It was a cloudy evening, reshma was standing in the balcony, blankly staring at the sky, waiting for the rain.
She closed her eyes, feeling the soft and chill tiny droplets of water. Suddenly, her chain of thoughts were broken by a fragile cry. Her lips curved into a smile to the soft wail. The voice intensified as she walked upto the door. She took him in his hands as his cry grew even more louder.
“awww… My baby… It’s ok… Mumma is here… It’s ok” She patted his back in a try to calm him down. But the baby cried even more louder.
“what happened to my prince??? Is he hungry??? Or does he wanna go poo poo??” She cringed her nose making a baby voice.
Reshma shifted to this mansion 2 years ago. It was when she found out that his husband hated the child and he once even tried to kill him.
She couldn’t forget a thing from her past. The way she fell in love with him, she regretted it, so very much that she could never forgive herself, not for a life time. She never realised the fact that he was a monster. It killed her everyday, every moment she lived, but then she had to live through it cause she had a reason, one beautiful reason, that she held on to live, one beautiful reason she literally held in her hand, it was just simply more than enough to live.
“hush-a-bye…. baby…. on the tree top…
When.. the wind blows….. the cradle will rock…
When… the bough breaks… the cradle will fall…
Down will come baby, cradle… and all….” She sang, as the baby calmed down and her voice trailed off as the baby closed his eyes.
As she placed the baby back on the cradle, she heard a knock on the door.
“sssshhhhhh….. The baby is sleeping” Reshma’s voice was a whisper.
“oh… I’m sorry…” It was Swetha.
“so… You just got off work??” Reshma asked her as both of them walked out of the room.
“yeah… Just now and I’m coming right from the hospital to see you” she said as she ran her hand through her bag and continued “here take these…” She held a case of tablets. “thought they might help your headache. Doctor prescribed!!” She winked.
“you stole the medicines once again??? ” Reshma frowned.
“oh well.. hows the baby??” She switched the subject.
“he is sleeping… He woke up a while ago, crying, may be he had a nightmare.” She said.
“Reshma… Why don’t you come out of this place and hangout with me for sometime?? You’ll feel better…” Swetha touched her hand.
“i wish i could… But with suman around… I hardly have time for anything…” Reshma said.
“hmm.. I can understand… But someday, if you’re free… Remember… I’m there!” She said.
After sometime, Swetha left.
Reshma sat back on her sofa thinking about how her life was and how it had become now. Akshay and Reshma had a love marriage. They were simply perfect for each other. He loved her more than anything else. After marriage, they moved to a new apartment, love was so magical. In fact, when Reshma told him about the baby, he was very much happy about it. Everything was going wonderful and then she had a baby, she was very much happy but then things changed. Akshay stopped talking to her, he became busy over work. Hardly, he took time off to talk to Reshma and when ever he did, he always wanted her to leave the baby alone. Reshma couldn’t understand at first but slowly she started realising it. Akshay had a problem with the kid. Ever since he was born, he hadn’t even taken him in his hands, not even once. Days passed and the quarrels intensified, Until that one day came. they were fighting on the same issue and Akshay lifted suman from the bed and tried to throw him on the floor.
It was a horrifying moment for Reshma, she could never forget that day. Everyday, She wished that she could, but it never helped. Gladly, nothing happened to suman, she caught hold of suman and walked out of the house. Later on, She even registered a complaint to the police but the police never took the complaint. She shifted to another city, with the help of swetha, to protect him from his dad. Swetha was a nurse, she lived a few rooms apart and always checked on reshma if she needed anything. Reshma spent all her time taking care of the baby.
Reshma had just fed suman and put him to bed when she heard a knock on the door.
She opened it and the minute she did, she was horrified, It was Akshay.
“get lost!” She said, immediately shutting the door. But before she could, Akshay held the door.
“Reshma… Please listen to me” he said as he tried to open the door.
“i don’t wanna listen anything!! Go away!!” She screamed, the baby woke up.
