UNTILL DEATH DO US APART
UNTILL DEATH DO US APART4 mins 223 4 mins 223
Raj loved Rekha, there could be no doubt about it. So was it with Rekha, who loved Raj more than herself or any other precious possession. They knew and believed that they were made for each other from the moment their eyes met one day, two years ago, in the crowded Mumbai Mall. They were total strangers then, and it was their first sighting.
The relationship was confirmed when they met again, weeks later in the same Mall. Meeting once without prior notice could be a coincidence, but meeting again cannot be put away to chance. This time they could feel the pull and thus they came together, each following his/her inner urging.
It had been two years of unrelenting passion for Raj and Rekha, but they still could not commit to marriage. The break up happened without a warning. Raj blamed Rekha for it, and Rekha blamed Raj. The cause of the break-up was silly, as it always is with those in love. Rekha suspected that Raj was fooling with her because he would evade any kind of question on cementing their relationship permanently. Maybe, felt Rekha, Raj had never thought of a permanent relationship with her. Maybe Raj was only interested in a physical and temporary relationship with her, while her love sought marriage.
Raj believed that he was more practical in life management and knew that while love and passion were driving their relationship now, it would not last forever. He believed that passion was fickle and would desert them as soon as they married to face the harsh realities of life. He was still struggling to make a career and doubted if he could sustain a long relationship with anyone.
As time flew, Rekha could feel it in her bones that their relationship was struggling and stagnant. She worried about what would happen to her if Raj left her for someone else. She was fragile, at least emotionally, and this was her first serious relationship with a man. With each passing day, she was feeling the helplessness and frustration grow inside her. She had to regain control of herself and the relationship, or else she was doomed.
It was under such a situation that Rekha decided to die. The day of her death seemed most appropriate for Raj was with her and this was Raj’s room. They had been arguing again over their future, and both of them seemed to have reached the point of no return. They were shouting at each other and were beside themselves. Reason had long deserted them. They were now animals, striking at each other intending to hurt-both verbally and physically.
“I will kill myself”, Rekha was shouting at Raj wildly. “This will set you free. As long as I am alive, I will not allow you to ditch me.”
“You’re mad,”, Raj shouted. “I love you, but not yet ready for marriage. There is none except you in my life.”
“Mr Raj, you can lie for all you want, but a woman surely knows when her partner is lying to her. I know what is going on in that wretched gutter of your mind. You tricked me into submitting to you, stole the only thing a girl values most; her virginity. Now you are just making excuses to get away from me. Die I will, and you will forever carry the guilt of my death. You will never be happy.”
Raj was trembling with a rage that seemed to have enveloped his whole being. “If that is what you want, let me do it for you.” He picked up the can of kerosene from the kitchen and began pouring it on her. Rekha was all the while shouting at him, daring him to do the unthinkable.
The fact was, Rekha never wanted to die, and Raj never wanted to kill her. They loved each other madly. That was the problem. Unbridled emotions, however fine they are, lead to disastrous consequences. Most of us cannot understand love when we are beset with problems that seem too big to resolve. We transform our fine emotions into monstrous and negative energies and do what we had never intended to do.
Even as Raj was pouring kerosene over Rekha, she was searching around for the matchbox. When she found it, she hurriedly struck a match and dropped it on her soaked body. The flames erupted fiercely, just like their anger and hatred for each other.
Raj, still under the spell of anger, turned to leave the house. Rekha was completely covered with flames now, but still alive. She saw her beloved trying to leave her to die and flung herself at him. She threw her arms around him in one last hug. Raj tried hard to free himself, but he was being held tight in his lover’s arms.
The two lovers were still in each other's arms when the neighbours broke into the room. I wonder if the last emotion Rekha and Raj felt was pure love?