It was raining outside and one could hear the tiniest drops of water hit the walls of the room that was isolated completely on top of the hill. Ironically, there were two more people inside the room who were shedding teardrops as well. Chris, the 32-year-old developer from Leh had been locked inside the room with his ex-wife Kiara, a banker from Ladakh.
Two days ago, when both of them went to sleep, things seemed spick and span. However, when they woke up, they found themselves in this haunted room. There were 10 dead bodies inside the room, 5 of them male and the other 5 female suggesting the fact that there were 5 more estranged couples in the room before them.
In the middle of the room that smelled of sulfur, hung a rope on which a small piece of paper read, “Apologise from the heart or be dead by your soul.”
It had been more than 24 hours and they had not spoken a word to each other. Chris was crying as he feared death and Kiara was in tears because she was about to propose a younger man in her office the evening she was mysteriously abducted.
In the air, tension loomed in many forms, and in the vicinity, rainfall made the aura even more dreadful. There was no running away from the hatred they had for each other, and even the fear of death could not break their egos.
“I am sorry, just let me go now and live my life.” Kiara sobbed.
“You think I set this all up to take revenge? Why do you always assume things about me?” Chris shouted at the top of his voice which perched through the water droplets out of the tiny outlet on the southern wall.
“I went to sleep peacefully because I was finally in love with a sensible man. You would not even let me live my life. Only you can go to such an extent to set me up here, Chris.”
“I have no clue why I am here or why, of all the people, you had to be here.”
“Stop fooling around, Chris. I know you way too well.”
“You think I am a psychotic freak who would lock himself up in a dark room with no food or water along with some dead bodies so that I can get an apology from you.”
“So, what do you want?”
“I want to be over with you. Ever since you left me, all I have wanted to do is be peaceful with myself but I cannot. I miss your smile when I wake up, I miss those burnt toasts you made for me. I miss surprising you by coming early from work, I miss leaning on your shoulder and abusing my boss, I miss every single freckle on your cheeks and even though I have told myself a 1000 times that you have left me, I still keep missing those things. Why did you have to leave when everything was so perfect? What joy did you get?”
“Oh, shut up, Chris. I know you inside out. You were the one who spoilt it. You had made me the center of all your worries, pain, and conflicts. You were like a small baby who did not know how to take care of himself. Rectifying you was not my job.”
“I behaved that way because you felt like home, someone who would love me the way I was. I never complained about what you did. Your late night outings, your absence from home for days without even a call, your mood swings, I thought it was always about one of us being sane no matter what happened. You taught me how to love, and then suddenly one day you walked away leaving behind a letter. Was it so easy for you?”
“Easy? I wept for days together, you moron! I was so used to holding you and sleeping, I had to buy hundreds of pillows until one of them felt like you. I was at my mother’s place for months together not moving out.”
“Then, why did you do it?”
“It was the right thing to do, Chris.”
“Who made you the judge of right and wrong for us, wasn’t it always supposed to be a mutual decision?”
“I don’t know. I never doubted that you loved me but love sometimes is not enough.”
“Love is always enough.” Chris sighed.
“Look what love made you do. You haven’t changed at all. You are still the emotional fool you were.”
“I was your emotional fool.”
“Oh, stop with it, already Chris.”
“I am really sorry, Kiara if I put you in a situation where you felt you deserved better. All I was trying to do was to love you the best way I knew, and to be honest that is the only thing I know how to do.” Chris broke down on his knees and sobbed like an infant.
The rain continued getting intense outside and so did the emotional commotion inside.
“I am not sorry, Chris. I did love you but at that moment it was the right decision for me. I decided I am really not concerned with you, thereafter. I want to start a new.”
“I guess, we both will turn out to be like these dead bodies if that is the case.”
“I would rather be dead than to apologize for something I did not even do. Love is not everything in life. You gave me the best days of my life but you were also pulling me down, I did not want to babysit you all my life.”
“I have loved you so much that I will respect your decision, and silently wait.”
“If this is how it ends, then so be it. I do not want to give you false hopes by apologizing because I do not mean it.”
The rainfall stopped and so did the tears. Both of them sat against the opposite sides of the walls unable to see each other in the darkness. Hours passed by but no one spoke a word. As tiny photons of sunlight slowly peeped through into the room, Chris saw her sleeping on the floor.
He wondered if things could have been different but they were not. Kiara had gone into a deep sleep.
Now it was just a matter of time before both of them succumbed to hunger, thirst and mental fatigue. The dead bodies on the other side of the room lay still, perhaps ego had killed them too.
Chris was a talented developer but his God blessed software called Life had some major bugs. The bugs were “Denial” and “Lack of Acceptance” on the other side Kiara was a smart professional banker. She was good with numbers but all she had been doing was counting regrets. Things could have been different if Kiara would have talked it out with Chris before taking a one-way decision for both of them or maybe Chris should have been a little more mature in his marriage. Putting oneself in the other person’s shoes would definitely give a better perspective. But the monster called “Ego” destroyed both of their minds and the couple went on to destroy their marriage.
This is why I call this blog “The Battle of Egos” for it is a terrible monster. It has the power to destroy you, from the inside. 😈