Arranged Marriage With Love (RIANSH) – Episode 48
I am such a boring and lazy author, no?Well I am from Hyderabad,India. You?She blinks open her eyes faintly, when she senses a touch on her forehead, finding those familiar eyes which were gazing at her with a hint of adore. She smiles, it was an effortless smile which adorned her like always, looking at the person or just feeling the fragrance of the person who makes her heart skip every time he comes closer to her.“Time?” She asks quietly when she feels him propping himself on the bed comfortably before pulling her into his arms.“It’s 6 am right now. Sleep!” He suggests while she just snuggles more into his arms. His voice depicted how tired and lousy he was right now.“You were awake the whole night?”“Had a talk with Maa and didn’t even know when the time passed. Today is going to be a long day for us. But I am not scared because I know tormenting can never be a way to resolve the issues and also I have my wife by my side.” He chuckles slightly while craning his head to look at his wife and finds her already asleep.“I don’t know what will happen when he comes here today. But it’s really important for us, for our family.”He sighs deeply and sleep finally engulfs him.He is important for us****Ridhima pushes open the, walking straight towards the floor length mirror, as she desiccates her drenched tresses with the towel.Quickly dolling herself up to be presentable, she turns towards the cot and finds her husband still sleeping. She walks towards him and then kisses his forehead, her fingers stroking his hair gently.She wasn’t in a mood to wake him up even when the time was 10 am as she knows; he was awake all night talking with his mother.She takes in his form, that innocence dripping from his face features was a sight to behold. She couldn’t control herself and places another kiss on his cheek, this time lingering for a long time. She just couldn’t get enough of kissing him. He stirs in his sleep, irritation daubing on his face; making Ridhima bite her lips in guilt. She mutters a low sorry to him before finally stepping out of the room, closing the door silently behind her.Walking into the foyer, she looks around and frowns when she finds the ambiance unusually quiet.“Ridhima.”Ridhima leaps in fright, placing her hand on her chest as she swirls around to find Dadi looking at her.“Y- Yes Dadi.” She says with a fake smile on her face, trying to hide the terror she had previously.“You woke up already? I was thinking you all were tired last night and wouldn’t make it early today.”“Dadi, even I am late today. I was just going towards Maa. Even last night, we couldn’t talk with- Ridhima stops, when she hears her stomach growl, making her mentally facepalm.What a timing!“Guess someone is hungry.” Indrani laughs at her, making her go red. “Go and eat something, you must be really famished.”Ridhima immediately nods at her before turning on her heels and scurrying out of the hall. She was factually running towards the kitchen, laughing at her inanity.She stops in front of the kitchen, catching on the breath, before walking inside. She raises her eyebrows in surprise when she finds Ishani hunting for something in the fridge.“Good morning.” Ridhima chirps to Ishani, who looks in her direction.“Morning Bhabhi.” Ishani wishes her back before going back to her hunting.“Want something?” Ridhima asks her, out of courtesy, while she just takes a plate from the dish holder. She washes the plate spotlessly and walks towards the dining table, propping herself down as she opens the lid of the tureen in front of her.“It’s poha.” Ridhima twirls towards Ishani, who was still looking into the fridge, but her words were directed for her.Ridhima sighs deeply, serving some portions on her plate and starts eating. She was really hungry.“Finally something edible to eat.” Ishani whispers before walking towards Ridhima.Ridhima looks at Ishani slightly confused and finds her opening a small sachet. Ishani opens the wrapper and takes out a brownie from, gently slicing it into two halves parts which were partially divided.“Take this. I know you would be thinking about why I am giving you the smaller bite. But Bhabhi, you are already having your breakfast and I am hungry.” Ishani chirps at her while forwarding her hand towards Ridhima, who was gaping at her.“So kind of you, but who the hell eats brownie for breakfast?” Ridhima scoffs at her, nonetheless taking the brownie from her hand.Who the hell refuses brownies when being offered?Ishani pokes her tongue at her and silently munches the snack as her breakfast while Ridhima just chuckles at her.Washing her hands, Ridhima wipes her hands with the hand towel, feeling heavy with food and ready for another sleep.