The next day Vijay and Harini were in Shyam’s clinic. Shyam slowly hynotized Harini and brought out Hashna.
“Hashna, were do you stay?”
“Hey doctor, how dare you ask this?”, demanded Harini.
“You can call me Shyam.” Shyam corrected.
“Listen Dockie, I am not that timid Harini to accept everything you say. Got it? I will be whom I Am.”, cleared Hashna.
Shyam was surprised by how valiant she was.
“Do not try to enact as if you know nothing. “ She continued as she played with her hair.
“No Hashna. I do not know anything about it”, Shyam tried to keep his voice low.
“I stayed in the house, opposite to Vijay’s flat. I mean your current house.”
“Why did you choose that house in particular?”
“I loathed staying with Harini. Plus, I was not able to place my perfumes, wallet, bags or cosmetics anywhere in her room. That idiot, Harini, whenever she saw my cosmetics, kept it inside, wondering to whom it belonged to. She never knew it was mine; because she never knew me.” She paused as she twisted her hair strand.
“The house keys were always with Harini. I used it. I used the house mostly in the night. I imagined myself as Vijay’s neighbour. His room was visible from the house. I used to keep staring at his room the whole night. ” as Hashna spoke, Vijay could relate to the silhouette he saw in Kamini Aunt’s house.
“You use heavy cosmetics and luxurious accessories?”, inquired Shyam. Vijay wondered how this question would relate to the current situation.
“Of course , yes. Vijay loves people who take care of themselves well. I always use only branded products that are posh”, replied Hashna. Vijay could now recollect what he spoke to Shwetha.
“How can someone care for others, when they don’t care for themselves?”, the conversation ran in his mind. He was stunned.
“What do you do for funds?”, asked Shyam.
“Simple, I use Harini’s jewellery and mortgage them”, Hashna laughed.
Vijay could connect the dots now and why Shyam brought this topic up.
“Doc, there is an additional benefit in this. You know? At the end of the day, I was Harini who would get caught, because I specifically chose Vijay’s gifts for her. “, she laughed loudly.
“I thought it all began to impress Vijay, Am I right? Why did you start hating Harini?”
“Hell Yes. Initially it was just to impress Vijay and make him love me, but it all began one fine day. The day I spoke to Vijay”, Hashna paused.
“You have spoken to Vijay?”, interrogated Shyam.
“Yup. Just one day. I told him that his wife was stupid. I also told him about how he looked. He ignored me completely. “
Vijay was able to recollect what Harini spoke to him one fine day. “You look like a Greek god. Men with such godliness are often matched to stupid woman.” She had applied heavy dark mascara on her eyes. She looked strange. Vijay was in no mood to understand or interpret the difference. He ignored and walked away.
“I slowly started doing things which would deepen the rift between Vijay and Harini. I meticulously planned in such a way, that Harini got caught for all that I did. Once I even tried to destroy one of the important office stuff. My bad luck, Vijay’s sister saw it. In fear of getting noted, I had to just crumble it and walk away. “ Hashna ‘s speech hastened.
“It was obvious Doctor. I know my Vijay. He is a man of ethics. Would he ever love or marry another woman when his wife is around. He would not. I initially reckoned that deepening the rift would bring us close. As I worked out , I realized it was only by removing Harini once for all, I could get close to Vijay.”, Hashna paused.
“My hatred for her grew rapidly.it was just few days back, Vijay was furious when he came to know about the jewellery. He hit her hard. Harini wept continuously. I was not able to stand Harini’s insanity anymore. I thought it was the right time to kill Harini. It would be surely misinterpreted for a suicide. Harini would be gone, I would be safe and Vijay would be mine. I took a knife and cut her wrist hard. I cut her left wrist so that people would believe it was a suicide. My misfortune, Vijay entered at the right time. But I would not leave her back in comfort. I want my Vijay. She is the one in between us. I will kill her. I will make her suffer” Hashna was violent and loud.
Shyam shook her hard. She fell back into the chair.
Vijay and Shyam discussed in private.
