Bengaluru, Friday Night 09:30 PM
Bengaluru, Time is 09:30 PM. The whole city is about to sleep. The roads are filled with rainwater, the weather is getting colder. When the whole city is resting under their blankets to survive the cold, still many people standing at the bus stop. They are all waiting for their buses, looking like challenging the weather that nothing can stop them. Some of them are going on holiday, some of them are going to work and some of them are going to homes. A few feet away from the group, Abhinav standing near a coffee shop at the bus stop along with a backpack and sipping hot Tea and waiting for his bus to arrive.
Abhinav is working for a startup in Bengaluru for one year. Since it is a startup, he hardly gets free time and holidays. Generally, he spends most of his time on his work. Even he is getting less amount of payment, he works with passion. Most of the holidays he spent on his work at home and finally this weekend he got a chance to visit his hometown and his friends. He is so excited about that.
The time is 10:15 PM. Abhinav getting frustrated. Since he doesn’t have much patience, its a typical job for him to wait for forty minutes. Previously he tried to call his bus driver to ask where they are, but all he got as the response is “We are on the way sir, just 10 minutes please”. He keeps on watching his bus location using the link provided by the travel company.
The hardest job in the world is waiting for something without any company.
The time is 10:25 PM, finally, the bus arrives. There are no words to explain his happiness after seeing his bus arrives. He quickly boarded on the bus and start to search for his berth. He found his berth after four three rows from the driver seat. He put his backpack in the holder and laid down on his berth. The aroma inside the bus and the cool air produced by air conditioners made him feel much relaxed and refreshed. He picked up his mobile and updated his WhatsApp status. While he recalling his memories in his college days and his friends, his eyes slowly closed to sleep. After so many days, he is going home now.
The Accident Was Taken Place
Abhinav was dreaming, he was standing in front of his school in his hometown. In front of him, his child self running to school. He is seeing himself as a child when he used to go to school with his friends. Slowly he entered the school, he saw himself kneel down outside of the classroom along with his two friends Rahul and Gopal as a punishment for being late to class. They are chitchatting with each other as this is the usual thing that happens in his school. The thought of his childhood friends made him feel happy since after finishing their graduation, they are hardly meeting each other. Rahul got a job at Infosys when Gopal is joined in ICICI bank. Three of them got busy in their works, it is today when all three of them are meeting after a long time. He was really excited about that.
He slowly looked inside the classroom, his face was brightened with a smile when he saw Vennela sitting on the front bench and solving the mathematics problem. It is been years since he saw Vennela last time. She left the city along with her family after finishing her schooling. Vennela was his first crush in his school days, he used to go to school, daily just to see her. She came to his life when he knows nothing about love but left him when his heart was filled with her. His eyes were filled with light when he saw his childhood crush, his heart blossomed with joy when he saw her smiling. Her cute smile mixed with innocence made him fall in love every time. He is not sure about his feelings towards her whether it is the love of teenage infatuation, but he liked those feelings.
When he is full of happiness, suddenly his dream world got erased and the jerk that happened from the bus took him to reality from his dream world. He suddenly woke from his berth to see what had happened. He noticed all the luggage bags are dropped from their racks of the bus and everyone’s face is looked with surprise and fear. Some people are shouting with fear when some of them are inquiring about what had happened. Finally, everyone comes to know that the bus has met with an accident. Since the bus is fully air-conditioned, everyone is full of fear that the bus may be caught on fire, but luckily that doesn’t happen. Even the front door of the bus is fully crushed by hitting the pillar in front of it. Everyone is afraid of this unexpected thing that happened.
Abhinav is watching all the scenes with his sleepy eyes, it seems he didn’t realize what just had happened. He is sitting on his berth and wondering whether he will reach home safely or not. Is this really the end? Am I not going home? Is this place where my death has been decided? So many thoughts running on his mind, slowly his body began to sweat, his mind is filled with fear. I don’t want to die. I wanna go home, meet my friends. And the final thought comes to his mind is of her, Vennela.
At the very first thought of her came to his mind, all his fear has vanished. His mind is filled with her thoughts. Oh, Vennela! where are you? I wish I had expressed my feelings about you back there. I wanna see you once and for all, maybe if I couldn’t make it, I wanna meet you and tell you how I feel. He is losing his thoughts and clearly feels tears in his eyes, not only because he is stuck but also he didn’t propose Vennela when he had a chance. He wanted to meet all his friends and family to say a final goodbye and also he wanted to meet Vennela and tell her how much he loved her. It is when he came to his senses when he heard a loud noise of breaking glass.
