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A Suitable Boy
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A Suitable Boy
A Suitable boy
Lata avoided the maternal imperative by looking around the great lamp-lit garden of Prem Nivas. The wedding-guests were gathered on the lawn. ‘Hmm,’ she said. This annoyed her mother further.
‘I know what your hmms mean, young lady, and I can tell you I will not stand for hmms in this matter. I do know what is best. I am doing it all for you. Do you think it is easy for me, trying to arrange things for all four of my children without His help ?’ Her nose began to redden at the thought of her husband, who would, she felt certain, be partaking of their present joy from somewhere benevolently above. Mrs. Rupa Mehra believed, of course, in reincarnation, but my moments of exceptional sentiments, she imagined that the late Raghubir Mehra still inhabited the form in which she had known him when she was alive: the robust, cheerful form of his early forties before overwork had brought about this heart attack at the height of the Second World War. Eight years ago, eight years, thought Mrs. Rupa Mehra miserably.
‘Now, now, Ma, you can’t cry on Savita’s wedding day,’ said Lata, putting her arm gently but not very concernedly around her mother’s shoulder.
‘If he had been here, I could have worn the tissue-patola sari I wore for my own wedding’, said Mrs. Rupa Mehra. ‘But it is too rich for a widow to wear.’
‘Ma !’ said Lata, a little exasperated at the emotional capital her mother insisted on making out of very possible circumstance. ‘People are looking ate you. They want to congratulate you, and they’ll think it very odd if they see you crying in this way.’
Several guests were indeed doing namaste to Mrs. Rupa Mehra and smiling at her; the cream of Brahmpur society, she was pleased to note.