Rahul thought that Raj had a head injury that the doctors had missed. He was talking nonsense. "Raj, you need to rest. Don't worry, Tara is safe and healthy."
"You don't understand me Rahul." Raj paused for a moment, then decided that the safety of his family was much more important than his experiment. He explained what happened in the chamber that day. By the end of the conversation Rahul was horrified. Together, Raj and Rahul decided to take Tara to a remote area where she would be safe. Raj made it clear that they couldn't tell anyone about this, not even their wives. Not until they knew she was safe.
Rahul and Anita left a week later when they saw that Raj was recovering well.
Raj left the hospital three weeks later. Despite warnings from his doctors that he should stay longer and recover more, he insisted on going home. He wanted to be with his kids, as far away from the hospital as possible. The glum atmosphere was too much to bear any longer. Mala, who was growing tired of the hospital herself, understood him and supported his decision to go home. It would be better there, where she could really take care of him.
Once at home, Raj immediately felt better. Just the sight of his familiar home, still filled with the furniture Mala bought long ago, was enough to lift his spirits. Mala took great care of him and Sneha did whatever she could to help her papa. Raj watched in amazement as she tended to him as kindly and gently as his wife. She acted much more mature than he expected from a twelve-year-old. Ankur, on the other hand, just sat next to him and conveyed his love without speaking. He held his papa tightly and refused to let go of him until Mala would walk by and say, "Ankur, if you hold him any tighter, he's going to suffocate. Let your papa breathe!"
Mala asked the help to work overtime so she could focus all of her attention on her husband.
As the days passed, Raj often thought about the experiment. What went wrong? He couldn't think of anything that could cause a catastrophic failure like that. Once, while he was lying in bed pondering this, Vivek called him. Raj almost didn't answer, remembering how angry Vivek had been after the explosion. He was in no mood to get yelled at, but Vivek was his friend. He probably just needed time to relax.
"Raj," Vivek said as soon as Raj answered. "How are you?"
"Getting stronger every day," Raj replied.
"Good, good. I'm happy to hear that. We're all anxious for you to come back to work. Now, can you think of anyone who would have tried to sabotage us?"
"No, no one. I don't think the government spies would have done anything. They want results as badly as you do. It must've been an equipment malfunction."
Vivek sighed, "All right, thank you Raj," then hung up.
After a month of recovering at home, Raj finally felt strong enough to return to work. On the first day, Vivek called him into his office. As soon as Raj walked in, he could tell Vivek was frustrated. He looked like he hadn't slept much lately. Raj figured his anger was justified. After all the money he invested in the experiment, it just blew up right when they were getting great results!
"Raj, welcome back," Vivek said indifferently.
"Thanks Vivek," replied Raj, surprised by his friend's cold greeting.
Raj expected Vivek to ask him more about his health or his family or anything, but Vivek just jumped straight to what he wanted to say.
"Raj, if you want, you can start the experiment again. We will rebuild everything for you. However, you already have everything documented, right?" Raj nodded his head, dreading what Vivek was going to say. "Well, we could implement the technology on a trial basis for the commercial project we're about to start. After all, I don't need to tell you how much money we've spent on this project. We need to start making some of it back."