Sunday, 24 December 2017

Chapter 42 : I'll Love You Longer Than Forever - AR FF

Previously on...
Riddhima and Emma bonding.

Chapter 42

The next morning, Armaan and Riddhima helped Nate and Erica work on their presentation for the seminar. It was truly great and with a few suggestions here and there, everyone was confident that it would be superb.
They had a delicious breakfast at the bakery of the hotel, opting to eat cakes and pastires instead of the assorted buffet the hotel provided to all their residents.

"Still a sweet tooth, I see," Emma commented as she made her way into the bakery, looking at Armaan.
Armaan smiled. "Still eating chocolates after breakfast, I see," he replied cheekily.
Emma shrugged.
"You guys mind if I join you?" She asked after she had placed her order.
"No... not at all," Armaan replied, smirking at the tongue tied Erica and surprised Nate.
"You remember Nate from last night, don't you?" Arman asked.
"Of course," Emma smiled. "Good morning, Nate."
"Morning, Dr. Wright," Nate replied, fumbling.
Emma laughed. "Oh! None of the Dr. Wright crap, please. You're Armaan's friend. No formalities."
"Of course," Nate replied bashfully.
"Hello. I believe we haven't met. I'm Emma Wright," Emma said to Erica, holding her hand out.
"Hello, Dr. Wright. I'm Erica, pleased to meet you," she replied, taking it.
They ate breakfast (dessert, really), talking and laughing. Nate and Erica were outrageously surprised by the fact that Dr. Wright - It's Emma, Nate can hear her chiding him in his head - was so humble and down to earth. She was sitting there, right in front of them, enjoying her chocolate pudding, talking to Riddhima and laughing with her, as if it was the most natural thing in the world. Like she fit there. Maybe she did.
Post breakfast, they retired to their rooms and got ready for the first day of presentations.
"Basket! Basket!" Armaan called out.
"Ammy, can you please keep it down?" Nate asked, exasperated.
"Well, can you tie this tie?" Armaan replied.
"Of course, I can! What sort of question is that?" Nate said, indignant.
"Do it then," Armaan said, passing Nate his tie.
"I got it, baby!" Nate crowed as he started tying the tie.
Sometime later...
"Uhhh... Nate! Stop! You're choking me!" Armaan wheezed.
"Shit! Sorry, man!" Nate immediately removed his hands from Armaan's neck.
"I asked you to help me tie my tie, not kill me!" Armaan burst out. And then, started coughing loudly.
"Sorry! Sorry, man!" Nate replied, rushing to the kitchen and getting him a glass of water.
Armaan downed it one gulp.
"Well, is it done?" Armaan asked when he could talk again.
"Yeah, I think so," Nate replied, hesitantly.
Armaan moved to check it in the mirror.
"What the f**k, man! What the Hell is this?"
"It... it kind of looks like a tie to me," Nate replied as if nothing was out of order. Like Armaan's tie didn't look like a nest on his neck.
"Come here, you." Armaan pulled Nate beside him, in front of the mirror. Waving his hand at his tie and then Nate's, he asked, "You think this is normal?"
"Well... it is little crooked."
Armaan scoffed.
"Man, why didn't you tell me you didn't know how to tie it?"
"Well, I can tie it for myself. I figured, you know, how different can it be?"
"Apparently, very different, you douche."
"What is going on, you guys?" Riddhima asked as she came out of her room, tying her hair in a band.
"Nothing..." Armaan started as he turned around to look at her, but then, he forgot what he was going to say.
She was looking absolutely gorgeous. Western formals suited her. Amazingly. She was wearing a black, knee length, pencil skirt and a crisp, white shirt with a grey blazer.
"Stunning," Armaan whispered, but everyone in the room heard him. Riddhima blushed instantly, a deep red covering her cheeks.
"I'll take that as my cue to leave. Don't take too long, lovebirds," Nate called before he left the room.
Armaan stared deep into Riddhima's eyes. She blushed at the intensity of his gaze and looked away, breaking eye contact. Her eyes landed on his wry mess of a tie and she laughed.
"Yeh kya hua?" She asked, pointing at it.
