Isha pounded on the heavy oak doors relentlessly, her knuckles red and swollen from too much knocking and her voice hoarse from excessive shouting. She was bent on ignoring the pain, however, and was quite determined to continue pounding on the door, even if it meant hours more of waiting, shouting, and knocking. She was going to make herself heard no matter what. She was going to make him see the error of his ways. Damn it all, she was going to make him pay.
He went too far this time.
“Javed, I know you’re in there! Open up! Open the door right this – ”
Startled by the abrupt slam the door made as it was swung open, Isha backed away slightly. She stared at the man in front of her, his dark hair disheveled, his eyes red and smoldering in barely-controlled rage, his mouth twisted in a hideous snarl. For a second, she thought he was a monster and had to take a further step back. But then she realized he was wearing his pajamas, odd bunny-patterned ones, and realized that the man wasn’t a monster – he was just someone who was rudely roused from slumber. Emboldened, she took some steps forward.
“Oh, you know perfectly well why I’m here, Javed!”
The snarl had twisted into a smile – mocking and patronizing.
“Come to play savior for little Harshita again, Isha? Well, how nice of you.”
Isha ignored the slur to her character and tried instead to focus on the reason she went there in the first place.
“I came back to get her things. She asked me to. Now if you don’t mind, please move aside.”
She pressed forward, intent on entering the house and getting what she came there for, but before she could enter, a hand shot out, barring her way in.
The words were whispered, venomous and scathing. And when she looked up at the speaker, she saw that he was smiling – sinister and cold – but she didn’t miss it. No, she didn’t miss the doubt that flitted through his eyes. It disappeared quickly, but she saw it, she was sure.
She had to commend him for his perceptiveness though. He was right, of course, she was lying. He treated Harshita like trash, but Isha had to hand it to him, he sure knew his girl inside out.
But this time, he wasn’t completely sure, and now she had the upper hand.
“You know you can’t blame her, Javed. You’re much too fond of breaking your toys.”
She reached out, grabbing the long sinewy arm that blocked her way, moved it to the side, and went inside. Aisha wouldn’t like it, but she had to keep up this farce. It was for her friend’s own good. Javed wasn’t good for her. He wasn’t good for anyone.