Being A Stranger

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Romance  |  House: Booksie Classic

First of all, a big thank you for considering the thought that my story is worth your time.

I hope not to disappoint.

For those who are reading this for the first time, this is a short story (short, promise!) of a seemingly normal girl who is somehow caught in the tangle of bemusing yet fascinating emotional maze
for someone she met on a trip. However, this girl is not a believer of a Happily-ever-after and is definitely not ready for dating the guy. They are just two strangers heading towards different
directions, destined to cross paths in unlikely circumstances.

For those who've already read my first story, "Stranger", can jump directly to Chapter-2 'Back To Basics', to see what happens next.

Hope you give this new story the same old love.

Let's meet the Characters:

Zoravi- Our protagonist takes us through her journey where she tells her tales and thoughts on meeting the stranger(s) on her travels and back home. She's moody, loves to travel, always searching
for excuses for good alcohol and sometimes too horny for her own good.

The Stranger (Aman)- He's dusky, has dark dreamy eyes and is a mystery for our girl.

Rahul- A tall, fair and handsome young man, college friend with whom Zoravi shares a complicated history.

Suven- Mr. Right Guy, well-settled, well behaved man who isn't afraid of speaking out his mind. A perfect match for our girl.

Manav- The chocolate boy who has everything one can wish for, and still wants more.

The Beginning

Changi Airport, Singapore

I had just landed from a 6 hour long flight. This airport is the exact opposite of the airport back home. This is much larger, much brighter and much crowded than the last airport. I am amazed to see the vast advertisements donning the walls. However my mind is pre-occupied with other things. The first thing I need now is a WiFi connection to reconnect with the world. My brother is waiting to hear from me and I'm praying that during my absence, no catastrophe occurred back home. I want to get through the immigration as soon as possible but there is this interminable queue ahead. I ran quickly to secure a spot just behind this cute guy, but no, this short lady had to come in my way. Now I can only stare at his back from a distance and hope the sweet sight can get me through this lifeless queue. As I open the map of terminal on my phone, I could locate that there are certain WiFi kiosks just after crossing the immigration.

Waiting for my turn, I'm wondering whether my host will be here to receive me or not. In our last conversation he had told me that he'll come to the airport if he got free on time from work. My watch is still showing the home time so I have only a vague idea about the time here. I wish I could get WiFi sooner so that I can know whether to find him here or just get a cab to his apartment. Clearing the immigration, I started looking for the kiosks. The Duty Free Shops here offer alcohol and cosmetics only. For a moment I thought I should buy a bottle of wine for my host. I should get something nice for him. But first, I need wifi and second he doesn't even drink. So wine can wait for now.

There is a crowd outside, people waiting for their dear ones who have just arrived. I am trying to get a quick look at the faces to make out if my host is here or not. But since I have never seen him in person before, there's a chance I may miss out him. Better to get the network first. The girl on information booth was really lovely and immediately offered to help me. Within seconds I am back in the web world. Quickly I texted, first text to my brother "Landed in Singapore. Safe & Sound. Peace Out" Next text to my host "Arrived. Are you coming to the airport?" Within seconds my phone screen flashed. First text is from my brother, "*thumbs up*". Next text is from my host, "I think you just passed me".

Alright, he is here. I called him up and explained my location. He appeared from nowhere. There is a formal handshake and I am genuinely grateful to him to come all the way to the airport.This is the first time I am actually seeing him. His face looks familiar, same as in the pictures I have seen. He got a lean frame and is wearing a casual shirt & jeans. He is better looking in person, I thought. And now I'm thinking I should have dressed better. I wonder if he's?checking me out now and getting disappointed! I am still wearing my work clothes. Seriously girl, a little lipstick & mascara wouldn't have hurt. But your lazy ass didn't bother to even wash your ugly face! And here he is looking all cool, you may even call him handsome but there was this innocence in his eyes that got my attention. There is an aura of positivism around him and I instantly felt I have picked a nice host.

I am literally starving by this point. We decided to get a quick bite before heading towards our first destination for the night.

I checked my phone and just now got a text from my boss. He had read my message that I was taking the day off and is texting me to know about my whereabouts. I had to chat for while now to explain my plans. I am feeling bad for keeping my host waiting. I apologized for my behaviour but he seemed to be fine with it. I knew I had to keep the conversation with him going too because we were stuck with each other for next few days. And I don't want him to think I'm a boring company. We are sitting? in McDonalds and I am under tremendous pressure to eat and talk simultaneously. Since I am not a good conversation starter (Which is somewhat ironic for a girl who travels solo) I chose the most predictable topics? to get it going. I came to know about his job and little bit about his family. He seemed pretty comfortable with this conversation and was taking interest in my life as well. Nice guy.

