Monday, June 21, 2010

The Ugly side of a perfectly normal person!

Well, the title might have given a vague idea but I know it won’t lend that much clarity to you now. At some point of time, in our life, each one of us becomes a Ravanan! Oh no, not the Mani ratnam’s film! The bad side of a person surfaces more than once in his or her life when they least expect it, making them evil. Some people have no idea that they have turned into one while some do get it but they continue doing it anyway. Let me start off with a story which happened to a friend a few years back. I will give you one disclaimer; our protagonist is not a typical hero you see in films. He is a normal person. He reflects you. Whenever I want to say something in between the story, I will *beep* you.

Year 2007. Divya had been in Ravi’s life for a quite some time. It all started when they participated in the college cultural function. Every year, the Computer science students were divided randomly into four groups and competition were held between them. The day was called as the ‘CSE Fest’. Dance, drama, adzap and what not! Drama was the toughest category. The other competitions didn’t require any acting or dialogues as such which made drama a no-taker. No one was willing to even audition for the roles. Yes, the story was ready. It was penned by Ravi himself who was a well-known writer in college. He was a college hero with two best selling books to his credit. He was liked by all for his charming and soft nature. When they were about give up, there was one girl, Divya, a fresher in college, who agreed to audition for the role of Laila, the protagonist of the drama. She was everything what Ravi wanted. He couldn’t take his eyes off her when they were rehearsing. She was stunning to look at and her acting, wow! It was something he hadn’t seen in any of the amateurs who had auditioned for his stage dramas. Gradually, he was falling for her. He was in his third year which meant he had lot of free time to kill. Whenever he was free, he would go to her class and whisk her away for rehearsals. The skit was about a couple who broke off a year back, only to meet again when the guy gets engaged and decides to give the first invite to his first love. Day by day, Ravi started to hate Amit more than he hated anyone else in his life. For those who are still in confusion, Amit played the role of Guru, Laila’s ex-lover. The story had numerous flashback scenes where they are being close, holding hands and all that stuff. The closeness wasn’t much but the after effect was proving costly. Even after the rehearsals, Amit walked Divya to her class, chatting with her all the while. If he had picked a normal looking guy for the role, it wouldn’t be bad. But this guy, Amit, he was handsome! That made it even more difficult for Ravi. The following night, Ravi sat down at his desk with a cup of coffee and the script in his hand.

*Beep one*, this particular night marked the birth of Ravi’s bad side. Like I said earlier, there are two groups of people. Well, Ravi belonged to the second group. He knew very well that he was doing an evil thing!

Ravi sat down to redo his script. He worked for two hours straight to cut off Guru’s character and still have the same effect of the original story. But it wasn’t working for him. Ravi was a wizard when it came to stories; he could change a bad one-liner into an epic story. Something was holding him back, maybe his good side; the critic inside him bashed the story as nothing more than a wimpy portrayal of a contorted storyline. He had already committed to directing the drama and he had no way of getting out of it. He tore out the pages in anger, his face turning red. He took the coffee cup and threw it at the wall smashing it into pieces.
“Ravi, what happened?” someone knocked on the door. It was his mom.
“I… I am fine. I just dropped the coffee cup. Going to sleep now, good night!” he said, clenching his fists in fury.
He lay down on his bed, looking up at the ceiling, the deep rage inside him reaching the highest degree. It was a long night. He kept squirming in bed until the clock beside his bed struck 5 am. Then the thought sprang up from nowhere. He stopped for a minute, taking in all the stuff that could make it happen. He let out a malicious grin and was fast asleep in minutes.

