The wind swayed away her hair as she walked past the beach side. Every evening she sat by the sea shore in memory of the one who had gone. Her heart had still not accepted the fact that her fiancée had died. He had gone by in one of those ships after being selected in Navy promising her a luxurious and happy married life after his arrival to their land. But destiny had played differently. The ever so lively girl’s happiness had been snatched away by the harsh winds that had eaten up his ship. Every day she waited for him since his departure. His body hadn’t been recovered but it was stated that he had died as there was no one left alive. She didn’t want to presume things, she wanted a proof. She didn’t believe when everybody cried out listening about his demise. She waited for the long gone prince even one year after his death.
She still thought about the times they had spent together at the beach when they were kids. The silly childhood friendship had blossomed into love. He had proposed her in one of those dinners at the beach side they had every Saturday. She had instantly accepted his proposal. Their engagement had been a great family affair. And everyone was happy that finally they had made the best choice. He was the most eligible bachelor in their clan. Thousands of times he had played violin for her. Every Sunday after the morning prayers at the church, she would sit beside him listening to the beautiful music his soul created. She was supremely blessed to have got the man of her life. She felt totally complete with him.
She loved the way when he whispered into her ears sweet nothings, when every evening was a celebration with him, when every day she just asked for him from God, when he always had a pair of earrings to gift her because he knew that she loved them, when her heart skipped a beat by just looking at his face, when their fingers were entangled into each other, all this was not just love, it was a feeling of togetherness, a promise to stay by each other’s side forever.
And then when day his call letter came. His selection at Navy had been confirmed. Their family rejoiced. He had to join in two months in Banglore. She couldn’t go with him for she had to give her college exams. Those two months were the most beautiful and among the toughest for both of them. It is said that the period between engagement and marriage are the most blessed one and so was theirs. But they both knew a separation was near. They would have to stay apart from each other. Goa wasn’t too far from Banglore but then it wasn’t too near either. He would have to go off to work without looking at her face. He would have lunch without having a taste of those yummy soft fingers which kissed his lips to offer food. It was going to be tough for them. They remained with each other for the entire two months so as to fill the days when they would be far apart but both of them knew nothing could fill the void they would experience after his departure from Goa.
The day he went away from her had been very painful for her. She had promised him she wouldn’t turn gloomy on Sunday mornings. And as promised she sat at the same place thinking about the good old times but didn’t drop a tear from her eye. She missed him but she felt that their love would empower all this. And even now she sat at the same place thinking about the moments when he played the violin for her, looking at her eyes lovingly. She knew he loved the way she would turn red with shyness when he looked straight into her eyes. Those eyes spoke a lot. She missed the talks they did through their eyes.
Thanks to the advanced technology, she could at least hear his voice every night and slip into sweet romantic dreams. She ran to the Internet Cafe every Wednesday for at seven p.m sharp someone would wait for her just to have a look at the lady who would bear his kid some years later. The video calls helped them cover up for the loneliness they went through by the day.
But then all good things aren’t meant to stay forever. One night, the news channel talked about a wrecked ship wherein everyone had lost their lives. He had also been in it. There was no news about him. They tried their best to learn about his well being but all efforts turned futile. They hadn’t even got his body. It was presumed he had drowned and died. Everyone cried out for the handsome guy who had left for heavenly abode but there was one person who could never accept the fact that her love had gone away leaving her all alone in this world.
“He can’t do this to. He had promised that he would come back and marry me”, she wailed but no one could say anything to her. It was a setback to all but there was just one person who had not yet recovered from it and that was ‘she’
He had lost all hopes in his life. He wandered about the park kicking every stone that came by his way. He had failed everywhere. He had not got a job. He couldn’t get capital investment to kick start his business. The only girl he loved had left him for a rich guy. He just wanted to die and before dying, he wanted to travel some great places of his land, his country that hadn’t given him anything. It only did good to the reserved category. It didn’t care about the General category, even they were humans and even they needed a job. And he was way better than the two boys who had got selected. He had always been ahead of both of them but their caste had brought them luck. They had got a job more than they deserved. He had just got disappointment in return.
He had lost his confidence and his belief in God had washed away. The catastrophe was enough to drive him crazy and his latest decision was to end up his life after travelling a few places he had never been able to visit even after being too eager to have a glimpse of them and the first on his list was ‘Goa’.
He always had a fancy for the beaches and beauties. And now he had finally reached the heavens. He soaked himself in the sun kissed land. He gaped at the bikini clad girls and swam to his heart’s content for life was about to end and he had to enjoy it to the fullest now. He flirted with girls to the core. He knew there was nothing called as ‘true love’ in this world, it only existed in books. He drank till he could take no more. He slept under the open sky and yelled at God till he lost the slang count. This was life, enjoy till the end for it sucks to live it straight.
It was time to turn bad.
Destiny always has different plans for us. Why doesn’t it work the way we want? When we think we have finally figured out life, it kicks us from nowhere and when we think that everything is over, it drops a ray of hope.
Like every evening she was walking by the beach side in a hope that he would return to her and the flowers of happiness would be blossom again into her life. She was lost in her thoughts. He was running through the same area, head phones plugged into his ears, enjoying life to his best. And they bumped into each other.
“Wohoo…man, I am sorry beautiful girl. Hope you didn’t get hurt.” he said in his flirty tone, something that he had acquired since the day of his arrival at Goa.
She didn’t say anything but just looked at him and turned away. He was amazed to see the hollowness in her eyes, those eyes that had lost hope but had a question in them. Something in him instigated to talk to her but he stayed still. He wanted to hear her voice but she didn’t utter anything. She began to walk towards the opposite side. He followed her but she was lost in the darkness.
