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Arshi SS: Outside the Lines, Chp 12, Pg 140, link T2 pg 149 (Page 72)

pooja102 IF-Sizzlerz
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Posted: 02 February 2014 at 8:40am | IP Logged
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Posted: 04 February 2014 at 12:46am | IP Logged

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Chapter 6B

Arnav regretted the moment he told the taxi driver who brought him up to Amer Fort to leave if he found a new customer who wanted a ride. He realized that as the sky darkened and the crowd formed outside the fort into the parking lot, it was becoming more difficult for him to find a ride back to the hotel. Most of the taxi drivers he spoke to told him they were waiting on someone. He was tempted to take off his cap and reveal his identity in order to entice one of the drivers into taking him on, but then thought it was hypocritical; he didn't appreciate it when people used him for his fame so he wasn't about to use his fame to benefit himself and hurt someone else in the process.

Cursing to himself about the lack of reliable options atop the mountain, Arnav took to desperate measures, hoping to hitch a ride in a car that would have space for him, at least to the main road. Sticking out his hand as most cars and taxis passed by, he was annoyed at the lengths he had to take just to get a ride. However, he was pleasantly surprised when a car stopped for him. Looking straight into the car towards the driver and the empty passenger seat next to him, Arnav was hopeful that some kind stranger was finally taking on him. However, he was shocked out of his mind when a soft voice lingered out of the car as the woman who spoke stuck her head out of the window slightly. The woman with whom he was trying to avoid an awkward encounter literally came right in front of him, with an offer that he just couldn't turn down. He was cognizant of the fact that he didn't time to waste in getting back to the hotel and taking up her offer was the best option.

"Sure," he responded awkwardly. Walking around to the other side of the car, Arnav noticed the passenger seat door was locked so he begrudgingly made his way to the back, all the while wondering if Khushi actually recognized him from afar despite his efforts to hide his identity, or if she was just willing to take the risk of offering a random stranger a ride.  

 

Khushi didn't know what had spurred her to ask the driver to stop for Arnav; giving a ride to a stranger was something she had never done in the past and couldn't foresee herself doing so in the future either. She took an impulse decision, but one that had merit behind it. For one, she knew that she was staying in the same hotel as the team; hence they were headed to the same destination. And most importantly, if she was to take on Ashok's special project, she would have to make a start somewhere with Arnav, so why not start testing the water now? If he saw her being kind and genuine towards him, maybe he wouldn't be against speaking to her on a personal level.

Sitting in awkward silence as the car slowly made its way down the mountain due to the heavy traffic, both Arnav and Khushi peered out of their respective windows, not knowing how to initiate any kind of conversation. It seemed like the backseat got a little smaller, with the tension between the two passengers ripe. Luckily for them, the driver decided to break the heavy silence that had invaded the car.

"Sir, where is it that you need to go?"

Simultaneously, both Khushi and Arnav replied, "Rambagh Palace." The Taj hotel was situated near the Rajasthan Royal's cricket ground, Sawai Mansingh Stadium. The hotel being a former palace represented the sheer opulence in which the royals of Jaipur had once resided. After being converted into a luxury hotel, it was oft-frequented by many Bollywood actors and actresses, cricket stars and even political bigwigs. Khushi had been surprised when she was told she would be staying in the same hotel as the team; it was perk that was provided to the reporter who covered the Mumbai Chronicle, as the newspaper was closely affiliated with the team.

Giving the duo a curious glance from the rear-view mirror, the driver again spoke, "Madamji, I think it's too late to go to the garden now."

"That's fine," Khushi replied curtly.

Kanak Vrindavan was a lush garden that was created by the Royal family of Rajasthan. It was on the way to Amer fort; hence the reason Khushi had asked the driver about it on the way to the fort. She wanted to take a quick peak at it for a few reasons. For one, she had heard that many Bollywood movies had been shot there and she for one would love to stumble upon a movie shoot happening live, especially if her favorite actor would be present. Secondly, she had heard a lot about tourists being pressured to dress up in traditional Rajasthani garb and partake in an elaborate photo shoot and wanted to witness it firsthand.

