Prompt : He was the last person I thought I would end up with

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“I love you, Anika. Will you be my girlfriend?”

The guy I love just proposed me and what do I do? I walk away. Hands clutching my books tighter across my chest, I just turned and headed for the bus.

20 minutes

It feels so unreal. I have time now to reminiscence my journey with Zayn thus far. We met during his first semester at the university. I had just graduated and volunteered for the orientation week. Freshmen were divided into groups and I was in charge of his. The week was filled with games which required teamwork and we got to know each other really well. His humour impressed me as much as his wit did. I fell in love with his smile and his dark blue eyes. Before I knew it, he was the first thing in my mind every morning and the last thought before I asleep. I remember trying to stop these before it was too late. It was in vain.

15 minutes

My girlfriends were not particularly impressed when I told them. After all, he was younger and ‘boys like him run away from commitment’. Remembering how eager I was in my first semester, I reluctantly agreed with them. Project ‘Forget Zayn’ commenced two hours before I received the first text message from him. He wasn’t going to make it easy for me, I knew that. The girls set me up on blind dates but the more I avoided him, the closer we became. Soon, we were hanging out in cafes and parties with mutual friends. Party. Yes. My first heartbreak. It was a wonderful party hosted by a friend of his and I was having a good time. The music was great and the company we had was awesome. We were laughing all night until… until Zayn left with another girl. The music became deafening and I felt nauseous. One of my flatmates who was there simply grabbed my hand and we left the party. We walked home silently. Girlfriends ; we bond over the complete cycle of love and heartbreaks.

10 minutes

I will admit it, i have fantasized a life with him. I mean, how would it feel like to see him when I wake up? I had created scenarios where he would ask me out spontaneously. At the bus stop, anywhere on campus, over a text message – I was desperate. One day, it hit me like a truck. Why would this young man, getting ready to face the world while enjoying his university life, with many beautiful, younger girls who clearly didn’t go through eight semesters of Business courses hanging around him, date me? I don’t really stand out, I am an average girl-next-door. And just like that, I began going on blind dates and never really found any suitable men. I had relationships which never crossed the three-month mark and slowly, my thesis became my sole companion. Zayn was pushed far into a dark corner of my mind and I turned my heart numb.

5 minutes

He was the last person I thought I would end up with. He went out with some girls, all relationships short-lived like mine. Surprisingly I never felt hurt when he told me about them. I said it, my heart was numb. We met every Saturday morning for brunch at various cafes and discussed our week, new gossips, about life and much more. If he gets a call or a text, he never answered them. He’d walk me home every single time no matter rain or shine. For every step he took towards me, I laid a brick on the wall i built between us. I simply don’t want to get hurt. Me and my stupid expectations.

Arrived

I am now lazily dragging my feet up the stairs to my bedroom. I recall the conversation we had and his unexpected question. Oh look! I’m smiling like an idiot. People will talk if we are together. I’m not sure if my father would approve of it. My girlfriends would definitely place bets to see how long it’ll take before i run to them with tears pouring down my face. Then there’s the question ; where will we end up? Will he be a short and sweet chapter in my life or would her stay forever? I don’t know the answers to the thousand questions in my head. What I know is that I love him. I don’t know what the future holds for either of us, but there is only one way to find out. I dialled his number and waited for him to answer.

“Hey…. I love you, too. Yes, I want to be yours. Now and forever,” I said. He could hear me smiling.