“Bhabhi, Sanjana and Siya were together last night too, I believe those both are doing something mischievous.” Ishani narrows her eyes at Ridhima, as if she was revealing the most important secret.“You think so.” Ridhima whispers back in the same tone making Ishani chuckle. “Why don’t we check then?”“Yes captain.” Ishani salutes to Ridhima, making her laugh.****“What???? The door is open! I mean it’s a sensation that Sanjana left her door open.” Ishani whispers to Ridhima, who looks at the door attentively.She soundlessly opens the door and signals Ridhima to go in, who follows her shrug and walks into the room, stopping at the sight in front of her. Ishani joins her from behind and stands still when she finds that, there were probably two silhouettes covered in a blanket, lying on the bed. Both of them were obvious that they were Siya and Sanjana, as they heard a few giggles and hushed voices.“What are they doing under the blanket?” Ridhima scrunches her eyebrows in confusion.“Damn my dirty mind! They are my sisters for god sake.” Ishani whispers to herself and shakes her head in exasperation.“Sanjana”“Siya”Ishani and Ridhima call them at the same time and notice how the moments under the blanket stopped for a moment before they heard some gasps followed by a deafening silence.“Now, Don’t pretend to be asleep and get up. As much as I want to pull the blanket away, I can’t as I don’t even know what you both are doing in there.” Ishani taunts them.“What do you mean by what we are doing?” Ishani throws the blanket away, before getting up onto her knees, as she stares at Ishani with a frown etched on her face. Ridhima looks at her and then at Siya, who was lying on her stomach, beside Sanjana. A laptop placed in front of her, which had something on the display, she couldn’t discern it clearly.“Yes, what are you doing in there?” Ishani spats back as she jumps on the bed and straddles Sanjana, making her shriek. “And why the hell are you shouting at me?” Ishani adds, as she tickles her stomach wickedly. Sanjana falls on her back with her assault, trying to control herself from laughing hysterically.“Stop- Stop it! Ah!” Ishani laughs at her before moving back, Sanjana breathes hastily, trying to organize herself and sits up on the bed.“Tell me what you both were doing.”“Actually, we both were watching a web series.” Siya leaps in as she reveals the scene.“Then why are you both watching it secretly, is it some erotic one?” Ishani winks at Siya while she just looks at her in surprise.“No- God, we are innocent. We were just watching this web series.” Sanjana points her finger at the screen and Ishani looks at the screen.“First date?” Ishani asks, as she looks at the title.“Yah! You know Sanjana di is going on her first date. So, we-“What? First date?” They turned their heads towards Ridhima, who was staring at them in shock.Sanjana shuts her eyes immediately as she senses the upcoming storm. Ishani was equally baffled, as she watched at Siya, who was biting her tongue, as if regretting action.“Please, you all just come here and sit. I will explain everything. Please don’t panic.” Sanjana mutters slowly, her voice filled with panic, as she shuffles her gaze between Ishani and Ridhima.Settling down comfortably on the bed in the four directions available, they all were staring at each other, or particularly at Sanjana who was fretting badly.“Actually there is a guy-“Which guy?” Ridhima immediately asks Sanjana, making her clench her jaw.“Let me finish.”Sanjana appeals. “Last month, after my return, all my friends decided to have a get together. After the party was over, this guy that I am talking about, asked me if I could join him for dinner as a date. I know him as a friend, even though we both weren’t close.” Sanjana completes as she looks at Ridhima, who was in a deep thought.“And you didn’t find it important to tell me about it or you didn’t find me important?” Ishani grits, her tone clearly signified how angry she was feeling.“Di, I was about to tell you but-“When? After you finally go on a date with him? God! Sanju, this is really startling, you started hiding things from me? Was I being so distant from you that you didn’t find it necessary to share these things with me? You shared everything with Siya.” Ishani sighs in disbelief; she was hurt for a reason.“Arey di-” Sanjana drawls softly, before hugging her sister. “I am sorry. I was just feeling edgy. I never wanted to share anything to anyone-““Yes di.” Siya sides with her. “You know, she didn’t tell me about her date on the first place. I usually found something odd with her Instagram, I mean I noticed her using a fake account. I stalked her eventually and found out about this guy.” Siya adds as she smirks at Sanjana.