I’ve left the lights on, like you always insist we do when any of our family was not home yet, and we were waiting for them to return.
I made your favourite dish –Chestnut and Pork noodles, and I minced the pork into those bulky pieces you always wanted it as. It’s steaming, now; fresh from the stove. Then there is dessert, the same dessert you forced on us for 42 years – Strawberry yoghurt; I came to loathe it, but not anymore. I’ll dive into an oil-tanker-sized vat of it and lap every drop up, if it’ll bring you back.
Honey, Come home –I’m all prepared.
To wash it all down, there is good ol’ bloody Mary Martini chilling here for you, garnished with oregano –for that peppery finish that you say, invigorates you. I will revive you, revive us, bring back all the moments we’ve missed since I lost you.
Remember us? The Impossibles? How we defied expectations? Let’s do it again, let’s defy fate –you just come back.
Remember how we met, when I was walking past you in class and inadvertently stepped on your toes?
You said you looked back to meet a profusion of ‘sorrys’, and my face that looked like a chipmunk that just got robbed of its nut- so apologetic a look. And that made you smile at me, made you forgive me, like I had not just stepped on a shoe worth more than most of our lecturers’ salary.
We never met again till the semester exams. When the lecturers were randomizing our seating, you were placed by my side. And even though, I could never have forgotten that first meeting of ours, you too, surprisingly, didn’t. You were the cool kid with the cool friends, with an unending choice of boys to do your every bidding. You had no business remembering a face from a chance encounter, but you did.
“My cute chipmunk”, that is what you called me.
Come home; I’ve missed someone calling me that. Come home and whisper it, a few last times, to my ears!
We cheated in that exam; I gave you a lot of right answers. And we were almost caught at it.
Remember how scared I was when I saw Mr Badmus coming for us, sure that he would not only send us out but fail us both? You later told me I had my Chipmunk face on, at that moment –a very scared chipmunk.
But you saved us both.
Come home, now; come save me, again.
Remember how the saving happened? You told the incredulous officer that I wasn’t passing a paper but I was passing a white handkerchief to you for a sneeze, because you forgot yours at home.
He made us stand for 5 minutes, then warned us sternly and kept his eyes on us.
You hugged me after the exams, in gratitude. A full, unashamed hug – and that scent of yours – that patchouli scent overwhelmed me. I wanted to hold on to you –never let you go, but I was more afraid of being a creep; and I held on to the memory of that scent, instead.
We exchanged numbers then, and that was how we began.
You’d call me to tutor you on something, and in the beginning, we’ll meet in a lab at some corner of campus. I’d do my bit, and always assumed you simply were listening.
You were doing more that listening, though, weren’t you? That was when you noticed that I had a soft, untamed handsomeness.
You said you wanted to tame it, own it. It came playfully to you at first –the idea of bedding me. It would be a big plus to me, we both knew; because I may never bed another girl as hot as you were.
Remember when I was teaching you about exothermic reactions, and I was trying to illustrate how the bonds work, and you reached over, pulled me in by my collar and planted a kiss on my lips.
If I never told you before, I was frightened by that kiss; frightened to hell and back.
Make me quake again on your account, come here to me, I’ll do the pulling this time; just come home.
I stared at you after the kiss, the words in my mouth sucked away.
I stared at your amused eyes and the long, add-on lashes. The naughty impetuousness that was your expression registered in the primal part of my brain. And that scared me more – what were you playing at?
Why are you acting like you’ve never been kissed before? You asked.
But I had been kissed before, not just by –You!
You, were a different world entirely; a Venus to my Neptune.
In the end, we did not have sex, not then.
Instead, we fell in Love.