Part 29

Geet went down and noticed dadima and Annie conversing with the guests. Dadima gestured to come near her. She went and seated near Annie. Geet patiently listened to everyone while dadima told about the success of her initial project and about her education to those who didn’t know much. She saw the initial disgust in some of the faces turned to admiration and some of the ladies congratulated her. Mrs. Mittal, one of dadima’s close relatives told, “Savitri, I must say you have got a real gem as your grand daughter-in-law who is down to earth and compliments Maan in every aspect, intelligent and beautiful, unlike those who flaunt over nothing.” The comment was more pointed towards Riya as she had noticed her taunts to Geet earlier and Riya understood it well. “God bless you beti.” She gave her blessings to Geet. Geet smiled and thanked her. She continued, “Beti, tum schooling Hoshiyarpur mein ki thi na? Mera beta bhi do saal waha ki school mein padtha tha, jab hume unhe unke dadi ke paas chodna pada.” Geet nodded and was about to ask something when dadima asked, “Are meine poochna bhool gayi. Prem beta kaha he?” Mrs. Mittal told, “Woh tho ab aathe hi honge. Airport se call kiya tha. He was eager to meet his bhabhi. Wedding mein aane ki bahut koshish kiya tha par aa nahi paya.” Dadima told, “Ha, such he. Prem beta tha tho yaha ka mahol hi change hota. Wohi ek he jo Maan ke gusse se nahi dartha he” and everyone started to laugh.

Geet thought about who this Prem will be. From their talks she understood that he is also into their family business like Maan, may be Riya’s next target. She smiled at her thought and joined others in their talk. After the initial hesitation she began to mingle well with them and everyone grew fond of her. Even Riya and others found it difficult to be rude to such a nice person like her. Maan was watching all these and really admired his wife for her nature. First time in his life, he felt lucky, lucky to have her as his wife. Maan was lost looking at her when he noticed all their attention turned towards the door and he looked to see the object of attention, Prem Mittal, Mittal uncle’s son. Maan somehow didn’t like his sudden appearance. He used to get irritated with Prem’s talks as only he had the guts to talk before him like that, no one else dared to. Even though he liked him for his nature, he irked him a lot. He knew now KM will no longer be silent. Everyone went to greet him while Maan got a call and got engrossed in it.

Prem was a charmer and a very nice person. Everybody took instant liking on him once they met him. So he was the favorite of all. Everyone was eager to talk to him while Geet observed all these from far. She understood from his talks and attitude that he is a nice person. She noticed Maan upstairs attending some call. She wished him to join them like Dev did. But knew it was impossible. Dadima called her then and she went near her. Prem looked surprised seeing her. Dadima introduced her to him, “Yeh aapki bhabhi, Geet” while Geet smiled. Prem suddenly asked, “Aap Hoshiyarpur se he?” Geet thought he might have seen her somewhere and nodded. Prem told, “Oh my God, I can’t believe it. Aap Brij Handa ki sister ho?” Geet asked then, “Ha, par aapko yeh sab kaise pata? Meine aapko pehle kabhi dekha nahi.” 

Others also were looking surprised. Prem told, “No no. Aap mujhe jaante nahi par mein aapko bahut ache se jaantha hoon. Agar aap school mein kisi ladke ko notice kiya hota tho shayad aaj hum ajnabi nahi hote.” Geet looked perplexed while Annie asked, “Prem bhai, batao na. Aap bhabhi ko kaise jaanthe ho.” Prem took a deep breath and told, “It is a long story Annie. Pehle mujhe bhabhi ko wish karne do aur fresh hone do uske baad mein sab batayenge.” He turned towards Geet and told, “Geet bhabhi, mein Prem, aapki patidev ka cousin, aur ha, jab hum baat karenge tab mere baare mein zyaada jaan jayenge. My hearty congratulations and sorry for not being there on your wedding.” Everyone except Riya smiled at this. Geet thanked him with a smile. Prem held his hand on his chest and told dramatically, “Oh ho bhabhi smiled, Haye mein marjava.” Everyone laughed at his antics and he went to fresh up. 

