‘I know him since my childhood, I have known him that long, but why am I so nervous today?’ Rhea was talking to herself, while all the girls and ladies around her, praised her for looking so gorgeous that day. It was ‘her’ day after all, a day that was going to be the most important day of her life. A day that would become a reason of celebration every coming year. It was her Wedding Day.
‘Maybe every girl feels the same, or maybe I’m behaving a bit weird. But WHY?’ She was feeling sick inside, with so many questions hovering in her mind, she was feeling nauseous and nervous. Her hands had started trembling. She started rubbing her hands. She saw at her palms, the mehendi (henna) had darkened fabulously, and the name on her hand was shining. She had always dreamed of this, of getting married to the love of her life, Rishab…her sweetheart! But when the day had finally arrived, all she demanded was a little more time. Some more time, to spend with her family, some more time alone. Was it normal to feel that way? Or there was something wrong with her brain only?
‘Rhea…’ Damini snapped Rhea back into reality, ‘Where are you lost my child? The ‘Baaraat’ has arrived’
‘Yes, mom…’ said Rhea with teary eyes.
Damini hugged her tight ‘Don’t cry darling…I love you’ she kissed on her forehead.
Damini and everyone else left the room to welcome the Baaraat. Rhea was left alone, she peeked out of the window; she could see a loud pomp and show going on near the gate of the palace. Her sisters and friends were ready to rob the groom on the ‘ribbon-cutting-ceremony’.
‘Finally, I’m going to become a Mistress from a Miss…my surname is going to change…I’ll be leaving my home…my parents, my family, who raised me up with so much love and care…’ a tear rolled down Rhea’s eyes as she was whispering to herself.
The Baaraat entered inside, all the ceremonies were done auspiciously, keeping in mind the ‘shubh-muhurath’ (auspicious time). It was now the time for Rhea to enter the hall. Her friends and sisters came running to her room. Rhea was sitting motionlessly on the side of the bed. Her hands clenched her lehenga tightly, and she was lost in her thoughts.
‘Rhea…come sweetheart, our JIJU (brother-in-law) won’t wait any longer…’ giggled her cousin, as she placed a hand on Rhea’s shoulder.
Rhea looked up to her cousin, smiled faintly and got up. Her cousin hugged her tightly.
‘I’ll miss you sister…’
They all accompanied Rhea and started walking out slowly. They reached near the stairs, Rhea was standing in the centre, all the other girls and ladies surrounding her. She looked no less than a princess that day. Bright red lehenga, arms covered with beautiful mehendi, and bangles, her eyes were shining like diamonds, her cheeks had a natural blush of their own. Everyone present in the hall, had glued their pair of eyes on Rhea.
‘Just a few more steps, and this will be my last walk as a spinster. Just a few more hours and I’ll leave my family, my home, a few more ceremonies, and I’ll be someone else’s…forever!’
Rhea’s hands started trembling and a cold shiver ran down her spine. She was feeling nauseous again. She had never been this nervous ever in her life. She was the one who proposed Rishab, and now they were getting married too. She was always bold and fearless, Rishab loved her the way she was. But today, nobody on the entire planet had been so much nervous, as Rhea was. She collected herself, and started climbing down the stairs. The ladies accompanied her. With every few steps downwards, a new question wandered in her mind.
‘Will she remain happy?’
‘Will Rishab love her like he did previously?’
‘Will she be happy without her parents, in another home?’
‘Was she doing the right thing?’
‘Wasn’t it a bit early?’
‘Does she needs more time?’
And she reached the ground floor. The pandal was all set up beautifully, decorated with fancy lights and flowers and Rishab was sitting, dressed up as a typical Indian Groom, looking handsome in his own way. Rhea stepped up the pandal and sat next to Rishab. She was shy to even look up, or make an eye contact with the love of her life. She was nervous and her hands were still trembling.
Rishab noticed Rhea in such condition, and he immediately held her hand gently. Rhea looked up at Rishab. With her eyes wide and full of questions, her mind, totally numb and senseless, she stared at Rishab like she was looking at him for the first time. Rishab looked at Rhea and smiled gently.
His smile, fainted all her fears, her all questions were answered, she was assured of a happy life with him. She was now ready to become his Mistress. She pressed his hand lightly, and smiled back at him. Rishab winked at her and kissed her forehead.
She closed her eyes, and released a sigh of relief. She was now ready to enter into this new Bond of Forever.