When the light came back, we both came on the earth back. Within a second, he broke the hug. He was looking at me with a surly expression like he had done a mistake by hugging me. My heart cried seeing the disappointment on his face. He again stood up holding his head, facing his back to me. I also stood up slowly and I was feeling weak and dizzy, maybe after-effects of Nyctophobia.
His arms were like heaven for me, I was feeling secured and safe in his arms. I felt so peaceful, the peace which I had been finding from childhood. I always felt like that something was missing and that something was love. But my love would always remain one-sided love, I was sure about this.
The lift opened and he stepped out and I was standing in the lift like a statue. The door of the lift started getting close again but before the door could close, he put his feet in between the doors and it opened again. I was shocked because I was thinking that why he stopped the lift from getting close.
He glared at me grimly. “Meet me tonight at 8 pm at my house.” Without saying anything further, he walked from there. I was literally in a shock because Sidharth Shukla asked me to meet him. The lift closed and I didn’t know on which floor it took me.
The whole day, I tried to keep myself busy in work at the office but still, his thoughts didn’t leave me for even a single second. I was checking the time every five minutes.
“Why the time is passing so slow today.” I cried after seeing the time again on my phone because it was still 5:30 pm. Then I wondered. “why he asked me to meet him?”
I was scared and happy both at the same time. I was scared because of his anger and I was happy because at least I would get a chance to talk to him. I was just hoping that nothing goes wrong this time. I was happy after the lift incident because Sidharth hugged me and I got to know that what is the real heaven. His arms for me were heaven on the earth, I just wanted him to hide me in his arms forever, but that heaven belonged to someone else.
I left the office at 7 pm and went to meet Sidharth. I walked inside the house and found no one sitting in the hall. I checked the time and it was already 8 pm. So I directly climbed upstairs to meet him. Like always my heartbeat was accelerating with each step I was taking toward his room. I held the knob of the door of his room and felt like my heart would explode next moment. Closing my eyes, I about to open the door but before I could, someone kept a hand on my shoulder.
I instantly turned around and found an aged man standing in front of me and looking at me confusingly. “Who are you ?” He asked looking at me suspiciously.
I opened my mouth to answer him but before I could, I heard Neyonika Aunty’s voice. I closed my mouth back. ” Raj, she is Shehnaaz, the girl who is helping us,” She said walking toward us and I looked at her. “Shehnaaz, he is Sidharth’s father” when Aunty introduced him with me, I looked at him and he gave me small smile.
“Whatever you are doing for us beta, you are doing a lot for us. You are our first and last hope.” He caressed my hair like a father, having hope in his eyes. This time I gave him a small smile.
“Uncle, I will try my best. I just need your all best wishes with me” I said looking at him and he smiled again. Then I looked toward Neyonika Aunty who was smiling broadly.
“Our wishes are always with you Shehnaaz. You know, how much sweet you are. I just wish to get a daughter in law like you” She said lovingly putting her hand on my face and I smiled. They were having lots of hope from me to get back their son and I decided to make their hopes my strength. “I will try my best to take their son out of pain,” I promised myself, standing there looking at their faces who were looking at me with the smile and having hope in their eyes.
I had been sitting in the hall for four hours and waiting for Sidharth. He had asked me to meet him at 8 pm and after four hours also, I had no clue of him. Ishita Aunty and Neyonika Aunty asked me to sleep in the guest room after dinner but I refused because I wasn’t feeling sleepy or should I say I wanted to wait for him sitting in the hall. Nobody could say that after seeing me that I didn’t sleep for even a single second from 24 hours. I was going crazy thinking about him and his pain. Love made me crazy. One hour more passed away and my eyes were still looking at the door. I decided to not leave this house until I meet him.
Finally, the door pushed open and find Sidharth stepping inside. His legs were trembling and he was not in his senses as he was drunk. He was about to fall down after losing his balance but before he could, I rushed to him and gave him support by wrapping my hand around his neck from behind and from another hand, I held his hand. Our eyes met and for just a few seconds we both got lost in each other eyes.
“Why are you, again and again, coming after me?” He asked, raising eyebrows. I remained silent because he was drunk and I found it better to remain silent. I started taking him toward the stairs.
“Nandita, I love you so much, please come back.” He was just murmuring this again and again when I was taking him toward his room and like always my heart was crying seeing his condition. I opened the door of his room and laid him down on the bed. Removing his shoes and shocks I covered him with the blanket. He was just murmuring Nandita’s name as a payer. I sadly looked at his pale face, his eyes were close. I can’t even describe in words what I was feeling at that moment. Seeing the love of your life in this condition and you are helpless because you can’t do anything, nothing can be more painful than this. But I was so wrong as it was just the beginning of pain in my life.
Last time looking at him, I turned to go but before I could take a step forward, I stopped when he grasped my hand. My heartbeat quickened and my breath became heavy as he held my hand. “Please don’t go, I am so lonely.” listening to his helpless and painful voice, I immediately turned to look at him. I found him still, lying on the bed and his sorrowful eyes were gazing at me. I felt like so many needles all together pierced into my heart and the pain was unbearable.
