hooded eyes showing suppressed laughter, he replied offhandedly, “Blimey you are acting like an untouched bride whose virginity is under threat by some hungry dog.”

She found herself drawing in a sharp intake of breath. Good Lord this man was too much for her. He was far too worldly with a razor-sharp mind and an equally jagged tongue. Raveena was never easily bullied, nor pressured. Although she was recognised as inherently kind and compassionate among her own circle of friends, she didn’t suffer fools gladly and was also known to have an answer for everything.

However today she found that she didn’t know how to handle this man, whose constant presence increasingly threatened to shatter her securely sheltered world. How and why, she didn’t know. And if she were honest, she was too terrified to probe any deeper into it.

Her heart leaped with relief as the automated lift message announced, “Now reaching level fourteen.” Oh thank God finally! Eagerly she waited for the doors to slide open. When the steel doors remained sealed, she pressed the open door button on the wall.


She tried again, this time pressing it so hard that the mark from the door button imprinted onto her thumb.

Still nothing.

“What is wrong here,” she turned to him in panic. He shrugged effortlessly, seeming not in the least bit concerned. “Dunno, most probably a malfunction.”

She gaped at him wondering how he could manage to appear so calm, and sound so cool and collected when she was already starting to feel suffocated inside the enclosure of the four walls.

“A malfunction? Then what are we going to do about it?”

Why oh why was this happening to her? The more she wanted escape from him, the more she found herself ensnared with this man!

“Just relax, take a deep breath and relax.” He reached for the phone on the wall, dialled the emergency number and then briefed the operator about the status of the elevator. Hanging up he turned to her.

“As I said earlier a malfunction, shouldn’t be too long,” he said briskly running his hand through his hair.

“But how could this be possible?” She started to bite her nails apprehensively.

“And why isn’t a mishap possible?” He inquired calmly, leaning against the wall with a lift of his thick arched eyebrows.

“Because…because…,” she trailed off helplessly not knowing how to reply to him. What could she say to him anyway? There wasn’t much she could say without sounding foolish. Suddenly exasperated she felt like kicking the four walls inside the cramped space. Why was this happening to her?

“Yeah go on because of what ner ner ner?”

“Why don’t you call me Raveena? Why do you always call me ner ner ner!” she fired instead. As though the stupid darn elevator was not enough, the nerve racking effect the man had on her made her plight even worse.

“I don’t call married women.” He prevaricate the question, his eyes and the tone of his voice reflecting that he was finding her anger very amusing.

“Listen you know precisely what I meant,” she grated through her teeth.

“Ner ner,” he suddenly sighed loosening his tie. ”We might have to stay here for a couple of hours if it takes the technicians that long to get us out of here, so please I suggest you calm yourself down and try to relax.”

“But why? Why would it take them that long to get us out of here? This is THE EUREKA we are stuck inside, don’t they keep back up emergency plans for such occurrences? I mean come on I’m sure they would, then why should it take them long to get us out of here?”

His eyes leisurely and almost caressingly traveled the length of her. He shook his head slightly. Good grief, this teenage bride was full of questions. Her temper…those sudden tantrums of hers, her false airs, she seemed a real handful…yet, undoubtedly, she was alluringly innocent. He chuckled.

“Now why are you laughing?” She frowned, her eyes narrowing suspiciously.

In such a tense setting how could he afford to express amusement? Very likely he was laughing at her…was there something on her face that she wasn’t aware of? Maybe her lip liner or mascara had been accidentally smudged over her face and he was finding her visage comical.

“What do you mean why? Everything for you ends with a why?” he thundered abruptly. “And how the hell would I know how long it would take the technicians to get us out of here. You sound more persistent then my two year old niece, Why? Why? Why?”

Feeling crushed by the roughness in his tone, she sank down on the floor of the elevator. “You have no manners! Your parents didn’t teach you any manners!” she retorted.

“Kindly do not bring my parents into this conversation, they are no more.”

All at once she found her heart opening up to him in compassion.

“Oh I’m so sorry,” she answered apologetically from deep within her heart.

He frowned. “Why are you sorry?” And then he continued harshly, “You didn’t kill them. Every living soul has to taste death eventually that is promised by Almighty Allah. Death is a harsh reality.

