Stella was on the hospital bed. Her left leg plastered. This had to be the worst day she has had in years. She slipped over the stairs as she was leaving the school after checking out the result for a test which was very important for her. Her mind wandered to the scene in canteen two weeks before the accident:
“Not that trash again”, said Allan dismissively. Steve nodded in his support.
“Cynical fools ! I've experienced it before. Twice. The world did conspire against all odds to give me what I desired from the heart.” Stella was adamant in her reverence of Coelho.
“You fall too easily for selective statistics. For every successful person in favor of whom the world conspired, there are hundreds more who, too, were wishing from their hearts. But no one interviews all the failed ones.” Allan always caught the finer points.
“Maybe their desires weren’t strong enough. And abilities must justify the aspirations too”. Stella tried to spin the argument.
“That’s doublespeak. What’s left for the world to conspire if the need for ability is acknowledged?” Allan said impatiently.
“Cool it down guys. We have the test for the exchange program with the Paris school coming up in a week. Stella, you are dying to be there. But Allan is clearly the favorite to ace the test.” Steve intervened.
“That’s right. I want it so badly that I am sure luck shall take me to Paris. Allan you would be rotting here while I’ll be sipping the wines there”, Stella replied over-excitedly.
“I was planning to miss the test anyways. Got my band here. Paris is for the old hags anyway.” Allan said .
“NO ! I’ve been working my ass off for the test only to outdo you and others. Tell me what would make you sit for the test with all its seriousness” Stella spoke challengingly to Allan.
“Hmm..I love my band. We were planning for a few jigs during the summers. Hard to beat that. Let me think” Allan paused and then said as offhandedly as he could “If you promise to give me a lap-dance in case I top, maybe I would give my all for the test.”
“Done” Stella said resolutely.
“What!!! Are you nuts? No trip to Paris and becoming a Lap-dancer for the one who robbed you off the trip. That’s what you face if you lose. Screw Coelho.” Steve tried to put some sense into Stella.
“I have worked hard and I want the trip more badly than anyone else. Even more than a pervert’s desire for a free lap-dance. That’s all I know.” Stella looked possessed.
“I’ve already begin to appreciate Coelho. The deal is on.” Allan said slyly.
A knock on the door shook Stella out of those memories. Allan and Steve entered the hospital room, both grim faced.
“Hey Stella. Everything OK ?” said Steve sheepishly. Allan had his eyes on the floor.
“Thanks for coming guys. I’m good. They’ll discharge me tomorrow.” Stella did put up a brave face.
“Great !” Allan mustered enough courage.
“Yeah. And good luck for the trip to Paris”, Stella couldn’t hide the envy in her voice.
“I don’t think I’ll go. And that deal is off too.”Allan blurted out quickly.
“Thanks Allan. You’re such a sweetheart. I finished third. So the guy who stood second gets to go there.” Stella says.
“Yeah, that would be George. We have a party this saturday night in the school backyard. I got hold of a fake ID to buy the booze. You would be able to make it?” Steve changes the topic.
“Three weeks before the plaster is off. But do toast a drink for me, will you?” Stella says smiling. Her eyes twinkle.
Allan & Steve left after a while.
The Saturday night party was a riot by midnight. And that was when the students heard the siren. It was only the third time in five years that the high-school party with booze was busted. Cops took the students into custody for the night and let them go in the morning.
School authorities however were not that forgiving. Punishments followed. George was caught too. His Paris tour was cancelled which meant Stella goes to Paris. Allan and Steve agreed that the world really conspired to make Stella’s dream come true.
Stella returned to school after a few days. That day, just before leaving the school she caught hold of Allan in the empty corridor.
“I got to confess this to you. That night, I called the cops.” Stella said that in a single breathe.
“You are a super-bitch. Aren’t you!” Allan couldn’t hide the shock in his voice.
Stella stood silent, ashamed.
“That’s ok girl. You actually did a favor to me. I was having a hard time to explain the abandoning of trip to everyone. And look, you did get what your heart desired.” Allan continued with a chuckle.
“Really? So you are not cross with me?” Stella was so relieved.
“Of course not! I never wanted the trip anyway. You know what my heart desired” Allan let his eyes roam as he said this.
“And that desire shall be fulfilled. Who am I to falsify Coelho?” Stella pushed Allan into the abandoned classroom. Het top was off before Allan’s bottom touched the chair. The dance was without any music, but Allan didn’t mind this conspiracy of the world at all.
PS : I am cleaning up a few old drafts. Please bear with some average posts as mentioned in the previous post. I got to get a clean slate before fresh ones start coming.