Sriyakanthi was furious with her sons choice for all the usual superficial reasons. This would be a serious social let down and the girl did not have the wealthy background she had been hoping for. She had spent her life looking down on this sort of person and now chose to consider it a slap in the face from the son she had invested so much love and care in, although naturally most of the blame went to the potential bride for be-witching him.
However to Sriyakanthie’s consternation the son was adamant about his choice and went ahead and married the despised girl. She ranted and raved and caused scenes, totally rejecting the daughter in law from the start and effectively drove herself ill with this reaction to the situation. Maybe it was a terrible consequence of this prolonged hysteria or maybe some other medical condition hitherto undiagnosed, either way, within a few years of her sons marriage, beautiful Sriyakanthi lay wasted on her death bed and eventually passed away but not before uttering a final curse on her own son and his wife, to the effect that she would personally make sure they would never children.
Life for her relations was quieter after her death and she was soon generally forgotten except perhaps on anniversaries either way, the son and daughter in law who had faced so much rejection, made the best of their new life at that home.
Months passed and then Sriyakanthie’s daughter in law was with child, and then in time duly gave birth to a son. Sadly, and perhaps we can speculate here, due to the psychological tensions she had undergone, and the subconscious dread of what she had heard, her child was indeed lame and misshapen, club footed and rickety from the start, in short looking as if it had survived some terrible accident. . But being stoic Buddhists, they accepted this as their lot and never considered the child a burden but did their best as parents to take care of it.
Within another year another child was born to this unfortunate couple, again sadly, a misshapen and deformed little girl.
You can imagine the sadness in the lives of these two because their destiny according to my friend, was to give life to a third child and it too was an physically deformed and slightly mentally handicapped too. Apparently the burden of looking after the three special children was simply too much for the young woman to handle and she pleaded with her husband to shift the family and live with her parents in a different town. He conceded to this plan and Sriyakanthie’s accursed house was whitewashed to be given on rent.
The house itself was a very pleasant and presentable piece of property and many potential tenants expressed interest. Then as now , the newly wedded couples were the majority of applicants usually in their quest to evade interfering in laws or be closer to a place of work.
A young couple who was already expecting a child rented Sriyakanthie’s house
Within a few months of moving in ,the young wife suffered a miscarriage of her fetus, in a very tragic and terrible mid night drama in which she too almost died. They did not know about the background of the house or indeed have any reason to even suspect any background worth mentioning but now the neighbors were beginning to speculate about this series of events.
To be continued next week.