For those of you who have missed the previous chapter, here is the link :
@Tanvi_5117 Congrats! Virtual hugs to you! And some virtual money too 💰💰
@1234Aayu Thanks a lot
@Yashi Thank you dear
@Niyati Thanks a lot. Haha yes this time the kiss was mutual and not accidental like before
@Annoyinguser Thank you dear. Lets see what Riddhima does…
@Maanvika Thanks a lot. Yes Riddhima’s smartness worked in her favour. Lets see if this is the new beginning for her and Vansh’s relationship….
@Priyanshi_13 Thanks a lot
@Candid11 Thank you dear
@RiansHLoveR Thank you dear. Btw, this was their second kiss, but the 1st ‘proper’ kiss.
@Zara Thank you so much. I’m glad that you are really liking Riddhima’s character a lot.
As for your question, yes Riddhima knows that it was Vansh who had gifted her that book. Because it was Vansh’s responsibility to get gifts for all the girls of the house.
You take care too.
@Jayashree Thanks a lot
@Sree Thank you dear
@Neha Deswal Thank you dear. And I know you are waiting for their next kiss too (wink)
@Prapti0809 Thanks a lot. Sorry for keeping you waiting though.
@Deepa Thank you so much. So very glad to see you invested and addicted to the story. And really sorry for keeping you waiting. I’ll try to update more frequently if possible.
And I love all my readers and fans, and the same goes for you too!
@Ravneet Thanks a lot. Glad you liked it.
@Mary Thank you so much (^hearts^)
Drunk Riddhima is always fun to watch na? And dont worry, Pathak would soon get punished for his crimes. Try to take a guess as to who can it be who stole those papers…
@Priyanka Thakur Thank you so much. Happy that you liked it!
@Ishu Thank you dear
@Pomu Thanks a lot. Hehe even I don’t know the name of that book. Only I know that it’s some crime fiction.
@Pampita Thank you dear
@Aisha08 Thanks a lot
@Priyanka Haha doesn’t everyone love a jealous Vansh? (wink)
@Parita Thank you so much. Tbh, I feel that all girls must be trained in self defence, so that they can at least protect themselves in such untoward situations.
Riddhima is falling for him, but her headstrong personality always comes in the way.
@Qt Aww thank you so much (^hearts^). Makes me really happy to see you addicted! Sorry for keeping you waiting for so long, I’ll try to post frequently if possible.
@Jazvine Kaur Hey I’m fine, how are you doing? Haha thank you so much for being so appreciative (^hearts^). You can comment anything random too, even if it is unrelated to the story, I won’t mind it.
@AarushiSoni Thank you so much. Yes, he did call her as MY Riddhima. I agree with you, girls should learn how to defend themselves in such situations without depending on any ‘man’ for help.
@Sweety21 Thanks a lot. Glad you liked Riddhima’s character
@Riaa Thank you so much. Tbh, I wasn’t expecting so many people to like the previous chapter, because I felt it would be too unconventional for their liking (like usually the guy beats the bad guys up to save the girl, which didn’t exactly happen).
But so many people liking it just proves that our audience is very much ready to watch strong women onscreen too.
Yes, I think I’ve stretched the mystery over Riddhima’s parents a lot. I will try to bring out the truth from the next 2-3 chapters onwards.
@Neetu Thank you dear
@Parul Here is the update dear
@Ayesha Thanks a lot. Here is the update.
Vansh and Riddhima were still lost in themselves, when Angre came behind them and awkwardly tried to clear his throat.
Vansh abruptly ended the kiss, realising with embarrassment that everyone around them had been watching them all this while.
Riddhima nervously started looking down, trying to avoid looking into either Angre’s eye or even Vansh’s eye, for that matter.
Angre also felt equally awkward. He had no intention of disturbing the couple, had the matter not been so important.
“Boss, we have managed to catch a few of them, but Pathak and majority of his gang have escaped.”
