It’s the perfect time of the day to miss you.
The silence around attempts hard to counter the echo of your sweet voice, this chilling air puts all its efforts to pierce my skinny emotions but are confronted by the warmth of your memories that wrap me up in protection cozily. The tiny drops that slide down our window pane , reluctantly ,are reminiscent of the happy moments that slipped away with time and only to amplify all of it , this heavy blue sapphire on my ring finger endeavours to curb the flow of my emotions that try to adorn this your-gifted notebook with calm yet turbulent memories.
“I miss you baby…”
“Ruhi, Sorry to disturb you but Akhira is crying, I think she needs you, I tried to comfort her, but all in vain.”(Rushed in a calm yet worried male voice with a three month old baby crying)
“Ohh! Thanks, this weather just took over me.Give her to me…”
“My poor baby…Mumma is so bad.ssshh…hmmm…hmm”
(The melodious voice of the mother, singing to her child occasionally broke the silence at nights, in that three-membered house)
It’s been a year to our marriage. Things changed so drastically. Fate and time, they say, can change anything. I am still so engrossed in our past. This blue sapphire keeps me there. Blue is the color of calmness they say, and that’s why you wanted me to wear it. Isn’t it baby?
But for me it has always caused turbulence.
That’s why I guess we can symbolize water by it .For, water has both faces, calm and turbulent, depends on what face we get acquainted with.
“Ruhi, I am leaving for office. Do you need anything?”
“Huh…oh sorry! I’ll clean that up!Wait!just a moment..”
“Ruhi, calm down. Its fine.I’ll do it. Do you need anything? I’ll bring it while returning”
“No, thanks and I’m sorry about that burnt bread, I was lost maybe somewhere.”
“Its ok.You need not be sorry, it still tasted good”
(Smiled the tall statured person to himself, as he got up to clean himself of the water that the lost lady mistakenly just splashed over him)
(That is how the conversation was between the only couple in the house.)
(A year back…)
“Ruhi, I have something for you…”(Pleaded a calm male voice)
“What now you idiot? Don’t you try any gimmicks on me now.You know, I hate you ohkay? “(Giggles the feminine melodious voice)
“Ummm… this is it…”
“I really love you Ruhi…Please be mine forever…”
…read the letters on the first page of the notebook. Beautifully and lovingly written… I was engrossed then, I am engrossed till now…And as I managed to pinch myself to reality, swapping my attention from left to right, there you were my love , down on your knees with this blue sapphire, ready to surrender all of yourself to me.
“Ruhi, stop being that temperamental, emotionally turbulent, drama queen. I offer you calmness with this blue sapphire. Please be mine forever, my love”
The echo of those words are still so near to my ears. Calm and composed as you were.
These pictures of our marriage…
How happy were you. How happy was I. Those chants, customs, celebrations, your favorite food, your favorite dresses, our favorite venue. So full of life it is sounding, looking yet so lifeless now, totally contrast to the situation we were in.
I miss you baby…I miss us …
Being in the same house, we are yet so miles away…
I often recall the feel of your tender lips as they pressed against my forehead, relieving it of all the stress. The warmth of your hug, as your arms tried to bring all my broken frustrated pieces together
the texture of your skin, as your fingers rolled down my cheek, only to make me smile again.
They say, marriage changes everything .Did it for us as well?
They say it’s just the matter of time, you’ll get to know soon. Did it for us as well?
They say, you will regret. Are you?
You no longer play with Akhira. You no longer choose dresses for me to wear. We don’t sleep nights together. We don’t fight. We don’t argue. We just aren’t the way we were. You don’t see our little angel grow up. She has not learned to speak ‘Dad’ and you don’t fuss about it.I get no chance to handle your kiddish behavior, or be irritated by your pranks. You don’t handle my tantrums anymore or me or us…It all just slipped away.
Time has really changed so much. Being close in heart, we are yet so far away. How dreadful is fate at times, how reckless. Moments of happiness and then turbulence all over. I have always faced this turbulent side of water and you’ve always tried to show me the calmer one.
(Six months back)
“No … not at all … I am not doing this…Noooooo”
“Ruhi, do you trust me?”
“I obviously do, Idiot.But, please, not for this. This is scary. I beg u.”
