Sunday, 22 December 2019

part 2 AR FF : "and then she said it"

Part 2. The Stranger

As soon as the door opened wide, I leapt forward, almost in haste, and hugged mom tight. Oh, I so missed her. At 27, I still hadn't very much got used to stay away from her. I would never confess that to her, but I love her way too much. Ofcourse why not? She was my first crush. Dad used to tease me saying that I had planned to marry my mom when I would grow up, right from my childhood. May be that's one reason, I didn't find my previous girlfriends worth it. I guess I search for my mom in them. Now when I said girlfriend's', don't jump into conclusions that I had innumerable affairs. I was into two healthy relationships before. But somehow they didn't turn out as we, or rather I, had expected.

Exhilarated with her mere presence, I hugged her tight only to smell something of mint. The next second, I felt her hair at her lower back, soft and thick. Now that was strange! Mom didn't have long hair back then. Even in six months I don't think it would have grown to that length. And that's when it hit me.

Shit.


I drew back abruptly as if she was radio-active. What I saw was someone, clad in a loose t-shirt and military shorts, with her mouth full of white foam, balancing her tooth brush. Oh! So it was the smell of her tooth paste. I could see that she was visible mortified by the size of her eyes ' wide and popped out. If not for the tooth paste and brush in her mouth, I was damn sure she would have screamed her lungs out. Who would not when you were attacked by a monster, not than I am one, early in the morning and that too when you were probably brushing your teeth somnolently?

Embarrassed at startling her, I opened my mouth to apologize only to find her run back into my home at her full pace. Confused, I moved in and closed the door, not locking it as I remembered that watchman would bring my luggage. Throwing my laptop bag on the couch, I moved to the dining table to have some water, my eyes searching for my mom and that stranger. Our home, as usual, was neat and spotless. That's how my mom liked it. It is a medium sized duplex three bed room flat, one bedroom down stairs along with a living room, dining room and kitchen and two other bed rooms upstairs.

I heard my mom's voice after a moment and looked at the stirs. There I saw that stranger pulling my mom by her arm eagerly. The only difference being that the tooth brush was now in her hand. My mom located me and it took a couple of nanoseconds for her to realize my presence. As soon as she did, her face brightened with a smile. She descended the steps quickly yet deftly while I placed the bottle back on the table. I smiled at her while she came and pulled me into a motherly hug- warm and soothing, which I had been waiting for.

"I missed you mom." I said, drawing back, while she kissed my temple lovingly.

She smiled. "When did you come? All of a sudden? Where is Rahul?" she started with her usual questionnaire. "I wasn't expecting you this week."

"I know." I admitted, happy. "I didn't inform you so as to surprise you. Rahul will be coming after three days." And that face of hers when she spotted me a minute back was a sight that I would cherish forever. I loved to see her happy.

Amidst our pleasantries, we conveniently forgot about that particular stranger of mine looking at us strangely, while I returned it. Following my gaze, my mom went and stood beside that stranger smiling widely. I took the bottle again and waited for my mom to introduce me to her, or vice versa. And where is my mom's paying guest, or rather friend, by the way?

"Armaan, she is Riddhima, my friend." I almost spat the water at her words. The first thought that immediately came across my mind was my hilarious imagination of my mom's friend. And this is complete contrast or even more. Standing before me was a tall and lean girl, I guess in her mid twenties, looking at me weirdly. How could this girl be my mom's friend? And her attire was anything but feminine; a loose grey t-shirt with the sleeves rolled up at the end and military shorts which were more like a pant.

Wait! Military shorts. Could this be happening?

Those were my favourite pair of shorts which I had bought when I went to Ahmadabad to attend a conference. How could she be wearing that? As I glared at my mom mildly, she gave me a nervous smile.

"Riddhima, he is Armaan, my son." My mom said to her and then that frown on the stranger's temple disappeared and she gave me a small smile.

I realized I, sulking at the loss of my favourite shorts, forgot to smile back when the frown on her temple reappeared. Covering up for the loss of my attention, I offered my hand for a shake politely mumbling a 'hi'. She raised her right hand up to meet mine when she, and I, realized that she was holding her toothbrush. She held it with her left hand and then rubbed her right palm against my shorts, perhaps to clean her palm off the tooth paste and then shook my hand. Then she mumbled a 'bye' and ran upstairs.

