Manmarziyan : A Passion Project
Guys, we are nearing the end of this ff…..another couple of updates and we are done…..
Silent readers do give your reviews.
It is going to be a really long ride….so brace yourselves….
Please ignore my typos and grammatical errors.
A phone rang loudly in an empty room…..a lady, dressed in a white and black uniform came from the adjoining room and picked it up, “nandini ma’am is taking a shower….please call her later.”
A hoarse male voice replied, “kindly tell her, her informer from india called.”
About half an hour later, when this news reached nandini, she quickly dialled his number. He picked up after a couple of rings…
Nandini asked briskly down to business, “is he okay?”
The male replied, “he is fine….and even your little princess is here with him..”
Nandini sighed in relief, she was worried sick as to where would bonnie have gone…..but now knowing that she was with arjun…nandini was free from all tensions…..arjun could be easily relied to do everything possible to take the best care of his gudiya…….plus, she had her men placed near them to keep away any danger from harming her kids…..it was them who kept providing constant updates and occasional pictures to nandini….she had satisfy her mother’s heart, by just looking at those pictures……she had seen photographs of nesam, teji and most importantly, her daughter in law to be, Radhika……..she knew Radhika hadn’t confessed about her feelings, yet she was sure that it was her who would be her DIL….
Her trance was broken by the same hoarse voice, “ma’am you might be interested in knowing…that your daughter is getting married, day after….”
Nandini was shocked, it was her princess’ wedding, yet she wasn’t informed…..had her one mistake killed all the love her kids had for her?
She barked, “to?”
“one saral joshi…..from what I have seen and heard, Arjun sir took his test and has approved of him….infact, it is he who is arranging the wedding.”
Nandini cut the call and dialled her assistant to book a ticket on the next to india….
Its every girl’s dream to have a perfect wedding….with all perfect arrangements…a perfect colour scheme
…a perfect flower arrangement.….a dress which makes every other girl jealous……a husband who would love her unconditionally…..but it is not the ultimate dream…..the ultimate goal is to have all her loved ones besides her on her special day….enjoying it as much as she is.
The entire maniac gang was putting their heart and soul into the wedding…..they hadn’t slept the entire night and were at arneil’s apartment discussing the details.
Radhika had surfed the net for ideas and designs….she hand picked a few and presented them to the rest the gang including the husband and wife to be. Her explanations regarding the her choices and her photoshopped pictures giving an idea of the final picture just doubled their spirits of creativity……her ideas were so good that they were approved instantly and unanimously…..
Sam had made a list of designers and potential stores for the ease of shopping with the bride….and she was then helping neil with saral’s.
Arjun was continuously on the phone….discussing the venue….he finally decided on a morning wedding at a nearby temple followed by an elaborate lunch at a posh restaurant for the guests which was then followed by an after party just for the gang. Bonnie and saral just looked at everyone working so professionally at all fronts…making lists and specifying details….presentations and what not…..saral looked at bonnie with pleading eyes…bonnie nodded…
She spoke, “guys?”
Nobody heard as everybody was busy….she again repeated herself In a loud voice, “guys?”
All heads turned towards her…..all 4 pair of eyes had questioning gesture in them….
Bonnie shrugged, “guys, its my wedding….not any deal you have to crack…..”
Sam, “what do you mean?”
Bonnie smiled, “I just mean that it is one of the events which needs more of your heart than your mind….i mean, yes, a perfect wedding is the dream….but a even better one is having all my loved ones enjoying with me…..staying up late at nights….gossiping…chatting….dancing….you knowing…drinking…maybe…….you know just having a good time all together.”
Arjun rolled his eyes at the word drinking….and neil laughed at his expression. He arm hugged bonnie, “sorry kiddo! Its all us time now..”
Sam too joined him, “yeah….sorry bonnie….okay, so I’ll order food…..chinese or Mexican?”
Radhika volunteered, “and I’ll get the booze….*turning her attention to arneil* you have any in your fridge?”
Neil nodded, “yeah…..i did get some bottle of beer…but didn’t drink…so yeah..”
Radhika nodded and walked to the fridge….she walked back with a confused faced.
Neil asked, “what?”
Radhika replied, “neil….you don’t have isn’t a single bottle in there.”
Neil was confused himself, “but chashni, I didn’t…..”
Both of them turned their attention to Arjun and screamed in unison, “Arjun!!”
Arjun just rolled his eyes…..radhika interrogated him, “what happened to the beer bottles?”
Arjun just kept looking at her blinking his eyes as if registering her question.
Neil seconded Radhika, “arjunnnnnn…..tell us right now.”
Arjun rolled his eyes…this duo was treating him like a kid, “stop bulling me…okay? I threw them out….”
