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The Caged Bird – Chapter 12

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The next day, Virat had already left for work when Sayi woke up. She unpacked her stuff, she carefully picked out a box, that she was worried about most throughout the wedding, or to be precise the only thing she was worried about during the wedding. She took out an aeroplane model and hung it on the ceiling resulting her to twist her leg when she got down.“What a nice beginning!” She exclaimed as she limped towards the drawer to take out the first aid.The door bell rang, she went opened the door limping, it was Ayyan! She had called him to discuss about the new plans and the renovation of her cabin.“Why are you limping ma’am”“I twisted my ankle, and please don’t call me ma’am, I already feel old enough!”“Then what should I call you”“Sayi??”“But that’s your name!”“Exactly, that’s my name and that is what everyone is supposed to call me! I will manage don’t worry, did you get the designs?”“Yes! I contacted a few interior designers and they sent samples” he said taking out his tablet“None contacted me asking for my preference!”“Errr…”“Never mind! I liked this one! And ask them to place an aeroplane model somewhere. ” She said selecting a brown and black themed pallet. “And what about other work and schedules and meetings? You are working in that company since long, and I’m literally clueless!”“Virat sir is handling stuff for now, you can come once we prepare your cabin, as for meetings and other schedule, we still have to wait for a few days. The company will first hold a party and officially welcome you. All these things may take a few weeks, so you rest at home till the time being!”He left picking up his stuff.Sayi sat on the couch and was browsing through Netflix. Though, she had nothing to do at her house, she still had her Usha tai by her side. Sayi, for the first time in life was getting bored! She walked around in the house, then sat back to browsing. She picked up a web series and in no time went into deep slumber.She woke up to the sound of the door opening and saw Virat standing wearing a navy blue 3 piece suit with perfectly gelled hair.They didn’t move a single centimetre for straight 5 minutes“I…I will get something for you to eat” Sayi quickly ran towards the kitchen to escape from the awkwardness.Virat followed her to the kitchen “Paa has called us for a dinner tonight! Get ready, I will wait” he went away and sat on the couch scrolling through his phoneSayi rushed to her room, opened her cupboard and picked up the first dress she saw, matched her jewelry the fastest she could, applied a cream….“I really should have learnt to apply basic make up when Usha tai asked me to do so.” She whined staring at the eyeliner on her handIn 15 minutes, she was standing in front of Virat! He looked towards her, went to her room, looked at her room filled with aeroplanes, came back after a minute and placed the nuptial chain around her neck and filled vermilion on her partition“Thank you, I almost forgot!”He nodded and they sat in his car to cover a journey of an hour plus traffic.They were both sitting quietly, too awkward to even initiate a conversation“If you plan to stay silent, then can we at least play music?”“Huh??”“The driver tends to fall asleep during a quiet ride, so if you don’t mind can we play the music?”She nods her head in affirmative and he turns on the radio.They were both silent throughout, the roads of Mumbai were surprisingly less crowded. They reached the Joshi Mansion earlier than expected.Kamal Joshi, who would ask his assistant to dial the number he wanted to contact, would not even pick up a spoon fallen on the floor was himself standing at the entrance to welcome them. It took 10 calls by Virat for her to come out of that shock.He escorted them to the living room, which again was surprising for Sayi, and she soon forgot about the two surprises by her father the moment she saw her mother and Usha tai. She ran over to them and hugged them both as tight as she could.Virat took his phone and left another message to Pakhi, which as usual was undelivered! He was worried about her, but there was nothing he could do. He had to change his wallpaper which had Pakhi’s picture on his mother’s order and remove all her photos from his pent house. It took him hours to put every memory of Pakhi inside the trunk. He wanted Sayi to feel comfortable and somehow that always ended up with them being more awkward. He knew it was all new for Sayi too, but she never initiated a conversation and he couldn’t do it either! He looked towards her getting all happy with her mother and caretaker. It was the first time since since he met her, he saw her smile like this!Soon the dinner table was set. Virat looked around the huge table, and counted the 20 chairs for a family of 4, the whole table was filled with food, which was enough to feed a minimum of 50 people, that was the first thought that came into his mind as he counted a total 60 dishes.A bowl of salad was bought and kept in front of Sayi“You still don’t eat proper food” Kamal asked“Why are you pretending to bother now? You never asked me this before!” Sayi’s reply was spontaneous as if she knew her dad would ask this. Virat looked towards her in shock seeing her talk back to her father.“Watch your tone. You are with your husband now…..”“Does it change anything? Does me being with anyone change a thing? No right? You are still the same Kamal Joshi and I the still Sayi Joshi!”“Sayi Virat Chavan!” Kamal yelled“Though I hate being associated with you and unfortunately there is nothing I can do at least in this lifetime, but, Sayi Joshi is my identity, and I won’t let you change my identity!”Sayi woke up without even touching her food and ran upstairs.