Chapter 5: Destined to be
Part 2: Train of thoughts
"Sorry Arnie, I was late for the date" Sheetal's voice pulled Arnav out of his reverie. He realized he had still been looking towards the door through which Kushi had left a few minutes back.
"Hey it's alright Sheetal, Give me a few minutes, Then we will be good to go" Arnav said as a matter of fact as he quickly checked his mails while standing by his desk.
"You are angry with me aren't you?" Sheetal asked him.
Arnav, who was in reality still thinking about Kushi's visit and her denial to his offer, was suddenly taken aback.
"Angry? No that's alright" he told her thinking she was referring to her interrupting him and Kushi a few minutes back
"What's alright?" Sheetal asked him getting more confused
" eh.. why did you apologise to me now?" he asked at last finally realizing that he has been assuming a lot in the last few minutes
"I meant about me asking you not to come to the airport' What did you think?"
Arnav snapped out of his thoughts about Kushi.
"hmm' I thought of the same thing" he lied smoothly avoiding her eyes
"It was all because of my Mom, She had informed by Dadaji that I would be arriving at delhi airport.. and he had come to receive me' I thought that you had to be introduced properly to my family.. not as a boyfriend visiting me at the airport ' So I"
"Hey Sheetal, that's not a problem' I totally understand' you don't have to give me so much explanation' I know that you planned to take the Delhi flight just to meet me' How will I remain angry with you?" he said as he snapped his laptop shut and took his coat from the back of the chair.
"Arnie, we have been alone in this room for 10 minutes now'you haven't displayed any sign of meeting your girlfriend after 10 damn days'No zeal ' No passionate hugs' and it's been only Sheetal that Sheetal this' and on top of it you are already busy with work' what more indication do I need?" Sheetal asked him playfully'
Arnav smiled at her as he came near her.
"I have been preoccupied with a lot of things here.. but I missed you a lot baby! I seriously did" he said as he gave her a hug, which she happily returned back.
"better now?" he asked her
"Much better" she smiled at him.
"come on then.. we are already running late for our lunch date" he said pecking her on her cheeks, before he took her hand and led her outside.
"These kind of men' they are all the same' rich, spoilt, arrogant brat" Kushi muttered to herself as she stepped out of the RP building.
"That girl did look like a girlfriend- no one of his girlfriends'No morality at all...Who knows' maybe they are living together'Or may be she is one of is casual flings... What did she call him? Arnie' lt was like calling a dog' yucks!" Kushi was by now crossing the road to reach the opposite road, and she was so absorbed in her thoughts that she hadn't seen the car speeding towards her until the man driving it applied the brakes screeching to a halt.
Snapping out of her reverie, Kushi hastily apologized to the man and crossed the road quickly.
Kushi was surprised by her own line of thoughts'What has she been thinking? Why was Arnav's personal life affecting her so much? Who was he to her? Let him live life the way he wants' why was she so disturbed to see a girl who addressed him in a personal way? She has never been this disturbed for anyone else in her life' Infact, she had been the love guru at her college' helping as many people who were in love as possible' and this man was not even her friend- no not even an acquaintance- may be a foe- why should she be upset about how he was living his personal life?
"yes' "she decided'"maybe I am upset by how he had managed to put father in lockup"
"and he had the himmat to ask me to fetch those damned papers' Like hell I will" she thought to herself "yes that's why- I want to imagine a lot of bad things about him- to make him literally a bad bad guy' so that I can hate him"
"What is this? Don't I hate him already? Kushi- STOP THINKING ABOUT HIM" She chided herself.
She shrugged away her thoughts and thought of what has to be done next' For god's sake Her father had been arrested.. and that man was the one who brought about his arrest... injustice...and she had challenged that man that she would bring her father out by herself'yes, She needs a good lawyer'She thought she will go and meet the editor, maybe he will suggest her a good lawyer.
She saw a bus approaching the stop.
"Oh god it is so crowded' But it's getting late already'" She stepped forward to board the bus
Arnav stopped the car for the signal just outside his office building when he saw Kushi standing at the nearby bus stop talking to herself
He found himself smirking seeing her like that. Just then, a crowded bus stopped at the stop, and he saw her boarding it.
He thought it was overcrowded for her to board it, Men were hanging to the foot board. Can't she wait and take another bus? He thought as he felt an in familiar annoyance flitting through him- Or why can't she take an auto or taxi?