“Seriously? A fake account?” Ridhima speaks quietly, making Sanjana bite her lip.“Um..Actually, first he had sent me a request to my original one. I was so shocked, amazed and eager that I had, by mistake, deleted the request. I didn’t send the request again as it would make him think I was desperate. So-“Sanjana chuckles nervously, shrugging her shoulders ever so lightly.“But you do look desperate here.”Ishani states, smirking at her. “What is his name?”“Armaan.” Sanjana utters, a hue of pink appearing on her cheeks.“Okay but how did he ask you out for dinner, I mean, it’s been a month right?” Ridhima questions.“He texted me. He told me he got my number from my friend.”“You aren’t friends with that friend of yours anymore. How can she just give your number to anyone?”Ridhima states, making Sanjana smile at her. “Well how are your preparations going on?”“Bhabhi, aren’t you mad at me? I mean, are you going to tell this to Bhai?”“You want me to?” Ridhima chuckles lightly. “Relax, I know everything. I trust you enough to let you go on a date too. I am not against anything until and unless you feel safe and happy with them. And it’s not my obligation to notify this to your brothers.” She completes it, with a smile on her face.“Damn! Why did I have such a cute family? You guys are making me emotional now.” Sanjana cries out softly, tears brimming in her eyes,“What Bhabhi, you are making her cry now?” Ishani fake scolds Ridhima, who acts along with her by muttering a sorry to Sanjana, making her chuckle.“Sanjana, I will always be your best friend before becoming your sister. Don’t worry about anything and just tell me your worries. It makes me feel protective about you.”Ishani says while stroking her hair warmly.“I know di, you are the best. It’s just that, sometimes when you get angry, it makes me panic.” Sanjana responds frankly.“I know. I get cranky sometimes and say things which may hurt others. I never intend to do it, it just happens. But Sanju, if ever I get angry at you and say something which hurts you, please forgive me for that.”“I know di, your anger for me can never be analogous to the love you have for me.”“Now tell me how prepared you are for your date.” Sanjana wipes her tears before chuckling softly.“You know, I have searched for some content on how one should behave on their first date and got this web series in the recommendations. I have watched almost all the 15 episodes that it has, but never did the lead couple go on a date. The series ends with the leads greeting each other on their date. I mean I wanted to know what people do during the date and before it.” Sanjana grits, feeling irritated.“Oh common di, you didn’t even watch the whole series in fact. You just skipped almost every dialogue and completed watching the 10hr web series in 45 minutes itself. She literally skipped the scenes every time the leads talked with each other.” Siya scoffs at Sanjana, while she just glares her way.“Whatever.”Sanjana huffs before turning towards Ishani. “Di, now as you already know about it, I want your guidance.”“Woah! This is something known to me, you never in your life asked for my help in anything and now you want me to help you prepare yourself for your first date.”Ishani says, slightly smirking at her.“Guess you are lucky.” Sanjana says wickedly, wiping the smirk away from her face.“I won’t.” Ishani deadpans, two can play the game she thought, making Sanjana pale.“I was just kidding. Please di.”Sanjana pleads, making Ishani sneer inwardly. “Please, I will give you anything you want.” Ishani smirks at that.Uh-Oh!“Anything?”Ishani repeats, making Sanjana nervous.“For now, I will give you the brownie that I bought last night. It is in the fridge.”Ridhima stiffens, suddenly going numb. She, from the corner of her eyes looks at Ishnai, who was equally uptight. She could hear her gulping inwardly.“Wait, I will just get it-“No.” Ridhima and Ishani screech at a time, making Sanjana stop in her action, confusion etching on her face as she looks at both of them, who were palpably worried over something.“What do you think of us? We would ask for something in return for helping you. You thought that low of us? And a brownie, seriously, Who the hell eats brownie for breakfast?” Ishani fakes her anger, while Ridhima just stares at her impassively. Ishani just repeated her words.Dramebaaz“No di, why would I? I just thought of bringing it here-“You think we are selfish, no need to get any-“What the hell? What are you speaking? I just wanted to get that brownie here- wait…..wait, I get it now. You ate it or have to do something with it, don’t you.”Sanjana states quietly. Ishani looks at her horrified, making her obvious with the truth.