Monday, 12 November 2018

Part 7: The First Kiss 😘

Armaan went downstairs with the blankets and joined the group.

"Arre...Riddhima kahan reh gayi?" asked Padma

"Pata nahin aunty.... main toh bas kambal lekar seedha neeche aa gaya" Armaan lied as he had seen her run to her room in tears.

Armaan could not enjoy the card game anymore. He kept thinking about what Riddhima had said, 'PERVERT!" – he had gone out with several women in his life but never been accused of being a pervert!

Is that what she thought of him?


Was she in denial?

After reading her note, he was under the impression that she liked him.....he had no idea she had such a low opinion of him but her reaction to the kiss just a few minutes ago said something else.....yes she was in denial....she did like him....her reaction to his touch and lips were proof that she was telling a lie but may be it is his fault......after all he is here as Anjali's prospective groom......how could she express her true feelings....and what about his feelings?

Was he really falling in love with Riddhima?.....no girl had ever stirred his heart the way Riddhima had.....Why was he always craving to be with her.....touch her...caress her.....hold her.....protect her.....care for her.....was this love??? He knew he did not feel this way for Anjali at all......he knew he had to act fast before it was too late.......

Riddhima was sobbing in her room.....she had washed her face and lips several times, trying to erase any remnants of his kiss from her lips.......she knew she was badly attracted to Armaan....she always was, since high school.......she was willing to wait a whole lifetime for him but she kept saying, "yeh paap hai....main aisa nahin soch sakti....."

She glanced at her bookshelf and saw her school year book had moved from its original place. She understood how Armaan had come to know her little secret.... how was she going to face him again? She would have to forget everything and pretend nothing had ever happened.... she had to DENY THAT SHE WAS CRAZY ABOUT HIM!

Armaan and Anjali retired for the night. Anjali came to Armaan's room after changing into her night clothes, 'chalo Armaan...kuch der terrace parr jaakar baatein karte hain...."

Armaan looked bored, "Nahin...mere sarr mein dard hai...main ab sona chahta hoon.... kal baatein karenge...."

"OK...kal mere saath shopping chalnaa.... mama-papa kal hi hamari sagaayi karna chahtey hain.... we can select our rings at the jeweler's .... OK goodnight!" Anjali left Armaan with a stunned expression.

Armaan was restless in bed; he got up and went to the terrace for some fresh air. All the lights in the house were out, he assumed everyone was asleep. As he entered the moonlit terrace, he saw Riddhima standing at the edge of terrace, her open hair blowing in the gentle breeze; her face looked ethereal in the moonlight. He quietly went behind her and could not resist himself again; he hugged her from behind, kissed her neck and whispered in her ear, "I love you Riddhima.... I am sorry for hurting your feelings"

Riddhima was about to scream as someone grabbed her from behind but Armaan had his hands on her lips.

She turned around and pushed him away. "Tum pagal toh nahin ho gaye ho Armaan.... hosh mein aao.... yeh kya keh rahey ho tum.... main tumsey pyaar nahin karti....in fact you disgust me.... meri didi sey shaadi karr rahe ho aur mujh sey yeh keh rahey ho...."

"I don't love Anjali and I am not going to get married to her! Main sirf tumhey chahta hoon.... I just realized it on this trip.... I am crazy about you Riddhima....and I know you love me too..."
" You are wrong ARMAAN!" Riddhima turned around as she wanted to avoid any eye contact with him.

"Phir mere chooney sey tumhari dil ki dhadkan kyon tez ho jaati hai?" Armaan grabbed her arm and forced her to look into his eyes.

She pushed his hand away, "Darr sey aur nafrat sey bhi dil ki dhadkan tez ho jaati hai...." She had tears in her eyes and ran away from him.

"RIDDHIMA! RIDDHIMA!" it was Padma. "Beta kahan ho tum...zara wo balm kahan rakha hai...tumhare mausaji ke jodon mein dard ho raha hai...."

Riddhima wiped her tears, "Haan mausi...abhi laayi..."

Padma followed Riddhima to her room, "Beta, chhat parr kya karr rahi thi....? Jaldi so jaao...kal bahut kaam hai.... main tohbas tujh parr hi depend karr sakthi hoon na.... kal hum Anjali aur Armaan ki sagaayi karney ki soch rahey hain.... tujhe sab sambhaal na hai...jaa ab soja" Padma kissed Riddhima's forehead and affectionately caressed her head.

Riddhima hugged her mausi, "Jaisa aap kahengi, main waisa hi karoongi.... aap bhi so jaaiye..."

Armaan came back dejected to his room. Even though Riddhima had spurned his love, he was not going to change his decision. He knew she loved him, he was going to give her time to accept her true feelings. He turned on his laptop and connected his iPod to it.

Early in the morning, Armaan knocked on Riddhima's door. She opened the door after a few knocks. She looked tired, but her eyes were swollen and red as if she had not slept all night, just like Armaan.

"I am sorry Riddhima...I am not being a pest...just a friend...yeh tumharey liye hai..." he handed his IPod to her.

She looked at the iPod, "yeh kiss liye?"

"Mera hai parr main kabhi suntaa nahin hoon.... I have uploaded a lot of your favorite songs in it.... now you don't need to carry your bulky walkman with you anymore.... tumhara saara sangeet hamesha tumhare saath rahega..." he smiled and squeezed the gadget into her hands.

"Parr...main kaise...?" she protested

"I said.... we are friends now.... please accept it warna main sochunga tum dosti bhi nahin karna chahti..."

Riddhima could not say no to such an honest request, "Thanks.... tum raat bhar yahi kartey rahe...soye nahin?"

"Tum bhi toh nahin soyi...." He smiled and walked away...


Tiya Gupta 

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