To add fuel to his worst state of mind, Madhuri’s father called him one hectic morning to join him for a talk. “I am sorry uncle, I cannot make it today”, Sagar told maintaining his regular tone of humbleness.
“It’s something crucial for your friend, Madhuri. I felt, it could help if I can discuss with you on this. Okay. Carry on with your work Sagar, we can catch up later” Said Madhuri’s father in a low tone.
“What’s so important for Madhu that could be discussed with me? It should not be about her, getting married to someone else. Oh God! Better you kill me rather dumping me into ocean of sorrows. I feel much better if God take my mortal coil away instead making me to watch my Madhuri’s wedding with an X person”, Sagar told himself.
Sagar cleared his throat and spoke again. “Uncle, I will be there in an hour. Okay? “
“Here? No Sagar. I will meet you in your office. See you, “told Madhuri’s father and had cut the call.
In Sagar’s office
Sagar: Uncle, what would you like to have, coffee/tea/ cool drink?
Uncle: (Madhuri’s father): No! Thanks.
Sagar called the peon and asked him to get 2 cool drinks.
Uncle: Sagar, can you expect what am I going to discuss about?
Sagar gave a childish expression and said,” No Uncle, No idea.”
Uncle: you know completely about Madhuri right, her health, her passion, her life style?
Sagar: Yes I do know Uncle. How is her health now? Is everything fine?
Uncle: Oh! Aren’t you both in touch? I thought “you” are.
Sagar: No uncle. It’s been a month that we spoke. I thought she must be busy with work. Isn’t she?
Uncle: No Sagar. She is absolutely free as she is advised not to work. Doctor suggested her to be at home. But she still keeps attending medical camps and visiting orphanages regularly. She needs a surgery in a month’s time. Didn’t she tell you this?
Sagar: We hardly had any interaction these days Uncle. I tried to speak to her many times. I am not sure why she didn’t respond to my phone calls. Even you didn’t inform me that she is not keeping well?
Uncle: I thought you have already been informed Sagar. You and Madhuri are good friends right, so didn’t expect this gap between you people. I am sorry Sagar.
Sagar: It’s okay. Has the surgery date been fixed?
Uncle: Not yet. I actually came here to discuss regarding her surgery only. We are told to get operated within a period of 30 to 40 days. Implantation of cerebellum has many risks and challenges to both doctor as well as the patient. The operation has fifty-fifty chances of success. Moreover, we need to take her to other city for this.
Sagar: Oh… okay uncle. Don’t worry. She will be alright.
Sagar told something confidential to Madhuri’s father and requested him to swear that he will not reveal this. They discussed their plan to be executed on coming Friday. Sagar wrote two mobile numbers on a piece of paper and gave it to Madhuri’s father. He took that paper, hugged Sagar tightly and then left the place.
Sagar became emotional, couldn’t control tears shedding from his cheeks. He tried to convince his heart.
Back to his memories with Madhuri, the day he met her for the first time, the days he saw her lovely smile, the days he walked with her, the day he carried her to the hospital in his arms; a sudden jerk in his ribs made him alert. He looked around. She was not there. He felt her presence. He imagined her, fighting with him for a cup of ice-cream. Yes she did it many times and still loves to do it, he thought.
Still lost in her thoughts, he failed to concentrate on anything else. Who will care for my tears? God, what are you trying to prove? Couple of years ago, I had no trust in you; at least I didn’t bother you with my wishes as most of the people do. What my cutie pie did wrong with you? If it is true that you are the eternal father for this whole universe, please save your child, Madhuri. Don’t curse me with her absence. If it’s all that you need to take a life away, then please take mine, but not my Madhuri’s. This is my first and last appeal to you God!
Sagar spoke to God in his thoughts, through his heart. He went through all ways of talk with God, he begged, he warned, he praised, he threatened; just like a common man in an ocean of troubles, sorrows.
“Nuvve naa swaasa… manasuna neekai abhilaasha…” his phone rang giving a break to his stream of thoughts and a river let of Q&A with God. He was not in a mood to attend the call. He ignored first four rings and answered finally for the fifth one.
