Hey guys hope you all loved this short story series The LOVE CATALYST. Some things that I want to share with you regarding this. First and the foremost thing is I received a lot of messages from people who thought this to be a true story in some or the other way but this is totally a work of fiction solely created from my mind. Second of all this was my first attempt into this kind of stuff and I hope to keep discovering. Now the most important, there were people who I owe big time for the mental support that they gave me and were part of this thing with me. 

SHARVARI PATIL, for rediscovering my passion, making me write, being my biggest support throughout, listening to all those unnecessary scripts and believing in me. 

ABHISHEK RAO, AL SAHER, for being my EDITOR’S and guiding me throughout. 

UJJWALA DI for being my sweetheart reader. 

MINAKSHI AWALE, AJINKYA BHOI for talking me out with the most important part. 

RAJ MISTRY, for being a constructive critic that I always wanted. 

KOMAL PAWAR, for being the silent reader of all parts and still not saying anything. 



Thanks a ton. 




It was the D-DAY as we were attending our chemistry practicals. Chemistry practicals were cool because of the atmosphere there. The teacher incharge would stand in the centre, with everyone around her like some accident had occurred. We both used to stand at the end of this hoard without a care about what was going on. That day wasn’t any different. Everyone was present, and yes, the girl with admirable beauty had paid heed to the invitation until now. 

“Bhai, ready hai na??” I poked Darshan. He seemed a bit nervous as if he was appearing for some exam but still replied,”Yes, it’s everything or nothing.” 

It felt satisfying doing this good thing but the consequences were still unknown. 

“Listen everyone, the Catalyst is an important part in this reaction” shouted the teacher. 

“Sunn be ma’am kya boli?” I taunted him with a wide grin. He laughed it off with his nervousness still visible. 

“Bhai, meri bhi SETTING laga dena!!” touted Akshay in a way to tease Darshan. Apart from us, he knew this thing because of his ‘poke into everyone’s business’ ways. 

“Haa!! I’ll do this stuff and make a living now. Log dosto ke liye STUPIDITY krte hai aur hum CUPIDITY”, I replied as all three of us broke into laughter. 

It was time, time for the final blow. Shruti’s behaviour had been skeptical throughout but still I knew she would come. We were already waiting in the back corridor where nobody bothered to roam about. Ideal place for an ideal beginning. 

And there she was, girl with an adorable charm with her curly locks sliding over her shoulder as she walked through without the slightest bother. 

She didn’t seem shocked seeing both of us, maybe because we hunted together everywhere or maybe because she was okay with it. 

“So?” I tried to break the ice. 

“So?” she said shrugging her shoulders. 

“What do you think?” interrupted Darshan. 

“The FORT GUY huh?” she said looking at me. 

“Yesss! The FORT GUY” I said with a sense of pride. 

“So, what do you think?” asked Darshan again as if they were the only words he had practiced. 

“I always felt that it could be him.” she said. That certainly did boost our confidence. But the atmosphere still had some nervous air in it. 

“I do have a checklist regarding my special someone.” she continued,” and regarding you, let me see” she turned her back towards us as she said this. It felt as if she was laughing there. 

“Okay, looks-check, courtesy-check, sweetness-check” she was speaking. 

“Bhai ye toh maje le rhi hai apne?” Darshan whispered into my ears. 

“Sabar kar baccha. You have waited this long. Thanda rakh” I whispered back. 

“… Bad habit of whispering-check” she went on as we looked at each other, “good at heart-check, gives respect-check and the most important…” she turned towards us as we stood pretending someone who waited for results, “… Loves me-check.” 

We both let out a sigh of relief and I poked Darshan to do the rest and then the moment it was. 

Darshan went down on one knee and Shruti in shock as he said those words, “I LOVE YOU SHRUTI, DO YOU LOVE ME?” 

Shruti was still in disbelief as she was looking towards both of us in total confusion, when she said, “BUT……” 



“Heya”, I texted Shruti on that boring afternoon. 

“Hey! Wassup?”, came her unexpectedly instant reply. 

“Nothing much re. U say?” 

“Tired. I returned today morning from my mini vacation.” 

“Ohhh! Great. So this is why the boys sulked at college.” 

“Hahaha! Lol! Stop it Nilay. Nobody is soo eager to wait for me and besides this was the best time that I had.”

