Thursday, 7 March 2019

part 29 & 30 : Tumhare hum


part 29 :

In the afternoon, Muskaan
leaves with Rahul, while I get ready
for the engagement ceremony. It is
being held at the Mallik's house. I
didn't really care at this point.
Fighting it seems useless. There is
no way out of this situation and I
know it. I just have to accept it. I go
take a shower in order to clear my
head. I throw on a bathrobe and
walk towards my bed, where my sari
is placed. It is midnight black sari

with silver embroidery all around.
The dress code for tonight is actually
black, not that I mind. Black is
definitely my color. I wear the sari
and put on jewelry and make up,
paying special attention to me eyes.
I style my hair in loose curls and
walk out the door. I meet my
parents in the living room. As soon
as I enter the room, they both get
up and walk towards me. They start
talking about how only yesterday I
was playing dress up with my
mother's clothes, pretending to be a
bride. I smile lightly, knowing that
my wedding day will be the worst
day of my life. It is definitely not
something I am looking forward to!
We drive towards the Mallik Mansion
and I just contemplate about how
my life will be living there. We ring
the doorbell and an unfamiliar man
opens the door. My parents and I
walk through the doors. I stare at
the man trying to figure out who he
is. He looks related to Armaan, but
much older. The man smiles and
says, "We finally meet! You must be
Riddhima. I've heard a lot about
you!" I nod, but remain confused.
He sees my expressions and says
apologetically, "Oh I forgot to
introduce myself! I'm Arjun by the
way, I'm Armaan's older brother!"
The realization dawns on me. Of
course, Armaan mentioned an older
brother at the dinner party a while
back. I shake his hand while he
smiles, "I must say Armaan is true to
his word, you are even more
beautiful than he described."
I blush and turn my head to hear a
woman say, "Arjun stop flirting with
your bhabi! Save some of that for
your own wife!" Arjun grins at the
woman and pulls her close, giving
her a hug. He turns to me and says,
"Riddhima meet my wife Arohi and
our son is around here somewhere.
That little kid is trouble with a
capital T!" Arohi points to a small
child reeking havoc around the
house saying, "Arjun look there is
Aryan, go stop him from running into
that poor old woman!" Arjun quickly
says bye, while Arohi stays with me.
We watch Arjun running around
trying to catch his son, until I ask
her, "How come I didn't meet you
two until tonight?"
She smiles, "Arjun is always busy at
the office. He handles most of his
father's work. He couldn't make it to
the dinner party last time because
of a business trip. As for me, well
Aryan is quite a handful and I was
helping to make sure it was going
smoothly. Armaan told me about you
though and I really wanted to meet
you that night. You have no idea
how many times I tried to approach
you, but was called for or stopped by
some guest. Anyways I'm glad that
at least we met tonight!" I laugh and
nod my head. She continues, "I
never see Armaan anymore. That
little twerp never comes over! Make
sure you make him come here more
often!" I look at her confused and
then it dawns upon me. SHIT! I
totally forgot Armaan has his own
place! I CANT BE LEFT ALONE WITH
HIM! WHAT IF HE TRIES SOMETHING?
OH CRAP! Arohi notices my horrified
state and asks, "Riddhima is
everything alright?" I have to think
of something; I have to make sure
that we live here and not at his
place.
I feel a tap on my shoulder and I
turn around to see Muskaan. I smile
widely and introduce Arohi and
Muskaan to each other. We start
talking and I make a note to do
something about the living situation
tonight. Then I notice Armaan walk
through the doors, wearing a black
suit with his hair gelled. He is
wearing a silky silvery grayish
colored shirt with the top few
buttons undone, exposing his tan
chest. He strolls in very casually, I
might add. He is looking good, but
I'm not going to tell him that! I turn
away and continue my conversation
with Muskaan and Arohi. I try to
find Armaan again but can't. I just
need to know where he is so that I
can keep away from him, that is the
ONLY reason I am looking for him. I
soon find him walking my way with
Arjun and Rahul tailing him. See
this is why I should have paid more
close attention to his whereabouts.
Muskaan and Arohi look towards
their husbands and start smiling.
Arjun and Rahul put their arms
around their wives, while Armaan
does the same to me. I roll my eyes
and sigh. He certainly knows how to
take advantage of the situation!
Just then both our parents come
towards us and push us all onto the
dance floor. I look up at Armaan to
see him looking at me lovingly. I
give him a dirty look, which he finds
amusing. We start dancing for
maybe a minute before I make a
lame excuse to go to the bathroom.
He does not fuss and lets me go.
Now that is a shocker. I get myself a
drink instead, a NON-ALCOHOLIC
drink I might add. It's not like I can