“Hello Sagar Sir. I was in a meeting when you called me. I am sorry. Tell me sir, how I can help you?” the person on call said in a tone of respect.
Sagar was not attentive to this as he was still thinking about his Madhuri. He could reply only after the person on call repeated his question for a couple of times.
Sagar: “Yes! I did call you for a help. Would be able to help me?”
Person On call: “With pleasure sir. Tell me what to do please?”
Sagar explained him in a detailed manner what to do and when to do. He also asked him to get the guest house in that city cleaned and maintained well. “Remember that guest house should be the most scenic place in the city. Make arrangements in such way.” Sagar added.
It was Friday morning 6 in the clock; Madhuri’s father called Sagar making sure that Madhuri was not around.
Madhuri’s father: “Hi Sagar, We will be there at airport by 7:30. That’s fine right?”
Sagar: Perfect Uncle. I have asked my assistant to hand over tickets to you. He could help you Uncle. Bye.
Clock showed 7:40 AM. A person in red T-Shirt was waiting at the airport for Madhuri and family…..
He warmly welcomed Madhuri’s family and greeted her “Hi Madhu, How are you? “.
“Hello Stupid Heart. Don’t imagine your hero. He is someone different.” She looked twice at Red colored T-Shirt he was wearing and lifted her head up to clear her doubt. She recognized him as Sagar.
Still doubtful, she looked at her mom and dad to check whether they too see Sagar there or it was just her dream. No, it was not a day dream. It was Sagar standing in front of her in a Red T-shirt; she gifted him on his birthday.
“Hey Sagar”, Madhuri screamed as if she found some wonder in the world. “Yep it’s me, Sagar, he confirmed.”
They both spoke for some time, it took twenty minutes for Madhuri to realize that Sagar had not met her accidentally at airport, but it was all planned in advance.
Sagar: Why didn’t you talk to me these entire days ma’am?
Madhuri: I, alone know the reason for it, she muttered.
Sagar: What?? Pardon me?
Madhuri: Nothing much. I was busy, busy with work.
“People say that girls do talk much, but what this fellow has been talking to my father since long,” Madhuri thought seeing her father and Sagar sitting together in the flight. She no longer could control her anxiety and messaged Sagar “Hey what’s going on?
Sagar: “we have some secrets, can’t be revealed J “
Madhuri: Very good. Let your secrets be with you.
Sagar: Hey we can chat later. Uncle is here with me. I don’t think so it will look good.
They reached city in another 4 hours and an hour more to reach Sagar’s guest house. Sagar’s guest house is little far from the city. The area has got no pollution, no noise. It was surrounded by green grass fields all around. It looked like a heaven on earth. Madhuri and her parents were taken into the bungalow by Sagar’s family members. He introduced them to everyone in his family.
Madhuri was least bothered about their talk and she was completely into another world, enjoying the beauty of the place. There were small fishes playing joyfully in an aquarium. She got attracted to those; but controlled herself as it was a new place.
She looked around and observed squirrels jumping from a tree to another revealing their presence. In her next glance, she found a herd of white colored rabbits through a window kept opened. This time, Madhuri forgot that she came to a new place and took her way to the place where those cute rabbits were sleeping.
“Hey! Madhu! Stop. Where are you going? Hey stop… “Sagar followed her as she didn’t even look back.
She sat near the herd of rabbits and chanted something. It was not audible.
Sagar: Hey, Madhu, what did you say to those rabbits? He asked curiously.
Madhuri: I sung a lullaby. See how peacefully they are sleeping?
She felt someone staring at her; she turned back. It was Sagar’s family came to that place. They were simply looking at her. Madhuri stood up and was silent. Someone came near to her and said, “You looked so cute, when you were speaking to rabbits”. It was Sagar’s mother who complemented her. “Thank you Aunty, Madhuri said in a humble tone”.
After dinner, Madhuri was sitting alone on the terrace from where she could see beautiful nature, still and stagnant water in the pool. She was imagining herself as a butterfly in that garden. She felt as if she was actually flying.
“Hey Madhu, what are you thinking so deep? , Sagar asked her standing diagonally opposite to her.
“Thank you so much Sagar. I love this place very much. The pool, the rabbits, the greenery, and your family… everything…. I like every inch of this place.” Madhuri told glancing at the pool nearby.
