Monday, 3 September 2018

part 7 : Frozen (AR mini ff)

"Diiiiiii, where are we going? And what exactly are we here for? I mean we aren't even shopping" asked a very confused Riddhima. She thought Anjali and Muskaan have been behaving a little weird since last evening. Ever since they got back home, they have been giving her very fishy looks. And not to rule out the fact that how come they came together last night. Lost in her thoughts she kept following them until Anjali spoke "Arrey yaar!!! We are here for shopping only, just looking out for this particular shop I saw the other day". Still not satisfied, Riddhima nodded her head and continued walking. While passing a cafe, suddenly something caught her ears and she stopped short in her track, almost frozen. She couldn't believe what she was hearing. "NO NO NO...this can't be true" she said to herself and on an instant turned towards the cafe and opened the door. What she saw inside left her numb completely.

On the other hand, Armaan stopped singing one of Riddhima's favorite songs as soon as he felt her presence. He looked towards the door of the cafe and felt his heart stop beating. There she was, standing right infront of him. It had been two weeks since he hasn't seen her and it already felt like eons. They looked into each other eyes and everything else faded away. It was just the two of them and nothing else. All they wanted to be in each other's arms and kiss the pain away but something was stopping her and he read it in her eyes. Tears formed in their eyes but Armaan held onto them for the meanwhile and picking up his guitar, he started playing it.

She turned around trying to get hold of her emotions and started walking away but stopped in her tracks hearing his spellbounding voice.....

Aye khuda mujhko bataa tu rehta kahan, kya tera pataa
Hum to yahan pe musafir hain, jo doondhe apni manzil ka pataa
Aye khuda mujhko bataa tu rehta kahan, kya tera pataa
Hum to yahan pe musafir hain, jo doondhe apni manzil ka pataa

Everybody stared at him as he sang whereas Riddhima just stood frozen with her back facing him.

Yaada teri yaada aati hai, jaan meri jaan jaati hai
Tanhaion mein rehta hoon, khud se hi aksar ye kehta hoon
Kyun tune dil toda, kyun tune yun choda
Kyun tera abh bhi rahe dil ko intezaar
Kyun chali aati hai, kyun tadpaati hai
Kyun hoon abh bhi main yun bekaraar

Anjali, Muskaan and Rahul looked towards Riddhima, who was standing rooted facing the door. Riddhima on the other hand was trying her best not to break down hearing his words. How true they were, she thought. Armaan continued, his words reflecting his feelings and his voice getting deeper emotionally....

Aye khuda mujhko bataa tu rehta kahan, kya tera pataa
Hum to yahan pe musafir hain, jo doondhe apni manzil ka pataa

Finally she turned, not being able to stand against the intensity of his feelings. He pointed towards her while singing about his 'manzil'. He started walking towards her, singing with deeper emotions, looking directly into her eyes and she couldn't take her eyes off him either.

Faasle hain magar phir bhi tu door nahin
Maanke hum to hai, par tu majboor nahin
Har lamha mujhko ye tadpati hai, jaan meri jaan jaati hai
Tanhaion mein rehta hoon, khud se hi aksar ye kehta hoon

He moved around her in circles and then kept the guitar away, singing without any music. She felt weaker by the minute and his words were piercing her heart badly. She made a move to go but he held her wrist firmly.

Kyun tune dil toda, kyun tune yun choda
Kyun tera abh bhi rahe dil ko intezaar
Kyun chali aati hai, kyun tadpaati hai
Kyun hoon abh bhi main yun bekaraar

He came closer and she bowed her head, closing her eyes feeling his breath on her face. He knew she was giving in. Then he lifted her face with his finger and she opened her eyes. His eyes reflecting the same questions as his words.

Aye khuda mujhko bataa tu rehta kahan, kya tera pataa
Hum to yahan pe musafir hain, doondhe apni manzil ka pataa

He sang the last part slowly and softly, close to whispers. Upon finishing, he moved back a few steps and opened his arms for her. Not being able to stop herself anymore and control her feelings, she moved into his arms and broke down to release all the pain.