“Sayi…” her mother ran behind her“I’m sorry. You had to see this. Please continue with the dinner, they will handle her” Kamal’s tone changed at an instantAs much as he wanted to go to her, he couldn’t because of the old man sitting right in front of him, enjoying his chicken unbothered about the current situation! Virat could hardly eat anything and his gaze was subconsciously always towards the stairs.Kamal waited for Virat to finish his food and then both went towards his library where he asked to summon Sayi. Sayi came after not so long, her eyes were red and puffy indicating she had cried, she looked as helpless as she looked on the day of their marriage ceremonies!Till today, he used to think of himself as the victim and the Joshis…..each one of them as his culprit, but today he realized how vulnerable that girl, with whom, he was tied was…that how she was forced to marry him like he was….that even she may had to give up on something she really cherished…that she might also have been full of life and cheerful as he was…he finally realized that they were riding the same boat!He excused himself, thinking they may need some privacy“What was that” he could hear Kamal, who had stayed calm the whole while shout at her the moment he got out of the room. He took a few steps and moved back as his body was not in his senses. The thing he knew was standing at the corner of the door“What?” Sayi yelled at him with the same tone, which kinda scared Virat“How could you insult your own father in front of your husband?”“When were you my father to begin with Mr. Joshi? And that was noting compared to what you have done to me! You literally made my whole life a joke! Do you even have the slightest idea that you destroyed my life by getting me married to that guy?”“I know what I did is the best…”“You don’t get to decide for me and you have no right to decide for me! You literally caged me in this very house that is supposedly mine! You forced me to marry a literal stranger whom I had never seen in my entire life and then you had the audacity to tell me that what you did was the best?? How can you stoop so low and still hold your head up with that fake pride of yours? You have no idea about how many lives did you destroy with that silly move of yours!”“Enough! Me being quiet doesn’t give you the license to sputter nonsense!”“You are quiet because even you know that you are wrong! And you will regret it soon”“I have never regretted a single decision I made till date, and you will soon realize it!”Virat walked away, he came across a room that had a huge picture of Sayi hung on the wall above the bed, entered the room and saw aeroplanes all around, he reminisced her room in the penthouse.“This room belongs to Sayi” Sayi mother came from behind“If you don’t mind can I ask you something?” Virat hesitated“Except for Sayi and her father’s relation, you can ask me anything!”“What’s with the aeroplanes??”“You asked me exactly what I told you not to.” Virat looked towards her in confusion“Ummm…I’m sorry, but what has aeroplane to do with this?”“Sayi wanted to study aeronautics! She wanted to become a pilot. She even did the course secretly by doing part time jobs to pay the fees for the course. Her MBA ended and she was called here, but she had another year left for her course and unfortunately her dad found out! The very next day, Sayi’s private jet with her PA was waiting at the airport, she rebelled just like today, or even worse than today, they broke several vases together and that’s when you Father-in-law decided her punishment…..”“Which was to marry me?” Virat completed“Not exactly you, it would have been anyone! He just wanted to get rid of her by getting her married, she tried hard to escape till the day of her engagement, she had booked her tickets of returning back with the money she earned, but her father took away all her gadgets and tightened the security around her! She was like Rapunzel trapped in a tower. Even her bad health couldn’t change his mind, she even tried hard to escape on the day of marriage, but….. (after a long pause) Can I ask you something as a mother?”He could only nod“Please take good care of her, she was never able to enjoy the small or big happiness in her life! Her dad had made her a living robot, please teach her to live, please never let her cry.”“I promise I will do my best to keep her happy!”They heard the sound of something break and rushed towards the library. 2 vases were fallen on the two sides of the room, the two pair of eyes were staring at each other with rage, without blinking for once. Virat reached out to Sayi, hell her hand and took her outside. Sayi stopped in the between, he looked back and she was looking at their intertwined hands, he left her hand as soon as he realized.“I’m sorry” he immediately apologized!Kamal Joshi came to see them off with his famous smile, he had when he was supposed to meet important clients. Sayi went straight to the passenger seat without even looking at her father. Kamal took Virat to a hug and Virat sat at the driver seat after a brief talk with Kamal.He knew Sayi was not in a state to talk, Virat looked to his left, she had already slept! It was late at night and half of the city was already asleep. He parked his car and tried to wake up Sayi, she didn’t even budge! He was left with no other option that carrying her. He removed her seat-belt and carefully picked her up in his arms, took her to her bed and removing her sandals, covered her with a duvet.“She must have been too tired, else her sleep is as thin as a hair strand!” he mumbled to himself carefully removing the hai strands from her face.He went back to his room, changed into his sleepwear and lied down straight staring at the ceiling. Sleep seemed millions of kilometre away from him. His mother in law’s and Pakhi’s words were echoing in his mind!Didn’t Pakhi said the similar things to him as his mother-in-law?He went out to the terrace, after tossing in the bed for over a 100 times! The cool night breeze touched his face, the moon was playing hide and seek with the clouds and the half of the city was as usual still awake. It was hard to not to find a car or two at anytime of the day! He leaned at the railing and quietly looked around the city that never slept!I messed up the previous chapter with hundreds of typos and realized that just now. I had to type that on my phone and I swear to God, I’m never doing that ever again! I have corrected it on Wattpad, but, I don’t have any idea about how to correct it on telly updates and I apologize for my stupidity!

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