Last Few Words
Last Few Words
Rishi woke up abruptly hearing the doorbell ring. He looked at the clock, it was 3:00 A.M. He looked at his wife who was in her deep sleep. So, he got up from the bed and slowly walked towards the main door. He peeped through the peephole and was shocked to see it was his father. He wasn't in touch with his parents from the past five years. He was thrown out of the house over an argument by his father. He hated his father since then.
Rishi and his father never had a good rapport between them from his childhood. His father was very strict and a result oriented person. He always humiliated him when he scored bad marks and because of which Rishi had to settle with the least. Though somehow his father got him into an engineering college, he managed to complete his studies scoring just pass. In a few years, he got a job, but couldn’t continue as he wanted to pursue his passion. He wanted to become a standup comedian. His father was ashamed to accept him as his son and always taunted him saying a quitter. One day he married his girlfriend and brought her home, and his father humiliated him in front of her. The argument went on too far, and finally, in anger his father challenged him to step inside the house only after proving his capabilities. Since then he had never looked back. Now Rishi was one of the best standup comedians and was doing a lot of shows and earning well.
Rishi stood near the door and hesitated to open the door. He didn’t know what to do. Whether to open the door for him or to just ignore. He remembered every bit of the argument and didn’t want to argue about the same topic. He knew his father would never like to fail and he was just too stubborn about his rules.
The doorbell rang again and this time Sheela, his wife came out of her room and asked Rishi, “Who is it? Why are you not opening the door?”
“Shhh…..” He whispered and told her, it was his father and he didn’t want to start the fight again. Sheela tried to convince him, but he refused to open the door. After a few minutes, Rishi peeped through the peephole and saw him still standing near the door waiting for him to open. Sheela requested him to open the door and said, “What if it could be some emergency or else why would he had to come at this hour. Please open the door. Don’t be so adamant like your father, just talk to him.” Finally, he opened the door and welcomed him.
“Hi Rishi, how are you?”
“I’m fine, dad. How are you?”
“Oh! You must be Sheela. How are you, beta?”
Quickly Sheela ran towards him and touched his feet for blessings. He smiled and blessed her to have a life filled with happiness. Rishi hesitantly asked, "Ahh… Why are you here, dad? If you are here to fight, then I'm sorry. I don't want to argue about my caliber again. Please, I have moved on and no interest in dragging my life back to the same old situation. I have made my life from scratch, and I'm happy in whichever position that I'm in now.”
“No! No! I’m here just to meet you both and spend some time with my grandchildren. Where are they? Are they sleeping? Can I see them once?”
“Why? You never wanted to see them when they were born. Why you want to see them now?”
“Hmmm. As I said I’m not here to fight. I’m sorry Rishi. I threw you out of my house over a silly argument. Now I understand. Please forgive me.”
“Forgive you? You threw me out when I needed you the most. You never trusted me or my talents. You always questioned me about my caliber. Look at me, dad. Now I'm one of the best standup comedians. Ya, I'm not a software engineer, but I have a lot of software engineer fans who dream to become like me.”
“I agree. I was a stubborn old man. I always made rules and forced everyone to follow it. I understand now that I was wrong.”
“Please dad, leave me alone. I don’t want to talk about it. You always bullied me from childhood, you never understood me nor supported me when I needed you. You always questioned. Please…”
“Rishi, I have come here only to apologize for whatever I did to you. Sorry for being a dominating father and bullying you every day to win the race and never understood you when you scored less marks, sorry for not supporting you when you chose your passion over your job, sorry for not accepting your love marriage and throwing you both out at midnight. Please forgive me…”
After a few minutes of conversation, Rishi finally hugged his father and forgave him. They generally spoke for a while, and he took him to his children's room, and his father felt happy seeing them. He blessed them from far and told him not to disturb their sleep. Soon Rishi got a call on his phone, and he ran to his room and answered the call. It was his mother, and she was crying.
"What happened, mom? Why are you crying? It's OK. I'm fine, and I forgave, dad."
“Rishi…. Your father is no more. He passed away a few hours back. He had a heart attack. From the moment you left home, he became ill and couldn't cope up. We searched for you everywhere, but we couldn't find you. But after a year we saw you on T.V., But then he didn't want to disturb you, as you were struggling hard to make your career. He wanted you to focus on whatever you did. He loved you a lot Rishi. We wanted to visit when you had your first child, but your father's health dropped very low, and he was bedridden. He didn't want you to have any kind of stress while you make your career, so we never came to see you. He always had this guilt that he couldn't control his anger and threw you both out at midnight. He couldn't forgive himself. He always wanted to see you, hug you once and wanted to apologize for what he did to you. He wanted to play with your children and spend the rest of his life with you and your family. But life didn't give him a chance."
In a shock of what he heard, his entire body became cold, and the phone slipped and fell from his hand. He ran and came to his living room and saw his father standing near the door and said, "Bye Rishi. I'm happy that you opened the door for me. Now that you forgave me, I can go peacefully. I always loved you, my son. May God bring all the happiness to you and your family. Please take care of your mother. She needs you." He slowly vanished, and Rishi fell on his knees and broke in tears and blamed himself for not going back to check on his parents after achieving his dream.