With each step he took around the havan kund , her heart broke into a million new pieces. He had warned her, begged her not to come. But she had not listened, she had had too. She had to witness his marriage with her own eyes, otherwise her heart would never let her believe, that the man she loved and who claimed to love her was marrying someone else.
Nidhi stood behind the crowd, out of sight, but in a place where she had a perfect view of the whole wedding. She stood her ground bravely, until he had put the mangalsutra around her neck. She stood there and watched, as the priest announced that from this day on Ashutosh and Mallika were husband and wife. Only after that did she allow her self to move. She slowly forced her shaky legs to back away, and then turned and walked out of his life forever.
Only when she had reached home, did she allow her emotions full reign. Nidhi flung herself on the bed and cried her heart out, she cried till she had no tears left. And after she was done, she got up and took off the sari she had worn to the wedding and looked at it with hatred and threw it out of her window, into the street. Let someone carry it away, she thought. She never wanted to see it again. Nidhi was glad that Dadi Bua was not at home, otherwise she would have been really worried, had she seen the state Nidhi was in. For her sake, if nothing else, Nidhi needed to pull herself together. Other than Ashutosh, Dadi Bua was the only other person in her life, who was close to her. And after today, it was only Dadi Bua. Ashutosh now belonged to someone else.
She needed to come to terms with the fact that he was Mallika's husband, and tomorrow, they would be leaving India forever, to settle in London. Even though she had known for about two weeks that the marriage was going to take place, she had kept hoping. She had hoped till the very last minute that somehow some miracle would happen and the marriage would get cancelled. But she had only been deluding herself.
Nidhi still could not believe how quickly everything had changed. It seemed that one minute she and Ashutosh had been planning their wedding, and the next minute, he had married Mallika, instead of her.
Mallika, was the daughter of Ashutosh's father's friend. She and Ashutosh had been friends since childhood, and had even gone to medical school together. Wherever Ashutosh went, it seemed that Mallika followed. Ashutosh had been adopted by Dr. Mathur when he was a child, and Mallika's father had been his best friend. Over the years her father had helped Ashu and his father numerous times, the biggest favor had been his help in financing Ashu's education. Ashu had not found out about this until a lot later, and had been very thankful to Mallika and her father. He knew that he was indebted to them, but what he had not known was the way he, in which he would have to repay.
Nidhi had known from the beginning that Mallika was in love with him, and when she had tried telling Ashutosh that, he had passed it off as her imagination. Mallika, in front of Ashutosh, had pretended to be happy for them, but Nidhi had sensed and seen her jealousy, in her eyes and behavior towards Nidhi whenever Ashutosh was not looking, and had been scared of it. She had tried everything possible to try and create a rift between her and Ashutosh. The fact that they had about 18 years of difference in age had been a big enough factor, and deterrent, in their families eyes, but when they had finally won them around, Mallika had played the last card in her deck. It seemed that that had been the Ace in the hole, and it had ultimately won her the grand prize. Ashutosh!
She remembered that day, two weeks ago, clearly. The day that he had come to say goodbye to her. Nidhi had taken one look at his face and had known that something was horribly wrong. But never in her wildest dreams could she have imagined what was coming. Ashutosh, showed up on her doorstep early in the morning, and said that he had something to tell her, and when she had tried to go near him to give him a hug he had stepped back and held out a hand, preventing her from doing so. Nidhi had looked at him with confusion and hurt in her eyes, and had asked him what the matter was. The ground had seemed to fall away from beneath her feet when he asked her to forgive him and had told her that, their wedding was off, and that he would be marrying Mallika instead, in two weeks time. And though he had not wanted to, he had eventually given in and told her that he had gone out with his friends the night before, and they had mixed alcohol into his drinks and gotten him drunk, and when they had seen that he was in no shape to drive, they had called his house to see if someone could come to pick him up. There had been no one home other than Mallika, and when she took him to his room, one thing had led to another, and they had ended up sleeping together. The next morning they had been found in a very compromising position by both their fathers. The result being that he had had no other choice than to bow down to their demands, and marry Mallika, to save the family's and Mallika's honor.
