Thursday, May 12, 2011

SR FF continued from Part 60

I have tried something new ........ let me know if it has gone down well with you all...........
If anyone is confused with this update as in the flow then pm me

Part 60

Riddhima could not seem to get her mind off her conversation with Juhi.

Riddhima: Juhi tum dono bahar gaye the na .....

Juhi: Haan .......... par tumhe kaise maloom ........

Riddhima: Nurse ne bataya ....... kuch kaam tha ..........

Juhi: Maloom hai ........ pata chala mujhe .......circular padha ...... woh chodo ......... tum mujhe yeh batao ......... are you alright? Stetescope haath mein tha aur stetescope dhoond ne chali kyu gayi........... ab yeh mat kehna tumhare dhyaan mein nahi tha............

Riddhima: Sachi dhyan mein nahi tha .......

Juhi: Siddhant ko avoid kar rahi thi na ......... damn it ........... aap dono ki problem kya hai ........ tum ho jo kuch bhi bolti nahi ......... saari bakwaas jhel rahi ho .........kyon kar rahi hoo aisa aur woh hai jo baat karne ka tareeka bhol jaata hai tumhe dekhte hi............

Riddhima: aaj wapis upset tha kya ...........?

Juhi: See .......... why are you so bothered?

Riddhima: The patient needs him .......... aur agar uske liye I need to stay away i am fine.

Juhi: So you accept you were avoiding him ............Just look at yourself ............. kya haal bana liya hai apna ........... kya ho gayi hoo ............ constantly itne tension mein dikti hoon ........... looks like you have lost all your confidence .........

Riddhima: Aisa kuch nahi hai jaise tum soch rahi hoo ........ main sirf usse aur upset nahi karna chahati hoon ......... that patient needs him .........

Juhi: then usse saach pata do ........... woh tumpe gussa kyu rahega phir and will not react so badly everytime he sees you............. he thinks you are responsible for the mess...........

Riddhima: Usse baat aur bigdegi ...........

Juhi: No Riddhima ........... i don't think so ............. tum aisa kyu soch rahi hoo  ..............kya hai Riddhima ........ is there something I don't know?

'Kaise batau usse kya hai ........ Kaun lagta hai Sid mera ........... kya rishta hai mera Sid ke saath...........  waise aaj mujhe bhi maloom nahi ki kya rishta hai mera Sid ke saath ......ya hai bhi ya nahi ............. kya zindagi ban gayi hai hamari ............ usse ek baar dekna chahati thi tasali karne ke liye ki woh theek hai ......... lekin jo dekha jo mehsoos kiya usse ruh kaap uthi meri ............ itna dard itna gussa itni nafrat............ aur Juhi chahati hai ki main usse sach pata doo ........... Sid mujhpe gussa nahi rahega ........... par kaise batau ...........ki agar saach pata diya toh .............. toh woh khud par saara gussa utare ga ki kyu usse mujhpe aisa ilzaam lagaya ............ aur khud ko aur bhi jyada takleef dega ........... aur waise bhi ........... who incident sirf ek bahana tha ......... uske gusse ki wajah toh woh 10 saal pehle ke sakham hai jo maine usse diye..............

Usse avoid karna hi theek hai ........... waise mera naam bhi lena aaj gawara nahi hai ..............
Juhi: 'I don't want to talk about that woman....that woman .....is this the way to refer to anyone'
Riddhima: Theek hai Juhi ....... koi farak nahi padta .........sirf woh aaram se apne patients ko dekhe wohi kafi hai mere liye uske samne jaa ke usse aur upset kyu karne ka...........

'Itni zhilat kyu bardhaast kar rahi hai Riddhima.........sirf ek patient ke liye ........ kuch baat toh hai ....... aaj bhi Siddhant gussa tha ya nahi uski jyada fikr thi
Riddhima: 'aaj wapis upset tha kya'

Siddhant chahe jaise bhi behave kare ........ lekin uske khilaaf kuch kaho toh sunegi nahi........... generally baat ki toh aise lagta hai ki she can listen to it for eternity ......... aur kabhi kabhi aise lagta hai ki jaan bhuj ke topic uske taraf le jaa rahi hai ............itne sawaal ........ kaun kyu kab kisliye........ reasoning bhi wierd deti hai patient ki wellbeing, insaaniyat, ek doctor ka farz ............ haan Riddhima concerned hoti hai about all visiting doctors but iss baar ......... kuch jyada hi concerned dikti hai .....

what was that for .......... woh khana khaye isliye mujhe bhej diya uss din uske saath..........
Riddhima: 'Ek baat kaho tum please uske saath jao ............. nahi toh woh khana nahi khayega aur wapis.............' 
Siddhant had mentioned that if he stays hungry for longer periods he gets a headache. Par kya Riddhima ne woh dudh aur pain killer bhijwaya .......... kya usko yeh maloom hai........... Par kaise ..... Jab se Siddhant aya hai Riddhima ekdum ajeeb behave kar rahi hai .......... Raat raat bhar hospital mein rehna ....... wait both the nights when she stayed over Siddhant had operated ............ Kuch toh connection hai?  Kaun hai yeh Dr. Siddhant Modi ?????

Straining her mind hard but could not make sense. Dr. Siddhant Modi ......!!! Siddhant !!! Sid...dhant.....!!! Sid............dhaant..... Sid..................Oh Lord!!! Kya yahi Sid hai .............??? Sid ............ Nahi ........... Agar woh Sid hota toh woh milne pucca jaati ....... kya woh avoid kyu karti

Riddhima: 'Nahi ...........Nahi........ it's ok ........  tum hi manage karlo ........ mujhe bahoot kaam hai aur waise usse mujhe milne mein koi interest nahi hoga.............'

Woh kuch bhi bole ........ aaj bhi Sid uske liye bahoot jyada importance rakta ahi ............ aaj bhi Riddhima ke dil mein Sid ke liye pyaar hai ............ Nahi woh Sid nahi ho sakta......... nahi toh Riddhima aise behave nahi karti.......... kabhi kabhi lagta ki Riddhima Siddhant aur mujhe nazdeek lane ki koshish kar rahi hai .............
Riddhima: 'Tum usse pasand karne lagi ho na?' 'Bahoot apnapan mehsoos karti ho na uske saath'
'Siddhant ek bahoot achaa insaan hai .............tum dono ek doosre ke kareebi dost ban chuke ho ...........aur tumne hi kaha ki tum usse bahoot pasand karti ho............ toh............kya .............'

Ab samaj mein aa raha hai usne Siddhant ke liye separate office kyu nahi assign karvaya. So that he can share my office........ kya soch rahi hai yeh Riddhima...........  lekin kuch toh hai ......... Aur Siddhant .........woh itna kyu interested tha ki Riddhima shaadi sudha hai ya nahi .............

Nahi!!! ....... bilkul nahi!!! ........ woh Sid nahi ho sakta  .........  hota toh yeh nahi poochta

Sid: 'Dr Riddhima Gupta unki beti hai na ?

Juhi: ''That woman has a name ...............Dr. Riddhima Gupta' Yes .............. she has retained her maiden surname Gupta instead of changing it to mallik

Riddhima ne hamari shaadi ke baad apna naam badala tha ............ woh shaadi jo sirf ek samjhauta thi ......... Dr. Riddhima Modi!!! ........ 10 saal ho chuke hai uss baat ko .......  Lekin yeh toh uska sapna tha toh phir naam kyu nahi apnaya .......... shayaad theek hi hai ........ naam badal ne se ya na badal ne koi farak nahi padta........... Woh Mrs Riddhima Modi naam se bani par hamesha maan Riddhima Ma.....................  aaj uski zindagi alag hogi .......khush hogi dil se........ shayaad Rohan ke umar ke bache bhi hoge uske .......... par phir uss raat woh hospital mein kya kar rahi thi....... jab se mila hoon dekh raha hoon .........bahoot jyada waqt bitati hai hospital mein...........  kya kar rahi hai woh ........ kya sab theek hai ............ nahi sirf guilty feel kar rahi hai aur kuch nahi ......... aur yahi wajay hai ki usne woh sab cheeze ki .............woh khana dawai sab kuch ............. kyu kar rahi hai yeh sab .........agar karna hota toh kyu nahi Shilpa aur Rohan ko kyu nahi apnaya ......Kyu soch raha hoon main itna uske baare mein ................lagti kya ho ab meri ........... na kabhi rishta tha na hai aur nahi hi rehaga............ kuch aur dino ki baat hai aur phir main wapis apni duniya main chala jaoinga ...........
Three different individuals, Sid, Riddhima and Juhi sat in their respective homes sat reflecting and trying to answer the same question. 'Kya Rishta tha Siddhant aur Riddhima ke beech?'



Part 61
The more Juhi thought about Sid and Riddhima the more she was confused. The only people who could clear it were Sid or Riddhima themselves. She knew Sid for a couple of weeks and hence could not get herself to probe with him. Next day was a Friday, Riddhima was out of town on a camp and she was going to be out for the entire weekend. Juhi was desparate for some answers and Riddhima's absence frustrated her since she would have to wait till Riddhima was back.

Sid was once again in Sanjeevani to check up on his patient. But today instead of going directly to the ICU he went across to the nurse station where the attendance register would be kept. His browsed through it search for the name which he dreaded to utter for the last 10 years. The man whom he considered his brother, his friend. The man who was instrumental in killing his faith in love and relationships. The man who had crushed the Shilpa's innocence and heart only for achieving his ulterior motive.  Sid was not sure what made him look up for him. He hated to give this man a moment of thought but today this man once again seemed to be the key to the mystery that surrounded the lady whom he loved and respected the most in his life at one point of time.

