FF - The Desperate Kingdom Of Love
FF - The Desperate Kingdom Of Love (By Arnavkhushi1) (Thanked: 20 times)
So I simply love Arnav and Khushi and Asad and Zoya to bits…and they both are very close to my heart…and I am also currently writing a FF – Oh Yes, That’s Love which starrs the four.
I woke up this morning , with this new thought of a new story line in my mind….and ofcourse….if any of you have read my work….you would know that I am so much in love with writing about the two of my favorite jodi’s together…This FF shall also be starring – Arnav, Khushi , Asad and Zoya.
This FF shall probably be a little darker than the one I am currently authoring…however…there will be a lot of shades to it…I hope you all enjoy it…Thank you for your time…And I would also like to Thank all my readers for their love..support and encouragement and motivation…for every story is incomplete without its readers.
I thank you deeply, and hope you will continue to shower me the same support and love.
The Desperate Kingdom Of..Love.
Arnav Singh Raizada – 28 years Old. A successful businessman- Founder of AR Industries – his flagship launch being AR Designs…and as Success bore to new Heights…he ventured into new segments and diversified…to become one of the most successful names in the country. He is ruthless and arrogant for the world…because of the dark past that changed everything Ten years ago.He loves his family.He has a elder sister Anjali…and a younger sister Zoya…in the two his Life resides….he lives in the hope that his mother would wake up one day from the tortourous sleep of Coma- which she had slipped into ten years ago. He hates with intensity and there is only one motive he has in his life right now – Destruction of Asad Ahemed Khan and his family – the past that that happened 10 years ago had given birth to a enimity and rivalry which had its roots dug in very deep.
Zoya Singh Raizada – A bubbly charming and a lovely…full of Life girl, 23 years of age…She was now living in London or rather been sent there for her studies as she had turned 18..by her family.
She loved her family to bits….she missed her father…whose tragic death ten years ago…had changed everything in their lives…as her mother had slipped into Coma. She loved her elder sister Anjali – who was more like a mother to a growing up her…and she looked upto and loved her elder brother Arnav to bits. She was so proud of him…because it was because of his struggle and hardwork..and his sacrifices for the family – that the rest were in a happy place today. She could do anything and everything for him.
Rest of the Raizada characters are pretty much the same…Anjali Raizada is happily married to Shyam ..but she lives in Shantivan.
Akash, payal, Mami and Nani characters are pretty much the same.
Kkusum Raizada – Arnav. Anjali and Zoya’s mother…who has been lying in Coma since ten years…and is also the sole witness to the tragedy that took place ten years ago that destroyed the friendship and happiness of the two families – Khan and Raizada.
Asad Ahemed Khan – 28 Years old.A successful businessman…Founder of the Khan Industries – his flagship launch being Khan constructions…but as he gained success ..he ventured into new segments…and is one of the most successful names in the country.The other reason why he is so aggressive in his line of business is because he always makes sure that he isnt a step behind and at par with his arch rival- Arnav Singh Raizada. He is arrogant and ruthless and very tradional man with strong beleifs in his culture. But he loves his family to bits…his mother Dilshaad is his weakness along with his younger sister Khushi. Not a day passes when the tragedy of the past doesn’t come to haunt him…of the day ten years ago when everything changed and he lost his father and the youngest sister Najma.He hates with Intensity so deep that his sole purpose is to take revenge for what happened to his family all those years ago..and he will only sit in peace once he has destroyed everything Arnav Singh Raizada has ever had and everthing that he has dreamed off.
Khushi Ahemed Khan – A very happy go lucky, lovely and a bubbly girl, 22 years of age.Her family is her strength and weakness.She loves her mother Dilshaad to bits and looks upto her brother Asad as a father….and she knows that her brother had shielded them of pain and beared the dark times all alone.She was proud of him and she had never ever refused to a thing he has said.She was sent to London to study as she was 18..and has been there since…but she visits home every holidays.
Rest of The Khan family includes Dilshaad and a few more relatives that shall be introduced as the story progresses.
They say…Love conquers all, but will Love ever blossom in the hearts which have been cast under a spell of hatred and revenge….and even if it Does….will Love be strong enough to live past the web of hatred, revenge , lies and the boundaries of religion…Will Love finally be able to write the Destiny..which was always meant to be??
What will happen…when the four hearts will come face to face in the Desperate Kingdom of Love??
Will Love Finally be able to Conquer it All?
The Desperate Kingdom of Love - Chapter 1 (By Arnavkhushi1) (Thanked: 29 times)
Chapter 1 – The Silent Truth
Almost everyone in our Lives we know atleast talks about or tells us or rather lectures us about the importance of Boundaries in our Lives…about the limits that perhaps we should never cross…and about how we should always stick to them….but isnt it ironical…That No one ever told the truth in the first place…the truth that doesn’t make a noise but exists silently in our being…the truth that in the World of the heart…the word Boundary doesn’t even Exist in its otherwise complicated dictionary of emotions…It just never has…and probably it just never ever will….
6.30 AM – @Barkat ( Khan’s Mansion)
Asad Ahemed Khan…woke up with a start as his alarm clock went off…and got ready in his workout clothes and made his way down to the ba****t of his home.He swtiched on the lights to the otherwise dark room…and shut the door….he switched on the soft music on his Ipod which was stationed on the speaker base…and started his day as usually with his workout routine….the only time in the day he had for himself…because most of the rest of the day would be burried in Work…and once he was home…he would spend that much needed time with his mother…and then talking to his younger sister Khushi..who was studying in London…and then at night….the memories of the past would come to haunt him…haunt him…until sleep took over….memories of how Life used to be ten years ago…
He increased the speed on the cardio as he ran and remembered the death of his father and his little sister Najma….and how happiness left him that day…as he lost so much in that one day- His father…his sister….his best friend…the family he had grown up with…whose friendship was always talked about by people….
He brought his run to a stop as he reminded himself that all of that was ten years ago..when he was 18…and a different person all together.And it didn’t matter now…because the truth of his Life was too bitter to ignore – Today he hated…he despised the best friend he grew up with…he hated him to the core…and no memory of the good old past could outlive the hatred he felt for Arnav Singh Raizada..today…
Right then he rememebered something..and so he called his secretary and asked him book his tickets for the flight tonight to US…his construction company had just won a contract…the contract which AR had been bidding for too…he was happy that he had outsmarted Raizada this time…and had backed the deal that would generate millions and also bring a lot of goodwill to Khan Industries.
He felt a sarcastic smirk on his lips as he imagined the face of his rival…and his reaction to his defeat.He had never come face to face with him in these Ten Years….in the sense they had never spoken a word to each other….but the cold war existed…and it was always in the air…even at the business conferences and award functions they had spotted each other in.
He finished his workout a while later and walked up to see his Ammi already preparing breakfast.He smiled as he walked upto her and wished her goodmorning.
Asad – ‘ Ammi…I forgot to tell you last night..ill be leaving for US tonight….we have backed the deal…and I am really happy that we have…and ill be flying via London…but its just going to be in transit…and I did not tell Khushi about it too…do u think shell be mad that I ddnt stop to visit her first? I mean she didn’t even come home for holidays this summer….’
Dilshaad smiled as she made her son sit down on the chair besides her and said – ‘ Well no Asad…Khushi will not be mad…she understands her bhaijaan has a lot of work….and secondly she did not come because its her final year right ..she is just finishing her MBA…u know she is busy with her dissertation…and once that finishes…she will be back for good….and honestly I cant wait too..I miss her so much too…this house is eerie with the silence without her’…but she stopped in midsentence as she saw her sons face harden in pain and so she diverted the topic and said – ‘ anyway…congratulations on the deal…is this the one for Khan designs?’
Asad replied sipping his coffe – ‘ no ammi…this is the construction deal….the one in Boston…’
Dilshaad’s face hardened as she remembered what her son was talking about as she had seen it in the news and so she whispered softly – Asad…I know you …and I can see that you are not happy that u won…you are happy that you defeated Arnav…isnt it?
Asad put his cup down in anger as he looked up at his mother – ‘ ammi….please…lets not go there again…’
Dilshaad said desparately –‘ how do u not expect me too Asad…its been ten years…cant the two of you let it go already?He was like a son to me…wasn’t he a brother to you too Asad?’
Asad got up angrily as he answered – ‘It’s the Past ammi…and no..i cannot let this go….its because of his family…that we lost abbu and Najma…’ as he tried to hide the pain in his voice..
Dilshaad replied with tears in her eyes – ‘ I know…we lost a lot Asad….but he lost his father too…and he blames us for Kkusum’s condition till date ‘
Asad , now unable to control his anger – ‘ that’s not true…’
Dilshaad sighed – ‘ exactly…that’s what im trying to say…when will this blame game ever end Asad…it will only when the two of you will stop this war…and talk things out…please listen to me…’
Asad looked directly into his Ammi’s eyes and he answered – ‘ Ammi ask me anything else but not this….please…just don’t…Somethings don’t ever end….and this war like u say it is one of them…accept it …just like I have …and stop torturing yourself in the hope that everything will be fine one day…because it never will….because I wont let that happen…as Long as I live’…and he walked back to his room…and started to pack.
Dilshaad walked into her room with tears in her eyes as she looked at the picture frame of her husband and whispered brokenly – ‘ I wish I knew what exactly happened all those years ago Rashid…I have already lost you…and Najma…and I fear…that this enimity will only bring us harm…..I miss Anjali…I miss Kkusum…I miss Arnav…I miss seeing the little girl..Kkusum’s youngest daughter…the one I had named…Zoya…she must be all grown up bynow..just like our Khushi,..who Kkusum had named…I miss how Life used to be Rashid...’ And she hugged the frame tighter as she wept helplessly wondering that was she really torturing herself in the Hope..in the hope that everything will be alright one day…and a shiver ran through her spine as she remembered her sons words…
Shantivan- 8.00 am
Arnav Singh Raizada returned home from his morning run…and he thought that it had really helped his anger and frustration that had been engulfing him since yesterday ..when his company had lost out that deal to Khan.
It angered him to the core…..not because he lost…because he knew…that it was a part of the game…since AR constructions was barely a few years old….unlike Khans which had been in the business for 9 years now…but it angered him still…that he lost to Asad Ahemed Khan…and hatred instantly surfaced again…as he crossed his mother’s room….and he entered to see the Nurse by her side…and he asked her if everything was alright to which he got the usual response like he got every morning…that all her vital parameters were fine…but there was no movement…and he fought tears of pain…as he watched his mother sleep in Coma for one more day….since the past ten years….the only movement that had ever happened was in her fingers…once when Zoya was by her side…when she was visiting home in the holidays last summer…and they had all felt a ray of hope…only to be disappointed as the doctor reconfirmed that Kkusum Raizada was still in Coma.
He walked back to his room….with hatred ruling his mind….as he looked at his bedside table where a picture of his father and mother lay….and the picture looked at him smilingly…and so he hugged the picture as he remembered the memory of it…the day it had been clicked….it was on at his 18th birthday party…or rather…not just his….Asad and his…the families…had celebrated it together…because they were only a week apart…Asad was like his brother since they had grown up together…just like how Zoya and Asad’s sister were like best friends at that tender age of 13…He remembered how all of them used to dote on Najma…the youngest in their group for she was just 7…and was she adorable….he and Asad had named her Tamatar…and just as that memory came…pain seared through his being as he shot back to the present….Asad was no more a brother or a friend…he was now a enemy….his father was dead…his mother was in Coma….and Najma was dead.
Just then he saw his sister Anjali walk into his room and he quickly kept the photoframe aside and he smiled – di…aap….you should have called me…’
Anjali smiled as she brushed the hair on her chotte’s forhead and handed him the glass of juice – how was your run Chotte?
Arnav smiled as he sipped his juice – great..di..as always…so have u packed already?
Anjali sat next to her brother and said – ‘ No Chotte…infact that’s what iv come to talk to you about…your jiju has come up with some work in Singapore…and he wants me to come along…so I was thinking….but what about London..i Mean?
Arnav instantly spoke – ‘ Di…you should go….with jijaji…hes been so understanding all these years…so I will not be selfish…and don’t worry about London…I will go…’
Anjali asked – ‘ You will?
Arnav nodded – ‘ yes I will…di…I know…that Zoya has to go for that course she signed up for the summer at Harvard…and I must say I am proud of her di….not only did she fnish her MBA well…but also is handling our London branch for AR designs so well…altho I wondered a year ago…why she wanted to work there and not here in the first place…but now…when I look at what my little sister has become..i am proud….im sure…even maa would be..’ and he choked on the words due to the emotion that surfaced up..
Anjali smiled sadly – ‘ I know what u mean Chotte….i am so proud of her too..im glad we sent her away…and u know that’s why I was going there…because of this deal she has been working on…but now coz of summer school…its all clashing…’
Arnav nodded – ‘ I know….its alright….ill go…its just three weeks isnt it? And anyway I think I haven’t been away for a while…will be like a break…and I guess I will also meet the real estate companies…we had been scheduling for…itll be good for AR constructions…since we just lost…’
Anjali sighed– Lost that deal to Asad..I know….its all over the news…its caused the share prices of Khan industries to rise up a little’
Arnav nodded curtly – ‘ I know….that was always his forte anyway…just like design is ours…and we have bagged every single deal internationally beating Khan designs anyway’
Anjali asked slowly –‘ Exactly…so why did you have to enter his forte anyway…and why did he have to enter yours’
Arnav looked at his sieter straight in the eye as he answered dryly – ‘ You know it isnt just Personal anymore di…its much more than that and….its complicated di….please stay out of it..’
Anjali sighed – ‘ But for how long will this continue Chotte? For heavens sake…..its been ten years….you know it kills us….this enimity …this rivalry…you two of been holding on to….i cant believe there was a time when he two of you were inseparable brothers….just imagine…one day if Maa wakes up….how will she feel…Asad was like a son to her too…’
Arnav sat up angrily as he answered – ‘ he was di..he was….and Maa has been silent for ten years di….just stop it di….stop wondering if everything will ever get back to what it used to be ten years ago…because it just never will…everything has changed….everyone of us has changed…
Anjali tried to calm down her brother as she said – ‘ Ok baba…calm down…im sorry chotte…ohk now why don’t u do ur packing…and’
Arnav nodded controlling his anger – alright…and ill just ask Aman to get the hotel booked…
Anjali – ‘ no no…why will u stay in a hotel chotte? Zoya’s appatment is there na…stay there…its serviced….and I know she isnt going to be there…but im sure shel be angry if her brother doesn’t use her place and stays in a hotel instead…’
Arnav thought for a minute as he said – ‘ ohk I will speak to her…but what about the keys? I guess shes leaving tonight…and ill only reach after shes left..di this is weird…ill stay at the hotel’
Anjali smiled – ‘ No chotte you will not….and just ask her to drop the keys with someone at the building…her friends or something..you can take it from them…I remember you saying that u met a friend of hers who stays in the same building…the last time you visited…whats her name….Khus…’ but before she could complete her sentence she heard her brother answer deep in thought – Khushi Gupta…but I’v only met her once..actually twice.’
Anjali smiled – ‘ Yeah..so what..I am sure she would do Zoya a favour…why don’t u just pack…I will speak to Zoya..’
London – 6.30 PM
Khushi sat on Zoya’s bed as she watched her pack…and worked on her dissertation side by side…just when her phone rang and she saw it was her brother…so she quickly picked up her phone and gestured to Zoya that it was from home…and walked towards the small kitchenette of Zoya’s studio apartment and sat on the chair as she spoke –
Khushi – Bhaijaan….how are you and ammi? Honestly I know you will be perfect since we just skyped last night…
She heard her brother laugh on the phone as he said – Khushi…sab thik hai..alls good…I forgot to tell u last night…im flying to US tonight…for a business deal…and its via London but in transit…so I wont be able to visit…but maybe on my way back…you aren’t angry are you?
Khushi’s eyes widened but she brushed the thought away – ofcourse not bhaijaan…I know u have a lot of work…but visit me on my way back…ohk…surely..I miss you…I haven’t seen you in so long…’
Asad smiled as he said – I miss you too..cant wait for you to be back home…ohk now..i gotta board…ill speak to you later…ohk?say my Hi to Miss farooqui…and U take care…ohk.’
Khushi smiled as she answered – Sure …you too bhaijaan…take care’..and she put down the phone as she walked back into Zoya’s room…and she saw Zoya busy looking for something and so she asked – what is it?
Zoya frowned – nothing..my file….’ And she rumbled through some stuff and found out…so she smiled as she said – Thank god…I just found it…who was it?Ammi…hows she?
Khushi – ‘No…it was bhaijaan…hes was just telling me that hes going to US tonight…and he says Hi….but yes ofcourse Ammi is good…I spoke to her last night…and hws everyone else at home..?’
Zoya sighed as she sat down next to her and whispered softly – ‘ everyones good Khushi…maa is still..u know…no improvement..but how sometimes I wish I could just speak to Ammi…and..’
Khushi nodded – I know what you mean….i feel so too…Anjali di has always been an elder sister to me…I miss our good old times so much…when…’ she choked on her words but she continued –‘ Im glad I ran into you here Zoya..last year…or else another year would have gone in my wish to meet my best friend…’
A Year before –
Zoya had just finished he MBA at the London School of Business…and she had just submitted her dissertation…but she was in no mood of going back to Delhi….and so she had spoken to her brother and Anjali and deceided to work for the AR branch…in London for a while…her brother had cribbed a little….but Anjali had convinced him to just let Zoya just be…
One evening…when she was returning from work….she saw the door to the studio apartment opposite her’s open…and she was glad that someone had finally moved in…on the same floor…and so she walked a little in to see…who it must be…
She stumbled across a few carton boxes and just when she was about to call out to see if anybody was there…a picture frame in the carton box caught her eye…and shock reeled through her…as she recognized the picture…the picture of the 13 year old her hugging her best friend Khushi…and she picked it up to see if it were really what she saw …and just when she saw a girl walk up to her and so she smiled as she asked – Hi….Im Zoya…I live across the hall…I was just seeing…who it must be..welcome to the building…and you are..?
The girl smiled as she answered – I am Khushi….Khushi Ahemed Khan…and I just enrolled in for my MBA at London Business School…I didn’t even like the student accomadation back at Cardiff..so this time I thought…ill just rent a studio appt…and so….’ But she stopped in midsentence as she saw the girls eyes widen and so she asked – Zoya…whats the matter…did I say something wro..’ just when she saw the girl get out a photoframe from behind her as she whispered – Zoya…zoya singh raizada…khushi…’
Realisation dawned on Khushi…as tears of happiness flew from her eyes as she instantly pulled Zoya into a hug – Zoyaa…you….here…..I mean..look at you….its been so many years….’
Zoya hugged Khushi back as she said – I know…9 years…but not a day had passed that I hadn’t remembered my best friend…’ and she took Khushi by the hand and took her to her studio as she showed her the same picture on her collage…’
Khushi whispered – Unbeleivale….for us to bump into each other like this…I mean…but what are you doing here..I mean?
Zoya smiled through her tears – I just finished the course you are beginning..’
Khushi smiled but frowned at the same time – so wait…are you like leaving….i mean…’
Zoya smiled as she said – No…khushi..im not…cmon lets go grab a bite…we have 9 years of our lives to catch up on…’
Zoya smiled as the memory of how she had stumbled across Khushi a year back as she said – I know…me too…and I cant believe that we have held this as a secret from our families…until now…because I cant even believe what will bhai’s reaction be…’
Khushi nodded trying to control her heartbeat at the mention of his name– ‘ I know…me too…even bhaijaan…’
Zoya smiled sadly – I know….Asad…hes always been like that now hasn’t he…remember how he used to trouble us when we were young…and then get all angry about it when ammi scolded him…..and remember when I told u all those years ago…that ur brother khushi was my first crush….he hasn’t changed much Khushi on that note. Of his anger...I know he hates us so much’….she felt tears brim up her eyes – so much has changed…khushi…so much…bhai has…asad has…I miss how we all were one big happy family Khushi….and now..look we have to hide the very fact that we are almost living together….this is the only thing I have hidden from bhai till now….coz I will not loose u again…somewhere deep down I do not understand the reason for this war anyway....’
Khushi nodded – ‘ I know me too….we all lost so much….but anyway….they must have their reasons right…sometimes I wonder…don’t they think of it…too…of how they were best friends more like brothers…do we need to live in this hatred and loose each other too…’
Zoya nodded sadly – I know…I wonder so too’ and just then her phone rang…and she gestured it to Khushi that it was Anjali di and she picked it up and spoke to her for a while…and when she put down the phone worriedly..Khushi asked – what happened?is everything is alright at home?
Zoya nodded nervously as she explained – yes at home is..but here it wont be’
Khushi looked at her confusedly – what..what do u mean? I know ur leaving tonight for summer school and yes ill miss you..but its just three weeks…and..’
Zoya explained – no khushi…but three weeks of you going to have be Khushi Gupta..again..’
Khushi’s eyes widened as she asked – what…???
Zoya looked at her nervously – Bhai is coming…for probably two-three weeks…to take care of the project id been working on…but due to summer school…remember Di was going to come…but I guess there is a change of plan…and bhai will be staying here…di has asked me to leave the keys with you..’
Zoya saw Khushi’s mouth open up in surprise as she comprehended whatever she had said in silence as she looked at Zoya helplessly – two three weeks….Zoya..how will i….i mean…you had..i know it was in an instant that time..’
Zoya smiled as she pulled her into a hug – ‘ honestly add this to be the only lie iv told him….i cudnt help it Khushi…u know…it was too instant….when he visited unexpectedly..and he saw the two of us together….i had to instantly just introduce you as Khushi Gupta…because well Gupta is perhaps the first thing that came to my mind…’
Khushi smiled as she pulled back – ‘ its ohk….ill manage…I mean I had done the same hadn’t I…when bhaijaan had showed up three months back…and introduced youto him as Zoya farooqui…..’ but she frowned as she said –‘ that’s the only lie…iv told bhaijaan…but I wonder…if the two ever find this out…’
Zoya rolled her eyes as she said – they will never…trust me…I mean..bhai hes alws too preoccupied with work to even comprehend that you are Khushi Ahemed Khan- the sister of his once best friend- now enemy…and..’
Khushi grinned – and you are not going to be living with bhaijaan across the hall anyway…..but remember just like I taught you last time….if u ever bump into him ever…’
Zoya laughed as she recalled the catch phrase she had used for the entire day..three months ago…when Asad Ahemed Khan had come to town to visit his younger sister..and she winked and said – I remember Khushi…and if I ever bump into him…I shall live up with ur side of the story… and exclaim all around him…Allah Miyaan …whats wrong with you…Mr.Khan..’ she winked as she returned to do her packing.
A few hours Later –
Zoya finished with her packing and had her bags ready..as she pulled Khushi into a hug – Ill miss you so much…here are the keys…and all the best…just be careful around him…and all will be ohk..trust me…and u have any problem…just whts app me…’
Khushi smiled as she said – Yeah don’t worry…now…go….and come back soon…ohk…’ and she walked Zoya down to the taxi and bid her bye.
Zoya sat in the cab…and it was only then did she think of him…the one she had never been able to get out of her mind…ever since shed seen him three months ago…had come face to face with the changed him..after ten years..she had forgotten all about the first crush she had had on him when she was 13…because ofcourse everything had changed….their families had cut out all ties…and she had never dared to ask her brother…anything….it was only a year ago that she had finally met Khushi…who always was like a sister to her…even Najma…she wiped her tears silently as the memories of the past came to haunt her…she knew Khushi cried several times in the memory of Najma…and her father….just like she did…in the memory of her father…and her mother…who lay in Coma since all these years….but they both always tried to be strong in front of the other…and give each other the strength silently…and because her bond with Khushi had always been close to her heart..that she had lied to her brother….who she otherwise always looked upto…and her mind thought of how her brother would react…if he ever found out…that the sister he doted on..her mind was being haunted by the memory of his enemy…ever since she had spent a day with him and Khushi…three months ago.She knew…that’s where…her boundaries lied…things were already very complicated…but as she browsed her phone..and saw the picture..of Asad and Khushi she had clicked from her phone…from his last visit…her heart ached….and somewhere deep down she prayed that she never met Asad Ahemed Khan again…because she feared…that if she ever did…her heart wouldn’t understand the meaning of the boundary any more…the boundary that yelled…that she could not think about the man..her brother hated…that she wasn’t allowed to feel for the man…her brother despised.
Khushi shut the door to he studio apartment as she placed her keys , along with Zoya’s on the table and lied down on her bed …deep in thought….as she felt her heart wander one more time…just like it did every night..since the past six months…since she had been saved by a accident that otherwise would have taken place…on the busy streets of London…by him……she did not recognize him then…but she had felt her heartbeats go haywire….for the first time…and she thought she would never meet him again…and then fate struck as she met him again…the same day…to know that he was Arnav Singh Raizada…her brother’s once upon a time best friend- now enemy and rival…and Zoya had instantly saved the situation…as she had introduced her as Khushi Gupta. She cursed her heart as it revisited the memory of how she had found it difficult to take her eyes off him…and control her heartbeat….for the two days he had been around….infact when he Left…she was happy..that her heartbeat had gotten back to being all normal…but then everytime when she would feel her heart thinking of him…she would google his name…and read all about the flings he had…and ofcourse his rivalry with Asad Ahemed Khan…so that her heart could understand the boundary her mind wanted to lay down here.She could not think of him…not only did her brother hate him….he was also bent upon in destructing her brother…who was like a father to her….and more than that…he would hate her too…if he ever found out who she really was…and so with those thoughts…she warned her heart again and again…to not think of what could never be.She tried to get some sleep…but deep down she felt a fear engulf her….a fear that now he was going to be living right across her….and she was going to have to pretend to be Khushi Gupta and not Khushi Ahemed Khan…she feared…crossing the boundary her mind had set…she feared falling for the man….she knew her brother hated.
Fate smiled to itself as it said addressing the two friends that sat next to him – Its me on the job girls….its me…im sorry but it all has to start with a lie…or it never will start…right?
Destiny smiled as she said – Right…it wont…anyway…I don’t mind…you are setting up my work platform…and I am thankful to u for that…you are doing the hard work..’and she winked playfully.
Love smiled as she heard the two and she said – Calm down my friends….this is just the beginning….we have a long way to go…but I must thank fate…in this story….hes been the one at work mostly for ten years in a row….’
Fate winked as he answered – Like I always say….whats meant to be…is just simply meant to be…and u know I have a way of finding my ways’
Love smiled as she looked at her two companions as she asked – btw wheres hate??
Destiny frowned as she answered – hes gone for swimming with revenge..but seriously why are u remembering him now?
Love answered calmly – well because hes a part of me…and u know that…all emotions are…’
Destiny nodded in agreement – yeah I know…anyway whts the plan now..’she asked looking at the two..
Love smiled as she answered – The meeting first?I guess..and for anyone who says…that the three of us don’t get along…hopefully will know one day…that although we do have our differences at times…the three of us -Love,Fate and Destiny do work together…almost always?
Fate and Destiny grinned as they replied to Love in unison – Yup..Almost Always..it is…
The Desperate Kingdom of Love - Chapter 2 (By Arnavkhushi1) (Thanked: 17 times)
Chapter 2 – A Strange Wish…for A Strange Impossibility?
We all must have often observed or noticed in our Lives…that how mostly everything that we do…or we plan to do…is simply classified in our Minds into two columns – One column of the Possibility – the possible things that we have done/ are doing/will continue to do in our Lives..its a simple classification…often makes our Life easier.
But then ofcourse there is a catch – when comes into the picture the Other column – The column of Impossibility…we know it is an impossible classification…far away from our reach…but what happens when we feel like wanting to do the Impossible…just so as to challenge it…and probably Hope..and dare to dream to convert it into a Possibility one day….and what really happens when we start getting drawn towards an Impossibility?? Do we Dream….do we lead ourselves on..?? Yes..we do. We all do it just sometimes…due to the Enigma it reflects…we all do Dream the Impossible…leading ourselves to the path where we find ourselves face to face with – A Strange Wish…for a Strange Impossibility.
Asad finally shut down his Laptop …and finished the presentation he had been working on…for the clients in Boston….which he was to meet on Monday..and he looked around the business class cabin to see mostly all the seats flat as he noticed that everyone mostly was sleeping…and so he thought he should get some sleep too..as he checked his watch..barely only three hours were left for Landing.
He got up and made his way to the washroom…which was towards the front of the cabin…and it was on his way back towards his seat..when he thought he saw a familiar face…on the first seat…of the opposite side of where he was seated…but she was sleeping…and so he looked again…so as to confirm it was really who he thought she was….and he felt a smile curve up his lips…as he walked back to his seat…not wanting to disturb his sisters sleeping best friend in her slumber. He settled down in his seat and he thought of why hadn’t Khushi mentioned this to him on the phone when he spoke to her…that Miss Farooqui was flying to US too?? And why hadn’t he spotted her? And then it dawned on him that she must have boarded in on London…and taken her seat first…unlike him…who was the last one to board the flight..because he had utilized the time in Transit to freshen up at the Lounge.But he still wondered…what would she be doing here as in going to Boston anyway for? She was a year older than Khushi and had already finished the course his sister was almost finishing…could it be that she was heading there for some work?? She did say..she was working…but he didn’t know exactly where.
