Saturday, 15 August 2020

part 8 : Khushiyon ka Intezaar

It has been two months ever since my first day in this house and lots of things have changed. I completely changed myself and my behaviour. I was successful in what I had said.



I guess armaan has forgotten that someone else also stays in this house along with him. I don't know whether I should be happy or sad. Happy because I was successful in letting him feel that no one stays here other than him and this wasn't new for me I had done that before too with papa.





Ever since I was born, I never knew I would have to make people believe that I never exist in this world or rather their lives.



But this time it was bit difficult, with papa even if by mistake I use to come in front of him nothing use to happen but I am scared to come in front of armaan. I don't know why but I don't want to come in front of him even by mistake.



I make sure that I use kitchen he is not around. I joined my office back though commuting is a big problem as earlier I use to live in the main city so travelling wasn't a problem but now that I live in NCR travelling has become a problem. Every day a cab comes to pick me up.



Sad because during these two months I realised how lonely I am. I have no one beside me.



I was glad that armaan was back to living his old life, his life with his friends and his love. Wish I had someone to love me, to ease away my pain, my fear, my loneliness. Armaan and his love always use to roam around meet for movies, I know this because accidently I heard his few phone conversations with his love.  I never asked armaan her name I don't know why but for me I never wanted to know her name.



Like every day I was using kitchen for making my breakfast as anytime cab could arrive. I was feeling bad and guilty of not telling or rather taking his permission for joining back the office. No matter how much I try to tell myself that I have no one and I don't need to take anyone's permission but the truth was he is my husband and I need to tell him if not take his permission.



I was about to step out of kitchen when I collided with someone and that someone was none other than armaan. he was shocked to see me may be because he didn't expect me here at this time. Usually by this time I leave for office but today I had to go late as there was a farewell function for people who were retiring.



"Aap ab tak office nahiin gayi" armaan asked. I was shocked to hear this he knew I had joined the office but how?



"vo mien vo apko kaise pata ki I joined back" I asked while stammering a lot in between and also feeling guilty that I hadn't told him.  Don't know what he must be thinking about me.



"Mom ne bataya" he said casually while smiling.



I looked at him and then realised how he came to know about my job. During these days I use to talk to ananya aunty as I have to unite armaan with his love and for that I need to develop a good rapport with his mother.



I didn't know what to say or talk, I was tongue tied "sorry mujhe apko bata dena chahiye tha vo mien, vo mien ghar par bore ho rahi thi bas isi liye socha ki office vapas join karlu"

I don't know why I was telling him I am not answerable to him but still felt like telling him. No matter how much I want to change the reality but I know I can't change it he is my husband and I am answerable to him. He should know that what I am doing. I looked down feeling bad.



"Hey its ok apko sorry bolne ki zaroorat nahiin hai or vo apko haath pe chot lagi hai kya" he said. I looked at him with totally shocked expressions, he noticed it? I quickly hid my hand in my dupatta.



Before I could say something my phone started ringing. I picked it up. It was my cab drivers phone to inform me that he has arrived. I sighed in relief as now I wouldn't have to tell armaan how I got injured.



"Vo meri cab aa gayi hai mien chalti hoon" saying that I started walking towards the door but armaan's words stopped me from moving further.



"Riddhima khana toh kha lijiye" armaan said, I smiled he won't stop caring and turned.



"aap kha lijiye mien office ki canteen se kuch kha loongi" I said and walked out of the house along with my purse.



I had changed completely I had become more workaholic than before. For me being workaholic meant forgetting all my problems all my fears. When I came back home as usual the house was locked I took out the keys and opened the house. I again closed it with the keys so that armaan doesn't have to ring the bell and feel the presence of someone else in the house.  I went towards my room after preparing a coffee for myself and some food so that I don't have to come out of the room once again. After eating something and drinking coffee I took out my diary.

