Does Shyam Have A Connection With Sheesh Mahal?
Arnav took his finger away as Khushi felt like she was drowning in his eyes… she wanted to let go… and go with the flow... but she had this tremendous urge… she had to do this… She held his hand as he moved the finger away, his other arm still holding her snug to his body; she looked deep in his eye and said in a whisper, “Arnav ji….”
“Hmmm...” Arnav was lost in those eyes… his senses getting blunt...
“Arnav ji, since your return… you have been very different… Why are you being so nice to me all of a sudden?” She thought for a moment before saying, “I have not been able to bring the truth out yet!”
A tear trickled down her eyes… rolled down her face...
Arnav’s eyes turned soft… his jaw muscles relaxed… gaze turned gentler… as he looked at her tears, his heart went out to her…
Khushi had to push further, “May I know why you are being so nice to me?”
Arnav’s face and eyes changed. Many emotions reflected on his face and his eyes within next few moments…he first looked puzzled, as soon as her question started sinking in… his face turned firm, eyes harder, colder, anger started mounting… a blaze appeared in his eyes and he clenched his teeth as the jaw muscles tightened… He held Khushi even closer, tighter… her twisted arm started hurting… he looked at her face… she was in pain… he realized that he had twisted her arm really hard and that it was causing her pain. He immediately loosened his grip on her hand, untwisted it, took her hand in his, rubbed gently where he had hurt her, his eyes softened again, slightly apologetic, he gulped as he was aware that he had hurt her. He held Khushi by her shoulders… brought her over to the bed, sat her down on the edge of the bed… Khushi kept giving him puzzled looks through tear filled eyes….. tears ready to roll down..
Arnav knelt in front of her, held her hand gently again and looked deep into the her eyes… said in a heavy voice, “Khushi, you never asked me.. but, let me tell you… I missed you a lot!”
“Jiii?....”What?” Khushi’s eyes initially widened, then tears started trickling down her eyes and a shocked face changed into a slightly brighter one as a smile broke through the tears on her face… Khushi’s other hand reflexively grabbed his hand that was holding her hand in her lap… Arnav looked at her and gradually stood up, tugged on Khushi’s hand gently so that she got pulled back up on her feet… she still was in a trance.. she did not know how to interpret what he just said.. “So… does Arnav ji….No! No.. how is this possible? ..Why would he miss me?” She looked at him again.. he seemed so genuine… his face had the boyish charm and no pretense…
She said with quivering lips…”This ….I… what.. is.. happening.. to me…Arnav ji?”
Before Arnav realized, Khushi fainted … Arnav grabbed her quickly as she fainted and lost control. He placed her on the chaise, reached for the glass of water. As he sprinkled water on Khushi’s face, he felt a tiny knot in his stomach.
”Khushi” “Khushi…” Khushi..” he tried to being her back to consciousness…his hand caressing her face gingerly.. his eyes full of concern.
Khushi, slowly opened her eyes… noticed that Arnav was sitting right next to her on the chaise…. She struggled to move… Arnav held her gingerly and sat her up by his side.. Khushi looked at him with vulnerable eyes… His eyes softer and his gaze caressing.. Rabba ve…
Khushi looked at him with vulnerable eyes…her eyes asked him, “So… do what I think is right?.... did you really miss me?”
Arnav did not answer that question; he wrapped one of his arms around her shoulder and pulled her closer… rested her head on his shoulder…..few moments of quiet ensued... then he asked Khushi, “Tum ab thik ho, Khushi?” “Are you alright, Khushi?”
Khushi realized that her head was still on his shoulder, she pulled back quickly… embarrassed… she jumped to her feet nervously.... unsteady on her feet… Arnav stood up supporting her… ”Don’t fall down again, Khushi!”
Khushi did not make eye contact; he still was holding her by arms on either side… gradually his hands slid down her arms as his gaze stayed fixed on her face… Khushi’s face reflected the awareness of his touch all over her arms.. a shiver ran down her spine… Dhak Dhak Dhak Dhak..
