Destiny Games #2
Chapter 4- Against all odds
Akaash reached the second floor landing immersed into some file which he was holding, pausing for a moment to say hi to Anjali and NK sitting by the couch near the Fish tanks, he crossed them intending to reach his room.
"You missed saying hi to me hun"
Akaash stopped on his tracks hearing the voice.
"hi" she said as she sat up from the couch where she was lying down all this while.
"My brother has poor eyesight Payal- It didn't get improved with his specs too" Anjali commented.
"When did you come? What are you doing here?"
"Wow! Nice welcome I get- and for your information- we haven't met for 3 whole days" Payal informed Anjali and NK both of whom grinned at her expressions.
"I mean- I didn't expect to see you here this late in the evening' When did you come? "
"It's been half an hour now' "
"What if Dadi comes to know'"
"Relax! I came to know from Anji and NK that Dadi, Nani and Mami have left for a satsang at the neighbourhood and will be back only by 8'" Payal rolled her eyes' Akaash can panic at simplest of things unlike her. Even if they come back early-what is the issue?
Akaash looked at Anjali and Nk who nodded at him.
"Why didn't you let me know you are here?" Akaash asked her finally
"I was waiting for you finish your meeting- so have been passing time trying to find out why your sister and brother hate Sheetal so much" Payal yawned.
"And I have been telling her that I hate her because she is so full of herself" Anjali replied back without missing a beat "She is more interested in impressing Dadi than anyone else- looks like a chamchi in making"
NK burst out laughing
"Anjali control your tongue' Arnav will be really upset if he hears you commenting like that" Akaash warned her
"He will be more upset if he ends up marrying her" Anjali told with her nose in the air "His life will be royally ruined"
"She does seem like a smart and shrewd girl if she wants to impress dadi' Nani is too easy to please"
"She conducts herself with so much importance, and she screwed her nose like this when Ramu kaka gave her tea- Doesn't she know he is more like family to us?" Anjali complained to Payal.
"Hmm that sounds like a put off'Is she good looking- how is the chemistry"
"Ofcourse she is good looking'" NK told her "what do you mean by chemistry?"
"Oh that's girly stuff" Payal told NK and raised her brows at Anjali
"Sadly yes- to an irksome level- I hate it" Anjali told her
"I don't get it" Payal told her
"Arnav behaves differently around her- like a love sick puppy- I hate it"
"Really?" Payal sat upright "You mean Arnav? Arnav singh Raizada acts like a love sick puppy?"
"Nothing wrong with him. I think she makes him do so" Anjali told "Look , Akaash doesn't change himself when you are around' He remains the same dumbo that he is"
"Excuse me" Akaash protested while Payal smiled at him and patted him
"But With Arnav- He turns soft around her' she keeps acting like a delicate darling- asking him for this and that- to which he complies like a gentle man"
"Anji, Are you sure its not the possesive sister instinct kicking in?" Payal asked her
"Possesive?" Anjali sat upright' "How can you tell like that Payal? Have I ever acted like a possessive sister for Akaash? Infact, I have always tried to arrange for those secret meetings for both of you'"
"May be you felt it for Arnav- because you don't know Sheetal much" Akaash told her
"Not at all- I wouldn't have felt so excited to meet her in the first place' I would only want you all to be happily settled with right girls' Girls who make me feel that my brothers are in safe hands when I finally go to another place after my wedding..."
"Don't get sentimental now Anjali- focus focus" NK told her smiling while Akaash looked apologetic.
"Yeah' Its you next- If you ever bring someone like Sheetal then" Anjali warned NK all of a sudden
"My girl is definitely not like Sheetal" NK told her
"Your girl? You have a GF?" Payal asked him, as he bit his tongue, as Anjali smiled wickedly at him
"Then how is she?" Anjali asked
"I meant, I wouldn't fall for someone like Sheetal" NK managed to get out of the situation.
Anjali wanted to pursue pulling NK's legs- But Payal moved on
"But that's really interesting to hear that Sheetal managed to change Arnav to a mushy mushy guy- I always thought Arnav would be tough to tame types even when he wooed someone"
"He didn't go mushy mushy' You don't get it' She keeps cooing to him and he complies'"
"Haa.. that happens when men are in the verge of impressing the girls before they ask them THE question"
"You reckon?" Anjali worriedly asked Payal, and she nodded.
