I saw her. There she was. Stuffed under the pile of shopping bags. So unlike her. I smiled.
I kept staring at her for long. Something came over me and I popped up in front of her pretending it to be happy chance.
She appeared delighted. Wow, it was a rarity to see her this happy in the past. And I, for certain, wasn’t a reason for it. But it was so good to see her that I catch myself with as widening a smile as hers. We exchanged greetings while she kept gazing at me and before she could say anything I asked her to join me for a cup of coffee. Hastily read Today’s Special on the board in front of the Coffee House. I realized after blurting it out. FLIRTING-COFFEE? WHAT THE HELL DOES THAT MEAN? (I tried to read through the corner of my eye) while she laughed brightly.
Ah! So beautiful she looks. Being not nervous, being herself, with that innocent smile. Back then something always resisted her while she was with me. I felt a little pang. Seeing her merrily joyous I captured that moment in my heart. I carried that embarrassing look a little longer to make her feel more comfortable.
We entered, ordered the specials, sat down and started chirping. I knew her eyes were constantly studying me closely; trying to point out differences in her mind yet dwelling in our conversation with that same devoted interest. What was about her that made me feel so warm around her? I regretted not keeping in touch with her. I missed her every day. All these years I had this urge to run back to her but because I had hurt her so bad that my regret won every single time over the pain of missing her. And here she is; still talking to me, still smiling at me.
I wanted to know each detail of her life ever since we parted. I wanted to listen to every second she spent without me so that for 1% I could make up for this lost time and picture myself with her in my head, living that moment alongside her. She is still that same bright, big-eyed, cute little girl but more confident than before and a lot chatty for sure. My inner-self smiled widely.
She catches me off guard asking the meaning of Flirting-Coffee. I tell her and we laugh crazily.
THIS! This is what I miss. We could always share whatever came into our minds not being bothered about how we come off as a person. We had an understanding like best-friends but we both knew we were more than that. Much more! A little tension always building in each other’s vicinity. Something you just can’t ignore.
I still remember whenever I used to tease her saying I was the only one who understood her and she used to go all philosopher on me “There’s no one who understands you completely. A person can only try and put efforts to do so but in the end, it’s the efforts that all matters” And then I’d roll my eyes for lecturing me and she’d ,in turn, show her grumpy look and then I’d make fun of her twitchy nose whenever she did that and then she’d try to lightly punch me and I would hold her hand mid-air and that moment appears again, there’s that profound tension. We would look at each other for some time and then quickly turn away. I am sure Cupid used to bang his head against the wall whenever both the lovers turned out to be this shy.
Wow! Good old days.
I see her spacing out. I bet she is thinking about it too. Oh! No No, Sweetheart. Don’t go there!
Or maybe she should bring it up. We have to re-walk on that thin ice to set things right. Some of it was a misunderstanding, but most of it was my mistake. I should have been more courageous. Like she always had been. I should have been the backbone like she was for me. If only I could have muster up the courage to resolve it then & there, we wouldn’t have lost these 3 years. For a person like me, it takes a good amount of wrecked loss to realize how important it is to fix things right away than waiting for a particular right moment. There is no right moment or else you’d lose your right person and sometimes it’s too late to fix anything.
I feel horrible. I hint at her about the things she still keeps in her mind. I wanted her to open up. I have to face this one day or I’d have to face a life where I let her go, without trying.
She’s in the middle of saying something that her phone rings. Poor timing, too bad!
I was about to take another sip when she loudly said those things. The Wedding! She is getting married.
My heart dropped to the ground. I am looking at her. She’s all cutesy and giggling over the phone and promising to hurry back. She’s leaving. She’s going. No! She is gone, from my life. Is it over? I thought today’s meeting was like destiny consoling me for the suffering I had endured because of my guilt and now it’s time for the reward. And here I am, being sentenced to another punishment.
She picks up her things and leaves. Like Literally!
She left me there. I feel stranded and she walks off. I see her leaving and she doesn’t even turn around. Is she the same girl who never got tired of looking at my face, someone who waved goodbye more than 10 times before disappearing?
Oh! She turns, waves her hand and quickly bolts out of the place. I can’t feel my legs. I feel my support marched out, paced out of my life. I come back inside and sit at the same place. Still in shock, still trying to turn the clock back. Just for once. Please, Lord, You can’t be this harsh. I blew my only chance.
It starts to drizzle. I look around the world as a hazy scene. As if I can’t see or hear anything but then I see her again. She looks lost. Did she come back for me? Shall I go for her? But she’s getting married and I don’t want to confuse her now. She must have found an amazing partner for sure. Shall I ruin that for her? Chuck it! This is the only chance I have.
I can get all my answers once I confront her. She’s slowly turning around when I hold her hand and ask “Are you getting married? When?”
She kept staring at me, tears shining like diamonds in her big eyes, “Does that matter?”
And I know. This is my moment.
“No, it doesn’t matter. Nothing matters to me more than you do. All these years I wasted confronting these feelings. I don’t care if you’re getting married the next day I am going to confess my feelings for you. I don’t believe my life matters if you aren’t in it and I want you to stay with me.”
I would have said something more when out of the blue I see her hand extending to my collar pulling me towards her and kissing me hard. Whoa! I had never seen her like this. She always manages to blow my mind away with something or the other.
She pushes me back to confess “I am glad I had this special coffee with you today” and winks.