Dusk was her favorite time of the day. It was the time when it wasn’t dark enough for her to get lost, but there wasn’t enough light for the world to see her failures. 

Failures are supposed to be the teaching blocks of life. But the truth is, not many people can accept failures. For Ana it wasn’t easy as well. Coming from one of the most elite families of Salem, she wasn’t accustomed to the kind of life the lower strata of society lived in. 

Ana was the daughter of a highly influential merchant who was not only known in the town of Salem, but also in the entire state of Massachusetts. 

It was definitely difficult for her to accept the realities of her new life. But what made Ana different from all the other spoilt brats was her patience and faith. No matter how difficult her life was, she never stopped working hard to get her lost life back. 

Her father, once being one of the most respected gentlemen in town, ended up being looked down upon. Not being able to withstand the disgust for him in the eyes of those very people who held him with such obeisance, he ultimately decided to take his own life. 

Ana ended up an orphan. The day her father committed suicide, she not only lost her father, she lost her entire family. 

Ana was just six years old when her biological mother was murdered. Ana didn’t remember much about her, but she did remember how every night she would see  her own mother with a different man. She never knew who her father was. She remembered asking her mother where her father was. 

“Sweetie, he has gone to fight for the nation.” 

That was the reply she got every time. Little did she know that even her mother had no idea who her father was. By then it didn’t matter to her, because Mr. Jones had already filled in for both her mother as well as her father. 

The person who had murdered her mother was a jealous lover of hers. Had Ana not been out that day, playing, who was to say that she wouldn’t have suffered the same fate ?

Mr. Jones found her crying on the playground that day, when he went to see off his lover for the last time. Even though a big and wealthy merchant, somethings weren’t ever going to happen the way he wanted. 

Mr. Jones met Ana at that point of his life when everything was falling apart. Little Ana came as a boon to him. While his lover was off to marry some pretty lady so as to protect his own family name, Mr. Jones, was already brightening up another lost soul’s life.

He showered her with love, adoration, and everything she had missed out on. 

But everything changed when the video was leaked.

The world which looked at her with admiration and love, now started looking at her with disdain and hatred. 

It was 6 months back, when her life turned upside down. Ana had just passed high school. With grades like hers, she was bound to get into any of the Ivy league schools. 

The day her world came crashing down, she vividly remembers every little detail of what turned her fortunes upside down.

The day was extremely humid. She was out with Kate, the housekeeper.  Kate was a year older than Ana and shared the same interests as her. Coming from the lower strata of society, she was forced to take a year or two off so as to collect enough money to be able to join a good college in the States. 

Ana considered Kate as equal to a sister. She gave her everything she could. From sharing clothes to sharing secrets, there was nothing Ana didn’t bestow Kate with. 

But the same couldn’t be said about Kate. Even after being treated as an equal, she still resented Ana the most. After all what did Ana have that she didn’t? Why was Ana so lucky? She got all the love, the money, but why? 

She despised Ana the most. So she decided to make everything Ana ever had, hers. The naive Ana had no clue that while she could do anything for Kate, Kate would rather see Ana hurt forever in life. 

Nothing could compare to Ana’s love for Kate, except the love she had for Mr. Jones, her step-father. So Kate decided to strike where it would hurt Ana the most.

That day, Ana and Kate had gone to the mall to shop. While in the Jones Villa, no one had any idea what storm was about to shatter all relations. 

Ana hadn’t even reached her house, when a news stormed up the entire quiet town of Salem. 

‘Rich merchant found in compromising state with butler.’ 

At first she thought it was another of those hoax news. But on reaching home, she realized that this time it wasn’t. 

Somebody had leaked a video of Mr. Jones in bed with his butler. Even though it shouldn’t have been a big deal for anyone, the Massachusetts law of the 90s hadn’t been as open towards LGBT rights as of now. 

Mr. Jones was taken into custody for indulging in ‘abominable sexual encounters.’ Even though he was released on bail, his trades failed. All his partners withdrew their support and sold off their shares. The once high and mighty Mr. Jones was now looked upon with disgust. 

No longer able to take in all the prejudice against him, he decided it was best to give his young daughter at least  a little bit of respect to live with. It was for her betterment that he decided to leave the world forever. 

What he didn’t realize was with his life, he took away the last family Ana had. 

For days Ana didn’t talk. After her father’s death, she was forced out of the only place she knew as home. She was reduced to nothing. 

Even Kate her dearest friend, deserted her. After all it was because of her that Ana had to suffer such a mighty fall. 

But what she did not know was even after losing all things Ana ever owned, she still had one thing left in her. Her faith and her determination. 

So when in 2004, Massachusetts became the first state to officially grant all the rights the LGBT community ever deserved, Ana knew in her heart, she had not only avenged her father’s death, but also of all the others’ who had to sacrifice their love just for the sake of society.

Now as dusk falls, Ana is no longer scared to show her scars. It was all that made her who she is now.

Written by:-
Rituparna Mazumder

Edited by:-
Aritri Saha
Akansha Singh
Bharat Sharma

5/5 (2 Reviews)
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