She stood there in front of where his motorcycle was parked along with Aman’s. Her eyes were glued to the machine and his were glued to her, as always. She looked positively kissable with one set of nails nestled between her perfectly set teeth and the other hand placed firmly on her hip. He watched as she chewed on her fingers gently, reminding him of the way her teeth had caught his lips and nibbled. He took a deep breath and forced his body to behave even as he walked over to Aman’s bike to extract the extra helmet for her.

It was bad enough that he had kissed when she had been in as much pain as he had once felt in his arm; bad enough that he had gathered her close and hoped that he was driving away the excruciating sting he remembered so clearly. Now that he had, all he could think of was how it felt when he had held her against him; how it felt when she had kissed him right back, with all her heart, with feeling that was mirrored in every curl of her fingers against his skin. All hell had broken loose.

In the last twenty minutes that it had taken them to make their way across the river on the raft that Mohan had helped him steer, he had employed every possible measure to ensure there was enough physical distance between them – just so that he wouldn’t be tempted to pull her back into that kiss. But all he had done was avoid the unavoidable for a few minutes more than he might have otherwise. He had clearly forgotten that when he had her sit with him on the bike, it would be in a way that was so temptingly carved in the glint of her eyes – her large midnight doe eyes framed with lashes that curved tantalizingly against the glass of her lenses.

“It’s just a two wheeler with a powerful engine, not a dragon” He said softly even as her fingers slipped out of the space between her teeth and her hand fell away from her face. And just as he prepared himself for the force of her gaze, her eyes caught his and held them prisoner.

“I haven’t ever…I mean I have an Activa at home but I am the only one who gets to ride it…Tripti, Ma…they have to ride pillion with me…”

He watched as her eyes scanned the bike again before gently skimming his face, never meeting his gaze again. In that driving-him-crazy way that she always did. He stepped closer to her as she continued to ramble about being scared of road accidents. His heart was soaring as he realized he would forever remain in her memory as the first time she ever sat on a bike. She seemed like the sort of person who would remember something like that as a special event. Just like she would remember that kiss. If he were to hazard a guess, it was the first time she had been kissed too. It thrilled him – this feeling of being special to her – enough to make him forget that he might be accused of gloating. “I ride carefully, I promise. I’ve never had an accident ever.” He said softly, hoping to reassure her as he extended his own helmet to her.

Her eyes flew up to his, alarmed. “So that just increases the probability of you having an accident with me sitting behind you.”

It was gravity of her concern that made him burst out laughing, much to rise of warmth up her long, slender neck and into her cheeks. He wished he didn’t know just how soft the skin there was. He wished he didn’t wonder what it would be like to kiss the column of her throat, perhaps even mark her as…

“We will be fine.” He promised again even as he tried to stop chuckling. “Here,” He extended the helmet again hoping that it would give her the reassurance she seemed to need. If only someone reassured him similarly. Fine? That was the total opposite of what he was going to be at the end of this trip. Dead. That is what was more likely. He was halfway there already.

She took the helmet gingerly, holding it as if it were a bomb. “What about you?”

He held up Aman’s. “I have J’s.”

Damn, he winced silently. Did he have to call out specifically which helmet was whose? She was going to ask him why he hadn’t given her Aman’s instead. “We should go now,” He said quickly, putting his helmet on. He then swung his legs over the bike and kicked it to life. Thankfully, the engine came to life in one kick, the dull thrum of the engine filling the growing restless between them. He waited patiently, his visor lifted up and eyes unblinking in their perusal of her movements.

He watched as she studied the bike and took a couple of steps towards the pillion seat. He saw her nervousness in the side-view mirrors and bit back a smile as her fingers found their way back to mouth.

“How am I supposed to sit – Aunty style….I mean…the way…older…women usually do?”

He chuckled to himself even as he turned around and hoped that she could hear him from behind the helm. “Sit the way you are comfortable sitting. It’s not rocket science, I promise.”

He saw her mutter something to herself which he was sure sounded like “easy for you to say,” before she placed her hand on the seat. Damn, he cursed. She was going to hold him and it was going to kill him when she did. Damn.

“I am going to be very clumsy. I’m sorry if we both land up on the ground.”

He smiled again and looked down before he turned his neck. “I’ll keep my feet firmly on the ground. We won’t fall.” This had to be the longest anyone had ever taken to sit with him on his Electra. And every second of it was pure torture. Of course, it was nothing that was going to happen in the next forty five minutes or so that it was going to take them to get to Rishikesh.

He watched in the mirror as she put her helmet on in quick jerky moments and visibility breathed in deeply before swinging her legs over the bike without touching him or even allowing her body to be in less than a couple of inches of distance between them. He held on as the machine wobbled for a few seconds as she found her balance. He heard her sigh of relief before he heard her muffled words. “I’m good….we can go,” She whispered. He could now see only portions of her head covered by his helmet…his helmet. Her hands were possibly lying uselessly by her side. There was nothing at the back to hold unlike Activas she had mentioned. Bikes like these were made for couples who could legally plaster themselves against each other in public. Or those who didn’t find physical proximity as killing as he was going to.

“You can hold me,” He offered softly, thankful for the helmet that would serve as a convenient excuse for the thickness in his voice. He wanted her to end the torment and just put her hands on him so he wouldn’t have to spend the next thirty odd kilometers wanting to pull her hands around his waist.

He was not surprised, however, when she urgently assured him she was fine and reminded him that they should leave if they wanted to find the doctor.

He took a deep breath and slowly released the clutch and kicked the Bullet into gear as he gently made his way through the short narrow path up the small hillock before turning left and merging into the well laid, winding highway around the mountains.

They rode in silence and distance as the steep cliff to their left dipped and rose as the mountains went by. The river flowed by in the distance, not always visible but ever present. He could even hear the water gurgle in his head despite the beat of his motorcycle. He resisted the temptation to look into the mirrors on either side, more often than he needed to. And tried to ignore the heat the lay nestled between his body and hers. He knew she was tense and uncomfortable and yet, anything he might do to make her life easy, would only end up alarming her more. The one time that he had had to brake suddenly – she had clasped his left shoulder and almost made him groan as her surprisingly sharp nails had dug into his skin. That she had apologized profusely enough for him to turn to her and ask her stop, had warned him against forcibly pulling her hands around his waist.

He hadn’t really expected conversation – not today, not yesterday when she had refused to ride with him. For one, it would be largely inconvenient with two helmets and mountain air playing ping pong with their words. And two, there was little to be said that could be without meeting each other’s eyes. In fact, in an ideal world, he wouldn’t have kissed her at all without clearing the air between them – not yesterday and definitely not today.

