Khushi followed Arnav silently to his room mentally cursing herself for accpeting his offer without thinking a bit.
'May be my mind was not working well with what all happened', she reasoned herself but whom was she kidding? She very well knew that was not the reason. She had some other reason which made her agree and that was her patient somewhere reminded her of him, her ladoo. His eyes, his face and the way his eyes blinked everything reminded her of him and she wanted to know if her suspicion was correct. She so wished it to be right but then she had no way to confirm it until he says something about it.
'How silly you were back then Khushi? 5 saal saath bitaya par kabhi naam bhi nahi pucha? Aisa koi karta hai kya?' she mentally chidded herself. Had she known his name it would have been very easy for her but she was busy giving him some silly nick name that the thought of asking him his name never crossed her mind.
Engrossed in these thoughts Khushi didn't realize when they reached his room and he had stopped short before entering inside. She was walking numbly when she hit her foreheard on his back and steadied herself holding his arms from behind. They both felt the electifying effect and chose to ignore the same.
'Dhyaan kahan hai tumhara, doctor?' , he asked.
'Ladoo mein' she replied innocently and he smiled at her answer.
'Shall i order some ladoos along with the coffee?' he teased.
'Huh? Oh sorry i was not talking about that ladoo..umm sorry you won't understand. Let's get inside?' she said biting her lips as she was frustrated with how she was behaving around him.
They went inside and took their seats. Aman was there with the coffee mugs and handing them the same made a quick exit. He knew from how long his boss was waiting for this moment. Arnav and Khushi talked about several random topics and finally she left saying she had her duty to finish. In the two weeks time Arnav was here this was the first time they talked properly and Arnav finally felt home after ages. now all he waited was for her to recognize him. Yes, recognize him! Her friend ladoo whom she had left back fifteen years back.
Arnav's journey after Khushi left had not been easy at all. Khushi was like a source of light in his dark life. After the death of his parents he had been alone till she came and changed everything. His parents had left huge sum of money behind them for their son and his uncle was after it. He looked after him and let him stay with them just for the money. Arnav couldn't fight back nor could he give everything up as he knew something wrong was happening. That was when Khushi had come and gave him all the strength he needed for. He had liked her from the very first meet which later changed into love as time passed by. But when Khushi had gone leaving him all to himself he was broken. It was like she had taken all his energy with him and he remained there lifeless and weak. He had lost faith in love and friendship and his life had been next to hell with his uncle beating him up like he was some filthy animal who deserved to be treated bad. He asked his uncle to let him free but he wouldn't agree so one night he escaped from that hell to start his life in a new way.
He somehow managed to get Mumbai as he knew he could someday meet his cookie there. At first things weren't easy at all but then god had made a way. He met a man in his sixties who had no one to be called as his own. After knowing everything about Arnav he asked him to come along with him as he lived alone and would love to have somebody as a company. Arnav was reluctant neither did he want a favor from anyone but the man had convienced Arnav and had taken him to his place. Arnav was first a helper to him but as time passed by they grew a bond and the older man started treating him as his own child. He made Arnav complete his studies and with his own effort Arnav started a business.. After few years of hardships he was now a renowned businessman. He had never forgotten about his love but had not made any attempts on finding about her whereabouts. It was later one day when Aman, his manager cum friend had suggested him to hire a detective to find out about his lady love. He agreed to it after thinking a lot and giving all details about Khushi he knew, he let the detective to do the rest. It was within a month time he had gotten every information he needed but he made no attempts to get to her. May be it was the pain she had given him or the fear she might not need him that stopped her and he never made any tries to change his mind.
He knew everything about her except for some personal stuffs. He had even seen her many times before but he always held himself back from running to her and taking her in his embrace which he longed to do since long. But god had his own plan. He met an accident and ended up being admitted in the same hospital where she worked. He had become very happy when he had opened his eyes after some hours and saw him there before him. But she didn't recognize him at all which kinda made him sad, little did he know she had thought about her ladoo the first thing she saw him.
The next day Khushi came to his room for the daily check-up and saw him engrossed in his phone talking to someone ever so sweetly. She felt a pang of jealousy hit her and again she chastised herself for acting silly. Who was she to feel jealous anyway? Though Arnav was talking to Aman's little sister all his attention was on his particular someone who was fidgetting with the paper in her hand and he could very well smell jealousy. So his plan really worked, he mentally patted himself and after a while ended the call happily now knowing that he did have some effect on her. She was doing her work when he messaged Aman. Now the second plan he said aloud in his mind.
Last day when she had mentioned "ladoo" he was sure it was him she was thinking of and was happy that she still remembered him so from then he had thought of letting her know he was her ladoo but he didn't just want to say straight away so he made some plans which would make her relive some of her past incidents.
Aman walked in with a packet in his hand and smiled at his friend. Khushi was done with her errands and was about to leave just when Arnav said something which stopped her right away.
'Cookie?' he had exclaimed and she was taken aback.
Did he just call her cookie? If so that meant he was her ladoo. Was he really? OMG this is just not happening! She turned back but to her utter disappointment she saw him hold a box of homemade cookies. So he was talking about those cookies not her..Hmm..
