Hello Mr. Roy , Hope you had a pleasant journey?
Oh yes it was good. The weather was fine. Both Dr Mathur and Dr Roy shook hands. Dr. Mathur who was in hurry tried to cut short the formalities and said with good humor, “ Well we have arranged one cottage for you. Please make yourself comfortable. I will join you for lunch and meanwhile if you need anything tell Raju he will take care of everything. “
Both shook hands again. And Dr. Mathur sped out of the room.
Doctor Roy while taking a hot bath in his cottage looked out at the green fields. They seemed to him extremely quiet as if not a leaf turned over in many years. The valley seemed to him like a beautiful cold dead bride. Everything had come to a standstill.
In the afternoon over lunch Dr Mathur told Dr Rao about the mental hospital and some special cases. Doctor Rao was a psychiatrist practicing in Noida and he had agreed with the Hospital authorities in Almora to observe the general scenario and see some special cases. After observing every nook and cranny of the hospital, at supper he asked Dr Mathur if he can look at the personal stuff of patients. Dr Mathur, who was a man who doesn’t mind anything at anytime, promised Dr Rao to show him stuff with brief detail about every curious thing.
At night, Dr Roy walked under the dark sky with little lamps shining over him. He had never in his life seen so many stars twinkling. It seemed to him that a long time has passed since he had seen the sky at night. He felt so peaceful. Suddenly his wife’s face came before his eyes. Oh how much loves her. All the days from his courtship period seemed to float before his eyes. Since he became the doctor his all dreams have come true. He has got his true love , a home and a wonderful family. He felt blessed and suddenly in a moment of spiritual frenzy he knelt down , looked up at the sky and silently thanked God for everything he gave him. With a tear in his eye he seized his phone passionately and called up his wife , who was taken aback to see his call because he didn’t realize in his moment of frenzy that it was almost midnight hour when he called up his wife who was sleeping peacefully in her bed.
In the morning Dr. Mathur was showed him personal possessions of patients which Dr Rao carefully inspected. He picked up a guitar and was amused by the fact that a patient says he was a great guitarist in his last birth, under the guitar there was a diary , somehow it attracted him greatly. As he flipped the initial pages , Dr. Mathur looked at him gravely, Dr. Rao asked him, “whose diary it is?” , “a girl’s… who is very strange.” “Why? What is the matter with her?” , “Well… she does not seem like a lunatic. Not at all. But when we told her that she is not insane and she can go she did strange things to prove that she is not mentally well. We had to keep her here. . I never understood why but every month she spends a week at a special house situated some ten miles away from here.” , “hmm… .”
After a tedious day, at night Dr. Rao kept looking at the stars but somehow his thoughts turned to the girl who claimed to be lunatic. Why would someone do so? To run away from reality? Or she had no one to go to? What if she needed some help? Lost in thoughts, Dr. Rao suddenly remembered he had her diary. He went in , switched on the night lamp and began to read from first page.
The world is pretty but unbearable. Let me then retire into the silence and never wake up from it. …
My world? Whatever the world whoever it is , its growing smaller day by day, growing dark like a Black moon. It does shine but bleakly and it does blow up tides into my heart… my heart is an ocean but I am... I am very thirsty…
Life has taught me one thing and it is … the courage to speak the truth… But it is very strange life has taught me something it’s contrary too… it has taught me to alter the reality… it is an astute trick to survive which your confrontation with truth wouldn’t let you do…
I will write my story and if one man reads it and prays for my soul, I shall pray for his when I am dead.
Something touched Dr. Rao and he shut the diary quickly. He tried to sleep but it won’t come to him easily. He could have intuition that a storm was awaiting him. A storm which could either wipe his guilt away or wash his own existence from earth. Not the name but a face – a blurred face appeared when he closed his eyes …a voice tried to reach his ears… something he could feel in the air… a call… perhaps it was a call… when he woke up in the morning , he found a car was waiting outside his cottage. The driver told him that Dr Mathur has sent the car to visit the patients of special house. So he was to meet that girl? He couldn’t imagine further. He got ready fast. Didn’t eat his breakfast and hurried into the car.
On his way, he noticed tall deodar trees but even the exotic drive couldn’t pacify his agitated soul. He asked for the girl as soon as he stepped out of the car. The manager showed him the way to her room. He went alone holding the diary in his coat’s pocket.
