शिकार -प्रेमचंद  हिन्दी देवनागरी में पढ़ें।

Icon-edit.gif is lekh ka punarikshan evn sampadan hona avashyak hai. ap isamen sahayata kar sakate hain. "sujhav"

phate vastron vali muniya ne rani vasudha ke chand se mukhade ki or samman bhari ankho se dekhakar rajakumar ko god men uthate hue kaha, ham garibon

ka is tarah kaise nibah ho sakata hai maharani ! meri to apane adami se ek din n pate, main use ghar men paithane n doon. aisi-aisi galiyan sunaoon ki

chhathi ka doodh yad a jay. rani vasudha ne gambhir vinod ke bhav se kaha, kyon, vah kahega nahin, too mere bich men bolanevali kaun hai ? meri jo ichchha hogi vah karoonga. too apana roti-kapada mujhase liya kar. tujhe meri doosari baton se kya matalab ? main tera gulam nahin hoon.

muniya tin hi din se yahan ladakon ko khelane ke lie naukar huee thi. pahale do-char gharon men chauka-baratan kar chuki thi; par raniyon se adab

ke sath baten karana abhi n sikh paee thi. usaka sookha hua sanvala chehara uttejit ho utha. karkash svar men boli, zis din aisi baten munh se

nikalega, moonchhen ukhad loongi sarakar ! vah mera gulam nahin hai, to kya main usaki laundi hoon ? agar vah mera gulam hai, to main usaki laundi hoon. main ap

nahin khati, use khila deti hoon; kyonki vah mard-bachcha hai. palledari men use bahut kasala karana padata hai. ap chahe phate pahanoon; par use phate-purane nahin

pahanane deti. jab main usake lie itana karati hoon, to majal hai, ki vah mujhe ankh dikhaye. apane ghar ko adami isalie to chhata-chhopata hai, ki usase

barkha-boondi men bachav ho. agar yah dar laga rahe, ki ghar n jane kab gir padega, to aise ghar men kaun rahega. usase to ookh ki chhanh hi kahin achchhi.

kal n jane kahan baitha gata-bajata raha. das baje rat ko ghar aya. main rat-bhar usase boli, hi nahin. laga pairon padane, ghighiyane, tab mujhe daya a

gayi ! yahi mujhamen ek buraee hai. mujhase usaki roni soorat nahin dekhi jati. isi se vah kabhi-kabhi bahak jata hai; par ab main pakki ho gee hoon. phir

kisi din jhagada kiya, to ya vahi rahega, ya main hi rahoongi. kyon kisi ki dhauns sahoon sarakar ? jo baithakar khay, vah dhauns sahe ! yahan to barabar

ki kamaee karati hoon. vasudha ne usi gambhir bhav se phir poochha agar vah tujhe baithakar khilata tab usaki dhauns sahati ? muniya jaise ladane par utaroo ho gayi. boli, baithakar koee kya khilayega sarakar ? mard bahar kam karata hai, to ham bhi ghar men kam karati hain ki ghar ke kam men kuchh lagata hi nahin ? bahar ke kam se to rat ko chhutti mil jati hai. ghar ke kam se to rat ko bhi chhutti nahin milati. purush yah chahe ki mujhe ghar men bithakar ap sair-sapata kare, to mujhase to n saha jay yah kahati huee muniya rajakumar ko liye hue bahar chali gayi.


vasudha ne thaki huee, ruansi ankho se khidaki ki or dekha. bahar hara-bhara bag tha, jisake rng-birnge phool yahan se saf najar a rahe the. aur pichhe ek vishal mndir akash men apana sunahala mastak uthaye, soory se ankhen mila raha tha. striyan rng-birnge vastrabhooshan pahane poojan karane a

rahi thin. mandir ki dahini taraph talab men kamal prabhat ke sunahale anand se muskara rahe the aur kartik ki shit ravi-chhavi-jivan-jyoti lutati

phirati thi; par prakriti ki yah suramy shobha vasudha ko koee harsh n pradan kar saki. use jan pada praqriti usaki dasha par vyngy se musakira rahi

