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The Parting Gift






The graduation ceremony album fell off the top shelf while 

searching the closet. She wiped off the dirt to see  

Class of '99 shine again.  Just seven hours before she got 

married,Wing Commander Zain Ali showed up in Zara's life again. 


The last group photo before he died.They had signed the photo  "Zain, Zara and Veer best 

friends forever". 

Zara's eyes moistened."When will you leave me Zain - its been five years and I have to 

move on - stop reminding me of your absence " she sobbed in the silent corner of the 

room. 


Just then,there was a knock on the door "who is it?" she asked regaining her 

composure.There was no response.After a few seconds there was a knock again.

"Who is it " she shouted this time. Frustrated at not getting a response she got up to open 

the door. It was Wing Commander Veer Randhawa.


"I thought you were supposed to be at the ..."

"I was - and you my love  , should've come" said Veer handing over the envelop.

"What's this?" she asked.

"Don't ask just see" he said.

Zara opened the envelop to see the picture of the reunion party. 

"Look closely" he said lowering his voice.


Her fingers trembled and lips quivered in shock.

All , the pilots were  neatly seated in three rows, raising a toast ....and a faint reflection 

of Zain, who  sat at the top row, smiling with a thumbs up!"





Gyanban Thoughts : this is loosely based on a  true story , Freddy Jackson who appeared in the Godard Squadron group photograph on the day of his funeral in 1919.








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