Sid: Sister is this the complete list?

Nurse: Yes Sir

Sid:If she is here that means he has to be over here itself. Brushing his thoughts aside 'Sister Dr. armaan Malik kaunsi shift mein hai .....

Nurse: Aise naam ka koi doctor yaha kaam nahi karte........

Sid: Visiting ya consulting hoga............... .

Nurse: Nahi Sir jitna mujhe yaad hai yaha aise naam ka koi doctor nahi hai ..........

Sid:How come he is not here .........? He must be working for some other hospital or may have private practice. Why am I so bothered after all that he did with Shilpa and me? Riddhima aur uske beech jo hai usse mujhe koi farak nahi padta Kabhi unko farak pada jo mujhe padna chahiye ....... woh dono jo bhi kare mujhe usse kya ...........

Riddhima felt this camp to be a blessing in disguise. Sid was not comfortable having her around and this camp forced her to be away from the hospital. If she stayed in Mumbai she would have involuntarily drawn to Sanjeevani with the hope of catching one glimpse of Sid to see how he was. She could not afford upsetting Sid. Her heart could not handle the pain cause by his hurt anger and hatred.

Whenever Riddhima was not available Juhi would fill in for Riddhima. Along with her regular duty handling Riddhima's responsibilities ensured that Juhi did not have any free time. Taking a breather became a distant dream. Work somehow managed to keep her mind occupied away from the questions that were hounding her mind. While Sid was trying hard to keep away the questions from hounding him yet seemed desparate to find answers to them. Juhi seemed the only source to these answers but due to her schedule he could not meet her.

Since Sid had to monitor the patient hence could not leave Mumbai So that weeked Sid called Rohan to Mumbai. He planned to make his visit to Sanjeevani and spend the remaining time Sid spent with Rohan. Sid's visits were going to be short visits as the patient's condition was impoving. Hence on Saturday evening he decided to take Rohan with him to Sanjeevani after which he planned to take Rohan out for a kiddie movie.

Rohan seemed excited to visit Sanjeevani, the place where his mother met the most amazing person in her life apart from his father, his Bade papa his friend, Sid.

Rohan: Yeh Sanjeevani hai na Sid?

Sid: Haan ...... main tumhari mumma ko yahi mila tha....... hamari dosti yahi se shuru hui..........

Rohan: aap dono yaha kaam karte the .........

Sid: Haan ...........

Rohan: Mumma ke aur bahoot saare dost hoge na yaha pe ............?

Rohan's innocent question set Sid thinking. 'Dost pata nahi lekin ............Shilpa ki behen ..........tumhari maasi ....... Riddhima .........kya batana chahiye Rohan ko ........... kya Riddhima se milvana theek rahega ........... kya woh usse accept kar payegi ............'

Rohan: Sid!!!  .........

Sid looked at Rohan's innocent face and immediately knew the answer. There was no point in subjecting the little boy to heart break. He had just lost his mother and there seemed no point in building his hopes about this relationship. It takes two to make a relationship and here one had never accepted it.

Sid: Nahi !!! woh bahoot pehle tha......... ab pata nahi mumma ke dost kaha hai ............. par kya hua main hoon na.............

Rohan's face lit up. Sid's words assured him that he will never be alone He does not have to fear any adversities till this person is in his life.

They quickly made way towards the ICU. The doctors were surprised to see how a small boy brought a smile to a man who hardly spoke and one who had been so angry off late. Sid wanted to check on his patient but could not take Rohan in so he asked on of the nurses to look after him for some time. Rohan was used to such environment. He often accompanied Shilpa at work and watched her work. He knew when the doctors are at work they should not be disturbed so he quietly sat at the nurse station.  
Sid finished checking his patient and came back to the nurse station with Dr Abhay in tow to pick up Rohan.

Sid: Chalo Rohan lets go

Rohan jumped down from the chair and ran to Sid.
Having seen Rohan sit quiet at the nurse station one of the nurses commented 'Lagta hai Rohan yeh environment dekh ke darr gaya'

Sid got a little nervous for a moment thinking whether the hospital environment refreshed Rohan's memories of Shilpa's illness. He quickly knelt down in front of Rohan 'Rohan aap darr gaye ......... '
Rohan was heavily amused with the nurse's comment. 'Nahi Sid ......main nahin darta ...........

Sid: Tum itne chup chap baite the isliye aunty ko laga ki tum darr gaye?

Rohan: hospital mein jyada baat karna nahi chahiye ........sab logo ko disturb hota hai na..............

Everyone amazed at Rohan's answer as it was coming from a child of such small age.

Nurse1: toh aap papa ke saath hospital jaate hai?

Rohan: Nahi mumma ke saath ............

Nurse1: toh aapki mumma bhi doctor hai ......... aur aap bhi bade hoke doctor banoge........

Rohan: Haan mumma ki tarah main bhi doctor banuga.........

The whole conversation was entertaining the staff there. Slowly, more and more people started waiting back to listen to the cute kid talking.

Nurse 2: Toh aap mumma ke saath hospital jaake kya karte the .......

Rohan: Kuch nahi ......... mumma patients check karti thi aur main unke desk pe baith ke apna homework karta tha............ main mumma ko tang nahi karta..............

All the nurses were fussing over Rohan and he was getting impatient as he wanted to go for the movie that Sid had promised him.  'Sid chale .........'

Nurse 3: Yeh apko naam se bulata hai Dr Modi? Hume laga yeh aapka ........

Sid understood where this nurse was heading towards and promptly cut her in. 'Yeh mera beta hi hai ........ aur Rohan hum dost bhi hai na ........right ...........' Rohan gave a quick hi-five ..........

Sid and Rohan always shared a different kind of a bond that it always brought a smile to one's face.

Nurse 2: toh aap apni mumma ko bhi apne naam se bulate hai ......

Rohan: Nahi ...........sirf Sid ko .........lekin Mumma hoti toh mujhe data deti ki main inhe Sid bulata hoon ...........

Nurse 1: But we have to say Rohan is very disciplined. He did not trouble anyone here while you were away Dr Modi'

Sid felt proud of Rohan. 'Thank you sister, he indeed is very disciplined'

Rohan now even more impatient to go tucked at Sid's coat. 'Chalo naa......... please'

Dr. Abhay: He is really impatient now ........... I think you better leave or else non of these ladies will not let him go

Sid and Rohan bid everyone goodbye. Sid took Rohan out for a movie that evening. Sid was glad to see a change in Rohan. Last couple of week he was still trying to come to terms with Shilpa loss. He used to be unsually quiet and lost. But today he looked alert and chirpier.
That weekend seemed to be the most wonderful weekend of his life in a long time. The smile of Rohan's face brought back the lost joy in Sid's life. He felt at peace seeing Rohan smile. For once he forgot a moment all the pain and worries that hounded him, Shilpa's loss, his patients, mysteries surrounding Riddhima, everything.

Rohan left for Panchgani Sunday evening and all that was held at bay by Rohan's presence came rushing in. He wanted the answers to his question which did not seem to stop bothering him.

The next day Sid found himself staying longer than required in Sanjeevani. He had finished checking the patient and settled himself down in Juhi's office. He waited for sometime then finally got restless. On enquiring he was told that Juhi was near the children's ward on the 3rd floor.

Juhi finished checking on her patient when Sid there waiting for her outside the ward.

Sid: Hi ........

Juhi: Hi How come you are here?

Sid: Came to meet you

Juhi: How sweet ......... your patient is recovering well after we changed the treatment.

Sid: Yes ....... anyways what are you doing right now?

Juhi: Nothing much thought of taking a break ........... you came at the right time

Sid: Cool ........lets go ...........

While walking towards the lift passed the children's ward. Instinctively Sid slowed down and pulled his attention.

Riddhima whenever had some free time would visit the children's ward to sit with the patients there for some time. She was fond of children and sometimes missed having her own. One whom she could fuss on, dot on, who would mean the world to her. Anjali at times would be upset that Riddhima would spoil Arushi and Ayaan with her excessive pampering But she knew how badly Riddhima missed them when they are not around Hence used to not mind it much. They were the ones who would bring a smile which was so rare to be seen on Riddhima's face.

She sat there surrounded by the children telling them a story while some children just played around for sometime with big plastic balls.

Sid stopped in his tracks when he saw Riddhima sitting there. Her back was to him. Juhi curiously looked at Sid who was now staring at Riddhima intently.

Juhi: Dr Riddhima Gupta!!!  Her tone laden with sarcarsim to remind him what had happened the other day.

Sid was so lost for a moment that he lost touch with his surroundings.

Juhi: Siddhant !!!!

Sid snapped out hearing his name 'What .......???'
Juhi asked suspiciously : What happened?

Sid: Nahi ...........nothing........... children can actually relax you their innocence and carefree ways make you forget your stress for a moment

Juhi: Oh so that is why he stopped ........ for a moment i felt it was Riddhima............ what am I thinking? What an idiot I am?   
Ya true ........ but when they are others they are nice as some say ......... when you have to make your life as per their schedule then you will know what it is ............

Sid: Well I am sure she will be as good as she is now with her own kids.

Juhi: whom are you talking about?

Sid signalled with his eyes towards Riddhima. Shocked to core at Sid's audacity. After everything he was still avoiding taking her name. Thinking that acting plain dumb may force him to take her name and break his ego. 'Who???'