hai. usi sarovar ke tat par kevat ka ek toota-phoota jhopada kisi abhagini vriddha ki bhanti ro raha tha. vasudha ki ankhen sajal ho gayin. pushp aur udyan ke madhy men khada vah soona jhopada usake vilas aur aishvary se ghire hue man ka sajiv mitr tha. usake ji men aya, jakar jhopade ke gale lipat jaoon ! aur khoob rooon ! vasudha ko is ghar men aye panch varsh ho gaye. pahale usane apane bhagy ko saraha tha. mata-pita ke chhote-se kachche anandahin ghar ko chhodakar, vah ek vishal bhavan men ayi thi, jahan sampatti usake pairon ko choomati huee jan padati thi. us samay sampatti hi usaki ankho men sab kuchh thi. pati-prem gaun-si vastu thi; par usaka lobhi man sampatti par santusht n rah saka, pati-prem ke lie hath phailane laga. kuchh dinon men use maloom hua, mujhe param-ratn bhi mil gaya; par thode hi dinon men vah bhram jata raha. kunvar gajarajasinh roopavan the, udar the, balavanh the, shikshit the, vinodapriy the aur prem ka abhinay bhi karana janate the; unake jivan men prem se knpit hone vala tar n tha. vasudha ka khila hua yauvan aur devataon ko bhi lubhane vala roop-rng keval vinod ka saman tha. ghudadaud aur shikar, satte aur makar jaise sanasani paida karane vale manornjan men prem dabakar pila aur nirjiv ho gaya tha. aur prem se vnchit hokar vusadha ki prem-trishna ab apane bhagy ko roya karati thi. do putr-ratn pakar bhi vah sukhi n thi.

kunvar sahab ek mahine se zyada hua, shikar khelane gaye aur abhi tak lautakar nahin aye. aur yah aisa, pahala hi avasar n tha. han, ab unaki avadhi badh gayi thi. pahale vah ek saptah men laut ate the; phir do saptah ka nambar chala aur ab kee bar se ek-ek mahine ki khabar lene lage. sal men tin-tin mahine shikar ki bhent ho jate the. shikar se lautate, to ghudadaud ka rag chhidata. kabhi merath, kabhi poona, kabhi bambee, kabhi kalakatta. ghar par hi rahate, to adhikatar lampat reesajadon ke sath gappen udaya karate. pati ke yah rng-dhng dekhakar vasudha man-hi-man kudhati aur ghulati jati thi. kuchh dinon se halka-halka jvar bhi rahane laga tha.

vasudha badi der tak baithi udas ankho se yah drishy dekhati rahi. phir teliphon par akar usane riyasat ke mainejar se poochha, "kunvar sahab ka koee patr aya ?"

phon ne javab diya, "zi han, abhi khat aya hai. kunvar sahab ne ek bahut bade sher ko mara hai."

vasudha ne jalakar kaha, "main yah nahin poochhati ! ane ko kab likha hai ?"

ane ke bare men to kuchh nahin likha.

yahan se unaka padav kitani door hai ?

yahan se ! do sau mil se kam n hoga. pilibhit ke jngalon men shikar ho raha hai.

mere lie do motaron ka intazam kar dijie. main aj vahan jana chahati hoon.

phon ne kee minat bad javab diya, " ek motar to vah sath le gaye hain. ek hakim zila ke bngale par bhej di gayi, tisari baink ke mainejar

ki savari men, chauthi ki marammat ho rahi hai."

vasudha ka chehara krodh se tamatama utha. boli, "qisake hukm se baink ke mainejar aur hakim zila ko motaren bheji gayin ? ap donon mngava

lijie. main aj zaroor jaoongi."

