If you missed the third part, you an find it here
Part IV (the final part…)
She looked at Avnish, who was looking abstruse. “And that three years old boy is Rohan?” He asked looking into her eyes. She replied with a nod. “Why didn’t you tell me before?”
“it’s because I thought they don’t matter to me anymore, Rohan and his mother I had never met, and their existence never mattered to me either. And for my dad and he using me as his alibi for his illegal romances with multiple women disgusts me. I curse myself for believing him, I was just five when he accused me of murdering my younger brother. How can a three-year-old murder someone? It was pure accident nothing more. It was an open and shut case for even for the police. He might have fallen off the bed or something else; anything could have been the cause of his demise. Blaming me was not at all fair on his part. Though my mom tried keeping me away from all this, I could never stay away. If only she had disclosed the truth earlier…Since she chose it to be this day, with his death I promised to bury my guilt and my shabby past away and move on and live a remorse-free life now onwards.” After a heavy breath she began again “but today when I saw him coming with you, his face took me back to the old days of fear, and anxiety.” Standing up breathing heavily out of her clenched teeth she continued “now after talking to you I felt a lot better, lighter and I have no grudge against Rohan, the only thing is that he resembles his father who is, unfortunately, mine too. ”
“Rohan was a little kid when I first met him,” Avnish began drilling back to his childhood days “He was a sweet little child, my mother was always fond of him. He is way younger to me but still, we made great friends.” Thought of Rohan always brought a smile to him. “He is a very hard working determined man,” Avnish spoke with admiration in his eyes.
Meanwhile, Rohan seated in a cab was heading towards his unknown stop. Staring out of the window his concern was not to find a hotel room for himself, instead, his mind was occupied with last night’s event and regretting his decision of visiting India. His thoughts did not just limit itself to this; it went further back to his childhood days and he was anguished by the thought how his fate had wronged him. He had a father, but never for him. How badly he hankered for his love and time. Things were not like this until he was three. His father used to visit them regularly, go out shopping get toys for him, then he was the best father. Suddenly, something happened, and everything changed. His mother was left alone, with his father visiting every month just to hand over their monthly expenditure. He missed being with his dad. Unaware of the reality he often used to travel to his father just to get a glance of him at his workplace. Once when he was caught by his father and how he dragged him back to his mother and he could never forget the way he yelled at her on allowing him to go anywhere near to his family.
His family!! Then who are we? Who am I? That was when Rohan started questioning his own existence. His mother turning back the pages of her life narrated the truth, and this truth was a big blow to him. Confronting the reality of his father already having a family shattered his world and that he chose his two kids over him crushed his identity. His mother unaware of his prior marriage was happily married to his father for five years. Illiteracy and the social norms didn’t allow his mother to leave her husband. Reflecting on his past he realized that this is how he became demure, sedate and composed at the tender age of ten. But his fate took a sharp twist by taking away his mother when as he got into his first job. Feeling ditched by the life he no longer wished to stay back. As he was offered to move out of this country, he grabbed it and flew off to Ohio leaving his dark and gloomy past behind.
The cab stopped and with a jolt, he was back to this reality. Checked in to the hotel room as he lay back in the couch he switched on his cell. Several calls had been missed and all from one number, Avnish. A message popped up saying “apologies not accepted. Leaving the past behind come home for dinner. We will wait for you tonight.” Gaping the ceiling Rohan dialed a number.
The doorbell rang. Ragini stood there greeting him with a smile; to her surprise, ‘The’ face did not scare her anymore. There was no fear, no guilt, no regret, no awkwardness and no more hatred in both of their eyes. With a reprieved smile she thought “FINALLY I am free from my guilt”