tagIncest/TabooA Brother's Love

A Brother's Love

bymintabal3239©

I am Prabhu. I am eighteen year old. I am in college doing a course in business management. I live in Chennai, India with my mother, sister Banu, and her husband Sampath. My father passed away three years ago. My sister and I are the only children of my parents. We are a happy family, but of late my sister not having a baby after two years of marriage has become a cause for some uneasiness. My mother is concerned, but does not express it openly. Not so my sister's mother-in-law, who in the Indian family is the one who has to be pleased and placated. This lady makes no secret of her disappointment. To her credit I must say that she does not single out my sister for the lapse. Most mothers-in-law put the entire blame on the daughters-in-law even in these modern days.

I love my Akka (elder sister in the Tamil language) who is four years my senior. As a younger brother I have to show her respect by calling her Akka and not by name. Like all elder sisters she is very affectionate to me. She is almost like a second mother to me, a super mother in fact for unlike my mother she never finds fault with me even when I am in the wrong. But I must confess that I am unworthy of her. The love that I have for my sister is mixed with sexual feelings. I have heard it said that man cannot avoid such feelings, and those who pretend to be shocked when others confess to sexual feelings towards their near and dear ones with whom such relationships are improper are humbugs. May be it is so, but I feel that I should not be harbouring such feelings towards my sister.

When I jerk off I think only of her. I make a supreme effort to concentrate on other women, but at the climax my mind's eye sees only Akka in very immodest dress and postures. After I have climaxed I brood on my wickedness, but next time the same thing happens. This is not all. When her sari pallav falls off her shoulders, as it often happens, my eyes dart to the generous valley of her large breasts. I think women have some sort of telepathy that tells them that men's eyes are focusing on their body. Even when there is no possibility of her knowing that my eyes are on her breasts she would rearrange her pallav. But not always. Does her senses fail her at times, or is she allowing her brother to have some fun, or (and this thought sets by body tingling) does she love to show her body to me? Incidentally I have never seen her bare breasts or any other intimate parts of the body.

There is one other time when I have an exciting view of Akka. It is during her weekly oil bath. I do my best not to be at home on Friday midmornings; but sometimes when I happen to be about I admit with shame that I take advantage of her. She would come out of the bath with her hair wound up in a towel, wearing blouse and skirt. She would remove the towel and give her long hair a twitch or two. Then she would stand at the open door and show her hair to sunlight running a comb up and down to dry it. She never uses the blower. Against the dazzling whitewashed compound wall her body would stand in silhouette, and through the thin skirt I can see her splendid rear, her thighs, and from time to time even the bulge of her private parts. I would be hard and tense and sometimes even before the show is over I would rush to the toilet to jerk off.

One morning at breakfast I found Akka's eyes red and swollen with crying. I felt sad. I knew something had happened that morning. My sister and her husband were at the phone at daybreak, and they talked for quite a while. My sister's husband's people always called at that hour to benefit from the half rates. My Atthan (that is the Tamil term for brother-in-law; I of course cannot call him by name for he is my elder sister's husband) is not a person to make his wife cry so bitterly. I knew it had something to do with her barrenness. My Atthan left later for his tour. He was a medical representative who would be home only for weekends, and today was Monday.

When I asked mother why Akka was weeping she had lots to tell. It seems that the lady doctor who had examined and tested my sister has found her normal. My Atthan is the person at fault. His sperm counts were low, and what is more many of the sperms were not in good condition. The doctor has said that while it is possible for my sister to conceive the chances are not good. When my sister's mother-in-law got the news she seems to have consulted a doctor in Madhurai, three hundred miles South of Chennai, where they live. Their doctor has suggested a method that is sure to succeed. My mother explained in her own way. It was not something she could say without embarrassment for sex education was not something she would approve of.

"Banu's doctor will inject other men's juices into her using a syringe," she said. My mother did not seem shocked at 'other men's juices' being used to impregnate her daughter. I had not difficulty in recognising that it was therapeutic insemination that the doctor was proposing.

"What does Atthan say?"

"He is for it. He says it is better than adoption."

"Banu?"