Radhika anticipating “and why?”
Arjun, “didn’t want my kid sister to drink…that’s why……and see i succeed even.”
Neil slapped his forehead at the foolish of Arjun…he was one overly possessive brother.
Radhika too was really stubborn….please she had a edge over Arjun, she knew she could mould him in any manner she wanted, “no you did not….i am going and getting some now.”
Neil smiled understanding her trick but he pretended to be shocked and fake gasped, “what? Chashni, you know naa its late….the supermarket must have closed by now…..plus, it isn’t safe for girl to go get booze from some road side wine shop.”
Sam and bonnie and saral seconded neil but Radhika remained adamant…saying that she volunteered for the task and she would complete it…no matter what.
Radhika grabbed her purse and was about to move out of the door, when saral offered to accompany her….but she declined….similarly neil too made a request to let him get it for her….but she refused…. She walked out the door..
She had walked a couple of blocks and her eyes were tearing up….she was hurt, Arjun didn’t even offer to accompany her….did he not care? Does her safety even matter to him? Does he even love her? Her tender heart was plagued by questions and soon tears streamed down her cheeks…..what had stated as a innocent leg pulling had made her realise her value in front of the guy, she loved with all her heart……her belief in love was diminishing at a fast pace…….she was starting to believe that love only hurt…..she was so deep in her trance that she didn’t hear the repeated horns of a car behind her.
Suddenly, her arm was flanked back and a hand gripped tight on her wrist pulling her back…..the sudden force jerked her up, pushing her towards himself, “what do you think, you were trying to do?” he asked sternly.
She turned to face him and there was he…..arjun mehra standing in all his glory….the handsome hunk had grim expression on. His eyes piercing radhika’s skin.
Radhika looked up and stared in his emotionless and stern eyes with her own full of emotions and tears….
His expression softened a second later on realising her tear strained cheeks and her eyes full of them. He without a word, just grabbed her waist all pushed her towards him…he hugged her tight….burring her in him. He felt a wetness on his shirt…..he rubbed her back and held her tight to him till she calmed down and when she did…he held her wrist and opened the passenger door of his car, motioned for her to sit and leaned down on her to fasten the seat belt….he himself took the wheel and started the car without a word…..
His silence affected Radhika….even scared her to a certain extent……..she wanted him to scold her, argue with her, explain it to her…..she couldn’t take the silent treatment.
She spoke in a gentle whisper, placing her over his on the gear, “Arjun….i am sorry…”
He flinched but he didn’t reply…..neither he did make any effort to remove her hand from over his….radhika decided to give it another try, “Arjun….i am sorry for hurting you….arjun…..scold me naaa yaar, argue with me all you like….but don’t stop talking to me….you know, it breaks a little piece my heart…..umm, your silent treatment…” saying so she tightened her grip on his hand….stroking her thumb on the back of his palm.
Arjun applied sudden brakes…. Pulled his car in a corner and stopped it completely.
He turned to Radhika and hugged her tight….she could sense the desperation, the fear in his touch….she too held him, caressing his eyes with one hand while rubbing his back with the other. She felt a wetness on her shoulder….today, the rock steady Arjun mehra had tears in his eyes…..she immediately broke the hug, cupped his face….arjun looked down….she coxed him in a gentle voice wiping the lone tear which had escaped the labyrinth of his eyes, “arjun…..its okay…..what’s wrong?”
Arjun looked up, losing himself in those hundreds of emotions flowing in those big brown eyes, he loved the most……, “Radhika…promise me, you wont try anymore daredevilry stuff….why did you go out of the house alone…..why couldn’t you take neil or saral with you…..dont you know…its so late and it is not at all safe for you to go out alone…..what if, something had happened to you..”
Radhika saw true and pure love in his eyes….she whispered, “I refused to take neil or saral with me…because I wanted you to….and Arjun mehra, till you are there for me, I am pretty sure nothing wrong would ever happen to me…”
She added in a barely audible whisper, “I love you..”
But it was enough for Arjun….he hugged her tight, kissing the top of her head, “I love you too Radhika….and trust me, I wouldn’t never ever hurt you…..and Radhika, nothing you do would ever hurt me, I may get angry for a little while but nothing more than that, I promise…..radhika, I know that you fear love….but I swear, it’s the most beautiful and innocent feeling….you’ll know once you start believing in love….and now, its my job to do so…..radhika, I promise, I would keep you happy always…..i will die before even thinking to hurt…”
Radhika broke the hug and placed her palm on his mouth….nodding her head in negative, “i know you would….and its not that I don’t believe in love….its just that I fear it a little……but now, since I have fallen for the devil himself, but I am sure these things will sort themselves out.” Saying so she kissed her palm which was kept on arjun’s mouth…..making him look at her all wide eyed…
She added in mock anger, “and did sam tell you all this…..i swear, will kill her…”
Arjun kissed her palm….and was about to speak….when she started squealing, “ice-cream!!!!!” Radhika saw an ice cream vendor passing close by.
