Sunday, 25 February 2018

End of the DMG story (AR os)

DMG - The Last Chapter

A light breeze caressed Riddhima, gently scattering her hair all over her face. With an impatient movement of the hand, she brushed them aside and turned her attention back to the diary cradled in her lap.  Over the last 10 months, this diary had been privy to her innermost thoughts and was her only friend who understood her.  She was always surrounded by overprotective family members and friends, but only her diary knew how hard it was for her to put up with the facade of being happy.  This diary also knew how her heart silently screamed that she would rather be left alone.  However she put up with everything, just to make them feel satisfied that they were doing their bit to keep her happy.

Letting out a soft sigh, Riddhima started thinking about her life and the various twists and turns it took in the last few months.  As she sat reflecting, the pages of her diary flicked over and that rustling sound caused her to look down.  In that process, her eyes fell on a page that truly summed up what happened in her life over the last 10 months, after she got married to Sid Modi.

October 25:


"The vagaries of life can be very strange.  At times it gives you all the happiness in the world and at the very next instant, it snatches away everything in such a cruel manner that you are simply left clutching at nothing and this is exactly what happened to me.  Life was never more perfect for me a year and a half back.  I had a loving family, a promising career and most importantly the love of my life Armaan with me.  I used to feel blessed that life gave everything I could ever wish for, but one fine day, on the day of my engagement, it decided to take everything away.

That day I was not only grievously injured in the shootout, but more than that my fate decided to take me away from Armaan.  Yes it did give me a chance again to meet him again in Panchgani, but what was the result of this blurry encounter? Simply nothing!  Instead, it led to a hasty marriage, followed by some of the most painful and tough moments of my life.  However, I have no one but myself to blame for it.  Yes, I was forced to take this step because of various circumstances, but this was not the only thing I could have done.  There were certainly other ways to deal with the situation, but at that time my brain was simply not working and I let my love for my family prevail over what my heart said.  Right now, I wish that marriage never happened as all Sid and I got was a lot of hurt plus the trauma of living a life we had never wanted to live.

Sid has always been a very good guy, but sadly whenever he was with me, the goodness of his heart got replaced by a bitterness that simply refused to go.  Again I would say that I am to blame for this as my hasty decision to get married destroyed his peace of mind too.  In fact, I had tested his patience too far.  However, we did try to work on this relationship, but deep inside both of us knew that I could never be the wife he would like to have.  I could never give myself to him, as I already belonged to someone whose name was engraved in my heart for eternity.  Not surprisingly, our marriage fell apart in three months, which in a way came as a big relief for both as we never wanted to be in that relationship in the first place.

After a speedy divorce, Sid took off to Canada to spend some days with his cousin Sameer.  But the truth is that he wanted to spend some time alone with himself.  I am happy to say that life had good things in store for him as he accidentally met Tamanna there.  He always believed that she got married to Aniket, but reality was that she could never marry him as her heart belonged to Sid.  Being the good guy he was, Aniket helped her settle down in Canada, as she wanted to pursue higher education in the field of medical science.  Much as she wanted to return to Sid, she knew that was not possible as the news of his getting married reached her.  So she decided to stay on till her studies got over.  But when they met again, they hit it off instantly and she proved to be a great source of support for him during those difficult days and soon enough it rekindled the love they had for each other.

Love has been very kind to them by giving them a second chance, but sadly very few people have the good fortune to find their love again.  However, I am happy that at least one of us got another chance at love.  As for me, I have decided to live with Armaan's memories and also give another chance to my career, which has been neglected by me for a long time.

Fool I was to have thought that getting married to someone other than Armaan would work.   In this process I not only wrecked my already dysfunctional life, but also did great injustice to Armaan and our love.  That won't happen again as I have decided to live with his memories till my last breath.  No one, not even my family can now blackmail me to live a life I don't want to.  I made that mistake before and won't be a fool to repeat that.  My heart says I will meet him again, but don't know when.  Until then I can at least keep his memories fresh in my heart.  Indeed, I will gladly spend my whole life waiting for him."

