Not a word was spoken by anyone present in the living room of Shantivan. Their feet glued to the floor with their eyes stuck on the same place Arnav had carried Khushi from. They were shocked to see Khushi running like this in the house, to witness the joy that radiated from her face. She was no more a walking dead body who needs support to even stand properly, who had the permanent lost look etched on her face. She was Khushi whom they have first met, whom they had lost so many nights ago. They were surprised to see Arnav, known as arrogant ASR to the world chasing his wife without a care, and oblivious to everything around him, he carries his wife back to their room. They, at last, when all this shock and surprise mellowed down, were confused with these changes in Khushi, and why they were not informed about it, from when it was hidden from them?
“Was…was it our khushi bitiya?” Nani broke the silence.
Anjali and Nk looked at each other, their eyes mirroring their confusion. As Nk had said earlier to anjali about Arnav spending his whole time with khushi, arnav was hardly seen by any of them these days. Knowing, how hard he trying to bring his wife back and what the real situation is, Nk and payal had convinced all to not disturb khushi, as what she need the most this time was arnav, and arnav needs to be with khushi every second for himself as well as to take care of her. So all the family members had not seen arnav and khushi for a whole week, including NK who had not disturbed his nannav . But this was…was not expected by any of them. Is it the reason for arnav for not allowing HP to serve his and khushi’s food in their room? Had he not wanted anyone to know about the improvement in khushi? But why? “”
Kicking the bedroom door open, Arnav carried a slightly red and breathless Khushi inside. Gently placing her on the bed, he hovered above her, hands either side of her head, he stared at her eyes, full of joy, remnants of laughter still lingering in their depth, devoid of the blankness he had seen in them not a so long ago, and just this sight lifted a burden from his chest he had not known, he was carrying with himself, even after they both have confessed their love to each other. He can now breathe freely, without any burden on his chest suffocating him, knowing His Khushi is no more trapped in the black hole which was trying to suck her in, which was taking her away from him.
She was still panting from her earlier run and the adrenalin rush filled in her knowing he was chasing her. Taking deep breaths to calm her racing heart, she looked in his eyes as he just stared at her, not saying anything. “What are you looking at?”
“Nothing.” He uttered, Still mesmerized by the light in her eyes.
Not able to handle his intense stare at her, she tried to divert his attention. “Don’t think you were able to catch me. I deliberately let you win. No one can catch me if I want. ”
His lips curved up, looking her cute side. “Uh-huh! But no matter how fast you run, I will catch you khushi, I will catch you- Always!”
Her heart thudded at his admission. He will not leave her. No matter what.
“I know.” She accepted.
His face got closer to hers. “How?” He asked in his husky voice.
“I just know…” Her eyes closed as her lips parted.
His lips touched hers slowly. His hands roamed over her body as his lips moved over hers gently. Was it because their position or the new found happiness, they don’t know. But whatever it was ignited a long buried fire in them, causing arnav to kiss her with abundant passion for the first time and khushi to pull him closer to her, responding to his passion, roaming her slender fingers in his black soft hairs.
Breathless, he pulled back. It is too soon. There are so many things, they have to talk about. She has just recovered. She has not fully healed.
“S..sorry.” He mumbled, backing away from her.
She opened her eyes and looked at him confused. Soon her confusion vanished looking at his lowered eyes, clenched jaws. He is angry at himself for losing control.
With sigh, she stood up in front him, “Arnavji?”
“Look at me.”
“Did I stop you?” She asked.
His head snapped up. What.
“Khushi, I am…” His apology died in his lips as her lips captured his.
“I am not sorry.” With that she went to poolside, showing him his Bluetooth, she still had with her. He smiled in relief. He had not made her uncomfortable.
“I am going upstairs.” A teary eyed payal rushed to go upstairs to meet her sister. A silent understanding passed between NK and Anjali. Nannav had clearly wanted them to know this. There has to some reason for him to hide this big thing from them, especially when he knew how desperately everyone want to see their Khushi healthy and chirpy like before. They cannot let anyone meet Khushi, not until Nk know the reason for Arnav to do this.
“Yes, I am also coming with you.” Nani took steps forward to follow payal.
“Payal babhi, Nani, Stop!” Hearing Nk’s urgent voice they stopped.
“Nk bhai, why are stopping us?” Payal wiped her tears. “Didn’t you see khushi just now? She is healthy and happy. I want to meet my sister. I am so happy that she is alright now.”
“Payal babhi, I understand and we all want to meet khushiji. But you have to understand, now is not the time to meet her. Didn’t you see how happy she is with nannav. We must not intrude. We should give them time to heal. Both of them. They need it badly. And when they feel right, they will come to down to meet us by themselves. Khushiji is, as she is now, because nannav was with her every second. Only nannav. We could not just barge into their room. Khushiji’s mental state is fragile, she could get scared or may react badly otherwise. She is happy with nannav now. Let her be comfortable with all the things that had happened. Let them solve their issues. And I am sure nannav will himself tell us to meet khushiji, when she would be comfortable to meet all of you.” Nk desperately tried to stop all of them to meet khushi. He have feeling inside, if they meet khushi, the consequences will not be good.
“NK bhai is right Nani.” Anjali supported NK. “Payalji, please wait for some days. Your khushi will come to meet you. But not now. Her condition is fragile. And we should be happy that our khushiji is back.”
Reluctantly payal took her steps back, her eyes staring up longingly.
I have to talk to Nannav. Now! Thought NK.
“Di, let me take you to the room.” Nk looked at anjali and she understood that he want to talk to Arnav.
Anjali nodded and Nk helped her to climb the stairs.
“I need to talk to him di.”
“I know. Just don’t go in front of khushiji.” Anjali cautioned.
Nk left anjali in her room to go to Arnav. As soon as he stood out of the room, he heard the sound of laughter. Khushi and Arnav’s laughter. He peeked inside the room from the slightly ajar door. He stood rooted on the spot for the second time of the day. There they were, arnav tickling khushi as she tried to save herself from her husband’s tickling hand continuously moving her body from one side to another on the bed. But Arnav didn’t stop. He continued to tickle her till tears escaped her eyes.
“Ar…na…vji S…to…p!” She tried to speak between her laughter.
“NO!” Came the pat reply.
“Please. Ok sorry….i…i..will..never..never!” She squeaked “N..ev..er Tickle you!”
At last Arnav showed mercy on her and stopped. She was still laughing. Smiling at her red face, he kissed her. “I love you.”
“I lo…ve yo…u t..o…too” Arnav laughed at her attempt to say it coherently and pecked her cute nose.
With a smile on his face, Nk left from there. He can talk to nannav later. Now definitely is not the time. Atlast they were happy!