Thursday, November 22, 2012

Chapter Eleven

The Way To A Man's Heart...



Khushi and Lovely had a good laugh about something they discussed as they descended down the stairs. Everyone had gathered for afternoon tea around the table.. they looked at them…  Nani ji happily smiled watching lovely and Khushi spend time together.

As Lovely took a seat next to Nani ji, she said, “Nani, I love your Khushi!” and winked.

Nani ji said proudly, “Our Khushi bitiya is just like that… she wins everyone’s heart!”

Shyam immediately looked up at Khushi with a disgusting smile but his eyes were admiring her. Khushi gave him an angry look and looked away. Anjali was sitting next to him. She said to Shyam, ”Here you go! Your chai…!”
Shyam was so occupied with his anger that he did not notice that Anjali was talking to him. Anjali noticed his angry face, surprised she asked, “What happened? Did I say something wrong?”

Nani ji, Khushi, Karan, Mami ji everyone looked at Shyam…Shyam immediately straightened his face and said with a smile, “Arey, Rani Sahiba! You…. You are just too much! You worry so much about me! I was just busy thinking about a complicated case on hand.”

Karan’s sharp eyes were not missing anything. He winked at Anjali and said, “Wow! How can anyone think about work when such a beautiful dame is sitting by the side! ….I wouldn’t!” His eyes were full of mischief.

Anjali curled her lips as smile spread across her face… Affectionately she said in a scolding voice with fake anger, “Karan… “

With a steady gaze Lovely was watching Karan carefully… so did Khushi.  Nani ji smiled, ”Karan bitwa, you are such a fun guy!”

“Haaye, what should I do, Nani ji, humari toh tabiyat hi kuchh rangeen hai…I have a heart that loves to love!” Karan said in a filmi style… everyone including Payal burst out laughing..

Payal said, “You know, our Khushi is also filmi, just like you!”

Nani immediately added, “Yes, Khushi bitiya is so fond of movies….. she dances so well too…”

Anjali chirped in enthusiastically, “Lovely, you must see Khushi ji dance at least once!”

Khushi turned bashful with all the praise….felt embarrassed, “Di, no… I don’t dance anymore…. I used to earlier.. . but then.. things were different….”

“Arey, no, Khushi ji! What are you saying?..... Mami, remember that night…Bali in Delhi?” As soon as Anjali said this and winked at Mami, Mami covered her mouth and suppressed her laughter…
Khushi lowered her gaze as images of her passionate dance with Arnav flashed back in her mind…  a shiver ran down her spine… filling her heart with longing..

“Bali in Delhi? What’s that? What do you mean?” Lovely asked.

“Hello Hi Bye Bye! Ms Lovely,  Arnav bitwa was very busy.. no time for honeymoon, so, Sasuma and Anjali bitiya, created hotel in here… in the Raizada Mansion…… for that reason..we brought Bali here in Delhi..” Mami answered enthusiastically..

Anjali said with a bright smile on her face and affectionate eyes, “That night… I tell you…. Chhotey and Khushi ji… they danced their heart out! Ahhhh…..!”

“What ..ASR and dance! I can’t believe it!” Lovely said.

“Ahh.. you will be surprised, Lovely! They both dance together so well.. so well.. you got to see it!” Anjali could not stop raving about Arnav and Khushi’s dancing skills.

Payal said, “And the Sangeet… before my wedding.. remember that, Di? “

Nani said nostalgically, “Yes! That was the first time we all saw Chhhotey dance on the stage!”

Karan jumped in immediately, “Ok, then it’s done!”

Everyone around the table was taken aback with surprise… They all looked at Karan curiously…

Karan slowly rose to feet with style, everyone else followed him… and they all came to the lounging area… got settled… suspense was killing them.. curiosity was mounting….

Finally Karan  announced, “OK then! It’s decided! Let’s make a plan for tonight! No one will sleep tonight!…hum log achhi si mehfil jamayenge…we will have a fantastic family get together tonight…. antakshari… some dance..and great food…what say? “

Nani ji’s face filled with smile… she nodded happily in agreement.. Anjali though hesitated, “But tomorrow.. we have the pooja…”

Mami said excitedly, “Anjali bitiya, I will get everything ready this afternoon! .. and the pooja is also in the afternoon at the temple tomorrow.  That should work out fine!... Say, yes..!”

As Aakash walked in, he asked, “Who are you guys conspiring against? Tell me!”

Karan briefed him about the plan for the fun night... Mama ji, who followed Aakash also heard everything and excitedly Mama ji said, “O, wow! This is a great idea! We haven’t had a fun family night in a very long time...”

Nani ji, Mami nodded happily in agreement.

Shyam said nothing.. he just stared at them. Khushi went quiet.. very unlike her…. That did not go unnoticed by Anjali. She said to Khushi, “Khushi ji, why are you so quiet? Did you not like the idea?”