As soon as Riddhima heard Pathak’s name, she flinched. She could remember how he had spoken so vulgarly to her and how his touch made her feel so cheap.
Vansh noticed this, and clenched his fists trying to suppress his anger. He signalled Angre to leave, because he knew that Riddhima was not in a position where they could discuss all this right in front of her.
After Angre left them alone again, Vansh looked at her. Her face was swollen, with cuts and bruises. Her eyes were worn out, and her expression showed that she was in deep pain. His Riddhima, what had those monsters turned her into?
He fiercely thought, “Pathak! You dared to hurt my Riddhima! For now I’m letting you go, because Riddhima needs me. But I will get back to you soon.”
Vansh gently tucked few strands of hair behind Riddhima’s ear, taking care not to hurt her in the process.
“Come, let me help you get up.”
“Aahh!” She winced in pain. “I cannot stand up, I think I’ve fractured my left leg.”
Vansh became concerned and frantically tried to search for something in the ground. He later fished out a stick.
“I’ll tie this to your leg, until we show you to a doctor,” offered Vansh.
But for that, he’d have to lift her gown up, and thus expose the bare skin of her leg to him.
“May I?” he asked her earnestly.
Riddhima nodded in approval. She realised that she had wholly started trusting him with her mind, body and soul. She knew that he’d never hurt her nor would ever try to take any undue advantage of her.
When Vansh lifted her gown up, he saw even more blue marks against her delicate skin, than which were visible on her face. His blood boiled with rage. He tried hard to keep his emotions in control for the fear of making Riddhima even more terrified.
After he was done, he offered to carry her in his arms, but she refused.
“I want to walk by myself,” she said.
Vansh looked at her in some pride. In spite of being wounded, she was still so strong, so determined. She was special, and as she herself had suggested, she had definitely stolen his heart.
With one arm against her back, Vansh helped her walk to the car. He could feel her nails digging through his arm, but that didn’t pain even half of how much it did when he saw her wounds…
Back in VR Mansion, though everyone was elated to see Riddhima back, but they were also equally distraught to see her in that dilapidated condition.
However, Vansh warned them from saying anything in front of Riddhima that could make her feel worse.
Since Riddhima was injured and required good medical care all round the clock for the next 2-3 days, Vansh decided that it was in her best interest if she no longer shared a room with Ishaan, and was instead given her own separate room.
When they reached her new room, the doctor was already waiting for them. Vansh reluctantly left the room to allow the doctor to do a complete checkup.
After half an hour or so, the doctor called him inside.
“I’ve checked her completely and thankfully there’s nothing very serious. Not many deep wounds or any internal injuries. There are no fractures too, there is only a sprain in her left leg that would make it difficult for her to walk for sometime . As for these bruises and minor cuts, they will heal within a few days.
Just ensure that she takes proper rest, eats properly, takes her medicines on time, and most importantly, tries to stay optimistic and happy always.
Since she was in lot of pain, I have given her few sedatives that will help her sleep well tonight.”
Vansh thanked the doctor who soon took her leave.
He flipped through Riddhima’s case sheet, and soon his eyes watered up when he saw the amount of wounds all over her body. Even though the doctor had said that there wasn’t much to worry about, but for him, it was just too much.
He held a half asleep Riddhima’s hands, and shed some tears.
“I’m sorry Riddhima! I really am very sorry! It’s all because of me that you had to go through so much pain.”
He turned to leave, but Riddhima caught his hand from behind.
When he turned around, her eyes were half open.
“Vansh, don’t leave that bastard,” she said barely able to open her mouth because of the bruise surrounding it.
Vansh caressed her face. “I won’t, I promise.”
He slid his hands upon her eyes so that she can close them and go into a deep sleep.
When Riddhima woke up the next morning, she found an unknown, young lady in her room.
She introduced herself. “My name is Sonia. Mr. Raisinghania has appointed me as your personal caretaker for the next few days until you become alright.”
After Sonia helped her to freshen up and eat something, the whole family gathered in her room to see her, except for one specific gentleman who did not.