Nidhi remembered that she had begged and pleaded with him that there had to have been some mistake. She had told him that she knew him and that she knew he would never betray her like that, no matter how drunk he had been. But Ashutosh had refused to listen to a word she said. He had been adament, and in the end he had given Nidhi no choice other than to accept his decision. He had then, in the same cold voice he had been using throughout, said that he hoped that some day she could find it in her heart to forgive him, and he hoped that one day she would be able to find the happiness that she truly deserved. Then he had wished her well, and said Goodbye, and without a backward glance had left her.
The only other time that they had talked after that was the day that she had received his wedding card. Nidhi could not believe that Ashutosh could be so cruel, and had called him for an explanation. He had been as surprised as she had been, and had claimed to have had no knowledge of that fact, and had apologized profusely. He said that somebody had probably done it unintentionally. He had also asked her to disregard the invite and had almost begged her not to come and put herself through the unnecessary misery. Nidhi could still her his voice and his words echoing in her mind. But she had had to go. She had to see him married, so that she could give closure to that part of her life so that she could go on from there. And she had, Nidhi thought, as she sealed the final box that carried all the memories of her time with Ashutosh, closed that chapter of her life, and along with the box, she had also packed and sealed, all her dreams for the future, and also all her hopes for any happiness in life. Ashutosh had been her life and her happiness, and she loved him with everything she was, with every breath she took, she would always love him till her dying day, but that would not be anytime soon, she knew. No matter how much she wanted to, she knew that her life would not end just because Ashutosh no longer belonged to her. After all, hadn't she continued to live even after her parents had passed away. Nidhi knew that she still had her whole life ahead of her, and that it was up to her to make the most of it. The only thing that had ended that day had been her dreams, and also her innocence and belief in love, that was all. But she was still alive, and like Ashutosh, she too had to move on, and forget about the past. Or if not forget, then at least try to let whatever happened in the past, stay in the past. She had to forget about everything and everyone else but DB. She had take care of DB now, just as DB had given up everything including her own family, to take care of Nidhi when her parents had passed away in that car accident so long ago. DB was all that she had left in the world, and for her sake she would have to begin again, begin to live Life Again!
Nidhi was awakened from sleep by a pair of tiny little hands, pulling at her blanket. She smiled and opened her eyes and looked upon the beautiful, angelic face of her four year old daughter.
- Mama, your eyes are open, are you awake now?
Nidhi laughed and lifted up her blanket and held out her arms for her precious bundle, who climbed in and snuggled into her. Nidhi hugged her tight, her heart nearly bursting with love for this tiny little child.
- Haanji sweetheart. I am awake now. Aapko kuch chahiye tha.
- Nahin mama, I had a bad dream thats all. I dreamt that the bad man was coming to get me, and I was lost and couldn't find you.
-Par dekho beta, aapki mama toh yahin hai aapke paas. Phir darne ki koi baat thodi hi hai, hai na?
-Aap hamesha mere paas hi rahogi na. Mere doosre Mama, Papa ke jaise mujhe chodke toh nahin jaogi.
-Haan beta, mama hamesha aapke paas rahegi. Apni pyari si gudiya ko chod ke kahin nahin jayegi. I promise.
And hugged her tiny daughter tightly to herself.
Nidhi had never wanted Khushi to find out that she was not her real mother, at least not yet. But things always had a way of coming out, she thought sadly. Since, Nidhi had been born and raised here, it was inevitable that her business was everybody's business. About a couple of months ago, one of the kids at her daughter's school had teased Khushi about not having a father, and told her that Nidhi was not her real mother either, and that her real Mother and Father had left her alone when she was a baby, apparently the child must have heard it from her parents. Ever since then Khushi had developed this insecurity, about her being left alone. And had had to be constantly reassured by both her and Dadi Bua that no matter what anybody said, she belonged to them, and Nidhi was her real mother now. But, how do you get a four year old child to understand that. Nidhi knew that it would take time. But then she had all the time in the world, for this child. She might not belong to her biologically, but Khushi was the child of her heart. The child she had so long ago hoped and dreamed about having with...
