This was the question that had clouded him since morning. And the night before. In fact, he had barely slept. And how could he? The mere thought of her leaving was too much for him. And so when he'd sat up in bed this morning before dawn, he didn't go for the coffee machine. Instead, he'd pulled out a bottle of Corona from the refrigerator and, sticking it through his lips, he'd kept wondering. Was she ready? Was he, himself? With her gone, the house would be nothing more than the rooms it held. And her resonating voice. But it would be the little things he knew, that would trouble him the most. With whom would he now watch her favourite show, now that she had made him addicted to it. Who would now make him the basundi he loved. Or that wonderful cup of tea. Who would now rant on about his drinking habit, snatching the bottle from his hands. Who would give him those doses of wisdom, like a parent to his child. And among these thoughts somewhere had a tear rolled up which he didn't notice until it fell on his hand that lay beneath. He was quick enough to wipe it though. He had promised himself to bid her a happy goodbye. Without a single drop of tear shed. And so now, when the car that waited outside honked again, he knew it was time. Time for her to leave. To step out there, into a world brimming with opportunities and challenges that awaited her. She hugged him tight, and he could feel his entire form go weak. But he stood still, and when she emerged from his arms, he found her weeping. He gave her a peck on the forehead and with a consoling smile, he escorted her to the car. She promised to call him regularly, and he promised to be by the phone always. And as the car shot ahead, he wondered again, as to why didn't he stop her, persuade her to be with him than going this far. But then again, he reassured himself, he had done the right thing. And above all, he had to. Because, if a Father wouldn't, who would?