That was a Sunday and somehow Kavya convinced Thulasi and Saradha to accompany her for a newly released movie. That was a kid’s movie but all three of them enjoyed it a lot. They had lunch outside and were relaxing while waiting for the bill.
“It feels like decades since we came out like this without anything much to worry…” sighed Saradha.
“All credit goes to Kavya, amma. It’ her salary that’s giving us some breathing space… Now if we can get her married…”
“Akka, please stop this! First of all, it’s your hard work and dedication that helped me to get this education and job… And don’t even think about my marriage before your marriage. I am almost five years younger than you…” interrupted Kavya.
“But Kavya think about amma…”
“Akka don’t speak as if she is only your mom and I don’t have any affection towards her… See, when we came out of our house penniless, you are the one who took up all the responsibilities on your shoulder… Now it’s time for you to relax and get settled… I can take care of mom and I can also manage the debts. You concentrate on your business and identify a good life partner for you…” said Kavya with a giggle.
Thulasi gave an angry stare at her sister but that didn’t stop Kavya from laughing. Even Saradha had a smile in her lips and said,
“Thulasi, what she says is correct. If you like someone let me know…”
Thulasi didn’t say anything. And the server came with the bill, so they stopped the conversation, paid the bill and came out of the restaurant. Since it was a Sunday late afternoon, there were very few people on the streets. And also the summer has hit the peak time and it was so very hot.
They waited outside the restaurant to spot an empty auto. Kavya put her shawl around her head and complained about the weather.
“It’s the AC syndrome Kavi, almost all IT people have this…” said Thulasi with a smile.
When Kavya was about to reply,
“Look there! Looks as if someone is not well…” said Saradha.
The sisters looked at the pointed direction and found someone sitting on the platform with the hands over the head. There were few plastic bags around… Though there were a few moving traffic, none of them stopped by to help.
Kavya, Thulasi and Saradha rushed towards the person. As they approached the person, they understood that it’s a woman by her dress.
“Hello, what happened? Are you not well? Do you need any help?” queried Thulasi softly.
The lady lifted her head with both relief and fear in her face. To the shock of Thulasi and her family it was none other than Abirami! While Thulasi and Kavya were dumbfounded to see Abirami sitting on a street platform like that, Saradha, spoke to her.
“What happened? Are you not well? Oh god! So much blood! Thulasi, Kavi, get an auto fast; let us take her to a hospital…
Only then Thulasi and Kavya noticed the flow of blood from the right side of her neck. They didn’t waste much time after that. Luckily they got an auto and took Abirami to the nearby hospital. Kavya told the hospital staff that it’s her mother and she got hurt by a thief. Though there was only a single duty doctor, they admitted Abirami without much fuss. And the three women were very much relieved when they came to know that the Abirami has got hurt more towards her shoulder than the neck. But still it required 10 stitches and because of her age Abirami was advised to stay in the hospital for few days. But the good thing was there’s nothing to worry!
While Abirami slept due to the effect of the medicine, all three women stayed back in the hospital. When Abirami got up from her sleep, she was surprised to see Saradha and her family there. Saradha explained how she and her daughters met Abirami and she also queried Abirami about her accident. Abirami thanked Saradha and her daughters for their help and shared her nightmare experience.
Abirami’s car driver had taken leave that morning. But she had to buy some urgent items and hence she had taken an auto from the near-by stand. After buying the required things when she was about to enter the auto again, the auto driver, trying to make use of the deserted street, had tried to steal her purse and when Abirami showed some resistance, he had used the knife in his hand, snatched her purse and had left the scene in his auto.
“Thanks, for helping me without keeping other bitter incidents in mind…” said Abirami feeling herself a bit embarrassed.
“There’s no bitter incident… I know why you demanded that money… Our family is nowhere near your family’s status… So please don’t worry about all those things…” said Saradha soothingly.
Just then the doctor came there with his nurse and asked them to wait outside. Outside the patient room, for the first few minutes they discussed about the incident and felt that Abirami was really lucky in a way… Then Thulasi turned to kavya and said,
“Kavy, so now you have been elevated to a heroine role! Usually only in stories and movies we hear such things right? Mother in law doesn’t approve her son’s love and the to-be daughter in law somehow proves that she is too good and manages to change her mother in law’s heart… Good!” with a smile.
Kavya too giggled. But Saradha scolded her daughters.