drink anyways considering I am
pregnant. Besides that fact, I refuse
to ever submit myself to alcohol
again, no matter what! Armaan
comes up behind me and says, "I
hope that's not alcohol!" I growl,
"It's coke you moron!" He raises his
voice a notch more saying, "Coke?
Riddhima you're doing drugs? How
could you? What will your parents
think?" I hiss under my breath,
"Armaan shut it! People can hear!"
He merely chuckles in response,
while I smile at all the people who
now think I'm some kind of junkie!
He takes my coke before I can take
another sip and drinks it. I look at
him shocked while he just says,
"That was really sweet, sweetums!" I
snap, "What is with the sweetheart,
sweetie, and now sweetums!!! STOP
CALLING ME PET NAMES!" He points
at me saying, "Oh wow it looks like
your having your mood swings right
now… sweetums. Besides I think it
suits you because of your SWEET
revenge as you so kindly put it!" I
growl at him since I'm quite
annoyed and pissed. He just laughs
and says, "Thanks for the drink…
sweetie pie!" I just groan because of
his idiotic sense of humor. I make
my way towards Muskaan and Arohi,
who have just returned from
dancing.
My parents and his parents come to
the stage and Billy Uncle says,
"Welcome ladies and gentleman to
the engagement ceremony of our
children, Armaan and Riddhima!"
Everyone turns to look at me and I
feel his presence next to me. I turn
to notice his smiling face looking at
the stage ahead. I return my
attention to our parents as well. My
father now asks, "Can we have
Armaan and Riddhima on the stage
to exchange rings?" I swallow hard
and robotically move forward. I feel
a hand slip around my waist, but I
keep looking ahead at my parents as
a reminder for why I am doing this.
On the stage, I just stare
blankly at Armaan. My father hand
me the ring and I just stare at it,
thinking of the commitment it
represents. My mother nudges me to
put the ring on his finger. I look up
at Armaan to see him smirking. I
hesitantly slip on the ring and then
move closer, whispering in his ear, "I
hate you Mallik." People all around
us think I just kissed him, but only
we know the truth. Armaan takes my
hand in his and he slowly slips the
ring on. He murmurs against my
cheek, "But I love you Riddhima…"
He kisses my cheek and everyone
around us breaks into blissful sighs.
I feel like gagging, hearing all of
them saying how cute we are. WE
ARE FAR FROM CUTE! Our parents
take turns hugging both of us.
Everyone starts applauding and
congratulating us for our
engagement. Congratulating us for
what? I feel like he just put a noose
around my neck, instead of a ring on
my finger!
Arjun takes the
microphone and announces, "Armaan
has a special surprise for Riddhima!
Now where is he?" Armaan jogs on
stage and thanks his brother.
Armaan looks directly at me and
says, "I'd like to dedicate this song
to the love of my life. Woh abhi
mujhse thodi si kaafa hai! So this is
a song for the girl that stole my
heart." Just then, the lights go off
and a spot light hits the stage. The
music plays Saathiya from the movie
Darling.
Armaan starts singing, while looking
at me and only me.
I never heard him sing before.
He has the most captivating voice I
had ever heard.
Saathiyaa saathiyaa hooo
Saathiyaa hoo saathiyaa hooo
He starts walking around the stage,
then goes
down the steps. He starts walking in
my directions,
while I slowly back away. At least he
gave the
pretence of me being mad at him,
although
that is the understatement of the
year!
Want you baby need you baby want
you baby need you baby
Want you baby need you baby want
you baby
As soon as he gets close enough I
turn away from him,
but hear him singing behind me.
His arms come around my waist,
while I push them away.
Ishq bedardi mujhko pata hai
Iski chahat mein milti saza hai
Ishq bedardi mujhko pata hai
Iski chahat mein milti saza hai
As I start walking away, I feel a tug
at my hand.
I turn around to see him holding
onto it.
He slowly presses my hand against
his heart and brings his hand
On top of mine. We stare into each
other's eyes.
I quickly realize what I am doing, so
I look away.
Beqrari mein mar hi na jau
Na samajh ko kaise samjhau
He sings into my ear since I refuse
to look at him.
The depth and sadness in his voice,
leaves me mesmerized.
He turns my face towards him and
looks pleadingly into my
chocolate brown orbs. It is as if he
wanted to know what he
could do so that I could accept him,
accept us…
Dil hai ki manta nahi hai
Bechain janta nahi hai
Mein karu kya bata zara saaathiyaaa
Dil hai ki manta nahi hai
Bechain janta nahi hai
Mein karu kya bata zara saaathiyaaa
He loosens his grip on my hand and
I pull it away.
He taps his heart and then steals a
glance at me.
He sees me walking away from him
again, and grabs hold
of my hand again. He twirls me
against his chest and dips me low.
Saathiyaa saathiyaa hooo
Saathiyaa hoo saathiyaa hooo
He continues to look into my eyes,
while I feel myself drowning
in the depth of his. My eyes notice
the atmosphere around us,