Riddhima closed her diary and looked around her.  She was at the same place where Armaan brought her once for Valentines Day more than two years back.  It was on this day that the world got to know about their love.  She closed her eyes, trying to feel him and the sense of completeness that surrounded her whenever he was with her as a lone tear trickled down her cheek.  However, this reverie was short lived as a firm object suddenly hit her from behind, thus rousing Riddhima from her dreamy state.  Turning around, she saw many pairs of innocent eyes staring at her timidly.  Yes, she was surrounded by a group of kids who were apparently playing with the basketball that just hit her.

"Sorry", one of them mumbled with his head down.  She could clearly see that they were half expecting her to shout at them.  Their innocent expressions simply melted her heart, but she just decided to show some mock anger and enjoy a longer interaction with them.

"So, who hit me with this ball?"

"Ummm, actually our friend was teaching us how to play," said one of them, "and when he tried to pass the ball to someone, it just bounced off and hit you.  I am sorry!"

"So the real culprit is hiding somewhere!  Please tell him that I want to talk to him, otherwise you won't get your ball back".

"I don't think he is going to meet you."

"Why?" asked Riddhima.

"Well, he is scared of you!" With that all of them started giggling.

"But I would like to talk to him anyways," said Riddhima trying to stifle her laughter.  She wanted to assure the scared kid that it was fine and if needed, she could help him teach his friends how to play basketball.

"Oh, he is right here, but hiding behind that tree", one of them said in a conspiratory whisper.

Turning around, Riddhima could make out a crouched figure behind a tree, who was desperately trying not to be seen.  Wanting to have some fun, she just made her way to that tree.  She was imagining him to be someone with a cute dimply smile and a pair of naughty eyes that would.........her rambling thoughts suddenly stopped as she found herself staring into a pair of blue eyes that she could recognize anywhere in the world.

"Armaan", these words escaped her lips in a mere whisper as she couldn't move, couldn't talk or even breathe.

There he was, the love of her life standing in front of her, holding his ears and an apologetic smile playing on his lips.  This was the person she had been dying to see since the past year and half.  There were so many things she wanted to say, so many questions she wanted ask, but now she was stuck in a time warp and she could sense nothing but his intent gaze on her.

"I know when girls see me, they tend to forget everything, but I guess you have had a long look, Basket......."

Hearing him call her Basket again after such a long time was too much for her to handle and it broke the dam of tears that were threatening to wash her away.  She broke into loud sobs that racked her whole body and she just couldn't stop shivering.  Unable to see her in that condition, Armaan collected her in his arms and tried soothing her, but every time he spoke, fresh tears poured out again.  He was looking at her helplessly, trying to think of a way to quieten her, when he felt himself being roughly pushed away.  He looked at her, only to see a pair of accusatory eyes glowering at him.

"Why? Why did you do this to me Armaan?"

This time it was Armaan's turn to stand rooted at the spot.  "How do I make her understand?" he wondered.  However, Riddhima was not ready to give him any liberties, as she wanted her answers and she literally shook him out of his thoughts.

"You said you will always be with me, right? So what happened to all the promises we made about never leaving each others side? You forgot everything so conveniently, huh.  I know you wanted to protect me after you got to know about your condition, but that didn't give you the right to decide what's good for us.  If I was in that condition, would you have left me? Why are you silent now? Answer me!!!!!!!"

As she was hurling accusations at him, Armaan gently took her in his arms again.  They remained like this for several minutes with Riddhima mumbling away incoherently, her face buried in his chest.  She was not aware of it, but she simply clung to him as if her life depended on it.  The crowd of young onlookers had melted away long back and right now it was only them at that secluded spot.  However, she couldn't help but feel secure in the strong pair of arms that held her protectively, shielding her from all worries.

