*** Read the first part here. ***
“So, why did you break his heart?”
It was exactly a day past the last time they had met. It hadn’t even rained yesterday, but Gul had decided to forgive Aria. After all, they didn’t really know each other. Aria owed her nothing.
Gul had spent the rest of her day trying to absorb the reality of her break-up. She was single after almost a year of dating her previous boyfriend. She didn’t know what to do. She felt lost.
Who was Aria anyway? Gul had wondered. It didn’t matter much, she had concluded. She just needed a new friend.
“I felt trapped. I needed to grow personally, and I felt that the more I stayed in the relationship, the more it inhibited that.”
“Why? Was he controlling?”
“No, he just liked me too much for my good.”
“Kids these days are so dramatic about love”, Aria nodded dismissively.
“Well, it seems like you have quite a lot of experience in the department”, Gul replied defensively.
“I do, that’s why I know what I’m talking about, dear,” Aria smiled at Gul in a matter-of-fact way. “So what made you pull the plug on the relationship?”
“I guess he would always expect me to act in a certain way and I wouldn’t. I would have had to be someone I wasn’t, to fit his description.”
“So you “it’s not you, it’s me”-ed him? Of course that makes you appear as the bad person then”.
“What’s blaming him going to get me anyway?”
“You seem pretty sure of yourself, good for you!”
“Thanks, I try.”
“So is that it?”
“For now, yes.”
“Well, you did the right thing, I’m sure. But let’s move on. Have you heard of this thing called the Bechdel test?”
“Is that the test that requires movies to have at least one scene where two women talk about something other than a man?”
“Yes, precisely. It’s kind of a feminist agenda. The expectation is that we have lives beyond the presence of the men in our lives. And so far, we’re flunking that test real bad.”
“Okay,” Gul said, decidedly. No more moping. “This calls for another round of introductions then. I’m a student, I’m just a year into my PhD in Data Science at the university. What do you do for a living?”
“Wow, you sound really smart. Almost intimidates me. So much that I gotta rush.”
“Oh no you’re not doing this to me again!” Gul exclaimed, exasperatedly.
“Watch me!” Aria replied, mischievously.
“At least answer my question!”
“Saturday, tomorrow. Same time, same place”
“What’s the point if you’re going to flee exactly 15 mins into the conversation? Believe it or not, you’re not enigmatic enough for me to come by every day at 5 am, just so I can be bailed on.”
“Girl, you sound possessive already!” Aria huffed, walking away, swiftly. “I have a bus to catch!”
“What? At this time? What do you even do? Where do you go? You are giving off some really creepy vibes you know!” Gul shouted.
“Well then you’ve found your match,” Aria yelled back.
“I’m really hoping for a longer conversation tomorrow, okay?”, Gul conceded. Aria was already half a mile away.
“We will, I swear!”