As he tried to get some sleep…he felt his mind wander about to the first time he had met her…Miss Zoya Farooqui….when he had gone to visit Khushi…three months ago….and he felt a smile gather up his face as he recalled how her funny antics had caught his attention….well ofcourse…he hadn’t spent much time with the two..barely two days….but he didn’t know why…she seemed familiar to him at first…and he had brushed the thought away wondering that she was just a stranger whom he had just met…how could she seem familiar? And he had noticed in those two days…that for Khushi…she was a wonderful friend…and he was happy and content…knowing that Khushi , his little sister had somebody who genuinely cared for her in a different country…where she was away from her family.And maybe that was probably one of the reasons…why he was fond of Miss Farooqui…because she was a good friend to his little sister…and secondly maybe because…she was funny….and amusing…and intelligent…and breathtakingly beautiful.There were times in that day hed spent with Khushi and her..when shed made the two of them crack up and laugh about anything and everything….and he had to give that to her…beacause he knew it was a difficult thing to Crack him up…and she had managed to do that pretty well and then there were times…when hed almost thought hed seen her steal glances at him once in a while…and then get back into a deep serious thought…..which made him unable to figure out what the hell was going on in that mind of hers. And then hed left…and he hadn’t spoken to her ever since except for a few byes and hi’s through Khushi on phone…and that was it.But he wondered quite a few times since he had met her….that how was it that she had managed to catch his interest in a way no girl/woman had. He was 28…but yes he was very tradiotional when it came to women…and so he had never indulged in any casual affairs…or flings…because he classified it as Nonsense…and also because nothing except for work and family occupied his mind anyway. But she had caught his attention….hadnt she? And he had felt himself being taken aback…by that smile..the first smile she gave him nervously when Khushi introduced her to him…and he had almost kicked himself for thinking about /or being drawn towards his little sisters best friend…she was 23….a year older to Khushi…but still almost 5 years younger to him, and exactly that thought was the same one he fought…when hed felt himself noticing how beautiful and attractive she was, and then ofcourse he remembered…as he was leaving….hed noticed her just nervously say Bye…and walk off just like that….without saying a word…and so he shrugged every thought that was on his mind…and left…but Zoya Farooqui continued to remain a Mystery to his mind…everytime he thought of her. He felt Sleep finally ready to take over…and he slept wondering….if he would find himself smiling again…when he would hear her exclaim – Allah Miyaan whats wrong with you Mr.Khan?
Arnav landed at Heathrow and checked his watch…it was 6.30 am….and he got through the rest of the formalities…and changed his simcard to the London no…he used everytime he was in London…and just as he switched his phone on again…he received a text message …and he opened it only to have a smile on his face as he read it –
‘ Hey Bhai…Welcome to London! I hate the fact that I missed seeing you – damm summer school dates! Anyways..I am boarding my flight…hope u had a nice flight too…since you will read this once u switch on your London no…and yes I have left the keys with Khushi…you remember right? So take it from her…and just so that u have to call her coz I know you will be reaching early morning ..i have also sent you her number. Will call as I land – Zoya’
As Arnav got into a cab…he saved his sisters friend no...and then he thought of whether he should call her now…and tell her that he would be there in 30 minutes…to collect the key….and just as he was about to dial the no…he stopped thinking it was quite early morning..and it wouldn’t be correct to wake her up now…so…he just thought it would be better…if he called once he had reached the building itself. Khushi…you remember her right?- his sister had mentioned in her text – well ofcourse he remembered her…how could he forget that innocent and mesmerizing face…..the one that had haunted him for several nights…in the past six months…since his return from London…and he closed his eyes…and he felt his mind wander to the memory of how he first met her – he had come to visit Zoya to suprize her…and he was stepping out of Selfridges at Oxford Street after he finished buying her a gift and it was right then..he spotted a girl who had just stepped onto the street with her attention to the phone…without noticing that the pedestrian sign was red…and he had immediately leaped forward and pulled her back with her hand...just in time ,saving her from being hit by the speeding car.
She was scared…and shocked from what had just happened…and had her eyes shut….and somehow the look she had on her face managed to mesmerize him….as he held her close…and asked her softly – if she was alright..?? And it was only then did she open her eyes a few seconds later and nodded…pulling away from his hold…and thanked him softly , and she just disappeared into the crowd…before he could say anything.It had surprised him ofcourse…but he had shrugged the incident aside..beacuse ofcourse there would be no way…he would be seeing her again.But infact there was a way…and he could not believe the co-incidence as he had walked into Zoya’s building towards her studio flat …when he saw the door to her sisters room open…and she sat there…deep in conversation with the girl he had just saved.....only to be introduced by her sister – to her best friend Khushi Gupta.She had smiled at him meekly and thanked him again…as she explained to Zoya what had happened.He had been visiting only for two days…so he hadn’t got much time to spend with Zoya…except for the Dinner..to which Zoya had gotten Khushi along as well…it was then…did he come to know that she was still doing her MBA…and was even a year younger to Zoya…which made him feel surprise at his own self….for being attracted to someone..who was perhaps even younger than his little sister…and then moreover..he was dating Lavanya those days…so he hadn’t indulged in any direct conversation with Khushi…because even though she was beautiful and had caught his interest…she was way too young …innocent and naïve…for him to think of her as anything but his little sisters best friend.Infact he had been quite shocked…when at times he had closed his eyes in the nights…only to get haunted by her innocent face…but he had shrugged it away ofcourse.
Right then the taxi came to a halt..and he broke away from his chain of thoughts…as he made his way inside the building…into the elevator…with his luggage…and pressed the 7th floor button….he was tired…and sleepy…he was glad it was a Sunday….and a few seconds later…the elevator door opened to the seventh floor…and he dragged his suitcase to a stop infront of 701…Zoya’s appt and walked across towards 702…and knocked…but when no one answered…he took out his phone…and dialled the number his sister had sent him.
Khushi heard her phone ring through her sleep…it was Sunday…and it was 7.10 am…why would anyone call her so soon? But she opened her one eye to check who it was…but when she didn’t recognize the number…she almost put her phone aside..to rush back to sleep…just when a thought came to her mind and she sat up straight immediately in her bed…as she picked it up to hear a voice…that sent similar shivers all over her.
She quickly got up…rushed to her bathroom…brushed…washed her face…all at the speed she didn’t know she was capable of working at…she quickly opened her hair which was tied up in a braid..and ruffled her hand through them…and then rushed back into the room…put on her trach suit jacket over the spaghetti..and walked to the door…with the keys in her hand…as she tried to calm down her heart beat…as she finally opened the door to see the man that had been haunting her dreams standing in front of her…looking incredibly handsome in his rugged casual wear…smile at her as he said in the voice that gave her goosebumps – Hi Khushi…I apologize for disturbing you so early…
Khushi instructed her heartbeat to calm down as she managed to smile back nervously – Hi…no that’s alright….how are you? Hope the flight was good..
Arnav nodded as he answered – yes it was…and im good…just tired…
Khushi immediately smacked herself for making him stand in the doorway when he was so tired , so she spoke hurriedly – Oh im so sorry for making u stand here…’ and she immediately walked ahead towards Zoya’s room and opened it and held it open as he walked up to the door and she handed him the keys – here…if u have any problem…just let me know..
Arnav took his luggage and took the keys from her hand and smiled – thanks Khushi…I appreciate it…’and he walked in and settled the luggage in the hall…as he walked up in the kitchenette…and opened the fridge to see no bottled water and so he turned only to see Khushi almost turning to leave, but he asked nonetheless – water?
Khushi immediately turned around and walked in and explained – well usually mostly me and Zoya have the tap water…its safe to drink….but since I guess you don’t…wait let me check if I have some’
Arnav watched her quickly sprint across to her studio…and she was back in a minute with a big bottle of Evian as she said – Im sorry…that’s all I have..’ as she handed him the bottle.
Arnav poured himself a glass of water as he sat across on small chair and said – so how have u been?
Khushi smiled and answered – Im good…just working on my dissertation…should be done in a couple of weeks…and then I head home for good..’
Arnav – ‘that’s great..’
Khushi thought that she should leave , so she said – ‘ well ill leave you to get some rest and get settled..’ and she walked towards the doorway when she heard him say – Khushi? And she turned…
Arnav smiled - thank you’
Khushi just smiled and walked across to her room…and shut the door…and kneeled down against the door…trying to calm her heartbeats again…she had just spent five minutes in his presence and everything about him had already started to mess up with her mind…how was she going to be able to function normally around him for three weeks….and just then she remembered…that it wasn’t normal anyway…because normally she was Khushi Ahemed Khan…and not Khushi Gupta.
Arnav was tired and so did not unpack completely and changed and got into bed….and just as he closed his eyes…the scene of how Khushi had opened the door to him…looking as mesmerizing and innocent as always..flashed in his mind….she hadn’t changed at all…in the past six months…her smile was still the same…she had that same innocence on her face…she was still amazingly beautiful….and he literally scolded himself for thinking of her…as he reminded himself that she was 22…way too young….for him…and he deceided to keep that thought in mind….and before he could think anything else…sleep took over.
Zoya waited at the Luggage belt impatiently….as she adjusted her watch to the time in Boston – 7 am…and just as she did…she realized it must be noon in London…since Boston was five hours behind..and so she thought of calling her brother to know if he had settled in well…and just as she was about to , she heard a voice behind her…a voice that shocked and surprised her at the same time as she heard him say – How are you…Miss farooqui?...and she turned immediately knowing who it was because there was only one person on this planet who called her that…and she found herself face to face with Asad Ahemed Khan.Hadnt she just wished for not meeting him ever again a few hours ago…and here he was standing right in front of her…looking as amazing as he always did…and she managed to smile as she said – Mr.Khan…aap? yahan ? how come?
Asad smiled as he walked up and stood next to her and answered –‘ We were on the same flight Miss Farooqui..’
Zoya’s eyes widened in surprise as she used the pretended catch phrase and answered – Allah Miyaan…whats wrong with you Mr.Khan? really? Then why didn’t I see you?
Asad felt a smile creep up his lips just like he had imagined would…when he heard her say those words and he answered – ‘ Because I only spotted you much later…when u were asleep…and just as we landed…you were off before I could call out to you’
Zoya - Oh….so how have u been?, she asked..deperately wanting to do something about the way his gaze was affecting her..
Asad – Im good…here for work…a new project…would be here for maybe two three weeks…and what about u?
Zoya – ‘ Well..im good to Mr.Khan…here for summer school at Harvard..three weeks’ and just then she spotted her suitcase and bent down to pick it up….but Asad was too quick for her as he picked it up and adjusted it on her trolley and answered – thts great…Miss Farooqui…I wonder why Khushi didn’t tell me this..’ and just then he spotted his bag and he took it and adjusted it in his trolley…as they both started walking out.
Asad - so where are u staying?i remember u saying u don’t like student accommodation?
Zoya’s eyes widened in surprise as she asked – u remember?
Asad whacked himself mentaly for saying that aloud and he covered up – yeah..I mean..Khushi doesn’t too…how is she ? I miss her…
Zoya – Well don’t worry…shes great….just working on her dissertation..shes excited to go back home too..Mr.Khan,,,and my classes shall be in the business school..which is in the Allston neighbourhood…across the Charles River…so iv just rented out a studio appt there…for a month…and what about you?’
Asad – ‘ I had my secretary book a service apartment for me too…although I don’t remember the name..wait let me check’ and he browsed his email toc heck for the confirmation…and he answered – ‘ Riverbend..it is ‘
Zoyas eyes widened yet again…as she genuinely question was this fate?or just a coincidence as she asked – Riverbend on the Charles??
Asad nodded – exactly….’
Zoya felt herself laugh as she said – Now I know why they say it’s a small world…I have booked mine there too’
Asad didn’t know why but he felt really happy with this new knowledge and he thought he will figure out the feeling later,as he saw her walk towards the taxi stand and he asked – where do u think you are going…Miss farooqui?
Zoya looked back confusedly as she answered – the cab?
Asad smiled – I like to have my way around…I have rented a car…and since our destination is the same…why don’t you join me too?
Zoya nodded as she followed him silently as his words brought out the worry in her mind yet again – ‘our destination is the same’…only if he knew that she wasn’t who he thought he was…..and she looked at him as they settled in the car and gave him a weak smile….busy in the thought…that why did it all seem so wrong and right at the same time?
London – 1.30 pm
Khushi sent in the mail to her personal tutor for the dissertation attaching the copy of the work she had done so far…and she was really happy about whatever she had done so far…she checked her watch to see it was 12.Ever since Raizada had walked in a few hours ago and messed up with her head…she was having a tough time distracting herself to think of things other than him…she had barely been able to sleep…and so she had gotten ready three hours back and had been working on her dissertation since then…and just then she heard her stomach rumble…she was hungry…she had just had cereal…so she deceided to cook something…just when she remembered that she was supposed to go grocery shopping yesterday and she had totally forgotten….just when her phone rang and she saw it was Zoya so she quickly picked it up-
Khushi – Zoya…how are you? Reached safe? Hows the apartment?
She heard Zoya sigh – Im good Khushi….just spoke to Bhai…hes just finished setllling his stuff…thanks and yes the apartment is good..also looks like im going to have to have to play Farooqui , my friend..
Khushi asked shocked – what ?what do u mean?
Zoya explained everything as she said – Looks like I will be staying with your Bhaijaan…across the hall…Omg this is so messed up Khushi…im scared what if he finds out?
Khushi tried to calm her down as she said – No..he wont don’t worry…its just three weeks…and then no Gupta- Farooqui…we can go back to actually being who we are..’
Zoya sighed – I know…maybe u are right…ill try my best..to not blow it..’
Khushi – Me too…all the best around…just be careful…that’s all…’
Zoya – yeah…all the best to you too…just thinking of getting some sleep…its just 830 am..and im tired..’
Khushi – yeah…u sleep..take care…and keep me updated’
Zoya answered – I will…I miss you so much already’
Khushi smiled as she put down the phone answering her best friend – I know…I miss you so much too.
A few minutes later…her bhaijaan called….telling her most of what she already knew from Zoya….but she heard him nonetheless…and just before she kept the phone down she said – bhaijaan….waise toh I know…zoya can handle everything and herself….but still …since you are there…just watch out for her…please…for me?’ to which she heard her brother reply after a few seconds of silence – I will Khushi..dont worry….u tc ok?
Khushi kept the phone down deep in thought…as she felt her stomach grumble and so she just took her bag and deceided to go out and get a take away or something…she needed fresh air anyway.
Just as she stepped out of her appt…she saw Arnav step out of his…as he smiled walking her to the Lift…and she silently dammed what fate was doing to her here….as she heard him ask – you had lunch?
Khushi – no…was just going to grab a bite…you?
Arnav – nope…was just going to grab a bite too…so whats the closest place to eat?
Khushi answered spontaneously – Nandos…its just a few blocks away…but I don’t know if you will like it…’
Arnav smiled – ofcourse I do love the food there Khushi…Zoya drags me to it everytime im here…so will you join me?
Khushi looked at him surprised for a minute…and she asked softly – you sure?i mean…
Arnav nodded – ‘Yup…and will give me some time to know how my sister has been doing ‘ he lied….because just as hed spotted her walk out the door..looking adorable in the pink sundress..but deep in thought…all he had wanted to know was how she had been doing…because he always kept a track of his sister…and he always knew how she was doing.
Arnav listened to her tell him all about what she and Zoya do..in their free time…as they ate….and he was quite amused….but relieved at the same time that Zoya had found such a great friend in Khushi and so he spoke – Thanks Khushi..
Khushi looked at him confusedly – for what arnavji?
Arnav looked at her in disbelief as he heard her call him that and he said – seriously Khushi? Stop calling me that…makes me feel old…call me Arnav…that’s my name…and thanks for being a great friend to Zoya…’
Khushi smiled as she heard him and she felt her heart flip– well don’t thank me…zoya is a wonderful friend too…shes always been there for me….Arnav’
Arnav smiled as he heard his name escape her soft lips and he didn’t know why he felt as if he had never heard his name sound better…and he whacked himself mentally again….as he reminded himself…she is 22..she is 22..my little zoya’s best friend….and he was deep in thought when he heard her say – Im sorry Arnav..
And it was his turn to look at her confusingly – sorry about what?
Khushi finished her meal..as she answered – I mean…for your break up with …whts her name lavanya..’
He felt surprised as to how would she know this and so he asked – how do u know?
Khushi said nervously – actually Zoya made me read the article…that came on the Times of India…two weeks back…I mean…’ and she hoped he didn’t see the lie in between…because ofcourse it was an article she had read on Google..while she stalked him to mentally remind herself of her boundaries…and she felt in that moment that it was pure irony…because she was sitting right across him…breaking every boundary she had placed for herself…
Arnav nodded as he remembered how media always had a big role to play in his Life and he remembered how his sister was never fond of Lavanya in the first place and he answered – I am sure Khushi…Zoya must have…she never liked lavanya…and honestly u don’t need to be sorry..it was just a casual …..anyway..what about you?are u dating someone? – he asked and he didn’t know why he hoped shed say no
Khushi smiled nervously as she answered– no …well no…im not…’ and she thought she saw him hide a smile..as he heard her..
They walked back and Arnav saw her deep in thought and so he asked – all ohk?
Khushi nodded – yes all is…I was just wondering..i mean…I thought id do some grocery shopping on the way..Tesco is just a few minutes away…so ill see u later then…and do u want anything specific?
Arnav thought for a minute and he answered – well ofcourse I do…but itll be just a basic stock..but it will pile up a lotta stuff…how about u just order it online…isnt that what Zoya usually does?
Khushi smiled as she agreed – yeah..maybe I could do just that…’ and she walked along with him silently…trying to figure out what the hell was her fate upto here?
Khushi quickly entered her studio appt…and asked him to come in…as she quickly went to her room…and hid the pictures of her family….and removed the desktop picture…that she had of Zoya, her and her bhaijaan…from his visit a few months back….and took her laptop out as she sat on the kitchen stool…across his..and opened the webpage to order the grocery…as she ordered whatever he needed as well…and booked the morning 10.00 am spot for delivery as she said –‘ and ill be home only…so ill receive it….’
Arnav looked around her apartment and smiled it was simple…and decorated well…it reflected her…and just then he saw her frown…as she read something on her email…and he instinctively got up to stand behind her and see what it was…just as she turned at the same time and bumped straight into his chest…as she lost balance…but he caught her just in time in his arms..just as she held on to his collar for support….and he watched in awe…that mesmerizing expression of her nervous closed eyes…play across her face…she was so innocent….her face gave her away….and he asked softly a minute later…after he reluctantly stopped himself from staring at her – tum theek ho?
Khushi opened her eyes to see him look at her and she thought his eyes spoke so much….that she felt herself melt…but she straightened awkwardly as she answered – yes…im fine…just that..my tutor…he has me all worried now..
Arnav – why what happened?
Khushi sighed as she explained – well you see…my major is marketing…and so my work is on – Making of an Iconic Brand- the Principles of Cultural Branding…’ and I have included the case studies of all the top brands in my work…like u know..Apple…Coke…Disney…etc etc…but now my tutor says that all that is good…but he wants me to research on a brand…like a proper research with questionnaires and stuff…to see how they adopted the Principles of Cultural Branding….he says itll make my project stronger…but now with only three weeks left…how will I get to do any research…and which company or brand…’ and she sat down disappointed – ‘ iv been working so hard on this Arnav…and now..what am I going to do?’
Arnav thought he didn’t like the disappointed look on her otherwise beautiful face and so he thought for a minute and he answered in an instant – well I could help u a little if u want..as in…you could write on AR..i mean…we are an established brand when it comes to international market in clothing and designer wear…and we have had to make a lot of changes in various countries of operation due to the differences in culture…’ and he saw her deep in thought as if she had zoned into another world..so he said – ‘ I meanits just an idea…Zoya would have suggested you the same probably..let me know if u want any help…you can come by our office anytime incase u want to know anything..’ and he waited for her answer…
Khushi smiled meekly as she answered – thanks Arnav…I mean thts so nice of you to help….ill think about this…and let you know…but I wonder why they write those things about you?
Arnav looked at her for a minute as he asked – write what?
Khushi replied wanting to kick herself for saying that aloud as she covered up once more – you know in all those articles..Zoya tells me about…she complains that the media writes way too much negative things about you….that you are mean…arrogant..and ruthless…’
Arnav fought as smile as he raised a eyebrow – so u don’t think im any of that?
Khushi looked away from his gaze as she answered – well…not now atleast…I mean…uv been nice ever since I met u now…and even before u saved me…
Arnav laughed at the innocent look that gave her away once more as he answered – I am nice to my friends…not that I have many…and my family…and to the people who matter to me….and you Miss Gupta…are Zoya Singh Raizada’s best friend…why wouldn’t I be nice to you?
Khushi felt as if someone had thrown a huge bucket of cold water on her…as his words brought her back to reality – Miss Gupta…and she felt her heart wonder if he would be as nice to her..if he found out that she wasn’t any Miss Khushi Gupta…but Khushi Ahemed Khan…and right then she heard him answer his phone as he gestured to her that he will catch up with her later and walked out towards his studio but not before Khushi had heard what he had said – Aman ..i hope u have fixed my meetings with the constructions here…I will not let Asad Ahemed Khan get away with this win easily…’
Khushi quickly shut the door to her room as she saw him enter his and she quickly walked back to hers…as she tried to understand her feelings that had been erupting within her…ever since she met him this morning…No this was not a good idea…this wasn’t a good idea at all….she knew it from six months back….that her heart wasn’t listening to her anyway as it thought of him despite knowing everything….but today…the few hours she had spent with him…and made her feel wonderful….and happy…and like it seemed right….and just as hed caught her in her arms…and how shed seen him gaze at her intently….flickered a hope that lay deep within her heart….he wasn’t dating anyone as well…and why had he smiled when shed told him that she wasn’t too….what did all of this mean…why was he helping her?? Why?? Was there a possibility that he liked her….NO….she shrugged the thought away…ofcourse not….why would he….she was just a 22 year old naïve girl…not the kinds he dated…maybe he was just being nice to her…because she was Zoya’s best friend…and she felt tears silently fall down her cheeks at that thought as she touched them and reflected – as to why did it pain to think that he thought of her as just that? It was right though maybe…it was safe if he thought of her as just that…and it was better that she maintained her distance from him…but then Why did her her heart wish otherwise….she knew what she hoped for was Impossible…then why did she still feel herself making the strange wish for the Impossible?
Arnav finished his talk on the phone and he saw his elder sisters missed call and so he thought of calling her…and he spoke to her for a while…filling her up on the events of the days…and he heard his sister ask – So hows Khushi? Zoya tells me shes wonderful…and very nice…and she must be…since shes making sure her best friends brother has settled in….
Arnav recalled the few hours hed spent with her and he answered spontaneously – Im happy that Zoya has her around di…and shes right…shes nice and wonderful…
Anjali replied in surprise – what?? What did u just say?
Arnav spoke confusedly – what di…I just said shes nice and wonderful..’
He heard his sister tease him – oh I thought it was Impssible for you to praise any girl…especially not the one u just met..
Arnav rolled her eyes as he said – Calm down di….do not think otherwise…she is nice…that’s it…moreover..shes even younger to Zoya..
He heard his sister reply – Yeah right..whatever Chotte…’ and they spoke for a few minutes before he hung up.
And right then his eyes fell on a picture on his sisters sidetable….a picture of Khushi and her hugging…..and he cudnt help but smile at it…and he felt his mind wander towards Khushi once more…The Impossible was happening here….he was getting attracted towards her…and he should not right? As he reminded himself of her age once more….and just then..the memory of how it felt as he caught her in his arms…a while ago struck him….it felt different…and he frowned at the feeling…because why did he feel that reminding himself of how young she was…wasn’t really working anymore….Khushi Gupta had found a way into his thoughts and mind…and because no girl had been able to do that….he had always seen it as an impossibility…that no girl could affect him in the manner that would surprise him…but in that particular moment as he comprehended what he was feeling….he was not only surprised…but also Astonished with himself.
2.00 PM – Boston
Zoya googled the name of the best take away /home delivery resturants as she was really hungry…and then a thought struck her…and so she walked up across the hall and knocked on the door and saw Asad open the door all ready and so she asked – going somewhere?
Asad smiled – well…no Miss farooqui….just thought of eating something…u know…hunger strikes?
Zoya laughed – Very Funny Mr.Khan….infact…I was just about to order something….so thought I should ask you…I mean…if u want something..’ and she showed him the list of the resturants on his phone.
Asad tried to hide his grin as he asked her to come in and he placed the order and as they waited for the food to come he asked as he watched her look silently into nowhere – all ohk Miss Farooqui?
Zoya broke away from her chain of thought as she answered flashing her smile– yes ofcourse…allah miyaan whts wrong with you Mr.Khan…what would be wrong with me….’
Asad thought there was something amiss but he let it go as he asked – so how have u been Miss Farooqui? Hows work….btw on that note….where do u work exactly?
Zoya tried to come up with something as she answered hoping that he wouldn’t see through her lie – oh..Mr.Khan….at a design company…’
Asad smiled – that’s great…I just started Khan designs three years back…did Khushi ever mention it to you?
Zoya nodded hesitantly – yes…she did…I know…..and so what work have u come for here..I mean what deal…??’..she asked desparately trying to change the topic…
Asad nodded and just then his phone rang…and so he gestured to Zoya..sitting across that the food was here…and he made his way down to get the delivery.
Asad walked back in a few minutes later…as she helped him open up the boxes and they started to eat as he asked – so what was it that you were asking Miss farooqui?
Zoya smiled at him across as she said – your work…as in why are u here?
Asad – Well…we just backed a new deal here..its a joint venture…for a construction project…a residential project with Hammond residential…it’s a big thing..specially we are the first Indian company they have dealed with’
Zoya gulped as she remembered the name..Hammond Residential….she knew her brother had been bidding for this deal too…Asad won means her brother lost…she hadn’t had the time to rack on this…and as she fought the emotions stirring within as she said – Congratulations..Mr.Khan….i mean I know you beat your competitors to this…’
Asad smiled – Thanks..Miss farooqui…not many that I defeated that Im happy about…im just happy about defeating one’, and right then he heard her whisper as she looked at him staright in the eye – happy about defeating just Arnav Singh Raizada isnt it Mr.Khan?
Asad asked confusedly – how do u know..Miss farooqui…?
Zoya immediately as she covered up – woh actually Mr.Khan…Khushi told me…about…and also its really all over news in India anyway..right…who doesn’t know about the rivalry between the Khan’s and Raizada’s..’
Asad nodded as he asked – so what have you come to study as in at Summer school…at Harvard’
Zoya ate as she answered thanking her stars that he changed the topic and so she said – ‘Actually im doing two courses actually- theres one on Cross Border Innovation which is for the first two weeks and then a short one week course on Real Estate Management’
Asad was impressed…he was right about her…she was beauty with brains and he asked inquisitively – But why real estate?I mean I thought you worked for a design company..
Zoya again tried to come up with the right lie…as ofcourse she couldn’t tell him the truth that she was doing that course…so that she could help her brother in AR Constructions and so she answered – well you know…just…Real Estate has always fascinated me..’
Asad – ‘great…let me know if u need any help with that…and I wish I could get Khushi to get some interest in Real Estate too…so that she could help me out at work at Khan constructions…you know now with the expansion…I could do with her help…but then I don’t push her you know….afterall shes so young anyway…so I just let her be..’
Zoya gave him a weak smile as she finished eating and said – you are a good brother…you know ..Khushi adores you…’
Asad smiled – I know..’ and just then he saw that she had some stain by the side of her lips…so he gestured her to rub it off…but when she cudnt get it right…he bent forward…and gently rubbed the side of her lips…gently wiping the stain away…and he couldn’t help but look into her eyes that had gone wide at his touch.
Zoya felt her heartbeat accelerate at the speed of light…as she felt his thumb rub gently against her lips and she stepped back…a few seconds later as she looked around nervously and asked – so youv unpacked?
Asad smiled – yeah mostly…’ and she saw him walk to the sink to keep his dish away..and started to wash it…
Zoya couldn’t control herself at the sight so she exclaimed – Allah Miyaan…whats wrong with you Mr.Khan….i didn’t know you could’
Asad grinned – know what?that I can do dishes? I have lived away from home too Miss Farooqui…infact…I’d left for London straight away after my Grade 10…with…’ and he stopped midsentence and continued after a pause – well lets just say…I know a lot of things…you probably think I don’t’
Zoya felt emotion choke her up as she realized what he was about to say…as she recalled that he and her brother Arnav had left for Sevenoaks School in London…together…when they were 16..and best friends….until they came back two years later….and everything changed…but she asked nonetheless – with who?
Asad looked at her briefly as he answered looking straight at her in the eye and answered – with someone who used to be a friend…
Zoya asked carefully – its Arnav Singh Raizada isnt it? Why do u hate him anyway?
Zoya thought she saw him clutch his fist in anger as he turned around and replied to her calmly – Some things are better not discussed Miss Farooqui…so please?
Zoya nodded silently and she didn’t like the fact that he had gone all tense so she tried to lighten up the atmosphere as she said – Allah Miyaan…whats wrong with u Mr.Khan…you got all serious…’
And just like she knew…he smiled as he answered –Miss Farooqui…’ but she stopped him midsentence..and he looked at her confusedly-
Zoya smiled as she spoke – heres the deal…why don’t u call me Zoya…u know that’s my name….i mean Miss farooqui is all…weird..i mean..it seems indifferent to me..’
Asad walked upto her and smiled – Fine Zoya…but you gotta quit the Mr.Khan then..’