“please Reshma… Listen to me… I’m sorry for what ever happened!!! Please come back… I’ve realized my mistake… Please forgive me!!” He said.
“forgive you??? How could you even ask me that!?! You tried to kill my baby!! And today you suddenly walk up here to ask an apology and you expect me to forgive you???? Go away Akshay!! before i call the police!” She screamed.
“but Reshma…” Before he could say more Reshma screamed “Swetha!!! Swetha!!!”
Swetha walked up to her room.
“what is going on here??” Swetha was confused.
“ask him to him leave!!! I don’t wanna see his face!!” Reshma said.
Akshay stood there helplessly.
“i think you should…” Swetha started to say as Akshay stormed out.
Reshma was in tears, she cried leaning against the door, Swetha asked her to open the door but she refused, suman was crying in the adjacent room.
She had never imagined this day to happen in her life. Everything had walked back, she felt helpless.
Days passed, Akshay came to see her every other day, begging for forgiveness, but Reshma never listened to him.
One day, Reshma and Swetha were strolling in the garden as Akshay walked up to them.
“why can’t you leave me alone??” Reshma’s anger shot up.
“Reshma… Please listen to me… I’m sorry… I know i have made an unforgivable mistake, I’m trying to change myself. I shouldn’t have left you like this. All I’m asking you is for another chance. Please.. Let me make it up to you…” He begged.
She turned away in a haste.
“coming Sunday, is suman’s birthday… I’m throwing a party in my home and raising funds for charity, i want you to be there.” He looked at her and then at her baby “with our baby”
He stood there for a reply from her but she walked away without saying a word.
That night, Swetha walked up to Reshma’s room.
“i think you should go” she said.
“what are you saying??? That man once almost killed my baby.” Reshma was surprised to what Swetha was asking her to do.
“i know Reshma… But look at him, i think he has changed, he isn’t like before.” Swetha paused to see Reshma’s reaction. She was silent.
She continued “people make mistakes, every one does. But people change too, Akshay has realised his mistake. He wants you back, don’t you think he deserves a second chance??”
Reshma wasn’t saying a word.
“besides… It’s your son’s birthday, and you’ll have a good time over there with the kids, you haven’t been out of this room in a year, it will be like a break for you…” Swetha held her hand. Reshma was silent.
“fine.. I’ll come with you to that function!! Is that ok??” Swetha asked her.
That Sunday, they went to the function.
Reshma was having a good time. Akshay was seated in a table far away from Reshma as he saw her talking to a few ladies. He was happy that she was there. He looked at her, even after all these years, she still looked gorgeous. He wanted her to be happy, always smiling and nothing else. He wanted her back in his life and wished that things became normal. That moment he realised what a big mistake he had made, he regretted it. He regretted for having done this to her. He should have been there when she was crying, he had left her all alone when she needed him the most.
Swetha walked up to him.
“so???” Akshay asked her.
“she isn’t opening up much, i tried talking to her but things aren’t going any where. She is being adamant” she said.
“it’s my mistake…” Akshay felt bad.
“don’t worry… She will understand you one day.” Swetha tried to sympathise with him.
Both of them looked at Reshma.
“she has been through a lot…” Swetha said.
On the other side of the hall, Reshma was with a few of friends, catching up with their life. But she was hardly even listening to them. Her mind was wandering some where else. She looked past her friends to see Akshay. He was talking to Swetha.
It hadn’t been a long time since she had left him, but he looked tired and old. She looked at him, this was the man who once tried to kill his son and it was same guy with whom she was madly in love with. She wondered how drastically could someone change. Now there he was, calm and composed, no body could ever tell that this man had once done such a thing, she herself had never imagined that. all his monstrous self hidden behind that tired face, or…. had it faded away? had he really changed? Did he really mean what he said? Or was he acting? She was confused. Her mind wavered between the past and the present. The future, she wanted to see once, turned out to be a nightmare and now the nightmare was changing back.It was late night, people had started to leave. Swetha had left earlier as she had some work at the hospital.