“Ruhi, listen, I’m there okay…I need you to come out of your fears. I promise, nothing will happen to you.”
And there we were, river rafting. It was so peaceful at the start.
“See Ruhi, how beautiful this water is.See, how calm, how peaceful. I love this serenity”
“Come up Rajat, Time for some fun to relive our college days. Come on Ruhi.”
Rajat: Ohh yes!(squeaked in a calm composed voice)
Ruhi: I did’nt know, you were joining us.
Rajat: It was all Akshay’s plan and when it’s something for him, I can never say a no.
Ruhi: haa. BFFs…hahaha,I hope I didn’t mess up your lovable friendship after marriage.(smirked Ruhi as she walks away with Akshay towards the raft.)
Rajat: No, you didn’t (a sigh only audible to him)
Akshay: Ruhi, how’re you feeling?
Ruhi: How would I feel you idiot! It’s like being close to hell, to death! Horrifying!
Akshay: Stop being that dramatic again, it will be fine.
So, broh, Hws life?
Rajat: Fine as always.
Akshay: ahaa, nice yaar…
Time for some action, just cooperate ok.(Whispering in Rajat’s ears)
Ruhi, do you know someone had a crush on you in college.
Ruhi: Ofcourse I do, you, idiot!
Akshay: Ofcouse me my love, but there is someone else as well.
Rajat: What are you upto? (Angrily whispering in Akshay’s ear)
Ruhi: Ohh really and you think you again go for a prank on me like always!
Akshay: No, my sweetheart!
Ruhi: Well! Shoot then! Who the hell was he?
Akshay: (makes funny sounds and expressions and pointing firmly at Rajat.)
Rajat: I can explain…He is upto some mischief…
Akshay: Nah NahNah (making again a funny sound)
(Their conversation gained momentum and so did their steps towards the raft.)
Rajat: Well yeah,I can explain…It’s not so…Akshay ,please stop that sound atleast.
Akshay: sssshhhhh.Ruhi… Listen to me.(in a calm and loving tone , putting his arm around her)
Ruhi: What now???
Akshay: This agile idiot standing right next to us, loved you a lot, but, wohoo I was the lucky one.
Rajat: stop it Akshay!
Akshay: SushhRajat, stay silent, my swear on you for that.
Rajat: But… ok.. Well yeah, you know how to shut me up!Geat!
Ruhi: Guys please! Atleast no pranks at this moment please. I’m already scared. (Almost crying)
Akshay: I Akshay , hereby declare that I will board this raft , only when Rajat my bff , promises to marry my love , Ruhi , if I end up my life here in this holy water.
Ruhi: SHUT UP!!! I’ll kill you Rajat, stop it now! We will not go for rafting only (nastily turns around)
Akshay: Well ok, whose birthday is it?
Rajat and Ruhi in unison: Yours.
Akshay: So whose day is it? Whose wish will be fulfilled?
Ruhi and Rajat: Yours.
Akshay: Great going sweethearts. Now go on and promise, else I wish I die soon. (Tripping over the raft with a heavy laughter)
Rajat: No ways. Ok.Ok I promise. (Breathing heavily, running to pick Akshay up)
(Ruhi ends up crying)
Akshay:Awww.. Baby, it was all a prank, don’t shed those precious pearls like this.
Come here my boy, Rajat, I love you, thanks for cooperating. (Hugs him tightly)
Ruhi: (beats Akshay and cries, again beats Akshay and cries.)
Akshay: Sorry … Sorry baby.
(Rajat stands in silence, trying to collect what just happened)
Akshay: Come up idiot, what are you doing standing there.
(Hastily moves to bring Rajat onto the raft)
Thanks broh. Do keep your promise. I know you still love her and you know what, even I’m afraid of water this time and can’t afford to loose her. I trust you. (Whispering in Rajat’s ears giving a contented wide smile)
(These words digged in Rajat’s heart but he loved his friend more and so, steadily climbed up the raft to keep up his friend’s promise)
(All climbed up the raft, their adventure began with the onset of destiny)
Everything was fine. At every rapid, Rajat would ensure that Akshay’s security and Akshay would ensure that Ruhi’s. They were enjoying it, but Ruhi was too engaged in a constant battle with her fears. It was tough for her. She had drowned before. She knew how unpleasant the experience could be.