"What garden," Arnav casually inquired; curious to know why Khushi seemed so wistful when being told it was it too late to see this particular sight.

"Just a garden on the way down that I heard about," Khushi replied; she was surprised that Arnav had actually wanted to strike up a conversation.

"Why it's none other than the park where some of the Bollywood films are shot. Madamji had made it clear that she wanted to visit there on the way back," the driver cut in.

"You know she wanted to see that star, what's his name - the one who always takes off his shirt and shows off his muscles," he started to think to himself out loud; the name of the superstar just on the tip of his tongue, embarrassing Khushi slightly.  

Arnav looked on amused seeing the blush creep up on Khushi's face.

"No, nothing like that," Khushi muttered softly. Arnav's amusement was soon lost as the driver continued to speak.

"Salman Khanji, that's the one right?" The driver once again spoke out loud, after remembering the name of the actor for whom Khushi had proclaimed her love earlier in the day.

"Anyway, it's too late to go to the garden now, so unfortunately you will miss out on the potential of seeing some actors. However I suggest you check out the IPL match tomorrow. You will meet many celebrities there, and you know your hotel is where all the cricket players stay, so you might get lucky and meet one of them there." The driver himself was excited at the prospect of Khushi meeting one of the famous stars that had come into his city, oblivious to the fact that one was sitting in his very own car.

 

Leaning in slightly towards Khushi, Arnav spoke softly for Khushi's ears only, "Is this why you took up the job of a sports reporter, so you can get close to so-called celebrities?" The cruelness in his tone was not left unnoticed.

"Excuse me," Khushi asked incredulously, not believing the words she heard.

"It's obvious you want to come close to celebrities. You want to stalk your favorite Bollywood actor by invading his work space in your free time. And you follow the cricket team around the country on the excuse of work, but even amidst work events, you don't hesitate trying to get close to a cricketer," Arnav bit out.

"Are you serious?" Khushi continued to reel in shock from the accusatory words, but quickly gathered herself. "If it wasn't for you, I wouldn't be here in the first place. I would be sitting behind my desk at the office." She didn't feel the need to give him any explanations, but wanted him to realize that there were repercussions to his actions.

"It's amazing what lengths people go to in order to get," Arnav started, leaving his sentence unfinished, but the insinuation was loud and clear.

"Look I don't know what you are trying to get at, but whatever it is, you are grossly mistaken. I'm not some groupie who's trying to get in the good graces of the rich and famous. In fact, if you're the example of what a cricket star is like, I would rather run the opposite way every other time."

"I didn't see that attitude when it came to a certain Australian player," Arnav said, confusing Khushi slightly before she remembered the kind natured cricketer she spoke to at the charity event after her interview with Arnav.

"You know what, I don't owe you any explanations whatsoever. Who I talk to, and who I'm supposedly trying to get close to for my own selfish reasons is none of your business." Khushi couldn't believe the audacity of the man sitting next to her; here he was throwing harsh accusations towards her when he didn't even know her, and worst of all, he was the sole reason for all her dilemmas since she had to take over Ajit's job. Khushi was angry, but she did not mince her words, hoping that Arnav would take her seriously. What was his problem anyway?

 

Silence had once again filled up the car, something that did not go unnoticed by the driver, who took it upon himself to play some music to quell the awkwardness. Arnav didn't know what had come over him to start a conversation, much less on this topic, with Khushi in the first place. When he heard the driver talk about Khushi wanting to wander into a potential movie shoot to meet a popular Bollywood star, the cynical side of him couldn't help but lash out at her for her apparent desire to get close to famous people. It proved to him that he was correct in his assumption that most journalists were either trying to ruin someone's reputation or get close to someone famous for their own personal gain.