"It would be crowded" He heard Sheetal speak out
"Yeah it is'"he replied to her
"What?" Sheetal asked him
Arnav who had been still looking at the departing over crowded bus with Kushi in it, widened his eyes as he realized his line thoughts as he jerked back and looked at Sheetal with wide eyes
"What did you say?" he asked her looking stumped
"I asked you if you have reserved the table for us at the hotel- it's going to be crowded"
"oh- yeah.. I have reserved a table for us" he said quickly trying his best to hide his flustered state.
He then thankfully observed that the signal had turned green as he started the car again. Arnav was still trying to comprehend why he thought so much for a mere girl whom he didn't even know personally'
Perhaps that girl was used to travelling in crowded buses- why was he worried about her? Why did he feel that protective streak that he felt as if she was one of the girls in his family? The protective gesture that was only reserved for the women he knew personally- For goddamned sakes, the girl was the daughter of a person who had probably cheated his father' and she had the audacity to challenge him on one of the deals' Maybe that was dregs of sympathetic feeling that he nested for her when he first met her'He decided- Yes that should be it' he was feeling sympathetic- he should control this sympathetic feeling towards this girl, he thought to himself as he shrugged out of her thoughts.
Noting mentally that he had to check out with Mr.Roy on Kushi's attempts to take her father out, he turned to look at a very quiet Sheetal who was looking outside.
"Hey you are very quiet' Lost in thoughts?" he asked her
"I thought you were the one lost in thoughts" She told him as she too turned and looked at him
"hmm, I was thinking about a problem' Now It's all sorted out'" he told her as a matter of fact
Sheetal smiled at him
"I know Arnie' You are all upset about your father's sudden expiry' you are taking too much on your shoulders are'nt you?"
"Hey, that's fine'So how long are you at Delhi?"
"I am starting tonight"
"Hey you know this is a short trip' I am at India for a week only- so I am going to Mumbai tonight' When are you coming back?"
"hmm.. I might not be coming back very soon Sheetal, My presence in needed here for time being- that's why I thought if you are here for a little longer'."
"What? You are staying here for sometime? How long? Then what about your project there?"
"Akaash will be taking care of it"
"But Arnie- I don't understand.. that was your dream project"
"There are a lot of things going on here Sheetal' I need time to sort it out' So I have asked Akaash to handle that for now"
"I can't believe this" Sheetal told him shocked "Why didn't you tell me of your change of plans?"
"I was about to tell you, then you told you are coming here already' so, yeah' "
"and how long are you going to stay here?"
"I don't know"
"This is ridiculous Arnav'What about us?"
"This change of plan is not going to affect what's between us Sheetal"
Arnav took a chance to look at her. She sure appeared upset. He sighed.
"I know you are upset, But this is the best way out Sheetal- Just for a few days"
"How are we going to work out on long distance relationship Arnav?" She asked him "and you tell me after you decide this is how it's going to be- utter ridiculous stuff"
"You don't have to feel insecured about this Sheetal"
She didn't reply. She turned her face the other side, he observed that her face was flushed with anger.
"Ok.. how about cancelling this date ?" Arnav asked her at last
"Yeah, I suppose that's the best thing to do now- I am in no mood for a date right now" She retorted back "Drop me at my Grandpa's place"
" No, I am taking you to my home"
"to meet my family" he smirked at her "Are you happy now?"
"NO" she said "Why this now? I mean when I asked you if I can come and do an obituary visit your grandmas ' you said no- then why are you taking me home now?"
"I thought at that time 'it might be too early- now I think the time might be right' besides Anjali and others wanted to meet you too'and this is not going to be a obituary visit- I am going to introduce you to them all"
"Introduce me to them?"
"As my girlfriend"
"Arnav? Are you sure' I mean"
"I am sure Sheetal' why shouldn't I be?" He smiled at her as she sat staring at him stunned by his decision.
"so is it a yes or no?"
"for joining me for a family lunch?"
Sheetal smiled at last as she nodded, Arnav stretched his free hand, grasping her hand in his and gave her a squeeze.
Kushi stared at the person standing in front of her.
"Don't worry Kushiji, Editor Rajvardhan sir told me about you, Don't worry- leave everything to me, we will bail your father out"
"Yeah.. we will" she bit her lip
This man was recommended to her by her editor. He was a short man, who liked to talk a lot. All he had been doing from the time they met is to talk about everything under the sun. Though she had reservations about this fellow, she had faith on editor Rajvardhan.
As soon as they reached the main road, waved an auto down, and got into it.
