“Hey! I found out something interesting” said Richa to Devika while researching for their medical thesis in a public library in Delhi. “It’s a business research paper.” “I told you to focus on medical research and not waste time in other stuffs. We have already spent too much time in this library and we have to head back to Bangalore tonight. So lets’ not waste time and focus on our research” said Devika angrily.
“I bet you will be interested once you read the name! Just open it”
“Vicky Singh? Hfff! My husband’s name! His business research paper, and that too in here. Sometimes I feel I don’t know anything about my husband? Lets’ go to Lucknow.”
“Lucknow? Now? Don’t be irrational?”
“Vicky told me that he was born and brought up in Lucknow but I know nothing about it. This paper also mentions his college in Lucknow. I’m dying to know – let’s go, please.”
“Devika, lets’ be rational. We’ve got to catch our flight back to Bangalore tonight. Next time maybe.”
“Please Richa, I got to do this. Let’s move our flight for tomorrow and go to Lucknow right now. I promise we’ll be back by tomorrow.”
Richa and Devika boarder a flight to Lucknow that evening instead of Bangalore. Next morning they were seated in Vicky’s college.
Devika asked the Principal “I’d love to know about my husband’s college days – photos, journals, anything…”
“Well, let me check. Vicky Singh – Year of graduation – 2008 – Science Department. Well you should ask Mr. Sharma.…he’s an old timer in Science Department and has a reputation of being very close to students of this college. He must know about Vicky Singh.”
Devika and Richa went to Mr. Sharma’s office and show him the business research paper of Vicky.
“Ahh! Vicky Singh! Very bright student he was! He was one of my favorites. I do remember this research paper. Vicky won India Innovation contest in 2007 in Delhi for this paper and brought laurels to college. Very bright student he was!” said Mr. Sharma sadly.
“Strange – Vicky has never told me about this. I’ll ask him once I go back. Thanks you Mr. Mishra.”
“As him? Which Vicky Singh are you talking about?”
“Vicky Singh, Science Department – batch of 2008. I stay with him in Bangalore. He is my husband.”
“Vicky Singh is your husband? That’s just not possible madam…”
“Not possible? What do you mean? I am Devika Singh – wife of Vicky Singh. We have been married for the last three years.
“There seems to be some mistake madam…”
“Mistake? No. Not at all. Look…. Vicky told me he studied here. In Science Department. He graduated from this college in 2008. And your college reports also mentions the same. Unless there were two or more Vicky Singh in your Science Department – batch of 2008.”
“There was only one Vicky Singh in that batch. I clearly remember. Still I feel there is some confusion. Its’ simply not possible.”
“I am starting to lose it Mr. Sharma. Why are you time and again saying its’ not possible. Look… For the last time I tell you. My husband is Vicky Singh. Born in 1985. Graduated from this college in 2008 – from Science Department.”
“Yes. 1st January 1985.”
“When and where did you 1st meet Vicky Singh?”
“Ohh!!! I don’t understand why you are asking me so many questions. I first met him in 2013 in Bangalore. Why? Is there any problem?”
“Please come with me Ms. Devika. I need to show you something,” said Mr. Mishra, and the two women followed him to a cemetery in Lucknow.
Devika and Richa froze as they read the large bold letters in front of them:
BORN: 1 JANUARY 1985
DIED: 13 JULY 2011
Devika stared at the tombstone and uttered in a shock: “If this is the real Vicky Singh, then who is that man in Bangalore? And if my husband is the real Vicky Singh, then who is this man lying dead for last five years in this grave?”