It was around 4 in the evening that I came to Ragama. I saw vehicles parked outside the house. There must be a meeting going on. I went in from the back door and sneaked into my room. I saw Nilukshi running with some files and I waved at her. At least Hashini knows that I am at home. I
was on the bed when Hashini called.
‘Randi, come out. I have someone I like you to meet’ she said.
Why do I have to meet her managers? I have nothing to do with them. I came out of the room, reluctantly.
‘Hello Randika. Nice to see you again’ that was Nimesh and Sanjaya was standing next to him.
‘Hi Nimesh, hi Sanjaya. What a nice surprise’ I said.
‘We came for the meeting’ Sanjaya said.
‘I am glad we met that day. This is a good place to work’ Nimesh was proud.
They did text me the day they got the job. I learned, both of them are working at our Anuradapura branch. But I didn’t expect them to see at my place. They have to excuse me to join the meeting. Nilukshi said my sister is impressed with their work and promoted them to managerial grade recently.
After spending some time with them, I decided to go and see Jerome. I found him clearing his dad’s room.
‘Hey Randi. I didn’t know you were coming. Why didn’t you text me. I sent you dozens of texts but haven’t got any reply, so I thought you were working today’ he said.
I touched his hair.
‘You don’t look alright. Are you about to get sick?’ he asked.
I told him about meeting Sarojini’s and what she told me.
‘So that’s that then’ he said. Jerome’s tone was different and it seems something was stuck inside him.
‘So what is new from your side’ I asked.
‘Do you remember Uncle Harry’ he asked.
‘Yes, he immigrated to Australia when we were kids, right? I said.
‘Yes, that’s the one. He is in Colombo these days for a vacation and they came to visit us last week’ he was struggling to finish.
‘So what’s the big deal about it’ I asked.
‘They bought a marriage proposal’ he said.
‘To whom’ I had enough for one day.
‘It is between me and his daughter’ he said.
‘Why didn’t you tell this to me’ I was furious.
‘I wanted to tell you. That day I tried to call you many times and sent you dozens of texts. But you didn’t get back to me’ he said.
He was right. Last few months, I didn’t bother to check or reply his texts. I was living inside a bubble and today it burst.
‘So did you agree to it’ I asked.
‘They said once I am married, I can get the residency in Autralia. Then I can help my Dad to pay off the loan.’ He said.
‘So you agreed’ I asked again.
He nodded his head. I lost my hope and the only person in that always stood for me, no matter. This is my own undoing.
‘So when are you leaving’ I asked.
‘They said in two weeks I’ll get my entry visa’ he said.
‘I see’ I turned back to go home.
‘Randi, I thought you were happy with Danushka. I could have waited lifetime if you said you want to be with me. When you lost interest in me, I saw this as a way to help my parents. I am so sorry Randi’ he was about to cry and I cannot watch that.
I left his place. The meeting was over and everyone was gone when I came back. I went straight into my room. Nilukshi saw me coming.
‘Randi, come out. We have lots of food here’ she said.
‘I am not hungry’ I said in a raspy voice.
She must have figured something was not right with me. I heard she was talking to Hashini. Before Hashini called me, I asked her to come inside. I told her about Jerome and his decision to leave the country. She left the room without saying anything. I didn’t go to work on Monday. Instead, I sent a text to Danushka saying that I am not well and taking some days off. My project was finished so this is a light work week. I spent the morning in my bed when I heard the bell rang. Danushka was outside the room. I let him in.
‘So what did Sarojini tell you?’ he asked.
‘Why don’t you ask that from her? She is your wife, isn’t she?’ I fired back.
That stuck him.
‘She cannot do anything about us. So don’t worry. We can still be together’ he said.
‘I don’t think she is interested in doing anything about us anyways’ I said.
‘So now you’ve taken her side’ he said.
‘Remember, I used to be on your side few days ago’ I said.
‘So why can’t we stay like that then?’ he asked.
‘It’s because I lost so much. Because of what I did, I lost the person who loved me the most’ I said.
‘Who, that half white guy? So he is the one who changed your mind.’ He said.
‘He had nothing to do with what happened between us. So please don’t bring him into this discussion’ I said firmly.
‘You are lying. I knew he would do something to break our friendship. He was jealous of us. I will kill him’ he started shouting.
‘Danushka, leave me now’ I showed him the door.
He left cursing. I hope he won’t take this any further. I mean, what else he can do?
Part 13 next.
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