Wat happens next….
Little later my mom came out and said, finish the discharge formalities let's take her home.
We went home. She was resting in Adithi's room and my mom gave her some food as per the physician's instructions. Nethra requested us not to inform her parents as they would just come and rebuke her. This will add to her pain and in no way will give her relief or change the situation. Later, my mom came to my room and said, "I wanna have a word with you"
I said, "Yes mom, what's it about?"
She said, "It's about Nethra"
I said, "Mom I'm really sorry, actually I was very angry with her and I don't know how I spoke all that. Maybe because of anger"
She said, "There is nothing to feel sorry about. I knew you were in love with her and I also knew that you didn't realize its love. She is not a bad choice to regret; she is like this because of some bad incidents that happened in the past; she is also a girl, a human being who is deeply in need of love that was denied by her heartless parents. I'll talk to dad about this if you are serious but before that I need to clarify certain things with you"
I asked, "What is it?"
She said, "She attempted suicide because of vexation as her parents have applied for Divorce and her father is getting married to someone else after the divorce. An insecure thought of their lives and future had made her depressed and has been troubling her. That's why she had decided to end her life"
I asked, "Mom anyway they are not together and the divorce is not going to change anything. She could have told me Mom. Death is not a solution"
Mom said, "When you are depressed you won't be able to think and decide wisely. Do you know she hates men? She is friendly with you because you care for her; respected her as a human being ignoring her callous nature and grumpiness" I asked, "What's the reason to hate men in particular?"
Mom said, "Do you remember one day when we were watching a movie she became nervous and started to shiver"
I said, "Yes, I do remember"
Mom said, "Taking advantage of her family situation one of her relative had been sexually harassing her for some time since she was thirteen years old. This has affected her psychologically; it's kind of a mental disorder. If she comes across such situations or thinks about it or if she sees something that reminds her of that she becomes nervous"
I said, "Mom, it's shocking. How could life be so cruel on somebody who is helpless?"
Mom said, "Life is like that. She wants to be happy, move around with friends and lead a normal life like other girls of her age but this incident makes her not to trust anyone and she thinks grumpiness and loneliness is a shield to protect her. She is very timid in nature and fears about life but she portrays herself as a bold and stern person. Now Arjun, tell me are you patient and matured enough to handle a wife like her?"
I said, "More than I know myself you know me better; you tell me mom will I be able to handle this?"
Mom said, "I don't know, but my advice for you is to stay calm and make her feel comfortable with you. Make her trust you and love you. Love cures and pacifies. You will have to be patient till that. It'll take time for her to develop confidence in you. Love is not the relationship of two bodies. It's the bonding between the hearts & minds of two individuals that lasts forever.
If you really love her as much as you portray, you've got to give her some time. I'm really concerned Arjun, she is not mentally sound right now and may not give in to your urge for physical intimacy. This might frustrate you to the extent of giving up your relationship leading to divorce or separation.
She attempted suicide because she didn't like her parents' divorce and just imagine her mental agony if she has to sail in the same boat. Take time, think and tell me. Are you gonna take her as your wife or are you gonna give up your love for the pleasure of physical relationship?"
Mom paused for a moment and continued, "If you are going for the first choice I'll talk to dad and at the right time we will talk to her mother or father"
I said, "Mom, there is no need to think I have made up my mind, It's now I love her more. I wanna go for the first option. I wanna take her as my wife, I know her heart is bruised; I wanna heal her hurting and relive her from her pains. It's no fault of hers mom. I don't know if she will ever open up or mingle with anyone like she did with us and vice versa if others would be able to understand her pain and grief or not. I want to be by her side always mom”.
Mom said, "Don't be hasty in deciding. It's easy to say but practically it's difficult. As a mother I wanna see my grandchildren. When I know the chances are very less, how do you think I'll accept to it?"
I said, "Mom, It's not a decision in haste. I'll stand firm and stick on to it come what may. To fulfill your wish we can adopt children and if you want grandchildren in your genes, technology has advanced to great extent in the medical field. I don't wanna quit her for a silly reason mom"
Mom said, "Good, I appreciate your decision but time alone will reveal the zeal of your love. All that we discussed should be between you and me. You should never discuss this with anyone especially Nethra and embarrass her at any point of time in your life"
I said, "I swear, I'll not discuss this with anyone"
Mom said, "We'll talk about it later. Don't trouble her asking anything. Okay" saying this she walked to the door and before she could leave, naughtily smiling she said, "I have never come across such a worst and wild proposal ever in my life"
After the discussion I was thinking about it and I felt pity for her. I decided, I should provide her a good life and replenish all the happiness and love that she lost all these years.
