It was still 2 hrs to go before I was to meet Nupur. I had known Nupur for 20 years now and I met her nearly every single day. Today for the 1st time, I was nervous meeting her. I had very big news for her and I dint know how she would take it. I dint know if she would be happy or angry at me. Be what ever the consequence but I decided to tell her today. I had to tell her. I had hid this very vital part of my life from her for 4 years now and I dint want to hide it anymore. All these 4 years I had never been able to look into her eye when ever the topic would come up. If it was someone else instead of Nupur they would have doubted me but Nupur trusted me blindly and she wasn’t the kinds to question. She would give me time and wait for me to open up. And today was the day.
I gathered all the courage in the world and prepared myself for the worst. If she stopped talking to me, I would understand. I had broken a very important rule of friendship after all. As usual I reached the place 30 minutes early. I had this habit of going early and Nupur coming late. I knew it would be a minimum of 1 hour before she would show up so I ordered a cup of coffee and a walnut cake with chocolate syrup on it. I wasn’t hungry but I was nerves and when I am nervous I eat. I was waiting and still she dint show up. So I ordered another cup of coffee.
My phone started to ring and it was Nupur. I knew what she would say.
“Hello.” “Err… hi poo. I am sorry yaar but I will be late. I was caught up in some busy work”, I said the last two words along with her. She laughed and said “You always know I am lying. I don’t know why I still do it though”, she said still laughing. Usually I would be laughing with her. Her laugh was infectious but not today. I wasn’t myself and she sensed that. “Are you ok”? Nupur said with concern in her voice. “I am fine. You were on net. Weren’t you”? I asked trying to change the topic. “Yeah! I am sorry babes. I will be there in 15 minutes, I promise”, she said and hung up.
15 minutes and I had to tell her the truth, even though he dint want to tell her. He said he needed more time. Wasn’t 4 years enough time? I will tell her today no matter what. But then started to think and I thought that may be was right. I was confused and I decided to call him even though I knew he would yell at me for disturbing him and then ask me wait for some more time.
“Poo. Do you even know its 4 am for me”? He yelled at me as soon as he picked up the phone.
“Yeah! I know but I wanted to tell you have I decided to tell Nupur about us”.
He gave out a loud sigh before he spoke, “Haven’t we been through this before? How many times do I have to tell you, I am not ready to tell her yet”? he yelled.
“She is my best friend and I can’t keep lying to her”, I nearly yelled and then realized that I was in public place.
“Listen Pooja. I will tell you this once again. Nupur is my sister and she is my best friend too. I know it’s hard for you to lie to her. Its hard for me too, may be even harder than you. But I don’t want to do this over the phone. I told you that when I come there in a month we will not only tell Nupur but also our parents and convince them and get married. I can’t stay away from you any longer. But all this cant be done over the phone and I hope you understand”, Ajay said with his usually dreamy voice.
“I understand. I know it’s hard for you too. But you don’t have to face her everyday. It’s just a month and I will manage. I have for last 4 years. But I can’t make my parents hang around the corner any more Ajay. They have selected some guy called Uday in my cousins wedding and have invited him and his family to dinner next weekend so that I we get to know each other. And I over heard my mum saying that uday liked me. Things will be complicated if things progress. I just want to get this out in open as soon as I can”.
“Hmmm…. Just a month more baby and I promise that I will not only tell your parents but make them accept this relation. I along with my dad will come and ask your parents. Your parents always said that I am like their son and now I will actually become their son”, Ajay said laughing.
“It won’t be that simple Ajay. They will show some reluctance at first. They do like you, so they very well might accept”, I said assuring not only him but also me.
Just then I saw Nupur park her black activa. She loved her activa and had also named it Dhano inspired by the movie sholay.
“Ajay, Nupur is here. I will have to hang up now. I will give you a call later. Bye”.
“Ok. I will go back to sleep. Love you Poo”, he said with a voice that always had an effect on me. It was like magic. Even when I had the worst of days all I needed was his voice to get my spirits up.
“Yeah, bye”, I said hanging up my phone and hugging Nupur.
“I am really sorry Poo. I was online and I just dint know the time”, she said picking up the menu.
“I am not mad at you because you are late Nupur. I am mad at you because you refuse to move on. You don’t want to get over him. I know what you were doing online”, I said looking at her face which now had a hint of sadness in it.
“No Poo. I wasn’t waiting for him nor was I going through his wedding snaps again. I was just talking to one of my old friends. Honest”, she said smiling. Her smile failed to deceive me. I knew she was looking at his wedding pictures and crying all over again. Her eyes always told the truth. They were puffy and red. She had hardly slept lately. She indulged herself in work and worked extra hours. She not only did her projects but also helped her friends do theirs. It was good in a way atleast her thoughts would be off that bastard. He dint deserve a girl like her. Rather she deserved some one much much much better than him.
“Arrgh! I like nothing here. Let’s get out of here and eat some pani puri”, Nupur said breaking my thoughts.
“Yes. It’s been long since I ate Pani Puri anyways. Let me just pay this guy and we will get out of here. I just found this great guy down this street who has good Pani Puri”, I said all excited. Pani puri was my favorite. I really enjoyed eating and Pani Puri topped my list of favorites.
“Wait! Wait! Stop! Stop”, I shouted as Nupur was driving. Book stall had just caught my eyes. “I want to buy Twilight series last book. I have been searching and I think I just saw it with this guy”, I said as Nupur slowed down and started to search for a place to park.
“I really don’t understand this obsession of yours about Edward Cullen. Firstly I can’t believe that you are reading a romantic book. Secondly I can’t believe that you of all people are in love with Edward Cullen. What happened to my Poo”? Nupur asked.
I smiled. “Why don’t you read this book and I am sure that you will also get addicted to it,” I said handing out Twilight to her.
“No thank you! I am not interested in reading and dreaming of this perfect guy who in reality never exists”, she said putting the book back into the stand.
Listening to those words from her mouth would have shocked me a year ago but now they dint. Nupur was a changed person. That guy had changed her. Love did change people. Ajay had changed me. The big difference was the changes in me were positive. I was now more out going and had a lot of confidence in myself. I always used to think I am an ugly duckling but now I started to think I look alright. I was now more open to challenges as I knew I had someone to relay on except for my parents. I believed in love because of my parents but now because of Ajay I started to believe in unconditional love. And Nupur who believed in that before now stopped believing in love.