"Even Akaash was like that.. But you were too young to notice it" Payal told her "Ok leave that, how does she talk to you people?"
"She treated me as if I am a kiddo'She made it a point to let me know that she would be the bhabhi figure to me... I cannot expect fun from her and she would love some respect'Wait till you meet her Payal- even you wouldn't want her to be your jethani! "
"and you forgot to mention that she is a snub" NK told Anjali
"Why so?" Payal asked him
"Look, I know my limits with my brother's girls. I know you are Akaash's girlfriend- In future his wife- but still when I talk to you, tease you, pull you hair or hold out my hand to assist you- would you mind?"
"Not at all" Payal replied "hey come on- you are my brother in law' How would I mind? You are gonna be my brother after my marriage"
"Exactly!" NK told her "When I met Sheetal, I didn't play any of the pranks that I play with you' I only spoke with her in a quite friendly way and her face expressions told me that she was already reacting as if I was flirting with her"
"That's sad" Payal told him "Are you sure you didn't bore her with your PJs"
Anjali smirked at Payal. But it was obvious that NK was pissed off, he brushed off Payal's leg pulling and carried on.
"How do you expect me to be in that comfortable zone if she keeps throwing signals as if she is annoyed with my friendly talks?-that too annoyed like a girl would be annoyed with a over flirtious guy?"
"NK, You can't expect the same level of comfort zone with Sheetal as with Payal" Akaash explained him- "You know Payal for 15 years- its not the same with Sheetal"
"Even if it was the case, I wouldn't expect the girl who is going to be a part of my family to have that kind of attitude' What is she a 16 year old? She was not brought up in a town to be shy and innocent in that way ' I would understand if she is shy' but she is clearly a snub head and a show off!"
"Yeah she is" Anjali supported NK, glaring at Akaash "I have a feeling that if she gets married to Arnav- he wouldn't remain the same man that he is now' He will not be happy"
"But I don't get it' If you all feel so, why haven't Arnav felt like that? As far as I know- Arnav is one of the best judges of character that I know"
"Simple! Love is blind" NK told Payal
"Crush is blind, deaf and dumb too" Anjali told him "and by the looks of it, I swear it is a crush that my innocent bro is falling for"
"Innocent and Arnav in a single line" Payal exclaimed "He would surely get a heart attack if hears this"
"I would say it is not a crush' It looks more like a companionship that Arnav is taking for love'" NK told them.
"Whatever you guys feel about Sheetal or this relationship- it is his choice of life- and I wish you both show some respect to his choice and feelings and maintain the courtesy to not hurt him with these comments" Akaash told them
"Whatever- But that doesn't change my opinion about her' I don't mind becoming a villain for their love story- I don't want that species to spoil my family atmosphere"
"That is really a strong range of hate Anji- I feel sorry for that girl"
"Now you don't start supporting you sweatheart" Anjali pointed a finger at Payal "You don't know how much I am worried if Arnav will one day come and tell us that Sheetal said yes to him- and the way the family goes about her- I am sure he will pop the question one day or other in near future."
"I am not supporting Akaash, May be she was little anxious to impress the elders. So that they accept her, I am still not able to fathom how Arnav would have developed feelings for a girl with such attitude.. Maybe Arnav is not that serious about her at all and you all are worrying about this too much' Or its completely in a different perspective' You know how Arnav is' I think Arnav would not have given her enough time to prepare herself and sprang this visit on her all of a sudden' Seems more like Arnav style to me'and also you both have been a little too excited to meet her ' Maybe she didn't expect such a high voltage excitement from you people and went off beat'"
"You understand my brother much better that these two" Akaash told her "Infact these two are exaggerating Sheetal's attitude' She is really a nice girl- I have met her in London- and now here' She was looking little nervous today- as you told it could be ..."
"Go on then, start Sheetal fan club" Anjali retorted before Akaash could finish his sentence.
Akaash started to tell something, Nk was grinning' Payal sensed this was getting into one of those siblings fight'
"Ok OK guys- enough'" Payal told immediately "I have some news to really cheer you all up"
"And what is that? Are you going to join Sheetal fan club too?" Anjali asked
Payal narrowed her eyes and looked at Anjali, which made her giggle.
