It started with a phone call yesterday afternoon whilst I was snoozing on my daily medications and a gulp of Ascoril-D. K called up asking if AJ was with me. I said no. Then she asked if he planned to meet me. I replied in the negative again and even added medical reasons that added to my inability. K and AJ have been married for half a decade now.
K said there was no news about the whereabouts of AJ and that he had walked out of home after a minor altercation. At night I wanted to check on K and see if AJ returned and all was fine but decided otherwise cuse I dint wanna make too much of it.
Today it happened again. The phone buzzed again with K's familiar number while I was half way into my siesta. This time I silenced the ringer trying to imagine all was well and K had called me to say just this and I dint have to pick up the phone to know this info. I wasn't the one keeping record of husband wife reconciliations and happy endings.
Damn it buzzed again.
This time eyes wide open I picked up. K asked if I knew when was the wedding function of another colleague JM. I said I had no clue and also that JM was in Delhi. The whole stretch of questions were perplexing me. Then she said AJ had still not reported home. It has been three days today. To calm her down I started talking. Probed her slightly as to the reason of the fight and then the skeletons came out of the closet.
AJ and I met in a former office. He was an analyst, so the initial Chinese Walls restricted our interactions. Then the markets slipped and their was a major corporate rejig.
AJ and I worked on the same floor and became friendly. To make it pure white we became friendly simply because amongst sharks u become friends with anyone who doesn't seem to back stab you in the world of IB.
That's when I figured out his obsession with occult and clairvoyance practices.
Thats when I figured out his obsession with material things especially clothes, contact lenses and footwear that billed him more than his income and the debt he dint mind incurring.
Thats when I figured out he had a house of his own at 32 with a huge outstanding EMI and a bigger outstanding loan.
Thats when I also figured out that he was shallow to judge people by their outward appearance, clothes, hairstyle, fone and footwear brand.
I tolerated and continued being friendly with him. Having no friend at work was better than having one who was shallow.
AJ's mother being a widow at an early age had invested in lots and pots of gold and his younger sister is an established item girl down south.
When our paychecks started getting delayed sometimes for months, I'd often ask AJ how he was managing the EMI. Sometimes the mother or sometimes the sisters contribution came up. K has a small fledgling investing practice of her own. Nothing to write about and so she couldnt contribute much to the household or EMI expenses. Lets say she managed her own. Then a particular desk was shut and AJ lost his job.
History was repeating itself.
AJ was a repeat job looser. He had got this job offer after sitting home for 7 months when his younger southern siren sis asked a 'friend' who happened to be a director in the company to give her brother a job. At work AJ wasnt diligent, wasnt hardworking and just did what he was asked to. I guess his first stint at a Call Centre had his mind trapped in the Call Centre culture where work started and ended with phone calls and your shift timings. Not a minute more.
This obviously speaks doom in the big bad world of Investment Banking where everyone out there competes to register more time in their punch in cards. When we were indeed slogging it out churning reports crossing the midnight hour for months on end AJ would be conveniently missing. Then he started convincing me to get out of office for a half an hour walk everyday during lunch hour 'cuse according to him lunch hour is one full hour and one can utilize it so. I told him lunch time gets over once you finish lunch. But with AJ it fell on deaf ears. He wasnt proactive and inspite of being from a commerce background dint know how to read a Balance Sheet or P & L statement to finish some reports that I, a non commerce student had to mark him with highlighters to pick up from.
News started filtering in how prior to landing the job here he had lost his job with a reputed German Bank I had once interned in where he was sent an absconding letter. No one knows the reason for losing his job. Then he had joined my office and when again he got jobless because of genuine cost cutting reason some of us well wishers pushed him to take up some job that helped in running the house hold expenses.
AJ belonged to that category of people who always have their feet 2 feet above the ground. He wasnt taking up offers that were a tad little less than his previous remuneration.
Today K told me about a recent spinal fracture that she suffered and how it was caused by AJ who had hit her. AJ has been assaulting K since the past few months. Looses his temper on silly little things. Kicks her self esteem by telling her how his 'friends' dont like hanging around with her because she doesnt look 'good' and insists she visits the salon every now and then when its difficult to run the house.
The worst of it all???
He has been concealing the fact that its K who has been paying the EMI''s since the last 2 years diving into her sinking savings fund from her school days where as all he could do was rake up more credit card bills to match up with my policy of not repeating clothes for atleast 2 weeks. A fact I must've on some god forsaken moment yacked mindlessly in front of a fool like him.
I clearly remember one occasion when AJ poked me about my lack of wearing make up to work every day. That ticked me off so much I told him I had no husband or man to please at an Investment Bank and all I have to offer fellow Fund Managers or Traders was a piece f my brain and Investment Ideas. If pretty faces could do it, then Miss Indias would flock Investment Banking post their ramp walking days.
That shut him up for life in front of me.
It dint work with K. She's told me about his continual trips to astrologers etc. and blowing up money to get an insight into his future. A future he was ready to do absolutely nothing about. Raking up bills into thousands but not bloody getting a job.
How he kicked out his mother and younger sis (who would pay up the house hold expenses for his house) after a silly angry fight and then does nothing to run the house smoothly or help K while doing so.
I am angry with myself. For having been friendly with a looser.
I dont know what has happened of him. If he is still alive or taken his own life. But if indeed he gets to read this they I'd just want him to know he can count one less friend in me.
And yeah even if I had said I'd not wanna repeat clothes in 2 weeks I dint have a monstrous home loan, married life or credit card bills to pay. Nor was I 32, gotten a job due to a younger sisters 'requests', or go shopping worth lacs on credit cards planning to pay back by fixed deposits when they'd mature.
I'd probably never told you this AJ but its true. Your'e an immature, selfish, LAZY and irresponsible guy who really needs to go out their and have a reality check.
For Gods sake stop lying and if you have it in you which I know you dont divorce K and let her have a better life with some one else. Cuse with you its worh nothing.