An Epic Love Story
By Deepak Jeswal
The forest was knotted into a merged mass of trees,
fallen leaves and fruits,
intertwined with vines growing at reckless, unheeded pace and insects crawling in their fate-less existence. A narrow track had been beaten through it by the incessant footsteps of humanity, shaded by the spreading trees on both sides, their branches intermingling with the other, providing a natural roof to the corridor.
With a heavy, coarse shawl wrapped around his shoulders and heads; his non-existence neck buried deep inside, and the ugly, small head bent, the man limped through the path with as much speed as his crippled leg could take him. His hands, inside the folds of the shawl, clutched a heavy pouch of coins. Somewhere, in the near distance he could hear a few howls and cries of the wild animals, but he was not scared…Raktaprasad had often taken this path, as did many others. And, moreover, today, his mind was stimulated by the lovely bulge of the bag that he held in his hand. It was his moment of glory- the British, true to their words, had given him the five hundred gold coins; let the two kingdoms fight, he would leave the country today itself to the far off plains on the south and settle there.
The night was nearly wearing off; from the small patches of openings on the green roof above, he could see the full moon above…so beautiful! Well, everything was beautiful today; just as his luck had been.
His mind replayed the events of the last few days – Arjun had come back from a meeting somewhere, angry and shouting, and had blurted out about Meera and Rudra. Seeing his opportunity, Raktaprasad had conveyed the same message to Shorya – a person Raktaprasad knew would be interested in this piece of information. Then, Shorya had asked him to impart a false alarm about Rudra planning to fight a battle to Arjun. The trick worked…Arjun, in his stupid fury and idiotic gallantry, had persuaded the King to give a befitting reply. And then of course, seeing the opportunity, Raktaprasad had gone to these lovely British men, with their riches and their hunger for land! Tomorrow, the motion of the events that he had so willfully created would culminate in the battlefield, with the death of many…but who cares?
Tomorrow, he would leave as soon as the sun rose.
Continue reading Meera – Episode 5