30 January, 2011
Both my kids got up very late the next morning. The surprise that my son had given us was still too heavy for us to take in and both of us would peep at his face to make sure that it was not a dream. His face was covered in the quilt but his soft and long locks of hair made his presence felt. Our home was a different place today as if its soul and heart had visited.
We were waiting for him to get up so that we could have talked to our hearts’ content but on the other hand I was really finding it difficult to answer his very genuine queries, queries about all that had happened during his absence from home. He had asked various questions during our chatting online and I had tactfully steered him away from uncomfortable questions, questions that pained us all. But now when he was home, I would have to answer all those questions.
“Do you go to the college?” he asked me when he got up.
“No, and why should I when I am no longer on the rolls of the college!” I commented in as dispassionately as I could so that he may not feel the hurt and humiliation that I was made to undergo.
“And who were the persons who played a major role in fabricating a case against you?” He insisted to know.
“leave it”, I said and immersed myself in my kitchen chores. he followed me to the kitchen and asked, “please tell me, I understand how painful it must have been for you to go through all this.” KS joined him at this point of time and said, “Show him the paper signed by those nineteen persons who your mother loved so much!” I could sense the feeling of hurt in his voice but shrugged off the suggestion of showing the paper. It was not the proper time for this.
“But why do you want to know?” I asked, exasperated of his entreaties.
“How can I still smile and greet the ones who treated you this way?” he said painfully. “Those uncles and aunties, I grew up respecting.”
“Oh! My God!” I thought. I was so much immersed in my own pain that I never thought for a second what a painful experience it must have been for my son to come after three years and to have found the changed equation among all those who used to be our loving friends and neighbours! He needed to know it all, to experience it for himself a part of the humiliation that false accusation puts one in!
The harsh and plain reality show at work at NIT and the aftereffects of the shock were there for so many persons to bear and for whole of their life! Once again I wanted to shout at the top of my voice, “Et tu, Brute?”
And not only I but my son also would have joined me in saying in utter despair the reality bites if I unfolded the names of his “uncles” and “aunties” –“Et tu, Brute?“