Irritated at Juhi's ignorance Sid replied 'Dr. Gupta'

Juhi was elated at her victory Finally she had gotten Sid to refer about Riddhima decently. 'Oh Riddhima ....... yes she would have been great if she had her own'

Juhi's answer surprised Sid. 'Kya kehna chahati hai woh ...........itne saal ho gaye hai aur .........nahi ..'
What do you mean by that ........... does she ..............?'

Juhi: what .........?

Sid: She has kids of her own ..........right?

Juhi: No .

Juhi's answer hit Sid. He could not understand whether he should feel sad for her or angry on the Almighty to have kept her devoid of this happiness. One thing that every woman desires ' Motherhood which makes every woman complete.  The pain the anger was becoming more and more evident. Yet again Juhi could not understand this change of emotions on Sid's face.

Juhi: why are you asking?

Sid: No nothing ..............

Just then the ball with which the children were playing hit Riddhima on her head. Gone were the days when Riddhima would have snapped at the child She cooly looked and signalled him to come near her.

Juhi: Oh Hell !!! ab iski parade karva ke chodegi Riddhima .........

Sid: Ab yeh bacha gaya kaam se ......... Go Juhi ......... help him nahi toh poori vat hai iss baache ki....Hitler ka avatar hai ek horror film ..............

Juhi: What??

Sid: Jao ........ otherwise ........... kachumber kar degi jaoooo!!! And nudged Juhi to enter the ward.

As Juhi neared Riddhima she heard Riddhima coolly telling the child to be careful while playing so that the ball does not hit any of the patients. Riddhima was a stern person but seeing her such with children was a pleasant surprise. 'How wrong was Siddhant? Yes she is stern but not a horror film'

Sid: 'Horror film ...........  sab rules follow karvati thi mujhe se ghar pe .......... aur kaise mujhe kaise darati thi ........' A smile spread over his lips as images of those happy days flashed before his eyes.

Juhi quickly retrieved back to notice Sid smiling looking at Riddhima. She felt nice to see this change in Sid.

Riddhima handed the ball back to the child who played skipped away towards the other children who were anxiously waiting for him. She felt a warm feeling spread around her instantaneously A feeling which she always got when she looked at the photograph which now sat on the side table in her bedroom. She felt that person was near somewhere as if watching her reveal in the feeling of peace and joy. He was also happy. She slowly turned, hoping to see that smile once again.

Juhi walked up to Sid who was lost in the days from his past with Riddhima. She wanted to lightly nudge his shoulder to bring him to reality when she suddenly turned to see Riddhima sitting there looking at them smiling.


This update I have practically typed entirely on my cell while I was supervising the worker do maintenance work standing in the sun. So please bear with me it may be slightly boring.

Going forward I plan to answer to everyone's comment for two updates together But trust me I have read all of them They mean a lot to me Hug


Part 62

There was something that happened there which she could not place her finger on. Everytime she came to a conclusion something would happen that would make her change her mind. A warm smile played on Sid and Riddhima's face. Was it because both finally made peace, Sid having forgiven Riddhima for the dosage incident and Riddhima was at peace to have received pardon from Sid. Maybe that was the case. She finally did what she wanted to do, nudge Sid out of his reverie and suggested they go on a break.

Sid came back to reality. They were no more together That was 10 years back Now she was someone else's wife. Slowly the smile faded to be replaced with cold indifference towards that woman who once was the sole reason for his happiness.

Sid coldly instructed Juhi 'Chalo chalte hai ............der ho rahi hai ........ tumhe aur bhi kaam hoge ....?

Surprised at Sid's rapidly changing moods. 'Ab kya hua..........?'

Sid: Kuch nahi .............? Chalo ab ...........' quickly walking away from there.

Riddhima's heart sank when she saw Sid's changed expression. Depressed with the thought that once again Sid was upset she returned her attention to the children sitting there.

Juhi once again caught between the two. She turned to check on Riddhima who was now again engaged in talking to the children sitting there. 'There is no point ......... why am I thinking so much ... I need to stop doing this!!!........... I guess I should talk it out to clear the confusion' She hurried to catch up with Sid who was now waiting for the elevator to arrive.

Juhi: 'Kya hua Siddhant? Tumhe ho kya jaata hai?

Sid: Kuch bhi nahi?

Juhi: Kuch toh hai .........? Kya hai? Kya tum aur Riddhima I mean do you .........?

Sid coldly replied back 'Nahi!!! Aur ab aur iss baare baat na kare toh behetar hai .........'

Juhi: Kyu nahi ......... sawaal pehle tumne poochna chalu kiya......... aur waise bhi tumhe kaise maloom ki Riddhima ko Hitler sab bulate hai .........

Sid: Uss din Nurse ne bataya ........

Juhi was shocked to hear that. How could the nurse be so uncouth to say something about this to a visiting doctor? What an impression would a doctor have? She inferred that the damage to Riddhima's image started from that very moment. She shook her head in disbelief and entered the elevator along with Sid. Rest of the evening Juhi did not touch up on the topic with Sid.

The next few days Sid was busy with his preparations for Rohan's admission for the new semester. The distance and the time difference made it all the more difficult. Work kept Juhi busy barely leaving her any time while Riddhima purposefully tried to bury herself in work trying to ensure that she kept out of Sid and Juhi's way.

But as Riddhima said destiny always brought them face to face how much ever they tried to move away from each other.

Sid's patient had stabalised. Everyone was extremely happy that they had not only saved a life but also given hope for a better future to that patient's family So had Juhi's surgery was a success for which Sid helped her practice. The team had worked extra hard to stabalise both the patients especially Sid's. At the weekly meeting the management felt that Sid, Juhi and the team should be rewarded for this success. Finally it was decided that there should be a small get together for the team. They thougth this would motivate other teams to perform well. Since the teams reported to Riddhima; she was required to have the task executed. Riddhima's biggest worry was Sid. He should not think this is another way of doting on him. Nonetheless, she did not have an option but to accept and execute the task.  Since the structure of it was left for her to decide she thougth of having Juhi hand out appreciation letters to the team, followed by a simple party. That way she could stay out of the event and not make Sid awkward. She had the necessary arrangements made and informed Juhi about the same.

Juhi: Tum toh nahi rahogi ........

Riddhima: Nahi ......... aur phir woh tumhari team hai ....... It will help you bond with them you and they have worked so hard It's important to make them feel that they are appreciated.

Juhi: Cool ......... do I need to do anything?

Riddhima: Actually nothing saara kaam ho gaya hai kal ke liye ........

Juhi: Cool ............. but shouldn't there be an appreciation letter is for me also .........  Juhi was hurt that Riddhima was asking her to hand over the appreciation letter but she had also contributed After she was one of the surgeons Was she not going to receive one and if so then when?

Riddhima: Woh !!! ........... Nahi toh ........ tumhare liye nahi hai ......... only staff and Dr Modi as he is from outside and really did do a lot for both the patients.

Riddhima's words hurt Juhi further. The fact that the management and Riddhima did not feel it was necessary to give her an appreciaton pained her. Dejected she left from there with the appreciation letters. Riddhima could sense her hurt but did not say anything. She had planned something special for Juhi. She had invited on of the trustees to come to give Juhi the appreciation letter. That was going to be a surprise which she had arranged for.

Everything was set as per Riddhima's instructions Juhi supervised the arrangements along with a person from the admin department. Riddhima had instructed the admin personnel to receive the trustee and conduct the event of appreciation letter distribution.

Sid arrived in the hospital not knowing of the event. Juhi had asked him to wait in the cafeteria so he settled himself down there with a cup of coffee. Soon Juhi arrived with the bunch of envelops in her hand.

Sid: Yeh kya hai itne envelops?

Juhi: Appreciation letters for the team

Sid: That's sweet of you ............. so you plan to have a small thing out here and that is why you called me.........

Juhi put down the letters on the table and nodded her head affirmatively.

Sid: But why did you call me this is your team event.......?

Juhi: Because there is one for you also ............

Sid: Me!!! why me?

Juhi: For the surgery you did ..........

Sid: Purva or the other one ........Mr Singh

Juhi: Both kind off

Sid: Then you should also get one ...........

Juhi: There isn't one for me .......... Riddhima said it's only for the staff and you

Sid was completely irritated thinking it was another of Riddhima's ploy. He got up to leave He did not require any appreciation It was not a gesture of appreciating but just guilt and pity that he felt was coming from Riddhima. A way to try making up for all what happened between them. But he was just doing his job and for that he did not require anything especially from Riddhima. And if it was a genuine effort to appreciate the teams' and his efforts then why was Juhi not getting one?

Seeing Sid get up worried Juhi 'Kya hua ........?'

Sid: I don't need any appreciation from anybody and anyways you put in equal efforts so you deserve also one ........

Juhi: Jaane do .........

Sid: Nahi ......... if this was a genuine effort I would have waited but this is just a show that is being put up and I am not going to be part of facade anymore. Why aren't you getting one? Doesn't it pinch you? Tell me.

Juhi: Very honestly it does I was feeling so depressed since morning ............. I did not even feel like coming 

Sid: Then why did you come?

Juhi: Cause it's my team and I need to do certain things Plus inn logo ki koi galati hai

Sid: But I don't need to do anything cause I have nothing to do with this hospital

Juhi: Siddhant wait .......... atleast for the team's sake They will feel good ...........

Sid: I know they will feel good But I will not do anything which my heart does not agree to ........ and my heart will not allow me to agree to this ....................

