We both looked at each other and chuckled, seeing the love birds, romancing without caring about their surrounding.
Who will say they are an old couple? Dude, they can defeat the younger clans in romance!
We both turned our gaze again at his parents who were busy drowning in each other’s eyes.
Aww! So cute!
Uncle slightly rubbed his thumb over the lower lip of auntie, saying something in her ear, making her blush.
A beatific smile came across my face, seeing them like this. Indeed, they are couple goals. “God, they look so amazing together. I hope Manik and I will also look like this when we grow old.” I blushed hard as soon as I realised what I’m thinking.
When did I start planning for the future?
Well, I guess with Manik, there will be going be to my many first because, with him, things are different-different for good.
From the time he came into my life, I started changing, I started adapting all the positivity of life which I used to think don’t exist. My man did bring the colour of joy, purity of positivity and the existence of love in my life.
I love him so much! Ahh, my man!
My trance broke when I heard Manik’s words. “And he was telling me to do stuff at night, oldy!” He murmured under his breath and I blushed harder.
“Manik, you’re so shameless.”I swatted his hand, glaring at him trying my best to hide my blush.
“What? I was right.” He shrugged and I shook my head in disbelief.
He and his remarks!
We turned our gaze again to his parents and my eyes widened in shock when I saw their lips just inches apart.
I was about to close my eyes but stopped when Manik cleared his throat, breaking their trance.
“Hello, the oldie love birds.” Manik teased, making them pull apart.
“Dammit,” Uncle murmured under his breath, making us chuckle.
“Couldn’t you come in a while?” Uncle said in annoyance and he smirked.
“Why? Did I disturb you?” He asked, rolling his tongue in his mouth, making me giggle.
Woah, this is the first time I’m witnessing someone at my place. Lol.
Good Manik, very good. I’m literally having fun.
My gaze went to auntie and I saw her biting her lower lip to control her blush.
Aww, she is so adorable!
“As if you don’t know.” Uncle scoffed, “I’ll definitely take my revenge, Manik. You just wait and watch.” He said, determined, making my eyes widen. He is such a kid. Now, I know from where Manik got his genes.
“Yeah right!” Manik said, giving a tight-lipped smile to him, making me giggle and auntie just blushed.
Gawd, she is literally so beautiful. These Malhotra’s has their charm.
As her eyes landed on me, she smiled warmly. Coming close to me, she engulfed me, “Aww, I missed you. How are you, my princess?” She asked, lovingly.
When she calls me Princess, I just can’t describe my feelings in words. I have never met such a wonderful woman ever in my life. I admire her so much.
“I’m good, Auntie!” I replied, smiling contentedly feeling her motherly warmth. “How’s you, Auntie?” I asked as we pulled apart.
“You can see, now I’m perfectly fine. But I’m angry with you. Why didn’t you come to meet me?” She asked and I moved my eyelashes down, having no answer to her question.
So many things happened in the last few days that I couldn’t able to meet her. Though I talked to her a few times on the phone still, I should have visited her.
“Mom, she was busy,” Manik answered on my behalf, making me smile.
“Yes, we know, busy with you.” His father teased us and I blushed harder.
“Oh, you’re so smart, dad!” Manik sarcastically said, clapping his hands slowly.
“Yeah I know right? Well, that’s why I know very well, why my princess has placed her hair like this. Even your mother and I has gone through the same phase, my dear son.” As uncle uttered this, my eyes widened in utter embarrassment and Manik choked his saliva making Uncle laugh. From the corner of my eyes, I could clearly see his ear turning pink like mine.
God, where do I land myself into? But I’m not complaining!
“When are you going to start behaving mature, Raj? Sometimes I get confused about who is my kid between you and Manik.” Aunty glared at him making use of relief.
“Every time you took his side,” Uncle complained, making an annoyed face looking so adorable.
“Because she’s my mom, Oldy! ” Manik teased him, kissing auntie’s cheek, making me and her giggle. Uncle glared at him before looking at me with puppy eyes. Aww!
