Hello All... THANK YOU AGAIN.. So Aham finally has come home and has brought Deepika with him.. Well it will take some time for both couples to become soul mates. Aham and Gopi are already on the job. So here is the next tiny step in their relation.
"Oh shoot.. Not the engaged tone again.. Who is Bhai talking to? Bhabhi is right in front of him.." Jigar was vexed. He did not know what he needed to do. As he was halfway to the airport he realized that in his hurry and due to the 'plan' he had totally forgotten to ask Aham the name of the guest and he now realized in the airport that his foolproof plan of having a Modi Industries board was not working... He was now in a fix. "I better go home and then maybe both Bhai and me can track the person down.."
"Excuse sir.. That madam says that if you are not by your car in another 2 minutes she will break your window..." A small boy with a chocolate in hand conveyed the message and ran away.. "WHAAT.. Hey stop.. Who" Jigar was perplexed.. He started walking to the parking lot as fast as his legs could carry him. "How dare she.. But who would dare?.. and my car?"
Jigar got the shock of his life when he neared the car. He could see someone in the front seat eating a sandwich and looking around.. Jigar ran to the car and looked inside. Second Heart attack. "I think I died and I am seeing Deeps in the car.. Or is it a dream? Am I still sleeping?" Jigar looked at Deepika inside the car and he could get no words out..
"So Mr. Jigar Chirag Modi, if you are finished staaring at the me and at my sandwich can you start this car? I am hot, I am hungry and I need some sleep..." He heard the well known voice.. "I am dreaming.. Deepu.. Deeps is that you? I do not believe it." "Well believe it.. Its me and I am spitting mad.. I have been waiting for 3 hours with all this luggage and you Modi brothers just left me here to die.. Aham Bhai I can forgive.. Poor guy has never been in his right mind... But Jigar Modi.. What happened to you? Three years I am not there and you become this?.. Hello.. Anybody there???" Deepika got out of the car and waved her hand in front of Jigar's face.
"So you are the mystery guest of Bhai? Where did he ever find you?" Jigar was still in a state of shock.. "Certainly not from the zoo but that is where it seems you have come straight from.. Jigar get a grip.. I am not a genie.. Lets get moving.. I want to eat good food after 2 days and I am H.U.N.G.R.Y." Deepika continued. "Oh.. Ok.. Sorry Deepika.. Here let me start the car and I am sure Mom made something special today. We will be home in 15 minutes.." Jigar got into the car. His mind was still reeling under the fact that he had seen Deepika.. He was also suddenly feeling shy after seeing her. "Get a grip Jigar. She is Deeps.. Your friend and she is back.. Now get going.. She is hungry and you know that hungry Deepika is worse than angry Deepika.." Jigar's mind was playing havoc. Silence reigned in the car. "hmm Jigar.."
Deepika would start and then she would stop. She was feeling awkward and would have been grateful if Jigar had started a conversation. By the time the car reached MB, Deepika was fast asleep..
"Here we are Deepika. Get.." Jigar turned around to see Deepika asleep. He smiled. "The
storm has subsided. Maybe she was tired." Jigar got out of the car and went to the passenger's side. He slowly shook Deepika awake. "Deeps we are home.. Deepika.. Wake up.." "Huh.. Where am I and Jigar.. How did you find me?." "Hey Deeps.. You are at Modi Bhavan.." Jigar smiled. Deepika was always disoriented after her sleep. She once had confused the hostel room to Modi Bhavan and had shouted for Mani ben close to half an hour.. Deepika got down from the car slowly. Suddenly it was her turn to feel shy..
"You go in and I will bring your bags. Mom should be in the house.." Deepika nodded and walked towards Modi Bhavan.. A second home for her ...
"Jigar Jiju.. Did you see Aham Jiju? He is home and see what he got me.." Panna was in full chatter mode as Jigar made his way to the door. He saw Panna come to a screeching halt in front of Deepika and look up at her quizically. "Who are you? Do you want someone? You look
like Jigar Jiju's friend in the photo" She informed respectfully but she was slowly hiding the toy behind her back.. "Hello. I am Deepika. I am your Jiju's friend and I am here to stay in Modi Bhavan for some days. Who are you little girl?" Deepika asked. "I am Panna Modi and I am not a little girl. Gopi ben says I am almost 4 feet tall and I am the tallest in my class.." Jigar smiled as Panna proudly replied. "Oh. Sorry Panna. You are a big girl aren't you? See I am lost.. Can you help me? Friends?" Deepika replied. Panna was really impressed and she immediately brought out her hand to shake with Deepika.