Ishaan wanted to almost cry out looking at her state, but he realised that he should be acting stronger.
“Dids, I’m so happy to see you doing better,” he said instead.
After that everyone spoke so quickly one after the other, that Riddhima couldn’t even say anything.
“Now you must take good care of yourself. No running or jumping around like you usually do,” said Sia.
“I prayed a lot to God for you, Aunty,” said Nandu.
“How is my brave Riddhima feeling now? We all are so proud of you, baccha,” said Gayatri.
“Get well soon,” said Ishani and Anupriya in unison.
“Take good care of yourself and become alright within 2-3 days. You remember your promise to me, right?” said Aryan.
“Oh my God! Riddhima had such a beautiful face, but look at it now! I wonder, if she’ll ever be able to look as pretty as she was before. The scars won’t go away that easily I think,” Chanchal blurted out carelessly.
Everyone in the room gasped at Chanchal’s sheer bluntness and rudeness.
“Why can’t you keep quiet? How many times should I ask you to think carefully before speaking?” scolded Gayatri.
Turning to Riddhima, she said, “Don’t mind her, beta. You know how she can be quite silly at times. All the scars would soon go away from your face.”
“I don’t care for the scars on the face,” Riddhima said softly after sometime. “But what about the scars on my heart and soul? Will they go away soon, too?”
Gayatri looked at her sympathetically, “Time is the biggest healer. Trust me, everything will soon get fine.”
Even though everyone was present in the room, but Riddhima’s heart and eyes were yearning for someone else.
“He didn’t even come to see me once,” she thought sadly. “Is his work that important to him?”
The rest of the family left, while Sia and Ishaan stayed behind with Riddhima.
They were chatting nonchalantly on random topics, when soon the discussion flew to how beautiful the bond between a sister and a brother could be.
“I believe I’m the best brother in the world,” said Ishaan proudly.
Riddhima narrowed her eyes at him, but he remained unfazed.
“I mean, it’s not an easy feat to tolerate a bossy and crazy sister like you,” teased Ishaan.
Riddhima flung a pillow at him.
“That’s the worst joke I’ve heard in ages,” she said. “The one who gives a number of excuses to evade spending his pocket money to buy a gift for Rakhi, cannot be the best brother.
I think that tag would be suitable for Vansh, though.”
Ishaan’s eyes glinted. “Oh!”
Sia joined him too. “Oh!”
When Riddhima looked up at them questioningly, Ishaan said, “Someone is praising someone….”
“Shut up! It’s nothing like that….”
Sia joined in the banter. “Don’t worry Riddhima. Just like how Vansh Bhai buys his sisters many gifts on Rakhi, he’ll get you gifts too, on Valentine’s and anniversaries….”
“What anniversary?” asked Riddhima trying to feign ignorance.
“Come on, wedding anniversary!”
Riddhima said annoyedly,”It’s only been few days since we got engaged, and you are going one step ahead by even imagining about our marriage anniversary?”
Sia looked at her mockingly. “You have no idea till what extent my imagination can run upto. Not only the anniversaries, but I’ve even imagined about yours and Bhai’s kids….Aaah!”
Sia let out a short scream when this time, a pillow came flying in her direction.
Vansh was sitting in the living room trying to scroll on his phone, but his attention was actually somewhere else. Every now and then, his eyes frantically tried to look upstairs towards Riddhima’s room.
Gayatri who was observing all this, finally said, “Vansh, if you are getting so impatient, why don’t you meet her then?”
“I’ve been wanting to meet Riddhima since morning, but she is busy with some or the other person. It’s been literally one hour, and there is no sign of Ishaan or Sia coming out of her room,” said Vansh.
“Oh! So you want to meet her absolutely alone, with no one to disturb the both of you? Ahem, ahem!”
Vansh shook his head defeatedly. “You really have an art of giving an altogether different meaning to someone’s words, dearest Dadi.”
Vansh smiled to himself. If he could have his way, he’d not allow Riddhima to steer away from his sight even for a split second.
