Like all mornings, Shoi had woken up at the ungodly hour of 5 a.m, went for jogging at the park and after her punishing ritual of exercises, been back home at sharp 6 a.m. She’d made her morning coffee, black straight and jam toast in the breakfast, just like any other day. Cupping the hot black coffee cup with both her hands, she pulled up both of her feet on the seat end of the chair, her favourite sitting posture and sat musing.
She’d earned quite a reputation in her family and friends circle, being a ‘living machine’ leading successfully, an independent but drab life, straightened down to every small detail. Hearing ’em, she used to give a mere shrug. Wasn’t as if they were wrong. Excitement in Shoi’s life was zilch. Work was her favourite hiding place, where she used to slog days and nights, for the fear that whenever her mind found itself free, it used to inadvertently take refuge in her past, when she wasn’t this person.
He’d drop in every morning, deliberately late (to make her wait) for the coffee, which he found distasteful and the toast, which only worsened his appetite, as he claimed (“You’ll be burned in hell for treating a guest in such a way!”, he’d spat, with a puckered frown on his face), yet drop in anyway. He’d walk her to her shop, despite her innumerable attempts to dissuade him and again walk back her to her home in the late evening. Why? Because he wanted to be ‘in form’ and what better than to walk with a just-average-looking girl. She’d be offended, turn up her nose in the air and fasten her speed, trying to leave him behind, much to his amusement. Among all other things he used to do, she liked the good morning and night messages. She had grown warm to the habit of waking up and sleeping to them.
Snapping back to the present, Shoi sighed. He always had to return back to torment her, didn’t he! 5 long months since they have had any contact and she still couldn’t forget him. She shouldn’t have let down her walls and let him in, she berated for the nth time. For when he’d walked out, he’d broken every piece of her. Yet she’d held her pride. She hadn’t went back to him, begging. After all, why would she? They technically didn’t have any rights on each other, to want the other person to stay back. After all, they were just strangers. Yet every piece of her mind and heart had wanted him to. But he hadn’t looked back even once and she had let him go.
The coffee had turned cold, the toast half-eaten. She swore an oath. Now her appetite had gone for a toss as well. Fantastic. Just then, her mobile chimed an incoming message. Surprised, she looked at her watch. 6:40 a.m. Too early for anyone to be awake and message her, except… Nodding her head disbelievingly, she reminded herself. 5 months, Shoi. Just let him be, now. Huffing a disappointed breath, she retrieved the mobile from the work table and widening her eyes, almost frozen a stance, fell back onto the chair in disbelief.
“Good Morning.” – Ayan.