Sheela Iyer posted under Flash Fiction QuinTale-47 on 2022-12-21

Tears escaped her eyes and streaked her face. Though her eyes were closed, her brain was battling a billion thoughts. The word ‘Sorry’ escaped her lips incessantly. Besides, with back-to-back meetings at work, Revati felt worn out. She tried to doze for a while but couldn’t. The blinding shafts of light pierced through the panels and fell on her face. She rubbed her eyes before opening them wide and gazed at the wall clock. It was quarter to nine. “Oh, God! I’ve a meeting at 10,” she mumbled and quickly got ready.  She paired a cream trouser with a tucked tobacco-coloured shirt and stormed out without grabbing a bite of breakfast that her cook had spread. Revati looked crestfallen. “Has anything happened between you and Anand, or is it your presentation?” asked her close friend Sheetal. “Neither. You know about the dark phase of my life. I wish to confess with Anand before he learns it from a stranger.” Revati said with a lump in her throat, blinking away tears. “Okay, calm down, Revati. I understand, but why do you want to ruin your present and future? If you remain silent, nobody will find out. Anand is a gentleman; besides, can you afford to lose him? So be a bit sensible.” Sheetal cautioned with concern in her voice. “I know, but the burden will not get uplifted off my shoulders until I confess. For months I have been struggling to sleep. It feels like being in a black hole of guilt,” Revati said, teary-eyed. That night, Revati called Anand and asked him to come home urgently. As an airline pilot, he often flew to varied destinations. He was perplexed as Revati had never sounded so stressed.  The following evening, Anand reached home. He took her hand in his and asked, “What happened, sweetheart? Why are you looking so stressed?” Her face turned pale. The word ‘Sorry’ softly escaped her lips.  “I….I….I’m sorry, my love.” She stuttered. “Sorry… for what?” asked Anand. “You were not around, and loneliness was killing me. In your absence, I was swooned by one of my office colleagues. We met often and spent time together for a couple of months until I realised my mistake and took a step back. We neither meet nor talk anymore. Please forgive me for this grave sin. I love you; I promise this will never happen again,” Revati said in one go, barely pausing for breath. There was a deafening silence for a few moments.  Revati's words bounced around his head, first in disbelief, then in shock, and finally, in anger.  She shivered like a dry leaf.  "Trust is the cornerstone of any relationship; you crushed it. Crevices are beyond the moons touch, and binders cannot fix them. Albeit you have greatly upset me, I am willing to forgive you since I truly care about you. Anand spoke while sounding hurt. Revati gave him a tight hug. Tears escaped her eyes and streaked her face.   Penmancy gets a small share of every purchase you make through these links, and every little helps us continue bringing you the reads you love!