I have always been told but had brushed it off until I saw it her eyes today. And I’m pretty sure on that. Maybe it is true that a girl and a boy can never be friends, one does falter.
In afternoon, picked up our trophy for debate and Ana after her performance, we headed to finally eat in the grueling day. Our glutton Sam was gobbling down burgers like anything. Haha! 😀
It was then I realized, that we were good one hour past the leaving time. Immediately dialed Mrs. Chaudari’s number, our activity supervisor. Well, probably today I was the chosen one to bear the brunt of her frustration for the tiring day outside that comforting AC room. She bashed me mercilessly – in and out, up and about. On punctuality, discipline, regularity, being a good citizen of the country – anything to everything. But finally did manage to convince her to wait for us. There was no way we could travel about 200 kms into the city without our college bus.
I literally pushed Sam off her chair to get her going to catch the bus. She had to leave her beloved burger because of me, bet she had cursed me thousand times over. And then we began our chase, race against time to catch the bus. It was maddening, especially to run in formal suits feels very stiff. I was conscious of not tearing up into a malfunction. Wonder how Ana managed, with all that heavy jewellery and shiny clothes.
I remember, we were cutting through the traffic, when a bicycle dashed in front of us. We barely managed not to topple him over. Just then don’t what got into Sam, she turned around, and grabbed my hand, probably to start our sprint again. Or so I thought.
But she stopped there, in the middle of the road and stood there, solid as a rock. She had a perplexed look as if deriving some complex formulas. Perplexed, we were too. Ana tapped on my shoulder and sighed. “The bus left. Look.” Of course, Mrs. Chaudari had made her choices. And then, rage took better of me. I must have shouted for good fifteen minutes on Sam, but she seemed unaffected. When she did turn back (or actually look up), I saw the glint I feared the most. I think she had the slightest of smile on her face too. What was she smiling at?
There we were, three stranded. 200 kms away from city. Hopefully got a auto, whose driver agreed to help us when I cooked up some story of how the city was embodied with my mother’s childhood. Ana slept through the journey and Sam was acting too weird to talk to. Nonetheless, I was too irritated for the day to talk to anyone.
But now when I think of it, I know Samriddhi isn’t coming to me and confessing anything. Good! Because I wouldn’t know how to handle the awkwardness. I cannot ruin this friendship of ours. We have been together since alphabets came into our lives. We have together won hundreds of debates at school. And we are still together while in college.
I know I’m not in love with her. Not that I love Anamika either. Or I love anyone for that matter, at the moment. What is troubling, that since love has made its way into the equation, it will ruffle up everything good we three had. Ana will be left unknown and Sam will act different or try avoiding me altogether. There’s no way I can get out.
Haven’t read Part 1 of the story? Catch up here –> In the Middle of the Road – Part 1/2