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Joined: 31 January 2007
Mohan stares in horror at Riddhima while he tries to absorb what she had just said. Noticing a slight movement, he turns and his heart sinks as he sees Megha standing watching them. He immediately pulls away from Riddhima and tears off after Megha who turned away and began running as fast as her feet would take her. Mohan chased after her, but lost her and finally found himself at the wishing temple. Without conscious thought, he turned to the wheel and prayed with all his heart as he turned the wheel that he would find Megha and be able to explain to her. He hears a sound and turns to see Megha sitting on the stair, sobbing helplessly. Mohan approaches her and falls to his knees, and looks up at her broken face.
Mohan looked at Megha's expressionless eyes and pleaded "please meri baat suno. Mei tumhe dhoka nahi diya." Megha looks at him and asks scornfully "dhoka nahi to aur kya diya? Humari shaadi to'" and stops as Mohan puts a finger on her lips.
Megha tears herself away from his touch and wipes her lips, her tears streaming down her face and says "Mohan, yeh tumne achha nahi kiya ' kyun Mohan, kyun kiya aise? Mujhe kahin ka nahin chora tumne". Mohan looks at her helplessly knowing that he had no answers that would remotely even make sense to her. He tries to go to her, and stops when she backs away. He puts his arm out to her and pleads "Megha please meri baat suno". Megha turns away and says "mujhe kuch nahi sunna tumse. Bas mujhe akela chchor do please Mohan" and falls to the ground sobbing.
Mohan steps back, watching her sob and drops to his knees. He runs his hands through his hair wondering how to explain to her that he believed she knew the truth, but just as he was about to open his mouth, he stopped, thinking "why did I believe that?" and goes into introspection and realises that he believed it because he wanted to assuage his own guilt. He wanted to believe that she knew and had forgiven him. And then he starts laughing saying mockingly to himself "wah Mohan wah! How stupid can you be?"He thumps the ground, lost in his thoughts as he realises what a fool he had been all along. He wanted to escape the truth and because he loved Megha, he wanted to believe it. He looked across at Megha who was now sitting on the ground looking lifelessly into the horizon, and he could imagine her thoughts. And he had no idea what to tell her. How could he make her understand that he was so scared of loosing her that he pretended that everything was alright. Mohan looking at Megha's face, realised that he had lost her now. His worst fear had come true and he would not be able to do anything but watch helplessly as the love of his life walked out of his life forever. His face twisted in pain at the thought, but Mohan also knew that he did not have the right to stop her from leaving him. He had put her in a terrible position and the only thing he could do was support her in whatever decision she made.
Megha on her side, sat lifelessly, her thoughts in turmoil as the reality of her situation struck her over and over again. What could she do? Where would she go? How could she face the world when they found out her marriage did not exist? How could Mohan do this to her, she wondered. Did he not think of her when he did this? And why did he do this? Where would she go with the kids? How would she survive? She couldn't go back to the Vyas's house' what would she tell them? That the man who claimed to love her had so deceived her that he had destroyed her life? What would she tell Nanhi? That her Spiderman had deceived all of them? As the thoughts storm through her mind, she dissolves in another storm of tears and she buries her face in her arms.
Mohan hearing a sound, looks at Megha who is sobbing uncontrollably and Mohan's heart breaks at the sight of his beloved in this state, and feels completely helpless as he knows she would not welcome his concern. Nevertheless, he goes over to her, and sits beside her, hoping she will draw some strength from his proximity. They both sit there, lost in their thoughts till finally Megha stirs, and starts to rise, knowing that she had to get back to the kids. Unconsciously, she looks around and sees Mohan who has also risen on seeing the movement by Megha. She gives him a look of anger and simply puts up her hand, stopping him from saying anything and starts heading towards the hotel. Mohan follows without a word. At the hotel, they approach the room, and seeing Megha's expression, Mohan steps back. He signals her to go into the room, and when she closes the door on him, he turns away, and sees Riddhima at the end of the corridor, watching them, a look of satisfaction on her face.
Mohan goes up to her, and says "tumne kaha tha na ke meine tadap nahi dekha hai. Meine socha tha ke tum sach me mera dost banna chahte the, aur tum mere jazbat samajthe the. Tumne tadpa hai to woh meri galti nahi tha. Tumne hi mujhe azad kiya tha yeh jankar ke mein tumse kabhi bhi pyar nahi kar sakta. Meine tumhe koi encouragement nahi diya aur meri ye samaj me nahi aata ke tum kis pyar, kis tadap ke baat kar rahi ho." He holds his hand up as she makes to answer and he says "mujhe kuch nahin sunna hai. Nahi tumhare koi safai, nahi koi explanation. Bas itna jaan lo, ke tumne shayad meri zindagi tabha kar di, lekin meri zindagi sirf Megha aur bacche ke liye hai. Usme tumhari koi jagah nahi. Ye divorce ho kar rahega" and starts to walk away. Riddhima follows him angrily saying "tum mujse aise baat nahi kar sakte ho. Mein bhi bahut koshish kiya tumse door rehne ki, lekin baar baar zindagi mujhe tumhare samne laakar khari kar diya to mujse aur bardaasht nahi hoti. Mei bhi ek shaadi shuda zindagi chaati hoon, aur tum mujhe apni marzi se shaadi ki thi".
Mohan angrily turns around and says "bas Riddhima. Us waqt kya haalat tha, tum bhi jaanti ho aur mei bhi. Tum yeh bhi jaanti ho ke agar tumhare baap ka wo haalat na hota to mei kabhi bhi tumse shaadi nahi karti. Aur phir, tum log mujhe hi kyun bulaya us raat ko? Meine to tumhe keh diya tha na ke mei Megha se pyar karti hoon? Tum hi ne to tumhaare baap ko jhoot kaha tha ke mei tumhe pasand karta hoon jabke tumhe sachai pehli hi mulaquat mei bata diya tha. To phir tumne ye shaadi kaise maan liya? Tum ye kaise soch bhi sakte ho ke tum us aadmi ke saat khush reh paoge jo insaan kisi aur se ji jaan se pyar karta hai? Aur phir yaad karo ke tum ne khud mujhe kaha Megha ko apnane ke liye. Meine jo bhi kadam uthaya, ye tumhare raza mandi se. Tumhare peet piche kuch nahi kiya"
Riddhima tries to hold him and he angrily moves away saying "haat mat lagao mujhe". Riddhima says pleadingly "ek baar mauka to do mujhe. Mei tumhe bahut khush rakhungi". Mohan looks at her disbelievingly and says"tum sach me pagal ho! Tum ye kaise soch bhi sakte ho samaj me nahi aati mujhe. Tum kaisi ladki ho? Mei tumhe baar baar keh raha hoon ke mei sirf Megha ki hoon aur sirf Megha se pyar karta hoon, phir bi?" He shakes his head disbelievingly and mutters "kahan phas gaya yaar. Kamal karte ho!!" He starts to walk away when Riddhima shouts "Mohan rukjao please rukjao varna'" Mohan turns to see Riddhima again with a piece of broken glass against her wrist. Shocked, he is about to react when Riddhima, grinding her teeth, says "mei sach me apni nabs kaat dungi. Please mujhe samajne ki koshish karo". Mohan shakes his head and says "sach me mei samaj nahi parahahun ke tum kya ho. Lekin yeh baat bhi tai hai ke mujhe tum blackmail nahi kar sakte ho kyunki blackmail usse karte hain jinhe kuch khona ho, aur aaj tumhare vaje se mera sab kuch lutgaya." Mohan starts walking away, leaving Riddhima sobbing.
Mohan goes to the lobby, and settles on a couch over there, then picks his phone and makes a few phone calls. He lays back and rues the day he ever met Riddhima! He thinks in his mind "thank you maa! Tumhare karan mere zindagi me Riddhima ayi. Bahut bara ehsaan kiya mujpar, ek pagal se milwake!"
At the same time, in the hotel room, Megha is sitting on the bed having changed, and watches the children playing with Mahaguru. Megha's mind is running a thousand miles a minute wondering what she will do. Mahaguru observes Megha's disturbed state of mind, and wonders where Mohan is, and then remembers his conversation with Guru who had told him of Mohan's hasty marriage to Riddhima. Mahaguru wonders if possibly there is some connection because they had seemed so happy earlier, and now Megha looked like she had lost life's battle. He gives the children some things to do, and goes to Megha, and quietly asks "aap thik ho beti?" Megha looks at him, her tears welling up and spills over at the gentleness in his voice. At the kind look on his face, she can't help herself and she spills the truth to him quietly ensuring the children cant hear her.
Mahaguru listens quietly and when, exhausted, Megha finally stops talking, he gently rubs her hair saying "bas beti bas. Ab aur mat ro. Sab kuch thik ho jayega". Megha asks "kaise thik hoga? Aap hi bataye, mei bacchon ko kya bataun? Aur meri parivaar ko mei kaise samjhaun ke hamari shaadi jayaz nahi hai?" And breaks into sobs again. Mahaguru gently rubs her head, murmuring quietly "bas beti bas."Finally Megha brings herself under control and glances at the children who were heedless to her sobs. They were busy with their games and had not noticed Megha's tears. When Mahaguru sees her quieten down, he says gently "beti, agar tum kaho to mei kuch bolun?"Megha looks into the gentle eyes and nods. Mahaguru says "beti, itne dino mei ek baat meine mehsoos kiya hai, ke Mohan tumse beinteha pyar karta hai. Pyar se baar kar aur kuch nahi hai beti, aur aisa pyar khona bahut bari galti hogi". Megha lifelessly says "agar pyar karta to mere saat aise nahi karta". Mahaguru sighs and says "mei janta hoon ke tum is waqt sochne ki taaqat kho chuke ho, lekin thora shant man se sochogi to shayad samaj paoge".
Megha looks at him and says angrily "aap ye kehna chate hain ke wo sahi hai?" Mahaguru shakes his head and says "nahi, usne bahut bari bhool kiya hai lekin wo bas ek bhool tha, kisi ki madat karne ke liye". Megha scornfully asks "uske bhool hai, aur sazaa mei bhugat rahi hoon. Mei kis mu lekar jaungi wapas? Meri ek ghar se vidai hua hai, aur doosre ghar me koi jagah nahi. Mei kahin ka nahin hoon!" Mahaguru looks at her and says gently"tumhara gussa jayaz hai beti, aur mei Mohan ke galti par parda dalne ke liye nahi keh raha ha. Mei bas itna kehna chata hoon ke agar ho sake to usse maaf kar do bas". Saying that, he rises and says "mei chalta hoon beti, bahut der hogayi hai. Mei kal subah aounga". Mahaguru leaves and Megha goes about preparing the children for bed and climbs wearily into the bed, holding her thoughts at bay. As the night passes, Megha cant stop thinking about what she should do. She had no choice but to think of the future. She had two children to look after and she had to figure out what to do.
Part II The next morning, Megha hears a soft knock on the door, and opens it to see Mohan looking unkempt at the door. She steps aside and Mohan goes in and silently heads to the bathroom to freshen up. When he is done, he comes out and says quietly to Megha since the kids were still asleep that he had booked the flights back to Indore that day. Megha nods without looking at him, and wakes the children up and gets them ready to leave. Nanhi, sensing something was wrong, looks at the two of them, and says "kya baat hai spiderman, tum naraaz ho Mummy se?" Mohan looks at her and gives her a small smile and shakes his head. Nanhi goes to Megha and holds her hand asking "Mummy, tum naraaz ho?"Megha pulls her hand out and says "nahin"but hurries the children along. Once packed, they leave and head to the reception where they check out and head to the airport. Mahaguru takes each one aside and urges them to try and get past their differences, but both are silent.
Back in Indore, they alight from the taxi and the children run ahead of them eager to see their grandparents. Mohan is about to take Megha's suitcase when he sees her hand also on the suitcase. He says "bhari hai" and Megha retorts "ab se har bhoj mujhe khud uthana parega to yahin se shuru karti hoon." She takes the suitcase, and heads towards the Vyas's house. At the door, Nanhi stops her and says "chale mummy, ghar chalte hain. Baad me dadaji aur dadiji ko milenge".Megha, with her back to Mohan, simply says "nahi. Chalo andar". She calls Addu and the three of them enter the Vyas house.