In the cab ride home he was explaining where are we heading next and urged me not to take too much time to freshen up. I knew he was sharing the apartment with his roomate. When I asked about his roommate, he told me that he has gone out of town for the weekend. So we will be having the whole apartment to ourselves. We reached his place. It is quite clean considering it's a bachelor house. He showed me my room and the restroom. Being a good girl, I changed up as fast as I could and we headed to our first stop for the evening. This was the first time I noticed he had held out the door for me. Although most may see this as a common gesture, I feel chivalry becomes sexy when you least expect it. He is taking me out for a light show in the Garden Bay. There is a light and sound show at the park famous for the giant supertrees that lit up to the sound of music. We had almost missed the 15 minute show but luckily managed to see the last one minute. These artificial supertrees seem like they have been pulled right out from a fairytale book. The lighting is magical and the music combined with the light synchronization makes the place almost dreamy. The place is dark except being filled with the dazzle of twinkling lights on the trees. If it were a little less crowded, it would be almost romantic with all the subtle colors flooding the sky. I am already loving this city.

Next he wants to show me a water & light show just in front of the mall. For that we need to walk towards the Marina Bay Sands. The hotel looks spectacular in night. I have seen this building in pictures only. It took me few seconds to acknowledge that I'm actually seeing it right now. This piece of modern architecture is pure wonder. My host was nice enough to offer to take my picture before I even asked. He was even showing me good spots to get the pictures clicked. I guess he is aware of this unrelenting need of a traveler to collect as many memories as she can in shape of stupid pictures.

As we walked over the bridge joining Garden Bay and Marina Bay Sands, we talked about our various experiences of adventure sports. His stories are far more exciting than mine and I am enjoying listening to him. He seems to be a serious risk taker and has done most of the things people like me only dream of. I wish I could be like him someday. Someday I can also have stories like these to tell. Stories like, Remember the time when I night dived with the whale shark, she was like inches away from my face. That was crazy. And stuff like that. Maybe oneday.

Many people have already surrounded the area to secure a good spot for watching the water show.

We stood there for fifteen minutes but the show never started and people were now dispersing. We too decided to get on with our walk. The Helix reminds me of the time when I was a medical student. How clueless I was with my life. Did I ever thought at that time I might be walking here someday. Look at me now, swaying along the Helix Bridge! Life is unexpected. Best things do happen unexpectedly.

"So how are you finding Singapore?". He asked. I looked at him and couldn't help but smile. These eyes are gonna kill me soon.

The view from Helix Bridge is beautiful. I can see Marina Bay Sands on my left, with the Museum and the floating football field on my right. I can imagine the floating field in action. People sitting on the seating area build on a sloping ceiling. It must be great fun to watch a live match here. I wish I could see that too someday, but life is too short to visit here again. Better I make the most of it right now. As we walking side by side, I sensed a smooth fragrance in the air. But couldn't make out from where it's coming from. Anyway, it's good.

I am constantly trying to get the conversation going. Though now I am making less of an effort and things are taking a smooth course of its own. He is also making some efforts, I can tell. I can only hope he is having a good time. Because I sure am.

Now we are approaching the famous Merlion. My first reaction when I saw it is like 'Isn't it supposed to be a little bigger?' He just laughed. The structure is more beautiful in reality than we see in pictures. It's the most iconic feature of this city. And true to its fame, it's brilliant. You can see the skyline in the backdrop from one side, the Helix Bridge and Marina Bay Sands on the other. Quite a sight. Alot of people had surrounded the figure, all holding selfie sticks in their hands. It was actually a funny scene. Everyone crazily tilting their necks to get the right angle to capture their head and the Merlion in the same frame. I laughed harder than I should.

Next stop is of my choice. I had told him earlier that I want to visit a rooftop bar. And true to his promise, he was taking me to one of the highest rooftop bars in the city. The bar, "1 Altitude", does not disappoint for the view it promises. The bar area is at 63rd Floor and sitting area is one level higher. It offered 360 degree view of the city. We could see all the way to the wide open ocean with hundreds of cargo ships resting for the night. Below us, I could see the tiny cars moving around on the almost flawless little roads. I had always loved watching the skylines. On my every trip I make it a point to watch the city from above. It gives a whole new perspective. You can watch how far you have come. Watching this city from here is now finally satiating my craving for city-lights. I had ordered the bar's speciality cocktail. He had warned me earlier about the drink that many people don't like it, but I wanted to taste it anyway. The drink is definitely better than expected. I have had worse cocktails in more expensive and not so classy bars. So this definitely is worth. As the alcohol is now entering my system, I am becoming more relaxed. Almost no forced conversations now. "So, how does living in Singapore feels like?", I asked. "It's great, I like the city, people are good, I love my job, so it's cool". "How about you? Do you love the work you do?", he asked. I told him about my job, the perks, my office and everything. "That's good, but what do you really want to do in life? Like your dream job?". Wow, that's a good question. I'm thinking what should I answer. "I want to travel, see the world, live like there's no tomorrow. I know it doesn't sound like work, but that's what I want to do". He just smiled. I think he knows what I mean. I finally said, "I know it sounds Weird, but I am a crazy person". He said, "I don't know about that, but can't argue with the carzy part". And we both laughed. Why the hell would such a nice, funny, handsome guy waste his time in showing stupid girl the city? I know you are getting there again, but hold your horses girl.

As we spent more time talking about this & that, I came to know that he is also not a chatty type. It's safe to say that we can enjoy moments of silence too, without feeling awkward. However at the back of mind I was still wondering if he finds me a good company and isn't regretting his decision to host me already.