“You’re looking so handsome, uncle. Are you planning to kill everyone here?” I complimented him to change the topic and his eyes shimmered, hearing this and from the corner of my eyes, I saw Manik frowning, hearing my words, making me chuckle.
“Thank you so much, Princess.” Uncle smiled, placing his lips on my forehead. Unknowingly tears slipped out of my eyes as I closed them, as this is the first time, I felt this soothing touch. This fatherly touch which I always longed for, I got it from him.
A pure bliss!
I instantly wiped my tear, smiling at him contentedly. I know they too noticed it but they didn’t ask anything, much to my relief.
“By the way, Nandini, thank you as because of you, there is peace in our house.” I narrowed my brows bemusedly not understanding him.
“I mean you keep him busy with yourself and I get some alone time with my wife.” He winked at me and added, “you have taken a romance breaker out of our way. So that is why I’m genuinely very thankful to you.”
As soon as Uncle completed his words, just one thought crossed my mind, Is it possible to blush and laugh at the same time? Because that is exactly what I wanted to do after hearing him.
“Raj, it’s enough.” Auntie chided him, slightly slapping his bicep.
I just laughed, they’re so adorable.
He shrugged his shoulders. “What? I’m just saying the truth.”
“Yes, dad, listen to mom and by the way, you called me a romance breaker even when you did that same thing,” Manik said and my eyes widened.
He is so shameless!
His father rolled his eyes, ignoring his words. “Manik, why don’t you shift permanently with her, instead of asking the driver to drop your clothes daily at her place?” He asked from Manik teasingly, shocking me.
Seriously, they both are fighting like two small kids. They both are the same, that’s why fight so much. But they’re adorable.
“I can’t believe this. You are the first father of the world who is telling your son to leave the house. Am I really your blood?” Manik said, dramatically making me chuckle at his words.
“Ignore them, Nandini and listen to me. You should shift with us and then we’ll live like a happy family.” Auntie squealed, interrupting.
“Yes, we’ll live happily. My son will remain busy with you and I’ll remain busy with my wife.” Uncle said, wrapping his arm around Auntie while she showed him her eyes while I just blushed harder seeing the teasing smile on Manik’s face. I showed him my eyes indirectly telling him to shut up but do he care? He giggled seeing me all flushed.
“Raj, just stop it. You’re becoming more naughty nowadays. Just come home then I’ll teach you a lesson.” Auntie warned him.
“Which lesson mom?” Manik smirked.
“Manik!” Now Auntie glared at him.
“No, Neyo, tell him, he is your beloved son. Tell him now.” Uncle smirked too, moving his eyes from Manik to Auntie.
Oh, so now they’re in one team. Poor aunty.
“I’m not talking to both of you.” Auntie averted her eyes angrily.
“Mom, don’t get angry with me. First Dad started all this.” Manik said, making an innocent face, pointing at Uncle.
Such a innocent devil he is!
Though, I sight to drool.
Uncle glared at him and turning his face towards Auntie, he too innocently said, “Neyo, I was just kidding. Please don’t get angry, my lovely wifey.”
A chuckle left out of my mouth seeing both of them like this. Such a dramatic duo they are.
Uncle and Manik stared at each other and passed a smile, talking to each other through their eyes. I wondered, what is going on in their mind.
Then they together kissed Auntie’s cheeks, bringing a smile on her face.
“Like father, like son.“ She scolded them, twisting their ears.
They both whined like kids and I giggled, placing my hand over my mouth.
“Better behave with me next time.” She warned them, finally leaving their ears. Now they both nodded their head meekly.
“Well, we seriously want you to shift with us, Nandini.” Now Uncle said, looking at me.
“Tell us, you will come to stay with us, right?”She asked me. “Otherwise I will get separated from my son.” She said grimly and her words hit my heart.
Am I really separating a son from her mother? I wondered, moving my eyes down in guilt.
“I’m sorry, Auntie, I had no intention to do this.” I apologised, holding her hand and my eyes became teary. After a second only a lone tear trickled down my cheek mechanically.