"Mom, how could you do that? That's my favourite shorts." I said slowly, gritting my teeth. That's true, I was slightly angry. I don't like strangers using my stuff, the only exception being Rahul, be it even my unused clothes. And that was barely a thing girls would wear.

My mom gave me a smile shaking her head, ruffling my hair, which I generally don't like but it was laid back due to the other thoughts. "Go and sleep. I'll wake you up when the breakfast is ready." I heard her and then realized that I was sleepy. Kissing her cheek, I moved upstairs to my room to catch some sleep with a part of my brain already thinking about that stranger.

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There is a thin line between a dream and reality. When you are absolutely tired and sleeping like a pig, this line ceases to exist. And so it took me a couple of minutes to realize that someone is shaking me off my sleep. When I opened my eyes, half to their usual size, I saw mom standing by my bed.

"Please get up Armaan. We need a small favour." My mom told me while I sat up on the bed.

We? Means mom and that stranger?

I rubbed my eyes to clear my vision and then glanced at the wall clock. It's about 7 am. I had barely slept an hour then. "Mom, please I want to sleep." I drawled and then yawned before falling on the bed again. I couldn't catch a wink the entre night due to the bus journey. Hence I couldn't even open my eyes completely.

"Please Armaan. Get up." My mom shook me again.

"Okay. Fine." I got up again and sat on bed, this time my eyes still closed. "Why do you want me to get up so early? I am on a vacation." I said, yawning again.

"Armaan, there is a strike of city bus drivers going on." She said. Oh, I am thankful I didn't decide to come by bus in the morning. I would have waited unnecessarily for the bus.

But why is she telling that to me? Now?

"Riddhima had her first campus recruitment session today. Please drop her at her college." So this is the reason. I thought it's very unlikely that my mom woke me up from my sleep just a few minutes ago for some work. She knew my love for sleep. Had she been in that stranger's place, she would have left to college somehow. But why did she wake me up now? "Raghu is on leave today." She added.

Great!

Now I am the driver as Raghu, our driver, was on leave. But driver for her, the stranger? That didn't sound good. I hadn't even talked to her properly. Hell, I have just met her an hour ago. And my mom is asking me, her loving son who had travelled 11 hours to meet her, to drop her somewhere by disturbing his dear sleep? That's definitely strange.

Mumbling only-god-knows-what, I got off the bed and made my way towards the washroom only to be stopped by her again.

Now what?

"You can brush your teeth later. She has to report at the college by seven thirty. So go." My mom literally pulled me out of the room. I was surprised. My mom, who doesn't even bear with my entering out of my bed room without brushing my teeth, is all by herself saying this. Confused, I moved towards my wardrobe but was interrupted again. "No need to change your dress. You are not attending a marriage." She quipped as she pushed me out of the room.

"Mom, please let me wear my track suit." I pleaded which fell deaf ears. I had changed into a sweat shirt and a three fourth pant before dozing off. I was in no way ready to embarrass myself by going to some college in this attire. I mean if there it's a college there would be girls. The last thing I wanted to do is become clown infront of some girls. But I convinced my mind saying that I would be in the car, so no one would be able to see me. Moreover it's not the college where my mom is working or where I had done my MBA from, both were the same ofcourse. Or is it?

Drowned in my thoughts, I went downstairs with my mom to stop dead in my tracks. The stranger, or what's her name, yeah Riddhima is pacing to and forth in the living room. It's not her pacing that caught me off guard. It's her attire again. She was dressed in a formal shirt and trousers with a blazer, her hair tied in a high pony tail. Of course it being her campus interview she was to get ready in that fashion. But it's not her attire that shocked me. It's rather mine. I looked down at myself. If I accompany her like this, I would surely appear like her driver. I desperately wanted to change my apparel.

Riddhima seemed to have been busy talking to someone over the phone that she didn't notice us for a minute. But when she did, she stared at me surprised and then at my mom something like she was glaring. But was she doing that? Shouldn't I be the one glaring at my mom? So I did finally; for disturbing my sleep and then not letting me to change into something more decent.

"Come on Riddhima. Armaan agreed to drop you." My mom said breaking the weird silence.

Agreed? Did I have a chance?

Unwillingly I dragged myself to the living room and grabbed the car keys after sparing her a mild glare, though I didn't know why. As I walked along the corridor I could feel her following me. Now don't get any wrong ideas! I can only feel her behind me due to the sound of her heels. That's when I realized I was wearing my slippers. But I am in no mood to change them either. After entering the elevator, I was about to close its door when my mom came to us running.

