“Am I not worth? Am I born to die alone? Is being good not good enough? Why people don’t understand me? Why there are nobody in this world to understand my feelings?”, Questions cloud has covered Rahul while he was staring at the picnic spot way below. He was standing on the cliff. He never thought bad about himself or underestimated himself but this incidence devastated him. He decided to jump from the cliff
One year back when he was running to catch the lift as he had to attend one meeting which was supposed to start in one minute, he was asked to go out by one girl who was inside the lift as the lift’s capacity was of 5 members and he was the sixth entrant. He argued about the overall weight capacity not met so it’s okay by looking at some fairly underweight members who were in the lift. But the girl insisted him to take the lift on it’s next trip. He made a dirty face and came out and ran through stairs to reach 4th floor where he had to attend the meeting. He made sure, he reaches before the lift reaches there. This incidence had badly hit his ego as well as male ego. How could anybody tell me to get out of somewhere. This troubled him a lot. There were 90% of attendees of the meeting were present so the meeting organizer said, “we will wait for 5 more minutes”. This is a meting about the newly formed employee committee to decide how to ensure this office location wins the award of ‘Best place to work’. He was representing his team. Adding to his irritation that girl entered the meeting room saying ‘Sorry for the delay’, wearing a smile while Rahul was perspiring due to his physical exercise he did while flying through 4 floors.
Angry Rahul passed a comment, “People who can’t make it to a meeting in time may not find best ways to make this place as the best place to work with. You have wasted 6 minutes of 10 people, which is like an hour of wastage.”
Others in the meeting room kept quiet while the girl responded, “Meeting should have started without waiting for me. Although I don’t want to give any excuse but, I had to fight one unruly employee in the lift and that caused the delay.”
The organizer of the meeting realized that there can’t be any better way to start this meeting. He interrupted and started the meeting. Discussion went on various issues and whenever there was an opportunity, Rahul and that girl started making remarks against each other.
After almost a week while Rahul was going home from office in the evening in the lane next to his office, he found one girl was surrounded by some barking street dogs and the girl was crying out of fear. He sped his bike to reach there and to his surprise it was none other than the same lift girl. He shooed the dogs away. That girl went and sat in his bike without asking or telling anything. Her hand was on Rahul’s shoulder and Rahul could feel the pain due to her tight grip. Rahul started his bike and stopped where the lane ended. He asked, where would you like to e dropped at. He got no response. He again questioned but no response. He took his helmet out and turned back to see the girl was trembling and crying. She was not able to come out of this trauma. He was not sure what to do. He decided not to bother her and waited there till she settles down. He looked at the girl. She has kept her eyes closed and tears were flowing continuously. Rahul was mesmerized by her beauty. He never realized that she was so beautiful. He again asked, “I have told the dogs not to bother you ever again. They will give you this in writing tomorrow morning. Now can you tell me where you would like to go”.
She got down from the bike and started walking. He parked his bike and went running to her, “Hey I don’t mind dropping you anywhere. Just asking so that I know whether to take left or right. Please don’t go alone. There are more dogs little ahead. She stopped. Rahul went and got his bike and she sat. This time she decided to hold the support of the bike than his shoulder. She said, you drop me at near an auto rickshaw, I will go to Akshardham Society near Akota if it’s okay with you. Rahul said, “I stay little further to that society so there is not problem at all. I will drop you at home”.
They did not speak a single word on the way. When she got down from the bike, she said, “Thanks… 15 years back, My younger sister died due to dog bite when she was 4 years old. I am sorry if I was over reacting but I was very scared.”
Rahul wasn’t sure what to say but he was definitely able to understand her reason to get scared. He said , “I am sorry to hear that. Take proper rest. Good night. See you tomorrow at office.”
The very next day he met her in the lift and once again Rahul was the 6th person. He himself backed out. But to his surprise, that girl also came out to give him company for the next trip. She said, “Sorry for creating an embarrassing scene the other day. But I can’t tolerate when people break rules and be unapologetic. I know you were in a hurry the other day to attend the meeting but I was not aware of that situation. Please forgive me if possible.”
That incidence had vanished from Rahul’s mind since yesterday’s night so he said, “That’s okay. Glad to meet a strong lady.”
They both walked up the stairs and Rahul went to 2nd floor while the girl went to 3rd floor. Now Rahul was interested to know her name. It took him a minute to identify that she is “Rohini”. Rahul immediately thought, “Rohini … Rahul. Wow!!”
They both went home together. Although dogs never gave a written apology to Rohini but Rohini never demanded that again. Rahul and Rohini were together when they were not at work. Entire office knew that they are very good friends. Rahul had considered her as his life partner although Rohini never said anything as such.
On Rohini’s birthday, Rahul went to her and gifted her a nice crystal made flower and a letter. That letter was nothing but Rahul’s written proposal to consider him as her life partner. Rohini read the letter and went to Rahul, “I never expected this from you”. She was angry, upset and on the verge of crying. She tore the letter and threw it to the dustbin.
Rahul was speechless. He could not understand anything. Asked her and she denied to talk anything. Considering this as denial to his proposal, Rahul went to Failed-Lover’s mode. He tried to ask her in many ways but she did not respond.
He spent sleepless night and asked questions to himself for which he had no answer. The next morning as usual Rohini was waiting at the cafeteria for the coffee at the scheduled time. Rahul went there and sat quietly without asking a question. Everything went as usual, going for scheduled 2 times for coffee, he dropping her home but they stopped talking. Again after some days asked her, “Tell me, what should I do?”. She responded, “I should not be telling you that. It’s your life and your decision”.Rahul was gradually going to depression mode. He thought not to bear this pain anymore,
They all had a scheduled office picnic on the weekend. Rock climbing was part of the program. He participated in that. When he went to the top, looking at the base station and Rohini busy playing cricket with other employees, he thought, “Am I not worth? Am I born to die alone? Is being good not good enough? Why people don’t understand me? Why there are nobody in this world to understand my feelings?”,He made his mind.
He called Rohini who was at the base station. He said, “I love you Rohini. if you don’t say that you love me as well. I will jump from the cliff.”
Rohini replied, “When did I say I don’t love you. But I can’t love a coward. If you truly love me say it aloud so that I can hear. I want you to propose me with pride. Not like a thief. You should have understood this Rahul. You still haven’t understood me.”
Rahul was mad of happiness, this was an unbelievable surprise for him. He shouted from there, “I love you Rohini”. entire crowd there were shocked. Some employees who were still climbing the mountain stopped there for a minute to digest this. He came running towards the base station while proposing aloud……..and …suddenly
– Stray Dog
One thought on “One small love story : Rahul”
Sakti, you certainly kept this reader on tenter hooks as she rushed to that wonderful and unexpected ending. Congratulations at a well-told story!