Lingering Moments...The Untold Saga...Chapter 36
Requesting all to enjoy Barun's expressions and ignore different clothing as taken from all possible shows, films of his...his eyes, his expressions are the gems to pick.
Darshan Matre Man Kaamana Poorti!
Chandni folded her hands in absolute devotion. With Darshan(holy sight) of Ganesha, her heart surged with reverence, repentance, confidence...all emotions!
"Aap Mangal Ki Moorti ho, Prabhu. Sabka Mangal karate ho!" (Oh divine Lord, you are the personification of auspicious. You bring bliss to all.)
"Aap ke darshan maatr se Man ki kaamana poorn hoti hai, Deva!" (By merely seeing you, all desires get fulfilled)
"Bholenath has sent me to you, Prabhu. He's the God for whom good and evil are equal. Sadly, I am the evil, oh lord of mine. You know already, even though unknowingly; but the sin did happen from my side to trigger death of a pious loving couple, my own Dev's parents. I hold myself responsible because I was impetuous and spoke out what I saw...It was a wrong deed. I should have restrained and pondered.
I feel ashamed of myself, oh Lord! When, as a part of marriage ritual, Diya rasam was to be done; just to defy Dev, I put nails under Dev's feet!...I always made his roads difficult...Pain was my gift to him...How could I? He cherished the gift, he walked on nails, His feet were bleeding, yet he carried me to your idol and protected the lamp lit for you.
He saved me from Raahu dosh(evil effect of stars). He has had complete faith in each ritual of marriage done with me and then finally he married me. It's your blessing that the lamp of love and care lights in our life till today. Even now when I gift him pain, he only gives back love.
He has done no mistake, but he suffers day and night for his parent's loss. And now, just because he loves me, he has to suffer my infertility, his loss of his child dream.
I deserve punishment. Maybe my kidnap happened because of that... And the impact of that kidnap has now come as infertility.
But why should Dev get punished?...a baby by his side will give him reason to stay in bed peacefully ...If one kidnap has not compensated my crimes, give me more... if my punishment is not over, you give me whatever more punishment anything is ok ...even a kidnap...but make me a mother... Like how Gauri is your mother...She put her powers in you, let me put all my powers in my child...
You are vighnaharta, you are the remover of all obstacles...take away the obstacles which are stopping me from conceiving Dev's child...you are Sukhkarta, you bestow happiness...You are dukhharta, please take away this pain from us."
The idol had a smile on its face. Chandni was asking to become like Gauri...His mother who had done huge penance before unifying with Shiva. So in a way, Chandni was asking for penance. Tathastu! ( may it be so!)
She went inside the garbhgriha(sanctum sanctorum) offering garland and shreefal (coconut) to the God.
"The same way as you are born before Prakriti and Purush,*** Aadi has come in Dev's and My life. Bless him. Keep all my family safe. Let everybody get their own happiness. Flourish my Dev in his profession. Bless my devar Veer to fulfill his noble aim in life. Keep Shikha, Meghna and Maamaji always happy. Everybody has suffred a lot. Let all their sufferings go away."
Outside the Garbhagriha(sanctum sanctorum), the sindoor(vermillion) was kept. Chandni put it in her Maang(hair partition). "Meri jindagi ke saath kuchh bhi ho jaaye, Mere Suhaag ki Hamesha Raksha karana."( Keep my suhaag always safe in any calamity that might befall us.)
Miku entered the mansion whistling happily. Pooja greeted him.
"Wow, Miku! You came back earlier than expected and you are whistling, too! The day was good?"
"Oh Di! Don't ask!" Miku gave a feigned dramatic tired look, "Bhai took me in all his meetings for our village development. What a man he is! Maan gaye! ... He never gets tired or bored. Incessantly, he's moving from one meeting to another. And he's so spirited, that everybody else in the room wants to keep pace with him. We slackened a little only when he went for some other conference calls of his."
"Oh so you ran away the moment he moved out of sight?"
"NO! Not at all! And he is Bhai! Even when he goes away, he gave me this big a list for task items for me to follow up," Miku stretched his hands as much as he could.
