Hello everyone, thank u for the love u have given throughout this journey, another story comes to an end. Planned to update on Monday but some unexpected things took place so I couldn’t. I will spare u all my sad story, so here is the last chapter I hope it’s good and I haven’t made u all wait for nothing.
Pls don’t forget to drop your precious views on this chapter and the whole story in general, would really love to read your reviews. Love u guys and Enjoy………
Saint Charles Hospital
Ankush stood outside Priya’s room with his family, she was being checked by the doctor, the news had already spread in the media about how the famous Mehra family was held captives in their own home by an evil maniac resulting in the death of one of their family member. The doctor came out after finishing checking up on her and told the family that she was fine and they could go see her. Ankush was the first one to enter her room and others thought it was best to leave them alone for sometime. Priya turned her face away seeing him but Ankush moved closer any way and sat on the edge of the hospital bed “how are u feeling?” he asked.
Priya looked at him as fresh tears attacked her eyes again “u thought I wasn’t worthy to share your pain then why are u concerned about my pain?”
Ankush forwarded his hand to wipe her tears but she turned her face away again “I thought I was protecting u”
“protect me from what?” she asked still without looking at him.
“I didn’t want to hurt u” he explained.
“but u did anyway” she said and looked at him only to see tears in his eyes “why are u crying?”
Ankush wiped his tears “bcoz u are crying” Priya just shook her head wiping her tears “am sorry, am really sorry for hurting u but the truth is I can’t leave without u Priya… I would die without u”
“why did u break up with me then?” she asked a little angry now.
“I was stupid” he said “I was scared but am seeking help now, Jai made me realise us that what I did was utterly stupid, I was hurting the both of us in the name of protecting u” He took her hand in his “I promise I will never leave your hand again, no matter how tough the road gets, we will always be together” Priya placed her other hand on his and saw that he was wearing his engagement ring again and she nodded forgiving him. Ankush smiled and hugged her and she hugged him back.
They were interrupted by Jai who cleared his throat out loud causing them to break their hug, Ankush stood from the bed, Jai looked at him faking anger “and I thought my brother loved me” he said acting to be disappointed with Ankush.
Ankush being the people pleaser felt bad “listen Jai… Priya and I…we are…” he stopped seeing Jai bursting out in laughter and Priya joined him “did I miss something?” he asked confused.
Jai explained that whatever he said to him was his plan to make him realise his mistake so he could go back to Priya “my best friend promised me that u will come crawling back to me and he fulfilled his words, thank u Jai” Priya said.
“so it was all a lie?” Ankush asked and they nodded “she was not crying day and night?” he asked again looking at Jai.
“she was but I told her not to bcoz I was determined to get u two back together” Jai said “and u can thank me later” he added taking a bow making them laugh. Ankush hugged Jai thanking him “don’t shower me with so much love or Priya will get jealous” he joked. Ankush sat back on the bed and hugged Priya again, Jai looked at their happy faces and smiled, for the first time he saw them together and wasn’t hurt instead he was happy. He placed his palm on the left side of his chest and smiled, his heart was calm “I will leave u alone so u can kiss each other in peace” he teased and left the room. Priya who had her eyes on the door saw his father when Jai opened the door to leave and reality strike her, tears fell from her eyes recalling the hell they went through today.
Ajay wanted to go see his daughter but was called by a doctor to go finish some formalities, Radhika who had just entered the hospital saw Ajay going behind the doctors and followed them behind. She froze to the ground hearing the doctor telling Ajay to fill body release form “who died?” she asked herself and gathered some courage to go ask Ajay. She walked up to him, Ajay was crying while feeling the forms that scared the hell out of her “uncle” she called him forcing Ajay to look at her with his tears filled eyes.
“Radhika…” she heard his voice and closed her eyes, tears of happiness wetted her cheeks, she heard him, she heard her Arjun and that meant he was okay. She turned and saw him with her own eyes, she ran to him burying her face in his chest crying “am fine, am fine sweetheart” he assured her wrapping his arms around her. She broke the hug and stood on her toes planting her lips on his forgetting where they were, Ajay looked away and Arjun parted his lips from hers “we are at the hospital, honey” he whispered.
“so..?” she asked and pecked his lips again “am just happy u are fine” she said and hugged him again. She then remembered Ajay and looked at him filling the forms “who died?” she asked looking at Arjun.
Arjun sighed “dadi… cardiac arrest”
“what?” she asked in shock and Arjun told her what happened at the apartment.