“Nandini, I was just kidding. I really didn’t mean it. I’m sorry, please don’t cry.” She apologised, wiping my tear.
But a few more tears rolled down my cheeks.
“Princess, don’t take our words so serious, didn’t you see how we tease each other.” Now Uncle uttered, taking me in his warm arms and I felt better.
“Yes and don’t ever think that you’re separating him from us. I was really just kidding.” Auntie again apologised guiltily.
Now I shook my head. “You don’t have to.”
“By the way can’t you see my Dad’s happiness, he is so happy that I remain busy with you.” Manik joked to change the atmosphere.
“Yeah, I second that. My wife is all mine. I can’t wait to go home.” Now Uncle said, wrapping his arm around her neck. Auntie just shook her head.
“So tell me, are you guys staying for the auction later right?” Aunty asked excitedly but before I could answer Manik interrupted me.
“No, Mom, we are going home soon. Actually, my baby girl has her classes Tomorrow.”
“No aunty, we are staying,” I said, giving a glare to Manik.
“Princess, I just love the way you shut him up.” Uncle laughed. “But on a serious note, I know it’s pretty boring. And I’m stuck here because my wife loved it. But You guys have the option and I don’t want you to spend your time here when the night is pretty young”
“No, it’s not boring and I’m staying,” I said, smiling at Auntie. This is the least I can do for her.
“There is no compulsion, Nandini. If you don’t want to stay. You can go.”
I shook my head. “It’s okay, Auntie. I’ll stay.” She just smiled at me, placing her hand on my cheek and caressing it with her thumb.
“Come, Nandini, I have to meet more people,” Manik said, holding my hand. I gave him a slight nod.
“I was waiting to hear from so long, Manik. Finally, you’re going to leave me alone with my wife. I love you so much for this, my lovely son. Go… Please go.” I chuckled.
Seriously, Uncle is unbelievable!
Manik and Neyonika shook their head.
“Uncle Auntie, I’ll see you around.” I bid them bye before walking Manik hand in hand.
Not for once, he left my side. He kept holding me from my waist throughout his conversation with others. He nodded at a few people and smiled at them, I couldn’t help, but admired him with a contented smile on my face but at the same time, there are a lot of things that started crossing my mind.
“I know, baby girl you must be feeling bored but just a few more people if you’re okay?” He asked and I smiled, giving him a slight nod but trust me I’m literally feeling so out of place and also I felt a lot of stares throughout the evening.
“Manik, it’s Any’s call. I’m just going out. You talk.” I lied as I don’t want him to get tense.
“Are you sure?” He asked, raising his brows.
“Yes, Manik. Please don’t take my tension.” I smiled and walked away, exhaling a deep breath.
God, this is too much for me. This is the first time, I’m witnessing his lifestyle. I know I shouldn’t let any negative thoughts cross my mind but what should I do? I’m trying to adapt it but it’s too much for me. All my life, I stayed away from people. I tried to blend with air but here with him, around so many unknown faces, all I feel like I’m an alien.
From the moment Manik entered my life, I started adapting new things, I started making conversation with his people, but opening up with his parents or friends is another thing and here with so many people is another thing.
“I can never fit into his life. Just look at him and look at me.” This thought did cross my mind a lot of times but seeing his care, his affection, and the way he priorities me above everything, these thoughts blended with air. As I said earlier, I won’t let my insecurity and negativity affect our bond but at the same time, I can’t lie to myself. I’m literally feeling so out of place. I think I need more time. This is his life and I’ll try my level best to fit in this. Everything is overwhelming. The place screamed luxury and the people wore clothes more than my college fees. I bet everyone must be wondering why Manik is with a trash bag like me. I could feel people judging me with their eyes. I was so lost in my thoughts that I didn’t realize that someone was standing beside me on the balcony of that floor.
“Not enjoying the show?” I turned my head, listening to an unfamiliar voice.
