When a stranger smiles to you.

Photo by Henrique Nery on Unsplash

The two strangers passed each other on a foggy bridge early in the morning. One of them, a slim, slender woman in her thirties, was on her way to town, and the other, a slightly older man in a suit, hurried out of town. As they passed each other, their eyes met only for a moment, and they sent each other a friendly smile. Was it courtesy? Or out of compassion? Or was it a grimace of destiny knowing that neither of them had any idea what that grimace had been sent over?

Last night, the same woman was waiting for her loved one. There were many challenges in her life, but one person held in her the hope that one day everything would be fine and she would earn happiness again. The man she had been waiting for tonight, like so many other nights, was her reward for all her previous disappointments and suffering. That’s why she faithfully waited for him, giving him all the love that could fit in her heart.

Hours passed and she finally got herself up from the couch, took off the transparent bathrobe in which she hoped to receive her man, and put on her jeans. It was five in the morning. Wrapping herself in a warm knitted sweater, she sat behind a kitchen table with a cup of coffee. What was she supposed to do now? Why didn’t he come? They didn’t live together, but the man she loved so much and who loved her had to have good reason to let her wait. Maybe something happened at work? Maybe there was a family accident? For several hours she could not reach him on the phone, and now, without drinking her coffee, she put on her jacket and rushed out the front door. She had to find him and he had to find out what had happened.

The same evening, two men met in the center of the city. Their meeting had to be hidden from the eyes of the others because they both kept a common secret. A relationship that no one else should have known. “When can we be together again?” asked one of them.

“I don’t know, I don’t know if I can go on with this,” said another.

“What do you mean? Do you end our relationship? ”

That evening one of them was on his way to his loved one, the woman he loved and with whom he wanted to spend the rest of his life. The man he met that night was an inexplicable mistake, a curiosity that overcame him in a matter of seconds and changed his whole life. He couldn’t take it back or nullify it. He did his best to leave it behind as painlessly as possible. But one thing that came as a surprise to him, as to so many others, was that playing with someone else’s feelings could be destiny-changing for so many people. One decision could change absolutely everything, to the roots.

Those two strangers passed each other on the foggy bridge the next early morning. Each of them carried their own secrets. They smiled at each other, each taken by their own thoughts, each in a hurry, either to their loved one or as far away from their loved one as possible. One ran against the most destructive news of her life that she herself did not yet know. Her person, the man she loved and waited so much, had lost his life that night. The other tried to escape from his fate to hide both his love and the shameful murder he hoped would never be solved.