A mellifluous strain of an old romantic song drifted in from somewhere and he found himself wanting to hold her hand. So he did in that cramped space of the auto rickshaw...he reached out to her and she was taken slightly by surprise because she wasn't in that auto...her mind was somewhere else wandering as usual..and yet this tender soft gesture...was coaxing her back to the present. And she found herself smiling sadly at him.
"I am a quitter," she whispered to herself more than to him, "I will quit on you eventually," she said a little louder.
"That's the beauty of transience, " he said reassuringly "everything must come to an end"
She shrugged, "true, but I will quit on you like I quit on everything else. I will push you away, even if it killed a part of me. I will find some weird logic to justify my actions and kaput! I'll be gone, even before I'm supposed to."
"Were you always like this?" he asked with a teasing grin.
"I like to think not," she found herself gently resting her head on his shoulders. There was a faint smell of cologne and mostly just his gentle breathing.
"Who broke your heart?" his voice was closer now...in that empty auto they had somehow managed to create a microcosm- their little transient world.
The answer came to her in seconds..."I did."
They didn't speak after that.
She found a soft ball of tears forming in her throat, constricting it ruthlessly. So she let out a tiny gasp and let the tears flow. She still had his unsure hand in hers. She eased her fingers, one at a time, away from his and asked the driver to slow down.