And yet, seeing her at the camp unexpectedly this morning, face twisted with pain and looking deliciously disheveled as she never had really seemed before, had gotten under his skin. Being near her had always kept him strangely aware of every inch of distance there was between them – even four years ago. It was the only reason he could cite, for kissing her with such abandon despite knowing that there was an Arjun-named chasm between them.

They reached Rishikesh within the hour even as the sun streamed over their heads and forced sweat to break out on their skin. The ride within the small town remained largely uneventful even as he looked at the now familiar surroundings through her eyes – one of a guest – absorbing, amazed.

The doctor they preferred to consult with at the River was a distant relative of Aman’s and hence practically family. He knew he was welcome without notice just as Aditi and Aman were. Radha Bua, as he referred to her thanks to Aman and thereby Aditi’s relationship, was a recent widow in her early fifties and lived alone in the holy town in the home she had made with her husband almost a decade ago when they had left the hustle-bustle of the city and decided to spend their remaining years serving people in the truest sense. As doctors, their presence was highly valued in the local community and at any point in time, their clinic which Radha Bua ran alone now, was always brimming with those who couldn’t afford doctors and medicines. They had had no children and hence were even more partial to Aman, Aditi and Arnav – especially Arnav who Radha Bua had taken a shine to after Aman and Aditi’s wedding. So it was no surprise that when Arnav and Khushi arrived at her clinic, she ushered them in to her private chambers and was with them in less time than it took for him to check with Khushi if she was doing okay.

Thankfully, Radha Bua had not called out the superfluousness of their visit. She had fussed over her wound enough to reassure him and Khushi both that her wound did need professional tending to. And that anti-tetanus shot. He watched as discreetly as possible as Radha Bua had a helper-lady clean and bandage the wound so that it wouldn’t get infected and would allow her to wear her clothes normally. Khushi remained as stoic and calm as she always seemed through the procedure except for a momentary clenching of her eyes when the anti-tetanus shot was administered.

He thanked his distant aunt profusely – adding to Khushi’s already ardent gratitude and ignored the small twinkle in her eye as she waved goodbye to the two of them for several minutes as they settled down on the bike and sped away from the small street.

He weaved through the streets again as gently as possible before he reached the intersection that led to the highway back to Shivpuri where he stopped the Bullet and took his helmet off.

“It’s almost two,” He said softly even as he saw her extract her helmet off her head and lean in. “You must be hungry. Do you want to get some lunch and then head back to the River or…” He hesitated as he struggled to get the rest of the words out – an option he really didn’t want her to take. “The team must have just banked on the ghat. We can catch up with them and join them back on the trip to the River?”

His breath remained clichéd-ly bated as he saw her toss up the options in her head. The thought of losing these unexpected moments of solitary togetherness to the entangled web they had waiting for them at the end of the day, was nerve wracking. A part of him wanted to make the decision for them and pick the former option. But he had done enough decision making in the past. He now wanted it to be her call to decide whether and how she wanted to take this further. If she decided to be with him because that is what she wanted, it would make it so much easier when everything was out in the open between them. Else…

“Asha Chachi said she would be cooking for me anyway. We could go back to the River and wait for the rest of them to…”

He smiled to himself and nodded, happy and amazed that she had both given him what he wanted and yet made it what she wanted. He waited as she put her helmet on. Then, triggered by the confidence that her choice had just empowered him with, he reached out by the side and pulled her left hand and placed it on his shoulder. He turned his head a little as her fingers curved as if to be pried away from his body and shook his head, and her hand stilled.

For the entire ride around the curved highway through the mountains, he remained aware of the pleasant weight of her ever-so tentative touch on his shoulders.

——

With the return to the camp, returned the whoosh of misgivings and fear. He saw that in the way her movements became fidgety and nervous, almost as it she was sure he was going to jump her. And so he put distance between them, as much as possible. As he parked the Bullet and then walked down the little mountain to the valley, he stayed a little behind her and focused on the path. The occasional comments were limited to apologies for a delayed lunch and inquiries about her hurt back.

On her part, she thanked him almost as much as she had thanked the doctor and yet kept her eyes away from his. It made him crave to get to that plate of food and the moments of stationery togetherness that would enable him and hopefully her to say something that would get them past the awkwardness that stemmed from a haphazard mesh of physical intimacy and unresolved feelings. All he knew now that though they were both, finally, in the same physical and mental place, their paths leading up to it were very different. And entangled in all the wrong places – most of them not even completely visible to her. A part of him just wanted to come out and tell her all that he had known and done. And yet, how could he?

It was only when they were both seated with plates of freshly prepared, fluffy phulkas, sabji and dal, that he allowed himself to look at her unchecked and refused to lower his gaze despite the heat glowing in her skin.

“Khushi…”

“About before…”

They both spoke at the same time, their hands poised over their plates as they sat opposite each other with the sun shimmering in softly on one hand and the tent canvas flapping on the other.

He stopped immediately, and nodded for her to continue, relieved that she had decided to voice the churn that had been dancing on her face the last few hours. He stiffened however as the two opening words she had chosen settled in his mind. He had declared rather bravely that he would not let her forget about the kiss or go back to Arjun. But if that is what she did choose, what could he do? He was no Bollywood hero, he wasn’t going to hold her hostage to the physical explosion they contained between them. He would have to watch her walk away. And he would hold himself together for the rest of his life. He knew how to do that. Especially when he was the one to blame.

He waited as she played with her food, spoon noiselessly sifting through a serving of dal and sabji. A few seconds later, she looked him in the eyes again, pushing her glasses up the bridge of her nose. He bit back a smile as her lashes hit the glass like they so often did when she adjusted her glasses.

“Before…ermmm….anything…I mean….” She looked away and breathed in visibly. “I need to speak with Arjun before we can…before I mean…” She put her spoon down and folded her hands in her lap, leaning away from the table. A part of him, really, really wanted to put her out of her misery. Even if she wanted, she couldn’t hide the fact that the kiss earlier and this…madness that seemed to envelope them, was her first encounter with all things related to romance and relationships. But the sadist-cum-masochist in him stayed mum as he waited for her to put a name to what they shared.

He knew she wouldn’t. And she didn’t.

“I just need to let Arjun know that I don’t feel the same way about him.” She looked at him with such sadness in her eyes that it twisted his heart to partly be the reason to put her in this position – at least for that one moment that held her gaze. “And once I have told him – I don’t know how I can…how we can…” She looked around and clenched her fingers. “I mean we are all here.He is too. And if he gets to know about us…He asked me….about you and I said no…and now…” She looked back at him and shrugged. “I know it’s not your problem but…”

He swallowed and shook his head. The words were on the tip of his tongue. And yet when spoke, they morphed. “I understand. And there is no…” This was harder than he thought. “There is no hurry. These two days are not all we have…” He wanted to believe it, he wanted to tell her there were decisions already made in his head.

