This post has been published by me as a part of the Blog-a-Ton 13; the thirteenth edition of the online marathon of Bloggers; where we decide and we write. To be part of the next edition, visit and start following Blog-a-Ton.

She peeped to look at him again & again failed to catch his eye. It was as if he deliberately avoided her. But then, he was busy haggling with the customers. Beads of sweat lined his forehead as the hot sun beat down on him mercilessly. Nilu sighed. He wasn’t going to look at her any sooner. Mother would be waiting for her return to cook the lunch. She had to hurry back home. With reluctant steps she walked back home, passing the shop but this time not glancing at it.
Manas looked up just in time to see her profile heading back to the village. She was as usual carrying that huge & ugly black umbrella and the jute-bag laden with fresh vegetables from the market. In spite of the heavy burden, her poise & gait remained royal. She looked like a princess! How he wished to throw away that ugly black umbrella & gift her, a lovely colorful one. He snapped out of his daydreams and attended to the waiting customers with the hint of a smile still playing on his lips.

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Her eyes scanned the crowd, impatient & hopeful. This is the village annual fair, he can’t miss it. Even the market has been closed for the day. Where is he?
Suddenly a shoulder brushed lightly against her & a figure quickly departed towards the river-side. The faint shiver that contact sent down her spine could only register one fact-it was him.

She followed him nonchalantly; it won’t do any good if she was spotted with him. Near him to be precise. Suddenly he turned & looking at her allowed a faint smile to light up his face. “I…” Nilu was unsure what should she say. Why does she stare at him in the market? Why did she follow him here? Why is she so hopelessly in love with him? What explanation suits the occasion?
Manas walked up to her, just close enough to be audible when he whispered-“I don’t need any explanations.” Almost as if reading her mind. “Nor do I have any expectations” he continued” I just want you to know that I care for you. I…” He turned to gaze at the river. “I love you…” he whispered slowly. Nilu stared wide-eyed & then walked a bit closer-“I do too.”

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It had been a moonless night when they had eloped. Even the village dogs remained silent. They caught the late bus to the city. Manas had already managed to get a small job there & also rented a house nearby. When the time was right, they had decided to leave behind their village, the strict Panchayat & the rigid caste hierarchy that prevented two souls in love from being bound in holy matrimony.
A simple court marriage the next day united them for eternity. The blissfully happy couple now settled down in their new house & new life oblivious to the furor created in the village. The high caste family discovered early morning that their daughter was missing. Soon Manas became conspicuous by his absence. The village elders put 2 & 2 together and began a man-hunt.

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Nilu opened the door to find her elder brother standing there.

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“How can you trust them? They will kill us if we return!” Manas was aghast that their house had been discovered. “No, they won’t. Anna says we just have to go & apologize to the elders & get married as per the rituals. They will accept us then.” Nilu beamed at him.

They set off in an auto-rickshaw early morning. Nilu eager & Manas doubtful, holding each others hands. Suddenly half-way a Tata Sumo approached their auto & blocked the road. Nilu’s elder brother stepped down the car. “You better come with us Nilu, we need to make arrangements for the marriage. You need to come ahead. Let us welcome Manas in the proper way a groom is welcomed. Some of my friends will accompany him in the auto” He smiled.
Nilu looked in to the trusting eyes of her Anna & then smiled at Manas-“Don’t worry I’ll be fine. But you come soon ok?”
Manas looked strangely at her-“Nilu, please don’t go now. I don’t want to say goodbye so soon.” “Silly, it’s not good bye! We will meet soon”

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When you walk down the corridors of the city mental asylum, you’ll hear Nilu’s pitiful shrieks renting the air. She is hardly ever coherent. When she’s exhausted & sobbing herself to sleep you can catch the only sentence she speaks-“he didn’t want a goodbye…”
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Leo said…
sad.. poignant.. unfortunate for the couple..! u narrated it well..

all the best for BAT.!
Rinaya said…
Thanks Leo! :)
Dreamer said…
A truly moving story, rooted in today's reality. Well done. All the best for BATOM!
Sagar..... said…
hmmmmm really sad.....

quite true also.....

is it a fiction ????
biplab said…
errr i ahve seen a movie with a similar story :P

moviebuff u see :P
suraj said…
simply awesome....... the narration is nothing short of brilliant!!!!

cant wait to read the next post!!!
p00ja said…
Rinaya...I'm speechless, your story has such true ring to it, more often then we wish to, we come across such atrocities, but you have made us feel the pain, your words were very well placed and carefully chosen.
Phoenixritu said…
How true! This is the reality these days. Very sad and moving
Vee... said…
this is what we read in news every now and then these days!! glad that you wrote about this :)
Poignant Tale, nice narration... do keep writing more like this..

All The Best for BAT 13.

Thanks for your wonderful comment on my blog, Few Miles. do keep visiting.

Yours Frendly,
Someone Is Special
gkam said…
A sad story indeed. And true even today.
The end was just heartbreaking!

ATB for BAT13
Gkam - Goodbye
Rinaya said…
thanx everyone for dropping by with your comments & good wishes.Yes this is partly based on a true incident in southern part of India.The last part dealing with murder is very close to the actual truth.I'd wanted to write about honour killings for very long & BAT gave me this chance.I am glad my message reached at least some people..
Vipul Grover said…
You have vry nicely touched the raging issue of honour killing.. the last part reminds me of the movie LSD
and the first para hs givn me an idea for a short story (totally different frm the theme of this post). if i evr write it, will duly credit u :)
Anonymous said…
lovely story Rinaya. All the best for BAT :)
Rinaya said…
It's an honour Marshal to have inspired you! :)
Thanks Maddie for dropping by.. :)
Keerthi P said…
I agree with biplab. Reminds me of a Tamil movie called Kaadhal. I am not sure if you have heard of it.

Still, your narration was awesome! All the best!
Rinaya said…
Thanks Keerthi fr your best wishes..& no I've never heard of that movie 'coz I don't think I've ever seen a Tamil movie in my life(unless u consider the Bollywood remakes!)
As I've mentioned,it's inspired from a real life incident mentioned in a newspaper.
that was touching really...and a well narrated story...i think these kind of incidents are all over the news..i wish people were more tolerant!!
Sourav said…
This is the reason, I didn't take part in this blog-a-ton, I hate goodbyes! Beautifully written, but I generally don't like reading sad stories! Hoping to read some happy thoughts from you soon :)
Sidra Sayeed said…
very scary and stark. The narration was gripping.
Shilpa Garg said…
Ah! The sad and ugly tale of honor killing with a twist. Good one! :)
All the best for BAT-13!
Cheers :)
mayur said…
sad but true! Unfortunately the Indian society upholds such rigid rules...over human life.

Wonderfully written!

All the best for BAT!!
Rinaya said…
Thanks everyone.. & the BAT13 has quite rightly gone to the Marshal! A great story indeed ;)
Chinmay Kumar said…
u have got nice comments

ur writing skill is excellent
Anmol Rawat said…
wonderfully written and quite moving :)

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