Lost you to find me
Lost you to find me17 mins 229 17 mins 229
I Love You
Rukmini promised herself she was going to be emotionless. The roller coaster journey from marriage to divorce in the last two years was too much for a lifetime. From the day they agreed to take a divorce, all she looked forward to, was that day. The day had come, and she packed the last of her bags and got into the Murari's car. Murari, Rukmini's husband, was a monster till the day they both decided to take divorce. But once they both agreed to the divorce, things changed for the better. Till that day Murari has taken her for granted, as any man in a marriage. Once they agreed they were no longer husband and wife, she treated her better. At least she felt that was the reason.
That day, however, things started to feel very real. She does not want to leave. But there was something that was nagging her to stay back. She thought it could be similar to a feeling you get when giving an old unworn dress. It was not because she fell in love with Murari. Murari got into the car and started to drive. She could not see any of his expressions. She thought he was happy to get rid of her. After all, he never so much as said an "I love you" in these two years. How could that day be any different? She was so angry with him that she decided to stay far from him for a while. But they had to stay together, as it was near, to the office and they two paid the lease for the two years together. Let us not forget, Murari may not be a great husband, but he was a decent gentleman. Before she could get through all her emotions, they reached her new address. Murari spoke to the watchman and took his help to arrange the bags in Rukmini's apartment.
Some residual feelings started to stir in Rukmini. This man was a thorough gentleman all this while. He made sure I get what I wanted all this time. Today, too, he was taking all the pains to make me comfortable. Why can't he be a half-decent husband? When all these thoughts were going on in her mind, Murari came to her and handed the key.
Before parting, he asked, "Is there anything else?"
Facing away from Murari she said, "Nothing". But what she wanted to say was, "Why you had to be this good before and after marriage but not when we were married. Now, I am confused about my future. I cannot trust anyone, anymore."
Murari said, "Okay, then. I will leave."
That was when it all became real once again to Murari. Rukmini was not going to be in his life anymore. Rukmini walked next to him to send him off and lock the apartment. What Rukmini did not notice were the teardrops that formed in his eyes.
Once out of the door, Murari turned around and said that one thing he wanted to say for a while.
"Rukmini, I love you."
I marry you
The Kundali was a match. The names could not have been any better match, Rukmini and Murari. Working in the same city and the same office complex was not a reason, but it was a convenience very few had. Everyone was in a hurry for Rukmini to say a Yes. But Rukmini was not the one who jumps into something without thinking it through. Rukmini needed to know the guy before getting married. She can only do once out of the village. The family gave already a stern look when she asked for Murari's phone number.
On reaching the paying guest house, she started to contemplate the repercussions, once she made that call. Even though none in the family for forthcoming to give the number, she got it. She started to think, why was that, he does not have a little bit of curiosity to find my number. Why doesn't he call me before I call him? Before the thoughts came to a natural end, the phone started to ring. Let us call it coincidence or in the lovey-dovey language cupid strikes, it was a call from Murari.
"My Dad wanted to know when we should come to your village to decide on the fixing the date for marriage", said Murari before Rukmini could even say hello.
Rukmini was a little angry. Not a hello, no flirting, no romance directly jumping into marriage. He seemed to be living a few generations behind.
She said with an angry tone, "Wedding date, already? I did not even agree to marry you".
Murari till then thought he was calling Rukmini's Father. It took a second to register who it was. But what hit him harder was, "I did not even agree to marry you". He asked her, "Are you going to reject me?"
"I did not say that".
"First, you were angry when I talked about the wedding date. Now, you say you are not going to reject me. I don't understand."
"I don't know you. It does not concern me if Kundali matches, what matters is what I know of you?"
"Okay, how do you suggest you know me?", asked Murari.
"Let us meet, talk and try to learn about each other", said Rukmini.
"By the way, how did you get my number."
"I thought it was your father's but turned out it is yours."
"What kind of man are you?"
"What do you mean?"
