Arnav watched Khushi’s struggle with her embarrassment with intense enjoyment and wondered idly if was possible for her to become even redder, “Kya hua Khushi, tumhara naak hi nahi poora face laal ho gaya hai”, he tipped her face and stared down at her, “bolo Khushi.”
“I thought you were saying,” Khushi said weakly, as the words got stuck in her throat, hoping against hope that Arnav would take pity on her and put her out of her misery.
But of course, Arnav was made of sterner stuff and besides he was having fun, a speechless Khushi was a rarity and he was a bit irritated with her habit of jumping in when he was trying to say something, serves her right he thought amusedly.
He crossed his arms, “Take your time Khushi, there is no rush,” he said, a faint smile playing about his lips.
Khushi finally cottoned on and glared at him, “Pulling my leg aren’t you?’ She accused hotly.
“Pulling your leg?” Arnav was innocence personified, “Why would I do that, I am just waiting for you to tell me what I was going to say.”
Khushi gritted her teeth, fine if that was what he wanted, “I thought you were going to say, ‘Khushi main tumse bahut pyaar karta hoon’ but of course expecting such a thing from his Laad Governer was my mistake,” she turned away huffily extremely put out.
Arnav gave a low laugh and swung her back by her arm and murmured softly, “Itna pata hai toh yeh bhi pata hoga that Laad Governor doesn’t like it when you turn away from him?”
Still upset, Khushi shook her head, “What do I know about the Laad Governor? Kuch bhi toh nahi?”
Arnav made a face, “True, you flunked the theory exam of your Laad Governor,” he said sadly, “Not even a ‘C!’ By the way did you study in the library or were you just fooling around? Must be really thrilled that Anya is here, good excuse for you not to study right?” he needled her further.
Khushi stiffened in his arms and struggled to free from his suddenly tight arms, “Ji nahi, I studied in the library as well as after coming back so that you wouldn’t have any reason to throw a fit if I go to the zoo tomorrow with you and Anya. That is if the Laad Governor doesn’t have any objections and gives me permission,” she ended sarcastically.
Arnav looked down at her flushed annoyed face tenderly; he tipped her face up and angled his head as he muttered softly “Hmmm, so you want permission for tomorrow eh? First let me see test your practical knowledge.”
Arnav woke early, feeling fit and fresh (mostly thanks to Khushi acing the practicals); Khushi was fast asleep, as usual sprawled all over him. He smiled and gently pushed her, she shifted away with a murmur of discontent. He went to the washroom and then left for his morning jog. Khushi was still asleep when he came back, he looked at the clock, it was just 6 am! He had woken an hour earlier than usual and today was Sunday; he shrugged and had his shower. Feeling pleasantly tired, he leaned back on the recliner to stretch his aching muscles and not surprisingly, fell into a light doze.
Anya was up and ready by 7 am. It was a big day; they would be going to the zoo yayy! She could barely wait. Unable to contain herself anymore, she tiptoed to CSR’s room and raised her hand to knock on the door; to her amazement, at her touch, the door swung open silently and smoothly, she peeped in and stared in consternation at the sight that greeted her. Choti bua was fast asleep on the bed, while CSR was on the couch.
She nibbled her finger, well they were in the same room; did that count? Was that enough to make babies? Surely there had to be more to it? After all Anoushka shared her room with her brother ever since she was born, but she hadn’t made any babies yet. Perhaps that was because they had bunk beds in their room. Or maybe she was too young to make babies? She nibbled her finger some more. She dearly wished she could consult her ‘guruji’.
Anya spied her Bua’s phone by the bedside table, she picked it up and went to pool side and dialed the helpline number. She had a whispered consultation with Aisha, her doubts cleared but concerns increased; she made a slow return to the room, debating on the future course of action.
Khushi had woken up in the meantime and had gone to the washroom. She returned to find Anya standing by the pool side entrance.
“Good Morning dear!” Khushi chirped.
“Good morning Chotti bua”, Anya responded gravely and handed the mobile to Khushi, “Sorry I borrowed it without your permission, but it was rather urgent.”
“Koi baat nahi Anya,” Khushi reassured her, “Wanted to talk to your parents? Missing them?” she hazarded a guess looking at Anya strangely serious expression.
Anya shook her head, “I wanted to talk to Aisha my friend, she knows everything,” she declared proudly.
“Achcha, so what did you want to discuss with her?” Khushi asked casually.
Instead of answering Khushi, Anya said, “Why is CSR sleeping here? Why does he not sleep on the bed?”
Arnav woke from his light doze and murmured sleepily, “Yes go on Anya ask your Bua why I am sleeping here. You know she always kicks me out of the bed!”
Anya turned to stare at Arnav, “Really?” she turned to look at Khushi who flushed guiltily, “Woh humari aadat hai,” she muttered embarrassed.
Worried, Anya turned back to Arnav, who was now sitting up on the recliner amusedly surveying the two, “And you don’t even lock the door!” she accused him rather plaintively.
It was Arnav’s turn to be confused, he looked at Khushi and said to Anya, “Excuse me? Lock the door?”
Anya vigorously nodded her head, “Yes, when you sleep, you should lock the door; see I could come in without even knocking! Aisha’s mummy and daddy lock their door and so do mamma and daddy. And you don’t even sleep on the same bed! How will you ever have a baby!”
“Have a baby!” both Arnav and Khushi exclaimed together as they looked at each other in consternation.
It’s been a while since I shared some other post with you. So here’s one for the weekend, some photos that I clicked from here and there and matched them up with some quotes. Who knows you may just like them eh? Weathered but not Withered
Click here for Chapter 81