“Ragu maa. We will meet Ansh na tomorrow. I want to give him choki” said Swara holding lollypop inside their room after dinner when Ragini was preparing the bed. Something flashed in her mind. She could see a small girl holding lollypop and sobbing then two boys fighting in blurred vision. She held her head. “Shona bacha” cried Ragini looking at Swara who was about to faint. She made Swara lie on bed and sat beside her caressing her hair. Tears started flowing from her eyes looking at Swara’s condition. She kissed her forehead and went and stood near the window and looked at the sky and spoke “Dadda. See na Shona di’s condition. I can’t see her like this. Please tell bappa to heal her na soon” She wiped her tears and spoke with her bhayyu and dadda for some time and headed to her bed and slept caressing Swara’s hair. Swara used to get flashes sometime. And it used to make her condition still worse and she had to bear severe headache due to it. Ragini could feel her pain and used to break down looking at her condition.
“Ansh” screamed Swara when she saw Ansh entering the park. Ragini saw in the direction and found Ansh waving his hand smiling and entering park. She saw someone entering a car behind him whose only back was visible and the car speeded. She guessed it to be Ansh’s chachu. She smiled looking at him. “How is your Dadi Ansh?” asked Ragini caressing his hair. “She is fine Ragu dee. I take care of her tablets now. So that she won’t forget” said Ansh smiling. “Good boy” said Ragini and kissed his forehead. “Why does she come out in such condition? Your dad or Chachu doesn’t stop her?” asked Ragini concerned. “My papa and mumma both are with God ji. And chachu does not even talk when he is at home” said Ansh sadly. Ragini felt bad for his and Ananya’s condition as they had only Anu to take care of them and his chachu was least bothered about his family. How can someone be so irresponsible she thought. “Take this” said Ragini giving the lollypop Swara brought for him to cheer him. “Thank you Ragu dee” said Ansh hugging her. “Thank Shona. She brought it for you” said Ragini. “Thank you Shona dee” he said hugging her. Swara who was pouting sadly said “You always love her more than me”.
“I love you both equally” said Ansh.
They played forgetting the surrounding and enjoyed forgetting their pain. “Bye Ragu di. Bye shona di” said Ansh waving bye to Ragini and Swara as they headed back to their home. Sanskar saw Ragini exiting and drove to the park carefully so that she did not see him. He did not want her to distance herself from Ansh after knowing he is Ansh’s chachu. Ansh had changed after he met Ragini. He was livelier and Sanskar did not wanted to snatch his only happiness.
“Ansh is so sweet na Ragu maa” said Swara happily. “Haa Shona bacha he is. We will meet him next Sunday” said Ragini caressing her hair as they were walking near their house. Sahil was watching them standing at distance. He looked at Swara. A tear dropped from his eye. He wiped it and got inside his car and drove off.
“So Mr. & Mrs. Gadodia. I called you here as Kishan’s mom had complained that your daughter Ragini has hit him very badly. Look at his condition. At this age only she is behaving like this. Control her please. This is last warning” said the Principal showing Kishan who had band aid all over his face and bruises. Ragini who entered scared while entering Principal room fumed looking at Kishan. “He is telling lie” shouted Ragini. Shekar held her as she was ready to attack Kishan. Kishan got scared looking her approach. “Ragu behave” said Sumi. “Maa. He is telling lie. He hit bhayyu with the stone. That he did not tell. He tried snatching my choki, Bhayyu came to rescue me. This dog hit him with stone. You saw na how big wound bhayyu got. I will not leave him” shouted Ragini approaching Kishan dangerously.