Abhinav finds out someone managed to break the emergency exit somehow. He felt a small sigh of relief when he took his bag and got out of the bus in a hurry. Maybe this is not the happy end of this journey he expected, but he was glad that he made it out of the bus. He found that they are in the middle of the highway and it seems there are no hotels or shops in the nearby distance. He turned to look at the exit of the bus. There are still some people getting out of the bus with their luggage. His gaze suddenly turned to a girl who is on the line to get out of the bus, she covered her face with her scarf but her eyes still looking attractive. His heart started to beat faster when he is staring at her, she is looking gorgeous and somewhat she looked familiar to him. He went to the emergency exit where she is about to get out. She is hesitating to get out of the emergency exit since it is at height and she noticed Abhinav when he gave his hand to help her get out of the bus. She looked amazed at him and took his hand then got out of the bus. Abhinav can’t turn his gaze away from her, he wanted to see her face and disappointed when she walks aside to call someone.
All the people got out of the bus and found everyone is safe and nothing happened. The police already came before everyone came out and took the drunken lorry driver who caused the accident. Some constables are there in the scene and helping passengers getting out. They are all seemed frustrated by this unexpected situation in their happy journey. They are in the middle of the highway, there was no sign of any hotels and bus stops to get a new vehicle. They lost their patience when the company who owns the bus apologized that they can’t arrange another bus for them and announced refund their money which will be credited to their accounts in the next two days. Some people start yelling at the bus driver for the discomfort and some people returned to Bangalore canceled their journey.
Abhinav feels he is doomed because he has no enough money on his wallet right now. There was no sign of ATMs to withdraw money, so he is kinda out of thoughts. The time is 12:30 AM and he is standing alone depressed. Most of the people have returned and some of the people adjusted to go on the buses standing. But Abhinav still standing there and no idea what to do. He borrowed money from his friend through Google Pay, but at that time, buses can’t accept online payment, so he stuck there. Finally, he realized that he can’t go anywhere if he standstill, so he tried to ask some passengers who still remained for money in the exchange of online payment. But he gained no luck until he met Rishi. He asked Rishi for money in the return he will pay him through online immediately. Rishi seems young, maybe a year older than Abhinav, so Abhinav didn’t hesitate much to ask Rishi for help. And gladly Rishi understood his situation and agreed to help him. Rishi lends some money to Abhinav, in the return, Abhinav paid the same amount to Rishi through Google Pay. Finally, Abhinav got a relief that he doesn’t have a money problem.
It is nearly 1:00 AM, finally, a cab has been going that way when the tired Abhinav and his comrades stopped that. The cab driver agreed to take them to near Kolar bus station per extra changes since he is going home. Abhinav, Rishi and Rishi’s girlfriend Shreya decided to go on the cab. Rishi and Shreya already boarded on the cab and Abhinav went to arrange his bag on the back of the cab. When Abhinav did arranging and boarding on the cab, he found the girl he saw before in scarf near the broken bus. She seems afraid because she is the only passenger who remained. When Rishi calling Abhinav, he went to the girl and tried to talk to her. “Excuse me, seems you are the only one who remained here. Do you need any help or someone is coming to pick you up?” he asked. The girl gave a happy look at him and said: “Thank you very much, I am going to Gudur, but suddenly it happens and I don’t know what to do now”. Her voice is sweet and somewhat it sounds familiar to him. “We are going to Nellore, if you don’t mind you can come with us, there is space in the cab,” he asked her politely. She happily agreed to join them and thanked Abhinav. Abhinav nodded and showed her the cab. She picked her luggage and arranged in the cab and boarded on the cab. Abhinav introduced Rishi and Shreya to her, and they both were happy to let the girl join them and finally the cab started.
It is nearly 1:45 AM when the cab has finally arrived at the Kolar bus station. All the people went inside the bus station and waiting for any buses to arrive quickly. The bus station was so calm and only a few people sleeping on the floors. The weather seems so cool and the air smells very fresh. Since it is full-moon day, the sky is looking amazing and the moon is looking very beautiful when he tried to hide inside clouds. The air, the weather, the moon, and the silence, for a moment Abhinav felt glad for his accident. They sat on the chairs at the bus station. Tempted by the beauty of nature, Rishi and Shreya lean on each other and started to enjoy the climate. Few seats away from them the girl is seated and Abhinav is standing at the front and watching the sky. For the first time, he didn’t feel the time passing by watching the sky. For a moment he lost his thoughts and started to dream again.
