SWASAN – MR MAHESHWARI AND I
Heyy, It’s Anjali back with the next chapter!!!
Thnxx for comments and to my silent readers….
THIS IS A SUPER LONG CHAPTER!!!! HAVE FUN!!!
Swasan character sketch..Sanskaar’s intro…
IN MRS SHARMA’S HOUSE
By 8:30 that evening, Swara’s worst fear had been realised. Sanskaar Maheshwari had shown his face in the party and had asked Ragini to dance.
Even worse, Ragini had accepted.
Even worse, Sumi was looking at the two of them in the middle of the dance floor so gleefully that Swara was sure she was thinking of Ragini’s muh dikhayi in the Maheshwari family.
Swara : MA! Will you stop that?
Sumi : Stop what?
Swara ( glaring at her) : Looking at them like that…
Sumi ( blinked ) : Like what?
Swara : Like you’re thinking of your grandchildren, their children…
Sumi shifted guiltily.
Swara : MA!
Sumi : So what if I was, Swara? He would be an excellent match for our Ragini.
Swara : MA! Haven’t you read the papers? It says he always has girlfriends and has never been single since the age of 18. He probably has mistresses lying about as well. You possibly can’t want him to be in Ragini’s life.
Sumi ( sharply) : Don’t think of telling me what I can or cannot do, Swara Gadodia! I am your mother, well stepmother. But that should still count for something.
Swara (feeling bad ) : Sorry Ma! You are my mother, not my stepmother. It counts in every way that matters.
Sumi ( smiling teary-eyed) : See! Now you made me cry.
Swara : Sorry Ma!
Sumi turns around and wipes her tears.
Sumi : Swara, You do know I love you right?
Swara (shocked) : Ofcourse Ma! And you do…know….that….I…
Sumi (reassuringly) : Ofcourse beta! It is just that my responsiblity is twice as great when it comes to mothering a child who has lost her mom.
Swara : Don’t worry Ma! I do love you….And I love Ragini!
At the mention of Ragini’s name, They both turned to look at her dancing with Mr Maheshwari. Since it was a London Regency themed ball, Ragini was wearing a floor length dress in a lovely pink colour, with her her done in a styled bun. Her form was the epitome of grace as she moved through the steps of the dance. Swara on the other hand was wearing a dark blue floor length gown with her hair styled and left loose.
Mr Maheshwari, Swara thought with irritation, was looking heart-stoppingly handsome. Dressed in black and white formals with a black tie, He stood tall, straight and proud. He was, at least, on the surface everything a man was meant to be.
Sumi (knowingly) : Swara! They make a wonderful couple, don’t they?
Swara actually bit her tongue to stop herself from talking.
Sumi (continued) : He’s a bit too tall for her, but I don’t see that as a very big obstacle, do you?
Swara dug her nails into her fingers.
Sumi : He dances well, Don’t you think?
Swara ( having had enough) : Ma! Ragini is not going to marry Mr Maheshwari.
Sumi (laughing softly) : I was wondering how long you would hold your silence.
Swara : Certainly longer than my natural inclination. You know he is not the man we want for Ragini.
Sumi : I think the question ought to be whether he is the sort of man Ragini wants for Ragini.
Swara (looking at the dark haired monster with her sister) : He is not that either. Ragini wants a scholar! Does Sanskaar Maheshwari look like a scholar?
Sumi : Maybe he’s not. But we wouldn’t know, would we? (changing the subject) I had a lovely chat with his mother and his aunt earlier in the evening.
Swara : His mother? So what? What does that have to do with this?
Sumi : Nothing Beta! But I don’t believe that such gracious and intelligent ladies could have raised anything but the finest of gentlemen, despite his reputation.
Swara : Par Ma…
Sumi : Swara! You will understand what I mean when you are a mother.
Swara : But….
Suddenly Sumi shifted the topic.
Sumi : Swara beta! Have I told you how pretty this blue dress looks on you? This time, Not just Ragini, Even you will have a band of followers.
Swara looked dumbly down at her dress, wondering why on earth Sumi had changed the subject so suddenly.
Sumi continued saying something else about her attire. Swara stared at her in dismay. Was her mom going mad? Then suddenly Sumi poked her in the ribs and she knew something else was wrong.
Sumi (gleefully) : Mr Maheshwari!
Horrified, Swara jerked her head up to see a startlingly handsome man approach them. A startlingly handsome man who looked startlingly like the man currently dancing with her sister.
She swallowed. It was either that or let her jaw hang open.
Sumi : Mr. Maheshwari! How nice to see you. This is my daughter Swara!
He took her limp, gloved hand and brushed an airy kiss across her knuckles. So airy, in fact, that Swara rather suspected he hadn’t kissed her at all.
“Miss Gadodia,” he murmured.
Sumi (beaming) : Swara, This is Mr. Laksh Maheshwari. I met him earlier this evening while I was talking with his mother, Annapurna and Sujata Maheshwari. Such lovely ladies.
