>> Read First Encounter here
The evening came and I was all expectations. The sun and its heat had descended down the horizon, and the few trailing clouds were following in sequence. A clam breeze, playfully wafting to and fro, restored the sense of serenity that has eluded me during the day. Maybe it was the enthusiasm and this newfound excitement about Sacdiya.
The cinema, as anticipated, appeared animated and dynamic. Several people lined up at the box office, again, displaying their usual carefree comportment at such a place. A little child, in a pink frock ran in circles between her parents, her golden ponytail bouncing in the air. Though I was displaying a somewhat convincing feel of placidity and composure, inside my body a fiery argument ensued. Why was I doing this? I was neither besotted with her to be behaving like this, nor so was I engrossed as to revisit her. It was a simple. There was nothing much there, well, except for her smile and her expressive eyes which, indicative of delightful times ahead, prompted a unique form of understanding and communication, implicit in its approach – partly because of her beauty and partly a self-induced embellishment.
I walked over, almost mechanically, to the Ben & Jerry’s counter looking here and there. But Alas! She was not there. A part of me sunk immediately, but kept staring into the delectable ice creams whilst conjuring up images of the day her bright smile sedated me. I walked to and fro, enquiringly, looking for her cocoa skin or her scarf somewhere behind the counters. Several minutes had passed, before I decided to look in a different place. I walked round to the Mainstand, an extensive counter mounted with several tills stationed in the middle of the sphere-shaped lobby of the cinema, and my eyes began their hunt. Dilated and deficient, their source of delight was missing, and find her they will if she was there by any means. It was not long before they found her, carefully scooping popcorn from the popcorn maker. Under the enormous light that looked down upon her, her skin glowed. She hadn’t seen me for a while, as I stood there, staring at her, exploring the contours of her body.
A long queue awaited at her till, all expectant customers, including myself. I advanced towards her, hands twitching, eyes bright, and face beaming. With one customer after another being served, it wasn’t long before the file shortened. Two people now stood between her and me and, no doubt, she had seen me. At once her eyes gleamed in gladness, or so I thought, and her wide smile took its natural form across her face, broadening it, shaping it and transferring it onto mine.
She hasn’t changed a bit. Her smile was still as captivating, her face still seamless, her lithe body unblemished, and her eyes inviting.
“Hope you weren’t offended,” I said as I came within reach of her and the two other customer in front of me had left. I knew very well she wasn’t offended, but this was to give her a chance to have a say about the incident and expand on it. It was what I saw fit to open the conversation with
“No I wasn’t, not at all,” she replied
“Are you sure, or are you just being polite about it?” I enquired, teasing her to say something and get a depth of her reaction
“Yeah.” Came her reply, timidly
There was a slight pause. She waited for me to ask the next question. I didn’t. Sometimes a slight interval is indispensable – it creates a room for imagination and leaves the person slightly lingering. It also creates a brief moment of discomfort and imbalance at this initial stage.
“I actually thought it was quite sweet,” she said, after that brief period, bashfully lowering her head slightly with a half-smile – a sort of an impromptu flirtatious smile which seemed so natural and hard to conceal.
“Thanks,” she added.
“Your welcome,” I said with a smile, though not a beaming smile so as to conceal my liking. “I just had to make sure, you know, some people have sensitive spots and might get offended by such stuff.”
“No, its alright,” she responded, still smiling splendidly.
I found her behaviour obliging and came across as greatly affable. The willingness was there and so was the openness and her guileless eyes could not do much to conceal her swelling appetite.
“What film are you watching?”
“Oh God, I don’t even know…What was it? Oh yeah, that’s it, Blood Diamond,” I had briefly forgotten about what film I came to watch and my friend who was in the auditorium already waiting for me. He came before me and I was to meet him there.
“Oh ok. It’s a nice film.” She replied.
A short moment of silence once again ensued. We looked at each other briefly, eyes staring at each other, following the same path in unison, and smiled.
“Can I have a medium tango please?” I said
“Why don’t you go large for 10p extra”
“I’ll have large one then, but bear in mind, I won’t be able to finish it”
She smiled and pulling a large Pepsi cup from the cup dispenser below started pouring my drink.
“You look exhausted,” I started, observing her sluggish movement, “had a long day?”
“Yeah I feel tired, I started at 2” she replied, placing her left hand on her forehead, furrowing her brow.
“What time are you finishing?”
I looked at my watch – The short hand was on the verge of 9 and the long hand on 10.
“About an hour and you’ll be in a cosy bed I presume,” I said
I looked at her, now observing her as I always do. God! She is beautiful. There is a hint of naivety about her that is even more ravishing.
“Enjoy your film,” she said as she handed my drink and serviette, to which I courteously smiled a thank you.
I took my drink, went upstairs into the auditorium and reclined on the comfy seat, placing my drink in the holder. I picked the drink up to take a sip, as the trailers ended and the film was about to start, just to realize that I had forgotten my straw downstairs – with her!
Well, another chance to catch a glimpse of her, I thought – and before you say it, it wasn’t deliberate!
p.s It seems like a Third Encounter is well worthy here.