“But how can there be more?” She asked, her eyes full of questions as they scanned his face. “You are here…and I don’t know where I will be…and…”

If he had ever any doubts about how she felt, they were all gone with the question that seemed to more powerful than a declaration of love. For the first time in years, he felt the stirring of hope, the distant promise of a future he had never really considered willingly.

 

River Song, Music and Lyrics

Song Title: Ennai Konjum Maatri

Album: Kaakha Kaakha

Singers: Shalini, Timmy, Tippu

Music: Harris Jayraj

Lyrics: Thamarai

 

The second stanza goes something like this (please forgive me for killing the essence!)

You brought me here

Made me say all these things

Made me smile (like I have rarely before)

What else (have you in store for me)

You sit beside me and mark me with you unwavering gaze

What does it mean, I wonder

 

My gaze is new

As are these words that come of my mouth

It is you who has brought upon, this (change) in me

That your eyes should look for me, and me alone

And other such thoughts drive me insane

 

A rather poor translation can be found here

 

Note:

  1. A dear friend and River-ian penned a beautiful piece about Arnav’s thoughts and feelings which i selfishly asked her to hold on too till I posted this chapter. Appu / Aparna / Sohni – please share you magic with everyone here. Beautiful writing can only be contained so long. Thank you for indulging my request.
  2. To all those who don’t understand regional languages like Marathi/Tamil – thank you for your patience. Hope you have been able to expand the joy that music brings in any language
  3. Next update: Monday, Sep 26, 2016
  4. Please excuse typos!

600 thoughts on “Interlude IV: Shifting Gears

  1. “You and I, it’s as though we have been taught to kiss in heaven and sent down to earth together, to see if we know what we were taught.” By Boris Pasternak (in Doctor Zhivago)

    Have they learnt? It appears so, now more than ever, at the very least they are talking about how’s instead of if’s. But not so much that they will do anything it takes to cross the barriers. Arjun is that huge barrier, more for Khushi than Arnav, and for obvious reasons. To Khushi I say, you either want something or you don’t. She sees this as some sort of a Catch-22 situation, but it really is not. All she has to do is talk, and that is possibly the only thing she doesn’t want to ever have to do. Isn’t that the case with Arnav and her too? If only she would stick around long enough to complete a conversation, she would be in a far better space. On the other hand, Arnav seems so much more at ease with what he wants, and sadly also at ease with letting go if he has to.

    I do wish Khushi enjoyed the ride more, as much as I think you enjoy writing about nature, which is put simply, fabulous. Yes she was in pain, and was just kissed, and has a million things on her mind, but I hear ‘Happiness is a bike ride in nature’. Sorry, I have no idea who to credit that line to.

    The songs are fabulous. I’ve lived more than a decade each in TN and MH. Suffice to say both are very dear and have played a great role in my formative years. So thank you, your songs are lovely flashbacks. Happy days and stay safe everyone :)

    Liked by 12 people

    1. Kriskles, your comment is so amazing. How beautifully you penned each and everything there is to say. Their feeling and emotions. And that quote….wow..
      I don’t know what I want to say, I don’t know how to say it. So ..that was amazing

      Liked by 6 people

        1. Aiya….I can’t form one sentence properly…this is the only way I can respond to meera’s characters, her story, her writing.
          I wanted to say so much but,wasn’t able to say a word other than ‘your comment is so amazing.’
          There are so many perfect comments,I can’t do anything more than put star on them. Believe me….and they all deserve at least 10 stars from me. Including yours.

          Liked by 6 people

  2. Nazarein jhuka ke dil pe ikhtiyar karta hai koi,
    Masoom adaon se humein giraftar karta hai koi.

    Shab-e-hijr to kaati kis tarha humne kya batayein,
    Visaal ki raat kaise dil pe kaabu rakhta hai koi.

    Khush-o- khatawaar karta hai humein iss tarha se woh,
    Jab iss yakeen se dil mere hawaale karta hai koi.

    mushkil milon ki doori tay karna kahan tha?
    Haath bhar ka yeh faasla kaise tey kare koi.

    azaab deti hai har saans jo chhu ke guzarti hai,
    fir bhi tujse dur rehna kaise gawara kare koi

    Liked by 11 people

  3. Meera this one was classic Meera update from beginning to the end full of meeraness all throughout. Of course it was a pleasant surprise for someone like me who is an ardent supporter of Khushi always. As I knew You did your magic and made me fall in love with this Arnav finally. I feel this time the likelihood is that Khushi will initiate the break up with tremendous heartbreak of herself, Arnav and all of us😭😭. You mesmerized me by subtle and sensual nuances during this exhilarating and very satisfying bike ride. I am not at all disappointed by lack of touch between them and it was the beauty that despite the fact they maintained distance still the chemistry, passion and tuning between them was very explosive. I could never expect anything different from this Khushi. She has always been very introvert and analyses a lot. Yes she kissed but she was under influence of sedatives as well as too much closeness of wet , disheveled and sexy someone who had those golden flakes around his irises and how could she resist😜😜. However she was just back to being herself during bike ride. I also loved this demure Khushi along with AV sir with all her shy gestures. Her Aubty style cracked me up. For me also Arnav giving his own helmet to her just to feel her was much more intimate than the kiss— I can die easily with happiness here❤️❤️. How will he stay away from her for next 5 years— my heart sinks when I think about that. Destiny is going to play cruel game again and it seems ultimately his karma will come back to haunt him😭😭.

    Arnav’s yearning for her stopped my breath — I wish Khushi knows about this but I don’t think that she realizes the depth of his feelings for her— ironic😽— however I am extremely thankful to you for giving this unexpected gift of happiness by giving his POV as till date I was always little skeptical about his true feelings.

    Now he is guilty for his past actions and tried to talk/apologise unsuccessfully few times–but somewhere it seems he knowingly lead her even though he was engaged when he was “Randy teen”😻😘and looks like Arjun was also privy to some facts— yes it is a big mess now.

    Among all this I can not help but feel sad for Khushi. She is a simple intelligent and introvert girl who has irrevocably fallen for AV sir and has to endure so much heartbreak and pain and now going through so much guilt of breaking Arjun’s heart that she can not even bask in happiness of this reciprocal feelings from AV sir. She will be completely broken along with AV sir when they separate this time. I hope that she does not loose her confidence this time and rather rise from ashes itself.

    However Horny Arnav was a treat to read. These lines of his longing for her, her touch

    “to end the torment and just put her hands on him so he wouldn’t have to spend the next thirty odd kilometers wanting to pull her hands around his waist.”