This man was too complex for her. To the best of her knowledge, she hadn’t said anything offensive; she had merely expressed her genuine sympathy. Why was he so abrupt and rough at times? He really did a great job in making her feel daft.

Bitting back the sharp retort which rose instantaneously to her lips, she told herself firmly that she wasn’t going to let this man get to her.

“Do you miss your parents?” she found herself asking curiously from her corner of the wall.

“Yes I do from time to time.”

“How long has it been since they passed away?”

Maanji passed away a couple of years ago and my Babajani just a year go.”

“Oh ok…my mother died when giving birth to me,” she said quietly. “Aunt Sara, my mum’s sister, is like my mother. I do love her so much you know, she is my world. But sometimes I feel as though I was robbed of having parents.”

She didn’t know why she was opening up to him and she didn’t particularly care at that moment. Removing his jacket, he sat opposite her on the floor, and stretched his legs out. She couldn’t believe that a man of his status and power sat opposite her on the floors of the elevators like some carefree youth.

“Parents? And your father?”

“I don’t know much about my father, my aunt never speaks of him.”

“I see,” he replied and left it there.

“Would you like one?”

She offered him a bubble gum from the packet inside her bag. She certainly needed her sugar fixes, it always seem to have a calming effect on her. With much reluctance Raveena had ignored her favourite lolly pops inside her bag on purpose, assuming that he would really take her for a child if he saw it in her mouth again.

“Errrrm…ner ner thanks but no.”

Though he declined politely, he seemed openly amused. Then he smiled at her slowly, a smile so captivating that she felt mesmerized by it. A silence pregnant with anticipation suspended between them as he studied her, while she nervously averted her eyes.

The sound of somebody’s cell phone ringing was like a knife slicing through the air between them. She watched as he took out his cell, held it in front of him looked at the screen and then switched it off.


The instant those words left her bubble gum mouth, she felt really naive. The call could have been from anyone. He must really consider her an utter airhead now.

“Actually more like my woman.” She was stuck by his candour.

His woman? Who was his woman? Stephanie?

Hmmmm…his woman…she felt an uncomfortable sensation inside her heart. Why did his declaration cause her heart to sink? He wasn’t her boyfriend, lover or husband? Who he saw romantically was his business not hers!

“Then why didn’t you answer it?” Her eyes were wide with perplexity.

“When women get too possessive and clingy, to me they lose their appeal. I like everything in moderation, except for sex and for that I have all the stamina in the world.”

“Adultery is a sin in our religion!”

Later on Raveena often marvelled at what had gotten into her during those moments trapped inside the lift with him. Usually a reserved person especially when it came to open discussion about sex, she was instead recklessly outspoken during those moments.

“Being married to one and thinking of another man is also a sin,” he quipped immediately followed by a wink.

Her face flamed. She knew the implication behind his words. Damn him, did he have to constantly throw her earlier stupid infatuation with him right back into her face? But she was over him now! Well and truly over him!

Wasn’t she?

0f course she was!

“Adultery is a grave sin,” she persisted, choosing to ignore his jibe but not for the world could she hide her open curiosity “Why don’t you get married instead?”

“Hmmm…I don’t want to get tied to one particular woman, which is why. Besides, a wife can be a pain at times.”

“How would you know if you were never married…or were you?”

“No I’m not married and never was. Let’s say I ‘m a good observer…and now are you my mum?” he said with a studied smile.

“So mean!”

“I’m sorry if that sounded mean to you. Listen ner ner, I have a few principals which I adhere to. I won’t date a married woman, even if she turns out to be the most beautiful woman on the face of this earth. I don’t drink alcohol; don’t do drugs, neither do I gamble. I love my faith as you do but I’m not perfect. I enjoy women – get that it is as simple as that.”

“I see,” she said somewhat furiously.

“Good and now let’s get back to you – when are you expecting hubby back home?”

“Yaseer,” she took his name lovingly, her eyes lighting up with warmth.

“On Friday.”

His eyes held hers. She didn’t understand why he was watching her with such detailed critical scrutiny. It made her uneasy and breathless.

“How long have you known him for?” His question forced her to look up at him.

“Ever since early childhood, he has been my next door neighbour for as long as I remember.”