Zoya smiled – All right…Asad’
Just then her phone buzzed and she checked it to be a whts app from her brother and she hid her phone aside as she said – ohk I gotta go now…ill see u later maybe?
Asad watched her walking out and he called out to her – Let me know if u want to have another take away…or actually go out for dinner somewhere….’
Zoya turned to look at him surprised ..as she heard him answer carelessly but with a smile– just so u know…my sister asked me to watch out for her best friend….and like you said…I guess im a good brother’
And before Zoya could say anything…she heard him say something…that made the smile vanish off her lips – it’s a request Zoya…do not mention Arnav Singh Raizada in front of me…ever again..ever?
Zoya answered hazily – yeah…ohk…ill see u later..’
Zoya felt sick in her stomach as she fought the emotions that were stirring up within her….as she replied to her brothers msg that all was well…and that she had settled…and she texted that she would skype with him in a while….she rushed to her room and sat down on the bed..and thought of everything that had been happening ever since she had bumped into Asad Ahemed Khan this morning…she was here…having lunch with the man, almost living right across the man…failing desperately at trying to control the attraction she felt for the man who was bent upon destroying her brother…he hated him so much…that he couldn’t even bear to listen his name…and she knew it very well….and she didn’t know…why…why despite knowing everything…and knowing the fact that she shudnt be in this place…tha…and she shudnt be spending time with him or infact even be talking to Asad Ahemed Khan…because she was not Zoya Farooqui….and she was glad she got him to agree to not call her that…because she felt so weird…as the Lie stood bluntly everytime he even addressed her….the fact remained that she was Zoya Singh Raizada…and despite knowing everything she did know why couldn’t she fight the feelings that were surfacing within for him..And she felt her heart wonder….wonder…that would Asad be talking to her…if he knew who she was…?? No that wouldn’t happen ofcourse…that was impossible….it was an impossibility that he even stood in the same room as her knowing who she really was.And she knew that was the right thing here wasn’t it? It would be just best to stay away from the enigmatic impossibility Asad Ahemed Khan was…but then why did she feel as if she wouldn’t be able to….why did she feel herself somewhere deep down…despite the odds…Wish for the Impossibility..?
As soon shed left…Asad deceided to do some work…but before that he thought of speaking to his Ammi and so he called her –
Dilshaad – Asad how are youuu?have u settled in well?
Asad smiled at his mothers concern – Yes…ammi…im fine…haven’t u slept yet?
Dilshaad – I will now…I just spoke to Khushi….and now u called…u know I cannot sleep until iv checked up on the two of you…right? So hows is it there?you will get all busy tomm on?
Asad – Yes Ammi…I will…but its nice here…oh and do u remember Khushi’s friend Miss Farooqui? I told u about that I met her the last time I visited Khushi…
He heard his Ammi say – Yes ofcourse…what about her? I do remember u saying tht shes really nice…and a good friend to Khushi..
Asad smiled – So I kind of bumped into her here…as in shes here for Summer School at Harvard…staying right across the hall….infact we just had lunch together…shes a nice girl ammi…
He heard his Ammi laugh as she said – Impossible Asad…this is..coming from you..’
He asked confusedly – what is?
Dilshaad explained – Impossible that my son is talking to me…or rather discussing a girl with me…I thought this day would never come…’
Asad – Ammi…calm down….ohk?dont imagine anything different..khushi asked me to watch out for her…so u know..ill just keep an eye on her..’
Dilshaad smiled as she said – I know..you will’
A few minutes later..after he put down the phone…Asad wondered to himself…if what he said was true…that he would only be watching out for her coz Khushi asked him too…and he knew it wasn’t true…because somewhere deep down…hed felt that attraction for her surfacing up again…and he recalled how electrifying the moment was when he had gently touched the side of her lips….she was exquisite…and amazing…and he knew that he was getting drawn to her…and now that she would be living across from him…he just had to wait and see where this went…as he for the first time let his guard off when it came to women….Zoya was different…from the rest he had ever met…and he sighed as he admitted that even he hadn’t known that a day would come…that a girl would be preoccupying his thoughts to such an extent that he was already looking forward to spend more time with her....he had marked it as the Impossible in his Life ofcourse….but some how Zoya Farooqui managed to walk into his life…and change it all.
Destiny winked at Fate as she said accusingly – Wicked…wicked you…look at what have u done…’
Fate smiled – well…it worked brilliantly didn’t it? Did u see how they remembered me…and personally I love to watch when the sparks fly…you know…its interesting…isnt it? And I haven’t been the only one who is upto mischief here…I had no Idea..Love had already laid its seed in the boys…I thought it was just the girls so far’
Love winked naughtily – Don’t blame me….alright..i was bored of the Hate..iv watched it for ten years… just thought of changing the scene for a while..’
Destiny frowned – ‘Yeah…but u know…iv written it down that way right…hate is important in this story..although I don’t understand why..’
SHe saw Hate finally speak up as it answered – well because maybe humans find it Safer to just live with me….than to rather go through the rest of the Drama..Love comes up with at times’- and he shot an accusing look at Love across and said – seriously…I know there is a thin line between you and me…and I am a part of you..I still don’t understand how you function at times…’
Love answered calmly – And you probably never will….it just isnt your job too…’ which made hate roll his eyes..as he sat behind reluctantly.
Destiny nodded and she smiled – And don’t the always say -Everything is fair in Love and War….it really is fair if we work a twisted path…because sometimes things don’t work simply…you know…
Love smiled at her friend for siding up with her – Thank you…
Fate joined the two In as he admitted – And I have to agree too..coz I do it myself all the time ….you know twists and turns…somehow I just Enjoy the thrill….’
Love and destiny laughed as they replied to Fate in unision – And don’t we all just know that you do…you are the reason they call their Lives the - Rollercoaster anyway..
The Desperate Kingdom of Love - Chapter 3 - Part A, B and C (By Arnavkhushi1) (Thanked: 16 times)
Chapter 3 - Just a Lie…or A Wonderful Lie, It is?
A Lie.Isnt it something we just usually always think isnt it a good thing,because we are all programmed that way, making us always preach the fact that Honesty is indeed the Best Policy and that we should always speak the truth, its true ofcourse that it is indeed just always easy and better to operate with Honesty in Life and also in our relationships and most importantly with ourselves. But still we cannot deny the fact that we all have lied at some point in our lives it could be while we were growing up to our parents to save ourselves from their angry rant for being so irresponsible at times for the silly fun stuff we all do or maybe sometimes to our teachers about being ill for not doing our homework on time or sometimes to save our friends or the ones we love, from the truth that might hurt them. Its a truth as simple as that…that we all have used the Lie in our Lives.
And then comes the Lies which stay with us forever- the lies that we tell ourselves to either escape into the world of denial or to either escape from our very own feelings and emotions or just sometimes because the truth is too bitter that it is better to not face it and its just easier to mislead ourselves by a Lie than to admit the truth. But still we all know that A Lie is a temporary solution to a problem and not a permanent one but then why is it that we still fall for it- when it specially comes to the matters of the Heart, why do we still sometimes choose to let our heart seek the comfort in a lie, maybe because we all get carried away by the comfort and the happiness our heart starts to seek in it by the wonders A Lie can reflect at times and in that moment, it is but natural to wonder that are all Lies just wrong? Is there no Lie that can be right if it brings happiness to the heart? Its only but natural to just wonder at times that is it really- Just a Lie….Or a Wonderful Lie , It is?
8.30 AM - London
Khushi had just returned from her morning swim,and she felt a little bit relaxed,thank god for her love for swimming,it was almost like when she was in water-all her worries would wash away,and she used that time to think from a clear state of mind.
And the things she had learned from her todays morning swim was that - First, there was no way her heart was listening to control the attraction and the pull towards the man,her mind was wanting to avoid but she was failing miserably because everytime she closed her eyes,she could only think of him,and she remembered how she had managed to stay quiet over dinner which he had ordered for them last night,and given her no choice but to join him,because he knew she did not have the grocery to cook; and he had argued that he had ordered enough for two anyway.She had managed to finish the meal as soon as possible,and had made a excuse that she had to do some work on her dissertation,to avoid his constant gaze on her. The second thing she had realized was that,there was no way she could not see his deep brown intense eyes,every time she closed hers-because it was as if they had captured a place in her mind and she had had another restless night,by fighting to not think of him or his eyes or how he looked at her.The third thing she had realized was- that she had landed herself in the middle of a deep mess-the mess she wanted to be in.It was a lie-and she knew that it was wrong to live this lie,but she couldnt fight the temptation to not live it.
She poured herself some cereal and milk and she ate still deep in thought just when a thought crossed her mind and she left her breakfast and walked with the milk carton and the box of cereal across the hall to knock on his door.
Arnav was just busy getting ready for work,it was early but since he didnt have much to eat at the studio ,he thought it would be best to reach work early and order something because he could not skip his breakfast as he had to take his diabetic medicine soon after and as soon as he finished wearing his suits,his thoughts wondered to her again the mesmerizing innocent her , who was living across the hall and he tried to figure out why was she behaving so differently over dinner last night she seemed all normal at lunch and even after then why had she gone on this sudden silent mode on Dinner ,she barely spoke to him except for a few general things about Zoya and she went into a total mute zone as soon as he asked about her family and she had just diverted the topic to -how she had to get some work done,and excused herself almost sprinting out of his sight,suprising him to the core. Had he said something that he shouldnt have? Or had he done something to make her uncomfortable? And right then the moment of when hed caught her in his arms earlier yesterday crossed his mind,and he wondered if his sudden closeness in that moment was what was worrying her. He couldnt understand that why was he thinking about her so much anyway? And he decided to not pay attention to Miss Khushi Gupta and her existence just when he heard a knock on his door,and he walked towards it to open it,wondering who could it be so early-it was just 8.40 am.
He opened the door-only to be mesmerized once more as he rechecked the thought he had deceided in his mind- forget Khushi Gupta and her existence and felt himself cancel it out and it automatically got replaced with maybe not forget it until later when she isnt standing at the door looking at him with her innocene and he heard her say - " Hi,Good Morning Arnav,I just thought. maybe you would be hungry and she handed him the milk and the cereal.”
Arnav couldnt help but smile at the thought that she remembered he didnt have anything to eat as he said -" Hi,Goodmorning,I was just heading out for work early thinking I would eat there but thanks,I guess this will do"
Khushi gave him a small smile as she said - " I remembered you didnt have any thing here and u need to have your medicine,so.." and she stopped in mid sentence as she whacked herself mentally for blurting something she shudnt have, and she immediately covered up - " Zoya told me your diabetic,she worries about you all the time ohk ill see you later ,bye " and before he could say anything he watched her sprint away once more making him wonder what the hell was up with her anyway? But he couldnt help but feel maybe good about the fact that she remembered every small detail about him could it be that Zoya talked about him all the time or could it be there was something else here?
Khushi closed the door to her apartment, and she tried to control her rapid heartbeat that had raced again at seeing him in front of her all suited up looking extremely ****y and mysterious just like he always did in all the news articles and interviews, she read and saw. She walked up to her room and took out the picture of her ammi and her bhaijaan that she had hidden in the drawer and she looked at it guiltly, because she knew that whatever she was feeling here was wrong and yet she seemed to not make her trechourous heart understand it. She stared at the picture for a good two minutes, and then she dialled her Ammi’s number, probably talking to her would help her soothen her nerves.
Arnav stepped out and walked across the hall and knocked on her door, because he wanted to drop in the keys with her for mainly two reasons- firstly, so that he would have a chance to see her again when he was back from work and secondly, because he really didn’t know why he wanted to see her , but it just seemed right and weird to him at the same time, and he knocked on her door nonetheless and she opened it and he watched her smile at him nervously –
Arnav – “ hey..i was just leaving for work…I thought of dropping the keys with you, I will take them once I am back”
Khushi, taking the keys from his hands – “ Not a problem Arnav, have a nice day”
Arnav looked at her for a minute and she seemed normal and he asked – “ tum theek ho?”
Khushi looked at him nervously and wondered why was he asking her this and she asked – “why do I not look alright?”
Arnav looked at her for a minute and replied – “well no you do, but I guess you …as in you look worried..”
Khushi nodded honestly– “ Yeah, I am, just a little stressed out about my project, I will be meeting my tutor at 1, lets see what he says, hopefully if he changes his mind, I wouldn’t have to trouble you for Help”
Arnav smiled – “ I wouldn’t term that as trouble exactly,anyway you have my number right, let me know how it goes, and I’l see you later then”, and he walked towards the Lift just after she smiled and said – “ yeah..later”, hoping that her tutor did stick to his point and he would have the opportunity to help his lil sisters best friend, or rather the girl who he couldn’t get out of his mind.
Boston 9.00 AM
Zoya checked her phone to see Khushis whats app to call her as soon as she was free,and she wondered if everything was fine with her and she called but Khushi didnt pick up so she hung up and wondered what was up right then she received her message that she would call her back later and so she just replied ohk and started to get her things together as she was about to leave for school her class was at 10 am but shed thought of having breakfast on the way or maybe take a take away from Starbucks and she prayed right before to not bump into Asad as she remembered how she had totally managed to avoid dinner with him last night by giving an excuse that she wasnt hungry and was tired and sleepy. He had asked her if she was sure and she had ofcourse lied because she didnt know how could she ever fight the attraction if she had him around her 24/7 anyway,she hadnt even slept well thinking of the weird situation she had invited for herself but just as she thought of him,she felt herself want to be a part of this weird situation even when it was against all odds to hope anything in this hopeless situation- and just then the memory of how she had felt when he had rubbed the side of her lips yesterday carelessly gave her goosebumps.She thanked her stars that it was time for school and she would now have something else to think other than the forbidden territory that revolved around otherwise the Man of her Dreams and she stepped out her door and locked up he apartment ,only to see him step out of his at the same time all suited up for work and she made a mental note to never ever thank her stars or pray again in this matter because everytime she seemed to pray to not bump into him he just managed to stand there right in her face looking as handsome and ****y as ever making her damm her heartbeat for loosing control once more.
Asad saw her and he smiled as he gestured her to walk towards the lift - " Hi,goodmorning,did u sleep well?
Zoya gave him a small smile - " Hi,goodmorning,yeah I kind of did you?
Asad , pressed the button to the ba****t as he lied - " Yeah me too ,hiding the fact that he had spent almost the entire night wondering why had she avoided him over dinner and if there was anything he had said to bother her and he only remembered himself saying to not speak of Arnav Singh Raizada but why would that have any affect on her anyway.
Zoya looked at him deep in thought as she asked - " you start work early,Asad?
Asad - " yeah my meeting starts at 10 but I thought ill grab a bite on the way,what about you have u eaten and what time is your class?
Zoya - " its at 10 too,I was just thinking of walking down and will have breakfast maybe later,after class at 11..
Just then the Lift stopped at the ground floor and she smiled at him and said - " So bye,ill see you later " , and she had almost just stepped out when she felt him catch hold of her hand and pull her back in instantly as the door shut she looked at him in surprise as she heard him say , dropping her hand - " why will u walk? Ill drop you ur school is on my way to work anyway and since we have time,why dont u eat something too-u didnt even have dinner
Zoya looked at the concern on his face and she fought the affect it was having on her - " No,you dont need to,its just walking distance,ill go and like I said,ill eat at school "
Asad shot her a ridiculous look as he asked - " whats the matter with you? Why cant u just listen?
Right then the Lift opened to the ba****t and she saw that he already had his temper raised and she didnt like that look just like she didnt like it even yesterday so she said - " Allah miyaan,alright dont u give me all your angry young man looks now-lets go."
Asad smiled as he opened the door to the car for her and took the wheel as he drove,it was a short drive towards her school anyway,and his work anyway,only ten minutes away and he stole a look at her sideways as she looked out the window and he tried to figure out what was it about her that was drawing him to her as if she were a made-for-him magnet,she had managed to avoid him over dinner when everything had seemed fine a few hours earlier and then she was trying to avoid him now too and right then he started to wonder why was he not able to get her out of his mind-her beautiful face,the way she laughed,and the way she remembered allah Miyaan,for every little thing-everything about her was amusing him and making him want to know her more.Right then he thought of switching on the radio for some distraction and he bent forward without noticing that she just had too,and their hands touched and Zoya immediately withdrew hers and let him switch it on and she started looking out the window again. Right then he saw Starbucks,around the corner so he pulled over and parked and watched her get out of the car with a almost nervous look on her face as she smiled at him and which made him wonder once more -what the hell was up here going on in that mind of hers?
Zoya sipped her coffe as she stole a glance at Asad across, who was eating , and she couldn’t help but think as to how handsome he looked and she almost laughed at herself because she knew even if that man walked in front of her in the shabbiest clothes ever, he would still catch her attention and she would still find him amazingly handsome.She was fighting something inside her mind, her more rational sense that told her to watch herself and that this was really all just a lie, but then as she saw him look at her just then and their eyes locked for a few seconds before she smiled and resumed eating, she felt her heart all happy and excited – because she was sitting right across the man of her dreams, and right now nothing else really mattered except for the time she was getting to spend with him here, which she might not ever get again in her life, and so she felt a smile curve up her lips as she deceided not to worry about what was going to happen later- because ofcourse it would turn out to be really ugly if Asad found out the truth or for that matter even her brother, but then she felt like for the first time ever not wanting to worry about what was going to happen next, because if tomorrow looked ugly, today was wonderful- so what it was a Lie- she was going to live it nonetheless.
Zoya smiled at him as she watched him finish his breakfast – “Allah Miyaan..whats wrong with you, Asad , I am getting late now…please hurry up” , and he smiled back and they walked towards the car and she sat in, and it was only a few minutes- very short few minutes later did they reach her campus, and so she immediately got off with her bag and stood at the window before walking in and smiled at Asad – “ Thanks for the ride, and I am sorry about last night, I was just so tired…so what was it that you were saying?”
Asad looked at her confusedly, she was definetly having some weird mood swings here – “ what Zoya?”
Zoya smiled , hoping he would get the hint that she was trying to make up for avoiding him last night – “ Allah miyaan, whats wrong with you Mr.Khan, I mean about u saying if you wanted me to let you know about if I actually wanted to go some place for dinner, since you know you are such a good brother and my best friend asked you to watch out for me”
Asad grinned as he realized what she was trying to do here and he didn’t know why he felt really happy as he said trying to hide his expression – “ Oh Yes, that I remember Zoya- so is there any place you have in mind?”
Zoya thought for a minute and she replied – “ Hmm, not yet,you? why don’t we talk about this later in the evening?”
Asad smiled – “Great, so ill see you once I am back from work, and if you have any problem at all, you got my number”
Zoya waved her phone in his face – “ Yup, got it..bye, see you later..” and she turned to walk just when she heard him call her name and she turned and looked at him puzzled and she almost caught that mischevious glint in his eyes giving her goosebumps all over as he said before driving away – “ I like that smile on you Miss Farooqui, I don’t know why but I guess I kind of really do”
Zoya smiled to herself as she made her way towards her class and she checked her watch, she still had a few minutes left, and right then her phone rang and she saw it was Khushi, so she picked it up in an instant.
Khushi waited for Zoya to pick up the phone and she was thankful that she didn’t take long as she heard her excited voice which immediately made her feel better – “ Khushi, how are you?? How are things going on with bhai…?
Khushi felt her heart flip one more time at the mere mention of his name and she replied honestly – “Nothing is Fine Zoya…I have a problem here” and she filled her in about her meeting with her tutor and how he really wanted her to make that change and how Arnav offered to help her in it last night and just as she finished she waited for Zoya to reply.
Zoya listened to Khushi and she felt herself ask – “Bhai offered to help you out?well that’s so not him…I wonder whats into him…but I am so glad that he did because I would have done the same if I was there, cmon Khushi u should do this, it’s the question of your degree, it wouldn’t matter right?
Khushi sighed as she admitted honestly – “Ofcourse it does Zoya…you know it does, you know how I feel around him, it isnt hidden from you right, and just like I know how you feel about Bhaijaan, you tell me doesn’t it matter if this is all just a lie, I know you kind of have this softcorner for bhaijaan and you know I have the same for Arnav, but isnt it just so wrong to go ahead with this Lie- Im sure Arnav wouldn’t even look at me if he knew who I was.”
Zoya sighed – “Khushi, I know…whatever you are saying makes sense, infact I have been wondering the same you know since last night, but just a while ago when I was having breakfast with Asad, I realized that so what If this is a Lie…its wonderful isnt it?I mean you are getting to spend the time with bhai, and im getting to spend sometime here with Asad, something which we both had termed as impossible- but our false identities are working here…and we are getting a chance to live something which we perhaps never will ever ever again, and you know you want to, Iv seen you stalk him a zillion times on Google and I will be honest, I want to too- maybe there is a chance that if they get to know us, we have a opportunity to make them reconcile, don’t you think? I know this is a big gamble for both of us Khushi but ..” and before she could complete her sentence she heard Khushi say – “ but I guess you are right…I am up for it, I do feel guilty about hiding the truth from bhaijaan, but maybe sometimes the truth isnt the solution to everything…sometimes we just gotta do with a Lie, im sure if this ever comes out, I can make bhaijaan understand”
Zoya smiled – “Exactly, im sure I can make Bhai understand too, he knows I love him way too much to go behind his back…but if I have , I must have a strong reason for it…”
Khushi agreed – “Exactly, I agree, but its ironical isnt it, in both of our cases, the strongest reasons are the ones our brothers detest…its so weird, I wonder what my fate is upto here anyway…so I guess ill just text Arnav about whatever just happened with my tutor, and you rush for your class.I love you..and I miss you Zoya..”
Zoya smiled – “Don’t worry, itll all be ohk…we will worry about the future later ..now go and talk to Bhai…all the best Khushi Gupta”
Khushi smiled as she said – “To you too, Zoya farooqui”.
Zoya finally put down the phone and she walked her way into her class…and just as she had settled in and put her phone on silent – she received Asad’s text asking her if class had started and all was alright, and she quickly replied that all was well…and that shed text him after class.She returned her attention to the Professor who was introducing himself, and she didn’t know why she felt happy , her heart felt happy – maybe because it was ready to live the Lie, it had invented and fallen for.
Khushi reached her apartment and she saw that she hadn’t settled her groceries in from the morning as shed left immediately after the delivery had come to meet her tutor, she quickly arranged hers, and kept Arnav’s aside making a mental note to give him his when he came back from work.
And right then she remembered she had to text him and so she took out her phone and typed –
I met my tutor, hes still sticking to his point.
I guess I will need your help on this.Can we discuss how to go about this in the evening?
Arnav just got out from the meeting room after reviewing the terms of the project and he took out his phone to see a new text message and he opened it , only to feel a smile curve on his lips and he deceided to hope more often next time as he quickly typed –
Not a problem at all.Like I said I would be glad to help you.
Will discuss it once I am back- probably around 6.00 pm.
And don’t thank me.
Khushi waited patiently for his reply and just as her phone beeped she opened it immediately and read it and smiled to herself, and she recalled what Zoya had said, maybe she was right , there was no point in worrying what would happen three weeks from now, she was getting a chance to know Arnav Singh Raizada something she had really wanted since a long long time now.And somehow it did not really matter if this was complicated and she felt happy, her heart felt happy because she was ready to Live the Lie, she had already fallen for.
Chapter 3 – Part B
London – 7 PM
Arnav made his way up to the studio, just as he finished talking to his sisters.Di had said that everything was going well with her in Singapore, and shed known from everyone else back at Shantivan that Maa was stable as well.After talking to her he had called Zoya, to know how were things going on at her end and if everything was well, which ofcourse was as she seemed pretty excited as she filled him in about her first day at school and how opting for summer school this summer was probably one of the best decisions of her Life, he had laughed ofcourse because his little sister always had the knack of cracking him up , and then as she had asked if he had settled in well, he had told her the truth that he had , and then filled her in a little bit about how he had been spending some time with Khushi and was going to help her with her project, to which Zoya had immediately exclaimed , that her brother was indeed the best and he wondered as he put the phone down if his sister would think the same if she knew that her brother was getting attracted to her best friend, Miss Gupta. He was still deep in thought as the lifts door opened and he walked up to Khushi’s apartment to get the keys from her.
Khushi heard a knock on her door, and because she had been waiting for the past one hour in anticipation, she quickly walked to open the door , knowing exactly who it must be.
Khushi smiled as she saw him – “ Hi Arnav, how was your day?”
Arnav smiled back trying to distract himself from the view of her looking beautiful, and so innocent at the same time, as he thought he really liked the colour pink on her, it made her skin glow in a way that was...and he stopped his trail of thought as he answered – “ Great, I was busy getting most of the details about what Zoya had done, and I just got a little late in the process..how was yours?”
Khushi , gestured him to come in and she said walking him towards the small dining table in her studio – “ Good actually except for I cudnt get my tutor to listen to me..and I was just going to make some coffe, you want some?”
Arnav sat on the chair as he nodded – “Yes, thanks…black and no sugar..”
Khushi – “ I know..” and she made coffe for the two of them and she placed the mug in front of him and she saw him sip his coffe and she said – “ The stuff you’v ordered has arrived, ill help you settle it”
Arnav – “ thanks Khushi”, and he watched as she flipped out her phone and flashed his text message to him as she said smilingly– “ Don’t Thank me, this is what you wrote, so I guess u should stop too”
Arnav smiled and he asked – “ so what happened with your tutor, did you talk to him about what I suggested?”
Khushi finished her coffe as she filled him in – “ and ofcourse I also spoke to him about what you suggested, and he absolutely loved the idea, although I don’t know how can I go about this without causing you much of a trouble..”
Arnav , thanked his mind for coming up with the brilliant idea as he said – “ there is a way actually, you could come with me to work from tomorrow on, and do all the questioning you want with the people incharge here, and how the culture change in UK has caused us to change our line accordingly, and for the rest of the information about India and US and UAE, I can give you, would four regions be enough ? and I guess you could work on your project from office, instead of home, since you might just need additional information and it would just be easier if you had people from AR around, and ofcourse I will be right around if you need to know anything..so how does this sound?”
Khushi replied sincerely – “ thanks Arnav, I mean that would be great…but I hope it wouldn’t be too much of a problem…I mean if it were Zoya..”
Arnav – “Yeah exactly, if it were Zoya you wouldn’t be worrying about it being a problem right, so why are you worrying if its me, it should rather be the same, so stop thinking so much…alright?”
Khushi nodded – “ohk arnav…thanks..” and she started to pick up his grocery stuff…and he picked up the rest as they walked across to his studio and she helped him settle the stuff in and she stepped back from the fridege to see him deep in thought so she asked – “whats up?”
Arnav smiled – “ nothing, was wondering what to make myself for dinner tonight?”
Khushi’s eyes widened in surprise as she said – “ well that’s something Zoya didn’t tell me about, Arnav Singh Raizada can cook?”
Arnav grinned – “ I can a little, not excellent but manageable, afterall I have been living by meself whilst I was studying both here in London and in the US”
Khushi immediately remembered what he meant, because he had been studying with her brother here in London, before things got messed up , and she fought the knot in her stomach and she said – “ Oh yes, you were here in London, Zoya told me…but she also told me that you were sent here along with a family friend…whats his name…Asad is it?”
Arnav stiffened as he heard that name from her , and he replied curtly and almost in a cold voice – “ Yes, Asad Ahemed Khan and he is no more a family or a friend Khushi, so id be rather happy to not talk about this and id prefer if you wouldn’t bring him up or even mention his name in front of me, ever again..”
Khushi looked at his hand that had almost turned tight around the bottle of water he was holding in his hand, and she fought her inner rational self who was warning her yet again that this man couldn’t even listen the name of her brother or her family and she said almost nervously – “ Im sorry…I didn’t know..I think ill go now..” and she started to make her way out because she desperately wanted to get some air, as she had realized that she was right, he wouldn’t even look at her if she knew who she was.
Arnav saw her turn , and he realized that he shouldn’t have spoken to her so coldly because she was just being normal, asking him a question unaware of the hatred the name would stir up within him and he immediately caught hold of her hand to stop her and said – “ Look, I shouldn’t have spoken to you that way, it isnt your fault..”
Khushi tried to calm down the affect his hold was having on her and she turned around , as somepart of her reminded her that she was Miss Gupta to him and she turned around and said – “ Its alright…and I wont bring it up again, I guess its sensitive”
Arnav let go of her hand as he said – “ yup, it is..so tell me about your family, Khushi?”
Khushi faked her best lie as she said – “ its just me , my elder brother and my mother….i lost my father many years ago..”
Arnav looked at the almost saddened look in her eyes and he felt himself wanting to comfort her and he said – “ I understand, I know how it feels”
He was surprised when she smiled reassuringly and said putting a hand on hi shoulder – “ I know you do….I know what happened from Zoya..im sorry..”
Arnav sighed , as he turned to look at her, and their eyes met– “well don’t be…”
Right then Khushis’s phone rang and she jumped apart from the gaze that was beginning to pull her in and she saw it was her brother , so she said – “ ill just be back…its my brother..” and she walked across to her room to talk to her bhaijaan.
Arnav watched her leave and he deceided to get changed from his work clothes but he left the door to his studio open.
Khushi finished talking to her bhaijaan as she assured him that everything was well with her and she walked back towards Zoya’s studio to see that the door was left open…and so she walked in and started to settle the remaining of the stuff from the Tesco delivery carton into the fridge when she heard him call her name – “Khushi..” and his voice startled her and her leg hit the carton as she lost her balance…but he leaped forward just in time as he caught her in his arms again…and held on to her waist and she held onto his collar for support only this time her eyes weren’t shut..because she couldn’t get herself to look away from his gaze…and she didn’t know how long did they both stay like that..until she felt him brush away her hair from her face tenderly touching her cheeks in the process cauging her to shiver as he said – “careful Khushi, you could have hurt yourself..”