and I give Armaan an icy cold look.
He grins, noticing he had an effect
on me.
Want you baby need you baby want
you baby need you baby
Want you baby need you baby want
you baby
He sings in a gentle whisper, while
looking at me lovingly.
He lets me up and turns me around
so I am
pressed against his back.
Narm khwaabon ki baahon mein
jagegin aankhen
Garm sayein mein beetengin ratein
Narm khwaabon ki baahon mein
jagegin aankhen
Garm sayein mein beetengin ratein
He presses his forehead against the
side of mine.
I close my eyes, in order to not let
any emotions
cross my face. His warm breath
tickles the side of my neck.
I feel reminded of that one night we
shared together.
I turn around in his arms and back
away.
Yaad to aayegi bekhudi chaayegi
Dard de jayegi tanhai tadpayegi
I bitterly sing about how his
memories will bring him happiness,
but also give him pain and
loneliness. He looks
amused that I just sang for him.
Dil hai ki manta nahi hai
Bechain janta nahi hai
Mein karu kya bata zara saaathiyaaa
Dil hai ki manta nahi hai
Bechain janta nahi hai
Mein karu kya bata zara saaathiyaaa
He starts walking towards me again,
slowly and seductively
with one of his hands shoved in his
pockets. He taps his heart
and glances at me again. He shrugs
his shoulders and looks up.
Some would say he looked
adorable… some would say so, but I
refuse to
acknowledge such a thing.
Saathiyaa saathiyaa hooo
Saathiyaa hoo saathiyaa hooo
He closes his eyes and starts singing
so
passionately, so dedicatedly.
Want you baby need you baby want
you baby need you baby
Want you baby need you baby want
you baby
He opens his eyes and scans the
crowd for me.
They finally land on me, while I start
trying to
talk to Arohi. She is too enthralled
in the
magic that is Armaan's voice. He
comes close and
places his hand out in front of me,
asking for a dance.
Saare alam pe aahon ka chayega
jaado
Apne hi jazbo pe to hoga na kabu
Saare alam pe aahon ka chayega
jaado
Apne hi zajbo pe to hoga na kabu
He starts leads us the middle and
starts dancing with me.
I am sure he has alcohol in his
system. What was he thinking,
while doing all this? He really does
not have control over
his emotions, it's quite true.
Zakhm lega jidhar hoga aisa asar
Na rahe bekhabar pechida hoga
safar
I glare at him as I sing. He nearly
laughs looking at my
expressions. I am basically
promising to make his life hell and
all he could do was laugh.
Dil hai ki manta nahi hai
Bechain janta nahi hai
Mein karu kya bata zara saaathiyaaa
Dil hai ki manta nahi hai
Bechain janta nahi hai
Mein karu kya bata zara saaathiyaaa
He shrugs in response to my threat
and continues to sing.
He twirls me and brings me closer as
we sway together.
Saathiyaa saathiyaa hooo
Saathiyaa hoo saathiyaa hooo
He twirls me so my back is pressed
against his chest again.
He continues to sing in my ear as
his cheek is
pressed against my temple.
Want you baby need you baby want
you baby need you baby
Want you baby need you baby want
you baby
The words slowly fade away as his
voice
sounds like a beautiful whisper.
I may hate his guts, but I
got to give him credit. He is a really
great singer. He almost had me
melting in his arms, but I can't let
instances like that happen again.
And the anger is back. The nerve of
him to use this engagement as an
excuse to get his filthy hands on
me. He was going to pay for that.
This reminds me that I have to make
sure I live in the Mallik Mansion
after marriage. I wait patiently for
the party to end, after all everything
must end sometime right?
When everyone goes home, all the
people that are left are my family
and Armaan's family. I paste a
depressed look over my face, which
attracts a lot of attention. I force
tears to well up in my eyes by
thinking of unpleasant thoughts.
Naina Auntie and my mother rush
over to see what the matter is. I
start wailing while holding onto my
mother. I cry, "Mom, how am I going
to live without you and dad!" I
glance towards Armaan, while he
cocks an eyebrow at me. I continue
as my father and Billy Uncle rush
over towards us. Billy Uncle asks,
"Beta what's the matter?" I sniffle, "I
can't live without my parents. Billy
Uncle and Naina Auntie won't be
there as well! I need a mother and
father figure in my new life. I don't
want to live alone…" Armaan looks
completely baffled and tries to
excuse my reasoning. Billy Uncle
puts an arm around my shoulder
and looks up at Armaan saying,
"Armaan you're moving back in!" I
grin widely while Armaan whines,
"But dad…" Billy raises his hand in
the air, silencing him saying, "It's
my final decision Armaan. Riddhima
doesn't want to live alone and I
don't want her to either. I would
love to pamper my new daughter in
law like I did with Arohi beta.
Besides we never see you anymore.
You have lived away from us long
enough, now is the time to come!"
Armaan nods his head obediently,
while I hide my amusement. Looks
like I've still got some tricks up my
sleeve. Maybe this marriage thing
won't be so bad after all...
***********