************ Flashback *************
Mehra’s Apartment – Few hours Ago
Jiya looked at the horrified faces and smirked, she was going to have the last laugh, she was not going to give them the satisfaction of defeating. Her finger was firm on the trigger, an officer ran towards her to capture the gun but it was too late she removed the gun from Arjun’s head and placed it on the right side of her own head and she with a smirk still on her face she pulled the trigger and…
The sound of the fired gun filled the room as the officers looked on shock, Arjun’s heart skipped a beat as Jiya’s blood fell on his face before she fell down on the floor. Priya and Ajay were released from the ropes, Ruby was not responding they checked her pulse and she had none. “she is no more” an officer declared before calling for a ambulance.
“NO…” screamed Priya terrified witnessing the tragic end, Ajay stay frozen with only tears running from his face, the pain was too much for him to handle.
Jiya was also declared dead on the spot, she had shot herself on the head, it was over, the nightmare was finally over but the price they had to pay for it to end was too painful for all of them.
********** End Of Flashback **********
Radhika placed her hand on Ajay’s shoulder conveying her support “u will be fine” she said.
Ajay smiled a weak one “we will all be fine” he said and Radhika gave him an arm hug, Arjun looked at them and knew they will indeed be fine.
Three Months Later
St. Katherine Docks
Sam stepped out of Neil’s car smiling as wide as ever, she was wearing a grey one shoulder short dress, her hair tied into a side french braid. She was blind folded by him “where are we going?” she asked excitedly.
“be patient babe” Neil said wrapping his one arm on her shoulder to guide her stiletto heeled steps across the deck to the boat he had arranged for their date. Reaching at the spot he wanted he took the blindfold from her face, Sam gasped looking at the beautiful view before her.
Neil had the deck decorated the boat in flowers, the sky deck above the water and the flowers made it look like they were standing on a floating garden. A table for two was placed on the middle of the deck with candles and flowers as the centre piece, rose petals laid on the floor in a shape of heart and they were standing in the middle of it “this is so beautiful Neil” she said before hugging him tight.
“this is just the start” he said giving her his famous dimple smile. He turned her to her left and pointed towards the water wrapping his hands around her attaching her back to his front. The starts and the full moon reflected on the water giving an illusion of floating stars “I love you so much Sammy” he said placing his chin on her shoulder and she rested her head on his chest feeling content. Neil detached himself from her “I may not be able to fly like superman but I promise to bring the sky down for you when u ask… I promise to make our lives beautiful for the rest of my life… I promise to love till the day I die”
“why talk about death?” she said annoyed and turned to face him.
Neil held his ears with aplogetic eyes causing her to smile but her smile turned into a gasp when Neil went down on one knee taking out a small jewellery box from his jacket pocket. He opened the box to reveal a big Tanzanite ring “Samaira Khanna, I am hopelessly and deeply in love with you… I can’t imagine a life without you… I love you, I want you, I need you… so will please make me the happiest man on this earth by accepting to marry me please please pretty please” he said in a pleading tone. Sam was crying tears of happiness, she didn’t say yes neither did she say no, she just stood frozen trying to let the his words sip into her system “babe, my knee hurts” Neil said.
Sam chuckled wiping her tears “yes..”
“yes..?” he asked and she nodded happily “yes?” he asked again “you said yes right?”
“yes, yes, yes I will marry You Neil” she shouted “now make wear the ring u idiot” she said and Neil slipped the ring into her ring finger. He stood up and spoke claimed her lips, Sam kissed him back with equal passion “I can’t wait to tell piggy about this” she exclaimed admiring her ring when they broke the kiss.
“let’s have dinner first” he said and clapped his hands twice, two me waiters came to them, one was holding a champagne bottle and the other was pushing a food cart, Sam looked on surprised “anything for you babe” he said taking her to their table.
“I love you” she said smiling.
“I love you too” he replied equally smiling.
“and we would love to serve you” said the waiters in unison making them laugh.
They toasted to their new life, knowing it was just the start of a beautiful and loving journey.
Womens Correctional Centre – London
Jai passed through the security metal detector of the womens correctional centre, he took his belt, shoes and wallet and put them back on before going to the visiting area, a security officer showed him the way and asked him to wait at one of the concrete bench. Jai sat nervously, he hadn’t seen Tina for months, surprisingly yesterday he received her call asking him to come meet her. Tina was kept in the isolation section of the correctional centre where criminal with mental disturbance were held while awaiting her trial. Jai’s chain of thoughts was broken when Tina was brought out escorted by a female guard, she looked pale and sick wearing her prison uniforms she walked like a zombie towards Jai and took a seat opposite him separated by a concrete table.
“how have u been?” she asked him.
Jai looked at her and could only feel pity for her, her eyes showed how pained she was “am okay, am getting by” he answered curtly trying hard not to offend or hurt her than she was already was “why did u call me here?” he asked softly not wanting to sound annoyed, and he wasn’t annoyed but felt obliged to come meet her for the sake of the friendship they once had.
“do u still consider me your friend?” she asked.
“I do” he answered immediately.
