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Surprises

Her first thought was to ignore it and vainly believe that it wasn’t what she thought it was. But deep in her frustrated mind, she knew that the blog post was about her. Not just because he had accurately mentioned the dates of their first meeting and the day she disappeared, but also because he had mentioned that ‘she’ was ranting about Semantics and her dissertation on Chomsky. And she pretty much knew nobody else would rant about the two together. In fact she didn’t know many people who knew what Semantics was. Forget Chomsky’s contribution to it…

She had a vague memory of their first meeting. It was an ordinary day at her favourite cafe. Only that day her favourite seat was taken and she had to sit facing the huge screen which showed some cricket match she didn’t care about. That was when she saw him for the first time. An ordinary looking guy who was likely to ask her whether she would mind moving to the next seat. But what he said was something she could never have expected.

“You got some impressively verbose issues going on…”

She looked up in surprise, not knowing what to say. For a moment she considered telling him that she had no clue what ‘verbose’ meant and asking him why he thought she had whatever-that-was issues going on. But she decided not to give away her ignorance to a stranger. She smiled and said,

“That’s a sign of frustration.”

She never got to know how he interpreted it. Just like she never looked up the word ‘verbose’ in a dictionary. But with that, started a friendship that became her comfort zone. With him, she could talk about anything. Be it Semantics or her hatred for Chomsky, he would listen patiently and at least pretend to be interested. And then came another surprise. He told her that he loved her. With no frills around to distort his intention. It was plain and untarnished. All she had to do was take a look at it and consider it. But she did not take him seriously. May be it was his simplicity. Or she considered him too good for her. Or she didn’t consider herself worthy of anybody’s love. He would never know why she never took him seriously that day. Neither would she. When she laughed it off with a ‘thank you’, he left it at that.

Soon after, her bouts of depression and anxiety made her shrink into a shell and she stopped talking to anyone. Including him. And by the time she came out of the curse, she had forgotten the comfort of his presence and life went on. She lost her heart to someone who trampled on it and made her shrink into her shell again. When she finally broke out of the cocoon, the blog post was the first thing she saw.

We would expect her to shed a few tears of happiness and pick up her phone. May be search for his number in his contacts and not finding it there, would type out a long e-mail, telling him that she needed to talk. Probably, she would have gotten the love she deserved and he the recognition. But that would have been a surprise. Never has true love been treated the way it deserved.

This story has no surprise. She shut down her computer, gulped some water with a couple of anti-depressants and forgot about the blog post.

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