“Thulasi, what is this? I didn’t expect you to speak something like this… When someone is facing some problem, we should try to help them and you shouldn’t expect any benefits from your action…”
“Ah mom! You are exactly how a heroine’s mother should be!!!” said Kavya laughing. But noticing her mother’s angry stare, she stopped laughing and added in a bitter tone,
“Amma, do you really think that we don’t know what we will get for helping others? We have been experiencing that for more than five years now right?”
Thulasi who wanted to change the topic, said,
“We need to plan also… All three of us can’t stay here for long…”
“That’s right akka, maybe I can stay back…”
“Yes Kavy but you have office tomorrow…”
“I can take care of her tomorrow…” volunteered Saradha.
“Ok.. That’s fine then… But…. Hmmm….. We need to inform Krishna’s relatives about this incident right? I know they are very close…” said Thulasi in a different tone.
Kavya looked at her sister and asked,
“Yes, Kavy, you know about his aunt and his son right???”
“Oh yes, how can I forget them!” said Kavya in a sarcastic tone.
But Saradha didn’t notice that and asked Thulasi to inform Abirami’s relatives too.
It has been two months since Dinakaran last met Thulasi. For some unknown reason she has been staying away from him. She has stopped visiting his house. Even in the shop, she has been busy all the three times he had been there. Giving some irrelevant reasons, Thulasi has even stopped Seetha from investing more money on the boutique.
But from what he heard from Seetha, she has been quite the same with Seetha… So all these sudden changes are for or because of him… Instead of getting angry for her behavior, he has been quiet amused by it! He likes to accept challenges and now Thulasi has indirectly posed him a challenge… And ofcourse, he is more than happy to accept it…
While he was sitting in front of his laptop typing an email, with his mind wandering with Thulasi’s thoughts, his mobile phone started ringing. Dinakaran picked it up and answered it,
“Hello! I am Dinakaran here….”
“Hello! I am Thulasi…”
Dinakaran was completely taken by surprise but he didn’t show it in his reply.
“Thulasi? Who is that?”
A strange sensation waved upon Thulasi… Is it anger? Disappointment? She had no idea… But she didn’t expect that question from Dinakaran. But how can a business man like Dinakaran remember her name always? She tried to reason herself… But still…
“I am Thulasi from Fabulous bouquet… Your mother has invested in my boutique…” said Thulasi in a small voice.
Dinakaran did notice the pause before her reply… A smile appeared in his face…
“Oh yes, tell me! You want to talk to my mother? This is my number… But I can tell you her number…”
“Oh no! I want to talk to you only…”
“Oh really? I don’t know why I am surprised… But yes tell me… I am in mid of an email and I need to send it fast…”
Thulasi could understand the reason behind Dinakaran’s behavior. A rich and popular person like him would expect someone like Thulasi to be free to talk to him as per his wish but Thulasi had done just the opposite, not just once but multiple times…
“Sorry to disturb you sir… It’s about your aunt, Krishna’s mother… She met with an accident and now she is in Devi Hospital near Chetpet… I thought I should inform you also about it…”
“Oh! What happened?”
Thulasi briefed about the incident and how she met Abirami. She also added that there’s nothing to worry about Abirami’s condition.
“Thanks Thualsi, for helping my aunt. I will be there with my mother in ten minutes…”
He hesitated for a few seconds and then added,
“I hope it is ok with you to stay behind and meet my mother there? My mom also knows about krishna’s love matter.”
He is thinking for her!!! This time a wave of satisfaction went through Thulasi! And strangely she felt very happy too… She was a bit confused about her own feelings but somehow managed to reply to Dinakaran.
“Yes, that’s fine with me sir… I hope its fine with you too… Otherwise I will go home so that madam will not get a chance to know about me…”
“No, that’s not required. As long as you are fine, you can be there… I will be there in ten minutes… can you give me the room details?”
Seetha and Dinakaran reached the hospital in a hurry. Seetha was surprised to see Thulasi there. Thulasi welcomed them with a 'somewhat' normal smile and introduced them to her sister and mother.
“This is krishna’s aunt and this is her son….”
“And amma, this is Kavya, Krishna’s fiancée and ofcourse also your Thulasi’s sister… This is their mother…”
While, Kavya and Saradha were shocked with Thulasi’s introduction, Seetha was taken by surprise!
To be continued...