Your Note Book
Your Note Book7 mins 16.3K 7 mins 16.3K
It was her first day in junior college and Ridhima couldn’t control her excitement. Some of her school friends had taken admission in the same college as hers, and they had decided to travel together. Being the good girl that she had always been, she sat on the fifth bench in her class with her friends. Throughout the day, she communicated with some other girls as well. That’s right. Only girls. Straight out from an all-girls school, she felt nervous while talking to boys. There were some in her STD.X coaching classes but she had tried to avoid them as much as possible the entire year. Her friends teased her for the same and felt that she behaved as if boys were aliens on this planet. Now that she was in college, her friends had gotten the chance to ridicule her even more. When her friends spoke to boys, she stood far behind so that no one noticed her; to the extent that she was embarrassed about her own behaviour. But there was nothing she could do to gain the confidence she needed.
The last lecture they had was Economics and she wouldn’t even have noticed him had the professor not asked all of them to introduce themselves. He sat on the second last bench in the class in a plain yellow T-shirt and pale blue jeans. His hair was ruffled and his eyes small. He seemed cute and naughty altogether with a sign clearly indicating “ CAUTION. DANGER AHEAD.” His voice was audible enough for her to hear clearly. “ Hi. My name is Suraj.” He continued further, telling the class about his hobbies and interests which Ridhima listened to attentively, but avoided looking at his face. Thanks to Suraj, she was physically present for the rest of the lecture but mentally she was absent.
As she made her way towards the bus stop with her friends, she noticed Suraj already standing with another boy from their class. For a minute she wondered if she was hallucinating. But her friends discussed about the two boys as well which meant she wasn’t. He looked at them for a minute but chose to ignore them completely while Ridhima kept admiring his tall, lean and thin physique in her mind. As he stood there talking to his friend, she observed his lips curve into a devilish smile. It was strange that she found him tempting and repulsive all at the same time.
Suraj took the same bus as hers, and got down just a few stops before her. As the days progressed, both of them took the same bus while going to college or returning back. While Ridhima mostly attended all the lectures, Suraj would bunk most of them. But eventually both of them managed to take the same bus to go home. Within a few days, Suraj managed to become one of the most popular boys in college for reasons good as well as bad. Though the professors hardly saw his face in class, he was a good sportsman and liked by many. As Suraj’s popularity soared, Ridhima’s confidence in herself plummeted. So she did what she felt was the best solution for her problem. Ignore the guy completely as if he just didn’t exist.
Her solution was causing her more harm than good. Though they met every day, they never exchanged any words. One day, she noticed Suraj’s eyes looking at her mysteriously, as if he was trying to solve an equation. As usual, she turned her gaze away from him rather than trying to initiate a conversation. Diya, Ridhima’s best friend was the only one who knew about her huge crush on Suraj. Purposely, she had tried to strike a conversation between the two; but Ridhima backed away immediately. After that, Diya swore to never help her again, as far as Suraj was concerned.
Unexpectedly, one day, Ridhima was late for her first lecture. She ran as fast as possible in the corridor and saw Suraj standing in a corner in front of the classroom. The door was closed, but she still made her way towards the door. Before she could knock, she heard his voice call out to her.
“ Don’t knock. Batra Sir won’t let you in. He didn’t allow me in, either.”
Inspite of the warning, she decided to knock. It would be better to attend the lecture than to face him. Unfortunately, Suraj was right. Batra Sir didn’t allow her inside and asked her to close the door.
As she closed the door behind her, Suraj’s howl and stare irritated her.
“ What did you think, Princess? Just because you attend all his lectures, he will allow you to come in 20 minutes late.”
What the hell? How did he know that she attends all the lectures? Was he keeping an eye on her as well? His sly remark somehow gave her the confidence to speak to him.
“ I thought I might get a concession since he sees my face almost every single day. Unlike some people, you know.” Ridhima gave him a half smile, proud of herself. Suraj returned her gesture, but his eyes scanned her from top to bottom.
“Wow! Someone does know how to speak!” She ignored his further remark and made her way to the library. Unexpectedly, Suraj followed her.
“Quit going to the library for a day. Let’s go to the canteen. I am hungry.”
His voice had a tinge of authority, inspite of being calm. And she listened to him without arguing any further, as if her remote control was in his hands.
Ridhima couldn’t believe her luck. Two months back, she was running away from this guy and now she was sitting opposite him. Even if it was for a mere 20 minutes. They both ordered a plate of fried rice and decided to share it.
“So, Ridhima” Suraj spoke and ate at the same time, his voice garbled.
“How do you know my name?” She looked at him suspiciously as he laughed at her funny expressions.
“I heard you take the best notes in our class. I was wondering if you could lend me your Economics notebook for a day.”
Ridhima felt hurt as reality dawned upon her. No wonder, he was being extra friendly.
“So, that’s the reason I am sitting in the canteen with you. Right.” Suraj raised his brow and thought for a moment.
“No. You are sitting with me because I was hungry and we still have 10 minutes left for the next lecture.”
“I am sorry. I am studying Economics today. Please ask someone else.”
Ridhima stood up and adjusted her dress, before making a move.
“It’s just for a day! Study something else. I promise I’ll return it to you tomorrow.” Even though Ridhima wanted to say ‘No’, she ended up giving her book to Suraj that day. She didn’t realise, until that day, that her crush was more stronger than she had imagined it to be. She just couldn’t say no to him.
After their encounter outside their classroom, Suraj started borrowing her books almost every single day. Diya warned her to stay away from him as she felt he was just using her for her notes. But Ridhima decided to ignore her warnings. In her mind, she knew that Diya was right. Still, she was happy with the little bit of friendship and attention that she was getting from him. Regardless of its unconventionality. Her feelings for him were pure and immaculate. She never expected anything in return and that was how it was meant to be. Suraj adored her and appreciated their friendship.
The book exchange continued for another year until Suraj decided to change his college after his HSC exams. Ridhima missed him dearly after he was gone. By now, she had realized that all stories do not have happy endings and that is how life is. Many people come into your life. Everyone has a time span. The ones who are actually important stay back and make your life worth living. She lost touch with Suraj after he left and neither was he, her Facebook friend, nor her Instagram one. But he always remained special to her as he was her first serious crush and the first guy she actually had a proper conversation with. Well, she isn’t the same shy girl afraid to talk to guys anymore.