Tina smiled but her smile didn’t reach her eyes “am pregnant” she said and looked into his eyes observing his reaction. Jai froze for a second not knowing how to react, his eyes widened in shock and Tina worried that he might not believe that she is carrying his child, a minute later his shocked expression was replaced with a confused one “say something damn it” she said raising her voice getting nervous with his silence.
Multiple feelings were going on inside him at the same time “am going to be a dad?” he asked confused and held his head with both his hands “am going to be dad..!” he stated his voice filled with wonder “am going to be dad” he repeated again in realisation “I don’t know what else to say” he added, it was all too confusing and exciting at the same time.
“I don’t want it” she said getting him out of the cloud of his thoughts.
“what… u want to abort it…?” he asked his tone having traces of pain and possessiveness in it as the reality of him becoming a father settled in his mind.
“I want u to take her” she added still looking unaffected.
“her..?” he asked in his softest tone, he was going to have a baby girl that thought alone was enough to bring a smile on his face, he imagined him going to the park holding her little fingers in his, unknowingly a lone tear escaped his left eye. He felt his throat getting clogged with all the emotions he was going through, he cleared his throat to not sound hoarse “we are having a girl?” he asked again in the same soft tone.
Tina felt overwhelmed that he used“we” instead of “I” tears started to well up in her eyes so she turned her face away refusing to look vulnerable in front him “I think I was clear when I said her but again yes you are having a girl” she stressed the word you reminding her self to not harbour any feelings for the unborn.
“you are her mother Tina” he told her.
“I don’t deserve her” she snapped “I would have killed it but I thought of you, it’s child your and am giving u full rights on her… I even talked to my lawyer, I will renounce all my maternal rights on her legally” she said looking him in the eyes.
Jai closed his eyes for a second trying to make his heart understand the situation, his mind told him that she was right, Tina was mentally disturbed and didn’t deserve to be a mother to his daughter but it pained him to think that his daughter won’t have a normal family like he had always dreamed of. He found it strange that in just a short span he had developed so much love for his unborn child. He looked at Tina, she was unaffected as if it didn’t matter to her, it hurt him to see her giving up on life “u can’t give up Tina, u have to fight this and overcome this… u will be fine, u will be cured and we could be a family… Arjun told me u may even not get convicted since all crimes were committed when u were not well”
Tina’s face changed hearing Arjuns name “don’t mention that devil to me” she gritted.
“Arjun is not in any fault Tina” Jai tried to explain but she only got more mad. Tina still believed her sister was innocent and that Arjun was responsible for her death, he recalled how hyper she got when she was told about Jiya’s death, she got so mad that she wanted to hurt the police officer who gave her the news, they had to sedate her to calm her “Jiya killed herself, she used u” he said.
“shut up, just shut up” she screamed startling the guards “don’t u dare talk bad about my sister u hear me” she gritted pointing her finger at him “she didn’t deserve to die, if it was anybody’s fault then it was Arjun’s… he killed her, he killed my sister” Two guards came and held her before she could do any harm, one went to call the prison nurse to calm her down “I called u here for your daughter, whether u take her or I kill her… do u hear me… I will kill her” she shouted enraged, it was as if she wasn’t Tina but someone else.
“u will not harm her, u will not harm my daughter” he warned.
She smirked “wow in no time our daughter became your daughter”
“u want that right?” he gave back equally angered.
A nurse came and calmed her down, Tina was taken back to her cell, she walked all the way laughing at him. The nurse came back after sometime holding an envelope “u shouldn’t have spoken to her like that, she may really harm your child” she said and Jai sighed apologizing to the nurse, she gave him the envelope “your child’s ultrasound scan” she added and left. Jai opened the enveloped and smiled looking at the report, she was the most beautiful girl he had ever seen in his life and he was determined to keep her safe even if that meant to deprive her of her mother’s love.
Royal Garden Hotel
It was Priya and Ankush’s wedding day, they had opted for a small function with only close family and friends, so many bad things had happened and the wounds were still fresh but the whole family wanted them to tie the knot and see them happy together. Ankush was still going for his session with Hrishant, he had already overcame his fears but still met him because he loved his company, they had became really good friends in a very short span. Priya was looking at Ruby’s photograph, Ajay came and placed his hand on her shoulder giving her a reassuring arm hug “just wish she was here” she said putting the photo away.
“she is watching over us” Ajay said and blessed her.
Tina nodded and smiled “is the bride ready?” said Sam and Radhika in unison interrupring the father daughter moment, Priya smiled and they took her down to the stage for the marriage ceremony. Priya was the most beautiful bride he had ever saw thought Ankush when he saw her descending down the stairs in her red and golden lehenga with his sisters on her each side. Sam was on Priya’s right wearing a green lehenga with silver embroidery and Radhika was on the left wearing a blue and golden combo one. They brought her to a small stage and the wedding rituals started while their families witnessed their union.
