The Promise – Part 2

Before reading this, please read Part 1 The Promise

Next morning, he woke up with a bad headache. “Hangover, may be! He thought. His wife neither called him nor left a message.

“Good” He muttered to himself. He realised he had to go home before work. He popped in an aspirin to keep going. Traffic was taking longer than usual. He thought he should call her once before he reaches home. May be he should take flowers as well. He was a bit scared. He had never spent a night outside like this. He cooked up a story in his head.

On the way, he stopped at the florist. It was the same boy who had delivered flowers to him yesterday morning. He started to choose the traditional red roses. Sir, the florist offered his opinion “ Madam Ji likes the white ones. She says white is peace and purity.

“How do you know?” He asked.

Whenever she orders flowers she tells that but she buys red because that is your favourite colour.

He smiled at the wisdom of the young lad and took white roses, may be peace was what he needed most. It was almost 7am. His wife would be ready to leave. He parked his car a little hesitantly. Her car was still there. He was about to ring the bell when he realised that the door was open.

She would never leave the door open even for a second. “The world is a big bad place. Whatever you leave unnoticed, goes in a jiffy.” She would always say.

He went inside and say the dinner table for last night intact. The wine glasses untouched. The food left as it is. His guilty conscience rebuked him. He turned to see his wife, still on the couch. She looked worried even in sleep.

He had thought he would leave flowers on table with a sorry note. He didn’t have the courage to face her now. She looked so innocent.

Just then his little child woke up, and walked up to him. “ Why is Mumma sleeping so late?Is she ok?”

“Yes, my champ. Let me get you ready.” He replied.

“Nooo” he started crying.

“You will bath me in cold water” I want mumma and he started crying.

The noice woke Meera up. She looked at him and didn’t react. As if nothing had happened. She picked up crying child and left for room.

“Oh baba. I am so sorry. I didn’t wake up early. It’s ok we still have an hour to get you ready. Why didn’t you wake up mumma,” he could hear the voice from the next room.

His phone started bombarding with messages.

“Love you honey. You are amazing”

“Why did you leave so early?”

He switched off his phone and sat down on the couch. What was he doing? Could he ever face Meera again. How could he tell him what has been happening for the past few months.

“Did you work the whole night, that today you don’t have to go to work?” Meera inquired.

He realised that he had been sitting here lost in his thoughts. Vivaan was ready and bouncing to go to his play school.

“Bye Papa, he chirped, and Meera took him to be picked up by his school van which had arrived.

Finally, Vivek and Meera were alone in the room. As always,Meera didn’t say a word. He then noticed her puffy red eyes.

“I am sorry, Meera. I am such a big idiot.” I should not have gone only. It just didn’t start on time and by the time my presentation finished it was all too late.”

“It’s ok.” She said and walked away. She didn’t cry in front of him.

But the moment she reached the shower, she broke down. Was this the same Vivek, who had promised he would never make her cry. Was it the same Vivek who had never missed even her car’s anniversary, and yesterday he had missed even their own marriage anniversary. The marriage for which they had stood up against both the families.

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