Arnav didn’t know why he he didn’t let go of her as immediately as he had caught her in his arms…maybe because he liked the feel of her…or maybe it was because unlike the last two times hed caught her so…she had her eyes open this time..and he couldn’t get himself to look away from her beautiful eyes..that refected each and every thought that was going on in her mind and he could see that she was as affected as she was..as he brushed her hair away..and touched her cheek softly as he could almost feel her shiver, and she conituned to hold on to him for a few more seconds…before she jumped apart..much to his dissappoitment and fumbled nervously – “ Im sorry..i guess im just so clumsy..”
Arnav saw her look away and he realized she was getting a little uncomfortable so he changed the topic as he asked – “ so what do u want to eat..i was thinking of making some pasta..”
Khushi smiled as she realized he was trying to make her comfortable and she said – “ but ill help you Arnav..this is only fair…” and she waited for him to say something and just as he nodded…she smiled and they both got to work in the kitchen.
Arnav listened to her constant chatter as they finished cooking and he couldn’t help but feel really good…like he hadn’t felt in a long long time around any girl..he felt really comfortable around her…and he watched her put the food on the plates as she turned to put them on the table..and he saw that she was struggling with her hair lock that was constantly falling on her face as she tried to push it away with her elbow…so he just took one plate from her hand..and before she could brush it away, he saw his hand on its own acoord had already moved and tucked it behind her ear..causing her to look at him surprised once more as their gaze locked and then she moved a few seconds later and sat on the table, as he joined her…and they started to eat.
Arnav asked as he ate – “ so does this building have a gym or something…now that I cannot run on the busy streets of oxford, I need to do something about my workout”
Khushi smiled as she said – “ well not our building , but you could check out the health club I go to for my swim – Fitness First, its right around the Baker Street, not very far..a few minutes walk “
Arnav brushed around the image that flashed in his mind of Khushi in a swimsuit and he whaked himself mentally for coming up with the scene that was distracting him to a great extent and he said – “ so you like swimming..?”
Khushi nodded – “ Yup, very much..i go everyday…7 to 8 in the morning…its almost like meditation for me…it’s a habit I cant do without… so u could come and check out the gym there if you want..”
Arnav nodded – “ I guess, I will…and 7- 8 is a good time for me too…”
Khushi smiled – “ Great….but you know thanks so much with your help on my project..I mean…”
And just as she saw him look at her intently as he said – “ I would like to help you Khushi…infact I want to..so stop being so formal..” , she felt her hopes raise…what if she wasn’t the only one who was getting attracted to him….what if he was too? What did all of this mean? Was there a way…that something she had dreamed about had a chance of turning into a reality…?? She wanted to find it out..she surely did…as she realized Zoya was right…all of this wasn’t Just a Lie…it was a Wonderful Lie, indeed…and maybe all of this had a bigger meaning behind it all to happen the way it was…
7.00 PM – Boston
Asad drove back from work and he was glad that he had spoken to Khushi and his ammi earlier during the day, because he had gotten really busy in the latter half of the day and he hadn’t had the time to even eat properly. Khushi was fine and happy , he was worried because he knew Zoya was here and she was all alone there…but she had assured him that she was busy in her project and also she had a lot of friends from her course who were still right there and lived nearby so she really wasn’t alone.Ammi had called her best friend Shaheen Khala to come stay with her for a few days, as Shaheen Khala was also a widow and her son Rayyan was in Dubai for some business, so she was more than happy to give ammi some company.He like Shaheen Khala, she was a gem of a person and also he quite like Rayyan as well, he was a nice fellow and was handling his abbu’s business empire quite well..he wasn’t very old..just around 25, but he did appreciate the man Rayyan had become, and he did know that Rayyan had a soft corner for Khushi somewhere, because he had witnessed him stare at her a couple of times last time when she was home and the families had dinner together and he had noticed Khushi talking to him too. He was happy that Khushi was now going to be home for good soon, well she was just 22 and he didn’t want to get her married so early but he knew that Ammi didn’t want to either, but there would be no harm if the engagement happened atleast and they could only get them married later…but he stopped his trail of thought as he realized that he needed to speak to Khushi forst ofcourse, because he loved her to bits and he wouldn’t force her into anything, he would only go ahead with this alliance in his mind if Khushi gave her consent to it.Right then he reached the Riverbend..so he parked his car in the ba****t and made his way up wondering what would the girl of his interest – Miss Zoya farooqui be upto right now…and he remembered that they had a dinner planned and he hoped she had some place picked already because he hadn’t had any time to think about that.
He reached his floor but before walking into his appt he thought of seeing Zoya so he knocked on her door, waiting for her to open up.
Zoya listened to her favourite music as she played games on her Ipad and checked her facebook , when she saw her phone ring and she saw that it was Asad, so she quickly picked it up as she asked – “Where are you?? Still working is it?” and she heard him reply – “Well no, I am back, now if you will open up the door, iv been knocking for the past two minutes precise”.
Zoya quickly jumped off her bed and straightened her hair as she opened the door and shot him a apology – “I am so sorry Asad, I was listening to music..so I didn’t hear you knock..how was your day?”
Asad smiled – “Its alright…my day was good..and you can tell me all about yours, once at dinner…I am starving..have you chosen a place?”
Zoya smiled – “You like Thai?..and why don’t u eat some cookies ..that will keep you fueled up until we actually have dinner”, she asked quickly handing him a few cookies from the coffe table
Asad nodded – “Yes I do…and thanks” he said, taking the pack of cookies from her hand.
Zoya smiled – “Well great, I was just looking up on Google, and came across this Brown Sugar Café, it isnt fancy but apparently its got the best food in town…so you up for it?”
Asad smiled – “Great, ill just get changed and then we can leave in 30 minutes..is that good?”
Zoya smiled – “Yup, it is” and she saw him walk to his apartment and she quickly rushed in her room closing her door…she just had 30 minutes to get ready for almost – first dinner date with the man who haunted her dreams.She quickly took out a casual black dress and went straight to her bathroom to freshen up and get ready.
Asad got out of his apartment and he saw Zoya step out the same time as hers and he smiled at her, as he tried to process the thoughts that had erupted in his mind after he saw Zoya looking so amazingly stunning in a black casual dress and he remembered how strict and reserved he used to be when it came to the clothes which Khushi used to where back at home whilst she was still India…but then he had changed with time on his viewpoint…that clothes did not really make much of a difference ,the person did, and he so he had let Khushi have her way of styling and dressing, he had changed so much along the way since he had sent Khushi to London – not only in terms of his thinking but also that he tried to be more of a friend to Khushi instead of an elder brother and made sure that she wasn’t scared of him so that she could share whatever she wanted with him just like she would with Zoya.
Zoya saw him look at her for almost two whole minutes in silence and she waved her hand in front of him to bring him back to presence as she said – “Allah Miyaan…where are you lost?I thought you were hungry..”
Asad smiled as he gestured her to walk towards the lift – “ yes I am…lets go…”
Zoya quickly told him the address as she sat in and watched him put it in on the GPS and he started driving…and she wondered what was going on his mind just when she heard him ask – So Zoya..how was your day? Did you like it?
Zoya smiled as she recalled her day and she said – “ofcourse I liked it..it was amazing, the course is so interesting…” and she went on to fill him in about how her day turned out and how she met so many different people and as to how this seemed to be the best decision she ever made to attend summer school this year…and he couldn’t help but just listen in awe and smile at how she got so excited about everything in Life…as she absorbed every single detail and lived it to the fullest, and it was so different from any girl hed met..and he heard her ask him about his meeting and presentation and he started to fill her in about how well it went , as if it were the most natural thing in the world…to talk to her..as if she wasn’t a stranger…as if she was someone hed always known.
A While Later…At Dinner –
Zoya exclaimed – “Allah Miyaan, isnt this the best som tum salad iv had in a long long time”, and she realized that her fake phrase was now becoming more of a natural habit.
Asad smiled – “Yes, I guess it is..i am glad u picked put this place”, and he continued to eat and he added – “ I guess I should let you pick out where we should be eating from now on…”
Zoya looked at him surprised as she realized what he said and she asked – “ what do u mean Asad?”
Asad looked at her straight in the eye as he said – “well, I mean I guess it wouldn’t harm to spend sometime together right..not that you are a stranger or something, you are Khushi’s best friend and not just that, I guess I would like to get to know you , Miss Farooqui..”
Zoya almost choked on her food as she heard him say that and she couldn’t believe this was Asad Ahemed Khan, the man of her dreams telling her that he wanted to get to know her, and he quickly handed her a glass of water and she drank it in a go to calm down her nerves as she said – “ you guess, you would like to get to know me…but why?
Asad – “ alright, remove the guess..I would like to get to know you, lets just be honsest, iv been wanting to since the first time I met you, and why is maybe coz Khushi..” he started to lie , because he knew he wanted to get to know her only for personal reasons , so that he could understand what was it about her that was making him think of her in a way he had never thought about anyone.
Zoya looked at him intently for a minute and she realized that he was trying to cover up instead of saying it outright so she completed his sentence hiding her smile – “ Maybe coz you want to know all about Khushi’s best friend..so is it like you will tell me to stay away from her..if you figure out im not a good friend” she joked.
Asad smiled, realizing what she was trying to do here, she had already understood the underlying meaning behind his words but was letting him get away and so he said – “ well ofcourse not , I already know you are a good friend, and I would never ask you to stop talking to Khushi, I know how much you mean to her, she absolutely loves you”
Zoya smiled back – “and I love her too…and I miss her so much..”
Asad smiled and just then a thought occurred to his mind just as he saw the waiter serve them the main course and he asked – “Zoya, I wanted to talk to you something , its related to Khushi?”
Zoya started to eat as she said – “yes tell me..kya hua, shes fine…I spoke to her in the morning…”
Asad nodded as he ate his meal – “ yes, I know I spoke to her a while back too..i just wanted to know is there anybody back in London or in her batch…she likes as in a guy?I haven’t spoken to her yet…but I thought since you are her friend and you would know”
Zoya felt her eyes widen in surprise as she said – “well no…not anyone as in in her batch or something or in London…theres this guy Aaditya in her class who probably likes her…and he did ask her out, but she refused..but why do u ask?” , as she hid the fact that ofcourse she knew who Khushi liked – it was her brother , the man he hated Arnav singh raizada.
Asad nodded – “ohk..no just asking…generally..” and he felt relieved as he felt that his sister would tell him , if there was anything of the sorts..and he asked Zoya – “ and what about you?is there anyone you like from your class or from work?
Zoya hid the simple fact that ofcourse she liked somebody and it was him and she said – “ well no, although there was this guy Nikhil in my class who did ask me out once, but I wasn’t interested..so yeah…but we are good friends, that’s all? And what about you, im sure you must have a list of girls all rswooning around you?”
Asad looked at her amusingly – “A List? Why would you think that”
Zoya smiled mischeviously – “well a list would do justice wouldn’t it…since you look the way you do, Mr.Asad Ahemed Khan”
Asad grinned – “well ill take that as a compliment Miss farooqui, but no- there isnt a list…no one has ever caught my interest that way and iv always been too busy with work and family anyway….but maybe there is someone I guess I have started to take a liking for”, hoping shed get a hint.
Zoya felt her breath stop as she heard him ofcourse catchingthe hint but she said innocently – “You guess..way too much Mr.Khan..” , hoping he wouldn’t hear her heartbeat race, because she definetly felt it race at a speed of sound, was there a possibility that Asad was starting to like her?
They finished dinner and they drove back to their building and Zoya was almost all silent as she tried to comprehend again what did Asad mean by maybe there is someone I guess I have started to take a liking for?
Asad watched her out of the corner of his eye as he parked the car and they got into the lift wondering again why was she silent and he realized he didn’t like her silence at all, he liked her more all chattering.Soon the lift got filled in as a lot of people got in and instinctively put a hand on her waist and made her stand inward against the wall as he took the place she was standing right upfront, and he saw her look at him nervously and he couldn’t help but look back at her as he smiled…and he continued to look at her, even when she broke her gaze and tried to look elsewhere, he knew she was well aware of his gaze on her and he almost laughed because he knew he was making her nervous.
Just as the lift door opened to their floor , Zoya immediately stepped out and he followed and she started to walk towards her room when he called her name, and she turned to see him grin mischeviously as he asked – “ whats up? Why are u so nervous around me…?, and she watched him take a step forward towards her, just as she took a step back as she said – “No im not nervous Asad, not at all” and right then her heel slipped on the wooden floor and she almost lost her balance and was prepared to fall back, when she felt a pair of strong arms go around her waist , and his touch sending shots of electricity all through her body, just like how he had barely touched her waist in the elevator and she had lost all her sense of thinking.
And she saw him gaze at her intently as he did not let go of her just as she tried and he said his hold firm on her waist – “ did I say, that you Look beautiful tonight Zoya?
Zoya fumbled to find the words as she knew she was loosing herself in his eyes – “ I do??...no…you didn’t..I mean..”
Asad hid his smile as he said – “ well now you know…don’t you?” and he finally let her up from her bent position but yet did not let go of her as he said – “ and also just so as you know….i had a wonderful time with you tonight, something I haven’t had in a long time, so thanks” and he let go of her waist finally.
Zoya smiled nervously as she heard him and was thankful that he let go of her, or he would have definetly heard her heart thud loudly this time – “ yeah me too..i had a wonderful time too Asad,goonight..”
Asad smiled – “yeah goodnight…ill see you in the morning then…and ill drop you to school…ohk?dont walk…let me know once you are ready…”
Zoya nodded and smiled at him and she watched him smile at her as he entered his apartment and she turned to get into hers and just as she had entered, she tried to process the new development here…he wanted to get to know her?? He said there was somebody he guess he liked..could it be possible that he really meant it was her?? And she wondered was this how everyday was going to be?? Him dropping her off..and then having so much time to spend with him and get to know him….her rational mind was warning her that this really wasn’t a good sign but she felt a part of her shut it up as her heart felt this is was nothing but a good sign….and she had been right…that whatever it was , it wasn’t Just a Lie…It was A Wondeful Lie, Indeed.
Hate looked at the three sitting in front of him , and he couldn’t understand why were they all smiling and so he spoke or rather grumbled – “ I do not understand what are the three of you smiling about, this isnt funny…whatever you all are doing here, will not have the right consequences and then don’t blame me..for playing my part..”
Fate looked at Hate who was all grumbling and replied – “ We will not blame you, we know you have your role to play, its just saddening to watch, anyway we are doing just our job here…this has to go about this way…and cmon don’t you love this already…?
Destiny smiled as she replied to Fate – “ well I don’t know about Hate, but I am totally enjoying this already…sparks flying all around, just when hate made me think I hadn’t written it out all perfectly, fate, my friend you reminded me that I have”
Fate smiled – “Exactly…this is perfect my friend, they should know- you are what is happening to them when they are busy making other plans”
Love listened to the three of them silently and she finally asked Hate – “whats the matter with you? Stop getting so worked up…you know this is how it is supposed to be, now don’t be a spoil sport”
Hate grumbled rolling his eyes , and answered Love– “ I know…but I wonder if Fate here, is nothing but a odd unpopular café whose job is to bring out the people the dishes they didn’t ask for, and will probably never like, really I don’t understand him at times, and nor do I understand you here..its like you have this cruel sense of humuor - you are giving them something they always wanted but like at the worst time possible, you would need a miracle to not make this turn ugly”
Fate grinned mischeviously – “well that’s an explanation about myself I haven’t heard before, and I must confess, I kind of like it”
Love looked at fate –“Stop teasing him”…and she turned to hate and smiled patiently – “ I don’t have any need to prove anything to you, I know you don’t believe in Miracles and that’s why you are not likely to receive one or rather even witness it…you just cant see beyond it all..however I can..so why don’t u calm down and resume what you were doing” and she saw Hate give her a ridiculous look but he returned to his work , almost calmer.
Destiny smiled as she turned to Love – “I like how you handle him ,when he gets all hypered and all ready to dance out of our hands..”
Love grinned – “ I created him now didn’t I..i know how to deal with him..and moreover Im used to his tantrums by now”
Destiny grinned – “ that I guess you sure are, and also im not worried at all infact, like I always say, somethings are just destined to be, it just takes a couple of tries to get there…seriously when will they understand its all really almost fixed….and just at times I do it in a way to make them think they got the better of me …coz well I am just kind..”
Love and Fate smiled as they said or rather stated in unision – “ And that’s why we call you the Match-fixer of their Lives, my friend.
Update - Chapter 4 - Just Life , Or A Movie It Is?- Part A (By Arnavkhushi1) (Thanked: 10 times)
Chapter 4 – Just Life, Or A Movie, It Is ?
Each of our Lives, is a unique story of its own, it has its share of happiness, the ups and downs , the sadness, the romance, the mix of emotions that we all face as we grow up , and everyday is nothing but another tale of its own. We plan a zillion things, sometimes all in our heads, only to end up doing everything differently, which ofcourse is the fun, knowing what would be in store for us tomorrow would make it boring.It’s the thrill , the mystery , the anticipation that Life brings to us is what makes it interesting, to wake up not knowing what is in store for us today, to wake up to hold on to a new dream , to wake up to see different realities shape up, to wake up to live each day as it comes, to wake up to learn new things, to live different emotions, to smile, to laugh, to cry, to fight, the list is endless.And it is indeed true that we all are really Living One Story through our Lifes, the story that was meant for us, each day almost representing different phases and chapters of the book , our Life is.We all have this unique starcast and script in our stories due to which there will come a Time in each of our lives when we will all wonder , as we keep believing and keep pretending , and keep living our tales ; that few moments in our lives are scripted to happen so beautifully , and so perfectly , and some so differently with twists around its corner – that we will all mostly be questioning in awe , that even though our lives don’t have the forward, rewind and pause button to it, sometimes it does feels as if it is more than what it seems, and that is when we wonder, that although people say that Our Life is not a drama or a movie, but maybe, It Is? And that’s when we will often be seen asking ourselves ; Just Life, Or A Movie, It Is?
London – 6.45 AM
Khushi was almost ready , and she thought whether she should check if Arnav wanted to join her from today onwards itself, he had said that the timing 7- 8 am did suit him well , and she was just about to call him right when there was a knock on the door and she quickly opened it to see him stand right in front of her all ready in his workout wear and she thought that she was wrong, kust when she had thought that Arnav Singh Raizada could not amaze and affect her more than he already had, he just managed to prove her wrong , either with his amazing ****y smirk, intense gaze, or with how ****y he looked with almost anything he wore. She commanded herself stop staring at him and so she smiled – “ Hi Arnav, goodmorning , I was just wondering if I should call you to know if you would like to join in from today itself”
Arnav smiled inwardly as he saw her check him out and he did not break his gaze from her and waited for her to finish looking at him , whilst he enjoyed gazing at the various innocent expressions that were playing on her face, right when he heard her finally speak, and so he decided to tease her as he said – “ so why didn’t you Khushi?”
Khushi looked at him nervously – “ Why Didn’t I what?
Arnav smirked, he loved the fact that he was making her nervous, for she looked adorable – “ why didn’t you call, if you were thinking too”
Khushi fumbled for words – “ I guess I don’t know, anyway so you ready? Lets go then..”
Arnav smiled – “I am , if you are..” and she walked out shutting the door to her studio and they walked towards the lift and he knew that she was aware that he had his gaze on her so he said as they started walking towards the healthclub with Khushi walking almost silently next to him so he asked – “ so you will join us in AR from today on? For your project? Or are you still thinking about it?
Khushi looked at him and smiled - “ No I have thought already , I will start today , so what time do you have to leave?”
Arnav smiled and patted himself for this development and said – “At 10 maybe, after breakfast”
Khushi – “Kool, and btw Arnav, you like eggs don’t you?
Arnav – “ yeah , I do, but why do you ask?”
Khushi smiled – “ I was thinking to make us omelets for breakfast, you know its only fair since you almost cooked the dinner yesterday”
Arnav smiled – “ If you want to , I do not see why would I have a problem with that, and honestly im kind of happy about the fact that you are not as nervous to share a meal with me, or even spend some time with me for that matter, like you were two days ago” and he teased her further as he saw her smile – “ well I guess you do know now, I am not going to eat you up Khushi”
Khushi smiled, hoping she had hid her excitement as she heard him , and she said – “ yes, I know you wont, its just that…actually nothing”
Arnav – “ what is it?”
Khushi looked at him for a minute silently and said – “like I said…nothing, and cmon we have reached” , and she was glad that they had already reached the healthclub which she had been able to use as a distraction to avoid his – I can-see- through- you- gaze.
Few Minutes Later –
Arnav started his workout and just as he started the treadmill , and the indoor pool was right in the front of the cardio studio and was only separated by glass wall, and so he felt his eyes searching for Khushi, as he resumed his run , and it was right then he saw her walk towards the pool, and he felt himself gaze at how beautiful and attractive she looked in her simple one-piece black swimwear, his imagination of when a picture of her in swimwear had flashed in his mind yesterday had not done her justice – she looked exquisite and very very atrractive and he realized that the sight of her had started to create a havoc on his mind , and it was as if she could sense it too as that very minute she looked right at him and their gazes locked for a second before she smiled at him nervously and dived into the pool, and he stopped his treadmill and walked towards the weights section , because he definetly needed some distraction from the sight of Khushi swimming.
Khushi waited for Arnav in the lounge, and she tried to control her heartbeat that had gone all haywire a few minutes earlier when she had finished her swim , changed and had walked towards the gym area to tell him that she was finished, and she had seen him working out with some weights, and she felt her heart store in it another very appealing image of the man it had attached itself too , as she gestured to him silently from across that she would be waiting for him in the Lounge to which he had nodded and signaled that he would be there soon.
Right then she saw him walk up to her and she smiled – “So how did you like it, it’s the best gym I could tell you about nearby”
Arnav smiled – “It works for me, Khushi, don’t worry , lets go”
Khushi – “Yup”
They talked some more on their walk back home, as Arnav began to ask her about her experience at the London Business school , and she asked him a few questions about the memories he had about his time in London all those years ago. Arnav couldn’t imagine how easily he had started talking to Khushi, as if it were the most natural thing in the world, and it did seem really weird to him that he was so comfortable around someone he had just met two days ago , for the second time in his life, and he wondered what could the reason be, and he realised that probably the attraction he was feeling towards her was at work here and he almost felt guilty one again as her age crossed his mind, but right when he saw her smile at him , he shrugged the thought away and reminded himself that he was just getiing to know his sisters best friend, that’s all , and there was nothing wrong about that, and right then they finally reached their building.
Khushi opened the door to her studio and asked him to come in as she started to get things ready for cooking and she felt herself think of what is it that could he be thinking in his mind, and she ofcourse rejected the possibility outright that he would be thinking of her, just like her thoughts had been preoccupied by him, right when she saw him walk up next to her and he started helping her out so she looked at him and said – “ Arnav, why don’t you just let me, I am not a bad cook, you will survive, if you eat my food…”
Arnav couldn’t help but laugh as he said – “that I am sure of ofcourse, but like you said last night , its only fair”, and he thought he saw a blush come up her face as she smiled.
Khushi smiled and gave up – “And I don’t think , I can win this, so yes you can help”
As they ate their breakfast together, Arnav saw Khushi deep in thought and so he asked – “ what is it?”
Khushi –“what is what?
Arnav – “What is it that you are thinking and frowning about”
Khushi felt surprised at the fact that he had noticed so she said – “ Its Nothing just that , I was just thinking in a few weeks, ill be heading back to India for good, as in back home, I am going to miss everything here so much and ofcourse my friends, and Zoya…”
Arnav nodded – “ I understand, zoya tells me that youv been here ever since after your Grade 12, just like her, so four years is a long time to not miss Khushi, and as long as Zoya is concerned, you can meet back in India ofcourse, you live in Delhi right?
Khushi sighed – “ Yeah, ofcourse I can, and you are right , four years is a long time not to miss, that’s why I am thinking….”
Arnav – “ Thinking what..?”
Khushi was just about to answer him when his phone rang , and he said before picking up– “ Its my secretary , Aman, I gotta take this call…get ready , we will leave by 10” and he didn’t know why he turned around before walking out and said – “ smile Khushi, I don’t like that frown on you”
Khushi felt a smile on her lips as she saw him walk out to his studio and she quickly walked upto her room and started to get ready, this was her first day at AR and she had to start on her research asap, so that she could get back to writing the rest of her work , and that was the only way she could take those two days off in the coming week, since Aaditya and Tanya had really been persisting her to join them in Manchester for Rahul’s engagement, ofcourse she wanted to go , and all her batch mates would be there, it would be a good chance to spend time with everyone before she left.
9.00 AM – Boston
Zoya quickly finished getting ready and she was just about to call Asad to see if he were ready , right when her phone rang and she picked it up in an instant to hear his voice on the other end –
Asad – “ Are you ready Zoya, Il be at your door to pick you up in precisely two minutes”
Zoya smiled to herself – “Allah Miyaan . whats wrong with you , I was about to call u and tell you precisely the same thing “ , she said walking out of her apartment and locking it to see him step out of his with a grin that gave her butterflies in her stomach and she heard him say grinnng–
“ we got some telepathy at work here already Miss Farooqui”
Zoya smiled – “ I guess so , Mr.Khan”, hiding her uneasiness at hearing him call her Miss Farooqui once more”
And they made their way into the Lift , towards the ba****t and walked towards the Car, Asad opened the door for her and Zoya smiled as she got in and took her seat and watched him setlle on the wheel as he asked – “ so where do you want to have breakfast today?”
Zoya smiled – “Im good with Starbucks if you don’t mind it again , you know since its so close, and I guess ill get late for class if we go anywhere else, and also don’t you think we should buy some basic stock of groceries, we cant be eating out everyday, don’t you think ?”
Asad smiled - “ we can do that later in the evening once you are back”
Zoya – “ Kool…”
Asad – “ So whats your plan after summer school, Zoya? Going back to your job in London?”
Zoya – “ well honestly haven’t thought much about it Asad, I guess I might just head back home , as in India, you know its been really long since iv been away, I miss my family”, and she regretted saying it out loud because she knew what he would ask next and she was right as she heard him ask – “ so tell me about your family, Zoya..”
Zoya tried to put things in the best possible way as she said with a a smile – “ well, im the youngest actually, I have an elder brother and sister, and then there is my mom ofcourse, my nani, mama and mami , and then my cousin brother and his wife…so yeah a big family it is, we all live together…and I get pampered to bits, although I sometimes wonder why would everyone want to spoil me”
She saw him smile as he parked the car and they walked in and ordered their coffes and croissants for breakfast and started to eat as they sat on a table for two near a window , when she heard him say – “ Your family sounds lovely , Zoya”
Zoya immediately took the opportunity to change the topic as she asked – “ so tell me what is it that you have planned for work , will you be all busy?”
Asad smiled – “I guess kind off , lets see how it goes, we shall be discussing about the investment terms today”
Zoya – “ sounds interesting”
Asad – “ what time will you be free ?”
Zoya – “five thrirty I guess”
Asad – “ Kool , so ill probably see you by 6”
Zoya nodded and right then she saw a crumble of the croissant right on the side of his lips so she gestured him to move it away , but somehow he couldn’t get it right , so she bent forwards and rubbed the side of his lips shoving the crumbs away , and his gaze locked with hers and she thought she saw something very different in his eyes and she quickly looked away taking her hand back as she said nervously – “ its ohk now” and she started to sip her coffe.
Asad thought that until now only he was the one who was capable of making her nervous and blush and flutter, but when he felt her brief touch on the side of his lips, he had no sensible explanation to explain or comprehend the jolt that had gone through his being, and his mind immediately started thinking or rather craving for her touch once more, and he sipped his coffe almost silently shrugging the thoughts that’s were starting to take over his mind, for he couldn’t understand what the hell was happening to him , he had never ever let anyone effect him in a way he was letting Zoya have, he knew it even months ago when hed first met her that there was something very different about her which held his attention , but this attraction and the wish to know her and spend time with her was somewhat really all new to him and he had to admit the fact that although he was happy , it was all a little too scary at the same time.
A Few Minutes Later –
Asad brought the car to the halt and he watched her hop off and he smiled at her and was just about to drive away when he saw her walk back to the car and he pressed the switch to let the window down and he heard her ask – “ All ohk Mr.Khan?”
Asad nodded – “Yes ofcouse, why do you ask “?
Zoya looked at him for a minute as she tried to wonder what was on his mind – “ well youv been on a serious thinking spree…since the past few minutes, I wondered if I said something”
Asad - “No, you didn’t, was just thinking about work”
Zoya smiled – “Ohk, well you see that thing in the mirror, those few lines on your forhead, everytime you frown or think..it doesn’t look very nice on you Mr.Khan…”
Asad immediately felt himself look into the review mirror to understand what she meant and when he saw that what she had observed was absolutely right , he felt a grin break on his face and he said – “ I guess you are right, it doesn’t look very nice to me too”
Zoya grinned in triump as she saw his small dimple appear and she said – “ I like that smile on you , Mr.Khan , keep it on , it would be tragic to not witness it” and she smiled and turned to walk away towards her class, she knew she had stunned him with his own sentence he had used on her the previous day.
