Mythiri’s Diary – 26st Jan 2014 9.30 PM
For the first time in 24 years I was up before my alarm rang. Actually I had never slept. Today was a special day. Today I was going to propose to my best friend. I was nervous yet excited. It was a heady mix of emotions I couldn’t describe. May be this is what, being in love is like. I stepped out of bed and ran to the bathroom for a quick shower. I had to catch Nikhil before anyone else did. Today was also Nikhil’s birthday. Precisely the reason why I chose this day to tell him those three words I have carried in my heart for the last four years.
I was out of the shower in ten minutes. I stood before the mirror wearing my best dress. A bright red knee length dress accessorized with a thin black leather belt around my waist with a shiny buckle. My hair let loose and dripping wet. I dint have time to dry it and anyways Nikhil loved it when I left it open. It was 7.58 am when I rang his door bell and waited expectantly. All these months I waited for him to take the first step forward but knowing him I should have guessed better. He was afraid I would decline. Maybe that’s what kept him back. Well not anymore. Today I shall give our relationship a new name. I dug into my satchel to ensure I had packed the two cards I had got for him. One was a Birthday Card. The other carried those three special words.
It was Nikhil’s Mom who greeted me as she opened the door. By now she was used to having me at her house more often than her own son. I rushed towards Nikhil’s bedroom and barged inside without knocking. Nikhil was seated on the bed reading a book. He didn’t see me creep up to him. ‘Happy Birthday Niks’ I yelled and jumped on him from behind. We both fell on the bed and burst into a jiggle. Nikhil hugged me back and said thank you. Like always he stretched out his hand and closed his eyes expecting a surprise gift. I dig into my satchel wondering which card to pick. Against my will I took out the Happy Birthday one and kept it on his hand. Nikhil opened his eyes but the smile on his face turned into a frown. ‘That’s it? Don’t I deserve something better?’ he asked while uninterestedly flipping through it. ‘All n good time Niks, be patient’ I said and took a seat on the bed.
‘It is good that you came I wanted to talk to you about something and its important’ said Nikhil even before I could broach the subject. I smiled. I saw it coming. This had to be it. Nikhil was finally proposing. This was even better than I had imagined. I held my breath and waited.
‘My wedding is fixed!’ said Nikhil
‘Yeah right’ I burst into laughter while Nikhil stood still confused and irritated at my reaction. I laughed for a minute or so and when I was done Nikhil still looked the same-Irritated; and then as if could read his eyes I saw it. Nikhil was serious He was not joking. For a second my mind went blank. I couldn’t believe it was happening. But it was. The walls were closing in on me. I couldn’t breathe. Nikhil was saying something but all I could hear was ‘My Wedding is fixed’. I turned and ran out of the house not stopping to bid farewell. If I had Nikhil would have seen the tears in my eyes.
There is nothing more that I want to say. Nothing more that I wish to write. I craved for you but I now know you are not meant for me. Good Bye Nikhil
1st July 2014
It has been more than six months , but I still remember every second of what happened on the day Mythiri came home to propose but never did. I wish she had. There’s a chance things could have been different today.
I still remember the last time we met. How she had laughed. That infectious smile, that twinkle in her eyes. She thought I was kidding. But I wasn’t. I told her about Sakshi. The girl I was expected to marry. Sakshi was my paternal cousin. She was orphaned at birth and was living with my grandparents. However they were now too old to take care of her and wanted someone else to take up her responsibility. The elders met and decided to move Sakhsi to Chennai to help her pursue her education. It was unanimously decided that she would stay at our place . However the ladies of the household were a little apprehensive about moving her into a house with a young bachelor. Even though we were related and staying with family , there were chances that Sakshi’s social image could be maligned making her prospects of getting an alliance dim. My grandparents wanted to get her married at the earliest so that they would be set free from her responsibilities. As talks progressed ,the decision was made to have Sakshi married to me. That way she could move in without endangering anyone’s reputation. Everyone seemed ok and all were happy. All, except one. I was not happy.
For the last two years of my life I had loved just one person in my life. My best friend -Mythiri. The moment I heard of my marriage to Sakshi I objected. I told mom I was too young for marriage. I told dad I had a year more for college to finish and wasn’t even settled. My parents coaxed me to find reason. Sakshi was a nice girl. She would make a wonderful wife and she desperately needed help. Age was not a factor and I was to pick up my dad’s business so there was no need to be settled. I decided to confide in mom. Knowing how close a friend Mythiri was she asked me how Mythiri felt . I fumbled cause I was not even sure if Mythiri loved me. What if she refused. Would that be the end of our relationship. Till date Mythiri had never said anything.There was only one way to find out. If Mythiri knew about my marriage I would be able to gauge her reaction .I would know if Mythiri felt the same about me. If she did I could break this alliance. I would have Mom’s support, and since then it was the first thing I had wanted to tell Mythiri.
But when I did, Mythiri just stared back. It was as though she was seeing everything but her mind had registered nothing. I wanted to hold her, to hug her to tell her I loved her. To ask , if she did? But Mythiri wasn’t paying attention. All of a sudden it looked like she didn’t care. A minute later she turned and rushed out of my house. I stood still but Mythiri did not turn back. Not once. Had she, she would have seen me cry for the first time in her life
It was 6AM when I heard the knock on the door. It had rained all night and was still pouring. I hadn’t slept a wink partly due to Mythiri’s weird reaction and partly due to the rain.I still did not know what she was thinking when she ran out. The knock resounded . I got out of bed and walked to the door. Unlatching it I saw Mythiri’s Dad at the door drenched in the rain. The look on his face said it all. He dug into pocket of his shirt and handed me a letter. I opened it and read it.The ink was smeared in parts due to the rain. It wasn’t a letter, it was a page. A page torn from Mythiri’s Diary, the last page of her diary.
28th Jan 2014
There was no newspaper printed on the 27th of Jan because of the republic day holiday . On the 28th of Jan Chennai woke up to pictures of Republic day parade on the first page followed by the Prime ministers speech in detail. On the third page, the lower right hand section carried an article that looked inconsequential to many but for one person the world had come crashing down. The article read as follows
’24 year old female ‘Mythiri Raj’ commits suicide by hanging. Reason unknown’