"A profound unmitigated loneliness is the only truth of life"
- R.K. Narayan

Her life had been a long tale of darkness. No light, not even a ray of it.
For starters, she was born in the dark-skinned lower caste family which, as per custom, had to live outside the village. In the marshes, where the mangroves grew so thick that not a ray of sun reached into their houses. They could not light a lamp as they could not afford it.
She could not go to village in the day time as her family was amongst the untouchables - her shadow would defile anything and anybody that it fell on. She had no right-to-form-a-shadow.
So she went into the village only at nights, to do the menial jobs like cleaning toilets, collecting and burning garbage, and scavenging food from the discarded bins of the tent-houses.
Despite such wretched survival, she was blessed with a physically fit body. It must have been a blessing, isn't it? Because thanks to it, on some days she would get good food to eat. On the days when the priest would grab her hand and drag her into the dark chambers of the temple to do things to her all night, while she gorged on the sumptuous food he threw at her. Most in the village knew about her affair with the priest, yet they chose to keep mum as the priest was a powerful man. Some lesser men would look for a night when the priest was out of town and compete with each other to offer her food, in the dark chambers.
All womenfolk of the village hated her, for being a manipulative woman who lured their men into one-night-stands. They cursed her to death.
Yet, unmindful of the curses, she continued to tread her life, lived in abject darkness - from the darkness of her skin, to the darkness of her house, to the nightly dark of the village, and finally (on blessed days) to a good meal in the dark chamber of the locked temple. A life that never saw the light of day. A life that seemed like one dark extended night that stretched from birth to death. Yet she continued to stand - a lifelong one night stand.