Author: Siddharth Naidu
Photography Partner: Prashita Ramteke
Trashed memories, broken dreams, famished will.
A young life was finished before it even began.
From the world where wonders had just begun to the world where Zariya was nothing but a vegetable.
When all hope was lost, a fickle frustration led him to her.
Vikram was the only hope; an only saviour for her will.
Drishti had unexpectedly become Vikram’s life goal.
Drishti’s acknowledgement was a purpose. Stories – his revolution.
Will Vikram lose it all in the attempt of survival?
Will Drishti ever awaken her emotions?
A story of breathtaking tragedy, heartwarming love and beautiful lives engulfed in the mirage of self-actualization!
When Zariya crashed on the road from her scooter, she was 19. She was at an age that identified her goals and realised them as dreams. In a split second, she lost everything. A sharp gravel stone pierced the skin under her neck and cut through an internal carotid artery. She lay there, immovable and entirely paralytic, except for the working grace of her sensory organs. She could see people gathering around her. A few men trying to remove her scooter, which felt weightless on her legs. She could see people pick her up and one of them placed her into the backseat of a car. The front seat, the textured leather cover, a faint jasmine smell and blowing horns were all apparent to her. She felt her blood dripping onto the seat, her senseless fingers sticking onto the glass window. It almost never happened. And then days later, she woke up in a plush private hospital. The sobbing of her parents, flower bouquets, the creaky doors, and the pungent medicinal smell filled her ambience. This was, however, her side-stop in a longer journey; a journey which would transcend through many hospitals and finally land her at General Govt. Hospital in the city. She would survive on aided-support, yet would never recover. She couldn’t die either. All she could do was to lay on the cot and spend her days…
SEVEN YEARS LATER:
Vikram suddenly woke up from a deep slumber and patted around his side table. After almost dropping it down, he latched onto his mobile and turned off the alarm. It was ten minutes past six. He closed his eyes and his body begged him to stay put. 3 or 5 minutes wouldn’t really change anything. Vikram, however, knew the trick having fallen for it plenty many times. He sat up and took a gulp of water from the bottle near his bed. By seven o’clock, he readied himself. A bag packed with precisely six books, some pens, some apples, and his office ID tag thrown in. He walked out of his small room and locked the door behind him. Just as he stepped away from the plankton seeping door and towards his bike, his mobile rang.
‘Vicky… Hello… Vicky… Hello?’ the voice said.
It was his Mother. She usually called him in the evening when he returned home. This call was an oddity.
‘Amma..! Can you hear me…Hello’, Vikram replied, raising his voice a little. He was a soft talker. But then, his mother was old and in her own words, growing deaf in one ear.
‘Vicky…Book a ticket for me for Duronto Express tonight’, His Mother said as clearly as she could. Vikram tried understanding the request or rather question the reason behind it. Did she tell him something? Was he supposed to remember something? But before he could come up with anything, his Mother intervened,
‘Vicky, you know Kamili aunt’s father right? He passed away an hour back, and I need to be in Hyderabad at the earliest’ she declared.
Vikram promised her he would book her a ticket as soon as possible and got off the call. His office was in Hitech city, fifteen odd kilometres to his place. But then, he had stopped going to his office for a long time now. For the past six months, his day started with a pretence of it and had to zero in on finding the perfect human resource for a said target project. However, everything had changed after he met her.Drishti. She was everything to him now.
He reached the Hospital within an hour. This was the only time that the doctors allowed him to visit Drishti. Dr. Swathi had taken pity on him and more so, on her. Her sympathy made way to his prolonged visits. She was dead otherwise, but her life breathed inside. And he was essential for her healthy heart beat. The scans and records showed the remarkable escalation in bodily activities when he was around her. And for Dr. Swathi, taking care of this abandoned young woman meant a treatment better than any.