“Ohhhh I see! So was he your first boyfriend or was he your first lover?”

She tugged at her wedding ring nervously. Why was he speaking to her so unreservedly? It appeared to her that all his natural sensuality along with his education and wealth must had gone to his head. He was treading on dangerous waters, asking her such intimate questions, which no other man had asked before. Her father-in-law and husband would be outraged, if they ever found out how blatant he had been in all his conversations with her.

But would she tell them?

“Why do you ask me such intimate questions?”

He smiled and crooked his head to an angle. “You’re telling me you have never discussed sex with another man but Yaseer, whom you have experimented with obviously?” There was a hard edge to his tone as he said the last few words.

“I haven’t experimented anything with him or anyone for that matter yet.”

It was out of her mouth before she could hold it back. Oh she was such a stupid woman, why did she have to say that? Her effusive outburst was in direct reaction to the underlying accusation in his tone.

“Forget I said that,” she got to her feet and buried her face in her hands.

“No I won’t.” Slowly he got to his feet. ”So you’re telling me you are a virgin?”

He seemed almost stunned.

Her hands still over her face, she curtained aside her fingers slightly and peeked at him through one eye. He’s eyes twinkling with laughter, he threw his head back and laughed which only made her turn her back on him. This was turning out to be hell embarrassing!

“Ner..ner you aren’t on some stage, stop this shy act of yours and turn around please.”

“I’m not acting ok!” Was this man crazy? How dare he consider what came to her naturally, her modesty, an act?

He sighed rolling his eyes heavenward. “Fine my apologies now turn around.”

Unwillingly she yielded to his request, or was that an order? Winding a strand of her hair around her finger, she averted her eyes from his.

“Yaseer’s friend met with an accident on the night of our wedding so he had to leave me that night to be with his friend and his family.” She didn’t know why she felt the need to elucidate, but strangely she felt she had to. Yaseer’s bride had no idea how alluringly innocent she appeared at that moment.

“I see…ummm I thought virgins were extinct in this day and age.” His eyes narrowed, he seemed lost in thought before he said in clipped tones, “Anyway I bet you can’t wait for your wedding night.”

“Can we change the topic please?” she requested uneasily. He must be truly out of his mind if he, for one moment, considered she was going to discuss intimacy with him.

“No, answer me, you can’t wait to share his bed right?” What was wrong with this man? Why was his face suddenly so thunderous? Enough was enough! He had not a bit of honour left in him. Utterly shameless man!

“Just because you were born with that silver spoon in your mouth doesn’t mean that you have the rights to say what you like when you like and to whom you like. I do not appreciate your bloody intimate questions!”

Raza knew her reservations and understood her tight lipped furious approach perfectly. Yet he found himself enjoying her luscious innocence together with the tantrums of hers. She was quite a revitalising change from the chic and completely uninhabited women he was accustomed to. They were not only candid about their sexuality but also knew the right buttons to press in order to please a man.

He knew the power he had over women. If only it had been some other women, married, or not married, in her place, trapped alone with him she wouldn’t have lost an instant in trying to entice him. But here this red blooded naive young bride of Yaseer Malik,’s was causing him an aching headache with her constant “oh but why?”

Considering the status of the darn elevator and the fact they had no idea when the problem would be remedied, Raza had to admit conversation with her wasn’t that bad, in fact till the elevators were up and running it was good way to pass the time.

“Ner ner ner please, stop with your lectures, you’re giving me a headache. Tell me something honestly, you must be desperately anxious for your hubs to take you in his arms and show you the stars, then bring you back to the world if I may put that mildly with modesty, something you obviously believe I lack in.”

Her temper flared ninety nine degrees and automatically her chin went up in resistance. She flashed him a chilly look. He was a rude, arrogant man, not to mention only interested in conversation revolving around sex!

Well she was fed up with his sex reference conversation. She wasn’t going to answer that, it was as simple as that. Her eyes narrowed as an idea struck her agile mind. She should ask him what his horoscope was! Now that would be the most perfect way to manoeuvrer the topic away from his rude, intrusive and very personal questions.

Once she got him embroiled in discussions about horoscopes, he might forget all about about intimacy.

“What’s your horoscope?” she asked blowing on her bubble gum till it exploded on her face, the pink gum stuck all around her nose.