"First, you did not try to get my number. Second, when I was about to call you, I got this call. I was in the impression this was some cupid strike, and you took all the fun out with your answer. Don't you know how to talk to a woman?"
"Well, I don't think lying is the way to start. It was easy to be true to self. Anyway, the Manmadha struck his arrow for me when I heard your name. I always wanted to marry a Rukmini. But looks like, I got a package of Sathyabhama too in a Rukmini."
"Manmadha, why can't you say cupid stuck me like this generation kids."
"Manmadha is the greatest out there. He was the reason for the greatest love story of all time, Parvathi and Shiva. Parvathi, a princess, left her celestial palace and did tapa for three thousand years standing on one leg. Manmadha was the one who brought them together, he got burnt to ashes in the process. Who else can boast of such credentials."
"In that story, Parvathi felt blessed to be seen by Shiva. Are you saying I am blessed to be seen by you?"
"Well, Shiva may not be a king or lives in a celestial building, once Sati died during Daksha Yagna. Shiva killed all the participants of Yagna. He went into Tapasya and grief for thousands of years. Only after Sati reborn as Parvati, he could come out of sorrow. Which ended in the marriage of Shiva and Parvati."
"This is too much of mythology for me to digest."
"It is not."
"Let us move on, cupid might have stuck you. For a girl that is not enough. There are a lot of things I want to know before I am ready to marry you."
"Okay, ask away", said Murari.
"Not over the phone. Let us meet in the office canteen tomorrow."
The date was agreed.
"By the way don't ever tell any girl long mythological stories about love. Many don't get it."
Murari did not know what he was getting into. But nonchalance has always been his life principal. That day, however, was different something was asking him to be scared of failure. He wanted Rukmini to like him. He wore the best dress he got. His mind went through a hundred different questions, which Rukmini might ask. Still, he was not ready. Like a kid going into an exam, he was revising his answers again and again.
"I am not going to ask what you do with your Salary."
"Your father and mother can live with us."
"My mother and father will come once in a while."
"I will not ask you to cook for me. I like to cook, so, I cook. You can eat if you like what I cook."
"We will have kids only when you are ready. I am open to adapt as well."
When those thoughts were going on in his mind, the phone rang. It was Rukmini, she was searching for him in the food court. The food court was a big one and crowded during lunch. As it was only one food court for some ten plus IT companies in the complex. She asked him to come out to parking. He walked out and met her. They both decide to go to a restaurant, nearby, for lunch.
She immediately noticed the nervousness in his face.
"Don't be nervous," said Rukmini.
Murari felt he was not making a good impression. He wanted to say he was not nervous. But the words never came out. He nodded an okay in response. After that, Rukmini expected Murari to start talking. He was waiting for her to ask the questions. After all, he had all the answers by heart, he was roting them for the last 18 hours. He did not prepare for any other small talk. Walking a little ahead, he noticed a beggar kid and handed a Fifty rupee to the kid to get lunch.
Rukmini asked, "Why did you give him so much money?"
The question was out of syllabus. Murari replied, "I don't know".
"You don't have to generous around me to get my acceptance. I hate kids walking around begging. It is a scam. Kids are kidnapped from their parents and left to beg. The money you give goes into some kidnapper sitting in someplace."
"What do you mean maybe?"
"I can afford to give the fifty rupees to the kid. I hope that the kid can have a decent meal with the money I gave."
"Have you not heard what I said?"
"I heard but what I see is a kid who says who is hungry. I gave the money for food."
"How can you be so blind to what is going on in the world?"
"I am not blind. I am just hopeful. Even if one kid was true and I did not do right by him, with what I have, what is the point of life."
Rukmini could not believe what she was hearing. In the world which can cheat a 75-year-old of her old age pension of five thousand rupees, Murari was an exception. She liked him, but she did not know if she was ready to say yes yet.
Murari did everything right during lunch. Behaved gentlemanly, answered every one of her questions the way she liked. She started liking him, but she was looking for something more. Murari finished his lunch and went to wash his hand.
