Radhika was still praying in the temple that they had in their apartment. Having a temple was Radhika’s choice. Though she turned out to be modern and outgoing but her lifestyle was still deep rooted somewhere. The clock was ticking as she saw the time. It was 08:30 am of the morning. She hadn’t sleep all night long. Neither did she call Love or Sahil, fearing to disturb them both. As the ‘Hanuman Chalisa’ ended, her phone buzzed.
‘Hello, Love? Any news of Aarush?’ Radhika knew that Love wouldn’t call her without any reason. There might be some news, definitely.
‘Yeah! He’s in Fortis, Pune. Don’t worry, he’s fine. They are going to perform a surgery on him, and we are shifting him to Mumbai as early as we can. There’s nothing dangerous and nothing to worry about, so don’t cry or do something crazy, please…’ Love broke the news with consciousness. He was aware about Radhika’s madness about Aarush.
‘I’m coming right now…’
‘No Radhika No! Stay there. We need someone there too.’
‘But why do you need someone in Mumbai?’
‘…’ Love went blank. He had to think of some way to keep Koel and Radhika away from each other.
‘Because we have to handle the company also. Three members are already here, who is there in the office? No one! You go and handle today’s work.’
‘Yeah…you’re right. I’m anyways lazing around at home for no good reasons. Don’t worry, I will join office right away and will take care of everything here. You please keep reporting me about Aarush’s health on a regular basis. Please!’ Radhika pleaded and Love hung up the call.
‘Oh my God!’ Radhika wiped off her tears and thanked her Gods for keeping Aarush safe. She cursed herself for being so stupid!
Radhika took a quick shower, applied some makeup on her swollen face to futile attempts. Her dark circles of insomnia and her puffed up eyes from crying all night, were starkly visible! There was no way any makeup could hide her emotions today. She was sad. She was happy and more than everything else, she was frustrated and angry on herself for behaving in such a ruthless way with a man who loved her like anything!
‘I must run to office now, it’s already 09.’ Radhika hurried up and took a cab to the office. She no longer had access to Aarush’s car. Instead of reaching at 09:30 am with Aarush, today she was half an hour late because of traffic and cab! Today, her driver wasn’t as smartly dressed, neither as fast as the previous one!
‘Great! Joining after 3 days, and already late. What will employees think about me? They must have been planning to force the board members to throw me away by now. I’m such an irresponsible employer. I’m an even irresponsible girlfriend! I don’t know what happened to the old Radhika Jain who came to this city with high ambitions and high hopes. Now, everything revolves around one man – Aarush Choudhury. Damn you, Mr Handsome, you have spoiled me really bad…’ Radhika’s elevator reached 27th floor. Her and Aarush’s offices were adjoined, there was only a glass wall separating them, which was installed only because of Radhika’s wish. Aarush never liked any walls between them, earlier!
‘Thank God for this wall, otherwise, the company wouldn’t be where it today is!’ Radhika was talking to herself. Admiring her office after 3 days. The crème shaded tiles and matching curtains. The glass wall through which Aarush used to wink at her and tease her. The intercom that was mostly used to cater to their mid-office desires! Aarush’s wild fantasies of making love to her on her huge office table, in front of the great ocean. Ah, those fantasies!
Radhika wiped away a tear and folded her hands as she stared at Aarush’s empty leather chair. She prayed to the God to heal her love soon, so that they can go back to their normal lives, only if Aarush would forgive her!
‘Maybe he throws me away now after that Intercontinental episode. But I won’t insist to stay either. I deserve that kind of treatment. Anyone would do that then why can’t Aarush? I will just apologize to him for my behaviour and walk out myself. Without burdening him anymore…’ Radhika started crying thinking about her separation from Aarush which was now near to impossible.
She had been yearning for his proposal since years now, and now, when he finally did propose to her, she rejected him! Who does that? Radhika couldn’t curse herself more.
She was taking a tour of Aarush’s empty office. She opened the drawer, found his spare ties that he used to keep there for emergency purposes. His tie was once ruined after their lunch in the cafeteria together, and he had to meet a delegate in half an hour. Men from office had to rush to get him that matching new tie. Since then, Radhika gifted him this tiny tie-drawer to cater to his emergency requirements. She next opened his cabinet below the table, which had his medicines for unwelcomed sicknesses. There were all medications for cold, fever and everything else that loved Aarush so much that it was usually stuck to him for weeks at large!
Radhika switched his computer on. The wallpaper image was of Aarush, staring into the sea from his office complex. She loved how he was so crazy about heights. She wanted to gift him an evening on top of Eiffel Tower in Paris, but she couldn’t! She wanted to take him sky-diving someday, but she couldn’t. She was regretting all those unfulfilled wishes and plans, that she wanted to go back in time right now, and say ‘yes’ to him at the Intercontinental. Radhika’s regret was eating her inside out.
The computer beeped. There were mails for Aarush. Radhika opened the mails thinking them to be official and work-related, but she was shocked on what she saw.
The mail was dated back to yesterday noon, probably around the time Aarush was at their apartment to pick up Radhika for their lunch date. And the mail was signed by Koel. There were pictures in the mail. Selfies of Koel and Aarush – making out and kissing in the same bed where Radhika was sleeping now!