The next day dawned bright and clear. He was all smiles when he reached the college and all his friends were looking at him in a different light. Little did they know that their friend was in a devilish mood. The rehearsal started and not in a good way. Amit came in, an hour late.
“An hour late, Amit. What were you doing? Counting the eggs you laid yesterday?” Ravi said laughing, his friends joining him. Amit being a second year student couldn’t say anything to his senior except “I messaged you, Ravi. That I will be coming late. I was at my uncle’s place and it is really far off from college.”
“Don’t turn it around on me, ok? I didn’t get any message!” he said, smiling at what he had done. He had erased the message right when he got it. “Guys, have a look at my mobile.”
His friends checked the mobile and obviously came up with the answer which made Ravi happy while it made Amit look like a liar.
“Hereafter call me. Anyway, from the top, people” Ravi said. All through the rehearsal, he kept picking on Amit and sometimes when it was quite obvious he was picking on him on purpose, he would change the focus for once, to Divya, so as to make others think that ‘Ravi was an ethical person’. But the damage was on Amit. At the end of the rehearsal, Amit looked like a complete idiot. Ravi went over and talked to Divya. ‘Talked’ would be a misnomer; ‘Flirted’ would be the apt word. This was his only chance to chat with her and to become friends with her. After the fest, it might prove difficult. He had to lay the ground work before the fest so as to keep in touch with her even after the fest.
“The story is so sensitive, Ravi. I love it! I am sure it will be a hit” she said.
“Thanks Divya. You know, your dialogue delivery is awesome. You can’t be an amateur” Ravi said.
“Thanks. I am an amateur, Ravi. Promise!” she said, placing her hands on her head and smiling.
“Well, then. I think you should audition for a role in my upcoming stage drama. Will you be interested?” he asked.
“Stage drama? Oh my god! Ravi, college drama is different from the real theater! I will be scared in front of all those people” she said, blushing.
“It is the same, Divya. I will help you. This Sunday, we have an audition. I want to see you in the Art gallery theater in egmore at 10. Got it?” he asked, smiling.
“Sure. Thanks, Ravi.” She said, skipping away in joy.
There is a hook! I have made the perfect move to keep her hooked to me even after the fest. Now to get the stupid Amit out of the way! Ravi’s inner self was planning the perfect vicious plan. Being a story writer was paying off in his real life too!

Ravi was chatting with his friends.
“Guys, Amit is losing it. He is terrible for the role.” Ravi said.
“But he is the only guy who has auditioned for the role and we have only a week ahead, Ravi” one of his friends said.
“That’s true. But if we want to have a shot at the trophy, we need to change him. Now is the time. If we keep him, till the end, we would be screwed” Ravi said, showing genuine concern in his face.
“Ok, if we take him off, who is going to play the role of Guru?” someone asked out from the group.
“Well, I am not sure. Since no one else auditioned and that I myself know the character in and out, I think I can play the role. But I need some help from you guys as well.” Ravi said, placing the cherry on top of his evil cake.
After a brief silence and few of them exchanging glances, they said “Alright, sure. All we want is to win the trophy”
“What should we tell Amit?” One of them called out.
“That I will take care” Ravi said, standing up and marching towards the CSE block.

“Amit, this is not going to be easy” Ravi said, after calling him out of the class.
“The drama team thinks you are not doing well in the role of Guru. They think you will do great in a role which is more subtle, like the one you did last year.”
“What? But I tried my best, Ravi. Please give me another chance. I will do better.” Amit said, in a pleading tone. Ravi’s good side surfaced just for a split second when he thought he should give him a chance. Just then, Divya walked by, saying hi to Ravi and Amit. The good side was gone!
“It is not about me, Amit. The team feels so. I can’t do anything if they have come to a decision. I am sorry. Listen, I got to go, don’t feel bad. I will surely come to you with a better role soon” Ravi, said, hurrying towards the stairs while Amit stood there, on the verge of crying.
When he climbed down the stairs, his inner self shouted out “Ahaa! Get lost, you loser”