Mohan watches the three of them going into the house, and then slowly heads to his own house, his loss hitting him over and over again. He silently climbs up the stairs and sees Guru eagerly waiting for them with an aarti thali. Mohan stops at the door, and when Guru is about to do the aarti, he holds his hand up and says defeatedly "ab iski koi zaroorat nahi hai Guru. Sab kuch khatam ho gaya hai". Guru worriedly puts the thali down and says "kya matlab?" Mohan tells Guru about how Riddhima was in Nepal and how Megha found the divorce papers. Guru, stunned, slumps on the ground, his own tears flowing as it slowly hits him that he had caused this for his bhaiya. He falls at Mohan's feet and says "mujhe maaf kardo bhaiya. Ye sub meri karan hua hai. Meine hi tumhe roka tha na? Mei abhi jaa kar Bhabhi ko sachai batati hun". Mohan holds him and raises him saying"nahi Guru. Yeh tumhara galti nahi tha. Meri galati tha. Meine Megha ko sachai nahi bata paya, aur yeh usiki natija hai".Mohan sits heavily and covering his eyes, says "mujhe ab sochna hai ke mei kya karoon". Guru silently gets up and goes to make a cup of tea for Mohan, and comes out to see Mohan fast asleep, a look of utter defeat on his face. Guru sits at the foot of the chair, and lowers his head into his knees, his tears unstoppable as he realises his foolish advice resulted in this. He racks his brain trying to find some kind of solution but gives up.
Over at the Vyas house, Megha was putting up a good pretence, which was successful except for Jiji who sensed that something terrible was wrong. But she realised looking at Megha's set face, that Megha was not ready to talk about it, so Jiji kept silent. She looked at Nanhi who shrugged her shoulders and shook her head, telling Jiji that Nanhi was not aware of anything. Addu was in his element, feeling victorious that his mother had not gone to that awful spiderman's house. In the evening, Saroj and Jiji suggest to Megha that she should ask Mohan to come over or else check to see if he was alright, and Megha lets slip that she would not return to that house. The elders look at her in consternation while Renu's ears perk up, sensing there was trouble in paradise! Megha quickly covers up saying that she couldn't return to that house right now and made up an excuse about the house being repaired and that it would not be good for the children. Saroj and Ved nod sagely and suggest that Megha call Mohan to stay with them and Megha glosses over it without committing herself. Jiji once again realises that something was terribly wrong, and could sense that Renu's viscious thoughts were churning as well. She makes a joke and suggests Megha call it a night. Megha looks gratefully at Jiji and nods saying "haan mei thak gayi hoon aur bacchon ko bhi neend aarahehonge". The elders wish her goodnight and she takes the children and head to her room where she settles the children for the night.
Megha completes her nightly ablutions and settles down to bed, and finally lets the thoughts she had held at bay loose. As she remembers the last twenty-four hours, her defences drop and she once again dissolves in tears. Unable to control herself, she cries herself to sleep with only one question on her mind ' how could Mohan have done this to her? On his side, Mohan is numb with pain, his mind going over the last few weeks and how his one desperate thought had ruined so many lives. As his guilt grows, he feels nausea building as he remembers his impulsive marriage to Riddhima, his stunned reaction to Megha's confession, his inability to tell Megha the truth, his reasons for going through with the marriage to Megha. Finally, unable to help himself, he runs to the bathroom, throwing up in disgust at himself for ruining the lives of the very people he claimed he loved. Wiping himself, he comes out of the bathroom where Guru is waiting for him with a glass of water, looking at him with sympathy. Mohan takes the glass, and swallows the water, then puts the glass down and slumps to the ground saying "Guru, mei kya karoon? Kuch samaj me nahi aaraha hai". Guru says putting his hand on Mohan's "itna mat socho bhaiya. Sab kuch thik ho jayega". Mohan asks "Kaise thik ho ga yaar? Samaj me nahi aata kya karoon". Guru asks "kya mei bhabhi se baat karoon?"
Mohan (defeatedly): nahi yaar, wo is waqt nahi sunegi. Maine usse kho diya hai. Ab koi faida nahin.
Mohan: nahi Guru. Maine jo kiya hai, maafi ke layak nahi. Wo jo bhi decision legi, mujhe manna parega. Mere paas koi safai nahi hai jo wo samaj sake. Meine uski zindagi ke saat khilwar kiya hai.
Mohan holds his hand up and says "mujhe usse door rehna padega jab tak ke wo khud baat kare agar baat karna chahe to".
As Mohan says this, he realises that this truly was his only recourse. He would have to go with whatever Megha decided, and if that meant she would never come back to him, he would bitterly have to accept it.
The following morning, Megha rises and ignorning Nanhi's questions, prepares them for school and sends them off. She once again, kept her thoughts to herself as she went about her day, and could only helplessly listen to the constant taunting by Renu. Renu, whose curiousity was getting the better of her, kept dropping hints that something was wrong and kept chipping away at Megha's defences, till she was almost at breaking point. She excused herself, and went to her room, where she dissolved in tears and starts when she feels her head being gently rubbed. She looks up to see Jiji sitting beside her, simply doing what she did best. Comforting her. Megha finally lets loose and without Jiji's asking, tells her everything. Jiji listens in shocked silence and pulls Megha into her arms comforting her while her own mind races, knowing that if this came out, it would be disastrous for everyone. Above all, Renu could not know about this because she would make everyone's life hell if she found out. Jiji thanked her stars that she had locked the door before sitting down with Megha! Finally the storm subsides in Megha, who feels better having shared her pain with Jiji. Megha looks at Jiji who shakes her head saying "kuch kehne ki zaroorat nahi. Mei samaj gayi ke ye baat to kabhi bhi na khule to accha hai". She continues rubbing Megha's head and tells Megha to lay down and rest. She would tell the family Megha was not feeling well and would stay in her room. Megha gratefully hugs Jiji and lays down, where she finally fell into an exhausted but peaceful sleep.
Megha rises refreshed, and mulling over her situation, realises that first she needed to do something about taking care of herself and her children. The only way this was possible, would be for her to get a job, but where? And what would she tell the Vyas's? She knew that eventually they would keep asking why she didn't return to Mohan's house and she had no answer for that. She couldn't tell them the truth. She had to find some compromise which would not affect them, but at the same time, she couldn't live with Mohan. Then she remembered the extra room besides Mohan's flat. Maybe that could be a compromise. She could stay there with the kids and this way no one would know the truth. It would appear as if they were living together, but she would make sure they did not meet. However, she also knew that if she was so close by, Mohan would try and get close to her, and she would not allow that. Her alternative was to go to the Bhopal house and live there saying she had a job there. Yes, maybe that would work. But even so, how could she make the Vyas's understand without Mohan's help? It seemed she had no choice except to talk to him. As she was lost in her thoughts, the children clattered in. Megha rises and asks them how their day went, and listened to Addu chattering away. Nanhi quietly observed Megha, but didn't say much. However, she had a determined look on her face. Nanhi went to wash up, while Megha was attending to Addu, then she went to Jiji's room and asked "jijibua, aap ko maloom hai mummy spiderman se kyun naraaz hai?"
Jiji sadly nods her head and says "haan beta, mei janti hoon lekin yeh aisa kuch hai jiske hul mere paas nahi hai". When Nanhi tries to insist, Jiji makes her understand that sometimes things happen between adults that cant be explained to a child, even one as mature as Nanhi, but what she could do, was to remain friends with her spiderman. Jiji tells Nanhi that more than ever, her spiderman needed his chavanni. Nanhi understandingly nods, and says "mei spiderman ko milke aati hoon. Aap Mummy ko samjhadena", and Nanhi takes off. She heads to Mohan's place, and stops shocked as she sees him slumped on the floor, crying his eyes out. She hurries to him and hugs him saying "Spiderman, kya baat hai?"Mohan, quickly wiping his eyes, hugs her back and says "kuch nahi Nanhi, bas aise hi". Nanhi suspiciously asks "tumne Mummy ko kuch kaha hai kya?" and notices that Mohan is unable to meet her eyes. Nanhi, in her maturity understands that something big has happened which neither her mother nor Mohan want to talk about, so she decides to comfort Mohan as best as she can ' by being herself. She starts chatting with Mohan about her day, and soon is able to cheer Mohan up slightly. Finally she calls it a night and giving him a quick kiss, runs home. Mohan looks after her tenderly, and once again lowers his head in shame, realising that even this love would disappear once she found out how he had deceived her mother. That night, Mohan decides that perhaps the best thing to do was to remove himself from the vicinity where Megha would constantly remember what he had done. Once resolved on that, he calls Prerna and has a discussion with her, and gives a small smile of satisfaction after the conversation.
The next morning, Mohan wakes up and starts putting his things in his bag. Guru comes in with the milk and sees Mohan packing and asks "bhaiya app kahin jaa rahe ho?"
Mohan: haan Guru, mujhe kuch din ke liye bahar jana hai. Yehi sahi hai is waqt.
Guru: lekin agar bhabhi'
Mohan (deprecatingly): wo nahi aiyegi to ruk kar koi faida nahi. Aur waise bhi, kaam ke liye jaa raha hoon.
Guru: kaam? Matlab?
Mohan (exasperated): arrey yaar! Kaam matlab kaam. Ek story hai.
Guru: oh! Achcha thik hai. Kuch aur chaiye?
Mohan looks through his things, and says no, then gives Guru instructions and is about to leave when he freezes as he sees Megha at the door. Unable to believe his eyes, he drinks in the sight of his love at the door. He takes in the puffy eyes, tired and defeated, and feels his heart wrench in pain as he recognises this was his fault. He noticed she was still wearing the MS and sindoor but knew that it was because of the Vyas's, not because of any loyalty to him. Megha on the other hand, notices the bag in his hand, and looks at Guru, her question clearly visible. Guru says "bhaiya ko kaam ke liye jana par raha hai. Ek story hai'" Megha nods, then says quietly "mujhe kuch batein karni hai". Mohan drops the bag and says "haan bolo".
Megha starts "mei zyada waqt nahi loongi. Mujhe tumhare help ki zaroorat hai. Mei Bhopal shift karna chaati hoon bachchon ke saath lekin parivar walon ko kuch batana parega. Isliye meine socha ke tum keh sakte ho ke tum Bhopal kaam ke liye jaa rahe ho'"and stops when Mohan interrupts saying "mujhe isme koi itraaz nahi hai, lekin ek din me Bhopal jana ajeeb lagega, na? Waise bhi mei out of town jaa raha hoon aur shayad kuch hafte lag jaye, to tum chaho to yahan reh sakte ho". Megha looks at him, startled and is about to ask when she stops herself and says "mei yahan kaise reh sakti hoon?" Mohan remains quiet then says "agar yahan rahoge to koi sawal nahi uthega. Sab jaante hain ke mei journalist hoon, aur kahani ke liye bahar jaana padta hai, to koi kuch sochega bhi nahi". Megha gives him a sharp look and sees he is perfectly serious, and realises he was right. Any other solution would raise a lot of questions. He was right, they couldn't just take off for Bhopal without an explanation, so this was a fair enough compromise. She reluctantly nods and says "thik hai. Mei bacchon ko lekar yahan raat ko aoungi". Mohan heaves a sigh of relief and tells Guru to take care of things in his absence, and he takes off. Megha looks at his departing back in surprise and was a bit disappointed that he didn't even ask about her. She looks at Guru who turns away and says "bhabhi kuch chaiye to bejijak batana, please". Megha nods, and tells him she will return later that day with Nanhi and Addu. She returns home and tells Jiji her plans, which Jiji approves wholeheartedly.
That evening, Megha settles in, and decides the next thing to do is to get a job. After settling the kids down, she calls Prerna who happily tells her that her place was always there at PL, so she could come back anytime she wanted to. Relieved, Megha settles down for the night, and drifts off. Early the next morning, she slowly drifts awake to hear the sound of Guru talking quietly. Seeing that she was awake, he quickly says "baad me baat karta hoon. Bye!" and hangs up. He makes tea and brings it to Megha who thanks him quietly. She raises the kids and gets them ready for school and after seeing them off, she gets ready and returns to PL and starts to work. This soon becomes her routine and time passes. Even though she knew that Guru spoke to Mohan regularly, he never called her, nor did he ever ask Guru to pass the phone to her. In fact her only knowledge of Mohan's existence or that he was ok was by way of seeing Guru talking to him. She did not know that Mohan called everyday just to make sure that she was ok, and that the children were ok. Guru would tell him about them, and Mohan drew comfort from the fact that they were at least in his home and were ok.
