She at my marriage ‘Aren’t you ready yet? Photographer has reached’ my younger brother asked and I moved towards the Groom’s room to get ready. In matter of hours, I’ll be married and I had mixed feelings about it. I looked out of the window to see Anita & her family arriving at the wedding hall. Anita..my best friend and the one I wanted to marry. Anita & I resided in the same street from our school days. We used to play study and do everything together. I had a crush on her from my teen years and when we joined the same college I was the happiest person on the earth. I never spoke to her about my feelings, it was never necessary. I believed we were destined to be together, until that dreaded incident in final year college trip. We went to Coorg with class mates and were staying in a scenic resort. Being a habitual early riser, I woke up early to find Anita sitting in resort bench, enjoying the pleasant weather. Situation was so romantic being in a scenic place with a girl I loved. I don’t remember what we spoke or how many minutes we spent there but I remembered the freshness of Anita’s face, the beautiful fragrance of flowers, the warmth of the weather and pleasant feeling seated in my heart. I took a momentous decision of disclosing my feelings for her and when I was wondering how to go about it ‘Look at those love birds..’ Someone pointed. This irked up Anita and she became agitated. ‘Don’t talk Rubbish. We are friends from kindergarden.’ She retorted. ‘Yeah we believed.’ Someone said and the crowd laughed. ‘I don’t care if you can’t accept it.’ She said and walked away. Her face was red with anger. I felt ashamed mixing love with friendship and never opened the topic again. Things were never same with Anita again. Though I moved on I always wondered whether Anita knew what I felt for her. ‘Akash.’ I could hear my mom’s voice. I opened the door and I could see my mom was happy to see me dressed up. ‘You are looking smart Akash’ Anita’s father said enveloping me in a hug. I touched his feet and took his blessings. My eyes searched for Anita while her parents were chit-chatting with my mother. ‘Are you done , Akash? Better hurry up.’my mom said and they all left the room. I stood before the mirror adjusting my neck tie when Anita walked in like a princess. Our eyes locked and we stood glancing at each other. ‘Congrats Akash’ she said offering her hands and somehow I didn’t feel like leaving her hand. ‘I need some solo photographs of you sir.’ Said the photographer who entered the room suddenly I was swarmed by rituals soon and I could see Anita enjoying with the mutual friends. We are destined to meet few people in life but never destined to be together. Me at his marriage ‘Akash’ weds ‘Pooja’ read the banner at wedding hall and it was hard to digest the lump in my heart. As I got down the car, I could see Akash watching us from the window and I pretended as if I didn’t notice him. Though I knew for months that Akash is getting married it was tough to put a brave face. Akash..my neighbor..my teen crush..my best friend and the person I wanted to get married with. I had butterflies in my stomach every time he looked at me but I guess he never had any feelings for me. I was waiting for the opportune time to reveal my feelings for him. It was during our final year trip in Coorg I realized he did think about me only as friend. There I was sitting in the bench in the resort lost amidst the calm nature, Akash came near me. He looked very handsome that day and something in me wanted to convey my feelings for him. We were talking about all random stuff but somehow I couldn’t bring myself to tell him. ‘Look at those love birds..’ Someone pointed.’ I was happy at the comment but looked at Akash for his reaction, I could see his face getting reddened with anger. ‘Don’t talk Rubbish. We are friends from kindergarden.’ I shouted angrily. My anger was at Akash couldn’t he understand me, does he think me as only friend?If nit, why is he angry at the comment. I felt very ashamed that moment. ‘Yeah we believed.’ Someone said and the crowd laughed. ‘I don’t care if you can’t accept it.’ I said and walked away. Akash was silent throughout the incident which made me understand he didn’t think otherwise. I never opened this topic again. Soon we shifted our house. I got over Akash but there is still part of me which wondered whether he knew what I felt for him. ‘Anita..’ you have grown up very beautiful said Akash’s mother spotting me in the wedding hall. ‘Thanks aunty’ I said. ‘Did you meet Akash? He is inside the room.’ She asked. He was looking like a hero when I entered the room. Our eyes locked and we stood glancing at each other. ‘Congrats Akash’ I said recovering myself. I didn’t have heart to leave his hands. ‘I need some solo photographs of you sir.’ Said the photographer who entered the room suddenly Soon Akash was swarmed by rituals soon and I could see him smiling happily as he entered a new life with Pooja.We are destined to meet few people in life but never destined to be together.