"He has asked me to take regular meetings from now on. He says this project will be my baby.
So from tomorrow, I am doomed. I'll be busy all day long. Bhai is a serious task master. As such, even if he doesn't say anything, it hurts when his eyes show disappointment for me. The feeling was not the same when Abbu scolded earlier. I would take it from one ear and leave it from another. With Bhai somehow, the hurt goes straight to heart." Miku tapped his thumb on his heart, his eyes were serious.
"That has brought you home?" Pooja raised her brows.
"No! I thought, today I'll do some time pass. One of the men mentioned there is disturbance in the city. So I took the chance and came home." Miku relaxed again.
"Disturbance in the city?" Suddenly Pooja was alarmed.
"Yup! All cabbies gone on strike. Haven't you been watching TV. It was being shown since yesterday."
"Cabbies gone on strike??" Now Pooja was in panic.
"Di why are you panicking? It's in the city, not at our home and it's only cabs not available. What difference it makes to us?"
"Oh My God! Chandni!!" Pooja screeched in fear.
"Bhabhi??? What about her?" Miku was perplexed.
"She's gone to temple and she said she'll take cab in return trip."
"What? Why didn't she take car? And she's gone alone? Why didn't you or somebody go with her?"
"Don't ask me all that now. Just check up on her. I hope nothing befalls her...Oh God Please!" Pooja was in tears now.
"Bhai will kill me! Let me call him."
He dialed from the special number Advay kept at home as hotline number. It was to be used in emergencies, so that he would pick on first ring itself.
He did the same!
"Bhai! It's about Bhabhi!"
Advay was in immediate panic. What had happened to Chandni?
"Bhai, she's gone to temple and she didn't take car. She was supposed to get a cab but there has been a sudden strike now. Don't know where she is!"
There was absolute silence on the other side.
"Bhai! Not my fault, please!"
Advay disconnected the line and moved fast in absolute panic.
Chandni was out there somewhere on the roads. All alone! Her PTSD! Advay lost all his calm. I'll rot in hell if anything happens to her.
His mobile rang. It was Chandni.
"Chaaandni!" He thundered into the phone. "Where the hell are you? Are you safe? Don't panic, ok?"
"Dev! I am ok! You are panicking. Calm down."
Advay calmed a little, but his voice was still urgent. "Where are you?"
"I don't know!...somewhere."
"Don't know?" Advay looked like thunder again.
"The cab driver took me half way and then said, He couldn't take me any further as people started throwing stones. He dropped me halfway near some flyover."
"Chandni, Mumbai is full of flyovers. Where are you coming from or going to?" Advay spoke though tight lips. He would have killed that cab driver, if he hadn't known that it was not truly his fault.
"Which route did you take?"
"Any landmarks you saw on the road?"
"I don't recognize any, Dev! You have never ever taken me out." Chandni pouted.
"But you know what? I saw lots of pigeons... and they reminded me of our Roka day. You had used pigeons, remember? You had said I would wear a head veil in your name only and you did the same."Chandni smiled happily to herself.
"Chandni! Please focus! Now is not the time for all this childishness." Advay hissed through tight line of lips, "Pigeons meaning you came from kabootarkhana. Where are you currently standing? Any landmark?"
"I told you already, I don't know!" Chandni pouted. "I just passed an overbridge. There were train tracks below. "
"Oh! You are near Dadar TT then! What do you see around? Tell me everything that you see."
"There's a fly over in front of me and there are cross roads under it."
"OK! So you are at Khodadad circle! What shops do you see around?"
"There's a big sweetmeat shop!"
"That's D. Damodar! Ok!"
He hung his head giving a restrained sigh of relief. At least, he knew where he had to go. "Listen! Don't move from there! Don't talk to strangers! Don't take anything from anybody! And don't tell anybody that you are lost. OK? I am coming. Don't panic!"
Advay was running out of the office hitting instructions on phone. People were shocked but before anybody knew what happened, he had disappeared.
Chandni was in full badbad mode muttering to herself, "Don't do this. Do that! Chandni this, Chandni that! I wanted to reminisce in that sweet memory of his putting dupatta on my head and he calls it childishness. He's panicked himself and tells me don't panic." She had a big pout on her face.