"Sab us idiot Nate ne kiya hai. Tie baandhni nahi aati usse."
"Lao, main kar deti hu," she said, moving forward.
Armaan smiled brilliantly, eagerly moving so that she could help him.
The moment she was in touching distance, Armaan grabbed her by her waist and pulled her close to him. "Armaan!" Riddhima tried to scold him, though the impact was lost as her voice came out breathy, and swatted his chest.
He just smiled innocently. Riddhima shook her head and got to work.
All the while that Riddhima was working on his tie, Armaan was rubbing his hands across her waist and nuzzling her face, placing kisses on any part of her that he could reach.
"Armaan," she whispered.
"Mmm..." Armaan mumbled, too lost in the feel of her to think.
"Armaan! Bas saara time badmaashi! Shaanti se khade raho 2 minute!"
Armaan chuckled.
"Main soch raha hu roz tie pehenna start kardu," Armaan said conversationally.
"Achcha? Kyu?" Riddhima asked.
Armaan tightened his arms on her waist and pulled her even closer, raising an eyebrow questioningly (as if she didn't understand why).
She swatted his chest. "Armaan! Tumna kabhi nahi sudhroge."
He shook his head vehemently. "Kabhi nahi." Saying so, he pulled her into a kiss.
Erica who had just walked into the living room was shell shocked, to say the least. She did not know that Riddhima was dating somebody. And, she certainly didn't think she was Armaan's type.
She willed her legs to move, but sadly, they were rooted on the spot.
"Seriously, guys! You're not alone," Nate called as he walked back into the room.
They broke apart immediately.
Riddhima blushed heavily and hastily exited the room.
"Dude! Such impeccable timing! Always interrupting," Armaan grumbled.
"What do you mean? This is the first time I've walked in on you guys!" Nate cried.
"Someone always does!"
"Oh! Bet that's awesome!"
"Sadist. I'll purposely walk in on you and Lavender all the time now."
Nate punched his arm. "Let's get going."
"Yeah, lets."
The seminar started late in the morning at around 10 and lasted till 6 in the evening. All the panels were great and Armaan and Riddhima learned a lot. The day was filled with various presentations and Nate and Erica rocked, just like Armaan and Riddhima knew they would. They had lunch together, laughing and joking, having fun.
After the day was over, everyone retired to their rooms to rest for a while before planning any outing. They were all free for the rest of the evening and could do anything they wanted.
So, Armaan made plans to take Riddhima out on a date. There were lots of places that they could see in Paris and Armaan wanted to make the best use of their time there. He'd made a list of places and planned on cross places off everyday.
On top of the list was a boat tour of Paris from the River Sienne. Armaan smiled to himself. Perfect.
He quickly got to work. First, he went to the reception and with the help of the receptionist, arranged a pick up and drop. She helped him with a few contact details for the persons who he was required to connect to, to get on the boat. He called them and made arrangements for a night out.
Satisifed with everything, he made his way to the suite to inform Riddhima.
Riddhima, Nate and Erica were lounging in the living room, watching TV and sipping some wine.
"Hey, you lazy bones!" He crowed as he entered the room.
"Hey! You... super active person," Nate greeted. "Where have you been?"
"Just... around," Armaan replied cryptically.
"Around where?"
"The hotel."
"What were you doing around?"
"Jeez, man! What's with the 3rd degree? Even Riddhima isn't asking me as many questions as you are."
"That's because I'm asking these questions on behalf of Riddhima."
"Oh, yeah?"
"Yeah, man. Gotta look after my girl."
"I'll have you know, she's my girl. But, I appreciate you looking out for her, just the same. So, thank you," saying so, Armaan pulled Nate into a bro hug.
"You're very welcome."
"Now, if you'll excuse us, Riddhima and I are going out," he said. Riddhima, who had been watching their exchange with amusement perked up on hearing this.
"Where are we going?" She asked.
"Out," Armaan replied.
