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She had had enough.
How long can a woman go on loving a man, who is no more the man she had married?
The embers of a love once so passionately received and reciprocated, slowly and unknowingly had died out. She could see the emptiness in his eyes, where there was once love. They no longer shared hopes, dreams and passion. It was as if that man she had married didn’t exist any more.
She never knew when she had stopped being his lover and had become just his wife.
And she had refused to live a farce. As she had six years before.
When she had met and fell in love with him, her father had been arranging her marriage to her childhood friend, her best friend.
“We do not marry beneath us.”
“Do you think that loser you have chosen can give you half the life you are used to?”
She was fond of her best friend but her love consumed her. Her father never understood the strength of their love. She had lived amongst riches but she could also live without them. She had proved it to her father. Love isn’t made of luxuries. She knew she wouldn’t be happy without him, his love.
But what she hadn’t counted on was the loss of his love.
She didn’t have a choice but to leave him. She had not wanted riches, she had wanted him. And she knew, as only a woman can know, he wasn’t hers any more.
That was why she married her best friend. Even though she would never feel that burning love for him, at least he loved her back. At least, she wouldn’t expect.
And she had thought she had been right.
Eyes blurred with tears, she looked at the letter in her hands. It was from her ex-husband.
I am so happy, now that you are happy. I am not writing to add to your pain but to tell you that this is the only way I had. Your father had been right. I was not ever fit to be your husband. I could not ever give you anything that you deserved.
Remember the time in Christmas, when you were looking through the glass of a shop, admiring a simple pendant, how I wanted to give it to you but it wasn’t in my power.
If you had married your best friend instead of me, you would have had everything in life, everything that I couldn’t give you.
The only way I knew to ensure your happiness was to set you away from me, set you free. I wanted you to go to him.
This is my first, last and only gift to you.
Be happy, my darling. Making you believe that I love you no more was the toughest decision and action of my life.
But my life has no meaning without you.
Did I ever tell you that I can’t live without you?
I had meant every word. Forgive me, darling.
I will love you forever.
She was wrong. She had failed. She couldn’t love enough. And, he was dead because of that.
She stared at the letter for a long time.
It was still clutched to her bosom when the servants found her on the floor, with the empty sleeping pills bottle rolling soundlessly next to her.
He was sitting all by himself in the steps of his mansion. His empty mansion. He had waited, like his mansion, forever from when they were kids, for her to be his, the mistress of the mansion. And now, she was taken from him forever.
He opened the sealed envelope addressed to him, to be opened on the occasion of her death.
It was from her dead ex-husband to him.
If you are reading this it means the woman you loved and wanted for so long is no more. I hope you are as much in pain as I had been every time she looked at things I couldn’t give her, knowing you could have given her all and more, easily.
You are her best friend and knew everything, You should also know I didn’t love her any more. Her virtues, her love and of course, her best friend made me feel the loser, her father had judged me to be. I hated her for making me feel so low. And then she left me for you! Did you think I would forgive her? Did she?
But I have had the last laugh.
You have all the wealth in the world but I took away the only thing you wanted and didn’t have. She had been mine in life, and she is mine in death.
I didn’t lie to her when I said I can’t live without her.
I just didn’t complete the thought.
I won’t die without her either.
A heartfelt thanks to Neha for the idea, and the faith in my writing abilities! Thanks a lot, girl! G.