The DJ is playing just the right music and I start to move slowly. I can see people around moving to the beat as well. He looks amused. I wink at him and kept dancing slowly. This is getting fun. I wish he could join me but he doesn't seem to have any inclination towards it. A group of girls is dancing few steps away. As I am watching them dance, my eyes met with one of the girls. She winked at me and I smiled back. She gestured me to join them. I danced my way towards them. I can see he is watching us dance and smiling shyly. I danced with the girls on a couple of songs and came back to my host. "I can see you have diverse interests", he said. I instantly replied, " Because why not?" and winked, again.

As I finished my drink he suggested that now we should go as the ambiance is getting dull now. As we entered the elevator, I sensed that breathtaking scent again. Now I get it, it's him. Oh my God, does he really smell that nice! I wonder how would it feel if you smell him from a little more closer.

Now we are back to the ground level but I'm not just ready to head back to the apartment. So he is taking me to another place nearby that is famous for clubbing and partying. This place is just a short walk away and we are now talking about Chandigarh. God, I miss Chandigarh. He's telling me about his late night adventures in our city beautiful. And it all seems so relatable. As we enter the clubbing zone, I'm immediately reminded of my own late night parties and the stupid things we used to do when we were out for the whole night. You should have met me in Chandigarh. We would have partied together.

I wonder if he ever misses Chandigarh, he has been living in such a beautiful city for so long. This thought is just crossing my mind when he said out of the blue, "God, I miss Chandigarh".

I'm starting to feel tired now and a bit hungry too. Before I said anything he spoke up, " You should eat now, it's getting late and you had a long day". I guess he can read it on my face and suggested we should go and get dinner. As our cab arrives, again I notice he is holding out the door for me. Really? Aren't you the perfect gentleman? A gentleman who can read mind of stupid, horny girls?

I'm wearing a flowing summer dress that is hugging my body tightly and now this dress is feeling too much to be carried on any longer. I so want to change. He had mentioned that the food court is just around the corner, so I guess I can quickly change before going for dinner. I really want to wash my face, get rid of this lipstick and get into more comfortable clothes. I asked him if I can quickly change. I think he got a different idea and instead told me that I don't have to worry about the dress since it's pretty fine considering the place and the company. Ok, so the dress is a little short and a little tight. But seriously, How does this guy even thinks of such nice things to say?

The food court is good, something similar to street-side food back home but more organised and definitely more cleaner. He suggested a local tea and a local bread for dinner. He told me that he didn't like it the first time he tasted the tea but it's good. The food arrived along with the tea. I was literally starving and praying to God for the tea to be good. I really need a tea fix right now. The bread was good, but the tea, Oh my, the Tea is simply mind-blowing. Oh dear host, I will forever be grateful to you for having introduced me to this tea. I am in fucking love with this tea!

On that thought, I must go to sleep now. Tomorrow is going to be long day. As we walked back to the apartment, again he was there holding out apartment door for me to enter. Really? Is this a dream? Where is this guy from? Angel-world?

"You can either sleep in your room or on this couch in living room. Bathroom is shared". I chose the room option, obviously. All I want now is to bury myself in that mattress and never wake up again. I am so goddamn tired.

I have decided to see the sunrise in the morning and like a good guy that he is, he agreed to take me there. So now we technically have only 2.5 hours to sleep. As I laid down, closed my eyes, I can't help but wonder how good he is. There was a text a from my brother. I had already? shared my host's address & contact number. So there was nothing much to worry about. He had texted to know how's the guy like. And if I am comfortable there. That put a smile on my face. I wrote "He is really nice. I am having a good time. Don't worry."

I have no idea how I mustered the courage to come alive at exactly 5:30 AM to get ready for the sunrise. I chose to wear my shorts and a black T-shirt. While my mind is still sleeping, my body somehow carried me to the East Coast Park.

I slowly came into my senses with the dim lighting up of the sky with dawn. Before that I was just lifelessly sitting there. Now I can actually see what is in front me. We are sitting on a high rise platform that I have no idea how I climbed. There is almost no noise except for the water in front of us. I can see almost a hundred cargo ships in front of me, all over the visible ocean. They look like twinkling little boats from the distance. The water and sky are both grey at this point with the orange light at the horizon and twinkling stars on the boats that seem floating mid air. I am not in my full senses to make a conversation this early in the morning. So we were just sitting there quietly, taking in the view. Silence was what I was familiar with and this time it didn't seemed strange too. I have seen better sunrise views but I guess this one was different from the rest. This looked it a dark grey curtain is holding a flame behind it. Like it doesn't want the light to go through. And the stars below don't want to lose their charm blinded by the stronger flame. This was beautiful. We sat there a little longer until the the whole sky was lighted up and the twinkling stars almost absorbed in the sky beyond. I stole a few glances at him and am wondering how serene he looks sitting here. Like he can sit here all day and say nothing and still be as alluring. Don't stare at him for too long!

We headed to get coffee before going back to the apartment. We had decided to sleep in for another couple of hours before heading out again. A girl came up, whom we had shortly met earlier when we were sitting on the platform. This time she stopped by again to say 'Hi' and asked whether we were dating. Before I could make myself conscious enough to comprehend the question and give a descent answer, he answered "No, we are just friends". Friends, are we now? Maybe no, but I guess there was no other decent answer. Why can't we be friends? Because you are one weird girl and he is descent guy! So shut up. I crouched back to my sleepy state and now thinking about my beloved mattress waiting for me. As soon as I hit the mattress I am dead.

