Another day had passed, now it was night's turn.Just as the day brought light, the night brought darkness. What was this night going to be like? She was tired of those memories, and sick of the life she was living. As she was in the kitchen making some tea for herself, she decided that this night was going to be a different one from the rest, that she was not going to give in. She didn't know what it was like to experience a pleasant time after the Sun had set for the past two years. Alone in the paying guest apartment that she lived in, she sat by the window with her cup of tea, sipping at it she looked at the passing traffic and the passers-by, something she had not done in a long time, she could feel the effort it took her to not let her mind drift away into what she had in the other side of her tiny little head. She sat there, still, gazing upon nothing, yet lost in something, she stared at the window as if it was a mirror that reflected all of her thoughts.
She saw herself at the age of sixteen, happy and excited awaiting the Holi celebrations to begin, with bright packets of colour surrounding the garden, she saw herself smile. The celebrations started, within no time her sister and her brother-in-law could not be recognised, with colours smeared all over their bodies. She seemed like the only one who could be recognised. Her sister went into the house first to wash off all the colours, while she stood in the veranda looking at all the neighbourhood children playing.
She suddenly felt her brother-in- law's hand creep up her waist, a chill ran down her spine, touching her breasts he silently whispered into her ear "badi patli kamar hain". She stood there, helpless. Not sure of what had just happened, she seemed to be in a daze, she wanted so desperately to scream and run away from him, but she did not.
Soon after, when she went to take a shower she saw her white brassiere that she was wearing, had turned a bright pink. She stood under the shower, and along with the water that washed the colour off her body, ran her tears. She cried like a baby.
She saw herself days after this incident, looking perfectly fine. No one knew of this. She hated the sight of that man now, the sleazy manner in which he looked at her, talked the creepiest of things that he wanted to do with her. Every time she saw him she wanted to run to her sister and tell her everything. Everything that happened and keeps happening every time she goes to her sister's house. But, she did not. She could not. She did not want to destroy the only relationship that seemed to keep her sister happy, she did not want to ruin it for the baby her sister was pregnant with. So she kept all this to herself. She saw her sister living a lie with that man, it broke her from within. It was all her fault, to watch her sister live that miserable life. She was the sole cause of the life she herself was living, drawing herself away from the world, without even knowing it. She could never forgive herself.
All this while she was not aware of the amount she had wept. When the reflections seemed to have disappeared from the window, she realised that her cup of 'chai' was empty, she went into the kitchen for a refill from the flask and came right back to the window.
Sitting herself down she smiled, not knowing that another bunch of reflections were going to appear on that window in some time, but this time of another man altogether - her uncle. She smiled, not knowing that this night had been the same as the rest, just a change in position, from lying on her bed to sitting at the window, and the manner in which her memories attacked her tonight. She was losing herself to those memories that haunted her without her knowing.
No one knew this side of Maya.
Article by :- Evelyn Pope, freshman of Mass. Communication and Videography, St.Xavier's college, Kolkata.