Juhi: Why Siddhant?

Sid: Cause you are not getting one? Chalo main chalta hoon

Juhi: Siddhant wait na for my sake atleast.......... please

Sid turned back to see Juhi's face pleading him to be with her She looked so depressed and dejected that he could not get himself to say no. He gave a faint smile and nodded.

He walked back and sat down next to Juhi. 'When is it going to end?'

Juhi: It will last for an hour or so ...........

Sid wanted to make it for Juhi So thought of taking her out.

Sid: Toh phir uske baad .........can we go out maybe we can go for dinner?

Juhi: Let see........

Sid: Lets see nahi ............pucca

Juhi: Aree mujhe iske baad bhi kaam hai .........

Sid: Bahane mat banao

Juhi: Bahane nahi banarahi hoon seriously kaam hai ............ Achaa chalo if it gets done quickly we will go out or else tomorrow pucca..........

Sid: Theek hai ........ seeing Juhi smile again made Sid feel better. But Riddhima's careless attitude continued to bother him deep down.

Juhi: abhi bhi itne irritated lag rahe ho

Sid: Tum nahi ho .........

Juhi: I was and momentarily I still feel bad but why should I spoil it for someone else........... and its not going to do any good to me either...................... see all of us have some problem or the other ....... but our attitude towards life makes the difference ............. what is the point of brooding over what went wrong with us Might as well be happy for what is going fine at the moment and smile ........

Those simple words of wisdom coming from Juhi amazed Sid. Maybe this was the reason why Juhi still survived the crisis of her life. Despite a many painful events she still managed to retain the zest for life and this attitude of hers managed to bring a smile on her face and others. He simply sat there affectionately watching Juhi randomly going through the letters.

Juhi: iss mein toh tumhare naam ka envelop nahi hai ..........

Sid: Great chahiye bhi nahi ......... ek kaam karte hai .......... hamare mutual thank you club ki tarak aaj hamara mutual appreciation club bhi khol lete hai ........  

Juhi: Smart ............ like the idea.......... laughing at Sid's idea

Soon the event started, Juhi and Sid were surprised when the admin personnel announced Juhi's name and the trustee handed her the appreciation letter Next was Sid's turn after which Juhi gave the team their individual letters followed by small speeches from everyone.         

Later the team celebrated their success by cutting a cake. Everyone seemed happy All sat around talking relaxing
                                   
Juhi: What are you thinking?                                                                             
                                                                                   
Sid: Nothing just .....you feel good now Noticing the big smile on Juhi's face                                                                             
Juhi: That was really sweet of Riddhima............ Bhanak bhi nahi padne di ki trustee aane wale hai I think I will go and meet her I was so angry with her that I have been avoiding her since morning                                                                                
Sid: hmmm I think you should go and meet her                                                                          
                                                                                   
Juhi: Tum nahi aoge!                                                                            
                                                                                   
Sid: Nahi tum jao ........... I will wait here and please kaam jaldi khatam kar lena then we can go out
                                                                                   
Juhi: Sure ....I will try pucca                                                                              
                                                                                                                       
Sid sat there staring at the remaining cake that sat on the table Seeing him sitting alone Dr Abhay joined him                                                                               
                                                                                   
Abhay: Dr Siddhant I just wanted to talk to you                                                                          
                                                                                   

Sid: Yes ....                                                                             
                                                                                   
Abhay: It was very nice of you to give me so much credit.                                                                                 
                                                                                   
Sid in his thank you speech talked highly of Abhay for managing everything at a short notice and also assisting him in the surgery                                                                                    
                                                                                   
Sid: But you deserve it Dr Abhay You did a great job otherwise we could have lost the patient                                                                            
                                                                                   
Abhay: Actually I did not do anything ...........                                                                            
                                                                                   
Sid was wondering what Abhay was hinting at                                                                            
                                                                                   
Abhay: Today if the patient is fine it is only because of Dr Riddhima and you actually ....                                                                                                                                                                                                                        
Sid: I am sorry but because of her we almost lost the patient I understand that you may respect her as a senior but you don't need to give her undue credit                                                                                                                                                                
Abhay: No Dr Siddhant that was me ....I had changed the dosage without consulting anyone In fact if it would'nt have been for Dr Riddhima then today we would not be celebrating this success here                                                                                             
Sid was flabbergasted at what Abhay was saying                                                                      

Abhay continued 'That day if she would not have been there when the patient started losing conscienceness then anything could have happened She came in and took everything upon herself She stayed there till all was fine It was her quick thinking and efforts not me or anyone else.                                                                                                                    
Sid sat there shell shocked listening. He did not know how to react Everyone was trying to tell him something about what happened but he was not ready to listen to anybody. He accused and behaved so harshly with Riddhima thinking that once again she was messing with someone's life                   

Abhay: Sir I am sorry .....                                                                                  

Abhay had made a mistake but that was due to his inexperience He could even hold it against him as he had realised his mistake and was apologising for it Sid always believed that people learn from their mistakes and that makes the better people

It's ok ....but be careful in future Sid said plainly                                                                                    
                                                                       
Abhay: I am really sorry I will not make such a mistake in future                                                  

Sid nodded his head to accept Abhay's apology                                                                                   

Juhi felt like a small child who had just received a new toy She was so elated that she almost skipped her way towards Riddhima's office.

Without knocking barged in and yelled at Riddhima ............... 'Thank You ............!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!'

Riddhima was not surprised to see Juhi behaving like this who still had a small child in her. 'Tum baccho ke tarah behave karna band karogi'

Juhi: Kabhi nahi............. Thank you Thank you Thank you

Riddhima: Kisliye liye.............

Juhi: Isliye ............. waving the appreciation letter

Riddhima: You deserve it .............

Juhi: Kal nahi pata sakti thi ............ you know how angry and upset I was ............

Riddhima: Sorry par tab tumhe itni khushi bhi nahi hoti ............. surprise ka alag hi maaza hota hai ............. waise kya tumhe sach mein laga ki main tumhe ignore karti ............

Juhi: Nahi ........... par tumne khud bola toh kya karo vishwas nahi karo.............
Riddhima: Sorry .............. maaf kar do ..............

Juhi: Theek hai jao maaf kiya ............

Riddhima: Sab theek se hogaya ............. Riddhima's focus remained on only one person when she asked the question though it sounded more like a general question

Juhi: Hmmm thank you you arranged everything very well

Riddhima: Anytime .......... Riddhima was happy to hear that all went and see a smile on Juhi's face.

All the team members had dispersed to go home or back on their duties while Sid still sat there staring into blank air. Anger growing within him as thousands of questions raged in his mind. She faked a relationship with him and never accepted her's with Shilpa But she always remained true to her profession. Then why did he doubt her? Why did he not listen to anybody who constantly tried to talk to him about the incident? Why could he not even bare the mention of her name leave? He was angry with her but did he hate her? How could he be so insenstitive towards her? Why did he subject her to such harsh words? What did she not defend herself? How could he let his emotions take so much control of him? He should not have done this but why did he?

The more he thought the more restless he became. He needed to something or he felt like his brain would explode.

He had made a mistake and he had to rectify it. But how? She arranged all this with good intention of motivating the team and not making up for her mistake. She was never at fault. He sat there trying to find answers to his questions when his eyes feel on the cake which the cafeteria attendant was going to clear. Instinctively he stopped him. He now knew what he had to do.

Sid: Aap mera ek kaam karenge ......

Cafeteria Attendant: Jee Sir............

Sid: Ek plate laiye please

The Cafeteria Attendant quickly grabbed a plate and returned to ask Sid what he was required to do. Sid cut a piece of the cake and placed it on the plate. ' Aap yeh Dr Riddhima Gupta ko de dijiye ........'
Cafeteria Attendant nodded and was about to leave when Sid stopped him. Just sending a peice of cake could not undo the harsh words said to accuse her. He needed to say sorry. He owed her one. It was his mistake. He quickly walked over to the counter to grab a pen and some paper and walked back to the table.

He stood there writing .............'Riddhima .........' He looked at the words written 'We are professional what happened was on professional level misunderstanding' He nodded his head as if to affirm to himself what he was thinking was correct. He scratched out the name and started afresh on a new sheet. 'Dr. Riddhima............' But .........' He took a moment to think about what he had said that day As he recalled his words he closed in eyes in disgust. How could he say all that? He knew he had overstepped his limits. He again looked at the paper before him. 'Dr. Riddhima bahoot impersonal ho jaata hai aur uss din .........' He once again scratched out the name and started afresh on a new sheet.

The Cafeteria Attendant intently watched Sid trying to write a note. From the looks of it he gauged that this was going to take time. He has other tasks to do but he could not tell Sid so. He had to wait patiently. After all Sid must be a very important person as the trustee himself was down to falicitate him. The attendant quiet waited back. Sid continued to try writting an apology note. Finally he wrote the simplest note possible. 'Sorry' He looked at it and thought for a moment. Yes maybe that was adequate to let her know he did not mean to be harsh on her He knew she would understand. But then the next question popped in her mind How to sign off. Finally he decided Dr Modi would sound just right After all that was the way she addressed him. He quickly signed off and handed the note to the attendant.

Sid felt happy for a moment. He felt good. He had done what he needed to do. But was that enough? He has really been nasty to her all these days while she was just trying to be nice to him. No!!! That was not enough; he should do this personally. He ran and caught up with the attendant. 'Suno......ek kaam kijiye ........'