Maan who had finished the call earlier was witnessing everything and was really getting annoyed by Prem’s talks. He didn’t like anyone being close to his Geet. And the final comment was enough for him to fume. He decided to go down for a while which was unlike him. Dadi was surprised seeing him and was happy that he came down. He went to meet his uncles who were having discussion at the living room. Soon they got lost in their business discussions. Dadi shook her head seeing her grandson talking only business even in a family get together. Prem joined them soon and dadi and Geet went to serve lunch for him. Others too joined to give him company. Prem really liked Nakul’s cooking and always praised it. He asked while having food, “Wah Nakul kakka, aapka food tho aaj pehle se zyaada ache lag rahe ho. Kya baat he?” Nakul told, “Kyunki yeh sab Geet ne khud banayi he.” All were surprised by his reply and Prem told, “wah bhabhi, aap tho kamal ka khana banathi ho. Ab mein jab hi Delhi aayenge zaroor KM aakar hi rahenge.” Others too complimented her as the food was really good. Riya also couldn’t help but admire Geet. She was really perfect in everything she does, perfect for MSK. 

After lunch was finished, all ladies together with Prem were sitting together and talking while Annie asked, “Prem bhai, aapne bataya nahi ki aap bhabhi ko kaise jaante ho?” Prem told, “Woh tho batana bhool gaya.” Prem stood up and told with a dreamy look in his face, “Jab mein pehle Hoshiyarpur ke school join kiya tha tho mujhe waha bahut odd feel ho rahe the. Par you know me, no one can resist Prem Mittal’s charm” and held his collar up while others rolled their eyes. He continued, “Ek din meine ek angel ko dekha jo apne saheliyon ke saath class ki taraf ja rahi thi. Meine unke peecha kiya par woh tab tak class ke andar chali gayi thi. uske baad meine unhe bahut baar dekha. Par ek baar bhi woh meri taraf nahi dekhi. One day I asked one of my friends about her and he warned me to stay away from her. Jab meine aur jaanne ki koshish ki thi tho usne bola ki woh Brij Handa ki behan he aur agar mera jaana pyaara he tho uske baare mein sochna chodo.” At this point everyone was curious and Geet looked embarrassed. Prem continued, “Meine decide kiya ki ek din unse mein zaroor baat karenge. Aakir yeh ladki kaun he jo Prem Mittal ko ignore kiya. Aur jab us din woh school aayi thi meine unhe follow kiya. Par baat nahi kar paya kyunki..” 

Prem stopped and looked at the curious faces around him. Annie asked, “Kyunki??” Prem told, “Oh no, mein apne reputation kharab karna nahi chahtha. Tho hum aur kuch baat karenge.” Annie pounced on him and told, “Agar nahi bataya tho mein sabke saamne tumhara reputation kharab karenge.” Prem raised his hands in defeat and told, “Ok sherni, bata raha hoon. Ha, mein kaha stop kiya tha? Hmm..Ha Kyunki.. Kyunki.. Kyunki..” Annie was getting impatient and hit him hard on his hand. He held his hand and told, “Oops Sherni, sorry sorry abhi batata hoon. Ha.. Kyunki I felt I was flying and saw a well built man behind lifting me by my collar. Next thing I knew is I was in hospital bed with a broken leg, a bandaged hand and a black eye.” All started laughing their hearts out when Prem told, “Kya sab mera mazak uta rahe ho.” And told Geet, “dekho na bhabhi, aapki brother itna terror tha ki mein unke saamne sirf ek chuha nikla. Aur us din ke baad mein aapki taraf dekhne se hi dartha tha. Oh no aaj woh aayenge na?  Please save me from him bhabhi.” Geet smiled at his drama and others laughed aloud. Everyone was enjoying this except one. Maan was fuming inside listening to all these. He didn’t like the fact that someone used to like his Geet. After sometime he excused himself and went to their room. Geet noticed his face and knew something was wrong. She decided to talk to him but couldn’t go up soon as she got stuck talking with one or the other.

