It was a brilliant Sunday evening, Sally thought. Generally, Sunday evenings would be depressing for her, as they entailed an end to the weekend. Not today, however. Today, she was in great spirits. Her entire life was about to change. And it was a change for the better.
She gazed in quiet contentment at the sky, as the colours slowly faded in and out, and turned darker. She was standing just outside her single-storey house, on Adams Street. She liked the neighborhood. It was quiet, unassuming, and people did not meddle unnecessarily. She saw some movement in the lawn of Mrs. Pareira’s house across the street. Thinking it must be her cat, she didn’t pay much attention. However, out of the corner of her eye, she saw a black shape moving quickly outside and then inside the house. She strained her eyes, to check what it was, but it had disappeared now. Mrs. Pareira was an old lady, living alone. Concerned for her, Sally decided to go and check if all was ok. As she started walking across the street, her eyes turned towards the road, and then widened as she saw what was coming towards her…
Short Story completed by Reshma Apte:
It was Mrs. Pareira’s son . He had left to pursue his masters in Engineering at a prestigious university in Europe. They used to be the closest of friends as children even though he was a few years older than her, but drifted apart after he started high school, then graduated.
Matt was Sally’s high school crush. She loved talking to him, the way his beautiful chocolate brown eyes twinkled and glowed when he looked at her and the way they shined with glee when he was teasing her, which, back then, seemed to be his favourite past time. But they hadn’t seen each other since he moved to Europe, and seeing him so unexpectedly today had Sally absolutely stunned and speechless.
Time had been very kind to Matt. His skin flowed with health. His body had filled out with exercise. Seemed he had kept up with his childhood passion for exercise.
Sally shook her head to drag her mind out of the memories of their shared past. She looked up from her daydream to find Matt standing in front of her, with an equally surprised expression.
‘Sally? Is that really you? What are you doing here?’ He asked in a disbelieving tone.
‘What am ‘I’ doing here? I live here! What about you? I thought you were based in Europe now, Spain, I think your mom said…?’
Matt shook his head. ‘Forgetful as ever, the both of you. Europe, yes, but I’m based in the UK, not Spain. I work with an investment bank in London. Have done for years now.’
Sally smiled, shaking her head in agreement of his first statement. ‘That’s wonderful! Glad to see all the mental gymnastics you used to do in school, playing with numbers, paid off!’
‘Ha, ha, yes! Although, I deal more with people and management issues these days than numbers per se. Still, it’s a good job, great money, wonderful perks!’
And so they fell into their childhood pattern of easy conversation. A few minutes into the small talk about life in the UK drove the knowledge of how effortless it was for them to reconnect hit home.
They both looked up with a new awareness of each other, as people and as members of the opposite sex. The friendship mixed with physical attraction was easier to handle now with the maturity of age and experience.
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