He thought he had done everything to make the way clear for him to make a move at Divya. It was a year since he had met her and the time was running out. In a month or so, the college was going to close and it would mark the end of college for Ravi. He had to do something fast. He had become pretty close with Divya by now, but still he didn’t know how to tell her. He was meeting her almost daily, in college and even during weekends, in the theater rehearsals. His bad side hadn’t resurfaced after the Fest and he was his usual self. One fine day, he decided to tell her how he felt. He walked to her class as usual after the final bell. Her class was emptying out and Ravi could see her sitting over by the window packing her bags. It would be sometime before the whole class is empty, so Ravi decided to take a leak, wash his face and meet her as the Prince charming she wouldn’t say NO to. After ten minutes of make up in the wash room, he slowly made his way to her class, trying to control his joy. The class was empty except for a two people sitting beside the windows on the other side of the room. It was Amit and Divya. He was holding her hands and they were both looking at a mobile. Amit slowly looked up and saw Ravi standing out.
“Hi Ravi! I was just talking to Divya” he said, standing up, jerking off Divya hands.
“Ravi. Hi! Come on in“ Divya said.
Ravi was standing there in shock. He slowly made his way into the class.
“What.. er.. what is this?” he said, pointing towards Amit and Divya.
“Well… Ravi. I like Amit a lot. I should have told you. But you are very close to me and I was feeling shy to tell you this. Anyway glad that you know about it now” she said, holding Amit’s hand. Amit stood there with the same expression of a thief when he is caught.
“Oh… I.. Oh. That’s great! Good for you guys. Anyway I just came here to tell you that the audition is off for this week. You can enjoy!” Ravi said to Divya.
“Oh thanks, Ravi. I wanted to go out with Amit during the weekends, but the rehearsals kept me off. Don’t get me wrong, I loved each and every minute of the rehearsals with you and the other writers. But I couldn’t spend time with Amit. Infact I should thank you. The fest was the time we got to know each other. When he was taken off the role of Guru, he was pretty swamped and that was the time we got together. First I just thought it would make him feel better if I talked to him. But later…” she said, turning towards Amit and smiling at him.
“No problem! Glad I was of help to my friend” Ravi said, smiling at her. His insides were trembling with a thunderous rage. He walked out of the class, gritting his teeth.

Saturday dawned bright. Ravi was at the Art gallery theater getting ready for the rehearsals when Preetam, one of the writers came in with a script pad in his hand.
“Hey, buddy. Good morning!” he called out.
“Hey Preet!” Ravi said, waving at him. Preetam came over and sat beside Ravi.
“Why sudden plan change? The rehearsals were not scheduled this weekend right” he said, with a doubtful expression on his face.

*Beep two*, the Ravanan was back! The first time, it was for something good to happen, 'His love for Divya'. This time, it was for something bad. To ruin her Career as an actress!

“Well yeah. There is a small problem. Divya wants to quit. So we need to audition again for the role of Prema. I have already asked my classmate Priya to drop by today for the audition. She is pretty good. Let Sheetal come in. We can decide” Ravi said, not daring to look up at Preetam.
“What? Why she quit?” he asked with confusion.
“She said she wanted to spend some time with her boyfriend” Ravi said, still looking into his script. “Hey guess what! Those female-centred themes I wrote for her, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to put in male characters like you said. I have already made some changes to the script. Read it and let me know” he said, handing over the script to Preetam.
After an uneventful fifteen minutes, Preetam looked up from the script and said.
“Ravi, this is brilliant! Bad thing, Divya will not be able to star in it. This is going to be a hit!” he said.
“Yeah bad luck for Divya!” he said, turning to his left and smiling. Now to get Divya out of the way!

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Titanic - Rewritten

Note: This is a script i wrote for my office contest to change the script of either sholay or titanic. My fav movie has always been titanic and i thought of giving it a new flavor. This is not a goof on titanic! I have tried my best to keep the original feel into it. so read on and post your comments!


When I stood there, it was more than enchanting. It felt heavenly. The cool sea breeze slowly grazed my face as I made my way to the stern. The light fabric of my gown flapped at the sudden gush of the wind making me pause for sometime before I walked over the tip of the boat. This was the most Peaceful I had been in a long time. My mother had turned into a dictator lately with the ever tempestuous Cal and his spy Lovejoy. Wish Jack was here with me. This was never going to end. Cal had known about Jack all along, although he pretended he didn’t and it was just a matter of time before he took me away from him. Well, he got his wish. Now I am getting mine!
I reached over to the railing and climbed it, closing my eyes the entire time.

"Sure, you want to do that?" a voice called out.

I stopped. It can’t be!

I slowly stepped onto the deck and turned around. Jack stood there, charming as ever, smiling at me. I stood rooted to the spot, stunned and surprised.

