Sunday, September 12, 2010

His Father

His Father By Bissme S

I have always prayed that my son must never find out the truth about his father. The moment he asked me about his father, Ihad painted a picture of lies.
Convincingly, I told him that his father was a real warrior... a real hero... a soldier who died while protecting his country from the vicious enemy.
But in reality, his father was a man who had committed the most hideous crime. Truly, the truth about his father will only psychologically scar him for the rest of his life.
The truth has broken me. The truth has brought unspeakable misery in my life. Even now, I have a hard time digesting the truth.
I don't want my son to go through what I had experienced. He must be protected from the truth at any cost. He must not suffer for the sins of his father.
I didn't face any difficulty painting this picture of lies. Firstly my son has never met his father. He died before I gave birth to Ajay.Secondly, nobody in this town has ever met Ajay's father. When I arrived at this town, I was a four-month pregnant widow looking for a job and a new life.I created a different identity entirely. I had to. If they knew the truth, they would probably outcast my son and me.
They would probably spit in our faces. They wouldn't want a convict's family to live within their community. His father and I were teachers in a small town. The first time I met Ashok was at the teacher training college. Slowly we became more than friends.
The moment we graduated, we tied the knot. I thought that I knew him well. It appeared that I was wrong. After two years of marriage, I learn about his terrible dark side.
Apparently he had been molesting some of his male students in the pretext giving them extra free tuitions. He took advantage of their innocence.
His secret was exposed when one of the student, Bala, made a complaint to headmaster as well as the police. My husband was arrested.
At first, I doubted the charges against him. Later, it became difficult to believe in his innocence. Bala managed to reveal some intimate details about his penis... a certain dark patch. Bala's confession gave courage for other children to come forward and speak out. In the two years of my husband teaching career, he had at least molested 25 children.
Out of shame, my husband committed suicide between the four walls of the cell. He was found hanging. I wonder what happened to the shame when he was doing the unspeakable act on the children. Perhaps he was more ashamed of getting caught compared to the act of molestation.
The town folk felt immensely cheated when my husband committed suicide. They felt that he had escaped the law and punishment too easily. In their eyes, justice was denied.
They were furious and frustrated beyond words. They directed their angry emotions at me. They felt that being his wife, I had to pay for his sins.
Whenever I went, they were throwing insult and curses at me. Shopkeepers refuse to serve me. I was not allowed to enter the temple.
Suddenly, none of my friends wanted to have any more association with me.The headmaster hinted that it is for the best that I resign. Apparently parents have been threatening not to send the children to school if I was still working.
I find the society is more unforgiving when the crime involved innocent children. When I learnt that I was pregnant, I had decided to leave this town and find somewhere else to start a new beginning. I don't want to subject my son to their anger and to their punishment.
Off I went, to a new town with a fake new identity. It has been 30 years since the incident. My son is a successful lawyer, happily married with two children.
To this day, Ajay doesn't have a clue that I have been lying to him all these years. Looking back, I have no regrets telling those lies.
For sake of my son's happiness, the lies on his father were necessary. Even on my dying bed, I would not tell Ajay the truth about his father. I will carry his father's crime to my grave.

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