That Night

“The melodies of life have become silent and the only thing which made me feel alive was the air gushing in and out through my nostrils. I could hear them clearly, as the voices in my head, like the melodies, have become numb. I couldn’t feel the emotions which people tried to convey while coldness was the only thing which I was able to reciprocate back. This is what my life looks like, too mechanical to understand and too simple to love.”

I closed my diary, the last ritual which I don’t forget to perform before leaving the office, and headed back to catch the last bus to my place. Almost two years had passed since I had joined at work at one of the most reputed corporate houses of the country, but every single day I had to curse myself for carrying on with the job a day more. I felt like a caged parrot who spoke what the company wanted to but his inner voice had become silent a long time ago. The things I loved the most, like writing and photography, had been untouched for sometime now while the thought of starting it the very next day is far too prevalent but to no real avail.

I had to take an auto rickshaw to reach the bus stop on time, but even after ten minutes I couldn’t get hold of one. The time when I almost lost hope, I finally found one but I wasn’t the only one to find it. A female voice went parallel with mine, and we both reached the auto at the same time. She was carrying a number of charts with two or three chart holders, she must be an architect I assumed. As we had to go to the same place, we decided to take the auto together. Till the time we reached our destination she had been on her phone, speaking on and on which I thought were her parents and she was assuring them that she would reach home safely.

We did share a few glances, but I didn’t dare to speak, maybe because she was a lot beautiful and was completely out of my league, maybe she felt the same in an opposite way. By the time we made it to the bus stop, the last bus had left, leaving us in a state of panic and cluelessness about what to do next.

Marooned at a place where the street lights had begun to flicker while the shops were shut close, adding to that a stranger for company, she had already began to panic and called her parents who told her they will be there in another hour. She even made me speak to her parents to assure her safety which I eventually did.

Me: That’s strange I have never spoken to a girl’s parents before I even spoke to her.

She: They were very tense, so had to calm them down. By the way, I am Riya.

Me: I am Ryan, I work at this corporate house on sector 4, and you?

She: I am an architect working for a firm at the same sector as yours.

A deep silence starts to begin as we didn’t know what else to speak about, before I had to interrupt.

Me: Is it possible for you to drop me near Karol Bagh, I think it’s closer to your place.

She: Sure.

Voices in my head (ViH) began to mumble, “Okay now she doesn’t want to start a conversation, or else she would have started something else. Shut up Ryan, you are not going to speak a word. Silence it will be.”

This time her phone started to ring, it had a beautiful ringtone, which I think I had heard a couple of years back. As I am trying to recollect the song, a voice interrupts…

She: Dil Se, the song is from Dil Se.

Me: Exactly, I just couldn’t recollect.

She: So you love music?

Me: Yeah I used to, but now I don’t really have much time.

She: Everyone has time, but we are just too lazy.

Me: Stop judging! You don’t know me at all. ~Even ego has a voice!

She: Sorry, I didn’t mean that.

Me: Sorry, I over reacted, I am just too stressed with this mechanical life I am living, trapped in this life where I cannot do a thing I like. I really want to, but harder I try, that much painful is the failure. ~ (ViH) How am I telling stuff which I didn’t even dare to tell anyone else.

She: I know exactly how you feel. Even I wanted to be an Artist, painting the world I imagined so as to show the real world what they are missing. But I just couldn’t gather the courage to take it forward. I was too scared to lose, but now that I think of it, it’s not that bad to lose than to stay at a place you never really loved.

Me:  It’s like a maze with no way out. I agree with you, I lost that happiness the day I joined here. I wanted to be a writer, a story teller who could add a new dimension and even justify the existing possibilities.

She: Writer, that’s amazing. Can you tell me one?

Me: The creative part in my head is a little rusted; it would need a little dusting. So hop in and help me put a story together.

She: Me, oh no! I can’t. I am really bad at telling stories.

Me: Don’t worry, just try to fill in the gaps, may be you could add those colours of yours to portray these characters in a different way.

She: For me to do that, you need to start!

Me: Okay, okay…let me think.

She: You have all the time in the world, but do tell me a story before my dad arrives.

Me: As you say highness!

She put both her delicate hands near her chin, and began to listen with seriousness. Her eyes made me a tinge nervous, as her expressive eyes seem to have great expectations from my story. A cool breeze began to flow, while she adjusted her light blue scarf over her neck with a little smile on her face. She was nothing short of an angel, which doesn’t mean I was a demon sitting along, but I was just a mere human when compared to her.

Me: There was this girl who I accidentally met while trying to catch an auto, I just couldn’t say no when she asked me whether we could share the auto. I was totally numb to see someone so beautiful, even the words refused to come out.

She began to blush with a little playful smile on her face, but aware that the person speaking was still a stranger.

Me: I just had one wish, when we were left all marooned at the bus stop and we had started conversing, that the night doesn’t end soon and we could continue to speak for a while longer. I wanted to tell her, that her smile was the most beautiful one that I had ever seen and I hoped that she carried that smile forever.

“The smile got a little bigger and I could see her beautiful smile again” – Mind mumbling again.

Before I could say a word more, a car made its way towards us. It was her dad. I just wished I could see that her a little longer, but it was all done. She rushed towards her father and hugged him, while he gave me a silent thank you for looking after his daughter. As we headed back in her car, we kept stealing glances through the rear view mirror but just couldn’t gather the courage to tell the final goodbye.

I got down from their car with a token of gratitude towards her father, and a small smile towards her. While she also kept looking at me in the same way, only wishing that time could have been a little slower.

I just couldn’t sleep that day, I felt something was missing and I had a very little idea how to retrieve it back. I knew I had to see her, I just had to.

Next day near her office gate, someone met her and she was happy to see him, may be even more than that someone who had met her.

Edited by: Sahithi


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