Hello everyone! First of all, sincere apologies for being late with this episode, I have so much going on, that it’s getting harder to make time to write. I hope you all have been enjoying the story, for that’s what ultimately matters. Also, thank you for all the love and affection. Happy reading!!
Twinj: My Lifeline: Episode 62
A quick recap: Kunj has to present himself at the court for the hearing of Alisha’s case, learning of which Usha panics and ends up revealing her hand in Alisha’s accident to Twinkle, and then accidentally to Kunj as well along with her foul means to get Leela to agree for their wedding, and he storms out angrily, leaving them desolate.
“Ma, I just spoke to Kunj. He’s at the studio, working on some urgent stuff that came up, which was why he wasn’t receiving any of our calls, but don’t you worry, he sounded much better than he was when he left, he’ll be back soon.” Twinkle lied blatantly, her heart thudding wildly at the possibility of getting caught. Of course she hadn’t heard from Kunj, he hadn’t replied to her messages either, and fear had been gripping her soul. Although it stung her heart to see Usha’s grief, she couldn’t bring herself to convince her beyond a single utterance of ‘It wasn’t your fault, Ma!’ It had been near midnight when she had been able to put away her own troubling thoughts and take things under her control, and so she had lied. She smiled with a heavy heart when she saw Usha look at her hopefully, and it gave her the strength to continue her pretence until she had sent both Usha and Manohar to their room. She broke into tears the moment she heard their door slam shut, ensuring she didn’t sob too loud, feeling too weighed down to even stand up, let alone go out by herself at that hour to look for Kunj. In her delirious state, Usha had regretted all that she had done, earning pity for herself in Twinkle’s view, but that didn’t make Twinkle feel any better about her own self or about Alisha’s accident. She still felt suffocated by the fact, but she knew she couldn’t let Kunj be out there, suffering all alone anymore. She stood up and wiped away her tears, sucking in a deep, determined breath before dialling a number on her phone.
Kunj banged his fist on the table in front of him, Usha’s words echoing in his head yet again. He found himself in a fix, he didn’t know what he had to be more concerned with, that his mother, the one person he was the most grateful to for all that he had become, for being his pillar of support over the years as he built a career of his own – one that he could present proudly to the world, had harmed the woman he was once in love with, at a point in the past when Alisha was almost the epicentre of his life, or that she had used foul means to get Twinkle married to him. He had assumed he would always be grateful to Usha for the latter, but as it turned out, it had become a heavy burden on his heart, something that he could not tolerate anymore. He felt betrayed and guilty at the same time, confusing him to a point beyond which he could no longer think straight. The pain in his mind seemed to begin taking a physical blow on him when he glanced at his phone and saw the endless missed calls from Usha, Manohar and Twinkle. He felt torn between wanting to vent out all that had been annoying him, and keeping things to himself and battling it all alone. He desperately wished he could speak to Twinkle or Usha, but the current circumstances made both seem impossible, and shut his eyes, resting his head on the cool table, hoping all this was just a nightmare that would be over when he would open his eyes next.
“Twinkle, did you have to come all the way by yourself at this hour?” Kunj asked in a defeated tone when he heard a low clinking of keys in the door followed by the squeaking noise of it being pushed open. He turned around in his chair almost immediately, recognising someone else’s presence, and Yuvi smiled warmly at him. “I’m sorry.. she always has the keys, so I assumed..” Kunj began in his defence, but stopped when he heard Yuvi chuckle. “She’ll be here any moment. She’s just outside, answering your mother’s call, assuring her that you’re fine, and that she’s with you. We kinda hoped she wouldn’t find out Twinkle had sneaked out, but..” Yuvi explained as he nervously glanced around the room, sighing when he realised he had nothing else to say. He looked at Kunj give him an almost non-existent nod before leaning to see if Twinkle was actually out there. He felt his heart leap when he spotted her and she seemed to be having a hard time convincing Usha, something that he decided he would let her deal with by herself for the time being. When he returned his eyes to Yuvi, he found the latter watching him carefully, evidently trying to gauge his expressions. “Twinkle hasn’t told me what transpired between the two of you.” Yuvi admitted, earning a surprised look from Kunj, and added, “I know I hold no rights to know either, but I do have something to say. To you, Kunj. No matter what the problem is, always remember that the two of you are on the same side, fighting as one unit, and not against each other. I’ve seen Twinkle stay absolutely quiet on the drive here, something that has never happened before, which obviously means this must be huge, but I do know that for you, she’ll always be prepared to take on the whole world. I hope to see the two of you chattering cheerfully when I see you next.” Kunj looked away from Yuvi, not willing to respond to any of that, tears beginning to prick his eyes as he recalled bringing Twinkle to that very office for the first time months ago, after which they had spent hours together there, all the memories flashing before his eyes rapidly. He was glad Yuvi didn’t speak further, he didn’t want to end up crying before him of all people.