“Only that greenery, rabbits and the pool you liked? Not me? He wanted to pose this question one more time, but couldn’t dare to do it as it was just a day before Madhuri getting her surgery done.
“That’s good. Tomorrow we have to go to hospital. It’s already late now. Have a peaceful sleep, Good night Madhu” he said in a hurry tone.
“No Sagar! I don’t want to miss this lovely nature. I can’t leave this place. Moreover, I know what I can see there in a hospital, people crying in their misery, sad stories, painful injections… Oh…. No, I can’t even imagine me there on operation bed.” Madhuri said confirming that she would not get admitted into hospital.
“Please Madhu! It’s not time to argue on this topic. You have to come. It’s my order.” Sagar told a bit seriously.
Madhuri couldn’t bear his ruling nature. She was not able to accept him concluding the things.
Out of anger, her eyes started searching for some harder objects that could be thrown at Sagar. It seemed luck was on Sagar’s side for few minutes; as Madhuri didn’t find any such objects. But Sagar couldn’t hold his luck in his court for longer time and passed it on to Madhuri’s. He tried to escape from a bamboo stick aimed to hit his nose; he somehow succeeded in his trial with little hurt on his neck.
Madhuri immediately approached him and asked, “Hey Sagar, did it hurt you? “
He wanted to enjoy this moment and told her that it hurt him a lot. She downed her head and said “Sorry Sagar”.
Sagar was silent. He didn’t utter even a single word; but was touching his neck and feeling the pain.
I really didn’t mean to hurt you. I just couldn’t bear you passing orders; so I did hit you. It was by mistake, Madhuri told trying to look into his eyes. Sagar looked into air and was about to get up.
“I told you sorry, no? Why are you still angry?” Madhuri said commandingly. She actually wanted to make him speak; at least shout at her for doing so.
Sagar was just staring at her; for him she looked more gorgeous when she was angry. He smiled and said, “I was just pulling your leg, my dear cutie pie”.
“Let’s go Madhu, this place is getting chilled. Come, let’s go”, he extended his hand and showed his palm indicating her to hold it.
“No. Thanks for your walking stick. Good night”, Madhuri slapped his palm gently and walked away from there laughing.
Next day morning……..
The day had finally arrived, on which Madhuri was going to get her surgery done. It was not a regular surgery. The complexity in the operation was with the removal of extra cerebellar mass that grew rapidly like cancer cells near the small brain and implanting the undeveloped portion.
Generally, most of the surgeries did happen during early morning hours. But, this one was planned during late noon hours.
There were some medical logics and rules behind it, which were neither revealed to Sagar nor to Madhuri’s family.
A sound 6 years of her medical degree and almost 2 years of fellowship in a worthy hospital, gave a clear picture on why it was planned so.
There was a hidden layer of tears in her eyes; not absolutely for her condition. But for She, failed to express her heart to the person who loves her, and just wanted to be with her for no special reasons. Somewhere in her heart, she had buried this pain of missing him. She pretended that she was happy, actually she was not.
What if the destiny has decided her to taste the unexpected bitter part of her life? What if the almighty power separates her soul from of the mortal coil?
A couple of years ago, when she came to know that this may happen some day in near future, she paid very less attention. She concentrated only on how to live this short life passionately.
But what happened in these two years. Feelings for Sagar ruled her mind; she was not with her completely. She never allowed him to know this. These thoughts were streaming in her mind endlessly.
Madhuri didn’t realize when she fell asleep with these thoughts and leaned her head on Sagar’s shoulder. Sagar asked the driver to park the car as they reached the hospital in the city. Madhuri, Sagar along with their parents got down and walked into the hospital.
The clock was showing 3 in the noon; Madhuri was given anesthesia and taken into the operation theatre after examining a couple of pre-surgery reports by doctors.
All these people including Sagar, who seemed to be strong enough at heart till that day, were now making constant looks at the door of the surgery room. They begged God to shower blessings on their beloved Madhuri.
As time was passing, tension in their faces increased rapidly. They desperately waited for doctors to come out. It was 6 in the evening, the clock showed; when one of the doctors in the surgery specialist’s crew came out to say something.