It is the moment he came to his senses when the girl in the scarf came and stand next to him. “Its beautiful isn’t it?” she asked him. he gave her a surprised look and said: “Yes it is, totally awesome!”. Every time he sees that girl he felt something familiar. Out of curiosity, he wanted to see her face, but somehow he felt it is not right to bother her, so he pushed that thought away. she gave him a smile and said: “I am glad to come with you, otherwise I may have missed this scenery”, Abhinav nodded and said politely: “No problem at all, I am glad that you are here”. Their conversation is continued for another few minutes, she said that she is working on a reputed MNC company as a software tester and she also graduated the same year as Abhinav. Talking with her somehow gave Abhinav relief and joy. When his curiosity began to increase, he finally decided to ask about her. “Every time when I see you, I felt something familiar. Even the way you are talking and the way you smile reminds me of someone familiar. My mind will surely blow here with curiosity if you don’t tell your name.” asked Abhinav gently. She gave him a disappointed look and said: “I thought you recognized me Abhi, but it seems you are not” smiled at him. He gave her a confused glance and asked: “Do you know me before? we are not even from the same office”. She nodded and said: “Maybe if you go to your school days, you may recognize me”. Abhinav’s heart raced fast when she started to remove her scarf around her face. The face he always wanted to see, the face which is stored in every single neuron in his mind is right in front of him. For a moment he can’t believe what he is seeing, it is when she smiled when he unintentionally said the name Vennela.
He can’t believe she is here and he didn’t even notice her inside the bus. For a moment he cursed himself for missed her on the bus. She may have boarded the bus before my stop. His dreams have vanished when she called his name again. “What happened Abhi, it seems you are shocked to see me” she smiled. He came to his senses and smiled at her said: “Oh Vennela! is that really you? I didn’t think we will meet again and that too in this situation” his face brightened. He couldn’t dare tell her how he feels, he was afraid that she will feel bad about it. She treats me like an old friend, she doesn’t feel anything towards me. Our friendship might be ruined if I propose her, he thought.
Most of the love stories fail because of not express their feelings to their loved ones. Most in the cases they think they may lose their friendship also. The worst part of any love story is keeping unexpressed feelings inside. Most of the people will hide their feelings forever and fake their friendship towards their loved ones, so they may lose their loved ones also. I feel there is nothing wrong about expressing our feelings to our loved ones. The bond will get strong only if we express our feelings.
The time is nearly 2:45 AM, almost one hour passed in their conversation. For the first time, Abhinav cursed time for passing this quickly. He wished to hold time so that he will be with her at this moment forever. Their conversation is continued happily when Rishi interrupted it. Seems his fun time was over and he seems worried about the ceremony he needs to attend at home. He asked Abhi to come to look for another vehicle. Abhinav didn’t like to be interrupted in his moment with Vennela, but respecting his savior, he and Rishi came outside of the bus station looking for another vehicle. There seems no sign of any bus or cab, but after a long search, they found an auto which is about to start to Mulbhagal to distribute newspapers. They were told that there will be a bus available to Chittoor from Mulbhagal. So they decided to go to the auto. Rishi went inside and brought Shreya and Vennela. There were only seats for four members with two opposite. Rishi and Shreya took one seat and Abhi and Vennela took their opposite. Finally, their journey started.
Since it is early morning, there is too much cold outside and with the auto’s curtains loosen, they can’t resist the cold. Both Rishi and Shreya lean on each other and sleeping due to cold weather. Since Abhi is next to the window, he holds the curtain without losing its grid to resist cold as much as possible. He can’t resist his sleep since he spent the whole night sleepless. It is the moment he lost his grip at the curtain when suddenly he felt Vennela on his shoulder, sleeping. All his thoughts were cleared and all his sleep was gone. Even the curtain lost its grip, he didn’t even feel the cold. All he does is staring at Vennela. He wanted this moment freeze and this journey will long forever. Enjoying the moment, his eyes slowly started to close and he started to lean on Vennela.
The auto took nearly one and a half hours to reach Mulbhagal. Both Abhi and Vennela woke from sleep when Rishi called them. They paid the amount to the auto driver and got out of the auto. They were told that the bus will arrive in half-an-hour. Along with them some of the other passengers from their old bus were there. They sat on the nearby rock and waiting for the bus to arrive.