Khushi said with some hesitation, “Di, who… it’s… that… I was…. thinking…”

“Say it, Khushiji! What happened? What’s wrong? Is there a problem?” Anjali fired question after question in a concerned voice.

“No, Di!... I was… thinking about him…. he does not like noise…. You know...” Khushi hesitated… did not complete her sentence…looked at Anjali with suggestive eyes…

Khushi remembered… the images of Arnav telling her how he did not like noise come alive in her mind…Anjali understood… Mami and Nani too..
Mami said in a mellow tone, “Phati Saree, you are right! Arnav bituwa toh ek dum se angry young man hui jayee yeh sunane par.. Arnav bitwa will be an angry young man if he finds out!”

Lovely asked puzzled, “Why?”

Anjali said, “You know, our Chhotey does not like noise…”
Nani said, “But….Anjali bitiya, you know what to do… you do have a solution… remember?” Anjali looked at Nani ji with questioning eyes.

“What is that, Nani?” Aakash asked with curious eyes.

Nani winked at Anjali… Mami looked at them suspiciously.. Anjali smiled as if she understood what Nani said, “Oh, yes! Nani, you are so smart!”
She turned to Khushi and said, “There is only one person who knows how to make Chhotey agree to this… and that is you, Khushi ji! Remember…when you got Chhotey to agree for Sangeet on Aakash’s wedding?”

“It’s…. that…. Di, I….. I.. me…..” Khushi stuttered… she did not know how to say it.. Shyam’s anger started mounting as Anjali kept reminding everyone about the special relationship Khushi shared with Arnav…..
Nani said to Khushi, “Bitiya, please, do it for the sake of our guests! For Lovely and Karan!”

Mami chirped, “Hello Hi Bye Bye..Arnav bituwa…. Phati Saree…. you must get him to agree… otherwise…. No Fun…. foolishhtop!”

 ********************************************


Lovely and Khushi were in the kitchen…Lovely was teaching Khushi how to make gourmet pasta.  She showed her how much water she needed… how it needs to come to a boil before dropping the pasta in… then she showed her all the veggies they cut before boiling the pasta… next step she showed her how to get all those ingredients cooking together in olive oil…
Finally... she showed her how to garnish..

When the  dinner plate was ready…. Lovely threw away her chef’s hat and said, “Voila!” ..”Here… Khushi, pasta is ready for your Arnav ji!”

Khushi got worried, “What if he does not like it, Lovely ji?”
“Oh, Khushi! Don’t worry….” Lovely said in a confident voice, “I know… ASR just loves this pasta… this used to be his favorite!.... Now go and surprise ASR!.... go...what are you waiting for?”

As Khushi brought pasta to the table, Mami started sniffing…, “Wow… something smells so nice!” “What is this?” Mami asked looking at the plate Khushi put in front of Arnav.


Lovely came in with a huge serving bowl in her hands full of pasta. She declared “ASR, Khushi has cooked the gourmet pasta dish for you!”
As Arnav looked at Khushi, Khushi gave him a sheepish look and said nervously, “I don’t know how it has come out...”

Khushi then looked at Anjali, “Di, it’s my first time.. trying a foreign dish…”
 Nani ji said affectionately, “Khushi bitiya, don’t underestimate your own efforts… You tried to cook something that Chhotey likes so much... that’s good enough!” Then Nani ji looked at Arnav and said, “The emotions that go into making something special for someone are important than how the dish turns out.. right, Chhotey?”
 
Arnav blurted, “What the..” As Khushi heard it, she felt bad. She tried to pull the plate away… Arnav looked at her puzzled. He held on to the plate and said, “Chhhodo… kya kar rahi ho.. Let it be.. what are you doing?”
“Ji, I thought… you did not want to taste it...”
Arnav gave her a puzzled look.. a question in his eyes….
Khushi said hesitatingly “You said…. ‘What the..’”
Arnav shook his head and rolled his eyes as he pulled the plate back in front of him, “Unbelievable!...  That was not for you…”

Arnav reached for his fork.. all eyes were on him… as he started chewing everyone kept looking at him for any reaction…. as soon as he swallowed, Lovely asked, “So?” Arnav looked at her… made no gestures… instead he took another bite… and started eating with his gaze towards the plate.

Lovely kept looking at him… waiting for his verdict…. Khushi got nervous… her eyes welled up… a tear was about to roll down her eye when Arnav looked up at Lovely and said, “It’s alright!”
Anjali could not hold back, “Only alright?... How can you just say only alright, Chhotey?”
Lovely repeated, “Just alright, ASR?”
Arnav’s gaze settled on Khushi who was on the verge of crying..
Shyam was irked by all this attention on Arnav and Khushi… he kept looking at them angrily… Unaware of Karan’s constant gaze glued on his face…

Arnav’s eyes did not leave Khushi’s face as he said slowly to Khushi, “It’s good!” Khushi’s face immediately reflected relief, a smile spread on her face, but a tear trickled down anyway…  As she wiped her eyes discreetly…Anjali looked at her affectionately…

**********************************************


Later that afternoon:

Everyone was in the lounging area… as Khushi started walking towards the stairs with a tray in her hands Anjali said, “Khushi ji, all the best! I am sure that you will get Chhotey to agree…!”

