A Strange Curse

“Get out of my house! Get out! How many times have I said it before? Can’t you understand what I mean?” A devilish shriek reverberated through the sitting room. The kitchen door slammed with reverberating bang. Karsang felt the words stab like a dagger. His job as a teacher did not provide him the necessity of a government living quarter unlike his wife who was a Junior Engineer at the Bhutan Telecommunication Limited. He bit his lips, feeling defeated.

“So everything is yours right? I am merely an unwanted guest.” Karsang fumed, more to himself than to her. He recalled it was not the first time he had listened and gnawed painfully at his wife’s sore words. He always took her words at a face value, but tonight it seemed like a judge’s final knock of hammer. Suddenly he felt desolate; a castaway into the lonely night. He was speechless.

“I have never met a monster like you, ever! You are useless, a pathetic father, a cruel husband.” Pelzom’s venomous vexation only incited surging anger into his sinews. “Please leave now. I am better at peace without you than with you.” Her venom was becoming deathlier.

A tea cup went flying over Karsang, hit the wall and shattered into bards of countless pieces. A shard landed on Karsang’s lap; it had a severed face of Doraemon smiling wide. The shattering echo woke their three month old daughter in the bedroom. She wailed a war cry, calling “Daddy. Daddy.”

The cup had been Karsang’s Teachers’ Day gift given by his weakest student in class he had helped to do better in the weekly tests. Tears coursed down his eyes saddened more by the loss of a gift than the tone of his wife.

Karsang knew Pelzom’s accusations had some honest reason and truth. His trifle guilts did not weigh so much heavily against his heart as her sharp vexations that seared into his bones like a last stage cancer.

“I don’t tell lies. I don’t cheat. You are a worst hypocrite!!” Pelzom’s fiery gaze could have charred anything between them. It was useless to defend anymore his rights of wisdom on the argument at the time, unless Karsang risked more volleys of past accusations.

“Yes! Everything you think is true is true.” He vented softly to pretend defeat by acceptance. He wanted to calm her for the day; but neither pretension nor defending rights seem to make her introspective on the perspectives of the events unfolding.

“What right things have you done so far? You are worthless eunuch for us.” Karsang’s hope sank as she found more radical ways to her wit. Conceding total defeat, he switched on their 14 inch TV to the BBS Channel. As the national anthem sang, Pelzom stormed into the bedroom to their daughter. Karsang smiled wryly to himself wondering how he could have failed to understand that woman can simply be indefatigable when thrilled           with hateful anger.

The word ‘eunuch’ hit him the hardest. “If you hate me so much so long, leave me alone! Get a divorce!” He bawled, unable to reason anymore.

“Good.” She sneered. “Be a man; are you scared to pay the child’s alimonies.” She was decisive, indicating Karsang must initiate divorce. He knew, if not for the common feminine arrogance, divorce would never be her easy compromise over a trifle matter made worse. In a matter of minutes into an argument men and women criminalize the institution of marriage like they would a murderer.

“Okay! I will see to it tomorrow.” He snarled. It was the last word he wanted to say it. His stubborn will to explain what is true and what she thought and heard as wrong over the gridlock only fueled more unwelcome dispute. As the current news flowed presenting the coming of Losar, a Bhutanese Traditional New Year, in a weeks’ time, Karsang heard Pelzom grumble and whine incoherently from the bedroom.

It had been two years since their marriage. They had met each other during the parliamentary election duty at Toktowogm at Chukha. Karsang was the Presiding officer while Pelzom was a ladies’ Frisker. Their marriage was bonded with unforgiving faithfulness from the election days, voted each other with promises of eternal loyalty. The bondage had given birth to envy, suspicion and annoyance; and blinded by the darker emotions, the two years had been and endless days of misunderstood arguments.

It was dark outside. Trashiyangtsi street dogs did not howl unlike the other days. Perhaps they felt it was not necessary that night.  The rain spattered incessantly with thunder rattling the window panes as it lighted up with a splash of sky shattering lightning. A momentary silence prevailed inside Pelzom’s house.

A week later, on a Losar evening, the threesome family celebrated their third matrimonial anniversary with an isolated dinner at Nordhen Resort, the most affluent resort in town, overlooking the grandiose antique Chorten Kora glistening white from the floodlight of halogens around it.

As they sat over a meal, Karsang prayed silently, “Until the last strength, I shall own this woman with love and peace. It is my sacred responsibility to make my heart her celestial home.  What have I ever gained giving lessons of selfish reasons to my only queen? Bless me thus.” He smiled one true smile.

Pelzom smiled, and closed her eyes. “What wasted days have I spent vexing, yet living together. Henceforth, I surrender for him, for without him life can never be more beautiful than the days I thought was worst. Forgive me, O’ Lord.” She promised silently, tears of repentance blurring her sight of the king the and princess before her.

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