Oh shit! Oh shit! Her face burned.

What an absurd picture she was painting, with the sticky elastic mess covering her nose. He looked at her and slowly shook his head, his eyes glimmering with laughter.

“My what?” He was sure he had heard her wrong. Good Grief was this woman for real, with her absurd questions and that ridiculous gum over her nose?

“You haven’t asked me my star sign yet,” she frowned rubbing the chew off her nose and mouth. What a looser she was, that she had blown the wretched gum all over her nose. Blowing gums was just a habit, how was she to know that it would get stuck up on her nose, it had never happened before today.

“Oh am I supposed to?” And then he laughed.

“No, “she retorted. “You’re not supposed to, but trapped inside this damn lift, what else we are going to talk about? I’m telling you anyway, I’m a Virgo and now what’s your horoscope?”

“I don’t believe in that crap.” He took the cell out of his pocket.

“Fine at least tell me which month you were born in and from that I shall figure it out myself?”

“November 1st,” he murmured absentmindedly after punching some numbers into his cell, he held it to his ear and then spoke.

“Geoffrey well done dude! ...Yeah I’m fine just a bit tired…..no I’m running late for the meeting.......dude believe me you don’t wanna know where I’m right now.” And then he laughed with a wink at Raveena, who by now was past caring what he thought of her, as she popped a lolly pop into her mouth. She was stressed and she wasn’t risking another bubble gum bubble bursting on her nose. Raveena smiled back at him, thinking how incredibly handsome he looked when he smiled or laughed.

“Anyway dude,” he continued, “I was going through the Wall Street figures this morning and the trading to the volume of shares in foreign exchange was awesome. Aside from the stock markets overall performance of our trading everywhere is simply thriving; thrice what it did last year. And this is because of the entire teams hard effort, especially yours. You deserve a vacation…which starts from now! No ifs or buts........listen save your breath you aren’t getting out of it this easy...officially you are on leave which starts now! Take some time out for the family and take them on a vacation any place in the world – I don’t have to tell you that all expenses shall be taken care of…….listen dude relax, unwind, enjoy, and stop arguing with me on this – my love to Emma and the girls…ciao.”

Slipping his cell back into pocket, he turned to Raveena who had curiosity written all over face.

“Who was that?”

Holding his hands at the back of his neck, he stretched and his eyes racked over her as though he was trying to drive a point home.

“Now why so many, many questions? Listen missy it’s not as though you are my bride or the way people put it, ‘your other half,’ that you just have to know every little thing about me.”

His bride... other half?”

Those words completely muted her as she thought how it would feel to be his bride. To be married to him, to a man with immense sensuality and power and then to be loved by him.

“What’s the matter, cat got your tongue...Mrs Yaseer?”

Mrs Yaseer?

Why did he take her husband’s name so coldly? Maybe he didn’t like Yaseer. But why wouldn’t he like Yaseer? That was one of the most insane suggestions that had ever entertained her mind!

“I don’t feel like speaking to you anymore and you can’t force me to!” Suddenly for some unknown reason she sensed danger in the conversation ahead and felt very disconcerted.

“Force…hmmm…speaking of force, many woman love that, actually they get addicted to it, are you one of them too?

He found himself inching closer to her, and she found herself backing away, until she felt her back pressing against the cold steel interior of the elevator. The atmosphere around them was thick with electricity. She swallowed hard, her heart racing insanely against her breast. He positioned his arms on either side of her, trapping her inside his enclosure. His face was only inches away from hers, and his lips in line with her quivering ones. His hypnotic gaze held hers a prisoner, yet he made no attempt to touch her. Raza’s face contorted with emotions she could never have understood at her young age, but which she would learn about in years to come. She was shocked at herself. Dazed by the deep, deep burning desire to touch his face, to tip toe and kiss him on his forehead, on the tip of that proud nose, then further down on his lips.

At that moment, the world and everybody in it came to a standstill.

His face, his eyes, and his whole being sparked a range of conflicting tumult inside her. This wasn’t only physical attraction, this went deeper, and this was something else. She couldn’t put her finger on it. Yet she could feel it mounting from the core of her being, to such a height that it left her aching to bury her head in his chest and feel his arms around her.

Copyright Raveena Khan 2008