Arshi FF: Family

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Oct 21

Chapter 21 (By Archanasuresh) (Thanked: 86 times)

Sorry for the late update. I'm busy with works at college and cannot sit to write anymore. I'll try to give small updates in every four days, but I can't promise. Sorry.

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Chapter 21

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ONE WEEK LATER

 

AR Farm House, New Delhi

8.15 am Saturday

 

“Good morning” Aman said as he walked into the silent farm house. Arnav looked up from the floor and sat up groaning. Aman looked at the empty bottles next to him and asked, “How many did you drink?”

Arnav scrunched his eyes and looked at him mumbling something. Aman sighed and walked to the kitchen to make a lemon juice.

“Here” he said after few minutes, extending a glass of juice. Making Arnav hold it, he made the man drink it.

“It’s a been a week ASR” Aman sighed, “How long are you gonna do this?”

Arnav leaned his head on the couch and closed his eyes.

“Go back to RM” Aman said sitting next to him.

“They don’t want me back there!” Arnav whispered.

“It’s your house. It’s your family. Go back to them”

“They don’t want me Aman”

“Win them back” Aman cried.

Arnav took a deep breath and whispered, “I wanted to keep them to myself. I didn’t want to lose them! Look where we are Aman! I’ve lost everyone and everything!”

Aman kept mum and Arnav asked, “Did they call?”

“Why would they call me?” Aman chuckled.

Arnav sighed and Aman said, “She calls Payals bhabhi every day. Aarav too!”

Arnav looked at him and he said, “I called Akash”

Arnav nodded and looked away.

“Waise I want you back in the office. AR is as if it’s dead!” Aman chuckled.

“Akash is there!”

“Still, you aren’t there!” Aman said smiling.

“I cannot Aman. I….I don’t want….”

“How long are you planning to do this?” Aman asked, “Are you gonna drink to death?”

Arnav looked away and Aman said, “Just come back ASR. Everything is messed up, I know. But try sorting things back to the place it was. And start that from AR”

Arnav nodded no and said, “It’s not a business failure to make a comeback Aman. I’ve failed in life. There is no sorting out. Not anymore!”

Aman sighed and said, “Okay then. Come when you feel like!” he stood up and said, “I’m leaving. Call me if you need anything!”

Aman turned to leave when Arnav asked, “Where is he?”

Aman turned to him and he asked, “Ishaan. Where did he leave?”

“How would I know?” Aman asked.

“You know everything” Arnav whispered.

“I don’t. I gave him some money as a help. That’s all. He didn’t tell me where he was going” Aman said.

Arnav nodded and Aman turned walking away.

“I know that you know where Ishaan is” Arnav spoke up and Aman stopped. He looked at his boss who said smiling faintly, “Of all the people, you would definitely know where he is. It’s fine if you want to hide it from others. But just letting you know, that I can catch you lying”

Aman looked away and said, “He didn’t want anyone to know. He asked me to keep his details away from you and others!”

Arnav nodded and Aman walked away.

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Edinburg, Texas, US

9.30 PM Friday

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“Did you like Texas?” Aarav asked smiling as he drove through the streets.

Khushi nodded yes and looked out of the window smiling, “I love it!”

“The night city looks really beautiful” he said and looked out.

Khushi hummed and leaned back on the seat. “How’s your work?” she asked.

“Great” Aarav said, “Great atmosphere and…yeah great people!”

Khushi smiled and Aarav said, “There is a little girl. Lily”

“Your patient?”

Aarav hummed.

“Cancer?” Khushi whispered.

“Hmmm” Aarav said, “Cancer doesn’t have age ma.”

Khushi hummed and Aarav said, “So Lily….well Lily is just a bundle of joy. It must be her age. She doesn’t know that she has a deadly disease. And that keeps her happy!”

Khushi smiled faintly and said, “Sometimes it’s good to be kept in dark. It keeps us in a world of illusion. We’ll be happy!”

“One day she’ll realize it. She’ll be broken. Beyond repair!” Aarav whispered.

“Till then, she can be happy! Just like me!” Khushi whispered and looked out.

Aarav kept mum and Khushi asked him, “Don’t you miss him?”

He nodded no.

“Lie” Khushi said chuckling.

Aarav took a deep breath and said, “Fine yes”

“And Shreya?”

Aarav looked out and Khushi said, “I think you should call her. It wasn’t right to call it off!”

Aarav kept mum and Khushi said, “Life is short Aarav. You won’t get multiple chances. Grab one when you get one!”

