Almost but not Quite
Ours was a beautiful story.
Ours was a beautiful story.
The night was at its darkest, and the stars their brightest when he rested his head on my lap. I ran my fingers through his hair, subconsciously giving him a ‘head massage’, as he called it. He murmured something and bent in closer, curling his body up. I felt his cheek muscles tighten to form a small smile. I rested my palm on his shoulders and gave him a slight squeeze. He held my hand and returned it.
I smiled to myself as I slid my fingers down his face, and traced the outline of his smile, pulling his cheeks slightly. The whiskey was making my head spin, and it was difficult to sit upright without something to rest my back upon. I could have easily leaned on the wall behind me; but to do that, I’d have had to disturb my current position, and his. At that moment, I would have consented to anything, just about anything, except to break the magic of the moment we were trapped in. Everything was so beautiful, that it made me feel something quite unlike anything I had in ages.
The alcohol was playing tricks with my mind, making me see shapes in the clouds when I looked up. It made me feel as if there was a song stuck in my head that I could not make out the words of, but the tune was beautiful enough to make me wistful. The night air heavy with the smell of cigarette smoke was starting to smell like the most heavenly scent in the world.
It was also making me fall in love with him.
Fall in love with his soft hair, and his strong shoulders; with the stubble on his cheeks that brushed ever so slightly against my fingers. His voice, so deep that it made the butterflies in my stomach fly around, and his embrace that I longed to be in.
I was lost in a world of my own, with the clouds in the sky above cooking up beautiful stories for me. I didn’t even realize when he got up, sat next to me and put his arms around my shivering form. His embrace was warm, and when I opened my eyes the next time, he had himself wrapped around me, with my head nestled in the most comfortable spot on his shoulders. It was magic, something even beyond that. It was love.
Almost, but not quite.
Because tonight was our last night in college, and come tomorrow, he’d go away to place thousands of miles away from where I was supposed to be in. College had brought us close — two strangers in this wide world, and our destinies would pull us apart. I had never considered him to be anything more than a friend, but tonight, the ambiance was getting to my head and making me think thoughts that made me feel both warm and cold at the same time.
I wanted this night to go on forever, but just like everything beautiful, it ended all too soon.
He hugged me for one last time, and bade me goodbye. With a parting wave, he walked out of the world we had created last night; walked out of my life. He had a smile on his face, but it never reached his eyes. For those deep brown pools reflected the depths those pangs of separation I found myself drowning in.
When I got back to my own bed, I could smell him on my clothes. I could smell him all over me.
He went away, to another place where he would start his life anew, with someone who would one day become his girl. He went away leaving me to start afresh too, and find another love, another dreamlike story. He went away, taking some magic out of my life, but leaving a part of him with me. A part that I would keep safe always, no matter what.
He went away, never to return again.
And I was left musing over something that might have been. Something that never was.
Ours could have been a beautiful story.
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