Tuesday, 7 June 2016

Mango Story I

Her idea, when she stormed into the kitchen at the dead of night, was to commit suicide.  
*******
They were in the midst of an ugly fight. She felt he was being impossibly unreasonable; he felt liberated for finally articulating the misgivings he held against her for so long. Logical that he was, he made a list, and maintained the thumb rule of three.  
“1. You are a Reformist.”
“2. You frown upon me, all the time, like I have done something wrong.”
“3. You cannot stick to systems or keep financial records.”
Her argument to make him see that she was more than the sum of parts – “and hello, I do remember your friend has not returned the 600 bucks I lent her” – didn’t go anywhere. He had reached the end of the road. He couldn’t take it anymore.
*******
He wanted a divorce. It was non-negotiable.
She could take everything he had. She could bring him to the road.
He would explain to family and friends. She might get sympathy. He would get disowned. He didn’t care.
“But my mother loves you,” she wailed, clinging to yet another straw. That too didn’t go anywhere.

*******
The evening was not supposed to turn out this way. They had been out with friends for drinks. She had a rare Mojito, and another one, and gave ample entertainment to others as she went rapidly high. He enjoyed his many mugs of freshly brewed beer. The evening was going great.
They discussed the impending wedding of one of their friends; they discussed their own marriage of many years. She overheard him whispering to a friend that she was the best - and it was only her sense of propriety, that came from being together for 12 years, that she didn’t whoop with joy and do a little dance, but instead rolled her eyes and asked him to shut up.

*******
It was at the parking lot that things started going southwards, and rather swiftly. She was feeling sober, and volunteered to drive back. He insisted otherwise. She reluctantly agreed to let him back the car.
She shouldn’t have. While backing the car, he brushed past the neighbouring SUV, giving its front a mean rash.
She bit her lip. He too didn’t speak.
He started the engine, and asked her to sit in the car. She insisted they should confess.
Just then, the owner of the SUV returned. He went up to him and apologised.  The owner expected repairs to cost Rs 50,000. He said he would pay.

*******
“You know I wasn’t running away,” he said, very quietly.
“Really! Then what exactly were you trying to do there, driving away like that?” she demanded, sarcastically.
“I was going to the security office at the exit,” he said.
She stayed quiet.
He laughed bitterly. “Even after so many years of knowing me, you don’t trust me,” he said.

*******
They reached home. He went to his room, closed the door, and sent her an email requesting a divorce.

*******
She was suddenly filled with deep regret for having advised so many of her friends, so often and so easily, to go ahead and get a divorce. How stupid of her!

*******
So in the middle of an argument that went nowhere, she got up and announced she was going to commit suicide. In the dim light streaming through the kitchen window, she pulled out a drawer and took out a sharp knife. She smiled when she found what she was looking for: a bag of mangoes. Just when she was about to cut one, the bedroom door opened and he rushed out in panic.
“You will not do anything stupid,” he shouted.
She quickly stuffed the mango in her pocket, and sulking, followed him back to the bedroom. In the darkness, she hid the mango between her clothes in the closet.

*******
By next morning, everything was forgotten. He asked her if she would come running with him. She opted to sleep some more. They both had a long day ahead but agreed to meet up for lunch.

*******
Later in the day, he sent her a picture of what he had discovered in the cupboard. A mango!


(Inspired by true events)