Among the streets of Mumbai, where street food aroma mingled with vehicle honking lived Rajiv. He was a Taxi driver manoeuvring on the jam-packed roads with dexterity.
Valentine’s Day was near and although the city hummed with excitement, away from it all Rajiv couldn’t shed the bitterness that accompanied this day. Years earlier on Valentine’s Day, his best friend Vikram had betrayed him and their friendship was over.
Rajiv, driving his taxi through the bustling city streets received a request for a ride. His screen lit up with Vikram’s name, the passenger. Thinking of it now, Rajiv was surprised that he had accepted this , even though at first sight his reaction was different.
A few minutes later, Vikram got into Rajiv’s taxi shocked to see his old friend in the driver seat. There was an uncomfortable silence that hung in the air as they launched into their journey. Still, the air was thick with tension that did not leave space in the car.
Not able to bear the silence for long, Rajiv spoke out. “You betrayed me Vikram!” he said, his tone reflecting pain.
Vikram sat in his seat, squirming uncomfortably as he looked out of the window watching everything pass by.
“I was envious, Rajiv. Envy of what you had – your love and happiness.”
Let bygones be bygone, Vikram. Life is short and for that reason, one shouldn’t cling to the things of yesterday! Perhaps we can begin again?
Vikram turned up towards Rajiv with so many different feelings of surprise & gratefulness.
“Thank you, Rajiv. I have consistently longed for that event from the day it happened and I sincerely apologize to you.”
With the baggage of their past, Rajiv and Vikram stepped on a throwback in smiles with an assurance yet to be tested. This was just a minor first step, although you could not call it such at that moment.
As Rajiv drove, he somehow felt a sensation of calm in his presence. And as he again wandered down the turbulent streets of Thakur Town, Mumbai. He perceived that many scars might heal with time, patience and a little bit of compassion. So, why not start afresh then?
And his past showed before him.
Years back, Rajiv and Vikram were great buddies since kindergarten; attached at the hip. They were neighbours, they grew up in the small town of Rewa dreaming together, sharing secrets and awash with memories.
At that point, Rajiv was in a blooming courtship with Meera a girl he loved more than his life itself. They had plans to spend Valentine’s Day with each other relishing every moment of their burgeoning love. On the other hand, Vikram is filled with jealousy and vowed to end their love affair by destroying it.
Vikram went ahead and gossiped falsehoods about Rajiv portraying him in light that is negative, soiled his name. He framed Rajiv as one who trashed Meera’s trust and hence made her doubt the relationship associated with him; which in essence broke her heart. The betrayal of Vikram destroyed Rajiv’s life; he couldn’t understand why such a close friend sank so low. he aftermath of Vikram’s deceit left Rajiv heartbroken and shattered. Meera’s trust in him was shattered, and their relationship crumbled under the weight of Vikram’s lies. Despite Rajiv’s attempts to salvage what was left of their love, the damage had been done, leaving him with a deep sense of betrayal and resentment towards Vikram.
The spillover of Vikram’s betrayal broke Rajiv into pieces. The trust Meera had in him was shattered.
He left Rewa and came to Mumbai, to start again. Logarithms to time, he established a taxi service and an automobile garage business in Mumbai and had been well set up here. One of Rajiv’s drivers did not come to pick him up, so he called for a taxi and that is how came where Vikram picked him up.
Though the wounds from that tragic Valentine’s Day were fresh as Rajiv met Vikram in his taxi. As they continued their journey, Rajiv couldn’t ignore the irony of the situation – two estranged friends brought together by fate on Valentine’s Day.
Vikram’s actions not only destroyed Rajiv’s relationship but also severed the bond of trust and friendship they once shared. The pain of that betrayal lingered in Rajiv’s heart, casting a shadow over his subsequent relationships and tarnishing his outlook on love and friendship.
He left Rewa and came to Mumbai to start afresh. Over the years, he set up a taxi service and automobile garage business in Mumbai and was well-settled here.
As it happened, one of Rajiv‘s drivers could not join the duty, so he took the taxi and this is when he met Vikram.
As Rajiv encountered Vikram in his taxi, the wounds from that fateful Valentine’s Day were still fresh in his mind. The opportunity to confront his old enemy presented itself, stirring up a whirlwind of emotions as Rajiv grappled with the betrayal that had haunted him for so long.
As they reached their destination, Rajiv and Vikram exchanged a tentative smile, their hearts lighter with the burden of the past lifted off their shoulders. It was a small step towards reconciliation, but it was a step nonetheless. As Vikram was alighting from the cab, Rajiv came out and both hugged each other. Rajiv asked Vikram to come home as he was living nearby. Vikram agreed. And as Rajiv rang the call bell of his apartment, Meera opened the door. The three childhood friends spoke a lot and lightened their hearts.
Both Meera and Rajiv drove Vikram to his home after dinner. They couldn’t help but feel a sense of peace wash over them. Perhaps, in the spirit of Valentine’s Day, there was hope for forgiveness and redemption, even in the unlikeliest of circumstances. As Rajiv navigated through the chaotic streets of Mumbai with Meera by his side, he knew that some wounds could heal with time, patience, and a little bit of love.
So, love wins!
I hope you like the story.
Love & Light,
Prompts by Authorpod – A taxi, an old enemy and valentine’s day.