On the day Mohan left, he knew there was one thing he had to do and ensure that it was done right this time. He went to a lawyer and spoke about the circumstances of his marriage to Riddhima. He explained to the lawyer that he suspected Riddhima had mental issues and he wanted this marriage dissolved as soon as possible. The lawyer having heard the full story, tells Mohan that there may be some way of fast tracking the divorce. Satisfied, Mohan leaves the lawyer's office, and heads out to Mumbai where his story lead was. After reaching Mumbai, he starts following his lead, and would chase the story everyday until he returned to the hotel he was staying in exhausted. He would push himself to the limit, numbing himself to everything other than the story. During that time, the only calls he took were from his mother with whom he was curt and to the point, but enough for her to understand he was very angry with her, and from Guru who gave him updates of Megha and the kids. He lived for those conversations because it made him feel for a few moments that they were part of his life.
One day, he received a call which showed "unknown number".Thinking he had a lead, he takes the call, and hears the voice he believed he had left behind forever. "Hello",Riddhima says. After a short silence, she pleads "Mohan please phone mat katna. Please". Mohan thinks then asks curtly "kya chaate ho? Mujhe phone kyun kiya?"
Riddhima: mai tumse milna chaati thi.
Mohan: kyun? Ab kya baaki hai kehne ke liye?
Riddhima: please Mohan, ek baar bas. Please mujse milo
Riddhima: actually wo papa bahut pooch raha hai tum kahan ho. Please papa ke liye mujse milo.
Mohan: kya tumne tumhare papa ko sachai bata diya hai?
Riddhima: wo wo, Mohan, papa ka tabiat phirse kharab ho gaya hai aur baar baar tumhe bula raha hai'
Mohan: Riddhima, mei ab ye natak nahi karne wala. Meine lawyer se baat karli hai aur divorce to ho kar rahega.
Riddhima starts to yell "tum aise nahi kar sakte Mohan. Mei tumse pyar karti hoon. Mei divorce nahi doongi"
Mohan angrily disconnects the phone, then calls the lawyer who says he has found a way of fast tracking the divorce and has presented the case to the judge. Mohan thanks him, and heads out to follow up on his story.
Mohan reaches the spot where his informant told him a meeting would be taking place. He takes a seat and puts his gear into place, watching carefully as people come and go. As he observes the people, he sees a good looking young man take a seat next to his table, and order a drink. Shortly after that, a young lady joins the man. Mohan goes back to his observations, and while trying to pick up the conversations around him for his story, he overhears a piece of conversation that makes him stop and listen more carefully when the man at the next table says "pata nahi kab Riddhima se chutkara paounga". The lady puts her hand over his and asks "kyun ab kya hua?"The man says "kya batoun yaar? Wo baar baar phone karti rehti hai. Mei jitney bhi koshish karoon piche churane ke, wo utna hi paas ana chaati hai."
Woman: kya tumne usse divorce ke bare me bataya hai?
Man: haan magar wo sign karne ke liye tayar hi nahi hai. Baar baar kehti hai ke wo apne maa baap ko samjayega lekin waqt lagega. Dekho na, hamare shaadi ko nau mahine hua hai, lekin aaj tak meine uske saat ghar nahi basaya. Wo apni maa baap ko batane se darti thi magar shaadi ke liye insist kiya. Hum log registration karwaye, phir mandir jaa kar riti riwajon se shaadi ki, lekin aaj tak mera saath nahi nibhaya. Ab jab mei apni freedom chata hoon, to wo usse manzoor nahi.
Woman: lekin koi to legal help mil sakta na, divorce ke liye? Agar tum dono saath me nahi rehte to ye kaise shaadi maana jayega?
Man: mei janta hoon, lekin wo manta nahi. Ab dekho, wo Nepal mei baita hai, aur chata hai ke mei sub kuch chor kar wahan jaon. Yeh kaise mumkin hai? Aur sabse bari baat ye hai ke mai usse pyar hi nahi karta. Bas ek infatuation tha jo maine pyar samjha.
Woman: Aur wo?
Man: pata nahi ' kehti hai ke pyaar hai, lekin agar pyar hota to yun itne din se door rehti kya?
Woman: tumne kaha tha na ke wo thodi mentally unstable hai. Aise kya kiya usne?
Man: wo baar baar suicide ki dhamki deti hai. Baar baar apni nabs katne ki natak karti hai. Humlog college me mili thi, aur tabse dekha. Jab bhi wo kuch haarte hue nazar athe the, to suicide ka dhamki deti thi. Wo to depression ke dawai bhi leti thi uski moods control karne ke liye.
Woman: ab kya karoge tum?
Man: mujhe lagta hai, ke shayad kuch din ke liye Nepal jaana parega taa ke koi faisla hojaye.
The woman rises and tells her companion she had to go to the ladies room. Mohan, who had been listening keenly, turns to look at the man, and notices the man looking at a photograph. Mohan leans over to see the photograph and is shocked to see Riddhima's photo. Unable to believe what he has heard, he goes to the next table and says "sorry to disturb you". The man looks up in surprise and says "Excuse me?"
Mohan says "please, aap se kuch zaroori baat hai, please can I sit?"
Man: sure, lekin meine pechana nahi.
Mohan: mera naam Mohan Bhatnagar hai. I'm sorry, mei aap ke baatein sun raha tha ' really sorry, lekin can I see that photo?
The man hands it over saying "sure, lekin kyun?" Mohan looks at the photo disbelievingly and asks"aap ka naam?"
Man: mera naam Jiten Sharma hai.They shake hands, then Mohan asks him about Riddhima, and Jiten, though surprised, basically tells him the same story Mohan had overheard.
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Joined: 31 January 2007
Mohan was utterly shocked to hear that Riddhima was already married, though her parents did not know about it. He couldn't believe that she would have kept the secret to such an extent that she willingly got married to him even though she was already married! Jiten looks curiously at Mohan, and wonders why Mohan was asking so many questions. Mohan asks him if there was any way he could see the marriage certificate and Jiten pulls it out. With his permission, Mohan takes a photograph of it, and emails it to his lawyer. Finally, he tells Jiten about his own marriage to Riddhima, and Jiten reacts in shock asking "what are you saying? She married you as well?" Mohan asks Jiten to come to his hotel the following day and Jiten agrees. Mohan places a call to Riddhima and curtly tells her to show up in Mumbai if she wanted to talk to him. Riddhima eagerly agrees, and the following day, she arrives at the hotel and heads to Mohan's room. She knocks on the door, and blanches when she sees who opens the door.
Jiten looks at the blanched face of his wife, and as she is about to turn away, he holds her hand and pulls her into the room. Inside, she looks in horror at Mohan and Jiten who are both looking at her. She sits with a thump then looks up at the two men, then turns to Mohan and says "tumne mujhe yahan isliye bulaye ke mujhe sharminda karo? Kya sochte ho? Ke mei tumhe divorce doongi kyun ke Jiten ko tum jaante ho?" Mohan looks at her dumbfounded, unable to believe his ears! Jiten looks at her disbelievingly and says "yeh tum kya keh raheho Riddhima? Tum Mohan se bhi shaadi karli?" Riddhima gives an evil laugh and says "haan bilkul, kyunki Mohan meri papa ko pasand the. Aur mujhe apni papa ke liye kuch bhi karsakti hoon". Mohan sits heavily as does Jiten, while Riddhima, whose mental balance is deteriorating, begins to laugh maniacally as she mumbles to herself that she had to do whatever papa wanted since papa loved her so much. In her mumblings, it becomes obvious that her father had completely disapproved of Jiten due to his family background and Riddhima had lost her mental balance due to her father's refusal to accept Jiten. So she had secretly married Jiten believing she could convince her parents once the marriage took place, but the situation in fact worsened and her father fell ill. After he recovered the first time, he made a zealous effort to get Riddhima married and that was when they had met Mohan whom the father liked. When the second heart attack happened, Riddhima felt she had to acquiesce to her father's request to marry Mohan. So she married Mohan in the temple, and in her mental state, this became her reality.
After listening to this, Mohan asks her why she wouldn't give Jiten a divorce and she blandly responds "well you don't love me. I may not love him, but why should I be alone?" Both Jiten and Mohan are dumbstruck and wonder if she truly has lost her mental balance or if she is pretending. But then Riddhima rattles off again and it was obvious from her words that she was not in her senses. Both Jiten and Mohan almost felt pity for her and for her parents. Mohan felt that her parents needed to be made aware of the situation, so he arranged for all of them to return to Indore where a meeting with Riddhima's parents took place. As expected, her father refused to accept the marriage between Jiten and Riddhima, but Mohan pointed out that whether he accepted it or not, the fact was that Riddhima and Jiten had married legally and this automatically made his marriage to Riddhima null and void. Riddhima's father pleaded with Mohan to reconsider, but Mohan told them what Riddhima had done both in Nepal and in Mumbai, and said more than marriage, Riddhima needed medical help. The father realising that Mohan was right, finally accepted that Riddhima was unable to sustain a marriage until her mental issues were addressed. As a result, they accepted that Riddhima and Jiten's marriage would also be dissolved.
Mohan turned to leave when Riddhima's mother comes up to him and putting her hands together says "beta, mujhe maaf kar do. Hum logon ko malum tha ke Riddhima ke dimagi halaat thik nahi hai, lekin humne socha ke agar shaadi hojayegi to shayad thik ho saktithi. Lekin hume bilkul maloom nahi tha ke wo chup chap shaadi karli thi"
Mohan: Mei chalti hoon aunty. Namaste
Mother: aise mat jao beta. Please hume maaf kardo
Mohan (bitterly): aunty, aap ki beti aur uski dimagi halat meri zindagi tabah kar di. Please mujhe jane dijiye.
Mother: mei janti hoon beta. Agar tum chao to mei Megha se baat kar sakti hoon.
Mohan looks at the mother in disbelief then shakes his head saying "nahi iski koi zaroorat nahi hai. Lekin aap ne ye socha, iski liye shukriya. Ab aagiya dijiye". Mohan leaves and is shortly followed by Jiten who also takes his leave. Jiten catches up with Mohan and they return to Mumbai and part ways, reflecting on the fact that theirs was a very strange connection!.
Back in Indore, the days pass and Megha slowly begins to calm down. She noticed the distance that Guru maintained with her, going about doing his job without intruding on her space. She knew that he was in contact with Mohan, but he never said anything to Megha, so she had no idea how things were with him. At PL, it was the same thing. She knew that Prerna and Karan were in constant contact with Mohan, but they never told her anything. She was not aware that Mohan had asked Karan to keep their conversations quiet after Karan had informed him that Megha had rejoined PL. Mohan told Prerna that for some personal reasons, he would prefer she not say anything about Mohan to Megha, and gave Prerna his kasam not to ask Megha anything. Prerna respected Mohan's wish, and made sure that no discussion about Mohan took place in front of Megha.
As she began to calm down, and she began to see that there were no after effects to the shattering discovery she had made in Nepal, she found herself thinking more and more about Mohan and where he was. The last few days had passed quietly and the numbing pain was slowly clearing. She realised that the decision to stay in his house had minimised any negative fallout since, as he rightly pointed out, whenever she was asked and she told them Mohan was on a story, no further questions were asked. Even Renu bhabhi had stopped asking questions. She reluctantly accepted that what Megha had said held true, and she too had backed off. When her former in-laws asked about her working, they accepted the reasons she gave which was that she was working to help Mohan with the expenses since Mohan had all these new responsibilities.
The children too had settled down to their routine, and even though Nanhi would periodically ask about Mohan, she seemingly accepted the news that Mohan was on assignment. Addu as usual did not seem to care about Mohan's whereabouts, simply grateful that his mummy was with him. The only people who seemed disturbed with Mohan's absence were Guru and Jiji. However, they took care not to talk about him in front of Megha. One day, Megha had finished a bit early and wanted to go home to prepare something special for the upcoming Ganesh puja. As she approached the house, she heard voices, and on coming closer, realised that Jiji was talking to Guru. Guru said "bhaiya thik kaise hoga Jiji. Dil tuta hai lekin bas bhabhi aur bacchon ke bare me poochta hai. Apni baat kuch nahi kehta. Pata bhi nahi wo kaise hai." Megha outside, hears sniffling and glances inside to see Guru's tear filled face.
