19: So Close Yet So Far
crossed her little arms on her chest and held her nose high in the air pouting.
Geet began to cajole Kritika but she didn't seem to budge. She was of course a
sweet child but once she was angry it was hard to calm her down. Stubbornness
was born with her, once she decided to do something that was the end of it, she
would see to it she did no matter how hard or easy it was. Geet had toiled to
keep Kritika's anger at bay since her childhood but miserably failed, after it
must run in the blood.
cursed herself for letting Maan reign her thoughts for the past week making her
forget her dear darling's birthday. Every year she would make sure her angel
received the best birthday, afterall she only had Kritika to shower all her
love and affection to. The day she came into this world, Geet had promised
herself that she would no matter what let Kritika miss the love and affection
she was entitled to. On the day she was born, Geet held her bundle of joy in
her hands and kissed carefully the tiny life wrapped neatly in a pink blanket,
afraid she may be crushed under her hands. That tiny little life came shining
like a star in her dark life devoid of joys. That was the reason she had her
named after a star, Kritika. Geet had cherished every second in her life after
Kritika came into her life. Her antics, her mischief, her nautakis were all
worth living for and at the end of each act Kritika used her smile was worth
dying for. The cute little smile that highlighted her dimples was the cutest
thing in the world and looking at it Geet would instantly forget all the
mischief and simply hug her darling. Kritika was her solace, her salve for the
deep wounds she had endured in her life. And to keep Kritika happy was the
utmost priority in her life. But now she had failed to do so. She knew she had
deeply hurt Kritika for not wishing her first thing in the morning and she was
ready to make it up no matter what.
Kritika cleared her throat bringing Geet
back from her thoughts. Geet held her face with her palms and looked deeply at
her. "Mujhe maaf kardo meri jaan. Mujhse bahut badi galti ho gayi. Agar aap
mujhse baat nahi karoge to main mar," before Geet could finish it Kritika
closed her mouth looking aghast.
tum bhi na, why are you talking like that?" Kritika said as her eyes welled up
with tears. She tightly hugged her mother indicating she had forgiven her. Geet
hugged her back thanking her for forgiving her and promising that she would
surely make it up today.
came back to look at Geet, her eyes glinting with mischief. "Maa are u sure you
promise to do what I say?" she asked her mouth slowly curving, deepening her
course kannamma (darling)," Geet replied assuring her.
cheri (Then okay), then double ice-cream treat, a movie at regal with friends,
and oh ya, water play in Ancient Play Ground in Central Park," Kritika listed
vaalu (naughty) double ice-cream treat combined with water play? Jaladosham
varum di (You will catch a cold) vendam chellam (no sweetheart) may be I shall
get you ice cream tomorrow," she said hoping Kritika would accede.
mamma promise is a promise, no rain checks!" Kritika squealed.
left with no other options Geet agreed for Kritika's conditions and tried to
call Arjun to let him know of her plans. Actually she was ready to kill Arjun
for conveniently escaping in the morning without wishing Kritika, atleast if he
would have been there she would have got the clue and not forgotten. She tried
calling Arjun but his number was busy, she then called Kritika's friends' place
to invite them for Kritika's birthday. Since it was short notice everyone
couldn't make it, only her best friend, Chandu, his brother Ravi, Neel and few
other girls, Raji, Priya, and Sangeeta were able to make it. Geet thanked their
parents for allowing them to come at such a short notice and promised them to
return before 8 at night. She then informed Kritika that she would first take
them to lunch along with ice cream and then the movie in the afternoon and
later in the evening they shall go to Central Park. Kritika was really happy
she got her way and went running to get out her swimsuit for the water play.
Geet couldn't hide her smile looking at Kritika run around happily, she looked
up to thank her lord, Muruga for blessing her with a darling child like her.
she got a call back from Arjun saying he had an urgent meeting with the
financers thus had to rush. He then asked if Kritika was nearby so that he
could wish her happy birthday. That reminded her of his convenient exit that
morning and chided him for leaving her to face the fuming Kritika as she had
totally forgotten in Maan's chakkar.
hello madam, maine subah subah usko wish kiya magar she was sleeping aur tum
toh kumbakarni ki tarah so rahi thi toh socha na disturb karoon is liye I made
her favorite chocolate chips pancakes and left," Arjun said. "Mujhe kya pata
tha that you would forget. Vaise bhi how could you even forget? That man
doesn't deserve your attention so much that you forget Kriti's birthday samjhi
tum?" Arjun said with a tinge of anger.
please use kuch mat kehna. It was not his mistake galti toh meri hi thi. I
never had the courage to tell him aur phir us raat," she paused choking with
please, rona mat, please darling," he pleaded. "Khair chodo voh sab, I think my
meeting is going to prolong until evening. I shall catch you guys in Central
Park teekhai? Aur hum raat ko ghar pe uski favorite butterscotch cake kaatenge
enna cheriya bambaai maami?" he teased
Arjun tumhara teasing ko na us par kabu karo, warna!" she warned.
