Shackled – (The mystery of the green box)—- Chapter 8.

CHAPTER 8 – TOO MANY SECRETS

Neera struggled to keep her eyes open. She was tired , hungry and sick . There was water all over her face. She could hear two people, screaming and she knew who they were. But, there was hardly any strength left in her to understand their conversation. The words ” Aaro paani mar chokhe, aaro… aaro…. oke morte dila cholbe na”*, reached her ears long time back, when the fatigue has just begun to consume her.  As much as she could see through the little space her eyes made for her, two blurry faces were right on her face, yelling . As much as she could hear, the word they repeated the most was , ‘Durga’. As much as she could feel, her heart was heavy with the hopelessness and shame , that she could no longer be her grand daughter’s shield. More than the fatigue and her illness, her conscience was feeding on her. She should have let Durga, know the truth. She could feel very  little energy left in her, and still couldn’t help, but mutter her last few words , “Aar uthh…bo na mone hoy …gobhir nidraaa… Durga parlo na re tor ma… herey … galo..” Tears trickled down her eyes as Neera finally shut off all the light of the world from reaching them.


 

“Oke enechi Saab! Magi bolse aar modoth debe na, or morod ke na dekha obdhi”* , a loud laughter followed as a gunda uttered these words to Wasim and his abbu. The entire room was roaring with laughter. Two goons pushed a woman clad in burkha into the room, she fell face down on the floor.

“Tui shesh samay eshe naatok korchish, tui bhalobashtish naki tor bor ke, je akhon oke na dekhe amader modoth dibi na bolchish ? Taaka chhara kichu chinti chhotolok meyechhele? “*, cried out Wasim. He ran towards her and kicked her with full force. The woman spat out blood . Durga was terrified at the sight. Who was behind the burkha? Did she know her ? She felt sorry for her, but, her tongue was tied. She was helpless and now the culprit was ‘fear’.

“Tui janish amar moner katha, haan ? Ami bhalobesechi amar bor ke, sabsamay” *, the woman sprang up from the floor and shouted out the words to Wasim. “Nijer poribaarer jonnyei toh oke bolchilam tomago shongo dite.  Kintu o , bairer lok der niyei byasto, nijer bhalo mondo bujhto koi ? Kintu akhon bujhlam tomago shongo dite bola ta chhilo amar sab theke bado bhool “*, the woman wailed . Durga was confused about what this woman was talking about, but her voice….her voice was so familiar. Her mouth was still stained with blood, she looked so much in pain but, the pain in her heart was much more, much more than what she was going through physically. Durga could feel the woman, as she was going through the same kind of agony.

“Shaitan Wasim, tui toh or shate porashona korechish, ekshathe college gechish, parli or khoti korte ? Ki kore haramjada, bol ki kore oke maraar katha kolpona korli ? Oke shottyi shottyi mere diyechish? Na o thick ache? Bol na bol daya kore bol o thick ache “*, she begged and begged for an answer and then got up and shook Wasim by his collar. Wasim pushed her away.  Durga was feeling really nervous now. She prayed that her thoughts turn out to be just weird imaginations. She was feeling goosebumps. It seemed she knows who this woman was. The woman ran to Wasim’s abbu now, she was furious, no push, no beating could stop her. Durga could feel her anger. She screamed on his face , “Kabir mamu, Kabir mamu daakto na tomake?”* , She paused and smirked, “Amio toh daaktam. Bhablam amar shoshurbaarir dikey r atmiyo, shunlam kato ajaana ghotona tomar theke. Jaanlam oyi sobuj baksher byapare. Ote ache khazana, katha diyechile Durga aar oyi baksher bodol e amader sab debe, khazana’r bhaag aar shanti, sab dukhher shesh , tai toh bolechile, na ? Toh tomader oyi chheleta kano bollo, amar bor ke merey diecho tomra? “*  she yelled at Wasim’s abbu, and now Durga knew his name, too….. Kabir.

Durga sighed, the truth was alarming , but, she was tired to react… too many shocks , just too much, for anyone to handle… it seemed like she was living a lie all the while…

The woman moved towards Durga. Durga looked at her , pain in her eyes. The woman lifted her veil . Durga couldn’t speak. Her voice trembled as she held back her tears and controlled the loud cry that fought to leave her throat , yet, she had to ask. She could say just two words,” Kano… mami ?”

Her mami hugged her and cried, “Durga tor mama amake katobaar baaron korlo re, ami shunlam na. Oke amaar shongo dite baadhho korlam. Wasim aar Kabirmamu amader sheyi purono sab ghotona bole, jani sobuj baksho tar byapare. Otar lobhe aaj sab haralam. Tor mama ke ora shesh kore diyeche na re ?” She looked down at the floor. It had the streak of blood that Kanai’s body left behind. She looked up at Durga and asked again, “Eta … eta tor mama’r rokto ? Ora mere diyeche na re?” Durga wept. She couldn’t say a thing. She knew how much mami loved her Kanai mama. And today they all lost him for her greed. She also knew that her mami never liked her. But, she would trade her for some treasure, planning to get rid off her – that, she never imagined. She would never forgive her.

Wasim signalled two of his goons to pull Durga’s mami back . She kept on talking to Durga as the goons grabbed her by her hand. “Kato kichhu tui jaanish na , kato kichu toke bolte chaito tor mama. Ebar ami toke sab bolbo. Tor jibontayi ek rahashya Durga. Sobuj baksher opor khali tor adhikaar, khali tor. Disni jano kauke. Neera ma boleche na shabdhane rakhte. Eder disni Durga ….”* Her voice slowly faded as they pulled her away from the room.

