When I was around 6 years old, every night, my eldest paternal uncle called me to come to their bedroom, shouting. Therefore, putting on a shirt, I emerged from my study and trudged across the yard to their tin-shed house. A bedside kerosene lamp illuminated the bedroom dimly. On a small table, a battery run black and white television was seated, and a steel almirah was standing beside the wall, across the door. My uncle and aunt were lounging on the bedstead, their back against the headboard, awaiting me- no sign of Urmi, my girl cousin, two years younger than me. But I know from the past events that she was lurking at the bedstead's dark corner, behind a window pane. Hands in pockets and head down, I shambled to the wooden bedstead, slumped on it, removed my hands and clasped the side rail. Straight off, Urmi dashed to me, summoned up every ounce of the strength she possessed and rained blows, kicks, slaps, and tweaks. Eventually, she got exhausted and slouched on the bed, painting, her lips parted and her eyes half closed, leaving me with grazes on the face, throat, and neck. As soon as her mother made her lie down on a soft pillow and wrapped a cotton sheet around her, she drifted into sleep. When she snored softly, I left the room as professional killers normally leave the spot after ensuring their target's death.
Generally, Urmi used to strike the people she got at hand. But they usually tried to thwart her, whereas I kept sitting still so that she could soothe herself by smacking me at her pleasure. Moreover, I would present myself before her when she became nuts and needed someone to beat them up. She even had trouble sleeping if she couldn't hammer someone before going to bed. So, I would turn up in their bedroom regularly at her bedtime until she was a bit older.
In early adolescence, Urmi often sent me love letters, imprinted with kiss marks with her lips colored with red lipstick, via the housemaid. In these letters, one dialog was common: You are mine. Sometimes the letter was composed of only kiss marks or a love rhyme or a sketch of me and her- I am asking for her hands, kneeling before her. When I received these love letters written in calligraphy, my heart raced in pleasure. Of course, I read these letters in the locked bathroom lest someone saw me reading these letters. Finishing the letters, I tore them into pieces and flushed into the toilet. After sending me a letter, she sent me a note urging me to reply. But I never did, except one time when she threatened to suicide, fearing her parents would discover my letter, and thus, I would be punished. Now and then, she arrived in my study and stomped her foot, demanding my answer. No, she wouldn't hear the answer; she would see it written on a piece of paper. At times, she borrowed grammar books from me and returned them, lots of red kiss marks on the pages. Furthermore, she wrote on the pages the first letters of our names, a Plus sign in the middle, M+U.
From time to time, she would stand at my reading desk across me for hours. Despite my asking her to leave since her presence broke my concentration, she kept standing still in silence. When I asked her to leave the room a few times, she replied in a sharp tone, "What is your problem. I am not talking to you. Imagine I am not here."
Concentrate on the study, not on me." Also, she rocked the chair I was seated, and when I asked her to stop, she rocked it violently. Once in a while, her mother appeared in my study and dragged her to their house, abusing and grinding her teeth. Yet, after a short time, she reappeared before me.
One starry late night, her housemaid came to my open window and splashed a sprinkle of water on me. When I woke up, she told me whispering, "Come with me. Urmi is waiting for you." At her words, my heart raced in an unknown fear. However, I got up, put on a shirt and unbolted the door carefully lest it cracked. Emerging from the room, I followed the housemaid across the yard and along a lane. In the middle of their yard, my cousin was standing, wearing a saree and heavy make-up on her face. Just as we reached, she asked her housemaid to wait for us here and watch if her parents came out of the room.
She grabbed my hand and dragged me into their newly constructed shower room behind the pantry. Latching the tin door behind her, she stood facing me. In the pitch dark of the room, we fell dead silent. At length, she told me in a subdued tone, "I wish I could hug you," and waited a moment to hear something from me. Then she stepped forward, her hands over her breast, her head under my chin. Her warm breath fell on me, and a certain brand's coconut oil's scent rose from her hair and hit my nostril. After a bit, she wrapped her hands around me, her chin on my shoulder, and her breast touched my chest. In response, I cuddled her, too.
At one stage, she withdrew her chin, pulled my face down by my neck and pressed her luscious lips against mine. On my lips, her lips vibrated violently. And it tasted bitter. Inevitably, the vibration and bitterness of her lips blended, filled my mouth and caused me nausea. Next, the mixture gradually spread through the blood and multiplied like the virus. Thereupon, my body temperature soared, and blood circulation increased so high that I felt its flow and waves in my all blood vessels. Eventually, the waves broke down at the verge of my body, and my lips dropped as a leech falls from the human skin after satisfying its thirst.