“The longest session!”, Shyam exclaimed. “By now all the dots could be connected. Why Harini felt that someone was moving around in the house, where the jewellery went and why Hashna thought Harini was to be blamed. But the only thing that worries me is her intention to kill Harini. It might come up any time again. Hashna is a stronger alter. Harini is much of a timid soul accommodating this violent alter. Hashna can easily take over Harini any time, which implies Harini life is threatened. “, Shyam spoke in a saddened tone.
He looked at Vijay. His face showed fear and determination at the same time.
“It is all in your hands Vijay”, exclaimed Shyam.
Vijay stood up to take Harini home. He devised a plan in his mind.
It was half past seven. Couple of days had passed by since the last session with Shyam was over. The bright aurora lightened up the city. Vijay was fast asleep. His mind had been either racing or worried or terrified since he came to know about Harini’s trauma and the truth in his past. Vijay was awake the whole night just to make sure Harini slept well. He thought of getting some sleep in the morning.
Vijay’s sleep was disturbed by a song. He first thought it was some mumbling sound. Later the sound was predominant. He woke up, terrified. Was it Hashna? Is she singing some hindi song? Had she taken over again? , Vijay’s mind raised so many questions. He rushed into the kitchen. Harini was there cutting vegetables. He was not sure how to check on her. He could not see her face. He touched her shoulders. She turned. Vijay let out a sigh of relief. It was his Innocent Harini.
“Vijay! Good morning “, Harini smiled.
Vijay smiled back weakly, searching for something around.
“What are you looking for?”
“Do you hear a song.”
“Yes , Of course. That is your mobile. It has been ringing for a long time. “
Vijay came running to the couch. He turned his mobile off, held his head and sank into the couch.
There was gentle pat on his shoulder.
“I know you do not prefer, me doing this for you. But just this time, have this coffee. You look drained. This will help you”, Harini extended his coffee mug.
Vijay got the mug and placed it on the table.
Harini assumed he was not interested. She turned to leave. She suddenly sensed she was being held at her wrist. She turned in surprise. Vijay was holding her hand. She was stunned.
“Sit”, Vijay pointed to the couch. She obliged.
He looked directly into her eyes. He held her hand close to him. His sudden touches sent shock waves through her. She looked down. “Harini”, Vijay called.
His next move startled her.
As he held her hands, he slowly knelt down before her. Harini was sitting on the couch, while Vijay knelt on the floor. His face was close to her lap.
He slowly rested his head on her lap. Harini was befuddled. Slowly she felt wetness spreading over her Kurtha. She raised his head in dismay.
Vijay was crying. Tears rolled down his cheeks.
Harini froze for a moment. “Vijay?” , she called.
She slowly lifted his head off her lap and sat down on the floor beside him.
“Harini”, Vijay’s voice break.
She had an urge to brush away the hair that fell on his forehead. She was not sure how would he react to her touch. She just looked at him, directly into his eyes.
Her eyes looked like an oasis of love. She had undergone so much in the past couple of days. Sleep inducing injection, repeated hypnosis. Still she managed to show him love, just her purest love.
Vijay slowly took her hands. He took her hands to his face. He rested his cheeks on her palm. He felt her warmth. Her hands gave him comfort.
“Harini”, he called again.
“ I….”, Vijay dragged.
Harini was still not sure how to react to Vijay’s sudden change.
“Harini, I…” Vijay was still fumbling for words.
“Harini, I am going to tell you something important.”, Vijay finally gathered his strength to speak.
Harini did not speak. She looked at him with avidity.
“Harini, how shoddy have I been to you since our wedding? Will you forgive me?” , he asked.
Harini was still looking at him, without changing her expressions.
There was a long pause.
“Harini, Sorry is not a word for all that I have done to you.”, he held her hand tight and continued to speak about Vidyuth, how he was deluded that It was Arvind who pushed and how he came to know the truth from Shyam.
“I thought, I had been penalizing you and Arvind, by trying to completely ignore you.” Vijay held his head with his left hand. “But , in reality I have been fooling around myself. Ignoring you, hurting you.” he hit his head hard with his hand, weeping.
Harini held his hand tight, preventing further movement. The cut in her wrist hurt her. She did not bother to mind it, at least now. She slowly moved closer to Vijay.
