A very,very,very long load of apologies to make you all wait so long.But there was my brother’s marriage and I had a tour for 3 days.This is one of the first things I have done since coming back.Please bear with me people,keep the love and the comments coming. If you ,by chance,laugh at the end of this episode,please tell me..A longer update this time…
People don’t remain the same all their lives. Circumstances sometimes change them so much, that it is hard to imagine that the person was once that way. Some change for the better, some for the worse.Some,even worse, get stuck in the same circumstance for a long time, their life stops at that point, after which it becomes stagnant. I sound more like Om, behave more like Rudra with the aggression and fury of Shivaay thrown in.
Truth is I have changed.
I’m sure for the better on the personal front, but behind it all, I’m the richest poor person in the world. Every relation has a name, some relations don’t. But when the person with whom the relation is joined is your source of strength, love and support, it is always better to give the relation a name. I had told Om that I couldn’t imagine
Annika as my child’s mom, now I realise that I can’t even think of the near future without her. Some things need to be lost to be gained. I had lost the person who had loved a stranger like me like she loved her life; the question was if I could win her back.
Pinky entered the room.
Pinky: Shivaay, this is the dress I chose for you to wear in Sasur ji’s Remembrance Day. Look at it and tell me if you want any changes.
Shivaay: Yes Maa,its fine.
Pinky: Look at me,Shivaay. Look at the dress. How will you know if the dress looks good on you or not without even looking at it?I have chosen it for you,will you not even look at it,Shivaay?What has happened to my son,this can’t be my Shivaay.This man,who has not talked to me properly for so long,cannot be my Shivaay.This is someone else.Do you fail to understand the concern which I have for you?Do you blame me for separating you and Annika?Is that why you have time for everyone in the house except me?
Shivaay: Mom,please stop it.Stop all this drama.How did Annika come in between?I don’t spend much time with anyone in the house.And what is your problem,maa? I do all my work,earna good amount of money,my stake in the company has increased even more.Isn’t that what you have always wanted?Why are you complaining ,Mom?Am I not giving you respect?And all this for not looking at a dress?How does it matter what I wear, anything will do. It’s not like I’m the showpiece or something.
Pinky: The problems is not the dresses Shivaay. The problem is your behaviour towards your mom. You are the only thing I have worth mentioning ,living for,in this world.And as for coming in between,Annika is the one who came in between you and me.I always wanted you to earn a lot of money,because according to me ,money is what gives you power,respect in life. That is why I wanted Annika out of your life.And I didn’t do anything at all in it,you were the one who sent her out because you believed in name,power,money and legacy.Being the woman that she is ,she has managed to influence you so much that you hold your mom responsible?
Shivaay wanted to scream but the words “How lucky it must be to have parents!” reasonated and with a voice of forced calmness,he said.
Shivaay: Mom! How can you blame her? I was the one who forcibly married her.I threatened to her kill her brother otherwise. You knew that too…Daksh poisoned your mind once against her, and you believed him. I was the one ,who instead of listening to her completely, insulted her so much that she left the house. She did a lot for this house,mom and silently bore your insults for my sake. How can you blame her?
Pinky : See?You are ready to argue with your mother for that girl.
Shivaay: No mom,I don’t want to talk about her anymore with you. I’ll leave for office now.
Pinky shed a few tears,sad that she had lost her son.The last two months,she had seen her son enter into a cocoon and he seemed to never step out of it. He had never been ill mannered with her,never blaming her for all that happened but neither did he talk prorperly to her.The craving for her son’s love had taken the better part of his life ,it was her love towards him that kept her going till now.Earlier,she used to be okay with it since,she thought ,her son had a purpose in life,he had gone to make them proud,now she felt,it was just his excuse to be away from them all.She couldn’t help thinking that Annika was the root of all evil,however.
OBEROI MANSION:THE HALL
Annika: Good morning Daadi!
Daadi: Annika puttar? At this time? Anything special, dear?And you are sweating too?Did you walk in this weather?
Annika: No,Daadi,its just that Champa broke down and I had to meet Akira to tell her something.
DaadI(With Puppy eyes): Oh! So that’s why you came. You came just because you had something to tell Akira.
Annika: (Smiling..With a thin film of tears forming in her eyes)If it was about meeting you Daadi, would I even need a reason?(Giving her a tight hug)
Akira enters just then.
Akira: Aww!!So sweet..!(Proceeding to hug her sister and kissing Daadi)How did I ,of all wonders, fit into your thoughts?
Annika: I wanted to talk to you about last night. I know you want to be with me all the time but understand, Akira,I cannot live here.
Annika: But you can pack your things and come with me to live there. The more, the merrier, no? And Badi maa,has no problem. We leave today. I have come to take you along with me .I can watch over you all the time. What say?
And All this while, Annika felt strange as if somewhere was watching her all the time.
Akira’s face broke into a full blown smile. A wave of happiness flooded over and she proceeded to speak to Daadi.
Akira: Daadi,I wish to thank you……
Presently,the most unwanted Man Of The Moment walked in.
Shivaay: Akira, before you begin your thank you speech, let me tell you that you cannot leave this house.
Annika’s face registered Anger while all others had shock written large on their faces.
Akira Annika(In unison): But why?
Shivaay: Because we promised Akira’s mom that we would look after Akira totally .I’m sure Akira wouldn’t have told her mom about discovering you in the middle of nowhere. Unless and until the issues between her dad and her get resolved and her mom gives her permission, she will not go anywhere.
Daadi looked at her Billu and proceeded to speak.
