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|lather (standard:romance, 3412 words)|
|Author: Shamoil Ahmad||Added: Apr 11 2010||Views/Reads: 1188/536||Story vote: 0.00 (0 votes)|
|Relations may wither...they do not die|
Lather Shamoil Ahmad It was just a chance meeting with her, on the road.... And just as the water in the puddle gets dirty the moment you put your foot on it, the same way... In the same way the color of her face underwent a change. She was taken aback by my sudden appearance before her, and so was I...nearly forcing me to ejaculate, "oh, you..." or words to that effect. She dragged the hem of her sari to her nape with an intent to cover it, I stole a furtive glance at her...she was certainly at that stage of her life where women first try to conceal the emerging wrinkles around their neck...from the withering complexion of her face and from the attire she was wearing, I quickly observed that she was not very happily placed. Her chapel too seemed old and worn out and did not match the color of her sari. Toe portion of her chapel had completely lost its original color and shape because of constant use. It then occurred to me that I was better placed than she at that moment and it sort of made me happy to see that I was better off than she, or that I was sort of happy to see her in this discomfort. My being happy at her lot was certainly not in good taste, but I could not help realizing that the relationship that could not fructify between me and her— the pangs of unfulfilled love—had left some fire still crackling within me for the last twenty years. It appeared to me that she was reading my mind. She once again straightened the hem of her sari over her shoulder, and greeted me with a smile that seemed wan like a dry leaf fallen from a tree...she had enquired of me if I lived in this town...to this I had responded with the nod of head in affirmative and hurled back the same query on her. She too had responded with the nod of her head. As she nodded ‘yes’, she betrayed on her face sign of an unspecified pain. Perhaps, she was not ready for this kind of unexpected meeting; or may be she did not think it proper that I should know about her living in this town. As for me, I did not find it wholly unexpected...I’ll readily admit that I had always been inquisitive about her all these years...where she lived...how is she...or how good was her married life...? Relations may wither....they do not die... Speechless, she was twisting the hem of her sari and I too was silent. I was baffled at my own silence. At least, we could have been doing some formal talking...like questions about home....about children...but my lips were sealed and she too remained silent...then it occurred to me that I should invite her to a cup of tea in a restaurant nearby; but thought, perhaps she will not like it. In fact, restaurant is my weakness...if I happen to meet any friend somewhere on the road, I definitely make one such proposal. Seated in a half-lit corner of a quality restaurant, joy of sipping tea while talking is immense. But we had continued to be silent in the middle of the road. Standing in the middle of the road without any purpose looked really very odd...perhaps I am making a wrong statement here...the fact of the matter is—standing there silently in this manner was actually producing a pleasant feeling. May be, I thought, she was passing through some kind of a depression; but when on an occasion or two she looked up towards me, I thought she too was keen to spend some time with me. It was then that I had alluded to restaurant. She had not given immediate consent. First she looked around, almost stealthily. She had smiled softly and had queried as to where she had to go. I had then hurriedly indicated towards a restaurant that was close by. We went to the restaurant. There was an unoccupied table in one of the corners. On being seated, I observed that although there was no sign of depression on her face, yet she seemed to be somewhat diffident. In the meantime, as I straddled my feet under the table, I touched upon hers...it was not done intentionally...but I remembered having once done that in the past. Those were the early days then when buds would sprout; fragrances had missives contained therein and the waves in the river would lead to the Click here to read the rest of this story (265 more lines)
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