She was late to rise but her father’s words were humming in ears. Last night, he was so rude to her.
‘We can’t afford to lose this proposal. ‘
Mother was standing speechless, tried to oppose but couldn’t succeed.
‘It’s so early, she is only twenty.’
‘So what, she is not getting married off against the law. The boy is well educated and also hails from a well-to-do family. She’ll live like a queen. We must accept the alliance.’
What a joke! She had just finished, talking to Rajen. He is now at Gujrat in connection with a lucrative contract. He rarely misses calling Sheetal, his childhood love. This time, he will take at least two months to return. Last night while listening to father, Sheetal was convinced that it would be too difficult to resist this marriage. She was confused about her next move.
Back from the toilet, she met her mother. Normally, she talks less, rarely goes against her husband. Sheetal looked straight. Her eyes were moistened.
Excuse me, dear. You can do whatever you want. I’ll stand by your decision.
Sheetal had no idea that she would be caught by her father. The man is so cunning. Though he was now posted to another police station but had good relation with the inspector here. Anticipating the situation, it wasn’t very difficult for him to depute some men to closely watch her daughter’s moves.
‘Please let me go. Why you don’t understand, I’m not agreeing to this marriage.’
‘Listen, dear, don’t forget, I’m your father. You’ve to marry this boy. That is my decision.’
It seemed that the whole sky had fallen on her head. In the cab from bus stand to home, she was guarded by policemen by her side and she was sobbing.
Sheetal was about to get into the luxury car. She was heading to her groom’s house. Her mother ran to her, caught her hand, hugged and whispered to her ears
‘Sorry dear, I couldn’t do anything for you. I’m helpless like earlier.’
Sheetal was anxious about her future life, more helpless than her mother. She didn’t have any mobile from the day she was caught, couldn’t even call Rajen. She had so much to say.
‘Yes mom, I lost my life. Let me go.’
It was almost four at night. The venue is calm and quiet. Dressed in benarasi along with lots of jewellery, Sheetal, though looked like a bride, but was unresponsive to the turn of events, felt no urge to see the groom and fell asleep.
She woke up to a male touch but couldn’t believe her eyes. Semi-nude, she found the groom’s father was on her. He was almost to enter Sheetal. By all her power, she quickly removed herself from his clutch and rushed to the door like lightning-struck.
Next morning, she discovered herself lying on tea- stall’s bench; saw the Sun above, saying at her
—— Let’s begin afresh…
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