I went Adithi's room to see her. Adithi and Nethra were playing chess. I pulled up a chair and sat next to Adithi and said, "Hi Nethra, how are you feeling?"
She said, "Better"
I said, "Please don't ever try to do like this again what so ever. I know you're grieving and your heart is bleeding but death is not a solution for anything. I just thought what if your attempt had succeeded. The thought of losing you made me wild and that's why I behaved badly. I didn't mean to hurt you but I meant what I said. I'm very sorry if it had hurt you in anyway"
She didn't say anything but silence. I asked, "Shall we go out for a drive and get some fresh air?
Adithi said, "Okay, let's go to ice cream parlor I need triple sundae. What do you want Nethra?"
I said, "Let me check with mom if I can take you out and if you can have ice creams"
I asked my mom and she said, "Okay do not buy Nethra a sundae but maybe a scoop if she can take it. Don't stay out for a long time. Come back soon" Adithi, Nethra and I went to the nearby park and were watching the people around, the children playing etc. A swing was free and Adithi said, "I wanna swing" and ran to the swing.
Nethra and I were sitting in a bench and she asked, "Can you do me a favor please?"
I asked, "What is it?"
She said, "I wanna see Mithra, can you take me to her? She is studying 9th standard in St. Ebenezer School, Yelagiri" I said, "Let me check with mom and if your health cooperates we shall go this weekend"
I checked with my mom and dad during dinner. Dad said, "Let us all go and visit Mithra this week end. Anyway we were planning for a family outing; let's combine it together"
As planned we all started. On seeing her sister both of them hugged each other and cried. We didn't know what to do and how to react on seeing this. Soon they became normal and were talking about their classes, studies, teachers, hostel and lot more. We had lunch with Mithra, during lunch Mithra said aloud to everyone, "Arjun is the only person Nethra has ever introduced as her friend till now and I'm very happy that she has someone to share. Thanks a lot, please take care of her. She is very reserved and will never tell anyone what she feels"
I said "Don't worry Mithra we'll take care" and we started back to Chennai. On the way back Nethra said to my dad, "Thank you for organizing this trip uncle, I'm very happy" Dad said, "Please don't say thanks a make me a stranger. You're happy right, that's what I wanted child"
Just to divert the topic I said, "Adithi is also studying 9th standard now". Looking at Adithi, I asked, "Is Mithra's syllabus same as yours?"
Adithi said, "Yeah, Same CBSE syllabus"
Overall the trip was good. She was happy and I was happy too.
Days passed on like this and I did not discuss with Nethra about my love for her and her opinion about me except for the hospital incident. I tried to talk to her sometimes but she avoided talking about it. We completed our under graduation and went abroad for MBA and my dad helped her in getting an educational loan. After MBA I took up my dad's business and Nethra joined a company. Adithi and Mithra moved to 12th standard.
Everything was fine and I asked my parents to ask Nethra's mother for her hand in wedding. As Nethra's parents are divorced, her mother took up the responsibility of settling them. Her father remarried and had a son. Nethra felt very ashamed and awkward.
When my parents asked her mother, she was not much interested in the wedding. My parents were very keen on the wedding and later she accepted. Our wedding was fixed. Before the wedding I wanted to ask Nethra if she was happy about the wedding because there was no love proposal, no acceptance and we were not lovers but good friends. I called her and asked, "Are you happy with the wedding?"
She said, "I think you're ruining your life"
I asked, "Why do you say that? Don't you like me?"
She said, "It's not about like or dislike but it's because of me, my behavior, attitude etc. You'll have a tough time with me because I don't know what a family is, what a wife and husband relationship is or how to build it. All I know is arguments, quarrel, hatred, tears, pain and grief. Since I didn't have any pleasant memories during my childhood, I hate having children and I hate myself too. I hated being a symbol of sympathy and shame among my friends and relatives. I hate divorce. I think it's the more cruel than any cruelty ever existed in our society. Divorce is worse than "Sati (A practice in the olden days where a woman would be burnt alive along with her husband in his death funeral)" No man can live a peaceful life with a woman with an attitude like mine. It will lead to divorce and I will become the apt example for the saying "Like mother, Like daughter""
I said, "Nethra, You don't have to worry about the past and its negatives. All I wanted to know is if you like me or not? Give me a straight clear answer yes or no"
She said, "Yes as a friend, but"
Wats the truth hiding behind that but????