“It won’t happen ma. It’s over!”

“No it isn’t. Why are you punishing her?” she cried.

“I’m not punishing her!” Aarav cried, “I don’t want her to be in the mess I am!”

“What mess are you talking about?” Khushi cried, “We’re all well here!”

Aarav sighed and said, “It’s…”

“Listen, whatever your father did, it shouldn’t affect your and Shreya’s relation!”

“Ma” Aarav said slowly, “It’s over!”

Khushi hummed and looked out. She suddenly turned to him and asked, “When you came to know about Ishaan, what was the first thing that came to your mind?”

“You” Aarav whispered.

“Then?”

“Then…I wondered whether he would’ve adopted me if I was really his son and Sheethal was my birth mother!” Aarav said slowly.

Khushi looked at him and he said smiling faintly, “He wouldn’t right? I would have been kept away with my mother, just like Ishaan was. And I wouldn’t have had a person to call dad. Like him!”

“Ishaan” Khushi whispered.

“I like him a lot. He is nice. Good. But the only thing I hate in him is his blood. That should’ve been me. I wanted to be ASR’s son!” Aarav whispered.

Khushi hummed and looked out.

Aarav drove the car into their apartment complex and said, “Forget that. We aren’t here in Texas to mourn about the people we left behind!”

Khushi nodded and Aarav leaned on the seat parking the car, “We’ve to start fresh right?”

Khushi hummed and nodded.

 

Nov 6

Chapter 22 (By Archanasuresh) (Thanked: 80 times)

Chapter 22

3 years later

 

Texas, US

DHR Health Oncology Institute, Edinburg

10.30 am

 

“Sure doctor” the nurse nodded and Aarav walked inside to this cabin. “Get the injection from pharmacy and prepare the solution” he ordered. The nurse nodded and scurried away.

Slumping on his chair, Aarav removed his spectacle and rubbed the bridge of his nose. His eyes fell on the small greeting card made out of pink chart paper. A small smile formed on his lips as he remembered the sweet little girl who gave it to him, just days before her death.

Lily, just as her name suggests, was a beautiful 8 little girl who was caught in the web of the deadly disease called cancer. Lying on the hospital bed with numerous tubes attached to her body, Lily was the happiest person he had ever seen. Was it her age which did not give her the realization that her life is gonna end? Or was it her maturity beyond her age that made her enjoy the rest of her days? Whichever it was, Lily always bloomed in happiness. She wasn’t just a patient for him but a best friend he was in dire need of!

Taking a deep breath, he opened the card. He smiled, just as he do every time he opens it.

Doctor Aary

You are good

I like you so much

But I know you like photo girl more.

Love, Lily

Keeping the card safely on the table, he took out his purse to see the picture of him and the girl he had left behind.

“Ha Lily baby is happy?”

“Lily always happy” Lily squealed.

“Ha now listen, this is gonna pain a little!” Aarav said softly and took out the injection.

“That needle pains a lot” Lily said pouting and shut her eyes tight. Aarav’s lip formed a thin line and he injected the medicine carefully.

The girl burst into tears and screamed and Aarav said soothing, “It’s over…it’s over…just a small thing it’s…”

“It pains….” Lily cried and Aarav applied lotion on cotton swab, pressing it on her skin.

“Good?” he asked smiling and Lily sniffled her tears, stopping her cries.

Lily pouted and looked down. “You purse….on the floor!” she pointed.

Aarav bend down and took his wallet and the girl pulled it. “Let me see” she said smiling.

“Careful” he said holding her arm where he had injected.

“Who is this girl?” Lily asked showing him the pic in his purse.

“My friend” he said slowly.

“Friend?” Lily raised her eyebrow.

“Hmmm”

“Girlfriend! Doctor has a girlfriend!” Lily squealed.

Aarav chuckled and Lily asked, “Where is she?”

“I don’t know” he shrugged.

“Why?” she asked frowning.

“We…I don’t know…”

Lily pouted and said, “You like her a lot na?”

“How do you know?” he whispered.

“You have her photo on your purse!” Lily said giggling and returned the purse to him, “She is pretty!”

Aarav nodded and she said, “Will you bring her here to meet me?”

Aarav smiled faintly and nodded.

“Yaayyyy” Lily squealed, “I’ll meet doctor Aary’s girlfriend!”

 

Aarav sighed and leaned on his chair. Closing his eyes tightly he played with the invitation card he had received a few days ago.

