First of all, I'm really sorry I couldn't update yesterday as promised. I got stuck :-( But, I've resolved things now and while I still don't think it's as good as it it can be, I'm going to go ahead and post it. There's always the next time for improvements, right? Right...
A big thank you @ everyone who liked the SS so far. You made my day!
@shaimah, @ashred12. @mohseensa, @Priyamvada, @Dancedevil, @princess14, @madhu_sridhar, @pinks86, @desigirlx5, @me.san, @harshabashpam, @missingremix, @2cute4u_22, @lazzz, @subtlesapphire, @Naima.., @aaliya25, @IrUmIBrAhIm, @raveenamc, @NivRenDeewani, @Ishita131, @pkyek.rules, @senorzorro12, @amitasaily, @rev4eva, @anshuls, @unnatia - Thanks for taking out the time to comment. You rock!!
And now, without wasting further time on my bakar, here's the next and final part.
The room was quiet, the only sound being the beep of the machines by Manvi's bedside, a constant reminder of what she'd narrowly escaped. The lights had been dimmed, and the cool night breeze stirred the long curtains at the window slightly, casting quivering shadows on the opposite walls. Manvi was asleep, but she'd now turned to face Virat as he sat by her bedside, staring at her silently, not daring to move for fear of waking her. Not that he minded. He felt he could sit there forever, watching her as she rested. It was slightly pervy, maybe, but he'd come so close to losing her that just watching her comforted him like nothing else did.
She stirred suddenly, murmuring something he couldn't quite catch as she clutched her pillow tighter. A long strand of her hair escaped from the cursory ponytail it had been tied up in, gently brushing her cheek. Unable to restrain himself, Virat reached out slowly, brushing the errant lock back. He traced her cheek with his knuckle, holding his breath... And she suddenly turned again, this time nestling her cheek into his palm, softly whispering his name and smiling in her sleep. He stared at her, a tempest raging in his heart, his eyes mirroring the feelings he couldn't seem to contain. And as if on cue, she woke up, and looked straight into his eyes.
For a long moment, all that seemed to exist was him and her, and something that they couldn't even begin to define. She smiled softly, sleepily and reached out to touch his face lightly, and froze. Her face clouded over as she remembered just what had passed between them, and she closed her eyes, breathing deeply, trying to contain the feelings that were yearning to be expressed.
"What are you doing here?" she asked, not looking at him, her voice still a little raspy from sleep.
He swallowed and ran his slightly shaking hands through his hair. "I..." he began, but she chose that instant to meet his eyes and he fell silent, the familiar guilt tearing him up at the pain in her face. He cleared his throat softly and began again. "I wanted to speak to you, Manvi."
"Oh." She laughed softly, hollowly. "Got something else to say about how much of a fool I am?"
His insides clenched as he looked down at her desperately. "I am the fool. It was all me. Not you. You were never wrong."
"What happened? Scared I'll faint again if I hear you reject me again? Don't worry about sparing my feelings now, there's no danger of me dying anytime soon." He held his breath and listened to her, horrified, not just at her words but at the tone in which she said them.
"Manvi," he said hoarsely. "Manvi, don't..."
"Don't what?" She was smiling oddly now, a wry, heartbroken expression that twisted his gut. "Don't say the truth? Cos that's what it is... Don't worry, I don't mind much."
"What do you mean?" he asked warily.
She sighed. "How I feel is my business, Virat" she said, saying his name as if it were both a curse and a blessing. "I don't expect you to return my feelings. I definitely don't expect you to act as if you return them out of pity for me."
He'd evidently not learned anything from the whole fiasco, for his temper shot up again. "Pity!" he said harshly, clenching his teeth. "You think I pity you? You think I spent the last month or so hanging around your room like a fricking watchman because I PITY YOU??"
Manvi winced, but said nothing. He glared at her, willing her to understand, needing her to understand what it had been like for him. She met his glare calmly, passively. He'd never thought he'd use that word for her, ever. When she spoke, it was cool and measured. "Just leave, Virat. We have nothing left to say to each other."
