Joined: 14 October 2006
Joined: 01 March 2011
Joined: 09 October 2010
Joined: 14 October 2006
Joined: 14 October 2006
Joined: 14 October 2006
was woken to the music of 'Eine kleine Nachtmusik' by Mozart. She smiled and
opened her eyes to be greeted with a hot cup of tea by her loving
husband. She had gotten used to waking up to western classical music and
going to bed to Indian classical music and ghazhals for the past couple
of weeks. Although Maan himself did not have much of a taste for classical
music he wanted his kids to cultivate what he considered 'refined' tastes in
music. So he decided to start when they were still in their mother's womb and
had bought a wide collection of classical music CDs, playing them throughout
Handing the cup to her he gently kissed her forehead. "Good morning darling. You need to get ready soon for your Godh Bharai at your mama's place. Mama has already called three times asking when are we coming."
He helped Geet up and led her to the bathroom. Geet was finding it increasingly difficult to move around with the huge weight she was carrying. Her widened girth made her arch backwards, exerting pressure on her back. Maan gently placed his hand on her lower back and pressed to straighten and support her back. After she had finished her morning routine, he helped her wear the wine red georgette saree with sequence work which her mother had gifted her. As he tucked in the pleats in he couldn't resist bending down to kiss his wife's humungous stomach and asking his babies not to get too excited and trouble their mommy that day. He then quickly changed into his sherwani and assisted his baba who was now moving around in a walker, into the car. He then came back to walk his wife to the car. She was not able to sit in the front seat as she could not strap on the seat belt over her burgeoning stomach. So he helped her to the back seat after pushing forward the front seat to the maximum.
At the Handa House Rano welcomed her daughter with an aarti. The hall was full of ladies who had gathered to bless the new mother-to-be. Anwesha led Geet to a large decorated chair at the centre of the hall and slowly made her bhabhi sit on it. Once she ensured that she was comfortably seated, she spread her pallu on her lap. Women lined up to fill her lap with gifts and apply tilak on her forehead. They then fed her sweets and a kichddi of rice, moong dal and til, cooked in ghee. Following this they bent to her ears and whispered auspicious blessings for her forthcoming childbirth. Geet blushed like a new bride at all the attention she was getting.
Sameera entered at that moment and made a beeline to Geet. Apologising for coming in late, she performed all the rituals and kissed her best friend on both her cheeks, wishing her luck. After a few minutes Dev arrived with a large parcel for his dearest friend. Seeing him Rano twisted his ear playfully asking what he was doing in a ladies function. He retorted that he was there for his 'bestest' friend in the world and he wouldn't miss her moment under the sun for anything. He then walked up to Geet and laying the gift on her lap, he shook her hand and bent down to hug her lightly by her shoulders. Maan smiled to see the camaraderie between his wife and her childhood friend.
When all the ladies had finished blessing Geet, Maan walked up to her and knelt before her. He took out a box full of glass bangles and patiently slid them down her wrist saying that the tingling sound of the bangles will keep his babies entertained. By the time he was finished, Geet had a dozen bangles in each of her hands. Although it was not part of the usual custom for the father-to-be to do this, Maan had got express permission from Rano to adorn his wife in this manner. He then kissed her forehead and gently led her into the bedroom so that she can put up her feet. Sameera came in and asked him if she can spend some time with her dear friend. From her anxious look Maan knew that she wanted to talk to Geet about Dev. Before he left the room, he whispered to her to be careful not to upset Geet too much. Sameera nodded her head understandingly.
She then sat next to Geet and taking her hands in hers she gravely said, "Geet there is something I have to confess. Promise me that you will forgive me."
"Forgive you for what?" asked Geet, confused by Sameera's unusual request.
"For hiding something important from you."
"What important thing?" she asked her.
"About who my boss is."
"Who is your boss?"
"Your friend turned foe turned friend" said Sameera
"Friend turned foe turned friend?" repeated Geet quizzically, confused by her friend's riddled description of her boss. Thinking for a few seconds, her eyes widened as suddenly a thought struck her. She asked sceptically, "You don't mean Dev, do you?"
Sameera nodded her head, looking apologetically at her.
"You must be joking! You work for Dev?" Seeing Sameera nod her head again she continued, "That means you are living in Singh Residence?"
Sameera's face had turned red by now.
It suddenly dawned on Geet that her friend appeared to have finally been bitten by the love bug.
"And you have fallen for the guy!" she exclaimed excitedly.
Although Sameera tried to deny it, she could not escape Geet's sharp eyes which caught the glint in her eye.