"Deepu beta.. Is that you? Oh.. How long has it been? Where did you get lost? Come on in.. What are you waiting for? Jigar, why did you not tell me she was coming?" Jigar saw his mom rush towards Deepika and hug her. His Kaki was also coming towards them with a smile on her face. "Come in Deepu. Aham said you will find Jigar.." She said and grinned. Deepika immediately took her blessings from his Mom and Kaki. Her eyes were filled with tears. "I missed you Maaji, Kakiji. I did not know how much till now.." She continued. He could see his mom's eyes filling up and his Kaki hugging Deepika. Jigar found a small hand link his his and pull. "Jigar Jiju.. She is really beautiful.. Just like in the photo. Why did you call her a hellcat?" Panna asked him in a loud whisper. "You did what?" Deepika turned around to see Jigar running up to the guest room with her luggage.. Everybody laughed as they saw her expression.. Then Deepika herself broke into a laugh.. It was good to be home..
"Ahamji.. Do you know what Deepika ben just did.. " Gopi walked into their room to see Aham standing near the window holding on to the sill.. She slowly walked towards him. His posture seemed to radiate tension and Gopi was suddenly worried.. "Is he hurt? He seemed to be quiet after we came back from the temple. What can be wrong?" she thought. It had been a dream at the temple. Aham had joined her and Maaji during the worship. He had taken her hand and had told her that he would be with her for always and they had done the pooja together. She had been in the seventh heaven.
"Ji.. What is wrong?" She asked as she placed a hand on his upper arm. She was stunned to see the pain in his face. "What is it? Are you hurt?" She pulled him towards the bed and made him sit down. Aham just held on to her hands for a few minutes as she stood facing him and did not speak for sometime.. "What is it Ahamji?" Aham still had not uttered a word. Gopi waited. She knew he would soon let her know what was troubling him.
"Bhabhi.. Bhai is still insecure. He does not show it. But he is still haunted by what he put you through. I just wanted to let you know." Deepika had told her when they had a private moment. Gopi had looked up surprised but she had seen the sincerity in Deepika's eyes and had been touched. "I will keep that in mind. I promise." She had said. "I know Bhabhi. That is why I told you. I do not want you get hurt if he is silent and all." Deepika had added and hugged a surprised Gopi.
So now she waited for Aham to say what was troubling him.
"It was just 20 hours Gopi.. Just 20.. How did you sustain yourself for more than a year. It felt like my heart was breaking every second.. And the pain of loss..Gopi.. I will never forgive myself. I am such a jerk." Aham said facing down Gopi finally understood. "Ahamji.. will you look at me please?" She asked. Then when he did not respond, she took his face in her hands and made him look at her. She saw his face ravaged by doubts and most of all pain.
Pain for the pain he had caused her. Gopi's throat had a catch but she continued because she
understood instintively that he needed her comfort.
"Ahamji.. Look into my eyes. Do you anything except happiness and love in them?" She asked gently. Aham for the first time seemed to search her eyes and tried to read its depths. Gopi looked on as he searched her face.. "There is no pain.. No fear.." she heard Aham say with wonder. "Yes Ahamji. How can there be pain and fear? You changed that long back. I am so happy now Ahamji that I cannot describe. We cannot ever change our past. But we can decide
our future right? When a beautiful future awaits us why do we have to think of the past? hmm.." She said. "Oh Gopi.. If it was that easy to forget.." Aham suddenly hugged her by the waist and Gopi could feel his tears on her skin. She soothed him, rubbing his back with one hand and placing her other hand on his hair. After sometime Aham had calmed himself enough but he did not let her go. "So Ahamji.. You forgot.. Where is my present? Or did you try forgetting that too?" Gopi tried to lighten the mood by changing the topic. "Oh yeah.. Of course I did not forget.. How can I? Here come with me.." Aham took Gopi by her hand to the dresser. It seemed he was loath to let her go. But his mood was getting better.
On the dresser was a box wrapped in gift wrapper and a big card on top. It was shaped like a heart and Gopi looked up.. "Deepu" was all Aham would say and Gopi smiled.. "But I wrote the
words myself" Aham added..
"To my wife and love.. Always yours, love Aham" the card said. Gopi opened the box and let out a huge breath. The set was breathtaking. "Its beautiful.. I love it." She said as she touched the small red pendant in the shape of a heart that seemed to shine above all others.
Aham was looking at her with a mixture of hope and pain. Pain as he remembered one other similar night when he had broken her heart. But as he saw her happiness he was comforted.
She is right.. Why think of the past when the future held so much hope.. Gopi took the pendant out and opened it. "Do you like it?" Aham asked her as she looked up at him. She could not control her tears. The pendant had their picture engraved with a A & G in it. She could not believe Aham could be so open with his feelings. "Oh.. No tears Gopi. Not anymore.." Aham said and wrapped his hands around his wife He did not realize he was himself crying.
"Your room looks so different now" Deepika walked in to Jigar's room. "Well 3 years is a long time. It is a lifetime for some people." Jigar looked up from the file he was going through to answer Deepika. Then silence. It seemed both were looking for the other to start the conversation.