Sam was more excited than the bride and groom, she had already started to plan about her wedding, the dress she would wear, the types of flowers they will use, what song will be played, she had everything planned in her head. Her thoughts were broken when she felt a hand on her shoulder, she turned and saw Neil smiling at her “we will be next” she said leaning on him.
“can’t wait” he replied “especially for the honeymoon” he added causing her to blush scarlet.
Arjun looked at his sister’s happy face and smiled, he always wanted to see her like that. He saw Radhika and walked to her, she smiled seeing him and turned to look at the brother and now going to be sister in law, in a teasing mood Arjun pinched her on her waist and she gasped out loud attracting attention. All eyes turned to her so she pretended to cough and rituals continued, she let out a sigh of relief and glared at Arjun who was silently laughing at her. She smiled at him and before he could understand anything she stomped her pointed heel on his foot causing him to scream in pain causing all eyes turned at him this time, he apologized and stepped aside while she laughed at him.
The wedding rituals were complete, Ankush and Priya were now man and wife, they got off the stage and took blessing from their elders, the family congratulated them expressing their joy to see them together and happy. They took a two hours break to freshen up and change before the party. The party was held at the hotel’s grandeur hall beautifully decorated in all white with light magenta lights giving the feel of a winter wonderland. The guests were already seated having refreshments, the couple was announced and welcomed to the party as Mr. and Mrs. Ankush Kapoor and their smiling faces showed they couldn’t be more happier.
Hrishant looking as handsome as ever took Ridhima to his table to introduce her to his mother Seema Dixit. Ridhima has been bluntly discouraging his every advances but Hrishant wasn’t giving up coming up with new tactics to make her smile everytime. His mother was no less than him, Seema in a cream silk saree jumped from her chair and hugged Ridhima tightly “am so happy to have finally meet u” she squealed like a kid shocking Ridhima “u are more beautiful than the photo” she expressed cupping her face with her right hand.
Ridhima looked confused hearing about photographs, where could she have seen her photos, she then looked at Hrishant with accusing eyes who just rubbed the back of his head in return grinning wide at her “nice to meet u too aunty” Ridhima said when they broke the hug.
“aunty… do I look an aunty to u…?” she asked almost screaming startling Ridhima.
“am… am… am sorry” Ridhima hesitated. The mother and the son then broke into laughter and she just sighed at the impossible mother-son duo.
Seema asked Ridhima to join them and she was seated between the two of them, Hrishant kept looking at her lovingly and she pretended to be concentrated on the white roses in a tall glass kept on the table so he won’t see her flushed cheeks. “I can’t wait to have u home with me, we will have so much fun together” said Seema breaking her trance “I always wanted a daughter but got a son instead but now my son is going to fulfil that wish too” Ridhima looked at Hrishant with questioning eyes but Seema placed her hand on Ridhima causing her to turn her gaze from him and look at her “Hrishant told me everything and to be honest am so happy with my son’s choice now just marry my son and come home soon” she added.
“aunty, there is nothing like that between us” Ridhima explained.
“I know, I know u are playing hard to get but my son will make u fall in love with him, am sure of that” she said confidently. Ridhima looked at her with shocked eyes, Hrishant face palmed himself and Seema sighed “was is too much?” she asked and Hrishant nodded “but I said the truth” she added defensively.
Ridhima stated to remember about a work she had to do and left their table, Hrishant followed her and stood in front of her “am sorry about that” he said referring to his mother’s comment
“what did u tell her about me?” she asked crossing her arms before her chest.
“that I love you and want to marry you” he stated.
“I am divorced, you know I was married once right?” she asked again.
“everybody makes mistakes so don’t worry much about that” he replied smiling wide.
She chuckled “are u sure u are a psychiatrist?” she teased.
“that’s what says on my biodata” he replied.
“okay…” she said.
“okay..?” he asked confused.
“my answer is yes, I accept your friendship” she told him. Hrishant started to do do some weird happy dance moves “I said yes for friendship not for marriage, no need to get excited” Hrishant didn’t listen to her he just kept smiling happy in his own world “by the way what’s with and pink?” she asked with her eyebrow raised looking at him with suspicious eyes.
Hrishant looked at his pink kurta he was wearing that day and smiled “pink is my lucky colour” he replied causing her to laugh. Mala and Dilip who had seen how happy Ridhima was especially when around Hrishant wished that their daughter get back the love she had lost.
A little distance away Radhika sat with Jai giving him possible names for his daughter, the whole family was excited for the new member that was going to fill their lives with happiness “Supriya… Ritu… Lakshmi…Manasa” Radhika said but Jai nodded negative.
