She Wanted It That Way - 4

She Wanted It That Way - 1 | She Wanted It That Way - 2 | She Wanted It That Way - 3

Vidya who had come out to the hall was watching her brother.
“Finally Da, you are repenting for all the thoughts you had about dad, isn’t it?” she asked him walking up to him.
“Yes. You were right Vid” Vishaal said looking at her with tears in his eyes. She changed the topic immediately, “So Da, when are you going to take me for a ride on your new bike?”
“Whenever you say. How about now?” Vishaal said wiping his tears.
“Nope. The first girl to sit on your bike should be Sneha bhabhi and then me”
Vishaal smiled when he thought of taking Sneha for a ride on his bike.

The next day, which happened to be a Sunday Vishaal met Sneha and showed her the bike and the letter his father had written for him.
“What? You took a gift from your old man? But I thought you hated him and he hated you too”
Sneha said sarcastically
Vishaal was already feeling ashamed of what he had told Sneha about his father and when Sneha said this he could not look into her eyes so he looked away.
“Ok, now that you have accepted the gift can we take a ride to our favorite place?” Sneha said placing her hand on his shoulder.
Vishaal looked at the sky and said, “I think a short round in the society and then a cup of coffee in the restaurant is what would be possible for now, as it is going to rain heavily!”
“Exactly! It is going to rain and that is the reason I want to go there in first place. Please…” Sneha pleaded. The innocent look on her face forced Vishaal to change his mind. Vishaal started the bike and Sneha sat on the bike putting her arm around his waist.

The moment they reached the spot it started raining. Vishaal decided to stand under the tree for shelter but Sneha walked closer to the edge of the cliff and spread her arms and raised her head to feel the raindrops on her face. She moved a few more steps towards the edge and spontaneously Vishaal ran to her and putting his hand around her waist pulled her back and said, “Don’t go so close to the edge”

After some time when he realized what he had done he moved back. For some time both of them were quiet and then spreading her arms again she said, “It feels so good, just try it once”

If someone else would have asked him to do this he would have laughed it off but Sneha was not somebody. He walked closer to the edge, spread his arms and raised his head to feel the raindrops on his face and it indeed felt wonderful. He stood there for some time closing his eyes and absorbing the moment.

Sneha watched him from some distance. Before she could know what got into her she walked towards Vishaal and put her arms under Vishaal’s spread out arms and moved closer to him. For some time they stood in that position, which looked like they were flying together. Then Sneha moved her right hand towards Vishaal’s heart and left hand around his waist and placed her head on his shoulder.

Sneha’s body was tightly pressed against Vishaal’s and for a moment Vishaal felt like turning around and kissing her but he was afraid that any wrong move from his side would offend her and he could not afford it especially at this moment when Sneha had come so close to him. He wanted to absorb this moment completely. Vishaal folded his arms and placed his hand over Sneha’s hand and both of them stood silently with closed eyes, feeling each other. After some time Sneha moved back and after hesitating for a while she walked to the front so that she was now facing Vishaal. Before Vishaal could prepare himself for what was happening she placed her left hand on Vishaal’s neck and kissed him on the lips. She thought that she must be out of her senses to do such a thing but at the same time she could not control herself. The place, the rain and Vishaal’s company finally forced her to flow with the tide forgetting about her illness, the ultimate truth of her life. All of her bottled up emotions of so many days finally came out in the form of a passionate kiss. She wanted this moment to last forever. Vishaal responded too and they kissed for a long time. It still continued to rain, the raindrops were the silent spectator to the expression of their love.

After they moved back neither of them was able to speak anything. They just looked at each other for a moment and then hugged each other. They stood there in embrace till the sun reached closer to the horizon and it grew darker. The rain had stopped by now and both Vishaal and Sneha were completely drenched in water and in love.

Vishaal walked to the bike and started it. Sneha followed him and quietly sat behind him placing her hand on Vishaal’s shoulder.

As they reached Sneha’s building she got down from the bike and was about to walk when Vishaal said, “Sneha … I love you.” She just smiled and walked to her building. When she reached the staircase she started feeling dizzy.

Vishaal returned home and called out for Vidya. It could be easily made out from his voice that he was very happy. As promised he took Vidya for a ride on his bike.

