The Evening Walk – Chapter Two (Finale)
Chapter Two – The morning after
We both walked into the coffee shop, quite a few seats were idle waiting for customers to be seated. We both chose a one closer to the air conditioner, the warm mode was on, which was very helpful indeed.
I walked up to the counter paid and order for two regular coffee’s and returned to my seat.
She started the conversation, “So Aniket, do you come here regularly?”
I replied, “Oh yeah every evening I come to the park for a walk. I love my evening walks.”
She responded, “Hmmm! that’s nice. It is a good way to keep your mind fresh.”
I responded, “Oh Yeah it is. And you, did the rain bring you in or you are a regular at the bike too.”
She replied, “Oh No, I am not a regular. It was just compulsion that drew me in and the rains tempted me to stay a little longer than I thought.”
I asked her, “By the look of it you seemed to enjoy the rains.” She looked towards me, as I continued, “Oh I am sorry, I couldn’t fail noticing you as I walked past you. Every time I looked I noticed that you were deeply within yourself and least bothered of anything that was happening around you.”
She responded, “Oh you need be sorry. Anyone would have noticed me for sure. I am crazy about the rains. I just cannot avoid the temptation to get wet in the rain. If I have a moment to spare I love to enjoy the rains and that is every time it showers. Even if it is heavy rains I love to be one with the rains.”
I smiled; I did not have anything to say to her on return, she continued, “I think it is the best thing that has happened to us. I like to thank the heavens for the shower.”
I nodded my head and added a smile and said, “Well I am not fond of rains as such, but I don’t mind it either. I enjoy watching as it rains rather than being in it.”
She frowned, “Hmmmm! Not bad for a start. At least you do not hate rains, most of them hate rains.”
I blinked my eyes to her response and then said, “I enjoy the freshness the rains bring along with it hence enjoy watching as it rains. I sit in my veranda as it rains; I prefer reading when it rains.”
Her eyes were wide open, “So you like reading too!”
I responded, “Yeah, I like reading.”
She quickly asked me, “So what do you like to read, I mean fiction, books, magazines?”
I thought for a moment and then I said, “Fiction, I enjoy reading mystery books.”
She nodded her head as she bit her lips, “Well I love romantic ones. Maybe got to do with my age. But can’t say so, as most my friends liked to read Mystery, Sci-fi or otherwise.”
Just then the waiter intervened as he served us some hot coffee. We thanked him and got back to the conversation.
As I sipped my coffee, “Well reading has nothing to do with age; it is more with our personal choices. I have been reading mysteries ever since I was a kid. Of course the authors I read have changed due but not the key word Mystery.”
She nodded her head in agreement, “Hmmm! That is true maybe. I have been reading romance for a very long time now. So I see the point here.”
I nodded in agreement. I then asked her, “Apart from reading what do you like to do in your free time.”
She replied, “I pick up my bike and visit the countryside. I enjoy being one with the nature. It is my favourite pass time. I can sit alone for hours together and I can ride alone until I reach eternity or boredom. But then that is me.”
I thought for a moment and then responded, “I must say, you are a very interesting person. Reading and biking are such a contrast to each other.”
She responded quickly, “I mentioned that earlier, that’s me!”
We both smiled, we both sipped our coffee and then she said, “Well I think it is getting late for me, I need to leave now.”
We both were almost done with our coffee; I said “Yeah, I think you should get going before it starts pouring again.”
She responded, “Oh that won’t be problem. I enjoy the rains, besides that I live very close by, my home is just about twenty blocks away. I should be there in a few moments. Of course if it rains heavily then it will be difficult for me to ride my bike. Then I may have to wait.”
The rains and my good luck were probably on the same page that evening. Just as she uttered the words heavy rains, it worked like magic. It started raining heavily that very moment. It was heavy for anyone to ride.
She frowned as she looked out of the window close to our seat, “Oh No! It is raining heavily! How will I go home now?” She was looking unhappy.
Somehow I could not see her that way, I had been seeing her smiling all evening and did not enjoy this sight. I immediately asked, “If it is urgent and fine by you, may I drop you home. You say it is close by and thus you can park your bike here and pick it up in the morning.”
She looked at me, her face wore a frown. She thought for a moment, “Would that not be a problem for you?”
I replied, “Oh No! Not at all. It will be my pleasure.”
She hesitated for a moment but then there seemed to be some urgency in her need to reach home. She agreed to be dropped to her house.
We walked towards our car and started towards her house. She guided me to her place. At the gate she thanked me for dropping her home. I bid her goodbye and looked at the Apartments name plate and made a mental note of it.
After reaching home I quickly had a light dinner and got busy with my laptop. Somehow the Angel’s thought kept bothering me all the while. I quickly logged onto the internet and search for her name, I did not know her family name but then that did not stop me from checking it out. I had her address, so thought that she may be active on one or the other social networking sites. My efforts did not go waste and I saw her feature on a few. She had a independent blog too. I read more about her. She was a researcher in the field of psychology, she had completed her Graduation in Arts and had varied interests.
The more I read about her the more I was interested to know about her. I logged in to in another social networking site and sent her a friend request, hoping that she would respond. Late until night I could not stop thinking about her and waited for her response. But to my disappointment none came from her end. I thought she may have had something important up her sleeve hence she did not respond. But that did not kept me away from hoping.
Next morning as I woke up the first thing I did was check for her response, but then again there was none. I just couldn’t stop thinking of her. As usual I went ahead with my morning walk in the park. I saw her bike was still parked in the same place as last evening, so I guessed she hadn’t had the time to come and pick her bike or maybe she was too busy to pick it up.
I was hoping that I would get to see her at the park collecting her bike but that was not to happen so.
A little disappointed I reached home, the house maid had reached home by then. I freshened up and sat in my veranda, I was still lost in Angel’s thought and little did I realise that tea was kept ready in the pot on the teapoi. As I sat down on the chair besides the teapoi I noticed the teapot. I poured myself some tea, early morning I preferred tea without sugar and milk, and picked that morning’s newspaper.
As I read on I reached the local news column. As I read through, I was shocked to see a piece of news printed that morning.
The News read, “Last afternoon a young and bright student of Arts from the Central College of Arts met with a brutal accident near the Central Park. She was crossing the road as she was hit by speeding car. She died on the spot. She had parked her bike in the Central Park and had crossed the road to buy a gift for her parents who were due to leave the next day for their hometown. Our city lost a bright student. Angel was very popular amongst fellow students, her friends and professors. An apprentice with our newspaper, she had shown a lot of prospect and would have made a great columnist. It was a sad ending to a very bright career. The last rites will be performed late in the afternoon expected to be visited by many. The procession will start from her home at 20, Phoenix Apartments, Central Street.”
Her photo was printed next to the article.
I was shocked as I recollected the apartment I had dropped Angel at.