“I want a different name for my daughter” he said. Jai was taking his role as a father very seriously, he was reading parenting books and attending classes to learn how to take care of his daughter, he knew he had many people in his family who knew all that but wanted to enjoy the experience first hand, he was even attending Tina’s every check up with the gynecologist wanting to be close to his unborn child.
Radhika thought for a while and spoke “Madhuri… Kareena… Priyanka… Vidya…” Jai gave her an unbelievable look and kept on denying her each suggestion “these are very good names bhai” she trailed but Jai wasn’t convinced, he wanted everything about his daughter to be special “Myra…” squealed Radhika after a minute of thinking “Myra is a really good name”
“I know” Jai said “but I want my daughter’s name to be unique, out of this world” he said with a sweet smile attached on his face.
“out of this world, call her Mars then” she said annoyed, Jai looked at her for a second before breaking into fits of laughter joined by Radhika herself.
It had been a week since Ankush and Priya’s wedding and the family quickly jumped onto Neil and Sam’s wedding preparation, the families met for a family lunch so they could all later bid goodbye to the newly weds who were travelling to Mauritius for their month long honeymoon/vacation. After a lavish lunch they all sat in the garden for some desserts that the new bride had prepared “how are u papa?” asked Priya getting emotional.
“am fine dear” Ajay answered “just missing your tea, Arjun is a good cop but can’t make tea they way u do” he added making them all laugh.
“at least I tried” said Arjun defensively.
“I have an idea” Ajay said “that will allow me to retire peacefully” he added.
“retire?” asked Priya.
“yes dear, Samrat and I talked and we decided to let u kids take over the reigns… u have been doing a pretty good job so far and am sure u will continue making us proud” Ajay explained and Samrat smiled giving his approval.
“what’s the big idea?” asked Arjun.
“to get u married son” he replied “one daughter left another will come in the form of your wife… what say son?”
Arjun blushed with his father’s words, Mala and Dilip were happy “that’s a very good idea” chimed in Priya.
“we can have a double wedding, we can get married together” squealed an excited Sam and the family nodded in affirmative.
“but I don’t want to get married now” said Radhika.
“choti..” Mala said in a warning tone.
“I want to work for now” explained Radhika.
“nobody will ask u to give up your dreams dear, I regard u as my daughter and u have the freedom to do whatever u want” Ajay said in a caring tone.
They all looked at Radhika waiting for her answer “am not ready for marriage, am not prepared mentality… I think” she said lowering her gaze.
“u think?” asked Mala glaring at her, Dilip placed his hand on her shoulder to calm her down “but Dilip…” she trailed, Dilip nodded giving her assurance to trust their daughter’s decision.
“it’s okay, nobody is going to force her” Ajay said, he looked at Radhika and spoke “when I called u my daughter I really meant it, and our home is your home too u will always be welcomed there with open arms” Radhika smiled thanking him through her eyes for his understanding. If there was anyone disappointed it was Arjun, he looked at her with painful eyes but she just averted her gaze hurting him more. Ajay gave Arjun an arm hug “looks like it’s just us for now”
“I can join u guys and we could turn the house into a bachelor pad” said Neil, Sam cleared her throat making him to turn to her, she folded her arms over her chest glaring at him. Neil just gave her a sheepish smile “u can stay with mum and I will stay with the guys” he said making everyone laugh lightening up the mood, they all laughed except for two people, Arjun and Radhika who were conveying secret messages through their eyes.
Taste Farm Offices
It was the biggest day for Taste Farm, today they were going to make some major announcements to the world. Their parents had withdrawn from the company making themselves available for any assistance needed to their children, the younger lot had taken over the company only to take it higher than before. Radhika stood before the podium with Jai and Ankush on her each side and besides them stood Priya, Neil and Sam, they were the present and the future of Taste Farm.
Radhika announced of the new changes the company was going to have, the third generation had taken upon themselves to live up to the reputation their ancestors had made, Sam and Ridhima were now board members and shareholders of Taste Farm after all transferring parts of their shares to the two. But the most important announcement was the revelation that Taste Farm originally had four and not three cofounders as it was previously known, the young ones apologized for the mistakes their families had done and had taken it upon themselves to rectify those mistakes starting by naming Tina as one of the company’s partner. Her share of the profits was going to be deposited in an account specially made for her and they were going to use that money for her treatment. They did that in hopes of healing the wounds Tina had gone and was going through at that time but also because it was the right thing to do.
The media hit them with a blizzard of questions but they were prepared, each had the other’s back they answered while being so calm and composed that the world knew they were true and the perfect choice for a newer and successful Taste Farm. After the press conference, they were all tired, all they had to do now was wait for the reaction of the masses after the news is broadcasted but they were confident they will be alright for they had each other.
