Strength of my love. . . (2)

It has been quite late, but I wasn’t just in a condition to pen it down!
You can read the first part here if you haven’t, the rest begins now!!

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Seeing Hazel head over heels lost in her talks and the proximity with Ron, made my breathing harder. It was suffocating to be there in the same room, under one roof, and see my Hazel change into a lovelorn maiden. She was totally besotted with him, as she sat linking her arm with his. The sparkle in her eyes, the blushing color of her cheeks, how much I admired and loved those things, yet tonight they gave me pain. Unbearable pain.

I got up to leave. I couldn’t bear this happening before my eyes.
Flynn!! Her soft voice called out my name.
I turned and saw her beaming. Her happiness was so evident.
Hazel, I said turning towards her, I want to go. Are you coming? I knew her answer yet I asked.
Her smile was fixed on her face, as she shook her head, declaring a NO!
I will see you tomorrow, then! Take care. See ya. Good night Flynn. And just like that,she let me go. Her face turned back to Ron. I felt as though I had just disappeared from her world. Probably for ever.

I started to walk back home. An excruciating pain within my chest. I wanted to shout and scream and take it out from my chest. But I couldn’t. I wasn’t even able to tell her good night. Words got stuck in my throat. My jaws wouldn’t open. A lump rose in my throat, choking me. My eyes welled up.

And then a tear fell from my right eye. Then one from the left. There were tears that seem to fill my eyes, but before they fell, there were more tears falling from the sky. The clouds were with me, in my pain. Their drops covered my face, and my tears flowed out with them. Mingling and dissolving in them. I sat there and cried as long as it rained.

When I was exhausted enough, I went home. Luckily all were asleep, so no questions were asked. I entered my room. Sometime back, this place was bubbling with life. Now, there was only gloominess. As I stood under the shower and let the water droplets drench my body, my eyes saw it as an opportunity and were ready with more tears.

After I changed and lay on the bed, I looked at my phone, which I had forgotten to take to the pub. It was blinking with a notification. A message had come.
It was from Hazel. I didn’t know if I should read it or not. I read it. It was habit.
Flynn! How is he? Do you like him? C ya tom! H

What should I have told her? Could I ever like him? Ever? Throughout my life?
I ignored it and closed my eyes. In the darkness, I saw her face. With open eyes, I was reminded of her. With more tears to wet my pillow, with thoughts of pain and sorrow, with a broken heart, I didn’t even realize when I fell asleep.

The days that followed, brought in many more changes. Hazel slowly drifted away from me, and I was glad about it. She asked me every time to join her in the parties and outings, but I didn’t want to see again, what I had seen that night. She messaged me more, and every time she had things to ask or tell. She had met him through Facebook. She hadn’t told me as she knew I would disapprove of it. I never asked beyond that, neither did she say.

She’d ask what she should wear for a dinner with him, or a party. She would snap a selfie and send it to me, and ask how she was looking. Each time I saw those eyes and that face, pieces of my heart got scattered. The rest of the time went in recollecting them back, with silent cries within. With each passing day my pain increased and their relationship seemed to grow.

A fortnight passed, the frequency of messages reduced. I had applied for a job as an accountant, in the other town. I wanted to just go away. Run away from those memories and the person herself. I couldn’t bear being in the same place where we had shared beautiful times and see Hazel replace me with Ron as she created new moments.

Though it was a two hour drive from our town, I preferred to stay there and took up a room near the office. My whole life had one goal now and that was to give myself no time to think of Hazel. But how could I remove her from myself. How could I erase her from my memories? How could I get rid of her face that haunted me day and night? How could I?
I knew, I never could.

The first week was a hectic one with lots of instructions and details to be explained and understood. The second went in trying to get into serious business.
Hazel called, and I had a lot of reasons to ignore her calls or messages. Later I would just send her a message that I was too busy. If she insisted, I’d say that I was too tired and had to sleep early.
The third passed and so did the fourth. But her calls came, in the same way. Selfies she sent, voice messages flooded my phone. Messages were there, which I deleted, unread. I wanted her to just forget me. So that I could keep her away from my thoughts.

By and by, I kept myself drowned in work. It earned me good reputation, positive remarks and trust of my bosses. The second month began and things were slowly smoothening down for me. I was able to make new friends.

Hazel’s messages were always there. She was angry sometimes, lonely as she’d said, she missed her friend. Just what I didn’t want.

Then one day, when the second month was coming to an end, my phone rang, it showed a call coming from an unknown number. I was surprised. I rarely received any calls or messages, except from home and Hazel. I picked it up.
The first sound was of cries. A girl’s cries. She was sobbing and breathless. And then she said, Flynn!!
In that instant I knew who it was.

