“Always” was what her diary read.
Holding it so close to his heart, he hugged the words she had written with her favorite red pen. With his watery eyes he had one look at her pen. It was nibbled, as she always did with all her pens. He tried to remember how much he used to love her “chewed” pens back then. Even today he broke down holding her pen and her notebook. Sitting on the floor hugging her words he pecked her pen, the pen which once her beautiful lips had touched. He remembered her lovely face. Eyes that spoke, dimple on her left cheek, and the beautiful mole over her soft lips coupled with her long mesmerizing neck and fragrant hair would drive him crazy to become her Edward Cullen and bite her neck.
He missed her so badly then. He thought he would do anything it’d take to bring her back. The girl whose heart he once broke was the girl he craved for more than even his own breath. He turned the pages in her notebook. There were poems she had written for him. There was deep longing, love, and regret in each of them. Some spoke of how much she missed him every moment while some noted every happy moment they shared. They got a smile on his face, yet tears streamed down his chin. They fell on her notebook and the red ink began to bleed. He could see his heart bleeding for her.
There was a movie ticket glued on one of the pages. He saw the details and remembered it was the last movie they went for together. On the ticket she had noted with her pen “Our softest kiss. He told me “I want to hold your hand for every second of the next three hours”.”
His cheeks went red and he began to blush. She had noted even that down !! With every page that turned, there were memories unfolding. His love for her multiplied a thousand folds with every word he read.
He kissed her diary and pen once more. Putting it in his jacket he went back home. He wanted to be back in India. To see her for one last time. To fight with her for leaving him alone. To fight with God. He wanted to fight with himself for being such a jerk. For breaking her into pieces.
This diary she had given to his best friend Vansh. Sealed in an envelope 2 years back. She had begged Vansh to send it to him. But Vansh knew how stubborn Nishant was. He held it back with him hoping that Sonia would move on since she wouldn’t hear from Nishant. Vansh had sent it to him just today. Opening the envelope turned his world upside down. He wanted to kill Vansh for holding it back so long. He wanted to fight with him too. But he held back. He knew how Vansh had been a true brother for Sonia when he left her shattered. He regretted every single thing that he had done after leaving India.
For one last time, he had to see her. He checked his bank balance in all accounts and booked the flight for that very night. He was impatient and restless. He wanted her so badly then.
As soon as his flight landed he rushed to her house. It was scorching summer heat. He sweated and panted. He had been to her house several times. They would go to her room saying they it was too hot and they wanted to sit in AC. He would then lightly close the door and hug her for long. While in the auto, he could remember every memory he shared with her. It was heart wrenching. His soul was torn in pieces. He wanted one more chance. He wanted to go back in time and live every moment with her again and never let her go.
The auto suddenly stopped and the driver caught his eyes streaming with tears while he looked in the rear view. He paid the auto driver and tipped him. The auto driver whispered “May God fulfill your wish”. He reached outside her door and rang the doorbell. Her mother opened the door. She greeted him warmly and welcomed him inside slightly surprised seeing him come with his baggage. He smiled shyly and asked for Sonia. Her mother signaled towards her room. With a heavy heart he opened her door.
There she was, sitting on the bed painting her toes. She was unaware of his presence and was looking intently at her feet with her hair slightly falling on her face. She looked angelic at that moment. She had always been the most perfect girl not only on the entire earth, but on the entire universe for him. He wondered where did his faithfulness vanish ? How could he betray her ? How could he forget the love they cherished for 5 long years ? He couldn’t forgive himself for this.
“How can I help the bride-to-be ?” He said announcing his presence. She looked up and was confused. She blinked her eyes twice then pinched her arm lightly. He couldn’t stop giggling. He went ahead and pulled her left cheek. She placed her hand on her cheek and looked at him. Tears were brimming her eyes. She tried hard to hold back. Even his eyes were moist.
“Aunty it is so hot here in India. We’re turning on the AC and sitting to have a chat” he managed to shout. Latching the door he sat on her bed. She was already crying. He also couldn’t hold back himself. Burying his head in her hair, he began to sob. He could recognize her fragrance. He hugged her tightly and she held him softly. She whispered in his ears “After all this time ?”
“Always ” muttering this he kissed her eyes. He wiped away her tears with his fingers. After two long years his lips met hers. It was like the first drops of rain on a barren land. Filled with longing, love and passion. He then whispered in her ear “Softer than the softest”.
Her wedding was delayed by a week. She walked in the mandap on the day beautifully clad in silk. He held her hand since the moment she sat beside him. “I want to hold your hand for every second for the next hundred lives to come” he said sweetly in ear while she blushed even more.
Her mother peeped in and muttered in his ear “Oh I know it’s very hot, later you can close the door and turn on the AC”. It was his turn to blush then.
“HAPPILY MARRIED” Read the auto rickshaw and the uncle who got him to her home, took them back to the airport.