Anyway, Khushi was her baby, in every way that mattered. She had gone through all the proper channels and had adopted Khushi legally four years ago..
It had been about a year after Ashutosh had left her when Nidhi, had been called in for an emergency, in the very early morning, regarding one of the children at the orphanage, that she visited regularly. She had found the baby abandoned and lying on the steps leading to the entrance, covered in nothing but a small tattered old blanket. Nidhi had spotted the tiny little bundle immediately. The baby could not have been more than a month old. The minute she had picked her up, and gazed into the tiny face, and big beautiful eyes of the tiny baby, she had fallen in love. Nidhi had known in that instant, that this baby had been meant for her. The fact that she had even then, resembled Ashutosh quite a bit, had also been like a sign from the gods. Now, Khushi was literally his spitting image, if she had not known better, she would have sworn that khushi was his child.
Nidhi had taken the baby inside, and had told the manager how she had come across the child, and also of her intentions to adopt the baby. The elderly manager, had begun to have fatherly affections for the beautiful kind hearted young doctor, who always had a ready smile for the children, and had generously donated her time and services, to them. He been more than willing to help expedite matters. To be truthful he would have been willing to do almost anything that would keep the smile on her face and in her eyes, that she had when she had held the little girl in her arms and she had looked at her as though she was holding the greatest treasure on earth.
Nidhi had taken the baby straight home to Dadi Bua. And although she had been opposed to the adoption at first, Dadi Bua's objections could not last long, as the tiny baby managed to worm her way into her heart as well. Their lives now revolved around this tiny little being, and for Nidhi, she was the sole reason for her whole existance. Khushi with her innocence, and unconditional love, had even managed to almost wipe out the pain caused by Ashutosh's desertion. Nidhi glanced down and saw that her angel had fallen back to sleep, secure once more in her mothers presence and love. She kissed the little face, and with a sigh of contentment and peace closed her eyes, and also went back to sleep, with her child in her arms.
Ashutosh had mixed feeling as he stepped onto his native soil after five years. These past years had taken their toll on him, which was evident by the gray at his temples, and the somber look on his face and a sadness in his eyes, which had not been present all those years ago. These things however did not in any way detract from his good looks, on the other hand they added to them. Many a female face stopped to admire the tall incredibly handsome man, who seemed totally uninterested in his surroundings, and seemed to be lost in his own world. Oblivious to the attention and interest he was getting, Ashutosh, collected his luggage and hailed a taxi to take him home.
How strange that word sounded, he thought. Home, but it was not, it was merely a house that he had grown up and lived in until five years ago. It had ceased being his home the day he had been forced, by circumstances and his father into marrying Mallika. Five years ago, Ashutosh thought bitterly, when his life had been changed forever. He had been forced into a loveless marriage to a woman he had always considered a friend. A woman, he later realized, who was not what she seemed, and who had tricked him into marrying her. He had found this out on the day that they had gotten married. He had married Mallika, because he had thought that he had compromised her virtue while he had been drunk.
Although he himself had not remembered anything, Ashutosh had taken her word for it. He had always trusted her, and why not, they had grown up together and were the best of friends. He did not have any reason to doubt her word. The only reason he had found out at all had been because he had overheard her thanking one of her college friends, on the phone the next morning. Mallika was thanking her for giving her the idea, about how to trap him. Apparently one of the crowd that he had been out with the evening he had gotten drunk and supposedly had taken advantage of Mallika, had been her friend's boyfriend. He was the one who had kept putting alcohol in his drinks. He heard Mallika say that nothing had happened that night, because he had been so drunk that he had passed out. And the next day he had woken up with no recollection of the previous nights events. Both of their Father's and he himself had taken her word. And when forced, he had agreed to the marriage.