The attendant was irritated. Sid had already wasted much of his time and now he was planning to give him one more task. Reluctantly he asked what it was. 'Jee Sir.......'

Sid: Yeh mujhe de dijiye...........

Attendant handed the plate and note back to Sid and waited for the next order.

Sid: Bas .......main karloonga .........

Hearing this, the attendant quickly walked off from there fearing that Sid may change his mind again.

Sid looked at the note for a moment. He wanted to do this personally but how. Once again he looked at the note 'Agar woh office mein nahi hai toh phir i will leave the note and if she is there i will give her the note ............no I will say sorry myself......... Yes that will be good' Happy with himself he briskly walked towards Riddhima office.

Riddhima who was out to check a patient had just returned to her and was settling down when she heard a knock on the door 'May I come in?'


Part 63

On hearing that voice again Riddhima froze instantaneously. The last encounter had unnerved her completely and anxiety resurfaced immediately
Everything had been fine till now. Then, what had happened? Why was he here?
She had to do damage control or else matters would get worse. The feelings that came with it was something she could not handle
As Sid had neared Riddhima's office, he steps automatically slowed down. He had been trying to frame his apology. But somehow could not understand how. His words to Riddhima kept ringing in ears. Few minutes before he was happy. He knew that he needed to do this cause it was the right thing. But what was he going to say though the anxiety was rapidly building up in him he was not going to turn back. With unsure steps he had walked up to Riddhima's office He had peeped inside to see if she was there and there she was seated trying to arrange or find a file.
He had taken a deep breath and knocked on the door. He opened it and requested permission to enter 'May I come in?'
Why is he here? What should I do? He must be thinking that the felicitation function was just a ploy to make him feel good. Why did this have to happen?
Sid stood there looking nervously around the room not being able to look up at her. He felt so guilty for having accused her so badly that he could not meet her eyes. She had not said anything till now so thought of asking again. He cleared his throat.
Riddhima immediately snapped out of her thoughts. She quickly got up almost knocking the chair down and took a couple of steps towards Sid. Before Sid could ask again Riddhima started All nervous and anxious that her actions may have angered Sid again which is why he was here.

'Woh........... tum...........' stammering as she did not know what to say......... 'jaisa soch rahe ho waisa kuch nahi hai ............. main toh sirf apna kaam kar rahi thi ............ woh management ka decision tha........isliye mujhe karna pada .............'

Sid felt a little bewildered. Her eyes reflected the anxiety and fear which were coming across in her words.
'I am sorry ........... I am really sorry ...........maine jaan bhuj ke kuch nahi kiya .........mujhe maloom hai Sid............ sorry ......... Dr Modi ...........ki tum ......... nahi ...............i mean aap ............. nahi chahate ki................'

'Why was she saying sorry? She should not be saying sorry I should be the one to say sorry?'

'main aap ke liye .............'

'Rid.......'
Riddhima's breath caught in her throat. After 10 years she was going to hear him take her name again. Her joy knew no bounds but so short-lived that was when Sid immediately corrected himself
'I mean Dr. Gupta ............. actually ............I am sorry .........

'Aap kyu sorry bol rahe hai ........... aap ki koi galati nahi hai ........... I should not have interfered..............'

'Nahi aapki koi galati nahi thi.............. Dr. Abhay mujhe sab kuch pata diya aaj ................ I am really sorry I should not have behaved like this ........... maine aap ko kuch jyada hi bol diya ............professional level ke bahaar jaake ........... I am really sorry .................

This was the same quality which had smitten Riddhima. Sid's honesty, his genuineness. Yet again today seeing Sid apologise for misunderstanding her intentions and his harsh words filled her with affection for this man. She stood there staring at the man in front of her. Completely amazed by this person whom she had given the biggest wounds of his life and yet today he was here to apologize for a small misunderstanding.

'aap ne jo kiya mere patient ke liye .......... uske liye thanks ............ really appreciate your efforts'

'No ......No ........... it's fine .............. you don't.............'

Sid was getting more and more uncomfortable as he could not understand how to offer her the cake which he had gotten for her. While Riddhima did not know how to get Sid to stop being sorry for the entire incident. He had repented enough.

Actually aaj aap ne puri team ke liye jo kiya usse bahoot achaa tha............ everyone was very happy........ especially Juhi..............'
But was he happy? Could she ever be a reason for his happiness? She was desperate to hear him say that. 'Aur aap?'

Sid nervously kept looking away not knowing what to say. Was he happy? He really did not know. He never gave it a thought. He knew if he answered negative it would hurt Riddhima But was it right to tell her that he never bothered to think about it. He quickly looked up at her to see her eyes desperately searching for a hint to her answer. No he could do this.

'Chalta hoon ............aap ko bahoot kaam hoga' He quickly turned around and walked out of the door ;leaving a dejected Riddhima behind. She no more brought a smile to his face inspite of the misunderstanding being cleared.

Sid walked towards the cafeteria when he realised he was still holding the cake which he had taken for Riddhima. He thought of a moment. Should he go back or just let it be? 'She took so much effort for the felicitation function.......... infact she is the main reason why this was possible.............If she would not have been there we could have lost the patient............ She deserves this as much as us....'

He quickly turned back and once again knocked and entered Riddhima's office. Seeing the puzzled look on Riddhima's face Sid looked down at the cake peice .......... 'Sorry to disturb you............but I think you were equally responsible for the success infact more than many of us......... Since you were not there ................. just thought of getting this for you......... Congratulations to you too............'

Sid's gesture left her speechless. Tears welled up in Riddhima's eyes while a big smile adorned her lids. She felt the happiest person that day.

Sid was getting uncomfortable with the silence. Sid quickly placed the cake piece on the table 'Mujhe chalna chaiye. Bye' 


Part 64

He had done the right thing. Sid felt light and at ease. He felt as if some of the tension that he always felt had faded away all of a sudden. Feeling a little at peace he walked into the cafeteria and once again settled himself there.

The cake seemed the sweetest thing that she had ever eaten yet she did not feel content. Clearing of the misunderstanding had still not brought a smile to Sid's face pinched Riddhima.
Sid's anger towards Riddhima had restrained him from eating the cake till now. Sid looked at the cake which still sat on the table. Slowly he moved towards it and cut a piece of the cake for himself.
Riddhima dug into the cake taking mini-bites at a time. As if by doing so it would last her for her lifetime. 
Sid was waiting for Juhi for over an hour now, hoping that she would be done soon. After so many years he found himself once again looking forward to spending time with someone. Someone with whom he was comfortable with, talk easily to and just be himself.

Here after finishing her work Juhi came to meet Riddhima to find her lost in her thoughts with a wide grin on her face.

'Kya hua Riddhima bahoot kush lag rahi hoo' asked Juhi as she walked into Riddhima's office. As usual Juhi had come to bid Riddhima goodbye before leaving for the day.

Riddhima: 'Nahi ........kuch nahi ..............aise hi .......kuch yaad aa gaya ...............'

'Kuch ya koyi ........ ??' teased Juhi

Riddhima: Kuch !!!!

Juhi: Kya???

Riddhima: Kuch nahi ......... aise hi ........

Juhi: Kuch toh hai nahi toh hamari Meena Kumari aaj itna chehekti nahi ............. kya hua .........muhje bhi toh bata chale

Riddhima: Aree baba kuch nahi ...........bola na .............

Juhi: theek hai nahi batana hai toh jaane do ............ waise main kyon hoti hoon ..............?

Riddhima: Shut up Juhi ...............mujhse jyada drama tum karti hoon .............

Juhi: toh phir batau ............

Riddhima: Cake khate hua ek baat yaad aa gayi ...........

Juhi: Cake ........... oh lord!!! I forgot to get you the cake ............ par yeh kisne laya .............

Riddhima: Woh ........ Siddhant ........Modi

Juhi was surprised that Sid inspite of not eating the cake himself had brought it for Riddhima: What!!! How come? ..........why did he ............? Did he again blast you? Just tell he did that and I am not going to spare him ............'

Riddhima was quiet amused at tirade of questions and was also touched how fiercely loyal Juhi was to her as a friend. But Sid never did any of the kind. She had to tell Juhi if not Sid would have to bear Juhi's wrath.

She quickly jumped to Sid's defense. 'No Juhi .........aisa kuch nahi hua .......... lagta hai Dr. Abhay ne sab kuch bata diya ......... so he was here to apologize for the misunderstanding...............aur issi liye woh cake leke aya tha .........

Juhi: See ............ I told you ...............pehle hi bata de......... sab kuch sach sach ............. par tum thi ki nahi ............ usse aur tension nahi dena chahati, woh gussa ho jayega falana timka .............. ab dekh ...........aa gaya na line pe sab kuch.......... 

Riddhima nodded her head.......... 'hmmm.........'. It did not matter whether her opinion was right or wrong now. All that mattered to her was that Sid was not angry.

Juhi found it a little strange to see Riddhima's face radiate with so much happiness for such a small reason. She had hardly seen her so happy in many days.

Sid's patience was running out so he finally decided to call Juhi

Juhi: Siddhant bhi na kaisa hai ........... did he actually bring you the cake to say sorry ......... ?

Riddhima once again nodded remembering the moment when he offered her the cake.

Juhi: 'I must say Riddhima ............. he is a thorough gentleman ............. the minute he knew he has made a mistake he was quick to apologize. No hang-ups ............and the cake ......... that was sweet .........'

Riddhima: 'Bahoot cute hai woh............'