But the reason behind meeting her alone was something else. The whole night he couldn’t sleep properly, as the guilt was eating him away from inside.
He decided that he would fess up his mistake to Riddhima and seek her apology. Hopefully, she’d understand why he had done all that.
Riddhima was angrily flipping through the channels on the TV. Why wasn’t Vansh here to see her yet?
Chanchal’s taunting words started ringing in her ears.
“Maybe she was right. I must look really bad with all these wounds covering my face. That’s the reason why Vansh might be avoiding me. I don’t look pretty to him anymore,” she thought. “But why do I care? I shouldn’t be wasting my time and energy over a shallow person like him who only cares about someone’s superficial beauty! Ugghhh!”
Just then, a news channel started playing on the TV. Riddhima’s ears pricked up when she heard the journalist discussing about the underworld.
“Mumbai is being increasingly engulfed by the Mafia. What is the police doing in all this?” said the journalist.
The camera shifted to someone else, and Riddhima’s heart skipped a beat. It was Kabir.
“The police is not sitting idle. We are trying our level best, and I promise that soon Mumbai would get rid of all the illegal activites and the underworld gangs,” said Kabir.
Riddhima stared at the screen with a blank expression. She recollected all that what had happened between her and Kabir, and this made her feel even more upset.
A sudden knock at the door, brought her back to her senses.
“Riddhima?” Vansh peeped in.
Quickly realising that things could become more awkward, Riddhima switched off the TV, before Vansh could see that.
He sat beside her and looked at her softly. “How are you feeling, Riddhima?”
“And the pain?”
“Did you sleep well?”
After that, an awkward silence lasted between the two.
Riddhima could not understand how just yesterday, they had kissed each other, and today, they could barely keep up a conversation. Why was the bond between them so strange?
Suddenly, Riddhima started blushing when she caught Vansh staring down at her lips.
“Why is he doing that? Wait…does he intend to kiss me again? What should I do if he tries to kiss me now? Should I push him away or reciprocate it?” she thought in despair.
But Vansh was thinking of something else.
“God, she has such a large bruise near her lips, and what did I do? I kissed her! Did I hurt her in the process? Part of the blame is on the poor lights around due to which I could not see anything very clearly yesterday, but still I should have been more careful.”
To end the silence Vansh said, “Where is this Sonia? I had asked her to stay around you all the time. Let me fire her for her negligence….”
“No, don’t do that Vansh. Sonia has gone to the kitchen to get some icepack for me,” said Riddhima.
Suddenly something struck her mind. “What happened to some of those goons that Angre and his team had managed to catch?”
“I personally took care of them,” said Vansh coolly.
“Oh,” she said understanding what kind of care he must have given them. She could feel herself getting happy at the thought of their suffering, and now she realised that Vansh was right to treat Neil that way. Such men deserved a treatment like that only.
“What enmity do you have with Pathak?” she asked out of the blue.
“We don’t need to talk about that leech!” he remarked angrily.
“But this is important Vansh. I really need to know all this,” Riddhima tried to explain. “Plus, I’m really confused as to how did you come to know that HE was the one who kidnapped me? He had clearly told me that you wouldn’t even have the slightest idea about this….”
Vansh hesitated. Riddhima had begun to ask him questions, and this was what he had been dreading since the past few hours. Why did this girl have to be such a smart-ass?
“Pathak is my rival, business rival. What else can I say except for the fact that he is a blo*dy rascal? You don’t need to worry about him, he won’t trouble you again….”
“But that doesn’t answer my second question,” she said crossing her arms across her chest. “And now that I remember, Pathak had even told me that he had asked you to agree to one of his conditions, and when you refused to do so, he got me kidnapped in a fit of anger. Is that true?”
Vansh became surprised. What was Riddhima even talking about? It had been ages since he and Pathak had even spoken a word to each other, so where did this whole ‘not agreeing to his condition’ come from?
He said, “Are you sure he said something like that?”