LONDON – 5.30 PM
Khushi worked on her dissertation sitting on the small desk Arnav’s had asked Andrew to show her, and right then her phone rang and she immediately picked it up seeing that it was Zoya so she said – “ Zoya, AR is wonderful , now I know why you keep so glued to your work all the time, hows everything going?”
Zoya grinned – “ perfect, classes are good and also I am getting a little bit more comfortable around your Bhaijaan, so yes everythings good, what about you, is everything ohk with Bhai?”
Khushi smiled as she recalled the morning events – “ ofcourse, honestly to be honest, its getting a little bit easier for me too you know around him and also hes being so kind, helping me on my work, infact he’s asked Andrew and Annie to help me out with everything I need, and he even called me a while ago , to see if there was anything else I needed, so yeah, I guess everythings perfect here too”
Zoya – “ Great , Andrew is a darling , and so is Annie, like that bhai has assigned the right people to help you out, Khushi , im glad this is working out better than what we thought , don’t you think?
Khushi – “ yeah, definetly better, I didn’t know Arnav Singh Raizada isnt as intimidating as I assumed him to be..”
Zoya grined – “ He is my brother, aint her? Kuch toh asar hoga mera…and also I must add your bhaijaan isnt as much of a khadus , I assumed him to be”
Khushi laughed and right then she felt another call and she saw it was her bhaijaan on call waiting so she said – “ Zoya ill call you back ,its bhaijaan on the other line…”
Zoya – “ Yup sure, I got ahead back to class as well , bye and you know I love you right”
Khushi – “I know, and you know I love you too”
And she picked up the other line and spoke for a few minutes to her Bhaijaan , telling him how she was superbusy with her project and right then she remembered that she had to ask him something so she said – “ bhaijaan , you know its one of my friends as in Rahul’s engagement next week in Manchester, and all my friends are going , so I was wondering if I could go , its just two days, it will give me a good chance to spend sometime with everyone before I leave…and waise I would have asked Zoya to accompany me , but since she isnt here, I thought ill ask you if it were ohk for me to go alone…”
Asad – “ Khushi , you know this is what I love about how you talk to me about everything, yes ofcourse you can go, but just keep careful and keep in touch with me, and also will that guy , yes whats his name Aaditya will be there too? The one who likes you “- he said teasingly.
Khushi’s eyes widened – “ Bhaijaan , im going to kill Zoya for telling you about this, but don’t worry, we are just friends”
Asad laughed – “ yeah right Miss Farooqui, but don’t kill her Khushi, and I know if there was anybody , you would tell me right?”
Right then Khushi saw Arnav step out of his cabin and she tried to fight the guilt that started to surface again as she lied – “ yes ofcourse bhaijaan I would, ohk now I gotta work , ill speak to you later, and don’t worry , ill speak to ammi in a while”
Asad – “ Ohk you take care Khushi , bye”
Khushi immediately shoved her phone aside as she saw Arnav walking towards her and she smiled nervously as she heard him ask – “ hows it going Khushi? Hope Andrew and annie were able to help you out”
Khushi – “ yes, everythings is well infact I was just writing about whatever information iv gathered today”
Arnav smiled as he felt relieved that he was able to help her and he said – “ Glad its working , so im just heading for this teleconference, ill finish in an hour, and incase you are working and want to wait , we could leave together”
Khushi smiled – “ yes ohk , not a problem Arnav, I anyway need an hour to put together the draft to email to my tutor to see what he thinks about it”
Arnav – “ great and I hope we are hungry, I am taking you out for Dinner tonight” , he stated with a smile.
Khushi looked at him confusedly – “ You are? But I didn’t know…thanks…I guess?
Arnav grinned – “well know you know, and you are good with Lebanese”?
Khushi smiled – “ yeah, Lebanese is good…” and she saw him walk away and she sat down wondering if all of this was for real , Arnav Singh raizada was taking her out for dinner…she felt a smile curve up her lips as her guilt vanished, because all she felt was sheer happiness in that particular moment.
BOSTON – 2 PM
Asad just finished his lunch when his phone beeped and as he checked it, only feel a grin on his face as he read its content –
“ You are dead Mr.Khan, I cannot believe you teased Khushi about Aaditya, now im feeling all guilty about breaking our BFF code, and btw since when did you loosen up that way when it comes to your sister, I always thought you were the big bad wolfy brother.Jokes apart – seriously you are not going to get away with this one.”
Asad quickly replied –
“I stopped being the big bad wofly brother when I learnt that my sister has grown up and its time I learnt to trust her.And I just finished lunch, did you have yours? Btw what the hell is the BFF code?
He waited for her reply and it came quickly and he read it –
“Just having it, have class at 230.And BFF code is – the Best Friends Forever Code. You see we aren’t supposed to leak parts of our lives to our friends elder brothers”
Asad grinned to himself as he quickly replied –
“Oh really , I guess there maybe a lot more secrets in there.So is there anything else that you are hiding?”
He quickly received another text –
“You think you are funny dont you? Im not going to tell you anything anymore, ok..so don’t ask! And im getting back into class, so ttyl.will let you know once am back at the apartment”
Asad smiled to himself as replied – “ Yes, do that” , and deceided to return to his work, as he walked in the boardroom to resume the discussion regarding Khan construction investment plans.
7.30 PM - Maroush, 4 Veer Street, London
Arnav finished placing the order and he smiled at Khushi across and said – “ well im glad you like it”
Khushi smiled – “ofcourse I do, I love the food here, and also the ambience, I just didn’t think you would like something like this”
Arnav raised his eyebrow – “ Oh so I guess you do some wrong assumptions about me then, Khushi”
Khushi tried to hide the embarra****t she was feeling as she said – “ i guess I do, since I got it all wrong, but don’t blame me Arnav, you are the one who is full of suprises, like uptil yesterday I wasn’t aware you are an amazing cook , and then today this dinner was no less then a surprise”
Arnav smiled – “Im sorry I didn’t ask, not that I didn’t want to, but I was busy during the day and then you were busy too with Andrew and Annie, but I really wanted to take you out, so …”
Khushis eyes widened in surprise as she felt her heartbeat soar and she asked – “ but why?”
Arnav looked at her confusedly – “why what?”
Khushi – “ want to take me out …”
Arnav felt himself at a short of words, as he thought of what to answer, he couldn’t just out right say the truth right that he was attracted to her, so attracted that it was making him want to spend time with her in every way possible,but he lied and said – “ well remember how you were asking me earlier today about my time back here, when I was 16, this was one of the places I used to come to all the time, so I thought you would want to see, and also the food is pretty good, so”
Khushi tried to control her laugh as she saw him answer, and she knew it right then that he was ofcourse making it all up and right when she heard that last bit , she couldn’t help but break out into a line of giggles, which made him exclaim his famous – “what the? Whats funny?
Khushi , in between her laugh – “ im so sorry , but you are, and that’s another surprise I just witnessed, Arnav singh Raizada has the ability to crack me up”
Arnav couldn’t help but grin and was just about to answer her back , when the steward came with their starters and served it to them and they both started to eat, as they were both starving.
An Hour Later, just as they finished and were walking out –
A very good looking man walked up to Khushi and he said – “ hey Khushi, how are you , haven’t seen you in a while..howv you been…”
Khushi smiled as she recognized who it was and Arnav thought he didn’t like the way this man was smiling at her, he didn’t know why though and he was just about to comprehend a reason for the same just when he heard her say – “ Hiii Nikhil , how are you? I know its been long…crazy bumping into you here…” and she turned to introduce Arnav and she said – “ this is Arnav Singh Raizda, Zoya’s brother and Arnav, this is Nikhil Oberoi, he used to be in Zoya’s batch of MBA”
Arnav shook hands and he felt a weird feeling creep up so both his sister and the girl of his interest knew this fellow and right then he heard Nikhil say – “ hows Zoya doing at summer school? I spoke to her before she left…”
Khushi smiled – “great…shes really enjoying it, and wait Aadi told me that you were about to join some course at Harvard too this summer, what happened?
Arnav felt his insights groan as he heard Khushi name another guy and before he could reason who he must be , Nikhil said – “ yeah, I am …next week , but haven’t told Zoya about it…and are you joining everyone next week in Manchester, or wait you need to ask your bhaij..”
And Khushi interrupted him right their because she couldn’t risk him saying – bhaijaan in front of Arnav so she said – “ yeah maybe, I guess we should get going now and we will leave you to catch up on your meeting….see you later…”
Arnav casually nodded at the man and they started walking out and he couldn’t help but question but even before he could ask it was as if Khushi read his mind and started to explain , as they sat in the taxi – “ so that was Nikhil, Arnav, like I said he was with Zoya in her batch , and I know him through Zoya ofcourse and also his cousin Aaditya is in my batch, so we are all like really good friends…they are both really nice”
Arnav felt the brother in him surface as he asked – “ so Zoya is good friends with him?”
Khushi heard a hint of pssesiveness in his voice for his little sister and she felt so much warmth embrace her as she saw in the flicker of a moment a caring side to him which is probably hidden from the rest of the world and she said – “ yes just friends, don’t worry, although he likes her , and did ask her out , Zoya made it very clear to him that they could only be just good friends, you know how she is right , shes always so clear in her head about what she wants, I gotta learn that from her”
Arnav felt a wave of relief wash over him as he realized that his little sister wasn’t very little anymore, and perhaps she was more sensible than he had imagined and then he asked – “ what do u mean you gotta learn it from her, I guess you are pretty clear in your head too”
Khushi admitted honestly – “ yes sometimes I am , but sometimes I am so confused, like I have been almost the whole day – you heard Nikhil mention about Manchester right?”
Right then they reached their building so Arnav paid the taxi guy and they made their way up and he asked – “ so what about it?Manchester?”
Khushi got in the lift as she explained – “ so its of my batch mates Rahul’s engagement next week , although my brother has given me the permission to let me go and I kind of want to , but im still confused whether I should or not” and she saw him give her an amused look and so she said – “ see now you know what I mean, about being clear?”
Arnav asked , very much amused with himself for finding her confused look even more mesmerizing – “ but why are you confused”
Right then the Lift opened to their floor and they walked out and Arnav asked her to show him her draft work over a cup of coffe because he didn’t know why but he wanted to talk to her more.He watched her set out her Mac from her bag as she switched it on and then joined him in the small kitcheneete as they made coffe, he asked again – “ im sorry , so why are you confused about Manchester? You should go if you want to , it will give you a chance to spend sometime with all your other friends before you leave”
Khushi – “ I know right , that’s exactly my point but then I am only confused because Aadi will be there”
Arnav shot her a confused look – “ so isnt he your friend”?
Khushi sighed as she explained picking up her cup as they walked to the table – “ ofcourse he is Arnav , he is infact a very good friend of mine , the one I can really count upon apart from Zoya ofcourse, but he kind of you know likes me,…”
Arnav deceided that he already disapproved of this guy Aaditya but he asked – “ as in ?”
Khushi – “ as in you know, hes asked me out and stuff, and I , you know do not feel anything for him that way , so I denied, and although hes pretty kool about it and has made me promise that it shudnt get in between our friendship and stuff, iv been careful spending time around him , you know I don’t want to lead him on unnecessarily, speacially now that I like..” and she stopped mid sentence and covered up – “ now that I know he still likes me..i mean I just know it”
Arnav didn’t know why , he felt quite relieved as he heard her admit that whoever this Aaditya dude was didn’t stand a chance with Khushi and so he said trying to sound as casual – “ well don’t worry much , think about it, don’t go if it makes you uncomfortable, and hell get over it too , since I assume hes as old as you, boys are immature at that age..and…now that youll leave” and he heard her say in between sipping her coffe – “ no that’s what Arnav, he isnt immature, and he isnt as old as me, he is 26, and very mature , he just joined MBA late because he was working earlier and I knowas in I can sense this is serious for him so…that’s why”
Arnav asked in a reflex– “ so you are good friends with him despite him being much older to you”
Khushi shot him a confused look – “ ofcourse, why wouldn’t I , you know age doesn’t matter Arnav , he is nice that’s all that should matter right , infact also Nikhil looks much younger but he is as old as you too , and we are all very comfortable around each other”
Arnav felt all the guilt he had been feeling for being attracted to his sisters best friend who was much younger to him , wash away in that split of a second as he heard her and he kind of felt happy with the knowledge that age wasn’t much of a worry factor for her , so he said to distract himself– “ Yeah, he doesn’t look as old as me though , I agree”
Khushi – “ Just like you don’t”
Arnav grinned and asked – “ excuse me? Is that a compliment? And just for the records how old do u think I look?”
Khushi judged the teasing tone in his voice so she teased him further – “ oh wait, now id like to think about the exact number, hmmmm, 32 maybe, you see I said you don’t look your age , I didn’t say you look younger”
Arnav shot her a ridiculous look – “ what the Khushi? No one has ever teased me that way”
Khushi grinned – “ im sorry baba, jokes apart, I meant you don’t look 28 too, much younger , but don’t ask me to say a number please”
Arnav smiled – “ alright , so show me what did you work on today”
Khushi immediately placed the laptop on the table in front and turned it as she went to sit next to him to show him , and she started to explain him what all information had she gained from Andrew and annie and how was she planning to analyse it further.
Arnav listened to her and saw her work and he was quite impressed, and so he said after a few minutes – “ well this is great work Khushi , and also I must tell you , I guess you are going to ace this one”
Khushi smiled as she said – “ thanks Arnav” and she shut down her laptop , and she could feel his gaze on her , and so she said – “ guess I should get going now….goodnight Arnav” and he nodded so she stood up but her knee hit the table bottom and she immediately fell back , and because Arnav was startng to get up too , he fell back on the sofa and she fell right in his arms and he felt his one hand go around her shoulder and the other around her waist to hold her, and their eyes locked and he said teasingly – “ you love hurting yourself don’t you ?”
Khushi felt herself drowning in his gaze and also his touch was already making her mind spin just when she heard him , so she broke her gaze and tried to get up – “ no ofcourse not , im sorry” and she looked at him surprised when he strengthened his hold on her, and did not let her get up – “ don’t be sorry , Khushi” and he looked at her confused eyes and he asked – “ are u sure, you aren’t hurt?”
Khushi – “ yeah im alright …” and she tried to get up once more and this time he let her go and so she immediately picked up her laptop and started to walk out the door, feeling very embarrassed and cursed her balance for forgetting how to function with him around right when she heard him say and so she turned to see a grin on his face– “ but be careful when im not around Khushi , I wouldn’t want anybody else to save you from your clumsiness, you see in three days, of saving you almost thrice, I am almost used to it” and he saw her blush furiously as she stood at the door and so he walked up straight to her and he saw her step back nervously until she hit the wall and he put his hands on the wall, almost caging her in between and he watched the play of expressions on her face as she continues to look into his eyes, and did not break away although her eyes gave away the fact that she was hell nervous and so he said – “ looks like you got another surprise Khushi , I have the knack of making you nervous too , very nervous” and before she could say anything he removed his one hand from he wall and flicked her nose tenderly and said – “ and also the knack of making you blush”
Khushi looked away embarrassed and she thought of what to say and right then she noticed him look at her as if he were trying to comprehend what was on her mind so she said with a smile – “ and looks like I have a knack of wanting you to figure out whats on my mind all the time” and she quickly escaped under him and stepped out the door as she said – “ see you in the morning Arnav”
Arnav – “ See you” and he watched her step ino her studio and he walked back into his wondering how did she know that he was trying to read her expressions and he felt a smile curve up his lips as he recalled how his closeness affected her, and the fact that she did not break the gaze everytime their eyes locked, could mean that she was attracted to him too? And he immediately scolded himself, his sensible self to act like a hyper teenager jumping to conclusions with a moment so minute for his record of numerous flings but he did feel like as if he genuinely hadn’t liked and felt so attracted towards someone in a long long time, and how her mesmerizing face had caught his attention at once all those months ago , and he thought amused that all these moments and feelings with Khushi seemed so new so different to his Life altogether, and he smiled and walked into his room right when he saw the time on the clock and he decided to ring his sister Zoya.
Khushi changed and got into bed and she tried to get some sleep , for she also had a long day ahead tomm which started early and she felt herself rewind the day in her head and the moments with Arnav , and she felt herself blush furiously as she recalled the affect that his closeness had on her when he had almost caged in between his arms, she had been surprised ofcourse, everything about him today had been no less than a suprsie or rather a happy shock to her.She twisted in bed as she sighed and felt as if she was being granted everything she had ever wished for, and it seemed too good to be true, the things that had happened today seemed as if they were perfectly out of a script of a movie , because that’s how it seemed, isnt this how they show it in all those movies, girl meets the man of her dreams and they fall for each other etc etc, but right then reality crashed into her that the truth here was more complicated than it seemd and she questioned her fate as to why was all of this happening in the first place if the truth had to crush it all later, and she realized that her life had quit being simple the day she had met him all those months ago, and now it seemed more like this mysterious puzzle of which she had no particular idea of what turn it would take next, she felt worried, happy , nervous, excited all at the same time, and she had no clue that her Life would bring her face to face with such a situation that she would wonder , what she was wondering in that exact moment that although people say that our life is not a movie, but just maybe hers just turned into one.
Update - Chapter 4 - Just Life, Or A Movie It is?- Part B (By Arnavkhushi1) (Thanked: 16 times)
BOSTON – 6 PM
Zoya just finished talking to her di, and she saw her brother’s missed call and she rechecked the time, it was 6 , Asad had texted that he would be there by 630 , and ofcourse she couldn’t talk to her brother with him around, so this was some good time for her to catch up with him so she called him immediately and he picked up in an instant –
Zoya – “sorry bhai , was talking to di , shes going crazy please tell her to stop shopping for me and waste her time, iv told her a hundred times that I can get whatever I want either in London and now that I am here, and oops btw its almost 11 pm , were you sleeping already ?”
Arnav – “ not yet , was about to , since my day is going to start early, and btw you know none of us can stop di , she just loves to spoil us, and you more, and I can see no reason why she shouldn’t, we love you, and tell me how is it going so far , any problem settling down?”
Zoya – “ ofcourse not bhai , no problem at all , do u think any problem stands a chance in front of Zoya Singh Raizada? Nahhhh…and what do u mean your day will start early”?
Arnav – “ well iv joined the gym , you know the one Fitness First , khushi said..”
Zoya grinned to herself , this conversation just got interesting and she said – “ yes that’s the one we both go to , its awesome bhai , and its good that you did, I mean I know how important it is for your health too…and also I want to thank you for helping khuhsi so much , she was telling me how youv been …”
Arnav sat up in bed , quite interested to know what did Khushi tell Zoya , so he asked trying to hide his inquisitiveness – “ so what did she say ?”
Zoya smiled to herself as she said – “ that ofcourse you are being so helpful and everything.thats it, why is there anything else you want to know ?”, she teased and she was sure her brother caught her tone as he said – “ no ofcourse not , anyway shes your best friend, im glad to help her, that’s all”
Zoya – “ yes ofcourse bhai, I know that’s all”
Arnav – “ I met your friend Nikhil , at dinner and btw why wasn’t I aware that he asked you out and you refused?”
Zoya made a mental note to fight with Khushi for this one , but she knew this was only fair since she did leak a similar info to her brother and it wasn’t of any harm so she said – “ bhai cmon , it didn’t matter ohk? Hes a friend, that’s all , anyway di knew, so chill”
Arnav – “ alright , and im impressed by the way by your work at AR here, everybody really thinks of you in high regard, and that’s not because you are my sister, im proud of you”
Zoya smiled – “ well what can I say , I learn from the best” and then her brother filled her in about the development at work on the project she was handling and she said – “ im not worried at all , since you are handling it”
Arnav – “ Yeah , but since you are the one who started it , you should know everything Zoya” , and they spoke for a few more minutes until his sister finally heard him yawn and directed him to get some sleep.
Zoya just put the phone down and she looked at the watch it was almost going to be 630 and Asad was going to be back soon , so she quickly used the time to make a list of all the things she wanted to buy on her Ipad, and waited for Asad to come.
A few Minutes Later –
Zoya heard a knock on her door and she opened it quickly to see the man of her interest stand in front of her all changed from his business attire in his rugged casual which would qualify him to be awarded for the hottest man on the planet and he smiled – “ so I was back a few minutes early , but I thought I will get changed first , I wouldn’t want to walk around Wal- Mart in a suit”
Zoya grabbed her bag immediately from the shelf and put her ipad in it and smiled back – “ great , then lets get going already , Mr.Khan, iv made out a list of the basics”
Asad looked at her in surprise – “ You have?”
Zoya admitted honestly– “ that’s something iv learnt from Khushi , she has this habbit of writing it all down , which ofcourse I don’t approve of, and I usually buy whatever just pops into my head, but that usually leads me to forget something , so I started to list it all down , which made Khushi really proud of me , you know”
Asad grinned , this girl was definetly more amusing that he had imagined – “ nice, so how was your day” , he asked as they got into the car.
Zoya – “ great as usual , lot of work tho ofcourse, I already have an assignment to work on , and I have the submission in two days, but I am loving it , and how about you, how did the investment discussion ago ?”
Asad smiled – “ it is going better than I expected , and we might sign the deal papers and the terms of the contract , the profit share and all the other formalities, next week, so yeah I guess that’s good”
Zoya – “ that’s great Asad , btw I still cant believe you allowed Khushi for Manchester, in one go, do u have any idea she has been confused to ask you about it for weeks since she knew I would be coming here, I must say you are kooler than I thought you were”
Asad grinned as he drove – “ so what else have you already assumed about me Zoya?”
Zoya teasd – “ well for starters I definetly assumed to be Akdu , and Khadus and a little Sadu and all strict and reserved, but I can see that I was all wrong , because you definetly aren’t any of those, Mr.Khan”
Asad raised his eyebrow and said teasingly – “ oh really , I didn’t know that my first impression is that bad …”
Zoya replied in an instant – “ ofcourse it isnt all bad, there are a few other things that leave a positive mark you know”
Right then Asad pulled into the parking lot and stopped the car and looked at her and said – “ maybe you could tell me more about that , once we are done with this…”
Zoya looked away , dam his gaze was again messing up her mind as she said – “ yes ofcourse later though, cmon Mr.Khan , lets go now”
Asad watched her spring out of the car and he smiled to himself, quite eager to know what positive mark had he left on her mind in the first go.
8.00 PM – Zoya ‘s Appartment
Asad and Zoya walked in with all the grocery bags and Asad dropped them on the table and Zoya started to settle it all up as she exclaimed – “ Allah Miyaan , now I know why Khushi makes a list , it makes it so much easier, I don’t think we missed anything”
Asad grinned – “Yeah we didn’t” and he realized hed been smiling and grinning way to much in the past three days , than he had smiled in the whole of three months, since the last he met her, and he started picking up his bag to take over to his apartment when he heard her – “ Allah MIyaan , where do u think you are going? Put that down , you can settle it later, im cooking us dinner tonight”
Asad put the bag aside and folded his hands in front of him and looked at her amused – “ now that’s a surprise, Zoya, so you can cook too, so what is this lavish menu you are going to craft up tonight”
Zoya sensed the tease in his voice – “ very funny Mr.Khan, well im not a expert but ..” and she ruffled up through the bags as she took out the pizza base and said “ tada…I make the worlds best pizza, mind you, and I am an expert because its my favourite, you know khushi always tell me, if I don’t do anything else in life, I can open a Pizza Chain and ofcourse I shall be the head chef”, she smiled.
Asad immediately felt himself crack up and he said in between giggles – “ so Miss Head Chef, do I get to help…” he asked walking up to her side in the kitchenete.
Zoya grinned – “ well no , but you can watch and you can Learn” she winked and started to get to work .
Asad watched the scene unfold in front of him amusingly as started to cut the vegetables and grate the cheese with utmost concentration as if it were some exam and he couldn’t help but take that chance to admire her once more as to how beautiful she was, the way her eyes lit up in excitement and glinted with mischief everytime she teased him , the way those dimples marked her creamy cheeks and the way her hair fell over her face….and her soft lips, the ones he had barely touched to brush the crumble off, and his mind immediately thought of how he wanted her to trip once more so that he could catch her in his arms like yesterday and he immediately shrugged the thought away and used his phone to distract himself, because he knew this was way too different, it didn’t seem like him at all and right then she asked him to hand her the gloves so that she could wear them before placing the pizza to bake in the heated oven , so he did and smiled, and their hands touched for a split of a second and their eyes locked, until she quickly looked away and placed he pizza in and took out her gloves and pushed her hair back which led to some of the flour stain her cheeks and she said – “ here you go , a few more minutes, and dinner will be served Mr.Khan , I hope Jahanpana is hungry”
Asad smirked as he walked up close to her and she hit her back on the hitchen counter and he said putting hi shand on the ****er from one side – “ could you share with me origin for that one, Jahanpana, seriously Zoya, do I look a tyrant emperor to you” and he watched her look at him nervously and he continued – “ so what was the positive mark of the first impression I gave you that you were talking about” and he leaned in a little bit closer and his hand on its own accord went forward and brushed the flour off her cheek , suprisng her to the core, because her eyes went as wide as they could but she didn’t look away , so he brushed his knuckles on her cheek softly as he said – “ better now, you had some flour on your face”
Zoya felt as if a thousand currents were going through her body as he continued to brush her cheek softly and stand so close to her that she could almost feel his breathe on her face and she realized in that moment that probably or maybe really he was attracted towards her too and she felt really happy at that realization so she said – “ well for starters, the positive impression could be, is isnt not possible for anyone to not think of you after they meet you , it could be because of how good you look , but also because you have this whole enigma around you , which makes it impossible to not think of you , and makes one wish for a chance to get to know who is really the man behind the mask of sterness, Asad Ahemed Khan reflects”
Asad couldn’t understand what did he feel more as he heard her say those words, happy that she wanted to know him or thrilled that she had been thinking about him too and so he asked teasingly – “ so you want to know the real me..”
Zoya felt goosebumps go through her as she heard his husky voice and she nodded meekly as she said – “ yeah , since you know you are my best friends brother and I guess im a good best friend”
Asad smirked as he heard her say that and he teased her further while his hand was still at her cheek not wanting to pull away – “ so you thought of me after you met me , is it Zoya?”
Zoya’s eyes widened as she said to her defense – “ not exactly you know, not the way it sounds..” and before she could say further, she felt him cup her face gently and make her look into his eyes as he said – “ would it make you feel better if I say I thought about you too , I don’t know why, but I found myself think of you , a number of times more than the usual”
Zoya saw him gaze at her lips and she thought for a second he was going to bend and the remaining distance would be closed between their lips and she said , barely recignising the voice as her own – “ you did? But why?”
Asad pulled her closer and his hand finally went around her waist and he said – “ well lets just say , your first impression was better than mine, since it caught my attention , in a way no one ever has…and that’s why I want to get to know you , and not because you are Khushi’s best friend”
Zoya looked at him for a second and she said – “ I don’t want to know you only because you are Khushi’s brother too , I want to know Asad”
Asad felt a grin curve up his lips and he said – “ well im glad now that’s clear between us” and he finally let her go reluctantly as the timer in the oven buzzed and Zoya jumped apart immediately to get their dinner out .
A Half Hour Later –
Zoya knew she was talking way too much all through out the dinner and it was really all random but she couldn’t help it because whenever she was nervous, she did end up talking constant nonsense,and she didn’t know how she was blessed with that ability because usually people shut up when something was making them nervous, but not her, when she was nervous she blabbered like an idiot and she was sure Asad noticed as he said, as they walked up to the sink to keep their plates and then walked back towards the seating area– “ So I learnt a few things about you Zoya”
Zoya smiled as she sat and said – “ I hope all good though”
Asad laughed as he sat next to her – “ first things first , you cook the pizza great , and I must agree with my sisters thought on this” and he saw her grin as she said – “kaha than a maine, waise aisa koi kaam nahi hai which I cant do”
Asad grinned – “and second when you tend to become way too nervous or rather restless, you distract yourself by the talking , isnt it? Maybe that’s something u cant do yet Zoya, be all mormal around me”
Zoya immediately stood up and pinted a finger at him – “ Allah Miyaan , who do u think you are Mr.Khan , who said im nevrvous or restless, im normal and why should I be anyway”
Asad stood up and immediately pulled her by the arm and his one hand went around her waist as he teased – “ so you mean , this doesn’t make you nervous”
Zoya , to her defense – “ No it doesn’t “ and she felt as if she was trapped in his gaze as she couldn’t get herself to look away.
Asad softly brushed his knuckles on her cheek once more and he literally felt her shiver so he grinned – “ well I guess then this does”
Zoya looked at him nervously – “ ohk fine, maybe it does, happy now are you , now let me go” although she didn’t want him to let go.
Asad grinned victoriously and let her go although he knew she didn’t want him to and nor did he but he did and said – “ your crazy , you know that don’t you , but adorable, no wonder everyone in your family wants to pamper and spoil you too , honestly I would like it too you know”
Zoya looked at him in surprise as she asked and watched him walk out towards the door – “ what, what did you just say?you would like what?
Asad grinned from the door – “ I said, I would like to spoil you too Zoya” and he watched a smile curve up her lips as she looked away, blushing and he said – “ Goodnight Miss farooqui, ill see you in the morning”
Zoya nodded – “ Goodnight Mr.Khan” and she watched him leave and she sat back on the sofa completely dazed over what had just happened.
