Seventeen Missed Calls
Seventeen Missed Calls9 mins 349 9 mins 349
"When you kissed me the last time and we, or at least I, didn't know that it was the last time, I didn't kiss you enough. I thought I had a lifetime to do so, I took you for granted. Then, I used to think that it was my faith in our love that makes me believe in our forever, but, we all knew about the inevitability of ephemerals. I wish I would have, every time, kissed you like it was the last time. That way, maybe, it would have had hurt less when you left, may be I would not have had regrets of not loving you enough. Now, that we look at each other and feel nothing, I yearn for the part of me you took away with you, and, left behind a bottomless abyss of emptiness.
To say, I felt empty, curling under my blanket, pressing my palm against my face and wailing in agony to not let any part of my reality escape the little world I had created under my blanket, far away from the real world. The real world didn't please me anymore, for there was no you in it. But, this emptiness started burdening me within, it amplified with all the memories of the trivial talks and fights of ours that just ceased abruptly, shattered dreams of being yours and sharing a life with you, and, the heart wrenching painful days of realization that someone else was living the life I had dreamt of. I had gone through this, all alone. After all this, I just want to ask you, didn't it ever bother you that I was broken and shattered because of you? Like, ever?"
Yes? It doesn't matter anymore.
No? I already know it didn't.
Yet, I was awaiting his answer. I don't know why, but I knew one thing, my heart and mind weren't in sync!
"Baby! I'm sorry! I was at fault. I had realized it long back. I just couldn't show up, I was scared how would you react. Let's be together again. I will mend everything."
Well! Well! Well! I wasn't prepared for this. I felt weak in knees, again. This was the same guy I had been waiting for, I had dreamt of being with, he's back. Wow! He wants to be with me, how lucky I'm because not everyone gets a second chance! I could feel the urge to fall weak in his arms and tell him that I was too tired of being strong and suffering like hell. I could almost feel that I was back in his arms, in the arms of the love of my life; just then, I felt his warm hands on my cheeks. I knew what was coming, I closed my eyes and our lips met. This time, I kissed him like it was the last time. We were so lost in our love, embracing each other that I didn't even realize what was happening until I woke up next to him. Just like in movies, I should have rolled over to him wrapped in his blanket and kissed him while he was asleep, as a gesture of overstuffed love! But, it didn't happen.
I felt a sense of disgust running down my veins as I found myself laying naked in front of my ex-boyfriend. Without any delay, keeping aside all the regrets for later, I collected my clothes, got dressed and tiptoed to my tent. The morning was as beautiful as I had expected while planning for the trip. As I sat alone in my tent, regrets sank in! In what mind I was I wondered when I planned for a trip with the ex to find answers to life. I came here to clear the mess, but the mess I have become. I was neither sad nor angry, rather, I was shocked and numbed. What exactly was happening? Why does life get so complex? On a scale of 10, was my life's mess already a 10 or there was more in store? All these relationships, boyfriends, dates, kisses, what's the purpose of these? Why does it happen if it doesn't have to last? How can we move forward with so much baggage tied to us? Why? Why? Why? I felt empty, again.
Not being able to adapt to the situation, I crawled under my blanket to sleep. Tears streaming down my eyes, not because I had sex, but because, I had always believed in fairy tales. I knew now that what I have always desired for doesn't even exist and what exists can't be comprehended by me. I was not questioning the rightness or wrongness of things. What bothered me was that, there were already so many memories I couldn't overcome, I have added to it now. Will I ever be happy again? Because I needed to.
I could feel someone kissing my forehead, suddenly, I felt pacified. I realized that I had fallen asleep. My eyes still shut, I got hold of his hand and pulled him close to me. I was now holding his hand close to my heart and sleeping. After a long time, I was at peace. I had someone to hold on to. I slept like a baby. He was sleeping beside me when I woke up, we were close, very close. We were so close that my hormones had overpowered my senses. I placed my palm on his face, he opened his eyes, looked at me and started sliding down my nightgown from my shoulder. I knew this love was wrong, but I wanted to love, wrong! In no time, he was over me. For a few minutes, I thought I had travelled four years back in time. We made love like I used to fantasize then. All the pains of these years vanished for some time, it was just us. Us, again.