'un donon sahabon ke pas hamesha motaren bheji jati rahi hain; isalie mainne bhej din. ab ap hukm de rahi hain, to mngava loonga !'

vasudha ne phon se akar saphar ka saman thik karana shuroo kiya. usane usi avesh men akar apana bhagy-nirnay karane ka nishchay kar liya tha. parityakta ki bhanti padi rahakar jivan ko samapt n karana chahati thi. vah jakar kunvar sahab se kahegi agar ap samajhate hain ki main apaki sampatti ki laundi banakar rahoon, to yah mujhase n hoga. apaki sampatti apako mubarak ho. mera adhikar apaki sampatti par nahin, apake oopar hai. agar ap mujhase jau-bhar hatana chahate hain, to main apase hath-bhar hat jaoongi ! is tarah ki aur kitani hi virag-bhari baten usake man men bagoolon ki bhanti uth rahi thin. daktar sahab ne dvar par akar pukara, " main andar aoon ?"

vasudha ne namrata se kaha, "aj kshama kijie, main jara pilibhit ja rahi hoon."

daktar ne ashchary se kaha, "ap pilibhit ja rahi hain ! apaka jvar chadh jayaga. is dasha men main apako jane ki salah n doonga."

vasudha ne virakt svar men kaha, " badh jayaga, badh jay; mujhe isaki chinta nahin hai ! vriddh daktar parada uthakar a gaya aur vasudha ke chehare ki or takata hua bola laie main temparechar le loon. agar temparechar badha hoga, to main apako haragij n jane doonga. 'temparechar lene ki zaroorat nahin. mera irada pakka ho gaya hai.'

'svasthy par dhyan rakhana apaka pahala kartavy hai.'

vasudha ne muskarakar kaha, "ap nishchint rahie, main itani jald mari nahin ja rahi hoon ! phir agar kisi bimari ki dava maut hi ho, to ap kya karenge ?"

daktar ne do-ek bar agrah kiya phir vismay se sir hilata chala gaya !

relagadi se jane men akhiri steshan se das kos tak jngali sunasan rasta tay karana padata tha, isalie kunvar sahab barabar motar hi par jate the. vasudha ne usi se jane ka nishchay kiya. das bajate-bajate donon motaren ayin. vasudha ne dannaivaron par gussa utara ab mere hukm ke bagair kahin motar le gaye, to motar ka kiraya tumhari talab se kat loongi. achchhi dillagi hai ! ghar ko royen, ban ki gayen ! hamane apane aram ke lie motaren rakhi hain, kisi ki khushamad karane ke lie nahin. jise motar par savar hone ka shauq ho, motar kharide. yah nahin ki halavaee ki dukan dekhi aur dade ka phatiha padhane baith gaye ! vah chali, to donon bachche kunamunaye, magar jab maloom hua, ki amman badi door haua ko marane ja rahi hain to unaka yatra-prem thanda pada. vasudha ne aj subah se unhen pyar n kiya tha. usane jalan men socha main hi kyon inhen pyar karoon, mainne hi inaka theka liya hai ! vah to vahan jakar chain karen aur main yahan inhen chhati se lagaye baithi rahoon. lekin chalate samay mata ka hriday pulak utha. donon ko bari-bari se god men liya, chooma, pyar kiya aur ghante bhar men laut ane ka vachan dekar vah sajal netron ke sath ghar se nikali. marg men bhi use bachchon ki yad bar-bar ati rahi. raste men koee ganv a jata aur chhote-chhote balak motar ki daud dekhane ke lie gharon se nikal ate, aur sadak par khade hokar taliyan bajate hue motar ka svagat karate, to vasudha ka ji chahata, inhen god men uthakar pyar kar loon. motar jitane veg se age ja rahi thi, utane hi veg se usaka man samane ke vriksh-samoohon ke pichhe ki or uda ja raha tha. kee bar ichchha huee, ghar laut chaloon. jab unhen meri ratti bhar paravah nahin hai, to main hi kyon unaki fikr men pran doon ? ji chahe aven ya n aven; lekin ek bar pati se milakar unase khari-khari bat karane ke pralobhan ko vah n rok saki. sari deh thakakar choor-choor ho rahi thi, jvar bhi ho aya tha, sir pida se phata padata tha; par vah snkalp se sari badhaon ko dabaye age badhati jati thi. yahan tak ki jab vah das baje rat ko jngal ke us dak-bngale men pahunchi, to use tan-badan ki sudhi n thi. zor ka jvar chadha hua tha. shor ki avaz sunate hi kunvar sahab nikal aye aur poochha, "tum yahan kaise aye ji ? kushal to hai ?"

