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DUSK OF LOVE

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Sea, sun, sand and Savitri. Whenever it came to love for beaches, she could be seen the first in the queue. Not only because beaches are blessed with some calm and cool vibes but also whenever she needed a healer, it worked for her.

She gazed at the sun as dusk’s sun didn’t hurt her eyes but instead gave her wrinkled face a divine glow. Savitri, in her fifties, maintained a decent look in her appearance as well as life. She looked at the sea waves rushing to her but she stood still. Her head swung when she tried to tally her life from the very beginning of her love story. To be more precise, a single mother’s love story.

‘How beautiful this sunset is!’ Avinash, a teen of nineteen, chirped besides her. 

‘Is it?’ She whispered thinking that no one would hear her. But she was absolutely wrong.

‘Sorry?’ Avinash made faces while Savitri didn’t bother her straight poker face.

‘Forget it,’ She ignored him. 

‘No please! Tell no!’ Avinash put camera in his backpack and neared her.

‘I wish these insane waves take me away with them,’ She murmured looking at the vast water body. Avinash hushed and gave her a smile as she was crazy. Savitri frowned and continued. Even she wasn’t aware of why she continued but she did. Life has always a plan for you. When you don’t know why you’re doing it, believe that Almighty wants you to do it.

‘If my love can’t take me away, it’s better these waves do. At least we can cherish our love in heaven,’ She resumed. Avinash giggled.

‘How do you know you’ll go to heaven?’ He literally laughed. Savitri’s face knew no expression.

‘And why your love can’t take you away?’ This time, he sounded somewhat serious.

‘Why would I tell you? Who are you? Mind your business, boy! Don’t interrupt my silence,’ She spitted only to get rid of him but all in vain.

‘You need to tell me, I think. Everyone deserve a listener and till we find the right one, we tend to mute it. If you have started, there must be a reason. Maybe I’m your listener,’ Avinash hit her heart with his words. She looked at him and smiled for nothing. When she didn’t find the right curve to start, the cool breeze gave her story a spontaneity.

‘We both are single parents. I lost my husband in an unfortunate tragedy and he’s a divorcee that is also an unfortunate tragedy. We work in the same bank branch and I being the manager am her boss,’ Savitri started. Her short grey hair vibed with the wind and her caged tears dried even before streaming out.

‘So?’ Avinash asked after a while.

‘What about our kids? How and what would we tell them? It’s pathetic,’ Savitri closed her eyes and took a sigh of relief.

‘You tried?’

‘I don’t know how to try! It’s like I don’t think my son would understand. I’m not sorry to accept that the conditions have made him toxic enough! But sometimes, parents are kids. And kids should understand their hearts too. They should,’ She tried to control the lump in her throat as well as the tear stuck in her eye but couldn’t find a way.

Silence. The breeze, chirping birds, sea waves and her heart only made the loudest noise possible. No human voice. 

‘And what about parents?’ Avinash broke the ice after a while. One could counter the sudden saddened charm on his face.

‘Parents should also make kids comfortable so that…….’  He coughed and never continued.

‘So that?’ Savitri’s curiosity made her spill out the obvious question.

‘Forget it. Anyway, I’m getting late. So I need to leave,’ He hanged his bag onto his shoulders and walked away until the same voice he was listening to the moment back shook him.

‘What if I say I’m your listener?’ Savitri raised her voice only to stop him. He wiped his watery eyes and turned back to her. 

‘I think you won’t deny having a gola with me, would you?’ He smiled. Savitri smiled back and nodded.

‘So….. let’s play a game,’ Avinash said sucking the yummy flavoured ice. 

Savitri raised her eyebrows, ‘Are you serious?’

‘A true listener doesn’t interview like this. Just say yes,’ Avinash bubbled.

‘Okay go ahead. What’s the game?’

So they basically decided that he would give her a word and she would tell the first thing coming in her mind post hearing the word,’

‘Gola!’ He began and smiled like a mellow kid.

‘Ummm…kaala khatta..’

‘Sky!’

‘Sunset..’ Gazing at the dusk, she couldn’t find the better pair.

‘Water!’

‘Vast and deep!’

‘Love!’

‘Boy and girl!’ She responded  so quick so that she didn’t even realize that he stopped asking questions. 

‘This is my story. I’m gay,’ Avinash didn’t took a span of time to tell his heart out. Savitri looked numb, not because she wasn’t ready for this, but because this one saying made Avinash look like a totally different person than that a moment before.

‘Say love and world will write paragraphs on how a boy and girl walk in the aroma of sunset, how they kiss, how they love each other breaking all boundaries and list goes on. And you know what? This haunts me every single night that how my father would react when he will conquer that fact? Would I be no more manly for him? Would I no more be his son?’ Avinash eyes flooded with tears that were caged for so long. His heart wept, his eyes witnessed his misery.

‘I love a guy in my college. He is senior to me. See he gifted me this!’ He smiled in tears, showing her the bracelet that his wrist cherished. 

He was out and felt light. It was like someone helped him push the rock that occupied the volume of his heart.

She was out too and felt that life wasn’t that scary that she thought it was. Instead, she found it a little bit beautiful and worth living now.

They sat there in the wet sand, saying nothing. They looked at the dusk, the beautiful dusk that was peeping in the depth of their lives.

It was like the sun parceled them the package of hope and was going now.

‘Don’t worry, I’ll convince your father. It’s okay if you love my son,’ Savitri said.

‘You too don’t worry, I’ll make your son understand your love. And it’s okay if you love my father,’ Avinash reverted.

‘Love will find a way,’ They both said in a unison and smiled from ear to ear.

It was always a dusk of hope but calling it dusk of love wouldn’t unbalance the universe.

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