“That was a heck of a show buddy. You always rock the party with your amazing bartending skills.” One of the customers said to Ronny as he finished his show and served the last cocktail to a guy who was eagerly waiting to taste the new poison for the night.

“Thanks, buddy.” Ronny winked, as he left the counter and walked to the manager’s cabin behind the disc of the club. He dropped his tired body on the plush leather sofa and leaned back, resting his head backward and closed his eyes strained with flickering flashy light of disk and club.

“Seems you have wrapped up for the day…” The manager poured Jack for Ronny and passed a glass to him.

“What else do you expect? I have been juggling those bottles and making drinks for four hours with this ear-blasting music. Dude, I am human and not some junky bot.” Ronny took a big swig of his drink and looked straight into the eyes of his manager.

“I know, you have been working for long hours but you can’t just stop in between boy. The club is paying you more than any bartender ever got paid in the city.” The manager spoke leaning forward to make his word some sense into the reckless head of Ronny.

“You’ll have to continue for a couple of hours before you call it a day.”

“Whatever… And this is for last time I am extending, tell your boss to pay if they want Ronny to stay more in light.” He gulped down his Jack in one go and left the cabin.

Ronny was one BADASS guy with impeccable bartending skills. For every bar counter, he stands, it gets flooded with people waiting to see what new Ronny had up to his sleeves. Though Ronny was working with one of the best clubs in the city and was being paid more than anyone he still felt that was not enough for the efforts put up by him.

There was a reason for his hunger, his love for luxury, the pomp and show which Ronny longed for. He was a profligate and wanted the world at his footsteps.

With towering high attitude, loaded with tones of ego, Ronny was a kind of a loner in this big city of dreams. He had no one to call his own. All he had was a couple of flings and innumerable one-night stands.

Ronny used to go in for big fat parties on his weekly offs to fill his pockets for the next list of desires. The real picture was quite different for what was being portrayed, his loneliness was strangling him deep within, and the only way out was to indulge himself into shopping.

It was during one of those private parties while Ronny was displaying his perfect juggling skills; the jar slipped and it was all a mess then. This had never ever happened earlier. What made it even worst was the host of the party, who happened to be his bosses’ friend.

If it had been somebody else, people would have ignored it smoothly but when it came to Ronny… No… He was a perfectionist and was never expected to miss a turn. The mess was not by chance but a result of something new that had entered into Ronny’s life. This was the first time that Ronny had tried cocaine and that too with shots of vodka… 

Ronny stumbled as he took his steps forward, he was completely under it, the next moments were touching the skies of embarrassment. He couldn’t take hold and puked in the mid-way. The guest who had already started making their ways out got annoyed by the unstoppable laughter on Ronny.

The invitee list had Ronny’s boss too, this unexpected behaviour of the best employee was boiling his blood and he did what anyone else in his place would do. Ronny was jobless the next second, yeah, he was fired. 

While taking his heavy steps towards the exit Ronny flipped a beer bottle to his boss but alas it was another wrong move and the bottle landed on the floor with all beer splashed and the glass broken. Ronny chuckled as he was now forcefully thrown out by the guards.

The night somehow didn’t stop and the sun rose again, this was a new day that had gifted him a nice hangover. Ronny had no job now. He made himself a coffee and began his job hunt. The thought of a small holiday before commencing the new chapter in life crossed his mind.

He packed his stuff and landed in Goa, it was a pleasant evening with the sun bowing to kiss goodbye, Ronny was sitting on a lounger with a beer in hand and his favourite trance playlist played on his headphones. It was like an ideal vacation and he was enjoying every bit of it. As the evening sky spread out its arms, the tourist started returning to their hotels and resorts before it turns dark. It was a perfect time for a beach walk with fading sunlight.

Ronny was walking by the beach with water slowly kissing his feet and stealing away the sand. He loved this feeling more than anything on this earth. It was soothing, relaxing and much needed too.

After a mile-long walk, he returned to his place when he felt something under his feet. He looked down to see what it was, a red leather spine book.

Book was never ever his companion. He’ll rather spend time on disc than with a book. But this one had some different aura. It was intriguing him to take it in his hands like a pole dancer seducing him to try her.

Finally, Ronny picked it up and walked back to finish his beer before heading to his hotel room. The book seemed old but wasn’t tattered at all, which made his curiosity boom.

