It felt cold. Almost numb and unfeeling.
There he stood, chatting away with my friend, staring down at her with a shine in his eyes I’d never seen. And to a corner, I stood, clutching the straps of my bag, biting my lips and looking down at my worn out red sneakers.
I heard them laugh. I watched them hold each other’s hand. And somewhere in that moment, a silent tear slipped down my cheek. Why, wasn’t it the very same guy I had been pining for since the last month, dreaming like a typical teenager, falling trap to his charms. How did I miss out the fact that every time he talked to me, his eyes never met mine, for he kept looking for somebody else? How did I not see the tiny little hints my friend left with me to tell him, and yet I hopelessly fell in love with somebody who could never love me?
Bringing a hand to my cheek, in the pretext of wiping my nose, I wiped away the stray tear and smiled.
“Why are you standing there?” he called, his voice so happy that it made me cringe.
“Yes! Come here, you idiot!” she called too.
A part of me kept breaking and the other part silently picked up the pieces. I felt like turning around and walking away, but I knew I’d cry. So, I walked closer to them and flashed them a grin that hurt me so much to tell.
“See,” she proudly declared, “She is the reason why we both are together now! Had she not helped, I’d have never met an amazing person like you.”
He looked up and laughed, his knees slightly bending and his hands in his pockets. I fell in love with that too.
“Well, there’s always this angel,” he gave me a grateful smile and I smiled back.
With each smile I managed to put up that was not so real, a part of me withered away and I realized it would never be the same.
“Seriously, you’ve been such a great friend to both of us! We can never think of ways to thank you enough,” he said again.
I shook my head and despite myself, I laughed.
“You’re making this so awkward! You both are in love with each other! So, celebrate! I’ll leave you alone now,” I said and the corners of my lips quivered. “I’ll meet you people tomorrow.”
Ten minutes later, I sat on the empty tennis court, clutching my jacket tight and breathing in too deep. It felt numb. I wanted to cry, but I only managed to cough.
Somebody came around and hugged me close.
“How does it feel?”
“Like shattered pieces of glass that can never be put back.”