Sagar immediately ran to the doctor; rest of the people too followed him. “Look, we are in a need of two more units of blood right now. Please speak to the receptionist and get it immediately. We are running out of time.” Doctor said and left the place in hurry.
With jet speed, Sagar rushed to the receptionist and explained the same. As Madhuri’s blood group is of rare kind, the hospital failed to provide it from their blood bank. The receptionist suggested him to get the blood units from outside. Sagar had no clue what to do and whom to approach. After 10 minutes of serious thinking, he realized that he could donate blood for his soul mate. But, he was not sure whether it would suit with hers or not.
“Hello Mister, please walk out, you are not allowed here.” A head nurse screamed at Sagar, for coming into the operation theatre.
“I am sorry Sister. But I have something urgent to talk about. Please come out.” Sagar pleaded.
The doctor, who informed Sagar to get the blood, observed this conversation and came close to Sagar. “Please come out, I will speak to you”, the doctor said walking out of the room.
“Tell me what the problem is? Did you try for units? “The doctor asked.
“It’s not available in hospital blood bank; could you take mine?” Sagar said.
“But it should suit with hers right? Do one thing; get your blood tested first.” He paused for a while and spoke again….”Sister! match his blood group with the patient’s and if suits take 1 unit of blood from him”, the doctor said pointing to the staff nurse sitting there.
“But where will you get the second unit of blood from? We can take only 1 unit from you.” The doctor added.
Listening to this, Sagar’s father came there and asked the doctor if his blood group can also be matched with Madhuri’s. Rest of three; Madhuri’s parents and Sagar’s mother too said that they were ready to give the blood.
“I understand your concern about her. She is lucky to have such a nice family. See, let this get finished fast, “the doctor said and went back to the operation theatre to accompany other doctors who were already there.
Luckily Sagar’s blood group and Madhuri’s father blood group showed positive result and the required blood units were taken from them.
“We tried our level best. We could only remove the extra mass grown in her brain but the implementation was not completely successful. We cannot guarantee for her long life, but yes we did get her out of immediate danger. Ensure that she wouldn’t feel any stress and always try to keep her happy. That could delay her, closing to be on death bed.” The doctors took Sagar into their chamber assuming him as Madhuri’s husband and said conclusively.
Sagar stood like a statue and couldn’t respond on what doctors just told him. He had mixed reactions; happy that Madhuri is out of critical situation for some more years; sad that this happiness will not last forever. He gained strength to frame his words and asked the doctors; “will she come to know this at any point of time? I mean any further symptoms in future?”
“Unless and until you tell her, there is no other way she would know; because she will not feel any pain or something. But after few years this may reoccur. Okay. She needs to be under observation for 4 more days. You can see her after an hour.” Said the chief doctor.
Sagar didn’t want to reveal this to anyone so he buried this bitter truth in deep layers of his heart. He took the pain and just aimed to see his Madhu happy as long as she lives.
As days were passing by getting Madhuri completely recovered from the remnant pains that the surgery had left her; Sagar could feel pleasure in serving her. Sagar took her to his guest house and taken much care as a mother does for her baby.
It’s obvious that love has great power to heal any pain; and it happened with Madhuri as well. Sagar’s pure heart, love and affection helped her to recover in very less time; in a couple of months.
A few days later, Sagar spoke to his parents and made them agree to marry Madhuri. Sagar’s parents were absolutely fine with his decision and felt proud about their son.
It didn’t take much time to get permission from Madhuri’s parents as well; as they always loved Sagar’s nature.
Madhuri’s parents trusted Sagar that he could take care of their lovely daughter. It’s been more than two years that they knew Sagar since the time when he came to their home town to know about Madhuri. They liked his humble nature. Both Madhuri’s parents admired Sagar in their heart for putting all his effort just to see a curve of smile on Madhuri’s innocent face.
It’s just the love Sagar showed and his caring nature that made Madhuri’s parents to nod their heads as a green signal for Sagar and Madhuri’s wedding. But it’s not her parents alone who should say “Yes”; but its Sagar’s sweet heart, Madhuri who can.
To be continued…