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Cuckold

kiran nagarkar

30 Chapters
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1 Readers
Completed on 19 January 2024
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Kiran Nagarkar's Cuckold is a historical novel on the life of Meera, her affair with Krishna – a scandal for which she was criticised and persecuted – and the predicament of her husband who felt betrayed by none other than the blue-bodied god himself. 

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1

Chapter 1-

11 January 2024
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The small causes court sits on Thursdays. When Father’s away I preside. There were fourteen plaints to be heard. I dealt with them all, albeit as the sun rose to the meridian and then crossed it, I be

2

Chapter 2-

11 January 2024
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It’s such an elementary rule, I wonder why almost nobody follows it. If you want to find out how a department’s functioning or how the work’s progressing on a project, go unannounced. It has nothing t

3

Chapter 3-

11 January 2024
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He had been the most eligible bachelor in this part of the world. It took them a long time to find a bride for him. Two or three proposals along with horoscopes arrived every day. They had to appoint

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Chapter 4-

12 January 2024
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Who makes up or invents proverbs? They are so often a crockful of never-mind-what. They pile up platitude upon platitude which the officious and unctuous mouth in and out of season and are taken to be

5

Chapter 5-

12 January 2024
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I have avoided speaking about the rights of succession as much as the other forbidden subject which tears my guts and paralyses my mind. But Prince Bahadur has touched a particularly raw spot and the

6

Chapter 6-

12 January 2024
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The wedding party returned home. Her favourite uncle, Rao Viramdev accompanied her to Chittor. She was allowed to bring a friend or servant along with her who would stay with her all her life. She bro

7

Chapter 7-

12 January 2024
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The news from the front hasn’t been either very bad or very good. Sometimes I think that Sultan Muzaffar Shah has lost his nerve and that’s why he has retired to Champaner instead of leading his armie

8

Chapter 8-

13 January 2024
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‘You think this is a laughing matter? You are going to tell me who it is. Now. I’m going to kill him and then I’m going to kill you.’ His voice was a strange and violent inhuman screech. ‘Have you no

9

Chapter 9-

13 January 2024
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She was a deep one. He had to hand it to her, it was, frankly, close to a master-stroke in the escalating war of nerves between him and her. You want a name, say it again, you want a name, you really

10

Chapter 10-

13 January 2024
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He was returning from work when he first heard the singing. It was faint and very distant and he didn’t know whether it was coming from the heart of the town or from one of the exclusive areas of the

11

Chapter 11-

13 January 2024
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Should he pull her tongue out, he wondered, or stuff a large silk handkerchief into her mouth? Was she perverse? Was she doing it deliberately to annoy him? He had broken the ektara into two. That did

12

Chapter 12-

15 January 2024
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When the Maharaj Kumar reached the palace, the guards on duty saluted him. Should he dismount? Why had he come home anyway? Befikir stood patiently while he tried to figure out what he was doing at th

13

Chapter 13-

15 January 2024
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When I look at my peers, friends, colleagues, cousins and brothers, I realize what a dullard I am. They carouse together, they go out whoring, they are lively and full of fun and pranks. I would like

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Chapter 14-

15 January 2024
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Poor Malik Ayaz. He was recalled home in disgrace and disfavour. War is a risky pastime for generals, more so for them than for kings and princes. A sovereign is hardly ever dethroned because he loses

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Chapter 15-

16 January 2024
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We left next morning. By evening we had joined Shafi Khan and the main Mewar army. The Merta, Dungarpur and other forces have gone their separate ways. Rao Viramdev and Rawal Udai Simha have accepted

16

Chapter 16-

16 January 2024
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It was a morning of sullen and lucid beauty. The Gambhiree was a festering gold rupture in the plains below Chittor. Someone had plucked the sunflower in the sky and torn off the petals and smashed th

17

Chapter 17-

16 January 2024
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Within a week, Greeneyes was walking about the house. On the tenth day she visited the orphanage. Rather, she intended to. The people of Chittor had got word that the Little Saint had resurfaced and s

18

Chapter 18-

16 January 2024
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He was returning from a seven-mile walk along the parapet of the fort at eleven at night when he saw his wife sitting at the Flautist’s temple. He turned towards the palace but something about her mad

19

Chapter 19-

17 January 2024
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Things had not changed much. Father pleaded indisposition when I asked for an audience to lay my head at his feet. Why had he called me back? When I went to the Victory Hall in the evening, a bandage

20

Chapter 20-

17 January 2024
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Raja Puraji Kika and I may be soulmates but it’s mostly a long-distance closeness. Besides, even when we are together, neither of us is very voluble. What we share is taciturnity and silence. I often

21

Chapter 21-

17 January 2024
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I got news from home mostly from Mangal. The first phase of the water and sewage system was coming along nicely. Lakshman Simhaji had had a stroke but was recovering fast. The royal barber’s wife had

22

Chapter 22-

17 January 2024
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I am like a schoolboy, I am always rushing home. From Idar, from Kumbhalgarh and now from Dharampur. It’s as if I need to pretend that there’s always something of moment, a crisis that cannot be resol

23

Chapter 23-

17 January 2024
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The good times had idled by. The party was over. It was time to get back to work. What next, heir apparent, question mark; husband of the Little Saint; black sheep, black cloud on horizon, source of a

24

Chapter 24-

18 January 2024
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I should have seen it coming but my vaunted prescience was malfunctioning or has it been just a matter of guesswork and some luck posing as clairvoyance all these years? Political considerations alone

25

Chapter 25-

18 January 2024
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Who, Mangal, who?’ It was seventeen days since ‘the accident’ as the court bulletin preferred to call it. ‘Could be any one of a hundred and fourteen people.’ I looked sharply at Mangal. Why

26

Chapter 26-

18 January 2024
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The day before Bruhannada and his wife were to leave Chittor, he sent me a message asking if we could meet. ‘Forgive me, Highness, for not coming myself but as you know it is not wise for me to sti

27

Chapter 27-

19 January 2024
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Had I really been that preoccupied formulating the new tax proposals to finance the war that I hadn’t noticed the night descend? How could that be, surely it wasn’t more than two and a half hours sinc

28

Chapter 28-

19 January 2024
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‘Krishna Kanhaiyya, Krishna Kanhaiyya,’ she had called him. He had decided that night that he would never, not even on pain of death, enter her bed. And yet here he was, going through the blue charade

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Chapter 29-

19 January 2024
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At the final meeting of the War Council on the night before the battle, the mood was buoyant, even jocular. Most of the talk was about how small the Padshah’s army was and whether the ditches had been

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Chapter 30-

19 January 2024
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That afternoon a party of seven came over from Mewar to meet His Majesty. Father was delighted with the company and the attention. Baswa is a godforsaken place though its ruler, Rao Himmat Simha, has

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