“Swara…” there was a knock in the door. The voice made Sanskaar get up hastily if someone saw the pillows in between them there would be a scene in front of the whole house which Sanskaar wanted to avoid he quickly shook Swara “utho… yeh kya tumhe knoch sunai nai deta utho” “maa sone doo na” Swara mumbled in her sleep. “Main tumhe maa dikhta hoon!” And he shook her more forcible which made Swara wake up with a gasp. ” what is wrong with you Sanskaar! Pagal ho kya?” “There is someone at the door utho jaldi” he replied. Swara quickly got up readjusting her saree and went upto the door while Sanksaar quickly removed the pillows between them and quickly laid back down acting as if he was still sleeping. It was Parineeta bhabhi at the door “Swara.. kitni der lagadi tumne darwaza kholne me” she teased smiling “voh bhabhi…” before Swara could make up a reply Parineeta continued “Achha chodo, tum dono jaldi se taiyar hoke nichee aa jao aaj ka pehla chulla tumhe jalana hai, yeh ek riwaaz hai” “ok bhabhi” she replied smiling and closed the door.
Sanskaar and Swara quickly got ready. Sanskaar was wearing a white colour kurta and pyjama whereas Swara was trying to wear a red and white Saree. “Yeh kya kar rahi ho tum, Swara?! Tumhe bahu dikhna hai joker nai” Sanskaar joked. Swara huffed at his comment and started wearing the saree again without thinking she removed her Saree’s drape and their eyes met an awkward silence in the air. They kept on looking into each other’s eyes finally Sanskaar cleared his throat and brought them both out of their trance. “Wait I’ll help you!” He quickly mumbled. While helping her wear the saree his fingertips accidently grazed her bellybutton which sent shivers down her spine. Sanskaar noticed her response but he was not ready for anything right now so he quickly mumbled a sorry.
After getting ready both went downstairs together avoiding looking into each other’s eyes. Sanskaar couldn’t understand her response to his touch neither could Swara understand her reaction to his touch. There was something between them which they both were incapable of understanding right now.
There was no qualms about the marriage that had taken place by either of the families. There was only one thing they both were worried about- Money! Since the wedding had gone through the business deal between the two families was still on. In their greed the lives of two souls had been tied together for an eternity. The Maheshwari’s were acting as if Swara was their first choise as a Bahu and that they were plesantly happy. The only person who thought family is more important than money in this whole circus was Durga Prasad Maheshwari, who was forced to go ahead with this business marriage deal by the pressure from his Business Investors. He was truly happy to see Swara Garodia strike that off, Swara Maheshwari as his bahu. She had also been his first choice for his son Lakshya but his wife had flatly declined since Swara being a half bengali.
All the ladies of the house gathered near Swara and took her for the chulla rasam. Parineeta showed her where all the masala’s and utensils are kept and then she was left alone in the kitchen. As it was still breakfast time she prepared Methi Paratha, some Dahi raita, 2 types of salad, fresh juices for everyone and for sweet she made Gajjar ka Halwa. She was very anxious as whether her inlaws were going to like the food prepared by her. The first one to give a nod was Durga Prasad aka Bade Papa “Swara beta the food is amazing yeh lo tumhara neg” Swara took his blessings and accepted the neg after that everyone started appreciating her food and she received neg from everyone. “Kaisa laga apko khana Sanskaar Bhaiya?” Parineeta teased him. “Aacha hai Bhabhi” he said awkwardly Swara was looking at him expectantly. “Aacha ya bahot aacha bhaiya?” “Bahot aacha” “Toh aur khaiye na bhai and emptied the whole bowl of gajjar ka halwa into his plate. Everyone laughed heartily except Annapoorna “Bas karo Pari bahu” she stated and everyone was silenced. “Swara bahu aur Sanskaar tum jao thoda aaram karlo aaj shaam ko tumari mooh dikhayi hai.” “Okay Badi Maa” an answer was received and everyone dispersed for their routine work.
’Mooh Dikhayi’ Rasam, Swara was very nervous as she was not that well versed with all the marwadi customs and traditions Ragini had been the best suited for those. “Why are you frowning?” Sanskaar asked her as he stepped out of the shower he was clad in a traditional marwadi sherwani. “Huh?!” came Swara’s lame reply she was deeply engrossed in her the thoughts she hadn’t noticed him coming out of the shower unable to take her eyes of him and her eyes taking the liberties to roam all over him. “Kya hua madam?” This seemed to bring her back to her senses. “Kuch nai chalo” she went upto the door when Sanskaar asked her to wait. He walked upto her took her palo in his hand and placing it over head hid her face this gesture made Swara blush and looked down. Sanskaar caught her hand in his and they went downstairs together.
The rasam started with high galore but when the guests saw Swara’s face instead of Ragini and also Sanskaar sitting in place of lakshya they were shocked but noone said anything for the fear of the mighty Maheshwari’s. After Swara received everyone’s blessings and the functioned ended everyone tired retired to their rooms.
Sanskaar picked up a photo placed on his bedside table ‘Why Swara why, why did you leave me? I thought even you loved me since four years 7 months I have been searching for you? Where are you? Please waapis aa jao. Hum toh khush the na?!” Wiping off the tears and hugging the photograph he drifted off to sleep.
“Mamma mamma you know today me and Masi had gone to a beach. The water over there is soo pretty mamma” Swara smiled at her four year old daughter. Her face was reminder of her husband. “Sanskriti chalo beta ab hum apko nai nai karayenga and then soo ne jana padega” “Nai mamma where is uncle? I want to play with him. Ragini smiled and said “Beta your uncle will be here soon then you can play with him but first you have to bathe na… go with you mamma” Sanskriti smiled and went inside her room.
”Swara tum janti ho jana she wants her uncle because she misses having a father!” “Jo possible nahi uske baare me hum kyu baat kare! Main mere past ko piche chodke aayi hu” she retorted “Swara tum humse juth keh sakti ho apne aapse pucho kya tum aaj bhi Sanskaar bhai se pyaar nai karti” Suddenly they were interrupted by a male voice. “Kaha hai meri princess?” Lakshya asked merrily. “Lakshya ji voh andar hai main usse lati hu voh apka hi wait kar rahi thi” Ragini went inside to get Sanskriti. ”A skipping Sanskriti jumped on lakshya’s lap and they both started playing and joy and laughter on her daughter’s face brought tears to Swara’s eyes. ‘I am sorry beta main aapko apke pappa se dur le gayi par uss waqt mujhe jo theek laga mene wahi kiya’ wiping her tears away and putting on a fake smile for the sake of her daughter she went ahead and joined her daughter and brother-in-law in their endless chatter.
Ragini who was noticing all this silently shook her head and thought to herself ‘Swara tumne meri aur Lakshya ji ki bahot help hai now it is my turn to repay you” with that decided even she joined the three of them smiling.