Kasturba in dilemma

by shalinijena

The rain made her sad. In her younger days, she would wonder what people meant by the “smell of the soil”. It never made any sense to her. She loved the smell of petrol instead. The rain made her day gloomy. ‘Nothing to look forward to’ – that’s what it implied.

But tonight was different. She was lonely and the pitter-patter gave her company. It didn’t matter if she wanted anybody. She squeezed herself into her own arms, hugging her breasts tightly, staring into the rain. The rain that she hated was trying to soothe her. It didn’t make her happy. She perhaps, didn’t even know what happiness truly was. She was neither sad nor unsmiling, she was nothing. She even refused to feel, it had cost her way too much…

Kasturba closed her eyes and stretched her neck, upwards; took a deep breath and cried. Silently, for nothing, in memory of no one. She cried – for herself.

Her phone rang. She knew it would. It kept ringing and she kept staring ahead, ignoring.

It gave little solace, little happiness, to know that somebody wants to care. Somebody wants to make her happy. Somebody wants to pursue her. Yes, how stupid it might sound, that makes her smile sometimes. And then the very next moment when she looks at him, it all goes away. Because she knows, all this – whatever it is, will go away.

It rang again and she turned her face to stare at it. The ringtone now irritating her, the lights blinking, the name flashing again and again. She sighed and picked up the phone.

“Can I come in?” He asked politely, not too politely.

She said nothing. After a few breathing moments he spoke again.

“Its kinda cold out here.”

She closed her eyes, took her time and knew she had no option, not even opinion. And even if she did, it wouldn’t make sense. So, she walked to the door, waited on the handle for a while, afraid. And then, a click, a difference in the air pressure, sudden whiff of cold and there he was. In a brown leather jacket, blue jeans and wet hair, he looked like a demigod – maybe not to everyone and she knew that.

He smiled at her. It was compassionate. Still with smiling lips that looked amused now, with his head tilted downwards and eyebrows slightly raised, he brushed the wet out of his hair and entered the room. For a few minutes, he looked around, like intentionally avoiding her gaze and after some more minutes of scanning the almost empty room, he finally turned to her.

“I can have some tea.”

“I can make you coffee.” She spoke.

He kept at looking her. And looking..

Her lips parted to say something, but they couldn’t. It was only air that spoke. They trembled now and she wished someone could bury her (please!). He didn’t smile, he didn’t find it amusing either. He just took a step forward, drew his right hand out of his pocket, took one more step and caught her by her face. She didn’t know if she had stopped breathing or was doing it too heavily. His face came closer, their nose touched and then their forehead. Standing there, for a while, they say nothing – just breathing.

“I will get you some coffee.” She whispered, not in a hushing way and walked away, while he let her go..

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