“You stopped loving me just because you were misled? You ignored me, just because you thought my brother killed Vidyuth?”, Harini asked.
Vijay nodded in discomfiture.
“Nothing in me made you hate me?”, Harini asked.
Vijay brought Harini’s hand close. He rested his head on her hands and shook his head “No” .
“Will you forgive me for my sacrilege? “, asked Vijay helplessly.
Harini was silent. Vijay slowly raised his head to look at her face. She was sitting still, tears rolling down. She looked at him closely. Her eyes asked immense questions to Vijay. Vijay did not have answer for any. He just had one answer ‘ Sorry’. Vijay was not sure how relevant that answer was.
Harini slowly withdrew her hand from Vijay’s grip. She covered her face and cried. Vijay waited patiently beside her , waiting for her to look at him.
She looked at him with her tear stained eyes. She slowly held his shirt. She tightened her grip. She shook him hard.
“How dare you do it? How dare you do it? If you believed it was Arvind, you should have spoken to him, accused him or punished him. Why did you leave my love at stake?, Harini was crying heavily.
As she cried she slowly rested her head on his chest. ”Can you imagine how hard it was for me?”, she asked. Vijay did not have an answer.
Harini looked down. Her tears blurred her vision. Vijay slowly turned her head towards him. He wiped her tears and pulled her closer to him. With utmost reluctance he braced her softly. Harini wept vigorously as Vijay hugged her. She hugged him tight. Vijay rested his head on her’s.
“I really do not know If I can ask this, but will you forgive me? “, asked Vijay.
Harini tried to tell something, when the calling bell rang. Harini turned towards the door.
“Wait, let me see who it is “, spoke Harini, as she wiped off her tears.
As Harini opened the door, she stood there, in utter shock.
Chapter – 19
“Arvind?”, Harini exclaimed in ecstasy.
She did not allow him to enter. She hugged him before he could enter the house. Arvind patted his loving sister. He hugged her tight.
Arvind looked at her. he was not surprised. Her droopy eyes and band-aided wrist did not give him a shock. Vijay had met Arvind and apologized for all his mistakes. Vijay also made sure he revealed about Harini’s disorder and Arvind had to meet definitely.
Arvind’s mind ran the conversation they had last evening.
“I am sorry for all my mistakes Arvind”
“You need not apologize to me. Don’t you remember how I begged you, not to ruin my sister’s life? But what have you done to her? Will we get our Harini back? What if she kills herself?”, Arvind was furious.
“I am sincerely working towards curing her Arvind. Your visit will help me a lot. If you had really forgiven me, please come home tomorrow. If you feel I am not worth it, you can definitely let me know. I will make sure you meet Harini in a common place.”, Vijay left with a sad note.
Arvind, as he patted her sister looked at Vijay who was standing beside. When Harini released Arvind from her hug, he slowly walked towards Vijay.
Vijay smiled at him, reiterating the last sentence he spoke. Arvind gave a tight hug. Vijay who did not anticipate the force, lost balance and fell on the couch. Arvind fell on top of him. Vijay was still holding Arvind strong.
“Leave me. If you are so much fond of me, you could approach me in private. But right in the daylight, right under your wife’s nose, this is atrocious. You might be this kind of a person. But I am straight. I would marry a girl and have relationship with a girl only”, mocked Arvind, as he stressed on the last words.
“Hah, you idiot. Don’t blemish my prospectus in front of my wife. “, Vijay pushed Arvind away as he adjusted his T-shirt.
Harini had tears of happiness.
Vijay and Arvind spoke about so many things throughout the day. They planned for a dinner at a famous restaurant that night.
Arvind hesitantly asked about Suresh. “Vijay, did you meet him after knowing all this?”, asked Arvind.
“I learnt one thing, Arvind. Punishments do not stop crime. I thought I was wise my punishing the innocent. It has back fired now. There is of no use. I am just trying to forget him completely.”, replied Vijay.
As they had their dinner, Harini saw the hotel staffs approaching with a bouquet towards table. She suddenly wondered if it was Arvind or Vijay’s birthday. She was sure it was neither.
