February 17

They climbed the little hill away from the city, carpeted in green grass. It was late in the evening and the place was devoid of all the light and noise pollution. They were almost out of breath by the time they reached the hill top. “Why do you put us through this taxing little adventure? There are so many other places we can be!” he grumbled.

“Come on now!” she dragged him along and spread a blanket on the grass. She lay down and pulled him next to her. He gave in. Their breathing was still heavy from the climb. She clasped his hand and stared out at the sky above them. She nudged him and he looked at the stars that sparkled against the deep tints of blue. “Isn’t it magical?” she asked, “what do you see, darling?”

“I see stars forming shapes and constellations. See those three stars stretching in a stiff straight line? Oh and look there! That blurry silver cloud looks like it has a trail of stars following it, like a tail. How many stars do you think are there as far as you can see?” he asked.

“A million, may be. What else do you see? I can see the outline of the infamous bear,” she said excitedly.

“Bear? What bear? Don’t be ridiculous. There is no bear. The stars can’t align themselves into something so complex like a bear, can they?” he teased her.

“Why would you say that?” she frowned.

There followed a silence, the kind that was neither comfortable nor uneasy. The kind they allowed to come in and linger until they found the right words to resume the conversation. When they lay there in the company of silence, momentarily, she thought to herself. How strange this relationship is! They were next to each other, holding hands, looking at the same sky and stars and the silver crescent, talking about the same thing. He was describing to her all that he was seeing, yet she couldn’t see them. She talked of how far and wide her imagination soared but he couldn’t keep up pace. It seemed like they were from two different worlds and when the two worlds were drawn towards each other, they came together at such force that it often was a catastrophe. She knew in the deepest part of her heart that there will be no other who can evoke such powerful feelings in her. But did he feel the same way? Would he risk an avalanche, a catastrophe, to be with her? Would she doubt it? 

She couldn’t dwell on such thoughts, now that he was with her at arm’s reach.


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