Realizing that she was still shocked and confused about his sudden appearance, Armaan decided to explain everything to her.  Taking her to a seat, he made her drink a little water and after making sure she was comfortable, Armaan started with his side of the story.

"You know Basket, never had I thought that life will play such cruel games with us and our love.  For me everything was so perfect that I was simply overwhelmed when it handed out its verdict that you and I can't be together.  I had to take a decision as I couldn't be selfish and keep you with me, even as my condition deteriorated."

He paused to take a look at her.  In spite of her initial shock, he could make out that she was listening to him and he decided to continue.

"I had to take myself away from you, as I knew you would never leave my side if you got to know the truth.  There was no way I could let you sacrifice the happiness you deserve for an invalid that I was supposed to become.  However, fate brought us face to face again in Panchgani, something I wasn't prepared for.  You might not be able to gauge pain I felt as I walked away from you, but at that moment I felt it was necessary for you to have a good life.  I wanted you to start living again with someone who would give you the best in the world, everything that you deserve.  When I later heard that you decided to get married, I was happy that you finally listened to the voice of reason and decided to give love another chance.  But I must admit that at one point I almost barged into the wedding venue to stop you from getting married, though I somehow controlled myself thinking it was in your best interest.

The day you got married, I left for Chicago where Mom was.  She had come across a medical centre that treats cases like mine.  I had lost all hope of recovery, but I couldn't refuse her.  However, we were in for a shock when we were told that there was a 5% chance of recovery.   I didn't even care as I lost you, but I had to do it for my parents who had started to hope again.  The treatment started in two days and in a month we got to know that I was responding well.  After 6 months, they told me that I could resume a normal life again.  Believe me Riddhima, at that moment I felt like killing myself for letting you go.  However, I knew that it was all over for us, so I decided to continue with life there, with your memories intact in my heart.

My work once took me to Canada, where I bumped into an Indian guy.  We both turned to apologize, when I saw him staring at me with a strange expression.  I was about to ask him why, when he blurted out my name.  Looking at my confused state, he took me aside and explained how he knew me.  By now you must have guessed that this person was none other than Sid Modi.  We started talking and he told me everything about you, about himself and the circumstances that got you married and later divorced.  I also told him about myself, which shocked him beyond words.  In the end he simply said, "Please go back to Riddhima, she needs you."

I couldn't stop myself and just made a mad dash for India and here I am.  It's all up to you whether you want to punish me or forgive me, but I will never forgive myself for the pain I caused you.   Right now, I just want to let you know that I will love you forever and never will I let a tear touch you again.  I don't know where I stand in your life right now, but I assure you that I will always be there, whether you need me or not."

Saying this he gently wiped her tears that had started flowing freely after his last few words.
Riddhima simply didn't know how to react, there was so much she wanted to say, but right now words were failing her.  She raised her helpless eyes towards him and Armaan just pulled her into his arms where she broke out into loud sobs all over again.  However, this time they weren't tears of grief, but all her pent up feelings, her anger, her helplessness and her frustration flowing out of her.  Just like she always dreamed of, she finally found her redemption in his arms.  A strange feeling of calm enveloped her and it transported her to a world of pure bliss.

A happy smile playing on her lips, something that eluded her for the last one and half years, Riddhima looked up at Armaan, her eyes shining with love and hope for the future.  Slowly their lips met in a sweet kiss that simply took their breath away, awakening all dormant feelings that had remained buried inside them for a long time.  It soon turned into a passionate kiss that spoke volumes about how much they craved for each other and how much they missed being together.

Armaan and Riddhima sat there for a long time, not talking much, but enjoying the feeling of being together again.  They didn't need words to convey how happy they were.

As darkness fell, Armaan linked his fingers with hers and asked, "Shall we go?"

Nodding happily Riddhima allowed him to take her wherever he wanted as she knew their love had finally found its destination.  Everything ceased to matter anymore, as long as he was with her.


Richa

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