He got the news eventually; not the last but he definitely was not among the first ones to know. She had got engaged and would get married soon.
He had known her well; they had met not so long ago, but once they did, they’d definitely hit it off. It was the time when he was away from home, and it didn’t hurt that they hailed from the same place, in fact, the same town too. Their conversations spanned several emails and had spilled over into phone calls. They were baffled by the extent of the common interests they shared. And discovering each new trivia about the other had been such a joy.
It had been some time before he started realizing how he felt about her. He was confused; he had given it considerable thought. The more he thought about it, the more he felt sure – she was the perfect companion for him. She would complement him in all ways and they would complete each other; were the rosy thoughts he had allowed himself to entertain. But he’d had his share of worries too – he had led a nomadic existence, traveling from city to city on his job, hadn’t had a chance to settle down yet. Though he loved what he did, he didn’t know if that was right for the both of them. What about his parents? and hers? Would they agree? Would she agree? The questions were eating into him – his sleeping and waking hours.
He felt miserable, guilty even talking the mundane stuff with her. He could hold it no longer. He decided to take the weight off his chest by letting her know. He decided to write her a mail; he knew he couldn’t handle her reaction over the phone. He also knew that a mail would give her some thinking time, at least the reaction wouldn’t be impulsive, he hoped.
He composed it, painstakingly trying to explain how he felt, taking care to ensure that he didn’t write anything wrong or inappropriate that would embarrass her. He told her that he wanted her to know, wanted to get his conscience clear, but above all wanted her friendship irrespective of her answer.
He got the reply three days later. It was a no. Her thought was clear as crystal – she had never entertained any such feelings for him. She didn’t feel that they were suited to spend their lives together. He was deeply hurt, though not shattered. He almost knew it would be a no, he thought. At least she didn’t break off the bond that they shared – pure and transcending all boundaries; that was heartening he told himself.
And now she was getting married. May be, after all, she won’t find that companion, whom he knew she wanted – for a second he allowed himself this wicked thought. Immediately he realized the futility of it – whom was he kidding?
What he had, he knew, was something that she’d never wanted.
ps: This, with some variations, could be the story of any one of us or our friends. I remember a saying that someone had once written on the class-room black-board in my school, as the ‘thought for the day’ –
“The one who loses in love never loses much; but the one who has never loved, has lost it all”
Profound, isn’t it? 😀