Getting to Know a Stranger, She Said

Getting know

Getting to Know a Stranger, She Said

 

          If ignorance is indeed bliss, then I must be the happiest woman in the world.  Why, then, do I feel as if something is amiss?

                   

          Take now, for instance.  I’ve been feeling utterly restless for the last ten minutes or so.

 

          I’d been going through the motions of preparing a meal for Rakul, just to get my mind off of the uncomfortable silence that reigned in our house.  He was seated quietly in the next room, but I could feel his eyes on me.

 

          What was holding us back from talking to each other?

 

          Oh, come on, Ananthi, I thought.  Stop fooling yourself and concentrate on your duties.

 

          Easier said than done.

 

          Unfortunately, my inability to concentrate on the task at hand proved to be my undoing.  I was so lost in thought that the knife slipped and cut me on my finger instead.  I yelped, more from fright than from pain.  Out of reflex, I jabbed the wounded finger into my mouth.

 

          “Are you all right, Ananthi?” my husband asked.

 

I nearly jumped.

 

He’s talking…to me?

 

          I took my thumb out of my mouth and turned to face my husband.  “I’m sorry.  I was careless.  I’ll be more careful next time.”

 

          He wore a sympathetic expression on his face.  “Let me have a look at that wound.”

 

          “It’s all right, Rakul,” I insisted.  “It’s just a shallow cut.”

 

          “Perhaps, but I’d still like to see it.”

 

          I blinked.  This isn’t like him…then again, what do I know?

 

           “Rakul, is everything all right?”

 

          “Everything is fine.  Actually, not everything is fine.”

 

          That was the response I’d been dreading.  Nevertheless, I decided to pursue the line of thought, anyway:  “What is the matter?”

 

          “Nothing.  Everything.  I don’t know.”

 

My face fell.  “Are you…displeased with me?”

 

          “No, I’m not,” he sighed.  “But I think that maybe I should do the cooking.  That is, after we see to your wound.”

 

          I didn’t know why, but his words brought me much relief.  I found myself smiling again.

         

          “I think you’re right,” I told him.  “To be honest, I’m not much of a cook, anyway.”

 

          Rakul reached for a strip of Band-Aid and quickly treated my wound.  “That should do it,” he said.

 

“Thank you.”

 

“You’re welcome.  Now, will you please, please let me do the cooking?”

 

I wanted to laugh.  “By all means.  I thought you’d never ask.”

 

That really made my day.  I walked away with the feeling that we may be able to work things out between us after all.

 

 

 

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