Six Month Later
Venice – Italy
Life was a bliss for the newly wedded couple, after dating for about a year Sam and Neil were now husband and wife and enjoyed their married life in every sense of the word, they had become one body and soul. They were on their honeymoon in Venice, spending quality time with each other, their day started sight seeing, trying out new things, shopping and ended up making sweet love to each other at night in the comfort of their hotel suite. Neil was carrying Sam’s shopping bags while Sam was on the phone with Radhika talking about some deal Taste Farm was currently doing, he followed her behind silently waiting for her call to end which never happened till they reached the hotel.
They got back into their hotel room and Sam was still on her call, he shook his head “don’t they get tired talking?” he asked himself and went into the bathroom to freshen up but when he came back Sam was still talking “am going out for a while” he told her and she just nodded showing him her thumbs up and he left.
Neil went to a bar for some time but got bored and went back to their hotel, the first thing he saw when he entered the suite was Sam’s phone on the charger and smiled “finally” he exclaimed and locked the door, he then heard Radhika’s voice and wondered if she had tagged along on their honeymoon “no.. ” he said horrified with the idea, he ran to the bedroom and found Sam in her Panama shorts lying in the bed on her stomach video chatting with Radhika, for a second he relaxed that Radhika was still in London.
“what’s that?” asked Radhika.
“what?’ asked Sam confused.
“that pink mark below your neck” she said.
“what pink mark?” Sam replied looking at her herself and glared at Radhika seeing what she was talking about “don’t be so shameless piggy” she said shyly.
Radhika just broke into uncontrollable laughter “Oh, hey Neil” Radhika said when her laughter had subsided causing Sam to look back.
“I thought I was invisible” he mocked for he had been standing there for sometime now.
“u have standing there long?” Sam asked.
“yes, was lost in your soft thighs” he answered in a husky tone making Sam blush pink “I really love the way u turn pink makes me want u even more” he said with his gaze fixed on her making her look away feeling shy and when she looked at him again Neil couldn’t hold himself and jumped on top of her.
“guys am still here” said Radhika.
Hearing her Sam started to protest “Neil not now please” she said breathlessly since he was busy planting kisses all over her face while his left hand was softly massaging her thigh.
Neil traced his fingers on her collar bone and without looking away his spoke “I want to show Radhika how u got this pink mark right here ” he said brushing his fingers gently.
“are u trying to make me bleach my eyes?” screamed Radhika.
“u wanted to be a bone in my honeymoon right, now watch to your heart’s content” he said before letting his lips land on her neck trailing hot wet kisses making her softly moan.
Radhika closed her laptop immediately “shameless” she muttered but she had really become a bone between the couple she thought. She remembered work and got busy again, she went to her bedroom looking for a file but the scene inside didn’t surprise, Arjun’s clothes on her bed while he was taking a shower in the bathroom singing out loud. She laughed at his terrible singing voice, he was practically living there with half of his clothes in her closet and him spending most of his time in her penthouse. She picked his jeans that was on the floor and a small blue jewelry box fell from it, she opened the box and found a beautiful champagne color diamond ring, her heart skipped a bit looking at the shiny beauty in her hands “is he going to propose?” she asked herself. The sound of the shower stopped and she quickly moved out of the room.
Arjun after a long cold shower changed into a track pant and T-shirt, he came out to the living room and found Radhika in her phone discussing about work with her friend Isabel “always busy” he mumbled and went to the kitchen to make themselves something to eat. Radhika had turned considerably busy, she was not only the president of Taste Farm but was also partner of Sun Publications managing the London branch, her former boss was now her partner.
She got off the call and followed Arjun in the kitchen and hugged him from behind “smells good” she said inhaling his scent.
“it’s the pasta” he replied.
“I meant you” she said still hugging him.
“are u saying I smell like pasta?” he teased. Radhika gently punched him on his back but he just laughed much to her annoyance. He pulled her to his front and kissed on her forehead “was just joking around”
“I know” she said and hugged him again.
Arjun broke the hug after a while and looked at her with questioning eyes “what is it?” he asked.
“you tell me” she replied smilingly. Arjun ringed his arms around her neck pulling her close and gestured her to speak through his eyes “don’t u want to ask me something?” she asked but he didn’t get what she was talking about. She showed him the ring box “isn’t this for me?”
Arjun took the ring box from her “yes it’s for u” he opened the box and took the ring out “actually I had showed the ring to dad that’s why he brought up that marriage talk back then… wanted to propose u six months back but…. ”
“do u really want to marry me?” she asked.
“with all my heart” he answered.
“why?” she asked “why do you want to marry me?” At first he thought she was also kidding but soon realised she wasn’t when she told him she would marry him if she was pleased with his answer.
He sighed and held both her hands and answered “I want to marry u because I love you Radhika and I want to spend the rest of my life with you”
“and why do u love, what made u fall in love with me?” she asked.
“how can I explain Radhika, you know am not good at expressing emotions” he told her but she was adamant.