Suddenly, her eyes fell on an old woman. She was struggling at the cross roads signal. The cross road was vast and there was no underground for people to cross. 'Oh God! This government! Never thinks of public convenience while doing things'
Chandni watched the woman quietly, 'How difficult life can be. A woman gets old, her partner is gone away and she has to live alone and manage life alone while body does not co-operate.' Chandni's heart went out to her.
"Aunty, Shall I help you to cross. Where do you have to go?"
"Oh! Will you please? I have to go diagonally opposite so three signals to cross." The lady was delighted.
"come! Chandni took her hand and started crossing.How are you going?"
"By bus! The bus stop is just near... There! Would you please drop me till the stop. They have dug up roads and it's difficult to walk."
"Oh Sure!" Chandni kept walking. She not only reached the lady to the stop but also put her in the bus she needed.
Then she looked around ...and she panicked!
Where am I now? She looked at her mobile. Oh god! It's discharged, NOW?
Pooja was in huge tears and Naani was consoling her. She had already sent Miku with Mohan to look for Chandni and asked them to update her immediately when some news was available.
"Pooja, don't cry, beta. It's not your fault that cabs are on strike."
"I shouldn't have allowed her to go."
"Sadly, that's true! And then, you didn't tell me till now that she had chosen to do something like this. Faith to go barefoot is one thing, but I don't approve of anybody putting their life in risk. Then it becomes blind faith. It's unjust to God, too! He has the onus to save you." Naani was very clear in her thoughts, "Pooja beta, even if she had asked you to allow her, you should have been strict with her. Always be strict and firm, Pooja!"
Pooja burst into fresh tears, "Naani when I was strict and firm, you know what it resulted into!"
Naani looked at Pooja's mangalsootra. She knew what Pooja meant but now was not the time to discuss it, Naani changed the topic. "As such we don't have to worry at all. She's just here somewhere on roads of Mumbai. Even if she were hidden in some dungeon somewhere remote, my Chiku would still find her and bring her safe home.. I have complete faith."
Naani's voice had a lot of conviction which pacified Pooja.
Advay reached D. Damodar...and there was no Chandni! What happened? Where is she? Advay had been little relieved after connecting with her but now he panicked completely. He tried her number but it was switched off. "Bloody hell!" he cursed loudly.
He asked people on the road giving her description. But it was Mumbai. Nobody bothered about anybody here on road. Had somebody fooled her and taken her with him? Advay was out of his mind with worry. All around, she was not to be seen.
He and his people started running across different roads.
From one signal to another he kept crossing and running a little far then coming back again. Asking people, again crossing again running to check her...
Advay asked everybody but nobody could tell him. Advay flinched at the thought of Chandni getting lost. His heart called out, "Please God Please!"
And then suddenly, he saw her walking towards him. Both ran to each other and their bodies crashed. Advay held her tight to his bosom, she was heartbeat, she was air, she was everything!
"Theek ho Tum? (Are you OK?)" he could barely whisper.
"Yes!" She was so happy to see him. Somewhere deep she had known he would come and he hadn't failed her.
'This girl will be the death of me someday!' thought Advay.
A short while later, Chandni sat in Advay's car. He leaned across her and reached out to her seat belt.
"Mujhe seat belt lagana aata hai." (I know how to put seat belt. ) Chandni pouted, her eyes sparkling, her face smiling.
"Tum kuchh bhi kabhi bhi theek se nahi karati!" (You never do anything right) he spoke with love his lips just a whisper away from her face. "And then I cannot do this." He kissed her on nose...then nuzzled against her neck breathing her in, taking relief and pleasure both from it.
" Ammm..." Chandni just couldn't stop herself from hugging him as she moaned. She had to catch him at something he didn't do right. "Did you call home and tell them?"
"Yes! I did! Called Miku also. He had come for you."
"Of course! He would. He's my sweet devar after all. I'll go home and once again apologise to all."
"Later! Currently, we are going somewhere else."
"Where?"Chandni's eyes sparkled with happy excitement of a child.