He dragged his hand through his already disheveled hair and pinched the bridge of his nose. "I love you, Manvi." he said seriously, his voice laced with desperation and a tinge of fear.
"Exactly how dumb do I look to you, Virat? When I told you that I love you, you yell at me... Now you come and tell that YOU love me. The only thing that's changed between then and now is that you've found out that I was severely ill. You pity me, and I DON'T NEED THAT!!!" Manvi yelled, sounding equally frustrated.
"Are you daft, you silly girl? Pity aur pyaar mein farak samajh mein nahin aata kya tumhe? You are the most aggravating person I know, by god!! You..." Virat all but screamed, before what she said registered. "You love me." He smiled suddenly, stepping closer to her.
"You just said 'when I told you I love you', not 'when I told you I loved you'... You still love me", he said, with a devilish grin.
Manvi picked up her pillow and threw at him. "Just get away from me, Mr.Chep. I don't have the time for this wordplay. YOU said you hated me. YOU said you didn't believe in love. YOU said I was a 'goddarn li'l fool'", she ranted, counting off each of his phrases against her finger.
"Shut up," he hissed, grabbing her by her shoulders and pulling her close. "Just shut up. Don't remind me of what I said, ok? You have no idea how much I regret that. And I actually have no reason to believe in love after what happened to me. I would given love a chance again if you hadn't forced your way into my heart, you annoying brat!! " He let her go and turned away. "I thought she had ruined me for love forever," he muttered.
"She? Tumhare life mein koi aur thi?" Manvi asked, suddenly looking murderous.
"Yes." He collapsed on the chair next to the bed again. "But she needn't bother you at all. She's history. She..." his voice trailed off.
"She what?" Manvi pressed, her face flushed with the heat of the argument.
"She left me! She left me for my biggest business rival the instant it became clear I was in trouble," he said hotly, shocked to hear the unsteadiness in his voice. "I thought she loved me, and she deserted me. I thought you loved me and you
nearly left me as well..." Feeling his eyes burn, he got up and walked away, not ready to let Manvi see him cry. He stalked to the half-open window and threw it ajar, breathing in the cool night air, trying desperately to calm himself down.
There was absolute silence in the room once again. Virat continued to look out the window, half-afraid to turn around and face Manvi. "Now do you understand why I spoke as I did that day? I've been hurt, Manvi. I'm scared..." he admitted quietly, leaning his head against the windowpane. He started as he felt a hand against his shoulder, sighing as it went around him. His eyes closed shut, a tear finally escaping as they stood there for a while, him leaning against the window, her leaning against him, taking comfort in their proximity.
A few minutes later, he turned to face her. She gazed at him quietly, her big eyes filled with tears. "I'm sorry," she said softly, snuggling closer as he buried his face in her hair, holding her close. He smiled tiredly, feeling as though he had fought with the world and emerged victorious. "You don't have to apologize to me, Manvi", he said, lifting her face up so that he could look at her properly. She smiled radiantly. "Not even when I break your things?" she asked, mischief gleaming in her eyes. "No." She drew back, and put her finger on her chin, pretending to think hard. "And if I make you my 'special' chai? "I love your chai. No apologies required." She grinned. "What if I call you 'chep' in front of everybody 'by mistake'? Virat shook his head. "That is the best nickname I've ever had, you know. Why would you have to apologize for that?"
Manvi laughed, walking back towards the bed. She smiled at him fondly as he tucked her in and sat down next to her. "Will you sing for me now, Virat?" she asked softly, cuddling into his side. "Of course I will, babe... Anytime you want, any song you want," he affirmed, pulling her close.
"So sing to me right now."
"You may be... thodi thodi si deewani
"Just a li'l bit crazy
"But baby, you're the one!
So that's it, people, that's the end!! Thanks for reading so far!! Hope you enjoyed this... Till next time!!
Edited by divya86 - 21 November 2011 at 10:52am