“Maa this is so yummy” screeched Ansh as he tasted the kheer made by Ragini for her Rasoi ritual. Ragini smiled caressing his hair. “Really beta. It’s very tasty. Take this is your nek” said Anu complimenting Ragini and gifted her Kangans. Ragini took her blessings and received the nek. Ragini turned her head to Sanskar. Anu and Ansh also looked at him waiting for his response. “What?” he asked annoyed as everyone was staring him. “Sanskar it’s Ragini’s Rasoi. You should gift her something” said Anu. “Why should I? I did not taste kheer only” said Sanskar casually. “Chachu taste it and give gift to maa” said Ansh forwarding the kheer. “Ansh I don’t eat kheer don’t you know.” said Sanskar a bit strict. Ansh’s face fell.
Ragini who observed it said “Is that the way to talk Mr. Maheshwari. At least for his sake taste it. It’s my mistake, I should have asked maa before preparing” Sanskar got up from his chair and said “I have said you don’t you try to be my wife” His heart pained to speak so rashly with Ragini but he has to do it to keep her away from himself, and from reminding her of that night. Ragini felt bad. Her pain was visible in her eyes. She could not control herself and headed to the room to hide her tears. Sanskar felt disgusted about himself. “Sanskar is that the way to behave. Why did you hurt her” asked Anu and went behind Ragini. Sanskar was lost not able to say anything. “I hate you chachu. You always hurt her” said Ansh and ran to Ragini sobbing. “Why should I feel bad for that stupid Maheshwari’s words.
He was khadoos only. Idiot, monkey and….” said Ragini sobbing and wiping her tears. “And mandh budhi” completed Sanskar. “Ha wahi…” said Ragini pouting. She looked up when she realized it was Sanskar. She huffed and turned her face other side. Sanskar sat in front of her with the kheer bowl. Ragini observed him from corner of her eye. “Actually this kheer tastes like upma. How much salt have you put. I know you did it purposefully for me” said Sanskar with fake anger. Ragini turned swiftly and screamed “Stupid Maheshwari how can you blame me like that I gave you same kheer what I served everyone. Actually now I feel I should have put salt and given to you. No instead of salt I should have put chilli powder and all spices or better I should have put washing powder” Sanskar choked listening to her. “Now you came to know if I want to trouble you I have better ways which you can’t even think of” said Ragini smirking. Sanskar gulped horrified. Ragini got up from the bed. Sanskar held her wrist and said “I was just joking. Sorry” Ragini cooled down a bit “Finally I heard sorry from Mr. Akdu’s mouth. That’s okay” said Ragini and twisted her lips a bit. Anu and Ansh watched them from the door where they were stopped by Sanskar when they came to cool Ragini. Ananya chuckled dragging their attention. Sanskar left Ragini’s hand and stood up. Ragini neared Anu and lifted Ananya in her arms and drooled happy.
“Sanskar leave Ragini at her myka for pag phere rasam and bring her in the evening.” said Anu. Sanskar looked at Ragini whose expression changed. “Maa let her be here. Why do…” said Sanskar but was cut in by Ragini who said “It’s okay maa I will go on my own I have to get my luggage also” Anu turned to Ragini and said “It’s rasam beta. From your house someone should come to take you but in such situation I feel let Sanskar take you there. Rasams are rasams beta hope your family understands. Shall I speak to your mom if you are hesitant” Ragini smiled weakly and said “Okay maa as you say” Anu signed Sanskar to take care of Ragini. He smiled weakly and complied. “Ansh come we will leave your school bus must be coming” said Anu calling Ansh. “And don’t worry I will handle Ani for today” said Anu taking Ananya back caressing Ragini’s cheek and left from there. Ragini looked at Sanskar and he signed let’s leave. She followed him
“Arrey Ragini beta.” said Saloni maasi when she spotted Ragini outside the gate where she was struggling to get inside. “Saloni maasi” said Ragini and hugged her. She felt like she is hugging her family member only and became emotional. Sanskar’s lips pursed tight and he controlled his emotions looking at her pain. Saloni cupped her face and observed her Sindhoor filled hairline and mangalsutra hanging across her neck. “You got married?” asked Saloni shocked. “Maasi wo..” struggled Ragini. She was not finding ways to answer.