Dear Diary

It seems like ages that I have written something. Pata hai diary other than you I have no one to share my feelings. Pata hai diary I changed my mobile number so that no one means no one can contact me especially rahul and muskaan. miene kissi ko bhi nahiin bataya ki I changed my number even armaan or anybody from his family. I talk to ananya aunty either through office phone or residence phone but never through my mobile. My mobile number is only with few colleagues of mine whom I know and can trust that they would never disclose my number to anybody be it armaan or rahul muskaan. because I know rahul and muskaan would try to find my new number as now the previous one doesn't work and they will surely contact in my office so I had given my number only to few people who would never disclose my number. Pata hai diary miene kabhi nahiin socha tha ki life main mujhe kabhi itna akela pan mehsoos hoga but I guess I deserve it kyunki shayad mien achi ladki nahiin hoon shayad papa sach hi kehte the mien apni mom ki deadth ki zimedaar hoon or mujhe life main kabhi khushiyaan nahiin milni chahiye. Per mien kya itni buri hoon diary ki khushi ke ek pal ke liye tarasti rahoon? Kya mien sach main khushiyaan deserve nahiin karti? Pata nahiin diary bhagwaan ko mujhse kya problem hai har baar sirf dukh hi dete hain khushiyon ke pal aate nahiin ki dukh pehle aajata hai. pata hai diary mujhe promotion mila hai aaj per meri kismat dekho na khushi share karne ke liye koi hai hi nahiin. Yahan koi aisa nahiin hai jisse mien apna keh sakoon mujhe pata hai diary tum ho mere saath or ek tum hi toh ho jo mujhe samaj sakte ho lagta hai sab bhool gaye hain ki riddhima naam ki ek ladki bhi hai jo insaan hai jiske seene main bhi dil dhadakta hai vo bhi udaas ho sakti hai usse bhi khush hone ka adhikaar hai. meri life main jo aata hai sirf dukh deke jata hai ab meri life main koi nahiin ayega mien kissi ko aane nahiin doongi siwaye tumhare diary ab sirf tum bache ho meri life main.  Please mujhe Akeley chodkar mat jana. Bye diary I have to go now.



I closed my diary and kept it back. I heard few voices means armaan was here along with his friends and may be with his love. I closed my eyes as after writing the diary I was too emotional and tears were continuously rolling down from my eyes. I went to the washroom so that nothing is audible to armaan and then cried my heart out so that later I feel bit lighter.
............................
I don't know what I was doing here I remember crying in the washroom when suddenly there was a knock on my door. When I had opened it, after washing my face, I saw armaan was standing there with his friends. He told me that today was his loves birthday and they are going out to celebrate it and want me to join in. I was about to say 'no' when everyone shouted 'please'. I don't know why I agreed for such thing, we are here in the disco and I am badly missing rahul and muskaan.



"Hey riddhima would you join us on the dance floor" atul asked me. I looked at him and then armaan who was sitting next to his love.



"I hate dancing its ok you guys go and enjoy" I said while plastering a fake smile.

"Riddhima please" anjali insisted.



"Nahiin anjali please don't force me I actually hate dancing" I tried to refuse politely.



Thankfully she nodded in understanding and then all the couples left for dancing. I was sitting alone when suddenly my eyes fell on rahul and muskaan.



Seeing them I wasn't shock dancing and going to disco was their habit and most of the time I had to accompany them as they used to blackmail me. I lied to armaan and others that I don't like to dance but the truth is I love dancing. I enjoy dancing it's the only thing which I like to do when I am sad. Seeing them infront of my eyes after two months I feel like hugging them and going back to the life I was in before the marriage, though it too was full of pain but at least I had my friends beside me.



But then if I go to them I will have to tell them everything, the truth of my marriage and then they will feel guilty for not trying to change my decision on marriage plus what I have decided it is better if I don't go in front of them.



I had to leave this place immediately but then I had come along with armaan and his friends so before leaving I had to inform armaan and his friends. I stood up and walked towards the dance floor, making sure rahul and muskaan don't see me.



"Hey riddhima finally you changed your mind" anjali asked me.