Jiji: main janti hoon Guru, lekin halaat aisi hai ke kuch kehna bhi…
Guru: haan. Bhabhi to unke baare me puchte bhi nahi hai.
Jiji: Megha naraaz hai, aur kyun na ho? Mohan ne kiya hi kuch aisa ke uski sazaa bhi to bhugat na parega.
Guru: Jiji, bhaiya ne bhabhi ko Riddhima ke baare me mere karan nahi bataya tha
Jiji: kya matlab? Tumhare karan kaise?
Guru: meine hi bhaiya ko kaha tha kuch na kehne ke liye. Maine socha tha ke bhabhi ko dukh hoga, aur phir Riddhima ne khud kaha tha shaadi ke dusre din ke wo ye shaadi nahi manti hai. Mere samne wo apni mangalsutra wapas kiya tha, to maine socha ke baat khatam hogaya hai. Isiliye meine unse aise kaha...
Jiji: ye tumne thik nahi kiya Guru. Mohan ko Megha se sachai nahi chupana chaiye tha.
Guru: Jiji, agar aap bhaiya ke halaat dekhte to shayad aap samajte. Bhaiya uss raat bilkul toot gaye the. Hame to darr tha ke who apne aap ko nuksan na kare.
Jiji: kya matlab?
Guru: yaad kijiye Jiji. Us raat jab bhaiya aye the aap ke ghar, waise hi hosh me nahi tha, phir bhabhi ne kuch nahi kaha. Bhaiya jab wahan se gaya, to bilkul toot chukka tha. Woh to yehi jaanta tha ke bhabhi Manav se shaadi kar rahe the. Bhaiya to bilkul apne hosh kho chukka tha. Usse laga ke woh bhabhi ko kho chukka hai. Haar chukka tha. Usime Riddhima ke ma usse phone kiya.
Jiji: haan mujhe yaad hai wo raat. Lekin Megha ne srikar to kiya tha ke wo Mohan se pyar karta hai.
Guru: Bhabhi mana zaroor tha, lekin bhaiya ko kya maloom tha? Wo to chala gaya tha – unhe to dhakka maar kar bahar phenk diya, aur bhabhi roka bhi nahi.
Jiji: lekin shaadi kyun kiya?.
Guru: bhaiya ne mujhe bataya ke Riddhima ke ma aur baap dono hi baar baar binti kar ke usse majboor kiya. Waise bhi, bhaiya ke liye yahan to kuch tha hi nahi.
Jiji: lekin wapas aya to Megha usse bata diya ke wo pyar karti hai, to tab batana chaiye tha.
Guru: wohi to Jiji. Meine hi roka tab. Kyunki usme Riddhima aa kar shaadi tod di. Phir aap aur papaji aye shaadi ke prastao lekar. Tabhi bhaiya aaplogon ko sachai batana chaata tha, aur meine hi unhe roka. Mein jaanta hoon ke bhaiya ko ye chupa kar bahut kharab lagta tha, lekin usne ye socha ke agar us waqt shaadi ko roka to papaji aur bhabhi ko taane aur badnami hoge jo bhaiya ko manzoor nahi tha.
Jiji: matlab Mohan ne jaan buj kar kuch nahi kaha.
Guru: aap hi sochiye Jiji. Agar us waqt bhaiya shaadi ko rokte to bhabhi ka kya hota? Mohalle wale papaji aur bhabhi ke baare me kya kehte? Waise hi to Bhabhi ke baare to log kitne baat karte the. Aur papaji ke kya halaat hota agar bhaiya shaadi ke liye mana kar deta? Papaji kya muh dikhate mohalle wale ko? Shaadi ki saare tayari already ho chukka tha phir Manav se rishta bhi toot chukha tha, to bhabhi ko log kya kehte?
Jiji: mei samajti hoon Guru, phirbi shaadi jaise cheez ko chupana to galat hai na?
Guru: janti hoon Jiji, aur bhaiya is bhool ke kitna bara sazaa bhugat raha hai, ye to hum dekhrahe hai. Wo to bas meri phone ke liye jeete hain kyunki tab bhabhi aur bachche ki bare me sunta hai. Wo din me char paanch baar phone karte hai bas ye jaane ke liye ke bhabhi aur bacche kya kar rahe hai.
Jiji (with tears in her eyes): mei janti hoon ke wo Megha aur bacche se kitna pyar karta hai. (She pats Guru's head) chinta mat karo. Waqt sab kuch thik kar dega, dekhna. Chalo mei chalti hoon. Megha ab ane wala hai.
Megha starts, as she realises that Jiji is coming to the door and she straightens, pretending that she had just arrived. She exchanges pleasantries with Jiji who then takes off, while Megha enters the house. She takes the cup of tea offered by Guru and nods when Guru tells her that he was going to get some supplies. She changes her clothes and starts working, making some sweetmeats that were prepared specifically for Ganesh Chaturti. As she made the sweetmeats, her mind goes back to the conversation she had heard. Her mind went back to the day they were talking about. The scene came back vividly to her. She remembered the unkempt way Mohan had appeared that day, his sobbing voice as he pleaded with her to tell the Vyas family how she felt. She remembered his confession in front of everyone, and her reluctance to admit the truth because of Indu. She remembered the constant taunts by Indu and how she begged Megha to stay away from Mohan. She remembered finally unable to bear the pressure and confessing her feelings, only to find Mohan had left. She did not know that Sanjay had thrown him out, since her own eyes were closed trying to keep the world out.
Immersed in her memories, she didn't hear the children until she felt herself being jerked. She comes out of her reverie and sees the kids have returned, and she rises to take care of the children. As they are eating, they switch on the tv and Addu is about to change the channel when they hear the name "Mohan Bhatnagar". Guru comes out and Megha tells Addu to put the channel back and listen to a story filed by Mohan on an anti-corruption story he had been working on. A small picture of Mohan appeared on the screen, and Megha covered her mouth in shock at the picture of Mohan. He appeared gaunt, sick and lifeless. Guru turned away, tears in his eyes and Nanhi says "wo spiderman nahi ho sakta hai" as she too seemed shocked at the sight of this person who looked so different from the happy cheerful person who had happily snapped their pictures in Nepal.
Megha, utterly shocked to see Mohan like this, doesn't know what to think. She looks at Guru, who is unable to control his tears and he slumps down in the kitchen, sobbing as his own guilt grows at what Mohan had become due to his actions. Nanhi goes to comfort him, and he hugs her tightly, then rises and heads out of the apartment. Guru runs into Jiji who is also looking shocked, and Guru realises that she too had seen the picture of Mohan. They just hold each other's hands in shared sorrow, then Guru takes off to the mandir to beg for Mohan's happiness. He slowly returns to the apartment and quietly prepares for bed. Megha was observing him, and wanted to talk to him, but didn't know what to say. She turns to continue her work when she hears Guru's phone ring. Guru, seeing the number, hurriedly goes out and is talking. Megha goes into the room and overhears Guru saying "sab kuch thik hai bhaiya". Shamelessly, she listens to the conversation which told her that Mohan was basically asking questions about them. The conversation ends with Guru despondently asks "kab wapas aouge? Ab aa bhi jao. Kam se kam Indore me reh to sakte ho, na?" and from Guru's face, it was obvious he had refused.
Guru sorrowfully comes back in, and settles down for the night. Megha finishes up and checks on the kids, then settles into one of the chairs, allowing her mind to go over everything she had heard, while her minds eye kept seeing the gaunt lifeless picture of Mohan. She allowed her mind to finally let loose all her memories of the last few months from her first meeting with Mohan, to their happy days in Nepal. She remembered all her moments with him, and then her memories of the days leading up to their marriage and after their marriage came flooding back. She recalled the day she told him she loved him. She remembered the utter disbelief in his eyes, then his hesitance. She recalled his wanting to tell her something and that he even started talking but was unable to tell her, and remembered her telling him that the only thing that was important was that they loved each other and that there was nothing they couldn't face as long as they were together. She remembered how he had broken down when he thought she knew the truth about Riddhima. She remembered how happy they were those few days before the storm broke in Nepal. One by one, she remembered all the instances where he in some way or the other, helped her. How he had saved her life at the Shivratri festival, how he had brought Nanhi back, not once but twice. He had found Addu. He had cleared Amar's name and brought Amar's killers to justice. She remembered his gesture of telling her to put Amar's photo on display. Finally, unable to control her tears, she allows them to fall and with that her bitterness and anger dissolve.
The next morning, she rises and prepares the kids for school. As she is preparing them, she sees Guru on the phone and understands from the conversation that it was Mohan. Without a sound, Megha takes the phone from Guru, and listens to Mohan saying "chal Guru, mei chalta hoon. Tumhare bhabhi ka dhayan rakhna. Agar koi cheez ke zaroorat ho to batana. Meri chavanni ko meri taraf se hug dena aur piddi ko kehna apni mummy ki baat sune. Khayal rakha apna". Megha listened to the broken voice, and felt her tears welling up. She was about to say something when the phone goes dead and she realises that he had ended the call. She returns the phone to Guru who is staring at her, and she just gives a small shrug but doesn't say anything. She takes the children to the bus stand, returns and prepares for work. She sees Guru giving her curious looks but he doesn't say anything, and she finally breaks her own silence and says "Mohan kahan hai?" Guru shakes his head and tells her he didn't know. Mohan never told Guru where he was when he called. He could be anywhere in India! Megha tells Guru not to say anything when he spoke to Mohan as she needed to think. Guru nods and Megha takes off for work. On her way, she realises she has to stop at the bank for some work, and heads to the bank. She runs into Papaji and they chat for a bit, then she goes in to complete her work. After she exits the bank, she is heading to the taxi stand when she hears "Megha". She turns and freezes as she sees Riddhima and an elderly lady beside her.
Riddhima and her mother come up to Megha and Riddhima says "kaise ho Megha?" Megha answers politely and is about take off when Riddhima's mother says "Tum Megha ho, na?" Megha nods and she says "Mei tum bol sakti hoon na?" Again, Megha nods, but feeling uncomfortable, wants to leave. Riddhima's mother puts her hand on Megha's and says "beti tumse kuch baat karni thi". Megha doesn't know how to react, so she numbly nods, and they decide to go to a small nearby caf. At the caf, they sit and Megha's discomfort climbs till finally Riddhima asks "Mohan kaisa hai?" Megha gives her a sharp look then turns away in anger which Riddhima notices. She asks in surprise "Megha, tumhe itna gussa kyon aaraha hai? Meine sirf yeh poocha ke Mohan kaise hai kyunk meine socha ke tum janoge". Megha looks at her, and says "kya matlab?"
Riddhima: meine socha ke Mohan tumhare saat hai, isiliye poocha.
Megha: mujhe pata nahin. Hum saat nahi rehte.
Riddhima starts, and says "kyun, tumne usse maaf nahi kiya?"
Megha looks at Riddhima in disbelief and is about to say something when her mother interjects and says "shayad Mohan tumhe sachai nahi bataya". Megha looks at her confused and says "sachai? Kaisi sachai?"
Riddhima's mother looks at Megha sadly and says "beti, mei janti hoon ke tum to hame kabhi bhi maaf nahi kar paoge lekin ab to Mohan ko maaf kardo. Uski to koi galti bhi nahi tha"
Megha: mei samjhi nahi. Aap kya kehna chate hain?
RMother: beti, tum shayad kabhi bhi meri majboori na samjho, lekin us din jab meine Mohan ko bulaya, mere paas aur koi raasta nahi tha. Riddhima ke papa ke haalat itne nazook tha ke aur kuch nahi sooja. Aur hame sachai ka pata bhi nah tha.
Megha (confused): aap kehne kya chaate hai, bataye na?
RMother: hame maloom nahi tha ke Riddhima pehle hi shaadi kar li thi.
Megha looks at Riddhima and her mother in shock, unable to digest this piece of information. She asks "kya kehna chate hain aap?"
RMother (pityingly): Riddhima ne chup chaap shaadi kar li thi, lekin hame nahi bataya tha. Jis ladka usse pasand tha, Riddhima ke papa ko pasand nahi thi, aur Riddhima apni papa ko aur dukh nahi dena chatithi isliye wo chupkar shaadi karli thi.
