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“WOW!! You look beautiful….” Seema the youngest of the five sisters cried with all giggles, and her reaction grabbed the ears of the rest, from the adjacent room. “OH GOD!!” their voice echoed together and was followed by their hysteric laughter. It was not long when their mother too rushed into the room.
“What have you done to him girls? ” yelling at her daughters she hurriedly grabbed his eight-year-old son “ Rishab, quick get out of this dress before baba see you.” but it was too late. All the laughter and hubbub created by the girls invited the DON…the father of the house. And to find his son, his pride and the only heir of his family all dressed up as a girl raged him. He shot a fierce glance at his wife and cried out “Who did this to my boy?” with his roar the entire room went eerily silent, except for the clinking of their mother’s bangles while desperately trying to wipe off the makeup from her son’s face. All the girls stood petrified in the corner with their back pressed towards the wall. And their silence triggered his temper without second warning he hurled towards one of his daughters standing close to him, who happened to be the youngest one. But before he could make his move the eldest daughter who has just entered the scene spoke “Sorry baba, we were just playing with him.” but before she realized she felt a hard slap right across her face, threw her down on the floor. “Aren’t your four sisters enough for you to play with?” he roared with anger…”Form today I don’t want to see any of you near him. Did you hear me?” he announced again “ nobody touches my boy…” with that warning he left the room dragging his prince along.
Priya slowly picked herself up, holding the helping hand extended by Bonnie, the second born of the family. Silently wiping her tears she walked out of the room. She was not bothered about the slap but the fear; what if she had not intervened and took the blame on her? What if Rishab had spoken the truth before her? He would have been in deep trouble.
It was an hour before the entire episode; she had seen his brother standing before the mirror staring at his carefully lined lips, with a lipstick in his hands ready to fill the color in. And he had that dress on. This was something she had always feared as she had been noticing her brother was not what he seemed. He was always attracted to dolls more than his guns and cars. Dresses and makeup’s always fascinated him more than anything. He was different from other boys. She always felt that her little brother was trapped in a body he was not able to get along with. And today he proved her right.
She had seen him long to get into that dress he had picked for Seema and he chose today to be the day.
“What are you doing Rehab?” she came in muffling. Her abrupt interruption startled him and the lipstick ran outside his perfect liner. He looked around and found his sister swiftly locking the door behind her. “You know amma and baba would not like to see you this way! You will have a tough time explaining this.”
“But didi I like this dress.” His innocent reply melted her.
“I know my boy, but amma and baba are never going to understand you.” kneeling down and holding him by his shoulders she spoke with a heavy sigh “Listen carefully, we are doing this for the first and the last time….did you get me? You complete everything until I am here. Once you are done clean yourself and we will go out. Is that ok?”
“Fine.” His face lit up and he carefully resumed from where he had stopped.
Hardly a quarter of an hour has passed when they heard their mother call her name “Priyaaa” made them both jump.
“I better go before she comes in. Better hurry up.” Making the least possible sound she unlocked the door and left him there with what he was doing…
“Lock the door…” she had instructed before disappearing, but he was too engrossed in his final touch up to hear her say.
And there her fear did come true. This incident drifted him away from his siblings, except for the eldest one. His bonding with Priya was growing strong despite being under the vigilance of the DON. He was her fashion advisor and makeup artist…
This was also the day that marked a change in the life of Rishab. This was the day he knew he was different. His thoughts, beliefs, and feelings differed from what the world had taught him to be. That day he realized that he had a beautiful soul trapped in the wrong body…….
To read more of her story click here