“I had a crazy dream last night.” He replied, from the other end of the phone.
“Tell me more about it.” I said, eagerly.
“Well I kinda dreamt that I was admitted in the hospital because of this terrible accident I had. I had got my face burnt.” He said.
“Why do you always tend to have these kinda dreams Stephen? Like people dying, or getting bashed up and all, it’s too much of negativity you know.” I giggled.
“Then you wouldn’t like to hear the entire dream. You are the villain of the sequence!” He said jokingly.
“What do you mean? Come on Stephen, you can’t be serious!” I said.
“Want to hear more about it?” He asked.
“Shoot.” I answered.
“Well, you had come to see me. And there was this awesome song being played at the background.” He said.
“You even have background music being played in your dreams?” I laughed.
“Will you just stop interrupting me every time Anna?” He said, not finding it funny.
“Okay okay. I’ll keep shut now.” I said, still giggling covering my mouth with my palm.
“So you asked me how I was and how things were and how I was doing and…”
“See! I was just asking about your health. That doesn’t really make me the villain of the story to be honest.” I interrupted. He kept silent for a while.
“Hello?” I checked whether he is still on the line.
“Will you SHUT UP OR DO I JUST DISCONNECT THE CALL????” He yelled.
“Sorry sorry sorry sorry sorry!! Please continue!” I apologized.
“I’ll just come to the end part of it just to prevent you from interrupting me anymore. I had asked whether you still wished to marry me after all this, and well, you remained silent. When I asked again, you said that you needed time. So I assumed that the answer was a no.” he said.
“Excuse me! I didn’t say no, did I? I confirmed.
“But your reply does imply that, doesn’t it?” He said.
“Of course it doesn’t you fool! It just means that I needed some time to sort out stuffs.” I argued.
“It’s easier for you to say because you are not in that situation, Anna. People withdraw emotionally after such incidents generally.” He said.
“Well, to your surprise Stephen, I don’t belong to that particular group of people having such mentality.” I said, stern.
“It’s not about having a stupid mentality, Anna. We are talking about an entire life time out here. It’s never easy when a comparison comes in between.” He said.
“Why would I compare?” I said.
“Maybe you wouldn’t, but others would, your parents could.” He said.
“Whose happiness are we talking about? My parent’s or mine?” I asked.
“Would you be happy getting married against your parent’s happiness, Anna?” He asked.
“Will my parents be happy in getting me married to someone with whom I wouldn’t be happy, Stephen?” I asked back.
He kept silent. Hahhh!! I had won!
“Some things are too complex for me to make you understand Anna.” He said.
“Why don’t you just admit that I am right?” I said.
“Life isn’t that simple. It isn’t a fairy tale.” He said.
“Can we talk about something else now?” I asked, giving up on the topic.
We talked for a while and we had to keep the phone down. I went to my room. Switched off the lights. Lay on my bed. I closed my eyes.
“Could anyone actually leave someone just because that person might not be the same anymore?” I asked myself.
With my eyes closed I visualized myself in the entire scene. After some time, I opened my eyes, switched on the lights, sat down with a pen and some sheets of paper and started writing down my thoughts.
She rushed up the stairs of the hospital, pushing her way through the crowd, grasping for breath. At last she reached the required floor.
“208…208…” she kept on repeating under her breath.
At last there it was. She was standing in front of room no.208. She moved forward slowly but stopped. She closed her eyes.
“I had promised to face everything, good or bad, when I’m with you.” Saying this, she pushed the door and stepped in.
There he lay on the bed, needles piercing through his fist. His face half dressed with bandages. But that didn’t refrain her from recognizing him. He looked away from her.
“You shouldn’t have been here”, he said.
“Please don’t push me away like that. I had to come to see you.” she replied.
“See what? This blighted face of mine? I wish I had just died in the fire!” He yelled.
“I can’t believe you just said that. You’re hurting me now.” She yelled back.
“I’m sorry. I’m just….umm…come here. Sit beside me.” He said, offering her a seat beside his bed. He held her hand and said,
“Can I ask you something?”
“If you want to ask any of your highly gibberish questions right now ,I may not want to put my ears to it.” She answered, sarcastically.
“Would you still want to marry me?” He asked.
She remained quiet, avoiding eye contact.
“I want an answer baby. Tell me, would you?” He asked again.
“I need some time to think over it.” She replied, softly.
“That implies second thoughts. So no is the answer I assume.” He looked away.
“That doesn’t mean a no! That simply means that I need time.” She fought back.
“You’re just hanging me up.If you would have been absolutely certain,you wouldn’t need time to think about it.” He said, trying to prove his point right.
“We aren’t kids anymore! This is a life time decision.Try to understand the depth of it.” She persuaded him.
“Well and for obvious reasons,why would a girl want to marry a guy whose got himself burnt?” He said.
“For the obvious reason that she loves him! When will you ever understand the intensity with which I love you? You think I say all of these for words sake? Tell me one thing,if tomorrow we have a daughter, and, God forbid, if something like this had happened to her, would you despise and abandon her to live all alone? You couldn’t be so cruel, could you? Then how could you expect me to do the same?” She said. Her eyes turned moist.
“No, I didn’t mean that. All I meant was…”
“You keep your highly absurd thoughts to yourself and listen to me mister! I had asked for time because I need to confront with my family about this. This is no small thing. I wanted to let my parents know that despite all this, I keep the courage to stand by the man whom I love, no matter how disastrous he would look like after this. If I have their consent, well and good. If not, then I’m afraid, I would have to decide for myself.” She said, interrupting him.
A teardrop rolled down his eye. He looked away. He asked with a shivering voice,
“You still wish to be with me? Why the hell do you love me so much?”
“I wish I had an answer to that!” She giggled, wiping away his tear. She continued,
“Loving you is like loving myself you see. We are different. But together, we are one crazy duo! We make mistakes. We aren’t perfect, right? That’s why I’m crazy after you. That’s why, I love you so much.” She said, kissing his hand.
I kept my pen down.