"Nahiin vo uumm I just came here to say that I am going back home" I hadn't finish when armaan spoke "why do you want to go now we'll leave together after sometime"



Hearing him I smiled and said "it's just I am feeling suffocated haven't been to disco before so just want to go back and you guys enjoy. Don't worry about me I'll reach home safely".



Saying so I left the place not giving any one a chance to stop me and plus I don't know why I said I'll reach home safely because I know it doesn't matters to him neither he will worry about my well-being. This mere thought that there is no one to worry about me brought tears in my eyes. I didn't want anyone to see those tears so I left the place as quickly as possible.



Finally I managed to reach home, only I knew how tough it was for me to get an auto at this hour of night. This gives me a feeling that I actually have no one in my life to help me I am alone. I had no more energy left to cry so I went straight to my room after locking the door with keys and slept.



I woke up early morning and followed my normal routine. After preparing the breakfast I was about to enter my room when armaan's voice stopped me.

"Aap kal raat araam se pohch gayi thi" armaan asked.


I looked at him with shocked expressions. I was not used to people asking me or rather showing their concern for me. It was all new for me till date no one has asked me if I reached safely or not. Rahul and muskaan used to drop me home so there was no chance of them asking me if I reached safely.



When I didn't say anything he continued speaking "vo miene apka phone try kiya tha per pata chala ki apne apna number change kar liya hai I was worried that whether you reached home safely or not"



Seeing his concern I said "mien araam se pohch gayi thi vo aap bura na mane toh kya mien apse kuch pooch sakti hoon". When he nodded his head I continued "vo miene galti se sun liya tha ki apke business main koi problem thi vo solve ho gayi"



I didn't look at him at all because I knew I would either see anger or hatred as it's his personal space and I myself had told him that we are not friends so it means I have no right to ask him. "Hain ab sab theek ho gaya hai" armaan said which brought me to reality and I smiled in return.



"Ab mien apse kuch pooch sakta hoon" armaan asked when I was about to leave after hearing everything was solved.  I looked at him and nodded my head so he continued speaking "vo kal miene apke haath main chot dekhi thi ab theek hai and apne phone number kyun change kiya"



I was numb for a second he is still worried for that "huh hain vo theek hai or number change karna pada koi option nahiin tha" I said and I knew he was confused hearing me but he isn't my friend that I should tell him every detail.



I don't know why I was feeling something wrong is going to happen and why wouldn't it happen I was crying yesterday so something wrong will definitely happen. I was yet again proved right, armaan's words proved that whenever I cry something bas is on its way.



"vo mom ka phone aya tha vo yahan kuch din rehne aa rahi hai" armaan said and I immediately asked him "kitne din".

"vo teen din" he replied instantly.


I nodded my head in agreement. It means I would have to act like a dutiful wife and daughter in law which I was happily escaping for past two months.  I looked at armaan and could see he was hesitating in speaking something I sighed because I understood what he wants to say.



"Mien apna saman apke room main shift kar doongi teen din ke liye" saying this I looked at armaan who was shocked hearing me, his facial expressions were conveying this.



Vo apko problem to nahiin hai" armaan asked nervously and I replied immediately with a smile "nahiin" saying so I left for my room.



The day passed quickly, today I came back home early because I had to shift my things in armaan's room. I shifted my stuff and was about lie down on bed when the door ball rang. Today I had forgotten to lock it with a key so I went and opened the door.



I was shocked to see ananya aunty standing along with a nervous armaan. I understood why he was nervous he must be sthinking whether I shifted my stuff to his room or not. Armaan looked at me and I blinked my eyes assuring him that everything is fine.

I saw him sighing and then i touched ananya aunty's leg after which she took me into a hug after breaking the hug I moved aside and let ananya aunty come in. the room in which I was staying ananya aunty will be staying there. we were sitting in the drawing room  and chatting.
"I was missing you both so I thought why not spend three days with my children" ananya aunty said.


Me and armaan hardly spoke we were either smiling or saying yes or no. finally we retired to our rooms, I had already made my bed down and without any talks I lied down on the bed.



I was about to close my eyes when I saw armaan bit tensed I stood up and walked towards the window where armaan was standing.