"She loathes the very thought."

"Why should she weep her eyes out? Nothing can be done without her written consent."

"My darling son you should know the subtle and not so subtle pressures that the husband and his family can bring to bear on the wife. She has no chance at all. Banu knows that. That's why she is weeping." Yes, the Indian woman total subservience is no fable. It happens day in and day out in all parts of the country.

"What do you propose to do?"

"Nothing. Banu belongs to their family. That's how it is."

"Next you will say that is how it should be."

"Yes, that is how it should be for the happiness of all," said mother vehemently. When women are for unquestioned obedience what chance have the reformers?

"I'll talk to her."

"Better do. She needs sensible advice."

I reviewed my feelings towards therapeutic insemination. Was I for my sister undergoing it or not? I wavered, but finally I took a stand—to support my sister. I could not possibly leave her to fight this battle with no one by her side.

*

I am Banurekha. Every one calls me Banu, but when my mother-in-law is annoyed or angry she calls me 'Banu-rekhaa,' with accent on the last syllable. She does that with my husband too. He is normally Sambu, but when she is not pleased with him he becomes 'Sampatt', with two and at times three Ts. Of course in our culture she cannot call her husband by name even when she is annoyed, which is often. She calls him Sampath's father when talking to others, or when talking to me he is 'your father-in-law'. As for my mother-in-law's name, I dare not name her even in print. It is a euphonious name of a goddess. That is as far as I can go. I call her Athai, the Tamil word for aunty.

My mother-in-law is a stickler for tidiness in the house unlike the home where I come from. The arrangements are more lax there. Within minutes of the top servant woman bringing in the sun-dried clothes I have to fold and put them away or else my mother-in-law will get annoyed. 'Every thing must get back to its place,' is something she repeats umpteen times every day. Sadly she has not inculcated this habit in her son. Every Monday morning when he is to go on his tour the entire human power in the household is mobilised to search for his spectacles!

My husband and I are now posing a problem to my mother-in-law. Two years after marriage I have not conceived. I can understand her anxiety for my husband is her only child. In our parts the ideal daughter-in-law is one who has her periods only after her first child is born! Usually the woman has to shoulder the entire blame if she cannot bear children. But my mother-in-law is kind to me; she holds my husband equally lacking in responsibility to the family. The Tamil word for barrenness is a derogatory word maladi. My mother-in-law has never used it with reference to me. I am thankful to her for that consideration.

In India every married woman keeps her ears flapping for news of missing periods from newly married woman from their lists of friends and relatives. If the news is not forthcoming within a reasonable time they raise questions, and if after a year there is still no news the young bride's physiology becomes a topic for gossip. To the mother-in-law a barren daughter-in-law is a calamity. Steps are soon taken to set matters right. Pujas (prayers) on specified days, tying toy sized replicas of cradles on trees set apart for this purpose in many temples, visit to the temple at Rameswaram at the very tip of India, and so on and so forth, and finally as a last resort help is sought from modern medicine. I went through all that and finally got an appointment with a doctor who was an expert in curing barrenness. The lady doctor who examined me was a stern type.

"How many times a week do you have coitus?" she asked. I turned to my husband.

"I am asking you?"

"Three."

"Only three?"

"He goes away on tour for five days in a week."

"If he is back on Friday night and leaves on Monday morning that is ample time for more than three," she said. "Do you have orgasms?" I nodded.

"Yes or no?"

"Yes."

"Why that hesitant reply. Do you know what orgasm is? Do you have it every time you have sex?"

"No."

"Fifty percent? You must give truthful answers. It is important."

"Not that many. Much less." To be truthful I do not remember having had a proper orgasm. I could hardly say that in the presence of my husband. The doctor sensed that.

"Mr. Sampath, if you could please be outside I can find out more about your sex life," she said, and my husband left the room.

There were more questions to which my replies were unsatisfactory. The doctor was a fan of foreplay. She did not think that fondling and kissing are foreplay. She wanted me to offer him my nipples for sucking and then lie down and spread and invite him to lick my clitoris till I had orgasm. She spoke in such blunt terms that I squirmed. She seems to be deriving enjoyment in talking this way.