"All the best Riddhima." My mom hugged het and kissed her temple, just as she used to kiss mine. She then closed the door and waved us bye.

"Which college?" I asked Riddhima while moving out of our apartments' parking.

"Institute of Systems and Management." She said slowly looking ahead. "Your college" She added as if I didn't know that.

Great, everything is going wrong.

Now I can only wish that no one spots me at the college. Ofcourse I was a famous personality at the college. One- due to my notorious activities, along with Rahul, when I had studied there. Two- being a son of professor. Three- being their campus recruiter last year. I had come to my college as an alumni member to take part in the campus hiring session for my company last year.

Throughout the drive, I was silent as so was she. I was thinking about the events of the day; mostly about my mom and this person sitting beside me. My mom, as far as I had seen, had become very much attached to her friend. But the point that worried me is, is this person worth everything? Not that I am jealous, which I might be recalling my mom's good bye kiss to her, but after my dad's demise I have become little protective of my mom. I didn't want her to go through any more heart breaks. I know my mom doesn't trust anyone easily. When she does, she does that extremely that it would be impossible for her to bear the pain if it turns sour.

I looked at Riddhima from the corner of my eyes. She was fidgeting with her pen and file. I could understand that she was nervous. That's just natural. I experienced the same two years ago. So I decided to make a conversation to help her.

"So, which company are you attending interview for?" I asked her. This was an easy one.

"Global Insight Inc." she replied checking her wrist watch for time. "Aunty told me that the company is good." She added.

"Oh." I nodded. "Yeah, it's a good company. I work for it."

"I know." She said. Ofcourse I should have known that. If my mom told her about the company it meant that she would have also told her about my working there.

Again the silence prevailed. So I switched the radio on, putting the volume down soas not to disturb her much. In twenty minutes, we reached the college. I wondered if I could ask her to get down at the main entrance instead of going to the parking area. I didn't want to meet anyone in my bed clothes.

"I'll get down at the main entrance." She said as if reading my mind.

My face would have revealed the obvious. So I stopped the car at the entrance and waited for her to get down. Being nervous, she fumbled with the door knob twice before opening it. She tried to conceal it but it was obvious in her every action. She was tensed.

"Thank you so much." She said, smiling politely, shutting the door as I pulled the window pane down. When I nodded she turned back to go in.

"Listen Riddhima." I called for her. She turned around and waited for me to speak something. Instead I stepped out of the car and walked up to her. "All the best." I added offering my hand for a shake.

"Thanks." She smiled, genuinely this time, shaking her hand with mine. I have to admit that she has a beautiful smile and very expressive eyes to add to it which twinkled when I wished her. I stared at her while she faded away into the group of students heading to the college. If my mom liked her so much, she has to be a good person. She appears to be one, if we are not mistaken.

I drove back home making sure that no one noticed me.

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It was something around 10, I guess, when I felt someone ruffling my hair carefully. I came back home from college after dropping Riddhima and then jumped back into the bed at its sight. When my sleepy brain processed the touch, I knew it, it being very familiar. I wonder sometimes; though I hate my mom ruffling my hair. I savor her doing this when trying to wake me up. I opened my heavy eyes and smiled at her. She smiled back, her fingers still in my hair.

"Have your breakfast soon. I am going to the college. Come and lock the door." She said, lovingly and then withdrew her fingers back, standing up to leave, expecting me to follow her. But then something hit me.

"Mom? How are you going to the college?" I asked her getting off the bed. It was her who told me there was a strike going on in the city and that the driver is on leave. Then how come she can go to college?

"Don't worry, I will take a cab." She said casually, drawing the curtains away to let the sunlight brighten my room.

"No mom, wait. I will drop you." I told her immediately when she turned to go back. If I can drop her friend at the college, I can drop her again too. Hell, I want to drop her. She is my mom.

"I knew that. By the way I didn't call the cab." My mom smiled and then I felt as if she had winked at me. This is my mom for you. She surpasses me when it comes to getting her things done sometimes.

"Mom" I drawled, smiling and shaking my head while moving towards the washroom.

I took a quick shower and came downstairs in 20 minutes. My mom was already waiting at the main door, sitting in a rocking chair, going through some business magazine. I knew I was hungry so I contemplated whether to have breakfast. But I also knew mom would get late to her session if I had it. So thought otherwise and headed straight to the door after grabbing the car keys.

