THE HIDDEN DIARY- A PREQUEL TO THE PENNILESS SEEKER

What a bright sunny day it was!
The snow in the mountains was melting and the sun was shining brilliantly in the sky, entering through the thin curtains of the open window and falling on Kavya who has submerged herself completely in writing a short story for a competition that was going to be held in her college that day.
A story about a man who had chased his dreams and turned it into reality with the weapons of dedication and hard work. A story of a superhero, a story about her Dad.
“Kavya, your breakfast is ready. Come fast or you will be late for your college,” she heard her mother shouting.
She put on her uniform and rushed downstairs.
“Maa, today is my story writing competition and I am going to write a story on dad.”
“It would be better if you stay at home and study for your exams. You know very well that your dad doesn’t like you wasting your time like this,” pat came her mother’s reply.
“Yeah mom I know. Dad doesn’t like anything about me. He hates me and he hates everything I do.”
“No Kavya, he….” Before she could complete her sentence Kavya took her bag and left for college, angry and frustrated.
Kavya had a passion for writing. It gave her immense peace. But no one in her family supported her. There was a thought stuck somewhere in their mind that a writer has no future. Not only that, there was a never-ending list of restrictions imposed upon her. She wasn’t allowed to read any books except her school books, she wasn’t allowed to visit any friend’s house, and the list goes on. Moreover, her parents were so busy working day and night in order to give Kavya a bright future, that they ignored the fact that Kavya actually craved for their love. She had begun to think that nobody loved her and she was all alone. She was mentally disturbed. But writing amid these difficulties is not everyone’s cup of tea. She was unstoppable (just like her father).
Kavya reached college on time. She was confident and ready for the competition. But still deep down somewhere she was scared. The thought of facing the consequences once she returns home and the fear of incurring her father’s wrath gave her chills. Results were to be announced on the same day.
She couldn’t help, but feel nervous and excited at the same time. She wrote down the story that she had prepared sacrificing her sleep and going against her parents. She was doing this not because she was hungry for success, but because writing was the key to her happiness.
Finally, the results were going to be announced. There were more than hundred writers who participated in the competition. She knew that the chances of her winning were blurred as she was always mocked for using colloquial words. She lacked vocabulary and her writing was as simple as she was. But, somewhere in the darkness, she could see a blur ray of hope.
After the judges held a brainstorm, the winner was announced. And she was none other than Kavya. The sudden announcement of her name startled her. She couldn’t believe her ears at first. But her blur ray of hope was crystal clear now. Her happiness knew no bounds when the chief guest handed over the prize to Kavya. For a moment she wanted to forget her everything. It was indeed the most precious moment for her. She just wanted to live in that time forever. But was it actually possible?
It was time to return home and face her parents. She took the longest path to reach home delaying the unavoidable circumstances as much as she could. She reached home and hesitantly knocked on the door, once, twice, thrice… and when no one opened the door, her eyes fell on the lock on the door.
“My bad! No one’s in home.”
“But where can they go in this hot summer afternoon? They know that its time for me to return home, still… “, endless thoughts, both positive and negative popped in her mind, turning her restless.
“NO….no,” she said firmly sweeping away all the negative thoughts that dared to come to her mind.
She tried calling her parents but they didn’t pick up the call, further adding up to her anxiety.
She had no choice left so she had to ask her neighbors. They were acting weird but Kavya kept on asking them to which they finally replied that Kavya’s father had met with an accident and was hospitalized. So, her mother was with him in the hospital.
Hearing this, Kavya started feeling dizzy, her ears ringing and there was a complete blackout before her eyes.
She didn’t remember what happened next, because when she opened her eyes, she found herself in the hospital, resting her head on her mother’s shoulder. Probably she had fainted and was brought to the hospital by one of the neighbors or whatever; she didn’t even care to know. All she wanted to know was about her father’s condition.
There was an eerie of silence and then Kavya asked her mother, “How is papa now?”
Just then her mother hugged her and her sobs made Kavya realize that a great tragedy had befallen on them. Her limbs started becoming numb and it was as if a part of her body had been mutilated. But she consoled her mother, who led her to the morgue where the body of her father was kept. From deep within she wanted to scream and cry but when she looked at her mother, the tears which had accumulated in her eyes receded back.
“Mom, see papa is sleeping peacefully. Let’s not disturb him,” and she hugged her mother tightly.
After completing the hospital formalities, the body was brought home for the last time for the funeral rites.
“Sometimes you have to accept the fact that certain things will never go back to how they used to be. You have to accept it and move on.”
Two years later…
Things have changed. Kavya has cleared the OPSC exam and is now a deputy collector. After her father’s death she only focused on her studies in order to support her mother and fulfill her father’s dream. But the thought that she had left her own dream behind still haunted her.
One Sunday, Kavya thought of cleaning her father’s room. In this way she can spend some time with his memories. She found an old photo frame, which had the family picture where she was in the lap of her father and smiling brightly. Tears rolled down her cheeks spontaneously as she dusted and cleaned the photo frame and kept it in its place. The photograph had made her nostalgic. Then gathering herself she regained her composure and her eyes fell on the dusty bookshelf. She started dusting the bookshelf and suddenly her eyes fell upon spider crawling across the bookshelf. In an attempt to drive away the mammoth spider, Kavy tried to strike it with the dusting cloth. “Shoooo……” But she missed the spider and instead the books in the shelf started to crumble one after the other and with a loud thud came crashing down on the floor. Kavya had made a mess of the bookshelf and the room was filled smoke of dust. “More work, Kavya!” she told herself and as she was arranging the books back in the shelf her eyes fell on a diary which was full of dust and the odd thing about it being , she had never come across such a diary. It fascinated her and she sat on the floor and began dusting the diary as she was curious to know the contents of the same. The room was filled with the light from the setting sun and as she opened the diary, she found her childhood picture on the first page and below it was written, “My princess”, it had photos of each and every stage of her life starting from her birth with many funny one liners. Kavya smiled on seeing this and she understood that her father tried his best to capture her childhood. Suddenly she came across a bookmark and on opening it, she found these lines, “Don’t know why I had to become so strict with you….hide all my love inside my heart. Being strict with you was like piercing my heart with needles. All I want is a better life…rather the best life for you where no fear or failure ever ventures near. The problem with me is I fear to express my love for the Angel of my life. Whenever you read this just remember , ‘Papa loves you a lot and wherever I am I will be your praying for your success and happiness.’ Papa.”
Kavya burst into tears on reading this and realized that beneath the stern veil was a very soft person who loved her a lot. Kavya got up and hugged the diary and after arranging the books went out. The next day , she started her journey and decided that she will also focus on her liking for writing and this time the ‘Diary’ accompanied her in her handbag.. THIS TIME IT WAS A NEW SHE..A STRONGER SHE..
All parents love their children but their love and its expression is different. Some cannot openly display their love and it is where we tend to make the silly mistake of thinking that our parents don’t love us.

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