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Arhi FF |Mohabat Door Jaane Na De| *Complete!* #2 (Page 68)

damonzlady Goldie
damonzlady
damonzlady

Joined: 29 April 2012
Posts: 1463

Posted: 30 June 2012 at 11:56am | IP Logged
ur FF iz jus 2 gud fo wordz, flawless!Clap jus luv it!

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saomom IF-Rockerz
saomom
saomom

Joined: 17 July 2010
Posts: 5013

Posted: 30 June 2012 at 5:05pm | IP Logged
Just dropping by to do some stalking...  

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rockinggirl5 Goldie
rockinggirl5
rockinggirl5

Joined: 05 February 2012
Posts: 1652

Posted: 01 July 2012 at 3:25pm | IP Logged
Wow... That was so beautiful. I don't know to tell you how good that was. It was perfect. Amazing update!!! I can't wait to read the next part. Please continue soon.

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-veena.shona- IF-Dazzler
-veena.shona-
-veena.shona-

Joined: 21 April 2010
Posts: 4777

Posted: 02 July 2012 at 12:24pm | IP Logged
wow wow wow!! jst read all d 32 chapps in 1 go n m suppa tired!! OuchROFL

jst wanna say u r a beautiful writer!!! i cld actually imagine d whole story in frnt of me!! CoolThumbs Up

PM me d next tym u update Big smile

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debby_11 IF-Rockerz
debby_11
debby_11

Joined: 16 August 2008
Posts: 6731

Posted: 03 July 2012 at 4:33am | IP Logged
fantastic ff :)

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indeedisa Groupbie
indeedisa
indeedisa

Joined: 30 March 2012
Posts: 195

Posted: 03 July 2012 at 10:36am | IP Logged
Aww, this is so beautiful. I've been a silent reader for a while actually, but your writing has made me want to break free! 
I love how you made Arnav, so ... you know, Arnav like, not like the ASR we've seen.
Keep on writing. Seriously, i check your thread everyday to see if you've updated!! Wink

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__blossom__ IF-Dazzler
__blossom__
__blossom__

Joined: 21 February 2012
Posts: 4156

Posted: 04 July 2012 at 4:15pm | IP Logged
hey...
I just came across your FF... And I can't explain how glad I am...read all the updates in one go...
And im speechless...the way you write...is so absorbing...attracting...I couldn't stop once I started...a great attempt I really hope if there has to be a redemption track ever...it should be like this...this was magical...
A very beautiful price of work...
Continue soon..
And plz pm me...love you!

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-doe-eyes- Goldie
-doe-eyes-
-doe-eyes-

Joined: 25 October 2011
Posts: 1228

Posted: 06 July 2012 at 1:44pm | IP Logged

Sigh. I'm sorry- I know this one has been a long time coming...but I'm currently using a VERY unreliable net connection which is a bit temperamental and goes off on its own. And I'm not the most patient person on earth :s Aaand...well, I've been wrestling with a writer's bloc and had practically no motivation to write. Probably has something to do with being surrounded by family and things to do, like being dragged out to shop for floor tiles, of all things :P So this one went through a lot of trimming, slashing and abuse and now I don't know what to make of it :( So I'm counting on you guys to let me know :) And tomorrow I'm launching a campaign for better internet, so please wish me luck so I can log on more often :P


Chapter Thirty Three

The minute he felt her willowy arms reach behind him, linking loosely against his back, he felt his breath vanish without a trace.

She was hugging him back.

This one moment that he had craved for, longed for, for who knew how long, now caught him thoroughly off guard, sending his heartbeat, delightedly playing its solo for the one person that had inspired its music, with the side of her face pressed against it, into a more frenzied tempo. Already, it had not been helped by the feel of her supple, achingly soft body folding gently into him. But he had had numerous teasing tastes of what that felt like in the past, always leaving him hungering for more, whether he admitted it to himself or not. Fate, after all, seemed to derive a playful pleasure in always thrusting Khushi into his arms, like a cyclical reminder of the fact that no number of denials would change that that was her rightful place.

This time was different.

True, there was no end to the innumerable times she had landed in his arms, starting from the moment they had first met. And gradually, during those months he had known Khushi, that secretive desire to hold her had crept inconspicuously into the lesser known fissures of his existence and silently taken root, and like ivy clambered up the chambers of his heart, crowding out his denials. And it had only been a few nights ago when he, holding a sleeping Khushi close to his form as they both lay on her mattress, had allowed the ivy to see light, and admitted to himself how badly, be it in his subconscious or otherwise, he had always wanted to feel her against him, always treasured those moments, to convince himself of her existence and his. How direly he had regretted not embracing her in that one moment when she had, willingly, torn through space towards him seeking comfort and security in his arms. How he had been mentally flogged by his shortcomings, moaned silently his remorse that he had been unable to steal away her pain.

