A Bus Ride

A Bus Ride by Anmol Rawat

Avantika stands there awaiting him eagerly. She feels excited as soon as she notices a bus from the far end of the road gradually coming close. The engine comes to a sudden haul and the door opens. She glances at every face trying to find him. She almost forgets the count of people she had seen that day seeking the familiar face. The sun sets gradually as she waits there in patience. He won't come now, she thinks and start walking back home. 

The next day she climbs up the bus as per her routine to reach her office. Quickly grabbing a seat, she tries to relax but she can't forget his bright face with a neat stubble. Every time she closes her eyes, his face is drawn with perfection in her mind. Her eyes are red and a bit swollen of tears she had cried over the past night. She could not sleep and with every twist and turn she made in her bed came the memories of the day which she thought was the beautiful most in her life.

Now she was thinking what her colleagues had said to her about the guys. She curses herself to have given in so easily. She curses him for being just like the other random guys. She thought he was different. She had never felt what she has felt with him. But it didn't matter now. All she could remember was the note she had found in the morning when she couldn't find him lying by her side.

"I have to leave urgently regarding some work but I will meet you exactly after one week on the same bus stop. See ya!

He left her with no contact of him. Patiently she had waited for him on the day he had told to meet but she felt be-fooled now. 

A Week Back
Samar runs with his lungs gasping for air after the bus he almost missed until it stops on the next stop. He quickly rushes and climbs up the bus. With his bag in one hand and coffee in other, he manages to locate an empty set and push himself towards it. The bus takes a turn and he almost stumbles on the seat spilling the coffee over the girl sitting next to the vacant seat. 

The girl looks up and he feels embarrassed at himself. "Am really sorry! It was.. I mean I could not balance myself and.. err here let me clean" speaking he takes out his handkerchief. "I'll manage, amm you don't have to do this", she speaks. "You... err I mean shouldn't you be angry on me?" he asks in confusion while sitting. "It’s alright. It was an incident. What could have you done?" she says politely. "Am Samar by the way" he mumbles forwarding his hand to her. "Avantika" she smiles shaking hands with him.

"You're going for work?" he asks. "Yes, I am an editor. Now don't you start flirting with me or I assure you that I will write about you in my column.” she laughs winking at him. "Oh lady, am a married man so stop trying your luck.", he replies frowning. She gazes in amazement and he burst out laughing. "Gotcha!" 

Time passes by quickly and soon her stop comes. "It was lovely to meet you. I gotta get down here. Hope to see you soon sometime.” she says smiling. Getting down from the bus, she could feel something strange. She had not even taken his contact. She turns her neck to have a final look and finds him sitting quietly in his seat. He wasn't even watching her. She gets down and starts walking away. "Avantika!" a voice calls behind her.

It sounded familiar and she was sure it was him. She turns back. "Mind if I make you skip your office today?" he gestures. "Are you asking me for a date?" she asks moving towards him. "Am just trying my luck." he smiles.

They kept talking like they always knew each other. They ate together in some random restaurant and talked endlessly. It was dawn when they started walking down the street to return to the stop and suddenly it started raining. They ran for the cover but they were completely drenched by the time they got there. They took a cab to her home quickly. "Come in, I'll dry your clothes for you." she asks him. "A black coffee and I am totally in.", he grins. "Of-course!"  She smiles. 

Reaching in, she gives him some clothes "here you can try some of mine while yours dry out." He takes them and their hands come in contact. They could not take their eyes off each other. Her skin was glistening due to the water and she looked beautiful with the wet hair falling down her face. He moved forward and she could not resist. Their lips met.

The bus stops suddenly forcing her to fall forward and she returns back from past. "Are you nuts?" she could hear the driver yelling at someone. Someone climbs in panicked, murmuring sorry. She cared least and looked out at the cloudy sky as the bus engine roared again. "Excuse me!" She turns towards the voice and notices a bunch of roses held by a guy with his face hidden. She grabs the roses with shaking hands and lowers them revealing his face. She gasps in surprise and tears roll down her cheek. It was him on his knees. "Before you start hitting me, I want to tell you that my flight was late due to the climate so I could not reach in time." he says. Before she could say anything he gets up and sit on the seat. "Am really sorry, do you forgive me again?" he asks. She nods. "That means that I am taking you to dinner tonight." He says smiling. "Are you asking me for a date?” she asks. "Am just trying my luck", he says wiping off her tears.

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