16 Mini Tales and a Tragedy

21 March 2015
A tall lanky guy sat right beside
“Hey! Nice scarf”
“Thanks!”
I smiled

20th Birthday of mine
First one that we celebrated together
Of all the things you did
My favorite was
your perfectly wrapped kiss.

19 roses
Were at my doorstep on valentine.
You said fourteen were too cliché
But never gave me a reason for why nineteen

18 days till our anniversary
When we had our very first fight
Over the date of our anniversary
You said it’s twentieth, I said it’s nineteenth
We later resolve this agreeing how the date doesn’t matter
All that matter is that we’re here, together.
But I know it’s nineteenth

17th, turns out it was seventeen
A photo from our dinner that night
Had a time stamp that we didn’t care to see
Sheepishly enough we celebrated our anniversary in
With a takeaway dinner and a bucket of ice cream

16 songs in the mixtape
Your best friend told me about all the cassette players that you went through
All because that rainy night
We were talking about how mixtapes were so cool
And I told you how I missed old school

15 shades of orange scarves
Cause you couldn’t decide which one was
Exactly like the one I lost last summer
Thanks to you being a perfectly great distraction

14 minutes late into the movie
Thanks to the pretty black dress
That took ages to put back on
After you unceremoniously took them off

“13 dine together, first to rise will be the first to die”
Quoted a friend as we were almost done with our dinner.
you stood up laughing and rest of us right after
that night as we made our way home
I held you a little tighter
Not superstitious
But scared

12 storeys high
The flat I liked was perched on the very top
Mint shade rooms and yellow kitchen
As we looked at the city lights
Sipping our tea was the first time
you admitted your fear of heights.

“11 more hours, love”
You try to console me through the phone
Although it felt more like you were consoling yourself
We somehow were able to spend a month apart
Without losing our sanity
But these unexpected additional few hours felt like a complete agony

10 minutes to eight
I sit there anxiously fidgeting with the tablecloth
You put your hand over mine
And calm me down
And the first time in this evening
I feel like I belong
Still not in this party
but definitely with you

9 generous slices of your favorite chocolate cake
It took you to finally admit
That there is such thing
as too much of sweet
I wasn’t surprised when you ran away
From anything that had chocolate, for a week.

8 chairs were left empty
We still decided to sit on the bigger table meant for ten
The tables meant for two had chairs opposite to each other
Keeping us at arm lengths
Keeping us from holding hands beneath the table
Keeping me from tickling you
And stealing your food.

7 tries it took you to unlock the door
Because you were too drunk to see
And I was too giggly to be steady on my feet
So after we finally got the door open
We sat hysterically laughing on the porch steps

6 days of burnt curries
And half cooked rice for dinner
Till you finally agreed on the new Chinese place that opened down the street
That one day I finally convinced you,
Turned out they burned their curries too.
That night our kiss tasted of burnt curries
and all the peppermint we had after.

Of all the numbers
I have lost the number of times we’ve been called out for being too handsy in public
You’re just too good to be true
Can’t take my eyes off you
Nor my hands

5 missed calls
I stopped mid walk to look at the phone
Seconds away
A speeding car

4….

3…

2..

1.

 

 

~~

 

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The Hard Part

[Originally posted on 16th February 2015 in http://scarlet-grace.blogspot.com/
The revised version of this story is also printed on the September 2015’s issue of Navyaata magazine as “The End Game”]

With sweaty hands I finally managed to press “send” and few moments later there came a “seen”. I waited and waited, there was nothing but silence. Suddenly he called. I didn’t know what to do. I pressed “reject” sign on the screen. He called and I cancelled again. We did that few more times and then he called again. I knew he wanted answers, he needed them but did he deserve it? I didn’t know. With shaking hands I finally answered. I expected him to ask “why”, scream at me maybe, call me names but all I got was silence. “Hello?” I said.

“Hmm… Why didn’t you pick up the call?” what was that in his voice? Annoyance? Sadness?

“Er… I just uh…”What could I possibly say? How could I say that I was being a coward that I was running away from what was coming, that I didn’t want to face the consequences of what I had done.

“So… did you have your dinner?” he asked again filling the dead silence.

“Yeah…” Why was he doing this? Why wasn’t he saying anything? Why was he acting so normal? Like nothing had happened. I knew he had seen it. I knew that he knew, so why? Finally my curiosity got the best of me and I asked. “You got the message didn’t you?”

“What message?” He was lying! He was lying! I knew he was! I knew he had seen it.

“The one I sent on Facebook?” I asked unsure of his response.

“Nope” Liar!

“I think you should see it.” I tried to keep a cool voice.

“I don’t want to” His voice suddenly pleading, filled with the obvious pain. What had I done?

“You need to.” I said sadly though I had already known that he had seen it.

“No I really don’t want to, please?” No. No. No. He was doing it wrong! This was supposed to be the easy part! Why is it becoming the hard one then? He deserved this! Or that was what I thought few moments ago… Had I gone too far? Had I been too harsh? He hadn’t become serious, had he? He couldn’t be! He isn’t the type of guy to get serious, at least not so soon… but isn’t this what we wanted? Isn’t this how he was supposed pay for what he did to her?

“Is it true?” His voice was in the verge of tears. It almost broke my heart. What was I supposed to do now?

“Yes. Every word of it.” I never resented myself more in my life than this particular moment. When had I become so heartless?
“Okay. Thank you.” And that very moment he hated me more than ever. “You’re welcome.” I replied coolly. He gave a small sound of disbelief, pain, hatred and then ended the call. I slowly put my cellphone down feeling numb and empty, hollow. It was over. I had done it. I had broken his heart and all I felt was relief. Relief that it was over.