That night was uneasy for him. He did not go to the pub, he did not even take a sip of alcohol, and he did not flirt with girls. That one girl was haunting his mind. He wanted to know about her. Somehow he could feel himself in her eyes. The lost hopes that her eyes portrayed made him think about his failures. It was tough to get sleep. He kept on tossing and turning but his eyes didn’t seem to shut for all that they yearned for was her, all that they saw was ‘she’.
He was wide awake when the sun touched the land of beaches. In some time he could hear the chimes of the church bell. Something in him aroused him to go to the church. Even though an atheist by choice, he went to the place he hadn’t visited since the past many years. The priest was reading out ‘The Bible’, the choir sang the hymns. The whole atmosphere was so calm and soothing.
And then suddenly he saw the same girl who had occupied his mind all night. He had lost his precious sleep for her and now he would leave no stone unturned to listen to her voice. He followed her but the prayer session had got over and everybody got up to leave. He couldn’t lose her now. She was again lost in the crowd. He looked for her everywhere but few things aren’t so easy to get hold of and especially beautiful girls.
All day his mind searched for her. He searched every street and every market place but ‘she’ was unreachable just like those irritating networks during rainy season. Tired and drained, he crashed to his bed. He had lost the hope of finding her and even if he found her what would that bring anyway? He had already decided to end his life, there was no point making a new friend, forget about falling in love again.
He woke and went back to his routine to of going to the pubs and admiring those white foreigners who showed skin for free. He had decided he would go a step further with one of them and enjoy the night. It would be a failure on his part if he would die virgin and he had decided he would hit on a girl that night itself and that would also help him vent out his frustration. He did go out that night and had a great date with a sweet European but that was all. She began haunting him again. He drank all night to forget her face but things didn’t work out for him.
Three days had passed by, he had almost become used to staying awake half of the night, and when finally sleep came, the girl would come to his dreams. He felt it was just another case of infatuation. He roamed about the city and it was time to leave Goa for some other destination. He had packed his bags when he went for a last stroll at the beach. Lo! Behold! He had found her. And this time he would not let her go.
“Hey…Remember me? I am the guy who got bumped into you few days back. What’s your name?”
She looked at him just the way she had done that day. He gave his hands to her. She shook them and gave a smile and went away. He followed her.
“Do you live here? I’ve come to visit this place. Isn’t it lovely? I am totally in love with it.”
He thought she would say something but she didn’t.
And then they saw a ship coming by. He saw her running towards the sea.
“Yes, I love the ships. My fiancée is in Navy and one day he would come on one of those ships and marry me.”
Finally, she had said something. But her words had made him go mute. He sighed and walked with her to the nearby restaurant.
“Would you have a cup of coffee with me?”’ she asked to his surprise.
“Sure”, he said smiling.
That day he decided he wouldn’t leave Goa till she gets her love. He didn’t know no one could bring back her love.
Every morning he walked with her, he loved her cute smile. She didn’t speak much but those eyes made him lose his senses. He told a lot many stories about her fiancée but he didn’t know he was a dead man. She always said he had gone for an expedition and would return soon. He loved his friendship with her.
One day he was sitting alone waiting for her but she didn’t come. So he decided to go to the church. He spoke about his love for her in the confession box and returned back. As he sat on their usual place of coffee, an old man patted him. He was a priest.
“Do you love her?” he asked.
“Who are you?”
“I am the girl’s uncle with whom you chat daily.”
“Oh! I am sorry. I’ll be honest to you. Yes I do love her but I would never come into her marriage. I know she has been engaged to the Navy officer.”
“Sadly, my son, he is no more. He died an year ago but she does not accept it. We all want her well being. If you can somehow help her fight out this situation, I would be obliged to forever.”
The truth struck him hard. He didn’t know whether to rejoice about the fact that he could get his love or to gloom about his love’s situation.
“Why hasn’t she come today?”
“Today is his birthday and she has gone to buy presents for him.”
She came back with a large packet of goodies. They looked at each other. She had a big smile on her face. The Priest departed. He still had the newspaper in his hand that clearly stated his death. He handed over the paper to her.
“No, that’s not true. They all have lied to you”, she yelled at him.
“You have to accept the fact. He is no more. His name is there in the list of the departed. He won’t come back. Stop waiting for him every evening. He has left for the heavens”, he shouted at her.
She fell and suddenly a stream of tears flowed from her eyes. He ran to hug her. It was difficult, the surge was high but she had finally broken down and accepted that he had gone and that was a relief to all.
They still walked together every morning and drank coffee but she was not that chirpy. She had learnt to live life without him. He still hadn’t spoken out his love for her but he had managed a small job for himself that paid enough for his survival. He saved for her. He still didn’t have the courage to speak out his life for her but he saved for a life he would someday get to spend for her.
A year had passed by now. She was sitting by the beach side and he was playing violin for her. She smiled shyly at him. Love had blossomed in their life and happiness had taken a new form. After a few moments of enjoying music, he kneeled down and said, “Will you marry me, Jenny?”
He didn’t have to speak of his love for she knew how much he cared for her. H had learnt to play violin for her, he had gifted her earrings every month for he knew that she loved them. He had stayed by her side and made her alive. And for a man like him, she was always ready.
Good times had come back. The waves splurged high and lovers sat close to each other, her head resting on his shoulder, looking at the sun set for the gloomy days of their lives had set in and it was time to welcome the season of love and joy.
About the Author:
Harshita Srivastava is presently a final year student of Mechanical Engineering. She is a passionate writer and a prolific blogger. Her debut novel ‘One In A Million’ will release in January next year. Get the latest updates about the book here. She blogs at http://harshitasrivastava.blogspot.com/ and http://relationshipvows.blogspot.com/Harshita Srivastava Harshita Srivastava Short Story Short story spectralhues publishes short stories The Waves Of Love