"Jack, how come you..?" I began.

"For you. You thought I would just leave you" He said, walking towards me.

"I.. I am so sorry Jack, Cal was.." I said, before the tears came out holding back my words.

"I know, Rose. I have been with you longer to feel the same way you feel now. I am here to take you away, to a place where no one can take you away from me" He said, walking over to me and kissing me.

"I don’t know what to.. I would have.." I said glancing towards the stern and back to his soothing face "I ..I love you" I said, hugged him, tears giving way to joy and laughter, as I felt mellowed in his arms.

"Rose, what the hell are you doing here?" a voice called out.

I turned and saw Cal coming towards me.

"Jack saved me" I said, my face bright and cheery, looking at Jack now.


The devastation was something beyond my wildest dreams. Almost two hours had passed by since the Mighty ship sank to the depth of the oceans taking a whole bunch of people with it before they could get off. They didn’t have much of a choice whatsoever with the lifeboats gone and the unwelcoming abyss of darkness waiting below. It was just pure luck I got aboard one of the lifeboats which now slowly glided on an eternal journey to towards any land surface, the driver trying hard not to hit any of the bodies floating on the surface of the water, the shock and anguish evident in what was seen of their faces. These four days were nothing but bizarre to me and this seemed a fitting end to the unpleasant quarter. I shivered inside my suit which was drenched in the icy cold water of the sea, still coming to terms with the happenings on the Ship when it was up and about. It wasn’t me. It wasn’t the ship. It was Rose!


Nothing can stop me now. Jack is here. God is with me! I thought as I let myself relax in the patio chairs in the middle deck right beside the pool. Everything came back to me. It was around six months back. He was an artist and a wanderer, which he preferred to be called as. During one of his drifts to Southamptom, I met him in the Rail station sketching almost everything in sight. At first, I was rather skeptic but after I glanced at one of his pictures lying beside him, I was amused. He drew a picture of me; giving it to me when I was about to board the train saying that I was the prettiest thing he had ever drawn. I smiled at him and that was the end of it, which is what would be expected of a dewitt-bukater. This was during one of the many journeys I had with Cal. I don’t know why I agreed to go out with him at all. My mother, Ruth dewitt-bukater, was one of the reasons. She had compelled me to do this saying this is the only way we can pay off all the debts and still appear upper-class. Days went by and I didn’t see Jack again. After almost a month, I saw him in the town trying to sell his portraits; many of them resembled me, which was what it seemed like before Cal pulled me away to a diner nearby. When I came back, he was gone. Cal had been busy with a business agreement with a steel mill and he didn’t notice my occasional wanderings into the country. I had to see it all. Jack was at his usual self, sketching away, when I surprised him. It was indeed me in almost all the portraits and I was stunned by the accuracy he had brought into each one of those even though I wasn’t around.

"When I see one I like, it stays in my heart" was what he replied to me. Cal wasn’t aware that I was going to the country almost daily and so was my mother. Jack gave me relief from the stress I had gone through after the death of my father. He was slowly becoming a person whom I can trust. In the days that went by, much more than that!

I turned around to see Jack leaning on the railing and sketching intently. He looked up, on cue, smiling back at me. He made his way past the pool and sat down beside me.

"Care to join me?" he asked, winking at me, holding out his hand.

I laughed. "Sure, why not?" I said, standing up and taking his hand.

"Not going to venture asking me ‘Where to?’" he asked.

"I think I will be safe with you" I said, walking with him.

During dinner, Cal sat in front of me sipping his wine and looking seriously at me.

"So where were you this noon?" he asked me.

"By the pool" I said, not daring to look up.

"Tell me the truth!" he said, a note of impatience showing in his voice.

"I am" I said, looking up for a fraction of a second.

He stood up, walked over to me and pulled me up.

"You better stop lying, Rose. I know what you did. Dancing? In a Third-class compartment? Aren’t you ashamed of yourself?" he said, his face close to mine and I could feel his boiling temper heating me up.

"Why should I be? Jack took me" I said, trying to break free from his grasp.

He loosened the grip and stared at me with his face red, his breath coming in gasps.