She continues "jab Riddhima ke papa ka dil ka doura para, wo chathethe ke Riddhima ke shaadi Mohan se ho, to Mohan ko humne majboor kiya tha shaadi ke liye. Lekin tab ye maloom nahi tha ke Riddhima pehle se hi shaadi shuda hai.
Megha, still unable to understand what was being said, unable to digest the information being given to her, asks "to Nepal me kya tha?"
Riddhima: mei maafi chati hoon. Mujhe khud nahi maloom meine kyun aisa react kiya tha, lekin I'm really sorry. Mujhe aise nahi karna chaiye tha.
Megha: tum to kehrahi thi ke tum Mohan se pyar karte ho.
Riddhima: mujhe haarna nahi aati. Mujhe pasand nahi ayi ke Mohan ke dil me mere liye koi feelings nahi hai. Mujhe haar ki ehsaas hua aur bardasht nahi hua. Lekin Mohan mujhe pehle se hi keh diya tha ke wo tumse hi pyar karta hai.
Megha: to tumhara shaadi?
Riddhima: nahi. Mohan se meri shaadi hui nahi kyun ki meri pehle se shadi hochuka tha. Lekin jab natak itne door tak gaya, to pura karna pada. Mei Mohan ko bhi sachai nahi bata saki kyunki mujhe dar tha ke wo meri papa mummy ko bata de.
Megha: Kya Mohan janta hai?
RMother: haan. Wo hamare asli damaad se milwaya hume. Mere khayal me wo Mumbai me milethe, aur hame milwaya.
Riddhima (deprecatingly): aur ab dekho na. Mei bilkul akeli hoon. Meri shaadi toot chukka hai, kyunki Jiten se mei rishta nahi nibha payi aur kanoon ki nazar me meri Mohan se shaadi hui hi nahi!
Megha sits back in shocked silence after hearing this. She looks at Riddhima who had calmly told her that the biggest destruction in her life, actually did not exist! Riddhima's mother put her palms together and once again apologises for everything, and the mother daughter rise and leave Megha still digesting what she had heard. The only thing she could think of was Mohan. He had lost everything, because he had tried to help someone, and his biggest pain came from the person he loved the most – herself! He had left his home, cut off ties with everyone for her sake, living in God knows what situation, so that she would not feel uncomfortable. And even in his self-imposed exile, all his concern was about her and her kids! As these thoughts fill her, she crumples a napkin as her pain grows. She felt like screaming but stopped herself. She rises and walks aimlessly as everything that has happened comes rushing back to her. Her feet take her subconsciously to that first place where they had met, the mandir. Almost like a film, the last few months replay in her mind, from their first meeting to the last night in Nepal, and their return to Indore. She sits on the floor, leaning against one of the pillars, and wonders what to do. Then a thought struck her. If he knew that his marriage to Riddhima was invalid, then why did he not tell her? As she wondered this, her words in Nepal came back to haunt her. And she rememberd the many times she had put him down. She remembered their days after their marriage and how she fought with him. She also remembered that despite everything he persisted, putting up with everything she did and said, but the fact that he had kept such a big thing from her told her that he had given up on them.
After some time, Megha rises, and realises its too late to go to work, so she calls Prerna and tells her that something had come up and she would be in the next day. She returns to the house, and starts working on the preparations for Ganesh Chaturti. She notices after some time that Guru was on the phone and from the quiet conversation, realises that he is talking to Mohan. Guru glances at her thinking she would talk to Mohan, but she shakes her head slightly and Guru understands. He gets off the phone, and silently helps Megha in making the modak. Megha slowly starts telling Guru about the plans for the Ganesh chaturti celebrations she is planning, and shortly, they start discussing the plans. The kids return and join Megha and Guru in planning for the festival which is two days away. Megha gets a call from Saroj asking her to bring Mohan and the kids for Ganesh Chaturthi but Megha says she wants to celebrate it in her house this year. Instead she invites the Vyas family over for the festival. Saroj asks about Mohan and Megha tells her confidently that Mohan will be back by then. Guru listens to this, and a broad smile comes to his face. Nanhi also hugs Guru on hearing this and excitedly says "spiderman wapas aarahahai?" Guru looks at Megha and nods.
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The next day, Megha prepares for work, and decides that today, she had to talk to Mohan. She would call him a bit later, after the kids had gone to school and she had reached work. With that decision made, she heads out and on reaching PL, stops short when she sees Mohan sitting at his desk! She slowly goes towards her desk, looking at him as she approached her desk, and saw he did not lift his head from the computer. Megha drank in the sight of Mohan, who was fiercely concentrating on his work.
Mohan had filed his final report for the story he was chasing and knew that he had to return to Indore. He had called Prerna last night to tell her that he had found all the facts for the report, and she told him to return and that there was another story for him to work on. He returned late at night, and put up in a hotel and had headed to the office the next day. In the last few weeks, Mohan had turned into a complete shell of himself. He no longer believed in any kind of relationship. He realised that in helping others, he had lost everything. He tried to help Megha and her kids because they touched him in a way that no one had ever touched him. He fell in love with Megha and her kids, but lost them because of his own foolishness. As far as Riddhima went, well he knew the price he had paid for trying to do something good. He threw himself into his work, because this was the one area where at least he had some control.
In these last few weeks, his relationship with his mother had deteriorated as well, though Indu had no idea why her son was so angry with her. But Mohan knew he couldn't hide any more. Regardless of whatever decision Megha made, he had resolved to accept it, but Indore was his home, and he would return there. In the hotel the night before, he decided to go back to PL instead of teleworking. No matter what had happened, he wouldn't hide anymore. He thought bitterly that he was used to being insulted in Juna Mohalla, so he would take a separate room over there, and when Megha decided to dissolve their marriage, he would return to the apartment. Mohan was convinced that Megha would eventually dissolve the marriage since she didn't have faith in him. It was in that state of mind that he had come to work the next day.
The moment Megha stepped into the office, Mohan felt his heartbeats increase, and it took everything he had not to look up, but he did not have the guts to see the hatred in her eyes. He heard the rustle of her sari as she settled down in her chair. Mohan forced himself to concentrate on his work, and soon got immersed in it. Megha on the other hand kept glancing at him, and saw that he did not raise his eyes even once to glance at her. After a bit, Mohan's phone rang, and without a word, he left telling Karan that he had a lead and would not be back till the next day. Megha's heart sank when she heard this, and knew that she had to talk to him; she was a bit miffed that he had not even tried to talk to her himself. In fact he had avoided talking to her or even looking at her! At the end of the day, she made her way home, and stopped at the market to pick up some supplies. She was walking towards the apartment lost in her thoughts, when she heard Nanhi squeal in laughter and looks in that direction. She sees Mohan hugging Nanhi while Addu stood a bit further away. Mohan gave Nanhi a package then gave Addu a present which was obviously a cricket bat. Addu tears off the packaging and sees a signed bat, and he too runs and hugs Mohan. Surprised, Megha wonders what it was that made Addu hug Mohan, but was glad to see the sight. She walked towards them, then saw Mohan rise and start to walk away, ignoring Nanhi's calls of "Spiderman". Mohan had sensed Megha's presence and was about to take off since he did not want to cause her any distress. He got on his bike and was about to leave when he hears "aji sunte ho"!
Mohan stops short, stiffens his back, and continues trying to start the bike when he hears again "aji sunte ho" and this time, he slowly turns disbelievingly. He raises his eyes, and sees Megha watching him, the two children standing beside her. Megha tells Nanhi "jao, spiderman se kaho ghar aajaye". Mohan looks at her in stunned surprise as Nanhi gleefully goes to him and holds his hand, tugging him towards the house. Mohan steps off the bike, and starts in surprise as Addu comes to him as well and takes his other hand. Led by the kids, Mohan returns to his apartment. Guru who was doing some work, sees Mohan return and runs to him, hugging him, his tears flowing freely. They break apart, slightly embarrassed at the display of emotions. The kids run off to their room while Mohan takes a seat. Guru takes off to make tea, and Megha too takes a seat opposite Mohan.
She takes in his gaunt face, which looks worse in reality, his beard and moustache looked unkempt and his hair was as unruly as ever. Megha's heartstrings tugged at the sad demeanor she saw in Mohan, and Megha as she observed Mohan, realised that what had happened in the last few weeks had broken him. This was no longer the same confident, impetuous Mohan she knew. This was a Mohan who seemingly had lost his zest for life and Megha understood that she played a huge role in this. In fact she was the cause of this. Megha felt at a loss, not knowing what to say, while Mohan showed no inclination to break the ice. Finally, Megha gently says "Mohan" and sees him raise his head but he didn't meet her eyes. This pricked at Megha and, irritated, she rises and goes right in front of him. He still refused to meet her eyes and exasperated, she kneels in front of him, and Mohan finally has no choice but to look at her. She asked him "itne din kahan the?" Getting no response, she continues "tum ek baar bhi phone nahi kiya?"
Mohan remains unresponsive, so Megha continues "actually mei tumhe phone karne hi wali thi. Tumse kuch puchna tha" and finally sees a reaction in Mohan's eyes. Encouraged, she says "jante ho, kal Ganesh Chaturthi hai". Mohan looks puzzled, so Megha explains "kal ke din, ek hafte ke liye Ganeshji ko ghar late hain, phir is hafte roz puja honge, aur phir Ganesh ji ko hum visarjan karte hain". Mohan finally speaks and says "toh?"
Megha: toh mei is saal mei Ganesh ji ko yahan lana chaathi hun.
Mohan (curtly): kyun?
Megha: kya matlab kyun? Puja hai, aur ghar par puja rakhna chaati hoon.
Mohan: to Vyas house me karo. Mujse kyun pooch rahe ho?
Megha: nahin, wahan nahin. Mei puja is ghar me rakhna chathi hoon. Aur Ganeshji ko yahan lana chathi hoon.
Mohan still looks puzzled and finally Megha says "arrey baba, mei apni ghar me Ganeshji ko lana chaati hoon"
Hearing "apni ghar" Mohan gives her a sharp glance and sees her frank eyes on him. He lowers his eyes and says "main samja nahin. Tumhara ghar to Vyas nivas hai, to phir…"
Megha gently holds his hand, forcing him to look at her and she says "shaadi ke baad, ladki ke ghar uske pati ka ghar hoti hai"
Mohan angrily stands up, pushing Megha back and says sarcastically "shaadi? Tumhi ne kaha tha na ke hamare shaadi ek mazaak hai, hai na? Bhool gaye tum? Yaad karo, Nepal me tum ne kaha tha ke meine shaadi ko ek mazaak bana ke rakh diya tha."
Megha too stands up and says "tum naraaz ho?"
Mohan laughs sarcastically and says "naraaz? Mujhe kis baat ki naraazgi hoga? Mei kaun hota hoon naraaz hone ke liye?" Mohan angrily makes to leave when Megha holds his hand and says "aji sunte ho, naraaz mat ho." Her joking got on Mohan's nerves and he shrugs her hands off and starts heading to the door when Megha says "Please Mohan, mat jao". Mohan stops, then continues walking towards the door, and Megha once again says "ruk jao Mohan. Please meri baat suno". This time Mohan stops and turns back. Megha comes to him and says "please baithjao". Mohan comes back, and takes a seat. Megha sits in front of him, and says "tumhara naraaz hona thik hai. Lekin mujhe ye to batao ke tum meri saat doge puja ke liye, na?" Mohan looks at her expressionlessly and she continues:
"Mei pehli baar ye puja mei apni ghar me kar rahi hoon, lekin tumhare bagair mei nahi karsakti".
Mohan: meri koi zaroorat nahi hai. Puja tum mere bagair kar sakte ho…
Megha: ye hamare pehli Ganesh chaturthi hoga to hame saath me karna chaiye
Mohan: mein in sab me vishwas nahi karti, ye jante ho
Megha (sighing): mei janti hoon, lekin pehli puja ke liye, please?
Mohan looks at her pleading face and says "thik hai. Mei kal aunga phir batana kya karna hai". He stands up ready to leave when she says "kahan jaa rahe ho?"