When he confronted Mallika with the truth, she had broken down and admitted everything, in front of him. She had told him how she had always been in love with him. She also told him of all the ways she had tried to separate him from Nidhi. And, that his refusal to accept her love, had caused her to take such desperate measures. She could not tolerate the fact that he loved Nidhi and not her. Ashutosh had been furious. He had also made her confess in front of both their father's, who of course had been shocked. But since this was what they had hoped for all along, that their children would marry one another, they made only a halfhearted attempt at chastising her. They explained that though they knew it was not fair to him, both he and Mallika needed to forgive and forget, and try to make a life together.
But of course, these things were easier said than done. And even though he had tried, he could not forgive Mallika, nor could he forget what she had done. Mallika also had tried everything she could think of to make their marriage work, she had even tried to seduce him, but he simply had not been interested. Everytime time she tried, Nidhi's face swam in front of his eyes. Her eyes, the total devastation on her face the day he had gone to her house and broken up with her, and of course his wedding! She thought that she had hidden herself from his view, but he had seen her clearly, and the misery on her face haunted him to this day. He had seen something die in her eyes that day, something pure, and bright and beautiful, and in that instant something inside himself had died as well.
Ashutosh remembered how Nidhi had pleaded with him, she had told him, begged him to not take Mallika's word. She had asked him to try and verify what he had been told. But Ashutosh had refused to listen, secure in the knowledge that his friend would not betray him like that. He had trusted Mallika blindly, and Nidhi not enough. He had always thought that she was jealous of Mallika and of his friendship with her. Ashutosh had passed it off as her immaturity and insecurity. Well, he had paid a bitter price for his misplaced trust. Not only had he lost the only woman he had ever loved, he had also lost his belief in the institution of friendship. But, on the flip side, Mallika had not gotten anything out of it either. All she had ended up with was a very bitter , angry man for a husband. A man who could not stand the sight of her.
She had apologized time and again, and Ashutosh knew that she had realized that she was paying the price for her actions. Even then he had not been able to forgive her. He had stayed married to her for all this time, only for his fathers sake. Because he loved him owed him his life. But when his father had passed away six months ago, both he and Mallika, mutually decided to part ways. It had not been a bitter divorce, nor had it been a particularly friendly one, either. Mallika had known that he would be going back to Lucknow. She had also known that he would try to find Nidhi, and she had still been jealous. She had tried to warn him that he would end up regretting it even more than their marriage, if he got back together with Nidhi again. He just hoped that she had learnt her lesson, and would stay out of his life.
If only he were that lucky, Ashutosh thought bitterly, and he knew that he was not. If he had been lucky, he would never have lost Nidhi in the first place. If only he had listened to her all those years ago, and tried to find out what had happened that night, instead of believing Mallika, he and Nidhi would still be together. They would definitely have gotten married, and maybe even had a baby by now. If, if, if ...thats all he had now, were ifs. And if he had a penny for every "IF" in his life, he would be a bigger millionaire than he already was.
That was the one good thing that had come out of all those years he had been married to Mallika. He had been able to concentrate on work, infact he had lived and breathed work. When he was not at the hospital, he was doing research and investing in stocks and markets. Not only had he made a name for himself internationally as a neurosurgeon, but had also made tons of money. The sad and laughable part was that he had so much, but no one to share it with.
The only person who had ever meant anything to him, the only one he had wanted to spend the rest of his life with, he himself had pushed out of his life.
He wanted to see her. He needed to see Nidhi. He wanted to see if she had moved on in life as he had suggested, or had she waited for him like he hoped, like his heart told him she had. He would go with the assumption that she had waited for him, that she had somehow known that he would find his way back to her, because to even think otherwise, was unbearable. He wondered what she had been doing all these years that they had been apart? Ashutosh suddenly had this sudden overwhelming urge to find out the answers to all of the questions buzzing around in his head, and heart. He knew that he had to see her. He had to see her now! He could not wait for later, so he leaned forward and gave the Taxi driver her address, and asked him to swing by her house first.