Hazel, what happened? Where are you? Why are you crying? I kept asking, with every beat of my heart. Thousand thoughts ran in my mind. Scores of emotions wrestled in my heart.

Hazel, where are you! Just tell me! I screamed into the phone.
I’m at the railway station. She spoke between breaths.
Which railway station? I asked her impatient.
In your town! She replied, softly.

I was taken aback. What???? You’re here? Why?? What happened?
She didn’t tell a word and I knew she was ready to cry again.
Just stay there. I’ll be there in about ten minutes. I assured her and locked my desk filling it with the papers I was working on. I told the clerk about an emergency and I ran.

Entrusting my legs with the responsibility of making me reach the station as soon as they could, I ran. Breathless and ache raging in my legs, I reached the station. I looked left and right. There were so many people but not the one I came for.

Just then, my eyes fell on a girl, sitting on a wooden bench. Her shoulders showed she was breathing heavily. Something after one has cried for a long time. I started walking towards her. She was wearing a black skirt and a white frilly top. The bow on her white shoes told me, she was exactly the person I was here for.

Hazel!! I called out softly, just for my ears. But just then she turned and looked at me. I stopped there as though turned to stone. She was so different today.

Tears rolling down her face. Puffed eyes, colored red. She rose from her place and walked a few steps.

When I saw her come towards me, staggering and pale, I was struck with a pain in the chest. This young girl, a couple of months back was the epitome of mischief and beauty. She was the only friend I had, and destiny had taken her away from me.

Suddenly she stopped. It was a second or two, and before I realized, she picked up the folds of her black skirt and ran towards me. The next moment she was in my arms. Crying and calling out my name.

I put my hand in her brown hair and rested my chin on her head. She perfectly fit in my embrace and stayed there.
What happened Hazel? What are you doing here? I murmured softly to her.
I came for you Flynn. She replied.

But why? Has anything happened? I asked with concern about her.
I had to Flynn. I just had to. She mumbled.
Why? What’s brought you here? Did Ron do something? Now I was filled with anger. Did he do something to her?

Yes. He did it. She said softly.
My fists clenched with anger. The fury within me rose like fire.
What did he do? I asked hissing, and grinding my teeth.
He opened my eyes. She said, her head still on my shoulder.

Totally confused about what she was saying, I pulled her from my shoulder. I moved the hair on her face and wiped the little pearls of water that were on her cheek.

What is it Hazel? Come! Let’s sit and talk. Let me get some water for you! I tried to pull her back to make her sit.

No Flynn! I’ve got to do it here and now. Just now! Saying that she raised her hazel colored eyes to mine.

Ron opened my eyes. I was so blind to run behind love while love was always by my side. When I was with him, I only spoke of you. When I felt a prick of a thorn, I called out your name. When I stumbled upon a rock, you know how often I do it, I wished you were there to catch me. When I walked into a party or pub, I missed the warmth of your arms, which made me feel safe. The more days passed, the more my pain grew. It became unbearable for me. And it was Ron who removed the blindfold off my eyes. He said, love is when there is longing, there is care, there is missing, there is pain, and there is completeness.

My ears were ringing. I was sure I had lost my mind and was imagining, seeing and hearing things. Maybe my wishes and desires were making me dream all of this.

Probably my facial expression gave away my thoughts and so she pressed my hands softly.
Her right hand rose to my left cheek, and she caressed my skin. Her soft hands today were different in their touch. And then she said the words, which I thought I’d never hear in my life,

You give me the feeling of completeness Flynn. I never realized but now I know for sure, that I love you. And I promise to love you always. Forever. Till the last beat of my heart. Don’t tell me now, that you don’t love me! I’d die in pain.

I reached for her hand, still on my jawline. And I kissed it softly. My heart bursting with joy and love, my voice shaky with sudden emotions, I spoke,
I can’t tell that Hazel. For as long as I can go back in my memories, I’ve always loved you! Always! I couldn’t see you with Ron, so I came here. And I never thought he’d be the one to unite us.I’ll always be indebted to him. (Pause) I have always loved you, beautiful.

She fell into my arms, calling my name softly.
Slowly she raised her head, her eyes met mine. Finally I saw that glint,that sparkle in them, which I had wished to see. How beautiful it was! I felt that it was different from what it was that night, for Ron.

It has been like that since that day. Rather, it just got brighter and brighter!

So, there it ends. I hope you all like it. Thanks for reading.
Stay happy and blessed!
S.F.R.

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