And though the rampant drumbeats of his heart, the sudden dearth of air, his body feeling itself char wherever it touched hers, were the same as the telltale signals of every other time Khushi was this close to him (less accidental of late), there was something...different tonight. 

One of those tiny, perpetually screaming voices in the distance that had continued its shrill reproach at the back of his mind, since that day he had failed to draw her into his embrace, had finally fallen silent, robbed of its lament. And that silence, the long awaited solitude, beamed up at him with its heartiest congratulations, happy that he had, at last, brought to culmination a voyage left half-traversed. Peace found him at last.

The windows of his eyes shuttered out the rest of the world and his arms latched her to him more securely, his head automatically drooping lower, parched and begging to drown into the sweet flowery aroma of Khushi.

So this, he concurred, a small smile playing about his lips, is what heaven feels like...so this is bliss.

***

It was odd.

Just like hearing the crack of a whip, but not feeling its lash. Not feeling the pain.

But Khushi knew. She knew that there had been pain, knew that pain ought to be a recent, fresh memory. Knew that she had had only a few days reprieve from an endless vicious cycle of pain and agony and anguish.

Yet, despite that knowledge, which had crystallised into its place, immovable, within the annals of time, Khushi could not feel it any more. Try as she might, as she stood, held in place by a cosy warmth she had this urge to snuggle deeper into, Khushi could not bring herself to remember what had been the only too vivid remembrances of bruises and scars that had penetrated her to her marrow, leaving her destitute in the midst of the debris that once marked her existence. Perhaps it was because this warmth that had enveloped her, this warmth that she had the inexplicable need to own, to gather quickly for herself, that she needed to hold to herself so it would not be whisked away, had drugged her. Drugged her mind, where the neat little locomotives of thought had melted away, just as everything outside Khushi's restful new nook in the world had melted away, leaving behind a shimmering, cheerfully glowing haze.

Yes. Khushi was drugged by a contentment that she did not feel the need to understand. Her undoubtedly wild, undeniably erratic dhak dhak echoed the cadences of the thundering tune her ear was pressed against, each beat resonating through her body, rinsing out and revitalising each aspect of her that bore even the shadow of a wound. She could almost feel them, the testimonies of pain, evaporate, sparing not even a blemish to commemorate the wounds she had been host to. She felt the sinewy limbs encircling her wrap themselves about her even more completely, felt the coarseness of stubble brushing against her ear, felt her scent being drunk in by the face that buried itself into her hair. Her body resting, relaxing, against the outline of him, as though carved specifically for that purpose.

Yes, she needed this, she wanted this. This serenity, this peace, this contentment, this assurance, this security. This sense of being whole.  

Many nights ago, a story, her story, had been left incomplete, flailing pathetically with no hope of reaching ground, receding into the clutches of nothingness, cut off before it could see fulfilment. And with it a cavernous rift had been ripped into her existence, and she had been on the very brink of falling into its endless, harrowing depths. Her journey had almost been like mounting a gigantic, imposing ferris wheel, the types of which she could remember from early childhood. The types that had always excited her curiosity, had incited a mild resentment towards Bauji or Amma for never letting her ride one. That night, a night when her story was to witness its final chapter, before life changed forever, before she abounded on a new tale, had been no different from ride on that massive wheel- the same mix of anxiety and excitement, of thrill and unease, expectation and apprehension, all melded into one, his enigmatic words replaying in her head again and again, swinging her higher and higher to new extremes of exhilaration, making it impossible for her, her heart, her mind, to remain still.

Mujhe tumse baat karni hai...

How many times that night had she wondered what he wanted to say to her, how many times she had admonished her dhak dhak to quieten when it confidently bellowed what he would have, straining to keep herself from getting carried away. And how many nights since, harassed by elusive sleep and ubiquitous reality, had her self control shattered and she had unwarily, with a wide hollow yawning open within her, the wind whistling against its emptiness, wondered wistfully what he would have said to her, if only her much awaited ride on that ferris wheel, her wheel of fate, had not gone so badly wrong. How things might have been different if that wheel, which had lifted her high, higher, higher, on the wings of an alien elation, had not suddenly ground to a terrifying stop, and left her there, dangling precariously high above the ground, frozen there while time rushed ahead, with no means of escape. With only the choice of leaping off into the empty space below, the choice of forfeiting life rather than be spectator to it slipping vindictively out of her hands. The sudden loneliness, the sudden fear with its icy fingers grappling with her helpless self, the sudden death of light...

All seeming nothing more than a dream, a horrific nightmare, but nevertheless an ephemeral creation of the mind to be discarded, because its place had been taken graciously by a voice that she unknowingly yearned for...

