Joined: 11 June 2009
Kokila Modi was worried. What was taking her son so long? She checked her watch again - it read 09:48 PM. It was almost an hour, Aham should have been here by now, she wondered worriedly.
As if on cue the doorbell rang. Their housemaid Mani came out of the kitchen, ready to open the door. Kokila sent her away with a wave of her hand.
Rushing to the door, she pulled it open.
"Jai Shree Krishna, Maa ji" Gopi said softly, her hands folded in greeting. Before she could reply, Gopi bent down to take her blessings.
She placed her hand over her head, "Sukhi raho" she said distractedly, looking at Aham. Aham put his laptop bag on the floor and looked at her, "Mom, what's wrong?" he asked, taking her hands in his.
The minute his mother had opened the door, he knew that something was grossly wrong, she was really worried - and that was clearly visible.
"Aham Dikra" his mother said in a small voice, glancing up the stairs
Okay, now he was worried, what was going on? He noticed that Gopi had been worriedly looking at his mother too; maybe she'd sensed it as well
"Baa" his mother said, in a broken voice.
Gopi froze - Baa? Her darling grandmother. Her only solace in the house when she had been so lonely. What was wrong with Baa? Was she sick? Had she fallen down? Was she - No, Gopi refused to think that Baa was - shaking her head, she sent a frantic prayer up to her Kanaji for her beloved Baa.
She vaguely noted that Maa ji was talking to Rashi ben - something about putting the baby to sleep in her room and then joining them in Baa's room.
She also noticed out of the corner of her eyes that Aham ji was nowhere to be seen - he had probably rushed off to Baa's room as soon as Maa ji had uttered the word. Which was what she should have done - she scolded herself mentally. But she'd frozen and -
"Gopi!" a stern hand shook her hard. It took her a few seconds to realize that it was Maa ji. Snapping out of the daze, she grabbed Maa ji's hand, "Maa ji, what happened to'?" her sentence was left incomplete as tears engulfed her voice.
" Gopi, sambhalo apne aap ko ' Baa is fine" Maa ji said firmly, " come with me" she said, grabbing her hand and pulling her up the stairs.
Gopi nodded wordlessly and let herself be dragged upstairs, her heart beating rapidly against her rib cage and tears streaming down her face.
Aham rushed to his Baa's room, to find his entire family huddled around her bed. As he moved into the room, he saw that Kaka and Papa were sitting beside Baa, holding her hands.
As soon as he saw them, he knew ' he knew that his grandmother was alive. "Phew" he mumbled, his breath rushing out.
Kaki ji was standing by the bed, worriedly looking over Baa.
"Baa" he whispered, everyone turned to look at him - the relief on their faces very apparent. Papa got up from the bed, vacating the place for him as he went and sat down next to his grandmother.
Baa lifted her tired eyelashes to him and managed a small smile, he smiled back and held her hand, "How are you, Baa?" he asked softly.
Baa closed her eyes slowly, and nodded, the faint smile still lingering on her lips. When she opened her eyes, she was looking around the room, her wrinkled lips forming a frown on her tired face.
He knew who she was looking for, "Gopi is coming" he said, and was rewarded with her faint smile once more.
Gopi did not remember moving so quickly in her entire life, within seconds she was by Baa's side, clutching her hand, "Baa - aap theek toh hai na?" she asked between tears.
Baa mustered up the brightest smile that she could, and nodded, muttering something that sounded like "haan"
She then looked around at everyone in the room; Kaki Ji gave her the same affectionate motherly smile, her eyes glistening slightly. Kaka ji and Papa ji also smiled at her. She smiled back at them, not failing to notice that Jigar Ji was nowhere to be seen. Maybe he had gone with the doctor, she thought.
Baa moved her fingers slightly, Gopi looked down at her - she should ask Maa ji what had happened - she still didn't know
But it was Aham Ji who spoke up, "Mom, what happened?" Gopi turned to look at Maa ji, "Aham Dikra, She fainted - repeatedly" she added slowly
"Did the doctor say why?" he asked. It was kaki ji who answered, "Age, Dikra. Nothing else" Gopi wasn't too convinced - how could someone just faint like that? Sure, Baa was old, but she had always been healthy.
She had been in this house for only a short time, but if this had never -especially when she had said that Baa had fainted repeatedly.
Her doubts must have shown in her face, because Kaki ji placed a hand over her head and said fondly, "Don't worry, Gopi. Baa is fine now"
Still not fully convinced, Gopi just nodded.
