Beyond the Sunset-5
by Tanuja Chatterjee
Back to Chapter 4 Chapter 5
"I'm sorry to see you suffer, Abha!" said Roy, watching her straightening herself.
"You are not the cause, so why should you be sorry!...And for what?"she remarked in a low voice.
"I mean...I mean to say that I wasn't there when you needed me the most." said Roy again.
"How does it matter now anyway, you left me for good. Don't you think you would have been in a fix with me?" she replied.
"Didn't have a peaceful moment since then." Roy spoke apologetically.
"But I need no apologies Roy. It's my failure if you hadn't been happy all these years 'coz I earnestly prayed for you." Forcing a smile upon her lips she looked at Roy as she spoke.
Roy stood just a touch away. She could easily extend her arms and touch him...feel him...hold him tight, but she didn't. Abha knew in the heart of her hearts that though so close he stood beside her yet he was a life time away. Void of three decades wasn't less than a black hole for her. How could she fill that all consuming void!
The silent strings of her heart created a mystical musical symphony within to celebrate her life's finding, yet she abstained from calling out to him and touch his heart. This longing...this yearning, which lay as molten magma in the deep unfathomable depths of her life, had been her source of strength...a reason to live for...a cause to die for.
Anubha was happy to see him fine and healthy. She was happy to know that actually she carried within her the capacities and potentials to love someone to that maddening heights. For her love meant hope, encouragement and appreciation and she believed it was meant to be given and shared not kept in bounds of her being alone and she could remain true to her belief. With these thoughts crossing her mind's landscape, she felt an upsurge of courage and strength. Since she lacked words to express them to explain her standing, she opted to stay quiet.
"Won't you accuse me? Won't you ask for explanations? Won't you fight the way you did then?" he asked.
The silent symphony had ushered in winds of spring within her and her voice reflected the music to bring alive those dead bygone days and she said, "Sorry Roy, I'm a bit miser in giving...in sharing all that. See, how selfish I've become now!...And fighting...! Well, you see, I've changed lanes too!"
Roy sensed that she was hiding her pain from him, behind the veil of her beautiful smile and lively voice.
"But you must! It'll help you to get rid of your ailment...all the congestion of your heart will vanish. It'll be a great relief," he said.
"I see no reason. How can I accuse you! I loved and trusted you with my life and have always given due respect to all your decisions. It was you who etched out this design for my life. Our divergent pathways was your decision then how could I ...!" she stopped as she felt choked then continued "I held it in high esteem Roy,as if this was the essence of my being here.I never tried to return. Yes! one mistake that I made was that I couldn't forget to remember you and assure myself that we are connected for eternity. I couldn't keep you and your memories at bay even during my silent prayers. This mistake I made. But even then, I've learnt to find an equilibrium. I'm happy...believe me...honestly!" she replied.
Roy turned and caught hold of her forearm and began to walk towards the monument. He didn't ask or wait for her reply just forged in his move. Before Anubha could realise and object, he pulled her along with unsaid right. She couldn't understand all that was happening and found herself following him just the way she did back then. His touch was comforting and grip strong and tight. She stared at his hand which clasped her arm. Roy was speaking but all she could hear was his charming voice. The words lost all their meanings and diffused into just a phonetic sound.
Suddenly, the excruciating pain from his grip got better of her senses and she thought it was his bloated ego that got better of him that day...thirty years to be precise. To be continued