Riddhima replied, “Of course, yes. He didn’t take your name directly though. He just said that ‘someone‘ had dared to refuse to him and therefore he wanted to teach him a lesson. I assumed it was you he was talking about.”
Vansh grew even more confused. Till now he was thinking that Pathak had abducted Riddhima out of his personal enmity with him, but who was this ‘someone’ whom he was talking about? There was something fishy going on, and he had to soon find out what it was.
Riddhima brought him out of his thoughts.
“And remember how I had become inebriated? It all happened after drinking that weird lemonade. I’m sure someone might have spiked it. But who could it be? The waiter brought out many drinks, but none of them were spiked except the lemonade. It must be someone then who knew that lemonade is my favourite drink. And who could have known that in the entire party except….”
Riddhima became shocked as a sudden realisation dawned upon her.
“Was it….you Vansh?”
Vansh turned pale. He had wanted to confess to her, but this wasn’t the way he had imagined to be.
“Yes or no?”
“Yes, and I’m very sorry about that. And I can explain Riddhima…..”
“I don’t want to listen to any of your stupid explanations!” shouted Riddhima. “How dare you Vansh! I thought I could trust you, but….but….”
She was at a loss of words.
“I was almost raped! Do you have any freaking idea what that means?”
Vansh hung his head down in shame. “Riddhima, just listen to me once. I was afraid you were betraying me, that is why I had to….”
“Get lost! And don’t show me your face, ever!”
Vansh was aghast. No one had ever spoken to him like that before.
“What did you just say?”
“Exactly what you heard. Get out! Get….” She held her head as it started to pain.
Vansh saw that and got worried. “Fine, I’ll leave if you want. But please don’t trouble yourself anymore. I don’t want you to…..”
“Sonia, sonia! Where the hell have you been? Come here, this instant!” Riddhima called out.
Sonia came running in.
“Take me to the washroom. Right now,” Riddhima ordered her.
Vansh tried to help her out, but she brushed him aside.
After Sonia had escorted Riddhima to the washroom, Vansh sat down there itself lamenting upon his actions, when accidentally, he pressed upon the remote and the TV was turned on.
He saw Kabir’s interview on the screen and realised that Riddhima had been watching that before he had come inside.
“Does she still feel for Kabir? Does she still miss him that she finds the need to watch him on TV secretly? Does she have no place for ME in her heart?” he thought disheartenedly. “But I thought that things between us were changing for the good….”
For the next two days, Vansh tried to apologize ample number of times, but Riddhima kept ignoring him. He tried to gain her attention, but she did not pay any heed. Her indifference towards him was eating him up from inside, and this manifested as his anger towards rest of the people.
Riddhima on the other hand, felt like a fool for trusting and feeling for Vansh. She wasn’t going to forgive him so easily.
With her wounds and the sprain healing, she could now walk by herself, however limping a little bit now and then.
Chanchal was seen complaining to her husband. “Tomorrow is our 30th wedding anniversary, and there is no celebration of any kind? Nobody cares for me over here.”
Saying this, she angrily left for her bedroom, while Rudra ran behind her to console her.
Aryan and Ishani tried to stifle their laughter and high-fived each other.
“Mom has no idea that we have planned a surprise party for her,” said Aryan giggling. “By the way, where is this Riddhima? We need her for the planning too.”
Just then Riddhima came walking slowly and carefully. Vansh looked at her expectantly inviting her to sit beside him, but she instead walked far upto Aryan and sat there.
Vansh felt irked. “She’s ready to sit with Aryan, but not with me?”
Aryan excitedly started discussing with her.
“Riddhima, now that you can walk around, I think it won’t be very difficult to dance too. We are going to kill it with our rocking duet.”
Vansh interrupted, “No way! Riddhima is not going to dance.”
“But Bhai she had already promised me that she’d…”
“That was before she had got injured. She is NOT going to dance, and that’s final,” remarked Vansh.