This was a good day Riddhima seemed happy and relaxed. She actually called someone cute. So unlike Riddhima but yes that was a good sign; a good time to probe about the doubts that were hovering in her mind. But yet again, fate intervened. Sid called to ask Juhi to hurry up so that they could go out for dinner.

Juhi: Haan haan theek hai ......... I will be there in 2 minutes. She quickly turned to Riddhima who was watching her intently trying to understand with whom she was talking .........

Understanding the question running in Riddhima's mind Juhi indicated towards her phone 'Your cute doctor !!! ........... Harassing me to come fast ..........we have to go out for dinner........... he promised me to take me out cause we both thought that I was not getting the appreciation .........'

Somehow today Juhi referencing Sid such did not unsettle her. He was indeed Her cute doctor Before she could let her thoughts race back into time Juhi asked her to join them for dinner

'Why don't you come along ............ your shift is also over by now...........?'

This thought immediately unsettled Riddhima. Sid was not angry but he did not seem happy. He seemed too awkward still in her presence and his awkwardness made her awkward. She still had to maintain her distance. That would be the best she thought.

Riddhima: 'Nahi .........I still have a lot of work ........... you both carry on and celebrate the success.........'

Juhi: 'Chalo na ........ you hardly ever go out ............. infact you don't go out at all ever ............ in so many years I have not seen you just go out and chill for some time.'

Riddhima: 'Nahi....... seriously you go ........ I am fine ........ and now go before he calls again ......... Urging Juhi to join Sid immediately fearing Juhi would keep insisting on joining them.

Juhi quickly rushed over to join Sid in the cafeteria.

Sid: Kitni der?

Juhi: aree abb aa gayi hoon na toh chalo ab .......aur waise bhi you should be used to this

Sid: 'No I am not........ Actually I am' ..........smiling slyly ............. 'Shilpa takes so much time to get ready ......... everytime you had to be after her ........... nahi toh 1 ' 2 ghante late toh pucca karva deti thi...........'

Juhi: Lekin main sirf kuch minute late hui hoon ......... toh ab chalo.........

Sid: Absolutely ........chalo ......lead the way...........

Juhi: that means I will have to choose the restaurant this evening also .........?

Sid: and order the food .............!!! happy with himself that he was successful in giving Juhi the hint that he was not going to do any of it.

Juhi: Gladly .........tum mardo ko khana pakana toh door khana order karna bhi nahi aata............. laughing out loud seeing Sid's now sulking face. ..... 'Acha theek hai ......... you being an exception ......bas happy ...........'

Sid defending himself: Hello I am ...............

'Yes Yes ........absolutely' said Juhi mockingly ........... 'Ab chale'

Juhi choose the restaurant and ordered the food while Sid continued to sulk throughout

Juhi: Ab kyu muh fulaye baite ho ......?

Sid: You girls really like bossing us around.

Juhi: Absolutely ........... that is what we are there for ..........? and if we don't then you men will be all lost.

Sid: Actually you know what you are right ............ Uske ke ana se meri zindagi ek aur baar puri badal gayi .......

Juhi: You mean ???

Sid: Shilpa............

Juhi: Bahoot miss karte ho na tum usse?

Sid just nodded his head.He really missed her ever since she left to come back to India. 'Woh meri sabse achi dost thi ............. Yuvi and Shilpa were the only ones who stayed with me through those difficult days............'

Juhi: You mean your divorce...........?

Sid once again nodded his head. 'I didn't feel like doing anything ......... I used to sit holed up in my apartment for days on end. Not wanting to meet anyone. I had completely lost touch with life, with people. I used to hate talking to anyone also.

'Yuvi always motivated me to focus on work.This helped me to greater extend for the first year while completing my internship But when Shilpa came things started taking a different turn............

Shilpa and Yuvi were two individuals who were closest to him after his family. He could talk about them for hours together. They indeed were the only support apart from his family who stood by him in his thick and thin. True friends!!! He always thanked God for giving him such wonderful friends.

Later that evening, Juhi told Sid about her invitation to Sid. Hearing that, Sid once again started withdrawing into a shell. He kept pushing the food in his plate; hardly concentrating on his food or the conversation that Juhi was trying to have. He seemed so enthusiastic till the moment she brought up the topic of Riddhima. She realised that the change in Sid's behaviour was triggered by none other than Riddhima which once again irritated her.  She had to know the reason why?

Juhi: Tum Riddhima se itna chidte kyu ho ...........?

Sid: Main kissi se nahi chidta .........

Juhi: Kyu jhoot bol rahe ho .........? what is the problem now?

Sid: Juhi tum be fisool ki baat leke bait gayi ho ..............

Juhi: Misunderstanding toh clear ho gayi hai na toh ab kya problem hai .............?

Sid: I ............ I just ............Juhi forget it you will not understand.

Juhi: Then make me understand Siddhant............

Sid: I don't want to talk about it ........

Juhi: In fact tum abhi bhi nahi badale ............. abhi bhi akele rehna chahate ho ......................... not once have I seen you smiling properly ............ kya bana li hai apni zindagi .........

Sid: Enough Juhi ............ you don't start............

Juhi: What?

Sid: Like Shilpa woh bhi hamesha aise hi .............

Juhi: Woh kuch galat kehti thi kya .......... just look at yourself ............. You have so much of anger filled in you constantly........... why ..............just because of what happened years back ............?

Sid: No .............absolutely not ........

Juhi: then what is it ........Shilpa's death ....... you did not have control over it ..............if you knew about it you would have tried your best to save her You would have eased her pain but you could not have changed her destiny ...........Learn to let go Siddhant............

Juhi had unknowly hit upon Sid's wound: Let go .............why should I always let go ....? Meri kya galati hai ............hamesha mujhse sab kuch chin liya gaya ............ jisse bhi maine pyaar kiya jisse bhi maine apna mana woh sab mujhe door kyu ho gaye ................ aur Shilpa uski kya galati thi ...............

Juhi: Iss mein kissi ki koi galati nahi hai Siddhant ...........Like I said ,,,,,,,,it is all destiny ................ look at me have I not accepted Rishab's death............ but have i let that affect me .............Yes I miss him but that does not stop me from living to the fullest.

Sid: But I am living my life........

Juhi: Tum zindagi kaat rahe ho ......jee nahi rahe ho........

Sid: Aisa nahi hai ...........

Juhi: Aisa nahi hai ...........toh batavo ............pechili baar kab tum sab se jyada kush the........... kaam se related chod ke...........

Sid: Jab iss weekend main Rohan ko movie dikhane leke gaya tha........... jab uske saath time spend kiya ...........

Juhi: Aur uske pehle ......

Sid somehow could not really recollect when. There was much truth in what Juhi was saying. He nervously once again started toying with the food in his plate.

Juhi: I can understand that your work gives you a lot of pleasure but then there is a life outside it also. And if you continue to be angry with everything that is happening or has happened then it's not going to help. It will only sap up all your energy.

Sid: But I am responsible.............

Juhi quickly cut Sid 'No Siddhant Shilpa ke death pe tumhara control nahi tha.......... and so you were not responsible for it ............. but yes somewhere deep down you have not forgiven your wife for what happened between both of you ...........and you are letting this affect everything ............ you till date don't like letting people come close to you thinking that they will hurt you but you need to give them a chance only then will you know whether they hurt or heal you .............and very honestly its not giving people a chance it is giving life a chance. Think about it .............'

Whatever Juhi said that evening set Sid thinking once again. There was a whole lot of truth in her words. What was his life all about? As far as he could remember it was just work and nothing else. After Shilpa left he had once again reverted back to his old lifestyle which he followed during his internship days in US. Except for a couple of close friends he hardly socialised with anybody. 



Dearest all .............

My exams are scheduled in mid April and start of May (university papers) Plus a lot of project work Going forward for another month or so updates will be slower I am really sorry But yes I shall update definitely .............Sorry about this

Part 65

The awkwardness between Sid and Riddhima just did not seem to settle. There was so much history there between them. Both did their best to stay out of each other's path
Be it when they bumped into each other in Juhi's office
Sid: Main baad mein aata hoon ........... aap dono ko kaam ka kuch discuss karna hoga.........
Riddhima: Nahi Nahi .........don't worry ............ I had just come in to have a casual chat ....... main chalti hoon .......
or in the lift 'Dr Abhay Lets take the stairs its good for health to walk a little.'
or in the corridor 'Main file office mein hi bhul gayi ........ main le kar aati hoon'
They always managed to find some excuse. These instances did not go unnoticed by Juhi who felt hurt that Sid did not pay heed to her words. She decided not to talk further on this with him as all her words were just falling on deaf ears. He seemed like a lost cause.
But Sid was never a lost cause. He would always make amends where required. Sid was just staying out of Riddhima's way as he constantly saw her uncomfortable when he was around. He had slowly and steadily started searching for the glint of comfort in Riddhima's behaviour. The absence of it only led to Sid's awkwardness. As before, somewhere deep down seeing Riddhima uncomfortable still made him uncomfortable. While Riddhima discomfort was solely triggered by Sid's discomfort. This was a vicious circle and it needed to be broken.

Sid's visits to Sanjeevani continued. His patient was doing a speedy recovery and it seemed be a matter of couple of weeks more before the patient would be discharged.
One afternoon Sid decided to do an early visit thinking that in the evening he would spend some time shopping for the next week's groceries and necessities.
It was nearing end of lunch time when he finished checking on the patient. He thought of buzzing Juhi to check if she had her lunch if not then he could also grab a bite with her.

Juhi: Tum aaj jaldi kaise aaye ..........