The words that flashed just when he opened the book were ‘THE WISH’. The sweet smile just stretched his lips as he flipped the next page.

“Pen down your wish and plant it deep in this sand. Your wish will come true in the most magical way.” Ronny read it aloud. He even found a beautiful pen tucked inside the book.

Ronny chuckled at the credulity that still prevailed. He was about to throw the diary away when someone whispered.

“Give it a try… I promise you won’t lose anything…”

He took a deep breath and opened the diary to find many pages filled with wishes of different people, and all the wishes were supported by signatures of their authors. After a long breath, he reached towards the end of the wish list and found a fresh page inviting him with open arms to fill it with all that was hidden in his heart.

A posh club, best in the city with a disc, a gorgeous and filthy rich girl,  a wonderful villa with a row of cars decorating it. His lips curved automatically to give that iconic smile which had stolen many hearts.

With a wider grin, Ronny wrote down his wish in detail about what was in his head and signed it before planting it in the sand exactly from where he had received it. He looked up in the sky wishing and praying for the fulfillment of all that he had written.

Another day rose with a bright sun, Ronny made his way towards a nearby club, wasn’t like he liked but still was decent enough to pass the time. As he stepped in, he found something that was his routine, he took a glass with his favourite drink and made himself comfortable in a corner.

The club was tightly packed and Ronny was the only guy with an empty chair next to him when Natasha walked in. She was scanning the place with her drink in her hand to get someplace to sit when she saw Ronny sitting alone. She walked to him and asked.

“Is this chair empty…?”

“Feel free to join.” Ronny replied with a smile and turned his head back to the bartender who was juggling the bottles. They both sat without exchanging even a word and kept watching the show.

“This guy is really awesome.” Natasha applauded as the bartender ended his show.

“Awesome?” Ronny asked with a raised eyebrow.

“Yes indeed, he is the best in the town. Don’t know if you have seen someone better than him…” Natasha’s words were dipped in sarcasm

“Oh! If he seems to be the  best then certainly you have not seen the best.” Ronny raised his collar and gulped down his Jack in one go.

“Easy to say than to do, isn’t it?” Natasha rolled her eyes sipping her drink.

“Well, I can but…” Before Ronny could add anything further, Natasha began

“Let me handle it.” Saying so, she disappeared in the crowd.

While Ronny was busy checking out hot chicks on the disc who were displaying their grooves with perfectly shaped figures, a sweet catchy voice boomed in the hall as the music came to pause.

“Ladies and Gentlemen, may I have your kind attention please…” All the heads turned to see Natasha standing with a mic in her hand.

“We have a special guest among us tonight and I’ll request him to show us some of his impeccable bartending skills.” Saying this she pointed at Ronny. Everyone turned to have a look at a special guest. The crowd started applauding as Ronny walked to the counter.

“May I know your name please?” Natasha asked covering the mic with her beautifully long fingers.

“Ronny…” He replied with a wink.

“Please welcome Mr. Ronny…” The hall again thundered with claps.

Ronny stood at the stage and took a deep breath before touching the bottle of liquor. He can’t fail like he did last time. He was now ready to rock the show.

For the next half an hour, Ronny showed his skills, making cocktails that were served complementary to the guest. This was never seen by the guest ever, everyone was mesmerized by the talent portrayed. Ronny served the last drink with a big smile to Natasha and called it a day. All that was heard around was loud applaud by every person present there.

“That was truly amazing. You were right, I was left to see the best and now I can admit that you are the best…” Natasha extended a warm handshake to Ronny, he too felt good after long.

“I am glad you liked it. Getting a compliment from someone like you really matters a lot.” Ronny couldn’t resist being flirty with her now.

“I am Natasha…”

“Ronny…”

“Yup… And everyone in the club knows this name now.” Natasha winked at Ronny leaving him with a tingling sensation.

 “So, what’s your scene?” They both made their way to the backyard to catch up with some strings of their lives

Ronny slowly opened up and narrated about himself and his work and how he had landed up in that place. Natasha could not resist herself from opening up the fact to Ronny that she owned the very club where he had stolen the entire show by his skills.

The wonderful evening came to an end with a usual exchange of numbers and a promise to catch upon for breakfast the next morning. Ronny was now feeling light and was filled with gratitude for Natasha as well as his stars.

TO BE CONTINUED…

Written by: Hemang
Edited by: Pratishtha Shyam
Sketch: Paranj Sankdecha

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