[ Velan a psychiatric patient meets an educated employed slum girl at the beach. He at the same time develops camaraderie with a female blogger]
Velan forgot about the slum dweller Mercy when he was blogging actively. He was intrigued and drawn to the blogger Deepa. Yet at the back of his mind Mercy always remained. He smiled as he thought idly that where would the world be without Mercy. He intended to call her but stopped short each time. They had willingly exchanged phone numbers so she wouldn’t mind his calling screamed his brain. Yet another part of him worried that she approached him out of sympathy and now if he called her she might get annoyed and brush him off.
He fidgeted with his mobile as he sat before his laptop in his room. Then finally gathering his courage he called her.
She greeted him warmly and said, “I had expected your call way back. What happened were you busy?”
“Me busy? That would be the day. If only I am as busy as the next person I would have no worries,” Velan replied.
“Don’t worry you’ll get there. How is the restaurant work going?”
“It is about to be completed. A week tops. Enough of me, what about you?”
“Me the same routine, work, home, work and fighting with my parents and brother. He doesn’t want to move out from the slums. He is used to being here. So we are not likely to move anytime soon.”
Velan stood up from the chair he was sitting in before the laptop. He was tense and nervous. He had already ran out of ideas, he couldn’t fathom how to keep the conversation going. Fortunately for him Mercy carried on the conversation unmindful of the pause.
She asked, “How do you spend time? You must be busy full time with the restaurant.”
“I do little, It is my brother who does all the work. My work shall start once the restaurant starts. I will be managing the whole show all the time. For now I am busy with my blog,” said Velan.
“Oh, you blog. How nice of you. What do you blog about?”
“Many things but mostly poetry.”
“A poet. I should have guessed from the way you were sitting all alone in the beach. Your brother must love you so much to take care of you and set up a restaurant for you.”
“Oh, we fight a lot. Sometimes it gets near to being physical. But he takes care of me. Especially when I lose… my mind literally. I told you about my psychiatric condition, didn’t I? But I hate his guts.”
“I understand full well. Elder brothers can be tiring when they get all bossy and overprotective of you. My brother is also like that.”
“What does your brother do?”
“He is a fisherman.”
“Does he have a boat?”
“If that is the case we wouldn’t be in the slums. He works for a boat owner.”
“Can he take me in the boat to the sea.”
“Ha, ha, ha…” Mercy laughed heavily at this and added, “Of course I will ask him. You fix the time and place.”
“How about this Sunday at evening. For I wake at noon and mornings are not possible for me.”
“Yes, it is a date. Err… by date I didn’t mean a Date, Date. Okay whatever Sunday it is then. If you wake at noon how will you manage the restaurant?”
“I am trying to wake up early.”
“Okay, my mom is calling. Keep calling whenever free. Don’t be a stranger.”
Velan after ending the call felt like he was on cloud nine. He was in no mood to sit before the laptop. He instead lied down on his cot and daydreamed about himself and Mercy.