As the hotel staff handed it over to Vijay, he rose from his chair, knelt down and extended it towards Harini. Vijay’s action left Harini totally flabbergasted. She blushed. She tried to hide her cheeks reddening, which made it more obvious. She beautifully accepted the flowers and Vijay’s proposal, for the second time.
Vijay’s question was answered now. She had forgiven him. She had accepted his love , again.
The dinner ended on a happy note.
Arvind bade a bye and left for his home.
Vijay and Harini reached home. Vijay felt relaxed and satisfied. He laid on the sofa, arching his body. He saw Harini walking towards her room. Few minutes passed by. There was still no sign of Harini. He was about to get up and check on her, when the door knob clicked. As Harini walked out of the room in her casuals, she looked at Vijay and smiled; the same sweet smile. Vijay smiled back and closed his eyes.
All of a sudden Vijay heard someone mumbling a hindi song. He was alarmed. He rose to his feet and walked fast to kitchen. Harini was doing the dishes.
“Harini”, Vijay called softly.
She turned her head swift and sharp. Her eyes showed rage. It was Hashna. Hashna had taken over now.
“So, looks like you are falling for her again”, Hashna spoke as her nostrils flared in fury.
“Yes”, came in Vijay’s stern reply.
She turned her head away.
“What the hell did she do to regain your love again?”
“She loved me unconditionally. She waited for me patiently. She never complained about it. If she had spoken about my attitude towards her to either of the families, my position would have been exacerbated. She thrived to shield me and endangered her life to a monster like you”, Vijay shouted.
”So I have started looking like a monster for you?”, Hashna gritted her teeth.
“Yes. You are a monster. You had hurt my love. Anything or anybody who hurts my Love, My Harini, is a monster to me”, Vijay replied in fury.
“You ignorant fool. Why are falling for her again. I will give you anything you want. “
“No You cannot. You cannot give me love when I ignore you, But my Harini can. “
“I can give you much more, Vijay. Please try to understand.”
“Listen, Hashna.” Vijay was surprised how spontaneously he addressed her with the Alter’s name. He wanted to see them different because, he wanted to eradicate the need for Hashna from Harini’s mind. Vijay continued to speak, “There could be no one in this world who will love me as deep as Harini. Such is her Love for me. Her love is the biggest. Her love for me is the purest. There is no other form of Love which is greater than hers. Even if it exists, I do not need it. I just need my Harini and her love. All for me. I am still not sure whether I deserve it, but I have taken all her love for me completely. There is no room for any other thing in my heart. My heart is already over flowing with the eternal love of my Harini.”
Hashna’s face turned red.
“You idiot. Why don’t you understand? Your Harini just saw you when she had already lived 17 years of her age. I was born for you. Why don’t you understand that? I molded every inch of mine just for you to like it. I had been living just for you. Your Harini has so many qualities in her which you hate. But look at me, I am a complete form of all your liking. Do you get it here? “, Hashna vigorously tapped Vijay’s head.
“It was your entire fault, Hashna. You assumed more than what was needed. You are just a part of my Harini’s imagination. You do not exist in real. Even If you could, I do not need you. I already have my Harini. Of course she is a human being. She has her own positive and negatives. I love her that way. I love her as a whole. I love her more than anything.”
“More than me?”
“Of course.”, Vijay smiled.
“So you love her more than me. So you do not need me ?”
“No I don’t.”
“I am living for you.”
“Sorry, I do not need you. You can get lost. Go to hell. I don’t care. But just get out of my Harini.”, Vijay threw his arms in air, signaling Hashna to leave.
Hashna showed a paroxysm of fury. She took a crockpot which was placed nearby. She picked it up in her hand and flung at Vijay. He escaped the hit. It fell on the floor scattering into numerous pieces. It created a tumultuous noise.
“Harini”, Vijay shouted on top of his lungs and shook her hard.
Vijay noticed her expressions change. His Harini was back. She was panting heavily. She looked at the floor. She swallowed hard.
“Vijay. Vijay. I .. I.. did something now. didn’t I?”, asked Harini in tantrum.
“Harini”, Vijay tried to get her close.
“No. I could feel it. I was shouting. I threw something at you. Didn’t I?”, continued Harini.