There is a knock at the door indicating it is time to get ready. I check the time and realize I had already overslept. So I am instantly up and about. Today I decide to go a little bold with my appearance. Since I am going for an adventure of a lifetime, why not get dressed for it. I wore an off shoulder top that I had shamelessly stolen from my friend. And here we go!

Let me just say that these past few hours were actually like a mixture of a thrilling movie sequence, a wild dream and a childhood fantasy coming true at the same time. I am literally speechless. There is this stupid smile on my face that just won't go away. I'm smiling like an idiot, giggling like a little girl on my own. I have always been a die-hard fan of the movie series Transformers and have been dreaming of roller-coasters since I was a little girl. And just now, I had experienced both, that too in one go. You can't even imagine my happiness right now. I'm just speechless. He is asking me did I like this, and all I do is give him the broadest, stupidest smile ever. He can read it all over my face how fucking ecstatic I am right now. I am falling short of words to describe my experience here, I guess I'll just save this feeling in my heart for now. This is my happy place now.

Before Universal Studios, I used to think love was the best thing ever happened to me. If not for this guy, I had almost given up on my plan to visit Singapore. It was one fateful night that he called me up and ensured me that all the trouble I'm facing to get here will be worth it. These past few hours are what I'll always remember. I literally want to hug him and shout out 'Do you realize? how fucking awesome you are?Thank You for bringing me here. I won't ever forget this! A hundred points to Griffindor!

As the time for leaving the Studios came closer, I am already feeling bad. I don't want this to end. Can't I stay here for a little longer, for like forever?

It is almost time for a Crane Water Show just outside the studios. This is a free show so all we had to do is to get a good seat. I decided not to take any pictures now. I will just enjoy this and be in the moment for now. The show displayed out beautifully a story of two birds. Both birds were living a mechanical life. Until the male bird realizes something is missing. He decided to pursue the female bird and nudges a little. He slowly approaches her and it beautifully shows out how his mechanical being is slowly coming into life after he saw her. How his heart comes to life when he falls in love. You can actually see how he is transformed from a lifeless machine to a beautiful bird on the wide LED Screen. It was so lovely. Soon she also realizes the magic of love and her heart starts beating to the rhythm of his heartbeat. They now fly high together embracing the love they have found for one another. It got me thinking that how true it is. Love surely brings out the life in you, you just have to find the right person to awaken your soul. While we are watching the show, our hands touched accidentally few times while we were adjusting to our seats. And every time it happened, it send electric shocks in my fingers. What the hell is wrong with you girl?

I have never heard about Luge before. But he suggested I must try it. And I was like 'Why not!' He got us multiple rides tickets that included three Luge rides and skyrides. And as I sat on it the instructor explained how to ride it. It seemed easy. Soon I am riding it freely and enjoying this as well. Now I know why he bought three ride tickets, as they say 'once is never enough'. We went back for the second ride and were taken up by skyride. Being on skyride is also a new experience for me. It felt like floating over the park beneath. Nice and easy. The day has not ended just yet.

Now we are going to explore another part of the island. But first we need to eat. I'm starving right now. Unfortunately the Subway is closed. So we picked some random eating joint that offered an authentic Singapore dish, I forgot the name. He ordered that dish for me and Indian for himself. No matter how hungry I am, I can't eat the food that arrived. It is too spicy and literally horrible. I could have ordered something else but honestly I don't have the courage to do that now. He insisted that I can share his food, but I am not feeling hungry anymore. I guess I can go without dinner for the night. I'm too overwhelmed with the day anyway. If only I could get the tea from last night!

As we are walking down the beach-side street there is some barbecue fest going on. They street is decorated with cute little umbrella covered bulbs. On one side of the street there are various food and beer stalls and on the other side benches are set up for people to sit and have food. The ambiance is just right to have a drink. Since there is not much left to do anyway I asked him if we can sit somewhere and get a drink. I asked him to order one for himself too and surprisingly he agreed.

We ordered wine (cheap wine, I must say, because it is awful!) I am still amazed that he agreed to have a drink with me. I guess the ambiance is that good for him as well. Or maybe he wants to have a drink with Me? And here we go with the forever love-struck mind of this girl again! However, poor guy gave up just after one sip. The wine was bad enough so I never pushed him. At this point I'm regretting my decision to not buy wine for him at the airport. This guy must not judge wine by the taste of this dirt. I should have gotten him a bottle of nice Jacobs Creek so he can know what an absolute bliss wine actually is. However, being a lover of alcohol, it was hard to see even this dirt wine getting wasted. I guess I can have another drink. We are not going anywhere and all I have to do now is sleep. So it's fine. I can drink his glass as well. We are sitting on one of the benches in the romantically lit up street. As I finish my second glass, I am feeling a little sleepy.

