Posted: 11 May 2016 at 7:57am | IP Logged
She was nervous she wanted to call him but she didn't have the courage. She had looked at her phone so many times. All she had to do was press the dial button but she didn't know how receptive he would be. She missed him so much. Leaving home was hard but leaving him was a thousand times harder. She wished she could have spoken to him before she left. She wished she could have made him understand. Now she was back and hopefully she would have the opportunity to explain why she did what she did. Hopefully he would understand and forgive her
No one was home when she got home. The house was locked up, not even the servants were there. Luckily she still had her keys.
After she settled she decided to call Pari. It would be easier that way. She knew if Pari knew he would soon find out. She had tried to call about 2 weeks ago but she was still abroad and the time was bad. She didn't know why she felt so compelled to call that day. She had been good at keeping her distance and not contacting anybody. But that particular day she couldn't stop herself. She didn't manage to speak to Pari and she didn't call back. She was also looking forward to seeing her sister and her Anshu. And Vendant and Vedikha would be so big by now. She smiled at the thought of her naughty munchkins. She missed them so much. Even if he didn't want her back, if he didn't want to see her, she would be able see her munchkins again. Not that anything could ever make up for not having him in her life. But she had prepared for that eventuality the day that she had decided to leave.
She called Pari.
"Hello" Pari said
"Yes, it's me Pari"
"Didi, where are you? Are you ok. Are healthy? When will you be back? Didi please come back home."
"I am home Pari. But the house is empty. Where are Ma and Pappa?"
"Yes. Now tell me where our parents are?"
"They went on a month's pilgrimage 2 weeks ago."
"I see. Good. Pari, how is he?"
"Fine under the circumstances Didi. Didi, he went through with the divorce. He is engaged now. He will be married soon. But Didi, he suffered so much when you left. It was terrible. And now he has finally agreed to get married again."
There was a long silence.
"Didi, are you ok"
Aarti composed herself and wiped her tears and said.
"I am fine Pari, sweetheart. Will you come visit me when you have a chance?"
"I will come now Didi."
"Ok, see you then Pari."
Yash was sitting with his brothers talking when Pari came there.
"Pari, where are you going?" said Prateek.
"I am going home."
"But Ma & Bauji are not there."
"I know, but ..."
"But what Pari?"
Yash looked at her. He knew immediately.
"Pari?" he said.
"Bhayia, she called. She is home."
He looked down. Not wanting them to see the anguish in his eyes.
"Can I go now?" Pari said.
"No, Pari. I want to see her first. Alone. I need to talk to her."
"Don't let her know I a coming."
He left immediately. He had a whirlpool of emotions rush through him. All he knew was that he wanted to see her. He needed to see her. He didn't even know what he would do or say when he saw her. He raced to her house. He also had a key and he opened the door.
He saw the kitchen light on. He walked there. She was busy at the kitchen sink. He grabbed her arm and swung her around. He was torn between his raging anger and his all-encompassing love for her. He didn't know whether to strangle her or kiss her. She stared back at him. She was still so beautiful. He could not deny his relief that she was here in front of him and safe. He went through all kinds of hell thinking that something might have happened to her. He opted for the latter. He grabbed her to him and kissed her punishingly.
She responded despite knowing his intention. She missed him so much. She was so hungry for just the sight of him. To feel him and touch him. Even though she saw the anger in his eyes, and she knew what the kiss meant, she didn't care. To her it was heaven. She happily accepted this punishment. She held him tight. She kissed him back. Her hands in his hair. It felt so wonderful. Suddenly he pushed her away from him.
"Where the hell were you?"
But before she could answer he said.
"No I don't want to know. I don't care. Why are you back?"
"This is my home, Yash"
Her answer disappointed him.
"I see. And for almost a year you forgot that little fact. What brought it to mind now all of a sudden?"
"It was time"
"So you have gone out there. Done whatever the hell you thought you needed to get done and now you are back. No one needs you."
"Yash, please let me explain."
"No Aarti, I won't ever believe anything that comes out of your lying mouth again. You told me you would come back to me, knowing that you were leaving. That last day, you had already planned everything. When you told me that you were going away with your parents, you already had your plans in motion. And knowing this you still made love to me in this house, without any scruples. Without any guilt or remorse for your coming betrayal. You disgust me."
"No, do you have any idea how much your parents suffered because of you. Not knowing where you are. Not knowing if you were alive or dead, sick or healthy. You didn't even care about anyone but yourself. You are heartless. Selfish and self-absorbed. They worried every day, they are still worrying. But you, you don't give a damn."
