I, riddled in my own passive aggressive shit, still thought of him. I would be all quite fine by myself in my own peaceable cocoon. And without notice, he would come wafting into my mind. Very casually. Like the fragrance of spices cooking in a broth. And he would linger for hours. I wouldn't know what to do with those thoughts. Unrequited love works that way, and that way only. It's often a disaster. It addicts women for a lifetime. Then I would map times and spaces in my mind and try to locate where he would be. What he would be upto. And all for what? Nothing. It doesn't lead anywhere. Nowhere. I often take up this fruitless exercise and sit motionless inside my mind. 

Nuances of him would bother me further. Happy little things would now turn into dangerous memories and haunt me. He never once remembered my birthday. I would be silly enough to remind him a couple days in advance wishing he wouldn't forget it that time. But he always did. That would push any self destructive woman into further self destruction. Bouts of depression and loathing would follow. This used to be an annual event during my birthday, I recall. There was no escape. He would send across belated wishes. Even those sufficed, but not as much. That affair was not to last, we both knew. It was so skewed and one sided, it had no future at all.

We moved on after a fling of a few years. To newer people, fresher faces. But, I could never get him out of my mind. It seemed silly, the happenings of it now even felt juvenile and physical. Yet memories are unerasable. I had once called him on the night of my birthday to secretly extract my wish of being wished. He was having a party instead. He kept the phone on speaker on the table with all his friends gathered around it. And for what felt like the entire night, I eves dropped on their drunken conversations. His friends didn't know. I waited for him to say somethings about me. When you are in drunken stupor, you can hardly leash your tongue. May be he gave in in the end and said somethings. I cannot remember. 

He called me back the next morning to apologize for what he had said and asked me to ignore it entirely. He was really high on some authentic grass. Ah, grass I said. Yes, very smoked up. I told him I smoked too. A franker camaraderie developed that moment. May be I was upgraded in his eyes. I seemed deeper, more mysterious. 

But soon after that, we called it off. On my next birthday, I received a nameless package. It contained two packs of favorite brand of cigarettes. I lit one, inhaled the smoke and exhaled out all my heartache. In one long endless sigh. I would never think of him again. 

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