Chapter 1: Khushi Muses

It was a dark and stormy night and rain seemed imminent. There was temporary power failure and Khushi was alone at RM in her room staring pensively at the flickering shadows of the plants near the poolside. A faint smile crinkled her eyes as she remembered a similar night almost 25 years ago. She had been so scared and frightened out of her wits. Even today she could feel the warm clutch in her heart as she had run into the safe haven of his welcoming arms. She shook her head, all that drama for a “deal”. Some things never changed! Even today the most effective way to get Arnav’s attention was to strike a deal; even the kids for that matter.

Khushi drifted back to the kiss that never happened; even now she wondered how things would have turned out if the RMians had not returned when they did. Even given her epithet as Sanka devi and her multifarious pranks (not all were successful) that evening ranked first in her list of most embarrassing moments. She wished the earth had opened up and swallowed her; she had ineffectually tried to disperse the flowers strewn all over, which in fact had ended up drawing more attention to it apart from drawing Arnav’s ire.

The blush of shame which had suffused her being had dulled over time and now she could look back with some sort of equanimity and amusement at her own naivety. But more interesting was the reactions of the ‘intruders’. Nani was questioning, Di was shocked, Mamiji was scathing, Jijaji was judgmental and to some extent even Jiji seemed to have judged her and found her wanting.

A lump suddenly formed in Khushi’s throat and she swallowed hard to dislodge it. At least Jiji should have….No, I shouldn’t think negative thoughts, Khushi told herself firmly.

How the last two decades or so had flown by and Khushi literally had had no time to breathe, always jumping from one crisis to another, managing home and hearth, juggling a career and kids and of course the Laad Governor. Often she had felt as if she were participating in a relay race, one where there was only one runner, only the baton kept changing!

Yet, today, suddenly, Khushi had a lot of free time on her hands, what with having left her job due to a variety of reasons, the kids all grown up and busy in their own lives and schedules, Arnav with his ever expanding business and the rest of the family scattered here and there.   Loneliness enveloped her and she often walked the nostalgia lane and it was as if she was seeing an old film being replayed but one she could now see with a different perspective. It was sort of fun, sometimes sad as well, but it did help pass the time.

Khushi heard a faint sound in the living room, using her mobile phone as a torch she cautiously made her way down. Why did the inverter never work when it was needed? It was HP’s day off; he had gone to see a movie with his wife. Actually Khushi had bought the tickets to see a movie (Salman Khan’s nephew’s debut movie) with Arnav (after taking his due permission), but this morning before she could remind him of their ‘date’, a first in many years, he informed her that he would be late as he had to go out of town for a meeting.

Disappointed but rather than risk another round of verbal duel (these seemed to be increasing in frequency of late, even considering their rather volatile relationship), she had quietly passed on the tickets to HP and his wife. Their happiness more or less made up for her disappointment.

It was déjà vu as she spotted the shadow of her husband in the hallway (minus the hysteria of course), sedately she made her way down to him and asked, “Aap? You were going to be late weren’t you? What happened, everything ok?”

“Yeah yeah fine, cancelled the meeting, why isn’t the inverter working, where is HP?”

“Oh, HP and his wife have gone to see a movie. I don’t know what’s wrong with the inverter. Why did you cancel the meeting?”

“Did you even check the inverter? I thought you could do anything Khushi Kumari Gupta Singh Raizada, what happened to your famous claim,” he coughed, “too old eh?”

The combination of that supercilious tone and the all knowing smirk (which she could see even in the darkness) was enough to raise her hackles even after all these years and she retorted rather hotly, “Old eh! Your wife’s husband may be old not me. Besides the last time I tried to repair with it, you gave me such an earful…..”

But before she could complete her tirade, he cut in, “What? You gave the tickets to HP and his wife!!! And here I…..oh forget it,” he stomped off to check the inverter.

Just then the lights came back on.

No there was no rose petal strewn pathway….

Khushi sighed, déjà vu all but vanished.

ASR turned back once to glower at her again before moving off in the direction of their room.

Khushi followed slowly, wondering why he suddenly looked so annoyed, not the inverter, he was teasing her (she could faintly hear the Rabba ve), the tickets to HP? But why?

What did he say….’cancelled the meeting’….oh ho he had cancelled the meeting because he remembered their date!….she entered their room on a Rabba ve crescendo

Awww.