I sat beside his bed on my knees. I squeezed his hand and blinked my eyes looking at him intensely to assure him that I am with him. He gave me a small smile and tears trickled down my cheeks mechanically. With my shaky hands, I started caressing his hair looking into his eyes deeply. He was also gazing at me silently without blinking his eyes like a small baby. I could see only and only pain in his eyes which was breaking my heart a bit by bit.
After a few minutes only, his eyes closed and he fell asleep. For a minute, I kept staring at his face, and then I moved closer to his face, I kissed his forehead lovingly. With this forehead kiss, I promised him that I will always support him like his shadow and will never leave him, I will follow him blindly like his shadow, always. After some time only when I was busy staring at him, my eyes became heavy and I slept there on the floor holding his hand and putting my head on his chest.
“What the hell, what are you doing in my room?” Next morning, I woke up as I heard his shout. I was sitting on the floor and he was standing in front of me. I looked up at his face and found him looking at me with rage.
“Now Get up and get lost from here.” I shivered and gazed at him having fear in my eyes as he glowered. I didn’t know why he always shouted at me. When I didn’t respond, he grasped my arm, yanked me up to stand and dragged me towards the door.
“You, yourself asked me to meet you.” before he could push me out of the room, I spoke after taking a deep breath. He left my arms and closed his eyes and took a deep breath. I signed because finally, he remembered that he himself called me to meet him.
“I am giving you a chance to say whatever you want to say but only on one condition.” He spoke curtly, looking at me. I was a little happy because finally, he was giving me a chance to speak, but I was also thinking about the condition.
“What is the condition?” I instantly asked.
“The condition is that you will never show me your face after today.” I raised my eyebrows in shock after listening to his condition because yesterday only I promised myself that I would never leave him and today only he was asking me to never show my face to him.
“If you are agreeing to my condition then you have five minutes to say or if you are not then you may just leave.” listening to his words, I came out my thoughts and looked at him confusingly.
“I am accepting your condition but please listen to me and try to understand me.” I agreed because I didn’t want to lose the golden opportunity as he was ready to listen to me. Listening to my words, he rolled his eyes like he didn’t care about anything.
“Remember that you have only five minutes and after this, you will never show me your face.” As he reminded me, I nodded my head sadly. His behaviour hurt me a lot.
“Sidharth, I know the pain which you are going through is unbearable” I started explaining him after taking a deep breath and he again rolled his eyes.
“Lekin koe bhi dard kabhi itna badha nhi hota jitna ki hum ushe banate hai. I have also lost someone who was so close to my heart, I couldn’t even imagine my life without her that time. It’s still hurt but we can’t change the reality, hona toh vhi hai jo humhri destiny mein likha hai. Apne aap ko hurt karne se, apne aap ko dard dene se kya sab shi ho jaega? Nothing will change but by doing this you are hurting your family, your mom and your dad, they really love you. At least for them, please try to live your life, try to come out of your pain.” I was trying my best to explain to him. Only I know, how difficultly I was controlling my emotions, I was feeling extreme pain in my heart. I looked at him, he was still looking on the other side as if my words weren’t affecting him.
“Sidharth jo chala jata hai, voh kabhi vapas nhi ata, you have to accept this truth of life. Nandita is never going to come back.” As I said these words, he instantly swept his eyes towards me, full of anger as like I did any crime. His angry glares were more than enough to scare me. I gulped the lumps down my throat in fear.
“Who told you that Nandita is dead? Nandita is not dead.” He shrieked loudly, pulling me toward himself by holding my arms tightly. I closed my eyes in fear.
“Now listen to me very carefully, it is not only the pain which is killing me, but it is also something more than the pain which is killing me” Listening to his words, I opened my eyes and he was glaring at me angrily. “What do you think I enjoy by hurting myself? Mujhe maza aata hai apne aap ko hurt karke ?” He asked, digging his nails into my arms and I nodded my head negatively while tears rolled down my cheeks.
“No one can never understand my condition. The pain and the guilt which I am going through.” He said dejectedly, having pain in his eyes and listening to his painful voice, more tears fell down from my eyes. I wanted to know his pain, I wanted to ask about his condition, I wanted him to share his pain with me, but I had no right to ask him anything because I had no value in his life, I stood nowhere in his life, I was nothing for him.
“Now I gave you more than five minutes, now please get lost and never show me your face or else the consequences will be more worst.” He pushed me away and warned me sternly. I was looking at him sadly, having tears in my eyes.
I badly wanted to help him and wanted to know about the thing which was more than the pain for him and Which was killing him. I wanted to know about Nandita and if she was alive then where she was now. There were many things which I wanted to know, but I silently lumbered out of his room before he could shout on me because my heart cried a lot when he behaved like I was nothing for him. “The person whom I love a lot, I was nothing for him.” I murmured dejectedly and cried in agony after coming out of his room because it was hurting a lot.
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