“See I missed such big thing. I shouldn’t have gone to my mom’s place only. Swara also recovered and you also got married. But don’t you think all happened within such short time” said Saloni maasi surprised. “Wo maasi. It happened all of sudden. Sorry I did not call you also” said Ragini apologetically. “ Chalo no problem. He is your husband?” asked Saloni pointing at Sanskar. Ragini looked at Sanskar and then at Saloni and nodded her head smiling weakly. Sanskar bent and touched her feet. Saloni made him stand straight and blessed him smiling. “Okay you go home. You might have come for pag phere. Before going just meet me and go” said Saloni and headed to her home. Ragini smiled and turned to her home. She opened the gate hesitantly. Sanskar stood there. He just had no courage to face her family. Ragini ringed the bell and Sumi opened the door. “Ladoo” said Sumi smiling through her tears and dragged Ragini inside. “Shona see Ladoo has come” screeched Sumi holding Ragini.
Swara jerked and came out running. She neared Ragini and hugged her in a bone crushing hug and sobbed. It was just one day that they were away but it felt like from ages they did not see each other. Ragini responded to her hug and sobbed. Swara dragged her out of the hug and cupped Ragini’s face and said “I knew. I knew it. My Ragu maa cannot tolerate my ignorance. Glad you are back bacha. You know how much I missed you. Now I will not let you go anywhere…” “dee I came for pag phere. Evening my husband will come to pick me” said Ragini cutting Swara. “My husband?” Ragini was surprised at her words. Swara’s face changed and her eyes became intense. She tightened her grip on Ragini’s elbow. Ragini looked at her elbow and then at Swara who was huffing angry. “Dee” called Ragini.
“Your husband?” asked Swara shrinking her eyes. Ragini nodded her head trying to smile. “When did that murderer became more important to you than me no no than us?” asked Swara furious. “No dee. Nothing like that. I’m still your sister. Daughter of this house first” said Ragini. “No…” screamed Swara. She dragged Ragini to the door. “You are no more Ragini Gadodia. You are and always will be Mrs. Ragini Sanskar Maheshwari. And you have no rights to be here. Just go” said Swara and pushed Ragini out of the house. Ragini looked at her painfully. She stumbled and was about to fall but Sanskar who just came to give Ragini her bag held her and made her stand straight. His blood boiled. He looked up at Swara with rage filled eyes. He tried approaching her. Ragini sensed his anger and stopped him nodding her head holding his hand. Swara looked at them. It pained her to behave with Ragini like this but to bring her sister back that was only the way. She felt Sanskar has brainwashed her mind so much that Ragini is taking his side. She huffed and headed inside the house and closed the door and leaned to it and sobbed. Ragini who jerked due to door banging sound looked at the door. She felt Swara was going away from her. She went and banged the door and sobbed and leaned to it and slid down.
Dekho hum dono hai ek dhaali ke phool
mai na bhuli tujhko tu kaise gayi mujhko bhul
Swara turned and placed her hand parallel to Ragini’s hand on the other side of the door. It looked like they are in two different worlds though they were separated just by the door. Sumi looked at Swara painfully. She knew how much Swara was hurting herself in the process of being strict to Ragini. Swara’s concern was fighting with Ragini’s determination. And both were suffering due to it. The love Sumi could see and understand in Sanskar’s eye the elder sister in Swara was denying to see. Sanskar looked at Ragini and tears flew from his eyes looking at her condition. He neared her and held her from her shoulders and made her stand and started moving from there. Ragini looked back at the door sobbing.
She looked at Sanskar with tears in her eyes. Sanskar cupped her face with one hand and nodded no. Ragini closed her eyes and sobbed more. Sanskar placed her head on his chest and walked holding her. He saw at the gate where Kavya was standing with Dayal. His steps stopped. Ragini looked at him and looked at the direction he was looking and found Dayal and Kavya. She ran and hugged Kavya and sobbed. Kavya was surprised. She was not understanding anything. Ragini got married to Sanskar was like a shock to her. More than that the way Swara behaved with Ragini was more shocking. Kavya looked at Sanskar with many questions. He signed her he will tell her later. Kavya dragged Ragini out of the hug and wiped her tears cupping her face.
“Come will go to our home for pag phere” said Dayal caressing Ragini’s cheek. Ragini looked at him and sobbed holding his palm. He understood the situation so well. He knew how important these rituals were for a married woman. “Sanskar you come at 7 o clock evening to our house to pick Ragini ok” said Dayal as he headed with Ragini. “Dad you carry on. I will join you” said Kavya. “Ok doll. Come soon” said Dayal. He made Ragini sit in the passenger seat of the car and closed the door. He sat in the driver seat and drove off. Sanskar signed Kavya to move and they sat in the car and he drove the car away from there. Sumi looked all this from the window and relaxed as Ragini had someone with her.
