Anya laughed, “Actually I had forgotten, but suddenly all of a sudden I remembered, I think we were sitting here, just like this except we were looking at the album,” she shook her head as she recollected those days.
[for those of you who haven’t read or don’t remember but mostly because the author was unable to post a longer update without messing it up ……long suffering readers may directly scroll down to the next non-italicized bit with my apologies ]
“Choti Bua!” Anya jolted Khushi out of her ramblings through RM and the past, “Come and see these pictures of Badi bua’s wedding, where is your wedding album? I want to see that too.”
They sat cross legged on the bed looking at the pictures of both weddings sharing their favorite munch, chanas; since both were chatterboxes, it was difficult to make out who spoke more, but definitely Anya raised the questions while Khushi attempted to do justice to her innumerable and diverse queries.
She was very curious about the photograph where Khushi was holding the bangles in front of CSR’s face while he looked away, irritated yet embarrassed.
Khushi grinned, “Oh I was teasing him; he had bought those bangles for me but refused to admit it.”
“But why,” Anya was surprised, “Why did he not want to tell you that he had bought the bangles.”
Khushi smirked, ego aur kya, naak nahi kat jayegi? Laad governor kahin ka, she thought fondly but shrugged her shoulders, “Who knows what these guys think?”
Anya looked at her doubtfully and would have pursued the matter but she was awestruck by Khushi’s dance photographs, “Chotibua you are looking gorgeous! Wow I wish I could have seen you dance then and look, both of you are looking so nice together.”
Khushi’s eyes misted over, yes they did look good, but he looked so dashing, her heart skipped a beat as she remembered the unexpected way he had come to her rescue that day. Funny she had never bothered earlier whether he was handsome or not, but now she felt a clutch in her heart whenever she looked at him. Did she or did she not find him handsome earlier she wondered; strangely she couldn’t remember thinking anything of the sort. Though she did recollect drowning in his eyes, not to mention all that acidity and dhak dhak, she smiled to herself.
“Choti bua, he is so handsome,” Anya stared mesmerized at Arnav’s photograph in the teri meri dance sequence, she leaned forward and confided, “You know Chotibua, CSR is the almost most handsome guy; the most handsome guy is of course daddy!”
Khushi laughed and hugged her, “Of course!”
“Choti bua,” Anya pointed to a photograph, “Why are you dressed like a bride at Badi bua’s wedding? Look there is another wedding photograph of yours! And look here you are looking so sad when CSR is carrying you and at this place you are looking so happy? Did you get married twice?”
Khushi swallowed, “Yes, sweetie, we got married twice.”
Anya stared at her wide eyed, “Twice! Both times to CSR?”
Khushi nodded but then shook her head, “No first time I got married to the Rakshash and then I got married to the Rajkumar.”
Anya stared at the photograph of the Rakshash, he looked so angry, so scary, “But why did you agree to marry the Rakshash?”
Khushi was trapped, she and her big mouth, kuch bolne ki kya zaroorat thi? Now Anya wouldn’t rest till she knew the whole story and she could hardly explain to the little girl about the complexities of human relationships, emotions and ‘halat’.
Khushi made a dramatic pose, “It was entirely my fault, I made the mistake of plucking a rose from his garden without his permission and he got angry and sad; voila! He turned into a Rakshash.
“Oh” Anya was enthralled, “Just like the Beauty and the Beast! But hotibua you shouldn’t have plucked the rose without his permission.” Anya reprimanded her bua.
Khushi shushed Anya, “Shhh listen, the Rakshash was very angry indeed and insisted I marry him as punishment.”
‘Then?” Anya was fascinated.
“Then I agreed to marry him,” Khushi continued with her theatril narration “because he looked so angry and threatened to eat me up if I didn’t marry him; then slowly slowly the Rakshash realized that I had not plucked the rose, I had just bent down to smell the roses. Once he understood, he was very sorry about the misunderstanding; he instantly turned into Prince Charming and we got married again.”
Anya sighed and clapped her hand, “How nice, just like a fairy tale. So you mean to say that since the Rakshash turned into a Prince, now there is no Rakshash, right?” she looked hopefully at her bua.
Khushi made a wry face, “Well to tell the truth, sometimes the Rakshash does come out, but don’t worry, I now have magical powers and I can turn him into a Prince, well sooner or later anyways,” She grinned mischievously.
Back to now
Anya looked at Khushi and pressed, “So tell me Mami more about this yarn you spun me so many years ago.”
“Nothing, we seem to be all done her don’t we,” Khushi mumbled and hurriedly began gathering the few clothes still lying on the bed, but Anya snatched them away and continued to nag her.
Cornered, Khushi made light of it, “Nothing much to tell actually, your CSR got the wrong impression about the sort of person I was and he…he persuaded me to marry him to save the situation,” Khushi glossed over the gory details which could have implicated CSR, she didn’t want the little girl to think badly of her beloved ‘almost first most handsome guy’.
“And of course he soon realized his mistake and fell in love with you to boot!” she clapped her hands delightedly as Khushi blushed, “That is why he married you again with full honors didn’t he?” Anya could think nothing less of her CSR
Khushi nodded, smiling slightly, “yeah something like that,” relieved to have that sorted out, relatively easily.
But then Anya wasn’t done yet, she nodded her head thoughtfully, “What ‘wrong impression’ did he get?” having clarified the big picture, Anya wanted the details.
Khushi looked at her helplessly; she was at a loss, she could hardly go over the whole sordid story with the young impressionable girl but clearly she wasn’t in the mood to let her off the hook so easily. Where the boys dammit? Hey Devi Maiyya, kum se kum Guddu ko hi bhej do! I shouldn’t have sent Arnav away, she rued as she racked her brains, how do I get out of this?
Anya’s eyes relentlessly bored into hers, Khushi sighed and mumbled, “Nothing, he just thought I was having an affair with someone else.”
“Affair with someone else!” Anya was astonished, “But then why should that bother him? He too was engaged to someone else wasn’t he? And why force you to marry him for that!” Anya was justifiably puzzled.
Khushi was trapped; she could hardly go into the details! She shrugged, “I don’t know, he saw me with someone else and he just saw red,” she coughed, swallowed her embarrassment and making an instant decision on the lesser of the two evils, she took the easy way out, “Now that you mention it, maybe he did have ‘one thing’ on his mind!” Khushi blushed rosily.
“Ahhh Mamu’s a deep one!” Anya clapped her hands excited and impressed at this hitherto unknown side of CSR; Khushi groaned, hey DM, yeh kahan aakar phans gaye hum, kuch toh kijiye! But DM seemed to be in a playful mood and determined not to spare Khushi her blushes.
“Just imagine insisting he marry you because he was jealous and wanted you for himself!” Anya marveled, “But Mami,” she was curious, “How did he ‘persuade’ you?” she looked slyly at Khushi, “Did you also have only one thing…”
“ANYA!” Khushi got up agitated.
Click here for Chapter 246