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It was a Friday night, and Sendhil was busy at his office trying to wind up his report for the week. He was looking forward to a relaxing Friday night at home with his kid. He switched off his computer and immediately received a call from his friend Amit.
“Hey, what’s the plan tonight?” asked Amit. “Nothing much, just looking forward to some rest finally,” said Sendhil trying to cut down the conversation.
“Please don’t bore me again Sen. This was the same thing you said last week as well,” said Amit. “But that didn’t help me either. Finally, your plan worked, you remember,” said Sendhil.
“Oh Please, It didn’t live up to the expectations. But this time let me tell you, it’s going to rock. I know this place, and it is just awesome” said Amit.
“Listen Amit, we are not that young anymore and looking for a drink and disco amidst girls is not my cup of tea of late,” said Sendhil trying to get away from Amit’s plans.
“I know you are married. But I also know that it’s not working. Then what else do you intend to do Sen. At least try to break away from the routine for a night? This alone can help you relax.” coaxed Amit.
“It’s not about that. I want to relax too.” Sendhil tried to explain. “Oh, please, come on now. I am coming to pick you up in an hour. You better be ready.” Amit cut the phone leaving Sendhil no chance to speak further.
Sendhil sat down on his seat again. He thought about what Amit had said and decided that it is not that bad an idea to chill out. He kept waiting for Amit, who took around two hours to reach his office.
“Seriously, when will you be ever on time?” asked Sendhil angrily. “Come on Sen. One can never be late to a Friday night party,” said Amit and pulled Sendhil out of his chair.
They both left for the party which was at a close distance from Sendhil’s house. They joined the party with a beer, and slowly their drink got hotter. They both started to dance as if it was the last dance of their lives.
Every time Sendhil drank, he thought about Priya and ordered for more. He was shouting ill of Priya all the while and Amit encouraged him to pour out his emotions.
This kept going on and on when finally Sendhil fell flat on his face. The next thing he remembered was that he was being carried home on Amit’s car. He slowly regained his consciousness and felt sorry for Amit as he had spoiled his party. However, Amit didn’t bother and continued to help Senthil.
Leaving Sendhil at the entrance of his house, Amit bid goodbye and drove on for his next adventure. When Sendhil tried to open the door of the house, he received a text in his mobile stating that he had exceeded eighty per cent of his credit limit in his card.
Sendhil in an intoxicated state felt that he should have gone overboard today and did not realize that most of the purchase from his card was for Amit and the girls which Amit had hooked up in the party. Sendhil entered the house slowly, trying not to get noticed. Priya, however, was well awake and was watching the Friday night movie.
“Why do you even come back home? You should either live in a bar or with your girlfriend. Either way, you will be happy than here.” Priya shouted without taking her eyes off from the television.
“I had no intention to drink today, but it just happened,” said Sendhil still in an intoxicated state.
“You need not explain anything. Anyway, I am here only for a couple of months more so you better save your excuses for your girlfriend.” Priya shouted again.
“Which girlfriend are you talking about? Linda is my colleague and a good friend. I don’t understand what is wrong with you. I have even stopped speaking to her after your doubts, and you still do this. Maybe you have started liking to hate me” Sendhil shouted back.
“Yes, I love to hate you, and I hate me for having loved you. You cheated me into your love, and today I have lost everything which I had. Very soon, I am going to be a single divorced woman with a kid. Thank you very much for that.”
“You decided the divorce thing and your Mother supported it. What sort of Mother will be able to do that? The family is between you and me and not fucking anybody.” said Sendhil in a raised voice.
“Don’t you dare to speak anything about my Mother. She knows what is good for me, unlike your Mother, who only knows what is good for her. From day one, she looked at me like a servant and tried to control me like a puppet. I am done with your family, and now I am done with you. If not for this boy, I would have killed myself by now.”
“Then let me kill myself and give your much-needed joy” replied Sendhil. Priya remained calm for a while and then she said to Sendhil in a quiet voice
“Who were you before the marriage and what the hell happened to you now? "
"You wanted me to be independent then and now you want me to leave my job."
"You said I was the most important person in your life and now you dance to your Mother’s tunes."
"You said my parents are like yours and now you don’t even talk to them."
"You said that you trust me more than yourself, and now you can’t even tolerate me speaking to my male colleague.”
Sendhil retorted, “Just because you had said it, it does not become true. If you don’t like me, leave me alone and live your life. And remember I can get the kid as well, so don’t act smart. There is simply no point in repeating the same fight. Divorce is on the way, so you better mind your own business and let my mind my own.”
Saying these words, Sendhil came out of the house, banging the door at the back. He sat on the bench at the garden and opened his cigarette pack. He lighted his cigarette with his trembling hands, and he didn’t realize that his eyes were moist.
He continued to smoke repeatedly until he finished the entire pack in no time. He threw the cigarette pack and lay down on the garden looking at the sky.
“Are you alright, Sir?” asked Subbu walking towards Sendhil.
Realizing that Subbu was nearby, Sendhil woke up, wiping his tears and said, “Yeah, I am alright.”