"Armaan, breakfast?" My mom would never allow me step out of house without eating on time. Be it breakfast, lunch or dinner. But before I could answer it, her cell rang.

"Hello." My mom spoke "Yeah Riddhima."

"Oh is it? Don't worry. We will get that." I can only listen to the one sided conversation. So I supposed there was some problem with Riddhima. I could clearly see the tension etched on my mom's face- her temple frowned. I still don't understand how can my mom share such an emotional bonding with that girl? She is not even her age.

"Yeah I will ask Armaan to make sure you receive that. All the best." I was snapped out of my thoughts when I heard my name. My mom cut the call in hurry and ran upstairs; not to her room but Riddhima's room.

"Mom relax." I offered her a bottle of water as she came down panting slightly. My mom developed low blood pressure. She is under medication for the past one year and I guess it is under control now. So it was important for her to relax from the heavy breathing. "Why do you keep on running as if you were in some marathon?" I asked my tone mixed with worry and irritation.

"Armaan, hurry. Let's go. Riddhima forgot her PAN card and they are not allowing her for the interview without that." My mom said as we reached the elevator. "Poor girl. She is so tensed." She added.

I couldn't help but smile. This is interesting. Throughout the drive, I heard to my mom blabbering about her friend. This is quite interesting.

This time, since I am coming to college however, I thought of meeting my colleagues who were undertaking hiring process. I didn't dress up in formal, neither am I in casuals. So that's fine. I parked the car in my mom's parking lot.

"I know mom. I'll give it to her." I told her as soon as we stepped out of the car, when she turned to me to speak. "Go to class. You might get late." I hugged her while she kissed my temple, as usual.

She gave me the PAN card and left to her block. I looked at the card. Her name immediately caught my attention. It's only mentioned as Riddhima. No last name. I mean usually PAN card contains the full name of the person. It is used as one's identity. I don't think she was married as she was living with my mom. Then if she is single, it should mention her family name or her dad's name. This is strange.

Still thinking, I made my way towards the conference hall of the college for I knew that's the place where the hiring process takes place. I noticed her pacing infront of the room, in the corridor, which was now isolated, just as I found her pacing in the morning. I assumed that's how she managed stress. I guessed everyone was inside the hall.

After a moment, she spotted me and her face brightened slightly. She came running towards me, smiling hesitantly. I handed her the PAN card and she slipped it into the file she was carrying.

"Thank you so much." She said after a moment, relieved. If I am not wrong I also noticed a thin layer of moisture in her eyes, now that she was closer to me. She was at the verge of tears.

"No problem." I smiled at her. "Now rush in." I added pointing to the hall. I could hear some announcement being made inside.

She nodded, smiled again, and ran to the door. But before she could enter, she came back to me running again. "I am so sorry Armaan, for bothering you so much. I mean-"

She was sorry. I could see that. She was also embarrassed. May be due to the reason that in the short span of a couple of hours, she had been seeking help from a person she had barely talked to. I wasn't quite comfortable either.

"That's fine Riddhima." I nodded at her, smiling, trying to ease her. She was tensed beforehand due to the interview and it doesn't help her any if she was feeling low. "Come on. Let's get you in." I guided her towards the door, unintentionally placing my hand at the small of her back. And I felt her stiffen instantly. It was just a friendly gesture on my part, but she did feel uncomfortable. I withdrew my hand the next moment and she went to the hall, leaving me in thought.

As I stared at her retreating back, somewhere, a small part of my brain did admire her figure. She was tall, some where around 5 foot 7 inches, reaching my chin. To be frank, this morning, I did notice her, umm body when I saw her in formal wear. Earlier she was in a loose t-shirt and a shorts, which I thought was hardly feminine. But I had to accept she does have a good figure and a pretty face; expressive eyes, straight nose, full lips, slender neck, not too broad and not too frail shoulders, small breasts, trim waist and long legs. And did I mention that everything were her natural ones, not a pinch of makeup?

Shit, what the hell was I thinking?

Oh come on, my readers, I am a guy. We, sometimes, do check out the figure of a girl. Sensible ones, like me- no I am not boasting, do it decently without any nasty comments. That is healthy too, isn't it?

