“Ooooo! Don’t worry. Did you ask Sayuri ma’am about this?”, texted I.
“Yes, I pinged her. She asked me to enquire in the exam cell. I’m planning to ask tomorrow”, texted Rohini. I sent her a thumbs-up to which she replied with another.
“Sexy! Am I the only student from CT who has been to the university today?”, grumbled I, peeping into our combined classroom, as I stood at the entrance. I looked around to spot only five other guys and two girls from CS sitting inside. I shrugged, chuckling, and walked to sit alone on my usual middle bench. I sat in the center as if Kareena and Sameer were present and sat on either side.
“Aye, betrayers! Why didn’t any of you turn up?”, I began texting on my friend's gang WhatsApp group which just included a few of my batchmates who sat within my vicinity. “Hmmm! I’m alone here and all of you are laughing. So awkward! None else came from our department only!”, I went on and on, as Jacob trolled me on the chat group, with stickers posing celebrities crying at different movies.
I sighed, inserting the smartphone back into my pocket. “Obviously! MSA is mad. How do they expect students to return from their natives just to attend classes for two days, with the Makara Sankranti festival on the line? Sexy! As if classes will happen today…”, my eyeballs rolled hither and thither, as I yawned to myself. I already felt cozy in my dark green hoodie; felt like resting my head on the bench and dozing right away.
My heartbeat turned into a rising high tide, as soon as Rohini entered the class. She smiled and chuckled, waving at her best friends, on the second bench. No sooner did she take her seat beside Vaishali than her eyes happened to catch me.
“Hi!”, said I, in my meek and hesitant voice, as I waved along.
“Hi!”, she greeted, in a soft tone, and turned back to chuckle with her friends. “None have come today, dude! What are we going to do?...”
“Kuchipudi dance!”, said Vaishali. Aye, I must say, Rohini is damn pretty when she smiles. She pulled Vaishali’s ears and exclaimed at Veena, in the midst of their conversation.
But, why didn’t I notice her good nature back during our original life? Hmmm, this reliving journey indeed feels like a dream. It's still incredible that my rejection triggered oceans of tears from her poor heart.
“Good Morning, students!”, said a girl, walking into our classroom.
“Ey! You too are a student, right?”, cross-questioned a short and smart guy from the last bench. All of us burst a round of laughter.
“Fine! See, all I came to announce was that CT students have Java this hour and they must leave for Lab-6 on the ground floor. Tia ma’am is waiting”, she announced, turning her head hither and thither like a sharp straight line. I raised my hand.
“Oh, wow! Fine, just go. She asked me to announce here as there isn’t any communication channel yet”, she clarified, leaving the class. Rohini and all others turned at me, for a second, as I packed my bag and headed toward the entrance.
“Sexy! I met Rohini on the first day of the third semester when she had just joined the college. Once again, on the first day of our fourth semester, I met her. If this wasn’t a sign, why did she come today when almost the entire class had bunked?!”, I thought, blushing at her from behind, as she continued gossiping with her friends. There is definitely a connection between us.
“Ooooo!”, I exclaimed, as I happened to stumble upon her bag placed on the floor, juxtaposed to her desk. I felt someone grab my hand from behind and stop me from falling, just at the right time.
I agree that love is unanticipated. I also agree that the identity of our lover is a true mystery
until we feel the love!
Following the same lines, one thus ends up falling for a bad partner-the wrong love. It's fine!
Making a wrong decision is common among ordinary homosapiens like you and me.
However, correcting our blunder and returning to our right love is a worthy question whose
answer may either be a ‘YES’ or a ‘NO’ or sometimes a combination of both! There is only one
superpower that can answer this query: ‘TIME’
“Dhilip!”, she exclaimed, as I turned behind. I looked into her eyes as she grew busy lecturing me, “You must be careful. A college bag of decent size is lying on the way…how could you fail to notice it?...”
Aww, I too care for close friends this way. Imagine if her friendship is to this extent, then, no doubt, her love would be limitless! I feel, I too was just like her, when I loved Priya, my wrong love. Urgh! Why is this reliving journey filling my dumb brain with lessons over lessons? Wait, why am I thinking about how her love for me would have been? In the first place, I don’t even know if I love her!