Sid: Aise hi ........socha shaam ko kuch aur kaam khatam kar longa ...........waise tumne khana khaya .

Juhi: I will be done soon ........ i mean eating but if you come quickly I can give you company for sometime atleast.

Sid: Cool ......... I will be there in two minutes

Juhi: Come fast I will order for you

Sid: You are such a saviour

The cafeteria was still packed. Juhi sat in the far corner waiting for Sid to get his lunch which she had ordered for him when Riddhima arrived there. As she saw Juhi seated still she heaved a sign of relief thinking that she would have company while she had a lunch. Most of the days; she skipped breakfast as she found it boring to prepare only for herself. Today being no different, she felt famished by now.

Riddhima: Good you are here. Now give me company till I quickly grab a bite to eat. If not trust me I will die of hunger.

Seeing Riddhima there Juhi did not know what to do. Sid would be there any moment and knowing these two one of them would definitely leave without eating. Before she could whip up anything Riddhima turned to leave to get her meal.  

Juhi feared another round of uncomfortable moments or faceoff; they had been crossing each other's paths too often recently. As Riddhima neared the counter Sid turned to leave with his tray of food; almost bumping into Riddhima.

Instinctively both said Sorry not realising whom they were apologising to. But as realization dawned the same awkwardness surfaced again immediately. Juhi sat at the table watching these two standing nervously looking around Sid and Riddhima ran a quick check of the cafeteria to realize that no tables were free. Both were unable to decide what to do. Knowing Sid Riddhima knew that he would leave on the pretext on having finished his work and being there just to say hi to Juhi While Sid knew that seeing him here Riddhima would try leaving not wanting to make it uncomfortable thus skipping her meal.
Still not being able to understand what to do; he looked at Juhi for help. A distant voice was heard

'Let go Sid.......  There is no point thinking about her. And you yourself say what happened was for the best At least she is happy. As of me ............ don't worry .......... maybe some things were not meant to be .......... But should we lose out on what we have here ........ I have you aunty uncle Yuvi Sue Vishal and you most importantly ........ This is my world I don't regret anything and I think it will help if you also don't ............ I am fine ............ I am happy .............. I want to see you happy ........... Let go Sid....'

Sid could not understand what was happening Juhi sat there pensively looking at him and someone else............. Riddhima!!!  She was here standing there nervously looking at him But that voice so serene and calm. It always had a soothing effect on him. He closed his eyes for a moment to collect his thoughts and a smiling face flashed in front of his eyes. The warmth in her eyes always reassured him of her presence in his life and today also he felt good. Sid looked back at Juhi.

'our attitude towards life makes the difference ............. what is the point of brooding over what went wrong with us Might as well be happy for what is going fine at the moment and smile ........'

'You have so much of anger filled in you constantly........... why ..............just because of what happened years back ............? Learn to let go Siddhant............'

He closed his eyes for a moment again to relive that moment and heard her again 'Let go Sid.... I am happy now ........'

They were indeed his saviours who were there when he need help the most. The words of wisdom did make sense. Why live with this awkwardness? He had felt so light and nice after he had apologised for his mistake. Then today also he could gracefully invite her for lunch instead of having to live with the anger of yesteryears as well as guilt of Riddhima skipping her lunch. This awkwardness needed to end.

Sid took a deep breathe 'Aap ........' Riddhima who was still trying to rack a reason to leave was taken off guard. Without further thought she started rambling away 'Sorry ............ I hope aap ko lagi toh nahi na............ I just thought of grabbing a coffee on my way so came here................sorry once again I didn't .........'

Sid: Lunch time pe coffee is not a great idea.........

Riddhima: Nahi ........ actually I know but ............. still looking here and there to avoid eye contact with Sid.

Sid: Join Juhi and me for a quick bite if possible .............

An invitation from Sid to join him for lunch, it felt like a sweet dream. No that can't be the case. She looked up in disbelief.

'Waise bhi too much coffee is not for health ........right?' added Sid, a mild smile flashed on his face for a moment.

Riddhima's face beamed with a warm nostalgic smile. Yes, this was her Sid, whom she once teased to provoke him to be bolder to ask her out for a date and here he was today asking him to join for lunch. Her happiness knew no bounds. She gladly nodded. Seeing that smile Sid felt nice for a moment. He had managed to get a smile on Riddhima's face. Just a moment it was, when reality struck him where they both stood today. He quickly looked away 'I will wait for you till you collect your tray' offered like a gentleman.

Juhi watched the two talk like normal individuals for the first time. It was next to impossible to miss There was a smile on their face.

Riddhima collected her tray and they walked towards the table. Juhi was still trying to digest seeing them together.

Sid: Juhi, I am sorry I invited Dr. Gupta to join us for lunch without your permission.

Juhi: That's ok .......... waise I am done and have to make a move. But I guess you have to give each other's company now.

Before either could object Juhi left from there leaving both Sid and Riddhima alone.

The cafeteria was buzzing with activity. People continued to walk in and out the cafeteria. Some chatted while they ate while some were just busy finishing their meals as quickly as possible to rejoin duty. For them nothing of this existed. There was deafing silence between them that hurt their ears. They sat at their table yet again uncomfortable, toying with the food in their plate. Both didn't know whether to speak or not and if they spoke then what to speak.

Every now and then, both stole a glance at the other's plate to check if the other was eating. Only to find the food hardly touched. Seeing Sid so uncomfortable again pained Riddhima. Finally she broke the silence 'Aapne kuch nahi khaya abhi tak......'

Sid: hmmm........... aap ne bhi kuch nahi khaya .......

Seeing Sid so uncomfortable in her presence had killed Riddhima's hunger by now. 'Nahi ..... kuch khaas bhook nahi hai'

Sid: Isliye coffee peene ke liye aaye the

Riddhima: Hmmm .......  waise itne late lunch ........kaise?

Sid: Patient ko check raha tha ....... isliye der hogayi ........

Riddhima: I have heard he is recovering very fast.......

Sid: Yes ......... he is doing well ............ waise you also deserved to be a part of the celebration that day .........

Riddhima: No no absolutely not .... Maine toh kuch nahi kiya .......... it was all due to the team's and your efforts..............

Sid: Absolutely not ....... if you had not controlled the situation that time all would have gone waste........ but why did you not tell me that day ............. I am sorry I said a lot  .........

Riddhima: Please sorry mat bolo please ........... aapki galati nahi thi ........ kisi ko bhi gussa aa jaata uss waqt ............

Sid: Par maine woh sab nahi kehna ........

Riddhima: Please aap uss baat ke baare mein mat sochiye ............please aap please gussa mat hoiye ......... please

 Sid gave her a reassuring look that he shall not think or talk further on it and returned his attention to the food that sat on the tray.

Seeing Sid eat peacefully Riddhima also started digging in her food enthusiastically.

Seeing both of them peacefully sitting and having lunch together pleased Juhi. For her it felt like finally two warring groups had suddenly called truce.



Thank you for all your lovely comments. I have read each one of them and will reply soon. Firstly sorry for the delay in update I just could not think nor write for so many days that frustrated me to no ends with my college projects et al adding to my frustration
But Thanks to my cutest little sis Pragzie and Tanni they were indeed very supportive and encouraging. Waise daate bhi acha hai ......... and when they start I actually doubt who is the elder one here. But cutie thank you soo much this update is thanks to you both Pragzie and Tanni   Hug 
and So here is the update ...........Hope you all like it.............

Part 66

Juhi waited in her office eager to know what got into Sid to invite Riddhima for lunch and more importantly about their interaction. As Sid entered her office she wanted to pounce on him with her questions. It needed a lot self restrain to avoid alarming Sid with her questions and sending him back into his shell.

They discussed Mr Singh's case. Sid was planning to discharge him by end of next week if his progress continued to be satisfactory. Though both were discussing the cases yet their minds still were still stuck on what happened in the cafeteria.

Sid constantly felt as if he would suffocate if he waited for another minute there. He failed to understand why he felt so. Something troubled him badly that his head had started to hurt As his work was now complete, he thought of saying a quick goodbye and leave for the day. He thought that a little rest may do him good.

Sid: Chalo Juhi main chalta hoon

Seeing Sid in such a state worried Juhi. She could not understand what possibly happened that Sid seemed so unsettled. Just some time back he was all fine.

Juhi: Tumhari tabyath toh theek hai na?

Sid: Haan ........sirf todha thak gaya hoon ....kal kaafi kaam tha ............

It was just a mere excuse that he was making and forcing him to talk would not be the right thing to do right now Hence, Juhi decided to procrastinate her questions to another day.

---------------------
Sid thought of grabbing a painkiller before heading home. He walked into the cafe after grabbing hold of a painkiller. He stood at the counter to order a drink for him the attendant handed over a tray containing two coffee cups meant for Riddhima.

 Sid wondered why Riddhima was having coffee barely within an hour of having her lunch.

Attendant: Sir aap?

Sid was not in mood for a coffee but he was so lost in thought that he blurted out: Coffee........

The attendant kept looking at him wondering if Sid actually meant to order what he has said. Wanting to confirm before he billed it he repeated 'Sir, so it's a coffee is it?'

Sid once again absent minded nodded. The attendant just gave him a sorry look and billed the order. Sid stood at the counter not knowing why he stood there even.

Attendant: Aapki coffee aur bill...............

Sid still dazed looked at the coffee for a moment not knowing why he ordered that. Noticing his lost look the attendant once again repeated 'Aapki coffee aur bill'

Completely disinterested in his drink and everything at the moment he choose the nearest table possible and settled down.