I didn't know whether I should keep my hands on his shoulder or not. I chose the latter and said "vo aap pareshaan kyun hai? Kuch help chahiye?"  Armaan looked at me and sighed.



"vo kal hum sabne milne ka plan banaya hai per ab mom ghar per hai toh lagta hai plan cancel karna padega" armaan said with lots of helplessness.



"Apko cancel karne ki zaroorat nahiin hai" I said. He looked at me with confused look.



I smiled and said "don't worry aap kal jaa payenge apko kuch cancel karne ki zaroorat nahiin" saying so I went and slept.

 ................................
 (NARRATOR'S POV)



The sun rose and so did Riddhima. As soon as she woke up she looked towards armaan and it reminded her off her promise.



Riddhima thought "pata nahiin mien kyun armaan ko pareshaan nahiin dekh sakti, promise toh kar diya hai pata nahiin mien nibha bhi paongi ki nahiin"



Riddhima started thinking of few ideas. After thinking a lot she thought "pata nahiin armaan ko yeh idea pasad ayega bhi ki nahiin, kahiin vo gussa na ho jaye isse"



Riddhima stood up and quickly freshened up and left the room. She walked towards the kitchen and found ananya already there. riddhima smiled then sighed and walked towards her.



"Namaste aunty" riddhima said and then bend down to touch her feet. Ananya gave her blessings and then hugged her.



"Ab tumhe mujhe aunty bolna band karna hoga kitne time se keh rahi hoon mien yeh call me either ma or mamma ab armaan ki tarah tum bhi meri bachi ho samjhi"



For a moment riddhima thought she'll finally get a mother and mother's love for which she was craving for years. But then her smile faded as soon as reality stuck her and she realised that mothers love, affection and care isn't in her destiny.



She nodded her head meekly and said "mamma vo mujhe apse kuch baat karni thi"



Meanwhile armaan woke up though quite late than his usual time. He was getting ready for the office in a hurry thinking that he is late thats when his eyes fell on the bed which was on floor and then he was reminded that his mother is in the house. He then remembered he had taken an off from work today not because he wanted it but because his mother had asked him to do so. Like always, he had agreed to his mother's wish.



Armaan came out of his room and saw riddhima and his mother were sitting on sofa and were happily chatting.



"Good morning mom" armaan said to gain their attention and then went and sat down infront of them.



"Armaan tum tyaar nahiin huye" ananya asked seeing him not dressed properly.  Armaan gave a confusing look to ananya and she chuckled. "riddhima tumne sahi kaha tha armaan bhool jayega"



Armaan looked at riddhima and she forced a smile.



"Arey budhu tujhe aaj riddhima ko bahar le jana tha na uske kissi kaam ki vajay se ab jaa jakar jaldi se tyaar ho jaa varna late ho jaoge tum dono" ananya said while smiling.



Armaan looked at riddhima and she blinked her eyes saying to agree with her. Armaan nodded his head and went to get ready. After few minutes armaan came back all dressed up



"Aagaya tu chalo ab jao or jaldi ana ok" ananya said and both armaan riddhima nodded their head in agreement.


Armaan and riddhima left and sat in the car. There was a complete silence in the car.
Riddhima wanted to clear few things with armaan so she spoke "vo apko bura toh nahiin laga ki mien apke saath aa rahi hoon? Vo aunty maan nahiin rahi thi toh mujhe yeh bahana banana pada"


Armaan looked at riddhima and saw her playing with her dupatta and her face showed tension, 'May she is scared of my reaction' armaan thought.



Armaan smiled and said "aap itne tension main kyun hai? mujhe bilkul bhi bura nahiin laga infact I am thankful to you for your help. Thank you helping apki vajay se mien aaj bahar jaa paa raha hoon"



Hearing armaan riddhima smiled and sighed. Armaan started his car and again silence prevailed in the car.



Suddenly armaan realised something and said "vo hum sab movie jaa rahe hain mujhe pata nahiin tha aap ayengi isi liye apki ticket umm vo".