Mr Augustine Ray and Mrs Lavanya Augustine Ray

Cordially invites you to the marriage ceremony of their beloved daughter

Iva Ray

With

Peter Roy

At St. Paul Church, New Delhi

On 2nd November 2018

With best regards: Irene Ray

He took a deep breath. Rays have been great family friends to Raizadas since his childhood. He recalled Iva, elder sister of Irene, who was one of his best friend during childhood.

“Iva’s getting married” Aarav murmured.

He recalled the conversation he had with Iva a day ago when she said, “I know you have got so many problems at home but I WANT YOU AT MY WEDDING. YOU GOT THAT RAIZADA? You better be there or I’m gonna haunt you!”

He took his phone and rang for his assistant.

The young woman opened the door and entered.

“Two tickets for New Delhi!” he ordered.

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Kaigonahalli, Karnataka, India

It’s my elder sister’s marriage Ishaan. Please come. I know you have got lots of problems. Problems of your own and problems with few people here in Delhi, but it would mean a lot to me if you come. I haven’t met you for these three years. You’re one of my few best friends and I can’t afford to lose you. Come back Ishaan. For me.

Regards,

Irene

Ishaan took a deep breath and signed off from his gmail.

It’s been three years since he left Delhi. A few days visit it was at the city but it had changed his life forever. Not only his but also many lives.

Not once did he try to contact his father or his Aman uncle. Nor did they try to contact him. Aman did, once, but he turned him down. Travelling back to Rajasthan wasn’t an option. With nothing left behind in the village, going back would cause people to create more stories than they already have.

Taking an unknown train, he reached the village he now is. Kaigonahalli! A village in Karnataka! With a satchel in his hand, he walked through the crowded streets of the village.

And that was just a start!

Ishaan took a deep breath as he looked around the small garage he had built of his own and the 3 employees he has hired of his own. A small smile formed in his lips watching them working and people driving out their repaired vehicles out of the garage.

Irene’s sister’s marriage!

And she is expecting him.

Life hadn’t given him a lot of friends. Not many parents loved their children to be friends with that child who don’t know who his father is. He remembers being teased by his classmates who, in middle of boasting about their fathers, pointed at him and laughed at him asking his father’s name. He remembers that one boy he had befriended during his first grade. He used to play with him for hours and hours. Ishaan never saw him again after the boy, with his family, moved out to city. Then came another during his seventh grade. A boy who had come to village to visit his grandmother for vacation. They played for two months till he left to city after vacations.

And next was Irene. A girl who visited Rajasthan for her project. A friendship of just few months.

But this one stayed!

Unlike others, Irene never left!

And he is bound to keep it that way.

“Back to Delhi” he whispered.

 

Nov 7

Chapter 23 (By Archanasuresh) (Thanked: 87 times)

Chapter 23

 

City Hospital, New Delhi

10.30 pm

 

“Aarav!” Snr Dr. Khurana exclaimed seeing the boy who worked as his junior for years.

“How are you dr?” Aarav asked smiling shaking his hands.

“Good good. How are you my boy? How’s US? It’s been four…? Three….three years!”

“Great going sir!” Aarav said smiling.

“You look a bit old!” Khurana said laughing, “Grey hair! Ha, start to dye my boy!”

Aarav laughed.

“Acha I’ve got to go. Surgery coming!” Khurana said and patted Aarav’s shoulder, “Walk around and meet people!”

“That’s why I’m here” Aarav said smiling.

Khurana walked away and Aarav pocketed his hands. He looked around the busy hospital and took a deep breath.

“Hello sir” the woman at the help desk said smiling.

Aarav smiled recognizing her face, “You still work here Vani?”

The woman nodded and said, “How are you sir?”

“Great. How are you?”

“Good going sir!”

Aarav looked around and asked, “Did any of the doctors resign….or are everyone still here?”

Vani looked at her system and said, “I can get that details for you sir”

“Thanks” Aarav said smiling nervously.

Vani stopped typing and looked at him. “Do you want details of someone specific sir?”

Aarav looked at her and smiled faintly.

“Shreya works here as junior to Dr. Sharma. Fifth floor, 3rd cabin in the right!” Vani said.

“Thank you” Aarav said smiling and walked away.

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Café Brazilio, New Delhi

1.30 pm

 

“Your tastes have changed!” Payal said smiling watching her sister eating creamy Alfredo pasta with ease.

“I love this so much” Khushi said smiling. Adjusting her loose strands into a messy bun, she took the fork and dipped it into the creamy pasta. “It’s so tasty. Ever since I had this with Aarav at US, I have been dying to taste it again!”