Her life was making her feel as if it were on its way to give her everything she’d been dreaming impossibily about eveer since she met him all those months ago.Asad Ahemed Khan definetly was a package of a surprise mystery that her life had dropped right in front of her , a mystery that she wanted to discover.And she remembered her conversation with her brother earlier, she knew he would expect her to not do what she was doing here, she knew he would be terribly hurt with her actions, because she already had a feeling where this was heading , she knew this was going to get twisted and complicated because more of her feelings were getting into the picture here but she felt like letting it all complicate for a while, it couldn’t get worse anyway, and she wondered if her simple life had turned into a a maze, a maze she was following blindly because it reflected what shed always wanted, although it eemed to good to be true in the first place but atleast it would be a while until it all turned ugly and she hoped that it didn’t have to turn ugly at all , if she could get Asad and her brother to understand and end this war between them and she felt anticipation and hope build up and she realized that she felt like a audience watching a story, the story which seemed like the Movie of her life.
Fate grinned – “ its funny how they still wonder , don’t they know their lives are no less than a movie for us, the entertainment we love to witness”
Destiny winked at him – “ and isnt these crazy ones that we term as the blockbusters anyway”
Fate grinned – “ Exactly, my thoughts” and he looked at Love and asked – “ so what up next ?
Love smiled as she said – “ so I just thought of this brilliant idea, so Iv called someone to join us”
Fate teased– “ I know youv given Hate a break since he actually needed it , but I miss him already …so who is it now?”
Love grinned – “Patience is virtue my friend, you will know, she will be here soon”
Destiny smiled as it dawned on her and she said – “ please tell me it is who I think it is?”
Love smiled and Fate looked on confusedly as he hated to be cluless so he asked restlessly – “ can the two of you tell me already?you know I don’t like to play guess who, when we are at business here”
And right then Jealousy with all its green aura walked in and hugged Love – “ Long time, I have missed you , and you called , whats the matter?”
Love and Destiny grinned as they said – “ we need you to get into your role asap, we have a job at hand”
Jealousy grinned mischeviously as she said – “ another assignment , oh I love you so much already Love, I was almost bored to death , and you know what more do I love, how I m so different but yet still an important part of you , and how much you trust me to do my job here, I guess I must be good at it “ she winked.
Fate grinned as he finally realized what was being cooked here – “ Not just good, you are brilliant, let me show you how to go about this”
Jealousy joined Fate as he explained her what needed to be done, and Love and Destiny looked on amused as destiny asked – “ remind me again , how did you manage to create all these emotions and still have them remain a part of you , I love the way they all look up to you”
Love smiled as she stated honestly – “ I don’t know, maybe I should ask them the same, and I wonder what will they say though?”
Destiny smiled as she said – “ Oh quite being humble now, your maginificent you know that right? we all downright love you”
Love smiled modestly as she said – “ Yes, I know and I love all of you too.”
Chapter 5- A Pinch Of Jealousy and Some Fireworks - Part A (By Arnavkhushi1) (Thanked: 10 times)
Chapter 5 – A Pinch of Jealousy and Some Fireworks.
Cyclones Happen.Earthquakes Happen.Tornadoes Happen, because they are by default a part of Nature. Similarly Jealousy happens , because it is by default a part of Love, as ironical it may seem but yes it is. Its funny how jealousy usually plays the role of a catalyst in the chemical balancing game of emotions, which our heart starts to play with our minds, under the flag of the good old glorious Love. And its really amusing if you were to think of how, jealousy starts its job, at first it starts slowly, making you feel uneasy, and makes you wonder and question your very own emotions, even makes you think if you were crazy.And then it starts to progress and it usually never really misses its target, and that’s usually when we realize that you can only be Jealous of someone, who has the attention of that one person of your interest, the attention which you ought to want for yourself, and then like the catalyst it is – it leaves you with no choice and forces you to visit the places of the heart , which you never knew existed, but the places you gotta visit, in order to come back to yourself. Jealousy is like that flight of the Global Airline of Love, because ultimately it will take you to that destination your heart seeked, and it is then eventually with time do we learn that it isnt just a emotion, it’s a very useful emotion indeed and in the Receipe for Love, even a pinch is enough to kickstart the Fireworks.
Three Days Later –
Saturday – London – 10 AM
Khushi sipped her coffe and she watched Arnav drink his whilst he browsed his phone and she felt her mind wondering about to the thought once more that , getting comfortable and closer to Arnav Singh Raizada was definetly unhealthy for her life, and she outright knew it. A week before, he had stormed into her life , and changed every dam thing about it upside down, including the fact that she was concealing her identity from him.She immediately scolded her mind to wander around the trechourous logic and she resumed her attention to think of how so much had happened in these past one week, and also ever since she had started spending more and more time with Arnav , in the past three days , they both started to get more comfortable around each other, and she felt herself open up to him quite easily and she was also happy about the fact he was different with her, than his usual self.There were times at AR when he would come over to talk to her, everyone around would look at her or rather them in disbelief and actually go to exclaim the fact that they had never seem him talk to anyone the way he did with Khushi, except for his family ofcourse.She had felt pure happiness ofcourse in that one moment , and although his intense gazes and looks still gave her goosebumps and made her feel as if there were something more he always wanted to say, and she tried to think what would be going on in his mind and right then she saw him look up and catch her in the middle of her staring at him , like he had so many times in the past few days and he said grinningly – “ ohk then, well this time I definetly got ahave something weird on my face…”
Khushi looked away , embarrassed and then she said to her defense – “ why, cant I look at you? Kya Arnav Singh Raizada ko dekhne ke liye tax lagta hai?
Arnav smiled at that and put his phone away and said, teasinly – “ well, I guess not…so yeah I guess you can continue to stare at me, like you were..” and he watched her mouth go in the usual O , which he founf extremely adorable and she said – “ well I was not staring for starters, I was, ..i was just thinking something and you happened to sit right across, and my eyes just happened to look in your direction, that’s all…”
Arnav laughed as he heard her say those words and he looked at her in awe and asked – “ seriously , how would anyone come up with a thing like that?”
Khushi grinned mischeviously – “ well …” and before she could say anything further her phone beeped and she turned her attention to the phone and started to type away, and Arnav took that opportunity to gaze at her.
In the last three days, he had felt himself open up and become more comfortable around Khushi, it was becoming more and more natural to talk to her, as he spent some more time with her, and ofcourse they were practically spending all day together and he couldn’t help but get more attracted to her, specially now that he didn’t worry about being reserved, and the more he got to know more, he started to realize that he genuinely was developing a liking for her, a very different sort of liking which came with truckloads of attraction with it and before he could think further, he saw her put her phone aside and she said – “ sorry, it was just riya…”
Arnav smiled – “ that’s ohk…so whats the plan for the day…since you declared yesterday that the weekend is supposed to be an off..”
Khushi smiled – “ honestly , I wanted to do some shopping , so..and I guess if you plan to buy any gifts for your family back home, I could help you too…”
Arnav smiled as he finished his coffe and said – “ great, so its done…and Khushi I must say , the coffe was indeed brilliant…”
Khushi grinned – “ thanks, but would you care to explain me once more, how do you stand the pathetic taste of the black sour caffeine..”
Arnav grinned – “ well , I don’t know, I guess it’s a habbit , iv become used to”
Khushi smiled – “ I know, its always about habbits…”
Arnav – “ yeah like how you have two full spoons of sugar in your tea..”
Khushi looked at him in surprise – “ you noticed….”
Arnav grinned – “ it isnt easy not to , when you have precisely five cups in front of my eyes, every single day, but yes there a lot of things which you may think I don’t notice, but I guess I just do…”
Khushi looked at him in surprise once more and she was just about to answer him when she saw him lean forward as he tugged the strand of her hair behind her ears, the one that always fell on her face as he said – “ and I also notice how that strand disturbs you…”
Khushi felt herself blush as their eyes locked for a second and then he pulled back and she teased – “ so what else have you niticed, Mr.Raizada..?”
Arnav was just about to answer her and right then her phone rang and she looked at him and gestured that she gotta take the call , but she didn’t leave her chair , so Arnav took that time to fiddle with his phone although he didn’t know why his ears were paying more attention to the conversation happening right in front of him.And as he realized who was it, that had called, he felt his insides a little uneasy , and as he watched her smile and talk in her constant usual chatter, he just hoped that she would put down the phone already , because somewhat due to some really unlogical reason , he was feeling uncomfortable listeing to her talk so easily with someone else, with someone who likes her, and instantly he felt that similar dislike arise for Aaditya, for apparently he knew a lot of things about Khushi and was a close friend, things which he didn’t know, and he didn’t know whether he wanted Khushi to look at him that way anyway, as just as a friend, because he knew one thing sure shot, he did not look at her as just that.He felt the uneasiness rise as she excused herself and walked to her room and she continued to talk on the phone, and he literally clenched his fists in anger, the anger he felt even though he didn’t know why, he felt it still, because he did not approve of Khushi giving Aaditya the attention, that she was giving him in that very moment.
He was just anout to get up and and leave her appt , when she walked out her room, and she said walking up to him – “ sorry, that was aadi, you remember I told you about the Manchester thing right?”
Arnav felt his insides groan as he heard her call him that, so Aaditya was Aadi and he tried to sound normal as he said – “ yeah, what about it? I thought you didn’t want to go…”
Khushi smiled – “ yeah I didn’t, but I guess I will, you know that was what Riya was talking about too and so was aadi, and I guess you were right , itl give me the opportunity to spend some time with everyone, so…”
Arnav felt like smacking himself for giving her his opinion, because he wasn’t aware that this was what he was going to feel regarding the thought of Khushi spending some time with Aaditya and he said – “ so when do you leave..?”
Khushi – “ Monday morning maybe, ill just take the train to Manchester, I was thinking going Tuesday, but aadi and riya are persuading that I go along..”
Arnav felt his insides churn again – “ hmmm…and when will you be back…?” , hoping that she would be back soon.
Khushi – “ Wednesday evening, I guess…the weddings Tuesday..so yeah…im so glad iv finished my work on what I had planned this week, and once im back, maybe a few more days at AR and then il be done…”
Arnav felt his mind wander to just one thought – she would be back Wednesday? And he wouldn’t see her for three whole days? And she would be spending that entire time with Aaditya?? And he saw her looking at him and so he said , trying to sound normal – “ Great, so why don’t you get ready? We can leave in about an hours time?”
Khushi smiled – “ definetly, an hour would be good” and she watched him deep in thought and almost frowning so she asked as she saw him step out the door – “ is everything alright..?”
Arnav was surprised that she noticed and he turned and said – “ yes, everything is fine Khushi, why wouldn’t it?” and then he walked in swiftly towards his studio and made his way to the room and started to get ready.
Three Days Later
Saturday - Boston – 11.00 AM
Zoya smiled to herself as flipped through the picture of herself and Asad, they had clicked at Dinner , last night and she couldn’t control her blush as he saw his hand on her shoulder, and she felt that similar flutter in her stomach as her thoughts wandered to him, things were going so perfectly in the past few days, they both were anyway comfortable with each other since day 1, but now it just felt so different , to wake up and meet him for breakfast, him dropping her off to school, and then spending as much time that they got in the evenings, in getting to know each other, and she knew what she was feeling was going to be lethal to her being , but she still allowed herself to feel everything freely , with the flow, because she knew this was the first time probably that she was listening to her heart here and not her mind. And what was more of a surprise to her was how different asad was to what she had perceived him to be, he was actually fun, a lot of fun , and not at all akdu, and very very straightforward with everything that came to his mind, and she reminded herself to never judge a book by its cover ever again , because Asad was definetly another story, than what his outer cover potrayed, and right then she saw him walk towards the car, as he took his seat behind the wheel and said – “ Im sorry , I had forgotten my phone, and I knew we wouldn’t return until later..so..”
Zoya grinned – “ Allah Miyaan , whats wrong with you, I know…anyway why don’t you have a look at this…” and she immediately showed him the picture on her phone from last night and asked – “ its nice no?”
Asad looked at her phone screen and felt a smile curve up his lips, the picture was wonderful , and he thought he really liked the way she was smiling in it and also the way his hand was on her shoulder, as if it were meant to be there, and more than anything , he was surprised to see that his face reflected pure happiness in that moment and he smiled and said – “ Correct that Zoya, it isnt just nice, its wonderful…” and he saw her give him her dimpled smile and he started the engine and said teasing her – “ I must say, we look good together…”
Zoya immediately felt her eyes widen in surprise and she said – “ Again, there you go, with all your shameless flirting…”
Asad grinned as he said – “ Oh I wasn’t flirting , I was just stating a fact, you know, you can correct me if I am wrong…”
Zoya saw the picture again and admitted honestly – “ well I guess you are right…”
Asad smiled victoriously – “ I always am”
“ very Funny”
“ Whats funny”
“ You are…”
“That’s something about myself , I don’t hear very often , Zoya..”
Zoya said in an instant – “ well that’s coz, not many know you the way I do”
Asad looked at her sideways and raised his eyebrow but admitted honestly – “ I guess you are right , I do not open up the way I have to you, to anyone, infact it suprises me too…”
Zoya smiled – “ im sure it does, and why don’t you pay attention on the road instead Asad, or I am going to get late for my class if you don’t get to driving faster..”
Asad smiled and returned his attention to the road – “ when will you be free..”
“Kool , so ill pick you up by 2 then?
“Yup…although Im so jealous, you aren’t working and I have to go to class…I thought of spending Saturday differently…I haven’t watched a movie in so long…”
Asad smiled – “ so maybe we could do early dinner and then movie tonight?
“we could…? I thought you weren’t fond of watching movie”
Asad grinned – “ exactly, you thought…and you should know that I am..”
Zoya grinned and she immediately took out her phone and started to check which movies were playing, and right then something on her facebook caught her eye and she immediately spoke in excitement – “ Oh my God, I don’t believe this…”
Asad asked curiously – “ what happened..”
Zoya – “ Nikhil just checked in at the Boston Airport…you remember my friend I told you about, Nikhil..?”
Asad remembered and he said, trying to hide the dislike in hic voice – “ yeah the one who likes you…”
Zoya – “ Yeah, whatever, but he knws I don’t, but he is still a very very good friend…and I wonder what the hell is he doing here..and why didn’t he tell me…”
Asad took the turn towards her school and fought the uneasiness that was stirring within him as to why was zoya sounding so excited to know that he was here, and he immediately shoved the thought aside , when he heard her say – “ I have just messaged him to call me asap, he is not going to get away with this…”
Asad brought the car to a halt and tried to sound normal as he said – “ yeah you should ask him…” and he saw he smile and he felt better as she said – “ I will, anyway thanks, ill see u in a while, you are ohk if I pick out a movie for us, right?
Asad smiled – “ Yup, just let me know the time, that’s all…”
And she hopped off, and right then her phone rang and so she just waved him bye and turned her back and walked towards the building, but not before he hadn’t heard her say – “ Nikhil what the hell are you doing here..”
And he felt that similar uneasiness creep up within him at the thought that she had just walked off without saying bye, because that Nikhil had called, and he didn’t know why he didn’t like the fact that she thought it were more important to take his call rather than to tell him bye properly.
He started to drive back towards their apartment , and he used the thought that they were going to be spending some good time today with the movie and dinner, to make himself feel better, because he definetly needed to do that or otherwise he was sure the uneasiness he was feeling would drive him crazy.
An Hour Later –
Asad flipped through the file of the contract paers which he were to sign on Monday , and he was making some last minute checks to see if everything was in accordance with what they had deceided in the last week and right then his phone buzzed so he picked it up , smiling to himself as it was Zoya –
“Hi, hows class going on?”
“ Great Asad, the last class got cancelled, I guess I will be free early , will it be ok for you or Ill just cab it?”
“What nonsense, ofcourse itll be alright, ill be there…”
“Oh and you know what, I spoke to Nikhil, and you will not believe this, his course here starts Monday on, he didn’t tell me coz apparently it was all a big surprise, hes taking some other short course for a week and then hes on the same one for Real estate as me, isnt that great..”
“Yeah, I guess…”
“Asad , is something wrong..?”
“No, why would it be..”
“Ohk and also , I have asked him to join us for lunch tomm, I hope you don’t mind that I asked him to join , I mean I just felt I should…so..”
“Hes your friend, why would I have a problem anyway?”
“Ohk then , kool, ill wait for you at 1”
“Ill be there..”
“Don’t keep me waiting , long..” and she smiled to herself and hung up, but she felt that thought urge up right again, something was off in his voice, or maybe she was just being paranoid, he must be working when she called, so he must be busy.Zoya smiled to her self as she thought of spending the entire day with him, she was right, taking summer school this year was probably the best decision , she had ever made.
Chapter 5- A Pinch Of Jealousy and Some Fireworks - Part B (By Arnavkhushi1) (Thanked: 14 times)
LONDON – 8 PM – Arnav’s Studio
Khushi heard her phone buzz and she saw that it was her bhaijaan’s message, so she quickly replied that everything was well and that she would call him in a while, and then a few minutes later her phone rang again and she saw that it was Zoya , so she picked it up instantly –
“Zoyaaa, how are youuuu??”
“Great, and well you do sound great too, hows it going…and why do I sense that my brother is the reason for that happiness in your voice”, she said teasingly.
“yes, just like I know for sure my brother is the reason for that happiness in your voice…” she replied
“ where is bhai..?”
“ well im at your place, hes on a call with his secretary back in India, I guess, whats his name…Aman…yup”
“ooohhh so now you guys are spending all your time together, now that sounds fun , I am happy finally my brother is showing interest in someone whom I love to bits and totally approve off…”
“very funny. Hows bhaijaan , what are the two of you up too?”
“nothing much, dinner and movie tonight…”
“ now that’s interesting, probably I could say the same for you…”
“yeah right, ohhh and I forgot to tell you, Nikhil is here, im meeting him for lunch tomm…”
“I know…we ran into him here a few days back…he told me…”
“what , and you didn’t tell me….”
“don’t blame me, he asked me not to…and also Im finally going to Manchester on Monday, will be back on Wednesday, I am kind of looking forward to it , you know..”
“thank God Khushi, I think you should go definetly too…”
“I know, even Arnav said the same”
“Bhai said what?”
“yeah , you know I was confused, so I spoke to him about it, and he sort of told me what he thought about it…”
“you know what, I feel bhai is really opening up to you , which is rare, he barely does…”
“ I know, and just like Bhaijaan…Zoya why do I feel this will get way too messy if …”
“Khushi, I know, that’s always at the back of my mind…however..”
And right then Khushi saw Arnav walk out his room and she said – “yeah Zoya, hes here, ill just hand him the phone..” and she quickly gave her phone to Arnav saying that it was Zoya.
Arnav smiled and took the phone from her hand and started to chat away with his little sister and he watched Khushi smile as she heard their conversation , and a while later he hung up and sat on the couch across and handed Khushi her phone and said – “ Zoya couldn’t believe the fact , that I spent the day shopping…”
Khushi grinned – “ well its hard to believe really, I didn’t know you had the patience…”
Arnav smiled – “ well now, you do ..and on that note….wait…”, and he walked to his room and brought out a bag, and handed it to her – “ here, this is for you…”
Khushi looked at him in surprise as she opened it , to see the beautiful black dress, she had liked earlier today, but because she had thought she had shopped so much already , she had left it out reluctantly and she said looking at him in shock – “ Arnav, no I couldn’t, definetly, and how did you know…”
Arnav sat next to her and he said – “ Oh cmon, I knew it you loved it, and also I bought something for almost everyone, so I wanted to get something for you too…so now quit being all formal…it isnt much..”
Khushi felt her heart all warm , as she knew this meant so much to her, that he noticed firstly and then he got this for her and she smiled – “ thanks, but I don’t know…if I could…I mean…”
Arnav groaned, why was she so unpredicatable, he’d thought she would be happy and so he said – “ Khushi, lets just say , it’s just a gift, and I want you to wear it for dinner tonight…”
Khushi, now even more surprised – “I thought we were going to stay in and order, wasn’t that the plan?”
Arnav grinned – “ yeah , I guess, but we just had a change in it, I hope you don’t mind…”
Khushi smiled – “ ofcourse not, but I still don’t know about this…” and before she could complete her sentence she felt his finger on her lips as he whispered huskily because they were really close – “shh not a word more, please…”
Khushi finally gave up as she felt herself loose her senses as his finger was on her lips and she gestured through her eyes , that she would wear it and he grinned victouriously and bent back and she smiled nervously and took the dress in her hand and her phone in another and she got up – “ ill see you in 20 mins?”
Arnav smiled and nodded and watched her leave the apartment and he grinned to himself, because he was really liking the developments between them here, and he didn’t know why , he had bought her the dress he knew she had liked, but all he knew was that he wanted to.and so he had..and now he just knew one more thing, that he couldn’t wait to see how she looked in it.
45 Minutes Later – At Dinner
Khushi could feel his gaze on her , and she tried to fight the butterflies that were fluttering around in her stomach in that moment , because firstly just as she had stepped out in that dress, she knew from how he had gazed at her, that maybe she did look better than what shed thought.And even on their way to the restaurant , she had caught him steal a glance at her a million times already, and for the first time ever she really felt as if she had a similar affect on him , similar to the one he had on her.She smiled nervously as he placed the order and she said – “ thank you Arnav”
Arnav looked at her as he watched the steward leave and he smiled – “ for what”
Khushi smiled –“ Just, for everything youv done to help me until now…and also for this dress…”
Arnav felt himself gaze into her eyes again as she smiled and he couldn’t believe the fact of how she never failed to mesmerize him and how his imagination never did her any justice, when it came down to the fact of how breathtaking she looked in almost everything she wore. And he felt his mind wander to how he had been bowled over when shed stepped out in that dress, and smiled at him , she looked exquisite and beautiful and the dress was a perfect fit and that honestly didn’t help him much because it made him acknowledge, how perfect her body was, and just then he heard her say – “Arnav?” and he realized that his thoughts had wandered whilst she was still waiting for him to answer and he said trying to sound as casual as he could – “ And how many times have I told you , to not thank me…already Khushi”
Khushi grinned - “yeah…my bad, I know you have…”
Arnav smiled and he was just about to say something when he saw three people, two guys and a girl walk up towards their table and he wondered as to who they were just when he heard one of them speak – “ Khushi….I am glad to run into you , don’t have to wait another two days to see you…”
He saw Khushi look up in surprise and then smile as she got up and almost side hugged the guy , making Arnav wanting to box him already and he heard her say – “ aadi, Rahul, riya…I didn’t know you guys would be here…”
He watched her meet the other two , while he took out that time to xray Aaditya, and then he heard her say – “ Guys this is Arnav Singh Raizada, Zoyas brother and Arnav , these are my friends, Aaditya, Riya and Rahul , remember the ones I told you about, ill be going to Manchester with them”
Arnav nodded curtly and shook hands with all of them and they spoke for a while , but deep down all he was waiting was for them to leave, because he did not like the way aaditya was stealing a glance at Khushi and admiring her , and he immediately felt like pulling her away from his gaze, when he heard Khushi say – “ why don’t you guys join us? Wev just placed the order for some starters?”
Arnav felt a kick in his gut and he couldn’t believe that Khushi had asked her friends to join in on what he had assumed to be their alone time or rather a date and he tried to control his anger as he saw her ask him thrugh her eyes if he were ohk with it and he couldn’t say anything so he just nodded, and he saw aaditya grin and ask the steward to join in another table and the chatter began, and he felt his discomfort rise as he saw Aaditya take his seat next to Khushi , making his insides churn , because Khushi’s attention was diverted towards everyone else on the table , except for him, and he knew for sure, that he didn’t approve of it , and he felt his anger rise but he controlled it ,because as much as he wanted to he couldn’t get up and shove Aaditya aside, and so as weird it made him feel , he tried to become an active participant of the dinner which seemed to him to be one of the most awkward moments of his Life.
Two Hours Later
Khushi watched Arnav from the corner of her eye, as they got into the lift of the apartment, and she thought that his face was unusually hard and she wondered if he was mad at her, because ever since dinner had been over and they had made their way home, he had barely spoken to her, making her wonder what had she done to spoil his mood, and right then she watched him step out o fthe lift and she followed and saw him walk towards his apprtment and he started to enter it without saying a word and she asked – “ whats wrong?”
“Are you mad at me..?”
“No , why would I be?”
“I don’t know, you just seem so annoyed , that’s what iv been wondering, is it probably coz I asked my friends to join us for dinner?”
Arnav walked in his studio and heard her footsteps behind him and he placed his keys on the table and turned and he was sure that sarcasm was evident in his voice as he finally felt his anger loose – “ oh so you noticed, good”
Khushi walked up to him and looked at him confusedly – “ but I thought you said, you were ohk with it..or else I wouldn’t have…”
Arnav looked at her in disbelief – “ you didn’t ask me Khushi…”
“well coz I didn’t know id run into them , and also it seemed approprotae, so…but im sorry if that’s the reason you are annoyed, arnav, they are my friends, I probably will never see them again once I leave…”
“you will , since you are going to Manchester , with them” and he knew she sensed the anger in his voice again.
Khushi looked at him in surprise – “ but weren’t you the one who suggested that , I should…?whats the matter with you Arnav?”
Arnav felt his anger take over and so he pinned her to the nearest wall and caged her in between his arms as he said – “ whats the matter with me? Whats the matter with you Khushi? I wanted to spend some time with you, and not with your friends, I took ot you out, so that I could…and there you were inviting your friends to join us, and that aaditya, now that iv seen the way he looks at you , I guess you were right, you shudnt go to Manchester, rather I guess you should quit talking to him in the first place”
Khushi felt her own anger rise for the first time as she heard his words and she said – “ what the hell Arnav, if that was what you wanted, you could have just said so, or even made a gesture, I would have handled it , and secondly why the hell does it matter to you , if aadi looks at me the way he does, I already told you , hes in love with me, and im not…and he knows it and I cannot help it if someone still chooses to feel that way…and moreover why does it make any difference to you at all anyway…so just stop it…and let me go” and she tried to get away from within his caged arms.
Arnav watched her struggle and he pulled back and she was walking off and he felt his hand hold hers on its own accord and he said, his anger washing away – “ im sorry Khushi, its just that the evening didn’t go as id planned …”
Khushi felt her own anger wash away as she heard him and she turned and let him pull her closer as he pushed her back towards the wall , only but tenderly this time and she said looking into his eyes – “ im sorry, I really am…”
Arnav looked at her for a second and he said – “ I don’t like the sight of him around you”
Khushi looked at him in surprise and she asked – “ why…”
Arnav admitted honestly and he said – “I don’t know, but I just don’t… I don’t want him looking at you as if you were the most precious thing in the workd for him…”
“he looks at me like that…? How do you know?”
“Im a man, I understand Khushi…”
Khushi felt her eyes lock in his and she asked – “ what do u want..?”
Arnav did not break the gaze and he said – “ I don’t want you to go to Manchester, Khushi…”
Khushi – “ but , iv promised all my friends already…” and she looked at him and asked – “ you still didn’t tell me why this makes any difference to you, how can you not know, if you are clearly stating what you want here? Aapko kyun farak padta hai…?”
Arnav tried to say something , but words wouldn’t come as he couldn’t get himself to just outright say that he liked her, and that he liked her way too much for his own good and he said – “ like I said, I don’t know..”
Khushi watched various expressions play on his face and then she said – “ ill think about it…”
Arnav immediately felt a smile curve up his lips and he cupped her face tenderly and brushed his thumb on her cheek – “ thank you , did I tell you, how beautiful you look tonight….my imagination didn’t do justice…”
Khushi felt herself shiver under his touch on her face and she asked – “ your imagination…”
Arnav grinned – “ Yeah , I guess I do think about you more often than you know…”
Khushi didn’t know what to say as his closeness made her loose her sense of speech anyway and she fumbled – “ you do…and why?
Arnav leaned in closer , coz that’s all he really wanted to do in that moment, he wanted to kiss her in a way he had never wanted to kiss anybody and he whispered huskily – “ the day I have all the answers to your why’s I will tell you Khushi…” and he saw her close her eyes in anticipation as his one hand stroked her arms upwards and he could feel her breathing heavy, and he felt himself drown in the magic of the moment and he brushed his thumb on the side of her lips and he felt her hand on her shoulder and he bent forward and kissed her on her cheeks softly and just as he was about to kiss her, and their was barely any distance remaining between their lips, he heard her phone ring, and she immediately opened her eyes and looked at him in shock as she realized what was it that was about to happen here if her phone hadn’t rung, and she immediately pulled away and grabbed her phone from the table to see who was it that was calling , and when she saw her brothers name flash on her screen, realization dawned on her that all of this had gotten way out of hands, if she had let him kiss her, she would have entered another level of complication is this already supertwisted complicated turn of events and she cut the call and turned to him and she could see the disappointment clear on his face and she rushed – “ Arnav , I think I should get going now, goodnight…”
Arnav watched her all ready to run and he held her by the hand and asked – “ khushi , whats the matter?”
Khushi looked at him and she smiled trying to hide her inner turmoil – “ nothing, im just tired and very very sleepy…and my brother just called, I need to speak to him and my mother before I sleep, so…ill see you later..goodnight…”
Arnav let go of her hand athough he tried to gigure out what the hell was the matter with her, just a minute before it seemed as if she were as affected as he was, that she wanted him to kiss her too, and now she was being so indifferent and so he just said – “ well ohk…goodnight..sleep well..”
Khushi – “ yeah you too..” and she immediately hurried out into her studio and shut the door behind her and she tried to calm her arms, as much as she wanted him to kiss her in that one moment , she realized where this would lead her too…and she knew she would have kissed him too, if her phone hadn’t rung , she immediately shoved all of his thoughts away from his mind and made a mental decision to stay out of his way , atleast she could try, because she didn’t trust herself anymore around him anyway, and she waited for five minutes until her breathing became steady and she felt her logical brain tell her that she needed a reality check and so she dialled her brothers number to talk to him ,hearing his voice would give her the check that she needed.
