After work, she was on her way home when she received a phone call from a friend who was ready to depart from New Delhi to the Valley on the last flight. The phone call suddenly knocked her heart out. She felt restless in her soul and heaviness in her brain. This is because so many memories kicked her heart and brain. The glow on her face disappeared automatically. Instead, she felt a deep sadness in her heart. She always tries her best to distract from the old memories but never succeeds.
She is very familiar with the same flight at the same time. Many times at the international airport, she had run to not miss the last flight to Srinagar. Thank God the airport authority had always given her a priority being a first-class passenger, and they had helped her catch the last flight of the valley. She did not want to be alone in New Delhi. He had always received her at New Delhi airport after her mother had passed away. He knew that she would cry like a baby if nobody had come to receive her. He knew her well.
Suddenly she remembered that once her international flight had been delayed, so was her connecting flight to Srinagar. She cried at the New Delhi domestic airport, being alone. She was not used to traveling alone. Somebody always used to be with her. Her tears flowed like heavy rain because she did not want to be away from him for one day. She called him. She was crying and talking at the same time. She told him about the flight cancelation when he was on the way to the airport. The situation was critical in the valley, so he could not come to receive her in New Delhi. He told her, “Munna, have faith. I will not leave you alone in Delhi. I will meet you there.”
She said, “But now there is no way. I don’t want to be alone here”. He said to her, “I will manage it.” The man gave up his duty because he did not want her to be alone in a strange city. Now, she thinks, where is he now? she is all alone now. Nobody is left to wipe her tears. She gets scared to be alone.
She had never traveled alone, but now she looks for him everywhere alone.
He took the same return flight and reached the hotel precisely 1900 PM. He did not even change his uniform. On the contrary, he had just put the jacket on the top of his uniform. Thus nobody knew that a senior officer was flying solo without any security.
Memories were suddenly beginning to flow back and forth in her mind. Is this the same man who could not leave her alone for an hour? Is this the same man who cannot see her tears? Is this the man who jeopardys his life so he can reach her? How could the same man give her tears forever? How can the same man leave her alone in this world?
Her life now depends on old memories. Sad memories make her cry easily. Happy memories make her smile. Nobody needs to ask her how she feels because both her voice and eyes convey the state of her heart.
While driving, she cried hysterically. She tried resting on her bed, but she could not sleep. Her eyes were closed. She felt his presence. She could see him in uniform standing next to her. He told her, “Munna, see, I’m here now. Don’t be afraid. Sleep. You look so tired. You’re not alone. I’ll never leave you alone. You remember what I told you. That distance doesn’t matter in our relationship, and my love for you will remain the same”
She suddenly opened her eyes, and she also felt his presence with her open eyes. She told him, “Yes, I remember when you told me. I remember the exact location. I was on the exit point of State Highway 47 from Highway 99 to the east. It was Nov 21, 2018, at 0430AM.