Two Strangers, One rainy night.

On a rainy night in the winter of 1996, a woman with a yellow coat and velvet dress with a green umbrella kept walking in the pouring rain.

The sky gazed at the glorious mess of her colors and the trees witnessed the depressing sadness in her eyes.

3 miles and a few yards away, a man in a black tuxedo with a black tie and an incredibly white shirt with a dead phone was struggling in the pouring rain, trying to fix his broken car in the middle of the bridge.

In a few hours their both lives are going to change in a way that seems almost magical.

The woman kept walking in the rain, as a leaf gliding in the wind. Slowly and with grace. Her fine curves were highlighted by her pink high heels. Her mascara was smudged all across her cheekbone and her dry lips were visible from her faded maroon lipstick.

1 mile away the man was still struggling to fix his car. He tried towing the car to the side but the slippery bridge road made it impossible. He loosened his tie around his neck and removed his collar button and sat down on one of the railings facing the river drinking his wine from the bottle. If he was having a bad night, he might as well not remember it.

The woman came in an hour later and stood at the edge of the railing and threw her handbag into the river.

The man in the impeccable tuxedo which was now completely drenched saw the woman threw her leather handbag into the river and couldn’t stop himself from saying “If I were you ma’am, I would throw away the coat.”

“Yeah, well you’re not. So drink up.” She said.

Next she threw the umbrella. He saw the smudged mascara, the faded lipstick and her brown sad eyes and the little mole above her lip.

“If you don’t mind miss, may I know your name?”

She shot him a careless glance and said “Rose”

“Like the flower?”

“No, like the poem….

O Rose thou art sick,
The invisible worm,
That flies in the night
In the howling storm…

It’s by William Blake.”

“Sure it is ma’am. Nice to meet you.” He paused for a moment, took a sip from his bottle “My name’s Dylan.” He said offering his 1974’ Chateau Margaux.

“Like Bob Dylan?” she took a few steps towards him and took the bottle.

“No, ma’am, like my grandfather’s retriever Dylan.”

“You were named after a dog?”

“Yes, ma’am.”

“That’s stupid.” She said sitting beside him.

“With all due respect ma’am, I’m not the one trying to jump off the bridge wearing a yellow coat.”

“I get it, you’ve got a problem with my coat.” She said taking a deep sip.

“Yes, ma’am. It hides the light from your eyes.”

“Is that flirting?” she said handing him the bottle.

“No ma’am.” He laughed.

“How did you know I was going to jump?” she said taking the wine bottle from him.

“It was a lucky guess ma’am” he said.

They drank wine in silence for some time.

“If you don’t mind ma’am, why were you trying to jump?” he asked.

“Boy! That’s a long story” she said

“I got all night ma’am”

“Okay. You’ve got to stop calling me ma’am”

“Sure miss, whatever works for you”

She laughed snatching the wine from him.

And that’s how their story began.

There’s also a part two.

If you like this story you might also like(Just a guess. In all probability, you might not even click it) my other short story.

If you decide to click it — Thank you.

— Indu.