    “Being near her had always kept him strangely aware of every inch of distance there was between them – even four years ago. It was the only reason he could cite, for kissing her with such abandon”

    “For the entire ride around the curved highway through the mountains, he remained aware of the pleasant weight of her ever-so tentative touch on his shoulders.”

    are constantly roaming in my head Meera. You are master at writing emotional scenes and can create fire and blow a bomb just by plain, simple and sensual words with lot of undercurrents( thank u sohniye for increasing my vocabulary here).I am still reeling under effects of Arnav’s yearning vividly described by you. I am so envious of Khushi at this point and would not mind to steal this Arnav for myself( sohniye— don’t kill me –after all it is a democratic world 😁😁🙏🙏).

    Usually I always look forward desperately for next update after reading your chapter but today I am very content and happy and praying ki “waqt yahin thum jaye and both of them stay cocooned in this pure bliss away from privy eyes of beraham world “.

    This song from Rafi Sahab come to my mind when I think of Arnav and future:

    Liked by 13 people

    1. That was a beauty on Day2 from you Meenu! You did it!

      And did you say you loved Arnav?! Did you say you want to steal him from Khushi?! Aretha… yeh toh katana hain!!!! I never expected this day to come ☺

      Liked by 8 people

      1. Yes Anu– now I am very sure of Arnav’s feelings and no more doubt— now I will be obsessive possessive for him you see😅😅-. I also analyse just like Khushi and will keep on holding till I am dead sure—- again 😁😁😁😁😁

        Liked by 9 people

    2. It is NOT a democratic world Meenu! Kisne bola tumko? Itni bakwaas information kaun feed kar raha hain yaar! ;) lol Welcome to this side of the world Meenu jaan! Im not surprised Arnav bowled you over too, ‘mera’ Arnav hain hi aisa! :D ;)

      Yes she kissed but she was under influence of sedatives as well Haw! Trust you to bring out things that never strike anyone else on the River! :D She had a sedative Meenu, not an aphrodisiac! ;) And when Mr Aphrodisiac himself is there with her in that wet , disheveled and sexy state, no other parameter can play there! Woh akela kaafi hain, sedative ki koi zaroorat nahin oye! :P LOL! I cannot believe I am typing all this right now!! :D

      I loved the fact that you highlighted her guilt because of Arjun Meenu. Its a heavy burden to bear, the friend who was with you through thick and thin for so many years, to think of breaking his heart must be extremely difficult. I wish we get to know what is going on between the two men, Khushi more than me lol!! The earlier she knows, the better.

      Amazing song and amazing comment Meenu, straight from the heart, as usual. :)

      Liked by 10 people

      1. I had a feeling ke Teri tipni definitely milegi yaha pe….esp when it come to one defending Khushi….😝

        Aphrodiasiac kahaka bhe..😝😝…ek gf ke hote hue Dusri pe dore daal raha tha….then come to the mountains like Bachara sadhu Bawa…..abh phir se chance mar raha without any explainations,…again and again keeps saying we need to talks, we need to talks….lekin koi talk karta hi nahi….ultra sadhu se achanak randy teen ban gaya hai.

        Hows….tells tells….

        😝😂🤗🤗🤗

        Liked by 7 people

        1. ROFL @ Sadhu Bawa! Oye, explanation unko milta hain jo sunna chahta ho! Hadd hain! Chance usne nahin, Khushi ne maara bey! Seedhe pappi leli !! Bechara was practicing his speech ekla, pahonch gayi tapasya bhung karne keliye! 😝😂

          LMAO! I cannot believe we are talking about this. Chup kar Avz, yeh log maar daalenge! Meeru jaan le legi! :P We will soon have a AV Vs Khushi camp on this blog, like IF used to have..story side pe reh jaayegi! :D

          Liked by 5 people

          1. 🙀🙀🙀😳😳😳

            Phirse Bachara boli.🙉🙉🙉🙉 tu sachmein pite gi 😝😝😝😝🙊🙊🙊🙊….

            aur pappi kabhi li? Ulta ulte paon mangne aya tha…..😝😝😝😝😝 Bichari Khushi,…chup kar ke chali jaa rahi thi, Roka ussi saadhu bawanehi…bahana baaz Kahika..😝😝😝..Yaad hai na……..aur waise koi speech beech practice nai kar raha tha,….drame marta tha……mujhe toh lagta hai chupke Khushi ko ghumrah karne ke sau Tariko pe kitab likh raha tha. 😝😂🤗🤗🤗

            Aur tum Meri bichari bolisi Khushi ko menka bulb rahi ho….🙉🙉🙉🙉 nahiiiiiiii 😂

            ROFL!! OMG….kal ke update ke baad definitely AV vs Kaveri camp banne wali hai….seems like the riverside is going to be divided 3 ways tho…as lots of us may be inclined to empathize with him.
            But please no IF wale group…..it used to be brutal over there. This fun and games wali group is thoroughly enjoyable. 🤗🤗🤗🤗

            Meera, excuse the siding please it’s all in gud faith and teasing. We love all ur characters ….(softly) some more than others -Aman😍😍😍.

            😝😂😂😂

            Liked by 4 people

    3. Hey minu 🤗🤗🤗🤗

      Beautiful isn’t enough. As much as I would like to disagree with Khushi’s distancing during the bike ride…I have to agree with u that that was absolutely tru to her character.

      U r indeed a true Khushi fan. Always able to streamline her dilemma and feeling regales of its complexities. But what is this I read….ur now and Arnav fan….😳😳😳😳 Meera ke magic he tumhe bhi nahi chhoda 😂😘👍🏼👌🏼😆

      But in the flip side, if u read the first interlude, I somehow get the feeling that he was not sure about his feeling towards Khushi as he is now. It seems like he may have been confused during AaRohan time….and was still confused even when she came face to face by the river bank after so many year. (Going by his conversation with Aman).

      It almost felt like he stopped himself thinking he doesn’t deserve her….and then that attempt to kiss from Khushi’s side was the turning point for him. Sort of like a green signal that’s yes, she want this just as much as he does and he wants to fight for it and yet she rebuffed him when he tried.
      But something has shifted. The equation isn’t in balance from all that we know and it almost feels like he is racing against time as the damn he built around this unknown feeling has broken and all is now out in the open as far as his future with her is concerned. And yet,…time is the liberty he can’t offord and the sword of the past dangling upon them.

      I just hope these 2 days r wisely spent by him….if not then Arjun is gonna be one up again and Khushi is the one suffering along with him.

      Thnq u so much for such a wonderfully worded comment as always. And welcome to camp AV. 😜
      Phew, my Aman is still safe. 😝😂

      Liked by 6 people

      1. I was nodding to everything about Av you have written. As much as I want to beleive that AV fell irrevocably in love with her during college, I guess it is right that he was confused. Let see how it unfolds :)

        Liked by 6 people

        1. HE hasn’t to have been confused Anu….cuz otherwise the new of his engagement and him still being with Saira won’t have been rife in college after that night.