However, by the end of the car ride, Arnav couldn't help but feel guilty for unleashing his harsh diatribe on her. Sometimes he just couldn't help himself when it came to journalists, and especially overtly friendly ones who tried to dig personal information out of him. He knew from the moment he opened his mouth that he shouldn't have started this particular conversation, and seeing the hurt look on her face made him feel even worse. He had already disappointed her during their interview at the charity event by thwarting all her attempts at conducting a proper interview, and now he had gone ahead and attacked her on a personal level. No wonder the Board thinks I need anger management classes. As soon as the car came to a stop in front of the hotel entrance, Arnav quickly paid the driver before Khushi got a chance to do the same and left without say another word. When Khushi exited the car, she was still stumped about her most recent encounter with Arnav.

 

The game started off badly and ended even worse. The Royals won the toss and selected to bat first, owing to the current field positions, which they found favorable. Their success was largely due to the poor fielding of the Indians team, reminiscent of the national team's failures at fielding a solid match. Not only did they drop easy catches that would have resulted in wickets, the fielders became sloppy when they let balls slips through their hands repeatedly, causing opponent to take an extra run or two many a time or even letting balls stumble all the way over the boundary line granting the Royals with an automatic four runs. Luckily for the Indians, the Royals scored 179 runs, a score that was in the realm of possibility for them to catch considering their solid group of batters. Unfortunately, their poor fielding translated into an even worse batting experience. The Indians were all out after scoring only 92 runs, resulting in a loss by 87 runs, their worst loss of the young season.

Arnav in particular had a miserable game. He was responsible single handedly for missing a catch that would have resulted in an automatic wicket at a time when there could have been a huge momentum swing. To make it even worse, he batted only for the course of one over before earning an unfortunate wicket after an easy pop up directly to one of the fielders. He cursed the entire way to the pavilion before throwing his bat in sheer frustration at not just his own play, but the whole teams' poor performance.

 

The post-match atmosphere in the locker room was depressing; none of the players were in the right frame of mind. Khushi didn't want to interview Arnav but knew that as one of the teams' main players, it was imperative to at least get one quote from him. Instead of asking him any questions directly, she decided to stay in the background and record the interview he conducted with the other journalists in the room on her microphone. She knew that the moment Arnav laid eyes on her, he immediately looked away. Was there remorse in his eyes, Khushi wondered. She was so confused with his behavior since the first time she met him that she spent the entire previous evening thinking about all their previous encounters while debating the pros and cons of Ashok's proposition. However, she knew that she shouldn't make a career decision based on a personal experience she had with him. Still conflicted over her decision, Khushi finished her duties in the locker room and headed back to her hotel and pack up; before leaving the city of Jaipur, she would have to call Ashok and give him her final verdict.

A/N: One year ago, I posted the first chapter of my first story. I can't believe it's been a year already, but I want to thank you wonderful readers for all your kindness, encouraging words and your unwavering support. Without all of you, I don't think I would have been here one year later, still attempting to write fiction.

As usual, thank you all for your comments from the first part of chapter 6. I look forward to hearing your thoughts about this part now. I am open to all feedback, suggestions, critique, etc.

