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Chapter 3 Words Can Leave A Permanent Scar

  • Before she could apologise, Justin spoke “Little girls should not talk about things they know nothing about. You should learn to mind your own business.” Trisha felt her heart shatter into a million pieces. Is that how he saw her, as a little girl. She wanted to cry, but she did not give into her tears, instead she turned it into anger, all the built up hurt and frustration spilled forth as this normally shy and quiet girl had had enough of people treating her like she was their verbal punching bag.
  • “I am just telling you the truth. That is why she will never introduce you to her family or take you home. You should find someone nicer that would be honest with you and would love you for you and with whom you would not be another notch on her belt.” Justin looked shocked at what he had just heard.
  • He let out a crazed laugh, “Ahhhh, I see what the issue is. You are jealous. So Simran was right, you do have a crush on me. So are you suggesting that I date you? I don’t date little girls, especially not ones who don’t even take pride in their appearance, and have their head buried in their books and know nothing about the real world. I date real women.”
  • “Justin, what is wrong with you. You can’t speak to her like that. Don’t vent your anger on Trish.” Trisha looked up to see another of Rakesh’s friend Amith Jindall. He looked at Trisha with concern. She was so hurt by what Justin had just said that she got up and ran into the house. As she entered the house, her brother Rakesh was coming out with snacks, and she nearly knocked him over.
  • “Hey, Trish watch where you are going”. Trisha continued running. She couldn’t believe that Justin had said those things to her. So, he also thought she was fat and ugly and could never have someone fall in love with her. She wasn’t blind. She could see herself in the mirror, but she had never expected him to say something like that to her. She was so embarrassed. He now knew how she felt about him and instead of being flattered, he was disgusted by the thought. Trisha felt her heart shatter into a million pieces and at that moment she really hated Justin and wished that she had never met him.
  • Present
  • “Ladies and Gentlemen, please fasten your seatbelt as we get ready to land”, the announcement brought Trisha back to the present. That was five years ago, but those words still hurt her as if Justin had said it to her just yesterday. Her aunts and cousins always taunted her and she would cry it out and be fine the next day, but Justin's words had left a permanent cut on her heart and no matter what she did, it just never healed. During the five years, she had not been back home, always using her studies as an excuse and recently her job. Her parents and her siblings used to visit her, whenever they got a chance. She used to always be so afraid that Justin would accompany them on one of their trips but he never came. She was conflicted, part of her was disappointed, but another part was happy that she did not have to face him. She had been living with Dadi these last five years and now she was back home. It was her parents’ anniversary and her brothers and sister had decided to throw a huge party for them. Steve squeezed her fingers to let her know that he was there for her. She looked over at Dadi who was now awake and fastening her seat belt. Her parents wanted Dadi to move in with them and Dadi wanted the same as well. Trisha sighed, she will be twenty-one years in a few days, an adult, so she should not let her childhood insecurities get the better of her. It has been five years now and she was positive that she was over the childish crush. She just had to be strong.
  • “Trish, Dadi, over here,” Rakesh waved frantically to get their attention. Trisha walked over and gave her brother a big hug. She had really missed him. She was so relieved that he was alone.
  • “Wow, what happened to my little sister. You cut your hair, I thought you said that you never will. It makes you look like a teenager. Dad is not going to like it.” Trish had had hair that reached to her thighs. Indian men liked their wives and daughters to have long hair. But Trisha had cut her hair into a bob. It outlined her cheekbones, giving her an angelic look. She was dressed in fitting blue jeans, a crop top and takkies. She was totally oblivious to all the admiring looks that she was getting from the guys in the airport. This made her all the more alluring. She was totally unaware of the effect that she had on the opposite sex. She had lost all her baby fat and had a figure that most girls would kill for. Dadi was hugging Rakesh and pulling his ears for irritating his sister. Rakesh and Steve shook hands. Rakesh had liked Steve from the moment they had met and he believed that he was good for Trisha. Dadi, Steve and Trisha followed Rakesh to the car. Trisha took a deep breath praying that for once Justin would not be there and it would just be her immediate family. She was not yet ready to come face to face with him.
  • That evening, as Trisha was getting ready for dinner, her room door suddenly flung open.
  • “Oh, my God, you chopped off your hair. What did dad say?” her sister Anisa asked her as she gave Trisha a big hug.
  • Trisha laughed, “You won’t believe it, he actually teared. You would think that I had cut off my arm.” Anisa laughed.
  • “Where is my nephew?” Trisha looked around for Anisa’s son who was nowhere to be seen.
  • “He is downstairs being spoilt by the grandparents and Dadi. Pretty soon he is going to have a sister or brother.” Trisha screamed in joy and hugged her sister. She had missed her sister, although they spoke every day, it was not the same.
  • “Wow, you are looking really hot and sexy little sister”, Anisa admired the way her sister looked in a short denim skirt and a white shirt. Trisha never used to wear short clothes and used to prefer to keep her body fully covered and so Anisa was happy to see that her sister seemed to have gained some confidence. So, this move had been good for her. Their mother was right, she had said that Trisha going to live with Dadi might bring her out of her shell.
  • “Really, you too. Nothing has changed since the last time you saw me, other than I cut my hair,” Trisha blushed at the compliment. She was not used to people complimenting her and being the center of attention was not something that she liked. She still preferred to be invisible,
  • Her old insecurities still lurked under the surface and was always happy to make an appearance.
  • “Who is here for supper?” Trisha asked nervously, praying really hard that HE will not be here.
  • “It’s just us family tonight, big brother Rahul, our sister-in-law Khushi, my husband Akash, your niece and two nephews, mum, dad, Rakesh and Dadi. Then there is you and your friend Steve. Mum wanted a quiet dinner since tomorrow will be the party and we will not spend any time as a family what with all the relatives and friends that our brothers have invited.” Trisha let out a relieved sigh. Just then she realized what her sister had said, “Why did you just say the word friend in that tone.”
  • “Because we all know that he must be more than a friend,” another voice added. Trisha turned round and squealed in delight and ran to hug her sister-in-law Khushi. Khushi was more like a sister. Her brother could not have found a better partner than their neighbour's daughter.
  • “You cut your hair. You look beautiful” Trisha groaned; everyone was going to pick on that.
  • “Mum sent me to call you guys down. Dinner is ready.” Trisha linked her arms with her sister and sister-in-law and together they walked downstairs. “ It was good to be home. Tonight, she could relax, but tomorrow she would see HIM.