BOSTON – 7 PM
Asad wondered why had Khushi not called him all day and even cut his call a while back and he heard Zoya ask – “ whats up with the frowning? Whats the matter?”
Asad brought the car to a halt at the signal and looked at her – “ nothing its just Khushi , i haven’t spoken to her almost all day , and shes been cutting my calls..i wonder if everything is alright…”
Zoya felt warmth as he saw his brotherly love emerge and she smiled – “ im sure she will be fine Asad, I spoke to her a few hours before, she was fine…”
Asad immediately felt better – “ You did?”
Zoya – “ Yup , so relax…shell call..”
And right then his phone rang and he told Zoya to put it on speaker, coz the signal had just turned green and he heard his sister’s voice and he exclaimed – “ Khushi , are you ok? Why did u cut my call”
“ Bhai I was in the middle of doing my project , so I thought I will call u once im done and before I sleep..and im fine…don’t worry”, she said trying to sound as normal as she could.
Asad - “ ohk fine, anyway Zoya told me that she spoke to you earlier, so I wasn’t worrying anyway….so hows ur project coming along?”
“great bhaijaan, I will finish it well in time…”
“So when shall I get your tickets for back home?”
“ bhaijaan , ill let you know in a few days, and also im leaving for Manchester probably tomorrow itself…”
Zoya immediately spoke – “ what? But didn’t you say you were going Monday?”
“yeah that was the plan , but I just spoke to riya and aadi and I guess theres been a change in the plan…we r taking the 12’o clock train tomorrow…”
Asad – “ ohk not a issue, enjoy yourself alright? But take care…”
“I will bhaijaan ..” and zoya could immediately sense that something was off in her voice but ofcourse she couldn’t ask her in front of Asad so she said – “ we are on the way to the movies Khushi , I miss you so so much…it would be funner if you were here…”
Asad smiled at that and he said – “ I agree, I cant wait to see you , khush, anyway Iv told ammi that ill pick you up for good from London on my way back , so that we can reach home together…”
“yeah , that sounds great bhaijaan , I miss home…”
Asad – “Khushi is everything alright…?”
“yes ofcourse, im just excited to be back in India after so many years…after all apna desh toh apna hi hota hai bhaijaan…”
They spoke for some more time and they hung up and asad turned to zoya – “ was it only me, or did you sense something was off too?”
Zoya lied covering up – “ I know, I guess she must be tired, its pretty late in London and shes been working so hard..”
Asad – “ yeah I guess you are right…” and he smiled as he teased – “ seriously does that word even exist in the dictionary?”
Zoya looked at him confused – “ what word?”
Zoya grinned as she said – “well it does, in mine…”
Asad grinned – “and I should have known you would say that..”
Zoya smiled – “ are you sure everything was ohk with you in the morning , you seemed to be off on the phone too …”
Asad remembered the reason for his uneasiness and he tried to hide it as he said – “yeah , I was just working on something.. so…”
Zoya – “great…and also after the movie and dinner, I still have to think about where can we go for lunch tomorrow, with Nikhil , hes nice you know…”
Asad felt his insides groan as he heard her mention him once more and he said – “ im sure..” and he hoped she didn’t sense the sarcasm in his voice.
Zoya agin felt as if something was amiss, but before she could ask , they had reached the Cinema, and she made two mental notes in her heard – first she had to talk to Khushi tomorrow and second she had to be alert to the new thought that had just creeped in her mind, the thought that she felt that Asad was uneasy everytime she mentioned Nikhil , and she didn’t know why , but it made her really happy to think if this possibility could be true.
Four Hours Later – 11 Pm – Zoya’s Appartment
Asad sipped his coffe and he heard Zoya say – “ I must say Mr.Khan, I had a lovely time tonight as well, you aren’t just fun to be with , you know, you are funner..”
Asad grinned - “ oh am I, im honoured you feel that way Zoya” he teased.
Zoya grinned back – “very funny…”
Asad was just about to say something and her phone beeped and she immediately picked it up to see who it was and she said – “ now what is he saying…?”
Zoya said typing in her phone – “ Nikhil aur kaun…”
Asad immediately feel his discomfort again – “ why is he messaging you so late..?does he do it often?”
Zoya immediately put her phone aside and looked at him and tried to control her laugh as she said – “ no well he doesn’t and also, he was just texting to tell me the time for lunch tomm, id asked him to confirm me later, since you know he has to settle in and stuff, so should be convenient for him na…that’s why..”, and she immediately realized from the look on his face, that he was jealous , and she made it a point to tease him and thought of making him admit the same and she said – “ again , you have that same look on your face…whts the matter with you?”
“I said nothing, Zoya, drop it please…”
Zoya grinned as she came up with the perfect plan to make him admit and so she said – “ ohk fine, I will, now toh smile…”
Asad smiled and he then he asked – “ Zoya”?
“Are you very close to him?as in is he a very close friend of yours”?
Zoya grinned , he was making her task easier – “not really close but yes a very good friend, why do you ask?”
“did you ever like him?”
“who..Nikhil…no…never..didnt I tell you? What is this about?”
“yes, you did, ohk nothing…who actually…”
“what who actually Asad, anyway leave my topic aside, why don’t you tell me about what you were telling me the other day?”
“about how you would like to spoil me? May I ask why?”
Asad grinned as he now liked where this conversation was heading and he stood up and went to sit beside her and said – “so you really want to know why?”
Zoya felt those similar goosebumps as he sat so close and she said – “ yes, I guess I do…”
Asad grinned – “ why don’t you tell me why are you shivering, first?”
Zoya to her defense – “ no , I am not…”
Asad teased – “ yes , you are”
Zoya – “ stop being smart Asad, and answer my question , I know what you are trying to do here, changing the topic…”
Asad brushed her hair away from her face and said looking straight into her eyes – “ No I am not, I am thinking about my answer…”
“whats there to think about?”
Asad leaned forward and she could almost feel his breathe on her face and she said – “asad?”
Asad cupped her face and leaned in and whispered, barely recognsiing the voice as his own – “ zoya..” and then he kissed the side of her lips and then switched to kiss the other side of her lips , and he knew the affect he was having on her.
Zoya felt his lips, touch so close to hers , that she knew that if she moved even a little, they would come in direct contact with his, and just as he was about to kiss her, his phone rang and disturbed the moment , and she saw the disappointment on his face as he picked up his phone and she shifted in her seat and brushed her hand through her hair, to calm herself and she heard him talk on the phone and heard him say before he hung up and said – “ give me five minutes, I will just check my mail and call you back…”
Zoya looked at him and asked – “what happened? Who was it so late..”
Asad smiled – “ I know but its morning in India, something urgent has come up at Khan designs, something I need to take care off immediately, so ill see you tomm morning then? Goodnight Zoya…”
Zoya smiled – “ sure, not a problem…” and she watchd him turn and she walked him to the door and right then he turned and cupped her face and tenderly kissed her forehead, suprising her to the core once more as he said – “ I hope, you got the answer you seeked?”
Zoya smiled as she said – “ I guess, I did…”
Asad grinned – “ And I am that glad you did…” and he walked across to his apartment, feeling really content with the fact that he had got his message across.
SUNDAY – 10 AM – LONDON
Arnav left the door to apartment purposely open, so that he could get a glimpse of what Khushi was up too, her behavious last night ofcourse had disturbed him and he had wondered what had happened , until he had slept. And right then he heard his phone ring and he picked it up and started talking to his di, he filled her in about what had been happening last week and to his utter annoyance she started to tease as he heard her say – “ so some one is spending so much time with Khushi, Chotte, this is something new development that I really like, finally zoya will approve of your interest too…”
Arnav was anyway annoyed with Khushi’s behaviour so he said curtly – “ di, please, just stop it, how many times have I told you, I don’t like it when you start your teasing mode, and pls you don’t need to start teasing me with Khushi atleast, shes not the kinds I Like, shes young and naïve and moreover she is just my little sister’s best friend to me, and that’s all she will ever be…I hope that’s clear…” He heard his sister apologize for teasing him and then she calmed him down and he put down the phone, and turned towards the door to see if there was any sign of Khushi, but there ofcourse wasn’t.
Khushi immediately shut the door to her room and she felt tears spring up in her eyes, she was just going to tell him that she would be leaving for Manchester in a while and that would only be fair, she couldn’t go without telling him ofcourse, and so she had walked to his appt to see his door open and he was standing in the hallway with his back towards her when he heard him say those words to his elder sister, Anjali – “and pls you don’t need to start teasing me with Khushi atleast, shes not the kinds I Like, shes young and naïve and moreover she is just my little sister’s best friend to me, and that’s all she will ever be…I hope that’s clear…”.And as soon as she had heard him say that, she had immediately walked back to her room and shut it , changing her plans of informing him that she was leaving.She wiped her tears, and she consoled herself, she should have known ofcourse there was no way he could like her, then why had it felt as if he did, and then she wondered about what the last whole week was about? What was last night about? She felt confused, and irritated, and she cursed herself for walking into this complicated lie, here she was defying everything in her life, for him and for him , she could never be what he wanted, and calmed her nerves and continued to do her packing, her friends would be arriving soon to pick her up, she was glad that they were ready to change their plan , when she had called and asked them too leave a day early last night, because she thought that would be the best way to avoid what would have almost happened last night , but in the morning she had felt almost guilty for doing so and thts why she was going to inform him , only to find out, that what she had done was indeed the only way out.
10.45 AM -
Arnav waited impatiently for Khushi to come talk to him or even call , and just as he thought he had had enough, he made his way to her room across and he knocked and she opened it in an instant and he almost noticed the paleness on her face and her puffy eyes as if she had been crying and so he asked worriedly – “ khushi, whats the matter? Is everything alright?? Did something happen at home? Tell me dammit..”
Khushi smiled trying to sound as casual – “ofcourse not Arnav, iv just developed a cold…” and she saw him look at the suitcase behind her and he asked in confusion – “ where are you going?”
Khushi smiled – “ Manchester, theres been a change in the plan, we are leaving today , and infact aadi and riya would be here anytime, my train leave at 12…”
Arnav thought as if he had been kicked in the gut and he looked at her in disbelief – “ so you are going? Didn’t you say last night, that you would think about it…”
Khushi nodded – “ yeah,,and thts why I am going , Arnav”
“why didn’t you tell me?”
“I was coming to tell u earlier, but I guess you were busy over the phone…” she said, and he immediately hoped that she hadn’t heard him say what he had said to his di, but as he read some sort of pain in her eyes he realized that she had heard every bit of it and so he said – “ Khushi, woh main….i didn’t mean..”
Khushi stopped him in the middle as she said – “ I know what you mean Arnav, its alright, its true anyway, I am zoya’s best friend, your little sister’s young and naïve best friend, and to you , that’s all I will ever be…”
Arnav held her by the shoulder and tried to explain – “ Khushi…listen to me..will you…”
But right then the lift door opened and he saw Aaditya and Riya step out and he pulled away taking his hands off her shoulder and heard Aadi say as he walked up – “ hi Arnav” and he just nuttered a “hi “ to both of them as Aadi sidehugged Khushi and she smiled, which made his insides rumble and he took her suitcase and said – “lets go then Khushi, or well get late…”
Khushi smiled – “ yup, lets go..” and she walked out and locked her door and she knew he was looking at her all the while and she said turning to him – “ Arnav, you keep the keys with you until im back, since all the grocery stock is in my fridge, so I thought you might need it will im away…”
Arnav took the keys from her and he didn’t know what to say because he definetly didn’t want to make a scene in front of the two of them so he said – “ thanks…”, and he saw her smile once more before she walked off with her friends into the lift and he noticed that something was very indifferent in the way she had smiled, as if he were a formal stranger, just an acquaintance, and he hated the thought and he realized how it must have hurt her to hear him say those words that he said in frustration to his sister.He stood their until the lifts door closed, and he saw Aadi, touch her shoulder as he asked if she were ohk…and she silently nodded in response. And Arnav Singh Raizada realized a few important things in that moment – a) that he wanted to beat the hell out of Aaditya, for his timing was always wrong b) he was jealous, very jealous about the fact that Khushi was going to be with him for the next three dam whole days
c) he was jealous because he liked her .d) and it was because he liked her he felt like a royal jackass for unintentionally hurting her with his words the way he had.e) and he couldn’t stand the fact that he would have to wait three whole days to make up to her. But he was sure he would.He would tell her the truth , that everything he had said was a lie, and the only truth was that he liked her.
SUNDAY – 1.30 PM – Boston
Asad scanned Nikhil upside down , for the hundredth time in the past thirty minutes since they had met for lunch, and he deceided that he had been right, he did not want him anywhere around Zoya , and what made him even more furious was how comfortable Zoya was around him , and it seemed that they did spend a lot o ftime together back in London and that this Nikhil knew a hell lot about Zoya, more than the usual, something which he wanted for himself. And he tried to engage in the conversation that was happening, when deep down all he wanted was to strangle the living daylights out of the man in front of him , who was acting as if he were such an important part of Zoya’s life.And right then in that one moment he realized what this uneasiness was, he was jealous, very very jealous, and he didn’t know he was capable of feeling jealous, because he had never faced a moment similar in his life ever before, and he saw Zoya smile at him , so he smiled back and he realized that this Nikhil was going to be around, because he was at summer school too , and he immediately knew he needed to do something about it.
He saw Zoya laugh at something he said and he faked a smile at Nikhil and deceided his next plan of action, maybe it was time he made things even more cleare with his lady of interest here.
A while later –
Nikhil smiled and he said – “ zoya, it was wonderful to see you after forever, anyway ill see you tomorrow then at school?”
Zoya grinned – “ yup exactly , same here..” and she saw Asad pull upfront with the car and he waited for her to get in and she heard Nikhil say through the window – “ Nice meeting you man”
Asad gave him a small smile and a nod and lied – “ yeah it was nice to meet you too ,Nikhil” , when he innerly dammed his existence in Zoya’s life.
Asad watched Nikhil pull Zoya into a hug and to his utter disbelief , she hugged him back and he tightened his grip on the wheel and he heard him say – “bye, ill call you later..” and to add to his fury, zoya smiled and replied – “ yes do that..” and then she got into the car , knowing that she had succeded in her plan , she had always hugged Nikhil bye, because it was always a casual friendly hug , but today she had done it even more purposely to watch the play of expression on Asad’d face, and she knew that maybe the time was now near that , he would admit that he was jealous.
30 Minutes Later –
Zoya watched Asad’s face as hard as a cold mask as they stepped into the lift and she said, pushing him over the edge – “so what do you think about him? Hes nice no?Nikhil?”
Asad knew his temper was rishing and so he did not answer her and waited until they had reached their floor, until he stepped out , took her keys from her hand, and pulled her by the other hand and opened the door to her apartment and shut it and pushed her back into the door , as he gripped her shoulders and he said angrily – “ yes, he is, very nice, honestly I think you should date him..”
Zoya looked at him in surprise and in victory as she said – “ and why would I? when I don’t like him that way…I thought we had that clear yesterday…whts the matter with you??
Asad hardened his grip on her and looked at her in disbelief – “ whats the matter with me? What was the need to let him hug you , or more so even hug him back…??”
Zoya – “Allah Miyaan whats wrong with you , it was just a casual friendly hug..”
Asad hardened his grip further – “ well it didn’t seem just that, he clearly still likes you…”
His grip was starting to now hurt her so she said – “You are hurting me Asad…” and he loosened his grip but did not let her go and said – “ im sorry…”
Zoya looked at his distraught face and she said – “ so what if he like me Asad, I do not Like him, and I never will…”
Asad looked into her eyes and asked – “ you wont ever? He is just a friend isnt he?”
Zoya smiled as she said – “ admit it…”
Asad – “admit what?”
Zoya smiled – “ that you are jealous…”
Asad knew that now that the cat was out of the bag there was no point in beating around the bush so he admitted honestly – “ I am jealous, I am very jealous about the way he looks at you , about how you are so comfortable around him , as to how you laugh and talk with him as if her were such an important part of your life..and I cannot stand the fact that he will be at school with you, its like a cherry on the cake”
Zoya knew that he was jealous , but when she heard his rant, she was surprised because she had no idea this was how much it was affecting him so she said – “ He is important yes ofcourse, because he is a good friend, but you are important even more, coz you know I guess, I like you too..”
Asad looked into her eyes and he felt all his insecurities was away as he heard her say that and he immediately cupped her face and pulled her closer by the waist and asked – “ you do…?”
Zoya grinned as she said – “ yes, I do…and im sure you already knew it didn’t you? Theres no need to be jealous of anyone Asad”
Asad grinned and he whispered - “ so I guess , theres just one thing left to make all of this completely clear…”
Zoya looked at him leaning forward and she asked in anticipation – “ what?”
Asad – “ this…” and he finally claimed her lips, like he had wanted to last night, and kissed her, and then he felt her hand go around his neck into his hair, as she started to kiss him back and he pulled her closer to himself, as he continued to kiss her again and again.Zoya didn’t know she was capable of responding to a kiss, the way she was responding to his, for the minute his lips had touched hers, she felt electricity shoot through every cell in her body and she just stopped her rational thinking and started to kiss him back and they continued to do so for a long long time.
Asad broke apart many minutes later and put his forhead on top of hers as he whispred – “ I guess, this clears a lot of things up…”
Zoya looked into his eyes and blushed – “ yup , I guess it does…”
Asad grinned – “ so now you know, why I cannot stand that Nikhil around you , because this is who I am Zoya, I am possessive, and what I like is something , I am even more possessive about…so you could stay or run, the choice is yours”
Zoya – “ so you would mind if I am friends with him?”
Asad – “ ofcourse not , I understand the importance of your friends in your life, but yes I would mind if he tried to flirt with you, and I wouldn’t just mind, I would hate it , if he ever touched you again…”
Zoya grinned as she put her arms around his neck – “ that’s a reasonable bargain, Mr.Khan , I guess I wouldn’t run away from that..”
Asad raised his eyebrow – “ you guess..?”
Zoya smiled mischeviously – “ I mean… I know I would stay” and she teased – “ so you mean you hate Nikhil so much already?”
Asad grinned – “ well lets just put it this way, I don’t hate him , but I am just not very excited about his existence” and before she could say anything, he silenced her with a kiss, that stole her breath away.
Jealousy grinned victoriously as she looked at the three in front of her and asked – “ so have I given you the kickstart you needed? I love how I just have to dance around a little, and there are fireworks all around…”
Fate grinned – “ And I like the fact , that I am not the only wicked one here”
Love smiled – “ Yes, you did it perfectly just the way I wanted you too…and that’s precisely the reason why I trust you so much , you never miss a target and you never disappoint me…”
Jealousy grinned – “ thanks Love, and I guess , im done here for a while now, right Destiny?”
Destiny grinned – “ Yup for now yes, but we would need you in much more, perhaps later, but for how the fireworks you kickstarted will do their job…”
Jealousy smiled and turned to Love– “ call me whenever you need me and I shall be at your disposal, and I must say I thouroughly enjoyed this assignment…and I cant wait to be back already…”
Love smiled – “Thanks, and I will let you know when I need you , undoubtedly…”
They watched Jealousy leave and Fate grinned mischeviously – “ what the hell, I was only missing hate until now, now I miss jealousy too…”
Destiny smiled – “ well I guess, you are just stuck with the two of us for now…”
Fate smiled sincerely – “ not that I mind ofcourse, I was joking..you guys are my BFF’s…and I totally got your back”
Love smiled – “ I know, anyway I am kind of happy about how things have turned out to be…I like the sparks so much already…” she winked.
Destiny winked back – “ well who doesn’t?
Fate grinned – “ exactly , its my personal favourite, and also Jealousy worked wonders,she gave us the exact headstart that we needed, would the two of you remind me to ask her when I meet her next about how she flames these fireworks anyway, its quite fascinating, I must say”
Love and Destiny smiled as they nodded in agreement and said – “Fascinating , indeed it is..”
Chapter 6- And Somethings are Just Easier Said, than Done - Part A (By Arnavkhushi1) (Thanked: 9 times)
Chapter 6 – And Somethings are Just Easier Said, Than Done.
Patience. How many times have we been told that patience is an important ingredient of our lives, that patience is indeed a virtue, that even though patience seems bitter, its fruit is sweet,and that there is no particular advantage if we hurry through our lives without patience.
Yet in that one moment, when the heart is impatient, it forgets every damm thing it has learnt about the importance of patience, and instead it chooses to beat with recklessness, driving us crazy, and we all will agree in that one moment, that it is indded true, that somethings are just easier said than done, and Patience as virtuous it maybe, definetly tops that list and we all wonder that why couldn’t just anyone be sensible enough to also write about the truth, the fact that just sometimes, it isnt easy to just sit back and watch things happen, patiently.
Monday – London 11. AM
Arnav closed his laptop in front of him , and shut his eyes in frustration , because once again , as much as he tried, he couldn’t get Khushi out of his mind, and the last week, the moments spent with her, and that pained look on her face before she left kept flashing through his mind, again and again , and he banged his fist on the table in frustration , because he couldn’t get himself to act maturely here, and he knew he was behaving so recklessly , something that hadn’t happened to him in a long long time.Ever since Khushi had left yesterday , he had tried to distract himself with work , and somewhere deep down he had even got the idea to follow her all the way to Manchester, because he couldn’t wait for her to return to sort things out , but then something important had come up at work, so he couldn’t act on his instinct and had to just stay back, and watch the clock ticking, patiently. And to add to his frustration , Khushi hadn’t answered any of his calls, and instead just texted him saying that she had reached safely.
He picked up his phone and thought for a good five minutes if he should text her , but ultimately his impatience won and he texted –
“Khushi , I hope you are doing good.”
His phone beeped in a second –
“Yes, I am.Thank you.”
“Khushi, quit being all formal, I said..i didn’t mean to say what I did, will you let me explain”
“ No, Arnav, who am I that you should give any explanations too in the first place? I don’t want any.I am just your little sister’s young and naïve best friend, isnt it?”
“Damm it Khushi, stop it will you!And why didn’t you take my call yesterday?”
“ I was busy, with everyone”
“Ok, will you let me explain when you are back”
“I don’t know…”
“what do u mean…”
“I don’t know…”
“ I am sorry, there is so much happening around, right now, can we talk later?”
“ Ohk…Is that Aaditya around you , even right now?”
“ Yes, and I don’t feel the need to discuss him further..”
“ What the hell Khushi?”
“Look , i ll talk to you later…Arnav..”
“And I Hope you are doing good.Take care Arnav”
Arnav stared at his phone screen and read that last message, she hoped he was doing good? And he dammed the fact that he wasn’t ofcourse, because all he wanted was to see her, and make things right already, and ofcourse he couldn’t bare the thoughts that were emerging in his head regarding that Aaditya. Two whole days were still left , until Khushi would be back , and he had no idea how to deal with the restlessness that he felt in that moment. He knew he had to be patient here, because that would be the only way he could keep a check on his mood, but he knew it wouldn’t help, because he had never been more impatient in his life than he was at that point, and he knew surely that it wasn’t something that was going to change anytime soon, atleast not until he saw Khushi in front of his eyes.
Khushi was starting to get ready, but she knew that no distraction was helping her, and nor was her idea of coming to Manchester helping, because apparently Arnav Singh Raizada had made it a point to not leave her mind and thoughts , no matter how hard she tried, and she felt her mind wander again and again to the last week that had passed, along with their almost kiss that had happened, the night before she left.She was sure that she saw something in his eyes too, probably something very similar to what maybe he saw in her’s and she felt her heartbeat race again , so she put her hand to the heart to calm it down, as she scolded herself for thinking of him once more, but just as his face again flashed in front of her, she realized what was it here, she was missing him, she was sure she was, and she knew her restlessness would only fuinish, once her trechourous heart would be near him.She reminded herself of his words, of his words, that had hurt her so much, and even that didn’t help, as her heart reminded her of their earlier text conversation and how he was saying that he didn’t mean any of it, and he wanted to explain, and she felt her heart hope once more.She didn’t know what the hell was happening to her, she had never felt so restless or reckless ever in her life, maybe because being angry with him , was hurting her too somewhere deep down, and she reminded herself of how kind he had been to her, so different, how he had probably never been with anyone and so she thought, whether it would be right to let him explain, and right then her phone rang , and when she saw his name flashing on the screen, she wondered, was there some weird telepathy working between them already, how was it, he called or messaged, exactly , when she was thinking of him.At first she thought of cutting his call, but then she dammed her heart for aching to hear his voice, so she picked it up , to hear the voice, that sent shivers down her spine , and she realized how much she loved her name , in his voice -
“Arnav, Hi…how are you?”, she said trying to sound supercasual.
“Im doing good, returning home, have a dinner with a client tonight..so would be busy, you tell me how is it going?”
“Oh great….yeah everything is good here too, I was just getting ready, it’s the Sangeet tonight…”
“Khushi…I…just wanted …look…”
“ Arnav, like I said, there is so need for any explanations, im glad we got things clear bef…”
“What do you mean Khushi?”
“I mean, its good that its clear now, what we are too each other, for you , we know each other because of Zoya, so I see no harm if you look at me just as her best friend, and if I look at you at my best friends brother, that’s all…”
There was a pause, and she thought he hung up , when she heard –
“so you are not going to let this go , easily?” and she could sense the anger in his voice.
“ I am just stating the truth, isnt it, something which you…”
“I know what I said, dammit, stop shoving it in my face again and again…” and she knew that his tone was really harsh and so, she decided if it was best if she hung up , this was going nowhere.
“Look, I think I need to go…”
“What is it now , Arnav…”
“So is that what you think of me, just Zoya’s elder brother…did you mean what you said..? Coz I know I didn’t mean what I said…”
“I don’t Know….”
“ Damm you, Khushi, I have never ever given a dam about anyone ever before, here I am trying to talk to you, to sort things out, something which I have never ever tried to do , and you aren’t making it easier…”
“Then probably you should do what you are good at…” and she knew her own temper was rising and she continued – “ probably you should give a damm about this too…Arnav…”
There was a pause once more, and she knew her words would probably hurt him too, and she was glad, that she’d said what she had, know he would know how it felt and then she heard him –
“Is that what you want…Khushi?”
And right then before she could answer there was a knock on her door, so she walked up to open it and she saw Aadi there and she said into the phone – “ just a sec…Arnav” and she asked – “ aadi, whats up”
Aadi grinned– “ why aren’t you ready yet, everyone is, cmon hurry up….we need to practice our dance once more too, or as usual you will nail it, and I wont..”
Khushi – “cmon, our dance will be the best, don’t worry, and ill just catch up with you in a while…give me fifteen minutes…”
Aadi –“ great, come soon…and is all ohk? Anything important?” he asked gesturing towards the phone he was holding , and she in an instant replied – “no, nothing important, just a call..” and then he walked out and she shut the door, and took the phone , and she was sure Arnav had heard everysingle bit , and she knew he would be fuming even more, and she admitted honestly to herself, that she quite enjoyed it–
“Sorry, I Gotta go now…”
“Yeah, I am sure, you got more important things to do, than this…”
“Arnav..lis..” but before she could complete her sentence, he hung up.
She instantly felt bad, for being harsh on him , but right then her eyes fell on her outfit and she started to get ready, because this was not the time to think about Arnav, and she deceided to enjoy herself, she would face his wrath later, and she knew she couldn’t escape that.
LONDON – 11 PM
Arnav twisted in bed, and then he dammed Khushi , for not leaving his mind, and he felt his anger rise again , as he recalled their conversation earlier in the evening, no girl had ever dared to talk to him, the way she was, and as much as hed wanted to explain, she wasn’t letting it go, and he knew somewhere deep down she was right, because in that one instant when she said, he was nothing but Zoya’s brother to her, hed felt a kick in his gut, and he didn’t know, why did it hurt, but it had.And he knew he had to wait for two more days until he saw her, and he realized as her face flashed through his mind once more, of the moment when hed almost kissed her, he realized that he missed her, due to some illogical emotion , that was stirring within him, but he was sure, he missed her even more than he had imagined, right when he heard his phone ring , and he wondered who could it be so late, and when he saw Khushi’s name flashing on the screen , he picked it up in an instant, and he didn’t know how, her voice managed to instantly calm his restless and impatient nerves –
“Hi…Arna…avvv” and he instantly felt something weird in her voice so he asked –
“Khushi, tum theek ho?”
“Yes, ofcourse , I am alright, what would happen to me, who do u think yourself too, hum thik hai, bilkul thik hai, aapke bawajood bhi hum thik hai…”
“Khushi…have you had something to drink?”
“Yes, I might have, two glasses of wine, white wine- that’s about it, I don’t like to drink btw, but today, we were having so much fun, so I thought I could have little bit of wine…”
Arnav immediately felt his worry rise and he asked – “ khushi , where are you?”
“I am in my room, Aadi and Riya just dropped me in, ooh we had so much fun…dancing..la la la…”
Arnav immediately cursed Aaditya’s existence , but he knew now was not the time to curse him and so he said – “ well, that’s good….isnt it, Im glad you enjoyed…”
“You think you are smart, don’t you, Mr.Arnav Singh Raizada?
“Excuse me? I know I am…”
“Oh you aren’t, Mr.Know it All…because if you were, you would know and admit, that you are Jealous,jealous of Aadi…”
“ I am…?”
