Editor’s Choice: Love Short Story – The Love Letter Hero
The Love Letter Hero – Love Short Story
The note began with this :-
“Show me the meaning of being lonely…
Is this the feeling I need to walk with….
Tell me why I can’t be there where you are…
There’s something missing in my heart…..”
Ravi, who didn’t have any idea about “Back Street Boys” read the beautifully written letter with trembling hands. Radha was shouting fiercely as usual. Rahul was standing near the entrance of his room, with folded arms and a cool face, with earphones plugged into his ears and with an “ I don’t care” attitude. Now, she turned to Ravi, with that ferocious face and eyes, reddened with anger.
“See Ravi, we can be very proud parents. This is our son’s love letter to someone, have you ever seen such a romantic love letter?”
Within a minute her sarcastic tone changed to fury. She looked at Rahul, who was standing there in the same way, now chewing something.
“Is this for what we had sent you to study engineering? Do you realise any of the hardships, we had undergone and still undergoing, while trying to give you the best of everything?” Her voiced is getting choked now.
Radha is going on yelling about many things, the difficulties she had to endure during her college days, her expectations when she had a son and his future, and many other usual things, which she used to choke out whenever she is in rage.
Ravi sat in the single wooden chair, holding the letter as if an important document and scrutinizing it as if it is an answer sheet of a Civil Service candidate.
His eyes were in that long letter, but he was not reading any of the words written there. The strong bund of the dam of many cherished but crushed memories, kept in an unused part of his head, broke in a weak moment, letting all those into his heart. His college days!
He was the hero of that arts college, dominated by boys; not because he was stylish, rich or intelligent. But he was the one and only one, who helped the boys in that college and nearby colleges writing excellent love letters, so that they could win their lovers. His letters were so great that, even the most handsome, most rich and most clever among the boys in that campus approached him, to write a love letter for someone they loved or someone on whom they had a crush. He accepted all requests and did the job very well, so that, believe it or not, every girl who got a love letter written by him, fell in love with the boy who gave it to her. The ugly got charming girls, poor ones got rich cuties and the blockheads got topper girls, at least temporarily. A permanent relation was not meant by the boys too!
All envied Ravi for this particular talent, capturing even the hardest of the hearts and making them fall in love with those boys. How many such letters ! He never had an idea. Some one used to kid him telling that he will get any girl, rich or beautiful, with his writing talent, even if he doesn’t have a degree or job. One of his friends even advised him to charge for each letter. He didn’t care, and continued writing love letters as if it was his destined duty. (But years later, while searching for a job after graduation, he had a second thought on this latter idea too, if he had charged at that time, he would have had enough money in his hand to start at least a small business… crazy time!!)
It was during those college days, something happened which he would never forget. He saw a girl from the nearby women’s college. Having lot of networks those days, he managed to collect her details. No one doubted him, because that was his accepted “profession” those days. Her name was Renuka. She was not extremely beautiful, rich or a topper,only a mediocre, but there was something in her which attracted him and made him fall in love for the first time. Though he never believed in love at first sight and all those things, he knew he loved her and wanted that to be a permanent one. Knowing more about her, he assumed they both will get along well, which gave him hope. And , being the “love letter hero”, his first communication should clearly be a love letter, he thought. Without discussing the idea and wish with any one, he wrote a love letter, after taking much time, than usual. Then he understood, it is difficult to write a love letter if we really loved someone. Next thing was to give it to her. It was not easy. He can’t entrust it to the usual “messengers” as the news will be spread like a wild fire. At last, he decided to give it by himself.
On a Saturday noon, he waited for her near the bus stop where she used to come. Seeing her from a distance, he was feeling nervous and his legs were shivering. When she reached near him, he was profusely sweating. Thinking of all the plans, he went near her and she gave a serious “Who are you? What you want ?” look. Somehow, he managed to gather some courage and started stammering something, which was not there in his plan.
“Hello, ummm….. I think you are Renuka” ….
“Ahh …… OK….. Someone from the nearby arts college has asked me to hand over this to you”.
He extended the letter with shivering hands in front of her. She snatched it, like a housewife snatching vegetables from the seller, for which she has already paid. And, she walked away.
He was still nervous and was sweating, but walked quickly and hid behind the huge tamarind tree on the roadside, so that, he can have a clear view of her in the bus stop, from there. He cursed himself for telling her “someone entrusted him to give it to her” instead of revealing his own interest, but felt excited and happy that he has written his name below, so someday she will find it was he who wrote it.
The bus stop was deserted. He could see Renuka leaning to the wall of the bus stop, checking her watch and giving a sigh, yes, the letter is still in her hand. She opened it and started reading. Ravi’s heart was beating faster and he was trying to catch the expressions from her face…. Happy? Angry? He couldn’t make out. It seems she is a fast reader, he wished to say her that it was not the way to read a love letter, as if checking a stationery shop bill and finally the consumer’s eyes would catch the total amount part only. Now her eyes caught his name. He was sure. A smile appeared on his face, but nothing on her face.
The horn of the bus sounded and he saw she was going to get into it. “When will I see her next? What will she say then?” His thoughts got wings and started flying. As the bus came to a halt in front of the bus stop, some passengers moved out of it. At that time, Renuka tore the letter into bits and threw to the waste canal beside the bus stop. Ravi stood there shocked for several minutes, with his dreams shattered. He came to his senses when a tamarind fruit hit his head.
He never saw Renuka thereafter. No one could give him any useful information about her, too. His flying dreams lost their wings forever. He didn’t write any love letter thereafter.
“Will you please stop this? Yes, it a love letter and I wrote it… So what? Is that a crime? Seeing all your show, I feel I am more than a terrorist! If I want I will write again …I am fed up by you , sick people!”
Rahul shouted all these in a single shot and went out of the house. And, that helped Ravi to come back to the present.
Radha was really broken. She started crying, which was something very much unusual. Ravi tried to console her.
“Please don’t cry Radha! He is young…”
“So? He can do ANYTHING he wants and walk so cool and proud, because he is young?” Ravi fell silent.
“Ravi, I can’t believe you have been keeping mum about all these? How could you? Didn’t we have hopes about our son… and didn’t you hear what he told before leaving …. he was fed up … FED UP OF US!!”
Radha was now crying with her face covered by her hands. She is truly hurt.
Ravi told, “It is not what you think, Radha. But I know what it is, the TRUTH! That’s why I didn’t tell anything so far…”
“What truth?” Her voice still blocked.
“You know he has written that letter for someone among his friends, to give it to that boy’s girl friend. He didn’t write it for himself. He was just writing for someone else, so why should we worry?”
A little shocked, Radha removed her palms covering her pink face and red eyes, and looked at Ravi with her mouth half open, to ask “ How do you know that Ravi?”
But, before that Ravi had put the letter in his pocket and got out of the house, may be to call back his son.