Sudden reappearance of her past has created turbulence in Neha’s present. Flashes from the memory lanes got stirred in her mind. Constant conflict raging within started keeping her distracted and distanced from her present. “Why God why? Why our paths had to cross in this manner? For everything I have been through I never complained, but at this juncture I can’t restrain myself from asking you Why?” The apparent calm demeanour of Neha was hosting a war within. Rishi’s return has opened the doors of the locker she kept hidden and almost forgotten in her heart. Something just got unearthed.
Though Neha maintained silence and just following an everyday routine mechanically rather than living life with her loved ones Rajan did notice this lost self of Neha. Fumbled words, silly mistakes, silent dinners – might not mean otherwise but this was not Neha, he knew something was bothering and he was worried about Neha. He tried to get deep into her thoughts. Nothing was coming forth from Neha. That’s when he thought of seeking some help from Shraddha ji.
One fine day Rajan called Shraddha ji.
“Hello Shraddha ji, Rajan here“, He said.
Shraddha ji: “Hello Rajan, long time, how you have been? How’s Neha? We shall catch up some day, work is really keeping me up on my toes. How about meeting this weekend?”
In one breath she finished – from exchanging pleasantries to fixing up weekend plans, she has done it all and now waiting for Rajan to reply.
Rajan: “yeah I am fine. Actually I called you to discuss about Neha. Two three weeks ago she passed off suddenly out of no where.”
“What happened? How is she now?” Interrupted Shraddha Ji.
Rajan: “Well, physically she is fine but I doubt about her mental state. I am clueless about what triggered her. She seems to be disinterested, indifferent and lost which is not her, at least not someone whom I am sharing my life with. I firmly believe that something is bothering her. I am fully aware of her ordeals in life but trying to ascertain if it is some pain from the past that has resurfaced or something I am completely oblivion to. I tried talking to her but she is avoiding my questions with her smile which lacks her ingenuity.”
Shraddha ji was listening to Rajan very patiently as he continued “Look Shraddha Ji if anyone I could trust Neha with is you. You have been a motherly figure to her. I request you to talk to her, get her to open up about her emotions, about her inner conflicts. My life revolves around her, her happiness means a lot, in fact everything to me. And I am feeling helpless at this moment“. His words were a mirror to his heart.
Shraddha ji: “Rajan get a hold of yourself. I am with you, don’t stress yourself, we will sort it out. Let’s meet this weekend, I will talk to her.”
Meanwhile at home Neha was unable to decide if she shall see Rishi again or not even if it meant to be for one last time, shall speak to Rajan about his patient being her love once or not, shall demand an explanation from Rishi’s family for separating her from her love or not and much more. She was getting torn from inside. And the doorbell rang. It was Rajan.
He greeted her and went to freshen up. During the dinner he spoke about the call and weekend plan with Shraddha ji. He didn’t divulge much about the details of the conversation. Neha was a bit reluctant at first but agreed eventually to go. She avoided any kind of contests, avoided talking much lest she would break down. She knew her husband is a great human being but a man, a husband indeed…..
The weekend arrived and as per the plan they went to see Shraddha ji.
“Welcome guys!!! See Mom who’s here to see us” exclaimed Shraddha ji as she warmly greeted the Tripathi family and everyone had bright smiles on their faces. After lunch Shraddha ji ans Neha found their space as Shraddha ji’s mom went to sleep and Rajan took Neeraj along with him to buy ice cream.
Shraddha ji started with a polite and concerned question “how are you doing doing Neha? Rajan told me that you passed off few days back“.
Neha: “ye..ye..yes I am fine. Nothing to worry about and started looking away from Shraddha ji.”
Shraddha ji have seen this face of Neha before. “Could reason be the same? How is it possible? If not then what?” Amidst such a hurricane of questions in her mind Shraddha ji placed her hand firmly on Neha’s hand as if she is pressing her for answers for her unspoken questions and subtly asked “Neha tell me what’s it that’s bothering you? Share with me. Let me be with you” she said in a comforting tone and looked straight into Neha’s eyes and longed for an answer.
This time Neha did break the silence, “Rishi…”
And this left Shraddha ji stunned.