I was late for my class. Yet again. Always known for my abysmally abnormal punctuality all through my schooling and the two years of college, I wasn’t surprised at that.
It was Professor Grumpy’s class. Standing at the double door of my plush classroom, I didn’t dare enter without permission.
But, why fear when you have friends who hold the same meaning to punctuality as you do?
In a minute, I was accompanied by my best buddies, Vijay and Vivek.
Well…in an Aeronautical Engineering batch where you’re the only girl among the twenty-odd students, you’ve no choice but to be surrounded by high testosterone levels at any given moment. And, I got closer to the ones I was tagged to as per the roll-call.
“Veda, Vijay, and Vivek…late again?” snarled Professor Grumpy when he spotted us laughing together near the door. “Get in,” he added menacingly. We murmured our apologies and took our seats in the front row.
That was precisely when I noticed for the first time. After two years of knowing them. Suddenly, Vijay held Vivek’s hand and gave him a sly smile. His eyes spoke to him. His expression softened as a naughty smirk crossed his face.
I turned away immediately feeling awkward. I couldn’t figure out what was going on.
My mind went hazy trying to draw bizarre conclusions.
Maybe, they are…
Stay away, girl…
A wee voice inside me warned. It only determinedly grew louder with each passing day, sufficiently corroborated by their growing intimacy.
Another voice squeaked.
But, by the end of the third year, those conflicting thoughts made me withdraw from the duo, only to be questioned by them umpteen times.
I began to miss their company.
They are too close to be called ‘friends’. They are possibly… I concluded as my conditioned upbringing choked the word in my throat.
The final year flew by with projects and deadlines as I struggled to digest the truth I faced. Even before I fully realised, I was sitting at the farewell party one fine evening, blinking back tearful memories of the bygone college days. My eyes habitually searched for my partners-in-crime.
“You look awful in that sari, Ved,” said a voice from behind.
I turned. It was Vivek with his forever-companion.
“Really? Thanks,” I snapped.
“Chuck it. I have news,” he announced enthusiastically.
“Project completed?” I asked.
“No, nerdy. You have a secret admirer who’s fallen for you,” he informed.
“WHAT?!” It took some time to sink in. Admirer? Me? Really? God, this is not a subject I’m good at…HELP!!! “Who?” I asked, flabbergasted.
“TADAAAA!!” he waved dramatically pointing to his smug-looking neighbour enjoying our lame conversation.
Goodness. And, here I was thinking… “You?! I mean…aren’t you guys…like…together-together?” I spluttered.
Both doubled up laughing like maniacs. I felt foolish.
“Ved, can’t two guys be ‘thick friends’?” Vivek blurted.
“’Course, we can be..,” added Vijay as he took my hand in his and went down on one knee.
For those who haven’t watched the movie, it is a story about two close friends set in the pre-independence period.
The author’s intention through this story is not to hurt anybody’s sentiments but to reinforce the fact that as much as #LoveisLove, Friendship-is-Friendship too; all the more delicate and beautiful that sets the ground for most relationships!
Image Courtesy – Mable Amber from Pixabay