“I just wanted to taste it.”“Well, how much did you taste?”“Mouthful, that’s it. Bhabhi took some part too.” Sanjana looks at Ridhima, who just smiles at her softly.“It’s ok di, I am fine with it. It doesn’t matter who eats it.” Sanjna waves her hand in dismissal. “Now you both should teach me how to behave on my first date.“No.” Ridhima denies she would ever do that. Like seriously, Date education?“Guess you both are forgetting, you both ate my brownie without my permission.”Ishani gasps loudly while Ridhima looks at her baffled.“Really Sanju, you are blackmailing us? That too a brownie-mailing?” Ishani nods in disbelief. Sanjana looks at her with her preeminent puppy eyes, making her agree eventually.“Ok fine” Ishani agrees, Ridhima turns towards her in perplexity. “Let’s do one thing. We will enact as if we are on our first date. You are Sanjana and I am Armaan.” Ishani scrunches her eyebrows, hoping for her idea to get approval.“Excuse me! I can’t do this. I mean, date with you?” Ridhima frowns.“Bhabhi, it isn’t that difficult. For suppose, if you want to make it work out, just imagine me as Bhai.”“I can’t.” Ridhima rebuffs almost immediately, slightly shaking her head.“If I imagine you as him, then I would imagine some naughty things that I shouldn’t be imagining with you.” Ridhima replies honestly, while everyone just stares at her.“Um…okay- I mean. It’s- goddddd.” Ishani yells frustrated, raking her fingers through her hair.“It’s fine, we will just have this basic introduction okay. They both can continue their conversation thereafter.” Ishani suggests making Ridhima agree.“So fine, now first of all, you will be going to the designated venue.”“Di, what if he comes late?” Sanjana asks acutely.“You wait for him.”“It would look like I am enthusiastic.”“Well, to be honest, you are. If you don’t want to, then you can go a little late too.”“But it would make him think me as tardy.”“What the hell?” Ishani yells, making everyone flinch. She was really getting heated up with her annoying questions.“Ishani control.” Ridhima calms her, as Ishani takes deep breaths, composing herself. “Sanjana, if you really worry about that, do one thing. You park your car outside the restaurant, if you chose one, and wait for him. Wait for him until he comes and walk inside after few minutes.” Ridhima advises. Sanjana smiles peacefully at her while Ishani clenches her teeth.“You continue.”Ridhima nudges Ishani, making her smile softly.“Then you both will greet each other. If he is a gentleman, he will pull your chair for you. After you finally sit down, comes the first step; Complementing each other’s appearance.”Ishani stops, looking at Ridhima.“You look stunning, my lady.” She pulls Ridhima’s hand, planting a small kiss on her pal. Ridhima controls herself from laughing out loudly.That was funny“Thank you. Well, you look striking too.” Ridhima blushes, tucking her hair. Ishani looks at her confused, was she really blushing?“No, the compliment looks bland. You know, a romantic compliment comes only when praised in urdu, the true passionate language. Like see, ‘आप बहुत अच्छे लग रहे होI” Siya sighs dreamily, blushing at her own words.“Um, he doesn’t know urdu.” Sanjana whispers timidly.“Call him for practice then.” Ishani snaps at her, making her close her mouth. “Fine, we will continue here. Now comes the next step, a pick up line showing the flirtatious side of him.”“Your eyes are like the ocean, I can swim in them all day.” Ishani says huskily, making Ridhima narrow her eyes at her. Was that even flirting?“You don’t know swimming na, di?” Siya bites her lips, controlling her laughter,while Ishani looks at her in disbelief. She looked as if she was about to weep.“Leave her and concentrate here.” Ridhima says, trying her best to not laugh at her condition.“I was wondering if you could tell me; if you’re here, who’s running heaven?” Ishani smiles at Ridhima, who cringed at her line.“What was that?”Ridhima giggles loudly, making Ishani frown. “You call that a pick-up line, like seriously?”“Yes, it is. I didn’t know you were flirting this week.” Ishani taunts her.“What the hell? Do you even know how witty I am in that section?” Ridhima was offended.“Acha! Tell me a line then.”“Um fine- You’ve got a lot of beautiful curves, but your smile is absolutely my favorite.” Ridhima smiles at her own line.Ishani chuckles piercingly, more than how strident Ridhima sounded, only to mock her.“You are just jealous.” Ridhima says, making Ishani frown.“Why would I be? My line was more romantic than yours.”“In your dream.” Ridhima retorts.“Di, they both are having a break up without actually dating each other. Made for each other, actually.” Siya jokes looking at Sanjana, as they both laugh collectively.