The shadows swirled like eerie demons on the wall, they were in contrast to the blood splatter.

The shadows were mocking her, they tumultuously rose and fell like her life. She was swinging like a pendulum between wrong and grave wrong.

Yes, there really was nothing right in the world, not in her world at least.

Here was her husband’s corpse lying at her feet. Her eight-month-old daughter was sleeping oblivious to the nightmare surrounding her future.

Her husband, the love of her life, the man she owed everything to – for the world. It was all a facade a curtain to keep the gruesome reality hidden from society.

While in her world – he was her rapist, her torturer, her nightmare which she lived every moment.

She remembered all the things she had been taught, or rather all the orders she had to obey. A woman should be a wife, a mother, an obedient servant. She should be loyal, faithful and have all virtues.

Of course, the virtues included to never fight back, ha! To never even lookup. But to become a mute piece of furniture, to be used for everything like a rag. She had to give up her name, her identity, her future – everything. Only to be beaten at will, to be ravaged at night, to complete the “happy family picture”.

Her mother saw her bruised body, puffy eyes, broken beaten soul. But said nothing, how could she? Why would she? Her suffering was alike, maybe even worse!

It was always assumed that bringing a new life into the world would ease the situation. She had wondered what good would it too, but she was too shattered to even question the logic, let alone refuse.

Taking someone’s life was appalling, it was a crime, a sin! But when she had seen him staggering with drunken steps towards her baby, with malicious intent in those lust-filled eyes…It broke.

Her servile nature, her not standing up for herself attitude, the age-old “your husband is God himself” obedience – it all broke. It came crashing down on her, just like her hand holding the pestle came crashing down on him.

He dropped and so did her life’s anchor. The path ended right there. She didn’t regret it; she would never let anything or anyone touch her little one. To proceed, nothing was left.

She was lost in those shadows only for her daughter’s future. Her parents wouldn’t take her back, society would never forgive her. But it wasn’t forgiveness she ached for; it was light.

She reflected which side the law preferred, to protect women or to protect life?

She wondered why girls were taught to surrender themselves completely while boys were never taught of how to respect, treat or love.

Love didn’t exist ….in her past. But it did in her future. Love for daughter, for her own freedom, for their survival. Her daughter would grow up to be a fighter, a leader, a survivor. Never a victim.

Never. A. Victim.

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