The Most Dreaded Meeting
Today is the most dreaded day. Here I'm, in Delhi airport, waiting for boarding the plane to Chennai. The past week was a blur. After hearing that terrible news, I took three days to digest it. Then, the remaining three days were spent on shopping for 'appropriate office clothes' ~~ according to my mother. Then, we had a family dinner yesterday, without my brother as he is in a medical camp.
My thoughts were cut short by the boarding announcement for some plane. Since my brother has one of our private jets for his use and my father needs the other, I was left to travel in commercial airlines, much to my mother's worry. She still think of me as a kid and worries over ever single thing. I mean, I don't get why she is worried about me traveling in a commercial plane. You know how mothers are. This news of me, 'traveling in a commercial plane' ( note the sarcasm ) reached Sanvi aunty and the "issue" (my mother's words) was solved within minutes. So, here I'm, sitting on the boarding longue, waiting for Rish family's private jet to arrive.
As soon as the jet arrived, I got a call from my dad informing it. As soon as I entered the private runway, my luggage were loaded and I took my seat. Soon after the takeoff , I politely declined the air hostess' offer and entered the cabin. The cabin was spacious with a king size bed, closet and a bathroom. Since, it is a three hour long flight, I decided to take a nap. Trust me when I say that I didn't sleep for the past week.
"Mam, it's time for landing", the air hostess' voice woke me up from sleep. After thanking her, I buckled up myself. As soon as I got off from the plane after landing, I called my parents, telling them that I landed. As I was about to walk towards the exit, a Mercedes Benz came into view and stopped towards me. I stopped in my tracks and waited for my escort to get down. Surprisingly, it was Rahul uncle and Sanvi aunty. As soon as aunty got down, she pulled me into a very tight hug, almost ceasing my breath. After she let go of me, uncle tousled my hair and gave me a light pat on my back. After telling how happy they are to see me again and how much they missed me, we got into the car. If I tell you that I'm not happy to see them, then I'm lying. I love these two to the core. They are like my second parents. But, coming to Chennai is definitely not in my bucket list and not the one I wanted. In spite of Chennai being a nice city and having amazing people, I dreaded coming here because of one obvious reason ~~ Adhvik.
But no, Lord doesn't have mercy on me. I'm put in a situation to come here and work under the one man whom I promised myself to never see again.
After a few minutes into the car drive, I can't help but think of the past. How happy and excited I was on that fateful day, to meet him; how I can't stop my smile throughout the ride. But today, I'm already dreading the meeting. The thought of that day automatically made my eyes well up. Before anyone can notice it, I gently wiped away my tears.
Finally something struck me.
"Aunty, where are we going?!", I asked her.
She let out a little laugh and told me that we are going to their house. Oh, no! I can't. What if Dhvi is there?! At that thought, my heart picked up it's speed.
" Why aunty?!", I inquired her nervously.
"Oh silly! That's where you are going to stay... Do you really think that we will let you find a place by yourself?!" , she replied me sweetly.
OMG! What will I do now?! Working under Adhvik is already a torture. But living with him under the same roof will be horrible.
"No aunty... Don't take trouble... I will live somewhere else...", I told her nervously.
"No dear! It always a pleasure for us... Besides it gets boring and lonely with only two of us living on that mansion.", she reasoned out.
Before I can reply, what she said struck me. Only two of us?? Does that mean...?!
"Only two of you?! Why?!", I asked her confused to which she just laughed and replied, "Dhvi lives in his pent house and visits often... Vita is currently in Paris.. Her new designs are being launched... BTW, you know she is a fashion designer right?!", she answered with pride on her children's success.
I smiled at her and murmured a okay.
So now I have no problem living with them... I smiled happily. But again, when did Lord show any mercy on me! My happiness is short lived when I recalled her sentence again. Dhvi lives in his pent house and visits often... Visits often?! Oh no! I have to talk them out of this staying with them issue.
Soon, we reached the mansion. After entering, I went to the guest room straight and didn't bother unpacking since, I'll move back again. After freshening up and dressing in a black jeggings and gray top, I went down to see aunty and uncle sitting in the living room. Deciding that it's the suitable time for talking about the matter, I went in front is them.
"Aunty... Uncle... I want to tell something to you guys... Please", I said, smiling nervously.
" Yes mah champ! What do you want to tell us?! Is there a problem in your room?! Aren't you comfortable?! Tell us... We will rectify the problem ASAP!", Rahul uncle answered smiling.
I almost felt bad about what I'm going to tell them. Note that, almost. But the concept of Adhvik visiting often made me hold on to my decision.
"No uncle... I'm thinking of staying in a penthouse or somewhere else... It's not that I don't like it here... It's just that I want to really live alone and explore the independent living... I want to know what it's like to live alone... But I promise to visit here often... I'll convince dad about it... Please please please...", I literally beg begged.
"Hmmm... Okay Lil champ... I'll not tell you that we are happy with your decision... But we understand... After all, we crossed your age... We will be okay with it only if your parents agree and you promise to visit is here whenever we call you... If it's okay, you can live in one of our hotel penthouses or you can share Adhvik's penthouse...", uncle said thoughtfully.
