In the darkness of the night, a muffled sob disturbs the silence of the room……She turns and twists on her bed with tears streaming down her rosy cheeks. A soft glow fills the room with moon high in the sky and stars shining on the beautiful night. The garden overlooking her terrace is basked in the silver moonlight with breeze flowing; touching the hearts of two young lovers who are meeting stealthily; away from the stealing eyes of the world. Somewhere far in the night, distant cries of an Owl are heard with croaks of the toads from the pond adding to the music in the garden.
She suddenly sits up in her bed and looks around. The comfort of the arms of her lover, the warm air from his breath and the hum of his snoring; which kept her always awake is missing today. She starts to cry and thinks back of the golden times of her life…….
Sitting on the steps of the college, she is chatting away happily with her friends when a stranger passes by. He is perhaps new to the place and keen to make friends. She ignores the stare and continues the gossip about that new teacher who has just joined. Next morning she feels that familiar eyes on her in the class; and turns to look back. She meets the same kind eyes which have the eagerness to talk to her. Concentrating on her books, she starts taking notes of the subject; getting pleasing glances from the teacher. On her way back home, as luck would have it her scooty gets punctured and she is left to pull the heavy thing herself. She is just about to faint from the scorching sun that a strong pair of hands tap on her shoulder asking “May I help u?”. Startled she fights back but unable to fight her tiredness, she gives in pulling the scooty. He holds the vehicle and escorts her home without another word on the way. Next day a smile greets the damsel in the class, which makes her shy of herself. During the tea break, she gathers her courage to go up to the stranger to thank him and introduce herself.
A brief meeting turned into a routine hello and then one thing led to another. She could not sleep before hearing his voice at night. He was as loving as one would dream of. The world seemed a perfect place to live in. The year passed away quickly and the end of the session brought about tensions of exams and job placements. She still made it a point to speak to him to keep him boosted up for the better performance in next exam every day. The grade had started to fall during the love that had blossomed bringing up troubles from the skeptic teachers. The session had brought good news for the lady with a job in the nearby metro, but alas her mate was unable to fulfill her desire for a well settled life.
They moved apart and the separation was very painful. He procured a job in the same city and continued to work for his living. Next vacation she came down, he came up to meet her with a rose in his hand. She was overjoyed to meet him, and they happily chatted for hours about their college days. It seemed that perhaps their dreams would come true and he would ask for her hand in marriage from her parents. The following morning she was made to deck up like a doll and serve tea for some people who had come to ‘see’ her. The evening was full of turmoil for the distressed lovers, which ended with fights and cries. “Life cannot be sustained by Love alone”, were her last words to him that evening.
Today the maroon dress lies in one corner of her room, with matching jewelry sets. The hena on her hands has dried but the eyes still seem wet. And she lays back thinking, what Love actually was?