Her house was exactly as he remembered it. he wondered if she would also be as he remembered, or would she have changed. He was still thinking all this when the door to her house opened. And it seemed that every prayer he had sent up had been answered, when Nidhi , his Nidhi stepped out.
Ashutosh caught his breath, she was even more beautiful now than she had been five years ago. Five years ago there had been still a hint of child in her, but now, she was all grown up, age had only enhanced her beauty, and she was breathtaking. The fact that she was still living here must mean that she was still single, he thought, and a joy the likes of which he had long forgotten, began to slowly creep back into his being. Ashutosh reached for the door and had been about to step out, when a little girl came running from inside the house, and made a beeline straight for Nidhi. Ashu smiled and thought, some things never change, children had always been attracted to her like a magnet, and the fact that this little tyke should run right to her was no surprise to him at all. But the next second his bubble burst when the little girl wrapped her arms around Nidhi's legs and said, "Mama, I am coming with you today, I am going to help you make your sick people get better." And Nidhi bent down and picked her up and swung her around," Yes you are My little angel. Aaj meri Khushi mama ke saath unke sick people to theek karne ke liye, hospital jayegi."
Ashu could not believe his eyes or ears. The little girl had called her Mama. She was her daughter. Nidhi had moved on. The pain was so immense, it nearly staggered him under it's weight. Not only had she moved on, but she had a child as well, and she had named her "Khushi". They had chosen that name for their daughter. How could she do that, Ashutosh thought incredulously. And with empty eyes asked the driver to turn around and take him home.
When he got home, HK was there to greet him. He had everything ready and waiting for his arrival. HK ne saara ghar Ashutosh ke wapas aane ke intezaar mein ready kar rakkha tha, and had prepared all his favorite foods for his first meal home.
After he had freshened up and had eaten lunch, Ashutosh decided that he would pay a visit to the hospital. Since he was due to start work in a couple of days, he might as well go and get all the formalities out of the way, he decided. and besides, there were too many memories in this house, that were suffocating him. Maybe it was time to start afresh he thought, on the way to the hospital. Maybe it was time to bury the past, and move on with life. It seemed that everyone but he, had done just that. To Ashutosh it seemed that he was the only one who was still wallowing in his memories. So he decided that the first step in burrying the past, would be to sell the house, Baba's house, and move into a new one, where he would not constantly be hounded by ghosts of his past. That decision made him feel a little bit better. And as he parked his car in his parking spot, he felt a familiar sense of comfort, and a feeling of home coming blanket his being.
The first familiar thing that greeted him on his arrival, was the KGH receptionist Divya. She looked up at him in surprise. Accrding to her information, Dr. Ashutosh was not due to arrive till the day after tomorrow. But, boy was he a sight for sore eyes, she thought. If she wasn't already happily married, she'd be doing what every other female at KGH did, dream about him. She smiled at him and said,
--Dr. Ashutosh, what a pleasant surprise! We were not expecting you for another couple of days. Welcome back Sir!
--Thank you Divya. I came back a little early, so I decided to come in and get the formalities out of the way, before I start work. How is everything, and how has everyone been doing?
--Everything is fine sir. But we have all missed you. Its good to have you back with us. I will let Dr. Rangnath know that you are here.
Ashutosh smiled, and started to look around. Everything looked the same, he thought. But then who better then he, to know that appearances can be deceiving. Just because everything looked the same didn't necessarily mean it was, he thought bitterly, he had had a good dose of that this morning, when he had seen Nidhi with her daughter.
Ashutosh turned around when he heard his name being called,
And came face to face with Rangnath. Well he certainly had not changed. Rangnath looked exactly the same as he had five years ago, well maybe he had changed a little, Ashutosh smiled as he noticed the padding around Rangnath's tummy. A sure sign of a happily married man, he mused.