shophar ne samip akar kaha, "rani sahab ayi hain huzoor ! raste men bukhar ho aya. behosh padi huee hain.

kunvar sahab ne vahin khade kathor svar men poochha, to tum unhen vapas kyon

n le gaye ? kya tumhen maloom nahin tha, yahan koee vaidy-hakim nahin hai.

shophar ne sitapitakar javab diya huzoor, vah kisi tarah manati hi

n thin, to main kya karata ? kunvar sahab ne dan ta, chup raho ji, baten n banao. tumane samajha hoga, shikar ki bahar dekhenge aur pade-pade soyenge. tumane vapas chalane ko kaha, hi n hoga.

shophar -- vah mujhe dantati thin huzoor !

'tumane kaha, tha ?'

'mainne kaha to nahin huzoor !'

'bas to chup raho ! main tumako bhi pahachanata hoon. tumhen motar lekar isi vakt lautana padega. aur kaun-kaun sath hain ?'

shophar ne dabi huee avaz men kaha, ek motar par bistar aur kapade hain ek par khud rani sahab hain.

'yani aur koee sath nahin hai ?'

'huzoor ! main to hukm ka tabedar hoon.'

'bas, chup raho !'

yon jhallate hue kunvar sahab vasudha ke pas gaye aur ahista se pukara. jab koee javab n mila to unhonne dhire se usake mathe par hath rakha. sir garm tava ho raha tha. us tap ne mano unaki sari krodh-jvala ko khinch liya. lapakakar bngale men aye, soye hue adamiyon ko jagaya,palng bichhavaya, achet vasudha ko god men uthakar kamare men laye aur palng par lita diya. phir usake sirahane khade hokar use vyathit netron se dekhane

lage. us dhul se bhare mukhamndal aur bikhare hue raj-rnjit keshon men aj unhonne agrahamay prem ki jhalak dekhi. ab tak unhonne vasudha ko vilasini ke roop men dekha tha, jise unake prem ki paravah n thi, jo apane banav-singar hi men magan thi, aj dhool ke paudar aur pomed men vah usake

naritv ka darshan kar rahe the. usamen kitana agrah tha, kitani lalasa thi ! apani udan ke anand men doobi huee; ab vah pinjare ke dvar par akar pnkh phadaphada rahi thi. pinjare ka dvar khulakar kya usaka svagat n karega ? rasoiye ne poochha, kya sarakar akele ayi hain ? kunvar sahab ne komal kanth se kaha, han ji, aur kya. itane adami hain, kisi ko sath n liya. aram se relagadi se a sakati thin. yahan se motar bhej di jati. man hi to hai. kitane zor ka bukhar hai ki hath nahin rakha jata. jara-sa pani garm karo aur dekho, kuchh khane ko bana lo. rasoiye ne socha, thakur-sohati ki sau kos ki daud bahut hoti hai sarakar ! sara din baithe-baithe bit gaya. kunvar sahab ne vasudha ke sir ke niche takiya sidha karake kaha, 'kachoomar to ham logon ka nikal jata hai. do din tak kamar nahin sidhi hoti phir inaki kya bat hai. aisi behooda sadak duniya men n hogi.'

yah kahate hue unhonne ek shishi se tel nikala aur vasudha ke sir men malane lage. vasudha ka jvar ikkis din tak n utara. ghar ke daktar aye. donon balak, muniya, naukar-chakar, sabhi a gaye. jngal men mngal ho gaya.


