By Pritha Banerjee (L&T MHPS)
Mom: “Enough of your ego Maya, now stop fighting further. Call him and go back.”Maya: “No Mom, I won’t.”Mom: “What do you want from him? Do you want him to die and then only will you believe that he loves you?”Maya: “I didn’t ask for any proof for his love. I cannot stay there, where I am neglected and ignored.”Mom: “Oh please! Neither has he neglected you, nor has he ignored you. It’s just that he could not meet your high expectations.”Maya: “How can you always take his side?”Mom: “That’s because he is a nice guy and the best for you. He loves you and cares about you too. It’s more than a month now since you’ve left that house but he is continuously trying to get you back. He even said sorry to you for no actual reason.”Maya: “Oh mom, enough of Madhav now. Stop it please!”
Maya keeps down the coffee mug in anger and leaves the living room. On entering her room, she bangs the door shut behind her. Upset, she thinks about her decision to walk away. She misses Madhav too but doesn’t want to forgive him and go back. She knows that Madhav will again ignore her for work and family. That he will neglect her emotions, her demands, her wishes, desires. She will be depressed again. She will be hurt again. So it’s better to stay away and be sad rather than stay together and be upset.
She was lying on her bed, when her mom came in and sat beside her caressing her.
Mom: “Baby, I know you are sad without him. I cannot see my girl like this. You have stopped socializing. You don’t eat properly. You are always irritated with everyone. That’s all because you miss him. Let’s give it a second chance. Let’s all try again and be happy!” Maya didn’t reply. After a pause, she firmly said, “I have asked Madhav to come tomorrow and take you back with him and you are going. That’s it.”
Maya quickly responded, “No mom. Why did you ask him to come? I will not go back to that house. I am fine here and if you are having problem because of my stay, tell me that clearly, I will find my own shelter.”
Mom: “Oh beta, please don’t be mad any further and stop this rubbish. Come for dinner.” She leaves the room.
Maya was pretty sure that she was not going anywhere today. She woke up late in the morning, didn’t get ready, and was inside her room. She could hear that Madhav had arrived. But didn’t react but continued to lie on her bed. Suddenly, she heard a knock on the door.
She knew it was Madhav. She was tensed. What shall I say now? Oh, Crap! My hair looks so dirty. What will he think of me? And suddenly she sat down, how does that matter? I don’t even want to see him!
Meanwhile, Madhav entered the room.
Madhav: “Hey! Good Morning. Not well? Why are you still in bed?”
Maya: “Nothing like that. Didn’t feel like doing anything in the morning. So was lying idle.”
Madhav: “So, how are you?”
Maya: “Good. What about you?”
Madhav: ”I was fine. Seeing you, I’m better now.”
Maya: “Oh please Madhav. Don’t play those word tricks again. You can fool my mom but not me. I have seen the other side of yours. So it won’t work on me anymore”
Madhav chuckled: “So you are still angry with me! Hmm… So now what, sweetie? Shall I leave the room or you will throw me out?”
Maya: “As you wish, I’m not throwing anyone any where.”
Madhav sat close to her on the bed. Held her hands closed to him and said “I missed you so much, baby. Please come back with me. It’s nothing there without you. I go mad in that house. I’m sorry and I promise to give you full attention and love and care.” With a pause, he continued “we fought because we want each other, we get irritated because we expect from each other. Ultimately, we both know that we love each other. I know, for the past few months, I couldn’t give you much attention due to my work pressure and few family issues. I have understood that baby. Trust me, I will not find excuses and won’t complain unnecessarily. I promise that you will be happy. That’s my responsibility. Please let’s not call it off. Let’s try again. One chance is all I need. Can you please give me that?”
Maya didn’t reply but tears started rolling down her cheeks. Madhav pulled her up, made her sit, kissed her and hugged her.
Madhav: “I love you, Maya. Please don’t leave me. I will be finished without you.”
Maya still didn’t reply and got up and stood near the window.
Madhav tried to make her comfortable: “By the way, Kamla Chachi is very happy without you. She told me that day. ‘Bhabhi har baat pe data karti thi. Sabun leke bhi. Par aap aise nei ho. Aap acche ho.’ But the sabziwala Ramu misses you. He told me, ‘Bhabhi accha khana pakati thi. Sab type ki sabzi leti thi. Aap toh sirf alu aur pyaz aur tamatar hi lete ho’.”
Maya quickly turned to him: “you were buying sabzi from Ramu?”
Madhav got up from the bed and started bringing down the suitcase. “Yes, madam! What else? I had to feed myself. Without wife, without food, how will I survive?”
Maya: “You cooked food for yourself?”
Madhav has already started packing her clothes into the suitcase, “Yup sweetie! I had to. Let’s go. I will cook for you too.”
Maya: “what are you doing with my clothes? Hey! I’m not coming with you!”
Madhav: “Yes you are, sweetheart. You can come back after a month again if you are not happy there. Just give me one last chance. Now get ready. Pack everything and come. I’m waiting downstairs, love.” He kissed her forehead & left the room.
After an hour, Maya came down and found both mom and Madhav deep in conversation, waiting for her to join at lunch. She was dressed to go out. Seeing that, both mom and Madhav were very happy.
Madhav: “Mom, I must say one thing! Ramu sabziwale did the magic today. I got instant response after trying so hard for so many days. I should have known this trick from the first!”