...It matters Khushi, it always has-It matters that you could become someone else's, it matters because I want you to be mine! Only mine, forever Khushi...It matters to me that you exist Khushi...because I can't exist if you don't...

...That's what I would have said to you, Khushi...it wouldn't have been any different if it had been then, now, or later...

Words which in one breath had defaced beyond recognition the face of those same crystallised recollections of a painful past. Words which had completed her incomplete story, plugged the gap, had drawn that chapter to a close and turned a fresh page for a new beginning...the lights had sprung back to life, the music had started to play, her dhak dhak had returned with gusto and the ferris wheel had finally churned into motion, the cycle of its journey concluded, delivering her, safe and sound and whole, into the waiting, welcoming, comforting arms of...

...her husband.

If Khushi had not been so intoxicated, she might, perhaps, have noticed that she was smiling a small, gentle smile.

'Khushi?'

'Hmm?'

'Can I ask you a question now?'

'Yes?' Softly. Readily.

'Did you- do you- the lights, I mean. The star lights on the ceiling...do you like them?'

A small pause. Heartbeats in synchrony.

Dhak dhak. Dhak dhak.

'I love them.'

And they stood there, under the spell of a night that had brought, in its own mysterious ways, several incomplete chronicles full circle.

***

Payal was a spectator on the sidelines, her scrutiny unobtrusive, but eagle eyed. She did not miss that look of contentment that had settled across her Jethji's face as he sauntered leisurely into the dining room, pulled out a chair and quietly seated himself. In fact, that look of contentment was more pronounced than ever- just one tiny smile, and the impassiveness that she was used to seeing on his face had been phenomenally transformed.

Arnav Singh Raizada was a markedly changed man.

Gone was that formidable apathy that could silence his foes and make onlookers quake with fear, gone that impenetrable aura of arrogant coldness. Payal could remember vividly that day when this same man had carried her little sister, unconscious and carrying the trauma she had seen and buried deep within her, never to be dug up again. She recalled surprising herself with the rage that overtook her, the fury drenched words she had flung and hurled at a man she had, from the snippets of outrage and bitterness her sister would occasionally spout, already established in her mind as selfish, uncaring, conceited, spiteful. And her view of him had not been flattered much on that occasion when, after worrying herself sick, she had seen the ashen, fatigued face of her sister, with a tint of terror etched across its pallor, borne home by the same man who had forced her into the face of who knew what tribulations.

But now, looking back, Payal had to admit that there were things back then, which, ensnared in the tangle of fury and worry and tension and resentment, she had overlooked.

Such as the fact that, the whole time that she, with Buaji in tow, had heaved spiteful, tartly biting accusations at the great Arnav Singh Raizada, against whom even lifting a finger would be sacrilege, his eyes had not spared Khushi for even a fraction of the time he was there. He had not spared them- the audience to Khushi's homecoming- one glance from the moment he set foot in that house to the moment he had tenderly lowered her into the bed.

She kept watching, hovering about her vantage point at the head of the table as she wiped dry a set of plates with a checkered dishcloth. Jethji, having shared a few perfunctory words with her mother-in-law, who was sitting a few chairs away and perusing a fashion magazine with unbridled enthusiasm, was twirling his knife about in his fingers, staring absently into space. Still smiling lightly.

Payal lowered her gaze back to the last plate, and lowered it onto the pile before her, but not before flashing a small smile of her own.

The man beneath the mask was so different. Arnav Singh Raizada had greatly, if not completely, redeemed himself in her eyes on that day when he had, astounding her with his unwavering frankness, apologised to her for the breakup of her first marriage. Mechanically she began to move about the table, setting the plates in placeā€¦not everyone in his position would have owned up to those things. Few would even admit to the nature of his involvement, if it could even be called that, in the ending of that ill-fated alliance. And even fewer would have expected a man who prided himself for his astuteness to turn about face, march back up to her, and ask forgiveness for a wrong she had never held him responsible for.

He had given her respect. He had shown her, in ways that the rest of her new family with their assortment of fancy gifts and sweet, reassuring words had failed to, that she had become part and parcel of a loving, caring family.

So lost was she in her thoughts that, even though her feet had steered her, in obedience to the reflex instructions from her brain, towards the kitchen, she felt rather winded when she felt a blur of colour slam straight into her.

'Khushi, kya karr rahi hai?' she squealed, grabbing onto the doorframe of the kitchen as she tottered on the spot, taken thoroughly aback by the force of Khushi's unexpected embrace. But before she could recover from the shock, Khushi had bounced a step back, relinquishing her throttlehold on her.

And startled her even more by grinning broadly.