"That's not true."
"Do you know how you sister cried for you. How upset the children were when you were no longer here. You were supposed to love Ansh so much. He couldn't understand why you were not here. He is only little. He missed you so much."
"Me? What about me? Do you want to know if I was here pining away for you? Well I wasn't. You see, the day I discovered you left I decided that we are finished. That I would no longer grovel at your feet and do everything your way. I gave you what you wanted. We are divorced. I am engaged. I will be married shortly. So I ask you please from now on, stay away from me. Stay away from my home and my family. If Paradhi wants to see you, she can come here. I don't want you anywhere near us. I am marrying a woman that wants to be with me. That is committed to me."
"Do you love her?'
"Love? I don't believe in love. I foolishly succumbed to love and left myself open to pain and betrayal. Love is not needed to make a marriage work. There are many arranged marriages to prove it. But I will take care of my wife with as much affection as I possess and we will be family. Something we never were. Maybe that is the reason our child was taken from us. We were never meant to be. Our love was just an illusion. It's a good thing our baby didn't survive to live through this emotional roller coaster.
He said that to hurt her. And it did. She slapped him hard across the face. She could take anything he said to her but not that. He automatically raised hand to do the same, but he stopped himself in time.
"How can you be so cruel" she said with tears in her eyes.
He grabbed her arm again and said through gritted teeth.
"Did that hurt Aarti?"
"Good" he said not waiting for her answer. Maybe you feel just a fraction of the pain I feel." he shoved her hard and she fell with her back against the kitchen sink.
"Stay out of my life Aarti. For good."
She stood there sobbing for a long while. She didn't know what she expected but it was not this. Never this. She had done this for both of them. Although she had told him to go on with his life and left the divorce papers, in her heart of hearts she always thought that he loved her enough to wait for her. She still loved him so much. She wanted him so much and now she had lost him forever. He wanted her out of his life. Then she stopped crying. She wiped her tears and got up. She couldn't sit here and wallow in self-pity. This was her own doing. She would not hurt him anymore. He wanted her out of his life and she would abide by it. She had stopped her business when she knew she was leaving. She handed the big contracts to some of her business associates that she knew could handle it and the smaller contracts she handed to Vheer and Rajesh to start a business of their own. She still had money, but it would not last indefinitely. She could not fall apart. She needed to keep it together. She needed to find a way to make a living. She couldn't depend on her parents to support her even though they could afford it. She had to restart her life. A life without him. But he would always be part of her and as much as he tried to deny it, she was part of him. He would always have her heart.
Having seen her just incensed him more. He didn't want to feel this way. He didn't want to love her. He didn't want to want her. He wanted to hurt her. Punish her. But it would never be enough for the pain that he felt. He was determined to exorcize her from his heart and his mind. He would get married and he would make it work. He would be a good devoted husband and father. He would love his wife as best as he could because he knew what it felt like not to be loved by the person that held your heart.
He drove to Arpita's house. It was late. Her parents were surprised to see him, but they agreed to let him see her alone.
"Is something wrong Yashu?'
"No nothing is wrong. I came to apologise."
"For not being committed to this relationship. But I promise from now on, it will change. I will change. I will be a good husband to you. And if we have children I will be a good father to them. I won't disappoint you Arpita. I will be the husband you deserve."
"I have always known that Yashu" she said.
He went to her and kissed her. He had never kissed her like this before. She responded. She was eager. He held her tight and moved his mouth down her neck and she moaned. His hands were about to open her he night gown to devour her breasts when he realised that he was envisioning Aarti and not Arpita. In fact he almost said her name, He stopped immediately.
"I'm sorry. I didn't mean for that to happen. I will tell my mother that I want the wedding to happen in the next 2 weeks."
He left there and he drove to the beach house. But that was the worst thing he could have done. It was no longer a haven for him. She was everywhere. Inside and outside the house, on the beach. There were so many memories there. Memories of happy times, of them arguing, of them laughing and joking and most of all of them making love. There was not a room in the house that they had not made love in, on the hot nights she loved to make love on the balcony. He loved it too. He could just picture it now. Her hair blowing in the breeze, her eyes close in passion, her body against his.