Rukmini started reminiscing. The logical part of the brain was saying he was the man. The female side, or the romantic brain, wanted something more, some sparks. It had not happened. He did not even try to touch her hand or sit next to her. The love as she knows is the silence that you hear between the heartbeats.
Murari was back, and they both shared the bill and headed back to the office complex. Once they reached the office complex, the time to part each other's way had come. Rukmini was ready to leave. But, Murari was not. She can see Murari was trying to say something. Rukmini waited for him to say something, but he did not spell it out.
She was ready to leave, said bye to him and turned to leave.
Then Murari said, "My friends told me it is better to love and be lost then remain single. But once I met you, I feel it is better being single than losing you. I am not going to survive your rejection."
Rukmini finally got the spark she was looking for, the romantic side of Murari was out. She said, "I marry you".
The last fight.
On the first night, Rukmini asked Murari what made him say that he cannot survive her rejection.
"I don't know," said Murari
"I agreed to marry you for that. Don't tell me it was nothing."
"I really don't know. Something made me say it."
"At least lie like others. Say it was love at first sight or something."
"I don't believe in love at first sight. For love to happen we need to spend a lot of time together, we must fight, I need to say sorry even if it is not my fault. You need to accept me even when you know I might do the same thing again. Things seem to get boring. But a day will come and that morning when we wake up pack the bags and when we get into the car and have a second to think we realize this is it, this is all we want."
"Oh! Mr Romantic. Tell me then why you said what you said."
"Because I don't want to lose the chance to fall in love with you".
Rukmini never doubted her choice for many, many days to come. The first fight happened, the second one, and many more and they reconciled every time. She was happy most of the days. There were very few complaints with Murari. Things started to become a routine.
Valentine's day had come and gone. Murari did not do anything special, a fight ensued. The marriage anniversary had come and gone. She had no patience for his excuses. That was when Rukmini realized things were getting too routine. Rukmini wanted something more she did not know what it was. That was all new to her as well.
For Murari, things were peachy. He believed he was not going to get a better life or a better wife. Happy in his world Murari got a shock one fine morning. Rukmini asked she wanted a divorce. He stood there speechless. He could bring himself to ask why? He left the room and locked himself in the other bedroom. The next morning Murari expected things to go back to normal. He behaved as if nothing happened.
Rukmini did not know how to react to Murari's previous day behaviour. All day she was going through unsettling emotions. She felt Murari was taking her for granted. She thought he was expecting her to forget this. He did not even call her, which made her anxious and angrier. The end of the day came, she reached home. Murari was late as usual. He came home and asked if she had dinner, without so much as a peep about the day before. She was getting frustrated. He nonchalantly opened the Swiggy menu and asked what she wants. That was the last nail in the coffin. She burst out in anger.
"Why did you marry at all? Work, eat, and shit nothing more. Sex also is a ritual. No romance, no flowers, no anniversary, no valentines, nothing. Tell me, why did you marry me?"
The reply was silence from Murari.
"Why are you standing like a wall there. Can't you have time even to fight for me? Guys like you should never marry. Even if you marry the woman should be blind, deaf, and dumb. That way, she will not have any expectations."
"Don't be angry. Tell me what I did wrong", asked Murari.
It was the same question from Murari whenever they fought. It made her angrier, "Every fight we have you keep asking what I did wrong. You never think for yourself and ask what I can do right. From the day we got married, you did not once say "I Love you". Not one romantic gesture all this time. You have a laptop, phone, washing machine, and a wife. You forgot long back that I have feelings."
"I am sorry, tell me what you want me to do.", asked Murari.
"I want a divorce. I am not going to expect anything more from you and get disappointed again."
That was their last fight as a couple. That night they agreed to a mutual divorce over WhatsApp messages. Their life was event less from that day till Rukmini moved out of the house.
"Why are you saying I love you, now", asked Rukmini.
"I thought I am not going to lose you. This is the last chance I had to say it to you.", replied Murari.