“Ofcourse you are, or why would you not want him to look at me as if I were the most precious thing in the world for him, on that note, I kind of noticed it too, you were right…”
“Would you forgive me, for what I said, if I admit that yes I am Jealous…”
“Hmmm, I don’t know…lets see….it hurt me to hear you say them, I don’t know why though…”
“I know, I am sorry….”
“Noooo, you don’t know anything , even when you think you know it all, I fear…what will you think if….”
“If you knew, how I am not able to get you out of my system, ever since I first met you, ever since you saved me that day….months ago..”
Arnav knew she was probably high, and wasn’t realizing what she was saying , but he liked where the conversation was going so he felt himself ask – “you what..?”
“see and you say you know everything, whilst you really don’t, do u know how I feel about you, NO…No….do you know why I never want you to know, because I fear…that you will hate me one day…that’s why I…I walked out that day…because I know….”
“What nonsense Khushi, why would I ever Hate you?”
“I just know , you will…” and he thought he heard her sob, so he asked worriedly – “ whats wrong Khushi??
“So you mean, you could never Hate me…?”
“yeah, I don’t think I can…but…what is it that makes you think I will?”
And he waited for her to answer, but when she didn’t, after a long pause –
“Khushi…you there…” and he heard her steady breathing , and he realized shed slept , so he hung up and a smile curved up his lips as he recalled her words, there were two things very clear, she hadn’t been able to get him out of her system, just like he hadn’t been able to, and secondly, there was something she felt too, and he felt confusion creep up hi smind as he wondered, why would she think hed hate her? Ofcourse he couldn’t, he never could, not when she was the only thing on his mind these days, maybe he could talk to her about this face to face, when she was back, and he felt a little bit more at peace, and he felt his patience rise all of a sudden, maybe the hours until her return wouldn’t seem that bad, now.
MONDAY - BOSTON – 9 PM
Zoya looked on amusingly, as she waited for Asad to join her on the table and she couldn’t help but smile to herself, at the sight of him cooking, and he had strictly instructed her to not help and just watch him, and so that was what she was doing, watching him.And she realized, that ever since yesterday, she knew she was falling for him even faster than she had imagined, and she knew this was getting complicated, because somewhere her sensible self had already started coming up with different scenarios about how would he react, when the truth was out.She knew for sure, they were pretty much on the same level , as far as there feelings for each other was concerned, but once again she had sensed a few hours earlie, how they were very different when it came to the level of her brother.She had heard him talk to his secretary, about how he wanted everyone at Khan Designs, to do their best, so that they could outdo AR designs, and back the upcoming contract, for which they were both bidding.And she had ofcourse sensed the hatred he had for her brother in his voice, because it was too obvious, and so her mind was again playing games with her, and she was constantly feeling that guilt again and again.Right then she saw him walk up with two plates in his hand and he put them on the table and grinned – “ well honestly, this maybe not as good as my Ammi’s, but will do….”
Zoya felt a smile curve up her lips, and she shoved her rational thoughts aside once more and she said – ‘ I am sure, it will be Asad” and she gestured him to take his seat….and immediately shoved her spoon into the biryani and ate a spoonful , and she watched him look at her for approval and she said – “ Allah Miyaan, do you have any idea, how amazing this is….why are you full of suprises…Mr.Asad Ahemed Khan…”
Asad grinned as he started to eat – “ Im glad, you like it…you know Ammi does this so well, I could eat it all day…its my personal favourite…”
Zoya smiled – “ I know, she always cooked the biryani so well….” She said in an instant, recalling how she and Khushi used to empty the entire bowl of her ammi’s biryani in a go, when they were kids.
Asad looked at her confused – “ yeah, but how do you know…?”
Zoya immediately tried to cover up as she lied – “ Ofcourse from Khushi, you know she cooks it pretty well, and she tells me shes learnt it from her Ammi…”
Asad smiled –“ Oh, speaking of her, I spoke to her earlier today, apparently she is having a blast…”
Zoya nodded – “Yup,I know…spoke to her too, but she was at the Sangeet function, so couldn’t talk much…’
Asad smiled – “ so how was your day…?”
Zoya smiled – “ great as usual, had lunch with Nikhil, which you know off, ofcourse…”
Asad – “ Yeah, and I just hope hes not being his usual flirty self…”
Zoya smiled – “ No, cmon, he does not flirt with me on every opportunity…”
Asad knew the sarcasm was pretty adamant in his voice – “oh really, that’s what I thought he did..”
And right then Zoya remembered she had to tell him something and so she said – “Oh leave him, so do you know, my sister’s , sisterin law who lives in New Jersey, has delivered a baby boy today…”
Asad smiled – “ that’s good…”
Zoya – “so you know how my sister is pretty busy right now and she cannot come to visit , so I just think I should go, you know someone from the family should, it’s a happy occasion…”
Asad – “yeah, but…your school..?”
“I got only a few classes Wednesday, which I can miss , I was thinking to take the afternoon flight to Jersey tomm, so that I can be back on Wednesday….what do you think?”
As much as Asad didn’t want her to go, he knew he couldn’t say much, because family was important for everyone so he said – “ I think you should go, have you got your tickets done…?”
“No, I was just going tooo…”
“Ohk, I will get it done, and I will drop you at the airport tomm…”
“But there isnt the need, Asad…”
“Shut up Zoya, you know I want to…”
“Ohk” and she saw him immediately flip out his phone to book her tickets.
A Few Minutes Later –
Zoya helped him clean up and she said – “ Thanks…”
“For everything, maybe….”
“So you are going to be all formal, I thought the formality was over…”
“yes, ofcourse it is…but still I like to express my gratitude, when I feel like…”
Asad grinned and he turned to look at her and tugged her hand and pulled her closer – “ then I should thank you too…”
“for everything , maybe…”
Zoya grinned – “ maybe you aren’t as smart as you seem, stealing my words….”
Asad grinned as he pulled her closer – “ what if I say, that’s not the only thing I want to steal…” and he leaned in closer..
Zoya knew she was blushing furiously, but she felt herself shiver, as he cupped her cheek tenderly and brushed his thumb over her lips making her forget her name, and as magnetic that moment was, she felt herself tip-toe , and her arms went around his neck on its own accord, as she welcomed his kiss.
One Hour Later –
Zoya knew she was griining like an idiot, and she knew he was watching her equally amused and she turned and said to her defense – “ allah Miyaan, I know, well although, you know Salman Khan is my personal favourites of all time, even Khushi’s, but somehow, I know I grin like an idiot , everytime, I watch him…”
Asad tried to hide his amu****t – “ so what is it about Ranbir Kapoor that you like anyway…?”
Zoya was just about to say when she saw her favourite song come up and so she said – “ shhhh, later…” and she turned her attention to the TV.
Just as the song finished, she switched the TV off and turned to him – allah Miyaan, do you know this is one of my favourites song of all times…”
Asad grinned and he was absolutely loving the adorable smile on her face and he asked – “ so how about you dance with me..to it…?”
Zoya felt her eyes widen in shock as she heard him and she felt herself ask – “ Allah Miyaan, whats wrong with you, you are asking me to dance…I mean…you know …how tooo…”
Asad grineed – “ Jeez, stop acting, if I just gave the breaking news of the millennium, ofcourse I know..” and he let out his hand…and whispered – “ so would you do me the honour…”
Zoya looked at him stunned and she smiled and handed him her hand, and he turned on the song on youtube – and his hand went on her waist and she put her hand on his shoulder and he started swaying with her, while their eyes locked and the song played in the background , and then very slowly he stared to twirl her around, and then rolled her out and rolled her in …to finally have her in his arms…and they continued to look into each other eyes, and stay in that moment…whilst the song continued to play in the background-
Sajde Mein Yuhin Jhukta Hun,
Tumpe hi aake rukta hai
Kya yes sabko hota hai?
Humko Kya lena Hai sab se?
Tumse hi sab baate ab se..
Ban gaye ho tum meri dua…
Khuda Janne Ke Main Fida Hun…
Khuda jaane yeh kyun hua hai..
Ki ban gaye ho tum mere Khuda…
Zoya watched him work on his laptop and she looked at him still in awe, as she couldn’t believe, Asad Ahemed Khan had just danced with her, in a way probably no one ever had, and she felt herself blush as she recalled how she felt herself heat up when his hands touched her waist and held her in his arms…right when he shut down his laptop and looked at her and caught her staring and so he grinned – “ what…?”
“Nothing, I still cant believe, that you danced with me the way you did…”
“I don’t know…”
“Is that why you were staring at me…?”
“I guess so, why cant I….does it tax to look at you?”
“Ofcourse not, you can look at me , as much as you want…”
“Just as I can look at you , as much as I want…” before you go tomm, he added silently to himself.
And he took he hand and made her sit closer to himself and he said – “ you will take care whilst you are away..and keep in touch…”
Zoya smiled – “ ofcourse I will, Asad…”
“Great, but whats worrying you…?”
“ Say it now, will you…”
“Look its just that, I like you and you know that, and I haven’t felt this way ever before, so it kind of makes me nervous…”
“Its not funny Zoya…”
“It is, when you see it from my point, you mean, I make you nervous…”
“Very Funny Zoya, not you, this thing between us…”
“What thing…?” she teased.
And he knew she wouldn’t let it go , so he joined the game in as he cupped her face and felt her shiver – “ this thing, that makes you nervous too…since you are shivering again…”
“very Funny, I am not…”
He kissed her cheeks softly and whispered tenderly in her ear – “ You are…” huskily , giving her goosebumps.
He brushed her lips tenderly and saw her eyes shut in anticipation and he knew he had won , as he heard her heavy breathing and he watched her nervous and yet very beautiful expressions and he whispered – “ so I guess this makes us both nervous…”
Zoya opened her eyes briefly and felt her gaze lock within his and admitted honestly, although for different reasons – “ I guess it does…” and she saw him smile, in a way she found completely ****y as always, before he bent forward, and kissed her once more, and she felt herself melt in his arms , once more.
Chapter 6- And Somethings are Just Easier Said, than Done - Part B (By Arnavkhushi1) (Thanked: 20 times)
Chapter 6 – And Somethings Are Just Easier Said, Than Done.
Tuesday – 5PM - LONDON
Arnav waited pateintly, quite patiently, all day for Khushi’s call or message, thinking that she must be feeling embarrassed about last night, and so he should just let her be for a while,but when he checked his watch and saw that it was almost 5 pm, he finally felt his last streak of patience wash away, and he was about to call her, right when his phone beeped, and he checked it to be Khushi’s message, and he couldn’t help but smile as he read it –
“Im sorry about last night.I shoudnt have called…”
“Khushi, no need to be sorry, im glad you did…”
“Did I say something , that I shouldn’t have?”
“No, you said everything you should have…”
“ When will you be back tomorrow?”
“My train is at 2.PM…”
“Ohk, you take care..”
“Yes, I will..thanks…”
“See you tomorrow, Khushi…”
He smiled to himself, as he realized he was right, probably she was going crazy being embarrassed about calling him last night, when ofcourse there wasn’t any need to ofcourse,and he felt himself quite eager to see her already.He quickly, finalized his dinner meeting with a client for tonight, again, because he definetly needed some way to make time pass, and ofcourse, there wasn’t much distraction , other than work. He then decedied to call Zoya, and speak to her, as to how were things in Jersey, he was glad she had visited Nisha, his Di’s sister in law.
TUESDAY – BOSTON – 6 PM
Asad made his way back to the apartment and knew he was getting impatient, and he really didn’t know how would the next 24 hours pass.Zoya had left this afternoon , to visit her elder sister’s, sister in law in New Jersey , who had just got a baby. Apparently , because her sister and brother in law couldn’t come straight away to visit, and because she was here, she felt it would be right from atleast someone from the family to visit, and because she couldn’t miss much of her classes, she had left today afternoon after school, and would be back tomm evening, because she only had two hours of classes on Wednesday, which wouldnt be much to miss.He missed her presence already and he recalled, how she had asked him to loose his grumpiness, when he had dropped her off at the airport, a few hours earlier. She had just been gone a few hours, and his impatience was growing already and he looked at his phone to see if she had called, because she’d said that she would the minute she reached. He saw that there wasn’t any call , so he just felt his mind wander to the amazing time he had spent with her last night, and he couldn’t help but smile as he recalled how good things were ever since they had made things clearer to each other two days earlier. He was surprised, not only by the fact that he had been so open about what he felt , but also about how used to he was of having her around, because now that he knew she wouldn’t be for the next 24 hours, even the thought was enough to irritate the hell out of him.For the first time ever, he could feel himself fall for someone , and he knew he was falling fast, because ever since he had kissed her two days back , things had already taken a step further for him , because he knew that he could never be as attracted to anyone ever again as he was to Zoya, and he also knew, that he wouldn’t want anyone else in his life, but Zoya.And he was thankful to his decisions of the past to keep away from casual flings, because he had never met anyone who had caught his interest, and now that he had, and he liked Zoya so much, there wasn’t any confusion , and he was pretty clear in his head about what he wanted, and infact this was what he had been waiting for all his life anyway, to meet someone, whom he was always clear about in his head, with no confusions in the picture.And right then the memory of how she had melted in his arms, when he had kissed her last night, flashed through his mind, and he felt his impatience growing again, right when his phone rang and he picked it up in an instant –
“I just reached Asad, had a comfortable flight, where are you?”
“I just reached the appt, although I do not know what the hell am I going to do now…”
“Allah Miyaan , whats wrong with you?are you saying that you miss me…”
“I guess I am , if you interpret – I am so used to you now, that it’s become a habbit, a habbit that I really like…as I miss you..”
“ I like where this conversation is heading ,Mr Asad Ahemed Khan is missing me…”
“You cant blame me, Zoya Farooqui, you have done this to me, and you will be punished once you are back…”
“You are adorable when you are so impatient, but its just one day, ill be back even before you know it, tomorrow…”
“Yeah…whats the noise?”
“who is it?”
“Nikhil , I guess he wants to know if I reached safe…”
“ Why does he want to know?”
“Yeah fine, I know, anyway maybe it’s the restlessness which is getting to me right now, I will talk to you later…”
“Ohk, will you feel better if I say, that I am missing you too, and I don’t think I could be very patient too, until I see you next…”
Asad felt a grin on his face and he said – “ And I feel better already…but come soon Zoya…before I run out on my patience”
Asad’s Appartment – 11 PM
Asad finished his remaining work , and looked at his phone, and he couldn’t understand what had Zoya done to him , that he himself was quite surprised with what he was feeling , and how restless her not being around him , was making him , and he realized that he missed her, he missed her more than what he had thought he would, and right then he was still deep in thought, when his phone rang and he picked it up with a smile – “ How did you know, I was just going to call you Zoya?”
“Well , I just knew it…Asad, im smart…”
“Hows it going?”
“Great, I am quite happy , I came, its fun, the baby is adorable…anyway you tell me what have you been upto?”
“Nothing much, was just working…”
“Hammond Constructions is making you work really hard, is it…?”
“No, that’s really all sorted, I was just reviewing a few new sketches for the new collection at Khan Designs…”
“You know my offer is still on…”
“But what I wonder is why are you having second thoughts anyway, you are working at a design company, I would love to have you at Khan designs…”
There was a long pause, and he thought of where she was lost , when he heard her –
“I know, I am thinking about it, maybe we could talk about this later…Asad”
“Yeah, and I guess you must be so tired too…”
“Yeah, I guess, I should sleep…goodnight Asad…”
“I guess, I miss you…”
“I miss you…”
“That’s good, coz I miss you too…”
“Is this weird?”
“ I think , we both are…”
“Atleast its common, ill see you soon…”
“I know, nor can I…”
Zoya hung up and she felt her insides churn once more, as confusion took over her mind, and she sighed, as once more, she had managed to escape Asad’s offer, that she join him at work at Khan designs, but she knew she would have to answer him one day, and what would she say?That she couldn’t ever work for him , because she wasn’t who he thought she was,that she wasn’t Zoya Farooqui, but the sister of the man he despised, Zoya Singh Raizada, and she felt a chill run down her spine as she felt that thought emerge once more, what if he never wanted to see her again after he knew the truth? What if he hated her…? She immediately took her phone and started to browse through the various pictures she had of them , from the last week…and she ordered herself to be positive, nothing so extreme would happen ofcourse, he would be mad ofcourse, but she would get him to understand, and he would understand, wouldn’t he?
WEDNESDAY – 5 PM - LONDON
Khushi walked around impatiently in her room, and she felt her restleness grow, as she tried to think of how she would face him, she was still annoyed at him , and that’s how it should have been, until wine got the better of her, and she called him almost half drunk in the middle of the night, and she immediately scolded herself again for having the two glasses, that she had had, she should have known , that she wouldn’t be able to handle it, and would end up doing something really stupid, which ofcourse had happened.Good for her, that she remembered whatever she had said and she thanked her sleep, that she didn’t end up blurting the truth, some of which she had given away already , and she knew for sure he was going to ask her about it, and she thought of various answers that she could come up with.Thats it, that was what she was going to do, give him his answers, and then maintain as much as distance from him as possible, because that was the best thing to do.Right then she heard a knock on her door, and she walked up to open the door, already knowing who it was , and she felt herself shiver, as she registered the sight of him in front of her, his intense gaze, already at its work, and she fought the urge to just tell him outright, that she’d missed him and gave him a stiff smile – “ Hi…you are back, early?”
Arnav knew he had imagined himself to feel relieved when he would see her,but he had never imagined himself to feel the rush of million emotions that he felt in that moment , when his mind registered in the sight of her, and he fought the urge to pull her straight in his arms, and kiss her like he had been wanting and he smiled – “yeah, I got free early…” he lied, because he had instead purposely made sure, all his work was over early today, so that he could get to see Khushi, just in time, without having to wait extra, because the three day wait had done enough damage already, and he asked – “ so you are still mad, that mad, that you wont ask me to come in or rather youd prefer me standing at the door?”
Khushi knew that would be really rude of her , so she gestured him to come in – “ No, come in ofcourse…” and she started to make her way towards her room – “ I was just unpacking…” and she immediately felt his hold on her hand and she said – “ Arnav Please…don’t..”
Arnav tugged at her hand, and pulled her back, so that he finally had her face to face , and he could see that he was making her really uncomfortable, but he didn’t have the patience to wait any longer so he asked – please what Khushi…”
Khushi – “ Please, leave me…” and he let go of her hand, and she started stepping back , as she said – “I don’t wana talk…”
Arnav looked at her and he was done with playing kool , so he stepped forward, and she stepped back again – “ too bad Khushi, because I want to…” and he stepped forward again, and she stepped back again and finally he saw her back hit the wall, and he caged her in between his arms, before she could run way and he said – “Khushi, look at me…”
Khushi looked everywhere else, but at him, but she couldn’t do much…specially when she was trapped in between his arms and she heard him say again – “ look at me, please…?”
And it was something in his voice, that made her look at him and just as she had, she thought she saw something similar, to what she had seen in her own eyes and he said – “ will you please let me explain…?”
Khushi nodded silently, and waited for him to continue -
“I only said, what I said because I was frustrated, and I was angry, with your behaviour, because, one minute everything was fine, and in the next, you seemed so indifferent…and I couldn’t comprehend what the hell was up with you, and then di called, and she started to question me as to why was I spending so much time with you, which is usually unlike me, and so I just said whatever you heard, in sheer frustration, I didn’t mean any of it Khushi…”
Khushi looked at him and she knew he was being honest and so she said – “ Its alright, I understand…im not mad at you anymore, now will you please let me go….”
Arnav looked at her confused – “Khushi, whats the matter, I thought its all sorted….what does this mean…?”
Khushi – “This means , that I am pretty sure we should try to stay out of each others way..its for the best…”and she tried to get out of his caged arms
Arnav pulled her back instantly and pinned her back to the wall once more and asked – “ for the best? Have you lost it? Do you have any freaking idea, as to what I have been going through ever since you left…? I almost came after you, but work came up so I couldn’t, and because I just couldn’t sit back patiently and wait for you to return, I piled up work for distraction , and I made sure I got free early , so that I could come see you today, and sort things out, as soon as you were back…and now you are saying, that we should just stay out of each others way, haven’t you heard that there are somethings that are just easier said, than done…and I know you feel something Khushi, you cant run away from that”
Khushi felt her own resolve breaking and she said – “ Arnav..please understand…”
Arnav shot her a look of sheer disbelief – “ what, understand what dammit, make me understand…and pls don’t tell me its because you feel I would hate you one day…and would you enlighten me why do you feel that way anyway?”
Khushi hesitated, and she saw the look on his face, and everything she had deceided about staying away from him , washed away in that fraction of a second as she said looking straight in the eye – “ you would, if you felt that I am not the kinds, as in if I am not enough, and I am stupid, naïve and young….”
Arnav – “ what the hell Khushi, you are twisting my words…”
Khushi – “No I am not, im just being honest, what if one day , you find out, that I am not who you think me to be…?”
Arnav – “ for heaven sake Khushi, stop beating round the bush, I know who you are….” And before she could say anything he put his palm over her mouth – “shh not a word, and you will listen to me Khushi Gupta, I like you, and I like you for who you are in front of me, and I probably like you more, than my own good, coz I missed you terribly while you were away, and I realized and deceided in that moment, that the minute you were back I would tell you the truth…”
Khushi couldn’t believe how happy she felt in that moment, for she was hearing the exact words from him that she had been longing to hear and she moved his hand away and asked – “ what did you just say? You missed me?”
Arnav nodded and he saw her smile and he felt relieved and he teased – “ you wont ask why?”
Khushi smiled – “I will , after I tell you that I missed you too…”
Arnav grinned – “ Why?”
Khushi smiled – “ You know, since I haven’t been able to get you out of my system ever since I first met you…”
Arnav grinned –“ well that makes the two of us on the same boat, because I haven’t been able to get you out of my system too…”
Khushi felt he breath fall short as she saw him lean in closer and he whispered – “ so there is something that Iv been wanting to do for a long time now, and also since I first laid my eyes on you today…”
Khushi whispered, almost feeling his breath on her lips and she waited in anticipation – “what…?”
Arnav saw her shut her eyes, and he could literally feel her shiver in his arms, and he felt his one hand go around her waist as he pulled her closer to himself, and then because he couldn’t wait any longer, kissed her quivering lips softly at first, but when he felt her hold on to his arm tightly and her hand went into his hair, as she tugged him even closer, and began responding to him , he lost all his resolve of being gentle and the kiss turned into a deep passionate one, and he felt himself never wanting to stop, something which he hadn’t felt in a long time, and so he pulled as close as he could, and continued to kiss her as much hed wanted. He had imagined the scenario a million times, in his head, but what he felt , was no where near what he had imagined, and once more Khushi had managed to mesmerize him , in her own unique way.
Khushi broke apart a few minutes later, because a thought had crossed her mind and she said catching her breath – “ I like you too, Arnav…and I like you way too much for my own good..too….”
Arnav felt a grin curve up his lips – “ I think , it’s a good thing….dont you think…?”
Khushi – “I don’t know…”
Arnav chuckled – “ I like that look on you, its adorable…”and he brushed her hair aside tenderly – “ you mesmerize me Khushi, did you know that…?”
Khushi smiled – “No…but now I do..”
Arnav grinned – “ And I am glad you do…” and he bent forward , already wanting to kiss her again, and so he did, and then as she started to kiss him back once more, the passion that took over the moment was both equally suprising and mesmerizing.
BOSTON – 6 PM
Asad drove as fast as he could, and he literally dammed his work for coming up at the last moment, and he hadn’t been able to pick Zoya from the airport because he was caught up in the meeting.She had messaged him that she had taken the cab , and had reached home a while back, and so he got free as soon as he could, so that he could get back and meet Zoya asap.He parked the car, in the ba****t, and his restlessness was growing onto him and he quickly made his way to the lift and waited for the elevator to take him to his destination , quite impatiently.
Asad stepped out of the lift, and he saw that the door to her apartment was open,so he walked in , to see her sitting on the table with her attention preoccupied in her laptop, while she spoke on the phone, and the minute she saw him , the 1000 watt smile that had smitten him came on her face, and she got up immediately and walked upto him , and gave him a sidehug, and then gestured him that, she would just get back as soon as she finished the call.
Asad smiled, and he felt relieved, finally at calm, at finally seeing her in front of him, and he gestured to her that it was alright, and he sat on the chair , she had been sitting on , and his eyes fell on her laptop, on the desktop picture, of Khushi and Zoya, hugging and laughing, and he couldn’t help but grin, as the thought crossed his mind, what would be Khushi’s reaction if he told her, that her best friend had caught his interest in a way no one ever had, and that he liked her quite a lot more than he had ever liked anyone, ofcourse she would be happy, he was sure, she had always pestered him about not taking interest in girls, and probably this news would make her happy, because he knew she loved Zoya to bits.Right then his eyes fell on a little folder , which titled – Family pictures, and he felt inquisitive, and was just about to click the icon , right when he heard Zoya’s voice behind him – “Allah Miyaan, whats wrong with you…Mr.Khan…you see me after one whole day, and my laptop interests you more…” , she faked anger.
Asad shut her laptop and shoved it aside and grinned, and pulled her by the hand closer – “ ofcourse not, you do…but since you were busy on the phone…you know the picture of you have on your DP is really nice…”
Zoya smiled – “I know, its my fav pic, of me and Khushi…and sorry I was justtalking to laura, she was filling me in about what I missed in class today”
Asad smiled – “ Not a problem…So I was just wondering, what would be Khushi’s reaction to this….”
Zoya’s grinned – “ And why didn’t I think of that..yet…”
“well coz, im just smarter, Miss Farooqui…”
“no, Mr.Khan, I didn’t think of it, because if you are thinking shell be surprised, you are right and you are wrong…”
“What do you mean?”
“I mean shell be surprised from your angle, not from mine, she kind of knew how I felt, anyway…” and she started to fiddle with her files on the table.
Asad pulled her by the hand and made her look at him – “ what do you mean , she knew…?”
Zoya looked everywhere, but at him embarrassed – “ well, she kind of knew how…ughhh…stop it…you know what I mean already….dont you..?”
Asad grinned – “Yeah…since when though?”
“Ever since I met you first….” , ever since I was 13 years old, she added to herself silently.
“So will you tell her, Or I should?”
“I was thinking to tell her myself, but then I thought barely week and a half is left until we go back, so maybe we could tell her face to face, I don’t want to miss her expression”
Asad nodded – “ sounds good….anywhich ways, I know, she will approve of my choice…”
“Oh really , I guess she would approve of mine too…”
“So you still gotta tell me about how did it go at Jersey”
“I will , after you tell me about how much you missed me…”
“Did I say , I missed you? Oh I didn’t mean it…” and he felt her smack him on his arm – “ouch, seriously” , he faked being hurt, and then he pulled her even closer – “so you want to know about how much I missed you?”
“I did, pretty much honestly, you see with you areound, im used to not having a dull moment around, and yesterday was lets just say…dull…”
“you mean, you missed me only because of that…I didn’t know I was a walking entertainment channel”, she teased.
Asad grinned – “That, and its time you knew you are and also I missed everything about you, so I just used my work patiently as a distraction…”
“Don’t Lie, you were anything but patient…”
Asad grinned – “ Talking about patience, have you ever heard how they say, the fruit of patience is always sweet…”
Zoya nodded – “yeah…so…?”
Asad leaned in forward – “ so…” and she understood what he was hinting at, and she felt her own hands go around his neck, as he leaned in the claimed the remaining distance between their lips, and zoya gave in to his passionate kiss, and she was glad he was holding her, or her legs would have definetly given her away.
They broke apart a few heated minutes later, and Asad grinned as hecupped her face tenderly – “ Ammi was right, the fruit is indded sweet…or maybe exotic , I should add…” he winked.
Zoya blushed furiously – “Stop it Asad , please…” and she immediately felt him make her look at him as he added – “ no but jokes apart, otherwise im a very patient man, but when it comes to you, I don’t think I can be, now I know what people mean, when they say , patience is something which is easier said , than done…”
Zoya smiled – “ I always thought it is, anyway…”
Asad grinned – “ Note that as another thing we got in common then…”
Zoya grinned – “noted…” and she tiptoed once more, to receive his kiss.
Fate grinned mischeviously - I know what they mean, its really easier said than done, im not very patient myself…” and he turned to Destiny and asked – “ seriously , how do you just watch it all patiently , when you know in the end it will anyway come around to what you have already written…”
Destiny smiled – “ well, honestly I don’t know, patience comes to me naturally, you know it will to anyone, who has the job as tedious as mine…”
Fate – “And you gotta point there, my friend…”
Destiny grinned – “Don’t I always…? Why don’t you ask Love the same anyway, I still wonder how both, patience and impatience are both equally an important part of her…”
Love smiled – “because, I have to admit, like almost everything in this world, I have two sides to my coin, one which can be very patient, and one which just cannot be…its as simple as that…”
Right then they heard a voice which said – “ There you go , being all mysterious and talking in riddles again…why do you have to be so complex anyway…”
Love smiled as she turned to Hate – “ Welcome back, how was your vacation…?
Hate rolled his eyes but answered nonetheless – “ It was good, had a blast, I quite needed it…”
Love smiled – “I know…” and before she could say more, she saw her friend Fate grin and say – “ I must admit honestly , I missed you , Hate..”
Hate finally smiled, knowing that he was missed, made him feel better, he did not understand why did love get all the importance anyway and he admitted honestly – “ I know, I missed myself too…”