Without even thinking for a second, I immediately shouted my reply in slight panic. "Oh.. No uncle... I'll take one of the other hotel penthouses... I don't wanna share with anyone.... But thank you so much both... I promise to visit whenever I'm called...", I said finally calming.
Wouldn't it be ironical, if I moved out of here to share a penthouse with Adhvik?! It's like vacating from a lake view apartment to live in a ocean ~~ okay, I know it's a poor metaphor... But anyways, you get it, right??
But my thoughts were interrupted by Aunty's voice calling out the most dreaded name.
"Adhvik... You came at the right time... Good! Come on here and meet your best friend... Rika, See Dhvi has come...", aunty said excitedly and walked towards the door of the living room, probably where her son was, with uncle in tow. My backside was facing the door. So neither I can see him nor he can see me.
Aunty's words froze me in my place. Here I was telling them about vacating so that I can avoid him at the most, but luckily he showed up himself. Note the sarcasm.
I know that I have to face him in the office soon. But I don't want to do it now. I'm not ready emotionally. I know that I'll cry at the spot if I see him now and I'm not a cry baby. I'm just too hurt beyond words. Probably, everyone of us will be, when you discover that you are just a play toy and 'another girl' to the man you loved for all your life and that first kiss of yours is only a play thing for him. So, all I wanted is to mentally prepare myself for the meeting. But I guess, I'm not so lucky.
Here, I'm standing in the living room, with my back facing the man I hate the most, and people are excitedly expecting me to turn around and face the devil himself. Woah, what a life!!
Making up my mind that I had no ways to escape, I was about to turn around slowly. But, by the heaven's grace, my phone started to ring. I looked down to see my college mate's name plastered in the screen. I quickly mumbled an 'excuse me.. I have to pick this call... It's important' to no one in particular and fled to the guest room.
But when I was out of their sight, I heard Adhvik's most enchanting, manly voice that brought me shivers down my spine, saying "How can you guys offer her to stay in my penthouse without consulting me in the first place?!". I want to kick myself for reacting like this to him. But I can't control it which pissed me and disappointed me the most. Coming to matter in hand, Seems like someone overheard . Was he standing there, listening to our conversation for a long time?! I almost want to stand there and listen to their conversion.
But, I didn't not let my curiosity get the best out of me. Running, I reached the guest room. After locking the door, I let out a deep breath that I didn't know I was holding in. Immediately, my eyes started to well up. But I don't want to let my tears out. I'm definitely not weak... I'm better than this... I deserve a man much better than this jerk who have no respect for a woman... Definitely, I deserve better..
I repeated this to myself over and over again. Finally when I calmed down, I called that acquaintance back and also said that I'll do a project for her. Anything to avoid going downstairs and facing that respawn of Satan and keep my mind away from the thoughts of him.
So, when aunty came to call me down for dinner, I told her that I'm extremely busy at the moment and will join them ( which I'm planning on avoiding at all cost ) after finishing this important work for my friend who have no idea on how to do it. She left with a nod. After what felt like forever, I was about to finish the work. Just then, aunty came again to tell me that Adhvik had left and she brought my dinner here to the room. I thanked her politely with a relieved smile to which she nodded and kissed my forehead with motherly love before leaving the room.
Soon, I was tossing and turning in bed for sleep to consume me. But no, it had other ideas. To be frank, my mind was filled with my thoughts about him. Just the thought of his voice made me shiver. I can't help but wonder how it will sound husky. But before I can go further with my thoughts, his words and actions from the past replayed itself in my mind. All I can think of now is the hurt and betrayal I suffered. But I know 2 things for sure.
1) I'm breaking my promise by seeing him and thinking about him.
2) I always know that I'm in denial and that I still love him. But thinking now , after today, the feeling of hurt and heart broken over powers the love that is left for him. I mostly hate him for all he did to me, even though a irrational part of my brain is still attached to him. But I know that I don't matter even an ounce to him when compared to how much he still matters to me.
Making my mind up to never trust him again or fall for his tricks or to never forget that unamendable pain that is etched on my mind forever, I fell into a light slumber.
The knock from the door woke me up. I jolted from the bed by the sudden sound and lazily rubbed my eyes. Then, aunty entered the room.
"Hey Lil' one! It's time to rise and shine... You have a long day ahead of you...", she said in a soothing angelic voice. Ah! I love this woman so much.. So compassionate she is! Trust me when I say that I'll turn into your worst nightmare if you wake me up from my sleep. But this woman and my mom alone have their way. I love them both dearly. It may seem like I'm not close to aunty and uncle. But actually, it's the opposite. I'm too close to them and love them so dearly. But coming to the matter in hand,
"I'm not little anymore aunty...", I said pouting.
"Oh, trust me.. You are Lil' to us always... Being the youngest among the four makes you little forever sweetheart! ", she said with a loving glint in her eyes.
"Now I know why Rahul uncle loves you so much", I teased her, winking.
"Yeah yeah! Go get ready and join us for breakfast today... And today, you can't skip it... You are eating with us", she told me with a semi-serious expression and left the room after giving me a kiss in forehead.
