12: Meera's new Mental State
Meera did not bother to listen to what Santhosh said. Even his tears did not bother her. She kept staring at the photos. She touched the biggest photo and caressed it. She ran around, moved from one photo to another and caressed all the photos. Her fingers shivered as it moved around the face in the photo. Tears rolled down her cheek and her voice trembled. “Who is she? Who is she? Who is she?” she kept repeating.
“She is no more, damn it.” Santhosh shouted again.
Few minutes of silence passed. Santhosh pulled up his strength and said again with a huge cry “She is noooooo more.”
“No. No. No. She is not dead, she is not dead.” Meera yelled at him.
“She boarded the same flight you boarded Meera. She died in the accident. She is an orphan Meera, from Anbu Annai Illam. She was a writer. She was going to come here for an author signing program. That was the first time I was going to meet her in person. I loved her from a distance. She is gone. She is go...ne” he died from within.
“No. She is not dead.” Meera held her head and sat down. She cried from the deepest inside of her.
“I got her corpse and burnt it myself. With these sinful hands, I burned my sweetheart. With these same sinful hands.” He slapped himself and cried more.
“She is alive. She is right in front of you.” Meera said firmly.
“Yes, she is all over here, Meera.” Santhosh said wiping his tears.
“Meera? Deepthi. I am Deepthi. This is me. This is me.” Meera stood up and ran close to one of the photos.
“What?” Santhosh couldn’t believe his own ears.
“I am not dead. I am not dead. I need to go to the author signing program. I need to meet my deb, he will wait for me. I need to go now.” She hurried to the door. Santhosh stopped her by holding her hands hard.
“What are you blabbering Meera? What’s wrong with you?” Santhosh’s grip on her hands tightened.
“Leave me please. My Deb will be waiting for me. Please leave me. I need to tell him I love him.” She accidentally looked into a mirror in Santhosh’s room. She tried her best and freed herself from his grip. She went close to the mirror. She caressed the image in the mirror and her face alternatively.
“This is not me. This is not me.” Confusion made her veins burst and tears flood.
The confusion prevailed for few minutes until Santhosh came to a conclusive point.
“Come with me. I will show you the death report of Deepthi. I think the hit on your head has confused you so much and my story on top of it has hurt you.” Santhosh said and Meera left the room.
They got ready and lied to Prabhu that they were going to meet Ashruth. They took the next flight to Chennai. They did not speak to each other till they reached Chennai. Santhosh knew that confirming Deepthi’s death was going to kill the already dead himself, but he did it for Meera. He wanted to take her to her psychiatrist too.
“She is a blank sheet now. Anything you write in it will become her. Anything that you say, that hurts her deep, will become her life. Any character you tell her that inspires her will become her.” Ashruth had already warned him of the mental state of Meera.
They reached the hospital were the accident victims were treated, Ashruth’s hospital. Santhosh did not want Ashruth to know about the confused state of Meera. He thought it will affect their marriage. Nadhiya had told him about her fears regarding the marriage. They reached the information desk and got the details about Deepthi. He showed her the detailed death report of Deepthi. He had not saved the death certificate for obvious reasons. He still assumed she was alive and Meera was making him feel pathetic.
Meera tore the report and shouted “No. No. I am Deepthi. I am not dead. I need to meet my deb.” Santhosh’s pen name was Deb. Meera knew it, but after the accident Santhosh had not mentioned about his books or his love for Deepthi to her. He was confused. He did not know what to do. But Meera was firm.
“Please trust me Santhosh. I am Deepthi. I am the writer of the book ‘Relationship Status: It’s complicated’. I want to meet my Dep. Please take me to him Santhosh.” She cried.
He pulled her aside to a lonely place to avoid creating a scene in the hospital. He saw the doctor’s name who handled Deepthi’s case. It was Ashruth. He was reluctant to take her to Ashruth to make it clear to her but he was helpless. They went to Ashruth’s room. Since she was his would-be wife, the receptionist allowed them in without an appointment.
Ashruth was busily talking to someone over the phone. Santhosh didn’t want to barge in, so he waited outside along with Meera. They did not exchange a single word. They could hear what Ashruth spoke. Santhosh was shocked. He had never even imagined Ashruth to be this way.
“Han ji. I am testing all those drugs the terrorists sent, on these poor Indians. I am sure they can use it to destroy any country; any country, even India. But, ji, don’t forget to send me the share you had promised. .......Ya, ya. I am getting married to a millionaire’s daughter. She is half mad now. I made her the way she is now. Few days only, I will take their property and fly to London. The life I have always dreamed of......han Ji. Jai Usaf Khan.” Ashruth cut the call and came to the waiting room. He was shocked to see Meera and Santhosh. He learnt quickly that Santhosh had heard the entire conversation. He picked up a steel vase and tried hitting it on Santhosh head. But Ashruth missed it. Santhosh and Ashruth fought for a few minutes. But nothing disturbed Meera. She sat still like the water in a pond. Santhosh won the fight as Ashruth fell unconscious.
Santhosh made the unconscious Ashruth sit in a chair and tied him to it. Meera was still not disturbed by anything. Santhosh searched for a water bottle. He opened the fridge and brought a cold water bottle. He splashed the water on Ashruth’s face. Ashruth regained consciousness.
“What’s happening? You are linked to a terrorist gang? You made Meera like this?” Santhosh yelled.
“I am not Meera. My name is Deepthi.” Meera cried.
“Answer us now.” Santhosh angrily asked. Ashruth gave an evil grin. He beat Ashruth, till he opened his mouth about it.
Ashruth told what happened that day before the accident.