part 30 :

Five days later, I feel a bit agitated that Armaan will be there at the mehendi. Whatever happened to the traditional mehendi's where the boys weren't allowed in! Those were the days…sigh… My mother comes in, bringing me out of my thoughts. She places my lengha on my bed. She walks over to me and taps my cheek lovingly, while leaving the room. I smile faintly and watch her leave. I then leave towards the bathroom to have a quick shower. When I get out, I walk over towards my bed and notice the olive green lengha with a brown border on the sleeves and the bottom of the skirt. I pick up the choli and notice there is no back, but string ties instead. Well I guess its easier to take off and not ruin my mehendi. What a shame that would be! I put it on and ask my mother to help tie the back. When I was fully dressed, I sit in front of the mirror lightly applying my make up and finally the jewelry. At this point, the hairstylist arrives and styles my hair up in an elegant bun using very few pins. I throw my dupatta over my shoulder and walk out the door. The mehendi is being held at our house, considering that I am the bride.

My mother comes towards me as I make my way down the stairs. She ushers me towards the chair where all the mehendi artists sit. She forces me to sit down, while I wait for the guests to arrive. Muskaan and Rahul enter through our mansion. She makes her way towards me and sits down in an empty seat next to me. She is the only one that sees the anger underneath my false exterior. She gives my hand a sympathetic squeeze, while I faintly smile. The rest of the guests arrive except for the Malliks. With that thought, Armaan enters the premises accompanying his parents. He is wearing a simple brown sherwani with light embroidery.

Arjun, Arohi, and Aryan follow them trying to settle down Aryan. He sure is a hyperactive child! He is cute, but very energetic. Aryan runs over towards Armaan and holds him around his leg. Armaan stops walking and looks down and grins at his little nephew, who is holding him captive. Armaan picks him up and says something in his little ear. I, of course can't hear since they are across the room. Armaan starts pointing at me, while Aryan nods excitedly. They both start approaching me, while I watch the happy little kid playing in his arms. Armaan towers over me and then crouches down. Armaan says, "Riddhima meet my little champ, Aryan! Aryan, this is your Riddhima Chachi" He nods, but looks super excited. Aryan happens to be only three years old. Armaan whispers to him and Aryan quickly places his hand out in front of me. Aww he wants me to shake his tiny hand. I take his little hand into mine and shake.

