Mom Look At The Stars
Mom Look At The Stars
“Mom look at the stars, how beautiful they are,” Seetha said to her mother who was feeding rice balls to her. She was sitting next to her on the balcony. The cool breeze flew across the roads as the trees swayed in rhythm. Rain lashed heavily for three hours continuously before it left and brought cheers to the people. Especially Seetha was very happy to see the rain and she extended her lean hands through the safety grills of the balcony and caught the droplets of rain in her hands and splashed them on her sister Rathi who in turn reported to her mother and wailed.
“Yes dear, they are beautiful because you adore them,” her mother confessed.
Seetha gave a look at her mother as if she was stupid, “Mom how it could be beautiful by seeing them. You are wrong. Stars are beautiful so I look at them.”
Her mother Janaki took another rice ball from the steel plate and tried to feed Seetha, but she refused it. “First tell me. Why do you say it wrongly?”
“No, that’s okay dear. Have food first, we will talk about it later,” Janaki said.
“I don’t eat food if you don’t give me an answer,” Seetha announced. Her hands were crossed against her chest and turned away her sight from looking at her mother.
“I’ll tell you when you grow up a big girl like your sister Rathi.”
“But that’s not the point. I want this to be clarified now,” Seetha sounded a little frustrated, but her mother was impressed with her stubbornness in knowing things. She thought she had grown quick to her age. She had not even finished her UKG to talk like that.
A strong cold wind swept across Seetha and she took a deep breath, still wondering about nature. She was keen to know things which she wondered and admired. Age is nothing to do with it. That was true. Even you could see people who were fifty-plus and still didn’t question anything interestingly. They take everything for granted and live a life just like any creature. That’s not the life Seetha wants to live, she wanted to explore everything that she could.
Janaki knew she can’t withhold this matter until tomorrow. She gave water in a tumbler to Seetha and asked her to drink it. After a few sips, she held it in her hand and looked at her mother, whose moist eyes had something to talk about.
“Yes, in this world, whatever it may be, when you look at it with pure heart and soul, you understand the beauty of it. For example, look at the cat in our house. You adore it, so it became beautiful to your eyes. Like, how happy you are to watch The Jungle Book on the TV. You love it so you wanted to see it again and again. But what about your friend Durga? Did she love to watch The Jungle Book every time?”
Seetha’s face turned pinkish as she thought of her mother’s response. She felt it was reasonably a good answer but still she wasn’t in the position to take it.
“Yes, I like that, but how can you compare a TV program with these stars,” Seetha said, extending her fingers at the stars in the sky as if she was touching them.
“That’s the catch. See if you grow your perception about your life varies. Oh dear, I don’t know if you can understand these truths about life now, but when the right time comes you will definitely understand about it.”
“Mommm, what are you still doing there. I’m feeling hungry, feed to me also,” Rathi said as she packed the books neatly in her school bag. Though she stopped going to schools and taking online classes, she always found it a good habit to follow the same process to which she was accustomed to earlier. It made her comfortable and gave the feeling that she was still engaged with school even though she wasn’t physically out there due to the ongoing pandemic.
“Yeaaaa coming babe. Give me a few seconds.” Janaki said in a raspy voice. She was elegant in her brown silk saree and had jasmine flowers on the back of her hair. She looked beautiful like the early morning sun, shedding a beam of light at everyone she looked. Today was her fifteenth wedding anniversary. Her husband had died when she was carrying Seetha in her. She didn’t want to think about it. Even her children didn’t know that their father doesn’t exist anymore. She told them that he went abroad to earn money and will come back soon. Her feelings were hardened now. It was her father who worried most than her because he only found this man was the right person for his daughter. Thanks to her father for letting her study what she was interested in. She did Bcom and was good at calculations and worked as an accountant in a reputed company even before she got married. Nobody knew that she loved a guy who worked in the same company. Even she didn’t reveal this to him and loved him so much that she even hesitated to talk to him about it. She was sensitive when it comes to relationship matters because she had lost her mother in a bus accident. Fortunately, both she and her father escaped with minor injuries. That was when she was seven years old. Her father alone took care of her to see a smile in her eyes always. When one day her father said to her that he had seen a good guy who was his friend’s son and he already communicated to him that Jankaki would accept this marriage proposal for sure. She threw a smile hiding all the pain in her heart. She had never thought that she was going to love a guy for four years without even dating him once. She loved for the sake of love. She liked that feeling. She lived with that feeling. She danced thinking about him and sang in memory of him. She listened to the songs which gave pleasure in knowing that they were inseparable. But why she didn’t tell him? She still couldn’t answer it. She may be though he won’t accept her because she wasn’t good-looking to his stature. Or he anticipated marrying a wealthy girl and she wasn’t fit for it. And more than that, he may not be interested to take a girl who had lost her mother already. So many questions were in her head and she left them unanswered even today.
