The tale of the Aperol Spritz @aqua

He tapped his feet with an urgency. There was a current of emotion running through his body, flowing out from his toes. He gritted his teeth as he waited for the verdict. A silence penetrated the air making it stiller than usual. Tick. Tock. The second hand relentlessly rung in his ear, louder than ever before.

And then. He heard the sound he was waiting for. It was the sound of an email, zipping through the still air, charging it with energy as it landed in his inbox.

He closed his eyes. “Mammmmmmmaaaa” his voice pierced the silence. “It’s come.”

His mother deftly walked into the room. A bead of sweat on her forehead. He looked at her, suffering from intrigue. “Open it with your blessings. And tell me what it says.”

“My blessings are always with you,” she smiled encouragingly. But heart-of-hearts she hated to be the one who would either make his day or break his heart. He had worked for far too long for this moment. And it had arrived. Finally.

Her hand shivered as she clicked on the email. It was from the university at which he had applied. With a quiver in her voice she read out, “Dear Mr. Sharma, We are pleased to inform that you have been accepted…” Without listening to the rest of the sentence he screamed like a banshee. His mother looked she’ll-shocked. He had made it.

He looked at her and screamed. “Mamma, we made it. It has happened. I’m going to London.” He kissed her on the cheek and called his friends that very second. Within the next 20 minutes, he was out of the house to celebrate his win.

She beamed at her son as he left for the party. He was about to leave the nest too. The house felt a little bigger that day. Loneliness crept up to her as she thought about her husband, who had left them the day he found that his son was a special child. But she took it upon herself to prove him wrong—by showing him how special her son really was. One day, he would realise his mistake. And she knew, that day had come.

Feeling the emptiness bite into every moment, she decided to make it a day worth remembering. So she booked herself a table for one at the most beautiful restaurant in town. As she sat by the window table, overlooking the skyline of Hong Kong, she felt a sense of pride swell inside her heart. And she raised a toast to life. A mix of Prosecco, some Aperol, a dash of soda, a generous amount of ice and a juicy slice of orange swirled together in a glass at her table. She took a swig. And her phone beeped. It was her husband. And the message read, “Congratulations.”

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