A wide-eyed Payal stared at the glowing, radiant Khushi, a broad smile stretched from ear to ear, a smile the likes of which seemed forever imprinted on her face back in the day, before they were both married, before that plague called Shyam Manohar Jha had stepped into their lives.

'What happened?' she quizzed her younger sister, clutching hold of her arm and manoeuvring her back into the kitchen, half anxious not to be spotted by her finicky mother-in-law and accused of shirking their duties.

'What?' Khushi repeated, bounding out of her hold and rounding the counter before reaching out for a casserole pot and ladling large amounts of a stew from a saucepan still simmering on the stove.

'What do you mean 'what'?' Why were you trying to strangle me as I came in?'

And Khushi looked up at her, pouting, lower lip protruding cutely as she reproachfully replaced the lid on the saucepan.

'Kya, Jiji...now I can't even hug you without being accused of murder!' she huffed.

Payal felt a tug of affection for her sister wrench at her.

 'Wahi toh...what exactly happened that you had to hug me like that?'

'Oh, so now I need a reason to hug my own sister? Jiji...ever since you met Jeeju I seem to have become a stranger to you, hai na?'

Khushi giggled as Payal raised an eyebrow at her, crossing her arms in affected indignation, before controlling her hilarity and returning Payal's look with exaggerated innocence.

'Well?' Payal pressed on.

Khushi averted her eyes somewhat then, her hands automatically reaching for her pallu, her fingers fidgeting with the cloth. She bit down on her lip, her wide smile not entirely gone, a distant look blossoming into her eyes. But Payal did not get the chance to fret, for just then, she replied.

'I don't know Jiji...' she murmured lightly, gazing absently into space, before she turned back around and beamed at her, 'I'm just...happy, I guess. Yes...I'm happy.'

Several minutes later, surrounded by the drone of overlapping conversations as she sat at the dining table in the midst of the family enjoying a hearty, if somewhat late, dinner, those were the words that kept replaying in Payal's mind.

Yes...I'm happy.

And Payal was glad. The disquiet had never truly left her when she considered the odd circumstances under which Khushi had gotten married, and nor had she ever managed to gather the pluck to ask. She had questioned herself, time and time again, whether Khushi was truly as happy and content as she claimed to be...or whether, once again, she had thrown herself into a gamble for the sake of someone else. Whenever that unwelcome thought had strayed across her mind, leaving behind a lingering trail of unease, Payal had felt tension knotting within her, causing fear to rear its malicious head and subject her to endless moments of doubt and apprehension. She had seen the cold, almost metallic facade that had slipped across the same face that had laughed so openly during her sangeet, as her Jethji had revolved about a sacred fire, pulling Khushi along with him...yes, pulling. Payal remembered only too well, with a pang of that same sickening sense of misgivings that had pushed her to bombard Khushi with a cavalcade of questions afterwards, how the whole scene had played out before her eyes. Khushi, subdued, a blank look plastered across her usually exuberant face, limp and little more than a puppet traipsing behind the rigid, cold, stony-faced man she was getting married to. Arnav Singh Raizada in his element.

And she had felt frost encrust about her heart, with what felt like massive, numbingly cold glaciers erupting in her stomach, a thousand questions chasing one another within her and rendering her mind menacingly blank, devoid of thought. Khushi assured her time and time again that she had given her consent to this marriage whole-heartedly, that her one complaint might be that she hadn't expected it at such short notice, that she was happy to be married into the same family as her sister and spared the tears of parting. And she had heard Anjali Di's repeated insistence that if only her Chote had not been so impatient they would have carried off the ceremony with far more grandeur, but knowing her brother and his caustic views about marriage it was prudent not to test his resolution till he decided to change his mind.

And ever since, Payal had allowed herself to be convinced. Even while she and Akashji were leaving for their honeymoon, she had been placating herself, reminding herself of these fragmented assurances like a mantra, while guilt at her inactivity had actively gnawed away at her.

So now, with the fresh memory of her sister beaming unreservedly back at her, radiant in her simple joy, evidently happy in ways that were beyond words, Payal was finally able to free herself from that needling, insistent voice that had always persisted in some dark disused alcove within her mind. Khushi was happy. And her husband was happy too. He smiled more often. He spoke more openly. He visited their sick father in the hospital every single day. He kissed her goodbye without caring who was standing before them. He made her smile.

And with surprising adroitness, whatever misgiving Payal had been lugging about with her drained away as rainwater seeps into the ground, without fuss. Pure happiness flooded straight in, warm and soothing. And Payal, somewhat lightheaded from the relief that suddenly swathed her, turned to Di, a half-mischievous smile blooming across her face.

'Di...how about I sleep in your room tonight? As it is, I haven't had a chance to look after you properly this whole time we were away...'

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