Thursday, 18 February 2021

Last part: Escaping the hell- story of a young British Pakistani girl,

  I jerked up from my comfy sleep as the truck came to a sudden halt.

Did we get caught or what? These were my first thoughts.

"Riddhima wake up, we're in Lahore." Ya allah tera laakh laakh shukar. I thanked my god, that I finally reached my destination.

________________________________________

"are we at british embassy?" my happiness knew no boundries.

"yes meri jaan" my heart skipped a beat. What if armaan really stays with me forever?  Stop dreaming madam.

As soon as we jumped out of the truck, my legs froze to its place. There stood my dad and uncles with my would be Buddha husband. I don't even know his name. And I don't even want to know.

I clung onto armaan so tight that my nails dug deep into his arms. My family was standing right in front of me with rage and furiousness in their eyes and guns in their hand. Before we could run, I saw him shooting in my direction but he missed by an inch and the bullet hit the truck instead. The noise of bullet created a racket and before he could rectify his mistake, 4 guards from embassy came running and held his arms. Armaan pulled me out of that area. We saw the police van coming and taking them away.

I hugged armaan and cried in his arms. All my problems are gone now. Gone forever. But what if armaan also goes? I will be alone now.

____________________________________________________-----

I sat in the british airways with armaan. We're going back now. I testified against my family and I guess they'll rot in jail now. Good! Even my mum will be free and my sisters won't have to go through what aaliyah my big sister had gone though. I am going to start a new life in Britain now. And I want armaan in my life. I am going to stay in some kind of hostel until I am 18 and don't start earning money. I know life won't be easy but now I am a free bird.

In the plane I met armaan's all friends. They were awesome, just like armaan. But still no one can take my armaan's place. No one'

"so Riddhima do meet us. It was so nice meeting you", muskaan, one of armaan's friends came and hugged me. I didn't want them to go. I never felt this lonely before. We were all at the airport and bidding adieu. They all slowly went away and I sat on one of the seats on airport with a heavy heart as a lone tear escaped my eyes. Armaan went away. Forever. I hid my face in my palms and started to cry.

"you said you'll never leave me."I whispered to myself.

"and I told you to trust me", my head jerked up and blinked furiously to clear the blur. There he was kneeling down in front of me, just like he was when we first met.

"armaan." I whispered as he touched his forehead with mines. Tears were flowing furiously through my eyes.

"Riddhima" he looked intently through my eyes. Goosebumps appeared at the back of my neck

"Don't go "I whispered finally poured my heart out, but still not fully.

"I would never leave you. I went to get my bag silly" he said wiping my tears. A relief spread through my heart. That loneliness disappeared with armaan's presence.

"Promise?" I acted like a small child but that time I so needed that reassurance badly.

"Pakka promise, acha ab asli naam to bata do" I fell back on my seat laughing.

_____________________________________________________

3 MONTHS LATER

"RIDDHIMAAA ARE YOU READY OR NOT. GOSH THE PROM WILL END WHEN WE'LL REACH THERE. YOU'RE TAKING THE PISSS" armaan shouted and banged on the bathroom door. Gosh this guy I tell, not even I bit of patience. I mean like come on am only hour late. Not much!

"AM COMING. STOP BANGING MY DOOR SO HARD. THE HOSTEL PEOPLE WILL KICK ME OUT IF YOU BREAK ANYTHING! HMPH" god we're just going to a prom, not to moon!

It's been 3 months now. My life has been so weird. I mean there is time when I hang out with armaan and his mates and I feel over the moon. But then there comes time when I feel so lonely in this 1 bedroom kitchen hostel room. Sometimes I wish that I just tell armaan what I feel about him but I don't want to lose his friendship. I can't even put in words how badly I fell in love with armaan over these past 3 months. He's everything I want in a life partner. But does he like me in that way as well?  It's so confusing and that's where everything goes weird. Today armaan's college has arranged a prom night for all the leavers and armaan has asked me out as date. I bet he did that so I don't feel lonely and come to the party. He's just too good for me. Am simply a mere 15 year old runaway! He deserves better.

"then you can come and stay with me" he joked but sometimes his jokes sound so serious.

"dream on moron" I laughed but only I knew how fast my heart was beating that time.

I came out of the bathroom wearing a strapless red dress which reached up till my knees. Before my parents never let me wear anything less than a full sleeves top and loose jeans and now am living just how I always wanted to live. The government provides me money every week and if I need anything expensive, then armaan buys it. he could just read my eyes; take this dress for instance. When I was secretly admiring this dress in the shop, I don't know when armaan saw me and next day I found it on my sofa as his gift. One more thing I got to learn about armaan is that he hasn't learn to take a no for an answer.

"you're looking enchanting Riddhima" he always finds new adjectives to describe me.

"you're not looking bad either" haha I can never praise him properly

"god! I so need to buy you a dictionary for your poor vocabs"

"whatever"

We both reached the prom night and linked up with the rest of the gang. Later armaan asked me for a dance stealing me from everyone.

we swayed slowly to the soft tunes playing in the back ground and armaan's intense stare was doing wonders to me.

"what are you looking at" I asked blushing. I just couldn't take his gaze

"you. You still don't believe in love?" are we having this topic again? Sigh

"why do you always start this topic armaan"

"because you don't get it"

"what?" I asked looking confused.

"we met like people meet in fairytales. I charged in and rescued you. We both spent a night of our life together escaping from that village of yours. We promised each other to stay together always. You still don't get it Riddhima" he took a frustrated sigh. OHMIGOD IS HE TRYING TO SAY?

"armaan do you l..love me?" I finally gathered confidence

"D'uh genius! We were meant to be together"

"armaan" I whispered as I felt tears welling up in my eyes. All these days I wasted thinking over stuff whereas armaan was already in love with me. What a dim wit I am ughhh

"forget it Riddhima", he started to go when held his arm and pulled him back with a jerk. Before he could say anything more, I kept my lips on his and gave him a full mouth kiss. That kiss held everything, my love, my promise, my stupidity and my strength. he broke the kiss and held my face into his hands.

 "First say what I am dying to listen"

"I love you" oh lord it felt so right.

"I love you too" with that he kissed me back. I couldn't believe my ears. He loves me too. Oh my god I was dying to listen to those words from his mouth.

"never leave me armaan. I'll die without you", I said breaking the kiss. He kissed my forehead.

"miss Riddhima who just got a new life. Will be my girlfriend? Then after a few years my wife? And then after a few years the mother of my kids and then after a few yea'" I locked his mouth with mines before he could finish his long rant.

"you talk a lot"

"do I take that as a yes then?" he asked grinning.

"uhmm sochna parega" I said laughing as he hugged me back.

"too bad, you don't have an option here"

"I love you"

"I love you too meri jaan. Acha ab to asli naam to bata do. You didn't even tell me at the airport" he said pouting.

"awww" I laughed pulling his cheeks

Fairytales do come true sometimes' mines did!



-Saniya


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