"I am sorry Jigar for not being there for you." Deepika tried again. "It's not your fault. And what could you have done.." Jigar said then sighed as he saw Deepika's face droop. "Deeps I really did not mean it that way.." "Its Ok. I was absent for 3 years and you have all right to be cross." "It's not that Deeps. I just.." "Forget that Jigar. Lets forget the drab moments for a bit. I came in to give you this.. A belated Birthday present." Deepika handed over a package to Jigar.
"Oh.. What is it.. Thanks by the way." Jigar opened the present and looked up confused. "A shaving kit. Deeps you got me a shaving kit.. For what?" "Well I wanted you to quit being devdas for sometime." "What?" "Sorry.. I just thought you may need it.." Deepika smiled cheekily but immediately realized that she had hit a nerve when she saw Jigar's face darken.. "Sorry Jigar. Stupid me.. I was trying to tease.. My big mouth.. See that is not your present. This is .. Don't look so angry. See I am holding my ears." Deepika pleaded.
Jigar opened his other present with forboding. It seemed his best friend had somewhere lost her mind in the three years.. "You did not..The van gogh.. How did you?.. Where.." "Ah Jigar my friend.. I knew I could make you speechless. And yes before you ask, this is the same one.. An imitation but still not a bad replica." "Oh Deeps. You remembered" Jigar looked at the painting he had loved during his final year at college. He had not been able to get even a bad replica. Deepika had remembered.
"Thank you so much Deeps." Jigar hugged Deepika. "I am so glad you are back. I missed you.."
Deepika grinned ear to ear. "I missed you too Jigar. Now don't crush me.. I just had a full dinner." She said "We have so much to catch up on.." Jigar pulled her to the sofa and started off.. "Thank God for small mercies. Atleast he is talking now.." thought Deepika as she looked at Jigar shooting questions at her. She could see her old friend again.. She promised herself that
she would make sure that the old Jigar returned back as she prepared to defend his barrage of questions..
"No Deeps. Not today.." "But I am asking you to take me only in the evening." "I have some files to complete.." "You can do that tomorrow." "Deepika understand. I need to complete the files.." Deepika's face fell. She was trying to make Jigar come out of the self imposed exile.
"Jigar. Take her out. She has come back after a long time. Her heart is set on going out today.."
His mom came in telling Jigar. "No Maaji. It is ok. His work is important too.." Deepika said. She did not want Jigar to be presurrized. "Maybe I am going too fast." She thought.
"Hetal is right. You have worked without a break for the past one month. And this will be a good break. I am there. I will take care if something come up.. Even Aham was telling me how you needed a break after working non-stop.. Go on Jigar.." Chirag chipped in..
Jigar could not say no. "Ok Papa. Deepu be ready by 6. I will pick you up then.." "Yeah!! Thanks Papa,.. Jigar.. I will be ready." Deepika happily chirped as she hugged Hetal behind her back.
Jigar looked up and smiled as he saw Hetal lay a hand on Deepika's chin and laugh.
"Mom seems to smile now that Deeps is here" thought Jigar as he sat down to breakfast
"No Mr. Solanki. I need the file on my desk in 20 minutes. I will be looking at it first thing when I reach office." Aham was talking on his phone and was trying to button up his cuffs at the sametime. "Ji.. Juice." Gopi walked in and immediately fell silent seeing him on the phone.. Aham looked up and smiled at her. He had felt refreshed that morning even after the long flight. He had fallen asleep holding on to Gopi's hand as she had slowly and methodically run her fingers in his hair until he slept. He had finally felt a sense of peace.
Gopi came in and saw Aham struggle with the buttons. She placed the juice on the night stand and it seemed the most natural thing for her to go and help him with his buttons. She placed a hand on his cuff and looked up. Aham looked down surprised as Gopi walked towards him and touched his hand. "Yes Mr. Solanki, the budget file also needs some changes. I have added some notes..Hmm.." He extended his hand and listened to SOlanki talk as he saw Gopi concentrate on his button. He smiled softly.
Once she was done Gopi looked up to see Aham winding up his call. She turned and found her hand pulled. "Thank you. But I need to rush. But I promise I will be home early today." Aham said.
"Ji. Here have this juice atleast. Maaji told me you were having breakfast at office. I will send in lunch early." Gopi said. She suddenly felt shy under his gaze.
"Hmm.. Bye Gopi. You eat well ok.. And Deepu.." "Ahamji I wanted to talk to you about her. It is good that you brought her here. Maybe today evening.." Aham smiled. It seemed his wife had already reached the same conclusion as he had. "yeah.. We will.. Bye."
Aham picked up his laptop bag and rushed out. Gopi smiled as she saw him go out. But suddenly Aham turned and rushed back. He came in front of her and, "I love you Gopi." Aham placed a hand on her cheek for a second and rushed back outside leaving a surprised Gopi gaping.
Comments and Feedback please.. And Thank you soo much again.. Couldn't help putting in pieces of Gopi and Aham.. Stay tuned for the next update.. Will have one ready by tomorrow..