Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Rain - A Short Story

After the movie, we walked out of the theater and toward the station. I was surprised to meet the hazy sky that must have developed in the last two hours and a half while we were inside. It had been painfully bright out when we went in. "I can't believe the ending," I said, kicking off a pebble on the street aimlessly, with my eyes on my feet aimlessly too. Both my hands in pockets. A toneless "Yea..." was the reply, barely voicing any opinion of the speaker.

We then walked in silence for what seemed like 10 minutes or so, and then I felt a little tickle on back of my nape. I realized it was a drop of rain as I felt where it landed with my left hand, and at about the same time, "Oh no," was uttered beside me. She, too, was now aware of the rain. The annoyance that was in her tone made me feel blamed and responsible. Soon it started pouring.

We had quickened our pace. Neither of us had an umbrella. We shouldn't have had to, anyway. The forecast reported nothing of the cloudburst that afternoon. If anything, the whole county was supposed to rely on the dryness that would last till the end of the week. Stupid summer weather, I thought. And what a stupid liar! Stupid weatherman in his stupid suit. Now it was raining cats and dogs. We started running.

We ran in silence, except the rain was making a thunderous opus on the ground and on cars driving past. I don't know about her, but I wasn't running to anything. The station was a little too far from us if running to avoid getting wet was our purpose. And there was nothing in our sight a place that seemed to lend us a roof. So we ran, because it seemed like the only sensible thing to do at the moment.

After a block or so, she was falling behind. She had a purse that hung heavily on her shoulder, and it jumped around her waist as she ran. I wondered what she could have had in there. She also had sandals on that made her calves skinnier than I had seen. They didn't seem to be making her running in rain any easier either. I wanted to slow down for her. Or even better, not run at all. We were soaking wet as it was. running or slowing down didn't seem to make much of a difference anymore.

"ARE YOU OK?" I shouted. trying to be heard over the rain pouring. "WHAT?" sh shouted back. "DO YOU WANT TO WALK?" I shouted again, not doing a great job in making myself sound any clearer than the first time. "I CANT HEAR YOU!"

She didn't seem interested in what I had to say. So I shut my mouth and kept running. She had probably given up on making me say anything, really. Probably thinking what an asshole I was for choosing that horrible movie. For seating ourselves in front of the loudest kids God has ever put on earth. For managing to forget the napkins from the popcorn kiosk. For leaving my seat twice for bathroom and leaving her in the dark in, again, that horrible movie. Thinking what a weirdo I was for going silent and awkward and squeamish the moment I picked her up today. Thinking what a screw-up for choosing a day that would rain. And I wanted to tell her, "I checked the forecast! Three times! The weather man said nothing about the rain, I swear!"

But I didn't. Instead, in the middle of this Murphy's Law of a date, I felt like laughing. I don't know why. Maybe it was the fact that she couldn't hear me over the rain. Maybe it was her purse dancing around her wist like it was going to fly off her. Maybe it was the movie that didn't register me at all. Maybe it was my trembling hand that wanted to grab hers the entire two hours. Maybe it was that I wanted to kiss her the whole time. Maybe it was my sudden awareness of my tongue tasting like coke and salty popcorn when I actually sat up to go for it. Maybe it was the stupid soundtrack that kept the perfect moments pass. Maybe it was that all I wanted to do was kiss her, and I couldn't for the life of me.

So I laughed, still running. Not out loud, but if I did, the rain would have muted me anyway. I'm going to kiss her, I thought. She must be pretty ticked off now. Heck, she is probably furious. Whatever is in her purse is probably soaking wet and useless by now, and she probably hates me because I made her run in rain in those pretty sandals. Maybe she might even slap me after I let go of her lips. But when we reach the station and finally make a stop under the roof, I'm going to kiss her before we even catch our breath. And for the moment, running in rain felt like the best thing in the whole world to be doing.

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