“I love you, I always will. You’ll always be my forever.”
Aashu is my definition of true love. You know how they talk about love at first sight, well, I fell for Aashu the day I first saw him. At the tender age of seventeen, I came to realize and believe that true love exists and it isn’t some romance novel cliché described by hopeless romantics. With Aashu things were always simple. It was as if the word ‘complicated’ wasn’t a part of his life. You’ll ask me what I loved the most about him, well, I loved everything about him. His ‘ not a single fuck given’ attitude, his stupidity, how his lips curved up in a smile when he saw me; I loved all of him. But I was too scared to tell him that. What if our friendship, this special bond that we had, got shattered? What if he decided to not to talk to me ever again? No, I couldn’t risk our friendship over my silly feelings. And I never told him how I felt for him.
After high school ended, we were at the crossroads in our lives. He decided to go to America and I stayed back in India. Time flew soon. It was the 2nd of October, I was anxiously waiting at the airport for him. I had tried to look my best that day. I looked quite different from my high school days. Now I didn’t have short boyish hair. Instead I had long brown hair that framed my face, petite body and a Brazilian model like complexion. I almost yelled “Aashu” out of excitement and nervousness both but what I saw next broke my heart into a million pieces. A girl was walking with him, clutching him tightly, as if she was sending the message of “He’s mine” to all the other girls that were staring at him. Every two to three seconds she looked at her ring finger with sparkly eyes and planted a kiss on his cheeks. What could’ve I done? We exchange pleasantries and promised to see each other again as an excuse to get to know all that was going on in our lives.
One night, Aashu called me up and before I could even ask him what had happened, he began sobbing uncontrollably over the phone, I panicked. Just within a few minutes I came to know that she had left him for some millionaire of the West. That day we talked for two long hours and in the end he did feel a bit better. I had this strong urge overpowering me, I wanted to scream my lungs out and tell him that, “Aashu, I love you! Please be mine forever!” but I just couldn’t tell him. Life went on. Aashu remarried. He did called me up to invite me for his wedding reception but I denied giving an excuse. How could I possibly go to his wedding reception? I couldn’t muster up the courage to watch the guy I love get married to someone else, again. That was the last time I heard from him. I had almost forgotten about Aashu until this morning when a strange looking letter arrived at my place.
With trembling fingers and teary eyed, Aashima opened the letter and began reading it.
” Dear Aashima,
God dammit!!! I love you!! I don’t know how should I say this to you. I am just too scared to lose you as a friend. I had fallen for you the day I first saw you but didn’t have the courage to say it. But I really , really love you Aashima!! I love you, I always will. You’ll always be my forever Aashima.
With this a seventy -eight year old widow, Aashima began weeping hysterically. Couldn’t speak a word more at the eulogy of the only guy she had loved the most in her life. Everyone at the church was overwhelmed with emotions and broke into tears.
In the end, I guess we all regret the chances that we never took.