[Urmila and Sharmila are sisters. The elder one Sharmila was in love with Vinod, her neighbour, even when they passed through the school-age. Father had brought proposals which she resisted tooth and nail, though she knew not the result. Two-three ones she escaped on the pretext of studies. She recalled her baby-hood memories. All their friends, but Vinod flew away from the brood for life’s needs. Vinod was in the look out of a job. Urmila’s father,Venugopal with conventional beliefs didn’t agree for their marriage. Finally father held a proposal close to his heart for Urmi. He finalized it despite all the resistance from Urmila. He thought time would bless her with glee. The wedding day reached].
As her four-wheeler reached the wedding auditorium, Urmila descended from it. Sharmila, their kin and the beautician assisted and accompanied her to the greenroom. And the beautician carried out the remaining part of the make-up. Vestured in purple conjugal array Urmila looked like a princess as narrated in the Holy Scriptures. Her colour and the saree’s colour were vying each other for the win. All the pairs of visual organs present in the hall followed Urmila. Her visage had a special prettiness in make-up, for which she was not devoting time much. And now all the eyes fervently awaited the groom’s arrival.
The groom, Aravind stepped down from the automobile along with his mother and some others like dear and near. Aravind had lost his male parent at his tender age. From then Malati , his mother never thought of a life other than guiding her kid to the correct destiny. And hence she possessed a soul sure with satiation.
The groom though not equally weighty as Urmila in looks, seemed nix behind her in poise. The party enjoyed a grant reception when a boy, Urmila’s cousin had offered a garland and a bouquet to the groom after washing and wiping his feet in a pious manner. Generally younger brother of the bride should do it. Urmila had no brother.
All the things that had to follow the reception journeyed rather soared in their usual unique fashion. The wedding stage was adorned with fresh flowers, a traditional wooden measuring jar of grains filled with paddy grains and a coconut flower bunch kept on top ( nirapara) and a conventional sacred oil lamp(nilavilakku). The respective parents led the lad and the lass to the wedding platform.
Their entry to the propitious platform was very conspicuous. Gals clad in cute garments carried flower plates with lighted coconut–lamps (thalam). They were entrusted with the job of escorting the persons of the day. Both the groom and the bride were made seated and the rest of the processes like tying marital symbol (thaali), exchanging garlands and finger rings, gifting special apparel to the bride by the groom, offering the girl’s hand to the boy by father and taking rounds around the platform by the couple took place in the ordained succession.
The laddie and lassie felt lassitude a lot but covered it within the blankets of grins to the guests. The muscles on their visages took a turn of aching even.The parents and kin as the dessert of the rituals served them dessert, milk and plantains. The guests all rushed to the dining and took their seats behind the feast-leaf.
When the couple reached the groom’s abode they were received by the mother who had reached earlier. She handed a lighted sacred lamp to the bride.
The Sun as an uninvited guest watched things well and rendered selfless service by shining brightly everywhere. He let not the rains to trouble the couple and spoil their garb in envy. He bade adieu to all after accomplishing his duty well.The night moved to her bed and started sleeping under the blanket of dark. People all withdrew themselves to their caves for a comfy sleep as their energy was exhausted in the day’s excitements.
Urmila slowly moved to the flower-fragranced bed room. Her steps were firm because the predestined rigid determination had dominated over her mind. She being fully conversant of the revolutionary upshot, put forward her steps to execute all that. Rather her mind seduced her to do that, to deceive all. She had only one mission i.e. the union with Vinod. In fact she solaced herself that everything is fair in war and love.
She was holding a glass of milk in hand and handed over it to Aravind according to the instruction by the elders.He sipped one-third and the rest she had had.
“I had heard only about ‘Love at first sight’, but experienced when I met you. I wanted to talk to you over phone. However I couldn’t,” Aravind broke the silence.
“You are actually broadminded and large-hearted. The other alliance-seekers were turning away their faces when they knew about my disease.”
“Disease!What disease?” his sound was loud with high anxiety.
“I habitually take Phenobarbital medicine for over anxiety, sometimes it becomes seizure. Now I am alright. If any break in taking medicine……,” he didn't allow her to complete the talk.
“Cheating! Your parents are cheats, Ho! What a cheating? They never told us this. O! No, I cannot bear with this. They wanted only to load you to someone. They cannot unload you like that,I won't allow,” Aravind was mad with ire. Suddenly he lowered his loud voice to cover things from his mother. He didn't want to throw her into agony.
[To be contd.]