After attending nearly ten meetings in two days, Venkatesh needed a break. Though he had successful meetings and promising interactions, he was terribly tired and badly needed a break. Steering away from his policy of holidaying during official visits out of the country, he decided to go on a weekend vacation to a local favorite holiday destination.
Venkatesh reached the airport two hours before the scheduled flight time and waited in the lounge. He decided to put on his ear phones and take a quick nap on the chair while waiting for the plane.
He got disturbed by a sudden loud greeting. It was a greeting combined with laughter that took him back by fifteen years. He heard a similar greeting every morning. His friend, Rajesh, would greet him in the same way every morning while they were going to the college.
Venkatesh’s mind quickly rewound to the nostalgic college days when they were the best of buddies. The early morning rides to the college together, the preparation during exams, and the trips to picnic spots outside the city all made those days really wonderful. And, then, something happened. Someone came in between them and they were never friends again. They never talked to each other during the last semester of their engineering graduation.
When the disturbance was not ready to give up, Venkatesh woke up and greeted Rajesh with surprise. They discussed everything about their present and realized they lived in the same town. They both discussed about their trips and realized that they both are returning to India after one month within a gap of few days.
Rajesh broached upon the topic that ruined their friendship.
“How is Sheela? Is she also working? I’m sorry that I have been foolish in those days. I’m glad you guys are settled well together. Thought it is not too late, I’d like to wish you guys a happy married life.”, said Rajesh.
Venkatesh was left perplexed. He assumed that Rajesh married Sheela and they were living happily somewhere. But, this was surprising. He did not how to react.
He immediately blurted out, “What the hell are you saying? I never married Sheela. I thought you married Sheela. Is this some kind of joke? She and I never got married. I did not speak with her all the few times she tried to get in touch with me. I thought she wanted to apologize.”
There was an awkward and surprising silence.
“She told me that she hated me. So, I thought she loved you and assumed that you both were going to settle together.”, argued Rajesh.
Suddenly, it dawned upon both of them that Sheela married neither of them. They both felt sorry for the way in which they dealt with the situation then.
They never spoke with each other or with Sheela after the big fight they both had in the college football ground. Their entire close broke up into two groups after that and the members of each group never interacted with anyone from the other group. The sad thing remains is that nobody thought of Sheela and what happened to her.
During the second year of college, Sheela and Venkatesh fell in love with each other. Rajesh was a good friend of both of them. When Rajesh met with an accident in the third year, Sheela became close to Rajesh. This led to a lot of disturbance for the next two years. Rajesh assumed that Sheela loved him and that she did not love Venkatesh any more. Sheela was angry on Venkatesh for believing in all rumors that Sheela loved Rajesh. Finally, it ended as a big fight between Venkatesh and Rajesh and the entire college became part of this fight. It took nearly fifteen years for Rajesh to get over the anger.
After a few minutes, Rajesh came forward and told Venkatesh, “Sheela and I were never in love with each other. She was helpful to me when I met with an accident just because I was your best friend. The last time I met her, she told me that she hated me for assuming that she loved me. I thought you and Sheela would have married after that. I could not forgive you for all the bad words, fights, and insults. It all looks so foolish. So, what about Sheela now?”
What about Sheela now? What happened to Sheela? It is the same question that has been troubling both of them.
Rajesh told Venkatesh that he got married and has two children. Venkatesh told him that he could never again consider marriage as he lost trust in relationships after that. His parents tried for some time and gave up the idea of convincing Venkatesh in the past few years.
After listening to Venkatesh, Rajesh realized that he is the main reason behind the separation of two people who were madly in love. He wanted to do something to find about Sheela. He wanted to check if she is not into any relationship all these years like Venkatesh has been.
Rajesh convinced Venkatesh to cancel his holiday trip. They both went back to the Venaktesh’s hotel and used all their contacts to find about Sheela.
It took them about one week to learn that Sheela is in India and that she is not married yet.
As soon as they returned to India, they planned a surprise visit to Sheela’s place.
Venkatesh knocked on the door while Rajesh waited outside near the car. He did not want to go along and create any further problems.
Sheela opened the door. She saw Venkatesh smiling at her. She was startled for a few minutes. Tears started rolling down her eyes. She could not believe.
“Did it take fifteen years for you to recognize my love?”, she asked and went inside crying. Venkatesh went behind her.
Venkatesh and Sheela got married after one week and lived happily ever after.