“And who needs your permission?” Riddhima taunted. “I’ve already asked the doctor, and she gave me a green signal. Who are you to stop me then?”
Turning towards Aryan, she said, “I will surely dance with you.”
Aryan hugged her out of excitement. “Thank you so much Riddhima. You are a darling, do you know that?”
Riddhima felt taken aback and uncomfortable with this gesture, but when she saw Vansh fuming with jealousy at them, she hugged Aryan back.
Vansh had had enough of this and started to leave from there, when Sia called him out.
“Bhai! Where are you going? We need to discuss about the party, right. And Riddhima is your fiancee, why don’t you dance with her?”
“I hate dancing on these cheesy Bollywood dance numbers. You know that’s not my cup of tea,” retorted Vansh.
“But you absolutely love to dance with five different girls in the same party,” mocked Riddhima.
“You are never going to let me forget that, isn’t it?” asked Vansh.
Riddhima ignored him and started her dance practice with Aryan, leaving Vansh glaring at them in anger.
It was late at night and everyone was fast asleep in VR Mansion. Riddhima was in her bedroom alone, trying hard to sleep too.
Pathak trying to kiss her forcibly and the goon hitting her black and blue, all the haunting memories of that dreadful night started playing out in front of her very eyes, and for a second she felt that it was all real….
Riddhima woke up with a start, panting and puffing. She looked all around her. There was nobody, and she was all alone. Had Ishaan been there with her in the same room like before, she wouldn’t have felt so scared.
She frantically tried to search for the silver amulet that her Papa had given to her as a child, but then she remembered that she had passed it on to Nandu.
At night, the room was feeling even more scary and suffocating to her, so she stepped outside her room into the corridor.
She was trying to close her eyes and take a deep breath, when she felt someone’s hand over her shoulder. She jumped up in fright and gasped.
“Relax, it’s me,” Vansh tried to rub her shoulders.
Riddhima heaved a sigh of relief. She let Vansh rub her back and shoulders for some more time, because strange enough, that seemed to relax her.
It was only after a minute or so, that she realised that she was still supposed to be angry at him, and not supposed to get too comfortable with him.
“Leave me alone,” she jerked off his hands.
“What are you doing here at this hour of time?” he asked.
“None of your business,” she snapped.
“My fiancee is very much my business,” he said softly. “Come, let me take you to your room.”
He tried to hold her hand, but she pushed him away.
“Don’t test my patience, or else….”
“Or else what? Will you threaten to lift me up in your arms like you always do?” she scoffed.
Vansh looked at her with a glint in his eye. “Don’t challenge me, Riddhima.”
Riddhima sat down on the floor defiantly. “Do it! Let me see what you’ve got….”
Before she knew it, she found herself being lifted up mid-air by a pair of strong arms.
“How dare you!” she said.
“You asked for it,” he said matter-of-factly.
Riddhima didn’t know how to describe her feelings. She felt uncomfortable because of the close proximity between them, but at the same time, strangely, she felt quite comfortable too. She had no idea what was happening to her.
Vansh took her to the room, and gently lowered her on the bed. He covered her with a blanket and headed towards the door. But instead of leaving the room, he shut the door from inside. He switched the lights off, leaving only the bedlamp on.
He then proceeded to make himself comfortable on the couch.
Riddhima had a question mark on her face.
“I’ll stay here with you the whole night,” Vansh said. “You can now sleep peacefully without having to feel afraid anymore.”
Riddhima was stunned. She had not said even a word to him, then how did he know that she was feeling…..frightened?
Vansh gestured with his hands to close her eyes. She pulled the blanket over her face, feeling shy to look at him. But she knew, she was going to get the best sleep tonight…..
Sneak peek into the next chapter :
Vansh consoles Riddhima when she gets apprehensive about the marks on her face.
Kabir enters the party and hugs Riddhima in front of everyone. She feels awkward while Vansh gets angry.
Riddhima decides to help Vansh move on from his bitter past.
Hello everyone! That is it for today guys. If you liked it, do not forget to comment.