We chatted for a while after I finished my drink(s) and now I am telling him about my trip to Bali and how much I loved their local beer. I always think of that beer whenever I am drinking. I am bit tipsy and now I'm going on and on about that beer, Bintang was it's name. The taste of it is still fresh on my tongue or rather on mind forever. I told him that he ever visits Indonesia he has to get me a bottle. In past one year I had asked every acquaintance of mine who went there to get me bottle. But unfortunately I still haven't got it. I don't know whether he was even listening at this point. But I am under the influence of wine now and am in the loop of my love for my beloved lost beer. Now we had started walking again on the street to head back home. I am imagining Bintang in my arms. If only! Suddenly he stopped and pointed out at a sign. He said "Look over there". I was occupied in my own thoughts and a little tipsy too, so it took me two extra seconds to read the sign. It said "Bintang".

So this really is Bintang, in my arms! The bar is decorated with hundreds of empty bottles of Bintang. It's like my personal heaven. As I'm savoring the precious moments with my love I again felt his eyes on me. We are talking about something related to dreams. I'm too dizzy to contribute productively in this conversation. And my mind is overwhelmed with the taste. But even in my tipsy state I can feel his gaze. It's his eyes again. It's those mesmerizing eyes. Boy, please don't look at me like that. I'm already struggling real hard not to let it show. Why isn't he looking away. He's looking away now. Oh, please don't look away!

I am regretting those two glasses of wine. I should have avoided that so that I could drink more beer. The bar didn't allow takeaways. Which is sad. This was Bintang, finally, in front of me. I'm actually drinking it. I'm actually holding it in my arms. Bintang in my arms and this dreamy guy with kind eyes, right in front of me! God, is this my last day on Earth? Cause if it is, I'm ready to go. There's nothing left now. I'm done. If I die today, I will die as the happiest person alive!

So he was actually listening to all my chanting about Bintang. He pointed out the sign to me. I would have genuinely missed it since I was so lost in my thoughts. I want to ask him, 'Are you an angel? Is that why I had to struggle so much to come here, because no good things come easy? Boy, who are you?'

After what I can call one of the best days of my life, we finally headed home. By this time, it is safe to say that I am 80% drunk. But since I want to get 100% I asked him to fetch me the wine he was talking about when we were coming back. Like a good guy he was, he went up, got me glass of nice cold wine from his refrigerator. I definitely should not drink this if I want to hold my tongue. But No, that is not happening now. I will drink that wine, I will say things I should not be saying. One question is bothering me since past few hours. I want to ask him but decided not to. But now since the almost-drunk-me has a mind of her own, I will blurt it out. How come a guy this good not have a significant other? Are the girls here blind or dumb or both? Or maybe he has a long-distance. But I resolved not to ask this question since this topic never came up. Why should I bring it up? But No, the 80-going-on-100-drunk-me had different plans. I just blurted out, 'Do you have a girlfriend?' What the hell, did I actually asked him that? What the fuck is wrong with me? Seriously girl, why you must know that? Anyway he replied shortly but firmly that no, he did not. And I said "Why not?" Can you be any more stupid, you dumb ass? It's his fucking choice, that's why! Please shut the fuck up now! So finally I get a hold of myself and decided not to ask anything more. I'll just drink and listen to my shitty playlist of drinking-songs. But not so soon, now it was his turn to ask the same question. He plainly asked do I have a significant other. Are you happy now? Now fucking answer him. Since I am a bit out of my senses so am not able to make up a lie, although I could have. But then I'm thinking, what's the point of lying anyway. I can tell him the truth. So I told him about the almost-one-sided-relationship I was into. He simply said OK and the topic was over. Phew!

As I am playing my all-time favorite drinking songs, he is just sitting by my side on the couch. For a moment I thought maybe I can rest my head on his shoulder and pretend to be sleepy. I wonder what would happen next. Will he push me off? Will he pull me closer? I wonder if he is a good kisser. Seriously girl? Your horny ass is up again! I laid my head on the arm rest, opposite to him. If only I could lie on his shoulder instead! Eventually he went to bed and I passed out on the couch. Although I did not forget to turn the TV off and going for pee before sleeping. But I am too lazy right now to walk to the room and make my bed. Plus the couch is closer to wine, just in case.

"He is coming back to the couch slowly. He is sitting on couch, right next to me. And he is pulling me closer. I think he's going in for the kiss. Oh My, I am actually going to kiss him..."

"Hey, you sleepy ass, wake up!"

Ok, so this was a dream and he is standing at the foot of the couch, shouting at me. I hate this guy!

The day started out really bad. I am having a bad throat because of all the screaming, shouting, wine and beer. I have no idea when or how I got dressed up, reached the airport and got into the flight. I guess my body was walking but my mind was still sleeping. Finally we arrived at our next destination. We entered the Kuala Lumpur International Airport and now I finally came to my senses. I realized my throat is worse than I thought. I am in agony while speaking. So I gestured to him that I can't speak. He asked is it sleep or soreness. I said meekly that it's pain. I guess he knew from my face that I was not well. We went to a coffee shop at the airport itself to have breakfast. As we sat down my throat is in misery. I really need a glass of warm water to soothe my flaming throat. But since speaking was a difficult task altogether I decided that I'll just point it out to the waiter when he arrives with the order. As I was half-sitting, half-slouching on the chair, two glasses of water came. I am confused. Is it what I think it is? I took a sip of the glass in front of me. Warm water! How could he even know that there was nothing more I wanted at this very moment? My pained face immediately had the broadest smile. Now I'm feeling so much better. And he is sitting in front of me with a smug face and even has a nerve to say 'You are welcome'. Idiot! I know I should not, but at this very moment, I really really like you.

