The Bond Of..? (Chapter 29)
Look who finally made her appearance, Mandyy!!!
Link to the last update: Chapter 28 Part 2
“Noah Jones,”Aarav froze when he heard the next few words. His mind throbbing with all the new found information as he sat there, stilled on the phone, his breathing clearly uneven with shock.
“I want to buy a painting of yours,” Aarav quickly mumbled when he felt his detective shaking his arm to go along with the facade.
“Sorry, all the premade ones are sold out at the moment. I can paint one as per your liking.”
“Oh what? Oh yeah. I am looking for something for my sister,” Aarav jeered, trying to hide his displeasure.
“We can having a meeting to discuss the details perhaps?”
“That would be great. I am currently in downtown.”
“I am travelling through that area in a few minutes. I think I can make a stop there.”
“Perfect.” Aarav cut the call and stared at his detective who was smirking at him with a knowing look. Aarav’s face flooded with shock hastily switched into a dark, cunning glim. This meeting was going to be fun, he thought as a vivacious plan sprang in his brain.
Sana walked through the busy, downtown streets of London, a sweet aroma of fresh cut flowers and newly baked pastries lingered in the air from the nearby shops. Nevertheless, even the best aroma of pastries was no match to her butter popcorn, eagerly waiting home for her. After having an hour long argument with Arhaan, she had finally managed to persuade him to into coming shopping with her to the famous antique shops in downtown to find his father’s favourite book. That might give her a clue as to where the key is hidden. Despite, all his groaning and mumbling curses, Arhaan was truly helping her find the book by barging into every antique shop down the streets and skimming for the book.
Sana chuckled as she saw Arhaan busily flirting with the salesgirl in the shop, slyly getting her to search for the book herself. As the light breeze hit her on the chilly autumn day, causing her to slightly lean back against the cement bricks of the shop, taking in colors of the fall. Her breath hitched in her throat when she saw a very familiar figure sitting in the outdoor cafe on the opposite street, sipping on his brewing coffee.
Without thinking twice, her hands, as if having a mind of their own, fumbled through her coat pocket to dial numbers. “Where are you?” she shrieked incredulously as she heard Aarav’s husky voice mutter a greeting. She didn’t know he liked to have fun at a place like that.
“In a presentation. At least I was until you interrupted me,” her jaw dropped as she heard his lie.
“What?” she breathed in patronizing anger, hoping he would get the message of not lying to her.
“Sana, I am sure you know that I have a business to run. So don’t act so shocked,” he scoffed in a mocking tone while she gaped at them from the opposite street.
Sana was at loss of words at his blunt lies and rage circulated down her body as she seethed,“What is all the noise then?”
“Rustling of the streets. I am outside a partner’s company to talk to you. Can you make this quick?” he said dryly while Sana could feel her throat parched with shock.
“Sorry for interruption,” she mumbled, completely oblivious to what else to say.
“You better be,” she heard him mumble before cutting the call. A deep sensation hit her heart as she saw him talk to the other girl seated before him after clearly ignoring her. She felt her heart tug her as she realized that his actions were making her grow more upset than angry. After a long time, Sana was seriously…hurt.
“I found it,” she heard Arhaan’s jubilant voice ring through her eyes, forcing her to rip her gaze from Aarav.
“Really?!” she mimicked his voice with fake enthusiasm, glancing at the bag hanging from his hand.
“This is it. I had to pay her hundred thousand to get this filthy thing,” he grumpily declared, shoving the book in her hand.
Sana was quite impressed that the copy was new and the deal was good, especially for a book that had sold out in a month after it released and to find it after almost thirty years was another miracle. “Arhaan! Be nice.”
“To a book? No thanks,” he snorted as he grabbed her hand and led her to a nearby cafe. Sana trailed along with a loud, long sigh with her emotions in a hazy mess
“This is not working,” Sana tilted her head from her laptop when Arhaan yelled from the corner of her office.
“Arhaan, it’s been only thirty minutes since we started,” after heading back from downtown, Sana decided to do some work while she got Arhaan to read the book for her.
“Exactly, thirty whole minutes and we didn’t find anything. There is no guarantee that we will find something in the next two hours either,” he argued impatiently, giving nasty looks to the book.
“How are you doing to survive University being like this?”
“I have another two weeks to prepare,” he bickered back as he threw the book on the couch, he was lying on.
“Why don’t I get you back in shape by making you read the entire book.”
“Because I have a company to run,” she shot back in a ‘duh’ tone.
“Is this necessary?”
“Absolutely, now get going with this,” she smiled when she heard Arhaan mutter a few curses but read the entire book.