Riddhima smiled as she understood what armaan was trying to say "its ok mujhe kabab main haddi banne ka koi shauk nahiin hai aap movie enjoy kijiye apni lover ke saath"



Armaan instantly replied "nahiin mien or vo akele nahiin dekh rahe vo poora group hoga apki ticket arrange karne ki koshish karonga"



Hearing armaan riddhima thought 'sab matlab sirf armaan or unki lover nahiin ja rahe yeh thoda weird hai'. Keeping her thoughts aside she said "nahiin please itni takleef mat kariye mujhe vaise bhi movie dekhne ka koi shauk nahiin hai aap log movie dekhiye mien aas paas ghoom loongi"



"Lekin kaha" armaan asked immediately.



"Kahiin bhi aap fikar mat kijiye" riddhima replied.



"Per teen ghante aap kaise I mean aap bore ho jayengi"



"Nahiin hongi mujhe adat hai" riddhima said and armaan looked at riddhima with confused look.



Riddhima smiled which gave armaan an indication that she wouldn't explain its meaning. They reached their destination and in the entire car journey armaan and riddhima were silent. Though armaan wanted to ask what she meant by "mujhe asat hai" but knew he wouldn't get an answer so he stayed quiet whereas riddhima was lost in her thoughts, thinking how she would spend three hours alone. Armaan parked his car and both of them stepped out of the car.



"Armaan aap jaiye mien apko three hours baad yahiin miloongi ya phir vahan pe jo caf hai vahan miloongi" riddhima said and armaan nodded his head in agreement and left for the movie.



Riddhima saw the retreating figure of armaan and tears dropped from her eyes and riddhima quickly wiped her tears and left to spend three hours alone.



Three hours passed away and armaan was coming out from the theatre with his friends when he bumped into someone and quickly mumbled a 'sorry'.



The person looked at armaan and said "armaan aap". Armaan looked at the guy and gave a confused look.

The guy saw the confused look on armaans face and said "lagta hai aap hume bhool gaye mien rahul or yeh muskaan hum riddhima ke friends hai"
Armaan then realised he had met them on their wedding day. He smiled and said "oh yeah now I remember how are you?"



Without replying to armaan's question muskaan asked "riddhima kaha hai? kaisi hai? apko pata hai two months ho gaye usne hume contact nahiin kiya apna number bhi change kar liya aap yahan movie dekhne aye hain na toh vo bhi ayi hogi na apke saath kaha hai vo"



"Muskaan calm down let armaan speak" rahul said while stopping muskaan in between.



Before armaan could say anything a girl came from behind calling armaan sweet heart and hugging him. rahul and muskaan looked at armaan with confused expressions.



Armaan forced a smile and said "apko riddhima ne kuch nahiin bataya".



Rahul and muskaan shook their head in 'no' and muskaan asked "kya nahiin bataya"



Riddhima was sitting in one of the silent corners of the caf and was lost in her thought. All her pains were flashing infront of her and she didn't know where her life is going to take her. She was so much engrossed in her thoughts that she didn't even realise that the time was over and she had to meet armaan near the car.



Riddhima felt few eyes on her and this brought her back to reality and she looked up. Riddhima was shocked to see rahul and muskaan with armaan. she immediately stood up and starred at her friends.



"Riddhima tune hume itna paraya kar diya ek baar bata toh sakti thi" muskaan said. riddhima's eyes widened with horror and she looked towards armaan who blinked his eyes conveying he told them everything.



Riddhima started shivering and mumbled "apko aisa nahiin karna chahiye tha"



Saying so riddhima ran from there not giving anyone a chance to speak. Silence prevailed after riddhima ran from there.



"Armaan do us a favour bring riddhima here again tomorrow she is not alright" rahul said.



"What do you mean she is not alright" armaan asked instantly.



"Probably you will never understand anyways rahul I guess you are right I too feel riddhima is not alright may be she is you understanding rahul what I am trying to say" muskaan asked and he nodded his head in 'yes'.



Armaan saw them with utter confusion.


Srishti

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