vasudha khat par padi-padi kunvar sahab ki sushrushaon men alaukik anand aur santosh ka anubhav kiya karati. vah dopahar din chadhe tak sone ke adi the, kitane sabere uthate, usake pathy aur aram ki jara-jara si baton ka kitana khayal rakhate. jara der ke lie snan aur bhojan karate

jate, phir akar baith jate. ek tapasya-si kar rahe the. usaka svasthy bigadata jata tha, chehare par svasthy ki lali n thi. kuchh vyast se rahate

the. ek din vasudha ne kaha, tum ajakal shikar khelane kyon nahin jate ? main to shikar khelane hi ayi thi, magar n jane kis buri sait

se chali ki tumhen itani tapasya karani pad gayi. ab main bilakul achchhi hoon. jara aine men apani soorat to dekho. kunvar sahab ko itane dinon shikar ka kabhi dhyan hi n aya tha. isaki charcha hi n hoti thi. shikariyon ka ana-jana, milana-julana band tha. ek bar sath ke ek shikari ne kisi sher ka zikr kiya tha. kunvar sahab ne usaki or kuchh aisi kadavi ankho se dekha ki vah sookh-sa gaya. vasudha ke pas baithane, usase kuchh baten karake usaka man bahalane, dava aur pathy banane men hi unhen anand milata tha. unaka bhog-vilas jivan ke is kathor vrat men jaise bujh gaya. vasudha ki ek hatheli par anguliyon se rekha khinchane men magn the. shikar ki bat kisi aur ke munh se suni hoti, to phir usi agney netron se dekhate. vasudha ke munh se yah charcha sunakar unhen du:kh hua. vah unhen itana shikar ka asakt samajhati hai ! amarsh bhare svar men bole han, shikar khelane ka isase achchha aur kaun avasar milega !

vasudha ne agrah kiya main to ab achchhi hoon, sach ! dekho (aeene ki or dikhakar) mere chehare par vah pilapan nahin raha. tum alabatta bimar

se ho jate ho. jara man bahal jayaga. bimar ke pas baithane se adami sachamuch bimar ho jata hai. vasudha ne sadharan-si bat kahi thi; par kunvar sahab ke hriday par vah chinagari ke saman lagi. idhar vah apane shikar ke khabt par kee bar pachhata chuke the. agar vah shikar ke pichhe yon n padate, to vasudha yahan kyon ati aur kyon bimar padati. unhen man-hi-man isaka bada du:kh tha. is vakt kuchh n bole. shayad kuchh bola hi n gaya. phir vasudha ki hatheli par rekhaen banane lage. vasudha ne usi saral bhav se kaha, abaki tumane kya-kya tohaphe jama kiye, jara mngao, dekhoon. unamen se jo sabase achchha hoga, use main le loongi. abaki main bhi tumhare sath shikar khelane chaloongi. bolo, mujhe le chaloge n ? main manoongi nahin. bahane mat karane lagana.

apane shikari tohaphe dikhane ka kunvar sahab ko maraj tha. saikadon hi khalen jama kar rakhi thin. unake kee kamaron men pharsh-gadde, koch, kursiyan, modhe sab khalon hi ke the. odhana aur bichhauna bhi khalon hi ka tha ! baghambaron ke kee soot banava rakhe the. shikar men vahi soot pahanate the. abaki bhi bahut se sing, sir, pnje, khalen jama kar rakhi thin. vasudha ka in chijon se avashy manornjan hoga. yah n samajhe ki vasudha ne sinh-dvar se pravesh n pakar chor daravaze se ghusane ka prayatn kiya hai. jakar vah chizen uthava laye; lekin adamiyon ko parade ki ad men khada karake pahale akele hi usake pas gaye ! darate the; kahin meri utsakuta vasudha ko buri n lage. vasudha ne utsuk hokar poochha, chizen nahin laye ?

'laya hoon, magar kahin daktar sahab n hon.'

