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Mitthi - Debarati Chatterjee

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The setting sun as pleasant as always threw myriad colors across the sky. It was no longer clear where the sky ends and where the lake began. It was silent except for the birds chirping away madly as they returned home to the waiting arms of their loved ones. She sat there on the banks of the lake throwing one pebble at a time into the still water and watching them make ripples in the lake.Her feet dipped in the lake and she felt the cool water lapping at her ankles. It soothed her mind and made her feel peaceful. 

This was her favorite spot, by the lake in the shades of the huge banyan tree.  She used to come here every Sunday with her father. She used to listen while he told her about his life as a kid playing in the paddy fields in sun and rain, about his mother’s cooking, about him stuck in his room when the storms outside made the palm trees swing all the way down to the earth and up again. She tried to visualize his stories. For some reason they were always in black and white. She tried to color them up but the colors did not quite fit. Her mobile was ringing. She should go now, Ayan must be home. She always forgot time when she came here.

 

“Hello Ayan,”

“Where are you Mitthi? Do you know the time? I was worried”

“Oho! I’m sorry Ayan, Just got stuck with some work. I’ll be home soon. Seeya then”

She sighed and picked up her bag to walk home. She never quite figured out why she never could tell Ayan about this place. She wanted to but probably Ayan would not understand. He might but She just never tried. Strange, how many things we give up in life before even trying.

Mitali met Ayan an year back at a friend’s place. Always the silent one, she felt a bit out of place in the party. It was her friend Sudha’s house warming party. Mitthi helped herself to a glass of soda and perched on the patio wall. She swirled the amber liquid in the glass and took a clean swig. Eyes closed, head thrown back she felt the warmth seeping down her throat…

“Careful! An inch more and it will hurt”

She choked in her drink. Spurting she quickly opened her eyes to see who chose to disturb her serenity. 

“Ayan” he said with his hand out in an attempt to hold her.

“Thanks. Mitali”

“Is it alright if I share this place with you? The music in there is a tad too loud for me” said Ayan

“you do not seem to me as a person bothered by loud music,” Mitthi said with an edge in her voice.

Ayan did not seem to notice this. He made himself comfortable next to her and took a deep swig of his drink.

“So what are you drinking?” Ayan asked.

“Just some on the rocks” she said

“Aha! Is that to prove to the world your strength?” Ayan said and turned to take a swig.

“Why would you think so?” she asked lifting her eyes to meet his.

“Well may be because you’ve been here for an hour now with that drink in your hand and eyeing the Pistachio ice cream on the food counter instead?” Ayan said stifling a laugh.

Mitthi’s eyes enlarged and then crinkled into a laugh.

“You have beautiful eyes” Ayan said.

“Really? Everyone says so. I don’t know. I can’t see” she said.

That was a year ago. Mitthi and Ayan came a long way since then. Ayan did not know then that it was not the ice cream Mitthi was eyeing, it was a dream. But he knows now. He knows where Mitthi walks off to every evening at Sunset. He is always behind her to protect her but never lets her know. He lets her think that she takes those few steps alone every day to the lake side to spend few moments with her father and her childhood self.

Today, as Mitthi walks back home to Ayan, Ayan walks behind her giving her company like he promised himself he would a year ago when he looked into her eyes and fell in love with her.

Comments  

 
#2 Akash Chatterjee 2013-08-04 12:07
Lovely story!'So many things we give up in life without ever trying'..a very beautiful observation!
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#1 Nanda Banerjee 2013-05-27 12:04
wow! so romantic. Very deep thought.I like it because my destination of love,romance is exactly like that."He knows where Mitthi walks off to every evening at Sunset. He is always behind her to protect her but never lets her know." wow wow wow. Excellent Debarati.what a writing and what a feeling of true love.Many times we make mistake to understand the true love.True love don't need any word or expression, it could be silent with the act or behavior.Debara ti you must be a very deep person.I think as the same way you have written.You have touched my heart. I met you at amaar basonto, but you don't know me because we didn't get introduced,but i didn't realize that you are this kind of a person.
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