Jeevika woke up hourly making sure Riva was okay. Not only health wise, but making sure she wasn't having a bad dream. She felt helpless. She didn't know how to tell her daughter how much she loved her. Even though Riva was aware of her love, she wasn't aware of everything. Jeevika felt it was enough for her to know just the fact that her father didn't belong in their tiny family. She didn't need to know the ugly side of the story. That ugly side that still gave Jeevika the chills. Looking at her daughter, Jeevika felt guilty for hiding everything from her. It was like hiding her Riva's identity, but seeing her this heartbroken already she knew the past would do no good to her. It was around three in the morning when Riva started coughing. Jeevika was just sitting next to her looking at her. She quickly got her a glass of water and helped her up. Riva slowly drank the water with the help of her mom.
r - "Mom you haven't slept a minute right?"
j - "why are you so concerned for me? Are you feeling okay? Why are you coughing now?"
r - "Nothing I'm fine. I don't know why I coughed. It's okay I'm fine now"
j - "Okay go back to sleep"
r - "No first you are sleeping"
j - "Riva please"
r - "Mom please"
j - "Okay we'll both sleep together"
r - "No first you're sleeping. I don't trust you. You will pretend like you're sleeping and then wake up once I'm awake"
j - "wow my daughter has become a spy"
r - "I'm your daughter. You can't hide anything from me"
j - "Okay okay. Will you pat me to sleep or no?"
r - "Anything for my mom" she said smiling.
Both of them lay back down and Jeevika placed her head near Riva's chest. Before Jeevika could even fall asleep, Riva was asleep again. Jeevika knew her fever medication put her down to sleep. Riva was right her mother wouldn't be able to sleep when she wasn't well. Jeevika got up from the bed and covered Riva with another blanket. Jeevika went out to the main hall with her laptop. She wanted to finish her office work so she could take care of Riva all day. Sitting in the dark with a cup of strong coffee Jeevika worked all night to get ahead of her work. She had fallen asleep on the table, but woke up to some noise around 6 in the morning. She tied up her hair and went to the kitchen where she saw Riva.
j - "What are you doing?"
r - "Making my lunch for school"
j - "Riva firstly your mother is still alive. I can make lunch for my daughter. And secondly you are not going to school today"
r - "Mom I have a huge test and have to turn in my assignments. I can't afford to skip today. Anyways its Friday so its the last day"
j - "Riva no. You didn't sleep properly last night either"
r - "Mom"
j - "Riva bed now"
r - "Mom please" she said beginning to cough now.
Jeevika quickly got some water and made her drink it. She made her sit down on the chair.
j - "Why are you becoming so frail. Come on lets go to bed"
r - "Mom"
j - "Riva no arguing"
r - "What's the point you're going to be working also from home"
j - "No I finished my stuff overnight. I'll be sitting with you"
r - "So you didn't listen to me right? You didn't sleep a minute"
j - "I slept then woke up and started working. You know I can't sleep more than three to four hours a day"
r - "Mom I miss you a lot"
j - "Why do you behave so weird. How do you miss me? I'm right here with you"
r - "But we don't get time together anymore. Just you and me"
j - "that's why I'm telling you to stay at home with me right now, but someone is too interested in going to school"
r - "Mom I just don't want to make up the test later"
j - "Well you will have more time to study. Come on its our day today. We will order in lunch, watch a movie, and have fun. Just you and me"
r - "Mom you're such a kid. Shouldn't you be motivating me to go to school and do well"
j - "But I know my daughter is too smart. She will catch up easily and I told you last night that I'm selfish. I want my daughter all to myself"
After Jeevika said that Riva started feeling a little upset. She just started remembering the talk again. The talk of Jeevika being selfish and keeping Riva just to herself… not even to her father.
j - "Okay now stop over thinking about everything as usual. Go change and get comfortable. I'll go make you some tea"
r - "Eww…. I don't like tea"
j - "Yeah but your cough needs it right now and your fever as well"
r - "Mom this was supposed to be a fun day not a torturous day"
j - "Yeah yeah we will have fun later. For now go and change"
Riva left the kitchen and Jeevika started preparing breakfast for her daughter. She didn't even remember last when they had breakfast together. She took the tray inside their room and placed it on the bed. Riva walked out the bathroom.
j - "What took you so long?"
r - "Uhm nothing" she said lying
j - "I made your favorite pancakes and you were still in the bathroom. Whats wrong tell me"
r - "Mom relax. I'm not that hungry. I think I'll just go to sleep"
j - "Riva why are you acting strange. One minute your okay and the next"
r - "Nothing"
j - "I'm not listening to you at all now. Sit down and tell me what is going on in your mind. Did something happen at school?"
r - "No"
j - "Then whats wrong? You're going to hide things from me? Do you not love me anymore"
Riva hugged her mom…
r - "How can you say that. You are the world to me"
j - "Then will you not tell me"
r - "Mom I'm not feeling well"
j - "I know you have a fever but whats wrong"
r - "Its more than this fever. I've been"
j - "Been what?"
r - "I've been throwing up and I have pain all over"
Jeevika started freaking out. The expression on her face is what Riva was dreading. This is why she wasn't telling her anything. Jeevika made her sit down on the bed.
j - "Where do you have pain? Tell me"
r - "Riva showed her bruises on her arms and legs"
j - "How long has this been going on for?"
r - "Uhmm"
j - "Riva you need to tell me right now so I know whats going on"
r - "A few weeks"
j - "What? Why didn't you show this before"
r - "Because I had fell at school and I thought I just got these bruises from there but I don't know"
j - "Okay lets take you to the urgent care"
r - "Mom not right now please. I'm really exhausted"
j - "I know but we can get some medicine for your fever also"
r - "Mom please" she pleaded to her crying…
j - "Okay lay down first"
Riva kept crying and lay down holding her mom's hand. Jeevika kissed her face while she tried to sleep. Jeevika's heart was paining. A mothers heart was paining. What was in store for them now.
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