In the six months that followed, Ravi was completely distraught at what had happened. Dr Tharakan took up the role of a friend, philosopher and guide to him and helped him overcome his distress and guilt. He was reminded that the most fitting tribute to his father’s memories would be to become the best doctor that he could.
In this time Ravi had settled down almost permanently in Kumli and was doing his best to help out all the patients who turned up at the Nightingale Medical Center there. Coupled with his new found love for his profession and his flair for being a quick learner, he was soon among the most loved doctors in the entire region and commanded respect from all the people.
It was a day like any other when little Preethi, a ten year old girl was brought into the hospital with severe breathing problems. Since Dr Tharakan had gone on a house visit, Ravi conducted the preliminary diagnosis. The girl’s mother informed him that she had a respiratory problem and had frequent attacks of breathlessness. However today’s was an especially serious one and she had been having violent spasms for the past hour or so, all the way to the hospital.
Just about when Ravi had completed his diagnosis, her father rushed into the doctor’s chamber. Even before Ravi or anybody else could react to the sudden intrusion, he had fallen at his feet and started pleading with him to do whatever was required to save his daughter. A bulky man in a policeman’s uniform falling at a masked doctor’s feet was something that you didn’t see every day.
When Ravi looked down at his feet and saw the weeping man there, he was taken back in time.
Slowly removing his surgical mask, he recollected the last time he had seen this particular face; on a rainy day six months ago when he was driving to Kochi on an extremely rainy and wet day. The last time he had seen Bhaskaran was that fateful day his father died.
And today, Bhaskaran was at his mercy, begging him to save his daughter.
How the tables had turned.
As soon as the surgical mask came off, Bhaskaran recognized Ravi and remembered the incident six months ago. He immediately apologized to Ravi and asked him to let bygones be bygones and to help Preethi recover from her spasms. He pleaded with the doctor not to take revenge, not today.
Without saying a word Ravi walked out of the room and into his chambers and shut the door behind him. From where he sat on his chair, the oath he had taken as a doctor loomed large on him, the words he knew so well haunted him.
He had to make a choice.
Disclaimer: This novella is based on a popular movie, the name of which I am not going to disclose here. I have taken a couple of the plot elements from the movie, modified them, added some background of my own and penned down this novella. Advance apologies for any fans of the movie who might be reading this novella, the intention was not to dilute the movie in any form or fashion, but to reinterpret some plot points using my imagination.