He hid behind his mom. Shekar held her and lifted. She was not budging. She was shaking her hands trying to hit him. She even forgot where she was. “Kishan Is she saying true” asked Principal. “Wo ma’am…” he stumbled. “See I told na he is telling lie. I will not leave him” said Ragini trying to get out of Shekar’s hold. “Relax Ragini. I’m speaking na” said Principal. “Tell me Kishan” she said turning to Kishan. He nodded his head lowering it. “See Mrs. Khanna. Fault is from your kid’s side also. He initiated the fight. Is this what you teach to your kid. To bully the younger kids?” asked the Principal to Kishan’s mom. “But that doesn’t mean she beat my kid so badly” said Mrs. Khanna. “Whatever she did, she did in rage when she saw her brother bleeding. I will talk to her. But whatever your kid has done is unforgivable.” she said. She showed her index finger to Kishan and said “This is last warning for you. If I get one more complaint I’m gonna suspend you from school. Now leave to your class” Kishan ran to his class. “You can leave Mrs. Khanna” she said looking at Kishan’s mom. She huffed in anger and left from there. She turned to Shekar and Sumi and said “I’m sorry for what I said. I was not aware of whole truth. But Ragini you should not have hit him so badly beta” “Sorry ma’am. But how do you expect her to behave when her brother is beaten up” said Shekar. “I understand Mr. Gadodia. But this much anger is not good. You saw how she was behaving” she said. “I’m proud of my daughter. She is fighting for right thing” said Shekar hugging Ragini and left from there. Sumi hit her head and said “Sorry ma’am. I will talk to Ragini. Sorry from her side” and left from there. “Bye bacha. Now go to your class” said Shekar dropping Ragini down near her class. She kissed his cheek, waved bye and ran to her class. He got up and started walking. “Shekar don’t encourage on wrong thing. This much stubbornness is not good” said Sumi. “Sumi. She did right. Now no more argument please. Let’s leave.” said Shekar. “Like dad, like daughter. She is your shadow. Just like you” said Sumi nodding her head. “And I’m proud of her” said Shekar. Sumi nodded her head in disbelief and left with him.
“Good morning Sir” said Ragini smiling looking at Sahil as she entered his cabin. He smiled at her nervously and lowered his head. Ragini felt it strange. Because so far Sahil never behaved like this with her. “Sir. Any problem” asked Ragini concerned. He was tensed. He looked at her and nodded his head. “Okay I will take your leave” said Ragini. He nodded his head still staring ground. He was confused. “Ragu ma. My baby sister” ringed in his ears. He wanted to ask Ragini about Swara but how to ask her. He cannot tell her the truth for the time being. He wanted to know why Swara was in such condition. It pained him. He closed his eyes frustrated and leaned back to his chair.
Ragini finished her client list and sent to Sanskar. After sending the file she looked at his cabin which was behind her.
His chair was empty. Why has he not come yet she thought. “Why should I bother” she said to herself and got back to her work. As she turned she saw Sanskar standing in front of her. She looked at his hand which had band aid. She does not know why but it pinched her heart somewhere. But her hatred took over and she looked up at him. “Ms. Gadodia. Did you complete your work?” he asked folding his hands. “Please check your mail. I have sent it” she said looking straight into his eyes. “Get the hard copy to my cabin” he said and started leaving. “There is a print option in your Mac book if you click on it. It will print from the high end desk jet printer placed in your cabin. If the printer is not installed then contact IT department” she said looking in her system. He closed his fist. His wound started bleeding again. “I hope yesterday only I made it clear to you not to teach me my work” he said and left from there and entered his cabin door banging. Ragini closed her eyes when she heard the door banging noise. Tarun showed her thumbs up and followed Sanskar.
She smiled at him weakly.
“Excuse me sir. May I come in?” asked Ragini peeping inside his cabin. “Yes” he said looking into some files on his table. “Tarun. Get me ginger tea” said Sanskar. “Yes sir” said Tarun heading out. She waved her hands in air like what are you doing looking at Tarun. He just smiled weakly at her and went out. “Idiot. Doesn’t even know what work to assign whom. Tarun is just his PA not any servant” thought Ragini in her mind. She kept the papers on his table and started moving. “Ms. Gadodia. Don’t you have manners to tell what you are keeping on my table” said Sanskar coldly. “I did not know you are Alzheimer’s patient. Don’t you remember what you asked me to get” said Ragini not even turning. Sanskar stood up from his chair and went near Ragini and held her hand twisted and pinned it to her back. He again lost himself in her fragrance. She breathed heavy due to his closeness. He dragged her still closer. Her thumping heart made all his sense go numb. Her black eyes drown him in its beauty. He felt so helpless to drag himself away from her. Her angry face brought him back to reality where his hatred took over. He jerked her and said “Don’t you test my patience Ms. Gadodia” Ragini held her hand which was paining. “I’m not even interested to” she said and stormed out of his cabin.
Sanskar closed his eyes frustrated and sat back in his chair. He hated her to the core for her attitude towards him but his heart wanted to hold her all his life. Her smile, laugh made his heart jump in happiness where as her tears used to pierce his heart. Her anger, hatred ignorance made him weak. He could not tolerate it. But if she was with someone else, it boiled his blood. He was not understanding the new feelings which had arouse in him. He never felt so vulnerable towards a girl. He needed her though she had only hatred for him. On the other hand Ragini was confused why she did not stop him when he was so near to her.
“I cannot sit here thinking and wasting time. Better I try to meet her” said Sahil to himself and headed out of his house with his blazer and drove off.