" Kushiji- did you notice- we both make quite a happy pair"
"What?" her eyes almost fell out hearing what the man told. The man was talkative- but didn't look like a flirt. Infact he had maintained his distance right from the starting, his intentions were always at the noblest, though he was annoyingly talkative. Even inside the rickshaw- he had sat at the far corner maintaining a respectful distance.
"I meant the name- we are the happy kind.. Your name is kushi gupta- and my name is Happy Singh" he laughed at his own joke.
"Yes Happy ji'" She smiled at him "Happyji? How much money it would take to take my father out?"
"Oh that depends on what terms they have arrested him kushiji' It will be put down by the magistrate mostly. You said the trial is tomorrow"
"Yes, that's what I heard"
"Then why do you need him out Kushiji? I mean, if money is a concern, its going to be another half a day- if it is not advisable to spend so much for another half a day then maybe"
Kushi stared at him
"No I meant, if you want your father out for another half a day, we can put the payment on the table and take him on bail"
Anjali picked up her ringing iphone and clicked on it with a smile
"Hello sweetie pie" she sang into the phone
"Hey Anji, My parents have gone out and the first person I am calling is my sweetheart's sister.. poor Akaash he is gonna get a heartattack when he comes to know that I love his family more than with him'"
"We girls miss gossips more than sweat hearts'so you got your mobile at last?"
"yeah I got it back' Arnav's plan about trying to act normal' My mom is back to being civilized with me" Payal piped in
"Good.. Arnav's plans for others always works' "
"Do I smell sarcasm? What happened to that girl free with the mansion matter?"
"I don't know about that' no one spoke about it after that night"
"ok.. so which plan of Arnav- didn't suit you? you seem to be pissed off hightime"
"I didn't mean me.. I think his plans for himself doesn't suit him'He brought Sheetal home today afternoon"
"He brought whom?" Payal shrieked over the other line'
"Tone down your excitement- its only Sheetal kapoor" Anjali sighed
"hey what happened' Am I speaking to Anjali Raizada? It's tough to believe that Sheetal visited and Anjali is down in spirits' How is she like?"
"Oh.. she is not like you Payal' "
"Ofcourse, how can she be like me? She is Sheetal not Payal"
"I meant she is not the fun loving kind like you'She is kind of reserved, poised and has attitude and carries off like a well cultured girl- very serious types- thinks high of herself"
"Your Dadi must love that types"
"yes she does already' she is full of praises for Arnav selection of bahu'"
"Selection of bahu? Don't tell me they are engaged already' did he propose her for marriage?
"no not yet' I don't want him to"
"Hey Anji' why do you think so? Dadi is fine with her' Nani, I suppose is ok with whatever Arnav is ok with' and what about Mami?"
"She jelled along quite well too"
"I don't think that should be a problem then'Are you the only one who is not OK with her?"
"NK doesn't like her too' He says she is a snub"
"Ok I get it.. what about Akaash? Why didn't he feel so when he met Sheetal first?"
"He says Arnav's choice is always right' for she is going to be the eldest Bahu.. who should have some responsibility- and not behave childishly' He feels one cannot be fun loving, bubbly and serious and responsible at the same time' So he says if Arnav feels Sheetal is the best for him, so be it'"
"hmm' So it's you and NK against the entire family"
"What about you?"
"I would want to reserve my Judgements until I meet her"
"That's going to take time I suppose. She is leaving to Mumbai tonight"
"when is she gonna be back?"
"I don't know- I don't want to know' better if she stays there only' I am hoping my brother meets someone else in the meanwhile'I can't think of her as my elder bhabhi' I don't get that feel'"
"You will get used to it" Payal consoled her "and you don't have to worry so much about it' they are not engaged yet"
"Yeah' but he brought her home and all that"
"Because we asked to meet her'cool down' Trust his judgement'"
"You sound so much like Akaash"
"okies Anji, Let me call you later' I need to talk with my poor sweet heart before my parents come back' I don't actually mind them knowing that I speak with Akaash- but Arnav had told me to keep it all low for a while'"
"Yeah I understand Payal.. you will be my favorite bhabhi - always"
"That was so sweet of you'Anji"
"And if Sheetal becomes a bhabhi, fingers crossed that she wont- She is going to be the least favorite one"
"Don't let Arnav hear about it' he would be broken that his most precious sister thinks like that about his woman"
"I won't'" Anji sighed "not for now- he is already fighting against a lot of things' But later- I am going to let him know that I don't approve of his choice for himself" Anjali told in a determined way.
So hmm' that's it for this update' I know almost all of you love Anjali for her train of thoughts' don't you all?
Topic started by abavi
Last replied by Khuarv