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Joined: 21 August 2012
Hi! I update everyday (except for the weekends) so I will not be sending any PMs
PS - Relax. The story will have a happy ending
Arnav sat in his seat rigidly. Throughout the flight, he'd been tensed, angry and silent. His mind was racing with the findings. He didn't want to understand how she could do such a thing.
Aman had called him up. Aman informed Arnav that the data from the green file was rumored to have been given to another rival company. Arnav hung up then and there, having heard enough. He took his phone and smashed it against the wall, watching as it broke into three pieces. He resisted the urge to tear down his hotel room.
Immediately he used the room phone to contact the front desk and asked them to arrange the earliest flight back to India. He still had one week left in his US stay but.. His acquisition deal in US could wait; most of it was settled already anyway. Right now, he needed to go back to India.
So ASR calmly waited, his rage barely contained as he finally landed in India. After going through all checks, he collected his baggage and strode off directly to his penthouse.
Khuraisha gulped her drink, savoring the familiar burn of alcohol. She signaled the bartender for another round. She was very happy today. She had successfully managed to steal the green file for a few seconds, take photos and pass around some rumors about the bidding. This time, she didn't have to use Khushi - no, Khushboo's name. Khuraisha was sure ASR would know immediately that his Khushboo was behind this.
Khushi caressed the two flowers he'd given her. She sadly looked at his jacket that hung by her bed. She was close to crying; a sudden heaviness was weighing her down. Arnavji would be back next week. She was happy about that, but sad because she hadn't been able to speak to him since the time she'd called him up to get the key for his penthouse. After that, they hadn't spoken. That was three days ago.
She'd gotten a call from his office. They wanted her measurements for the sari he'd designed for her. She couldn't wait to wear it for the event dinner reception that was coming up in two weeks.
Arnav reviewed the security footage. He hated thinking about her as a mole. Why would she use her own name? He saw as Khushboo exited the elevator and went into his penthouse. After a few minutes, she came out with the green file. She stopped outside his door and looked through the file. He watched as she took out her phone and made a call while walking to the lift.
Was she calling her partner in crime? No, it couldn't be. But then how else did his designs get leaked? How else did the data in that file float around? Everything was pointing to her. He swallowed. Had he been fooled by this innocent looking woman? He shook his head. He should've known. They were all the same.
He stood up, too angry to sit in one place. He kicked the sofa and paced around, agitated. Why would she do such a thing? Why? Why did she not pick up his calls? Why did she pick up the call he'd made from a different phone?
Was it all fake? What about all the time they'd spent together? Were all the shy looks, the innocent actions all planned? Why? Did she just want money? He itched to go up to her and shake her for answers. But what good would that do? There was no denying it. She was the mole. Everything pointed to her.
"ASR, you wanted the sari done as soon as possible. It's mostly ready. Should I deliver it to you? Or.." Aman called him up.
Arnav stayed silent. He thought back to the time he'd spent making all those designs, being motivated by her. And she was the one who betrayed him. A feeling nagged him. Why would she use her own name? He was so frustrated. His anger always made him to irrational things.
"Leave it there for now. May have to make changes to the blouse size" Was all he said before he hung up. He'd been waiting impatiently to see her in his designed piece. Now, he was impatient to murder someone.
"Are you sure about this?" Ritesh asked her again.
Khuraisha rolled her eyes. "Would you stop being such a wuss and just do it? What is your problem? Be a man." She spat at him.
Ritesh clenched his teeth. He turned away and saw Khushi standing by the pantry. He walked to her with a cup of coffee and just as he reached her, he deliberately spilled some of the coffee on her and on the floor. Khushi squeaked as the coffee soaked her anarkali. She whirled around to see Ritesh standing there, apologizing to her. "It's okay, Sir" She said, grabbing some tissues.
Ritesh looked at Khuraisha who nodded at him. He snatched the tissue from Khushi and dabbed at her clothes. Click.
He apologized again, taking her hand in his to wipe the coffee that had splashed onto her. Click.
Khushi moved to go to the washroom so as to watch the stain before it set. But Ritesh purposely blocked her. She slipped and gasped. He caught her in his arms and brought her close. He smiled at her. Click.
"Are you okay?" He asked looking deep into her eyes. She nodded and hastily left for the washroom.
Ritesh joined Khuraisha who stood behind the pillar, clicking away photos. She showed them to Ritesh. She sneered "Don't you two look cosy" She laughed. "Wait till ASR gets these. Our work will be done."
"Isn't he out of town?" Ritesh asked.
Khuraisha shrugged. "Doesn't matter. When he gets back, he will find these express-delivered photos at his doorstep." She smirked.
Arnav paced his hall. He wanted to call Khushboo, meet her and demand to know what was happening. But before doing that, he took some time off to calm down. He always jumped the gun and behaved harshly. He didn't want to make the same mistake with Khushboo. She couldn't have faked her feelings for him; he could see it in her eyes. He had to get to the bottom of this. He was just about to grab his wallet and head out to meet with Khushboo to hear her out when his doorbell rang.
