The strapless rubber slipper was simply floating carelessly above the lake; also becoming the object that captivated my leisure time whilst I sat near the drenched lake, my legs dipped inside the cool fresh monsoon water which nourished this parched lake after four months of scorching heat.
I was hanging out with my friends near the lakeside, well rather saying, taking candid selfies in the pleasant climate when you passed us unnoticing me and my friends who were stunned and blown away by your amazing charm. You were seated behind the girl on the scooter who was a junior to me in my high school, and you were dressed in a peach colored loose t-shirt and ripped jeans, incessantly admiring the natural habitat and enjoying the pleasant weather which contrived of the cool misty breeze and the dark heavy clouds swelled up with water, planning to nurture us anytime with its might. My friends, who by now had dug up your history and your bio-data, were trying hard to search you on the social world, attempting to befriend you before you left.
I didn’t send you a request on the social media, neither did I try to ogle you from far away, but this evening something really struck me. I don’t know why, but you weren’t getting out of my head. I wasn’t like the rest, who would love talking to strangers on phone, or posing for photos like a celebrity, constantly updating their profile pictures, boasting about the number likes and shares they get along with the false appraisals written in the comments…. No I was different. I had always loved to make new friends, not because you were someone new in my small town, but because there was something really special about you. So somewhere in my mind, had I, decided this evening to meet you personally.
I knew my friends were complete assholes, and wouldn’t allow me to meet you alone, so the only possible way was if your Vespa had a breakdown or if the Poseidon listened to me. I peered at you earnestly, sitting far away alone with your hands crossed, your protract black hair brushing against the cool gentle breeze, deeply engrossed in your own thoughts on one of the grey colored stone rock, exploring yourself as to who you were in this vast universe, passionately relishing the beauty of the lake, while your group alike mine, were engaged in their photo shoots.
My friend Aayush, who was trying to lit a cigarette to look a stud, saw me staring at you, who came and sat beside and apprised me serenely, “Bro, don’t even try, she is completely out of your league, daughter of a filthy rich Pune based businessman and studies English at Cambridge.” My heart sank, not because you were richer and more qualified than me but because, my heart, for the first time had skipped a beat after seeing someone.
“Anyways, her name is Ahana, first cousin of Riya and is here for the weekend, #quiten_Aahu if you want her on instagram,” Aayush said perceiving the disappointment on my face.
The next, I looked at my friends who were still stuck on their screens discovering some new faces with fake smiles and happiness while I kept counting the number of bounces my stone made which I threw in water.
As the gloomy dusk befell upon us, we all got up to leave. I looked one last time towards you and discerned that your group too was gearing up to leave. I intentionally let my friends ride ahead of me while I kept pace with your group, stealthily capturing glances of you from my sideglass. I obviously, had crushes before you but never had the guts to express myself, but today someone inside me was burning to get out and unconsciously it had transformed me into a stalker.
I took it as a sign from Venus (Love God) when the squall started, luckily forcing you and Riya to stop and refuge underneath one of the apartments. While my friends enjoyed the downpour and rode off, I thanked my gods and garnered confidence to come near you with some nervousness still clinging onto me, excitability surging high up my belly making me falter and numb at the same time. When I stopped near you, my brain captured the most beautiful sight my eyes ever saw, the untied hair with your brown enchanting eyes and a black mole near your lower lip was simply charming. But nothing stunned me more than your chin, yes… Your chin, you had a cleft chin which was adorably the cutest thing about you.
“Hey, you must be Riya, right?” I acted.
“Hey, Nikhil, How are you?” Riya replied.
“Am good, just cursing my friends who left me alone,” I lied.
“They are all morons to ride in this stormy rain, I know just trying to show off.”
“You, I think are the one sensible among them to wait here.” Riya tried to flirt with me.
I smiled involuntarily, not expressing my desire how I yearned to bath in the rains while riding my Activa. I somehow smilingly, accepted the fact that goes on something like this, ‘To want something, you need to lose something.’
“Oh, I forgot to introduce you to my cousin, Ahana.” Riya spoke up realizing she was with someone.
A ray of electric shock passed through me when I greeted hands with you.
The rain had transformed itself into a drizzle when I had just taken the initiative to talk to you. Seeing everybody get into their routine again gave me a bad feeling about seeing you leave. I needed to do something; it was need of the hour, but sadly nothing, which could make us closer originated in my mind.
I didn’t pray to any of the gods this time, but luckily Riya’s scooter didn’t start. Even after knowing nothing was wrong, just a few kicks would make it start, I pretended that there was some malfunction in scooter.
“I have my tuitions in twenty minutes. I need to leave now.” Riya said.
“I think I will have to call my dad.” Riya said wanting to make me do something.
“Wait… Don’t upset your parents. I have a plan; you take my scooter right now. There is a garage nearby, Ahana and I will show your scooter there and then I will drop it at your place. You can call afterwards and I will pick my moped from your place.” I said not making her realize how I made you stay with me.
I was truly surprised how you also didn’t object staying with me. Anyways, happiness erupted through me when I handed my keys to Riya and she left off. We both started walking towards the main road with me manually handling the scooter, while you walked in silence.
This awkward silence that prevailed between us lasted for more than five minutes which wasn’t uncool, although I wanted to know so much about you. None of us took the initiative to speak up, which also exhibited how both of us were shy in our own hemispheres. It rather turned out that through silence, I think, I got to know more about you.
Just as I was about to open my mouth, you spoke up asking me what I studied. It didn’t take me much time to open up and tell her how I hated studies and my teachers, and how nobody taught us properly the subject I loved the most. Also, I didn’t comprehend how the subject slowly shifted to the character and types of girls and boys of my school, which was the most interesting and enjoying talk between us.
As we reached the garage, I once again falsified that the scooter wasn’t starting. Just a small choke made its engines toil and the worker laughed at me for being so illiterate about vehicles.
You seated behind me comfortably as I enjoyed the best ride of my life taking the longest route possible to Riya’s house. I asked you about your life in Cambridge and immediately you responded how you reveled there, but in spite of living the life how the world sees it as an enjoyable merrier life, you revealed to me how you drew pleasure from the natural and the pure abode of this world and also how you longed to come to India and get enraptured in its heavenly nature. Just like this evening when you were relishing the ambience of the lake and felt one with nature, you stated how you don’t get time for these things there. You opened up to me like I was your long-lost friend, your voice being the most appealing thing my ears ever encountered which also enjoyed every bit of it. You also mentioned how comfortable and contended you felt when someone like me who had similar leisure activities get in touch with you.
Well, nothing but the refreshing essence of the climate and you with me was the best thing that had ever happened to me. It is truly miraculous how two people when they discover that they aren’t the lone ones on the planet who have similar fancy desires stumble across each other and pour out their hearts towards each other, yet, still remain contended even after knowing they both might not be able to meet each other again. Yes, leaving you at your doorstep and not exchanging numbers was not a stupid thing as this is how we both were. We knew that mere chatting and friend-zoning each other was not the-our-kind of thing. We all pass through this stage of our life, but that isn’t the only stage to live on, yet I got a wholesome memory of you imprinted on my heart.