--Hello Dr. Rangnath. It's been a long time. How have you been? How is Anji? Anything new?
--Welcome back, its good to have you with us again Sir. And thank you for asking, Anji and I are doing quite well. Actually nothing new, as such, other than that Anji and I have an almost five year old daughter, named Nishi, she was born shortly after you left.
--Aah Yes! Now I remember, Anji was pregnant, and due to deliver right around the time I got married. I am sorry, it had totally slipped my mind. I apologize for being so late, but the Heartiest Of Congratulations to the both of you! I am very happy for the two of you. So when do I get to see your little Angel?
--I don't know about the angel part sir, she is more like a terror. But anytime you wish. Anji is always bringing her around.
--That's great, I can't wait to see her.
Rangnath smiled at him. He was really happy to see Dr. Ashutosh back at KGH. He had missed him at lot during these past years.
Rangnath had always looked up to him, and had a great amount of affection and respect for his older colleague. Almost like an elder brother/mentor/friend. But right now along with his happiness at having his friend back, there was also a feeling of dread, at the thought of a confrontation between Nidhi and him.
Rangnath had been informed of Dr. Ashutosh's return by the management, as the new chief of staff, last week. And he in turn had informed his wife, Anji. What he had not told her was that Ashutosh was also now divorced, and free from Mallika. He had no idea how Anji would feel about that.
Anji and Nidhi had been best of friends since childhood, and were, to this day, inseperable. Rangnath also had, during the last few years, developed a close affectionate relationship with Nidhi, to him she was just like a younger sister. He and Anji had seen her devastation and suffering five years ago, when Dr. Ashutosh had married Mallika, and left the country. And he did not want to see her hurt that way ever again.
Nidhi was a remarkable young woman, and he had developed a great admiration and respect for her courage, and determination. The way she had picked up the scattered pieces of her life, and moved forward was commendable. Both he and Anji, had tried their best to be there for her, during the early days. And while Nidhi had always been an important part of Anji's life, she had, over time, become important to him as well. They both adored her little girl, who, like her mother and her Anji Massi, was best friends with their own almost five year old daughter, Nishi. Anji had named their daughter after her Nidhi Massi.
Rangnath had not counted on Dr. Ashutosh showing up at the hospital today, however, and where on one hand he was very happy at Dr. Ashutosh's return, he was very worried about Nidhi and her reaction, on the other. He and Anji had not told Nidhi yet, they were planning to do that tonight, when she came over to their house for dinner. He knew that Nidhi and Khushi were both in the hospital right now. It had been Nidhi's day off, but she had had to come in because of an emergency. And, she had brought Khushi along with her. All of Nidhi's weekends were reserved for Khushi. Nidhi devoted both these days to her daughter, exclusively. She did not come into the hospital, nor did she accept any appointments on these days, unless it was an absolute emergency, which could not be handled by anyone other than her. Nidhi had become a very well known Doctor in her own right, and had an impeccable reputation. She was well known as having "the Magic Touch" where children were concerned.
Nidhi had worked very hard and completed her residency and fellowship in Pediatrics, with top honors. All of her patients (children) adored her, and their parents loved her. A year ago, she had been offered, and had accepted a position here at KHG, and since then had become one of their busiest and most sought after doctors. Rangnath and Anji were very proud of her. And the way she had managed to take care of her Grandmother, run her house, raise her daughter and also manage her busy practice, was an example for everyone. Anyway, hopefully nothing would happen and Nidhi would not find out anything until tonight. Then she would have the whole weekend to prepare herself, Rangnath hoped, as he crossed his fingers.