Rapid after rapid. They passed it all and then came the 4th grade rapid. Death rapid as they call it.
Their raft went all normally to the massive waves of the holy river and then it turned upside down. Ruhi, still had the rope to the raft firmly held. Everyone vanished from sight. Ruhi’s sapphire slipped from her hand. She frantically started searching for Akshay. She yelled, cried and shouted out for help. The other raft members came in sight but, far away. She heard a familiar voice from somewhere, “Ruhi”, swim towards me, “Give me the rope”, “I’m here.” It was Akshay, she tried swimming towards him helplessly, and the flow was too much. Flashbacks came to her mind, how she drowned, how she was gasping for breath and she felt numb in her legs. She lost her senses. Fear overtook here. The fierce turbulent water took over her, she fainted. Akshay, was taken over by water, he endlessly fought against the horrifying fans of water and then gave up as he hit his bare head against one of the rocks. Serenity took over him. He wanted to be there forever and his wish was granted on his birthday, He was there forever.
On way back, Ruhi opened her eyes to the scorching sunlight and frenzily searched for Akshay. He was no more. She screamed hysterically on hearing the news. Rajat on the other hand, was numb, silent.He could not accustom to reality. When the raft turned, Ruhi’s ring went past him and he tried to bring it back, as he knew what importance it had for the couple. And in the meanwhile he lost his best friend, the love of his love.
How terrible was that afternoon. How terrible is this afternoon. My feet still feel heavy to lift as it reminds me of the one, when I lost you. You were right. I had to be calm. I wish I had, I could have saved you.
Baby, you must be desperately wanting to breathe. You must be struggling to race against water. You must be needing me. You must be needing me…
The afternoon faded into evening as Ruhi recalled the outrageous experience remorsefully looking over their old photos with tears now on them.
“He knew something wrong will happen. I wish I could have stopped him. I wish I could know it before”
(Broke down a male voice, at the entrance of the hall)
“He was my best friend. I loved him more than anything. I loved him more than you and he knew I loved you.”
He had seen her crying for the first time on their marriage anniversary
Ruhi recollected herself as he heard Rajat’s voice, piercing her own emotions for her beloved. She knew how much Rajat loved Akshay and she knew he married her just for him.
Ruhi: “All of that was not a prank right? You actually loved me?”
Rajat: But how do you know it? (Rajat tried to gain his composure)
Rajat had tried long to hide how broken he was after him. He only showcased that he was pretty happy marrying his love after him. This was only to show loyalty to his dead friend whom he loved a lot and so that Ruhi hated him. But, today he broke down.
Ruhi: I have been reading Akshay’s diary after him. And it speaks more of you than of me. I know all about you through him.
The day after Akshay passed away .Ruhi, came to know he had left something behind.It was their baby in her womb. People forced her to abort and remarry. But, she wanted to raise the last excerpts of her beloved. Rajat stepped in at this moment and married Ruhi, to keep the promise of his friend.
It is raining outside it is raining inside, it rained then and it is raining now. Ruhi was all drenched in tears as she again began writing down for her beloved that night.
My love, I am at the edge of a big decision today. As per your wish, I am coming out of my fears, I am trying to be calm now, for your peace, my love. You’ve kept repeatedly kept saying in your diary that you are in guilt of taking me away from your friend, as he loved me more. It’s time to release you of the guilt. It’s time to pay back for his loyalty on your behalf. The world does’nt know you as much I do.I know, where happiness is for you and I want you to be happy wherever you are. I want our daughter Akhira to respect Rajat as his father and not step-father and for this it is necessary to keep you protectedly hidden in my heart. I thence release myself of the past on this first anniversary of ours. You and I will always be together, no one can separate us. But I will now have to masquerade infront of Akhira and give Rajat the love he deserves in exchange for his loyalty. I know they will judge, but I know, you won’t ever my love.
They said, they are saying and they will say…what matters, is you…
All of us live with our past. All of us allow it to shape our future. But some of us know how to shrug the past. I think that is who I am…..
And that is how blue is our sapphire. Ruhi leaves the sapphire on the notebook…