They all laughed together. After lunch, they all sat together in the drawing room. Mom was very concerned about her mood swings and his rudeness. She advised them from her years’ of experience for a happy life ahead. They left after having tea.
Madhav took her for a movie date followed by dinner. They reached home around midnight. Both were very tired. Both were actually very happy to be back together. Though Maya didn’t express her happiness. But Madhav knew what she wants. He has promised himself in this past one month to give her enough attention and make her fall in love again. Maya was very important to him. Due to stress, may be, at times he had completely ignored her. But he never wanted to lose her. He truly loved her.
Few months passed by and everything was going well. Maya was more or less happy with her work life and her personal life too. Fights were still there, but nothing major.
After few months, same things were repeating in their life. Madhav became very busy. But Maya didn’t complain any more. She left Madhav in his own world and tried to keep herself busy in her own way. She made new friends, started meeting old friends on every weekend. Madhav also found it okay. He was free from any kind of pressure from Maya. She was there with him, happy and cheerful with no complains but very less interactions. Madhav did feel bad about it but was still not questioning because she was happy. He had full faith on her and knew that she understands his workload and schedule.
Life was good. Maya had befriended Varun and they had grown fairly close. Whenever she was upset, she would speak to Varun or go out with him. Maybe, she was not in love with Varun, but she was enjoying the attention she was getting. Whatever mental support she was missing from Madhav, she got that from Varun. He was her colleague from office. So she could discuss work and responsibilities too. Varun was single, living alone without his family in the city. Hence, he was always free for Maya. He had a strong liking towards her. He knew about her marital problems too. He wanted to become a support for her. He enjoyed being with Maya. Maya could also feel Varun’s fondness for her. She never stopped him from being affectionate.
It had now been one year since Varun and Maya had met each other. Varun made some grand plans to celebrate the day.
Varun texted her in the morning: Hey Maya, good morning. what’s up?
Maya: Good morning. Nothing much.
Varun: Why are you sounding low?
Maya: Had a fight last night.
Varun: Oh! That’s great.
Maya: Shut up Varun. I hate fighting with him.
Varun: How will I get a chance to pamper you and spoil you if you don’t fight with your husband?
Maya: Oh Yaa.. LOL
Varun: Anyway, get ready. Will come and pick you in few hours.
Maya: What? Why? Where are we going?
Varun: Trust me, I have no plans to kidnap you. So you can trust me and come along
Maya: Hah! Very funny. Ya, I can come because Madhav has left for work early today. He has got something very important today. He looked tensed.
Varun: By the way, Last year I joined your office on this same day.
Maya: So, it’s one year to our friendship. Wow! Let’s celebrate.
Varun: Yup. Thought so. So, now come on, get ready!
Maya: See you
They went for a dance show, followed by dinner. Something very obscure happened. Maya didn’t expect this at all. Varun proposed to her. He admitted his love for her with a toast of champagne.She was not ready to react even. But she was overwhelmed by his treatment. Maya couldn’t say no. She couldn’t be angry. She was happy to know that someone cared deeply for her. Varun kissed her for the first time today. She allowed him to do so. Varun dropped her home at the entrance of the complex. While walking to her flat, Maya was thinking about Madhav and Varun. She started comparing in her mind. She was thinking about how to face Madhav. At once, she thought, it’s good for everyone. It’s not worth staying here with Madhav. I should start a new life with Varun. But honestly, even in her mind she couldn’t think of leaving Madhav for someone else.
She reached at her door and found the door to be opened. No lights on. She took out her phone and turned on the flash light to her surprise. The whole floor was covered with roses and a white lily bouquet, wine glasses, cakes on the table with the candles ready to be lit.
Maya: “Madhav? Is that you?”
Madhav came out of the room and turned on the lights. The room was beautifully decorated with flowers and candles and pictures. He hugged her tightly and started crying.
Maya was tensed. Has he come to know about Varun? Is he upset because of me?
Maya: “Hey! What happened?”
Madhav: “Nothing. Just let me hold you for a while. Will explain everything later.”
Maya: “Okay, fine.”
Madhav after a pause: “thanks a lot sweetheart. you are always lucky for me. I knew it, I will do it if you are there with me. Thanks for your support, thanks for your sacrifice. Now, my time, my attention, it’s all yours. I’m all yours… We will go for a long vacation and celebrate this success.”
Maya was confused, “What are you talking about?”
Madhav: “My new Android application, M2 was launched today. It’s a great success. It’s all because of you. Love you baby. Sorry for ignoring you and being short with you. Sorry for every negligent. But now you know that it’s all for us. You know, M2 stands for Madhav Maya. I fought with the investors for this name. Do you like it?”
Maya: “Yes, I like it. I am very happy for you.”
Madhav hugged her again. He took out a beautiful necklace and gave it to her. “I am sorry for all my bad behaviour.”
Maya started crying. What have I done? How could I do this to Madhav? How could I let Varun come close to me? She hugged him more tightly and couldn’t stop crying. At that moment she hated herself the most. She just wanted to undo everything that had happened in the evening and the last few months. The guilt made her want to run away from the whole world with Madhav. She realized how much she loves Madhav. And how huge a mistake she was about to make. She wanted to confess every transgression but at that moment couldn’t utter any words other than the three.
” I am sorry…”
Maya looked at her ringing phone. Varun calling. She silenced her phone. She saw Madhav lying beside her and sleeping with his mouth wide open. She always found this cute. She hugged him tight and went back to sleep.