He opened the door to find the concierge lady there with an envelope in her hands. "Sir, I'd just gotten back from the pantry when I saw this on my desk. It's for you." She handed him the package and left.
Arnav opened it up, his insides filled with dread. He had a bad feeling. All his previous anger, rage and fury threatened to overflow once he saw the contents of the envelope.
He threw the envelope on the floor, the contents spilling out. He growled deep in his throat, his anger making him blind. He grabbed the phone. "Deliver the sari to me right now. I want it within the next thirty minutes."
~ Two weeks later ~
It was one day before the event dinner reception. ASR made his way to the U3 Events office with a wrapped present in his arms. Khushi looked up from her desk and felt her breath stop. Arnavji! Her heart silently screamed out. She was shocked to see him. He was supposed to be back a week ago. She tried calling him, but his phone was unavailable. They had had no contact for two weeks. She didn't know what to do. She even made a trip down once to his office, wanting to ask his staff if they knew where he was, how he was..
But now, here he was, looking fresh, sharp and more handsome than she remembered. It had been four long weeks, almost a month since she'd seen him, since he'd left. How she ached to forget everything and everyone and just jump into his arms. She stared at him, waiting for him to look at her, to notice her. She wondered why he hadn't told her he was back, that he was coming to meet her. She got confused when he noticed her walking straight ahead to Khuraisha.
She saw him saying something to Khuraisha who looked surprised at ASR's visit. Khushi frowned. What were they talking about? Why hadn't he called her? Why hadn't he told her he was back? Didn't he realize how worried and anxious she'd been? Khushi saw him talking to Khuraisha who looked utterly confused. Khushi watched as Arnav passed Khuraisha the package in his hands. Khuraisha took it, looking at it curiously. Nodding at whatever ASR said, she turned to walk away in a daze.
Khushi stood up, wanting to go up to him. ASR began to walk back to the lift, checking his email on his phone. Seeing as there was hardly anyone near the lift, Khushi quickly walked up to him, blocking his way. Arnav stopped short at her block. He looked at her, his face expressionless. She stared back at him, taking in his features, tracing his handsome face. It had been so long. Her heart pounded in her chest. Why wasn't he saying anything?
"Arnavji" She murmured. He stayed silent. "I didn't know you were back. Why didn't you tell me? Or call me? I was so worried." Khushi took a step forward, using all her strength to not hug him, wrap him up in her arms.
"Yea. Got back two weeks ago." Arnav smiled at her. Khushi frowned, her brows scrunched.
"Two weeks.. I thought you were coming back last week?" She asked in confusion.
"Cut my trip short." Arnav scrolled through his phone. Khushi was confused and starting to get angry. Why was he acting like this? Why was he so.. so different? So distant?
"I tried calling you so many times, Arnavji" She looked down to see a different phone in his hands. What happened to his samsung phone? He was using an iphone now.
"My phone broke. Got a new one." He waved his iphone at her. "Anyway, I'm really busy. Have to do some last minute work for the dinner reception tomorrow. See you then, okay?" Arnav smiled at her.
She stood there, unsure of what was happening. She didn't expect him to behave like this after being away for so long. He was back since two weeks.. He couldn't find two seconds to let her know? What about the file that he wanted her to keep safe? What about his trip to the US?
She'd thought once he got back they would meet and talk for hours. She would finally tell him the truth about the name confusion before the reception tomorrow. Before she wore his sari. What happened to the sari?
She had so many questions to ask him. But she couldn't find her voice. And he was already walking away to the lift. He stepped into the lift and pressed a button. He looked straight at her as the doors shut together. Her spine tingled. The way he looked at her, it made her feel uneasy. It unsettled her.
What was going on? Even his smile seemed so.. so unlike him. She shook her head. It's okay. She would see him tomorrow and would talk things out. She was sure he was just extremely busy. Everything's okay, she told herself, ignoring the gripping fear that was started to form within her.
It was the day of the dinner reception. Finally, the day U3 Events had been preparing for such a long time was here. Khushi, Khuraisha,Ritesh, Rakesh and a dozen of other fellow colleagues were there onsite, preparing for the evening. Since Khushi met him yesterday, she had been feeling confused, dreadful and tensed. Something was wrong. She couldn't even call him because she didn't have his new phone number. She'd considered emailing him using her fake khushboo email address, but she didn't want to use that. No more lying.
She wondered if she should go to his office. Talking face to face would be the best, right? However, Ritesh swamped her with work. Task after task, assignment after assignment. Soon, it was 5. The reception would start 7. They all had two hours to change into their evening outfits. Khushi walked around slowly, looking at the decorations, trying to distract herself from bad thoughts. Arnavji had smiled at her before leaving yesterday. So everything was fine.
He was probably distracted with work, busy preparing for the event. Besides, she wasn't his wife that he would update her when he landed in India, when he ate, when he slept. Khushi locked her fingers together, swallowing. What happened to the sari? Would he remember to give it to her? Or was he so busy that he forgot.. She groaned. She couldn't even get in touch with him.