After she left, I did all my morning duties, took bath and changed into cotton shirts and a baggy T-shirt. Then, I went down to the dining room where aunty and uncle were already present. When I entered, I saw uncle giving aunty a peck in forehead before heading to sit in the head of the table. Romantic and young at heart they are! Seeing this made me yearn for this type of love.
Then, I sat on the one side of uncle where as aunty was seated on the other side.
"Hey, Lil' champ", uncle called out with a smile.
"Hi Old man!", I teased him to which aunty laughed.
"I'm no Old man kido! Ask Sanvi too.. Forever Young...", he countered and smirked at aunty.
"Yeah yeah... Whatever old man!", aunty said smirking and then we both hi-fived each other to which uncle huffed dramatically and smiled.
Soon, the breakfast arrived. It tasted like heaven considering it is made by Mr.Raj , one of the leading chefs in India.
"Champ! Did your dad tell you that you are starting to work today?! ", uncle said which made me choke on my food.
"What?!", was the only word I can manage to get out of my system, being shocked to hell. My strange reaction made aunty and uncle to look worried. So I quickly composed myself and asked again.
"I take that he didn't tell you about it... Anyways, today you will start your work.. Dhvi has been informed earlier... So, go get ready and I'll drive you myself... I'll drop you off and then, I need go sort out some issues... And you will be shifting to the penthouse in Emerald by tomorrow... The next building to Emerald is where Dhvi stays... So, Its better if you stay there... You can always have Dhvi for emergency and we will have peace of mind... ", he said.
Shit is the only word I can think of... Starting work today means I hafta meet him today... Am I ready?! And staying in a building next to him?! FML! I have to avoid him at all cost... It's not like you are staying with him... So you can definitely avoid him... Don't fret a lot... Now go get ready to meet the devil... I tried to console myself.
After eating, I changed into a white shirt , gray pencil skirt and a salmon colored blazer over it. I matched my outfit with salmon colored pumps and silver strap watch. Since I did not have much time, I left my hair to flow free over my shoulders in its natural waves. After finishing, I checked myself out in the mirror once. I looked good and professional. If I tell you that I didn't care about how I looked in front of Dhvi, I might be lying. I want him to see and realize what he missed out. Adhvik beware... Here I come, your worst nightmare..
Don't be fooled by my dialogues. Still I'm hell nervous and dreading this meet. These dialogues are only my self Pep-talks.
But time rolled by and now I'm in standing in the top floor which is also the floor to his office. Uncle said me a quick 'good luck' and went away. Here I'm standing, contemplating if I should enter or not.
Okay, this is it! Time to meet the devil who stole your first kiss for his Playboy reputation and who broke you beyond a fixable limit... Just be brave and don't show your weakness to him... Do not crying in front of him... You are not that naive 17 year old now... Rika, you can do it!
After my pep talk, I entered into the lobby where a girl with the most tight costume you can ever imagine was seated. I wonder how she can breath in it.
When she saw me, her face turned into a scowl. "What can I do for you?!", she asked me rather rudely. It irritated me to the core. Yet, I don't have time for this. I have to face the devil. So, I responded her politely.
"Hi.. I'm Rika.. I want to meet Mr. Adhvik Rish... He already knows about my arrival... ", I said politely with a professional smile.
The girl frowned further and said me the most rudest thing which made me blow over the top with anger. "Back off Bitch... He doesn't want to see you.. I'll make him mine... I don't want a slut like you to interfere between us...", she said.
Her words ticked it off. I was fuming is an understatement. Great! All I need is to encounter a rude slutty assistant to make my day even great... Thank you God!
"We all know who is the slut and a bitch here... You are in for a rude awakening, whore.. Just call him already and announce my arrival... I don't have time for you and your stupid talks..", I replied her, my words coated with venom.
First of all, I'm not a rude person. The only person I spoke to with hatred earlier was Adhvik. But that doesn't mean I'll keep quiet when someone bitches about me. I give them back.
Secondly, it officially pissed me off when she laid claim on Dhvi. I know what you guys think. You guys must be wondering that I say I hate him because he hurt me, though why am I saying this! Trust me when I say that I don't know either. I'll confused either. It was easy for me to hate him and not think about him when I was thousand miles away from him. But being this closer and hearing his voice makes me feel some crazy emotions. You can't blame me though... After all, he was my first and only love which lasted for almost three fourth of my life... So yeah... My thoughts were interrupted by that stupid lady whose name I still don't know.
"What will you do if I refuse to call him slut.. ", she challenged me. Oh yeah baby! Really? Challenge accepted... Bring it on!
"Then I might call Mr. Rahul Rish to tell him that I'm denied to meet Adhvik by his assistant... What do you think he will do when he comes to know that his best friend's daughter who is also his favorite god daughter is denied access??", I asked her with an attitude. I smirked and mentally victory danced when her expression changed from stuttiness to shock and terrified. Then, without giving her a minute to reply, I took over her phone receiver and handed it to her.
She quickly called Dhvi and said him about my arrival. Then she told me to go ahead into his office.
Time to face the Devil! , I thought to myself and entered inside his office.