He embraced her back tightly, securely, to never let go. Tears falling from his eyes too. Both, crying to gain relief in each other's embrace. He couldn't believe she was here, in his arms, so close to him. While on the other hand, Riddhima felt alive again. She knew she belonged WITH him, she belonged TO him and now no matter what, she can't live without him anymore.

Finally, he looked up to compose himself and took a deep breath before parting. Gently, he parted from her and looked into her eyes, which were red due to all the crying. He cupped her face and cleared all the tears. Moving forward, he placed a kiss on her forehead. "I love you" he whispered against her forehead and she closed her eyes to save the feeling in her heart forever. "I love you more" she replied with closed eyes. He smiled, deeper than he had in a long long time.

The crowd around finally broke into thunderous applauds. Many of them had tears in their eyes. All were awed to see such a love story. They were all mesmerized and touched by Armaan's voice and Riddhima's tears.

Anjali, Muskaan and Rahul were in tears too. Never had they realized the depth of their love for each other. They were speechless with the whole scene infront of them. Anjali was really happy for her little sister that she got somebody in her life who loves her with his true heart. She had witnessed Armaan's love yesterday only but what she saw today was spellbounding. And what surprised her more were Riddhima's feelings and emotions, she never realized they were so deep. Also, she was amazed to see how strong her sister is. She had kept all these feelings inside her for two weeks, without uttering a word. But then she realized that despite everything, Riddhima agreed for this marriage, it shows how much she loves her parents.

Armaan and Riddhima were jolted out of their dreamland with the sudden sound of applaud. That's when they noticed the crowd around them and were a bit embarrassed for the PDA. Riddhima tried to move away from Armaan but he pulled her closer and wrapped his one arm around her waist. She looked at him with wide eyes and he gave her a naughty smile. Instead of getting irritated, it warmed her heart to look at his cheeky antics to keep her close to him. She can understand what he would have gone through in the last two weeks since she went through the same.

"Ok guys....Enough of your romance!!! We better take a seat now" said Anjali to break the emotional atmosphere. Riddhima suddenly moved away from Armaan seeing Anjali. "W-wo..di..w-wo..uu-uh, this is A-Armaan. W-wo..." fumbled Riddhima, not knowing what exactly to tell her elder sister. "Bas need to stammer like that. I am not going to eat you. Now let's sit and talk. Public entertainment kafi ho gaya, don't you guys think" replied Anjali.

Finally all of them settled at one of the corners of the cafe. After placing the order, Riddhima held Anjali hand and said "I am sorry di. I know I should have told you everything from the start but I just couldn't bring myself to tell you the truth. I was so shocked myself that I just wasn't thinking straight. And I am also sorry that I didn't tell you about Armaan earlier. I always used to think that I will tell you about us once you meet Armaan but that didn't happen and I....." "And you never felt it important to tell me" Anjali completed her words before Riddhima could continue. "You know Ridz, I understand what you must have gone through on discovering the truth and I have no complaints from you on that issue but you hid such a big thing from me for two years. It's hard to believe that and if I have to be honest with you, I would say that I am genuinely hurt this time" she added further. Riddhima looked down feeling terribly guilty and mumbled "I am sorry".

Everybody else was quiet thinking that the two sisters needed their space and should resolve their matters on their own. Anjali looked at her and knew what Riddhima just said was true, albeit her approach was wrong but her intensions weren't, so she decided to let her off the hook for this once as she has gone through a lot lately and she doesn't want to make her sister sad anymore, so said "I'll forgive you if only you promise not to hide anything from me from now on". Riddhima looked up at her sister and hugged her at once. She didn't say anything anymore but Anjali understood everything without any words. She hugged her back and added "now don't you dare cry anymore. You have flooded this cafe already" "Diiiiiiiii" was all Riddhima could say as everybody started laughing.