          Also he broke off after that…and during the first interlude….his confusion and hesitation of facing her was very evident.

          He may have been battling with his conscious as to whether these feeling are real? Esp if one introspect with what he so easily voiced to Aman about unconventional looks. And then to top that the guilt of not being sure of himself and yet leading her on and unwillingly breaking her heart.

          Now I don’t know how Arjun fits in this picture,….maybe he was just privy to AV’s gf info and AV thought its known by Khushi, until the fiasco at AaRohan Night happened, which brought on the guilt and the feeling of not deserving him.

          I am from keeping my fingers crossed and just hoping it’s all in Khushi and AV’s head and nothing to do with the bet speculations.

          😊🤗🤗🤗

          Liked by 6 people

  4. Finally we see a “So in love” Arnav Varun!! It was so refreshing to know that he finds Khushi so irresistible. Hope Khushi soon comes to know what is in his mind, she being so insecure of her looks. It is so beautiful to step into new love and you have written it so well. This is the moment Khushi was waiting for all her life, wasn’t she?
    Waiting eagerly for the next update to see how Khushi will disclose the matter to Arjun. What is it that Arnav wants to tell her that has the power to disrupt their budding love?

    Liked by 6 people

  5. Can I just fan girl over the romantic bike ride and the fact that Khushi owned up to her feelings. She stayed true to herself and no matter how difficult, even admitted her feelings and the need to tell Arjun. She is courage personified.

    Liked by 6 people

  6. Awesome.. the ride to Rishikesh and back was enchanting.. I loved the silent ride as it is more connecting then wasting energy on words.. good that Khushi got professional treatment and ARSHI got to spend some good quite time with each other.. Arnav is so happy to be Khushi’s first for many things and he is also enjoying her uneasiness as she wants to speak to Arjun and pour out to him her heart’s true feelings for him and then to decide what is between her and him.. Loved the small talk which have given hope not only to Arnav but also to us too.. Khushi indirectly have voiced out her feelings for her AV sir.. happy that Khushi is not giving into the pressure created by Arjun’s talk.. she is giving her true feelings a chance.. but now lets see what happens next?? loved the awesome update.. :)

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Meera,

    Just realized my comment wasn’t posted. Well, retyping it.

    Song – one of my favorites. Here at least I could follow it. However this song was from the female perspective wasn’t it?
    There was something sweet about Khushi in this update. May be because you penned down about her through Arnav’s eyes. If I had not been so set against him, I would have enjoyed his observation of her nervousness and excitement. It’s nothing to do with your characterization of him, it just my perception of him. I enjoyed where he had to exercise control over his desires for her. Well, that sounded like a good punishment for him.

    I really dread the update where Khushi will have to break Arjun’s heart. However, loved it when she finally plucked the courage and expressed her priorities where she had to tell Arjun first. It’s like setting the rule – friendship is equally important. Loved that about her.

    And the best part was Khushi’s innocence when she expressed her doubt and worry about how to take the relationship forward when they are far apart.

    Liked by 9 people

  8. Hello, Meera.
    The non regional language speaker in me loved the Peppi number and heard it a few times since the update. It definitely has expanded my 🎶 👂. But the river fan in me still needed to know the word so I can understand Kaveri state after that sizzling interlude. (Damn I am still not ever last 2 updates) so I dared to translate and loving it even more now. posting here, pease let me know if this is as accurate as it would get.

    Thank you Meera.

    Singers : Vijay Prakash
    Song: Konjam Konjam
    Lyrics : Karky
    Music : Maragatha Mani
    Movie: Naan Ee
    Lyrics in Thanglish
    Exact translation of tamil words
    Konjam olari kottava?
    Konjam nenjai kilari kaatava?
    Konjam vaayai mudava?
    Konjam unnul sendru thedava?

    Konjam vazhiyai kaeten – Adi
    Konjam konjam valigal tharugirai
    vo o o oh ho

    Nee thiraigal maatinaal
    Ul araigal pootinaal
    Un idhaya moolaiyil
    Naane irupen (2)

    Konjam ullam sindhidu
    Konjam konjam ennul vanthidu
    Konjam paarvai veesidu
    Konjam konjam unmai pesidu

    Konjam thirakka sonen Adi
    Konjam konjam maraikka paarkiraai
    vo o o oh ho

    Aey kanja vanjiye
    Un nenjil yaen thadai?
    Ippooli veliyai, Inraavathu udai

    Whats up ? Whats up ? Whats up ?

    Kaakai thoodhu anupidu
    Kaatraai vanthun
    koonthal koothuven

    Rekkai yeathum indriyum
    Thukkikondu vinnil yeruven

    Innum jenmam kondaal – Un
    Kanmun thonri imsai pannuven
    vo o o oh ho

    En idhaya kootile!
    Un idhayam korkka vaa!
    Eeruyirai serka vaa!
    Onraakida va!

    What did you say?

    En idhaya kootile!
    Un idhayam korkka vaa!
    Eeruyirai serka vaa!
    Onraakida va! English Translation
    I tried my best :)
    Shall I blabber a little?
    Shall I tell from my mind a little?
    Shall I shut mouth a little?
    Shall I search inside you a little?

    I asked a little a way –but
    You gave little little pain
    vo o o oh ho

    Even if you put a obstacle,
    Lock your mind,
    I will stay in the corner
    of your heart.

    Drop your mind a little
    Come inside me a little
    Just see me a little
    Speak truth a little

    I asked to open a little – but
    You’re trying to hide a little
    vo o o oh ho

    Hey poor girl
    Why hurdle in’ur mind ?
    Broke this fake fence at least today

    Whats up ? Whats up ? Whats up ?

    Send a crow with message
    I‘ll come as air and
    hold your hair

    Without any feathers
    I’ll fly in sky holding you

    In my comings births – I’ll
    show up and torture you
    vo o o oh ho

    In my heart,
    Shall I tangle your heart?
    Shall I Join two hearts?
    Shall I make them one?

    What did you say?

    In my heart,
    Shall I tangle your heart?
    Shall I Join two hearts?
    Shall I make them one?

    Liked by 9 people

    1. Thanks for translation Avni.
      I am taking a liberty to share another regional song sung by a very unconventional singer ( actually he is a Director)Watch “Ekla Aakash (Male) (Ekla Aakash) (Bengali) (2012)” on YouTube

      Followed by a online translation

      My lonely skies have stopped sailing in the dark currents of the night, after (I started) loving you

      You acquainted my days with color ,  after (I started) loving you

      The moment our eyes meet, the patio blooms with flowers

      The morning dew caresses my lips after loving you

      When my tired heart finally found a home, all I wanted was a phone call from you

      When the afternoons filled the house with notes of my loneliness that the sun sang,

      I would find myself thinking about where you were, how far away

      My untuned guitar fell into tune when you came into my life, after (I started) loving you

      My lonely sky befriended the moon, by smiling the way you do, after (I started) loving you.

