Aanadhi pulled the pallu of her saree and wiped her face and neck.She was sweating profusely.The time is 1 am and all the buses from Bengaluru to Trichy has already left.She looked at her watch again and again.She has been trembling in fear and tension since she got a text message from her daughter Arthy who is studying in Trichy.
Aanandhi ,a single mother, has been very proud and happy since her daughter joined one of the prestigious colleges in the country.She threw a party at her office to celebrate her daughter’s academic success.Her life was like a candle burning for her only daughter.Only last weekend she had visited Arthy at her college before the classes started in full fledged.
She again looked at her watch and it showed 1.15 am.She cursed herself for being alone in life.There is nobody to call out during an emergency.She closed her eyes when a bright light flashed on her face.When she opened her eyes,she saw the taxi driver with an ambassador car.She jumped into the car and shouted “Go as fast as you can.I need to reach Trichy soon”.
She again looked at her cell phone to read the text message from Arthy.It read – Maa,I got raped.It was sent at 00.18.47 am.
She cried like a mad woman.Memories flooded her heavy hearted mind.Arthy’s childhood,school days,teenage days flashed in her mind in random order.She felt that she may faint in tension.She again tried calling Arthy but nobody picked the phone.She tried calling the hostel warden’s number but she didn’t get any answer from that landline phone.She was devastated and aghast.
“Madam,we are reaching the college…Wake up,Madam“,said the taxi driver.
Aanandhi opened her eyes to see the surroundings and wiped the mucous and saliva stained face.She told herself that she will do anything to punish the one who tortured her daughter.
After reaching the girls’ hostel,she threw the money to the driver and ran to the security guard office.She filled the visitors’ register and sprinted to the block C of the hostel campus.She climbed the steps like a mad woman and stopped running only after reaching the room no.325.She banged the door and there was no answer.After two minutes,which went like two hours for her,Arthy’s room mate opened the door.Arthy’s roommate,Niya,was shocked to see Aanandhi at the dawn of the day.
“Where is Arthy“?,asked Aanandhi in her fatigued voice.
“She is not there in the room.I think she must have slept in her friends’ room.”
“Yeah,look at this text message from her.She is not picking up the phone too.”
“But her phone is there on her bed.Aunty,you please drink some water and relax.Let me check with my friends.As today is Hostel day,people were practising until early morning.So most of them will be sleeping now.Please sit here and I will come back in few minutes.”
Aanandhi sat on Arthy’s bed and saw a Mill and Boons book,her cell phone with 28 missed calls and a red saree which she was suppose to wear for the hostel day.She took the saree and wept badly.
“Maaaa“,Arthy dashed into the room to see her mother.
They hugged eachother and Aanandhi kissedall over Arthy’s face.
“Who did such a heinous act to you,baby?”
“Maa,what happened to you?I’m perfectly alright.Did you see any bad dreams?Do I look like somebody who was raped last night?”
“Then why did you sent me such a text message?Don’t you know that we are staying far from each other?”
Arthy took her cell phone and checked her sent folder.
It read – “Maa,I got raped.”
She thought for a while and then hugged her mother.This was the greatest blunder anybody could have ever done in their life.She sat next to her mother and explained what had happened last night.
Everybody was busy with the practice sessions for the hostel day.According to the tradition,all girls have to wear a saree on the Hostel day.But Arthy had no saree to wear and has been nagging her mother since two days.A senior came out to help Arthy by lending a red saree last night.As Arthy got the saree only at late night,she didn’t want to wake her mother from sleep and tell the news.Instead she sent a text message saying “Maa,I got saree”.But in her phone,she was using the T9 dictionary mode for typing the texts faster.Little did she realize that the first prediction text what we get when we type saree is raped.Without noticing this,she sent the text message, threw her phone on the bed and went for the practice session.
Aanandhi danced with joy though Arthy was on the verge of crying.
“I knew that nothing must have happened to you.I am so happy“,said Aanandhi through her tears flowing through her cheeks.
“Sorry Maa.I love you…Sorry“,Arthy tightly hugged her mother and wept.