Ways Apart.

“Don’t work so hard, you know. Spend some time with us as well”, Elena said on the phone hoping to sway her husband, “Sita and Lajjo are both wishing to meet you all the time but you only come home around 11 pm when both of them have gone to sleep. At least let them see you on some days and go out to have dinner or ice cream.”

“Really Elena? It’s 3 pm and you called me to speak about this? You remember we have talked about this so many times.”, said a frustrated husband, “I can’t deal with your nagging all the time, if you don’t have anything else to say then I will be cutting the call.”

Elena was started by the sudden increase in voice. She kept mum for a few seconds and spoke, “This is not right. You shouldn’t treat us like this. I also gave up my job to live with you and take care of the children, that doesn’t mean that you can disrespect us as if I am not doing anything. Everyone can make time for the family! I don’t understand what work you are doing that you can’t come home a little earlier.”

He was taken aback as he had never heard Elena sound so disappointed before. After a moment of silence, he replied, “Oh Elena. I understand how you feel. Okay I will try to come by 10 pm today. Alright?”

Elena got even more irritated after hearing that response and cried, “Are you kidding me? You know very well that both children go to sleep by 9, and you need to spend some quality time with them. You need to be home by 7 so that we can go out for dinner. If not, then I will just go alone with them.”

“Fine. Fine. I will take my leave shortly so that I can reach home by 7. Alright then See you soon”, he replied and put the phone on the table. He covered his face with his hands and took a moment to understand what had happened, then thought, “What is wrong with her. It’s been the same way since the past five years, but why now?”

He got up from his chair, took the coat from the rack, and walked towards the door. While he was heading for the door, a peon opened it and cried, “Sir there is an emergency. A patient is in a very critical state.”

The husband was perplexed. He looked at the peon, shrugged and said, “I am sorry. I need to go home. Please let another doctor know.”

The peon wanted to ask once more but the husband glared at his face and said, “Well then. Goodbye.”

-Siddarth

Ego’s victory

“It’s a hoax”, he groaned, “Why do you have to put up all that. Is it all fake then?”

She was stunned after hearing those words. Although he had not mentioned it clearly, she understood what he was referring to. Tears rolled out her eyes, the mascara began to drop as well. She found the handkerchief in her purse and took it out, using it to clean her cheeks of the mascara. But she smeared the whole make-up on the cloth instead, now looking even worse as an amateur’s try on someone’s face.

Now even more disturbed she looked at her handkerchief and began crying even more loudly.

Stanley was just tired, and held his head with both his hands after this scene thinking, “Why did I marry her? How can it be that I lost my sanity in the last moment?” He raised his head to look over at her face with a disappointed look and then lowered his gaze to the floor. “Just why…?”

After about five minutes of continuous crying, the wife stopped, probably tired of the tears, looked at Stanley. “How can he be like that? He wasn’t like this before marriage. Then what changed? It has been only 10 years in marriage, and he acts so ignorantly. He would have come rushing to wipe my tears earlier, but now he doesn’t even care. What has happened? Did he meet someone else?”

Stanley felt the gaze and could sense the questions, the doubts in his wife’s mind. He wanted to say, “I am sorry. I am just tired of all the work, and formalities and love. I can’t find an anchor in life. There has been so much difference since the past couple of years that now it’s just doubts and cries in this relationship.” But a man’s ego it was. How could he come down and say such a pitiful thing to his woman?

No one was at fault, but at the same time both were. As they hesitated, the crack widened.

-Siddarth