‘How do you guys know each other before?’ enquired Rishi after seeing them getting closer.
‘We are classmates from school’ explained Abhinav noticing there is something Rishi observed on them.
‘Is that it mate? really!’ teased Abhinav like he noticed what Abhi is hiding in his mind.
‘Yeah it is only’
‘Guys it seems the bus will take some more time to arrive, shall we talk about ourselves? it will help us to get to know each other’ asked Shreya.
‘I think its a good idea. Since we are traveled this far together, we didn’t even know about each other’s’ supported Vennela.
‘Okay, who will start first’ asked Rishi.
‘Let’s start with you guys first, I am eager to hear your love story’ Abhi teased Rishi and Shreya.
Rishi and Shreya stared at each other and smiled. ‘Okay then, I know Shreya from nearly four years. She is my junior when I am in my second year of college. Guess what! I first saw her when there is a welcome function for freshers in our college, it is the moment I fell in love with her when I first saw her. Luckily she is also from our branch, so I took the opportunity to talk to her. It was very funny that I first talked to her in the name of Ragging the juniors’ Laughed Rishi while recalling, ‘It took nearly one year to propose her and guess what, she almost took nearly four months to accept my proposal’ finished and Smiled at Shreya.
‘Wow, guys! you have a pretty amazing story. see, that's the beauty of love. It will make us wait for even for decades also’ praised Abhinav reminding that he also had the same kind of fear.
‘That's the point, I know how Rishi feels towards me, I enjoyed it every minute since he first proposed me. Know what guys? we girls love to see secretly how much you boys are mad about us’ smiled Shreya, ‘Rishi is a nice guy, he took every step to earn my love, that's the reason I fell for him at first, I trusted him in the first place’ confessed at Rishi.
‘Wow that's cute guys, I wish you very good luck’ wished Vennela.
‘Now tell me your story, Abhi’ asked Rishi.
‘Mine is not as beautiful as your’s mate, love never happened to me before. Still, I am enjoying my days being single’ Laughed Abhi right before the moment he observes Vennela is smiling at him, this made him blush.
‘Seriously, dude! you didn’t love anyone till now, this is very hard for me to believe’ Rishi raised his bro and smiling at Abhi as he knows the truth.
‘I guess its time for Vennela to talk’ Shreya smiled.
‘There is nothing to talk about me guys, I didn’t have any love story to talk about. I didn’t want to think about it until I settled well in life. Maybe I will think about it when I have the chance’ confessed Vennela.
One side Abhi is happy hearing that she is not in love with anyone and on the other side he is getting afraid that she may not have any feelings towards him too.
Their discussion continued for a few minutes until they hear the bus horn. Thank god! finally, the bus has arrived. All the people standing there rushed to reach the bush to reserve seats before its occupied by some others. Rishi managed to reserve seats for both Shreya and Vennela, but all the seats have been filled in gents row. So he and Abhi chose to stand near the back door of the bus. The bus has started after a few minutes they arrived.
‘You like her buddy, aren’t you?’ Rishi asked Abhi as he noticed he is staring at Vennela seated on the front seat.
Abhi gave him a surprising look wondering how he noticed. smiling at him Rishi said: ‘You are terrible at expressing your feelings mate, trust me, I am also like that when I am in one side love with Shreya. Now tell me you love her, aren’t you?’
Abhi nodded, ‘Yeah buddy, with all my heart’
‘Then I guess you need to express your feelings mate, before its too late. See this fear is common for everyone in love if it cost losing the person you love, trust me, it’s not worth it.’
‘I too want to express my feelings to her, but after watching her treating me like a friend, I can’t afford to lose that too by proposing her’
‘I thought exactly the same when it comes to proposing Shreya. I am afraid to lose her friendship too, but when I propose her, I come to know she has the same feeling towards me. She will get to know your feelings only when you express them, otherwise, she can’t know. Most of the beautiful stories will end up sad due to the fear of expressing feelings. I don’t want you to do the same mate, you deserve to be happy. Trust me, just talk to her, I hope she has the same feelings towards you’ confessed Rishi.
Abhi nodded in agreement and turned to watch Vennela.
Vennela and Shreya seated on the front and talking to each other. almost one hour passed on the bus and the time is nearly 4:45 AM. Shreya noticed Abhi staring at Vennela when she turns to see Rishi.
‘I think he likes you’ Shreya teased Vennela.
‘Who? Abhi?, that's not possible’ Vennela blushed.
