The phone rings again. He decides to ignore it again. He had already deliberately avoided picking up her call for last three times today. But suddenly, he changes his mind and picks up her call this time.
Hey, what’s up? Not picking my calls?
(Decides to make the excuse that never fails) Nothing much, was sleeping and phone was in silent mode.
Oh… ok, thanks for the huge favor. I would like to get rid of this debt as soon as possible. I would like to hand over the check tomorrow. So, we are meeting tomorrow, right?
Can’t you do an online transfer?
Man! You are so strange. Not long back, you kept proposing dates for meeting with me, and now, you are acting so reluctant to meet!
(Laughs… and makes another excuse) It is just that I am too lazy and don’t feel like stepping out of house on Sundays.
(Laughs) Don’t make excuses. I shall see you at 7.
Okay. See you tomorrow then.
Although, he disconnects the call, her pleasant laugh still keeps ringing in his head and his thoughts drifts down the memory lane to the pleasant childhood memories associated with this laugh. Those were the days. He is snapped back to present by the striking of wall clock signaling that it was the 3rd stroke of the night. He wonders why he is so reluctant to meet her now. And he doesn’t have to ponder upon it, as he knew very well why.
He wishes he could confess to her that she was her childhood crush. He wishes he could confess that she was always like a dream – not the dream that one chases, but the dream that one likes to dream of. Like the dream one dreams of how cool it would be if one had an invisibility cloak or one had super-powers like superman, but one doesn’t chase such dreams (at least he didn’t and he heard those who chase such dreams, end up getting hurt jumping from rooftops). She wasn’t aware of his existence in reality then and he wasn’t aware of her existence beyond his dreams. And it was a blissful co-existence in which he associated all the attributes (like elegance, compassion, innocence, humor etc.) that he wished in a Dream to her.
Although the years rolled by, this Dream stayed with him like the other dreams that he didn’t chase, as such dreams don’t shatter because you don’t chase them. And when she appeared in his dreams, a few months ago, in that usual coffee shop setting, he was so certain that he was in dreamland that he dared to go talk to her (for he gathered such courage only in his dreams) and they kept talking as they always did in that usual coffee shop setting and the usual scene where they both really meet for first time and they exchanged contact numbers at the end. However, this dream appeared different to him from the other usual dreams. However, he ignored that thought and continued to live as if it was yet another dream until the day he got a call that dawned upon him the reason why that dream was different.
(to be contd.)