'daktar ne padhane-likhane ko mana kiya tha.' tohaphe laye gaye. kunvar sahab ek-ek chiz nikalakar dikhane lage.

vasudha ke chehare par harsh ki aisi lali haphton se n dikhi thi, jaise koee balak tamasha dekhakar magan ho raha ho. bimari ke bad ham bachchon ki tarah

jiddi, utane hi atur, utane hi saral ho jate hain. jin kitabon men bhi man n laga ho, vah bimari ke bad padhi jati hain. vusadha jaise ullas ki god

men khelane lagi. chiton ki khalen thin, baghon ki, mrigon ki, sheron ki. vasudha harek khal nayi umng se dekhati, jaise bayaskop ke ek chitr ke bad doosara

chitr a raha ho. kunvar sahab ek-ek tohaphe ka itihas sunane lage. yah janavar kaise mara gaya, usake marane men kya-kya badhaen padin, kya-kya

upay karane pade, pahale kahan goli lagi adi. vasudha harek ki katha ankhen phad-phadakar sun rahi thi. itana sajiv, sphoortimay anand use aj tak

kisi kavita, sngit ya amod men bhi n mila tha. sabase sundar ek sinh ki khal thi. vahi usane chhanti. kunvar sahab ki yah sabase bahumooly vastu thi. use apane kamare men latakane ko rakhe hue the. bole tum baghambaron men se koee le lo. yah to koee achchhi chiz nahin. vasudha ne khal ko apani or khinchakar kaha, rahane dijie apani salah. main kharab hi loongi. kunvar sahab ne jaise apani ankho se ansoo ponchhakar kaha, tum vahi le lo, main to tumhare khayal se kah raha tha. main phir vaisa hi mar loonga. 'to tum mujhe chakama kyon dete the ?'

'chakama kaun deta tha ?'

'achchha, khao mere sir ki kasam, ki yah sabase sundar khal nahin hai ?' kunvar sahab ne har ki hnsi hns kar kaha, "qasam kyon khayen, is ek khal ke lie ? aisi-aisi ek lakh khalen hon, to tumhare oopar nyochhavar kar doon."

jab shikari sab khalen lekar chala gaya, to kunvar sahab ne kaha, main is khal par kale oon se apana samarpan likhoonga.

vasudha ne thakan se palng par letate hue kaha, ab main bhi shikar khelane chaloongi. phir vah sochane lagi, vah bhi koee sher maregi aur usaki khal

patidev ko bhent karegi. us par lal oon se likha jayaga priyatam ! jis jyoti ke mand pad jane se harek vyapar, harek vynjan par

andhakar chha gaya tha, vah jyoti ab pradipt hone lagi thi. shikaron ka vrittant sunane ki vasudha ko chat-si pad gayi. kunvar sahab ko kee-kee bar apane anubhav sunane pade. usaka sunane se ji hi n bharata tha. ab tak kunvar sahab ka snsar alag tha, jisake du:kh-sukh, hani-labh, asha-nirasha se vasudha ko koee sarokar n tha. vasudha ko is snsar ke vyapar se koee ruchi n thi, balki aruchi thi. kunvar sahab is prithakh snsar ki baten usase chhipate the; par ab vasudha unake is snsar men ek ujjval prakash, ek varadanon vali devi ke saman avatarit ho gayi thi.