“So much happened. And you did not feel it necessary to say it to me. I couldn’t attend my best friend’s marriage also” said Kavya angry. “I’m sorry Kavya all this happened so quickly. I was not in my senses to recollect myself. And even Ragini was in the same state. I’m really sorry” said Sanskar. Kavya felt bad for both of them. It wasn’t a pleasant situation for both of them to get married. Nobody will wish to get married like this. Kavya placed her hand on Sanskar’s shoulder. “Thank you” said Kavya smiling. Sanskar looked at her confused. “Thank you for making place for Ragini in your life. The way you need her badly she also needs you badly. Thank you for being there for her” said Kavya and smiled through her tears. “I cannot accept her as my wife Kavya. We did this only for Ansh and Ananya. I need her forgiveness before we move on in our relation.” said Sanskar staring the sun from the bench they were sitting near the beach. “She will Sanskar. Just tell her once what happened that day. It was just accident” said Kavya. “No Kavs I cannot remind her of that night again. Her life will be at risk. You know na what Yohan told that day. I’m ready to face her anger and hatred but I cannot see her pain” said Sanskar and got up. “As you wish” said Kavya and walked with him. “But one person need to know the truth and I will reveal it” thought Kavya.
“Swaragini are inseparable maa” Ragini remembered Swara and her moments and a tear dropped from her eye. She wiped it with her hand which she had placed near the car window when she and Sanskar were heading back to home. Sanskar stopped the car. Ragini jerked and looked at him confused. He signed her to look outside the window. She turned and looked outside and found a ice cream parlor. Sanskar who stepped down from the car opened the door for her and forwarded his hand. She looked at him. He smiled and nodded his head and she held his hand and stepped out of the car. He held her hand and headed inside the parlor. “You have karela ice cream?” asked Sanskar to the waiter. He looked at Sanskar confused. Ragini who was looking down looked at him confused. “No sir. We don’t have that flavour” said the waiter nervous. “Oh then what about imli or spicy?” asked Sanskar.
The waiter gave him weird look as if he was a patient of a mental hospital. Ragini waved her hands in air like what the hell are you doing. “Wo kya hai na. Madam eats ice cream according to her mood. So now these flavors only will suit her taste buds” said Sanskar pouting. Waiter looked at Ragini. Ragini who was glaring Sanskar looked at waiter and smiled weakly and said “Two choco chip scoops please” and turned to Sanskar. “Sure ma’am” said the waiter and headed from there smiling. He had seen plenty of couples in his life as a waiter. But these two were so different. He really liked the way Sanskar lifted the mood of his wife. “Mental Maheshwari. Don’t keep proving to every person that you were in a mental hospital once upon a time” said Ragini huffing and turned her face annoyed. Sanskar smiled widely and leaned to his chair.
“Omg Bandariya so fast you ate?” asked Sanskar as he saw Ragini’s ice cream bowl empty. “Don’t you call me that; Sanki insaan. And it’s ice cream. You should eat it when it is still ice cream. Not like you waste time till it becomes milkshake” said Ragini showing his ice cream bowl which still had half ice cream which was melting fast. “Wo I have sensitivity problem. So I take time to eat ice cream” said Sanskar pouting. Ragini looked at him and held his hand concerned and asked “Apke tooth paste namak hai” with serious face. Sanskar looked at her making weird face. Ragini burst out laughing and held her paining sides. She showed her index finger to Sanskar and laughed more waving her hand in air as Sanskar face looked so funny. Sankar huffed and looked at her angry. Then his lips could not control themselves from smiling looking at her beautiful laugh. He would love to be a joker also to draw a smile on her sad face.
“What is this?” asked Ragini as she saw Sanskar entering her room with many carry bags. “Your dresses” said Sanskar keeping the bags near the wardrobe. Ragini looked at him confused. “Don’t worry I took Kavya’s help to buy it. Not my choice” said Sanskar and turned to leave. “Thank you” said Ragini smiling at his gesture. He turned and gave her a warm smile and headed out. Ragini opened the bags and arranged her wardrobe. It had been a year that someone did shopping for her and brought her dresses. Though Kavya gifted her Anarkali few months back she felt hesitant to accept it. It just felt as a gift. But whatever Sanskar brought felt her own. She herself did not know why she felt happy for Sanskar’s gesture. It’s a unique feeling when you wear something which is bought from your husband’s money. Her heart was slowly slipping down from her control and she was enjoying it rather than suffering.