But, no matter how much you hope and pray for something, sometimes, fate has other ideas. While Rangnath had taken Ashutosh around the hospital and was reacquainting him with the old things, and introducing him to the new stuff, he had deliberately avoided the area that he knew Nidhi was in right now. The Pediatric ward. And somehow, to his luck, Ashutosh had also not mentioned anything regarding this oversight. Rangnath hoped that his luck would hold out, and he could avoid a meeting between the two. Just as he sighed in relief, he saw Janki Bai walking straight towards them, with Khushi in her arms.
The second Khushi spotted Rangnath, she started squirming in Janki Bai's arms, demanding to be let down. (Every body at the hospital, including all the staff adored Nidhi's daughter, she had managed to worm her way into everyones affections) The minute Janki Bai put her down she ran towards Rangnath with her little arms outstretched. He immediately bent down and scooped her up, cuddled her and kissed her cheeks.
--Rangu Massa, mujhe mama bheja aapse hello karne ke liye.
--Toh phir kijiye na hello, sweetheart. I am waiting.
She giggled at his standard answer, and laughed when he tickled her tiny tummy
Khushi put her arms around his neck and kissed both his cheeks and said.
--Hello Ranu Massa. Now can I have my treat.
Rangnath laughed, he had prepared for this when he had heard that Nidhi was bringing her daughter along with her, and took out a lollipop from his pocket and handed it to her.
Ashutosh had been quiet throughout this whole exchange, and, Rangnath noticed that he was staring at the little child in his arms with fascination, and a tiny smile on his face.
She was absolutely adorable, and very advanced for her age Ashutosh thought, and had this sudden inexplicable urge to hold the little girl in his arms. He had not known that a child so young could be so fluent in her speech. She couldn't be more than 3 yrs old, he guessed . Khushi, was actually very tiny, and did not look four years old. It was probably due to lack of nutrition in the womb, had been Nidhi's guess. But in all other ways she was a perfectly normal, and an extremely bright little girl.
Kushi paused in the act of opening her lollipop wrapper, and looked up at the stranger who was staring at her, and then hid her face against Rangnath's neck.
--Massa, yeh kaun hain?
She whispered loudly.
Ashutosh was absolutely captivated by her. He looked at Rangnath and said.
--Dr. Rangnath, who is this naughty little baby, in you arms?
Khushi turned around and looked at him
--I am not your baby. I am only my mama's baby.
Ashutosh laughed and caressed her tiny cheek with his finger, and looked at Rangnath questionly, with one eyebrow raised.
--Sir, hamare hospital ki jo Senior Pediatrician hain, yeh unki beti hai.
--Meri mama, sick people ko theek karti hain.
Ashutosh frowned, he had heard that somewhere, he thought. Those words sounded very familiar.
--Aap kaun hai? Agar aap bhi sick people hai toh aapko bhi meri mama ke paas jaana chahiye, woh aapko bhi theek kar dengi.
Ashutosh just could not resist her any longer, and held out his arms. Khushi looked at him, intently, for a few seconds as if judging him and making up her mind about him, before she slowly held out her arms to him and went into his.
--Apka naam kya hai, Beta?
--Mera naam Khushi hai? Meri mama ne rakkha tha mera naam. Woh kehti hai ke mere aane se unke paas dher saari khushiyan aayi thi, issliye unne mera naam bhi khushi rakkh diya. Par aap kaun hai? Aapne to bataya hi nahin.
Ashutosh had gone absolutely still, when he heard her tell him her name.
It couldn't be, he thought incredulously. and looked at the tiny child in his arms.
--Beta aapki Mama kahan hai?
Just then Khushi spotted Nidhi walking down the hallway towards her, and laughed with delight, when she came and stood behind them
--Woh rahi meri mama. Woh dekho aapke peeche khadi hai.
--Her mother is right here, Dr. Ashutosh, behind you.
Ashutosh recognized that voice, he would know it anywhere, he thought, as he slowly turned and and came face to face with the woman who had haunted his dreams, and occupied his every thought for the past five years.
-- Khushi is my daughter!
I hope that you all liked MY Khushi. Because she really will fulfill the meaning of her name.