Mohan heads to the door without looking at her, and says "mei hotel jaa raha hoon. Kuch din wahan rahungi jab tak koi aur intezaam na kar loon". He is about to step out when Megha says "ruko Mohan" and he stops. She comes to the door and says "tumhara to ghar hai, phir kyun…" and trails off at the anger in Mohan's eyes as he looks at her. Without a word, he leaves, almost falling down the stairs in his haste to get away before he said something he would regret. He knew that if he had stayed any longer he would have exploded with the anger that was steaming in his mind. He knew that she was not aware of the truth, but he couldn't forget the cruel words she had said where she had insulted his love. Yes, at the time, he deserved her anger and bitterness but surely she could have given him the benefit of doubt. She could have listened to him, tried to understand his point, instead of which she chose to leave him. He knew the only reason she agreed to stay in his house was because he was not there. Now she was trying to pretend as if these last few weeks had no significance. That he had lost everything seemed of no significance. Mohan is about to take off, and turns the bike to leave when he sees her standing in front of him, her hands out the same way she had stood when he had wanted to leave after Amar's truth had come out.
Megha, in the instant that Mohan turned to leave, understood that Mohan was very hurt and angry and she could not ease his pain with jokes. They needed a serious discussion and it was obvious that she would have to initiate it. She rushed down the stairs and stood in front of Mohan, her arms out, and when she saw his eyes on her, she put her hands on her ears and said "sorry". His eyes flared in anger at what he saw was her flippancy, and he switched on the bike. Seeing this, Megha goes closer and then stops and says "mujhe tumse kuch baat karni hai". She quickly removes the key from the bike and stands beside him saying "meri baat sun lo, phir jana" and she starts walking towards the apartment.
Mohan, his anger still evident, has no choice but to follow. He was about to shout at Megha, but noticed that some people were giving them strange looks and he realised he couldn't make a scene. He slowly follows Megha, who was climbing the stairs. In the apartment, she calls Nanhi and asks Nanhi to take Addu and go out to play. She also asks Guru to go and get some supplies for the puja the next day and tells her that she needs to talk to Mohan, so he should ensure that they had some privacy. Guru nods, and heads out just as Mohan enters the apartment. Mohan glances at Guru in surprise and sees Guru gesturing that he had to get supplies. As Mohan enters, Megha suddenly feels nervous but swallows her nervousness, realising that this meeting was necessary. She looks at Mohan, gesturing to him to sit down, and to calm her nerves, goes to the kitchen to make tea. Finally, taking a deep breath, she comes with the tea and gives Mohan a cup, then takes the other cup and sits down opposite Mohan. For a few minutes, there is pin drop silence as the two are lost in their own thoughts, then taking a deep breath, Megha says "Mohan" and waits till he raises his eyes and meets her. He gives her a quick look, then stands up, putting some distance between them. With his back to her, he says "mujhe yahan kyun rok rahe ho? Maine kaha hai ke puja ke liye mera koi itraaz nahi hai". He turns and sees Megha standing right behind him. He stops short.
Megha says "mei puja ki baat nahin karna chati hoon. Mujhe ye jan na hai ke tum yahan wapas kyun nahin ana chaate ho".
Mohan: Yahan kya hai?
Megha: yeh tumhara ghar hai.
Mohan (giving a short sad laugh): ghar? Ye?
Megha: haan ye ghar to tumhara hai. Mei samajti hoon ke tum naraaz ho, lekin naraazgi me koi apna ghar chod deta hai kya?
Mohan (sarcastically): achanak mere upar itna meherbaan kyun ho rahe ho?
Megha: mei bas pooch rahi hoon ke tum yahan wapas kyun nahi ana chate ho?
Mohan: yahan wapas aakar mei kya karunga? Yahan mere liye kya hai?
Megha: hum log hai. Guru, Nanhi, Addu aur…
Mohan gives a short disbelieving laugh and says "Guru shayad, lekin baki to mere nahi hai.
Megha: tum sach me soch rahe ho ke tumhara chavanni tumhara nahi hai?
Getting angry now, Megha holds his hand forcing him to look at her. She says "tum shayad hum sabse naraaz ho lekin Nanhi se tumhara kya naraazgi ho sakta hai?" Mohan looks away knowing she was right. He pulls out of Megha's hands saying "Nanhi se mujhe koi shikayat nahi. Lekin jab usse sachai maloom hoga to phir wo bhi mujhe akela chod dega". Megha's heart wrenches at the bitterness in Mohan's voice, knowing that the bitterness was a result of her actions. She began to feel guilty that he had lost his faith in people because of her. She now realised how deeply hurt and embittered he had become and recognised that was because of the way she had reacted. Admittedly she had felt cheated and had taken her decision to stay in the Vyas house upon their return from Nepal without saying anything to him, but she should have at least talked to him. Megha was at a loss to know how to comfort him. But she knew that she had to tell him what she knew. The only truth that really mattered now was that their marriage was real. They were husband and wife, and whatever their differences, they were a couple and had to resolve it as a couple.
Mohan watched the various expressions on her face as she struggled with her thoughts, and couldn't help feel his heart stirring as he watched. He had supressed his feelings and stayed away, and he couldn't understand what she wanted from him. He had been taken aback by the way she had said "aji sunte ho". He had not expected to ever hear that from her again, and he couldn't understand why she felt the need to talk to him about the puja. After all this was her house. He knew their marriage was valid, so this was her house and she could do whatever she wanted. He knew that by staying here, there had been no fallout from Nepal. No one would ask any questions and as he had pointed out, the fact that he was a journalist made it logical that he be out of the house. He had felt instinctively that she would not say anything about Nepal to anyone, so he had at least not faced any insults yet. He smirked at this thought not realising that Megha was watching his expressions the same way he had been observing hers. Megha found the play of emotions on Mohan's face too much to bear. His face reflected the pain of his thoughts and without further thought, Megha pulled him into a hug.
Mohan came out of his reverie as he felt Megha's arms around him. Stunned, he did not know how to react and just stood in her arms in amazed shock. Megha pulled him closer and realised as she held him that he had lost weight in this short time. She could put her arms completely around him due to his weight loss. As the impact of her actions and words hit her again, she couldn't stop her tears and she pulled him closer, hugging him tightly. Mohan's defences were slowly crumbling as he felt her tighten her hug, and he wanted to move away before he completely lost control of his emotions. He tried to pull out of her arms but felt them tighten even more, and then he felt her shoulders shaking and he could not help himself any longer. He raised his own arms and hugged her back as his own tears started to flow.
Megha felt his arms around her, and could feel his shoulders shaking and they both broke down, sobbing and comforting each other at the same time. They stayed like that for a few moments then realisation hits Mohan, and he abruptly pulls away, and putting some distance between them, he runs his hands through his hair. He mumbles "sorry" and makes to go to the door when she says "tumhe nahi lagta ke hame baat karni chaiye". He turns in surprise, and it begins to occur to Mohan that there was no animosity in Megha's demeanor towards him. He looks at her and says "kis bare me?" Megha almost smiles but controls herself, and thinks that the kids and Guru will be returning soon, and they needed to talk undisturbed. She says "bahut kuch baatein hai, aur phir kal ke bare me bhi baat karna hai. Chalo na, hum kahin bahar jayen?" Mohan bemusedly nods, curious at this point that she kept insisting on wanting to talk to him.
They descend the stairs as Guru is returning and tell him that they would be back shortly and to look after the kids. They see Nanhi and Addu on the way, and Megha tells Nanhi to take Addu and go home. Addu makes a fuss wanting to go with Mohan and Megha, but she scolds him saying "zid nahi karte beta. Mummy aur Papa kuch der me hi ajayenge". Addu starts making a big scene and Megha loses her patience and is about to slap him when she feels her hand being held and she looks to see Mohan shaking his head. He says "kya kar rahe ho? Baccha hai." Addu runs to Mohan, hugging his legs and Mohan kneels saying "sun na. Mummy ko mei jaldi wapas laounga. Aur tum agar Nanhi ke saat jao to mei chocolates launga, thik hai?" Addu nods and runs off to Nanhi while Mohan and Megha get on his bike and head out. Almost by silent consent, they reach the park where so many of their meaningful conversations took place.
They make their way silently to their favorite bench, and sit down, not saying anything but walking together in a semblance of harmony. They settle down on the bench, and for a few moments, Mohan allows himself to think that he was here with the Megha who said she loved him. As the thought fills him, he relaxes, closing his eyes to shut out the reality. Megha turns to look at him, seeing his eyes closed, and she notices that he seemed a bit more peaceful now.
Sensing eyes on him, Mohan opens his eyes to see Megha observing him. This time though, he does not look away. Seeing this, Megha starts by asking "tum itne din kahan the?"
Mohan: ek story ka picha kar raha tha. Mumbai me kai leads the, to wahan gaya tha, phir Delhi.
Me: tumne kabhi phone karne ka nahi socha? Mujse nahin to kum se kum Nanhi ko?
Me: kyun? Tum to uski spiderman ho, wo tumhare chavanni. Wo to nahi badla Nepal se wapas ane ke bad…
Mohan stiffens when he hears the word "Nepal" and getting restless, is about to rise when he feels her hand on his. He looks in surprise at her palm on his, and looks at her to see her shaking her head. She says "nahin. Mat utho." Surprised that she had understood his action, he subsides. She continues "Mohan, tumhe nahi lagta ke hame baat karna chaiye. Mera matlab khul kar baat nahi karna chaiye?"
Mo: kaisi baat. Mujhe to hairani ho raha hai ke tum mujse baat karna chate ho.
Me: hairani kyun horaha hai? Hamare to ek rishta hai.
Mo (bitterly): rishta? Kaunsa rishta?
Me: rishta hai Mohan. Ek rishta jo hume janam janam baand ta hai. Ek rishta jo hum apne dil ke sunkar joda tha.
Mo: jis rishta ko tumne ek mazaak kaha tha (still bitterly)
Me: meine bhool kiya tha Mohan. Mei janti hoon ke tumhe bahut dukh diya, lekin meri halaat samjho. Jis rishte ko mei sach maan rahi thi, ek hi jatke me jhutlagaya. Mei shocked ho gayi thi.
Mo: tum to meri baat sunne ki liye tayar hi nahi thi.
Me: I'm sorry Mohan. Us waqt bas yehi khayal man me aaraha tha ke hamara rishta sacha nahi tha. Usi shock me itna kuch keh gayi.
Mo: tum ye sab kyun kehrahe ho? Tumhe azaadi chaiye to bata do. Mei janta hoon ke tum…
Me (angrily interrrupting him): tum kuch nahi jante ho. Meine kab kaha ke mujhe azaadi chaiye?
Mo: to phir kya chate ho?
Me: hamari shaadi ho chuke hai Mohan. Hum pati patni hai. Tumhe nahi lagta ke ab hame apni misunderstandings khatam kar doon.
Mo: pati patni? Arrey wah! Achanak ye baat kahan se ayi?
Megha sighs, and says "tumne duniya ke samne meri maang me tumhara sindoor dala, mujhe apni mangalsutra pehnaya. Vachan kiya ke tum zindagi bhar meri pati banker apna farz nibhaoge. Meine vachan diya ke tumhara saat doongi zindagi bhar. Mei janti hoon ke tum ye soch rahe ho ke hamara shaadi ek hafte bhi nahi hua aur meine vachan todi, par ye sach nahi hai. Mei manti hoon ke mei naraaz thi, lekin meine saat nahi chora. Tumhare ghar wapas aya."
Mohan scornfully says "wo to isliye ke main wahan nahi tha. Saat to nibhaya nahi".
Me: thik hai. Manti hoon. Tab mei shock thi, aur kuch sochne ka taqat nahi tha meri.
Megha kneels in front of Mohan and says "mein janti hoon ke meine tumhe bahut dukh diya hai. Mujhe tumhari baat sunna chaiye tha, and I'm sorry ke us waqt tumse ye sab batein nahi ki. Shayad kabhi tum mujhe maaf kar paoge."
Mohan looks into her earnest eyes and slowly says "maafi ki koi baat nahi hai. Mei samajta hoon ke tum shocked the".
Megha gives him a quick smile, and sits beside him. Knowing she had to bring up the subject, she takes a deep breath and says "Mohan, tumse ek baat poochoon?" Seeing his nod, she asks "us din ke baad, tumne Riddhima se koi baat ki?" Mohan stirs restlessly, debating within himself, and then resolves that if she is making this effort to talk, he would not hold back. He looks at her and nods.
