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Until Death

Their’s was an unusual story. Everyone has their story, on how they found love or how they lost love. We’ve heard of best friends suddenly realising their love and joining in in holy matrimony, we’ve heard of totally oppsite ppl falling in love in one instant… of ppl who never believed in love converting to believers of true love. These two ppl, of whom this story is about won’t exactly fit any group. She didnt believe in love, was too practical for her own good and marraige was just a matter of convenience for her. He was charming, vovacious yet a simple guy who merely agreed to the marraige for the heck of it.

 Joined in matrimony as such, they did nevertheless make a handsome pair. She was a lawyer, not that eminent yet respected immensely by all who knew her for her amazingly clear view on all issues. Although not beautiful, she would definetly turn heads because of her impeccable dressing and most importantly her attitude. He was your regular IT professional, very ordinary in most aspects and yet so lovable. He could be called downright handsome, the kind girls just adore. In fact many of his friends didnt think the girl was good for him, saying  that he’d be better off with someone with as light a countenance as his. Everything suggested that the marraige may not last, but neither of them paid a thought to anything. I guess the ppl all were right, since the marraige only lasted 2 yrs. But they were more wrong than right, as in the span of 2 yrs both souls interchanged to such an extent… that even god would have been surprised.

Anyway, as it happens, they got married. Their courtship, short and abrupt as it was, shall be the discussion of another tale. What follows is the events of the 2nd and last year of their marraige, it having lasted just 2 short years. their first New year started of with a party at one of the more happening clubs in the city. Neither of them were the ‘club-ers’ kind and soon they found themselves roaming the city in their car. T’was no surprise that they found themselves at the steps of this lake in the centre of the city. Here, there needs be a mention of the lake. It was the one common thing between them. I’d like to believe that it was here at this lake that he must’ve seen her first, that the arrows of cupid had been strung, shot, and hit their mark. But, unfortunately it was not… the arrows of cupid was in fact at a common aquaintance’s party. Anyway, this lake was a quaint, oblongish one, sorrounded by trees and a park of sorts. The one place that both of them loved to come and relax. After marraige, once they discovered that both liked that place… the lake became their regular meeting spot. She’d get there in the evenings from her office, which was a stone’s throw away, and he’d be there, everytime, waiting for her. They’d walk around a bit, ultimately sit on the steps and talk till it was time to go. And here it was that they spent their first and only new year, in each other’s arms on the steps of this deserted lake.

The next morning, nothing was the same. They had been married for almost 10 months now.. and it was only on this day that she realised that she was in love, the eternal kind. He on the other hand, realised that a deeper understanding, grounded in love, had blossomed between them. And so time seemed to pass, with both wrapped in the warmth of love, yet undeclared, for both were the modest kind and of course once married you don’t need to say ‘i love you’ or so they thought.

In that whole year that followed, everyone who knew them were astounded. The girl who never wore pink, orange, yellow or any colour remotely feminine was seen in pretty dresses, long flowy hats and with a lightness in her step that was almost obnoxious. The guy who seemed so charming, lovable, but the can’t-commit-type was seen to become so much more responsible, so much more serious than any of his friends had thought he was capable of. He was content, satisfied… as though the maturity he suddenly seemded to posses had given him some enlighteneing knowledge and that knowledge like all profound truths gave him a wise, almost indifferent emotion. Collegues, friends, relatives were surprised to see the couple now… no one understood the change, but that didnt bother anyone. All thought that the couple were so much in love, so much happy with life.

It was during one of the company health check-ups in january that she found out about her cancer. Having first realised she was in love, and then realised that she was dying was something that shook her, and made her re-examine her life. it triggered in her a latent quality of enjoying life to the fullest. She knew his ways, and slowly changed herself to be like him. I’ll never know why she changed, but that explained the flowers, and colours and dance and music that she jumped head on into. Everyday of hers began a smile, and carried on with a laughter that was light yet contagious. At first he was surprised at this change, but something happened and in the following days the more bubbly she was, the more silent he became. This surprised her and she was more intent at being happy herself, to spend her last days making him happy. But somehow, she could sense he was not happy. Her disease combined with his growing indiffrence took the toll, and both drifted apart.

 The drift went on well into march, as the city was transforming from winter to spring. All over, the trees that had gone bare were blossoming or turning in new leaves. As though after a long break, he called up and asked her to come to the lake after office as usual. They hadn’t ben there since new year, though she had tried to get him to take her there. Of late, she was growing more and more tired. She couldnt be happy enough, and she felt as though he was pulling her down. She knew that she still loved him, but she also knew that things weren’t working out fine. After the phone call, she was relieved cause there was no point in delaying announcing him her test results, she being the kind who would always tackle the toughest problems first. She had just a few more months, and she wanted to leave him prepared to tackle life once again. In fact, her delay in telling him earlier on was because of her fears that indifferent as he is, what if the news of her cancer made no effect on him? she was afraid that he would not care, that he would be as indifferent to her disease as he was to her changed persona.

She left office an hour early that day, with the intention of taking a walk to collect her thoughts and perhap phrase her news more appropriately. She didn’t wanna be dramatic when she announced it cause she herself was not very greatly concerned about the disease. But, she didnt want to sound too off-handed either. With all these thoughts in mind she was walking down the path when he happened to come up her way. A startled look was all that was exchanged between the two and they walked off together to their usual place on the steps of the lake. A silence followed which neither of them felt like interupting, cause the silence itself was so comfortable. But eventually as the sun prepared to settle for the night, a sense of urgency settled in on her and she turned to talk to him. It was he who spoke to her first. “I have cancer”, he stated. Her shock turned to a maddening laugh. All the months of doubts, fears turned to relief and she couldnt help but laugh at it. His confusion was soon ended when she triumphantly announced to him, “So do I sweetheart!”.

And there they sat, on the steps of the lake with the last rays of sun gazing intently at this insane couple. For what in death can anyone find funny? With tears rolling down their face, they gazed briefly into the short while they both had left with each other…. and that was all they needed to be happy. If a lifetime is the time a life lives, the remaining 6 months were a lifetime for them. And these two were intent on spending their lifetime in bliss. She was now happy, light just like him. She was now truly in love, just like him. No more did dountd of she’s-too-good-for-me or he-s-not-my-kind pop up cause it didnt matter anymore, cause they were in love. And this love carried them through the 6 months, till the morning when she drew her last… his lonely soul lived the earth for 6 days more, and drew its last peacefully in sleep.

As the final rays dipped beyond the lake, he finally stopped his laugh, turned to her and said “By the way, I love you”.


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