14. A wish unfulfilled

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Hlo darlings

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Not every time you need a huge mountain in your way to stop you from going ahead. In fact, you may conquer the peaks of mountains and go ahead, but words, are what can make it impossible for you to move, breathe, to feel happy or to do anything else. Shivaay’s words were one of those millions of words.

“Anika’s Dadi is no more. She died this evening.” Shivaay had to speak as fast as he could because Gauri wasn’t ready to listen to him. His words made it impossible for Gauri to take another step. For a moment she was frozen like an ice berg, then, she trembled as if it was melting, and when she overcame the shock, the medicine prescription fell from her hand. She turned towards him to look for any hint of lie in his eyes, unfortunately, there was none.

Savitri was like her own Dadi for her. She still remembers those days of their childhood before Savitri met with an accident and she used to live with her foster parents, in the colony next to the one where Trivedis lived. Those were the golden days of her life when Savitri used to tell fairytales to her and Anika, with their heads in her lap and her hands caressing their heads.

Surprisingly, not even one tear came out of Gauri’s eyes, because her sorrow was overshadowed by the fear she had in her heart for Anika. Anika was not in a state of mind to accept this bitter truth. Her life was already in a mess, and now, what will happen to Anika when her only family is no more.

“Her last rites have to be done today, what.. what will we do ?” It was Om who spoke this time. He was there with Shivaay when Khanna told them about Savitri. Shivaay had asked him to find Savitri’s whereabouts, but they didn’t know that they would have to hear this.

Gauri sat on the nearby chair, unable to think of a possible way to tell Anika about this news. Anika’s state of mind was not at all right, she was already burdened with so much to cope up with. The worst part was, that Anika was looking forward to meet her Dadi, she wasn’t as happy to be out of Oberoi Mansion as much as she was happy to meet her Dadi. What will happen when Gauri would tell her that she could see her Dadi but she won’t be able to stay with her, talk to her. Never, ever.

Gauri’s dilemma ended, as soon as Priyanka, Janvi and Dadi shouted Anika’s name and held her from falling on the floor. She had heard Shivaay’s words because the door was slightly open. Gauri’s fearful eyes looked at Anika’s blank face, her silence hurting her more than her sobs and screams would’ve done.

5 minutes.. 10 minutes.. 15 minutes.. 20 minutes.. but nothing happened, silence occupied the atmosphere. After some twenty-odd minutes, Anika’s eyes that were, till now staring nothing at particular, moved towards Shivaay who was looking at her helplessly. His eyes, his face, quivering lips, his trembling hands and numb legs clearly depicted that he wanted to do something to relieve her of her pain but he didn’t know what that ‘something to be done’ was.

“You’re.. you’re lying, right ? It..it’s one of your hundred ways to torture me ? Yo.. you want to see me cry, right ? I will. I’ll cry.. but.. for once, say that you’re lying, that my Dadi.. Dadi is fine.” Anika held the collar of his blood stained shirt and asked, with her hope melting into tears and dying each passing minute because of his silence.

Her grip on his collar loosened and she took two hasty steps towards her right, to come face to face with Janvi and said, “He respects you a lot.. he won’t.. he won’t deny what you would say. Please ask him to say the truth.. please.”

Her words soon, turned to sobs, her sobs to cries, and her cries to loud screams and she fell on the floor, with her hands covering her mouth and her knees drawn towards her bossom. Kalyani’s hand on her head, Janvi and Gauri’s requests infront of her to get up so as not to hurt her wounds once again went into deaf ears.

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