This story is part of a novella – A girl was born

Do check out the first and the subsequent chapters – https://firsttimemommy.net/category/a-z-blogging-challenge-2018/

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Image: pixabay

Over the weekend with Tia away, Tara got much time to think things through. She revisited her past and realized what a mess she had managed to make of her life. This was not what she had wanted. She had wanted love, but not at the cost of her life. This love had taken away her sense, her values and all ambition from her. This love had made her selfish. It had ruined her life. All she had to show of her life’s achievement was her daughter! She couldn’t even be a good wife. The realisation pinched her. Hiding her face in her palms, Tara cried for a long time. It was probably the last time she would ever cry.

By the time Nikhil came home the following Tuesday, Tara had made up her mind to tell him the truth. Her husband deserved that. Over dinner, Tara was quiet while Tia talked. Once dinner was over and plates cleared away, Tia retired to her room. It was a school night and she still had to finish some lessons before going to sleep. When Nikhil entered the bedroom, Tara had already changed into her nightclothes and was standing by the window. She was too restless to sit.

“I want to talk to you.” She said to her husband. He nodded.

“I met Himanshu. Do you know who he is?” She asked.

He nodded. “I learnt about him from your sister ages ago. You met him. And?”

“Nothing happened.” She announced.

Nikhil let go of the breath he was not even aware he was holding. It was audible.

“But, it could have, Nikhil.”

If Tara hadn’t seen Nikhil’s eyes dilating, she would have said that this piece of news hadn’t affected him in the slightest. His face betrayed no other emotion. No insults or angry recriminations came from his side.

“Aren’t you bothered?” She couldn’t contain herself and finally asked.

“Yes, I am.”

“Then why aren’t you angry at me? Why aren’t you shouting at me? I am your wife and I almost committed adultery. How can you just sit there and talk so calmly as if nothing has happened?” Tara wanted to know. Had she been in his place, she would have created a huge hue and cry over it.

“I am angry. I am also feeling helpless, but shouting has never been my style, you of all people should know that. Also, I am not surprised at this turn of events.” He announced quietly. Tara looked at him. What did he say? She looked at him confused.

“I knew you married me out of obligation to your parents. But, I really thought you would come around someday. You tried your best, but you were not happy in this relationship. Hence, I dreaded that someday you would find someone else and quit this marriage. The only thing I hadn’t counted on was that “someone” would be Himanshu.”

“So basically, not only I am not surprised, but also in a way, I am relieved.” Of all the things, this was not what she had expected to hear.

“Relieved. Why?”

“Because we have finally reached that milestone.”

This was a surreal conversation. They were talking so peacefully that they might have been discussing Tia’s school grades.

“So, what now?” asked Nikhil. Though his face was impassive, his eyes betrayed his eagerness.

“I think that I have got that closure. Himanshu was the ghost from my past that I was finally capable of chasing away. I was crazy to think that I could find happiness in my past.”

“Past haunts us, but it seldom becomes our future, Tara!”

He was a wise man, Tara always knew that. But, for the first time Tara realised that Mr. Darcy came in different shapes and sizes, thoughts and temperaments. It was a pity he could never be her Mr. Darcy.

“You are right. Pity, I didn’t have that wisdom before.”

“I hope you can now see me differently and not the man your parents asked you to marry.” Nikhil continued. Tara shook her head.

“Nikhil, it has taken me a long time to realise that I am not in love with Himanshu. It has taken me an equal amount of time to understand that if I haven’t been able to love you in the last sixteen years, nothing will make me do now.”

“What are you saying, Tara?”

“That it’s time we dissolved this sham of a marriage. I have suffered enough chasing love and so have you. Let’s stop this chasing around and think about being happy. We deserve it, you of all people do. I have been selfish all these years and you have borne with me, I want to be selfish one more time and set you free.”

Tara’s face was set in a determined resolve. For the first time in their marriage, Nikhil really saw Tara as the sure and confident one.

Himanshu is now Tara’s past, seems like Nikhil is too! What does Tara have in mind! Find out tomorrow! 

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