Joined: 26 June 2007
Hi Hi! This is Hayley and I'm back! I got lots of wonderful suggestions and the best I could collectively pull out from all of it was that you guys desperately wanted a less gloomy story than mySS : Holding On and Letting Go and the end of my FF : Tearing Ourselves Apart (Check out my indexfor my other works) So I thought I would write something a bit more happy (with its own ups and downs of course). Anyone wanting emails for updates, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org because I am not sending PM's anymore, even non I-F members can send a request :)
So this story is just something for everyone to read when you need some ArHi time, I haven't planned the story and will make it up as I go along, so don't expect an elaborately planned plot! This one is for good reads and (hopefully) enjoyable words about our favourite two characters.
It starts out sometime after the new year in ArHi world, place it where you like, it's quite open... Pleasant reading folks !
With a sigh, she lifted herself off her blanket and watched the children across the street from the window laugh and play with each other, smiling at their innocence. Her sister was gone and the sun was high in the sky, its heat, beading her head with droplets of sweat that should not have been there in the month of January. Suddenly realising that she had overslept by a large margin she fluttered out of bed and dashed towards the bathroom, walking around with a fizzing foam of toothpaste in her mouth as she grabbed things that she needed and flung them into the colourful fabricated bag at the foot of her bed.
She was supposed to go and help Anjali with decorating the house for the function they were holding that night for Aakash's last birthday as an unmarried man, despite his reluctance. She knew that Anjali would be too busy to even notice that Khushi was well over reasonably late, but that was not the reason for the jittering butterflies in her stomach.
He was a whole different problem.
He hadn't seen her for about a week and he was glad to have had that many days to recompose himself, if anything, he thought they were insufficient. He stood facing his wardrobe, looking at the different colours in front of him, trying to decide which one to wear. After realising what the reason behind his sudden self consciousness was, he turned away and roughly grabbed at a dark red jumper, pulling it over his head like a child angry at his mother for making him dress for school and started marching downstairs to help his Di put decorations up.
He found himself whisking around the pillar he was working on every few minutes to check on the door and then back at the clock again to complain internally why she wasn't there, and every time he did, he felt like stabbing himself out of anger. Why did he care so much? Why was he always so aware when she was around? He shook his head violently as he thought of how she had looked lying next to him, removing the image of her beautiful eyes that haunted him, even in his sleep.
His heart drove through his head, reminding him of what he had felt when he had seen her.
Want and desire tore at him as he thought of how much he had wanted to touch her. Feel the softness of her skin against him, let her warmth take over him and taste her lips...
He shook his head even more violently than last time, stumbling as the sudden movement made him unstable on his feet. As he fell forward he caught a glimpse of dark red, feeling the elated sensation he did whenever she was close.
Why did everything always go so wrong when she was there?
He let his quick reflexes stop him short of falling flat on his face and looked up to face her wide eyes staring right back at him, stopping him from breathing. He wasn't sure if she was real this time, because somehow, she looked even better than the last time he had seen her, and he didn't think that was even possible.
He started slowly walking towards her as everything around him seemed to melt into something that didn't matter, into nothingness. All that he saw was her and he had waited long enough.
Before he even knew it, he was standing close to her, staring into the eyes that were looking right back.
She inhaled sharply, as he watched her, suddenly making her feel very aware of herself. The intensity of his gaze had her lost so far away that she wasn't sure she would ever find her way back. All she knew was that he was getting closer, and he ended up being so near that she could feel his body heat radiating out towards her. If she closed her eyes, she was sure she would be able to hear his rapidly beating heart, but she knew if it was one thing she could not do that very moment, it was closing her eyes.
She realised how easy she found losing herself completely when he was around. His strong jaw and handsome features made her heart melt, but it was more than just that. It was all of him. Everything about him made her want him to steal her heart, and she would offer no defence. Only stand by watching as he took everything that was dear to her, because despite everything that he had done with her, she was sure he would guard it with his life. She didn't know how she knew that. She just did.
That voice brought both of them reeling out of where their minds had been, landing harshly back on the ground.
Arnav rolled his eyes in frustration as he heard his cousins voice. He had been annoyed at NK's flamboyancy and loudness before, his affection for Khushi had made him angry and the fact that he touched Khushi when they danced made him hate his cousin with a passion. It did not help that he had shown up with a bouquet of red roses for her at midnight.
How dare he?
He turned, still breathing rapidly from his encounter with Khushi and watched angrily as NK made his way towards them arms stretched out wide, preparing himself for a hug. He imagined NK holding her close, his arms wrapped around her back.
Khushi looked nervously from NK, approaching her with arms open, back to Arnav who caught her eyes for a split second before stepping away from her. She felt her heart drop in disappointment as she tried to think of how to get out of hugging NK, for fear of it being very awkward.
She didn't have to though, because as she watched Arnavs retreating back, she saw him swiftly stick a leg out, bringing NK falling down to the floor. He threw his arms out and fell towards her, and Khushi closed her eyes and braced herself for the collision that never came. Instead, she felt a familiar warm hand grab strongly on to her arm and pull her sideways before she hit something solid with a lot less violence than she had imagined.
She didn't want to open her eyes because she knew she would give in once she looked up at him holding on to her. The feel of his hand pressed up against her back, pulling her closer into him was enough to make her forget everything, she didn't need the added pressure of his eyes looking at her too.
"Are you...I mean, watch what you are doing!" he scowled, taking advantage of the fact that she was not looking at him.
"OW!" NK shouted, holding on to his ankle and frowning in pain.
The sound made Arnav flinch and he let go of Khushi as she kept her eyes closed, watching her for a second before turning and briskly walking away from the pair of them.
"Ow! My ankle, Khushi Ji, Oh Khushi ji, please help me" NK begged, looking up at Khushi as her eyes flew open and she looked around herself in confusion, searching for something before finding him sprawled on the ground.
"Nanhe ji!?" she exclaimed, bending down to help him up.
"I'm really sorry I won't be able to help you decorate the poolside like we planned" NK sadly said, more disappointed at the fact that he wouldn't be able to spend time with her rather than the fact that she would have to do all that work on her own.
"It's okay Nanhe Ji" Khushi smiled, her old Khushi smile "You rest your ankle, I can manage the decorations, you just make sure you get it better before the sangeet so we can perform together."
NK's face dropped for a second "Oh, I forgot about that! Don't worry Khushi ji, my ankle will definitely be okay by then, it's only a sprain."
Khushi sent him a reassuring smile and left NK's room, thinking of why Arnav would trip his own cousin. She made her way down to the kitchen, picking up a box of decorative lights, flowers and floating lanterns helpfully labelled 'poolside' by Anjali before climbing up the stairs towards the place where she held so many memories with him, convincing herself on the way that maybe the whole fall had just been an accident.
She watched the dancing reflections of light from the floating lanterns as they hit the water interphase in the pool, shimmering and changing forms as it glowed along with the hundreds of tiny light bulbs that gracefully adorned the tree's making up his beloved poolside. She admired her work, looking at every single flower, carefully placed around the open space, filling it up with the scent of a wild forest, clashing against the hazy yellow light cast by the glowing bulbs.
She looked over at the box where there was a few lanterns and a line of hanging lights left and she rubbed her hands together eagerly reaching down towards the box when a voice made her freeze.
"What are you doing here?" he called, surprised to find her.
She looked up at the man that made her breath catch in her throat and stood up straight, flattening out her dress as he looked on at her incredulously.
"What are you doing?" he repeated.
Khushi only looked at him, not understanding why he was so confused. She looked around at the decorated poolside "I was putting up the..." she said absentmindedly, pointing up around her at the lights before she remembered his tone "not that it has anything to do with you" she finished, as he furiously snapped up at her.
"THIS IS MY HOUSE" he strained through a clenched jaw, trying his best to keep his wild rage in check.
"And this is my Jeeju ji's birthday" she shot back, turning around in a huff towards the box only to find Arnav hold on to her arm roughly and turn her back around to face him, anger evident in his eyes.
He took in the feel of her against him, before letting the anger take over.
"Khushi Kumari Gupta, don't you dare speak to me like that."
"What!? What are you going to do about it?" she replied confidently, matching his anger with her strength.
He clenched his jaw to refrain from shouting at her like he had when she had slapped him "Don't push me Khushi, you know that I can do anything."
Khushi gulped, trying her best to swallow her fear, breaking her strong exterior as the words he spoke set in, she knew it was true, but would he ever do anything to intentionally hurt her..?
"Now get out" he said, voice barely above that of a whisper, with all the menace of its missing loudness.
She shook her head unconsciously, not realising how that small action made him furious. He tightened his grip around her wrist, pulling her closer to him so that her face was only inches away from his, heat radiating around them from all the anger and intensity of their unidentified emotions.
"What part of get out don't..." he was interrupted by a voice calling out towards them and he was thankful that it stopped him spewing his venom words at Khushi again.
"Khushi ji!" Anjali called, walking towards the poolside where they stood.
Arnav pushed her away, watching as she stumbled and took a step backwards to steady herself. The yellow light around them made her eyes shine like bright honey orbs, calling him in towards her, making his anger fade away, replaced by pure awe.
Khushi tore herself away from his gaze, turning to face Anjali who had just walked in and took her time to admire the work they had done.
"You both did this?" she said to herself, looking around at the open space that looked like a little piece of paradise, the cool blue water setting a disparity against the calmness of the trees and lights.
Khushi was too busy thinking of Arnav to respond to Anjali who continued to speak after having taken the view in.
"You both really work well together" she murmured.
Arnav's head snapped up, about to speak up and say how he could never work with someone like Khushi and actually do something productive when she got there first.
"A...Anjali ji, I should probably go, I'm glad you like it" she smiled, starting to walk past her, away from him.
Anjali held on to her arm softly, so different from her brother she thought. She felt a pang of guilt at the news she was hiding from Anjali. The fact that her husband was unfaithful and cheating, and as much as she worshipped him, he didn't give a damn. The guilt clawed away at her insides but she put it away, remembering how she was taught as a child that hiding the truth was the better option sometimes, if someone was going to get seriously hurt.
"Khushi ji, what are you saying, I didn't invite you over to come and work and then go home! You are staying for the party."
Khushi anxiously looked over at Arnav who was looking back at her intently before looking down at what she was wearing.
"But Anjali ji, I didn't bring, I mean, I didn't even think about that, I don't have anything to change into, and I can't go in this" she indicated down at her dark red dress which she had been working in all day. She hoped the excuse would be sufficient to get away, from him, because she wasn't sure what she would end up doing if she stayed around him for too long.
"Di, there is no need for her to..." a stern look from his older sister silenced him immediately and he stomped off with one last look at Khushi, making sure to express his disappointment, quite the opposite of what his heart was thinking.
"Khushi ji, I would give you some of my clothes, but you will probably think they are really old fashioned, but we have some of Lavanya's new clothes that she left behind, you can just wear what you like from there!" she said excitedly, dragging a hesitant Khushi behind her.
Arnav stood at the top of the steps leading away from the poolside, holding his chest over his heart which was thudding loudly in its place. His world was spinning, and he found that that seemed to happen surprisingly often, well, since he had met her.
He closed his eyes, only to snap them open when all he saw through the darkness was the picture of her bright eyes. He thought he was going crazy, what was he going to do? He didn't know why he had become so angry seeing her. He couldn't think straight anymore, he couldn't control his senses around her. His mind took him places he didn't want to go, because he knew he could never unsee what his mind showed him. He could never unwant her once he had imagined what it must be like to have her.
He could never remove the image of those luminous eyes when they looked at him, back with the same ferocity he knew he felt.
So that is it really, I haven't decided at all what I am going to do with this, whether to keep it an OS, SS or a FF, it really depends on how much you guys like/dislike it. Please do leave likes (it only takes a click!) and comments, I love reading them !
Btw - I will send out PM's later, a bit busy atm, so don't get upset if you read this before I send them out!
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