Aarav’s mischievous smirk plastered firmer on his face as he saw Neeraj blink his eyes, his entire figure stiffen as he sauntered closer while Aarav mumbled, “So, brother-in-law, how delightful to see you.”
“Aarav?” he choked, the shock evident on his face.
“I always thought you were upto no good. Trying to mess with my sister’s life but hell, you turned out to be the most talented painter on Earth.”
“May I add a betrayer too?” Aarav continued as he indicated at the chair to Neeraj,”I have found out that my sister thinks you are some ordinary manager in a bank but the last time I checked, you are hiding millions of dollars into your bank account.”
“You make me sound like a thief.”
“I always did.”
“The last time I checked, you were fooling the entire world by pretending that Sana is your wife. Showing your sister falls hopes about your perfect bond. If you think I am a betrayer, think again because you are betraying more than one person,” Neeraj replied in a similar voice of confidence, making Aarav’s smirk fall.
“I have a reason and when we have a mutual divorce, everything is going to be fine. I cannot say the same for you,” Aarav shrugged off, his plan clearly taking a backward turn.
“If you can’t then I very well can. I have a reason too and when I break the contract binding me from spilling the news, everything will be fine.”
“What do you want?” Aarav bargained a deal, leaning closer by placing his arms on the table.
“For what?” Neeraj asked him boggled.
“For not spilling my secret.”
“For you to not spill mine.”
“Deal,” Aarav whispered before turning around and swiftly walking away, a wave of relief washing over his face that his sister had chosen the right guy, not that he would ever go tell her.
“Nothing?” Sana asked him in flat tone, unable to believe Arhaan.
“Nothing. All it talks about this guy who faces Alzheimer’s and the troubles he goes through in his life. He has money in his bank account to survive but he doesn’t know where it the key is, so after a ton of mysteries, he finds it in the garden fountain. Oh! And he has a daughter who ditches them when she figures his disease and leaves home. How can she do that? I am never raising my kids to ditch me when they grow up. Infact, after reading this book, I am planning on taping them to me so that they live with me my entire life,” he ranted out all the information.
“You are insane. Is that what you learned from the book?” she asked incredulously.
“I also learned that dying with Alzheimer’s is not a very good way to die. I researched all the ways we could eliminate this disease by taking all these precautions. Guess what I am going to with them?”
“Arhaan, I don’t think this is what the topic-” Sana started but he cut her off.
“You don’t know? I am going to send a copy to everyone I know so that they don’t face the disease either.”
She held a finger out for him to excuse her as she took her call,“Yeah?”
“We didn’t receive the payment from you,” the banker snapped at her hotly.
“What? Let me check,” she remarked in a sharp voice before scanning her outbox.
“That’s weird. The internet is not working,” she informed Arhaan as she changed some settings in her phone, hoping it would work.
“It will be better once my three hundred thousand mails have been sent,” Arhaan retorted casually which made her drop her jaw for the second time in the day.
“Three hundred what?”
“I just told you that I need to send this to everyone I know. I sent it to everyone, even the friend’s of my friends.”
“Arhaan!” she yelled at him with frustration while he gave her a sheepish look.
“We are having a night out,” Sana heard Sia shriek over the phone along with Neha hooting to add the effect.
“So?” Sana enquired bored as she tossed herself on the bed, well knowing that Aarav was not going to be home in the next hour.
“So you are expected to be here in the next ten minutes in your PJ’s!”Nisha di drawled out to her, as if speaking to a child.
“Not happening,” Sana flatly denied as she let out a yawn knowing very well that she was too tired to play games with them.
“I am sending your lamborghini, get here NOW,” Saanvi screeched into the phone in her usual demanding voice.
“Don’t I get a choice?” Sana countered in a hazy state.
“We’ll think about that the next time,”she heard all of them snap at her which made Sana jerk in her half dazed mode.
She sighed and grabbed a pair of PJ’s and stuffed it into her bag before strolling towards the living room to see Arhaan watching a movie,“Arhaan, tell Aarav that I am going to the Sen mansion for a night out.”
“Why can’t you tell him yourself?”
Sana sighed heavily at the question. It had been two weeks since the lying incident and she assured that she constantly avoided Aarav, whether that was going to work early and sleeping before he comes back or staying at the Sen mansion on the weekends. She had hoped that Aarav would notice her peculiar behaviour after all a few days and come to talk to her regarding the issue but she grew even more upset when he hadn’t made any effort to talk to her since the past two weeks. Everything in Sana’s life seemed to go in a blur and she was trying miserably to cope with her sprawl emotions. She wasn’t even sure why things had changed between them and why Aarav went back to being so ignorant.
“He is not home,” she mumbled the obvious.
