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ANYTHING FOR STELLA

SUKANYA NAYAR

"Bobby! Wake up! ", Bobby drowsily opened his eyes and peered at the pale figure standing in front of him.
" Stella! ", he croaked; his throat felt dry like someone had forcefully fed him sand... " You came back! Don't you ever leave me Stell... I've told you to never leave me... " he mumbled. He rolled over on the mattress and stared at his beautiful wife.
Stella rolled her eyes and sat at the corner of the bed and tucked her soft hair behind her ear, " I've told you a million times Bobby I'll always be here, now get dressed and come for breakfast there’s eggs on the table! " Bobby smiled and rubbed his bloodshot eyes, pushing his unwashed hair out of his eyes and went to the bathroom to perform his daily chores.
Bobby was just finishing his breakfast of eggs and coffee with Stella when he heard the front door open he looked up in surprise to see his mother walking in. She was smartly dressed and looked her well-polished usual self with an expensive leather purse tucked under her arm; she smiled at him, "Having your breakfast darling? Good! I'll join you"
" Yeah, Stell cooked it; I'm sure she'll get you some", he replied
His mother smiled a bit forcefully and didn't look at Stella even though she had jumped up in order to get a plate for his mother. "Don’t bother dear I'll get it myself. "
Stella sat down feeling dejected and stared down into her coffee. Bobby glared at his mother, it was one thing not to accept his bride because she was beneath her status and wasn't from her high society circle but to completely ignore her and be uncivil? that he couldn't stand. "Mother! I don't think Stella appreciated the way you spoke to her. ", he said as he brought his fist hard on the polished wood.
His mother blinked slowly and said frigidly, “I’m sorry love, I meant no disrespect.” Bobby unclenched his fist and pushed his food around on the plate having completely lost his appetite. His mother sat quietly at the table drinking coffee while Stella looked nervously at both of them, fiddling with the plain gold ring on her right hand, she smiled weakly at him and in a false cheery tone began speaking, " Well, how hot-"
His mother cut her off abruptly, " I was meaning to talk to you Bobby about Stella.....Last time you called me you said you're afraid of losing her and as you're running low on your medicines I thought I would have them refilled for you”, she pushed a brown package towards him " There; that should take care of you for this week, I should get going now dear, Mr Brandon did invite me to join him for lunch at the Ritz Hotel.....” She stood up and walked towards the door in her smart black high heels, she paused for a moment and looking at her son she said, " You know what will happen if you don't take your medicines don't you Bobby? " With that she waved at him and locked the door behind her.
Bobby looked at the nondescript package before him, his skin felt itchy all of sudden and with a shaky hand he pulled the packet towards him.
" NO! don't do it Bobby!! You can't keep doing this to yourself! " Stella said but her voice was faint as if it was coming from a great distance...... Bobby looked at her and yelped; Stella, his beautiful wife was lying on the floor covered in blood, her neck had been twisted in a sick manner and her soft blond hair was now dyed red with blood pouring from her cut veins. She looked at him with her vibrant blue eyes and Bobby knew that he would do anything to save her and stop her from dying in front of his eyes.
"NO! ", he screamed, " I have to take it! if I don’t, I'll lose you Stell! " He tore the brown package and tied the rubber lace on his upper forearm; his hands were still shaking uncontrollably; with a practiced air he injected the medicine into his system. After a few seconds his heavily scarred arm fell limply to his side while he smiled and looked at the ceiling, Stella was looking over him and she whispered sadly, " I never left you Bobby... I'm always here”; she kneeled down beside him and placed her hand over his heart. He smiled again feeling drowsy and at peace with the world. He felt his heart slowing down and his breathing becoming easier …...
Two days later: Jack the store boy quickly opened the door to Mr Bobby's apartment and placed the weekly groceries on the kitchen counter and called out to the owner, “The things are in the kitchen sir that’ll be five pounds sir…”. He never liked Mr Bobby with his vacant and bloodshot eyes murmuring to himself in his apartment that smelled worse than the dirtiest pigsty. Slowly he sensed something was lying behind the table, he went towards the shape and screamed at the sight.
On the same day a local news channel reporting a heroin drug overdose at an apartment, "...... our sources say that apparently Mr Bobby was hallucinating about his dead wife, who died in an unfortunate car accident two months ago. In order to preserve her image in high society and avoid scandal in the name of her mentally disturbed son his mother Mrs J. Lowell used to provide him with drugs luring him to believe that if he didn’t use them his wife would die thus making sure that Mr Bobby never left the apartment and embarrass her in public..…”


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