Yuvi watched curiously as Twinkle stood quietly in front of Kunj minutes later, neither of them even looking at each other, but also knew he had better leave and let them find their way out by themselves. “I’ll get going now, Twinkle.” He informed in a whisper, and she smiled her best at him, mouthing a ‘Thank you!’ that he acknowledged with a quick nod and shut the door as he left, restoring the pin drop silence in the room. “That, isn’t helping to solve the problem, Twinkle!” Kunj said, annoyance evident in his voice, as he watched her sit quietly by herself on the chair across from his, staring into the oblivion. “Your way isn’t helping either, Kunj.” She pointed out, looking at him with an indecipherable expression. “Are you serious? You’re making this a ‘your way vs. mine’ issue?” He hit back, shocking her. She knew that he too was well aware that wasn’t the case. She inhaled deeply, reminding herself that this was way harder on him than her, and spoke slowly, “You know I’m not, Kunj! All I want is that you and Ma make peace with the fact that the deed is done, and there’s nothing either of you can change now. I agree that a number of apologies have to be said, there are multiple regrets, but we’ve all learnt our lessons, and..” She stopped when she heard him let out an emotionless laugh. “Really? That is all that has to be done? Such an easy task!” He commented sarcastically, testing the limits of her tolerance. She knew he was hurt, but he needed to understand that she was trying her best too. “Kunj, please listen to me! I know, I realise all this could be impossible to deal with, but I’m here by your side, desperately hoping to make it better for you, even if it’s just a little bit!” She explained, walking over to him and putting her hand on his shoulder and giving it an assuring squeeze. “Please calm down!” She whispered, leaning towards him and placing her free hand right over his heart. He looked up at her, letting the first tear flow down his cheek, giving into her soothing voice, but flinched when he raised his eyes and they met hers, for it reminded him that their marriage was forced upon her too.
“Kunj?” Twinkle called out hesitantly when he had managed to bring his emotions back under her control, and he withdrew from her as if on cue. She sighed, preparing herself to try again, but he blurted out, “I don’t think you should suffer because of me anymore. I know you’ve been tested over and over, but not this time. I just need some time to myself and will be back on my feet soon. You should get back home. I’ll drop you.” She gasped realising his reference, and straightened, watching his now blurred image because of her welled up eyes. “I..” She began but her mind gave up before she could come up with anything else to say. He stood up abruptly, bumping into her and both of them fell back into his chair, her warmly engulfed in his arms, their eyes jumping at the opportunity to speak what their minds wouldn’t let them given the current circumstances. He absentmindedly ran his hand on her cheek, making her shiver at the contact of his cold fingers when they reached her neck, jerking him back to reality. “Kunj, we’ll make all this better, I promise!” She literally pleaded him not to let go by hugging him tight, and had he listened to his heart, he would have let her take over and dealt with it gracefully with her help, but his mind was too clouded with guilt to do so. “Nothing can get better beyond this!” He stated, and she pulled back, looking at him, realising that had she been in his place, she would have been worse, but she also knew that she would have been equally bent upon being all alone, but he wouldn’t leave her side, and neither would she. “Let’s go home.” She said simply, letting go of him, but he tightened his grip just before she stood up. “I’m sorry you had to deal with so much. All my fault!” He spoke in a hushed voice, and that had been it for her. Her tolerance had given up, she could no longer have him blaming himself for everything. “That’s enough, Kunj! You need to stop pulling the entire burden over yourself when there was absolutely nothing you could have done to stop it from happening!” She snapped, taking him aback. “You don’t understand how this feels, Twinkle!” He shot back, making her argue, “Oh really? I don’t? I suppose that is why I’ve been so patient, and allowing to let you vent all your pent up anger! I understand that you’re in pain, Kunj, but I can’t let you carry on like this anymore! You’ll have to accept that only and only Usha Ma could have changed the way things turned out!” He shut his eyes, turning away from her, realising that she was right – her outburst had cleared things out for him, cursing himself for being unacceptably rude to her and said, or rather whispered, “You’re right.” He turned around when she didn’t respond, only to figure out that she had already left.
That’s it for now, guys. I know this episode has several arguable points, and I would love to hear your opinions on them too. I hope you all will agree that Kunj is at that point in life, where he can’t divulge his thoughts, his fears, his pains to anyone else, even if he himself wants to. Let’s see where this will take them. Lots of love!