"Out, where?"
"That, baby girl, is a surprise."
"Armaan! Please, batao na. Hum kahaan jaa rahe hai?"
"Arre! Abhi bataya toh surprise hai. Tum chalo na."
Riddhima sighed but complied.
Armaan dragged her to her room. Then, he placed all the bags that he was carrying on her bed.
"Here, wear this," he ordered.
"Kya hai isme?" Riddhima asked, indicating the bags.
"Khud hi kholke dekhlo."
Riddhima smiled and moved to the bags to do just the same.
Inside was a cute top and a pair of skinny jeans, along with long heeled boots, a coat and some accessories.
"Waise toh mera bohot mann tha ki main tumhaare liye koi dress lau, but thand bohot hai na..." he explained.
Riddhima smiled fondly at his thoughfullness. He was such a sweetheart. Always trying to make her comfortable.
"Now come on! Get ready!"
Armaan left Riddhima to change and went to his room to get changed as well.
He pulled on a white tee and dar washed jeans, pairing it up with a leather jacket and some boots.
He set his hair and puffed his DavidOff on himself.
After he was ready, he knocked on Riddhima's door.
"Basket, ready?"
"Haan, Armaan. Bas 2 minute," Riddhima called from inside.
Armaan shook his head. Always with the 2 minutes.
"Main andar aa raha hu," he replied.
"Aa jao!"
That was a surprise. She was actually allowing him in? He was just joking when he said he was coming in, hoping that Riddhima would hurry up when she heard him. That was odd. Maybe, she was already dressed.
Sure enough, she was. She was sitting at the dressing table, applying mascara. She had left her hair down and applied minimal make up. She was wearing the heart pendant Armaan had given her, because she couldn't wear her kadaa. (She had already told him that for the duration of their time in Paris, she won't be wearing the kada or the payal as she was mostly going to dress in western clothes and those 2 accessories would look to odd with her clothes. So, she would wear his pendant instead.)
"Someone's looking sexy," he commented.
His words caused her to blush.
"You look pretty damn hot yourself," she replied once she was done blushing.
Armaan smirked at her and dropped a kiss to her head as he layed down on the bed waiting for her to finish.
After about 5 minutes, Riddhima came and layed beside him.
"Hey, you," she said.
Armaan turned to face her. His hands went to her forehead, mussing with her hair as he placed a wayward strand of hair that was on forehead behind her ear.
He lowered his head to hers and gave her a smacking, hard kiss.
"Hey," he replied, pulling her into his arms.
"Chale?" she asked him after they had been laying like that for a few minutes.
"Haan, bas 5 minute."
"Armaan?" She asked.
"Hum kahaan jaa rahe hai?"
"Woh toh main tumhe nahi bata sakta. Sorry."
"Lekin mujhe jaanna hai!"
"Tumne sunaa nahi hai kya? Intezaar ka phal meetha hota hai."
"Mujhse nahi hota koi intezaar. Chalo abhi!" She demanded, extracting herself from his arms. She got up from the bed and pulled him up as well.
"Chalo ab!" She commanded, taking his hands in hers and pulling him out the door.
"Don't wait up!" She called to Nate.
Armaan shook his head.
As promised, a car was waiting for them at the hotel entrance when they got there.
Armaan and Riddhima cuddled close to each other throughout the ride, taking in the city. It was absolutely beautiful.
The driver dropped them off near the River Sienne.
They had a quiet dinner in one of the bistros nearby. They fed each other, whispering in the dark, exchanging kisses. It was truly magical.
"I love you," Riddhima told Armaan as they walked on the sidewalk to wherever Armaan was taking them.
"I love you, too," he replied, tightening his arms around her waist as he pulled her closer and placing a soft kiss on her lips.
"Ab hum kahaan jaa rahe hai?" She asked.
"Phir wahi sawaal. Kaha na baba, surprise hai!"
"Okay, fine. Mat batao."
"Basket! Gussa kyu ho rahi ho? Hum bas 10 minute mein pohonch jaayenge. Please na!"
Riddhima sighed but nodded. "Theek hai. Chalo."
They were walking along the banks of the Sienne. A lone musician was playing by the bank. Armaan smiled and pulled Riddhima there.
