Doctor Sunil Agarwal was a well known gynecologist in Kolkata. In his mid-30’s he had dedicated his life to the study of medicine and now its practice.
Due to the rigours of his profession, he never had any time to think about relationships. Let alone be involved in one. But much he was subject to a lot of pressure to “settle down” in life. Off late he too was feeling that living ones life alone probably wasn’t such a great idea and finding a companion made a lot of sense. So he decided to succumb to his parents wishes and decided to get married to a girl his parents had selected for him.
As soon as news spread in the Agarwal clan that the prodigal doctor was getting married, relatives from far and wide made plans to attend the last wedding in Sunil’s generation in the Agarwal clan.
Sunil had a lot of cousins, living across India, all of them were married.
One of his cousins, Rakesh lived in Mumbai. No one had seen him in a long time because he never came down to Kolkata for famiuly functions because of his work schedules. He was a business man and had his own automotive parts exports unit. Rakesh was Sunil’s mom’s elder sisters only son.
Rakesh was married for close to 7 years and had a baby girl.
Sunil and Rakesh were very good friends as teenagers and even went to the same school.
But Rakesh wasn’t as bright as Sunil and after the 10th moved to another school pursuing commerce and later moved to Mumbai in search of a career.
It was decided that Sunil would have a sort of a get-togethar come bachelor party at his place before the day of the marriage, where some of his really close cousins would be there with their wives. Rakesh too had given his word that he would be present for the occasion, after all this was Sunil’s wedding.
On the day of the party, Rakesh arrived with his wife. Rakesh’s mother was baby-sitting his daughter for the evening.
Sunil was ecstatic on seeing Rakesh and his wife, whom he was meeting for the first time, becase Rakesh had married against family consent to a Maharashtrian girl in Mumbai itself.
As the evening wore on, drinks started flowing and everyone started having a lot of fun.
But something was bothering Sunil. He felt that he had seen Rakesh’s wife somewhere, but couldn’t figure out where it was.
Probably it was the alcohol which was getting to him he thought.
He mentioned this to Rakesh, but Rakesh brushed it off, saying it couldn’t be possible because she had never been out of Mumbai.
Sunil said that he had been to Mumbai on business visits once, for a couple of days, nearly 2 years back, maybe he had seen her then.
But Rakesh took no notice off it and started asking Sunil about his fiancée.
But Sunil still couldn’t help but try and figure out why Rakesh’s wife seemed familiar.
A little disturbed Sunil turned towards the mini-bar to pour out a drink for himself.
As he turned, he saw Rakesh’s wife standing next to him, teary eyed. Sunil asked her what had happened.
She broke down and held his hand thanking him.
Rakesh spotted her and came to her side and tried pulling her away from Sunil, apologizing to him for her behavior. He said she was a little unstable because she was under medication for a medical problem and probably it was the alcohol which was talking.
On hearing this Rakesh’s wife shouted out, asking him to stop with the lies.
The room went silent.
Wiping away her tears, she thanked Sunil again for saving her during her delivery in Mumbai 2 years back. She said her condition was very serious and all the doctors said that there is this visiting doctor from Kolkata, Dr Sunil Agarwal who could save her.
She thanked him for her life and for her giving her, her daughter.
Suddenly it struck Sunil. Now he knew where he had seen her. But before he could stop himself from speaking, he blurted out that she was the wife of that cab driver whom he seen for a really complicated caesarian delivery.
There was a palpable hush in the room.
Everyone looked at Rakesh’s white face. He looked at Sunil sheepishly and then at his wife and walked out of that room with her without speaking a word.
Sunil knew, that would probably be the last time he would get to see his favorite cousin again.