‘Don’t hide from me, when Rishi is in love with me, he used to stare at me secretly so many times. I observe the same on Abhi towards you’ explained Shreya when Vennela turned to see Abhi.
Abhi suddenly turned his face, when Vennela stares at him.
‘I told you na? I bet he likes you’ teased Vennela again.
Vennela blushed again and smiled at Shreya.
‘Maybe you are right, Abhi is a nice guy, you know what I used to admire him when we are both in school, but I never thought he has feelings for me’ confessed Vennela to Shreya who is smiling at her.
‘That’s the magic of love, most of the people will lack the courage to express their feelings. Even when Rishi first proposed to me, I clearly observed the tension on his face. Trust me, they are afraid to express their feelings doesn’t mean they don’t have feelings, its the fear of losing the loved ones. I think you both are beautiful together.’ confessed Shreya.
Vennela nodded and turned to see Abhi again. She clearly Abhi is secretly staring at her and his eyes are clearly expressing his feelings. For the first time, she feels the charisma of love.
Finally, they reached the Chittoor bus station. They got out of the bus and entered the station. Luckily there is a bus available to Nellore and it has plenty of empty seats left. Rishi and Shreya got one row and Abhi and Vennela got another row. After a few minutes, all the seats have been filled and the bus started to move.
‘This is the end of our journey if I didn’t tell her’ Abhi thought. He decided to express his feelings to her.
Vennela sat next to him. Calmly. She doesn’t know how to ask him about his feelings towards her. Deep down she knew she also likes him, she enjoyed every moment she spent with him. The very first time when she sees him when he helps her to get down the bus, she started to adore him. At the moment he came to help her with the journey, she got very much excited to travel with him. All these moments flashing in her mind, deep down she doesn’t want to miss him at all. All she wanted him to express his feelings to her.
Maybe this is how destiny works. If it wants to make two people meet, it will make them meet in any circumstances. All we need to do is to trust it and wait for it to turn us.
‘I really enjoyed this journey’ finally Abhi broke the silence between him and Vennela.
She is glad that the conversation between them has been initiated.
‘Yeah, of course, I am glad to be a part of this journey. It made me feel like a fresh start again’
‘I am glad the accident happened, otherwise, I wouldn’t have met you and I might miss the beautiful moments in my life’ he confessed.
Vennela started to blush.
‘All my life I feel like I am missing something, Vennela! the first moment I saw you is the very first moment I feel myself again. When I lost you after I left school is the moment I lost myself. After that, I may survive but I really really missed to live, because the moment I lost you is the moment I lost my life. After a long time, we met again here. I don’t know if this is planned by destiny or not, all I want to express how I feel’ Abhi looked in her eyes.
Vennela smiled at him. He can clearly see in her eyes that she is asking him to express the final words. This is the moment he waited for his entire life, all he needs to do is to cherish it.
‘I may not good at expressing my feelings, but I am glad we had a chance to travel together and I want you to be a part of my journey as my better half. I promise that I will never lose you again until the end of my life. can you be my soulmate for the rest of my life?’ finally Abhi confessed his feelings to her.
Vennela feels tears in his eyes after listening to him. Even she knows he has feelings for her, she didn’t know he loves her this much. This is the moment she is waiting on this entire journey. At this moment, all she wanted to be with him. She feels herself when she looked into his eyes. His eyes filled with tense and pleading her to accept the proposal.
She smiled at him and said: ‘Yes, I will be and I am happy to’, she cannot utter another word. She simply fell on his shoulder and said: ‘don’t even dare to leave me in any situation’.
Abhinav can’t say anything. The moment he waited for his entire life, the moment he dreamed when he is about to die is now. There is no scale to limit his happiness now. ‘Never, I love you with all my heart’ confessed to her and lean on her.
50 years later:
Abhinav is in his death bed in I.C.U and next to him Vennela sat holding his hand and crying. Looking at her he finally smiled.
‘See ya, I told you, I will never leave you in any situation. Even if I die, I will be with you forever deep in your heart.’
Vennela can’t even utter a word, her face is filled with tears.
‘Shut up, you moron. How dare you to talk like this, you are not going anywhere.’ she managed to say.
Abhi smiled and said: ‘remember our first journey, how we met in the accident, those are the moments I cannot forget in my life. those moments gave me a purpose to my life and made me believe Love at first sight’ he confessed.
‘Idiot, that is not Love at first sight, that is Love in the moonlight’ she managed to say before his eyes slowly closing forever.