She was jumping in his arms…..arjun smiled..his pov, “….she looks so cute……she is as innocent as a kid and now that’s she mine, if an ice cream makes her happy, I’ll buy her the entire factory..” Arjun bought her a huge cone. Radhika pecked his cheek in delight….it was one of the heat of the moments things…. A second later Radhika realised what she did….she burned in embarrassment……she deliberately avoided eye contact with Arjun …he just looked at her with a amused smile….he clicked a cute picture of her happily munching the ice cream come and sent it to sam with the caption saying, “she is mine and today she knows it…..meet the only girl I ever loved, who now loves me back.”
A second later he got a reply, “congrats on the progress of your love story…..but where is ice cream?”
Arjun slapped his forehead and whispered looking at Radhika, “crazy girls.”
Sam told the news about ardhika to neil, bonnie and saral…..everyone rejoiced and saral finally felt light…he felt it to be right…finally, radhika too had her happiness.
For the next couple of days, everybody was having a gala time…..while the gang worked on the arrangements side by side….
Bonnie was continuously trying to reach out to somebody and she was looking frustrated…neil asked her, “kiddo…what’s up?”
Bonnie asked irritated, “why is teji, not here and why is he not picking up my call?”
Sam smiled, “he is on a romantic get away with ishana…..and he is not taking your calls because he doesn’t know about your wedding yet….”
Bonnie smiled, “romantic getaway…not bad…haan….wont disturb him then.”
Sam was ticking things off her list while checking the arrangement……when felt a tickling on her waist….soon arms wrapped around her….she too leaned back knowing it was neil…
Neil whispered in her eyes, “you look tired Sammy….seems like you could enjoy a neilu jaan treat.”
Sam turned around in his arms to face him, “I’d love it.” She said wrapping her arms around his neck.
Neil grabbed her hand intertwining his fingers with hers…..he took her out for an ice cream and later dropped at her the apartment…..but Sam didn’t let go, she kept leaning on him…
Neil smiled, “Sammy, you are home….go sleep….good night..”
Sam pouted for a second and spoke in cute little voice, “but you are so warm..” she ran her finger up and down his arm…
Neil laughed took her to her bed room….covered her with a blanket and sat massaging her feet. Sam pulled him up and slept hugging him tight.
Finally, the day for the wedding arrived……bonnie, who got ready in simple red and orange saree with elegant jewellery, was accompanied by Arjun and Radhika. Saral looked every bit royal clad in a cream sherwani with orange embroidery…..nesam accompanied him.
The temple was decorated with lots of the flowers, the arrangement was mesmerising…. The priest was already ready with all the materials and requirements….and soon the ceremony started…..neil unknowingly wrapped his around sam’s shoulder…….arjun had memories flashing before his eyes of the good times spent with his sister and how soon she was old enough to get married… Radhika was leaning of Arjun with her hands wrapped around his arm….
Just as all the rituals were about to be complete….a shrill voice shouted, “stop!”
(too filmy….huh? ? ….its always like that, just as they are about to complete the wedding…the villain makes an entry and shouts rukoooooo…….then all the face of each one of the people is shown in black and white ending with that of the bride and groom…….and whooopsss that’s the end of the episode ? uff….these typical hindi tv serials…??
But don’t you worry, I wont be that cruel…)
Everybody turned to look at the source of the voice…..arjun and bonnie are shocked to see their mother, they looked at each other to confirm her unwanted presence……arjun felt a bit nostalgic on seeing her after so long…..but his blood boiled on thoughts that she was here to stop his gudiya’s wedding and preach about status…equal standing….and stuff, he didn’t bother about….all that mattered to him was love…and the love between bonnie and saral was pure….he was willing to go to any extent to have them married.
Radhika could sense that she was somebody really important to both Arjun and bonnie….she had no clue that nandini was their mother.
Bonnie stood up, but Arjun placed a hand on her shoulder asking her to sit down and complete the rituals……he turned to neil, “neil, please make sure that they are married quickly…..just keep the rituals going on, no matter what..”
Neil nodded and handed a couple of thousands into the priest’s hand
Sam kept staring at nandini, all the while….her voice seemed so familiar….her face seemed known….yet sam couldn’t where had she seen nandini before, or who she was to her.
Arjun took a few steps forward, while neil kept standing at the priest asking him to hurry every two minutes.
