“Queen Meenakshi’s last desire??? “ Kanda asked Raj as he sat down. He looked very tired but there was a bit of color in the face that had gone pale in the last few hours. Raj looked at Kanda with a dreamy gaze and repeated again.
“Queen Meenakshi’s last desire. It is the only way to make Vinoth come to us. Selvan was so much devoted to his mom and I am sure Vinoth carries the same affection so far.
Queen Meenakshi was pregnant when the King went missing and no one knew that except my ancestor Rajarajan. He examined her when she had called him of to treat her acute Morning Sickness. When the King went missing , she searched for some time, then handled the reigns to Marthandan , First cousin of King Ravi Varma and she retired to the hills to lead an ascetic life. No one bothered about her after that.”
“Only one bothered about her” Suddenly Rajarajan shouted from his cot. He got up with a sudden surge of energy and almost ran to Raj and chuckled. Raj looked at him with utmost irritation.
Rajarajan continued, “ I was so much concerned about her. I had my men follow her and befriend her and go wherever she goes. I had a hunch that the King will definitely come and meet her and I can catch the King. But no one came. “
“She had so many issues during pregnancy and I was there treating her all the while without actually seeing her. Finally she delivered a healthy baby girl. After the delivery she was fine as a fiddle. She had many miscarriages before that. So it was a surprise that the baby was too healthy. “
“Maybe she was really not healthy and the excitement of seeing the baby made her feel good. She died a couple of days later. When I went to the tribals who looked after her and revealed my identity, they were relieved to see someone from her kingdom. They gave a parchment that contained the Queen’s last wish.”
“Since the tribals couldn’t read, they gave it to me so thankfully and the moment I read it, I knew I could use it to bring the King out from hiding. But he had gone too far to try that.”
Rajarajan looked at both of them as if expecting them to ask for explanation. Kanda looked interested but Raj was just looking desperate. He had just lost his father. The already known story didn’t interest him.
“What was written on that? “ Kanda asked hurriedly.
“She had written her love for the king and finally she has said no one but the King should perform her last rites. “
“I don’t understand” Kanda protested.
“She is still waiting as a mummy for the king to return to perform the last rites.” Rajarajan shouted as if in a mock.
A sudden chill passed over Kanda. He could not imagine so much love for a person the Queen had, to wait even after death. He looked at Rajarajan. He too felt so much irritated by the Person’s presence now.
“We will use this to make Vinoth come from his hiding. Now that the King is no more, Vinoth should make her soul rest in peace now. “Raj concluded.
There was utter silence in the room now.
“Where is she?” Everyone turned to look at the voice.
A tear strained red eyed Vinoth was standing there with knees almost failing to hold him any further. He dropped on the floor. Raj rushed to him. Vinoth immediately got up. He clutched Raj’s shirt and shook him wildly.
“Come on tell me. Where is my mom? “He demanded.
Raj looked tensed. “I will take you there now. Also Ravi Varma and Thondaiman’s mortal remains too. They have been found by the archeologist now.”
Vinoth appeared aghast.
“See now you can make your entire family rest in peace. Who will get such a blessing? “ shouted Rajarajan in glee.
Vinoth turned to him as if a hungry lion is ready to pounce on its prey. “I am just dying to make you mortal so that I can kill you as I had desired for years now.” He thundered.
“If you kill me, who will tell you what happened to the baby Meenakshi delivered.” He laughed back.
“Your baby sister and her generations” He continued.
Vinoth looked at Raj. “Surely you know what happened to the baby right?”
Raj looked guilty. “He never told us what happened except the location of her mummy. The tribals have mummified her and she is safe. But that’s the only thing I know. “
Vinoth was dumbstruck. The mocking face of Rajarajan was too much to bear.
“Your ring will be the price of this valuable information. “ Rajarajan smiled.
“It has the properties to reverse the potion of immortality.”
Vinoth threw the ring at Rajarajan with all his might and shouted, “I want the Info now”.
“She has gone long back and her generations are carrying forward now. Her current generation is staying in this house right now. “
Vinoth and Raj suddenly looked at Kanda.
“Ha ha ha. A poor choice. Her last successor was Sakuntala and she was married to a prominent Doctor Srinivasan. “
Raj slowly turned and looked at the enlarged photo of his mother Sakuntala adorned with a bright sandal garland. She seemed to smile at him now.
It took a moment to digest the fact now. “So I am now the living descendant of Raja Ravi Varma, I suppose.”