Outside the airport, our taxi driver was having trouble locating us. I spotted him at distance and waived to him. He got the hint. When he came closer he greeted us. He is a cheerful guy and immediately turned to my host, " Sir I was not able to spot you until your wife waived at me". I don't know why but I wanted to laugh out loud. Last morning we were dating, and now we are married. I wonder what tomorrow morning would be like!

So now begins a long-long day of too much walking, too much sun and too much sore throat. I am in a terrible condition. I am in one of the most beautiful cities in the world, with a great company by my side and I still can't enjoy this. This is pathetic. I don't want to be sick right now. I was trying hard not to think about my condition and have fun. But no matter how much I try, this cold always seemed to get me. I could feel he is getting bored too. That made me feel worse. I'm ruining his trip as well. But I must say he was doing everything he can to make it fun for me.

Our first stop was Batu Caves. As we arrived there, the sight of hundreds of stairs frightened me. How the hell can I ever climb this? That too on my own! Is this even a good idea? I should just go back. However, on a second thought, since I'm already here, maybe I should give it a try. I will quit the moment I felt I can't take it anymore. So I resolved to atleast try. I took a lot of time to take the first step. The stairs are narrow and I have to be extra careful not to fall over my head. Within minutes I could feel my heart beating loud in my ears. Louder with each step. I guess I should start working out soon cause this physique of mine won't get me far in the world. But I see he is making jokes and is trying to make me laugh. He pointed out to a lady walking ahead of me and mentioned how my skinny ass can't even beat this drum roll. I know it sounds insensitive, but it made me laugh. It is working. I am distracted from the fatigue, more because of his aroma than his jokes. He smells divine.

Once he noticed the sheer exertion on my face, he asked me to stop and catch my breath. He told me to look back to see how far I have already come. As I looked back, I could see that I've completed almost three-fourth of my journey. And the view from up here is just wow.

Batu Caves are known for the giant statue of Lord Hanuman at the foot of the stairs. This cave upstairs inhabits another series of smaller Hindu temples. I could see most of the tourists were Indians visiting here to offer their prayers. On reaching to the top, I silently congratulated myself and even more silently thanked him for bearing with me all the while?.

There is guided tour of Dark Caves organised by Malaysian tourism for exploring another part of the caves. He told me I can take this tour only if I am not scared of the dark. I want to tell him, Me, scared of the dark? Dude, I'm basically a nocturnal person!

So he got us tickets for the Dark Cave tour and now we have to wait for an hour for the tour to start. There was this weird smell here in the waiting area that I later came to know was the smell of Bat poo.Finally our tour began and we are walking along the narrow trail in the caves. We are provided with hand torches to see our path ahead. Our guide is really sweet and is informing us about the history and significance of the caves. These caves are home for bats, so we were strictly instructed not to flash our torches above eye level in case we don't want thousands of bats attacking us in the dark. Now we are almost in the middle of our tour and our guide instructed us to switch off all the torches and phone screens to have an experience of absolute darkness. As we switched off the torches, there was it. Infinite darkness. Darker than a room with no lights.Darker than your soul, girl. I have never experienced such darkness before. It was so fascinating yet so deadly. But, there is something else here too. Another fierce energy is here, but I am not able to put my finger on what it is. This enigmatic feeling is taking over my mind and now my thoughts are running wild. I don't know whether it is the cold, headache, fear or what, but I am not thinking clearly at this point. In that moment, suddenly his arm brushes mine. The sensation causes me to lose it all. I am not going to admit what I am thinking right now, because this is just so wrong. I am leaving tomorrow. He is someone I met two days ago. I should not be thinking about this now. Stop it, I ask myself. That energy in darkness is lust.

We switched the lights back on and proceeded ahead. As we are walking down the caves, I said,"This is a good place", he immediately said "You are welcome". I hated it. That inkling from the dark is still fresh in my mind. So I'm really careful in keeping a safe distance between us. Once or twice during the walk on slippery surfaces I genuinely needed his hand to help me climb up or down but I didn't ask for it. I am terrified what his touch can do to me. And he didn't offer to help as well. See? He is a good guy, not a weirdo like you!

After the dark caves, our next destination the famous KL Tower. On our ride back to the city I tried to get some sleep. But I just can't seem to fall asleep. I have a hunch that he is looking at me while I try to sleep and this is making me really conscious. Why is he looking at me? Do I have something on my face? Do I look weird sleeping? Girl, you look weird nonetheless. So just chill. I will now just pretend to sleep and hope to get some rest before we reach.

