I walk into the party, its 10.00 p.m., i have a masquarade mask pulled in cause that’s the theme. You need to put on a mask to hide yourself.

I feel fascinated by the party culture, people dancing with booze in their veins trying to live a life or run from it, i dont know.

I am surrounded by people, some of which i know, the others that i pretend to know. They are talking about how fucked up it is to be stuck in a job with no growth or life and how fucked up the next year is going to be.

I hold a bottle of beer in my hand and walk to the other side of the terrace where it was quite and has a sense of ease.

I pull out a cigarette and take a puff, i try to puff out smoke rings but the wind is strong, i feel good and i smile.

I look around and i see there is a girl at about 100 metres away from me. She looks at me. She has a mask that has some feather around her eyes. I look at her and hold the beer up and smile.

She smiles back at me.

I think of walking upto her to start a conversation but somehow decide against it. I look away from her gaze to look at the stars instead.

I pull out another of my cigrattes and look for the matches in my pockets. I dont find any. I put the cigratte back in the packet and keep on looking at the stars.

I feel fascinated by the stars. They have a sense of ease. Its like they clear out the darkness of the night and are a symbol of hope.

I feel a tap on my shoulder.

I turn around. I see her, she has dark brown eyes, as deep as an ocean. Its like if you look at them for a while you are gonna get stoned.

She smiles pulling out a lighter and speaks "you gonna light them up or not, cause i am out of smokes and you dont have a light to light them up, weird.. isnt it?"

I pull out the cigrattes and we light them up and puff out the smoke.

She says.." you know i think i wont ever vibe with someone who when looking at the night sky doesnt go like "what the fuck? Look at it. Its amazing..isn't it?"

I look at her taken aback.i try to speak but she interrupts saying.. "i dont know.. its like the stars..they clear out the darkness in the sky and are a symbol of hope."

I give a heartfelt smile.

"Why are you smiling like a fool? Are you shy in front of pretty girls or is it a taboo to speak after 10?"

I say " you know what i find really amazing.. its that i thought its going to be a pretty long night and its gonna suck big time till i looked up at the sky and saw the stars and thought about hope and here i am in the midst of a happening-party talking to a stranger..who talks about the same thing that i was thinking about..and i dont even know why i cant get the smile off of my face."

She smiles and says " keep the smile. Looks good on you."

I reach out my hands to introduce myself.

She looks at me and says " its a masquarade party right? We can be whoever we want to be."

I nod my head.

"So here.. for i am the ruler of the barren island filled with greenery, the girl who knows where parallel lines intersects and the one who is gonna sing her hearts out when there is no beat playing around..i am hope." She says reaching out her hand.

"Well hope, that was something for i am the hopeless of all romantics, so hopeless that i would love to get some hope, an awkward being only around people but a confident soul when i am alone, a guy who would love to hear people sing with their hearts out.. i am hopeless". I say holding her hand.

She chuckles.

The conversation keep on moving with ease, we are talking about things that people may find stupid but things that actually have meaning.

She talks about the birthmark on her neck, about the places she has travelled while she was dreaming, about how she feels when she hears bob dylan sing, about the fears that she has, about the times she felt happy and the times she was sad.

In those moments the only think i could think of was
" am i dreaming cause it feels surreal"

The clock struck 11:55

I pulled my masked out and looked at her and said
"You know it was good to know hope but i mean what are the odds to met a stranger in the midst of a night where we are all about good beginnings. So here i am, in the middle of a starry night..looking at a masked girl who speaks about the same shit that i talk about..and do hell with the rules of masquarade mask shit for if you want to know me here i am..and my name is Aman".

She smiles and pulls out the mask. She looks like a piece of art..so beautiful..she looks at me intensely and says" i am Aashi. See i just did it again. Made you smile."

She closes in on me as the clock struck 11:58 and whispers a melody..
"You are walking along a street or you are at a party,
Or else you are alone and then you suddenly dig,
You are looking in someone's eyes, you suddenly realise
That this could be the starting of something big."

I smile and say " we are under the mistletoe and it is about 12:00..i hope you know the rules"
She moves closer smiling.." i am all about beginings"

The clock struck 12:00.

We kiss. She tastes like cherry.

She looks at me and says "its funny you know..i dont even know why i picked up the lighter left on the table before..it looked beautiful..but maybe now i do."

We smile and as we close in, i wake up with jerk.

I smile as i lay wide awake in by bed and look at the masquarade mask lying on the top of the table.

I think i am going to go to that party.