Arnav was noticing her every move from the corner of his eyes. from the excitement to the sad pout nothing was missed and he enjoyed seeing her doing so. It was not long for the happiness to remain forever, he promised and turned to Khushi.
'You alright?' he asked.
'Umm..yeah i am fine. I should leave now.' she said struggling with words and left from there.
He wanted to meet her later at the day but it looked like she was very caught up as she made no appearance. The next day was friendship day and though he wanted to enjoy seeing her restlessness around him for some more days he didn't want to make her sad.
The next morning Khushi entered his room with a very dull face and he could tell it was because she missed him, her ladoo. He right away wanted to reveal he was her ladoo but he knew he had to wait until the right moment. Finishing with the check up when she was about to leave h caught hold of her hands and smiled lightly. She was confused and raised an eyebrow to know about his gesture when he handed her a note and asked her to read the same once she was free. Nodding her head as a reply she went outside and Arnav couldn;t wait for her to read the note and come to him.
Some hours later when she was finally free searched her coats' pocket and fishing out the small note read out the same.
'It's been ages that i have not celebrated this day, want to know why? Its beacuse how can i enjoy this day without you, without my cookie?? Here i said it. I am your ladoo Miss. Gupta, the one you left yeears back. I haave waited enough for you that now its almost killing me. Ab toh aa jao apne ladoo ke paas' it read.
By the time she finished reading it her eyes had teared up with the tears of happiness. She couldn't believe Arnav was her ladoo and she was right all along but with her being silly couldn't realize it. She rushed out of her cabin and went straight to Arnav who was sitting on his bed smiling. She came crashing down on his chest and hugged him tight not caring about his injured hand. She had met her ladoo after ages and she couldn't think of other things other than running into his arms. She smiled, she laughed, she cried and also exclaimed on her stupiduty yet didn't step back from the warm embrace and Arnav didn't complain even though his hand was being crushed in between. He felt some pain but the happiness if having her in his arms was enough to make him forget rest of the world.
Finally after what seemed like an eternity she pulled out from the hug and started punching him with her tiny fists complaining how he could remain quiet from all those days. Arnav winced in pain and finally she realized what she was doing and slowed down. Arnav smiled simply saying if he had told her earlier she couldnlt get the best friendship day gift which she agreed and again hugged him this time making sure his hand is not crushed.
Talking about everything from the time she left, they spent the day together, holding each other. Arnav badly wanted to know what made Khushi leave and asked her the same. Khushi hesitantly said the reason of her leaving was his uncle and how she didn't want to do so but as it was said that would help Arnav be a better man, she had agreed. Arnav was not surprised knowing that infact, he had always known it had to do something with his uncle and he was right. Khushi also admitted how as time passed, she thought she had taken a wrong decision but thinking it was for his good shrugged off the thought. Arnav did agree her decision had helped him be a better person but said she could have informed him before leaving and explained how broken he was when he found her gone without a word to him. Khushi reasoned she was just a kid back then and didn't have that much of understanding and Arnav teased her saying she still was a kid for which he got a smack on his arm. They also talked on how alone they had been and how much they had missed the other. By the time all these things were discussed they both were emotional thinking about the past but they promised not to think about it again and as they were together now they could always create some new good memories. It was late now and Khushi had to leave but Arnav stopped her and opening the side drawer took two packets out of it. He handed her the one placed above and wished her again but she was more curious about the other one and she did ask what that was.
'Aah this is for my girlfriend.' Arnav said nonchalantly.
Khushi's face fell suddenly at the mention of his girlfriend. Without her knowing her eyes started to well up which she blinked several times in order to stop her tears from rolling down. She fimally composed herself and asked.
'So you have a girlfriend'
'Ahan i do. She's the most beautiful thing ever happened to me.' he said smiling.
'Oh okay.' she said struggling and what about to turn away when she left a tug at her dupatta.
'Don't you want to see her?' he asked.
'No i don't' she wanted to shout but kept quiet and nodded her head.
He smiled at her and pulled her to sit next to him. She sat there feeling more uncomfortable than ever. Taking his phone from the side table he clicked a picture of them both seeing which Khushi was very confused. He then smiled and showed her the same. Khushi spoke nothing but gave a stern "what" look and Arnav pointed at her picture and said 'This is my girlfriend, my love. She is the most beautiful thing ever happened to me. Had it not been for her i would not have been her before you. I have loved her ever since i knew the meaning of love. When she left me i was broken but that also gave me a reason to start afresh and be who i am today. I tried hating her for leaving me alone but could never do that, infact i fell more in love with her.' he said smiling softly and looked at Khushi whose tears were now rolling freely. She stayed there numb and it was making him impatient.
'Itna kuch bola yaar maine kuch reply toh do.' he said.
She didn't know what to do or say. His words had made her feel as if she had just made a journey to heaven and back there. She was happy knowing the feeling which she kept buried deep inside her all these years were reciprocated by him as well. She couldn't get any words so she did something which was a shock not just for Arnav but for her as well. She lightly kissed him on his lips and said 'I love you too Arnav, i love you too'
The words were simple so was her gesture but that was enough for him to understand what he felt for him and he was happy. This was the beginning of their new journey now, not only as best friends but as couples who loved each other madly.
Thanks for reading.
Edited by broken.silence - 26 August 2014 at 11:19pm