“Harini, come to me first”, Vijay extended his arms.
“I have lost my sense. That is why you have been taking me to Shyam. Am I right?. Vijay, please. Please let me know what’s wrong in me”, Harini wept.
He could not manage her. He felt it was the right time to talk to Shyam again.
He dialed Shyam’s number. He narrated about how he had confessed and made Arvind and Harini meet. He also conveyed that Harini was now fully aware of what went wrong in her life. He also enlightened Shyam that he had conveyed her love for Harini.
“Hashna appeared again after the proposal. She was violent. I made sure that I strongly conveyed about my love for Harini and how have I accepted her as a whole.”
“What happened then?”
“I made sure I brought back Harini to her conscience. But she sensed she did something weird. She is now demanding what is her problem.”
“That’s a good sign; Nothing to worry. Please come to my clinic. Harini is now ready to meet her Alter. Harini and Hashna are going to converse for the first time.”, said Shyam and the line went dead.
In next one hour’s time, around 11 in the night, Harini and Vijay were in Shyam’s clinic.
“Sorry to disturb you in this odd hour.”, Harini apologized.
“No problem. I just reached home when your husband called me. It is not at all a problem for me. Thanks for waiting for me.”, smiled Shyam.
“Shyam, May I know what is the issue with me? I behaved very weird at home today. My head is throbbing. What is wrong with me, Shyam”, Harini’s tone saddened.
“I can tell you.”, Shyam signaled Harini to join him in his room.
She was made to lie down on the cozy chair and he made her comfortable.
“Harini, you are suffering from Dissociative Identity disorder, in common terms, split personality disorder. “ Shyam uttered and waited for Harini to react. She gave a blank expression. Shyam ran through her story again; The cause and birth of Hashna and where they were now.
“Harini, to stop your mind from giving room for Hashna further, to stop Hashna coming again in your life, I want you to meet her now. “continued Shyam.
Harini was bewildered. She was not able to understand how she would meet herself.
She was hypnotized.
“Harini?”, called Shyam slowly.
“Yes Shyam”, she replied in a feeble voice.
“Hashna, are you there?”, called Shyam.
There was a long pause.
“Hashna, are you there”, called Shyam again.
“Yes Doc, I am here. Still here alive, even after so many humiliations.”, scoffed Hashna. Shyam was able to understand that still Hashna was not out of the conversation she and Vijay had a couple of hours ago.
“Hashna, I want you to meet Harini”
“Hell with her”, replied Hashna.
“No Hashna. Please stop abusing her.”
“You stop commanding me.”
“Harini, are you there”, Shyam spoke softly.
“Yes Shyam”, replied Harini in a feeble voice.
“Now come on, say Hi to Hashna”, added Shyam.
“Hi Hashna”, the feeble voice spoke.
There was a long pause.
“Hashna , are you there”, inquired Shyam.
“Yes and Hi Harini”, replied Hashna.
“Hashna, I am sorry for what was happening around for the past few days. I apologize for the same.”spoke Harini.
Shyam was happy how Harini’s sub conscience mind is talking to itself.
“Hell with it”, replied Hashna.
There was a sudden pause.
“Shyam, I am talking to myself, ain’t I?”, asked Harini.
“Not really , Harini. One part of you is talking to the other.”, corrected Shyam.
There was a long pause again.
“Hashna, I want you to understand that the need for you in Harini’s mind is now not there. “, Shyam broke the silence.
“I knew that doc. Please do not re-iterate.”, replied Hashna.
“My Vijay , my sweetest thing in this world, spat the words on my face. He told he does not need me anymore.” Hashna’s voice broke.
Shyam looked at Vijay. He showed him a thumb up.
“Yes Hashna. The need is now gone. Why don’t you leave Harini’s mind and let her live her life?”, Shyam raised a question.
There was a long pause again.
“Hashna, are you with me?”, Shyam asked again.
“Yes Doc. I am here. I was just thinking. I did not consider anything more important than my Vijay. When I really know that there are no chances for him to love me anymore, I really feel I should leave. “, Hashna ‘s voice was now getting clearer without any fury.
“I really appreciate it, Hashna. So what do you really think about Harini now?”