“Where is it? Haa there. But how to get it” said Swara looking at a sugar bottle which was placed above the cupboard. She tried to take it standing on her toes. But the bottle slipped from her hand and broke into pieces as it touched the ground. Swara got scared due to the sudden noise and closed her ears. Sumi ran into the kitchen as she heard the noise. She saw the sugar scattered and the bottle broken. “Can’t you let us live peacefully? See what you did? Are you even aware of how much your sister is struggling to earn meal for us every day? How will you understand? If you could understand you wouldn’t have been burden on her” shouted Sumi. She started cleaning the mess. Swara pouted and started crying. She ran out of the house. She tried running out of the gate but stopped remembering Ragini and held the rods of the gate and sobbed remembering Sumi’s harsh words.
She felt two hands on her hand. She looked up and found Sahil who had tears in his eyes looking at her condition. “Swara” he called. She jerked his hands. “Swara don’t you remember me. I’m Sahil. Your Sahil. Your best friend” said Sahil holding her hands. “Who are you? I don’t know you. Leave me. Ragu maa had told me to not to speak to strangers.” said Swara trying to get out of his hold. “Swara please try to remember. I’m Sahil. Your Sahil. How can you forget me. Remember how much fun we used to have in college” said Sahil. “I don’t know you. Leave me.” said Swara crying badly. Saloni heard her cry and rushed out of her house. “Hey what are you doing” she shouted looking at Sahil who was holding Swara’s hands.
“Maasi see na. He is not leaving my hand” cried Swara looking at Saloni. Sahil left her hand as he sensed it will turn matter worse. “Wo ma’am I’m her friend. I was just trying to talk to her” said Sahil nervous. “No maasi he is lying. I don’t even know who he is” said Swara hugging Saloni. “No believe me Swara. You know me. Try to remember. Don’t you remember I’m your best friend Sahil. We were in same college. I never thought I will meet you in this condition” said Sahil pleading looking at Swara who was refusing to recognize him. “Sir?” he heard Ragini’s voice and turned shocked. “Ragu maa” saying Swara ran and hugged Ragini who was staring at Sahil with questioning look. “What happened Shona Bacha?” said Ragini caressing her hair. Swara narrated everything what happened to Ragini. Ragini looked at Sahil for explanation. “I will tell you” said Sahil. “Sit and talk in our house terrace” said Saloni taking them to her house compound. Swara hid herself behind Ragini scared of Sahil.
“Dadda. I got admission in IIT” saying jumped Swara in excitement. Ragini who just returned from tuition classes heard her. She hugged Swara and said “Congratulations dee. I’m so happy for you.” She twirled Swara in air. “But I have to stay in hostel till I finish my studies” said Swara sad. “No. How can you leave me and go. I will miss you” said Ragini tearing. “Ragu. Don’t worry bacha. I will come home during holidays. And when will be mobile phones useful. We can speak everyday” said Swara caressing her cheek. She nodded sadly. “Abhi se yeh haal hai. When she will get married what will you do?” said Sumi coming out of kitchen. “Swara and Ragini are inseparable maa” said Swara side hugging Ragini. “Thank God I will be peaceful for 4 years” said Vikram sitting on the couch. “Ha bandar. Be happy. This is what you wanted right?” said Swara and stormed into her room. “Bhayyu” said Ragini glaring Vikram. “What? I told truth only” said Vikram casually. Ragini narrowed her eyes. “Fine. I will get her favorite jelebi evening. Don’t expect me to say sorry and all” said Vikram sliding on the couch and lying. Ragini nodded her head in disbelief and headed to Swara’s room to cool her.
“Shona dee. I will miss you. Don’t forget to call okay.” said Ragini to Swara who was sitting near window inside the train. She nodded her head. Both of them had tears in their eyes. “Kitna rothi hai yeh ladkiya?” said Vikram. “Bhayyu” shouted Ragini sobbing. Swara turned her face other side angry. The last whistle blew for the train to leave. Vikram who had controlled his emotions till now ran with the train speed beside Swara. “Now what?” asked Swara wiping her tears. Vikram handed her the box which he had brought for her. She widened her eyes looking at it. “Meri shaadi me isse bada gift dedena. And I will not miss you” said Vikram casually. Swara laughed teary eyed looking at him. And the train speeded up. Swara waved bye from her seat. Vikram stopped running and looked at the direction the train disappeared. His face fell. Vikram and Swara shared a totally different bond.