After talking to her friends, Reshma walked up to the balcony. The breeze was soft and soothing. She stood there for a while, when Akshay walked up to her. She started to leave when she saw him.
“whoa! whoa! lady… I’m not gonna do anything.. You can stay…” He paused and she started to walk.
“or if my presence turns you on and makes you you irresistible from making out with me.. You may leave, i don’t mind!” He smiled wickedly.
Unsure of what she felt, whether it was irritation or the will to prove him wrong, she stayed back and tried not to look at him.
“you know what Reshma… the day you left me, i realised a few things in my life, no matter where i go, what i do, how our lives turn out to be… I would always come to you… I would always want to be with you… Coz that’s what makes me feel happy… I know i have made a mistake in the past, I’m pining over it everyday, every single moment. I know i can never make it up to you but i just want you to know that I’m sorry… Forgive me if you can…” He said.
“why is it always so simple to ask for forgiveness than giving??” Her eyes were most and her voice was breaking.
Akshay stood there silently. She knew that he cannot be forgiven but she loved him, even after all this, some part of her was still in love with him.
“all these years, I’ve tried to forget things, but i am not able to… Tell me Akshay… What should i do??” She stood there in tears.
he held her in his arms, stroke her hair gently.
“it’s not your fault Reshma… It was never your fault… You don’t have to forgive me… Give me another chance…” Akshay could have never regretted himself more than how much he did at that moment. He cursed himself for not being with her when she was going through all this.
He wiped her tears and kissed her, She resisted, breaking the kiss. She was holding his shirt firmly, breathing heavily. He lifted her face and moved close to her lips. He didn’t kiss her, he wanted to know if she still loved him. A second went by and the very next moment she pulled herself, like a magnet, to his lips. He kissed her deeper, leaning against her, pushing her against the wall. The air between them was burning. He missed her terribly and so did she. They kissed passionately, in few seconds both of them were out of control and after a while, both of them lay exhausted in the bed. He held her tightly against himself as she cuddled around him.
Suddenly, she heard a cry. Quickly, she got up, dressed herself and waited out of the room to see suman. A minute later, she walked inside with her baby.
“awww… Baby… don’t cry… It’s ok…” She spoke to the baby as she sat on the bed.
Akshay looked at her, he loved her very much. He wanted her, it didn’t matter how she was, what she did. At that moment he knew only one thing, that he loved her.
“can i hold him??” He asked her.
She looked at him, a smile curved out of her lips.
She placed the baby gently in his arms. He looked at Reshma, then in his arms.
“he is a beautiful kid… One-day, he is gonna grow up and became a big man….” He had tears in his eyes. He kissed the baby’s forehead. The baby started crying.
Reshma took the baby in her hands.
“it’s k…. My baby…. Mumma is here…” She said as patted his back.
Akshay watched her as she walked around the room. He remembered the day they were going to have the baby. He knew how happy and excited she was, about the baby. Sad that the baby was stillborn. Her health conditions were very weak and the doctors told her that she might never be able to bear a child in her life. He still remembered that day. Hearing the news, she fainted. Doctors told that her brain had undergone multiple shocks, she didn’t wake up for two days. when she gained her conscious, they found her playing with a doll, they thought it was normal. At first, he didn’t realise it, he was already going through a huge trauma. He worked late hours trying to keep his mind occupied. But gradually as he saw her, he saw what she was going through. She had started to believe the doll to be her child. He tried explaining her but it rather went worse and one fine day, things went out of hand.
Now, he looked at her, he knew he cannot change things but then he realised that he didn’t have to. he loved her and wanted her to be happy, that’s all. He closed his eyes, a drop of tear trickled down his cheek.
“hush-a-bye…. baby…. on the tree top…
When.. the wind blows….. the cradle will rock…
When… the bough breaks… the cradle will fall…
Down will come baby, cradle… and all….” He heard her sing until he drifted off the real world.
Love is all about understanding, respecting and admiring the differences and still being madly in love with that person irrespective of all the odds that are stacked against them. No one is perfect, not even you… you need them as much as they do, to be perfect.