I could hardly decipher what was going around me. I could see the nurses moving around me. A doctor was observing me minutely. I was trying my best to recuperate my memory. I could remember, that I was crossing a desolate dimly lit road. Suddenly, a speeding car came and I was blinded by its glaring flashlights and I was run over… I was feeling excruciating pain. But I could hardly remember anything else. After coming to my senses, I realized that I was almost completely wrapped in bandages. Perhaps I was under some analgesics and hence was not able to feel any pain. I was a bit dizzy and then I could see Ravi.

He was wearing a doctor’s coat. I could hardly believe my eyes but it was certainly Ravi. How could I forget those dreamy and tranquil eyes? And those eyes were affixed on me after so many years. Ravi asked me,’’ How are you feeling now” I said yes by gently nodding my head. He started examining me and a lot of old memories started flashing in my mind. Rakesh was our neighbor. Our mothers were bosom friends. It was very common for us to visit each other’s place.

He was always a brilliant student and I used to seek his help for completing my homework. And as the days passed by we developed a strong bonding. We used to share all our feelings and emotions. And ultimately, even without our realization, our friendship culminated into an intense relationship. We were confident that our families would be quite happy with our relationship. But we were wrong. My parents were dead against this relationship due to some caste issues. My parents wanted to marry me off quickly.

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I protested but my father was hell-bent. Rakesh’s parents had no such reservations but I could not convince my parents. Ultimately, my marriage was fixed. Rakesh soon went abroad to study medicine. I still remember the day when we parted our ways. It was heartbreaking for both of us. But we were helpless. I never even imagined that I will meet with him again. Rakesh had complete his check-ups and said with a smile,’You are better now. The visiting hours will start in a few minutes. Your little son and your sister are anxiously waiting to see you.’’

He now sauntered his way out of the room. Hearing of my son, I was forced to think about that lech. My parents were quite relieved that they were able to marry their daughter to Anil, who fulfilled all their criteria. But soon I realized that Anil was a drunkard and a womanizer. I thought that our son could bring him back. My son did manage to seek his attention for a year or so, but after that the again went astray. Things got even worse.
He started physically abusing me. I was left with no other choice than to return to my father’s place and file a divorce. My parents had passed away in a car accident. My unmarried little sister, Poonam was staying alone. I somehow managed to bag a job in a Montessori school and was thus able to make both ends meet. My sister takes care of my four-year-old son, Ajit when he when I am at school. We were even planning to admit Ajit to my school.

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I was accumulating some money for that purpose. But all my efforts are now in vain. I think it will get used up for my medication. Maybe much more money is required. Oh, God!from where will I get so much money. Poonam must be feeling very helpless. Then suddenly I could see Poonam and my little son making their way into my room. Ajit was excited to see me again and said,’’ Mom, this doctor’s uncle is so good.

He had taken us to his house. That aunty has given me so many chocolates you, know.” Poonam then said,” I at first didn’t recognize Rakesh. But he remembered me and introduced himself. He has been an angel to us, sister. He has paid all your bills. He and his wife have taken care of us as if we were their family. It seems so unreal in today’s world’’ I was stupefied.

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