Payal chuckled and ate her noodles.

“How’re your jangli daughters?” Khushi asked laughing.

Payal groaned and said, “They have created some scene. Akash have gone to their boarding school. These kids! They’re gonne be the end of Akash!”

Khushi chuckled and Payal asked, “Where the hell is Aarav. I wanna meet him so badly!”

“He went to the hospital”

“Why?”

“To visit some people he said!” Khushi mumbled.

“Or to meet someone specific!” Payal whispered.

Khushi kept down her fork and shook her head, “I hope it goes well. I tried my best to convince him to call Shreya in the past three years but…no…he doesn’t budge! No matter what he never opened up about her!”

“So he forgot her? Doesn’t care about her?” Payal asked.

“No” Khushi cried, “I’ve seen her photo in his purse. In his laptop. Hell, his mobile wallpaper is Shreya. I don’t understand why he is hurting himself and also her!”

“Didn’t he call her? Just once?” Payal whispered.

“No” Khushi whispered.

Payal sighed, “I met her once to talk about Aarav. She asked me not to meet her again if the topic of discussion is gonna be Aarav”

Khushi sighed and nodded, “I hope it goes well!”

Payal hummed and Khushi looked down to her plate. She started twirling her fork and occasionally glanced at Payal. Payal sighed and kept her fork down. “What is it? Shoot!” she said.

“What?” Khushi asked shrugging.

“Just ask what you have it inside! Don’t play Khushi!” Payal said chuckling.

Khushi sighed and said, “You got me!”

“What is it?” Payal asked.

Khushi bit her lip and looked away. “Err….is…how are things at home…?”

“You used to call me every day and I used to narrate the events at home!” Payal said raising her eyebrow.

“You know what I meant” Khushi whispered, “You said about everything and everyone but not about….”

Payal took a deep breath and said, “He doesn’t live with us anymore”

“Then?”

Payal shrugged.

“Don’t you know?” Khushi narrowed her eyes.

“No. He comes to office. Akash meets him there!” Payal said.

“He never stepped into the house after we left?” Khushi whispered.

“He did. To take his belongings. And he left” Payal said.

Khushi looked away and Payal said, “Why are you still thinking about him? Why concerned about him?”

“He is my husband jiji!”

“Ha…Payal scoffed, “Where did this sudden love come from?”

Khushi smiled faintly and said, “What he did is unforgettable and unforgivable. I cannot live with him anymore. But I can’t stop loving him either. He is special to me jiji!”

“Your love for him is toxic! Really toxic! Toxic to yourself!” Payal said shaking her head.

Khushi shrugged and said, “But I like it!”

“Don’t even think about getting back with him!” Payal warned.

Khushi smiled faintly and said, “I didn’t move this far to get back to him jiji. I walked away to build a life of my own, not to cry over the life I lost!”

“Are you gonna meet him?”

Khushi nodded and said, “Yes. It’s been three years!”

“Khushi” Payal whispered and held her sister’s palm, “You’ve taken the right decision. Stay strong. Please don’t change it. I suggest you not to visit him!”

“Are you afraid that meeting him will change my mind?” Khushi asked.

“May be!” Payal whispered.

Khushi nodded no and said, “It won’t. But I want to see him again. Jiji, I don’t want to be with him. I can’t trust him anymore. But…but you don’t know how much I suffered these three years without seeing him…without hearing his voice…I want to see him jiji!”

“Take a stand Khushi” Payal said irritated.

“I can’t!” Khushi cried, “I can’t take a stand when it comes to him! I’m clear about everything but not about him!”

“Arnav Singh Raizada is dead for you” Payal hissed, “That’s how it should be!”

“And that’s how it’ll never be!” Khushi whispered, “No matter how much I try…he can never be dead for me!”

 



Nov 13

Chapter 24 (By Archanasuresh) (Thanked: 91 times)

Chapter 24

City Hospital, New Delhi

1.30 pm

“Come in” Shreya called out hearing the knock. Burying her head in a medical file, expecting her assistant Nancy, she called out, “Nancy, you were supposed to prepare the schedule for tomorrow by now. Where is it?”

Hearing no reply, she looked up. Her hold on the file loosed up and it fell to her lap.

“Hey” he said slowly, entering the cabin.

“Aarav” she whispered.

