As I opened the window, a gust of cool musky air greeted me in the face. It had stopped raining but the sky was still covered with dark clouds. I looked out into the garden. Little white pearls hung from the leaves of guava tree while the small bed of flowers adorning the fence dazzled vibrantly in riotous colours. Outside on the road, I saw two little boys jumping in a puddle formed by the downpour.
My mind drifted to the past.
“Come on pigtails! It’s fun,” yelled Ashu.
I stared in horror as he jumped into the muddy puddle. His white uniform was soaking wet and his socks and shoes were covered in mud.
“No way!” I shook my head vehemently from underneath the umbrella. “And will you please hurry up? Or else I ‘ll just dump your school bag on the road and leave.”
“You wouldn’t dare!” Within seconds, he was by my side. I gaped in disbelief as he flung off the umbrella and stuck his tongue out at me. Hard sheets of water slapped my face as I stood shivering with cold and rage. It felt like someone was pricking my skin with sharp needles. I stared crying.
“Hey, I’m sorry.” He was instantly apologetic. “Will you stop crying if I share my chocolate with you?”
That brightened me up. Quickly, I wiped the tears and held out my hand.
“Stupid girl!” Ashu grumbled as he grudgingly placed the candy in my outstretched palm.
A thunder rumbled in the distance and I guiltily turned away from the window. New brides didn’t sit and brood all day. But the gloomy weather was somehow unsettling me.
“She accepted. Can you believe it?” Ashu screeched with joy.
I looked at him in stunned silence. While he spoke animatedly about his newfound love, I stealthily crushed the red rose I had brought for him.
“Listen, we’re going out on our first date. Can you go home alone?” he asked hopefully. “And don’t forget your umbrella. Looks like it’s going to rain.”
“Of course.” I forced myself to smile. The rain came down then and I started walking in it. For once I wished to get drenched, willing the silvery stream to mingle with my tears and wash away the pain.
My husband’s voice jarred me out of my thoughts. He was standing under the guava tree in pouring rain and gesturing for me. Quickly, I grabbed an umbrella and strode outside. It was only when I reached him that I noticed the little furry bundle snuggled cosily in his arms.
“The cat’s wet and looks hungry too. Mind if I bring it in?” He asked, his eyes pleading. A warm fuzzy feeling washed over me and I held the umbrella high above his head. We started walking.
“You’re getting wet.” He observed, frowning at my soaked form. As water cascaded down my back, I felt myself getting drenched in love.
“I like getting wet.” I said, blushing stupidly.
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