The door was opened. As Dr Roy stepped into the room it welcomed him with a lovely fragrant. A figure stood at the window looking outside. He stood at the door in silence but he was taken aback hearing, “Hello doctor! I know you would find your way to me.” Dr Rao hesitated for a moment and then asked “May I know your name please.” The face turned towards him. It was not a very handsome face but certain lines on it were so appealing. Curving her lips a little the lady said, “Oh I thought you came because you knew me. Well then let us play with your memory a little,”. The mysterious smile played n her lips. Astounded and troubled Dr. Rao sat on a chair offered by the host. She looked confidently into his eyes and chatted about the weather , the hospital and authority as if she is not the patient but a doctor here. After some moments she asked him where is his sister now a days? And how is his wife? And how are his children? Baffled by the questions he desperately asked her to tell her identity. She again smiled mysteriously. “Did you happen to come across a writer in your life?” I have come across many writers and in fact most of them are my patients. They both laughed at his joke but lady suddenly became grave. She stood up went to a wooden wardrobe and took out a file. She gave the file to the doctor and said, “I know you have come here because you have read my diary. Now read this doctor I shall meet you later sometime.” She went out without even saying goodbye. The doctor thought it was all a dream. And the rest of the day was in fact like a dream. The lady disappeared from the hospital without taking any of her things. Everything seemed so esoteric.
For some unknown reasons Dr. Rao avoided to read the contents of file. But at some hour after mid night Dr Rao felt a sudden curiosity so he opened the file and there he found many loose papers on which as he assumed some poems were scribbled. For some time he randomly read the lines and looked at every paper. Amidst the poems there was a paper on which some prose was written. He thought it would be a piece of fiction. But the title said : My story. He curiously and hurriedly began to read.
I had seen ghosts, heard mysterious voices, I had cut my wrist nerve, I had thought of suicide several times, I had visited my own grave in my visions and felt someone is watching me every moment. I was not mad but I was becoming one in my childhood. And then one day I discovered a reason for things that were happening with me. I found the bits of my story. How I looked in my past birth, how I met him and then… I don’t know what happened. I wanted to find the story. I decided I would go to abroad to find the places I had seen in my vision. And I knew , because no one would believe me , I will go alone. But things changed. The story gradually faded away. And then one day he came into my life. He was aspiring to be a psychiatrist. Somewhere deep in my heart I thought our destinies were inter-connected. And I felt that at least he will take my feelings seriously if I tell him about my visions. But things ended badly and one day suddenly I disappeared from everyone’s life. Everything happened the way I had imagined. And I just wanted to let them know that I was not wrong. That my visions were not wrong. That I ended up in an asylum. That… I was an angel and I still feel like an angel but the world was never meant for me I had to die in order to live someone was waiting for me up there I have already paid off for my past birth’s sins and now I want to live like a wandering soul wishing to die happily in the arms of mother nature. I am happy and even ecstatic. And oh how much I am sorry … I could never convince my family and friends how much I needed to live like this. I hope you understand.
God bless you doctor and your family too.
He read all of this in a breath and now reading the last line he felt a cold shiver in his body. He closed his eyes tightly and read the last lines.
Please, if you can do me a favor , send my belongings to my sister or brother and ask them to forgive me for I never wished them ill. May God bless them and their families!
With a cold and deep sigh , doctor shut the file and looked out at the moon from his window. The divine moon light soothed his heart and its first impulse of brining Eva back because wherever she was she is following her heart and she is not unhappy. She is following something she believes in. All different emotions agitated Dr. Rao. He paced up and down in his room. He thought of calling his wife and then thought of Eva…it was much because of her he could find his true love. He wished so fervently now that at least she meets him once more so that he could thank her for her incredible friendship. He wished to kiss her soft palms and place his head on her lap… she was right he was an idiotic simple little boy… if he could have understood what was boiling up in her soul he could have … no it was her destiny he could not have saved her from anything…it was her lot… oh Eva… He felt so blissful as the moonbeams touched his face. Sunrays tickled his cheeks where the moon had kissed him at night. The morning was so refreshing. As if the night had washed his past and he had become a different man. He felt so optimistic so full of love and so full of life. Looking at the sun, he prayed for Eva.