Everyday is a nightmare for me at work as I hurriedly enter the cabin only to listen to a swarm of not so good adjectives being hurled at me mercilessly by my boss while I still struggle with my unkempt hair and bruises on my lips that give me agony every time I try to lick away the residual blood that make all its way through my cells only to ooze out and finally give me that sweet sour taste.
But honestly, these verbal abuses mean nothing to me as I dread something else, that awaits me at home. Who would have imagined what their future holds at a tender age of 7 when all they want is a family, a home where they would be loved. Being an orphan, I still remember the happiness I felt when there came from the dream city Mumbai, a young couple who instantly expressed their desire to adopt me.
But now that happiness is long gone. Today, I am here working as a secretary, possibly the worst job one can ever have. Mr. Smith is an obnoxious individual. Right from handling his paper work and reminding him of his meetings, not to forget the elaborate and tedious work of maintaining everything on a complex Excel sheet, to even covering up for him in situations wherein Mrs Smith inquires about her husband’s whereabouts, I technically handle his life. But there he is, not having an inch of gratitude.
Just like any other day I wrap up and leave for that unpleasant place called home. As I am walking along Dharwad Road, a place which was the center of the fiercest protest in the city once, I get engrossed in the many bizarre and weird thoughts that cross my mind. Suddenly I am thrown back to the present by the wailing noise of a kid from somewhere in the midst of the 4th Lane.
Taking it for a kid getting wacked for being disobedient, I ignore the situation and head towards my house. There he awaits my arrival, all set with his glass of whisky and a new game in mind. Today he wants me to act as a dancer and even has a sleazy costume arranged for it. My dad, not the biological one but the foster one, the one who adopted me and in all ways gave me a new life, a life of pain, suffering and submission, a life where at the age of 8, I was being forced to act like a woman, do things that a woman does. The only anomaly being that my love cave was not yet mature enough to provide pleasure which he was desperate for.
About my mom, she left us 6 months post I was adopted when she uncovered her husband’s illicit physical relations with his daughter. I wonder why she left me with this asshole when she could have saved my innocence, my life, my self-worth.
As I ponder on the above questions, my so called father grabs me from behind and murmurs dirty talks in my ears as I try hard to free myself from his clutches. I quickly change into the costume and begin dancing to some insane African tribal music that he puts on. He starts throwing money at me at definite intervals and forcibly makes me drink his whisky which I spit on his face. Red with anger, he slaps me and pins me down the floor. Pulling my hair while also sipping the last drop of his whisky, he gets a handcuff and locks my hand to the bed. What follows is a night full of repeated rape and beatings.
The next day I feel weak and so I decide to meet a friend and stay at her place to avoid being at home. Megan is a physician and probably that’s one reason why I visit her every time after such an eventful night as she is someone who will keep my secret. Megan has advised me several times to lodge a police complaint or else run away. But when your father is one of the most successful tycoons in the city, these options do not help.
After getting my wounds treated and my soul healed a bit, I set out when I receive a call from my boss. Somehow managing to give a reason for my absence, I get him off my back. Heaving a sigh of relief, I tart walking through the same lane. This time too, I can hear similar sobs and I decide to uncover once and for the perils of this tiny creature. A peculiar sense of familiarity I feel and imagining it to be a connection that I am developing with this little girl, I start walking down the footpath slowly steadily watching my steps at all times.
The house stands amidst the 4th lane, an area that houses a lot of poverty. Here, one can find a lot of jhuggis and lanes so narrow that not more than one person can walk together without cramping and squeezing each other. As I approach the yellow house from where the noises originate, I quickly peep through a hole on the wall and what I see leaves me aghast.