“I like your stories, darling. Why don’t we get this published into a book” Rajesh asked
Priya was very skeptical “I don’t know. Do you think it’s good enough to be published”
“Ofcourse dear. The grammar is right. Your stories are short, simple. The readers can just connect to it.” Rajesh persuaded her.
“If you say so, but how will we do it. Where do we find the publisher. And what about the investment?” Priya was anxious about a lot of things.
“You just churn out good stories, rest you leave it on the supreme one” Rajesh gave a loud laugh.
“Alright, almighty, supreme one… I am so grateful to you” Priya laughed along.
They kept the papers in the file and left to have dinner in their favorite restaurant.
Rajesh and Priya knew each other for 5 years. They were married for 2 years and had a great life. Priya was interested in writing, and started writing short stories as a hobby. Anytime, she saw some incident, which happened around her, or she remembered something from her past, she would weave it into a beautiful story. She had around 50 stories ready.
It took her an year to complete the number of short stories required for the book to be published. Rajesh had contacted a publisher who was eager to publish the book. Rajesh had to do a lot of travelling, for his work, and he did not find time for the publishing. Priya, did not want him to take too much burden, and she herself took up the responsibility of getting the book published. After the initial few stories, Rajesh had not read what she had written. Every time Priya sent him the new story, he wouldn’t read the story citing various reasons. For some time, she started feeling, that her stories were probably not upto the mark and Rajesh dint have a heart to tell it to her. But, her publisher was confident that the stories were great, and she should get it published.
The book got published. Along came the fan following, awards. Success was with her now. She felt aloof, inspite of all the adulation.
Priya couldn’t understand why Rajesh couldn’t be a part of her success. One day, she decided to confront him. She wanted to know if it was her fault and if success had got into her head that she distanced from her loved ones. Rajesh assured her, she was still the same doting wife. It was his work, that was eating up all the time.
She wrote a couple more books, which were again Best Sellers and undoubtedly won her awards and lot of recognition, not just on the national level. Next she decided to write a novel instead of short stories. In a year’s time, she was ready with the book, it was published. The publisher had arranged for a book release.
Rajesh was in town that day. she told him, she would be glad if he could be with her on this big day. Rajesh had agreed to accompany her.
In the evening, Priya was dressed in one of her finest Sarees. Rajesh had got it for her, from one of his trips. She looked so elegant. She looked in the mirror and smiled at herself. Just then, Rajesh called in to say, he would join her at the release location, and that she start from alone. This saddened her, but she was happy that he atleast took some time to come to the location directly. She took the book in her hand – “If only you were” and went downstairs to the car.
The book release location was bustling with people. They were waiting to take a glimpse of this fabulous writer, who had become a rage in a few years. There were photographers, journalists, other prominent writers, waiting to welcome Priya. A volunteer announced, Madam Priya is just in the corner, and she would be reaching the venue in 5 minutes.
Rajesh had just parked his car, and come near the entrance to welcome his Priya. He was happy, as he was going to be with his beloved wife on her big day. At the Road entrance, they spotted her car, taking a turn.
A huge crash. Everybody saw the car go up in the air. Police rushed to the place. The car was smashed all over.
Rajesh rushed to the place. He wanted to rush Priya to the hospital. He could spot the saree in that mess. He went near the body. Priya’s face had a peaceful smile. On one hand, she had the book, which was to be released that evening.
Rajesh couldn’t believe what he was looking at. He took the book from her hand. He opened the last page and read the last few lines.
“Everybody says – Behind every successful man, there is a woman. Some also say – Behind every successful woman there is a man. “
“But all I wanted was my man to be beside me”
~End of Story~
Rajesh took the book with him, and walked across the street. Some journalists claim they saw him teary eyed.