I say, "Hi cutie! How can you stand being in the arms of your very bad Armaan Chacha? He is very mean right bacha?" Aryan laughs and claps his hands saying, "Yes! Armaan Chacha bad!" Armaan looks at him shocked and says, "Aryan! Armaan Chacha is not bad, she is bad Riddhima Chachi!" My mouth drops open, while he grins. Aryan shakes his head and replies, "No, Riddhima Chachi good!" I laugh while Armaan rolls his eyes, "I introduce you to her once and you switch sides! You little traitor!" I laugh, "He's just really smart!" Arohi comes from behind, while Armaan complains to her, "Bhabhi your little devil thinks I'm bad… Riddhima is playing little mind games with him and is corrupting your poor child." I open my mouth to protest, but hear Arohi reply, "It's your own fault Armaan, You know how much Aryan adores you and he barely sees you anymore!" Armaan looks embarrassed and says while eyeing me, "Bhabhi I was a little busy, but now I'm moving in so my little champ better not say bad Armaan Chacha!" Just then Aryan starts to cry so Armaan takes him over to Arjun.

The women all start getting mehendi applied on their hands. I don't even know what design to choose, it is all so confusing. There are so many to choose from. Arohi then says, "Riddhima can I suggest a design?" I nod, "Of course!" Arohi goes over towards the mehendi artist and whispers in her ear. I look at her suspiciously, while she shrugs, "It's a surprise Riddhima!" I shrug my shoulders and start talking to Muskaan, letting the designers do their work. From time to time, I notice the intricacy and details of the designs on my hands. It really did look beautiful. When it's all done, we all sit there and wait for it to dry. Armaan keeps looking at me from a far, and it's a bit annoying. I try to send as many glares as I possibly can without attracting attention. Muskaan starts laughing, thinking my expressions are so hilarious. I wasn't really worried about her catching me. After the mehendi is basically dry I look closely at every little design, but something doesn't seem right. There is a pattern, I just couldn't figure out what it was. Upon closer examination, I find Armaan's name on my palms. I look at it horrified and then look up to see Armaan looking my way. I get up in a huff making an excuse to go to the bathroom. This time that is exactly where I am going!

I go straight into the bathroom and close it without locking it. Obviously, I can't lock it without getting mehendi on it. It is practically dry, but I had to get it off! I reach for the tap, but hear the door to the bathroom swing wide open. I look up to see Armaan smirking in the doorframe and looks over towards my hands. I look at him angrily and reach for the tap again, but stop due to his voice. He says cockily, "Trying to erase me from your destiny?" I mumble, "I wish I could…" under my breath. I turn towards him and say, "Get out right now!" I turn on the tap water and am about to scrub the mehendi off of my hands, but Armaan locks the door behind him. He quickly pulls my hand away from the water and holds onto my arms in a firm grip. He pushes me against a wall, where I find myself cornered.

I'm so vulnerable at this point, I can't even touch him. It would look quite suspicious if I come back down with mehendi all over Armaan's clothes and not on my hands, where they should be. I look towards Armaan angrily and yell, "You can't dictate me Armaan! I'll do as I please! Get your hands off of me!" He laughs hoarsely into my ear and says, "Maybe I can't, but I won't let you erase my name from your hands!" I just reply, "I'll just go to another bathroom then and you better let go of my hands or I will kick you somewhere so that you can't get anyone else pregnant, you fool!" He smirks, "I like this side of you!" I raise my knee into position and he releases my hands from his grip. He says, "You better be going down the stairs!" I reply, "In your dreams…" Before I can finish the sentence I feel him pull at one of the ties of my blouse. I stop in my tracks, knowing I can't go out like that! He comes up behind me and says, "You were saying?" I mumble, "I hate you…" He chuckles behind me and starts tying the tie he had just undone. He purposefully brushes his hands against my back, sending shivers down my spine. He opens the door, while saying, "Now don't give me any reasons to keep you in this bathroom, sweetie pie!" I growl, "UGHH!!" I exit dramatically, while I hear him laughing from the bathroom.

Stupid jerk! It's my hands and I don't even have control over them! Note to self, never again put on mehendi! I became so defenseless, that I couldn't do anything and he knew it! Why does he keep trying to make me mad? Shouldn't he be trying to get on my good side? He is such a spoilt brat! He always has to have everything his way! The nerve of him to take advantage of my weakness like that! He's playing so dirty, that was a cheap shot!

I sit back down, while Muskaan asks me, "Where were you?" I glare at Armaan while replying, "I got a little held up…" She follows my line of vision and sees who I am giving all these deathly stares to and quickly gets her answer. She whispers, "Why?" I reply, "Look at this!" Muskaan replies, "Yes, Riddhima your mehendi looks nice…" I shake my head and say, "What does this spell?" She looks at me strangely and says, "A-R-M-A-A-N… Oh!" I nod, "Yeah… His name is written in my destiny… and I can't erase it…"

***********

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