“What do I have to think. Lucky little head. She took my Vijay completely for herself. But that is ok. Vijay found her love better than mine, Vijay chose her. I love Vijay. So I respect his choices. “, Hashna’s voice calmed down completely.
“So you have something to tell Harini?”
“Good luck. My Vijay is yours now. Go, get some life at least now. “, Hashna smiled.
“Harini, why don’t you thank Hashna now?”, asked Shyam.
“Sure, Shyam. Hashna, I thank you very much for giving my life back to me. “
“Ok Girls. It is time for Hashna to leave. Why don’t you tell a Good bye?”, added Shyam.
“Good bye Hashna”, Harini spoke first.
“Yeah, Good bye”, replied Hashna.
There was a long pause.
Harini was still under hypnosis. Her eyes were still closed.
“Hashna”, called Shyam slowly.
There was no response.
“Hashna?”, Shyam raised his voice a little. Harini was calm and comfortable. There was no change in her.
“Hashna”, Shyam called for the final time. Harini was still lying straight.
Shyam turned to Vijay and smiled broadly. Vijay’s eyes were moist. It was the tear of happiness, gratitude and of course a mammoth Victory.
Harini slowly opened her eyes. She saw Vijay smiling.
Shyam went close to her. “You are amazing.”, Shyam smiled.
“How did it go , Shyam”, asked Harini.
“Everything ended well. Now hurry up, go , go home. A whole new beautiful life is waiting for you.”, Shyam urged Vijay and Harini. Vijay paid the bill and started his way back home along with Harini.
Vijay saw Harini, as she slept peacefully. They were back home and due to her session, she dozed off sooner than what Vijay thought.
Few of her hair strands fell on Vijay’s face; he removed those and moved closer to her. He carefully placed her hand on his chest and closed his eyes, just to wake up for a beautiful life ahead.
Shyam was still looking at the clock to turn 6. He dialed, Sharadha’s number.
“Hello, Son, Good morning”, she answered.
“Mom, I have some news for you.”
“I think it’s time to reconsider my marriage proposal. Why don’t you call up Gayathri’s parents and let them know that we would be visiting them soon?”
“Is it my son who is on the other side? I could not believe my own ears. What made you take this decision son? What made you re consider about the wedding which you had been postponing for so long?”
“One of my patient mom; She taught me what it is to love unconditionally. Her eyes, they had so much love. Blessed are people who receive such love. Divine, are people who show such love. Let me see, I could be blessed enough. If not, I would be happy to be divine , too.”, Shyam spoke in a single breathe.
“Sure son, I will let you know after talking to them”, his mom assured and the line went dead.
She felt happy for her son. She blessed his son’s patient, who changed her son’s mind.
Few weeks later – Phuket, Thailand.
Vijay and Harini were on their honeymoon. Harini was standing in front of the mirror, curling her hair strands with her left hand fingers. Vijay came towards her and pulled her closer.
Their eyes met. Harini slowly craned her neck to reach his lips, exposing the impeccable fragrant skin.
“Remember, you asked to do it differently? and now you just want a simple kiss?”, demanded Vijay.
“Go ahead”, blushed Harini.
He slowly traced down a line from her chin to the hollow of her throat with his fingers. He stopped there. He could feel the way Harini’s body responded to his touches.
He slowly sucked the air in the hollow of her throat. His lips were as cold as marble. Harini was almost only half conscious. Her body trembled. He tightened his grip around her waist to prevent her from losing the balance.
He traced back the same line up to her chin, but with his lips, the second time.
When their lips were just few centimeters apart, he pulled back.
Harini craned her neck further to reach his six feet tall frame.
She opened her eyes as she sensed Vijay moving away. She pulled him closer this time. As she brought her lips closer to his’, Vijay stopped her.
She was stunned.
“I will kiss you, but ……. “, he dragged.
“But what?”, Harini asked as a thin line of agony appeared on her forehead.
“But just say I love you”, completed Vijay. Harini smiled.
“I love you , Vijay”, Harini blushed.
“Love you too, sweetheart”, Vijay hastened his words before his lips could meet hers.
The two pair of lips were now smiling and kissing together.