“mom please, I don’t want to get married”-Captain Arjun Mehra declared in a firm voice.
“now please Aru, give me the reason why?? – his mother Meera asked him, already getting hyper.
Arjun- mom please you know my job. Our lives are full of uncertainty. I don’t want to destroy any girl’s life tangled with my uncertain life.
Meera- don’t Aru. Nothing is going to happen with you. You promised me that you will stay safe.
Both remained silent for some moments.
Meera (sighed & take a deep breath)- Aru, your father left us when you were only 4 years old. It was an accident, so sudden & see it changed our lives. Your father was a civilian. Then?? It’s all about destiny. In today’s world, no one is safe son. But that doesn’t mean you will not live your life.
Arjun looked at his mother. She is a teacher & now working as a principle of a school. Arjun smiled “you always have your points mom, no one can beat you in reasoning.
Meera- Aru, I know you very well. You are a very reserved person. In childhood, you only concentrated on your studies & NCC, later you joined Army & your duty becomes your life. We both so depended on each other, I am getting old. Before death, I want you to settle down.
Arjun ( almost shouting)- mom please, if you say these kind of things, I am going to stop coming in holidays.
Meera- really?? Can you able to stay without seeing me??? ( his mother pulled his cheeks). Aru, you are afraid of commitment. Okay, listen, a new teacher joined in my school, Radhika Mishra. You just meet with her once, I promise, if you don’t like her, I will not force you.
Arjun- & how am I going to meet with her?? & most importantly what to say to her??
Meera- You don’t need to say anything. I already talked to her about you. I told her that I want her as my daughter-in-law.
Arjun hold his head. “mom, you are just impossible. Don’t tell me you already gave final words to her parents.
Meera- Aru, she is her guardian. You know she spent her childhood in an orphanage, their she studied & became a teacher. She is a complete self-made woman with values. I am sure you will like her, no no, You will definitely Love her.
Next day, Meera sent her son to meet with Radhika.
Arjun- mom, I don’t even know her. How am I going to recognize her? I am not at all comfortable.
Meera- You are behaving like a girl. Don’t forget she is the bride & you are the groom. ( Arjun angrily looked at her) Okay, she will recognize you. She saw your picture that one in Uniform & I can say from her expression, she likes you.
Arjun- So, the main point is you already fixed my marriage.
Meera- Yes, I did. But I want your yes, after all I can’t even drag you in mandap.
Arjun showed his muscles & winked. Meera rolled her eyes.
Arjun was standing outside the gate of a park. He is feeling like a fool. He is looking here & there. Suddenly, he heard a female voice from his back. “Captain Mehra”. Arjun turned & looked at the girl. She is looking at him but he can say from her body language that she is nervous. But Arjun is only looking at her. “I am Radhika” her voice broke his trance. He nodded his head. But both looked confused as they have no idea what to say or what to do.
Arjun ( in a low voice)- hii, how are you??
Radhika- Fine. How are you Captain??
Arjun- I am also fine.
Again silence, Arjun was visibly confused & wondering how to handle the situation. Finally, he said, marriage is the most important decision of our life. But in mind, “dam, I am teaching a teacher, She know the importance of marriage fool”. So, think carefully & then decide , specially think about my profession.
Radhika only looked at the man in front of her. He is first time meeting a girl for marriage, most probably he never dated anyone. She feel a sense of pride. Her face hold a look of admiration only if Arjun noticed.
Radhika- Hope mam told you about my background that I am an orphan.
Arjun- Yes, but it doesn’t matter. Very few have the strength to write their own destiny. It’s your plus point.
Both again stopped, having no idea what to say further. Radhika looked a man selling Ice-Cream. She tried to lighten the situation.
Radhika- What about an ice-cream treat??
Arjun looked at her & replied with a small smile. “Sure”.
Radhika took a choco bar but Arjun refused. Radhika took out her purse to pay, but Arjun already paid. Radhika protested. “heyy, its not fair. It was my idea plus you are not eating.” Arjun silenced her, “next time you will pay, now happy??” She smiled at him. Suddenly they heard a little boy voice, “Miss, Miss, you are here in the park.”