“I don’t know anything I just want to hear u say why you love me… take it as a test, if u pass u get me as your wife for forever and always but if u fail then forget about me” she said stubbornly and started to walk away.
“okay wait” he said making her stop and turn to him.
“am listening” she said folding her arms over her chest.
He took a deep breath and began “I love you because you love me as I am with all my flaws and the little goodness I have” she rolled her eyes at him but he smiled and continued “I love you because you are the reason I smile, you drink all my tears away with just your one smile, you make me happy” Radhika chuckled at his words and gestured him to go on “I love you because you comfort me when I mourn, you pick me up when I fall, you forgive me everytime I hurt you and I know I have hurt u many times”
“yes many times” she added smilingly.
Arjun moved closer to her and held her hands in both his “I love you because each time to hold me I feel content, at peace, you have taught me to be patient and let go of my pain… I love you because you are my shining star and I want to love you everyday, every second of my life for the rest of my life” he left her one hand and cupped her face “I love you because you believe in me, you understand me and above all you complete me” By that time Radhika was in tears, she didn’t know when her eyes got wet but she was overwhelmed with the love he expressed he had for her. Arjun kissed her eyes “I can’t stand your tears even if they are happy tears” He kissed her right cheek and then her left one wiping her tears with his lips “I love you Radhika” he whispered against her lips before capturing them in a passionate kiss that she reciprocated with all the love she had for him.
“I love you Arjun” she said before burying her face in his chest when they broke the kiss.
Arjun broke the hug and asked “so did I pass?” and she nodded in agreement. He took the ring, went down on one knee and spoke “will you marry me Radhika?”
She pretended to be in deep thought “let me think” she said causing him to gape. She smiled “yes, yes I will marry you” she said and he put the ring on her finger.
He got back on his feet “I knew u would say yes, u we’re dying to marry me” he teased making her giggle “I promise to protect you, I will protect your dreams, your soul and everything you love”
“I know you will” she said “I trust you”
They hugged each other again, Radhika had her eyes closed sealing in the memory deep in her soul, she always knew that he had her heart but today she realised that he had touched her soul too. She loved the man who was keeping her warm with his strong hands around her, the same hands she wanted to hold on to every step of her life, she was going to walk besides him holding hands and their fingers entwined throughout the journey they call life because in that very moment she knew that she can have all that she had ever wanted in life as long as she had him close, as long as she had her man.
“I have yet said the most important reason” Arjun said breaking the hug.
“what is it?” Radhika asked curiously.
He leaned in to whisper in her ear “your kisses are so addictive” he said and witnessed as her cheek turned crimson and smiled loving the way she blushed.
Radhika wrapped her hands around his neck “I think we need to close that mouth of yours” she said and placed her lips on his before he could say another word.
El Milagro Palace
Piyali sat in her room admiring Sam’s wedding photographs. Sam in her bridal attire looked beautiful and happy with a wide smile adorning her face, Neil was sitting to her left with his right arm around her shoulder staring lovingly at her. Jai was sitting besides Sam was blushing since Sam was teasing him about a girl he met at the wedding and couldn’t keep his eyes off her. Samrat, Prena and her were standing behind their children happy for them. She thought about Kabir, he was her family too but Kabir had refused to even see her stating that she was responsible for the condition he was in and he was right Piyali knew that, she realised no matter how happy she will be she will never be truly happy with her brother in jail for the rest of his life.
Her thoughts came into a halt with the sound a baby’s cry came from the monitor, she quickly ran to the nursery to attend to her granddaughter. She found Jai cradling the girl to his chest soothing her back to sleep. “what woke her up?” she asked.
“dirty diaper but have changed her already” he said whispering to not disturb her. The baby fell asleep and he put her back in her crib, he stood there staring at her admiring God’s most wonderful creation, he still couldn’t believe that tiny little girl was his, his daughter. Piyali left the two alone walking out of the nursery “papa loves you so much” he whispered looking at her sleeping form.
It had been a month since she had taken her home, Tina after giving birth didn’t even want to give her child a glance, Jai tried to bring the child close to her but instead she threatened to kill her. Tina had already signed all the papers renouncing all her rights on the child so legally only Jai was the sole parent and guardian of their baby entitled to make all decisions concerning her. His thoughts were broken when the baby stirred in her sleep making some sound that he found adorable, Jai rubbed her belly gently “ssh… sleep baby, papa is here” he said in a whisper. Sensing his touch and baby relaxed making him smile, he had forgotten about Priya or if he ever had feelings for her, his entire life now revolved around his little princess that he had named Aria.