Jhanki Modi had lived a fruitful life. She had seen everything in her life. She had been blessed with a wonderful husband. She had lived through his trials, shared his happiness, and built a future with him. She had 2 wonderful children, whom she gave all that she could give.
She fondly looked at her sons ' Chirag had always been the studious one, while Parag had been the dreamer. She wasn't the one to restrict her children; she had allowed them to follow their own paths. Her husband often told her that Children should be molded, into their own personalities. He had believed that if they restrict their children, they would only be shadows of their parents, and not have their own personalities. So as a mother, she had let her sons follow their own paths.
She had seen the business grow, she had seen their riches grow, she had moved from a thatched hut to a bigger house, and then to Modi Bhavan.
She had seen her sons getting settled into marriage. She had welcomed two wonderful daughters-in-law to her family. She looked at both of them now, and images of their marriages flashed before her eyes. She loved both her daughters ' yes, that's what she thought of them ' they were more like daughters to her. Hetal, who was so soft and forgiving in nature, and Kokila, her best friend's daughter, who had always been the one in charge.
And then their family gradually grew with the addition of wonderful grandchildren. She had lived through childhood through her grandchildren. She had reveled in joys that only a grandmother could get ' by spoiling her grandchildren. Be it the times she had secretly given Kinjal sweets, or let Aham play with his dada ji's stick even after his mother had strictly said no, or take Jigar outside when he was supposed to be in play school.
She had spoilt her grandchildren when she had that privilege. She had told them stories, sang them lullabies, put them to sleep, played with them till they had wanted to, even when she had been tired. And then, then they all had just grown up.
She still remembered the day she had held Aham in her arms for the first time. He was tall, even as a baby. And he had been pink. And he had cried so loudly that people visiting the nearby wards came by to look. She smiled, flinching the next instant as that action caused pain to her tired muscles.
" Baa!" Gopi exclaimed, touching her forehead. Jhanki shook her head, to indicate she was fine. She adored this girl - the girl that Kokila had chosen for Aham.
She had immediately struck a chord with Gopi, maybe because in too many ways Gopi reminded her of herself. The innocent child had faced a lot of problems in the house, but slowly, she had won everyone over, including her strict mother-in-law.
Jhanki knew that Koki adored and loved Gopi like a mother. But she also knew that Koki was not the one to openly show emotions, she lived inside a strong wall that she'd built around herself. The same way, she had let, maybe even influenced Aham to lock himself up inside that wall. Jhanki's eyes travelled to Aham. She had always been worried about Aham ' because Jigar had always been this soft spoken, easy going, charming boy and Jhanki knew that he would be fine in life. Kinjal was adamant and stubborn like her mother, but Jhanki wasn't too worried about her either. She felt sad thinking about Kinjal ' that had been a bad phase for the family, what Kinjal did was wrong, no doubt, but at least the child was happy now. That's all Jhanki wanted - her children and grandchildren's happiness.
Jigar and Rashi were happy now ' they were even blessed with a beautiful baby girl. She knew there had been problems between them, but all that was in the past now. Kinjal, learning from her mistakes, had truly accepted Dhawal, and was happily settled with him in Mumbai now.
But Aham wasn't happy. She knew her grandson well - she knew he had much love to give, but he locked all that up.
She had seen the children grow up - she knew Aham loved Jigar and Kinjal, but he would never show it openly to them, nor would he open up. She knew Aham respected and loved Hetal, Chirag and Parag - but all he showed for them was a distant respect, some small smiles here and there, casual talk, answers to questions asked. The only person Aham opened up to in this house was his mother.
He had been close to Jhanki as a child, always running to her after he came back from school, playing with her, insisting he hear stories from her. But as he had grown up, he had started to distance himself, to the point that he lived all alone now - by himself, within all those walls he had built around him.
Yes, KanaJi had given Jhanki Modi a fruitful life, and she knew her time was closing in - he would call her back soon.
There was nothing that Kanha Ji had not given her, she had got everything she wanted. There were no regrets, except one. She looked at the two people sitting on either side of her, holding her hands.
Kanha Ji had brought them together, she had seen that there were troubles ' Aham did not like Gopi. But she had hoped that Gopi's innocent charm and innate goodness would win him over. It didn't - those walls hadn't been broken. He had sent her back.
But there was something called destiny. She knew with the wisdom that came with her age that these two were destined to be together.
But sometimes destiny needed a little push.
I'm done! Bring in the flak!
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Fantastic update hun
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Aug 3rd update - Part 1/2/3/4/5 - end
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