Aarav took small steps and stood before her. He looked at the name tag and smiled seeing Dr. Shreya Patel. He looked around the cabin, that once used to be his, and said, “Nothing has changed here. The same how I left it three years back!”

She took a deep breath and stood up. Keeping the file on the table she asked, “Why are you here?”

He looked at her and pocketed his hands. “I just…” he stammered, “I wanted to see you”

“Why?” she asked crossing her arms.

“How are you?” he asked slowly.

Shreya laughed out loud and said, “Great question to ask to a person whom you have ditched three years ago!”

Aarav looked down and said, “I know I shouldn’t have done that but…I didn’t know what else to do!”

She scoffed and said, “I begged at your feet Aarav! I mean, who does that? I DID! Even then….even then YOU LEFT!”

“I didn’t come for an argument Shreya” Aarav said closing his eyes, “I’m here at Delhi for a wedding and I thought to see you!”

“Well you have! See, Shreya is alive! Now get lost!” she snapped.

“Shri I’m….”

“Stop RIGHT THERE” she hissed, “Don’t call me that!”

“I’m….”

“Not everything is same as you left it Aarav” she whispered.

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Oberon Mall, New Delhi

1.30 pm

“Your sister is getting married tomorrow. You’re supposed to be at home!” Ishaan said.

“You’re back after three years and no day out with you? Not happening boy!” Irene said laughing. She linked her arm with his and the duo walked inside the mall.

“Don’t you have a mobile? I have to email you to get in contact. Idiot!” Irene said.

“I have but I don’t share it with anyone”

“Then why exactly do you have it?” she asked laughing.

Ishaan shrugged and Irene said, “You’ve changed a lot!”

“Yeah I’ve got beard!” he said fisting his hand in air, “finally!”

She laughed and said, “Not only appearance. Everything has changed. You’re more serious and….you’ve lost that innocent touch-me-not look!”

“Isn’t that good?” he asked laughing.

“Yeah but…I loved the old Ishaan. Pure and innocent!” she said smiling.

He chuckled and they stopped at a café. “I’m starving” she cried.

“I know” he said laughing and pulled her into the café.

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“So how’s life?” Irene asked sipping her hot chocolate.

“I’ve got a small garage of my own!” he said smiling.

“Woah!”

“Don’t woah. It’s a small garage. But I earn enough for myself and for the two-three employees I have hired!”

“That’s great Ishaan” she cried.

Ishaan chuckled and said, “What about you?”

“Completed my medical studies but we have to practice for a year. Only then will we be officially called doctors!” she said, “Here only, in Delhi Ayurvedic Institution”

He nodded and she asked biting her lip, “Did you meet them?”

“Who?”

“Raizadas” she said slowly.

He nodded no and said, “I wanted to talk to you about that”

She nodded and he said, “I came here for you. You know that, don’t you. But if I attend the wedding then your parents’ might not like it. And I may run into the Raizadas! So…”

“You’re not attending the wedding” she completed.

He nodded.

“Why exactly did you come then?” she asked crossing her arms.

“For you. To see you” he said slowly.

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Raizada Farmhouse, New Delhi

3.30 pm

Khushi took a deep breath and walked into the wide open farmhouse. Looking at the unlocked door she wondered at the safety of the house where the billionaire businessman stays.

Looking around the messy living room, Khushi wrapped arms around herself feeling cold inside the house. Suddenly she stopped stumbling over something on the ground.

“Alcohol” she whispered looking down to the floor where five or six empty bottles lay.

Taking a bottle in her hand, she walked forward and called out, “Arnav ji!”

“Arnav ji! Where are you?”

She frowned hearing no reply.

“Now don’t play hide and seek with me! Aman told me that you’re here! Come out!” she called out.

“Khushi?” a whisper came from her back and she turned to see him standing near the bedroom door.

A lump formed on her throat seeing the man before her. Gone were ASR and his ever powerful demeanor with its aura screaming its authority for miles. Before her was a weak pale man with clothes loosely hung on his body.

“Khushi” he whispered his voice so changed over the years.

“Hey” she whispered clutching the bottle. He walked forward slowly and looking closely at her, “You….you’re real?” he whispered.

She nodded.

Lifting his hand, he extended it to touch her cheeks. Khushi moved away and held his palm as a handshake. “I’m real Arnav ji” she said shaking his palm and patting it. Leaving it the next instant, she crossed her arms to herself.

“Khushi” he smiled and whispered, “You…you’re back…back…”

“Err…I want to….talk…” she couldn’t complete when she felt herself being pulled into a tight hug.



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