Hey Devi Maiyya!
Arnav looked at himself in the mirror. He was wearing a gray suit with a silver tie to complement the champagne-pink-silver sari he's designed for her. He wanted them to match. After all, a couple should match, right? The time was 7. He would slowly head out to the venue. Anyway, his entries were always later. His team was there already.
Khushi looked down at the pink anarkali that was slightly fancier than the other ones she owned. She was waiting impatiently for Arnavji to show up. Once he did, she could get her sari and then change into it. For now, she was wearing this.
The crowd started to form shortly after 7:15. This dinner reception was for the top 10% exhibiting companies along with their hosted buyers, plus the organizers -U3 Events. They were expecting around 200 people to show up tonight.
Khushi stationed herself at the entrance of the venue, fed up with the waiting. She wanted to be the first to see Arnavji as he came. It was her first event, she wanted to share this experience with him. Then after the dinner, hopefully they could go out to gazebo nearby and talk privately. She'd decorated the gazebo herself with some fairy lights and candles. She wanted to give him a surprise, just like when he'd cooked dinner for her.
Unfortunately for her, Ritesh came in a few minutes and told her to take care of the registration counter for the last minute guests. Disheartened at not being able to greet Arnavji by the entrance, she went to the counter with a heavy heart and did her job. She spotted Amanji amongst the growing crowd and her heart leaped. Arnavji, where are you?
Arnav walked into the venue. He looked around. There were quite a few people. He saw Khushboo who smiled at him brightly. He smiled back. She was about to come to him, but he spotted Aman and some of his team members. He walked up to them, joining their conversation.
Khushi looked up from her counter and her eyes zeroed in on Arnav. He was looking very handsome in his perfectly fitting suit, hie gelled hair and toned physique. Khushi longed to talk to him, but she couldn't leave the counter unattended. When it was 7:30, the host; one of the U3 Events staff, went up on the stage.
"Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the dinner reception tonight. So glad to see a good crowd here. Feel free to mingle around, have drinks and dinner at your own pace. Please enjoy yourselves." The host left after announcing.
Khushi's eyes were trained on Arnav. She was the only one manning the registration counter. She looked around to see if she could get someone to replace her for a while but with no luck. She saw him head to the dinner buffet with his team. The evening dragged on, soon it was 8. Ritesh told her to come along for a quick briefing before having dinner with their colleagues. After attending the meeting, she tried to excuse herself from dinner so that she could talk to Arnavji for a few minutes. Arnavji didn't know where she was, he might be looking for her.
Ritesh insisted she have dinner with them. Khushi told him she would be back soon and left in search of Arnavji. She saw him a little distance away, shaking hands with someone with a drink in his hand. He was meeting with people. Afterall, this was a business platform for him. She shook her head. She was so impatient! She would wait until he was free.
Arnav was happy with the crowd, he got to meet a few high profile clients and partners in the industry. He also chatted with some of the hosted buyers. Hmm, seemed like this event was turning out to be profitable for him.
The night dragged on. Khushi gathered courage to go up to him, to catch his eye. But Arnav was constantly surrounded by people. He was busy chatting, socializing. She smiled to herself. He probably forgot about her sari. Silly man. He worked so hard. She would see to it that he relaxed later on when she brought him out to the gazebo.
Some music filled the air and even as the night progressed, the buzzing and murmurs filled the atmosphere. The turnout was good and she was proud to be part of its success. She wished she could share her feelings with Arnavji.
Soon, it was 9. The dinner reception would end at 10pm. She waited in anticipation for the night to be over so that she could have some alone time with him, finally, after so long.
Silence filled the air and Khushi looked up from her new task of helping people with the directions. Her breath hitched as she saw Arnav Singh Raizada on stage. She looked at him proudly, he was a picture of confidence and power. Her eyes drifted to the clock. It was 9:45.
"The host has kindly allowed me to make an announcement. I am Arnav Singh Raizada, owner of AR Designs. I'm glad to be part of this event and also this dinner reception tonight. I'm sure the three days of the exhibition will be better than as we expect it to be." Arnav looked at the crowd that cheered, agreeing with him.
"I know that this is a business platform. But I can't help it. I'm going to share something personal. I want to thank someone for introducing me to this event." Arnav's eyes found Khushi standing by the pillar and he smiled at her. She looked beautiful. Khushi looked at him, smiling, her heart pounding. She'd introduced him to this event. Was he going to.. to do something on stage? Was he going to invite her on stage? What was he going to do..? She tried to calm her racing heart.
"And, I would like to make an announcement as well" Arnav made sure to stare at Khushi throughout.
Khushi looked on, wondering what announcement he would make.
"Ladies and gentlemen, please put your hands together for my beautiful fiance" Arnav stretched out his hand as Khuraisha walked up the stage in the champagne, pink and silver sari that he'd designed.
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