"See I told you about a surprise right? She is my friend Shilpa. And he is Mr. Perfect - Gautam".
On sensing the gravity of the situation Shilpa managed to smile a bit with a simple "Hello". Gautam Nodded in response.
Aadhya felt the missing surprise factor and was curious to know what the matter was.
"Do you guys know each other?" asked Aadhya pointing to the silent Shilpa and dumbstruck Gautam.
"Aadhya, I have to leave , got an urgent deliverable to be completed." - said Gautam in hasty and left gobbling up a glass of water.
"Aadhya, can we have some fresh hot lemon tea?". "Order two of them please." said Shilpa to the waiter who approached the table.
"No make one of hot espresso" Aadhya intervened.
"For God's sake tell me what is going on. I need some explanation. Kill the news Shilpa." she pleaded.
"Aadhya, Gautam is a married Man.He is my colleague Shalini's husband. Shalini is in India at the moment. She is on a maternity leave for 6 months. I cannot believe my eyes. Gautam and you. "
"What are you saying? Are you in some sense by the way? Gautam is not married. No he is not married. He cannot be" Aadhya felt something which was inexplicable.
"Look Aadhya, Gautam's marriage with Shalini was against his parents wish but he still went ahead marrying her. Mayank and I were witnesses from Shalini's end. I myself am completely in a state of shock. I dont know if I need to tell anymore. Be calm and safe. Hope you come over with this very soon." says Shilpa holding the shivering hands of Aadhya.
"Madam here is your hot lemon tea and your hot Espresso. Just like the way you like them. " Waiter placed the tray with the two drinks on their table.
Aadhya broke into tears. Her celebrations were ruined.
Aadhya was shattered to pieces on facing the real world and its hard to believe reality. She did not give up, she worked hard towards her goals.
Story on Gautam's end:
Shilpa recieved a message from Gautam that day:
Shilpa, Am really sorry.
I should not have cheated
your friends.Please do not
spoil my marriage with
Shalini. I love her and
will do till I die.
I am guilty of my deeds.
But what about Aadhya?
However I will take care
of her , you need not worry.
Do not expect forgiveness
from me, you rogue.
Shilpa encouraged Aadhya in her work. Shilpa spent time over the weekends capturing some classic photos for the journals Aadhya was working on. Aadhya got recognized in the Media industry and she was awarded the most prestigious "Author of the year" for her Book "Complicated youth" she wrote targetting the youth and their charms.
Shilpa and Mayank moved back to Delhi for good.
Gautam had vanished from Aadhya's memories until she sipped the hot espresso on Table 8. Today Aadhya sits in the cafe waiting for that Mr. Perfect who would shower geniune love on her.
Continuing the rants in her digital diary.
28th November 5:10PM - "The encounter of the Tall espresso"
Slipped into a thought stream. Fresh and rejuvenated for a new tomorrow.
I have started, walking with my dreams. Waiting for a new dream to be fulfilled.
She picked her bag and moved on.