He grinned back.
Laksh : We think so.
Sumi (purposely) : Swara! Mr Maheshwari is the brother of the man dancing with Ragini..
Swara (sarcastically) : I guessed.
She saw Laksh shoot her a stare which meant that he had detected her sarcastic tone.
Laksh : It is an immense pleasure to meet you, Miss Gadodia! (offering her his hand) I would be honoured if you decide to dance with me later today.
Laksh : Would you like to join me in getting a drink?
Sumi nudged Swara to go, So she went.
Swara : Ma! Do you want a glass of lemonade? I will bring you a glass.
Sumi : Not really. I should really be going back and joining the other ladies. (almost running away from them) Sushma! Sushma! Wait up!
Looking at her mother’s retreating form, Swara shook her head.
Swara : I don’t think she wants any lemonade.
Laksh smiled devilishly.
Laksh : It’s either that, Or she’s going to run to Darjeeling to pick lemons herself.
Swara laughed, despite herself. She didn’t want to like Mr. Laksh Maheshwari. She didn’t much want to like any Maheshwari after all she’d read about the businessman in the newspaper. But she decided that it probably wasn’t fair to judge a man based on his brother’s misdeeds, so she forced herself to relax a bit.
Swara : Did you want a drink? Or did you come with me, just to be polite?
Laksh (grinning) : I am always polite. But now, I am thirsty.
Swara looked at his grin, then at his handsome form and groaned.
Swara : You are an arrogant flirt as well.
Laksh started choking on air.
Laksh : Excuse me?
Swara stood horrified that she had spoken out loud.
Swara : Sorry! I shouldn’t have told that. It was really rude.
Laksh ( looking very interested) : No, Please continue!
Swara looked all around her to escape. Realising that she couldn’t, she decided to tell the truth.
Swara : I am going to be frank. (Laksh nodded) I just…I just thought…you might….be like….your brother.
Laksh : My brother?
Swara : Mr Sanskaar Maheshwari obviously.
Laksh : I have 2 brothers. Adarsh is the second son.
Swara felt like a fool.
Swara : Ohh! Lol! I am sorry…
Laksh : Me too. My brothers are a dreadful nuisance most of the time. Damn them.
Swara shot a quick look at him and saw only love. This was not a man who wished his brothers dead.
Swara : You are devoted to your family, Aren’t you?
Laksh( turning serious all of a sudden) : Ofcourse.
Swara (pointedly) : As am I.
Laksh( curious) : Meaning?
Swara willed herself to hold her tongue but failed.
Swara : Meaning that I will not allow anyone to break my sister’s heart.
Laksh sees her looking at Sanskaar and Ragini, now standing and talking.
Laksh( murmuring) : I see.
Swara : Do you?
Laksh : Yeah, I do.
Theyy reach the refreshment table. Laksh hands her a glass of wine and takes one for himself.
Laksh looks at her and slowly sips his wine.
Laksh : Sanskaar wants to settle down this year.
Swara (in a uncaring voice) : Oh, Does he?
Laksh : Obviously, I will know.
Swara : He has a bad reputation though!
Laksh : True!
Swara : So it is difficult to believe someone like him settling down with one woman.
Laksh : You certainly have given this a lot of thought?
Swara (looking directly at Laksh) : Mr Maheshwari! Your elder brother is not the first one with a questionable character to want to go out with my sister. I do not take Ragini’s happiness lightly. No matter how wealthy or influential he may be.
Laksh : Some people may think that’s enough for a marriage.
Swara : Maybe. But Ragini is not one of them. And a husband can break her heart with greater intensity than just someone with a crush. What do you think?
Laksh : I have no answer. I am not married, you see.
Swara : Oh God! That was such a lame response.
Laksh : I feel like I’m losing my touch. I am never lame usually.
Swara( smiling) : Don’t worry. I don’t think you have anything to fear. I am rarely generous with compliments. You are lucky.
Laksh laughs loudly.
Laksh : You have to meet Sanskaar! He is a good man.
Swara : Maybe. But now, I will take your leave. I see a friend calling me.
Laksh : Sure! I will come to claim a dance soon.
Swara smiles and nods. Laksh looks at her retreating form thoughtfully. Sanskaar joins him.
Laksh : How was your dance with Miss Ragini Gadodia?
Sanskaar ( curtly) : She’ll do.
Both of them knew what that meant.
Laksh (smiling mysteriously) : You should meet her sister then.
Sanskaar : What ?
Laksh : Her sister! You have to meet her sister…
20 MINUTES LATER
Sanskaar had received Ragini’s entire bio data from Laksh. He saw that the way for Ragini’s hand in marriage was through her sister. He found this surprising. Usually, People asked their father’s approval or brother’s. Or even a mother’s. This was the first time he had heard of getting a SISTER’S approval.