Both looked at the small boy. Radhika immediately recognized her student. “ohh noo, her student saw her in a park, enjoying ice-cream with a man.” She looked very embarrassed & almost ran out of the park holding the ice-cream. Arjun & the kid both looked shocked. Soon, Arjun understand the situation & broke into laughter.
He came back in his house. Meera was standing in door-step. “You liked Radhika?? What is your answer??”
Arjun- mom, first let me in.
Meera- First answer.
Meera was very happy. “What ‘hmmm’ my dear Aru?? Say yes loudly & clearly.”
After a month, the both got married. It was a court-marriage, they signed papers in Marriage register Office, garlanded each other & he filled her mang with sindoor. In their First Night, Radhika was literally biting her nails in nervousness. She even don’t know him properly. He is a Gentleman, but that kind of relationship, she is worried & tensed. Arjun entered into the room. He sensed the nervousness & he felt terrible. He wondered whether all couples in arranged marriages went through this type of confusion and awkwardness. Without waiting for the situation to become even worse, Arjun grabbed a pillow and some bedding and began making a bed for himself on the floor. “You don’t have to”, Radhika began protesting, but Arjun replied, “It’s okay, I’m a soldier and therefore I can sleep just about anywhere comfortably”. Radhika just looked at him. She can rely on him, he will never let her down.
After marriage, Arjun resumed his duty, but this time his wife accompanied him. Both started living in Base Quarter like other families. Radhika joined as a teacher in Base Army school. Radhika got the fact that her husband is a very reserved person, not open up easily. They became very busy in their life. But every night both shared their daily chorus with each other. Radhika used to share the antics of her students. They laughed together. Soon, other topics also started adding. They started talking about their likes, dislikes, their passion, hobbies. Arjun started sharing his previous posting, mission, experience with her & Radhika freely talked about her life. How her relatives abandon her after her’s parents death in an accident, Arjun just put his hand on Hers. She just closed her eyes & feel the warmth. Soon, they started going out together. Radhika always used to hold his hand while walking together, she got the fact that Arjun is shy to show his affection in presense of others. There is always a pride in her eyes when each morning she see him in Uniform, but as soon as he leave, she just silently for his safety. Arjun also noticed the change in him. He love spending time with her rather than Army Club. He feel comfortable with her. He love her eyes, smile, smell everything. His heart filled with happiness to see her smile & he can feel his body burning with desire when each night she sleep beside her. How badly he want to touch her.
One day, Arjun & Radhika both went to a nearby hotel to celebrate a friend’s marriage Anniversary. All were enjoying. Soon all friends challenged Arjun to propose Radhika. Arjun gulped, But he did not refused. He took a single red rose from a flower vast , offered her & simply said “I Love You Radhika.” Friends clapped & whistled & Radhika’s cheeks turned red.
They came back in Quarter. Radhika changed her saree & came out wearing a sleeveless Nighty. Arjun looked at her. He slowly came closer to her. She closed her eyes with shyness and fear. He removed the clip from her hair & started playing with her hair.
He kissed her forehead. He was kissing passionately on her neck, shoulder. She was enjoying the beautiful sensation running through her body. Arjun lifted her up on his arms & place her to the bed. He lay on top of her. He kissed her lips with full of passion, love & care. The kiss
was so deep that her lips got a small cut, & started playing with her tongue. Radhika unbuttoned his shirt. Arjun also removed her nighty, & started cuddling her, nibbling her & caressing her. Their legs entwined.
She was mourning & scratching his mascular back. Both were enjoying the moment. Arjun kissed her on shoulders, cheeks. Radhika also kissed his face, bare chest. Arjun kissed her eyelids & started caressing her stomach. She was
clinching the sheet in her fists & enjoying the pleasure. Two bodies & soul became one. They both enjoying their union.