      My idle mind, and the hazy corners of the house,

      wait for you, want to feel your presence, when will you arrive?

      The forlorn cries of the doves, the dust laden book shelf,

      seem to have gotten used to this sweet anticipation by now

      My lonely skies have stopped sailing in the dark currents of the night, after (I started) loving you

      Liked by 9 people

          1. Ooh then I love you already! :) Nah, Im not a bengali and don’t even have the ‘b’ of bengali in my blood or around me. Jus that Im fascinated by everything that is…especially art and culture!

            Liked by 9 people

      1. Oh my,….not only does the song sound beautifully melodious.
        Love the guitar and the piano play, the voice is soothing too.
        The best part is the lyrics. How beautifully versed and befitting to AV during his initial camp time…and also Kaveri during her time after AV left EI-V.

        Thank Avanti for sharing, I really like it. Language indeed had not bar to our love for music and feeling therein.

        Liked by 8 people

    2. Thats lovely Avz! :) the song sounds lovely!

      Jaana, its got nothing to do with you…but, this is what translating a beautiful song into english does to it….

      Send a crow with message
      I‘ll come as air and
      hold your hair

      Yaar seriously?! Kya boloon ab? Im sure the references were there, but not in this way! It might be sounding much better with the original lyrics hain na? :(

      Liked by 9 people

      1. Sohni……Barha hi baaaid idea r-hut.

        I so agree with u….the translation literally take the sur out of the Sangeet.
        I love the melody and peppyness therein,…..but I shouldn’t have been watching that video….threw me off with the girls *nain matakka* and a *ghusel* hero…so resorted to translation.

        Phir Kya,….sare philngswa ka the ends hue gawa. Hello hi bye bye.

        Liked by 7 people

        1. Not a bad idea re, its just the essence of the song which is lost in translation. I loved the song too, it is peppy! Loved it in fact :) So far have loved all the River songs, most of them are in the most-favourite list :)

          Liked by 8 people

          1. nain matakka – like sohni said any of those or simp,e Ankhe Matkana like kamar matkana….that’s what she was doing.

            Ghusel – ghusse wala- angry young man.

            Anu don’t get me wrong, they look gud in the song and all and they have amazing chemistry,…..it’s just that it being a river song and Khushi’s being all nervous from AV POV, the peppy song and the girl singing to lighten the guys mood got me all confused. That why i was trying to get the lyrics translation.

            😄😄

            Liked by 4 people

            1. I see … it was Autocorrect’s ingenious work!

              No worries abt the pair in the song… nothing to take offense there and understand he confusion. I guess the line to focus here would be the part which Meera had translated. It reflected AV-s state for the Interlude ☺.

              Liked by 4 people

    3. Avni… I am a little confused. Do you say that the song translation you have posted is of thus week’s River song ? If so, it is not. I have not heard this song you have posted but it the lyrics are funny even in Tamil, leave alone the translation in English. I will listen to the song and then say if the song is any good or not.

      But this week’s river song is a beautiful one. I did google for translation but did not find a good one. I will try to find a better translation and share for the girls here.

      Liked by 9 people

  9. Ondra, renda aasaigal ellaam sollavae oru Naal poathumaa?
    Anbe, iravai kaetkalaam, vidiyal thaandiyum iravai neelumaa?

    Yes Khushi, you need more time and Arnav seems to know how to do it.
    Waiting waiting… :)

    Liked by 9 people

              1. Beautiful beautiful song Anu. I haven’t checked the lyrics yet and don’t think it would make any difference, just the…and her voice is wow! God those violins and the bass guitar are surreal!!! :)

                Liked by 7 people

  10. How. How did it end up with her wary of his position at their new company then – was all I could think of, after ending this chapter. But while I was reading it, oh. I love how you never go all fancy. I love how you clearly see the real life and real love for what it is and never introduce something our hearts would love to have there. It is so beautiful, their awkwardness, the intermittent sparks, the knowing eyes around, an ignorant heart and so much more. It’s almost as if the entire world is revolving around their love life but having their own too. It’s how the little ripples in life keep generating, intersecting. Some die, some grow more pronounced. I am in love with the way you write. 💝

    Love,
    Reveur

    Liked by 9 people

      1. Unfortunately, that and all my other blog stories are out of public access. Hope you understand. As and when they are ready for public access again in the future, I promise to make it known.

        Liked by 2 people

  11. Hi Meera
    So as usual, I was stuck in the traffic and I had the radio on to tune myself out of everything else.. I was so zoned out that I didn’t realize when I switched to NPR (non-profit, non-commercial news station) until this piece came on http://www.capradio.org/articles/2016/09/21/it-takes-a-river-a-135-mile-journey-down-the-colorado/ and all I could think of was this river and how truly you have captured the essence of being in the wilderness.. I am amazed and awed every time I read The River.. Nerdy Khushi and suave, larger than life, hot Arnav has been portrayed so many times in so many fictions but there’s such simplicity in your words that I can’t help falling in love over n over again!
    By the way, I am not going to worry about the inevitable – Arjun’s story and heart belongs to someone else! He will have a lifetime of happiness with someone else.. But K and A are nowhere closer to getting on their journey … They have barely touched the tip of the iceberg… There are so many issues and practical K, alas, is just too practical! And your prologue gives away that they will have to go in separate directions one more time so that when they finally meet (third time is the charm) they will be in it without any baggage … Both of them will be equals! Can’t wait for the next one!

    Liked by 7 people

    1. I have to agree with u completely….I was listening to it couple days back and thought of the river too.

      ESP the first para….its seems like it’s written for AV-Kaveri situation.

      Thnq for sharing it here. 🤗🤗🤗

      Liked by 6 people

  12. Her hesitation to get on the pillion is so real. I was a stubborn rider too. Never got on pillion fearing toppling the vehicle due to my weight. Oh how nice it feels to be loved for what you are than for how you look!! I shall love my husband forever for that.

    And you had to choose that song!!! I am going to be singing it for a few days to come now.

    Wonderful update Meera. Thanks for the river.

    I crave for Swami.

    Liked by 6 people

  13. I always loved reading arnav’s thoughts about Khushi. If I had any doubts about how Khushi was looking after they kissed, it got clear when read what he saw through his eyes. He completely adore her, how closely he notice every little details about her. How she was afraid before their ride.
    Hope Khushi could listen to those thoughts, then she might have not doubt about her figure.or appearance.
    He want to give her full chance to decide about them, he don’t want to force her because he think he might have force his girlfriend. Just like him I am too afraid of how will things work between them and Arjun.
    Did she have that much courage, when Arjun will come infront of her she will easily tell him truth. I don’t think she could.
    Totally loved this chapter, their ride their kiss, everything,.
    Marvellous update.

