I was just going through some of my old stuffs from my school days and my eyes fell on this piece of paper with doodles on them. And it wasn't just doodles, there was something written in between them. After I read it, I was like, “WHOA!” I never realized I was ever this serious about a girl back in junior high. And just then I remembered. I wrote this for a gal I was crushing on for over a year and just as she was about to leave town, I handed it to her and asked her to read it on the way. She gave me a weird look and asked, “What the hell’s wrong with you? You know I hate to read. Say it?”
I replied, “Let’s just say I wasn't being frank with you. There’s more to me than I have expressed.” those were the last words I said to her (except for ‘goodbye’ of course)
Then five years passed, I have completed my 12th board exams and I have officially graduated high school. With a short stop for celebrations, started applying for colleges in the city. It was during one of those visits at a particular college that I remembered ‘she’ used to stay around here somewhere as I remembered her telling me about it long back. So I took my wallet and opened up my piece of paper with contacts (it was a year before I had my own cell phone) and fortunately I had her number after all.
The joy that struck me at the very moment was profound. I wasted no time, looked around, spotted a payphone, after the shopkeeper made me buy something I didn't totally need just to get my change, I finally made the call. Her Mum picked up. She was surprised. She was about to call her daughter but I asked her not to let her know. Her Mum sounded real happy and gave me the address.
A few minutes later, there I was, outside her door, her Mum waiting for me outside. She smiled and called out to her and her brother as I walked in through the gate. And there she stepped out, looking prettier as ever.
Later we had lunch then moved onto her room, her Mum was kind enough to let us alone, probably knowing that both of us got five years’ worth of life to catch up on. I was totally excited and I had a smile that rivalled the Joker (maybe not that creepy but you get the point) and try as I might I couldn’t take my eyes off her. It was unbelievable for me that she’s right here in front of me and even if it has only been five years, to a school kid version of me that was HUGE.
We talked about school after she left town, friends; those I made and those I lost, I kept talking about how much I missed having her around and how tough it was to get adjusted to the fact that I won’t be seeing you. Then I noticed I was turning the conversation into a sour one so I turned to her and asked, “Nah, enough about that, so tell me, what did I miss out in your life?”
Her face sparked the most beautiful smile I have ever glanced upon. I want to say my heart skipped a beat but I think it counts as more than one beat because I realized I wasn't breathing for a while. Little did I realize that it was that very moment, that very question that was going to change everything!
She told me she has a boyfriend. That’s when I actually knew how “heart-shattering” would sound and feel like. I mean she did say a lot after that, I'm probably guessing that it was about the guy and how she feels about him but that shattering noise was still violently resonating inside my head and I couldn't get most of it.
As I was hoping to put an end to this day and just leave very soon, she surprised me. She suddenly bounced off her chair and went to her cupboard, pulled out an old looking journal from the top left drawer. I faintly recognized it as I said, “isn't that…”
“I see you remember them well.” She said as her smile snuggled to the corner of her lips. “Yeah, it’s my journal. The one you always tried to sneak-a-peek. Well…” she opened a few pages, took out a folded piece of paper and handed it to me. “Take a peek now.” she said.
I instantly noticed what they piece of paper was. I looked at her again and with a smile more beautiful as the one before, she tilted her head to her right gesturing me to open it. I did and what meet my eyes, it took everything in me not to shout. Yes you people guessed it right. It was the letter I gave her on our last meet, five years. ago.
I was thinking of all this as I held onto that piece of paper and that’s when it struck me, I couldn't remember what was written on its back. So I flipped it over and there it was, written in that beautiful handwriting of hers that I have tried so many times to impersonate as mine.
“You should have told me sooner, dumb-ass.”