11. Confusing emotions

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Chapter 11

Confusing emotions

Aayush startled when Ahilyaa's father appeared on the top of the staircase, a warm smile on his face.

"I was just coming to fetch you kids. Dinner is almost ready."

"Dinner?" Aayush stared back blankly, his mind in turmoil. When the old man's face lit in amusement, Aayush saw a hint of Ahilyaa in his eyes. He shook his head, and closed his eyes against the clutter that was his brain.

"Did my daughter give you a hard time, Aayushman?" her father asked in a teasing tone. He opened his eyes to find his smiling face closer, "She is a tough one, just like her mother, but let me tell you something. They're like walnuts. You just have to be patient and strong enough to break the outer layer."

Aayush didn't know what to say, and nodded his head feeling like the biggest fool on earth. "I need to use the rest room." he muttered, darting past the older man, and jogged down the stairs. He ignored the questioning glances he got, and entered a door he hoped was the restroom.

He sighed in relief and closed the door behind him. Leaning against the cool basin, he glowered at his reflection. His skin was flushed, and he couldn't get his heartbeat back under control. He wanted to scream at the top of his lungs, and maybe jump into a pool.

A pool of shame. He found his sub-consciousness chiding him.

He had imagined a thousand ways he'd act when or if he saw Ahilyaa Joshi again. None of them played out like anything that just happened. He thanked god that he didn't make a bigger fool out of himself and kissed her the moment he pulled her into that room. He could imagine her mocking smile if he had, teasing him about being stuck on a one night stand.

She's probably had lots of similar one nights during her trip. The voice in his head chided again and he gripped the basin tighter, his muscles trembled. He refused to believe that voice, even if his brain agreed with it.

After wasting enough time in the bright restroom, he splashed his face with cold water, and used some of his trusty breathing techniques to calm his nerves. He just had to get over this dinner, and then, he could go home. He'd sit with Sharad and drink through the night, finding ways to get over his feelings and forget all about Ahilyaa Joshi. He knew it was only a matter of time before she'd become nothing but a blurry memory. He would be damned if he let that woman get into his system again. He was so done.

And before that, he would have to kill Sharad Rajput. He could think of a few ways to torture the bastard.

With that thought, he plastered a smile on his face, dabbed his face with the tissue paper hanging on the wall and emerged a new man from the restroom. He entered the living room, and gave the fakest smile to the ladies in the room. "Where are the others?"

To his utter horror, his mother giggled like she was ten and pointed towards the kitchen. Frowning he walked to the small kitchen and muttered another curse under his breath. The day was just getting weirder by the moment.

His father, his fucking famous restaurateur of a father, was wearing an apron scattered with strawberry cupcake prints, as he watched and listened intently to the minx's father, who was wearing another ridiculous apron. They were taking turns to stir something in the pan.

He stepped in through the archway of the open plan kitchen, and saw Sharad sitting on the counter behind them. His smug grin grew wider when he saw him, "Hey Aayu!" He threw something at him and Aayush pulled his arm back on instinct to catch it.

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