Fiction Park

Wasabi

  • Unlike wasabi, love left its aftertaste which always lingered way longer than it should
- Abha Dhital
Sometimes she wished she was angrier. She wished she was relentless and unforgiving. She wished she was capable of destroying people. But she wasn’t. She also wished her head ruled her heart. But it didn’t

Jul 2, 2017-

One...two...three…four

 

It always hit her like wasabi. When and once she felt it, she could not even begin to control the chain of reactions that followed. Her ears would turn red, her nose blue, and her eyes some shade of yellow. “That’s disgusting,” her face would scream with lips still pursed. 

She is just a friend. It is just a hug.

She knew better, but wasabi takes its own time to wear off.

A little too self-aware, she knew she was conservative in her own peculiar ways. For starters, she was an exclusive hugger. She wouldn’t hug any other man who is not her boyfriend for more than a second. He on the other hand was not so conservative. Much like other women in his life—friend or not—he would and could hug them for more than three seconds and shrug it off like it meant nothing. 

Four seconds. 

He knew how she felt about body spaces. Technically, they never talked about it out loud, but he had seen her ‘wasabi face’ too many times to not take note. 

Good thing we’re not together. 

When her time came, she gave a two-second hug to her friend, a one-second hug to him, and not so friendly waves to other people in the room with whom she felt no connection whatsoever. 

My dear old friend, take me for a spin

Two wolves in the dark, running in the wind

She hadn’t heard the song in ages and now it wouldn’t leave her. Even when she couldn’t tell how the song had managed to make its way to the top of her head, it felt apt. The mood called for it. 

As she made her way home through dust and gravel, from Koteshwor to Satdobato, the song played in her head on loop. And it made her sad. 

It was not right. She knew better. But instead of shrugging it off, she chose to indulge in what she was feeling. She longed for him as much as she longed for a blacktopped road. 

The lights go out, I am all alone

All the trees outside are buried in the snow

........

The food on the table made her angry. Not because she didn’t want it, but because she wanted it so bad and there was no room in her stomach. 

Shouldn’t have gone to the party. Not for the food. Not for the booze. Not for the person. 

The sight of her room only further disappointed her. At any given point in time, her room spoke volumes about her state of mind. How long had it been since she last wiped her mirror clean? Why was nothing in its place? How do clothes keep making their way back to the table, the books to the floor, and old slimy socks to the top of her pillow? 

You monster! 

No, she was not mad at the dog. She was just projecting her frustration on the animal, which she couldn’t pour earlier out on the human being. 

It was high time that she cleaned the room and cleared her conscience. 

She plugged in her earphones and started sorting her room one slimy sock a time. 

I can’t help but drive away from all the mess you made

You sent this hurricane now it won’t go away

 

Sometimes she wished she was angrier. She wished she was relentless and unforgiving. She wished she was capable of destroying people. But she wasn’t. She also wished her head ruled her heart. But it didn’t. 

“Did you eat the food on the table?” 

She didn’t realise how late it was until Aama knocked on her door. 23:50. 

“Yes. Please go back to sleep Aama.” 

.............

“How can you even eat that thing? Wasabi is disgusting.” 

“It’s not. You just need to know how to take it in.” 

“Why do you even like it?” 

“It tastes good and it keeps me alert.” 

“What about when it hits you?” 

“When it hits you, you just take the blow and wait for it to pass.” 

She loved wasabi. He hated it. 

You just take the blow and wait for it to pass.

 

As she recalled the conversation, she wished it was as easy when it comes to love. Unlike wasabi, love left its aftertaste which always lingered way longer than it should. Seven months and some in this case.

...........

“Reached home safe?” 

Her phone bleeped. She had been home for two hours now. Two hours might not have been as long and as late as seven months, but it was still a little too late to check on someone you really care for. She knew he had more to say. He might as well have just come to the point instead. 

“Can we talk?” 

She chose not to answer. Everything has its own time. She let the dog snuggle under her blanket, put her phone on the airplane mode, and plugged in her earphones. It was going to be another long night. 

Count stacks of routine lies

Funny how easy you could see my blindside

Still the same song with the same old beats

Sure I could stay but there’s a place I’d rather be

Published: 02-07-2017 09:36

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