Riya got the call from the hospital when she was about to leave office. It was an hour long presentation for the product branding and she gave her best. The market penetration theory clicked the right note with the clients. It is the trade open secret in an marketing agency to first create the picture of need into the mind of the client . Mr Philip Kotler was so right about it in his books. The Big Boss Andrew Xavel always appreciates her Indian talent which surely made her day. Ashutosh was a step further even congratulating her as the would be Assistant Director of the firm! Well that sounds good.
Mumbai and its traffic complement each other. The later reminds you the pulse of the city which is always in the perpetual motion and never stops. It is the traffic jam that brings everything in halt for a while. The person within you recapitulates the whole day in a glance. Riya was perhaps more stuck into the past as she could not figure out the present which has just got into her nerve and jeopardized her grey matter with a call from the hospital. The police called again and wanted to know her whereabouts.
There has been a brawl in one of the happening night club of Colaba and the police got Riya’s number from Rohit’s mobile. The one critically injured 19 year old boy who has been rushed into the nearby local hospital.
9 hours before
“Mumma Good Morning”
“Good Morning Rohit Beta “.
Riya gave a warm hug to her 19 year old son. He has come long way for a vacation at his mother’s place Mumbai. Rohit got everything from his Dad. His good looks, aptitude ,height ,the brown hair , chiseled face ,the deep black eyes everything is just like Rishabh. Wish Rishabh was here today to see his son studying in the first year of Massachusetts Institute of Technology . Knowing Rishab the self-proclaimed genius and the matter of fact would have raised a toast with Rohit on his every milestones.
‘Mumma I got a party tonite with my freinds. Somewhere in Colaba .Can I get your car for today’.
“Nope”. Riya in her stern voice.
“That’s not fair Mom. You know in States you can’t survive without a car.”
“But this is Mumbai.”.Riya in a non-negotiating mood.
“But I am your Rohit mom.” HERE BEGINS Rohit’s Drama.
Rohit knelt down holding Riya’s both hands.” You can trust me on wheels”
“You do right Mom. What happened to Dad is unfortunate but life doesn’t stop there. We move on. Look at you. My mom is in a reputed position in the company ,doing good in her life,the world is awestruck bout you. You never gave any sob story to the people out there, did not let anybody know how single handedly you raise me and today all I am cause of you Mom. Don’t let irrational thoughts get over you Mom..You are my super woman.” Rohit stopped to breath.
“Now that’s enough for today Rohit ..Stop bragging and be careful on the roads.” Riya smiled.
“Aweee dear momzy I love youuuu. And all the best for your presentation .”
“Yes homey wish me luck.” Riya kissed Rohit’s forehead.
“I know you can do anthing mom. I trust you.”
I trusted your Dad too. Riya told herself….
17 years ago.
Riya was sitting still outside the ICU. Rishabh was in ventilation. Fighting for Life . He was in the rehab for last 6 months. Drug Rehabilitation. Little Rohit was with his nanny.
Rishabh was the most sought after boy in the school AND Riya’s childhood crush. She never thought in her wildest imagination that the school captain and the topper will fall head over heel on her . It raised eyebrows of many hotties in the school and so did Rishabh’s parents when they were expecting fair sweet docile homely wife for their most eligible son. Rishabh was best in everything. He was topper in his metallurgical stream, went UK to work in one of the market leading commercial consultant firm, a great enthusiastic travel blogger, suave, romantic ,a go getter in everything he aspires in life.
But life had other plans. His drug addiction from his last year in college started engulfing all his goodness. Riya realised about it after a couple of month of marriage. Rishabh did his best to keep it oblivion to Riya and his parents and anybody here in India.
Riya tried to discuss this with her in laws ,needless to say they did not believed. More and so they blamed her for trying to malign their ideal son in the society with toppled up of their age old displeasure for Rishabh’s wrong choice of girl. They always wondered how their perfect son could be so silly in choosing the girl for himself. For them even son having occasional drinks in parties were no close to reality so his addiction to drug felt like a sheer lie. Riya dragged Rishabh to the Rehab Centre .For the last 1 year he has physically abused Riya on every other day and came up with Sorry notes and a bouquet of yellow orchids on very next morning. Rohit was too young to figure out anything. But the whole world said Rohit has got the best of genes from his Dad, his eyes, smile, colour. Finally Rishab’s parents were happy to get Rohit more like Rishabh and very less like Riya.A peace in their world perhaps.
The mobile rang
“Yes I am on my way..Stuck in jam will be there by 5 min .Is everything alright Inspector” Riya on her trembling voice.
“Yes alright so far. There has been police raid in the nightclub for the presence of drug peddlers. We need to talk to you about Mr Rohit.”
“I am on my way thanks”. .Riya hung up the call…Could not dare to hear the rest …She knew it…Rohit got everything from his Dad….she knew it…the genes does everything….Her upbringing her values everything went for a toss. The foreign degree of Rohit will not be able to save her little from the dismay of her failure as a mother. She lost. She knew Rohit is more like Rishabh.She could do little for Rohit since Rishabh left all his remnants in Rohit.
The cab stood in front of the hospital. Its a government hospital. .Tacky ,shabby but with the best of doctors and worst of infrastructure.
Riya got down from the cab. Can’t move her feet. A police Van honking outside the hospital .A policeman somehow got a hunch with Riya’s perplexed looks and approached.
“Are you Rohit’s mother?”
Hmm…Riya managed to respond somehow.
“Oh madam I must say you should be proud of your son” The policeman paused with a grin on his face.
“His courage to fight against the goons was commendable. Boys at his age are getting carried away and your son did what is expected from a responsible sane individual. There were some drug peddlers in the nightclub. Your son was partying in the club and saw the peddlers trading off drug .His friends ran away from the scene but Rohit informed the police. When we barged into the night club he was already being attacked by the peddlers .He got some serious injuries but the doctor said he is out of danger. I understand what you went through but before I could tell you something the line got disconnected . Hope you are feeling better now Madam. Go and meet your son. He is stable now.”
Riya went to the 1st floor .Rohit was in the cabin. He is sleeping..in a sedative. Riya called Ashutosh and explained everything.
“Oh Riya you should have to told me in office. In no time you left the office .Wait I will reach soon.”
“Ashutosh we need to get Rohit shifted to a good nursing home after finishing all the formalities with the police…”Riya said calmly.
“Sure..Wait till I come there and relax “.
Riya looked at Rohit. Her 19 year old boy lying on the yellow tinted hospital bed. A bandaged on his forehead head with a big red blot on it.
Riya hold his hand .It felt like the two year toddler’s hand just like the day when Riya returned home after the funeral rites of Rishabh .Rohit still believes his father died of road accident. This was a conscious effort made by Riya to keep him away from the dark past of his dad. Rohit was raised with the belief that he got all his goodness from Dad.
“I am sorry mom. “Rohit said in the feeble voice, ”I messed up your day.”
“I am sorry Rohit.”Riya Said with the welled up eyes, “I am sorry for not trusting that you are my son .”.Riya smiled this time.