“Shonu. Get up see I’m getting late for work” said Ragini waking Swara. “Ragu maa please I don’t want to get up” she said holding the pillow close to her chest. “Shonu please beta. You want Ragu maa to come early na in the evening. If I go late; I will come also late.” said Ragini sitting beside her caressing her hair. “Good morning Ragu maa” said Swara getting up and hugging Ragini. “Good morning Shonu.” she said hugging her back. “Now get up fast. You have to get ready” Ragini said getting up and dragging Swara to washroom.
“Shonu.” said Ragini showing her eyes to Swara who was playing with the toothpaste.
“Sit properly bacha.” said Ragini to Swara who was shaking her head playfully when Ragini was wiping her hair with towel after bath.
“Ragu maa.” said Swara playing with her hair. “Hmmm?” said Ragini combing Swara’s hair. “You will get me choki na today?” she asked. Ragini checked her fever. “Yaay shonu bachha’s fever is gone. She can eat the choki.” said Ragini hugging Swara and kissing her forehead.
“Now come eat your breakfast” said Ragini dragging her to dining table. Ragini fed Swara and she kept explaining Ragini random things. Ragini kept listening and laughing.
“Maa” called Ragini. Sharmishta came out of her room. “I have kept the food in the freezer. Please heat it and give it to Shona in the afternoon.” said Ragini taking her bag and cell phone. “She can do it on her own” said Sharmishta a bit strict. Swara hid behind Ragini scared of Sharmishta. Ragini looked at Swara and kept her hand on Swara’s hand. “Maa please for god sake. She is also your daughter” said Ragini pleading helplessly. “I know that very well. And she is responsible for your condition today. I think you have forgotten it” she said shouting. “Do as your wish.” said Ragini as she doesn’t want to start the same topic again on which they have arguments daily. “Shonu bacha. See I will tell Saloni maasi. She will give you food ok.” said Ragini hugging Swara. Swara nodded.
Ragini stepped out of her house wiping her tear. “Saloni Maasi” she called her neighbor aunty. “Haa Ragini beta. I will serve Swara afternoon food. Don’t worry” Saloni maasi said smiling. “Aww Maasi. So sweet you are.” said Ragini pulling her cheek. “Not more than you. You also teach my kids for free na.?” she said caressing her cheek. Ragini smiled and headed to bus stop.
Ragini saw her phone and there were many missed calls from an unknown number. She dialed the number. “Strange. Nobody is picking up” said Ragini disconnecting the call as nobody received on the other side. And she got inside her bus.
“Doll. Your phone is ringing.” said Dayal handing the phone to Kavya. She dialed the number and said “Hello” in half sleep. “Hello. Who’is this?” asked Ragini balancing herself in the bus. “You called me and asking me?” said Kavya yawning. “Look madam. I had got miss calls from your number. So dialed to check.” said Ragini bit angry. Kavya looked at the phone screen and found Ragini’s number. “Oh I’m sorry Ragini. It’s me Kavya. I called you night but I think you slept.” she said wiping her face. “Ohh. Kavya. Sorry yar. Actually I slept and checked my phone now only” said Ragini feeling bad. “Ohho chuck it yar. Waise, what are you doing?” asked Kavya. “I’m in bus on the way to office.” said Ragini. “So early? It’s just 8 man.” she asked surprised. “Yeah. My travel takes one and half hour. My office timing is 9.30 morning, so I need to leave by this time” said Ragini. “Wooow. I never wake up also so early” said Kavya yawning. “Ohh fish. So I disturbed you. Sorry yar.” said Ragini. “Ohho. Leave it yar. My poppy is so happy as I woke up so early. See a good point na?” asked Kavya. “You really are a very sweet person” said Ragini laughing. Dayal signed her something and she continued. “Listen. Will you be able to come to our house someday for dinner? Poppy wanted to meet you and personally thank” said Kavya. “Ohhh I’m really sorry dear. This month full busy with work. Let’s make plan for next month; only if there is no thanking business” said Ragini laughing. “No problem dear. Any time is okay” said Kavya. “Okay bye. My bus stop came. I have to get down. I will talk to you late” said Ragini. “Yeah sure dear. Take care” said Kavya disconnecting the call. “She is busy this month. Will plan for next month” said Kavya looking at Dayal who was waiting curiously. “Fine doll. Let it be next month only. Now got get freshen up. We are going for jogging.” said Dayal pushing her to washroom. “Poppy. I wanna sleep” said Kavya uninterested. “No ways. I don’t get this golden chance frequently” he said pushing her inside the washroom.
“Ragini madam. This is for you” said the peon handing a bouquet. “Who gave this?” she asked confused. “Don’t know madam. A flower vendor delivered and went” said the peon. “Thank you kaka” said Ragini smiling taking the bouquet. She saw the note for the sender’s name. Again the same name. She boiled with anger and threw the flowers in the dustbin. “What was that?” asked Nisha. “Sarcasm” said Ragini huffing and heading to her workplace. She closed her eyes, took a deep breath and got back to her work.
Afternoon Ragini and Nisha were in canteen and having lunch. Ragini was worried. Nisha observed it and asked “Are you okay Ragini?” Ragini smiled at her and said “Haa Nish. Now chill”
After lunch Ragini dialed Saloni maasi’s number. “Hello Ragini beta. I gave food to Swara. She ate it. And took her tablets. She is sleeping now.” said Saloni maasi. “Thank you so much maasi. I have no way to thank you.” she said smiling. “Dhat. Apne ko koi thanks boltha hai kay?” she said. “Apne tho please kehne par bhi nahi maanthe” said Ragini remembering morning incident with Sharmishta. “Everything will be alright Ragini beta. Bappa pe bharosa rakh.” said Saloni understanding Ragini’s pain. She smiled weakly and replied “unpe bharosa na hotha tho mai saans bhi nahi le pathi. Ok maasi I will speak to you once I come back home.” “Okay beta take care” said Saloni maasi disconnecting the call.
