Ahalya was her name. It meant night.
Ahalya put the final touches of make-up and smiled at the facsimile staring back at her from the ornate endowed mirror. She sprinkled the aphrodisiacal perfume all over the poster bed and adjusted her sequined saree-pallu to fall between the hollow of her voluptuous bristols. Her curves seductively peeped through the exposed parts. The world couldn’t see the nail and bite marks on her chest and back… a benefaction from her ravenous beast of a husband.
She took out the new malt, her husband’s favorite brand, but specially brewed by Vishnu just the way she wanted. Vishnu was her best friend and a mute witness to her life turmoil.
She wiped a lone tear remembering the day over five years ago when she had been out on a secret rendezvous with Vishnu, who had just taken over his late father’s brewery. All of twenty, she belonged to a respectable upper-class family. Her father, Sadananda, would throw a fit knowing what his prodigal daughter was up to.
She had left the brewery backyard in the rainy evening, hurrying home along a secluded path swelled with the earthly petrichor, drenched despite having an umbrella. Suddenly she was waylaid by an inebriated Gautam.
What fomented was a woman’s worst nightmare where Gautam violated her, destroying her virtue in a matter of minutes.
Ahalya was her name. The era didn’t matter; she was blamed, yet again.
“It is decided, Gautam will marry Ahalya,” The Panchayat declared.
They didn’t want police interference, and Sadananda was only too happy to avoid the negative réclame.
“You are lucky; they are a rich and powerful household. You will have all the life-pleasures….” Sadananda advised, blinded by scraps thrown his way.
Ahalya was galvanized from the fire pan to the fire. What followed was five years of marital rape and insatiable malevolence. The family condemned her for not bearing an heir, although Gautam hadn’t sired an offspring through any of the innumerable illicit affairs all over the village and outside. Ahalya had been delighted, though.
Ahalya was her name, and she was finally untrammeled from the curse.
That night, on her fifth marriage anniversary, the entire universe had conspired to align themselves in her favor. The family members were visiting a funeral in another town, and she had sent the innumerable servants away under some pretext. Alone at home, finally, after years, she had her chance.
Gautam stumbled into the colossal house drowned in grog. Ahalya sashayed closer to the monster, offering him a glass of her unique concoction. Gautam’s eyes gleaming with lust consumed the brew, and within minutes of reaching the bed inside, he sprawled… lifeless.
Ahalya took out her packed luggage and left the house. The CCTV jammers in place and the glass in Gautam’s stiffening hand, she left with Vishnu in a waiting car. Justice had finally moseyed its way….
Timelines lay immaterial; her present had no probability
Karma came full circle swathed in the envelope of Serendipity
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