Durga kept looking anxiously. She knew she couldn’t do much about what was happening around her. What was mami saying about her life? She wondered. Her last words intrigued her.


 

Haseena and Wasim’s brother glanced at each other . They checked Neera again. She was not breathing anymore. The wrinkled face, still looked so pretty with a pair of  beautiful eyes that looked like lotuses floating on a calm pool of water. Those eyes were shut , never to open again.

They were scared, they did not know, what information they would provide Kabir with. Without wasting much time they kept looking around the house . They emptied Neera’s cupboard, peeked into all the boxes in there, searched in between her clothes, yet nothing could be found. Suddenly Haseena’s eyes fell on a golden box, sitting at a corner in Neera’s cupboard, hid carefully beneath a bundle of clothes. She thought there must be something precious in it. She ran towards it and opened the box and looked inside in excitement. A bunch of photos . That was it.

Disheartened and angry, she threw the box to the floor and looked away. Suddenly, she looked dazed and turned back quickly to face the photos. Walking to where the photos lay scattered on the floor, she picked up one photo- a family picture, and kept staring at it, dumbstruck. Wasim’s brother nudged her, “Ki hoise bhabhi ?”*

Haseena replied slowly, ” Ekhuni Kolkata Jaite hobe, bujhli.”*

 

Glossary ( The lines in Bengali explained) –

  1. Aaro paani mar chokhe, aaro… aaro…. oke morte dila cholbe na —- Sprinkle more water in her eyes, we can’t let her die.
  2. Aar uthh…bo na mone hoy …gobhir nidraaa… Durga parlo na re tor ma… herey … galo.. —-Will not wake up anymore it seems, am slipping into a deep sleep. Durga your grandma failed .
  3. Oke enechi Saab! Magi bolse aar modoth debe na, or morod ke na dekha obdhi —- Got her, boss. The woman is saying that she won’t help anymore, unless she could see her husband.
  4. Tui shesh samay eshe naatok korchish, tui bhalobashtish naki tor bor ke, je akhon oke na dekhe amader modoth dibi na bolchish ? Taaka chhara kichu chinti chhotolok meyechhele? —-You are doing all this drama now? Did you ever love your husband that now you are saying you won’t help us without seeing him ? Did you ever love anything, but money ?
  5. Tui janish amar moner katha, haan ? Ami bhalobesechi amar bor ke, sabsamay. —- You know what is in my mind right? I have always loved my husband.
  6. Nijer poribaarer jonnyei toh oke bolchilam tomago shongo dite.  Kintu o , bairer lok der niyei byasto, nijer bhalo mondo bujhto koi ? Kintu akhon bujhlam tomago shongo dite bola ta chhilo amar sab theke bado bhool. —- I told him to support you all for the sake of his family. But, he was always busy with outsiders. He never understood what was good for him. Now I understand my mistake.
  7. Shaitan Wasim, tui toh or shate porashona korechish, ekshathe college gechish, parli or khoti korte ? Ki kore haramjada, bol ki kore oke maraar Katha kolpona korli ? Oke shottyi shottyi mere diyechish? Na o thick ache? Bol na bol daya kore bol o thick ache —- You cunning Wasim, you studied with my husband, went to college together, you could harm him ? How could you do this ? Did you guys really kill him  ? Or he’s fine ? Please tell me he is fine.
  8. Kabir mamu, Kabir mamu daakto na tomake?—- Kabir uncle, that’s what he called you right ?
  9. Amio toh daaktam. Bhablam amar shoshurbaarir dikey r  atmiyo, shunlam kato ajaana ghotona tomar theke. Jaanlam oyi sobuj baksher byapare. Ote ache khazana, katha diyechile Durga aar oyi baksher bodol e amader sab debe, khazana’r bhaag aar shanti, sab dukhher shesh , tai toh bolechile, na ? Toh tomader oyi chheleta kano bollo, amar bor ke merey diecho tomra? —- Even I called you that. Thought that you are a relative from my in-laws’ side. Learnt of so many unknown facts from you – learnt about the green box. You said it contained treasure. You said in exchange of Durga and the box you would give us our share of the treasure. That will mark the end of our miseries. Then why did your man tell me that you have killed my husband?
  10. Kano… mami ?—- Why aunt ?
  11. Durga tor mama amake katobaar baaron korlo re, ami shunlam na. Oke amaar shongo dite baadhho korlam. Wasim aar kabirmamu amader sheyi purono sab ghotona bole, jani sobuj baksho tar byapare. Otar lobhe aaj sab haralam. Tor mama ke ora shesh kore diyeche na re ? —- Durga,, your uncle told me not to do all this, not to support them, but, I forced him. The greed of treasure led me to do all this. I lost everything because of my greed. They killed your uncle right ?
  12. Eta … eta tor mama’r rokto ? Ora mere diyeche na re? – This… this is your uncle’s blood ? They killed him ?
  13. Kato kichhu tui jaanish na , kato kichu toke bolte chaito tor mama. Ebar ami toke sab bolbo. Tor jibontayi ek rahashya Durga. Sobuj baksher opor khali tor adhikaar, khali tor. Disni jano kauke. Neera ma boleche na shabdhane rakhte. Eder disni Durga ….—- You don’t know several things. Your uncle wanted to tell you so many things. Now I will tell you everything. Your life is a mystery Durga. On the green box- only you have the right. Don’t give it to anyone. Remember what your grandma said…
  14. Ki hoise bhabhi ?—- What happened sister-in law ?
  15. Ekhuni Kolkata Jaite hobe, bujhli —- We have to leave for Kolkata immediately.

 

© Sohini Dutta and A weaver at work Blog, 2018. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Sohini Dutta and A weaver at work Blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements
Tagged with: