Ashutosh was in his study at home, and after a long time he had come home other than to sleep. In his study he was reflecting on the maelstrom of changes that have hit his life since Nidhi returned. Some recollections were pleasant whilst others hurt. After sometime he opened his drawer to pull out something, it was a file where he had kept two things that were close to him, one was a picture of Nidhi that he had taken two years ago, she was in the children"s ward and surrounded by Shehensha and the other children. It had been taken when he had heard them talking about a picnic, even before that he had fallen in love with her, her spontaneity ,her instinctive ability with the children, how so easily she had brought him in her wave of positivity, he the unloved one who had someone who made him feel loved.
Lost in his thoughts, he had not realized that someone had entered the room, It was Armaan. After his interaction with Nidhi, he wanted to talk to Ashutosh,to know how he felt about it all, as much as he was close to Ashu, Armaan had grown to appreciate Nidhi a lot, he knew perfectly well that beneath the youthful looks was a woman of character, who had suffered due to the insecurities of his friend. Armaan had realized that after seeing her breaking down.
-Ashu, said Armaan. What is going on? As Ashutosh reacted, Armaan noticed something falling from his lap. It was a picture of a smiling Nidhi and some papers, as he collected them, he realized that they were the deeds for the house that Baba had given to Nidhi. The same house that last time had been the cause of their separation and later their union. He knew that Nidhi had given the house back to Ashu but he never knew what Ashutosh had done with it.
-Ashu, these are the papers for the house na' said Armaan.
- Yeah, the very house that linked us together, the house I had so many dreams about, the house I wanted to make a home in, with Nidhi.
-But Ashu what's stopping you?
-Armaan two years ago, out of my own selfishness, maybe an over consciousness of society or simply a need not to preserve Nidhi from the harshness of a society that would have branded her, I ended up hurting the one woman, the only woman who has wormed her way to my life, to my soul. I kept wondering whether it was a dream I could allow myself to indulge in or a reality that I could make mine. She has come back now, I know she is hurt, I know I am the cause but how do I make her realize, accept that I still love her, I care for her'
Armaan found himself in a strange situation, he was privy to the feelings of two people who wanted the same thing love each other, yet, their own actions, society, their feelings are now preventing them from going ahead.
-Ashu, last time, she was the butterfly that came to shake your world, to make you realize what love was, to fall in love, this time it"s your turn to do the work. In a way this time destiny is making you fight for your love. Last time it was her turn and now yours.
With these words Armaan left him to his thoughts. Ashu realized the truth of his words, it felt good in a way to have some else echo what he wanted to do , hearing it made it more real.
The days that followed both were neck deep in their professional activities, for Ashutosh it was enough that she was still around. There were times when they had to work together and to both it seemed that their ability to read each other had gone stronger. So far neither ventured on the personal ground again,yet many around had noted the underlining tension between the two.
It was yet another night duty Nidhi had been having a strange feeling of unease for the past few days.At first she put it down to the tension with Ashutosh but this time there was no relief even in her work which had been her lifeline for the past two years. She appreciated how perfectly attuned they both were but she just didn't want to cross the line. She loved him, still love and will still love him. Lost in her thoughts it took her a few minutes to realize that she was being beeped.
She was spurred in action on realizing that she was being called to the ER. Rushing there, she immediately started focusing on the facts being thrown at her, there had been a major road accident and the injured were being sent to the ER of KGh.
Seconds later she was ready for action with team, she had been called in as there was a child involved.As the ambulance neared and the injured were being wheeled in, she felt as if rooted on the spot. In front of her was Khushi the daughter of Anji and Rangnath, to make matters worse she saw an injured Anji being brought in.
She knew that she could not break down now not when the one who had been her support in time of need now required her support. Holding to these thoughts she started to sort things out checking Khushi out. She was about to hold a syringe when she felt a hand on hers, it was Ashutosh.
-Dr Verma what are you doing?
-You should not be there and you know it.
-Dr Mathur, I am where I should be doing what I should be doing that is saving a life. Right now, you are preventing me from carrying on with my job.
Ashutosh knew that she of all people should not be there, he knew the relationship that Anji and Nidhi shared and was worried about whether she would be too emotionally involved to deal with the case objectively, yet he felt that she needed to be there and preferred to move to the sideline for the time being , be there for her when she would need him.
She could feel his presence around and yet it annoyed her, in her mind it was as if he wanted her to break. Bucking up she decided that no she would give him the privilege of seeing her break down once more , she needed to be strong for herself and for Anji.
A few hours later after having stabilized khushi who had been brought in the ward and checked on Anji, she finally made it to her cabin. Barely had she stepped in that she was rendered speechless, it was as if time had gone back to the past where she was in the cabin when he stepped back in. In the dimly lit cabin she could make out the silhouette of someone she would have recognized any where.
-Dr Mathur, what can I do for you? She asked in a voice she hoped to sound professional.
Since Khushi"s admission she has been trying to stick to that professional identity and not break and she desperately tried to hold on.
-Nidhi, he said in that soft tone he used to utilize when they were alone, when he used to be there when she needed him...