To the rest – with love (Part 3 of 5)

She simply lay there. Her husband did all the work. All of it.

And after he was done, he slapped her once again, for moving a little in the middle – mostly out of routine, turned around and slept off. She woke up, washed those little drops which had managed to slip past those eyes, and covered her face.

This had become a daily affair. When (ever) he would come home, sober or drunk with madness, he would force himself on her. The first few days she had resisted – invoking her sense of duty, the ingrained sense of duty towards her husband. But when nobody paid heed – her mother, sisters, the friendly neighbourhood aunty, her mother-in-law, the police, she just stopped.

Everyone told her was no crime committed.

These cannot be crimes. Of course not. Such an idiot she was to even think that.

She sat in the balcony, puffing away the smoke with slow drags. This was her first cigarette in decades – and probably her last. Or perhaps not.

Stealing stares at the body which once used to walk up to her in fits of murderous rage, now lying haplessly in the corner; she turned her face to the TV. Someone was talking about how the crocodiles mated; and how this was the best season to capture it, and how he was risking his life trying to record such a show.

“Such a fool”, she thought – almost thinking aloud – “He should have learned from my husband. He knew all about recording mating sessions without knowledge, or consent, or information. Even telecasting them to his set of friends was never too much of a risk for him.”

“What is the big deal about crocodiles then! Such a fool indeed”, she gasped.

Her cigarette was almost over. Putting it off in the ash-tray, she turned to the kitchen. Fetching the biggest knife she could find.

The wretched body took a few more stabs.

A little more than a few.

She sat motionless there near the body, as like her everyday chore – went up and smeared an ounce of blood on her face, and then scoured it on her chest.

The TV were showing  the crocodiles had now mated successfully. The show was over.

She woke up from the floor, cleaned the carpet  – cleaning everything but the floor on which the body lay, and her face – and her chest.

She left a message for Arun to come back home. She placed a second call. The police was now on its way.

She was perfectly alone. Not a living soul around. Locking the main door, she grabbed her husband’s pack of cigarettes and lit another one.

“A well-deserved smoke”, she assured herself.

 

 

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