"Does he know yet?" she whispered conspiratorially.
Sameera shook her head in the negative.
"Do you want me to talk to him about it?" Geet volunteered.
"No please," begged Sameera. "I'll confess to him myself at an opportune time."
"OK, but do not take too long to confess. I want my two best friends to tie the knot as soon as possible."
"What if he does not love me?" asked Sameera fearfully. Her eyes quickly filled up at the very thought of a possible rejection.
"Arey, Pagli. Can any man not love my darling Sameera? Dev is very lucky to have someone like you in his life. I am sure he too loves you but I think you may have to take the first step. Given his bitter past, he may be a little reticent. Shall I discreetly find out what is in his heart?"
"No, he is too shrewd. He will guess what you are after. I will handle it my way. Now you don't worry your pretty little head over this. Concentrate on getting my dear little bunnies safely into this world."
Geet smiled and closed her eyes as she felt enormously tired. She soon dozed off.
Sameera drew the covers over her and went in search of Rano to give her an update of her mother's health. Soon it was lunch time and the guests were offered a buffet lunch.
Both Dev and Sameera tried hard to behave casually with each other, not wanting to attract any attention but they could not take their eyes off each other. Dev was enchanted to see her in a saree for the first time and found her extremely sexy in it. As he stood behind her in the queue for the food, his eyes inadvertently wandered to her exposed midriff. As her saree fluttered in the breeze, he caught a glimpse of a flat and smooth stomach. He gulped and looked away, trying to get the image out of his mind. After they filled their plates, they sat in the opposite corners of the room and stole glances at each other when they thought that the other was not looking.
Maan enjoyed watching all this from a distance. He then filled up a plate of food for Geet and took it to her room. Gently kissing her awake he propped her up and fed her the food before having his own. As they were finishing up, Rano came in and asked her son-in-law whether she could have a private moment with her daughter. Maan nodded and left the room.
Sitting beside her daughter, Rano asked her daughter when she was planning to come home for her confinement. Geet shook her head and said that she was not planning to leave her own home as Maan cannot stay away from her. Rano asked her in a hushed tone whether he still wanted physical intimacy with his wife. Geet's eyes widened in surprise and said that Maan is a very understanding husband and they have not been intimate for nearly three months now, given her physical condition. More than the physical intimacy what keeps them bonded to one another is the strong emotional connection they have with each other. She then explained that she wanted to be with her husband as much as he wanted to be with her and they planned to welcome their babies into this world together. Rano smiled and kissed her daughter's forehead saying she was so happy to hear that her daughter has got such a loving and caring husband.
After lunch the guests left, thanking Rano for all the arrangements. Dev and Sameera also took leave as they had to get back to work.
That evening when Maan, Geet and Baba took leave of the inmates of Handa House, sans Arjun, who was as usual missing, Rano held Maan's hand in hers and with tears in her eyes said that she must have done a lot of good karma (deed) in her previous birth to get a son-in-law like him.
"To be very frank, I was a little apprehensive of what life my daughter will get. While I had full confidence in your abilities to succeed in life, I always feared that the process of adjustment may be tough for my daughter. I am happy to now see that my daughter refuses to come to her mayka (mother's house) for her confinement, preferring to have her husband by her side instead. What more proof do I need to know that you are treating my daughter like a queen."
"She is a queen, Mama. She is my queen and will always be. I should thank you for raising her up so well and trusting her with me."
Baba nodded his head in agreement. "We are the privileged ones to have a lovely girl like Geet with us, Ranoji. Don't worry about your daughter. Everything will go smoothly. Just keep praying for her well being."
"That I will. My prayers are always for my children. Maan and Anwesha are also my children," she said emotionally.
The trio then got into their car and left for their house.
That night Geet woke up with a scream as she developed cramps in her calf muscles. Maan immediately got up and seeing his wife's contorted face, he realised she was in agony. Finding out the source of her pain, he lifted her feet and placing them on his lap, he massaged them. He then pulled her toes towards her ankles and lower legs. Once the cramps subsided, he got her a couple of bananas and forced her eat them saying that the potassium in the fruit would reduce such cramping episodes. Geet was amazed by Maan's knowledge on the subject and asked him how did he know so much. Maan smiled and took out one of the pregnancy books. He said that he has read it from cover to cover in order to prepare himself for all the symptoms of pregnancy and tackle them the best way he can. He then leaned forward and gently kissed his wife's lips before settling her back comfortably on the bed. He caressed her head lovingly till she fell back to sleep.
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