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Life has beautiful surprises in store for all of us. Just like the rainbow follows the rain, the dark clouds of sadness will also fade away.
He looked at her. She was sitting in front of the mirror and combing her hair. From shoulder to her hips her body was curved in a manner that it resembled an hour glass. A beautiful resemblance he thought. But just like it is impossible to capture time it seemed impossible for him to achieve her. She was his wife. She was getting ready for a wedding invitation. In the turmeric yellow Benarasi sari she looked like a star far beyond his reach. Yet she was his wife.
Rajat had been invited to the wedding too but he decided not to go. He wanted to take some rest, just be at home. The age gap between Suvarna and Rajat was of nine long years. He was 34 and she 25. They had an arrange marriage. Suvarna was the second child of her parents among five.
Suvarna’s father had died when she was 10. Her mother was not a working woman. Then onwards, she had started working as a school teacher in a primary school. But with that little money it was impossible for her to raise five children.
Whatever Suvarna’s father had saved was spent on his own treatment of cancer. So Suvarna’s mother distributed all her children among all her relatives so that they have a proper upbringing.
Suvarna grew up with her maternal grandparents.
They loved Suvarna very much but they loved their orthodox views about a girl’s life more. As soon as Suvarna had completed her masters in Physics she was married off. As her grandparents believed that there is no age limit for learning but there is definitely an age limit for marriage. And, Rajat was a perfect groom for he did a government job and had an own house. Therefore any girl should be willing to marry him. When Suvarna told her grandparents that she was not ready for this marriage they considered it as her shyness first but when she further insisted they dismissed it calling it stupidity and childish behaviour.
It had been eight months since Suvarna’s marriage but she had not accepted him as her husband. Rajat’s face constantly kept pricking her. She cursed her fate. She had been devoid of parent’s love. The grandparents she thought loved her were just sharing their daughter’s burden. She hardly met her siblings more than once a year. Her career had ended. The preparation she had taken for the PhD interview was now futile. She felt there remained no reason for her existence. Her value was limited to cooking food, washing cloths and dishes. She never even felt like talking to him.
But for Rajat she was a dream come true. She was so beautiful; her eyes were like neem leaves, her nose like a sword and her lips red like rose petals. From the first day of their marriage he had noted her staunch behaviour. He first thought her behaviour was bitter as she had to leave her family. But slowly he realised, he was invisible to her and whenever he tried to be visible it was not a pleasant affair.
Next morning, Rajat had decided to speak to her. But then, he remembered the incident when he had asked Suvarna whether she married him by choice, to which she had replied,
‘I am naïve. I do not understand the greatness of a government job and an own house. Therefore the BEST was done to me’.
Then on, Rajat always thought twice before approaching her. After a lot of struggle, he gathered courage to ask her about her favourite things. The beginning of any relationship was conversation. Finally he asked her, ‘what do you like Suvarna? He could see nonchalance on her face. But before she could answer or even turn away her face her phone rang. She got up lifted up her mobile phone from the table and went to the veranda. The cold January breeze blew from outside. It entered through the veranda, filling the room with its chilliness. Rajat overheard the words that she spoke to her friend.
A few days later, Rajat brought a gift for Suvarna. After a lot of convincing of Rajat’s part she opened the gift. It had two envelops in it. In the first one she saw was the form of PhD program in America that she had denied over the phone. She looked at his face blankly and moved on to the next envelope. It was their divorce paper with the clause that he will financially support her until she is financially stable.
She looked at his face with her bloodshot, watery eyes once and then left a room. ‘Thank you’ would have been words too little for someone who let her winter melt into spring.
Suvarna was leaving for the University of Texas. Rajat came to see her off. He smiled at her and for the first time she smiled back at him. ‘Chocolate cakes, rainbows and warm sun are a few of my favourite things’, she said and left.