Arnav asked, “Did you hear something?” Khushi was barely able to breathe, looked at him coyly and nodded “No!” Her heart started beating faster… Dhak Dhak Dhak Dhak … She placed her hand on her heart and closed her eyes as she gulped.
Arnav held her hand and said, his face still serious, “Khushi.. I want to…. say something……”
Khushi opened her eyes. Arnav looked her into the eye … his gaze penetrating.. yet gentler… He could not take her eyes off of her… she just looked so mesmerizing as she stood so close to him.. shy.. bashful…
He repeated as if he was in a trance, “I wanted to say something to you..” his husky voice gave her goose bumps… Anticipation mounted in her heart… “Hmmmm….” Khushi said... Her breathing now was so heavy that she could barely catch her breath… her heart was pounding loudly…
Arnav leaned forward… brought his mouth closer to her ears and said in almost a whisper, “This saree…This saree looks beautiful on you!”
Stunned Khushi looked up… Arnav had said something totally different than what she expected…
Her heart filled with disappointment... all of a sudden, she pushed him forcefully and moved away… turned around and let her tears roll down.. Once again Arnav Singh Raizada had managed to disappoint her after building such anticipation… As Arnav watched her… the disappointment….. the anger…. the anguish… his heart could not control itself.. he felt her heartache…..her anguish found a place in his eyes… he moved closer.. Khushi looked up through her tears…angrily she tried to escape to the poolside, when Arnav reached for her and swiftly pulled her into his embrace… Khushi struggled… but Arnav did not let go…Khushi finally broke down in tears, held on to his collar and allowed her tears to trickle down once more as Arnav’s soothing hand rested on her back…
As he soothed her he said to himself, “Wish… I just wish.. that I could tell you why I am being so nice to you!... Khushi…Kaash… …”
Anjali was about to leave the kitchen. She gave instructions to Hariprakash to bring some flowers for the pooja.. the worship.. for the next morning.
Just then Karan walked in…”Hey, sweetheart! How are you?” he asked jovially. Anjali gave him a broad smile and said, “I am fine.. and you?.... Is Lovely here too?”
“Yup! Lovely said that she planned to spend the whole day with Khushi ji today! So, I thought why not spend my day with you? Not a bad idea, right, sweetheart?” ” Karan said flirtatiously… Anjali smiled, shook her head to say, “Alright”. Then she said, “I do have to step out this afternoon for something… but before that… certainly! I can spend some time with you, no problem!”
They both smiled. As they walked towards the lounging area, they decided to sit at the dining table. Anjali called HP, “Hariprakash ji, please, get some coffee for Karan ji!” “Okay, Didi!” HP replied.
As they sat at the table Karan kept staring at Anjali…. It made her very uncomfortable… She finally asked, “What?.. Why are you looking at me like that?... Karan ji, do I have something on my face?”
“Sweetheart, drop this ‘ji..wee..’.. ! Just call me Karan…it will feel so nice to hear that from you!…” Karan said flirtatiously.
Anjali replied, “Ahh.. it’s a bit difficult but.. I am willing to try…”
Just then HP came with the coffee… Anjali and Karan started sipping on their coffee.. Karan started telling Anjali what they did at ASR’s office earlier the other day.
“Knock.. Knock…” someone knocked on the door…
Khushi looked at Arnav… he was still holding her tight... close to his heart… she felt so secure in the warmth of his embrace that she had almost forgotten that this is not how it was supposed to be!
The knock got stronger… louder…
Khushi pulled away from Arnav…her eyes pleaded to him to let her go… he released her from his embrace… she ran to the bathroom…
Arnav walked up to the door…opened it…
It was Lovely. She said as she looked over his shoulder, ”ASR, I am looking for Khushi! Have you seen her anywhere? Is she here?”
Arnav said in a calm voice, “She is in the bathroom… freshening up! Come in. please!”
Lovely said as she walked in, “Listen, I plan to spend rest of my day with Khushi today!”
As Khushi stepped out of the bathroom Lovely looked at her and said, “Khushi, can we spend the day together?” Then she mischievously added, “Only if… ASR is willing to share you with me.. I guess!”
Khushi nodded as she blushed, “Yes, Lovely ji!”