“What?” They both flinch and turn ahead, finding Ridhima and Ishani glaring at them.Ridhima opens her mouth to say something, but stops, when she finds her mobile ringing. She slides to answer the call, with a smile on her face.“Meera, so finally you got some time for this friend of yours.” Ridhima exclaims, slightly annoyed at how she didn’t answer her calls. Sanjana calls for Ridhima’s attention, asking her to put the call on speaker.“—was sleeping. Then I charged my phone sufficiently and saw your notifications. Sorry, I didn’t mean to ignore you. After what happened last night, I really wanted to talk with you. I shouldn’t have reacted that way with Vansh, but when he spoke about Sam-““Meera, it’s ok.” Ridhima blurts out instantly, trying to halt her words as she put the call on speaker and everyone was listening to her.“The call is on speaker. Everyone is here.” Ridhima speaks softly and hears her gasp from the other side.“Hi Meera di.” Ishani butts in excitedly, all the frustration long gone. Sanajna and Siya laugh at her, receiving a glare in return.“Hope you had a good sleep last night.” Siya squeaks cheekily and they hear Meera’s blooming laughter fill the air.“Yes, Last night was a salient reminiscence. Siesta wasn’t the only thing I got yesterday, there was a proverbial restiveness which crammed the darkness with it’s colorful cologne.” Ridhima narrows her eyes listening to Meera. The warmth she heard in her tone was unmarked; her tone resembled that she was really happy, which made Ridhima happy.“What magic happened last night that my friend turned this romantic?” Ridhima bites her lip in anticipation; she knew the answer and could also feel the blush, which would probably be creeping on Meera’s face.“You know.”Meera whispers, making Ridhima chuckle. Ridhima turns her head slightly and finds everyone watching her skeptically. Ishani raises her eyebrow asking ‘what was happening between both of them’.“Anyways, at least you had a good night. Look at me, whole night I was tormenting about where my brother was. He didn’t even inform me if he would come or not. No messages. No texts. I wonder how cold hearted he had turned out to be. I wonder if he even cares about-“Um…Ridhima, I have some work. I will talk to you later.”Meera cuts the call hastily. Ridhima heaves a sigh; she knows why Meera has suddenly cut the call. Sanjana was upset with how her brother was ignoring her.Ishani looks at Sanjana in concern, leaning towards her and wrapping her arms around her. She knew how much she was missing her brother, his love and attention.Ishani pulls back when she hears her phone chime with a notification. She checks the incoming message and shouts suddenly.“What happened?” Ridhima asks alarmed.“Aryan’s mother. My mother in law came. She is down, talking with Maa and Dadi. Sampath bhai messaged me that she was sitting here for almost thirty minutes now.” Ishani speaks in a single pant and stops when she was out of breath.“Relax, she is your mother in law and not some Dayan.” Sanjana jokes but Ishani glares at her.“You wish.” Ishani mutters, while running to the closet and skimming through the clothes.“Hey- they are mineeee.” Sanjana whines when she finds Ishani taking few pairs of clothes from her closet.“Please, let me wear them. I don’t want my mother in law to find me in this baggy t-shirt and mini short. She will really kill me with her looks.”“So, there is finally someone who can scare Ishani.” Ridhima laughs, looking at Sanjana who just smirks at her. Ishani glares at them menacingly, before leaving the room in long strides.“Siya, take a rest now. Bhabhi, come let’s go and see how our tigress behaves in front of her lioness.” Sanjana pulls Ridhima along, walking behind the already gone Ishani.Ishani stops herself for a moment, before setting her hair correctly and brushing her dress trimly. She takes a deep breath and walks slowly and pleasingly.She walks down the stairs and into the hall, finding her mother and Dadi sitting with her mother-in-law, while Sampath was sitting on the single chair. She looks behind and finds Sanjana and Ridhima coming.She walks in front of everyone, getting anxious when she feels all eyes on her, and greets them silently. She hugs her mother-in-law calmly.“Maa, I didn’t know you were coming.” She addresses her mother-in-law in the most polite tone, surprising everyone present over there.“Yeah, I heard about your mother’s health and came to see her. Thankfully, she is fine now.” Ishani smiles at her before turning her gaze to her mother; she was looking a bit healthier than she was last night.“Anu and Anjali were talking about your marriage dates too.” Ishani blushes, looking at her Dadi. She wanted to scream and run across the hall in joy.