 I hated the ‘LOL’ thing alot but that ‘thike, ladki hai,achi dikhti hai, chalta hai’ thing made me continue.”Ohhoo! U have had a superb tym I guess! Kidhr gyi thi?” 

“Actually it was a native place thing, Kolhapur is where we went. But this time we enjoyed being there. And you know what the higlight of this trip was?” 

Before i could reply anything came a string of messages








Her excitement and enjoyment both were sensed in these 7 letters and I just wanted to listen more. “Sahieee!! Aage bata!” I kept it minimum, eager to listen more. And she continued… 

“Arrree! U must visit this fort. Srsly the climate, the fort, surroundings everything everything mesmerised me to the core. And as always the way our MAHARAJ had built it, all the secretways and stories, they always fill u with a sense of pride that we had techniques that the world didn’t know. And arre the best thing was the chilling drizzle that came there. It wasss the sexiest thing whilst enjoying the fort. I love rains alot and that weather made me miss someone!”

This someone thing made me interrupt her,”Ahem ahem, kisko miss kiyaa??” 

“Ayeee, stop ur wheels. There’s no1 yet but yeah it felt like someone shud have been there. Someone who could click pictures for me when i was engrossed in the beauty of nature. Someone who would do that Yash Chopra movie things of draping something over me when i felt the chills. Someone who would feed me when i was tired enough from the adventure. And someone who would cuddle with me to sleep. Ik I’m being too cheeky but the weather there made my mind wander exctly like this. And yes i missed the spcl sum1”

This one message gave me the existential crisis of GOD. Did he really want me to be the CATALYST? Did he favoured the SETTING? Did he want me to do this CUPIDITY? 

It struck to me that I had forgot to reply Shruti and she was waiting. Her behaviour that day was kind of spooky as she hadn’t been so eager to talk to me before. 

“🙈🙈”, this was all I could reply. 

“Tu kyu sharma raha hai? I didn’t miss U”, and bang came down the world to being normal. 

“I ain’t sharmaing, okay! It’s just that I enjoyed your lovaria in that ecstatic weather on the fort.” I tried being cheeky, ” Acha Shruti what if someone actually existed like your FORT GUY!” 

” Haha! Itni kripa bhagwan ny banake rakhta humpe” she said 

“Arree hum janme hi kaahe hai?” this time I replied without gulping those words. 

“What?? U, the almighty😂?” 

“Naah! It’s like there does exist the FORT GUY and he is one of our classmates.” I said, now, determinant about being the CATALYST. 

“Ummm… Okay! Now I don’t know how to react to this😂! Still, Who is it?” she asked seeming curious this time. 

“Hai koi toh!”, I was loving this suspense thing,”This FORT GUY is, someone u know.” 

“Arre Benedict! Stop this suspense and reveal it once” she seemed annoyed. 

“Not so easily😈. Meet me in the back corridor of college on Thursday.” 

 “Stop this nonsense Nilay! Bata de kon hai? Is it U?”

I was in a fix after this reply. It’s like there are two kinds of guys in this world- first are those who fall for a girl after seeing her, after mentally deciding that she is the one and the second are those who fall for every girl that talks sweetly with them and yeah I proudly belonged to the latter part. 

I could have turned cupid for myself but doing the CUPIDITY for BHAIJAAN seemed more interesting. 
To be continued… 



It was this superb weather after the mid terms that seemed to make college all the more interesting for me. The sweetly shining sun showering its mild heat added with that cool breeze in the air, “Winter was here”. Besides doing the usual notoriety with Darshan added to the fun. Although Darshan seemed like some lad who had lost his way into a big fair. He was weird but this was something different.

“Bhai, all okay?” I asked him that day amidst the chemistry class. “Nothing!”, he said. Never had he so blatantly replied to me.

“Haa ab seth ho gye aap log. Garibo ko kyu bataoge?” 

“Bhai, plzz you pay attention there. Shruti might need your notes later.” 

This reply was enough for me to understand why this lad had lost his way in this fair. Shruti hadn’t yet arrived even though the mid term breaks were over. 

“Darshu, scene kya hai ye Shruti wala?” I asked him this time wanting to know everything. 