After,7 months, Radhika was 5 months pregnant. Arjun is taking care of her. But he seemed more busy in his duty. Radhika can assume he is working in a secret mission & this increased her anxiety. One day, Arjun was in wash-room when all phones started ringing together. His two mobiles, the LAN phone. Arjun came out in towel & received the call. He looked tensed, wore his uniform & left in hurry, not even look back for a second. Radhika feel like hug him tightly but he just left.
In evening, Radhika just reached her Quarter, an Orderly came running. He looked tensed. “mam, come soon in Base Hospital. Arjun Sir is badly injured.”Keys fall from her hands. She ran towards Hospital. She peeped in the cabin from the glass door. Doctors are checking his pulse. A nurse came to put the oxygen mask on him, but the doctor stopped her. “It’s too late, he is no more.” Radhika felt numb. Her legs not able to hold her balance. But many hands hold her.
Arjun was running, catch me Radhika. She is also running behind him, trying to catch him. He was laughing. Suddenly, a layer of fog covered the atmosphere. Radhika was unable to see her Arjun anymore. She screamed & woke up with a start. She came out from her room. There is his Arjun, wrapped in Tiranga. It’s just like he is sleeping peacefully after completing his duty. Meera was lovingly caressing her son’s forehead. Radhika put her shaking hand on him. Why his body is so chill? Where is his warmth which always soothed her??
That day terrorists held hostages all little students & teachers of a school. Captain Arjun Mehra led the mission. He successfully rescued all of them in cost of his life.
After one month, Radhika sat lifelessly on the bed holding the picture of Arjun. She looked at the other side of bed, but its empty. Tears escaped from her eyes. A hand tried to hold the droplet, but it fall on his picture instead. Arjun is sitting beside her, but there is a boundary of life & death between them.
“Still I can feel your presence Arjun. But I can’t see you, I can’t touch you. You know what I just hate you. You only care about your duty in life, we are all secondary. Mom, I, our child. How simply you left all of us? Not once you thought naa how we going to manage? How can we live without you? You remembered your pledge “Service Before Self”, but you forget our marriage vows. What is the fault of our child that he will never know what father love is? You never thought once naa before coming in front of bullets? Answer me dam it. She started crying. Tears escaped from Arjun’s eyes also.”What to do Radhika ? I saw the face of my family on those innocent lives. It was my duty to protect them. Can I able to back off if my child was there?”
Radhika got up & opened the drawer, took out her diary. She opened a page & lovingly caressing the dry flower which Arjun gave her in party. Arjun also looked at her, he tried to touch her, but he is helpless. Remember me like a dry flower of your diary, it may not have any fragrance, but will remember you of my existence forever in your life.
Radhika is holding her son. Meera is also sitting beside her. She is holding the Param-veer Chakra of her son.
Both have tears in their eyes.
Meera- He always wanted this samman. I, too, wished to see him holding this in his own hands. But see the game of destiny. It’s in my hand. I received the posthumous recognization of my son. I am sad yet proud.
Meera sighed & looked at her grandson.
Meera- He just looks like Aru. I feel like I got him again.
Radhika- maa, I reborn again holding my son in my hand. The time I spent with Arjun was the best phrase of my life. He is a part of my existence. He gave me the best gift of my life & also the biggest responsibility. Soon, I am going to resume my duty. He fulfilled his duty of a soldier, now its time for me to fulfill my duty as a teacher. I am proud of my Captain & maa, I will be the most happiest person & proudest mother if ever my son wants to become a soldier just like his father.
Arjun looked at his family for a last time. At last, he is Free. He got his peace & solace.
“And who says I will not be there on that morning. You will call me by my new name, you will bind me with new chains. I shall come & go eternally, the same me. So you need not remember me anymore. Staring up in the sky, you may not recall me anymore”…………………….
Dedicated to all soldiers & their families.
Hii all, this is Madhumita again. So, this is my second OS after confusion.
Want honest opinions. But plz no rotten eggs & tomotoes.
Loads of Love to all.