Radhika too walked forward and held arjun’s hand….she didn’t know who nandini was…..why her presence mattered….why she wanted to stop the wedding….or anything about the matter…..but these questions could be answered later but right now, she didn’t want Arjun to take any step he may regret.
Nandini’s heart smiled widely on seeing Radhika standing like a rock, with Arjun…..she looked like a celestial nymph in ethnic….it seemed to nandini, as if Radhika had come straight from heaven just for her son….she was proud of her son’s choice….radhika was the perfect girl for him……but she was miffed with him for getting bonnie married to saral and not even informing her about it…..it wasn’t as if she was against their wedding…..it was just that she should have been informed in advance……well, after all it was her daughter’s wedding.
Arjun walked towards nandini, “what are you doing here?”
Nandini sighed, “Arjun…I am your and bonnie’s mother…..”
Arjun was about to say something when nandini continued, looking at Radhika with wide smile on her face, “you look gorgeous, beta….stay blessed.” She was about to pat her head, when Arjun yanked radhika’s arm and pushed her behind him….he hid Radhika from nandini’s sight with himself.
Arjun replied, looking sternly at Radhika, “I will explain everything to you later, radhika……I have intentions to let her spoil another relation.” He said recalling his childhood friends….his college best friend….and some random high society girl, she almost had him married to.
Radhika just kept quiet….she kept looking over arjun’s shoulder towards nandini.
Nandini smiled a sad one, “ Arjun….you didn’t change…but beta, I did…..i am sorry for my mistakes….i should have had more sense than that…..well, our roles always remained reversed, you were always the mature one….which I should have been, afterall I am the mother.”
She moved her hand forward to caress arjun’s face…but he stopped her hand with a jerk, “stop repeating the word, mother….”
Arjun recalled all the past memories…..the happy times the small family of four had spent together….how nandini used to decide who they should be friends with…..how nandini had separated him with his best friend because apparently, his family wasn’t of an equal status as their’s….the final blow came when she had finalised his marriage to a girl of a high class family, even without consulting him…moreover, she had tried to justify her act by saying that this relation would be beneficial to their business……it was this grave mistake of hers which had forced him to leave their home…and had instilled a small feelings of hatred and indifference towards her in his heart.
Nandini replied trying make him understand, “time doesn’t change relations beta.”
Arjun seemed unconvinced…and was about to retort asking her to leave…when sam came forward holding her phone tightly….while neil just kept urging the priest to go faster and faster.
She showed a picture to nandini, “this is you…right?”
It was picture of samrat and nandini from their college days. Nandini and samrat were best friends….and samrat loved nandini from the bottom of her heart….but she left him to marry Arnav mehra, a rich businessman.
Nandini had tears in her eyes….all her past was catching up to her…..her gross materialism had made her commit so many mistakes…..she had broken a number of relations and now that she realised…..maybe, it was too late to save the only one existing…..the beautiful relation between child and his mother.
Arjun took a look at the photograph. “yes, that’s her…”
He looked sharply at nandini, “mom, how does sam have a picture of yours…and who is that man standing besides you?”
Nandini’s heart took a little leap on hearing the word mom from Arjun after almost 15 years…
Sam replied with tears in her eyes, as she remembered her own family….she whispered, “my dad…”
Ardhika speak in unison, “what??”
Sam nods, Radhika hugs her and wipes her tears away…..she starts her story, “my dad and your mom were best friends in college…infact, were lovers….but your mom left him to marry your dad, the great businessman, Arnav mehra…..my dad was truly broken….he didn’t want to marry anyone and he did not for almost another decade. Then he met my mom, who was also their classmate in college….she had a 10 year old son….her husband had died in an accident….my dad married my mom, just so bhai would get the love of a father…..after almost 4 years, I was born….but they didn’t really care….i was a mere show to the world…it was just to prove to the world that they loved each other…….it was a fake show….my dad was still in love with your mom and my mom loved bhai’s father, her first husband……mom cared about a lot as he was the symbol of her true love…and my dad, well, he expected my mom to take care of me.……it was their ignorance and indifference which lead me to leave and start leaving my life independently….”
Radhika hugged sam, whispering, “your sister is here for you always.”
Arjun too arm hugged her and glared at nandini with bloodshot eyes….he hissed in anger, “your gross materialism….didnt just destroy our childhood….but destroyed her life as well…”
Just then neil came, with bonnie and saral in tow, happily announcing, “meet the husband and wife….Mr. and Mrs. Joshi…”
Nandini looked on in horror.
Precap: arjun sends nandini away…..radhika has a mid night caller.
Urghh….there is so much to write…..you guys, wanted an ardhika confession desperately….and since I had already written the precap….i had too adjust both the things in the this chapter…..hence the really long one…..sorry!
Silent readers please do give your reviews.