“Yes, it’s been 6 months already. I want the wedding to be done as early as possible.” Ishani looks at her mother-in-law in awe.“Maa, you had anything? Shall I bring some coffee or tea for you.” Ishani clicks her tongue. ‘Please don’t ask for anything, I don’t know how to cook.’ Ishani holds her breath as she waits for her reply.“No, I had my breakfast already.” Anjali looks at her amused when she finds her releasing her breath.Sanjana looks at Sampath in amusement, finding him in the house was really unexpected. As if finding someone’s gaze on him, he turns his head towards Sanjana and his smile widens. He gets up from his seat, walking towards her and finally stands beside her.“Good morning, amore.” He plants a kiss on her forehead, making her mouth wide open.Well what magic happened to him?But she was happy to see him smile.“You know your mother was showing me your childhood photos.”Ishani stiffens, laughing nervously. Damn, why do these parents always find ways to embarrass their children?“Oh.” Ishani mutters.“How is Papa? It would have been great, if he came along too.”Ishani speaks nervously, trying to divert her attention.“Why are you getting nervous?You don’t have to follow all these formalities in fact. I am not some desi mother-in-law, you know.” Anjali chuckles at her own joke but stops when she finds everyone staring at her.“Okay, I do accept that initially I was a bit fanatical about this alliance and all because I was scared that my son would feel low in front of his wife. Maybe, the difference in prosperity between Ishani and Aryan would put up some issues in their marriage. But now, I am convinced about how strong their love is. My son is happy and I am content.” Everyone look at her with high regard.They were happy that Ishani found an excellent companion with an ostentatious family.Ishani wipes her tears away and hugs her, making her chuckle slightly.“Vansh.” Ishani moves back and turns behind; finding her brother walking in slowly looking at everyone in confusion.Ridhima frowns, finding him coming from the doorway.When did he go out?He looked visibly shocked. His eyes fixated on Anjali and then moved towards his mother, who was looking at him blankly, as if knowing what was happening.Ridhima walks towards him but stops, when she finds the person coming behind him. Her eyes widened in shock, finding the person coming in front of everyone.Perilous silence was prevailing around everyone, as they looked at the person who came in front of them after years.“Ishani, isn’t he your father, the one who was named dead?” Ishani turns towards Anjali, who was having an eccentric expression on her face telling that she was expecting an immediate explanation about him.Ishani doesn’t respond, she just couldn’t, instead she turns towards the person, standing in front of her with his gaze held low. She couldn’t utter a single word for the next few seconds and just stood there.“Ishani.” Anjali called her again, she was really shocked to know that the person who was called dead was actually alive.How can someone lie about one’s existence?Ishani turns towards her again, her eyes already blurred by the tears.“I am asking something. How come he is alive when you said he was dead?”Silence“I think I should leave now.”“Anjali.” Dadi mutters, while Anjali turns towards her. “I actually-“No Aunty ji, first of all I don’t understand anything. For a second, I was so happy to finally get my son married. But it got postponed because her sister had some health issues. Then the marriage gets actually canceled when she finally meets her mother out of nowhere. Yet we were okay, knowing that Ishani wasn’t aware of anything about her mother. Now her father is standing in front of her who was dead in reality. I am sorry, I know I am speaking rudely, but what can I do? How can I start my son’s marriage with a lie?” Anjali speaks the reality as she turns towards Ishani. “This is your life. It is really unbelievable for me to know that you didn’t know about your parent’s existence. Your silence is making me leave now. I will definitely wait until you finally answer all those unanswered questions.” She walks past Vansh and out of the house, leaving the storm behind.Once again the silence filled the room, everyone was waiting for some reaction from anyone. Vansh walks towards Ishani, he was feeling really horrible. He places his hand on her shoulder, gently squeezing it. Ishani swirls towards him, her cold eyes met with his, making him retreat his hand. She then turns towards his father, her gaze was piercingly sharp.“You aren’t dead?”No, I am not dead. I just couldn’t upload early due to some issues. I am really sorry for being this late.How is today’s chapter? Do vote and comment.