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❝ Relationships are stronger when you're best friends first and a couple second

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❝ Relationships are stronger when you're best friends first and a couple second. ❞ 



It was 10 pm by the time their flight landed at Bangalore. Anika loved traveling, visiting new places but never got a chance to do so. Bangalore, one of the well maintained and beautiful cities in India, was totally different from Mumbai, neither too crowded nor too silent. Throughout the journey from the airport to Nirav's house, Anika stared outside the window of the cab like a small kid admiring the beauty of this new place. It was a new beginning of her life. Till now she had realized that there was no point in crying over the spilled milk. At that very moment, she promised herself to give her best to this relation.

They reached home by 11:30 pm, totally exhausted by the wedding preparations, rituals, and the long way journey. Nirav's house was simple and yet beautifully designed 3-bhk flat.  Saying goodnight to Asha and Vijay, Anika and Nirav moved to their room. Opening the door of the bedroom, Nirav said,  "Welcome home Anika! And this...", pointing towards the room he said, "...was my bedroom once!"

Anika gave him a confused look. Clearing all her doubts, he further added, "It was my room once, but now it is our room. You have an equal right on this bedroom henceforth. So, Mrs. Anika Nirav Rairikar, please come in." 

Anika couldn't help but smile on his sweet gesture. Getting inside, she said hesitantly, "Um... Nirav, I want to say something..."

"Yes Anika, say", he replied instantly. 

"I am extremely sorry for my rude behavior. I was so blindfolded because of my dream that I never realized your sweetness. I was totally out of my mind and I am feeling very guilty for my behavior...."

Before Anika could complete her words, Nirav interrupted, "Hey, hey, hey girl! Chill! You don't have to apologize to me. I am not at all angry with you about it, so just forget about all that and let's make it a fresh start."

Anika nodded with a smile. 

"You remember, once you had said that you believe that any relationship becomes strong if it is started with a good friendship. So Mr. Nirav, will you be my friend?", she asked extending her right hand towards him as a gesture of a handshake. 

He had a big grin on his face hearing her words. He was happy to see her other side too, her sweet side. He hoped that one day, he would be able to win her heart and convert this friendship into love. He extended his hand towards her.

And that one handshake removed the guilt from Anika's mind. 

"Anika, Anika

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"Anika, Anika...."

Hearing someone call her, Anika immediately woke up from her sleep just to find that the "someone" was none other than her husband, Nirav. He was calling her name very sweetly to wake her up. She looked at him for a second and then at the clock. It was 8 am. She got panicked.

"Oh my god Nirav! Its 8 am. Why didn't you wake me early? Oh my god! What will your mom and dad think of me! Damn!", she said worriedly.

Nirav held her by her shoulders and said,

"Anika! Calm down. It's alright even if you wake up late. Plus every one of us is tired, so sleeping for a long time is quite justified."

Anika noticed that Nirav was properly dressed as if he was going somewhere. She asked,

"Why are you all dressed up? Are you going somewhere?", she asked.

"Yes, I have to go to the office. You know when we are the owner, we have more responsibility right?", he replied.

"Yeah okay!", she answered lazily. 

"You go, take shower and come outside. I am waiting for you, so then we will have breakfast together.", he said.

After almost 25 minutes, Anika was fully ready. Taking a last look at herself in the mirror, she headed towards the dining table where everyone was waiting for her. She felt bit guilty to be late.

"I am sorry auntie, uncle, I just overslept.", she said.

"Anika, first of all, we are Nirav's mom and dad, so are yours. So from next time no autie and uncle, only mom and dad.", answered Asha.

"And my dear, why to be sorry for sleeping till late? This is your house too. You can sleep whenever you want, you can do anything you want. Now come, sit and have the breakfast.", said Vijay.

She nodded and sat beside Nirav to have breakfast. While having breakfast, She turned towards Nirav and said,

"Nirav, since you are joining back your office from today and I don't have anything to do sitting at home whole day, I'll also start applying for jobs then. You know how difficult it is to get a job nowadays."

Before Nirav could say anything, Asha interrupted saying,

"Why do you need a job dear? Nirav is capable of giving everything you want. There's no need for you to work dear."

"Mom, it's not the matter of money. Its just that if I'll have a job, I'll be busy in that. Plus I love working.", Anika tried explaining politely.

"You know, I am a commerce graduate. It had a great value when I was young like you. But I believe that a lady should give her full attention to her family after the marriage. I did the same. I dedicated my whole life to my family. And see, I am happy. I don't regret it at all. Why don't you explain her Nirav?", Asha said restlessly.

"Um... mom, if Anika wants to work, what's the problem....", said Nirav.

"There's no problem my child. It's just if a woman is working, she cannot give proper attention to her family.", Asha answered.

"But....", before Nirav could complete his sentence, Asha interrupted, "Oh c'mon. You are just married. Just take rest for few days and then think about job and all."

Anika was shocked to hear all this. She couldn't believe her ears. She always thought that Nirav's parents were of modern mentality, but she was proved wrong. Yes, they were modern in the way of living, but a woman, once married shouldn't work and stay at home for all day was something really odd for Anika to hear from the people like them. 

Back to their bedroom, Anika was lost in her thoughts until she sensed Nirav sitting beside her and staring at her. 

"Why are you staring at me?", she asked,

"I am just looking at you. I know you are thinking about whatever happened at breakfast and I am really very sorry about it. I know how my parents are. You know, I had to join my dad's business just because of such behavior of my parents. I wanted to do something else. Anyways, I think just give them some time, I am sure they will change their mind. Till then, take rest. I am getting late now. See you in the evening.", saying that he left the room giving her an assuring smile.

", saying that he left the room giving her an assuring smile

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