"Ok tell us.." Anjali finally told her
"I am getting engaged to Vinod Khatri day after tomorrow" Payal told as she stood up and announced this with dramatic effect
"What?" All the three shouted back
Arnav looked at Mr.Roy who was sitting opposite to him in his office cabin at his house.
"What do you mean Mr.Roy? He refused to speak to you?"
"Yeah, He denied plainly ' Not even a word"
"Even after you told him that you are representing me?"
"Yes, Even after threats that we can actually prosecute him for cheating late Mr.Ajay Raizada"
"Did he oppose when you accused him that he played tricks on my father?"
"No, he didn't, But he stopped being nice to me, He rudely asked me to get out"
"Did you talk to the girl? Did he say anything to her?"
"The girl proclaims that he refuses to speak to her too- But I am not sure how much of it is truth"
"Because I had forgotten my car keys in the room and went back to fetch it' The room door was not closed fully, and I could hear some conversation happening between the girl and her father. "
Arnav waited for Roy to continue
"Mr.Gupta was saying the girl that he and Mr.Ajay Raizada were childhood friends' I think he was mentioning about some favour or something that was promised' I didn't get it fully, a nurse who passed the corridor was throwing awkward looks at me, she stopped to ask me what I was doing there, I had no choice but to open the door and announce my presence. They stopped speaking abruptly"
"I see" Arnav told thoughtfully
"Whatever be the case Mr.Raizada, I would advise you to observe caution if you decide to go and see him. We don't know yet if whatever this man says is true- And I have a feeling that if it is true we could be in a much worser position than the case if the man is lying"
"What do you mean? How could we be in a worser position?"
"If they are childhood friends, and the man is given a part of his property in mysterious conditions- it could be anything' I am a man who believes that there could never be smoke without fire' "
"I don't get you"
"What if you father had promised the man long time ago that he will take the girl as his Daughter in Law for one of his sons? And now when the man came to claim his right, your father couldn't say no for something that he owes this man, and just gave away some of the property as compensation and this man is quite shrewd to use that to get his daughter married to you or one of your brothers?"
"But this is farfetched'and ridiculous!" Arnav was tempted to laugh scornfully, but controlled himself
"This is just a speculation- but isn't this one of the possibilities?" Mr Roy asked him
"Looks plausible" he said thoughtfully "May be we are far away from truth"
"But I have a feeling that the truth could be as ridiculous and farfetched as this" Mr Roy told him
Arnav nodded at Mr.Roy
"You are right Mr.Roy"
"I insist you to exercise caution Mr.Raizada- We need to be guarded too, we need a counter plan if the man is asking for you, so that he can convince you using your father's name or weekness. Its my duty to warn you- I would appreciate if you would call me and let me know your moves- unlike today morning"
Arnav and Roy got up, as Arnav extended his hand to Roy
"I will be cautious Mr.Roy, Thanks for the advice"
Arnav spent some time in recluse and solitude of the big study at the second floor, long after Mr.Roy left his cabin. He usually spent his time in the study when he was confused and wanted to gather his thoughts. Books and gardening were the two things that unwinded him. While gardening was reserved for times when he was upset or wanted some relaxation, he preferred books and recluse to gather his confused thoughts. Today being such a day, He was lost in thoughts about Shashi and whatever Mr.Roy had told him just moments before. He thought about Kushi's promise to him that she will somehow bring those papers to him.
He was in dilemma 'Should he wait for Kushi to give him those papers? Or should be proactively counter act to get those papers? Should he go and meet Shashi? What if Shashi has laid a trap for him like Mr.Roy predicted? According to Mr.Roy, Shashi had been quite persistent that he needs to meet only him- Was Shashi so confident that Arnav wouldn't be able to refuse whatever he asks for? Did his father owe this man something? Or could it be as simple as to thank him for his help this morning?
He had to act fast, they could not do anything until he got the property papers back- The prospective buyer wouldn't wait for long enough and they had to settle the money for the rest of them.
He decided to visit the hospital the next morning. Whatever be the case, Arnav wanted to unknot the mystery of their family property ending up in Shashi's name.
As he opened the door to get out of the study, he could hear his brothers and sisters making a din in the lounge. Then he remembered Payal's call to him.
"Oh my god! I completely forgot about it" He muttered to himself and quickly he decided to put his problems at the backseat for now and look at what could be done for his brother and Payal.
"Time for action!" he told himself as he stepped out
Topic started by abavi
Last replied by Khuarv