Edward looked at his fiancé of two days seating by the lake and smiled, they were now living far from the city, far from all the pain and the past. As if sensing his eyes on her Tina turned giving him a warm smile and he returned the smile with the same warmness in his eyes. Tina turned her gaze again at the lake, her psychiatrist arrived and Edward left the two alone. He was not different from Tina he thought, they had both made mistakes and now were on the path of redemption, they understood each other very well and that helped them heal each other. He recalled his conversation with Arjun three weeks ago.
************* Flashback ****************
Edward was now a free man after serving eight months in jail, Arjun and Mark would have lived without him being charged with any crime but Edward wanted to pay his dues, he wanted to repent for the mistake he had made. Since he was the one who helped the police get evidence against Jiya and saved lives in his attempt his sentence was minimized to only eight months, the fact that Mark and Arjun testified in his favour also helped a lot.
Edward stared back at the building that he lived in the past eight months, it’s strange he had sent many to jail and today he was coming out of it. A car honked at him blowing his thinking cloud, he turned towards the car and saw Arjun at the driver’s seat “what are u doing here?” he asked.
“I thought u might need a ride so I came” Arjun replied. He stepped out of the car and hugged him “welcome to the free world” he said.
“I feel so worthless of this love” Edward said feeling remorseful.
“u saved my life, buddy” Arjun told him and they hopped into his car “where should I take u?” Arjun asked.
Edward without a second thought answered “to Tina”
Arjun observed him for a minute and realised that he had never asked him before the reason of his help for Tina and Jiya but his answer had given him hints about Edward feelings “and what are u going to tell her?”
Edward sighed and then smiled “am going to tell her that I love her” he turned to Arjun “do u think she still loves Jai?” he asked concerned.
“I don’t think so” Arjun replied but Edward still looked worried, Arjun has been giving him updates about all that has been happening when he was in jail, he knew about Tina being pregnant and knew about her giving up on that child but couldn’t help but think that she might have been doing all that bcoz she still loved Jai. Arjun noticed him lost in thoughts and spoke “u do know she is my sister and u will need approval to be with her right?”
“what?” he asked shocked.
Arjun laughed “relax am just kidding” he took a second pause and continued “you are good for her and I don’t object” Edward smiled, he didn’t have to ask how she was bcoz Arjun has been filling him in on her condition and knew that Tina was getting better, she had improved a lot.
********** End Of Flashback **********
He met Tina that day and the first thing he told her was the love he felt for her, Tina was hesitant at first but later accepted his love seeing his sincerity and honesty and the most ironic thing was that Tina was discharged on the same day she accepted to be his girlfriend. Not wanting to stay in the city anymore Edward took Tina to Millbeck where his family owned a ranch, Tina had refused to accept the money and the partnership of Taste Farm, if anything she wanted to be away from everything that had ruined her life. They started living in the ranch and Edward had proposed her for marrigae two days ago which she happily accepted. Tina was still seeing a psychiatrist on her own instance stating that she didn’t want to take any chance with her health especially now that she was really happy so Edward arranged for a private doctor who came to see her once a week.
His thoughts bubble burst with the whistle sound of the hot water kettle he had kept on the stove, he made tea, poured it into three cups and placed the cups on a tray taking them out to the lake view garden where Tina and her psychiatrist was. Tina was holding a cat they now owned on her lap gently stroking it with her hand while talking to her doctor, he placed the tray on the table and cat got startled with the sudden sound scratching Tina’s hand while jumping off her lap “ouch.. ” Tina screamed.
“what happened?” asked Edward concerned.
“Fluffy scratched me” she said in a pained voice. Edward panicked seeing blood oozing from the scratch marks “it doesn’t hurt” she said to assure him though it was stinging her bad. Edward brought the first aid kit and cleaned her wounds while she stared at him lovingly “it’s just a scratch am fine” she said when he had finished and cupped his face with her unhurt hand “I don’t like you worrying so much”
“I can’t help it, I love you too much” he said and kissed on her forehead and Tina couldn’t help but feel happy with his love and care.
Next day morning Edward woke up first as usual and went to the kitchen to make breakfast, he always made breakfast for them while Tina made lunch and dinner was there joint effort. He climbed down the stairs and found the cat dead “fluffy” he said touching it but the cat was lifeless. Tina came down for breakfast after a while and saw him sad “fluffy died” he told her.
“what… but how…?” she asked worriedly pain visible in her voice
“am sorry, I know how much you loved that cat” Edward said and took her in an embrace “we will get another fluffy, today itself”
“promise?” she asked almost in a crying voice.
“promise” he said still hugging her.
Tina tightened her arms around him “don’t ever leave me”
“never” he replied hugging her close.
Tina who had pain in her eyes smirked, and the pain was replaced with fire, fire that held nothing but hate, hate for those who had hurt her. She looked at her hand that was scratched by the cat and smiled a devilish one, the game wasn’t over yet.
*************** THE END ***************
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- Manmarziyan – Shaded Of love chapter 24