It was very hot. Surprising for an evening in October in Hyderabad. But it does not matter, we have conquered nature by slowly killing it, thought Parikrit. Very soon he would be inside Prasad’s IMAX and the AC will take care of this weather.

He was meeting his friend Bookshan after a long time. Bookshan had suggested that they might as well catch a movie. So Parikrit had booked the latest super hero movie. He did not even remember what it was now. They all sounded the same anyway.

As soon as he entered IMAX, he saw that Bookshan had already come and was waiting for him.

“Hi Pari! Long time” said Bookshan.

“Yes Booki. Well, looks like someone has been having a lot of Pizzas” said Parikrit.

“No man. I have actually lost 5 kgs” said Bookshan with a smile.

“Good job. Ok, grab a seat at the fast food counter and I will go and get the tickets. We still have half an hour before the movie starts. So lets order something and we can chat” said Parikrit and left for the ticket counter.

Parikrit took the tickets and went over to the food counter. He saw that Bookshan had ordered a couple of samosas and cokes.

“So, how are your wife and kids?” said Parikrit.

“Good. My daughter Sneha got married last month.”

“Well congrats! Who is the groom”

“Its a classmate of hers. You see kids now a days. I think its a blessing if they atleast call you for their wedding” said Bookshan with a hearty laugh.

“Guess its all for the good. At least you wouldnt have to pay any dowry I guess” said Parikrit wryly.

“Who says that. And since we are Reddys the going rate is much higher. No one is gonna give that up. I had to cough up 4 crores” said Bookshan

“4 crores? Wow. Lucky you are a rich guy” said Parikrit.

“Rich, my ass. All my savings are gone. Luckily, we had applied for the free education quota for her, so I did not have to pay anything for engineering studies.”

“But you have a successful business. How did you apply for free education”

“Well you know, greased a few hands here and there and got the certificate. Its pretty easy now. There are brokers also for these kind of things.”

“And I had to give the apartment we bought last year to the groom. Luckily it had appreciated in value and so could cover some costs” continued Bookshan.

“Yeah. That was a good apartment in a prime locality. How much did you pay for it?” asked Parikrit.

“Bought it for 60 lakhs. 40 white and 20 black. Now its valued at a crore. What can you do? Guess thats how life goes on. At least I am lucky, I have a son and hopefully I will recover some money from his dowry. He is now in the final year of engineering. Thanks to YSR, free education for him too.” said Bookshan.

“Need to buy an apartment. I am paying too much tax now” said Parikrit.

“Why dont you remind me after the movie. I will hook you with my CA. He can do wonders with taxes. Last year I paid zero tax on my business” beamed Bookshan.

“Will do that. By the way, its time for the movie. Lets get in” said Parikrit.

Both of them got into the movie and found their seats. Just before the movie began the national anthem started and both the friends stood up for the national anthem.

“Look at the kids on row E. They are not even standing up for the national anthem. What a bunch of unpatriotic idiots. Somebody should just trash them.” said Bookshan.

“Yes, they are the unpatriotic ones” though Parikrit.

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