ek din vasudha ne agrah kiya "mujhe bandook chalana sikha do." daktar sahab ki anumati milane men vilamb n hua. vasudha svasth ho gayi thi. kunvar sahab ne shubh muhoort men use diksha di. us din se jab dekho, vrikshon ki chhanh men khadi nishane ka abhyas kar rahi hai, aur kunvar sahab khade usaki pariksha le rahe hain. jis din usane pahali chidiya mari, kunvar sahab harsh se uchhal pade. naukaron ko inam diye; brahmanon ko dan diya gaya. is anand ki shubh-smriti men us pakshi ki mami banakar rakhi gayi. vasudha ke jivan men ab ek naya utsah, ek naya ullas, ek nayi asha thi. pahale ki bhanti usaka vnchit hriday ashubh kalpanaon se trast n tha. ab usamen vishvas tha, bal tha, anurag tha. kee dinon ke bad vasudha ki sadha poori huee. kunvar sahab use sath lekar shikar khelane par raji hue aur shikar tha sher ka aur sher bhi vah jisane idhar ek mahine se asapas ke ganvon men tahalaka macha diya tha. charon taraph andhakar tha, aisa saghan ki prithvi usake bhar se karahati huee jan padati. kunvar sahab aur vasudha ek oonche machan par bandook liye dam sadhe baithe hue the. bahut bhaynkar jantu tha. abhi pichhali rat ko vah ek sote hue adami ko khet men machan par se khinchakar le bhaga tha. usaki chalaki par log danton tale anguli dabaye the. machan itana ooncha tha ki chita uchhalakar n pahunch sakata tha. han, usane yah dekh liya ki vah adami machan par bahar ki taraph sir kiye so raha tha. dusht ko ek chal soojhi. vah pas ke ganv men gaya aur vahan se ek lamba bans utha laya. bas ke ek sire ko usane danton se kuchala aur jab usaki kachi-si ban gayi,to use n jane agale pnjon ya danton se uthakar sone vale adami ke balon men phirane laga. vah janata tha, bal bans ke reshon men phns jayenge. ek jhatake men vah abhaga adami niche a raha. isi manas-bhakshi chite ki ghat men donon shikari baithe hue the. niche kuchh door par bhainsa bandha diya gaya tha aur sher ke ane ki rah dekhi ja rahi thi. kunvar sahab shant the; par vasudha ki chhati dhadak rahi thi. jara-sa bhi patta khadakata, to vah chaunk padati aur bandook sidhi karane ke badale men chaunkakar kunvar sahab se chipak jati. kunvar sahab bich-bich men usaki himmat bndhate jate the.

'jyon hi bhaise par aya, main usaka kam tamam kar doonga. tumhari goli ki naubat hi n ane pavegi.'

vasudha ne siharakar kaha, aur jo kahin nishana chook gaya to uchhalega ?

'to phir doosari goli chalegi. tinon bandooken to bhari taiyar rakhi hain.

tumhara ji ghabadata to nahin ?'

'bilakul nahin. main to chahati hoon, pahala mera nishana hota.'

patte khadakhada uthe. vasudha chaunkakar pati ke kandhon se lipat gayi. kunvar sahab ne usaki gardan men hath dalakar kaha, dil mazaboot karo priye.

vasudha ne lajjit hokar kaha, nahin-nahin, main darati nahin, jara chaunk padi thi." sahasa bhainse ke pas do chinagariyan-si chamak uthi. kunvar sahab ne

dhire se vasudha ka hath dabakar sher ke ane ki soochana di aur satark ho gaye. jab sher bhainse par a gaya, to unhonne nishana mara. khali gaya. doosara phair kiya. chita jakhmi to hua; par gira nahin. krodh se pagal hokar itani zor se garaja ki vasudha ka kaleja dahal utha. kunvar sahab tisara phair karane ja rahe the ki chite ne machan par jast mari. usake agale pnjon ke dhakke se machan aisa hila ki kunvar sahab hath men bandook liye jhonke se niche gir pade. kitana bhishan avasar tha ! agar ek pal ka bhi vilamb hota, to kunvar sahab ki khairiyat n thi. sher ki jalati huee ankhen vasudha ke samane chamak rahi thin. usaki durgandhamay sans deh men lag rahi thi. hath-panv phoole hue the. ankhen bhitar ko sikudi ja rahi thin; par is khatare ne jaise usaki nadiyon men bijali bhar di. usane apani bandook sabhali. sher ke aur usake bich men do hath se zyada antar n tha. vah uchakakar ana hi chahata tha ki vasudha ne bandook ki nali usaki ankho men dalakar bandook chhodi. dhayen ! sher ke pnje dhile pade. niche gir pada. ab samasya bhishan thi. sher se tin-char qadam par hi kunvar sahab gire pade the. shayad chot zyada ayi ho. sher men agar abhi dam hai, to vah un par zaroor var karega. vasudha ke pran ankho men the aur bal kalaiyon men. is vakt koee usaki deh men bhala bhi chubha deta, to use khabar n hoti ! vah apane hosh men n thi. usaki moorchchha hi chetana ka kam kar rahi thi. usane bijali ki batti jalaee. dekha sher uthane ki cheshta kar raha hai. doosari goli sir par mari aur usake sath hi rivalvar liye niche koodi. sher zor se gurraya. vasudha ne usake munh ke samane rivalvar khali kar diya. kunvar sahab sabhalakar khade ho gaye. daudakar use chhati se chipata liya. are ! yah kya. vasudha behosh thi. bhay usake pranon ko mutthi men liye usaki atm-raksha kar raha tha. bhay ke shant hote hi moorchchha a gayi. tin ghnton ke bad vasudha ki moorchchha tooti. usaki chetana ab bhi unhin bhayaprad

