Love and Sahil signed some papers and asked the doctors of Fortis, Pune to shift Aarush to their Mumbai branch. The management made the arrangements and Aarush was shifted within a few hours. Love called Radhika to inform her about the same, and she was elated to see him after two days of separation, which felt more like 2 years. Love hinted Radhika about presence of Koel, so she was mentally prepared to see Aarush and Koel both together in the hospital. Love didn’t tell her about Aarush and Koel’s night out together, though.
Koel, who was perfectly fine, chose to stay with Aarush in the hospital. Love escorted Radhika to Aarush’s room in the evening. Koel was sitting beside him. Radhika looked at Aarush who looked fine otherwise, but she was aware of the internal injuries he had, so she tried to ignore Koel who got up to greet her.
‘Hey, you must be Radhika…’ Koel said. She smiled and put her hand forward.
Radhika chose to ignore it and walked towards Aarush.
‘Hey…’ she gently placed her hand on his forehead.
‘Hi…’ Aarush managed to utter his first word since morning.
‘How are you feeling?’ Radhika curled his fingers in her hand.
‘I’m fine now. Better than yesterday. I’m sorry for being a jerk.’ He kissed her hand lightly.
‘No Aarush…it’s all my fault…’ Radhika gently placed her head on his chest and broke down.
‘I’m sorry…’ Radhika instantly got up realizing Aarush had injuries.
‘Your tears hurt me more than these wounds which can still fill with medicines and time. Stop crying. I’m sorry for being so hasty in proposing you…’ Aarush kissed her hand. Koel was observing them both from a distance. She realized that she had lost Aarush now, to someone who genuinely loved him much more than she could ever do.
‘Aarush…’ Radhika couldn’t stop her tears from falling down. She laid her head beside his on the bed, and Aarush swayed her hair with his hand. Seeing him in this condition was heart-breaking.
‘Stop…you will ruin it…’ Radhika placed his hand back on the bed because of the IV-drip.
‘It’s fine…I can’t see you hurt.’ Aarush smiled at her, ‘I know you might be having a lot of questions about me and you might be shocked to see Koel here too.’
‘No, I knew she might be with you. I got her parcel at home…’ Radhika tried to act normal.
‘That you delivered under my wife’s signatures? I know that story. Koel already told me that, and I’m proud of what you did. But…’
‘But why did I reject your proposal?’ Radhika completed Aarush’s long-awaited question, ‘Because Aarush, I wasn’t sure that you would marry me knowing that Koel was back now. After I got her parcel, I wanted to talk to you about it, but got no time. In haste, you asked me to get ready and took me for lunch. Mentally I was planned to talk to you about the parcel at the Intercontinental only, but you proposed to me. I couldn’t say ‘yes’ before I’d have talked to you.’
‘Oh my God!’ Aarush now understood Radhika’s side of the story. He felt guilty for being so hurried and insane.
‘And if I tell you something, will you understand it or leave me?’ Aarush asked Radhika.
‘Leave you? That can’t happen in centuries! I am dying to know what happened to you, why did you go to Pune, how did you get into this accident, but only after you are alright and on your feet. Right now, you should only rest.’ Radhika pulled the sheets up his chest and placed her hand on his eyes, signalling him to sleep.
‘Enough of the talks and enough of the explanations. Time to rest…’
‘I spent the night with Koel.’ Aarush said it. Radhika stared back at him with astonishment and tears that welled up in her eyes immediately.
‘But that’s not the story, I want you to listen to me before you…’ Aarush was speaking and Radhika got up and walked out. She couldn’t imagine Aarush could do something like that. She was trying to talk to him about her parcel before accepting his proposal and he slept with Koel? How could he betray her?
Love placed his hand on Radhika’s shoulder. She shrugged him off and started crying again.
‘Hey…hey…I am going to jail you know…’ Love hugged and whispered in Radhika’s ears.
‘You have to go to jail if you murder someone, right?’ Love looked at Koel and back at Radhika who was now smiling. He hugged her tighter and Radhika giggled a little.
‘You are a fighter and you can’t just give up because of this bitch, can you?’
‘No…’ Radhika was somehow speaking with difficulty.
‘Right! And we all are with you. We will never let this bitch take our friend back into the hells that you brought him out from, right?’
‘C’mon now, stop crying. Aarush is okay and he will be home in a week or so. You need to be strong. For him! And you can’t just lose to Koel, girl. You are way smarter than her. Who is she? A divorcee? And you want to lose to someone who couldn’t be faithful in her relationship? Who couldn’t even save her own marriage?’ Love was being reasonable for the first time.
‘I know. I just need some time off from all this…’
‘I understand. Just go home and sleep. No more crying or weeping or listening to sad songs. Just sleep!’ Love ordered Radhika and sent her home.
Radhika knew she couldn’t just give up, but time and again, scenarios of Aarush and Koel making up, were playing in her head and she couldn’t stop herself from imagining her boyfriend with another girl just a night ago. The thoughts of them both in one bed, were killing her inside. She was trying to be strong and rock-hard for herself and Aarush, who needed her more than anyone else right now…