This drabble may not be everyone’s cup of tea and I completely understand that. I thought I should forewarn you before you read…
She kissed him gently. Her lips clinging to his smooth forehead as her hands caressed his face. The cloying smell of roses and sandalwood filling her. She traced the small scar below his left eyebrow, its origin a mystery to her.
Tumhare har sawaal ka jawaab dena jaroori nahi hain.
Her hand came to rest over his heart. Almost as if it had a mind of its own. Homing in to where her own heart lay.
Jab tum mere paas hoti ho… hamari dhadkanein ek ho jaati hain.
Her fingers curled tightly, bunching his kurta, her heartbeat thundering in her ears. Drowning out the sound of grief that echoed all around her. Her entire being focused on the beloved face in front of her even while drowning in the well of tears that lay pooled inside her.
Hamari aankhon mein se ek bhi aansoo aapke dil ko hazaar baar chhot pahuchata hain.
Hum jaante hain
Her glazed eyes remained hauntingly dry.
She looked ahead blankly as Naniji ran distraught hands over her head, her shoulders, her face, murmuring words she couldn’t hear, a mother’s love pouring in rivulets down her lined face. The empty floor lay strewn with rose petals, a pall of incense smoke hovering over them. She was incognisant of how she came to be seated on the sofa.
His husky whisper quelled all other sounds in the room. Feeling the need to be away from the oppressive weight of the numerous eyes surrounding her, she stood up suddenly. She turned beseeching eyes towards Naniji. Imploring her to let her go.
The wise eyes had seen more than their fair share of suffering over the years. Who knew better than her of the moments when the only place to look for solace was within yourself.
She stood by the french doors of their bedroom. Looking out blankly at the dancing shadows cast by the late afternoon sun, as it peeked through the swaying branches of the tree by the poolside. A soft breeze sashayed along the surface of the pool, gently urging the still water into ripples that glistened with a million rainbow coloured flecks. Vivid bright petals from the gulmohar trees that bloomed riotously in the Shantivan garden floated in with the breeze. Settling themselves on the carefully pruned plants that ran along the walls surrounding the pool. His plants.
A sudden gust blew one end of her dupatta across her face. Caressing her face gently before billowing out. She uncrossed her slender arms slowly to reach out for the dupatta as memories arose of another face it had swathed in a storeroom months ago. His face.
A heaviness settled inside her even as a strange sense of calm enveloped her. She turned to walk into the room that lived and breathed him in every inch of space. Her feet carrying her to the recliner of their own accord. She bent to pick up the book lying there. Its pages fluttered in the soft breeze that followed her in.
Lowering herself on the chaise, she lay back holding the book against her heart. The words contained in it swirling in her mind’s eye as they tossed random memories of her life at her. Each time the kaleidoscope paused, his melting brown eyes would be there, calming the storm inside her. In those earthy hues was his soul, a heaven she was a part of. Carefully opening the book, she took out the red rose that lay lovingly preserved between its pages.
I wish ki tumko duniya ki saari khushiyan mile.
She held the rose to her heart as a deep quietude filled her. She felt an immense sense of peace in that moment.
Khushi mujhse vaada karo ki mujhe kabhi chhod kar nahin jaaogi. Main tumhare bina nahin jee paaonga.
A promise she fulfilled. Hamesha.
The doctor pronounced the time of death as between 5 and 5:30pm.
“5:12” he was corrected somberly.
It was when his pyre was lit.
This drabble came about when I was wondering what would happen if Arnav did die after being shot in the show. The producers had planned to introduce a new love interest for Khushi, but, I feel that in such a scenario, she would simply cease to exist. I have always visualised their love, their connection as being almost otherworldly.
Not the best of times to write of ArHi dying, but the images wouldn’t leave me. So, here we are. Thank you for reading. Stay sane and stay sanitised!