"Men know very little of the woman's needs in sex. You have to teach them," she said. I got bold.

"Doctor, do you want me to ask him to...?"

"Lick. Be bold woman. That precisely what you have to do. And show him where to lick. You will be surprised that men have the vaguest idea of our private parts. If you doubt my word ask him to name the parts tonight. I see you are blushing. You should work yourself up to a state where you do not blush. Understand?" Orgasms, she said, are important for the uterus sucks in semen during orgasms. She then examined me and ordered for many tests both for my husband and me. The tests however were conclusive thus sparing me another lecture. Unfortunately even the best coital technique cannot solve our problem—my husband's sperm count was well below normal.

"Are there any sperms at all," I asked during my second visit.

"There are though many are not quite normal."

"But only one is needed?"

"That's true. The chances are not good but it is not impossible for you to conceive."

"Has it happened in your experience, doctor?"

"It has darling," said the doctor suddenly becoming tender. She pinched me on the cheek and said, 'Deep down in my heart I can sense that in spite of what science tells us you will be a mother soon. Read this booklet I have written, and ask your husband also to read it. I have explained everything an Indian bride and bridegroom must know about sex."

I was happy to see her so optimistic, but the events that unfolded two days later were bad news for me. My mother-in-law called and dropped a bombshell. She had explained our situation to her doctor in Madhurai and she suggested therapeutic insemination. This doctor it seems was a state renowned expert in this. I was aghast, but my mother-in-law brushed my objections aside.

"Please give me sometime Athai," I said, "we'll try prayers. Prayers they say can work magic."

"Prayers can and they do work wonders. I'll give three months." I was not sure if she was granting the time-out for me or for the powers of prayer. Significantly my mother had no objection to therapeutic insemination. Anything was acceptable to have a grandchild.

I did not have much hope. Three months is not a long period, and when that is over my husband's family, which is now my family, will apply pressure that I cannot resist. I wept. That was all I could do.

*

Prabhu again:

I could meet Akka alone only after lunch. I had no classes that afternoon and my mother was attending a series of religious discourses in a temple in another corner of the city. During class I was pondering about my sister's dilemma; I had a plan.

Akka lay turned to the wall and was sleeping. She heard me come in and sat up.

"Have you come to console me or convince me?" she asked.

"Neither; I want to know what happened?"

"They want me to undergo therapeutic insemination. I don't want to carry any man's child. I thought mother would be shocked. She was not. These seniors are all he same. They want grandchildren at any cost. You?"

"What is your objection?"

"I won't know what defect my child would have inherited from his unknown father: Mental disease, criminality, diabetes and so many others. Yes, there may be good things too. He may be a genius. May be I am having a negative mindset, an obsession even, but I cannot go through life watching my child all the time for defects to appear."

"I am with you Akka," I said.

"Thank you. At least I have one supporter. I prefer to be barren if that is want it finally comes to. But I know I will have to agree." I thought she would start crying, but she did not. This was the time to broach my plan.

"Suppose I am the donor would mother mind?" My sister looked up. Her large round eyes had a puzzled look about them. Apparently she had not thought of such a possibility.

"Mother would be scandalised to hear you say that," she said slowly.

"Atthan?"

"I won't dare mention it to him," she said at once.

"You?" She stared long at floor, and then she slowly shook her head as if she would not object.

"You must speak."

"I won't object," she said slowly. "That would be all right." Another pause. "I may even welcome it," she said and then she looked up. "Parbha, I'd love it." Prabha is a girls name and when she is tender to me she always calls me that way. Our eyes met and Akka hugged me and burying her head on my chest she sobbed like a child.

Even an eighteen-year-old brother hugging a sister is not done in our parts. But Akka clung to me as if in desperation. I held her tight and called her my darling.

"Don't worry Akka, you need not carry any man's baby. You will carry mine." One hand of mine was on her cheek now wet with tears, and the other on her head pressed to my chest. She sobbed all the more. "Don't weep my darling I cannot bear to see you sob like this. Our prayers will surely be answered." She held me tight as if she would sink if she did not. Her sobbing suddenly ceased.