New readers, please buddy me for PM's

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sudumonnonie3081psruthiLovenallPantheraoncaPetunia11anythingdulltomchi94princessep13HugeArshiFanmoni16IamleeMcAwesomnessblacklady1arshifan64johsimspnksOyester09snia25290Su2014MINKRISHzunaishabazingafanKuldeep_14Mamu768ArShiuakiwikaligeitahchamateVioletFlowerEternalalluresrsan12madhuiyerPagliTitligurukhushcutyanushkamalar3damnitarhiCambArshinmepujajksangeethbaladancydreameranju4566owinsony1990fanfollowerkharunyaindygal2010lilyattitudeesha85xfanafshanbabarUV_ArshibrinnylOVENIbasanti108kkyajojs1234Fridashreyasoniapayal.12savvzpaaskhannaarhiformemaina95131ruark_22321abcanamika00MsFuzzybear69tasmineducky_anneinamajarmrignayanichoochootrainBhavz21_ArShisoppyLiya123rush007dianapadhi92kamtokdin1likeNoOtherSisbamboo11987Trishadivya_divsRattyswamiarshisimpleSobhan006gprsipkndlover75katy185BSDsarunina_saahilalwaysarshi..PT..ship13celinawalterdialuvarshijg12nissoBavariNandzaksujiTirtharupaambi08-MIMOSA-mpuhanshipra.aquaSonaparam29IpoonaFeistyDewdropCute6Tulipdulipsakhter90V3Odinajnarmsmarpledaffodils06srmirjitanya_viNi_singhshils28faffythangam100Raila1014Sarikaa97Shweta1691dreamymayafatima2603segadmoomin4455l.savitreehenamaniRishita.SIholicSamyxxaycma98pravallikahararnavAnamika100gugguemistrycinthiann1758anjusr06P4rveen12bhadraprasadApoorvaranijessjazzluvbugSS88saakhi01IronButterflyspillaranjanatripathibs1224sanamskyMDTharunshalbiPinky.RaizadaPdroverArshi67Rish_Rublesaashi12sfghfjAnjuRishmissmkdieforasrjyothirockzAruni.deeswarnamints23Anarocksickanu1017luvraj4everamaypranayShamz94sudhareddyzafiLivingInPajamasAnupamaJYKishmishdeepa.ediyadivyasnoopy84ChitraFNewbiesoapfantinselshalini_s-afsha-ARS24rulamasunitikapooryoga123Mysticaldivinehoney-sweetycanapoemranogillpup03nishu_shorna1chillyBarun_GfMiss.Zaidivandana.sagarLinsieRajiSobtian

aashi12 IF-Rockerz
aashi12
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Joined: 19 November 2012
Posts: 7578

Posted: 04 February 2014 at 12:50am | IP Logged
Ting.. Ting!!


Edited:
Can't help asking Why oh why?.. Seriously the most harmless conversation can have this disastrous end was something i couldn't have forseen. Especially when Khushi stopped by to offer lift and he took it.

For once when Arnav tried to break the silence by participating in the conversation it felt good, as if he's trying to be a li'll accomodating, but all went into drain. He took upon Khushi all his frustration, categorising her with the kind of journalists he has dealt with and passed on his judgement.

Can't a girl , who's a journalist, be a fan? And Khushi did well by keeping mum. And i'm glad she did.

Because then Arnav certainly realised that he's been harsh and he felt guilty. Is it tha his personal life is affecting too much on his professional life? I wonder!

Edited by aashi12 - 04 February 2014 at 4:01am

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A_BAPdrover

rk2127 IF-Dazzler
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Posted: 04 February 2014 at 12:59am | IP Logged
Taken
bs1224 IF-Dazzler
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Joined: 25 November 2012
Posts: 4702

Posted: 04 February 2014 at 1:01am | IP Logged
Loved it
Amazing one 
Well done 
Thanks for pm..

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ranogill IF-Sizzlerz
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Joined: 12 September 2012
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Posted: 04 February 2014 at 1:07am | IP Logged
Very good update...so they talked to each others...hope khushi change her mind and stay...

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anjs IF-Sizzlerz
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Joined: 03 September 2011
Posts: 18393

Posted: 04 February 2014 at 1:10am | IP Logged
m glad u are wanting to continue writing this ff, it has potential...and yes, do  update on time, that is very important for readers to stick around, as i have seen very good ff's stop updating for 6-6 months and then the readers loose interest...

very good update btw...i think the way Arnav lashed at her was his jealousy bt how easy going she was with that player, but how guarded she is with Arnav...

hopefully he will realize that his image is responsible for that...

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sanamsky IF-Dazzler
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Posted: 04 February 2014 at 1:18am | IP Logged
and i will not wait to say  that

Edited by sanamsky - 04 February 2014 at 1:18am

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