    Liked by 4 people

  14. Oh di it was so good that whole battle within Kushi about getting on the bike🤗 The girl is one Bollywood heroine😎

    Arnav has a long way ahead I hope he uses his common sense and maturity in handling this relationship 🙄
    Aman will handle it just fine he anyway deserves better than a compromised relationship 😊

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Aman?!?!? 😳😳😳😳😳😳 nahiiiiiiiiiii🙉🙉🙉🙉🙉🙉🙉

      U means Arjun right?👍🏼👍🏼👍🏼👍🏼👍🏼

      Man I had my heart in my mouth seeing Aman’s name there….😝😂😂😂🤗🤗🤗

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Beautiful! I’ve heard this one. I’m glad you liked the kaminey song. This combo has the ability to evoke images in your mind listening to the song. I remember a conversation with dear friends on the forum over that kaminey song, ASR…….
          Heard this one?

          Liked by 5 people

              1. Sorry I didnt mean the whole song  Gulzar is always  phenomenal so expectation levels are high too. let me rephrase my words its that paticular word kaminey I felt a bit harsh for my ears . If you hear Rashid khan Sajna barse one of my yr long favourite but rendition of english part always makes me cringe 😊😊😊

                Liked by 6 people

                1. Aah! The one Rashid Khan sang with a Bengali touch! 😊 The English in that song has the effect of ‘Dekho baarish ho rahi hain, it’s raining it’s raining it’s raining’ of Anu Malik! 😋Absolute disaster! 😂

                  PS: I worship Rashid Khan.

                  Liked by 4 people

  15. A thousand stars burst, literally…that was a yes…I am as happy as Arnav might be..
    I used to wonder so much that whats going on in AV sir’s mind….That was a torture..Now I can really read how he feels….Its like a treat for my crazy mind….
    I just would not like to see Arjun taking it badly…I feel for that guy..
    I have never known Khushi to be courageous enough to show what she is feeling…not with anyone, not even Arnav….I was amazed how she took a stand and let him know which direction her mind is headed…or rather her heart is…
    that was a beautiful update…loved it…i see a new beginning…

    Liked by 4 people

  16. This update was like a happy dream were very unexpectedly I was showered with Arnav’s pov and his true feelings towards khushi. His desires on which he tried to keep the lid on and I truly believe that ut serves him right for leading khushi on.

    But apart from his feelings, the bike ride and them not addressing the elephant in the room what loved the most was that khushi didn’t denied or step backed but stated forth her priority of coming clean with Arjun. What more, she even questioned about the future of there relation, felt the similar relief as Arnav at the question did.

    About Arjun, not being rude and I too like him but he had this heartbreak coming his way for a long time that why I guess he hid some of the info about AV engagement or hid break-up from khushi.

    Like I said, this update was a happy dream so I really don’t want to wake at this point coz I know heartbreaks are coming not one but three for the next 5 years as life plays its move i.e, if khushi’s statement about Arjun keeping tab on his hero AV is any indication to go by.

    Song for AV

    Tu dhang chahaton ka..
    Main jaise koi nadaani
    Tu dhang chahaton ka..
    Main jaise koi nadaani
    Mujhe khud mein jod de to..
    Mere yaar baat ban jaani..

    Rang sharbaton ka
    Tu meethe ghaat ka paani
    Main rang sharbaton ka
    Tu meethe ghaat ka paani

    Tere khayalon se, tere khayalon tak
    Mera to hai aana jaana..
    Mera to jo bhi hai
    Tu hi tha, tu hi hai
    Baaki jahaan hai begana

    Tum ek musafir ho..
    Main koi raah anjaani
    Tum ek musafir ho..
    Main koi raah anjaani
    Mann chaha mod de to..
    Mere yaar baat jaani
    ….

    Liked by 7 people

    1. So I was listening to this random song and it brought the bike ride to mindo.
      Navi- I copied the link from u tube – but doesn’t look right. Not sure if it will work. Maybe I need to try from the laptop, not my tab.😊

      Liked by 3 people

  17. Hey AVNI– gosh I am too lightheaded to Erie or think anything coherent as just came from partying with my daughter but I will get back to u in detail. When back to normal. All I can say is that I love u and always be in Khushi camp as I feel I am Khushi when I read this story.

    Liked by 9 people

  18. This song popped up on my playlist today…been humming ever since. One of the better shot sensual songs in an era where the movies were not worth watching. I absolutely Love this song, as a composition and for Asha Bhonsale’s voice! Her singing is surreal in this one and I remember loving the picturization of the song for this particular antaraa as well…lol.

    Liked by 7 people

    1. Oh my sohni,….my old time fav song. In fact I like other songs from khiladi too. And I agree, the picturisation of female anthra is amazing along with the wording befitting the era perfectly.

      Thank you for reviving such wonderful memories by sharing this song.

      🤗🤗🤗🤗

      Liked by 6 people

  19. Apologies for the late comment…..

    Great to finally hear whats going on in AV sir’s mind…
    – constant reminder to himself to keep distance – toooooo cute..
    – her large midnight doe eyes….
    – yes yes yes – first kiss, first bike ride….how many more firsts to come….
    – her long slender neck….hmmm
    – Aah so now Khushi has to wear only his helmet….

    The final lines are the cutest…. “You are here…and I don’t know where I will be” Never had a better confession of love…..No wonder he is blissfully happy…

    Just hope it stays this way……

    Liked by 3 people

  20. the update became in a very interesting juncture…the attraction between Arnav and Khushi is as clear as the day and night yet there is unknown awkwardness between the two, this awkwardness may be because of the past they shared, or because of every said and unsaid thing that remains between them..but what makes me happy is that Arnav and Khushi are willing to take a step forward and with Khushi making it clear to Arnav that first she would like to speak to Arjun and end what could have been between them, this clearly indicates Khushi though hesitant is ready to give her relationship with Arnav another go and Arnav ready to wait and Khushi’s fear of where he will be and where she will head to and this answering Arnav’s unasked queries and the hope stirring in Arnav’s heart yet again all this was wonderfully depicted…and by the way the song ‘Ennai Konjam’ is one of my favourite ones…nice update… :-)

    Liked by 2 people

  21. Meera, I love these interludes more than if you kept interspacing the story with each of their views.

    “And he would hold himself together for the rest of his life. He knew how to do that. Especially when he was the one to blame.”

    Does he hold himself responsible for what happened with Saira? Was it because of Khushi or was it because he just simply outgrew Saira? That their teenage love could not stand the test of adulthood? Does he believe he ended up hurting both of them, although unintentionally? Am dying to know this story now.