I shook my head as she released me and stood up. She patted my shoulders, enquiring, “Are you alright? Dhilip!” As she shook me and chuckled, I blushed and nodded but just couldn’t take my eyes off her. Control, Dhilip! Yo, how do I stop my pupils from dilating?
“Thanks!”, I thanked her, breathing hard and blowing to keep my palms warm, as I left the classroom.
No sooner did I open my notes and get ready for the class that Rohini hurried straightaway toward my desk. Why is she traveling towards me as her destination from the very first bench of the adjacent row? Her eyeballs rolled hither and thither but failed to notice mine interlocked into hers. What are you looking for, medam? Come to me. I’m always here to help you, for sure. I chuckled at the brown dolly prints on my milky white hoodie. Ooo, why did I wear this? I look like a kid, in this.
“Ouch! Aah!”, whispered Rohini, stumbling at my desk. She was about to fall upon me and I caught both her palms and left her stranded in a diagonal pose. I helped her stand erect. Our eyes interlocked into each other for the entire next minute. Aye! What’s happening to me? Rohini makes me feel special.
Ooooooo! Ridiculous! Why did she exactly come here, to my desk? She sighed, throwing her mouth open, seeing the seat beside me empty. She then looked at me.
“Where is our class representative, Kareena?”, asked I.
“No, she hasn’t yet returned after lunch…”, said I.
“Oh! Ma’am wants to connect to the projector. She asked me. I’m blank…Can you see, Dhilip?”
“Uhmm…Hmmm…” I turned front to face the whiteboard and cables hanging freely from the laptop on the lecturer’s elevated desk upon the stage. I stood up at once and rushed to the stage. As I grew engrossed bending and connecting the table, I happened to notice Rohini smiling with relief, as she sat back on her seat.
“Thank you!”, Smriti ma’am, our Math lecturer this semester, thanked me. I nodded and returned to my seat. As Smriti began projecting questions and we began answering, like a rapid-fire, I wondered how Kareena’s absence benefitted me. Yes yes, she had proposed to me back then but after Rohini explained love to her, she realized that she never loved me. We ought to be open-minded enough to not lose our friendship before setting out on the voyage of love!
Above all, why did this projector incident happen? When I decode it, I feel as if the universe wanted Rohini and me to be together and tried its best, as well but I hardly gave these signs a thought.
It's now during the reliving journey that I realize how tiny roadblocks were cleared to make way for the both of us, just for the sake of our interactions to go on; what about the biggest roadblock: Priya? It was my duty to clear her and take wise action. In fact, Rohini and I would have hardly spoken that afternoon if Kareena was available. I chuckled, correlating to the point that destiny strives to create spaces for the destined to somehow interact but it's on our part to realize and utilize this gifted space. When destiny itself helps you, what more do you want, to relish your true and right love?
I blushed, sitting alone, with my hands crossed and my back hugging the backrest, as I always sat. I chuckled at Rohini closing her mouth and eyes and laughing alone, at some episode playing on her tab, directly piercing through her ears. She pushed in mouths of fried rice but couldn’t take her eyes off her hobby while I couldn’t take my eyes off my girl. Urgh! Nope, sorry guys, I don’t know if I can ever see her as my girlfriend.
The fact that Rohini relished her lone company struck me that afternoon. I sat three benches behind her. Hardly did she bother to even turn back and greet me with a simple “Hello”. How I wish I had observed her feeling of isolation back then! Hmm, by confessing her heart out to me, back on that day, she indirectly requested me to drive her loneliness away…I wonder how I missed noticing her entire other side, back then!
“Dude, come and eat with us. Come!”, Srithika offered Rohini. I threw my mouth half-open and rolled my meek and hesitant eyeballs hither and thither as her bad friend plucked out her earphones and dragged her to the first benches which her gang occupied on the adjacent row.
“Dude, I wanna finish those episodes and stay updated by today…Please! Please!”, chuckled Rohini, shrinking her eyes and trying to move out. The other girl too caught her and pressed her shoulders, making her sit.
Fuck! You can’t force someone like that. If they want, they will dine with you else no, this sort of behavior isn’t fair at any cost. I extended my right hand on my bench’s surface only to notice my fair golden hands glittering with the violet sleeve standing halfway above the right elbow joint.
Will Dhilip speak up for Rohini?!
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