Daadi: Yes Annika Puttar, what Billu says is true. Akira can’t come there because I promised her mom I’d take care of her. But you people can meet anytime,anywhere ,even here,but this must always be the place Akira comes to sleep atleast till her issues get sorted.
Point scored. Thank god! How could I let Akira go, she was the only reason Annika even stepped inside the mansion. Akira was the only trump card with which I could win back my Queen of hearts, despite being the joker that I am. I know taking advantage of people’s weaknesses is wrong, but as they say, all is fair in love and war. I wanted to hug Daadi tightly for her quick grasping power and thinking. After all, she was doing this for her grandson’s Ishqbaazi!Just when I didn’t get words to appreciate my Daadi,she surprised me yet again.
Daadi: Billu,go drop Annika home.
Annika looked Shocked.Why did I care?I was thrilled that I wanted to dance all over the wide, slippery hall.
Presently her sister offered to drop her home.The speed at which Annika nodded in a yes would have put lightning to shame.
My superwoman came to my rescue again.
DaadI: Puttar,Shivaay wanted to meet his Badi Maa and talk to her.That’s why I thought he should drop her home.
Akira: No problem,Daadi,I’ll drive the car and we’ll all go meet Badi Maa.
I felt like hurling a death glare at this match breaker of a sister. Man,she was too clingy and overprotective!
Presently ,someone’s phone rang.
Akira : (Attending the call ,not taking care to switch off the loudspeaker mode)Hallo,Mita?
Mita: Akira,you donkey,did you forget that we have to research our case today?Will you come quick in 5 mins or will I have to spend another 15 mins getting baked in the sun?
Akira grinned sheepishly at everyone in the hall.
Daadi: Go dear,otherwise your friend might faint in the heat.
Akira,left the room unwillingly.How I loved my Daadi!
Annika: actually Daadi,I was going to my hotel,not home.
Daadi: Its okay Annika,wherever you want to go,Billu will drop you and then meet Jhanvi.
Check Mate! Finally we were in the car and Madam gave me the silent treatment, but I couldn’t resist looking at her. And the best businessman the year before, was now only interested in the business of how he could hold his wife’s hand or do something even better.I took a deep breath in,to calm all crazy sensations flooding my head.Annika looked at me as if I Was some exquisite,ugly animal she had never seen before.I managed to smile back,which I’m sure looked stranger than what I was doing now.I had to act,now.Shivaay,Shivaay,think..I forced myself. “Oh those deep eyes! those wonderful lips!” ,the one part of my head purred.
If you don’t do anything now Shivaay,someone else will be purring over them with her sooner,the other part of my head reminded. Then it struck. There was this restaurant a small, cozy place,brown surface on which was engraved “The
Sitara”.The name,unmistakably Indian,but had French windows,covered by light brown curtains.The front part of the building had large glass panes and people were sitting,eating food contently without a care in the world.This was surely a French Restaurant,I decided.Looked hi-fi enough.
Annika: Okay, now you even admire restaurants stopping your car in the middle of the road.
Shivaay: (The “Take Annika Didi out on a date,Bhaiya”looped on in my ears.) Annika ,isn’t it very hot today,I feel very thirsty.
Annika: Oh really! It is? What do you suggest we should do?
Shivaay: We should go to that restaurant over there.
Shivaay: (Because I want to take you out on a date ,damn it!)Because they serve really good coffee!The espresso is too good here…!(I offered ,in the innocence of a five year boy who claims to have eaten his lunch all by himself)
Annika appeared to take this detail in,with her consecutive nods.
Annika: I don’t drink espresso,Shivaay..
Shivaay(Shit,Wrong move!):No,no,no,!!!I know that.you even get good tea here, Annika. Elachi and ginger thing?So good.Last time I came here,there ratatouille was so good,I asked them for it one more time.But today ,we will just have coffee,or tea,here…Have coffee or tea and do nothing else…Nothing else…
We were walking now towards the hotel. Annika gave me a look of pure amazement, admiring my knowledge of this restaurant. After all,I was SSO.I knew from first sight, that this was a French Restaurant.
We sat in the table. Presently, a waiter came to take in our orders shooting a surprised look at both of us.Maybe, he was awed seeing SSO with some girl.She is my wife,I wanted to tell him.
Shivaay: We’ll order one espresso and one ginger,elaichi tea.. What say Annika?
Annika: No Shivaay,make it two ginger,elaichi teas,you won’t get espresso here.
Shivaay: How do you know?
Annika: Because the owner of the restaurant is so lazy,so outdated .The person doesn’t even know you are of international importance.
Shivaay: Don’t talk about him like that.I know him really well.He’s so sweet Annika. How can you jump to conclusions without even asking the waiter if its there or not?(Usually men are owners of restaurants, right?Today was my free jump to conclusions day..)
Waiter: Madam is right,Sir.We don’t have espresso here.Only ginger and elaichi tea.
Shivaay: But last time…I ate..I mean I drank….
Annika: If I’m not mistaken,Sir,this is the first time you are coming here,sir…This is what the waiter wants to ask you,no? Kaka??
Waiter: If the owner of the restaurant says it,can there be any objection?
Om and Rudra laughed so loudly, the whole room shook.
Om: Are you teling us that..Hahahahahaa!!!
Rudra: You went to Bhabhi’s own restaurant …..Hahaha…
OmRu: And made a “Pappu “ Of yourself?(Giving each other hi fi in between smiles.)
Shivaay: Its not funny..
So it was funny.
I had made myself a completely fool of myself and proved myself a certified idiot infront of my wife,the waiter.
No one, no one, except the few 50 people there and the two giggling donkeys over here knew of my fiasco. I consoled myself and felt better.
After all, it’s the thought that counts, right?