"You said I never take you around anywhere, right? So correcting that! Have you seen the sea shore?"
She had seen it yet not seen it. She remembered the sad moment when he had managed to throw her out. But she wasn't going to mention to him. She was very happy that he was taking her for outing. Anywhere in the world was ok.
Watching her silent lost in thoughts, Advay asked, "How come you didn't panic today?"
"Because a certain someone has told me to remember his eyes, our moments! So when I am scared, I just remember him. His eyes stay with me and I'm OK."
Advay smiled happily. "Why suddenly Siddhivinayak today?"
"To ask for a mannat(vow)"
"What kind of Mannat?"
"If I disclose it, I won't get it."
She didn't have to tell. He knew what she must have asked for. Is this a good time? Should I ask her?
"Chandni, remember Vidvaan?"
"Of course I do! Damaroo, what a question! He's my bachha!" Chandni's eyes filled with love.
"Precisely, Chandu! He's your son. We can adopt him, you know?"
"No. I don't think so." Chandni was serious and firm.
"Chandni?" Advay couldn't believe her refusal. "Excuse Me!... You are registered as the boy's mother already!"
"Yes Dev! I know that! I did it then, for Meghna and for the baby, too! But it was then! And it was a unilateral decision! I did it with my own understanding...maybe my impetuousness..." Chandni was contemplative, "...and more so to protect Indrani in my blind faith..." Suddenly her eyes changed to angry hatred.
Advay listened silently reading her expressions...her feelings beyond her words.
"In a way it was good that you ditched me in reception party on the basis of Vidvaan. Meghna came to know about her baby and then all her emotions, her suffering as a mother came clear to me first time. I hadn't given proper thought to her perspective...Mamaji supported my doing that day... but I feel differently now!
Reinstating Meghna with the baby could not be done by me...could not be done by Mamaji...could not be done by Meghna herself. But you can do it!"Chandni spoke with huge conviction and then continued in firm voice, "...You should do it!"
Advay felt relief flooding through him as a huge weight shifted from his chest. But he was rather surprised by a peculiar proud satisfying smile curving his lips. People applauded him hugely, awarded him many a times but he never felt any happiness ever in all that. He found his satisfaction in his work alone, not in his accolades...yet, with Chandni, it was all different. Her confidence in him gave him a huge satisfaction...a kind of motivation to stand true to her belief.
"Dev, I want a baby, yes! But your baby! Our Acchu! You may not understand my purpose, my obsession behind it. But I am true to my feelings...
And then, knowing that Meghna can unite and live happily with her baby, I simply cannot take the right away from her just because I am registered officially as the baby's mother...I cannot be selfish like that, Dev. You understand that, right?" she beseeched earnestly.
Yes, he did! He very much did! His wife was completely guileless, if anything else not!
With her words, now the only task remaining was to get the background check details expedited and then have PP and Meghna united to enjoy parenthood with baby.
Should I mention PP to her? What will be her reaction to him as Meghna's husband?
Before he could speak up, Chandni spoke, "Dev, no more baby talk, please! That subject is weighing heavy on all our conversations, our casual talks...the one entity in this universe whom I needed to speak to I have already connected. Now we just wait..."
"Not just Wait...we do our act!" Advay winked at her and she blushed.
He watched the colour rise in her cheeks, his gaze went to her toes, they were curled. Will it always be like this? He wondered happily as he drove.
*** Read all about scientific basis of Hindu Gods. Why Ganesha, the son of shiva (purush) and shakti(prakriti) is born before them.
What happens further as Chandni , as always, asked a boon so bizarre that pain is inherent in it.
Pooja has a sad saga of her own. The show like so many other threads, butchered up this part also. Yet, our story is meant to complete all loops with justifiabe answers. So what is past and what will be future of Pooja?
Is Naani getting some premonitions?
What thought flashed in advay's mind? Koi aakashvaani toh nahi?
Advay is relieved of a huge dilemma he had. Now his task is easy...he just have to be righteous as he always is. But is being a little too optimistic about easy settlement of PPghna story? Is any love story existent without any hurdles?
Keep reading... it's getting more and more interesting.
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