Mo: Nepal me meine mere lawyer se baat ki thi ke divorce jitney jaldi ho sake, karwane ke liye. Ek din Mumbai jane ke baad Riddhima mujhe phone kiya ke woh milna chati thi. Meine socha divorce ke liye baat karna chaati thi, lekin wo kuch aur hi chati thi.
Me: kya chati thi?
Mo: wo chati thi ke mei uske papa ke samne natak jari rakhun.
Me: usne tumhe kuch bataya nahi?
Mo (warily): kya matlab?
Me: wo apni bare me kuch nahi bataya tumhe?
Mo: tum kehna kya chate ho? Tum kuch jante ho?
Taking a deep breath, she nods saying "meri kal hi Riddhima aur uski mummy ke saath bank ke bahar mulaqat hui tha."
Mohan looks at her shocked, and seeing the expression on her face, realises that she knows. "To tumhe pata hai" he says. She nods and says "haan. Riddhima ke mummy ne bataya uski shaadi ke baare me." Mohan slumps back closing his eyes and says "I see".
Megha says "tum shayad mujhe viswas na karo, lekin meine tai kiya tha ke mei tumhe phone karungi usi din jis din tum wapas aya aur office me meine tumhe dekha. Agle din mei office aahi rahi thi ke unse mulaqat hua. Meine Guru se uska phone liya tha ek din, aur tumhare baatein sunni. Chaate the ke tum wapas ao aur ham apne bare me discuss kare. Yeh zindagi ke bahut bari itefaq hai ke jis din tumse baat karne ke thaan li, ussi din itna bara sach samne aya." She looks at Mohan wondering if he will believe her, and doesnt see any distrust in his eyes. It was true that it was one of those big life coincidences that the day she decided that it was time to look to the future, she found out that the skeletons she thought existed, evaporated into thin air.
Mohan on his side, was digesting this piece of information that Megha was aware of the fact there was no impediment as such to their marriage. Their marriage was real in every possible way. The question was really where did they go from here? Mohan knew his feelings for her hadn't changed, but he no longer believed in her feelings. Mohan was convinced that if there had been any love on her side, she would have made some effort. He had kept away for her sake, hoping that she would call him back, but she never did. However, he couldn't deny that today at least she was making efforts so he would meet her half way.
Mohan had received a blow like never before these last few weeks and had lost his ability to trust unconditionally. He did acknowledge that she had stated they were husband and wife. While he was happy to hear she was no longer questioning their relationship, he did not have it in him to become the old Mohan everyone walked over when it came to relationships. If she said he should return to the mohalla, he would. He had missed all of them so much so he would be glad to return. Lost in his thoughts, he didn't hear Megha who realised he was not listening and she gently shakes him. Startled, he comes back and hears her ask "to tum wapas aoge?" He looks at her and sees the question in her eyes. He nods in response and she stands saying "phir chalen? Der horahe hain aur bacche intezar kar rahe hain". Mohan agrees, and they head back to the mohalla.
Once they reach the mohalla, he drops her and is heading out, when she stops him saying "kahan ja rahe ho? Andar nahi aoge?" He tells her that he had to pick up his stuff from the hotel and Megha nods saying "bhool gayi thi. Thik hai, tum jao. Wapas aakar saat me khana khayenge". Mohan nods and takes off while Megha goes up and prepares dinner. While she is preparing dinner, she gets a call and happily chats with Jiji and Sarojji discussing the next day's plans and asks questions about the rituals she would have to do. After Sarojji signs off, Jiji remarks that after a long time Megha sounded quite happy. Megha tells Jiji about her conversation with Mohan, and that he had gone to get his things. Jiji suggests that Megha make sure she does his aarti to help ward off any further problems in their lives and Megha thinks that's a great idea. She prepares the thali and sets the table for dinner. When she finished cooking, she looked at the dishes, and realised she had made all of Mohan's favorite dishes!
A bit later, the bell rings and Mohan is taken aback as Megha does his aarti before allowing him in. As she is doing the aarti, he sees Nanhi and Addu in the back laughing and jumping while Guru was just observing the ritual, tears filling his eyes. Once the aarti is done, Mohan finally steps back into his house after almost two months from the day he had left, his life in pieces. He drops into one of the chairs and Nanhi immediately comes and hugs him tightly and begins to cry as she sobs "spiderman, mujhe chor kar kahan chalegaye the?" Mohan feels his heart swell as he hugs her back trying desperately to hold his tears back but is unable to in the face of this unfettered, unconditional love. He hugs Nanhi and then gently wipes her tears saying "maine tumhe pehle bhi keh chuka na, ke chahe kuch bhi hojaye, mein hamesha tumhare spiderman hi rahunga". Nanhi too wipes his tears and kisses him on the cheeks and asks "ab tum yahin rahoge na?" looking at him hopefully. Mohan nods saying "mein kab tak apni chavanni aur piddi se door rehta"? He looks at Addu who is standing observing Nanhi and Mohan, and when Mohan says "sunna piddi", to his surprise, Addu comes to him as well and hugs him. Then he steps back and says "mein piddi nahin hoon"! Mohan smiles at that, and says "haan na. Thik hai Addu".
Megha stands at the door quietly observing this scene with tears in her eyes, and she realised that perhaps what she could never achieve, the children were doing so with their innocence. Mohan finally had a genuine smile on his face. Guru too was observing this, and realised that perhaps this was truly the best medicine for him. Guru had seen the pain on Mohan's face that horrible day two months ago, and even when he returned yesterday, the pain was evident on his face. The innocence of the children would be a balm on Mohan's bruised soul.
Megha calls them for dinner, and finally it appeared the Bhatnagar family was together. They sat at the dinner table, having their dinner with Nanhi and Addu regaling them with stories about school. Then Megha tells them to get ready for bed becase they had to be up early to help her with the puja. She tells them about bringing Ganesh ji home and explains the significance of the rituals. She takes them to bed and gets them to sleep, and after changing, heads to the living room where she stops short as she sees Mohan fast asleep on the daybed. She gently covers him and goes to bed herself.
She rises early the next morning and starts quietly preparing for the arrival of Ganeshji. She goes to the living room, and sees that Mohan is not there.She feels a stab of fear then thinks that he is in the bathroom. She knocks gently on the door but it is empty. She looks for Guru who is making tea and asks where Mohan was, and Guru tells her he had to go out. Just then, there is a knock on the door, and Mohan returns with some items that Megha had forgotten she needed for the puja. They silently begin the preparations and shortly afterwards, Megha goes down to the mandir and picks up the Ganesh murti she had chosen. She returns carrying the murti and at the bottom of the stairs, Mohan joins her silently, holding the murti as they climb the stairs together bringing Ganesh ji into the house.
They jointly place the murti in its place, and the puja goes off well. All the invitees are welcomed and join them in the puja. The puja is almost completed when there is a knock on the door. Everyone looks at the door and are surprised to see Indu at the door. Megha quickly rises, donning her pallu and goes to take her blessings. She bends and to take Indu's blessings but Indu steps back without blessing her. Mohan observes this, and looks angrily at his mother, but doesn't say anything. The Vyas's rise and greet her and she rudely reciprocates. She then goes to Mohan who is standing with Nanhi and Addu. Mohan watches her approach, and bends to Nanhi telling her to take Addu. The Vyas's sensing the tension, take their leave of Mohan and Megha and head out leaving Mohan, Megha and Indu. Guru also takes off, recognising that they needed to be alone.
As soon as they leave, Indu start to say something when Mohan raises his hand stopping her. Indu looks at Mohan astounded. Megha too seeing this, realises that Mohan is very angry and tries to say something when Mohan again, puts up his hand stopping her. He turns to Megha and says "pichle baar tum ne mujhe roka tha, lekin is baar nahin". Indu is surprised to hear the force in his voice, and the restrained anger. Mohan turns to Indu taking her aback and says "Ma, meri baat bahut dhyan se sunna. Uske baad jo faisla karna chaten hai, aap le sakte hain. Aaj ke baad, agar aap Megha ko apna bahu nahin maan sakte hain, to mujhe beta samajna bhi aap ke koi zaroorat hai!"
Indu looks at him shocked, and says "tum iske liye apni maa ke saat aise baat kar rahe ho?" She goes to Megha and holds her upper arm tightly causing Megha to grimace in pain. Mohan sees the grimace and takes hold of his mother, pulling her roughly away from Megha saying "bas Maa. Bahut ho chuka. Aaj ke baad yahan aane ke koi zaroorat nahi." Indu starts crying saying "tum apni maa ko tyagne ke liye tayar ho is vidwa ke liye?" and sees Mohan's hands curling into fists. Indu is shocked to see that unable to believe that her own son would be making fists at her. Megha too is shocked to see this, and goes to stop Mohan but she too stops at the sight of Mohan's lifted hand. Indu can see the surpressed anger, and does not know what to make of it. She had understood in the last few weeks from the curt way Mohan talked to her, that he was very angry at something.
Seeing him today, she got the impression she was the cause of his anger. But, she thought, he has been angry at me before, but never like this. Indu looks at Mohan, and is actually a bit scared seeing the anger in his eyes. She calms herself and says "beta, tum apne maa se is aurat ke liye..." and stops seeing Mohan's face. She starts again "mera matlab tum..." and stops when she sees his expression. Mohan comes closer to her and says "mei ek baar phir keh raha hoon ma. Megha ke baare me mei aur koi baat nahi sununga. Waise bhi mere bare me sochne ka haq aap kho chuke hai!"
Indu steps back in shock and Megha covers her mouth in shock when she hears that. Indu breaks down in tears hearing that, and sobbingly asks "meine aise kya kar diya ke tum yeh keh rahe ho?" Mohan gives a sarcastic laugh and says "tumne to mujhe sabse pyar bhari toofan diya hai!" Indu looks at him confused by the sarcasm and looks at Megha trying to see if Megha knew what he was talking about but sees the same confusion on her face so she asks "tum kya kehraheho, kuch samaj me nahi aarahi".
Mo: kaise samaj ayegi aapko. Jab aap mujhe kabhi nahi samjhi to mere baat kaise samjhenge?
Indu: beta saaf saaf kaho na. Meine aisa kya kardiya jo tum mujse aise baat kar rahe ho.
Mo: jante ho maa, tum shayad pehli maa ho, jo apne hi haath se apne bete ko ek pagal ke hawale karna chate the!
Understanding dawns on Megha when she hears this and she says "Mohan..." and stops when he gives her an angry look. Indu looks at him in total incomprehension and seeing that, Mohan continues "Aap ko itne jaldi the Megha se chutkara pane ke liye ke ek pagal ladki se shaadi karwana chati thi".
Indu, still not understanding, asks "meri kuch samaj me nahi aarahi hai tum kya kehraheho. Kaun pagal, aur mei kab tumko ek pagal se shaadi karwana chaha?"
Mo: kyun? Aapki pyari Riddhima? Aapko maloom hai ke jis ladki aap ko itna bhaagayi thi, woh dimagi bimar hai? Lekin aapko isse kya farak padta? Arrey woh pagal hai to kya? Kam se kam wo to aapke pasand hai, na? To kya hua ke meri zindagi barbaad hota aise ladki se shaadi kar ke, lekin at least wo Megha to nahin, hai na?
Indu steps back in shock and says "nahi ye sach nahi" and looks at him beseechingly. But seeing his set face, she realised he would not lie about something like this. He continues "agar aap ko mere baat sach nahi lagti to jaye Riddhima ke mummy papa se poochiye. Wo sirf dimagi bimar nahi thi. Uski shaadi bhi hochuki thi!"
Indu sits down heavily on hearing this, then listens to her son as he accuses "aap to bas yehi sooj raha tha ke aap Megha ko mujse door kaise rakhe, chahe jis raaste se bhi ho, hai na? Aur meri zindagi gaye bhar me, na?" At this, Megha holds Mohan saying "bas Mohan. Tum kya kehe ja rahe ho? Tumhare maa ye thodi jaanti thi ke Riddhima ke problems the? Wo jaan buj kar aise kabhi nahi karti". Indu looks at Megha and sees the earnestness in her face as she scolds Mohan. Mohan, in the mean time looks at his mother and says "dekha ma, tum Megha ko kitna kuch sunaya hai, lekin wo abhi bhi tumhaari side le rahi hai". Indu looks away feeling guilty remembering some of the things she had said to Megha, and she silently rises and starts to leave when Megha goes to her and says "Aunty, aap please aise mat jaye. Prasad kha kar jaiye". She gives her some prasad and turns to leave when Indu stops her and says tearfully "mere Monu ka khayal rakha". Megha nods and says "aunty, yeh aap hi ka ghar hai. Aap jab chahe aa sakte hain". Indu looks towards Mohan who is sitting with his eyes closed and says to the room in general "mai chalti hoon".
