Aashayei – 1st Abstract
It was a warm summer evening; every face in the office was excited yet sad about the farewell party of their boss Yashwardhan Singh. They worked diligently to make sure that each and every corner of their workplace looked as perfect as their boss himself was. Even though Yashwardhan was their boss, but he treated his workplace like his own baby, nurturing each and every detail to make sure that it brings pride and joy to everyone. Each and every subordinate of his loved and respected him like his own family member.
“Hurry up Aditi, sir, must be reaching here anytime!”, screamed adult, Yashwardhan’s personal secretary.
“Apporva, make sure that all the blue balloons have got the same shade!”, he screamed on some other guy. Blue was Yashwardhan’s favorite color and hence, Adyut made sure that the color theme for the party is strictly blue.
Finally, after a hard work of two hours, staff managed to decorate the office as Adyut wanted it to.
“Sir will reach by 9:00 AM, he is very punctual guys, we need to be ready before that!”, instructed Adyut.
In a splendid career of 40 years, Yashwardhan had never got late in his office, his entire record was full of appreciations and achievements; he was a man of high values.
Everybody went back to their seats, trying to pretend that they were treating it as a normal day. Yashwardhan dressed smartly in a gray suit, blue shirt and tie stepped inside the office and was wished Goodmorning by all his subordinates like it happened every day, he went straight into his cabin and asked the peon to call Adyut.
“Goodmorning sir!”, said Adyut entering his cabin.
“Goodmorning young man! Kindly get me the file of Bhatia enterprises, I need to check something in it!”, he commanded.
“But sir………………………………..”, Adyut paused trying to say something.
“What? I am asking for Bhatia enterprise’s file!”, Yashwardhan was himself getting emotional about his last day at the office. His work was his passion and leaving it today forever was pounding. He was trying to sound stern to hide his grief.
“But sir…………………………….”, Adyut’s throat choked. He wanted to ask Yashwardhan to come out of his cabin so that they could start his farewell party, but surprised and scared by Yashwardhan’s sudden change of temperament; he couldn’t get the right words to request his boss.
“May I come in sir!”, finally Aditi and Apoorva came to Adyut’s rescue.
“Yes!”, replied Yashwardhan.
“Sir! Actually, we have arranged for a small surprise for you, but for that you need to come to the main hall, please sir!”, said Aditi.
“What kind of surprise?”, Yashwardhan understood that his subordinates have planned something for him.
“Sir, please come with us, so that we can show you!”, requested Apoorva.
Yashwardhan walked with them, and was welcomed with a huge round of applause by all his employees.
There was a huge blue banner hung at the wall reading “We will miss you sir!”
Yashwardhan’s eyes went moist; he tried controlling himself and cut the cake, which his subordinates had got for him.
There were few games in the party and the entire menu had only Yashwardhan’s favorite cuisine. Adyut, Aditi, Apoorva and almost the entire staff gifted a farewell memento to him and the day passed.
Yashwardhan left his office with a heavy heart, he wept like a four year old in his car way back home. It seemed as if, his world had finished with his professional life.
He stepped inside the house and closed the door behind, loosened his tie and crashed on his rocking chair and closed his eyes.
“Saaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahaaabbbbbb!!!!!”, that was his servant Vishnu waking him up.
“Yes!”, Yashwardhan woke up and rubbed his eyes.
“Sahab, Doctor Sahab aaye hai aap se milne!”, Vishnu replied.
“Unko bithao, hum aa rahe!”, replied Yashwardhan. He didn’t remember when he dozed off in his rocking chair itself. He stood up, washed his face, combed his hair and went in the living room where his best-friend, his confidant and his family doctor, Vinay was sitting.
“Hey old man!”, Vinay winked as soon as he saw Yashwardhan. Even though both of them were in their late 50s, but seeing each-other made them feel young always.
“Hello uncle!”, Yashwardhan winked back, taking on Vinay’s sarcasm.
“How are you? How was the last day at the office?”, Vinay asked getting a little serious. He had some important and grave issues to discuss today.
“Ah.. It just went by! I don’t even know how time passed so quickly!”, replied Yashwardhan poignantly.
“Yash! You know what? I need to discuss something with you!”, Vinay held his hand.
“What? Am I going to die tomorrow?”, asked Yashwardhan trying to crack a joke to make the situation lightly.
“Can you call your sons from US for a few days?”, Vinay asked.
“You know I can’t do that, even if I call them, they won’t come!”, Yashwardhan knew his children well, they both were self-centered and never bothered to look after him, even after his wife’s death.
“Yash! actuallyyyyyyyyyyyy……………………”, Vinay stopped and lowered his eyes, he could feel a lump forming in his throat. It was painful to bring out these things in front of his best-friend.
“What is it Vinay? I know I am HIV+ and will die someday!”, Yashwardhan replied calmly. He had acquired this infection from an infected blood donor and was fighting it since past 8 years. Nobody but Vinay knew this secret of his.
“Yash! We had been controlling your HIV since these many years with the help of medicinal drugs, but the last blood test shows that we have lost it! Your body has caught Tuberculosis, and hence this HIV has finally turned into AIDS!”, a drop of tear rolled from Vinay’s eyes. Even though he was a doctor, he knew that some or the other day his ARTs will fail and Yashwardhan will fall prey to AIDS, but seeing his best-friend catching a fatling disease was agonizing.
“It’s OK Vinay, as such I have retired today, I have fulfilled all my duties towards my work and family, I don’t have any reason to live a very long life anymore!”, said Yashwardhan taking Vinay’s verdict calmly.
“No Yash! Don’t say that! I have spoken to one of my colleagues in Europe, he said that if you go there for treatment, we can inhibit the virus for some more time and give you a longer and healthier life!”, Vinay suggested. He was struggling to do every bit to save his friend.
“Vinay! Look, I don’t want any treatment now, I have a few months or maybe a year left with me and it’s my last wish to die where my wife, my love took her last breath!”, Yashwardhan stood up and walked towards the wall where his wife’s photo was hung.
“But Yash!”, Vinay tried saying something.
“I don’t want to discuss anything else Vinay, I am moving to Haridwar tomorrow morning itself!”, declared Yashwardhan.
Vinay knew that he won’t be able to convince Yashwardhan for anything at this point of time, he stood up and went back to his clinic to make medical arrangements in Haridwar, so that his friend doesn’t face any problem once he reaches there.
TO BE CONTINUED………………………………………………………..
– By Udisha M
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