The sinking of the Titanic was nothing but shocking to me and it was the worst thing that could happen to me. But at the least, I was with Jack, all along. I never let go of him. Future seemed bleak when I met him and now I could see it. He was going to take me away to a far-off land. Even when Cal made me take up a seat in one of the lifeboats, I jumped back into the ship, with Jack alongside me, reassuring me, time and again, that everything is going to be fine.

Now I was lying on the wooden door which was the only thing which could give us shelter from the icy cold water, while Jack was a holding onto it. He was shivering and his face was a ghostly white.

"You need to live, Rose. When dying, it will be in your bed" he said, with much difficulty.

"No, Jack. You will be with me. You promised me that you will take me away" I said, tears welling up.

"I would still keep up my promise" he said, his lips going numb. His head fell on the door with a loud thud.

"Jack! Oh God!" I said, crying over his body. It took me a long time to bid adieu to the one person who cared about me but It was time!

I slowly let go off his hands from the door as he slowly drifted deep into the sea, his expression-less face looking up at me.


Lovejoy was more than helpful to me. He kept a constant watch on Rose, giving me details about her whereabouts. For a long time, it was mundane. But Rose started doing some sinister stuff after she met that artist guy. I wasn’t sure what I should do. I was madly in love with her right from the time I saw her at the convention a year ago. It was tough to get hold of her, owing to her authoritarian father. His death was the only answer. Lovejoy took care of it. And now, Jack. They were seen everywhere and I feared that they might elope sooner or later. I had to take her away from him and the maiden voyage of Titanic proved a good reason to do so. Just as I expected, she tried to run away with him but Lovejoy came to my rescue. He shot Jack when he was in the mansion grounds trying to rescue Rose. I had to lock Rose up till the trip which I thought would be very difficult to do after her lover was killed right before her eyes. But strangely she didn’t hesitate. She came with me but I had no idea she was in shock. I didn’t know she would go crazy.

The day I saw her near the stern, I asked what she was doing there. It was Lovejoy who alerted me that she was off to the stern alone. What could she possibly do now? was all I thought when he conveyed the news.

"Rose, what the hell are you doing here?" I shouted, my voice getting drowned by the sound of the sea.

"Jack saved me." She said, glancing sideways. No one was there.

"Jack?" I asked, in a confused tone.

"You thought he would never come back, didn’t you?" she said, smiling.

"Lovejoy, bring her to the upper deck" I called out at Lovejoy, who was watching the proceedings in shock just as I was. Even when I asked her why she went to the third class compartment, she retorted back saying Jack took her. That was when I reaffirmed the fact that I wasn’t the one who is going crazy!

On the lifeboat, situations weren’t that great. They were running out of fuel and the slow maneuvering of the boat seemed difficult. I borrowed a binocular from one of the helpers and looked into the darkness. Nothing was visible except for the bodies and when the light from the lifeboat fell on them, they looked ghastly. I know I had been rough with her but all I wanted was to be with her. I tried my best to put her into a lifeboat ahead of me but I didn’t expect her to jump back into the middle deck and that was the last I saw her. What if she was alive? I could still sense a tiny ray of hope as I continued looking through the binoculars. The water splashed onto the lenses making it hard to see. Right when I was about to lose hope, I saw her. She was all alone on what seemed like a wooden door. On closer look, she seemed to move. My god!

"Sir, can you please move over there? It is my fiancé. She is alive. Over there" I called out to the driver, standing up and pointing towards the door.

"Sit down, sir. Please" he said, slowly turning the boat towards her.

When I was finally a couple of yards from her, I could see her lying there, shivering.

"Rose, Rose" I called out, from the distance.

She looked up for second and again looked down at the water at her own reflection.

She was murmuring something.

"Rose! Rose.. give me you hands" I shouted, when I was about a meter away from her.

She slowly fell off the door into the sea as I looked at her with shock. I tried jumping into the sea but the people in the lifeboat stopped me.

"You would die."

"The water is too cold" they shouted at me.

"No! NO!" I yelled.

I am here to take you away, to a place where no one can take you away from me! Was all she thought when she slowly glided down the sea and up towards Jack.