• Vol. 08
  • Chapter 12
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Why they say red and green should never be seen

They say red and green should never be seen. Maybe it's too festive for any other time of year. But red lenghas and green barfi, or sea green walima outfits and rust coloured mendhi, or pistachio flakes and saffron curls weren't so bad, per se.

But I liked one and not the other.

I told him I hated the colour red. The colour of unpredictable periods, of embarrassment, of non-existent roses.

He wasn't into giving flowers, but he said I'd change my mind about colours, and what Desi bride doesn't wear red on her wedding day? Then he'd joked that he'd buy me shirt in the shade of his favourite football team first.

I saw red at that.

Until I didn't.

I waved my wand and stirred my cauldron. I dropped in tomatoes, nail varnish, even the hats of garden gnomes, anything I could find in mum's garden or bhabi's room, until the whole thing bubbled and fizzed and stank like rotten raspberries.

Until all the reds drained away.


Why they say red and green should never be seen

Half the fruit veg gone. The roses in the neighbours' gardens. The double red lines on the roads. Not a big deal. But that also meant the traffic lights, the stop signs, the fire engines. The fires.

You made me do it, I told him. He'd called again to ask about Save the Date cards, and we started arguing again about something else.
You made me hate a colour.
You made me hate you.
You loved it, so I hated it.

You made me want to undo it too.

So I hung up my wand, my recipes, my plans. And stepped into the cauldron.