It was afternoon by now, I was wearing his shirt. He was already awake. I hugged him from behind and bit his ear. That was enough to turn both of us on. We were on the bed again, loving each other. We broke our passionate kiss, as I had a call to answer. I could have ignored the call, but, I didn't. I felt that a trivial call was more important than our love. But, why?
We were too hungry and so we decided to stop here for now and get some food. My boy had done some real hard work and he deserved this food break. After that, we went for some sightseeing in the hills. With a lot of pictures and yet no couple pictures, we headed back to our tents.
"What? Go to your tent!" I pushed him towards his room.
"Come on! You can change before me. I am your would-be husband." He urged, trying to grab and kiss me.
His words lingered in my ears for a split second and I forced him away from me. This was exactly what he had said when we wanted to bed me four years back. I had cried myself to sleep in disgust for years for believing his words. It was happening all over again. I rushed to my tent and broke down. I didn't even know what was I doing. Was I healing or hurting?
It was already late evening and since we had dinner while returning, I was packing my luggage as we had to return the next day.
"Can you come outside for a moment, please?" He cried.
After what had happened, he didn't dare to get in my tent. I was guilty of pushing him away from that way, so I went outside even though I wanted to stay back, alone.
Under the starlit sky, there were two tents, bonfire, my love on knees with a guitar and me. This was all too good to be true, just like a Bollywood's 'Happily Ever After Fairy Tale'. He played a romantic song that he used to sing for me back then. I was in awe of the moment. The very next moment, we were beside the bonfire, in a blanket, snogging. Our breaths got heavier, as we made love passionately under the starlit sky. The place was filled with whispers of our love. We remained there, snuggling till dawn. One more session, in the cosy tent and then we got ready with our luggage to return back to reality.
"Hurry! We're getting late." I called him.
"Umm... yes? Aren't you ready? Anything wrong?"
"I am ready. All set. I... I.. just wanted to say something....
I was sure that like me, he too wasn't sure. However, it still hurt me. Faking it, I tried to act cool and calm.
"It's ok. I would not contact you when we reach there."
"What?" He interrupted.
"Idiot, I love you. I'm sorry for what I did in the past. I love you, I do. I can't live without you." He continued blabbering.
I had nothing to say, none of his words made sense to me. I had heard it all before and witnessed the uncertainty of these words. This is exactly what I wanted to listen since a long time but it didn't please me. Not anymore. But, I had to say something as he was looking at me, expecting an answer.
"Umm... well... oh! I am out of words. Umm! Thank you for accompanying me. I wanted to sort things out once and for all. Umm but it backfired, I guess. Just kidding." I laughed alone, like an idiot.
"I can wait for a better answer." He smiled.
I nodded in affirmation.
All along the way, he was holding my hand an I was leaning on his shoulder. It was all how I had pictured my love story to be; except the phase of those four years obviously. I couldn't sleep all this time. I sat there, leaning on him, lost in another bizarre world of nothingness.
ONE WEEK LATER
It was 3 AM and I was having a great time with my girl squad. Today, I was the heart and soul of the party. Laughing, gossiping, mimicking, joking, dancing, drinking, and, most of all, living. I spilled food while eating, burst out laughing and spitting my drink on my BFF, hugged everyone and smiled genuinely.
I took some time out to check my phone and found 17 missed calls from him. I had been ignoring him since the day we returned. But, I couldn't do that for long. So, I called him back.
"Hello, baby! What's wrong with you? I have been going crazy here. Baby, are you there? Hello?"
"The last time you broke up, I didn't know how can someone fall out of love. But,"
I took a deep breath and continued...
"Now I know. It took me four years and a trip with you to fall out of love. I'm sorry. I, now, understand what you had been feeling then. And, I hope, you will understand too."
I was done, and then a voice came from the other side of the phone,
"Is there anyone else in your life?"
Noooo! Obviously, no! I had almost said that there was nobody else, but, something struck my mind. I knew it was cruel to do this but I wanted him to taste his own medicine.
"Yes. And, I love him. Take care. Goodbye!"
After disconnecting, I could feel the burdened emptiness ease away swiftly.
And, I never felt the urge to fall weak in someone's arms again.
A FEW DAYS LATER
"What did you do on your trip that changed you so much as a person? You smile all the time, talk to everyone now, go out, sleep well, eat properly; how did you find your answers of life? I would do that too. I am ready to dial my ex's number NOWWWW! Just tell me!" She almost cried.
"I loved him enough."