“Poor girl. Bappa aap uski ithni pareeksha kyu le rahe ho. Usse bhi jeene do” said Saloni maasi looking up.
“Ms. Ragini Gadodia?” said a voice on the other side of the call as she picked up and said Hello. “Yes” Ragini replied. “Ma’am. I’m calling from Mr. Sanskar Maheshwari’s office…” before the person could complete the sentence Ragini disconnected the call. “Ma’am, ma’am” said Tarun over the phone. “What happened Tarun?” asked Sanskar. “Call got disconnected sir” he said lowering his head. “She disconnected the call? How dare she?” Sanskar hit his chair frustrated. “Fix a meeting with her. I don’t know how you are doing that. If you don’t get it done, you will be fired from the job” said Sanskar taking his Blazer and heading out of the office.
“What is his problem now?” Ragini told herself. “Ragu. Come will leave” said Nisha coming to her desk. “Yup. Just a minute, I will freshen up and come” said Ragini heading to washroom. They both went outside the office.
“Bacha” called Ragini. As usual Swara did not come running to her. “Bacha?” she got worried. She went to her room and Swara was sitting on bed horrified. Ragini got worried and ran and sat beside her “Shonu. What happened?” asked Ragini tearing looking at Swara’s condition. “I’m very bad girl na Ragu maa?” she asked with tears pouring from her eyes and pouting sadly. Ragini dragged her and hugged tightly. Caressing her hair she said “No baccha. You are the best girl in the world.” A tear dropped from her eye which she wiped fast. “Then why mumma hates me. She told because of me you are suffering. Your life is spoiled. I’m burden on you. It is better if I stay as away from you” said Swara sobbing. “No baccha. Mumma loves you. You are her favorite kid you know na from childhood. She is just angry. She will be okay kiddo. Don’t take anything seriously what she says. You know we are playing a game. In that Mumma lied so she is punished” said Ragini rubbing Swara’s shoulder. “What punishment?” asked Swara innocently. “She has to scold the kid she loves the most. See you are favorite kid” said Ragini. “Oh. Mumma has to bear such big punishment. Poor mumma” said Swara sobbing. She dragged her out of the hug and said “See I brought your favorite choki. Won’t you eat?” and wiped Swara’s tears. “Choki” Swara’s face lit up. Ragini gave the chocolate taking out from her bag. Swara grabbed it ate like small kid. Ragini smiled in between her tears.
“Maa” saying Ragini went to Sharmishta’s room. “Over? Looking after your kid?” asked her mom sarcastically. “Please do me a favor maa. Please don’t say anything to Shona which hurts her please” said Ragini folding her hands. “She is my kid. Have you forgotten I gave birth to her” shot Sumi. “No I did not forget that. But I guess you have forgotten that” said Ragini. “Yeah true I forgot. But I did not forget that I gave birth to you also.” said Sumi tearing. “Maa” said Ragini holding Sumi. “I know you love her. Then why this rude behavior towards her?” “Because she is ruining your life.” said Sumi bursting into a cry. “Maa please she is not responsible for anything. Stop blaming her” said Ragini. “I already lost my two kids. Thinking about your future is wrong oh what?” she asked. “Maa. Please my life is not detached from Shona. Look at her condition. I cannot leave her like this and move on in my life simply.” she said pleading. “Till when Ladoo. Your sister might never become normal again. From two years, you are seeing, there is no improvement at all. Do you want to sit unmarried all life and take care of her?” asked Sumi helplessly. “Let it be maa. My world is Shona. Nothing is important for me than her. If I cannot take care of her being married, then I will never get married. It’s my promise on Papa and Viky bhayya” said moving to the two portraits hanging on the wall covered with garlands. “Ladoo….” shouted Sumi. Ragini headed out to her room where Swara was sleeping.
“This stubbornness of yours is responsible for our financial condition today. You are just like your Dad. It is spoiling your life. I will not forgive Swara for this, ever.” said Sumi collapsing on the floor. She went near Shekar’s portrait and said “I need you today Shekar. Why did you leave me alone” and caressed the photo.
Ragini sat near Swara and closed her eyes leaning back.
“Chotu. You have to be strong. When will you learn fighting back?” asked a male figure in front of Ragini who was shivering with fear. She hugged him and said “You are there na bhayyu. You are my strength. That’s enough for me. I’m never weak as far as you are with me” she said. “Shhh Chotu. Don’t cry” said the person caressing her hair.
Ragini opened her eyes which were filled with tears. She went to the window. Looking at the sky she said “I miss you bhayyu. I miss you a lot. Please come back I need you”. She cried silently without making any noise and sat leaning the wall below the window and buried her face dragging her legs near to her chest. Swara was sleeping on the bed peacefully.
Saloni maasi : Sneha Wagh
I know you people are waiting for Sanskar and Ragini, but you need to wait till the story takes a shape. Please suggest whom you will like to play Vikram’s character. My suggestion are : Shivin Narang, Vikram Singh chauhan, Krip Suri, Harshad Chopra or anybody else. Please let me know.
Hope you people like it.