The episode begins with Abhi excitedly exclaiming, "Akshu is here!" He immediately dials her number, and she promptly answers. He inquires about her whereabouts, and she playfully responds with, "I'm right behind you." Abhi swiftly turns around and rushes towards her, causing the other guests to depart. Manjiri curiously asks why Akshu mentioned Abhinav's name. Suwarna responds, "We don't know," leaving Muskaan wondering why. Kairav intervenes to stop Muskaan, while Surekha mentions that Akshu fled from her haldi ceremony. Dadi reprimands Muskaan, reminding her not to speak recklessly.
Sujeet arrives and supports Aarohi, advising her to stay strong for her family during this nerve-wracking pre-wedding phase. He offers his help if she needs it and then departs. Aarohi acknowledges his kindness, describing him as a nice person. Manjiri admits her fears, concerned that Akshu might leave Abhi again just when he was about to find happiness after seven years. Manish reassures her, urging her not to think that way. However, Manjiri expresses the sentiment that a groom's mother can't truly be happy if the bride departs.ALSO READ: Yeh Rishta Kya Kehlata Hai: Abhimanyu leaves Manjiri after she recovers, Aarohi leaves the Birla mansion too
Abhi questions Akshu, asking if she doesn't want to get married. Akshu clarifies that she never said that; she just wanted to discuss something related to Abhinav. This revelation sparks concern among everyone. Muskaan offers a prayer, and later, Abhi and Akshu return home. Manish inquires about their absence, expressing concern for their well-being. Akshu apologizes, explaining that she left the haldi ceremony because she had no other option. Manjiri asks for the reason behind her departure, and Akshu mentions Abhinav's predicament.
She explains that Abhinav sold his taxi to cover Abhir's surgery expenses and had taken a loan for a new one. The loan lenders were harassing Neela, so it became her responsibility to resolve the issue. She wanted to tell Abhi and take him along, but he was occupied with the ceremony, which compelled her to go alone. Manjiri embraces her, expressing remorse for her earlier worries. Abhir arrives and hugs Akshu, who reassures him that she won't leave him. Ruhi echoes the sentiment, saying she told Abhir that Akshu couldn't leave Poppy (Abhir). Akshu proceeds to participate in the haldi ceremony, with Manjiri applying the haldi and offering her blessings.
The haldi ceremony continues with everyone participating. Dadi assigns a task to Aarohi, and Sujeet offers his assistance, which she declines. He encourages her to come to him if she needs help before departing. Aarohi wonders why she feels uneasy but ultimately concludes that he is a good person, and some people have a naturally kind disposition.
Akshu attempts to stand up, and Abhi offers his hand. Manjiri observes the moment as Akshu accepts his hand, with "Yeh Rishta Kya..." playing in the background. Manjiri smiles and leaves the scene. Akshu questions Abhi, asking if he's upset that she left the ceremony. Abhi smiles and expresses his pride in her for taking responsibility for Abhinav's troubles. He playfully offers her a handkerchief, joking that he carries two in every pocket. They share a sweet moment, and everyone watches with smiles. Dadi wards off any evil eye.
Later, Akshu meets Manjiri secretly. Manjiri takes her hand and explains her concerns, emphasizing how Abhi has loved Akshu throughout his life. Akshu reassures her that she won't intentionally hurt Abhi and promises to protect their relationship. However, when Manjiri requests that Abhinav should never come between them, Akshu is taken aback. Manjiri urges her to make this new beginning without conditions, emphasizing that hope is not a bad thing. Akshu agrees to give her best to their marriage and cherish Abhir's upbringing and their friendship as the foundation of their relationship. Manjiri hopes for a fulfilled hope and reminds Akshu to take care of Abhi, ensuring he receives her love and not her pain.
The family members engage in light-hearted banter and discussions about the upcoming functions and rituals. Kairav jokes with Manish, who seeks a hand massage, to which Kairav playfully comments on Manish's lack of strength. Suwarna smiles at their interaction. They discuss potential gifts for Abhi and Akshu, with Ruhi suggesting a puppy, and Anand suggesting a bike (despite them already having one). Suwarna suggests gifting them a farmhouse for their future, and Akshu enters the scene. The family members try to cover up their conversation, and Abhir suggests asking Akshu what she would like as a gift.
Precap: Abhi and Akshu admire their mehendi designs, while Aarohi pushes Sujeet. Akshu declares that they will show him what they are capable of, and Aarohi slaps Sujeet, leaving everyone shocked.