    I think Arjun isn’t going to need much explaining. He is so clued in to Khushi’s every expression that he’s going to realize something momentous has happened.

    PS: Errm, Khussi bitya, one little thing? We aunties do sit astride on bikes too, haan. Just saying. I’d probably fall off if I sat aunty-style. And next time, do hold on to Arnav around the waist under the guise of “I’m scared of these curvy mountain roads”. It’s a feeling like no other. As Meera said it allows couples to sit legally plastered together.;)

    Liked by 2 people

  22. perhaps Arnav needs more guile :)) if he had ridden a bit faster and that to over a few small bumps
    she would have been plastered to him and that could have led to so much more like a stopover on the way to the camp:)) dreaming mein kya harz hai

    Liked by 1 person

  23. Excellent chapter….very beautiful…
    Only arnav and khushi…lovelyyy…
    Khushi’s nervousness is observed by arnav and he seems like that nature of khushi…finally they both gone for a bike ride…
    Their silent conversation on bike ride is just perfect…
    He is always thought negative side of their story…finally in the end he saw hope…that is really good for their relationship…
    She took a good decision…that she wants to speak to arjun… Because she must be free from thinking of any other person…but she is worried of arjuns reaction…i hope he will understand her…
    This is a perfect song for this situation…very good song…i really loved this song at the time of movie release…surya and jyothika both are excellent in the movie…

    Liked by 1 person

  24. She gapes at the motorbike as if it’s a snake waiting to strike at any moment. Arnav loves the nervousness of Khushi at her own expense & will cherish it in the future in his leisure time when she is gone. At least he hot a glimpse of real Khushi.
    Arnav’s interlude about all the first experiences of her with him. Great job.
    She feels guilty about Arjun & wanted to clear the air before embarking on new unknown journey… not only for her but for both of them or should say three of them.
    Arjun won’t be happy in spite what he has stated…he will know without her saying her feelings towards Arnav. Air has changed between them. That would hurt him more than her rejecting his proposal.
    She is worried about them too. How are they going to embark on their journey if both are going to resides at different banks of river…river floats to unknown destinations & make different routes along the way. No one knows where they are going to end up. So innocently she said…. “But how can there be more?” “You are here…and I don’t know where I will be…and…”
    No hurry…I understand. Well he waited for this long now few more moments won’t hurt him. Hope shines in his eyes…it was absent for a long time. He has decisions to make & have already decided how he was going to persue. There are roadblocks but will prevail.
    Fantastic update Meera👍

    Liked by 1 person

  25. Now arnav is getting serious here….he started to notice everything about her….
    even khushi wants to tell to arjun that she doesn’t feel the same about him….After 2 days again they are going to seperate but in this 2 days wats going to happen which leads to break their budding relationship

    Liked by 1 person

  26. Do you even know how desperately we love seeing these interludes? A peek into Arnav’s mind. A reaffirmation that what we are feeling is right.

    This song comes to my mind – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B4jxmT3tY2A :P to convey our desperation

    ” He took a deep breath and forced his body to behave even as he walked over to Aman’s bike to extract the extra helmet for her.” See. An affirmation. That AV is as into this as we believe him to be. Also, while Kaveri seems virginal and not at all 22, AV sure makes us realise that we are reading about adults here..:P

    ” She seemed like the sort of person who would remember something like that as a special event. Just like she would remember that kiss..” Don’t we all cherish our firsts? They mean something to everyone. You keep making me giddy Meera.

    “Bikes like these were made for couples who could legally plaster themselves against each other in public” The whole portion of bike riding has been so much fun. Khushi’s worries, AV’s teasing and your sarcasm. Finally, a bike ride. In the hills. Could this day be more romantic? What started out as a tragedy, just turned into a beautiful mess?

    There is a mix of innocence here as well, the heady rush of excitement too. Should I call that lust? It seems so negative here. Desire, maybe?

    “And entangled in all the wrong places – most of them not even completely visible to her.” If I didn’t know the story beforehand, I would say, all these small glimpses had confused the hell out of me in the beginning. Making me wonder what does he keep stressing on? What is he hiding? If he is hiding?

    ” He would have to watch her walk away.” Yet again, these interludes remind us that the ever great AV too has insecurities. Life isn’t perfect for him like we have come to expect. He also has fears, and things have a potential of not working out for him too. These interludes thus break the myth of our mysterious AV Sir.

    Maybe this song goes here too – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZegFVnEnxS0
    “Taarif Jo Sunke Tum Aise Sharma Jati Ho
    Achchi Lagti Ho
    Kabhi Haas Deti Ho Aur Kabhi Itraa Jati Ho
    Achchi Lagti Ho”

    Liked by 1 person

        1. Tell me about it, I manage a official website and any day the website hangs up on me, I freak out. Thinking I messed up and all the data is deleted. This place is freaky. 😝

          Liked by 1 person

  27. Arhi equation has changed..
    Khushi is ready to talk to Arjun..
    But will she..I wonder..
    The Prologue is still alive in my mind..
    It won’t let me be happy..
    I know Arhi r still destined to go different ways..

    I pray to get read The River fully .. n then at least one read ..
    It’s pure magic.. just like ODAAT by Sohni <3
    I can never get enough of it..

    Liked by 2 people

  28. Lovely chapter. Their bike ride brought so many off screen segments from the show. Even though Khushi is supposed to be upset with him and this is her first encounter with Kisses and romance, she took the lead and made some decisions pretty quickly. She thought of pros and cons. She doesn’t think they have a future, yet, she was ready to tell Arjun that they have no future as a couple. They can only remain as a best friends. I am really feeling bad that it took another 5 years for them to meet again. I wonder what happened.
    Cheers…….

    Liked by 2 people

  29. AV finds kh s ramblings / nervousness cute
    She initiated the kiss 💋 & is going to talk to Arjun
    The point that I noted was she was I afraid to voice her inner thoughts in the presence of AV
    For someone who never discussed emotions even with Tripti, she is acting as though they are Aman & Aditi
    Arnav has been pinning for kh, how literally kiss worthy is that 💕
    Can I kiss him ?
    Both of them have their moral compass intact , livable sweet Arshi
    Not scared of Arjun any more as kh might not give in to his drama
    But Arnav seems very gentlemanly, he might let her go without a fight ,becos he is not LG from the show

    Like

  30. Meera, as for the song selection, who can forget Surya / jyotika real life romance during kakka kakka, ( salaaba kadala)the chemistry came through the screens & hit us , wanting to romance tamizhselvan ourselves or at least a hubby like him .

    Like

  31. You really had to end this chapter with this song, didn’t you? The chapter was already doing all sorts of things and then you ended it with this song! This is such an excellent chapter, your writing is realistic yet poetic. Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

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