CHAPTER 2 – HER STORY
Rajashree lay on her bed, sleep eluding her. She was in a state of pleasurable excitation. She felt good; on top of the world. The day had passed in a haze of delight. Rajashree had never imagined that such a seemingly trivial experience would give her so much pleasure and bring happiness into her life. But this was no synthetic experience. It had been genuine and real – had actually happened to her – and was profoundly affecting her. She explored her own feelings, the stimulus of the welter of events and her response.When she had first noticed the handsome, bearded man staring at her, she was uncomfortable but had resigned herself to his ogling – what she believed was a masculine propensity in Indian society. Maybe he was just looking in her direction, since she was sitting with a group of women. She decided to ignore it. In any case, she couldn’t do anything about it.
But curiosity got the better of her. After some time she looked in his direction through the corner of her eyes. He was still looking at her. She got confused. “What was his motive?” she wondered. Was he trying to seduce her? She dare not smile back or appear too friendly lest he misinterpret it as a sign of easy availability. Rajashree felt irritated at the invasion of her private space. His visual intrusion was disturbing the equilibrium of her personal inner zone.
CHAPTER 3 – HER STORY (..continued)
Suddenly the lights came on. As she got up she came into eye contact with him. She tried to avoid his gaze. But she could not avert the magnetic pull of his eyes. She looked straight into his eyes, trying to project defiance. But when she saw the genuine ardor and frank admiration in his eyes, her defenses broke down and she smiled.
At the tea break, as she picked up a cup of tea, Rajashree searched for him. He had not come out. Rajashree sat down in a remote corner. Sipping her tea, she explored her feelings. The seemingly trivial encounter had definitely raised her spirits. She felt good. Fresh, buoyant and youthful, Rajashree was no clairvoyant to look into the province of Sanjay ’s mind, but she was curious to know the extent of his feelings.
“What does he want from me? “ she wondered. “Is he really attracted to me or is it my vicarious imagination titillating me?”
Rajashree made a spontaneous decision, trusting her intuition. If he was playing a game, she too would join in. A bit of harmless flirtation never hurt anyone. She went into the auditorium and sat on a vacant seat much closer to him. She noticed that the man was sitting silently with his eyes closed, as if he were meditating. Even as she was feeling a flush of disappointment, he suddenly opened his eyes. The astonishment evident in his surprised eyes made her realize that she had been ogling at him unabashedly. She quickly turned her eyes away in momentary sense of guilty embarrassment, and then recovered.
He had shifted to a better position and was smiling at her. She felt a tremor of anticipation at his positive response and teased him with her eyes. She surrendered herself and her inhibitions to the mysterious rhythm of their spontaneous interaction and locked her eyes into his, radiating unconcealed feelings of joy. As they made delicate love to each other with their eyes, she experienced immense enjoyment and unparalleled pleasure. It was the first genuine physical attraction she had felt for anyone since her bitter divorce. It had been a long time ago, and not since then had the mere sight of a man aroused the womanhood in her to such an extent.