"Ok guys, time out!!! interrupted Armaan and turning towards Anjali, holding Riddhima's hand that was kept on table, he said "madam to maan gayi hai ab but we still have a bigger task at hand". Everybody looked at him confused except Anjali, who seem to have been thinking the same but was prepared nonetheless "don't worry. We are all in for it together and I am sure we all will convince mum dad too". Riddhima stiffened at the mention of her parents and it struck her hard that she has agreed to marry Sid. Armaan felt her hand going cold and turned towards her. He immediately wrapped his one arm around her shoulder and pulled her closer on seeing her troubled look. "Don't worry sweetheart. I will speak to your parents tomorrow. I am sure they will understand aur ab to Anjali bhi humare saath hai. So, please don't get stressed" he said holding her tight. She looked into his eyes and saw the determination with which he said that, she relaxed a bit in his embrace knowing he wouldn't let anything go wrong.

"Ya Ridzy, I am there with you guys. I am sure mum dad will agree for it once they know everything. Tension mat le tu...Hum sab hai na" said Anjali when she realized what Riddhima must be thinking. Riddhima nodded positively. "Ok guys, I think we all should make a move now. We have to tell everything to Atul also" Anjali said once everyone was relaxed. "Oh ya and I bet jij is the best person to talk to uncle aunty" said Muskaan. "Nahi Muskaan, I will speak to them myself" Armaan said. Ridhhima pressed his hand to show how proud she feels to have him in her life and rest all just smiled at their love. 

Hence, they all went to Anjali's and Atul's home. Surprisingly for everybody, Atul wasn't shocked to hear about Riddhima and Armaan. Just like Anjali, he had guessed that Riddhima wasn't happy with the whole marriage thing and there was something wrong with her. So, to get to the bottom of everything he tried to know the whole story behind it and luckily one of his friends worked in Creative Advertising. From there he learnt about Armaan and Riddhima, a while ago. He was waiting for Anjali to get back home and tell her everything but found out that his wife was a step ahead. He was really happy for both of them.

Everybody was sitting and having fun pulling each other's leg when suddenly Muskaan said "Ridz, I don't understand one thing, tune Armaan ko sab kuch kyu nahi bataya pehle hi". Armaan's expressions change immediately on hearing this and that's when Muskaan realized that she has touched a sore nerve. Everybody went quiet; Armaan got up and went to another room, which had a washroom, on the pretext of using it. Riddhima knew this would have happened sometime or the other. She thought it's better to talk things out with him rather than dodging the topic. Hence, she followed Armaan.

Outside, everybody gave murderous looks to Muskaan and she mumbled guiltily "I am sorry guys. I didn't mean to say that. It just came out unintentionally".

Inside, Riddhima waited for Armaan to come out of washroom. Armaan came out and saw Riddhima waiting for him. He knew she would follow him and he also wanted a closure for this issue, once and for all. Unable to keep a check on his emotions, he blasted on Riddhima "How could you leave me like that Riddhima? You didn't even feel it important to come and talk to me once? Mere bare main ek baar bhi nahi socha tumne? Bas ek letter chod diya likhkar that you are leaving. Ek baar to sach bataya hota mujhe, I would have taken all your problems on me. Main aakar tumare mum dad se baat karta humare bare mein but nahi tum to itni smart hona ki sab kuch khud hi decide karliya bina ye soche samjhe ki mere kya hoga tumare bina. How could you be so selfish Riddhima?"

Riddhima was taken aback but looked at the pain in his eyes and lowered her's out of guilt, thinking how could she make him suffer so much? He held her shoulders tightly, pulled her towards him with a jerk and whispered with visible pain "Didn't you trust me even a bit?" His question broke her heart and it was then she realized the damage she had done. "I-I am s-sorry Armaan" was all she could say before breaking down in his arms and kept repeating the same thing over and over again.

"Why Riddhima?" he whispered while holding her tightly. "I-I didn't want to l-let mum dad down, s-specially when they s-sounded so excited a-about this p-proposal and then I-I got to know a-about the a-adoption also so....." she couldn't complete and broke down again clinging on to him. He held her close to his heart with tears streaming down his face too. Albeit he knew everything but just wanted her to say it knowing they both wouldn't be at peace until they talk about it once.