There was no need of words to understand each other’s feeling. As they were twins though they fought like cat and dog, their heart beated with same beat. Even if he did not say he missed her Swara knew he will miss her more than anybody.
“Hey you. Come here” said a senior guy to Swara who was walking to her class. She complied and stood in front of him. “Hey Laksh. What should we tell her to do” said the guy looking at the guy who was leaning to the wall sitting on railing with a hat covering his face. He removed the hat and looked at Swara and said to his friend “Tell her to propose the first guy entering college gate” Swara opened her mouth in shock. “Careful Ms. flies might get inside your mouth” said Laksh closing her mouth holding her chin. When she had no option she agreed to do it. She held the rose they gave and headed to the gate. All of them stood at a safe distant. A guy entered with blue shades and sling bag and funky tatoos over his shoulders which was visible in his sleeveless jacket. He walked chewing the gum, with hands in his pocket.
Swara hesitantly went and gave him the rose. He held the rose and was shocked. He removed his shades and looked at the girl who had the guts to give him rose on his first day of college. “Sorry I’m doing this as a part of ragging. Seniors are watching please don’t feel bad” said Swara and hugged him. He was shocked due to sudden happenings. Swara ran away from there. The boy stood there collecting what just happened. He brushed his thoughts and headed to his class. He saw the same girl who gave him rose in the morning. He went and sat beside her. Swara stumbled and tried to get up. But he pinned her hand to the bench and she sat with a thud. She looked at him nervous. “Hey don’t take tension. I forgave you for morning thing. I know you did it as a part of ragging. Hi I’m Sahil” said the boy forwarding his hand for handshake. “Swara” she said and shook his hand. He smiled looking at her.
“Haa Ragu maa. I’m fine. Okay bye” said Swara disconnecting the call. “Who?” asked Sahil who was biting the fried corn in his hand. “Ragu maa. My baby sister” said Swara munching on the corn in her hand. “I need your help in mathematics yaar. I’m really bad in it” said Sahil throwing the corn stem into the dustbin. “Come to library tomorrow morning at 8. I will clear your doubts” said Swara throwing the stem in dust bin. “You are truly my best friend yar” said Sahil side hugging her. She smiled. He dropped her to her hostel and headed to his hostel. Just in one semester Swara and Sahil mingled with each other very well and became best friend. And without their knowledge they were falling for each other. But never confessed their feelings to each other. Sahil backed off as he did not want to spoil their friendship. Swara thought same. To stay out of thoughts which will ruin their friendship Swara agreed for Laksh’s proposal. Sahil was heartbroken. He never got a chance to tell her his feelings. He determined himself to burn all his feelings towards Swara and just to be her best friend. It was sendoff party. Both of them were very sad as they could not meet like earlier. They had become each other’s habit. Sahil headed to his house without informing Swara anything.
“I thought she is happily living. I never imagined in my wildest dreams that I will face her in this situation” said Sahil completing narrating. Swara had slept on Ragini’s shoulder. Sahil looked at her painfully. He just told Ragini that he was her best friend and hid the fact that he loved her as the time was not correct.
“His name is Sahil” said Swara blushing and covering her face in pillow when she returned home and Ragini confronted her for her dull behavior. “But I don’t know what he feels for me Ragu. He did not even say a bye while leaving. I think we are not meant for each other. Even I broke up with Laksh as I realized my feelings towards him but I was late. I don’t know where he is” said Swara turning and stretching her hand. “You love him so much?” asked Ragini sleeping on Swara’s shoulder. “Ragu baby. This is not the age for you to think about it. Sleep now” said Swara turning Ragini other side and patting her shoulder. Ragini smiled closing her eyes.
“Ragini” Sahil’s voice brought her back to presence. “So Sahil sir is Shona di’s Sahil. What a coincidence? But I have to find out what he feels for Shona di. Is it love or just sympathy” thought Ragini to herself. “But sir. She will be shocked if she remembers her past. It is dangerous for her life. So please don’t try to remind her anything” said Ragini. “I will make sure I don’t remind her of past. I will create new memories with her. You have to help me in this. I lost her once, I don’t want to lose her again” said Sahil determined. Now he understood why he was attracted to Ragini as she was Swara’s shadow. She reminded him of Swara who never left his heart even after these many years of separation. He met Ragini when he wanted to move on in his life thinking Swara is happy with Laksh. But his Swara was back in his life. Now his priority was bringing his Swara back to normal.
Ragini helped Swara to get to their house. Sahil waved them bye and headed to his house. He slept with determination to heal Swara’s wound. He has to get his Swara back. That was his life goal now.