“So what we were up to?” Janaki teased her daughter.
“You said something perception. But what was that? Anyway, I think I’ll get it as I grow. But you are so beautiful to me always, I love you mom,” Seetha said and kissed her mom on her right cheek. Janaki smiled in return as she went to the kitchen to serve food for Rathi, who was now scrolling her fingers to change the channels with the TV remote.
“C’mon mom, I’m feeling very hungry. How long should I wait for you?” Rathi threw her face away as she shrieked and fell on the sofa. “You are always feeding this bubbly girl first and leaving me alone.”
“Sorry, dear. You grew up a big girl and could eat food little later. But she can’t, she is still a baby you know,” Janaki said as placed a steel plate on the dining table and serving rice and sambar.
“Mom you stop talking like that. She is not a little girl as you think, she had grown up too. Why don’t you feed to us at the same time?”
“Possibly after three years when she turns eight. Stop arguing and start eating,” Janaki ordered.
Seetha giggled on hearing this. Rathi threw an empty tumbler at her.
“Rathi, stop doing that. You are almost hurting her,” Jankai said in a sharp voice.
“But………” Rathi shook her head and looked at Seetha, “You little dirty pig, if you laugh at me again, you are gone.”
“Mom, see what she is telling,” Seetha whimpered as looked at her mother, “she is always threatening me. Even yesterday she told me that our father had left only because of me. You tell me how I should be responsible when your husband left the house.”
Janaki came down and slapped. Seetha started crying.
“Hey Rathi, why did you say like that?”
“What? I didn’t say anything but the truth.”
“What truth you know? You know nothing. Never talk like that. Your father hadn’t left us, but he had gone to Emirates to earn money.”
“For God’s sake stop that again. You are cheating us by telling lies. You are not telling us the truth. You don’t think that we are going to still believe the same story again. No that’s not going to happen anymore. I have grown up as you rightly said earlier. You can’t lie anymore.”
Janaki took a deep breath. She knew that this moment was going to come a way back. But she had never prepared an answer to this question. Even God doesn’t know what she is going to respond to her children.
“Don’t worry babe. He would never come again because he was killed.”
“What??” It was Rathi’s response. She threw a weird face.
Seetha couldn’t get what was going on.
“Yes, I killed him……….I killed him………….. I killed him.” Janaki said as she shed tears copiously and her lips quivered.
“Moommmmmm don’t lie again. Tell us the truth. I mean actually what happened. Don’t try to threaten us. I don’t have fear.”
“I killed him because he kept hurting me from the day he tied a knot. Yes, that’s the truth. We can’t have him in our life anymore. The devil is no more and it won’t come back. You understand.” Janaki said in an uproarious tone. Rathi jerked back as if a sudden evil force caught her. Seetha kept looking at her mother in shock despite all this chaos happening in front of her.
Was that true? Yes. How did that happen?
The only mistake Janaki did was revealing to her husband that she loved a guy before they got married. She didn’t want to tell about it but her husband kept asking if she had ever been in love before. She never minds telling him the truth and said that only she had loved him and there was no relationship between them and even that guy didn’t know anything about it. But her husband flipped a smile and started taking advantage of it, to frustrate her daily by asking offending questions. Whenever they had been in love, he would ask her if that guy had touched her or kissed them there and even ask her if he was better in the bed than him. The torture didn’t end there. He would even burn her hands with the candle and the worst thing he did was that he had even shared her nude photo with her friends. When she had once attended the call from his friend on his mobile when he had gone out, his friend said to her that she was looking so hot and if she would like to invite him to take on. That moment she felt like someone had ripped her head and threw away. What was that? A friend of his would talk like that? She immediately cut the call and scanned through the pics in the gallery. She was aghast when she had seen her nude photo which he had taken without knowing her when she was dressing. Had I lived with such a terrible person? She hated herself for living with him for seven years and the more painful thing was that she was carrying another child (Seetha) in her womb. She felt like a rip-off her stomach and throw the child and cry like a maniac. She cried and cried on seeing her pic. She waited for him to come, still having a tiny hope that he didn’t do that. Maybe some wicked fellow did that, she thought.
“Who took this photo?” Janaki shrieked when he had entered the house.
He laughed, “Oh this photo I took for fun. Even I shared it with my friends. Such a lovely axs you know.”
The next second he wasn’t there to breathe, the sickle in her right-hand cut through his throat neatly and he fell on the ground. His eyes were stalled and his soul left his body. Janaki called her father and told him what had happened, he was sorry for finding the wrong person to marry her. He wept hard and surrendered to the police for committing this crime, telling them that he murdered him because he tortured his daughter for a long time and Janaki wasn’t able to tolerate living with him.