Campus was rather quiet when I got back. Not many students were at the canteen and the library looked packed.It wasn’t surprising. Super senior batch would be writing final year part 1 next month and the stress factor was obvious. Everyone was doing the last minute studying.
My heart felt heavy when I realized that is everyone except Beautiful Eyes. I knew he didn’t have enough attendance this year and the college wouldn’t let him write the exam.
I wanted to be able to go and smack his head and tell him that, it is high time he took his studies seriously. Try as I might to think everything is normal, I couldn’t totally ignore the jittery feeling in my heart. What if Nikhil told Beautiful Eyes about me and Arjun?
No, nothing will happen. He knows the truth.’ I told myself.
Still I looked for his bike at the bike stand. I needed to talk to him.
‘Please lord, please let him call me’. I pleaded in my heart.
‘No, No. No. That is not right. I take that back Lord. I am sorry for asking you for a favour.,I am becoming a hypocrite. I shouldn’t be coming to you, just when I need help. I am sorry Lord’

I didn’t want to be a hypocrite. I also didn’t want divine retribution either. All I wanted was to marry Beautiful eyes and live happily ever after. But now more than ever I was worried. My actions and divine retribution could work against everything that I ever hoped for and wanted. For a second I regretted walking away from the Lord. I could hear Anitha speaking “God will punish you” over and over. I said then that I will deal with it when it comes. I was no longer sure if I could deal with it, if the punishment was breaking up with the love of my life.
Although his bike wasn’t at the stand, I wanted to make sure he wasn’t in the canteen. So I walked towards the canteen and did a quick scan inside. There were few students inside, but Beautiful eyes wasn’t there. With a heavy heart I I walked back to my hostel.
Shylaja and Aparna was in the room.
How come Shylaja was in the room? Didn’t she go back home? I wondered. I placed my bag on the bed.
“How come you came back early?” Aparna asked
I thought of telling her that this tiny hostel room with three beds inside and hardly any space to move was anytime better than my home. Besides here I would get three meals a day, which would be a luxury in my house. But I knew Aparna wouldn’t believe me. truth was stranger than fiction, No?
“I wanted to borrow some books from the library” I lied
“Doctor Murthy wanted you to see him at lunch time tomorrow” Shylaja spoke. Her tone sounded funny. So I turned and looked at her
“Have you met his wife? She is a very nice lady” Shylaja spoke while looking at me in the eyes.
“No, I haven’t” I replied. “Did he say why he wanted to see me?”
I knew why Dr. Murthy wanted to see me. He probably was going to give me an earful for handing in an empty answer sheet.
Shylaja shrugged her shoulder as though it was a known secret why Dr. Murthy wanted to see me. She went back to study. I looked at Aparna. She too quickly looked down to start reading her book.
I wasn’t sure what was going on and I didn’t feel like staying in the room. So I took my book and walked out. Why was my roommates behaving so strangely? Then I remembered Shylaja asking
“Have you met his wife?”
Suddenly I understood.
There was no redemption for me, was there?
Everyone thinks I pass the exams because I was sleeping with all the professors. I wanted to scream. This was all George’s doing. He was destroying me. Even though I was far away from him, his poisonous tentacles were all around me.
That Bastard knew, I was a better student than his daughter. That is why in the first year itself he wrote those anonymous letter and said that I passed the exams because I was sleeping with the professors. He knew those comments would follow me like a pack of rabid dogs through out my studies. Bastard.
NO. I won’t let you destroy me George. I clenched my fist. NO George, you will not succeed. I am Methran Thambi’s grand daughter and I will survive.

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