“Excuse me?” I looked at the person. He looked tall and handsome. Probably in his late 40’s and looked sophisticated.
“You seem to be lonely, Are you here with anyone?” He ran his eyes all over my body and I instantly felt the need to get out of there.
“I’m here with ‘my man’.” I smiled politely.
“What kind of man leaves a gorgeous woman like you alone? He must be a fool,” he smirked.
“Well, my man is a fool or not but I know one thing that he is a gentleman. He never makes a woman feel uncomfortable, unlike some people.” I gave a tight smile, indirectly telling him to back off.
How can he say anything about him?
“Are you get offended?” He smiled and came closer to me.
“You heard the lady, she is with her man. Step back, Mr Guzman.” I instantly relaxed, hearing that voice.
It’s my man, my Manik’s voice.
I closed my eyes, sighing.
“Is she with you?”
“Yes, Any problem?”
“Relax Manik, I was just having a conversation with this beautiful lady,” he looked at me one last time and walked away.
I startled, as Manik immediately turned and wrapped his arms around me, hugging me tightly.
“I’m so sorry, baby. I shouldn’t have let you walk away. I know you’re feeling uncomfortable here. Fuck, I’m such a dumbass. I’m really sorry, baby.” I just can’t believe that he is apologizing to me when he is clearly not at fault.
“I would have killed that fucking sleaze bag if he had laid his hands on you,” he looked pissed and gritted his teeth.
“Do you know him?” I asked as I pulled back from his embrace.
“He’s is one of the major sponsors of this show and one of our business clients too,” I nodded, understanding.
“Now tell me, what’s bothering you?” He asked, clasping my arms.
“Bothering me? W-what are you talking about Manik?” I asked, looking around.
“Really baby girl, are you again going to lie to me?” He asked, making me look at him by holding my chin.
“I know there wasn’t any call of Any.” I sighed.
“Manik, promise me you’ll not get mad at me if I’ll tell you the truth.”
“Do you really think I’ll ever get mad at you? Until or Unless you’re not taking a risks with your safety and happiness, I can never get mad at you.” My poor heart melted again, listening to his words. He said with so much honesty that I couldn’t stop myself drowning in his pool of words.
Exhaling a deep breath, I held his palm in mine, “I was feeling out of place, Manik.” I whispered, moving my eyelashes down.
“Why?” I looked at him, he frowned hearing me.
“I’m trying my level best to fit into your world but it’s really getting difficult for me, I mean started getting comfortable with your friends and parents but here with so many people, it’s another thing, Manik. I m- mean..” I stopped, seeing the intensity of his eyes.
“What if I say, you don’t need to fit into my world, because you’re my world.” He said, cupping my face, gazing at me with so much affection.
My heart skipped beating as he uttered this. I just became completely speechless and hugged him. “You have no idea what your words do to my heart, Mr Malhotra.” Tears of happiness trickled down my cheeks mechanically, I’m so blessed to have him. Only he has the power to make me cry with immense happiness. I love him so much.
“Well, I do have,” He said and I looked at him after slightly moving my head up, still in the hug. As I wiggled my brows, he chuckled.
Leaning down, he murmured against my forehead, “because your existence around me does that same thing,” placing a soft kiss there, he sealed his words as a promise to be with me always.
My heart filled with joy, hearing his words and my lips curved into a beatific smile.
“Shall we meet my parents for dinner or do you wanna get out of here?” He looked at me in concern as we pulled out of the hug.
“I’m fine, Manik, now let’s have dinner together. They must be waiting for us and even I also want to spend more time with them.” I smiled at him.
“Are you sure, baby girl?” He asked, cupping my face, making me smile at his concern.
“Yes, Mr Brown eyes!” I said, placing a kiss on his palm after moving it near my lips, which was placed on my cheeks.
Placing a soft kiss on the side of my head, he said, “let’s go, my girl.” He smiled, pulling me close by wrapping his one arm around my waist.
We walked back in and saw his parents waiting for us at the table. We smiled and took our place.