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After spending a complete week sitting and waiting in and around the Babulnath bus stop and not finding any girl who looked even as close as the image he had of Meera, he found himself standing in Vimal Uncle's general store.

The store where he'd met Meera.

Now Vimal Uncle was a friendly shopkeeper.

From the couple of times Vedant had been to his store to buy the daily requirements, he recalled him referring to every customer of his by name.

And because Meera seemed to live in and around the place, he hoped Vimal Uncle would know her whereabouts too.

"Yes, Uncle. Meera Modi. About my age and lives close-"

"-I know who she is!" He cut and Vedant ended up staring at him wide eyed.

"You...you do?"

"Yes. But why do you want to know her whereabouts?"

Was that a tinge of protectiveness he saw in his eyes?

Was Vimal Uncle mistaking him for a creep?

Did Meera have a lot of admirers before him?

Wait. Did I just call myself her admirer?


I'm going to gag.

"She and I..." he tried a hand at explaining, "...we're doing the same professional course. And our bags got swapped in the exam centre. I want to give her her bag back."

Vimal Uncle raised his brows at him with challenge.

But he stood his ground.

He'd not lied to him. It was the truth. Except the fact that his intentions were not just to return her her bag.

He wanted to meet her; wanted to see her reaction when she'd know he'd had her bag all this while and just...get to know her more. As in, get to know her as a person; and not as a diary.

If he would've wanted to just return the bag, he could've easily messaged Aashni on Instagram and explained the situation to be able to contact Meera.

But his desire to see the surprise on her features when she'd find out that he'd had her bag all along held him back.

"Well...what do you want me to tell you?" Vimal Uncle finally asked; after scrutinizing him to the point of embarrassment.

"I don't know. Anything. Where can I find her?"

"She lives close; as you seem to know already. My morals don't allow me to give you her address."

"Uncle...from what angle do I look like a loafer to you?!" He spat all at once.

"Not a loafer. But you are a stranger to her. And I cannot tell you where she lives."

Vedant cursed the Universe coherently for his sheer bad luck. And it sucked that Uncle actually made a valid point.

She may have found him attractive, but she would most certainly freak out to see him at her doorstep. In fact, what would he even say to her?

And God forbid, if one of her many relatives opened the door?

Or worse, her brother Rishi?

What if it landed her in deep shit?

He couldn't let that happen.

"Okay. Thank you." He mumbled, and was almost about to leave when Uncle called.

"I can pass on a message if you want."

He considered that, but realizing even that would defeat his purpose; he shook his head softly and muttering another thanks walked back home.

He considered that, but realizing even that would defeat his purpose; he shook his head softly and muttering another thanks walked back home

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