It has been six months since Prisha was pushed to death by the person she loved the most, Saveer. Novoneel Chakraborty is back with a riveting finale to his bestseller ‘Forever is a lie’.
Here’s an excerpt from the prologue of the book.
Fortis Hospital, Bengaluru
Private cabin, 10.35 p.m.
‘I’m sorry, Prisha, but I had no other option,’ the person said, standing close to the hospital bed on
which Prisha was lying with her eyes closed. Beneath a blanket that covered her till her bosom, she was wearing a sky-blue patient’s uniform. Her forehead was freshly bandaged. Her right hand, with a drip, was placed on her belly while the left one was by her side, a pulse-monitoring clip attached to the index finger. There was a saline water stand beside the bed. Her left leg was plastered and her face bruised. It was quiet except for the occasional beeping of the monitor that was keeping a track of her heartbeats. The room was bathed in an eerie green-coloured light.
‘Just like I had no other option with Ishanvi. She was a good girl. So were you. But you both fell for the wrong person, bad person. And sometimes, even when you aren’t at fault, life still holds you guilty and makes you pay for it. But how do you atone for something you haven’t done?’ Silence. The person grasped Prisha’s left hand. It was cold.
‘Not that I expected you to be alive but now I can at least talk to you, unlike Ishanvi.’
After a deep sigh, the person added, ‘I had tried warning you like I had tried warning Ishanvi but neither of you paid heed. Why? You were in love. Love! I hate that emotion because it is the most customizable emotion a human can feel. Its definition changes the way one thinks. Its syntax changes the way one feels. It is not like sadness or happiness. It is not absolute. Though we think it is. I hate it. In fact, hate is a soft word. I abhor love, loathe it. If you had been in your senses, I’m sure you would have asked what makes me so anti love. Well, it is a long story but I carry the moral in my heart every day. And will do so till I turn into ashes.’
There was silence. The person caressed Prisha’s forehead.
‘Unfortunately, nobody will ever know my story. But that doesn’t bother me. The only thing that bothers me is that the person who mattered the most to me will also never get to hear my story. You tell me, Prisha, is it fair to live someone else’s story all your life? But . . .’ The person leaned close to her left ear and whispered, ‘If you can listen, then listen well. Chances are you will die soon on this bed. But in case you survive, don’t push me into killing you again. Next time, there won’t be any passerby to bring you to any hospital on time. One last request: don’t test me for I’ve been killing people for a long time now. You are my only failure. And failing is something which doesn’t go down well with me.’ After staring at Prisha for a while, the person said, ‘May your soul rest in peace, Prisha. Next life, choose someone better. Choose someone who’s worth it.’
The person stopped caressing her forehead and tiptoed out of the room. Prisha had opened her eyes by then. She had been in her senses throughout. Or was she? She didn’t see the person’s face but she did feel the person’s touch. Contrary to the person’s words, the touch wasn’t threatening. The last statement had made her hair stand on its end.
This was the first time Saveer had visited her in the hospital since she had regained consciousness. Why would he want to kill her? she wondered. Or for that matter Ishanvi?
These, however, were the least of her concerns at that moment. There was something she noticed that was extremely disturbing. Prisha saw the person leaving the room. But in a woman’s attire.
What’s wrong with Saveer? she wondered. Then she thought to herself: was she hallucinating because of the heavy sedatives she had been taking for some time now? Prisha couldn’t tell. She dozed off.