Lovely gave a thumps up, “All the best, Khushi! Come back soon with a good news!” Khushi smiled but her heart started beating faster with nervousness…

Karan turned to Payal and Anjali, “Come on, guys! We should start making preparations for the fun evening… Come on!”
Everyone got up enthusiastically… Mama ji was ahead of everyone in full force

****************************************


When Khushi entered the room Arnav was working on his laptop. Khushi slowly walked over to him…. then she handed him the bowl and said in a soft voice, “Halwa…sugarfree…. For you! ” Arnav took a spoonful and gulped it down hurriedly as he started working on his laptop again… He choked… started coughing… Khushi came running.. started rubbing on his back, "Arnav ji.. are you okay?” She quickly reached for the glass of water on the table and held it to Arnav’s mouth… Arnav took few sips… as his cough slowed down and Khushi put the glass away, their eyes talked to each other.. a memory from the night when Arnav had gotten sick after Khushi did not have dinner for him came alive… that night Arnav had choked the same way and Khushi had run to his rescue..

As his throat settled…Arnav’s eyes noticed that Khushi was nervously crumpling her saree with her right hand standing next to the bed… deep in her thoughts..
 “Khushi..” Arnav called in a soft voice.

Khushi was lost in her thoughts, “Khushi..” Arnav called again… it broke her thoughts…
She looked at him nervously… he asked in a soft voice, “Tum thik ho?... Are you alright?
“Yeah… I am alright… Di.. was……Di…” Khushi did not know how to broach the topic….
“What happened to Di?” Arnav jumped to his feet as his face filled with worry...”Dammit… say something! What happened to Di? What’s wrong?” He grabbed Khushi by her arms… his eyes were demanding an answer..

Khushi said nervously, “No,… nothing…. Di is fine… she asked…. Me… to.. ask you…”
“What the…! Since when does Di need you to have me ask about something?” his eyes filled with disbelief...
Khushi nervously added, “Di wants to have a family get together tonight…. Some antakshari… some food… something like that...” she deliberately skipped telling him about the dance.. It was going to be the next big task for her…. to bring him downstairs…
“Everyone has their heart set on it...” Khushi added with pleading eyes.

“Who’s idea was it?..don’t tell me that you did not plan this, Khushi Kumari Gupta Singh Raizada! I know you and your ideas very well!” Arnav said as his eyes gazed into hers searching for an answer….
 
“No…. it was not me! Honest to God!.... It was Karan ji…, Lovely ji and Di…they made the plans. I came to ask for your permission for all their sake…...” Khushi’s voice trailed off as she looked Arnav into the eye…. her eyes innocent… pure… reflected the truth she spoke… Arnav’s heart started melting… His hold on her arms got tighter… stronger… he pulled her closer…his gaze steady on her face… he looked her deep into the eye and whispered... “Fine!....but… Khushshii… it’s just because YOU asked…” They kept gazing in to each others eyes…Rabba Ve




15 comments:

guturgutur said...

aww that was so cute!

kathrina pheonix (DUMAS) said...

awesome update loved it so cute asr needs to stop making his wife scared of him poor khushi she cooked pasta for him so cute and snake always watching her so disgusting awesome update thanks for the pm loved the update

Anonymous said...

Nichuss

this part was so cool Monkey Emoticons
poor kushi so afraid f arnie...Monkey Icons
Arnie plz say ys to kushi

Anonymous said...

vkp1989
Awosome update.

jessjazz said...

it's just because you asked. . . . haiiiiiiiiiiiii. . . so loveable. . .
hate shyam!!!!! please make him disappear, or let karan find out his deep dark secrets and then crush him.
and karan and anjali can live happily ever after. . . ;)

Anonymous said...

Miki Mk

thanku for the post <3.....It was very nice I really enjoyed this part...w8inggg for the next prt :)

fffan123 said...

Brilliant update. Loved it. Thanks for the pm

Anonymous said...

sarun_deewani

superb update lovely

Anonymous said...

anita_21492
awesome update
i was in tension for arnav's verdict about the food
and i like karan...i cannot say that enough

Anonymous said...

mishty_angel
awesome update lovely

supriya r said...

Loved it!!!! Amazingly written Loved the family conversations Nani mami Payal nd Karan!!!

Please come bck with the nxt chapter soon....so damn eager to knw wat happens nxt!!!!

beena14 said...

Lovely dear ,

Awesome update wish the creative team would have used some of these wonderful chapters you have written. Waiting for the next one.

Beena14

jessjazz said...

Beautiful how all were involved in the convo. And Khushi going to get permission!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Khushi is so scared about arnav.....
Shyam????
Watch out...
You are gonna get caught soonnn...
Update soon

IF- sooryalekshmi

jessjazz said...

Lovelyji.... no update yet? :(