Arnav and Khushi quickly exchanged glances with each other… Arnav’s eyes asked her, “Are you alright?”.. Khushi’s eyes said… ”As alright as I can be..”
Arnav pulled out his tie from the closet and as he put it on, he said, “Well then… I am going to the office. Lovely, when do you have to meet with your clients?”
Lovely said, “Oh, yeah, the meeting is tomorrow morning...sharp 11 AM, in your office..!”
Arnav said as he rolled his sleeves up, “I will have the conference room set up for you. Aman can take care of the arrangements for you!” He then picked up his laptop and jacket; he said as he left, “You guys have fun! See you later!”
Lovely walked over to Khushi and asked, “So, what shall we do now?”
“Lovely ji, I love to talk.. do you?... We can chat whole afternoon! And yes, will you teach me how to make pasta? Arnav ji loves pasta but I don’t know how to cook it! …” Khushi started talking chirpily.
“Sure… sure… In fact, even I don’t know much of cooking but, pasta and all.. that I know how to cook… pretty well, if I must say so myself!” Lovely said as they walked down the stairs and headed towards the kitchen.
Anjali laughed hard at Karan’s joke….held on to her tummy and said, “My stomach is hurting now.. you have made me laugh so much! Please.. have some mercy….stop now..”
Karan raised both his arms half way and said, “Okay..,Okay...calm down..”
He then looked around and asked, “I don’t see your hubby… where is he?”
Anjali said with a sulked face, “He left for work early in the morning… he has no eyes for anything else but his work!”
“Not even you?” Karan asked a little pointedly.
“Yeah, not even me!” Anjali said as she curled her lips and thought of Shyam leaving in a hurry early that morning.
Karan said, “Then it’s very wrong! You.. and someone does not pay attention… impossible!”
Anjali realized where he was headed. She quickly corrected herself, “Ji…? That’s not what I meant!”
Karan flipped back in his jovial mood, “Khair.. Let it be.. You tell me, is Mr. Mahohar Jha related to your husband in any way?”
Anjali hesitated a bit…. Nervously she said, “You know, the reality is that I don’t know anything about his relatives.”
Karan’s eyes widened with surprise, “Why? Did you elope to get married?”
“No! Not that! It’s just that we have always lived here.. even after we got married..” Anjali struggled to find words… She nervously looked around... Karan sensed her awkwardness.
He said, “Hmm.. it’s so unusual… But.. I won’t bother you with my questions anymore. It is just that Mr. Manohar Jha was a big hotelier in Lucknow He wanted to purchase Sheesh Mahal. He had big plans to covert it into a five star hotel. He did a lot to obtain it..…but he could not.. I have heard that same Sheesh Mahal was purchsed by some young chap last year!... Long time back… Mr. Manohar Jha had to face bankruptcy because he could not get Sheesh Mahal and he had already invested so much into the effort…“
Karan watched Anjali’s face change colors… as he spoke. He rushed to say, “Oh, I am sorry! What am I talking about!.. I should have known that you had nothing to do with it! Please, forgive me!”
Anjali was deep in her thoughts.. she said, “It’s alright….” But her thinking wheels started churning…”It seems to me that I should ask him about this Mr. Mahohar Jha .. especially when it relates to Sheesh Mahal…”
Karan waved his hand in front of her and snapped his fingers to bring Anjali out of her trance…
Payal was on the phone with Buaji…”Buaji, how are you?”
“Arey, bitiya! You have called after such a long time! We miss you a lot…. I .. your Amma… and .. Babuji… everyone! .. And Khushi? How is she?”
“Buaji, Khushi is alright too. I miss you all a lot. I was thinking of coming over after the pooja tomorrow.”
“Is everything alright?” Buaji got worried sensing the weight to Payal’s words.. Payal said, “Yes, everything is alright! It’s just that I had something to discuss with you.. about someone..”
“About who?” Buaji asked
“I will tell you all about it when we meet,” Payal said.
Mami watched Payal from outside the room, listened in on her conversation, said, “Hello Hi Bye Bye! It’s my job to do investigationwa? How come this Khoon Bhari Taang is undertaking some investigationia?”