I decided to stay at the college till evening, as the strike of the busses still prevailed. And the college being in the outskirts of the city, I was sure the ladies would have a problem to hire a cab. I met my colleagues, had my breakfast and met few of the professors who had taught me. Then I came back to my colleagues and helped them with the hiring.

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In the afternoon about 3, I sat in the cafeteria in the campus munching on my sandwich. I was bored. Mom will not be free until 4 pm. She had lectures to deliver till then. Even the hiring process was wrapped up. Thinking about hiring, I wondered what Riddhima would have been doing. Just then my cell rang, startling me. Mom's name flashed on the screen.

"Armaan? Had your lunch?" I knew that would be my mom's first question. I wondered why she didn't try being nutritionist.

"Yeah mom. Just had sandwiches." I said looking around the canteen for any familiar face.

"Sandwiches? I prepared lunch for you in the morning. It was in the oven." She told me. "Armaan, are you in the campus?" she asked suddenly.

"Yes mom. Waiting for you." I said as a matter of fact. "Remember, the strike is still on. So I stayed back to take you home."

"Oh okay." She said and paused. I assumed she was thinking about something or someone? "Armaan, if you don't mind, could you keep company with Riddhima for some time?" she asked skeptically. "Make sure she had her lunch."

I was surprised at the level of protectiveness my mom had towards Riddhima. "Mom, she is in her own college. She will have her friends to take care of her." I said. I don't know I was not quite comfortable with this girl intruding our personal space. I realized lately that my mom's words started with her and ended with her.

"Armaan, Muskaan didn't attend the interview today. Riddhima doesn't have many friends. Please do that for me." She said, almost pleading. So she and Muskaan might be in the same class and they might be friends. And yeah Muskaan Gupta, my cousin, is my uncle, Shashank Gupta's daughter.

"Fine mom. Leave me a message with her mobile number. I'll call her." I replied.

"She doesn't have a mobile. However she said she would wait for me in the main cafeteria." She said.

"Okay. I am in the cafeteria. I'll let her call you when I meet her. Bye mom." I said and cut the call.

Then I was on the mission- search Riddhima. The cafeteria was of three floors. I wasn't sure I will be able to find her easily since I was in the third floor. So I got up from the table, paid the bill and moved towards the ground floor. Its better I stay at the entrance so that I can spot her or vice versa.

After sometime, I found her coming towards the cafeteria, alone. She was lost in some thought, I supposed, as she passed by me without acknowledging me. I frowned at her. She didn't look happy. I guess she didn't make it to the company. I watched her going to the corner table and looking around the cafeteria. I placed an order for rotis, the best in the cafeteria and walked upto her.

"Hi Riddhima." I greeted her and then she looked up at me surprised.

"Oh hi Armaan. You are still in the campus?" she asked me.

"If I am standing her before you, it means that I am still in the campus." I quipped smiling. She was embarrassed. "Can I sit here?" I asked her. The only chair across her is filled with her blazer, which she removed now, and her file. My eyes, somehow, darted across her chest, as the top button of her shirt was open, for a mere second before looking away.

"Oh yeah. Sure." She said and frantically cleared the chair off her stuff.

"How was the interview?" I asked her inorder to make some conversation. I could see that she was nervous the moment I came to her. She was a bit relaxed before.

"It went fine." She said not looking into my eyes. "I am in." she added after a moment.

Is this girl for real, I wondered. She had just grabbed an offer with a fat package at a prestigious company and she was saying that she was in with absolutely no emotions. I was in ninth heaven when I got my first offer letter in my hand. And then I immediately called for a huge celebration with my friends. She, definitely, is strange.

"Oh, well......congrats." I said and then we shook our hands. And when we did that I again felt her stiffen. May be I hadn't noticed this in the morning when I wished her good luck. If this is her nature, then it was a huge surprise for me as to how she made it to this college clearing all the interviews and other rounds. How did she end up being hired by our company when she wasn't even comfortable talking to a random person.

"Thanks." she mumbled, still not looking into my eyes.

Then the server arrived with the order. He placed it on our table and went away after collecting the money. I pushed the plate of rotis towards her and she stared at me confused. This time she looked into my eyes. "That's for you. Mom asked me to make sure you have something for lunch. I assume you haven't had anything still." I said.

"No, I mean, I-" she stammered. "Okay." She nodded and then started eating. I tried to interpret her body language while she was busy gulping the roti. Being in the field of managing people, I have learnt to read the person's state of mind through the gestures. She fumbled with the glass of water, then the plate, then with tearing the rotis. I understood she wasn't used to attention.

