Punyasloke Bose

Drama Horror


Punyasloke Bose

Drama Horror

The Faceoff

The Faceoff

8 mins

Shreya was busy doing her bridal makeup. A few hours from now she would be getting married. After a long courtship of six years she was going to tie the knot with Aditya. Shreya was in her final year in college when it all began. Through a friend she was initiated into social media. All her friends were also doing it as it was great past time. They all had got their accounts registered with Facebook. 

Slowly Shreya got hooked into the Facebook band wagon. Her friends list started burgeoning from known people and acquaintances to the uncharted territory of unknowns. Aditya came into her life through Facebook. He was initially an unknown person to Shreya. But slowly an intimacy started growing. A simple friend request turned into a relationship. Shreya had many such friends but this one with Aditya just continued. 

Shreya finished her college and then enrolled for a course on event management. She then joined an advertising company as a creative executive. Aditya on the other hand did his MBA and joined his father to manage their family business of manufacture of paints and resins. 

In between there was a period of lull and then again they would become active chatting on the social media. Shreya liked the photos Aditya uploaded in his profile page. Shreya was a little conservative about putting up her pictures for the world to view. She preferred to remain more private. 

Then they began chatting over the phone. Shreya found Aditya to be very polite and gentlemanly in his conversations. Shreya's family came to know about Aditya gradually. To them he seemed a very eligible bachelor by being rich and polite. They began insisting Shreya to take the relationship to the marriage level. But Shreya though being fond of Aditya wanted that he should propose first. 

In between their established relationship there was suddenly a break of two years. Aditya had all of a sudden withdrawn from all communications. 

Then suddenly Aditya came alive and started communicating afresh. Shreya enquired about the absence to which he diplomatically evaded. Suddenly he proposed to Shreya. Aditya let Shreya know that his family wanted to start negotiations with her family. Shreya's family was very excited. Very soon their marriage was fixed. 

The marriage was solemnised and Shreya went to her in law's house. The first night was dramatic as first nights after marriage generally are. 

The next morning Shreya got the shock of her life. A tumultuous period in her life was about to begin. She got up early the next morning and found Aditya still asleep. Seeing Aditya's face Shreya recoiled in horror. It was truly ugly if that was an appropriate definition. Beside his face lay a skin coloured full face mask. So with the help of this mask Aditya hid his appallingly ugly face. 

Momentarily pulverised into inaction, Shreya slowly gathered herself together. One thing dawned on her slowly, that she had been grossly cheated. Before the marriage Aditya was reluctant to come face to face with Shreya, which she had passed it off as his shyness. 

Shreya wanted an explanation from Aditya and his family for this humongous concealment. Before Aditya could get up, Shreya had informed her parents and asked them to come soon to her in law's place. Meanwhile Aditya got up and quickly put on his mask awkwardly and looked at Shreya like a convict. 

Aditya found Shreya to be visibly upset. Shreya demanded an explanation from him for such a gross concealment of facts before the marriage. Aditya tried to reason out with Shreya. He said that his face had been deeply burned from a huge fire in their paint factory few years ago. The biggest casualty in the fire was his face. After the fire was doused he had been taken to the hospital with a severely burned face. The doctors had saved his life but his face remained deeply burned. Some plastic surgery had been done to restore his face to the original self but much remained to be done. To get better treatment Aditya had gone abroad to Switzerland to attend a renowned plastic surgeon. He reminded Shreya of the absence of his communication in the intervening two years was his treatment in Switzerland. He said that the treatment needed his attendance in many phases due to the severity of the accident. Aditya said that he had already gone there twice. In future he had to make many more visits to get an improved version of himself. 

Shreya felt pity for Aditya and empathised with him for his grief. But she could not bear the thought of being cheated. She said that at least before the marriage Aditya could have been more honest and let her know of his real self. Aditya said that he had tried many times but could not sum up his courage to own up to the facts. Now he wanted Shreya and their family should pardon him. 

But Shreya was in no pardonable mood. Even Aditya's parents came begging to Shreya. But she would not relent. For them Shreya had only one reason that before the marriage there should have been an honest revelation so that the thing would have died down under the judgment of good sense.. Shreya threatened of taking legal action. Aditya seeing the loss of reputation and family prestige begged for forgiveness from Shreya. But now it was a different Shreya now. 

Very soon Shreya was with her parents. Her parents tried to console her but she was hell bent to take legal action against her in laws. Aditya tried his best to seek forgiveness but to no avail. 

Shreya went straight to the Police station to lodge a formal complain accompanied by her parents. The Police recorded her statement without any prejudice. Then they sent out summons for Aditya and his parents. 

Aditya and his parents responded to the Police summons. Aditya answered to the questions put up by the Police to the best of his abilities. The Police tried to counsel the couple but it proved to be too daunting. Taking cognisance of the sensitivity of the case, the Police transferred it to the family court. In between Aditya begged of Shreya to forgive and pardon him. But Shreya could not get over the thought of being cheated with her life. 

At the family court a counsel was appointed for Shreya. Aditya refused to have a counsel and wanted to accept Shreya's counsel as his own because according to him he did not have any dispute with Shreya. 

The lady judge listened to the plaintiff's cause empathetically. She questioned Aditya about his sincerity and motive behind hiding the fact of his ugly facial disfigurement. To which Aditya responded saying that he would have revealed to Shreya slowly about his tragic accident. He also said that as he was under treatment and slowly hoped that after many attendances with the cosmetic surgeon his facial image would normalise. 

But Shreya's hurt ego would not repair. She now filed a fresh case of divorce in the same court. Aditya was at his wit's end. After a prolonged hearing the judge passed a ruling saying that as the pride of one of the parties was severely hurt, it was advised that in the best interest of the marriage to continue more time be given to both the partners. The wounded party should accept the situation stoically and leave the healing to the process of divine intervention. Because the accused was sincere in continuing the relationship and honest enough to accept the fault of suppression of facts due to fear of rejection. The judge gave the couple a time of three months to heal the wound. She asked the couple to go on a honeymoon to make their marriage work. After three months the court would again assemble to update the status of the marriage and decide future course of action. 

Aditya was pleased at the outcome of the court proceedings. The parents of both the couple accepted the verdict with an open mind. Shreya's parents asked Shreya to take the wise judgement given by the court pragmatically. 

Aditya tried his best to woo his aggrieved wife Shreya. He had his next appointment with the cosmetic surgeon in a couple of weeks. So he booked the tickets and hotel bookings for himself and Shreya and her parents. Because during his hospital stay Shreya would not feel lonely but would be in the good company of her parents. 

The visit to the beautiful surroundings of Switzerland had an intoxicating effect over Shreya. Her wounded pride slowly began to heal. Aditya attended the appointment with the cosmetic surgeon. After the facial repair this time, the beauty of the human face a God's gift came to the fore for Aditya the first time ever. Even Shreya seemed to soften her stubborn stand. The whole ambience of Switzerland was playing magic over Shreya's mind. She slowly began liking Aditya. After all behaviour wise there could not be any complaints against him. 

The cosmetic surgery over, Aditya face became almost normal. He now had only one sitting left with the surgeon after which his face would become almost like any other man. 

The repulsion which Shreya had faced before now changed to admiration and attraction. She remembered the story of Beauty and the Beast which she had read as a little girl. The beast in the story changed to a handsome Prince after beauty gave her word of marrying the beast. The beast here in the form of Aditya was slowly being changed by the patience of Shreya the beauty. 

After three months the family Court was again in assembly to decide the outcome of the Faceoff between Shreya versus Aditya. The court saw a beaming couple sitting side by side romantically so dismissed the case with a happy note. 

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