Monday, April 13, 2015

A-Z April Challenge 2015: K for KAIKEYI AND KING DASARATHA

K for Kaikeyi
Google Images
Queen Kaikeyi’s joy knew no bounds. Her favourite Prince Ram was going to be crowned Heir to the throne of Ayodhya. She sang as she went about her duties, organising the function. She would not allow Prince Ram’s mother Kausalya to lift a finger. Kausalya and Sumitra watched in amusement as Kaikeyi went about the palace, ordering a number of maids and man-servants to do her bidding. 

The palace appeared like Devaloka when King Dasaratha rode on his chariot through the ornate gates, flanked by his four sons who were riding on horses. A smile broke out on the old king’s face. He knew that it was Kaikeyi who was in charge. She was the one who enjoyed the flamboyance of royal life more than anyone else.

Getting out of the chariot, the king’s eyes fell on Manthara, Kaikeyi’s faithful servant. Her half-bent figure was distinct in the twilight. His instincts told him that something was afoot. He went directly to Kaikeyi’s chambers to meet his favourite queen. 

Kaikeyi greeted the king with a wide smile. She held out her hands to him, “Where have you been the whole day? Have you forgotten it’s our dear Ram’s coronation tomorrow? There are so many arrangements to be made.”

Dasaratha smiled at her enthusiasm. Was the king expected to do the work of organising the coronation? He did not utter the words as he did not want to curb her enthusiasm.

Manthara stopped outside the chambers, hiding behind a pillar, when she saw that Kaikeyi was not alone. She bided her time, waiting for the king to leave, before poisoning Kaikeyi’s mind.

It was sad that all of Kaikeyi’s enthusiasm for her favourite Prince went to naught by an old maid-servant’s words. In barely a few hours, King Dasaratha found that his world had tilted on its axis. 

Glossary:
Devaloka – Abode of the Devas (Heaven)





Check out some of my favourite bloggers who are also participating in A-Z April Challenge 2015

Eloquent Articulation by Inderpreet Kaur Uppal
I Luv Fiction by Ruchi Singh

40 comments:

  1. I gave your blog a shout out on my blog today :) I liked this little snippet, especially for the enthusiasm of the queen...

    @TarkabarkaHolgy from
    Multicolored Diary - Epics from A to Z
    MopDog - 26 Ways to Die in Medieval Hungary

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    1. Thank you Tarkabarka Holgy for the shoutout :D
      Yeah, she is quite enthusiastic to begin with... until... :(

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  2. I always thought Kaikeyi was the bad one. Was she poisoned by Manthara throughout?

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    1. Kaikeyi loved Ram the most, even more than she did Bharat. And she was the one who loved Ram more than Kausalya actually. Manthara poisoned her mind on the eve of the coronation.

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  3. Thank you for refreshing my memory with these stories. I had heard them so many years back!

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    1. You are welcome Aathira. I am refreshing my mind too :D

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  4. People who mentor are the ones who can poison a mind as well!!

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    1. Very true Ruchi! Thank you for stopping by :)

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  5. Good grief, what on earth is / was happening?

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    1. If you are familiar with Ramayana, you will know that Kaikeyi is Dasaratha's favourite queen and she adores her stepson Ram more than her own son. All that changes when her maid Manthara poisons her mind. The very next day, Dasaratha is on his death bed and Ram, Sita and Lakshman are on their way to live in the forest for 14 years. :)

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    2. I had no idea the consequences would be that huge! Goes to show how easily people are poisoned if you know how to manipulate them... :-(

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    3. Yeah, very true. Manthara thoroughly washes Kaikeyi's mind. Maybe the forerunner of KGB ;)

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  6. I can visualize the scene so vividly, Sundari! How easily the love of a mother for her stepson gets diluted by a wicked half bent maid, the moment that turns the entire epic on its head! I love the way you have described the loving Kaikeyi!

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  7. Nicely narrated, Sundari. This is a relatively lesser known side of Kaikeyi. She was not the complete villain that she is normally portrayed to be. However, one error in judgement cost her a lot.
    *Shantala @ ShanayaTales*

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    1. Thank you Shanaya. Yeah, so true. I remember this tale vividly, having heard it from my grandparents so many times :)

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  8. Loved the narration Sundari :) It is so hard to believe that Kaikeyi, who loved Rama so much, could pay heed to Manthara's words :(

    Kaleidoscope of Hopes

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    1. Really sad! But then otherwise, Ram wouldn't have had an opportunity to meet Ravana and that's the main reason why Lord Vishnu was born on earth, right? :)
      Thank you for stopping by Swathi

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  9. Even I wasn't aware that Kaikeyi loved Rama so much. Loved reading this one Ma'am :)

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  10. Kaikeyi was actually one of the most brave and courageous women who fought side by side with Dasharatha. I like the way you have highlighted the goodness of her nature and the fact that she was swayed by evil.

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  11. Well written Sundari. You brought out the softer side of Kaikeyi. And it is also said that she mourned his departure the maximum. Just because Ram had given his words to his father, he did not return even when Kaikeyi begged him too. Such a waste of life but then Kaikeyi is also the trigger of Ramayana. So maybe it was meant to be.

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    1. Exactly Ina :) It was meant to be. Otherwise Ramayana wouldn't have been possible and Ravana will probably be ruling the earth even today ;)

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  12. Yes. I knew that part. Thanks in no small part to my grandmother :) And sad that a maidservant can poison the mind of a queen so quickly.

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    1. Really sad! thank you for stopping by Vinay :)

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  13. Have read about the beautiful side of Kaikeyi. If only she had not listened to Manthra that day!! Beautifully narrated story!

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    1. Thank you Shilpa! If she hadn't listened, there would be no Ramayana and Ramavatar of Vishnu would have been a waste :)

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  14. "his world tilted on its axis"! such an apt description of a lost king, torn between his promise to his queen and his love for his favorite son! loved it!!

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    1. :D Thank you Little Princess. Coming from you, that's a great compliment

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  15. This is why they say that we must carefully choose the company we stay in. Although, if something is meant to happen in a certain way, we end up in the company of people we would normally not associate ourselves with. Vinaashkaaley vipreet buddhi

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    1. Absolutely true Chicky, every word of yours. Thank you for stopping by

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  16. Oh that Kaikeyi - 180 degree turnaround and that one event took the Ramayana on a very different adventure. Nicely penned.

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  17. But Kaikyei was cursed by his own son... :-( ....Madam you gave a different angle...nice one

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    1. All mythological stories have more than one angle. This one is what I like - that Kaikeyi is not black, just brain-washed :)

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  18. Hmm. Main ' if only' I'm Ramayana. Cud see Ayodya palace thru your blog. Picture is also beautiful

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    1. Thank you so much Lak! That's what I wanted to bring across - visualising the scene :D

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