Where are my keys.... hmmm.. I had kept it in my purse I remember it ... well I can never get anything I am searching for ... its fate... I just.... Rachana's monologue trailed of as a memory for past just pushed itself to gain her attention.
"You are always losing things.. Its because you just don't focus on one thing... you are doing this, seeing that and thinking something else... "
She shook her head and snapped herself out of that memory. She didn't have time to dwell on it like usually she would love to do. The sky was overcast and she had to finish her weekly shopping and reach home before it started pouring.
"Forget the keys I will find it later... But why am I remembering him?!!!"
"Because you miss him"... Rachana wondered where did the voice come from. She turned in a circle standing in the grains aisle of the supermarket.
"My crazy imagination"
"Its not your imagination that is crazy, its you who is crazy because you are missing him"
Rachana was sure now that she is slowly going mad. "Uff, let me just focus on the work at hand. Do I need Rava?"
"No you don't need Rava. But you need to call him". Rachana turned around to see herself standing there smiling serenely.
"I don't know if you need Rava, But you definitely don't need him" Walked another version of her from behind the Serene Rachana smiling mysteriously.
"Wow.. Am definitely crazy, or having a nightmare. What's happening here.. This is exactly like in movies where your conscience splits in two to advise you in opposite opinions. Damn this is a crazy dream" Rachana wondered. She pinched herself hard and said "Wake up wake up wake up.."
"Don't hurt yourself" said Serenity. "ha ha ha don't worry you are not mad" laughed Mystery.
"Am not waking up. Maybe its just my imagination. I should just ignore it and finish my shopping" thought Rachana and turned around to walk away.
"I wonder if he is also going crazy like me" she wondered.
"Of course he is missing you" smiled serenity. While mystery sneered and answered "Oh stop it, don't mislead her. He is obviously enjoying himself".
Rachana walked away filling her basket with the items needed and not needed.
She was standing in shampoo section and her eyes filled up on their own while she struggled to control them. "I shouldn't cry. This is not the first time I was set aside. Mom and dad didn't miss me when I left for college. Sis didn't miss me after her marriage. Friends easily forget to invite me or even inform me about something. So why should I expect him to miss me." she waited against her better judgment to those two voices of opinion.
Serenity's voice was soft when she answered "That's not true. Everybody remembers you and miss you. Its just that you are not so forth coming in gaining attention. They don't want to disturb you that's all"
Mystery retorted angrily "You are the one who fills her mind with unwanted things. Look Rachana, we all are alone.. just nobody notices that"
Rachana winced at the brutal words but continued ignoring both of them and walked on. No matter how much she wanted she couldn't hold back the thought "But I miss him"
Instantly Serenity said "Of course you do, that's why you should call him. Don't be egoistic now"
Mystery replied in a strong voice "No, you shouldn't call, don't bend your pride. Your pride is very important, if you bend now, he will always expect you to bend. If he misses you, he will call"
Serenity said with unusual sternness "Well if even he was guided by his version of you, then he will also not call even if he is missing her more than life"
"Well if he doesn't then it is his lose. When he is the one who walked, he should be the one who comes back. If you ask me even if he comes back, you shouldn't take him back. Its not like Rachana can't find a better man"
Serenity's voice was smooth when she said "No relationship can sustain with stubbornness and bending a little of your pride to keep your bond intact is not like you are surrendering your soul"
Rachana understood serenity was addressing her but she studiously ignored both of them and went on. Even though her ears were tuned to hear what they were saying, she didn't want to acknowledge them in any way.
But the idea of not seeing him ever or worse seeing and not able to behave as she always had made her throat close up. She wanted to cry so hard, just to put out all this out of her heart and breathe. But she willed herself to be strong.
She didn't know if she got all she wanted, but she just wanted to get out of here. Wishing against hope that those two versions of her would just stay here leaving her alone. Rachana walked towards payment struggling to hold back her tears.
At that moment serenity spoke softly "Think what is more important, your love or your stubbornness. He....."
And mystery didn't let her finish and spoke in between "No, stop it, its because of you that she always bends. Rachana don't lose your self respect. Don't go groveling at the feet of a person who doesn't need you. You will never be happy with half baked relationship. "
Rachana willed that these two just disappear and leave her alone. Right now all she wanted was to pay for her groceries and go home. Go home and curl up in bed with her fluffy pillow and cry for days.
As soon as that thought entered Rachana didn't even want to wait till getting her groceries. She just left her trolley at the side and walked out of the store. All the time she was driving back she kept a tight fist of control over her feelings and concentrated with all her energy to just get home.
Rachana parked her vehicle in the apartment parking and stepped in the lift. She could feel her control slipping. But she wondered where were these two ??!!
As the lift doors opened the sight of him sitting by her door welcomed her. There he was sitting by her door, his long frame folded up, his hands on his knees, his head back at the wall and his eyes were closed.
Rachana didn't know what to do, what to feel. She stepped out of the lift and as if she had called him, he opened his eyes and looked right at her. Rachana walked up the whole corridor to reach him and all the time his eyes never wavered from her face. He got up languidly, which was quite unusual for him. He was epitome of vigor and vitality. Always full of energy and motion. And there he was unnaturally still.
Rachana wished that those two be with her now. She needed support even Mystery's pessimism was welcome now. She reached him and stood in front of him.
She was quite small in front of him. He looked down at her, hands in his pocket. He looked like he was in a battle and didn't seem like he had won in any way.
When he didn't say anything, Rachana walked by him to open her door. As she inserted the key inside the lock he spoke.
"I miss you"
Rachana's spine straightened up as if something very strong hit her. She was so surprised that she didn't want to look back at him, even though all her senses were screaming to look at him and fold herself in his arms.
She took a long breath, one, two, three and her senses calmed down a bit.
She waited for him to continue. When he didn't, she willed herself to open her lock, as the lock clicked open, his baritone voice interrupted again.
"I need you, I .... I need you"
This time she couldn't hold back and turned around. His face looked like he was in pain. His stance was still rigid. It was like he didn't want to say these words but something much stronger pulled it out of him.
He was not meeting her eyes, but finally when he looked all around her and settled on her face. His eyes softened, he took a stride towards to wipe off her tears.
Rachana didn't even know that she was crying. He wiped off her tears with his thumb, his palm cupped her face for a moment and he step back as if he was burned. His eyes were questioning, a hundred questions, searching her face for answers,
Finally Rachana turned towards her home and opened the door to walk in. She knew he was waiting with bated breath. As she entered her house, she knew what she wanted.
Rachana turned back towards him, smiling hesitantly and open the door wider, indicating him to come in. Suddenly like a sunshine breaks from between the dark clouds his face lit up with a small smile, which she had come to love.
As he walked in Rachana started to close the door. Just before it closed she saw both of them smiling at her.