“He has a phone,” Arhaan shot back the obvious answer.
“We are not really on good terms right now, so do the work for me,” she threw over her shoulder, feeling a little guilty in using Arhaan for everything but she knew she couldn’t possibly bring herself to talk to Aarav without either breaking into tears or venting all her anger.
She smiled as she heard Arhaan mumble something about everyone giving him work. Typical Arhaan.
“What kind of a night out is this without popcorn?” Sana whined and stomped her foot, she knew she was acting immature but she couldn’t care less. After everything she was going through, eating popcorn was something she was drooling over on her way to the Sen mansion but as soon as she arrived, the rest of the gang had made plans regarding the ‘rules’ of the night out which clearly didn’t allow popcorn.
“Well, we don’t want you to go all crazy with too much popcorn in your system,” Nisha di cooed softly.
“Tell me one time that happened,” Sana demanded irritated.
“I can name ten,” Saanvi swanked, clearing her throat to start,“Remember the time we thought you were high which is why you were talking on the phone which had no one on the other side.”
“I am here!!” they heard Akira, Neha’s sister burst into the room with tons of food.
“Nobody cares,” Sana snapped brutally as she threw a fit.
“Woah. Did you have a fight with Aarav or something?”Akira raised her eye in surprise and Sana was sure Saanvi was filling her in.
“Why would you think that?”
“Because, I don’t know, you are in love,” Neha piped in after wiggling her eyebrows.
“That’s the last thing that will ever happen. I am not going to fall in love and neither will I snap when I fight with him.”
“This is the thing about young love. Everyone goes into denial.”
“There is nothing there is between us to deny.”
“Get her popcorn,” Nisha di announced amidst the battle.
“Really?!” Sana shrieked, giving her a hug.
“Go ahead, enjoy your day,” Nisha di mocked as she placed a packet of popcorn before Sana. Sana dug in, not before seeing a mischievous glint passing through her eyes, but she was too involved to care.
“You are kidding me,” Aarav retorted in calm voice.
“Oh come on, it is going to be fun,” Arhaan insisted in a persistent tone.
“I am going to be in the house,” Aarav called out, proceeding to leave but before he could so, he was pulled back by his brother.
“We are going to prove that our sister is in love with you,”Sanay determinedly remarked while Aarav glared at the Sen brothers.
Apparently, Saanvi was holding a nightout for the girls so all the brothers came over to Aarav’s to do the same.
“If she is. I am sure she will tell me,” Aarav reasoned.
“No she won’t. She is too stubborn to admit it.”
“Does she use you as a punching bag and a cuddly pillow?”Sid burst out his monologue in a dramatic style.
“If any girl uses a man as her punching bag, that is plain sad,” Aarav replied, chuckling.
“He means likes vents her anger, expresses her feelings, yet comes back to snuggle into you?” Arhaan came to his rescue while Sid glared at him.
“Yeah,” Aarav responded after a while of thinking.
“She is in love with you!”
“Your statement is completely invalid.”
“Let’s go,” saying that they all dragged Aarav into the halls of Sana’s house while he groaned desperately.
“I can’t believe that I agreed to this,” he chimed in dismay,“This is all so childish, I shouldn’t have even taken part in this.”
“Right, these are for young adults, you got involved for no reason,” Arhaan snickered, throwing him a punch in the shoulder for the effect.
“Shut it and concentrate on the mission,” Saman bro halted them before they broke into a verbal fight.
“Now this is a mission?”
“Why is Sana so tipsy?” they heard a voice shout from the kitchen which caused the boys to grab whichever piece of Aarav they could find and pull him into the kitchen. Aarav gasped as he saw Sana place a hand on her head, her face growing pale while her body cleared seemed unstable. The boys popped their heads into the kitchen to see the happenings with Aarav’s eyes glued on Sana.
“Wait, did she eat the entire supply of popcorn?” Nisha di shook her head in disbelief.
“Crap, she did,” Saanvi mumbled as she cracked into laughter seeing Sana go through the kitchen in a half dizzy state.
“Sana, are you okay?” Neha asked with concern as she gently patted Sana’s cheek.
“No! I am not,” Aarav saw her pout cutely, taking a seat next to Neha.
“Why is she acting like that?”Aarav asked Sid, who was taking pictures so that he could blackmail her later.
“You know how people get extremely active when they have too much sugar in their body? Well Sana acts a little tipsy when she has too much popcorn in her body,” Sid mumbled while Aarav turned amused.
“This is crazy.”
“Welcome to reality, man.”
“Sana, what happened?” their little conversation was broken when they saw tears streaming down Sana’s eyes. All the boys, including Sid, stopped their talks and listened quietly.
