Read a tale of endurance, will & a daring fight against Covid. Click here for "The Stalwarts" by Soni Shalini.
Read a tale of endurance, will & a daring fight against Covid. Click here for "The Stalwarts" by Soni Shalini.

Proof Of Love

Proof Of Love

3 mins

"Prove you love me," Padma demanded for the umpteenth time. 

 I couldn't take it anymore and went wild with rage. I shoved her aside and punched the wall so hard, I broke my wrist. I could see that one forearm bone had broken completely and it was sticking out, having pierced through the flesh and hide. Blood squirted out first and then steadied into a consistent flow. Padma screamed.

Being in extreme pain myself, I screamed too, crashed to the floor and writhed like a fish thrown onto the ground. I could see blood all around me. The viscosity of blood made it a fine and thick paint and all my writhing seemed to have painted on the white floor, the picture of a dying bee on a hibiscus, of a dying fish on a red towel, waiting to by chopped and eaten raw.

As I slipped into unconsciousness, I could hear Padma continue screaming. I also saw the hazy picture of her running around helplessly, like a person on fire chased by hungry hyenas. I smiled even as I passed out. 

When I regained consciousness, I was in hospital, with my hand heavily plastered. Padma was by my side, inconsolable and seemingly full of remorse.

 “I shouldn’t have asked you. The doctor said the carpel bones were shattered, the ulna cracked and the radius bone stuck out. Why did you do this?” she asked. “I will never ask you how much you love me. I know it now. You almost killed yourself for me. I will not ask again. I am sorry”. She cried, holding my plastered wrist against her face and cried. I was too weak to move and to me where it lay made no difference. I was numb both inside and outside.

 The nagger is crushing my wrist even now, I was annoyed.

 “Where is Subadhra?” I asked her. That was the only thing I wanted to know.

 “She is safe at home with her grandparents. She doesn’t know about you yet. Don’t talk. You are still weak. Your voice is hoarse and your throat seems dry. I will get you something to drink.” She said and walked out of the room.

Thank you Subhadra dear, I thought of my little daughter. You are the only one in the entire world, for whom I will go any distance. You keep me human. If not for you and if not for all the social, moral and legal slag that has cast us into hapless civil meatballs, I would have so loved to watch the punch land on your mother's face. She would’ve crashed into the wall, taking shreds of paint and maybe even some concrete from it, replacing it with her blood. She would’ve sunk into the floor, a lifeless clump, her tresses painting a fine pattern on the wall on her way down. That would’ve helped liberate me from the most uncomfortable question that I would ever have had to answer over and over again. Why is a ‘No’ so difficult to understand? The blood did flow, my dear little one. But it was shed so I could get away without losing you. It was always about you my dear daughter and never about anyone else. It wasn’t all that easy, but a lot easier than the alternative. Blood did flow, and I now haven’t lost you either. Everything is just as fine as it can be.

As the sedatives I had been administered started taking effect, I slipped into unconsciousness once again, smiling this time around too as I possed out, as enjoyable scenes of my daughter laughing and playing without a care in the world played in front of my eyes.

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