Do you want to have some Coffee, Shiv?
Desperately need it. I cried, without even a glance at Ayushi standing at my desk with her pink cup.

The transition from college to work is usually a struggle for many. It seemed so, for me too, until I met her through a mutual friend. It is always refreshing to find someone of your age, someone who shares your trivial transition woes and someone who seeks out fun in life. Ayushi turned out to be that person, my first real friend at workplace.

On certain afternoons, after we had met our groups for lunch, we would head to the vending machine for bad tasting coffee and venting out our work issues. Soon, our camaraderie thickened and we began seeking out each other for pouring out our inner turmoil. We discussed our relationships at depth, analyzing and over-analyzing our respective partner’s actions and eventually our break ups with them. The coffee meets became a daily affair, sometimes more than thrice a day, many a times ending in frenzied debates which concluded only when either of us were interrupted by a call.

Coffee partners, we were named by our group. Somewhere deep within, we knew we were meant to be more. It almost seemed like a different subplot had been brewing in the background when our group decided to go for a trek in the Sahyadris. Months of friendships, hundreds of coffee and thousands of incessant conversations had created a powerful infatuation for her. I wanted to be a part of her.

Under the gaze of a million stars, amidst the silent voices of the mountains, she lay beside me. The campfire had been put off, but the smoke still lingered in the cold wind; the music inside me still playing long after the songs had stopped.
I stared at her flawless skin, her long eyelashes dancing in the breeze as she gazed up the sky. This felt like the moment; all those secrets, conversations over coffee leading to a single moment where the friendship morphed into something more beautiful. I turned sideways clumsily, distracting her zen. She faced me, her moist eyes exposing the deep tremor flowing through her.

I saw her sad expectant face as I pushed her wavy strand of hair away from her face. As I pat her cheeks, I could see a warm smile.

Do you want to…?

The world paused. I felt my blood rushing to my face, a tense feeling gripping my stomach and the air between us becoming thicker.
I moved close to her. She glanced to her other side, to check on our other friends and turned to my side, our faces almost touching each other.

Our breath was one. I stared deep into her eyes, waiting for her to ask again.

Shiv, Do you want to have some coffee now?



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