"Don't do this. I was undecided about our marriage, and you said one romantic line and I fell for you. After that, you were not romantic all the time we were together. Today you do this to me. Why?"
"I don't know."
"Again, with the "I don't know". We were married. We have seen each other in the worst and the best. Still, you cannot be open with me."
"Yes, I cannot be open with you. Because I don't want to lose you."
"Please, I cannot take this romantic lines now. Please get out", said Rukmini.
"Please give me one final chance. Let me say what I want to say."
Rukmini gave an angry nod yes to Murari.
"I loved you all this time. When we had our first fight when I took you to the office the first time on my bike, I was in love with you. When we had our first late-night dinner on the roadside Parotta shop, I fell for you head over heels. Because love for me is not the one which makes the heart skip a beat, Love is the one which makes the heart feel this is it, this is what I want, and I can beat normally now on. I thought you too had many of those with me."
Rukmini was waiting intently but had no words yet.
"I know I missed valentine's day. Our valentine's day was when we met for the first time. The day we met for lunch. I made your favourite meal and bought you that necklace you always wanted on that day. Anniversary, I missed as my best friend's father passed away that day. I know, I should have at least called. But I was the only one he had to share his grief."
Rukmini started to feel a little guilty.
"I never told you this because I don't want you to feel guilty. I never expected these things matter. For me, the definition of Love comes from my parents. You see them fighting all day. But the moment my mom wants something, my dad, is there to server her and vice versa. I never heard them ever say "I love you" to each other. My mom is tired from all the day's work. My Father silently walks to her and massages her leg with warm water bag. My mother, yells at him when my Father buys a Gulab Jamon, because of his diabetes. But she makes it, anyway, for the festival, because he told her festival is not done without a Gulab Jamon. I believed we had that."
Rukmini's started to feel guilty. But her logical brain was saying she was right to feel ignored.
"Please give me one more chance. I will do better."
Rukmini angrily closed the door. Disappointed with himself, Murari left from there.
Murari was having lunch by himself. He acted all day as if everything was great, but deep inside, he was hiding a lot of pain. That was lunchtime for Rukmini too it was past lunchtime. Murari came long before lunchtime in the hope of meeting Rukmini in the food court. She never showed up. He did not have had the heart to ask anyone about her. What if they say she moved to a different place? He needed the hope of seeing her again to survive a little more.
Dejected, he was walking into his apartment. What he did not notice coming into the house was, the door was open. He walked past Rukmini, who was in the living room. He went in and dropped on to his bed. A few moments and he ran back to the living room. She really was there it was not his mind playing games.
With tear-filled eyes, he screamed, "You are back, please, tell me you are back."
"I am not. I am not back for you or your stories. I am here because I could not live in my new apartment alone."
"Please don't say that. Tell me you came back to stay."
"We were divorced yesterday we are divorced today."
Murari felt disheartened and tested at the same time. If that was what she felt, why is she here. She cannot be here to hurt me more.
There was absolute silence for a few minutes.
Then Rukmini asked, "I haven't had dinner. Have you had any dinner?”
With residual tears in his eyes, Murari nodded "No".
"Let us go to the Parota shop. I need to know how can love happen in a Parota shop."
"What does all this mean?", asked Murari.
"I wanted to fall for you at Parota shop."
Murari in an upbeat tone, asked, "And?"
"It did not happen."
"Because it happened yesterday when you told me what love meant to you."
With tears in eyes, he hugged her there in the street.
Wiping off his tears she said, "This is romance. You need to play hard to get and wait for the partner to fight for you. It keeps the female in me alive."
P.S.: Rukmini asked Murari whenever we are in a crisis you have the most romantic words. Why can't that be every day? Murari replied, "Shiva knew what Sati, his wife, wanted. But he could not give her. Sati was overcome by something which was not Shiva's fault perse. When she came back as Parvati, he found what he lost of himself, and became Arthanareeswara. To summarise, I needed to lose you to find me."