“This hurts. This hurts so much and I don’t even know why.”
“When he keeps ignoring me and guess what? He does that so often that sometimes I feel that we don’t even know each other.”
Aarav let out a sharp breath as Sana breathed his name, “Aarav.”
“This is not fair. I know he doesn’t like me but can’t he just try to understand the fact that I do? Like very much.”
“Sana!” everyone shrieked as Sana lost her balance and fell to the ground, finally breaking down after a very long time.
Aarav could practically feel the daggers being thrown his way and the immense guilt suffocate him as he stood there, watching Sana’s pale face, completely leech out color. He felt a weird sensation of pain dwell into him as he saw her break down because of him right in front of him and he could practically hear the sound of his walls breaking as the dawn of realization struck him.
They were madly in love.
Sana stared into the space of floor tiles before her, aiming her gaze at the patterns she suddenly found so fascinating. She gently pulled her legs against her chest as another sigh escaped her lips. She couldn’t believe that she had broken down yesterday and bluntly blurted out the entire truth without even thinking twice.
Another sigh escaped her lips as she closed her eyes, impatiently searching for some sort of a solace to bring her out of her misery. She could faintly hear the conversation Arhaan and Saanvi were having about Arhaan’s dad’s book. Both of them pressured her into waking up from bed and sitting in the living room, not leaving her side even once. She knew they were worried about her but she didn’t know how to assure them she was fine. Infact, she didn’t know whether she had any more courage left in her to assure herself she was fine. Ever since her parents died, she spent all her time, drawing the courage to assure herself that everything would be fine. But after all these years, her words seemed foreign to her, as if they would only happen in another world.
“Was there something to do with the key?” Saanvi interrogated like a true lawyer from beside her.
“Yes there was. He found his key in the garden fountain,” Arhaan responded, unsure where she was heading towards.
“Do you guys have a garden fountain?”
“No but we have this huge tank- Saanvi, you are a genius!” Arhaan yelped, so much that it was hard for even Sana to not pay attention.
“I found where the key will be,” Arhaan said with rich pleasure while Sana grinned at him wamly.
“Really?! Where?” she gathered herself to utter with equal amount of joy.
“I think it might be near the garden tank.”
“You mean that locked cage?”
“There used to be a bird feeder beside that where a few seagulls used to come to feed off. That was our dad’s favourite place, so after all the their death, Aarav built a fence around it as Arpi Di used to constantly get depressed seeing the bird feeder.”
“Go, get the key then,” Sana ordered, with real contentedness going through her veins.
“I don’t know where it is, only Aarav knows.”
“Call him then.”
“My phone is out of battery,” he sheepishly mumbled, running a hand through his hair while Saanvi chuckled.
“I’ll do it,” she declared, aweing both of them before hurrying to her room.
“I need to speak to Aarav, immediately,” she voiced out her concern to his secretary.
“I am afraid that I cannot do that Mrs.Ross, he is on a one year tour with his company delegates,” and Sana glanced at the date on the phone before gasping widely.
The world started to spin around her as she sank onto the ground, a muffled sob barging from her throat as the words made sense to her. She looked at the date once again, the throngning pain building inside her stomach, it was here. The twenty first of september was here, the day the contract ends. Aarav’s words of playing in the fire;either waiting for it to burn them or jump out of it; warning her out of this entire misery;his erratic attempts to stop her flashed before her. A throbbing ache hit her chest as she sukled down to her bed for support, unable to contain her tears which were streaming like they did never before. He warned her about having a broken heart at the end of all this. Her face dishevelled and thatched in all directions as she poured her heart out for the second time in two days, not knowing what else to think or feel about Aarav’s little act.
“He left,” the dreaded words came out of her mouth as she sunk once again into reality. Any ounce of hope left in her body, completely shattering, in a way, she was sure that it could never be fixed again.
OH MY GOD! That was a VERY VERY VERY painful update and it was SOO hard to write. Did I break all your hearts? Please don’t hate me!
Why do you think Aarav left? Okay, here is the thing. I am thinking of a one/two year leap in the story. I am not going to show all the heartbreaking separation but after that? Or do you want Aarav to just come back and confess but then that will be no point in leaving.
Anyways, how are you all????? I am assuming everyone is as busy as I am! Anyways, do drop in with your comments as to what you think should happen.
The story was supposed to go this way since the beginning but I think I got too carried away on how they fall in love that I wrote 28 chapters on that. I don’t want to give it a rushy ending but do want to end it…ugh, this is so confusing. HELP ME!
And has anyone heard the song Tere Sang Yaara?! My god, the song took away my breath. I am soooooo obsessed with that song right now, I can’t even tell you how much I listen to it and how good it is.