A very loud voice busted the bubble of thoughts in his head.
“Dad, I am confused”, Sharnik said.
“Tell me something new and why are you yelling, you want to tell the entire society you are going to some place special”, he said in a gentle teasing voice and moved to his room.
He was a retired man, the most loved man in the entire society. Wise, humble, very funny and in spite of being single parent he was the best father one could wished for. His wife left him when their only son was 9, almost 18 years have passed but still there is not a day when he didn’t cry for her.
“What have you done to the room”, he looked at the messed up room with eyes wide open.
“Baba, which shirt? “Sharnik said. He was sweating and looked very confused.
“You look hot in everything my boy, they will love you”, he said.
When no response came from his son he said, “Ok! Wipe your face and wear blue.”
“I love you. You are the best baba. Wait here I will change and come”, he rushed to the washroom.
People often used to call Sharnik his younger version. Sharnik, was his 27-year-old son who had a perfect personality and even perfect nature and values. There was nothing in this guy one could question, be it his career, his habits, his attitude, his value he was perfect. He was working in a very prestigious company as a software analyst and was a great painter, singer and cook. What more one could ask for?
The relation between him and Sharnik could never be like a typical dad and son after his wife’s death. In past 18 years, Sharnik has seen a best friend in him, he was his companion to movies, parties, ghazal nights, cricket matches and what not. Somehow the old man was so adjustable and wonderful that he could happily make his place in all the invitation list of Sharnik’s friends and colleagues.
“Tada…! “, he came out of the washroom and looked absolutely flawless.
“My handsome hunk. You gonna break some hearts today. Now go get my daughter-in-law”, He said cheerfully.
Sharnik was going to meet his girlfriend’s parents today. They worked at the same place and were totally in love. They were a very beautiful couple and have decided to take their 2-year-old relation to next stage of marriage.
“All set”, the old man asked.
“Yeah baba” touched his feet and left.
He closed the door and went in the balcony to see him going. He knew he was a lucky man to have a son like Sharnik. He wanted him to settle now and start a new life soon.
It was almost night. He got a little worried, he picked up the phone when suddenly the doorbell rang.
“Baba… I am sorry… so sorry…I am late but there was a lot of traffic and stuff”, he said very quickly,
“How was it”, he asked in a very low voice.
“I don’t know baba, I think I am not ready for marriage right now” he said in a very casual way.
“Hey you..!!! Tell me what did they say”, a firm voice said.
“oh daddy!! There is nothing to worry. We have to do some rethinking, she is coming home tomorrow for lunch”, he said. “Come on baba..!! We got a pizza to finish”.
“Ok fine. She is coming tomorrow?” he asked with glitter in his eyes.
After the pizza party they wished each other goodnight and went to their respective rooms. It was a difficult night for the son and the father, it was the first time Sharnik actually have hidden something from his dad. The old man has seen his child grow, he knew everything about his son and he knew something was not Ok this time.
His girlfriend was the only child of her parents and somehow they didn’t appreciate the idea of Sharnik and their daughter living with his father after marriage. For Sharnik it was a straight no, he loved the lady but he loved his father way more. For long he was tossing and turning on the bed when at 5 he went it deep sleep.
It was 10 in the morning.
His phone rang.
In a very drowsy voice he said “hello”.
“Shar, I going to reach in an hour. You are on bed still?” she was mad at him.
“Oh shit, I am sorry. Ya you come by your time I will be ready, everything will be ready”, he was on his feet and had no idea what to do now.
He tried opening the door of his room, it was locked. He shouted “baba!! baba”
“What happened? Why are you yelling?” his father said on opening the door.
“Why did you lock…” he looked around and words didn’t come out of his mouth.
“When did you do all this, like the curtains, I didn’t know we had such pretty things in the house. The carpet. Wait did you cook too”, he asked with surprise.
“Yes my son. Your dad is the best I know that”, he laughed and moved to the kitchen.
“She isn’t coming for the first time”, he said.
“I know it but I want to make it special this time. I want to tell her that she isn’t coming to a house where two stupid males reside but she is coming to a palace of which she will be the queen.” He said in a very royal voice.
“You can write dialogues for daily soaps baba”, he laughed and went to his room.
After 40 mins there was a knock at the door. Sharnik opened the door and saw his girlfriend along with her parents.
“Oh what a pleasant surprise! Uncle Aunty!” it was a weird tone and indeed was filled with so much surprise.
“Welcome”, the old man said from behind.
It was not the type of house her parents were expecting. It was done, very beautifully. The old man had done the best he could, everybody sat on the white L-shaped sofa and discussions started over tea from history of families to work to retired life to kids. Everything was discussed and talked about. The room was filled with laughter, after all old man was one hell of a humorous guy. He narrated stories of Sharnik’s childhood and how hard it was for him to raise him all alone.
Hours passed like minutes and lunch was served. The food was delicious, her father couldn’t stop himself from praising the old man again and again.
It was 5 and it was time for their departure and soon they left.
Sharnik was happy but confused. No one talked about the marriage. Neither his dad nor her dad, he didn’t wanted to ask anyone about it when he walked into his room and saw an envelope.
He opened it and it said,
“I was very irritated when she was forcing me to meet your father at least once. I constantly thought while sitting in the car what is so special about your dad which she wanted me to see. And now I am thanking god I came. Sharnik till now I was sure you are a great guy but now I know you are a great son of a great father. Let’s meet up on next Friday to fix the dates for your engagement.
to be father-in-law”