Hence he probed her further so that she speaks out everything "you really think you are indebted to your parents for loving you so much". She parted from him a little shocked and said "ofcourse not Armaan. How could you say that? I don't think that and will never do so. I know I said that to Muskaan but at that time I was just too stunned on learning the truth. The truth about my adoption came out infront of me out of a blue and I was just not able to process it all. But NEVER did I think of it as a debt in real. I love them more than myself and I know they love me equally. So please don't even think what you just said" she said with a conviction written all over her face.

Armaan was really happy to hear it though he knew it all along and then asked her what he had been itching to all this while "then why did you agree for this marriage?" She lowered her eyes, not being able to stand his strong gaze and replied softly "it was the same day I got to know about the adoption when mum dad asked me for the marriage. They were so excited about it and I was so numb to even think. I agreed thinking that this is least I could do to make them happy. I know what I did was wrong and I should have told them the truth but I was not able to think straight and kept doing whatever came in mind, without even giving it much of a thought. I know I have hurt you a lot in the process but believe me I didn't me to" she held his hand in desperation trying to make him understand. He simply hugged her and whispered for only her to hear "I love you Riddhima". She relaxed in his arms the moment she heard it and knew he had forgiven her.

They cried in each other's embrace for a long time to lighten the burden their hearts had been carrying since two weeks. Coming out of the hug, he cleared her tears and kissed her forehead "now if you even think of leaving me and marrying someone else, I swear I'll kidnap you from your own wedding and lock you up where nobody can find you" he said expecting her to smile atleast but found her in the same gloomy mood. "kya hua?? Aren't you happy??" "I am but mum dad Armaan" she said with apprehension in her voice. "Don't worry princess. I'll speak to them and ab to Anjali hi nahi, Atul bhi humare saath hai. I am sure we'll convince them" he said but she still looked anxious.

He sighed and asked to get her instant replies "pyaar karti hoon mujhse" "sabse zada" "bharosa hai mujhpar" "khud se zada" "fir to bas doli uthne ki der hai". Saying this they burst out laughing a moment later and said in unison "DDLJ...Shahrukh and Kajol" He gave her a bear hug and said "just keep smiling like this, that's all I want. You are my strength Riddhima and I need you with me to keep me going. I can fight any battle in life as long as you are with me". "I'll always be with you and I promise to never break this promise" saying this she stood on her toes and softly kissed on his lips to seal her promise.

"You guy can come out and join us for dinner whenever you are done with your romance" they heard Anjali shouting from outside. They smiled at each other and he gave her a quick but passionate kiss before moving out to join everybody for dinner.

"Finally Romeo Julliet ko time mil gaya apne romance se" Muskaan said cheekily. Riddhima turned scarlet on hearing everybody laugh but recovered quickly and retorted "Atleast hume time to mila but tu aur Rahul jab shuru hote ho to poori duniya ko hi bhool jate ho". Now it was Muskaan's turn to turn red and everybody laughed again except Muskaan and Rahul. This was one side of her Armaan loved the most, no matter what; it was really hard to press Riddhima. Hardly ever had he seen her at loss of words and he love his feisty tigress.


The next morning Armaan went to the Gupta house to talk to Riddhima's parents. Anjali, Atul and Muskaan sided up with him but Riddhima didn't utter a word out of guilt. Ofcourse her parents were heartbroken on learning as to why she agreed for the wedding but understood her point of view also when Anjali explained them her state of mind. Though they were still hurt but agreed with Anjali. They took a promise from Riddhima to never hide anything from them and warned her to even think about the adoption thing. They told her that she is their daughter and will always be one. She hugged them and cried her heart out. Shashank and Padma accepted Armaan with open arms and agreed to get them married on the same day when Riddhima and Siddhant were fixed to marry.

Shashank spoke to Siddhant and Gaurav, his best friend and Siddhant's dad, and explained them everything. Gaurav was really upset but decided to support his best friend and Siddhant was also fine with it as he always had a hunch about it since he had not seen Riddhima happy even once in last two weeks. Being an old friend, he also wanted her to be happy, so agreed to call off their wedding. Finally, Armaan and Riddhima got married with everyone's approval.


Thanks for reading it.


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