kya karogi? Haan bolo," he pestered further.
warna," she stammered, "Poda loosu payale neer veetukku vaarum appo nokku
theriyum (Go mental fellow, you come home then you shall know)," she finished.
ji aap mujhe damki de rahe ho? Chalo teekhai I shall know soon then," he
vahi soch lo, chalo teekhai mein rakti hoon Kriti ko late ho raha hai cheriya
(okay)?" she said.
alright no problem," he said pausing a little, "aur sun, love you." And before
she could react Arjun hung up the phone.
smiled and remarked, "Badmash!" Geet heard Kritika calling her from the living
room to hurry up. Geet rushed out else they would be late for the movie.
Kritika met with all her friends and they all headed to eat at Olive Garden
after the initial greeting.
the gang was having fun, on the other side of the city, Maan decided to sleep
for a while before even thinking about going out due to his heavy jet lag. He
slept like a log for almost 5 hours and woke up to be greeted by the hustle
bustle of the city. He woke up groggily and rubbed his eyes, clearing the
sleepiness. He looked around to find the clock by the bedside reading 5:12 PM.
He got up and stretched out a bit to ease his pains from the long journey and
went to the bathroom to take a shower. Coming back from the shower he caught up
on a few calls and emails. Finishing up with them, he decided to set his study
table up in the suite itself since he would be using it as the stay was almost
two weeks and he couldn't work sitting on the bed always. He first got out his
love's photo and placed it by his laptop and then set other things up. He
googled a few places he could explore around but nothing caught his attention.
He was lazily surfing when he found that Central Park was very nearby. He
figured that would be the best place to go for just a stroll and get some fresh
air. He changed into some casuals with white shirt along with dark blue jeans.
He combed his hair and in the end ruffled it a little just like how she used to
do and looked at the photo and smiled, "Ab kush?" he asked as though she stood
in front of him to answer him and sent her a flying kiss. He then headed out of
his hotel suite to walk to the park, as it was just 2 blocks away from his
sidewalks seemed to be filled with tourists, businessmen, locals, couples, all
enjoying the nice weather. He walked towards Fifth Avenue and passed the
Metropolitan Museum of Arts. On the way to the park Maan had picked up Central
Park's map since the park was huge and it was easy to get lost. And from his
map he could see he was near the 85th side of the Ancient Playground
and Water Play in the park. As soon as he entered the nearby trees he felt a
strong wind blow bringing the fresh smell of grass mixed with heavy pretzels
and hazelnuts that was being sold by the corner cart. In the midst of these
various smells, he could still smell something different yet similar; a flowery
perfume smell, too familiar to be disregarded easily. He looked around to see
if he could recognize any familiar faces but he failed to do so. Blaming
himself for his silly thoughts he proceeded to walk towards the Turtle Pond
that the map marked as quite near to where he was.
On his way he again felt something odd, as though a tight
rope had fastened him and leading his way. He looked around to find a bunch of
little kids a little far from where he was stading enjoying by the water
fountain laughing and splashing water around each other. He involuntarily
smiled at the cute little kids but something else caught his attention. Beside
the kids, a woman in maroon saree with turmeric yellow border, with her back
facing towards Maan was trying to capture the little kids antics. The musical
laughter of the woman in the saree seemed to enchant Maan and he stood rooted
on the spot. He craned his neck to get a better view of the person who had made
him pause in his tracks. But the woman seemed to be busy trying to capture
every single act while continuously avoiding her long curly hair that seemed to
handicap her shooting skills and the children's continuous splashing of water
on her. Although she seemed to enjoy the assault by the little kids, she tried
shouting something incomprehensible to stop them from throwing water on her.
Maan just stood staring at the sight in front of him forgetting everything. The
mystery lady seemed to attract his attention preventing him from moving
further. He was mesmerized by the musical laughter and in the corner of his
mind a thought pestered in his mind telling him to avoid the sight and proceed
further. While his mind probed him to walk away, his heart stopped him from
in his inner conflict he failed to see a few of the kids he saw a while ago approaching
him angrily before convincing the lady in the saree they would be back soon and
cajoling her not to follow them. Suddenly Maan felt tiny little hands on his
stomach trying to punch with all its might. He looked down to see a cute little
cherub staring angrily at him with her hands on her hip. He looked amusedly at
her dark brown eyes dancing with fury and her nose flaring with rage. Her tiny
fingers snapped at him and indicated him to bend down to her level.
alright my sweeties sorry for the delay like i said i am really not well i had to write this coz i had promised i would. i know its not that long but please excuse me. i hope u like it. slowly u shall get to see more of maan's side too. hit the like button and comment please