"Prabha," she said, "isn't what you suggest impossible without mother or Atthan knowing."

"Easy. Atthan is away all week days and mother off to her discourses almost every day."

"But how can we do this on our own without a doctor?"

I had not thought of that, but the answer came to me at that moment and I blurted it out.

"We can in nature's way." It was a horrible thing to have said, and there was no way I could take it back. My heart was thudding as I waited for enormity of what I suggested to sink in. If Akka had drawn back in horror I do not think the relationship between us would have been normal gain. She did not. Instead her grip on me tightened. I breathed again. I was bold enough to say more.

"It is not passion Akka. It is no different from what a doctor does with his syringe. If we had the means of doing in the doctor's way we would have done that." Still no word from Akka. Then she spoke.

"But you know nothing about how it is done?"

"You know enough for both of us," I said. Then she did something quite unexpected. She released her grip on me and lay down.

"We'll do it," she said "Come on top of me"

*

Banu again:

When my brother came to my room I was sure that he had come on instructions from mother to persuade me. But what he suggested took me by surprise.

"Suppose I were the donor would mother mind?" he said. I had not thought of such a possibility at all.

"She would be shocked beyond measure," I said.

"Atthan?"

"I would not dare ask him that question."

"You?" he asked. I thought about it. Why not? I nodded. He wanted me to speak out my answer. At first I was hesitant, but soon it dawned on me that it would be a perfect release from my predicament. After all he is my flesh and blood. I can bear his child. I said yes with considerable enthusiasm. The release from the noose that was tightening me was so great that I hugged him and sobbed. Then doubts appeared.

"We have to keep it secret from mother and Atthan. Is that possible?" He said it would be easy because mother was away for her discourses so often and Atthan was away all weekdays.

"But how would we get it done?" I asked him. I thought of the syringes and gloves and drapes and all that and my hopes were crashing down.

"We can in nature's way," he said. He was proposing that I have sex with him, but he spoke as if he was suggesting something that happens every day. It should have been shocked, but I do not know why I was not. Prabhu went on to soften the thought by suggesting that it would not be with passion and could hence be thought of as if on par with the procedure that the doctor would have done. I was not paying attention to that. I decided that it was all right with me, but did my little brother know how to?

"You know for both of us," he said. I decided to go through with it.

"Get on top of me," I said as I lay back. When I think of it now I am astonished at the casualness with which all this happened.

A change now came over Prabhu. He was no longer the brave man who had come out with such a stunning solution to my problem. He stood with eyes vacant of expression, his mouth open, and sweating from every pore. My heart went out to him in his misery. I held his head to my chest exactly as he had done mine a few minutes ago.

"Its God's doing Prabha," I said, "this is how He performs His miracles, making people do what they by themselves would not do even in their dreams. You know my college friend Stella. One day she told the story of one of the Christian prophets whose family God saved when the rest of humanity God destroyed in anger. And then this prophet's wife herself disobeyed and God changed her to salt. God did not allow the family He loved to perish. He made the two daughters of this prophet to seduce their father and they bore him children who multiplied. Christians are so strict in such matters that I did not believe her till she brought the bible and showed me the passage." I held him tight as I said this and kissed him on all parts of the face. He was reviving too and he pecked in return.

"I do not consider I am wronging my husband," I said. "I am offering him a baby as good as if it is his own and not some unknown person's syringe product. In my mind I have no doubt at all that what I am doing is not only moral but ethical too."

Prabhu was listening.

"You used to be excited to see my body, " I continued, "I would sometimes put on a low-necked blouse like this and you would be darting glances on it. I would look away so that my little brother can have some excitement. I must confess that I got a kick out of it too. And when you were in the house during my oil bath I would wear a thin skirt so that you can see my body through it. It used to be funny the way you would run away to the bathroom, I suppose to jerk off. No darling there is no need to be ashamed that I knew it all the time. I suppose all brothers and sisters play such innocent games. It is all part of growing up." I sought his lips and we kissed on the lips. Prabhu was now aroused and when I kissed with my tongue he did the same.

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