As Sneha climbed up the stairs she started feeling breathless and when she reached her flat she was violently coughing. When Sneha’s mother opened the door for her Sneha was still coughing and when she removed her hand with which she had covered her mouth there were drops of blood on her palm. When her mother saw it she panicked and rushed to make a call to the doctor. Before Sneha could reach her room she collapsed on the floor.

Within few minutes the ambulance arrived and Sneha was taken to the hospital. The same ambulance crossed Vishaal as he was taking a ride around the society with Vidya but he did not know who was inside it.

When Vishaal and Vidya returned home his father was anxiously waiting for them. The look on his fathers face scared Vishaal

“What’s wrong?” Vishaal asked

“Sneha, she has been taken to hospital some time back. Her mother had called up to inform you asking you to come immediately.” His father informed him.

Vishaal could not believe it but still he rushed out of the house and took a cab to go to the hospital. Sneha’s mother was standing outside Sneha’s room waiting for Vishaal, as Sneha was still unconscious. When Vishaal reached the hospital and Sneha’s mother told him what had happened to Sneha he felt as if either he was not steady or the world was spinning faster. He had to look around for a seat and as he sat on the bench he covered his face with his hands and started crying.

It seemed like eternity, Vishaal was seated on the bench, crying. Sneha’s mother had walked to him and tried to console him though she herself was crying. As the doctor came out of Sneha’s room both of them approached him and enquired about Sneha. The doctor said that she had regained her consciousness and they could meet her.

As Vishaal entered the room he was shocked to see Sneha. She looked so sick and to add to it she was crying. Vishaal looked at her for a long time staring at her without saying anything but his eyes were screaming and asking Sneha, why did you hide it from me. Sneha read the expression in his eyes and whispered, “I tried to tell you several time but could not.”

One by one Vishaal remembered all the incidences, which had pointed towards the news he had just heard. He remembered how Sneha had walked out of the umbrella and got into a cab because she did not want to get involved. He remembered the moments when she tried telling him something but the bus arrived. He remembered the look on her face, at the cliff, when he had mentioned that the place felt like heaven. At that moment he could not decipher what that look meant but now he knew the answer. He remembered that she had tried to tell him something several times but he had preferred to spend some silent moments with her.

“Vishu” Sneha’s voice brought him out of his thoughts. “Vishu … I love you” Sneha said with quivering voice. Vishaal walked closer to her and her eyes spoke to him asking him to embrace her. He sat on the side of the bed and went into her arms. Sneha’s mother silently walked out of the room. They lay there, like this, in each others arms as the intravenous drip continued to infuse life into her. After 10-15 minutes Vishaal moved back and looking into Sneha's eyes asked her, “Sneha, would you marry me?”

Sneha had anticipated that Vishaal would ask her to marry him and she had thought about many a times. She had convinced herself and made up her mind that she would say no to him. Vishaal asked again, “Sneha, would you please marry me?”

And she said yes.

He went back in her arms and they both spent some more valuable silent moments of Sneha’s life, which Vishaal would cherish forever.

After a month when Sneha recovered from that phase of her illness Vishaal and Sneha got married. Vishaal’s parents were proud of his decision and supported him, as Vishaal lived with Sneha fighting the illness together. Few months later, Sneha’s health started deteriorating. One night when Sneha was sleeping Vishaal walked out of his room and sat in the hall. His father joined him after some time. Vishaal was already crying but on seeing his father he walked towards his father and hugged him for the first time in his life. Vishaal cried in the comforting arms of his father. Sneha had succeeded in bringing them close.

Two months later, which happens to be the present day, Sneha died of leukemia.

Today, as Vishaal stood at the cliff feeling the raindrops on his face he experienced eternal pleasure and he experienced her. Before coming to this place he had bought a packet of cigarette. He pulled out the packet from his jeans pocket and placed a cigarette on his lips. He then took out a lighter and as he lit the cigarette he was reminded of the flames that had licked his Sneha away from him. He collected all his strength and threw the lighter into the valley. He remembered how one year back he had thought of ending his life. So much had happened between then and now. He had changed so much. He had quit smoking, he had taken up a job and he started talking to his father, all because Sneha had made him do so.

He walked a few steps closer to the edge of the cliff dislodging a few stones, which fell into the valley. He looked down and the valley seemed so inviting. He wanted to throw himself into the valley so that he could be with his Sneha but instead he moved back. This was the last thing Sneha had changed in him – the suicidal tendency.

He walked back to his bike and returned home to his family because she wanted it that way.