She looked at him lovingly and called him softly but he just glared at her and walked off to the poolside back to the sad version. Ahh well at least these were Rabba ve times after a long time……

She turned and walked back to the kitchen, with a light step, he remembered! That was all that mattered, it had been so long since he had made an effort to go out of his way…..she brushed aside the sad version and switched to the happy one while making his favorite pusta. Sure to sweeten him up, she thought with a glimmer of a smile.

Soon the Laad Governor came stomping down and barked, “I am going out for a while”.

Khushi’s smile and Rabbe ve faded. “Going out? Why….it is raining and I was making pasta….” Khushi was talking to herself.

***

PS: Another quick point, a bit later along Silver Streaks, due to reader demand to maintain flavor of the IPK, I have liberally used Hindi – I sincerely hope all of you are comfortable with it – thanks.

Chapter 2

32 thoughts on “Chapter 1: Khushi Muses”

      1. Oh dear! Well I do have translations for some special chapters, let’s hope we can muddle along – perhaps you can learn some hindi on the way too 😀

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  1. I had started reading Silver Streaks in Med and had bookmarked it. Today I went to read it was not there. I am glad you have started to repost here. Thank you.

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  2. Nothing has changed even after 2.5 decades. But, do we really want them to change? As long as there are no blind accusations it is OK, I guess. Off to the next chapter.
    Cheers……

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  3. Hi Dahlia, discovered you today , wow – 7 years and IPKKND still going strong and internationally therefore I hope there’s not lots of Hindi words for all your international readers ( me being one ). I’m going to read / enjoy all your stories and your blog since I’m IPKKND obsessed. Will definitely press the “like” button as I go along. Thanks

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    1. Hi Lynette! Welcome aboard😊 Happy to meet an IPK fan after 7 years! I have to confess SS does have quite a bit of Hindi esp in the later chapters. Mostly due to reader demand for flavor. Hopefully you will plough thru it nevertheless.🤞

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  4. Dahliaaaa, so excited to come across this blog! I was re-watching ipkknd after years and suddenly wanted to read Silver Streaks, only to discover the website no longer exists!!! Anyway I decided to google to see if the combo ipkknd silver streaks dahlia throws up something and there you were! I am so glad the story is on a blog …. And oh hello!! You must be wondering who is this rambling on. I went by the name Rainqrazy during the ipkknd MyeDuniya days! An avid fan … Of your stories!

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    1. Hello Rainqrazy so happy to see you here 🙂 Not at all wondering about who is rambling – despite the silver streaks my memory is still ok 😀 I loved reading your takes on IPK and am sorry the website shut down denying us the pleasure of re-readings and interactions. Sorry for the delay in responding as very few people bother to leave a comment and I am having a major block. Thanks for leaving me a note, much appreciated 🙂

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  5. Very pleasant story. I don’t know how many times I am reading. You have shown how to keep a good relationship between couples parents children friends business and society without hurting eachother and also suppirting each other whenever needed.

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    1. Thank you Sarada. Although I think the relationships lasted long without much hassle mostly because Khushi streched herself thin trying to keep everyone happy rather than everyone supporting each other.

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  6. I found your blog today and I’m starting thos story.. Khushi is old 😃.. this is the first time I’m reading a story of this kind and well I’m intrigued.. the way she reminiscing those moments.. wow 😊😊😊.. Arnav has cancelled meeting to go to movie with her. Aww 😇☺☺☺☺.

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  7. Hi Dahlia!!

    I have recently discovered IPKKND (thanks to quarantine), and I came across this piece of work. May I just say that this piece of work is brilliant. I actually finished all 500 chapters in the last weekend (no sleep), and I had to stop by to re-read and comment on this piece of work. It deserves all accolades and more!! The story, the execution, the effortless delivery of dialogues! This is amazing. I think this replaces IPKKND in my mind, tbh. I am going to slowly but surely mark my presence all over the blog, I am so impressed!! Special mention to your deduction of ASR and Arnav. Such an insight into his character, I loved reading it.

    I believe that writers often leave a piece of themselves behind in their works, and seeing this story has left me in awe of you. The mature take on characters, the humor, the closely connected relationships, I am falling short of words, but rest assured I will come back for more!

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    1. Hello Mysticaura! Welcome aboard and you certainly made my day, touched my heart (and eyes!). I am compelled to return the compliment and indulge in a bit of character analysis too – kind, warm, generous and a way with words. It is very rare for anyone to comment but to binge read and come back to comment is really something else. Thank you. Look forward to making your acquaintance and possibly trigger Dahlia 😀

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