At the Tower we bought the tickets for skydeck to view the city 360 degrees. I do have to carry my backpack all the way which is not helping me beat this cold-sore-throat situation. Anyway we head up to the top. There is a nice cold breeze out here. Standing on the skydeck I can see the whole city and the mountains beyond the city limits. Right in front of me are the Twin Towers. The weather is cloudy, I can't see much far. However the clouds are just adding to the magnificence of the view. The buildings down looks old and sturdy. Only Twin Towers are shining exceptionally among the otherwise worn out skyscrapers. The breeze is nice and soothing my senses. I decided to sit down here for a while and enjoy the weather.

I kept stealing glances at him. He looked so charming in his white tee and blue jeans. Just the way I like it.

Once we got down we spotted the City Tour hop-on hop-off bus. I thought it would be good idea to take the ride. This way we can visit more places and can do so by just sitting (And I won't have to carry my backpack any longer).

By this time, he officially declared that I'm acting too dull for this trip and I must brighten up for fuck's sake. I felt so too. I should cheer up. I guess the lowest point of my being boring came when we were sitting at the rooftop bar and there was absolutely nothing happening. The seating arrangement is on the top of the building which is actually a Helipad. You can imagine the view, KL Tower brightly lit up in colored lights, shining Twin Towers and few other high rise buildings here and there. Because of the cloudy weather we could not see the sunset. But the breeze is cool and music is good. The place is getting crowded now and everyone seems to be having a good time, except us. Although I don't mind the silence and can enjoy my drink perfectly well in this ambiance and the music, I felt that I must make some use of the company I've got. After all, I'm not sitting alone here. After much deliberation I suggested we should play some game, drinking game to be precise. He is worse than me in suggesting a game. It took too much brainstorming and another 30 minutes of silence before I finally said we should google 'Drinking Games for boring people'.

I was drinking, he was not. The view was perfect, the chemistry not. After another session of brainstorming on his side we finally zeroed on Never Have I Ever. This should be fun, I thought. But we both could not think of any questions. It is seriously difficult for us to have a casual game getting started. Now we are dependent on our smartphone's App. (Yes, seriously, we used the app to play the game) No matter how dull this may sound, this was about to lead to some serious fun here.

'Never have I ever had my heart-broken'. Both of us drank to that. Cheers!

The more we played the more I got to know about the naughty side of him. Though I am also spilling out some not-so-good-girl facts about myself. We decided to continue the game and head to the next place.

'Never have I ever had done it in a public place.' He drank, I didn't. Oh My! Really? Where? When? But No, you can't ask that girl, there are rules!

So now I'm in front of one of the world's most iconic building, Petronas Towers. I need a picture and for that I need a good spot. It was a tough task considering everyone else here wants to a take a good picture as well. And there are too many people. After I managed to find a descent spot and he was kind enough to offer the click, we headed back for the hotel.

'Never Have I ever cheated on my partner.' I drank, he didn't. Oops, You are a bad, bad girl!

Our cab finally arrived and he is holding out the cab door, yes, again. Isn't he the perfect gentleman? As we approached the check-in counter, the charming receptionist asked us to give her our passports. Since we had booked a single room she wanted to confirm whether to offer a double bed or twin beds. She first asked 'Are you a couple?' and then in a lower voice 'Or brother-sister?'. The second part was heard by me only and I literally burst out laughing. She was genuinely confused. He didn't get it and replied that we were just friends, so we want separate beds. I am telling him about the brother-sister thing and he thought I am making this up. Dating to married and now to brother & sister! This can't get any better than this!

"Never have I ever dated a co-worker" None of us drank. That's a sign of being professional. Good girl!

After this incredibly long and mostly dull day for me, I finally lied down on my bed. We decided to continue our game, but changed the theme to Truth or Dare. Ofcourse, we are still dependent on the apps. But it's good, atleast the questions are sharp and I am getting juicy stuff out of this. This guy has done some serious stuff. And now I'm a fan.

"Truth or Dare?"


'When was the last time you had done it?'- Phone screen lit up.

"I don't remember, maybe with my last girlfriend, last year probably."

Oh? So you didn't have any hook-ups after that? Are the girls in Singapore so dumb? BTW are you available? Shut up, you horny bitch!

All of a sudden our phones buzzed at the same time. Both of us are getting a call from our mothers. I finished my call first so that he can attend his. I found it really cute, him lying to his family about 'traveling alone'. Good guy is not that good I guess.

We got dressed again and went out to grab some dinner. There is a food street right in front of the hotel. This food court is lined up with various food stalls offering different foods ranging from Singaporian food to Pakistani food. As we are walking down the street, there is now another part of the road having pubs on both sides of the street.

"I think you are dying for a drink right now".

"Yeah, because why not!"

My throat is still hurting a little so I guess I can have some brandy to help me sleep at night. We sat down and I ordered a drink. We continued our game and things were now taking a different turn.

"Truth or Dare"


'Kiss the guy sitting right in front of you.'

Is his phone a witch or something? I am embarrassed and shocked at the same time. I try hard to pretend to be cool about this and simply say, "I don't think it's a good idea." Ofcourse it is the best idea at this time, but no, do not do this girl. You are going away tomorrow morning. Never to return again. I know you want to, but just don't.

I can read in his eyes that he is enjoying this as much as I am. I can feel it he wants that kiss too. But he is also holding it back. I wonder why he is not making a move. Maybe because that is not the right thing to do here. He ordered warm water for me, again. How did he know that I need it right now?