“Yaar nilya kyaa batau abb? I think I’m in love. It’s like it was nothing before but now she has became the one who reigns my thoughts most of the time. This hasn’t happened with me before and I tried to get her out but she has become like an ant that sticks to jaggery. She has become like my epitome of happiness right now. All the things that I love, I end up having her in them.”
” Like how?” i asked. 

” Arey its like, if I love forts, I see myself clicking her  pics as she stands by the walls with her arms spread out. If I love food, I see myself feeding her. If I love rain, I see myself draping a coat over her as she feels the chills. If I love sleeping, I see myself cuddling with her. I don’t know why this is happening bhai? ” he said. Every comparison of his made him blush and that’s when I , too, was sure about this lost lad searching for love. Before I  could suggest anything to him came those golden words, 

To be continued….. 



Being in a junior college without the burden of studying had been the best feeling after those mindsquashing board exams. Attending lectures hadn’t been so interesting. We had also learned this bunking phenomenon whilst sneaking out before the next teacher entered. Everything around us gave the feeling of ‘MAA TERA BETA BADA HO GAYA HAI MAA’. 

The bond between Darshan and me, too was blossoming into something stronger than just friends. From birdwatching to brunching, from dozing off mid lectures to standing up for each other, there was everything that a BHAI does between us. Yet, when Shruti was around, things started to twist and turn and roll and jump. Shruti was that occasional bird who would join us during our mischiefs. The girl who used to have no one in this class apart from me had turned to everyone’s, even though mild, but secret crush. She used to hangout with her girl gang which used to flock together everywhere as if they hunted in a group. 

“Nilay, can you give me your chemistry notes? ” she asked me once. I was busy with some stuff so I’d ignored her. “Nilay?” she called again. Before I could look up, came a thud on my head from our very own Darshan ji, “Are Nilya, bichari kabse puuch rhi hai wo, dhyaan kidhr hai tera? .. Deena usko book.” Hitting me on the head usually enraged me but brocodes cooled this rage at that time. I handed over the book to her and turned my attention to this Hulk besides me whose gaze was locked on her departure. 

“Bhaiiii, gayi wo!!” I exclaimed standing in front of his face. What followed was funny weird and shocking as he replied, “Hamesha ke liye toh nahi naa??” with an expression of shyness clearly visible

To be continued…. 



It was one fine rainy day when our colleges had started. The air was filled with the feeling of being a grown up as we walked the pavement to our new college that we were enrolled to. Add to it the blooming essence of the soil in the rains. We here referred to my friend Darshan. Till 10th he was just like any other acquaintance that I had but as soon as the admission process for the junior college got over I was glad that there was atleast someone with me. 

As we entered the class, I was actually thrilled seeing so many new faces and that too without the usual uniform… Everyone had their own styles and attitudes. From a hipster to a nerd, from a heroine to a geek, they were everywhere as if the jungle had organised a huge meeting of the animals living in there. We sneaked through these animals to the third last bench as sitting in the first rows was not our cup of tea and doing the nautankiness was in my blood veins. And then started the bird watching game, Darshan was kind of similar to me so he too joined in the natural process. We looked for every bird on every branch in the class. Some of the faces were familiar and some of them were totally alien to me. This thing went on for three lectures and the bell rang. As soon as the professor stepped out the whole place turned out into some sort of market with different pitches of voices being heard. 

“Chal bahar jaake aate hai! ” said Darshan rhetorically. We walked through our small marketplace looking at faces who looked back at us as if we were people with long noses and big ears. As we moved out through the door, I heard a voice call me,”Hey, Nilay!”. 

Startled with this girly voice we looked back, it was Shruti. She was one of the cutest girl in the class. I knew her as we were in the same classes for 9th but never have had the guts to talk to her. Even here I had watched her but there’s always that thing called “AUKAD KE BAHAR” waali feeling which put barriers in my mind. And here she was, calling me. 

I went upto her and said,”Hey, Shruti right? So you too in this college? “, those were the stupidest words that I could manage at that time, yet she replied smiling,” Yeah! So nice to see you here. Idhr koi bhi pehchan ka ny hai yaar.” My internal demons replied with,”Are hum janme hi kaahe hai?” but I gulped them and said,”I know it sucks. I’m glad I have at least one friend. Actually two now.” 

I know I sucked at building rapports with girls but this was it. 
To be continued…