Megha follows Indu outside, and wishes her goodbye, watching sadly as Indu leaves with tears in her eyes. Indu in the car, goes over what she has heard, and angrily places a call to Riddhima's parents. She insists on meeting them, and finds out to her horror that what Mohan had told her was correct. Riddhima further tells her of her actions in Nepal, and Indu leaves them angrily telling them that they had no right to play with anyone's life like that. As Indu returns to her own home, she realises that Mohan's accusations were valid. She had not looked beyond the fact that Megha was Mohan's choice. She had always wanted to choose Mohan's life partner, who would, in her mind, fit into the Bhatnagar family. And when she saw that Megha was Mohan's choice, a widow with two children, she was not ready to accept it. Not because there was anything wrong with Megha, but because she was Mohan's choice.
Indu like many mothers, felt that if Mohan married of his own choice, she would loose him. So she had disliked Megha on principle alone. Her mind went back to the puja, and she realised that Mohan was not looking his normal self. She realised, thinking back, that he looked exhausted and lost. But it was also obvious that he would not welcome her at this time. She had to step back and hope that Megha would make him happy.
Back at the apartment, Megha started cleaning up now that the puja was done. Her disapproval was emanating from her being, as she silently went about doing her work. Mohan who was watching her surreptiously, could sense her disapproval. He shrugged his shoulders, thinking to himself that he was tired of everyone being his mother. If she had something to say, she would say it, he thought. Finally Megha finished cleaning and took some vegetables, and took a seat in front of Mohan, cutting the vegetables. She glanced up and saw Mohan looking at her an amused smile on his face. She starts muttering "kaise aadmi hai. Apni maa se koi aise baat karta hai kya?" as she cuts the vegetables. Still muttering, she says "ma kya cheez hoti hai, koi samjhe to hi janega ke maa ke dil par kya beet ti hai" and finally Mohan says "arrey yaar, agar kuch kehna hai to zor se kaho na!"
Megha dumps the vegetables on the table and says "apni maa se aise baat kyun ki. Tum to pyar se bhi samjha sakte the". "Pyar se?" he asks almost bitterly. "Pyar se usse baat karte hain jo sunne ke liye tayar ho. Jo insaan sirf apni baat thopne par viswas kare, unse pyar se baat nahi ki jaati". Megha hears the underlying pain and bitterness in Mohan's voice and realises that it had hurt him as much to say those things as it must have been to hear it.
Understanding this, Megha changes the subject and starts talking about the puja and how well it went. As she talked, Mohan slowly relaxed and soon the kids came in. That evening, there was another ceremony, and the Bhatnagars were invited over to the Vyas house. They got ready and headed out, spending time with the Vyas's. Megha was a bit worried that Renu would say something and annoy Mohan, but the evening went off without incident. They returned home and Megha put the children to bed, then went out to the living room to see Mohan fast asleep once again. She once again, pulled the covers over him, and went to bed herself.
In the bed, Megha reflects on the day, thinking that some inroads had been made. Addu seemed to be more accepting of Mohan, and things appeared to have improved slightly with Indu. In fact almost all the relationships seemed to have had some advancement, except theirs. As she reflected, she realised that Mohan neither encouraged nor discouraged any contact. The last time they had any contact, she was the one who initiated it. She rued that what a difference a few weeks made. In Nepal, he found every excuse to touch her, to try and get close to her, and now he didn't seem to want any contact with her.
The next morning, being a weekday, they prepare the kids for school and almost silently, they fall into their old routine. Mohan takes the kids to the school bus while Megha prepares breakfast and gets dressed. When Mohan returns, he goes for his shower, and Megha remembered how the first day, he had struted out in a towel. She wondered if he would do the same thing today and while she was thinking about it, he came out of the bathroom fully dressed. She rues the fact that he has even taken away her opportunity to tease him! After breakfast, they head out to PL for work, and at work, Megha invites everyone over for the puja in the evening, and asks Prerna if she can leave a bit early. Prerna gives her permission, and they settle down to work. A bit later, Mohan gets a call and after speaking on the phone, comes to Megha and says "suno". Megha looks up at him and he tells her he has a lead and would be leaving now, but would try and get home in time for the puja. As he leaves, Megha watches his departing back thinking that he was doing all the right things, but he had put up a huge wall between them. But she couldn't figure out why.
That evening, the puja goes off very well and the evening passes pleasantly with the entire mohalla coming together for the puja and a presentation. During the presentation, Megha couldn't help remembering the Shivratri celebrations where Mohan had saved her life. She allowed her mind to go back and her memories bring to her mind, all the incidents where Mohan had in someway or the other helped her. She looked around for him, and noticed him taking photographs, looking very dapper in his sherwani. He was smiling widely as he was taking photographs, listening to Nanhi chattering away as he clicked. Megha looked on lovingly as she saw for a few moments that he seemed to let his feelings loose.
As she observed, she didn't realise that Mohan too was observing her through his camera lens. He was snapping her pictures as he was observing her. The celebration came to an end, and there was a feeling of sadness that the next day would be the last day of the Ganesh Chaturthi festival. Everyone was talking of their plans for the visarjan the next day. The Bhatnagars returned home and exhaustedly went to bed. Once again, there is no contact between Megha and Mohan and Megha's frustration grows as she wonders why Mohan was not letting her into his life.
Mohan on the other hand, was still finding it hard to let the past go. He could see the effort Megha was making, and he could understand her feelings but he was having a hard time dealing with the utter defeat he had suffered these last few weeks. He had left Indore without any hope and he had lost his trust when she had allowed him to go. For him, it had seemed like for the second time in his life, the person he had loved more than anything had betrayed him. He acknowledged that based on what Megha knew at the time, maybe she had no option, but he still couldn't get past the fact that she had refused to listen to him.
In a sense, Mohan had lost his confidence that she loved him. There was a time when he would have sworn she loved him, but... Mohan sat up abruptly saying to himself "kya kar rahe ho yaar? Ye kya soch rahe ho tum?" He stands up feeling restless, then goes to the bathroom and puts on his track suit and quietly lets himself out. Megha hearing a sound, looks out the window and sees Mohan leaving and she quickly gets dressed and follows him. Mohan, lost in his thoughts, finally finds himself in the park, and sits on the bench. He starts as he hears someone beside him and looks at Megha in consternation that she had followed him this late at night. He asks angrily "tum yahan?"
Megha returns the anger by saying "haan mei, yahan" She crosses her body with her arms and looks at him and asks "kya tum ne socha bhi ke itne der itne raat tum teherne jaoge to mera kya hoga?"
Mo: kyun? Kya hota?
Me (exasperatedly): offo tum bhi na! Mei chinta nahi karti?
Mo: oh! Arrey isme chinta ki kya baat hai? Mei to aksar yahan aata hoon.
Me: raat ko? Bina kissi ko kuch kahe?
Mo: haan aur nahin to... (trailing off as he understood what she meant). Oh!
Me: oh! Kamal karte ho. Ghar par biwi aur bache hain aur tum adhe raat ko teherne chale!
Mo (smiling): well adhe raat thik nahi hai. Bas dus baje hai, lekin tum mere peeche peeche kyun aye? Tumhe kuch hota to?
Me: to kya karti? Mere pati adhe raat ko teherne chale jate to mei kya karti?
Mohan starts laughing at her expression and relaxes a bit. Megha also smiles at his laughter and says "waise teherne ke liye aur koi waqt nahi mila tumko?"
Mohan shakes his head in amusement, and says "teherne ke liye koi waqt hota hai kya?" Megha shrugs her shoulder, and sits back relaxing a little, glad that she had got him to laugh. Mohan quietens down as well, relaxed, and leans back, staring at the stars. He closes his eyes, relaxing when he feels his hand being lifted, and he starts. Opening his eyes, he sees Megha has lifted his hand and put it around her shoulder, and leans her head on his shoulder. Mohan freezes for an instant, then relaxes, his arms around her.
After a bit, Megha says softly "Mohan". He stirs and says "hmmm?" "Mei ek baat poochoon?" she says. She feels him nod his head and she asks "kya tum abhi bhi naraaz ho mujse?" and looks up at him. He pulls back a little and looks at her, then slowly shakes his head. "Mein naraaz nahi hoon". She snuggles a little into him, and says "to phir kya baat hai. Tum itne door door kyun rehte ho mujse?" Mohan sits up and pulls away from Megha, then stands up, running his hand through his hair, and says "naraaz nahi hoon, lekin tehes zaroor paunchi hai. Jab yahan se gaya tab mujhe pata nahi tha ke mei wapas aapaunga ya nahi, or aya bhi to kya milega. Maine jo bhi kiya tha, tumhe isiliye nahi bataya ke mujhe tumhe khone ka dar tha, aur wohi hua".
Me: nahi Mohan. Tumne mujhe nahi khoya. Kabhi bhi nahi. Haan mujhe shock zaroor hua tha lekin bas is baat ke tumne mujhe sachai nahi bataya. Agar bataya hota, to hum koi na koi hal nikalte.
Mo: main bahut baar bolne ki koshis ki thi, lekin nahi keh paya
Me: mei janti hoon Mohan. Mujhe tumhare koshishon ko yaad hai. Bas tumse thodi si understanding maang rahi hoon. Meri halat samajne ki koshish karo. Us waqt jab sachai samne ayi, aise ayi ke mei sochne ke taqat kho chuki thi. Us halaat me tum hi batao – man me koi logic rahega?
Mo (sighing): maana. Tum shocked the, aur tum apni astitva khoj rahe the. Shayad mujhe sabse kharab laga ke tum mujhe ek bhi mauka nahi diya samjhane ke, ke kya hua, kyun aur kaise.
Hearing this, Megha too stands up saying "to kya tum mujhe iske liye kabhi maaf nahi kar paoge?" Mohan turns to look at her, and says "agar maaf nahi kiya hota, to hum aaj yahan nahi hote Megha". Megha looks at him, then just holds out her hand saying "chalen?" Mohan looks at the outheld hand, then taking it, they head back to the apartment, and wish each other good night.
The next day, which was the day of the visarjan, the kids rise early and Nanhi excitedly comes to Mohan saying "uthona spiderman" and shakes Mohan awake. They get dressed and perform the necessary rituals. In the evening, when it is time for the visarjan, Megha asks Mohan to take the murti which he does, and they complete the ritual of the visarjan as a family. As Megha watched the murti sink into the holy river, she prayed that Ganesh would bless her family and keep them from any further harm. She prayed that they had seen the worst of times with the truth about Riddhima coming out and now she asked for God's blessing that the new life she had embarked on with Mohan would be blessed.
Mohan on his side, watched the murti sinking, and with it, sank his concerns and pain. He wanted to start fresh with his new family. He wanted to bond with his children and his wife. While he didn't believe as such, he still closed his eyes and asked for blessings so that he could take care of his new family without any further problems and carry out the responsiblities he had undertaken.
As they slowly turned to head home, Mohan walked beside Megha, with Nanhi beside him and Addu beside Megha. As they walked, Mohan's fingers slowly brushed Megha's and he continued brushing her fingers till he finally entwined their fingers. Megha looked at their entwined fingers, then looked at him and saw the smile on his face as he asked "Mrs. Bhatnagar, ghar chalen?" Megha smiled back at him and said "chaliye Mr. Bhatnagar" and they walked back to their house hand in hand as they put the past few weeks behind them, and looked to the future of Mr. and Mrs Mohan Megha Bhatnagar and family (Nanhi, Addu and Guru).
And their journey continues...
The following 10 member(s) liked the above post:
chandni.1411, mighty01, blmadhuri, swavai2, Ishaqzaade, Meera_Ka_Mohan, naina2010, sitamma, Senpoo, pc_pals,
Joined: 02 October 2010
The following 4 member(s) liked the above post:
blmadhuri, swavai2, Meera_Ka_Mohan, Senpoo,
And it looks like a perfect gift for her...
He posted an open letter which shall shut several mouths..
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