I caved and called K. the other day. I know, I know (hides face in shame), but it was just something I had to do. Here's a transcript of the conversation, just how I remember it.
Him (rather too enthusiastically): Hi!
Me: Just wanted to... y'know... check in and things. See how you were doing. Coz we should stay friends and all (realise I am babbling and trail off)
Him: Yes, that's what I want as well.
Him: So, how's work?
Me: Oh. Oh! Work is... work (pat myself on the back for this profound statement) I'm busy. It's book and theatre season so I'm out all the time.
Him: Yes, I read your paper every now and then. But in bits.
Me: Yes (think: Yes, well you never read it when we were dating either didja?)
Him: So, your hair looks good.
Me: I know.
Him: It looks really good
Me: I know.
Him: It looked good at that party too.
Me: The one where Randeep (his friend) treated me like I was part of the enemy camp?
Him: Did he? We talked about it and decided it was okay if he wanted to carry on in touch with you.
Me: (Think: How kind) Yes, well, he hasn't called.
Him: Is Dhati still pissed with me?
Me: Yes, all my friends are (laugh to take the truth out of this statement). Your dad must be very happy, no distractions.
Him: Actually, my family was quite upset with me for a couple of days.
(I think Good. At least it's not out of sight out of mind for them.)
Me: Oh, one more thing. If you start seeing someone else, I'd like to hear it from you and not from anyone else coz we have a lot of common friends.
Him: Well, there was this one girl who I spoke to for a couple of days.
Me: (Thinking Oh. My. God. Oh. My God.) Uh-huh?
Him: But nothing really came of it.
Me: (rather squeakily) Okay.
Him: I just don't want to be in a relationship right now.
Me: (overcompensating brightly): Yeah, me neither. I'm taking a sabbatical. (pause) Would you mind if I started seeing someone else?
Him: No! No, I'd be really happy for you.
Me: (thinking: all is lost) I wouldn't be so happy if you were seeing someone else.
Him: Fair enough.
Him: So let's meet up soon
Me: Yeah. No. Not yet. Give me a call sometime.
(We hang up and I take all his..our.... pictures off my bulletin board, out of the frames, and his ring off my finger. It feels naked.)