"Truth or Dare"


'If you can guess the song he is humming, he gets to hug you.'

He hummed a song and I guessed it correctly.

I win a hug from him. So now what do we do? Should I hug him right now or later? Or should I simply let it go?

I should stop this game right now. I must stop. Do not make any mistakes here girl, don't do anything you'll regret tomorrow. My brandy is here and I am having it neat. It is doing wonders to my terrible physical state. He can see me relaxing now and quietly said 'You are welcome'. Suddenly I am having this urge to say out loud, Why are you like this? Why are you so nice? Why are you so good to me? Please don't tell me you are like that to everyone you meet cause right now I would hate the thought of you being with any other girl. Maybe I am not well, maybe I am a bit high, but I want to be in this moment a little longer.

By the time we are done with our drinks (My drink, his water) I am feeling a lot better, healthwise and otherwise. Dinner is bit too spicy for me so I just let it be. But he is making sure that I eat.

We came back to our hotel room and before I realized, the game has somehow turned into the confessions phase.

"Truth or Dare"


"When was the last time you kissed someone on lips?", he asked, not the app.

"I think last February, my boyfriend, about 11 months back."

But in last 11 hours, I've kissed you in my head a million times. Does that count? No girl, that does not. Because first, it's all in your head, and second you are crazy.

As we are laying down in our beds, I am just looking at his face. Our game is still on and we are confessing our dark secrets as well. This feels so calm, so serene. He is telling me stories about his childhood, his past, his future plans. And I am sharing my stories, my aspirations, my dreams. He and I have been through a lot, we both are at this point pretty much happy with our lives. We both have been burned by love, we both know what we want and more importantly we know what we don't want. I am wondering why haven't I met him before. He is imperfect just like me, but he is everything I am missing. I wonder what would happen if we came together. Isn't this too good to be true? Can I move over to his bed right now? I fell asleep considering the thought to move to his bed or not. As it turns out, I didn't.

When I woke up in the morning I had just few more hours left to be on this vacation, to be with him. I am leaving today, never to return again. I might never see him again. My head is still hurting now and I so want to sleep for few more minutes. But I can't. He is still fast asleep. I look at his face, he looks so enchanting while sleeping. All these thoughts of never seeing him again are making it difficult to look away.

"Stop staring at me!", he suddenly said, his eyes closed. I blushed heavily and immediately ran to the bathroom.

I decided to take a bath and start packing. As I laid in the bathtub I am trying to remember how good this whole trip has been. He is a great guy and I do hope he had a good time as well. Tomorrow at this time I'll be in my office thinking about this very moment. The whole trip has been a series of "Why Nots" and "YOLOs" and not once did I regret doing any of that.

On our way to the airport I tried asking him about his experience of the trip. But all he said was "It was ok" Maybe he is like that always, calm and composed. Not always over-thinking, over-analyzing like me. I decided to drop the topic now. It was good for me, and I'm happy he is here. Maybe that's as far as we can ever get.

"Truth or Dare"


"Do you think we should have kissed just to see how it goes?", he asked.

Yes, absolutely!

"Umm, maybe. Yeah I guess so.", I said with a straight face.

My flight is an hour earlier than his. He came to see me off at my boarding gate. I ask him if he wishes this trip was longer. I can see he wants to say something but decides against it. He just said, "Yeah, I wish." I am not ready to leave, not just yet. But I can sense the distance in his eyes. He is just nice & polite. Nothing more. It is wrong for me to fall for him. The time to go came nearer.

Our goodbye happened at the skytrain station in the airport from where he had to take the train for his terminal. Our eyes met but neither of us said anything. I could stare at those eyes all day! Do you feel the same? I know you don't. But I wish you did.

"You should come back with me to Singapore right now. You have the visa, so why not?", he said out of the blue.

"You should come with me to India. You don't even need Visa for that. Just buy the ticket, because why not?"

Then we just laughed. We are well aware of the reality. No matter how much we like each other at this moment, no matter how much we want to stay, we just can't. I wish I could be with you for a little longer. I wish you wish the same.

But all I could say is "I hope you had a good time". He said he had a good time, it was nice meeting up. He came closer for a hug. While I pulled him closer, all I want is to hold him right here. Oh his scent! It's driving me crazy! I don't wanna let go.

It was a quick hug. I must go now. Because if I stayed here for another one minute, I won't be able to leave. It's over girl, step away before he notices the tears. You promised yourself you will not let this happen to you again. So just move, now!

I quickly turned and start walking away. After few steps I turned back one last time to see him. That's it, just like that. He is gone. This trip is finally over girl. On my way to the airplane I tried not to think about this anymore and focus on what I'll do when I reach home. He is someone too good to be true. He is someone I will always think about whenever I travel next time.

As the flight attendant instructed to put all phones on airplane mode, I noticed there's a text on my phone. I open it, hoping it's from him.
"I miss you baby. I hope your trip was good.I know you don't want me to, but I am coming to get you. I'll be waiting for you at the airport. See you soon :)"
It's a text from my Almost-One-Sided-Relationship. I guess it's time to say goodbye for real.

Submitted: September 09, 2017

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