He stood at the corner of the room, in his coat and tie and neatly combed hair. His polished shoe, almost perfect, with just a small white smudge on the side; the wedding hall had just been renovated. His composure and smile were a perfect mask, impenetrable, perfected over years of restraint, years and years of wanting to do the right thing, and doing it. She was getting married today. He tried to hold back the contempt he felt towards the bridegroom, towards the scores of relatives, some whom he knew some whom he did not, contempt towards his friends and hers, who were talking about the most pointless of matters, contempt towards the insect which was buzzing around the cameraman's light. Yet he stood there smiling. Like he should. Like what was expected of him. One more day, he thought. One more lifetime. He can take the beating.
3 years had passed since they first met. It was fantastic in the beginning. It always usually is. They talked for hours. They shared music. They complained about the sad state of affairs in the country and why it is impossible to make progress under a corrupt oligarchy. And then he had to leave. He had no choice but to. And a decision had to be made. It was not the most cordial parting but he knew he had to stop thinking about her. Ill not take you through the boring details of human stupidity. Most of us have experienced it and know what happens when one is frustrated, especially in matters of affection and reciprocation. He wanted a little bit more involvement from her and she was reluctant to concede even that little bit. And so they stopped talking and that was that.
Things were fine till he received that bloody wedding invitation. Perhaps, there is some profound truth in that statement in the Thomas Crown Affair - 'People do not realise what they have till its gone'. Well gone it was and realise he did. But he wanted to attend the wedding. He wanted to see her. He wanted to see if there was even one single scrap of feeling, a fleeting vestige of emotion. Something he could use to berate himself in that absolute self criticizing mood he sometimes got into. He knew he would not get it. She was blissful and happy. "Screw her", he thought but that was a thought he could not hold. His smile had slowly transformed into a smirk without his knowledge like how sometimes it is evening and suddenly it is night. He corrected himself and put his smile back on. It was difficult but it had to be done.
She was looking at him from the wedding platform. Her eyes were on him. "Did she see that?", he thought and quickly flashed a smile. "Congratulations", he whispered with exaggerated stress so that she could read his lips from where she was."Thank you", she whispered back as is customary and looked away. Some other friend had come to convey her bloody wishes. He was a masochist but he was not suicidal. So he dusted his shoes and having enjoyed enough of his share of mental torture walked away.