Maan went to study and closed the door. He didn’t like anyone around her. And the thought that Prem liked her once was something that irked him. He never cared for her until few days back. But the thought of someone near her was hurting him. He couldn’t admit it that he was feeling jealous. He can’t tell Geet to keep away from him. But he doesn’t want her to. To distract himself, he decided to finish some of the remaining work. He went to freshen up after sometime. When he came out he saw Geet entering the room. He asked her to get ready and went to study taking the sherwani he placed in the bed. He stayed there some more time replying to some of the emails. When he came out the sight that greeted him took his breath away. There she was in a baby pink lehenga, matching his sherwani, near the mirror trying to tie the strings of the choli. The choli was almost backless except for the strings and a small joint down. His legs carried him automatically towards her. She shivered when he touched her bare back and slowly ran his fingers to the sides to take the strings on either side. He looked at the mirror to see her eyes closed, her right hand clenching the dupatta to her chest. He tied each of the strings slowly and trailed his fingers down her spine. 

He held her by shoulder and pulled her up. She followed his every move with her eyes closed. Maan couldn’t hold back the need to feel more after grazing her smooth skin. He placed his lips on her neck and trailed his path down. Geet gasped feeling his lips on her skin. His hands untied the strings while placing kisses over her bare back. Geet felt her legs will give away and she was trying to control her irregular heartbeat. He removed the blouse from her right shoulder and placed his lips there. Geet couldn’t control any more and moaned, “Maan..” It was the first time he heard her calling his name and it provoked him more. He turned her towards him throwing the dupatta she was holding and was about to take her lips into his when his phone rang which brought them to senses. Maan took his hands away and stepped back. Geet turned with her back towards him. She didn’t know what to do. Even though he has touched her before what she was feeling now was entirely different. She felt loved with his each touch. But it was really awkward as they just started to get to know each other. Geet was about to move towards the bed to take the dupatta when he stopped her placing a hand on her shoulder. She stopped waiting for his next move. He came near her and tied the strings he untied earlier. Once finished he picked the dupatta from the bed and put it around her neck covering her. He turned her towards him and placed a light kiss on her forehead and told, “Tum ready ho jao. Mein niche chaltha hoon.” Geet slowly looked up. She could see that there was a strange contentment in his eyes. She smiled and nodded. He left with a small smile in his face.

Geet got ready and came downstairs. The relatives and dadima’s friends were ready and set to go. Only Annie was left to come. When Geet descended down the stairs, everyone was stunned seeing how beautiful she looked in that simple but elegant lehenga. Riya and others felt so low before her beauty. Maan couldn’t take his eyes of his Geet, he smiled at the thought that she was only his. But the smile didn’t last for long as Prem joined them. He told openly, “Wah bhabhi, aap tho aasmaan se uthra hua pari lag rahi ho.” Everyone smiled at his comment but Maan was fuming inside. He wanted to strangle him for making such comments about his wife. She was his and only he has the right to praise the beauty of his wife. But he couldn’t tell it as Prem will obviously stick around with anything he told. He noticed that Geet was feeling conscious of the attention she was receiving. She was never used to someone praising her beauty. She left from there in the pretense of getting Annie. 

Geet came with Annie who was looking beautiful in her sea green lehenga. Prem asked, “Oye sherni, aaj tum ladki lag rahi hoon. Kya mene chasma lagana bhoolgayakya?” Annie started waking him and Prem ran around with her chasing him. Geet thought, “Dadi is right. He is definitely nice. How fast he brings smiles in other’s face.” Their cat fight stopped when Prem crashed into someone who entered the hall. He looked up and ran towards Geet without wasting a second. He went behind her and told, “Bhabhi, aapka Hitler bhai aaya he. Please mujhe bacha lena.” All started laughing at this. Geet smiled at him and went to welcome her parents and brother. Rano was really glad to meet Geet and noticed the admiration in the face of others for her. Mohinder and Brij just nodded their head. Maan went to meet them and left after exchanging pleasantries. Dadima asked Nakul to bring refreshments for them and chatted for a while. Dev came out wearing a red sherwani looking handsome and all left for Meera’s house.