He took her in arms and held her close, dancing to the soft music that was emanating from the musician's guitar.
Riddhima smiled and pulled herself closer, resting her head against Armaan's chest, listening to the steady beat of his heart and breathing in his scent. He smelt heavenly.
"This is perfect," she whispered.
"You're perfect," Armaan replied.
"Armaan!" She blushed.
He pulled her back and looked deeply into her eyes.
"I love you," he said, his voice thick with emotion.
"I love you, too," she replied, her eyes betraying her as a tear slipped out of her eyes, overwhelmed by the love and intensity of the situation.
"Hey!" He whispered, quickly wiping the tear with his thumb.
"Kya hua?"
"Kuch nahi."
"I swear. Kuch nahi. I just... I love you."
"I love you, too."
Armaan smiled and kissed her forehead, then her cheeks and finally her lips.
A soft, sweet kiss conveying his love for her. They broke apart as they heard the click of a camera.
He pulled back and removed a twenty, handing it to the musician. "You make beautiful music, man," Armaan commented.
"Thank you. You make a beautiful couple," the guitarist replied.
"Thank you," Riddhima replied.
They then walked over to the photographer who was standing just a few feet away.
"I'm sorry. I hope you don't mind. But, you look beautiful together. I couldn't not click a picture," the photographer said.
"Of course. Can we have a look?" Riddhima asked.
The man showed them his camera.
It had a few pictures of them.
The first one was when they had just started dancing, both of them wrapped in each other's arms, Riddhima's head on Armaan's chest and Armaan's chin resting on her head.
In the second one, they were staring into each other's eyes, blissfully unaware of the world around them.
In the third one, Armaan was kissing Riddhima's forehead.
And, the fourth one was the one in which they were kissing.
"They're absolutely gorgeous. Can you give us copies of them?" Armaan asked.
"How soon can you make them?"
"It would take me atleast an hour," the photographer commented.
"Perfect. We'll be here in an hour to collect them."
"Fast delivery will cost extra, sir."
"Money is not an issue. Just have them ready in the next hour."
"Of course."
"Thank you."
After talking to the photographer, Armaan pulled Riddhima away.
They made their way to the port where several boats and gandolas were docked.
"Reservation for Mallik," Armaan announced to the concierge.
"Yes, of course. One private gondola ride," the concierge replied, looking into her diary.
Armaan nodded.
"This way, sir," she replied, gesturing towards the empty gondola off the bank.
Armaan smiled his thanks and pulled Riddhima to the boat.
He stepped in first and gave Riddhima his hand, grabbing her by the waist as she entered to hold her against him as the gandola rocked.
"Armaan! This is so amazing!" Riddhima whispered as they sat in the boat. Armaan smiled and kissed her head.
They were sitting in the boat, with Riddhima's back against Armaan's chest as he wrapped her up in his arms. The ride was for an hour, along the banks of the river, where they could see the entire city from.
"Here," Armaan said, placing a chocolate in front of her.
She took a bite of it and moaned. "This is delicious."
Armaan took a bite of the same chocolate and replied. "So delicious."
Riddhima blushed.
"Armaan, we have to take them home."
"Of course."
They sat wrapped up in each other's arms, whispering and talking, admiring the beautiful city and Riddhima clicking loads of pictures for the remainder of the ride.
When the rower reached the Eiffel, he stopped the boat.
"This, this is Paris at its finest. Enjoy the view," he smiled at the beautiful couple.
"Thank you," Riddhima told Armaan.
"What for?"
"For this beautiful night. It's been magical."
Armaan shook his head.
"Thank you," he replied, "For this beautiful life. It's going to be magical."
"I love you."
"I love you, too."
There, in the middle of the Sienne, with the Eiffel Tower in the background, Riddhima kissed Armaan to show him just how much she loved him.

Prags xoxox

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