But he was glad. This proved that Ragini was devoted to family. She would definitely make an excellent wife for him. Also, They were less wealthy. So Sanskaar felt it would be easy to obtain permission from Swara Gadodia.
Laksh (smiling confidently) : Don’t worry Sanskaar! You will have no problem getting the elder Miss Gadodia to give you permission. She probably will swoon when a man as handsome and wealthy as you talks to her. She might even fall in love with you.
Sanskaar : I don’t want her to fall in love with me. I just want her to recommend me to Ragini.
Laksh : You won’t fail. I spoke to her earlier this evening, and she spoke so much about you.
Sanskaar (determinedly) : Good! Now where is she?
Laksh scans the room and sees her behind a group of people. He points her out to Sanskaar. Sanskaar looks at Swara. She was not at all what he expected to see. She wasn’t ugly at all. Only when compared to Ragini, did she pale. In actuality, She was pretty with straightforward eyes and full lips. She held herself with an air of confidence that he appreciated and found attractive.
Suddenly Laksh started shouting.
Laksh (walking forward) : Miss Gadodia! Miss Gadodia!
Sanskaar walked behind him, preparing himself to charm the woman.
Laksh : Miss Swara! It is so lovely to meet you again.
She looked at him puzzled. Sanskaar could sense her confusion. Laksh had shouted out her name in the middle of the room and now he was acting like he had randomly run into her.
Swara (smiling wryly) : It is good to see you too. And so quickly after our last encounter.
Sanskaar smiled to himself. This Swara Gadodia did have a sharper wit than he was led to believe. Laksh grinned wickedly and Sanskaar got the impression that his brother was planning something no good.
Laksh : I know! But I felt it was really necessary to meet my brother.
Swara turned to Laksh’s right and stiffened as she saw Sanskaar. Her smile had been replaced by a frown.
Sanskaar (thinking) : That’s odd.
Laksh : Miss Swara Gadodia! This is my brother, Sanksaar Maheshwari, Owner of MNC Maheshwari Pvt Ltd. Sanskaar, This is Swara Gadodia. I think you danced with her sister earlier today.
Sanskaar : Yes Laksh!
He got the feeling to strangle his brother.
Swara (awkwardly) : Hello Mr Maheshwari! It is an honour to meet the famous businessman.
Laksh gave a sound that sounded suspiciously like a laugh or a cough. He looked at Sanskaar and suddenly, Sanskaar knew. This Swara Gadodia was not a shy girl, who would fall in love with him. This woman had certainly not paid him any compliments when she had earlier spoken with Laksh.
Realising that Swara was holding out her hand, He took it and kissed her on the knuckles.
Sanskaar (without thinking) : Miss Gadodia! You are as pretty as your sister.
Swara stiffened even more and turned downright hostile. Sanskaar hit himself in the head. The one compliment he knew she would not believe, and he had gone and said that.
Everyone knew that Swara was not as beautiful as Ragini, and would never be. This compliment certainly had not made him a better man in her eyes.
Swara : And you, Mr Maheshwari are ALMOST as handsome as your brother.
Laksh coughed again. Swara ignoring Sanskaar, turned to Laksh.
Swara : Are you ok?
Laksh (nodding) : Just a tickle in my throat.
Sanskaar : I think it’s a guilty conscience.
Laksh : Ah no! I’ll just go get myself a lemonade.
Sanskaar : How about rat poison?
Despite herself, Swara gave a fascinated gasp.
Laksh : It’s ok, big brother! Lemonade would be perfect.
Swara : Shall I go get one for you?
Sanskaar saw that she had one leg out. She was clearly desperate to leave him.
Laksh : No no! I can do that myself, Thanks. But I was going to dance the next one with you.
Swara : Don’t worry. It will be fine.
Laksh (shocked) : Oh no! That would be sooo UNGENTLEMANLY. ( HE shuddered, then beamed that made Swasan feel very afraid) Sanskaar, Why don’t you dance with her?
Swara (quickly) : Oh no! That’s ok. Seriously.
Laksh : Come on!
Swara : It is fine. I don’t want to dance with….
Sanskaar had finally had enough. The girl was almost about to insult him. Already, His brother had already fooled him. He wasn’t going to allow this girl to make him feel like a fool as well.
Sanskaar (taking her hand) : Allow me to stop you from making a terrible mistake.
Swara ( turning hostile again, in a cold voice) : Excuse me?
Sanskaar : I think you were going to say something you might regret later.
Swara : I don’t think so! I don’t have regrets in my life.
Sanskaar took her hand and pulled her closer. He moved forward until his nose was almost touching her head.
Sanskaar ( whispering in her ears) : Not yet! But you might have one now.
He pulled back and clutching her hand, pulled her onto the dance floor forcefully.
PRECAP : Swasan dance…Swara’s fear…Sanskaar starts to court Ragini…And an incident with a dog
What did you ppl think of this chapter?? Too long? Should I make it shorter?
Please do comment…Ur comments encourage me to be better!!!