When she was done eating, I handed her my mobile and asked her to call mom. And the very next instant her face broke into wide smile as she called my mom's number.

"Aunty, I made it to the company." she screamed in joy startling me. I wondered if she had any multiple personality disorder. I mean, few minutes ago she told me that as if it didn't matter to her and now she was jumping in joy telling that to my mom. I don't think I would ever be able to understand the bond she and my mom shared.

"Yeah. Okay aunty." She said and paused "He is here." She added and gave back the mobile.

"Yeah mom?" I spoke into the mobile.

"Armaan, I will be back in 20 minutes." She said. "Did she have her lunch?" she asked curiously.

"Yeah, she just had rotis." Riddhima looked up at me as I said that. "Why don't you ask her yourself?" I said slightly irritated, I don't know why.

"No that's fine. Now behave well with her. Bye" she said and cut the call, while I stared at it baffled.

Neither of us was ready for a general conversation so I started talking to her about general management, finance, marketing strategies and about her other electives. She talked with keen interest which pleased me. I mean, it's rather rare to find girls taking very keenly about management and finance.

The day was quite interesting till then. I am not interested in making it more than it already had been. So I let it be and talked to her as if we were two business clients. Putting an end to our discussion, my mom came back from her lectures and we gladly left for home.

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In the night, after dinner, I went to my mom's room casually and found her sitting on the bed resting her back against the bed post with her legs stretched. She was reading some novel that she didn't look up at me. I went and lay down beside her with my head in her lap. I so yearned for this. There is something quite unique about this. I don't know I seek solace in mom's lap whenever I was disturbed. Now I am disturbed about the emotional bond my mom shared with Riddhima. It would leave her in a lot of pain when Riddhima decided to move out of our home when she gets her job.

Mom kept the book aside and massaged my scalp as I closed my eyes.

"Mom, how did you meet Riddhima?" I asked out of blue.

"Muskaan introduced me to her two months ago. She was her classmate and best friend. Riddhima had been in search for an apartment to live before that. So when you came up with an idea of paying guest, I told Muskaan the same and she brought Riddhima to me." My mom told smiling down at me. "Why do you ask that?"

"No, it's just-" I shut my mouth when Riddhima barged into the room. And my eyes widened at the sight of her. Unlike her previous bed clothes, she was wearing a woolen gown that reached upto her thighs, leaving a large part of her long legs bare. I had to admit, they were smooth and flawless and not to forget quite seducing. My eyes were fixed on her or rather her legs for a second before I looked away when I heard mom speaking.

"Oh Riddhima. Come in." Mom invited her in when she hesitated looking at me.

When she took two steps ahead, I found myself looking at her body again. And the next moment, she followed the direction of my eyes and her eyes popped out. The next moment she ran out of the room mumbling that she would be back.

"What happened to her?" My mom spoke to herself.

"Why did she come in the firsthand?" I asked her back.

"It's her place daily before sleeping."She told me pointing at her lap.

"Now that I am here, she had to realize that's it's my place." I told her sternly.

My mom laughed at me. "Why are you suspicious of her?" she asked as if reading my mind.

"I don't know. I don't trust her yet. I just met her in the morning." I defended myself.

"She is a good girl Armaan. You can trust her. She loves me as much as you do." She said calmly kissing my temple. "And I love her too."

"I trust you if you say so." I replied.

Just then Riddhima came back into the room. This time she put on a sweat pant beneath her gown. I was embarrassed. She might have caught me staring at her. May be she realized that her dress was way too short to be standing infront of a guy. I guess she forgot that I am home.

"I just came to say good night, aunty." She mumbled her voice a little above a whisper. She kissed my mom's cheek and then moved towards the door after my mom kissed her back.

"Good night Riddhima." I said on an impulse. I don't know why I did that. May be it was just to cover up my stupid action before. She didn't look at me. She whispered a good night and ran out of the room.

"I guess she is scared of you." My mom remarked laughing.

"I am sure she is." I said and got off the bed. "Good night mom." I kissed her cheek and left her room.

As I lay down on my bed, my mind was still struck around the thoughts of mom and that stranger. Well she appears like a stranger to me who somehow sneaked her way into our lives. Unknowingly I drifted off to sleep thinking about her, the stranger.

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Luv

Sushmita

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