"No, no, no!" he shouted and started bashing things, throwing around furniture and ornaments. He even had pictures of them hung on the walls as a surprise for when she moved in. He ripped them from the wall and threw them on floor. The glass frames shattering. But that was not good enough. He picked each one up and beat it against the wall till it was in pieces. When he was too tired and there were no more things to break he sank down on the floor and cried. What a mess. This house was a mess, his life was a mess all because of her. He hated her. He hated that he loved her so much.
Two weeks later he was sitting in the hotel room. It was the first day of the wedding rituals. He had insisted that the wedding date be moved up, he wanted this to happen so that he could forget her and get her out of his life. So far he had not been successful. It took everything within him not to go back there, not to call her. He wanted to ask Paridhi about her but he didn't. He knew Pari went to see her in these two weeks but she never said anything and she never took the children. He was worried about she would feel about Paridhi's pregnancy but then again it was Ansh that got her out of her depression the last time so she would probably welcome the new baby too. He thought about being a father. He looked forward to that. The only problem was that he could only think of her as his children's mother.
Her family was back from pilgrimage and would be at the wedding procedings. His mother had insisted on it. He was sure that it was to rub their faces in the fact that he was now off limits to Aarti. That he had moved on.
"Yash beta, it's time."
"Coming Ma." he wished he could be as happy as she was.
He walked out to where the rituals would take place. He saw her parents and he nodded. They looked so sad, and they looked away. Almost guilty.
"Ma Bauji. How was your pilgrimage?"
"It was fine." said her father.
"Yash, beta, you are making a mistake. She made one and now you are making an even bigger one."
"Sorry Ma. I know this can't be easy for you but I have made my decision."
"Satya ..." she said looking imploringly to her husband.
"No, Shoba. It's their lives."
"We will talk later" he said and walked to where he woud be waiting for his future wife.
He was still waiting, deep in thought when something caught his attention. Her saw Pari come to her parents and they spoke very intensely. Then her parents left in a hurry looking very worried. He really tried not to let it affect him, to let it go. But he couldn't. He indicated to Paridhi to come to him when she looked his way.
"Paridhi, where did Ma & Bauji go?"
"It's nothing bhayia"
"Paradhi, why did they go home?"
"Bhayia, please go ahead with your wedding rituals. Ma & Bauji will take care of it."
"Is she ok?"
"She is fine"
"Pari, tell me the truth"
"I can't Bhayia. She made me promise."
She just shook her head and cried.
He couldn't stay. He had to find out what it was. He made his way out of the hotel."
"Yash, what are you doing?"
"I have to go Ma."
"Where are you going?"
He didn't answer, he just kept walking."
"Yash, are you running after that woman again. When are you going to realise that she is no good"
"Please Ma. Give my apologies to the Singh's."
"So you don't intend to come back?'
"I don't know."
He got to her house.
"Ramsingh, where is Aarti?"
"They left for the hospital a while ago."
He made his way to the hospital. But no one could help him with the ward that she was in. He ran up and down the halls and finally saw her father sitting in the passage outside one of the wards.
"Bauji, where is Aarti. Is she ok?"
"Beta, what are you doing here. What about your wedding."
"Bauji please tell me if Aarti is ok."
"She is fine"
"Where is she?"
"Inside there." he pointed to the hospital room.
He didn't hesitate. He just barged in. He saw her sitting next to her mother. Both looking very worried, but she looked fine. On the hospital bed was a baby hooked up to drip.
"Aarti, what's going on? Are you ok?"
"Whose baby is this?'
She looked away.
"Aarti, whose baby is this? "Aarti?"
"Mine. It's my baby."
He looked at the name written down on the board above the baby's head : Aayu Scindiya.
His head was reeling. How was this possible?
"What's going on? How did you have a baby? Why does he have my name?"
"Because he is yours too."
He looked at her and then back at the baby. He still couldn't understand. How did she fall pregnant when they were so careful? How was the baby born when she couldn't carry a child? And how was she back two weeks with the baby and no one told him he had a child.
He walked back out of the hospital room and out of the hospital. He didn't even ask what was wrong with the baby. He sat in his car for a while then he called his mother.
"Ma the wedding is off." and disconnected the call. He went back home. He just couldn't fathom what was happening. He had to clear his head.
She watched him walk out. This was not her intention. She had planned to let him know about the baby once the wedding was over. She didn't want him to make a decision based on the fact that they shared a child. And now he had found out in this way. And he left, He didn't even ask anything about the baby. He didn't ask what was wrong with him. He showed no interest. He just left. That said it all.