paristhitiyon men vichar rahi thi. usane dhire se darate-darate ankhen kholin. kunvar sahab ne poochha," qaisa ji hai priye ?" vasudha ne unaki raksha ke lie donon hathon ka ghera banate hue kaha, "vahan se hat jao ! aisa n ho, jhapat pade."

kunvar sahab ne hnsakar kaha, "sher kab ka thnda ho gaya. vah baramade men pada hai. aise dil-daul ka aur itana bhaynkar sinh mainne nahin dekha. vasudha --tumhen chot to nahin ayi ?"

kunvar -- bilakul nahin. tum kood kyon padin ? pairon men badi chot ayi hogi. tum jiti kaise bachin, yah ashchary hai. main to itani oonchaee se kabhi

n kood sakata.

vasudha ne chakit hokar kaha, main ! main kahan koodi ? sher machan par aya, itana yad hai. usake bad kya hua, mujhe kuchh yad nahin.

kunvar ko bhi vismay hua, vah ! tumane us par do goliyan chalaeen. jab vah niche gira, to tum bhi kood padin aur usake munh men rivalvar ki

nali thoons di. bas vahin thnda ho gaya. bada behaya janavar tha. agar tum chook jatin, to vah niche ate hi mujh par zaroor chot karata. mere pas to

chhuri bhi n thi. bandook hath se chhootakar doosari taraph gir gayi thi. andhere men kuchh sujhaee n deta tha. tumhare hi prabhav se is vakt main yahan khada hoon,

tumane mujhe pran-dan diya. doosare din prat:kal yahan se kooch hua. jo ghar vasudha ko phade khata tha, usamen aj jakar aisa anand aya,

jaise kisi bichhude mitr se mili ho. harek vastu usaka svagat karati huee maloom hoti thi ! jin naukaron aur laundiyon se vah mahinon se sidhe munh n boli, thi, unase vah aj hns-hnsakar kushal poochhati aur gale milati thi, jaise apani pichhali rukhaiyon ki patauti kar rahi ho.

sndhya ka soory, akash ke svarn sagar men apani nauka kheta hua chala ja raha tha ! vasudha khidaki ke samane kurasi par baithakar samane ka drishy dekhane lagi. us drishy men aj jivan tha, vikas tha, unmad tha. kevat ka vah soona jhopada bhi aj kitana suhavana lag raha tha. prakriti men mohini bhari huee thi. mandir ke samane muniya rajakumaron ko khila rahi thi. vasudha ke man men aj kuladev ke prati shraddha jagrit huee, jo barason se padi so rahi thi. usane pooja ke saman mngavaye aur pooja karane chali. anand se bhare bhandar se ab vah kuchh dan bhi kar sakati thi. jalate hue hriday se jvala ke siva aur kya nikalati. usi vakt kunvar sahab akar bole "achchha, pooja karane ja rahi ho. main bhi vahin ja raha tha. mainne ek manauti man rakkhi hai."

vasudha ne muskarati huee ankho se poochha, qaisi manauti hai ?

kunvar sahab ne hnsakar kaha, "yah n bataoonga."

tika tippani aur sndarbh

bahari kadiyan

snbndhit lekh

varnamala kramanusar lekh khoj

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