He looked around the cafe which was now almost empty. This was a place where he could spend long hours today did not interest him for even a minute. He took a sip of the coffee and gulped down the painkiller with it  and started toying with his phone.

Just then a something caught his attention, a gang of new interns had recently entered the cafe were not at the counter placing their order. Nostalgia seemed to fill Sid's senses when he heard a familiar name.

Intern 1: arree yaar waqt be waqt coffee peene se tum Dr. Riddhima nahi ban javogi  .............

Intern 2: Kya matlab hai tumhara .........  ?

Intern 1: Main ek baar unko ek project pe assist kar raha tha........... woh ek baar bhi nahi uthi ......... khana khane ke liye bhi nahi sirf ........... coffee pe coffee jaise unka breakfast lunch aur dinner wohi hai .........'

Intern 2: One of case hoga ........... usko trademark banane ki zaroorat nahi hai ...........

Attendant: Nahi ji ........yeh sahi bol rahe hai ........... Dr Riddhima unko wajah nahi lagti kabhi kabhi toh unka lunch aur dinner dono coffee hota hai ........ agar woh Dr Juhi dimaag ki surgery wali woh na ho toh woh ek coffee leti ke ya order kar ke chali jaati hai ...........

Intern 3: Waise ek number ki hitler hai ...... par dil ki buri nahi hai .......kal ki baat lo ......... Woh rounds be thi ........... break time khatam ho chukka tha but Aslam and I could not go on a break .........Jab unko pata chala toh immediately hum dono ka break schedule kar diya ........ boli you should take care of your health you all need to eat and rest at proper intervals ............

Intern 4: Actually Hai toh ek doctor ..........doosro ko sahet bananeki salah deti hai aur interns ka toh bahoot khayal rakhti hai par kudh ki sahet coffee pee ke banati hai ................  laughing out the irony of Riddhima's life.

What the intern was saying was quite right. How could a doctor be so careless about her own health? When did Riddhima become so careless and why?

Sid just continued to sit there pondering over the information just revealed to him.

----------------------------

Juhi wanted answers to her questions so taking the next possible opportunity she landed in Riddhima's office

Riddhima seemed fine yet there was not so completely. Something seemed to trouble Riddhima also. Seeing Riddhima state, Juhi's suspicion became stronger.

Juhi: Tum theek nahi lag rahi ho ........  Siddhant aur tumhare beech phir se kuch hua kya ...........?

Riddhima: Nahi kyu ? aisa kyu poocha rahi ho?

Juhi: Woh thoda upset worried lag raha tha.............

Hearing Juhi's words the joy that Riddhima experienced died an instant death and triggered Riddhima's anxiety. Knowing Sid Riddhima know that Sid would not say anything or show it but he was hurting. Inspite of clearing the whole issue the harsh words said to her seemed to bother him. But she deserved them yet he would never forgive himself for having said those.
'Kya woh bahoot pareshan lag raha tha? Usne kuch kaha kya?'

Juhi kept observing Riddhima and decoding her behaviour. A small question had given rise to these innumerable questions.

Riddhima: Juhi tum kuch bol kyu nahi rahi ho........

Juhi just shook her head 'No he did not say anything ........... more like it maine poocha nahi ........ but if nothing unpleasant happened then why did he did look a worried?

Her Inability to find an answer to these questions or help the situation drained Riddhima's further. She sat there like a lost warrior. All she could do is hope that all this did not trouble him too much. The tension was clear on her face which perturbed Juhi. Why did both look so lost and worried? Her suspicion that there was more than just the dosage incident was once again becoming strong.

Juhi: Riddhima .......... tumse ek baat poocho ......

Juhi's stance put Riddhima on guard immediately. She suspected that Juhi was reading into their concern for one and another. 'Poocho.............' she answered reluctantly.

Juhi: Riddhima ............. Siddhant ............. I mean ............ kuch hai kya tum dono ke beech?

Juhi's question alarmed Riddhima. She quickly refuted 'Nahi ........ kuch nahi hai ........ tumhara kehne ka kya matlab hai ........... kya hoga hamare beech ? Kuch bhi toh nahi .............

Juhi was slightly taken aback by Riddhima suddenly outburst. 'Nahi mere kehne ka matlab tha ki tum dono .................jaise tum dono behave karte ho ...........aise lagta hai ki kuch tum dono ..............I mean ........... there seems to be too much history there than just the dosage incident.

Once again fear gripped Riddhima. Juhi was never judgmental but Riddhima did not know how she would react when she would come to know the truth behind Siddhant and her. She did not want to lose a good friend. But more importantly she did not want to spoil the comfort level between Sid and Juhi. She had seen how relaxed Sid was with Juhi. Somewhere his troubled looked vanished when he was with her. Moreover, how much ever she hated it but she could not deny that there seemed a possibility of a future to them. The flashes of that evening ran fresh in her mind as she gripped on to the armrest of the chair. There were too many emotions surging in her fear anxiety affection spite. It seemed to drain her further.

Juhi observing her carefully understood Riddhima was venerable again like she was when she had sensed Sid. Could this person be Sid? 'Kya rishta hai tumhara Siddhant ke saath Riddhima............ ?

'Kuch Nahi' blasted Riddhima ......... 'Mera uske saath koi rishta nahi hai ........... aur ab yeh fisool ki baate band karo Juhi............ '

Juhi: Par main toh ............

Riddhima: Kyu janana chahati ho ......... isliye kyu ki tum usse pasand karne lagi ho ..........isliye hi na.. Toh sunno mera uske saath koi rishta ............woh sirf ek achaa insaan hai aur insaniyat ke naate main todhi concerned hoon........ isse jyada kuch nahi hai ..............and now let's just end this topic here I don't want to talk about Dr. Modi anymore........... is that clear?

A dejected Juhi left a fuming Riddhima behind but yet could not get herself to believe that there was nothing. On the contrary, Riddhima's outburst strengthened her suspicion further.

---------------------------------------------

Sid could not digest that the so prim and proper Dr. Riddhima Gupta was very careless with her eating habits.

He was supposed to be the irresponsible one not Riddhima. On all days after he got up he would find Riddhima all ready after having completed her morning jog, with breakfast and the day's meal ready. Never a thing was out of place.

That seemed just like yesterday yet ten years stood between them. After ten years of marital life with one she loved and yet she seemed lost. What happened in these ten years that brought about this drastic change in Riddhima? Was everything fine in her life? Or was his presence bothering her? If his presence bothered her then why did she do all that she did when he was in Sanjeevani for the surgeries? He wanted answers to his questions. But the biggest question which he needed to answer himself first was whether what he desired, was it correct? He did not have a right to think leave alone question or interfere about Riddhima and her life. He was no more a part of it. Actually he never was. He should not be thinking about her. He quickly got up and left to go home.
----------------------------------------

Juhi was happy that the day was slow. Her preoccupied mind was relieved. She still could not understand why Riddhima reacted this way. Juhi now knew that Riddhima indeed thought there was more to Siddhant and her relationship and somehow this was irking Riddhima. But why, she herself had on previous occasions also maintained that she did not know Siddhant and all was on humanitarian grounds. Juhi did not have any reason not to believe Riddhima. Obviously why would she lie to her? Juhi was that person with whom Riddhima had shared some of the darkest secrets of her life, be it extramarital affair or her marital life with armaan. But it still did not fit. What made her uncomfortable about Siddhant and her?

---------------------------------------
Sid somehow could not get himself to go home. He wandered in the supermarket trying to shop for the next week. After failing miserably at it he went to a nearby bookstore and browsed through books. Books had become Sid's best friends after Shilpa left. Any spare time and he would be seen with a book in his hand be it medicine, self help or fiction. But today that also could not hold Sid's attention. Sid's curiosity got him back to Sanjeevani. There were too many questions swirling in his mind. He wondered how to find the answers to the same. He did not want to pull Juhi into this as she was still seemed unaware of whom he was to Riddhima. Talking to Riddhima directly may lead her to misinterpreting his concern.

He walked towards the ICU to check on his patient once again so if anyone asks why he was here he could use that as an excuse.
Luck seemed to be on his side that evening. On enquiring the nurse informed him that Juhi had already left for the day. He seemed relieved that he would not need to explain his presence to one person less. He entered the ICU to check on the patient where Dr Abhay was already present doing a routine round of inspections.

Dr. Abhay: Good to see you Dr Modi. Your patient is doing extremely well.

Sid nodded while going through the same reports for the second time in the day.

Dr. Abhay: So when do you plan to shift him out of the ICU?.

Sid: I was thinking of tomorrow and then by end of next week we can discharge the patient. I spoke to Dr. Juhi about this.

Dr. Abhay: Oh that's great........ by the way I needed your signatures on some forms. Just a formality for waiver of fees.

Sid once again just nodded his head.

Abhay left to the room to get the forms ready followed by Sid. Sid still did not know what to do next. He had already finished checking on the patient and soon would be done with the forms signing also but still had not come up with an idea as to how to get more information.

As Abhay put together the papers, Sid started browsing through the bill for Mr Singh. Inspite of his fees being waived off the bill was totalling to a huge amount. Surprisingly it did not contain the expenses for the medicines. Once done Abhay handed the papers to be signed. 'Dr Modi, what are you thinking?' seeing Sid deep in thought.

Sid: Nahi main soch raha hoon ki inspite of the fee waiver how come the bill is turning up so high....

Abhay took the bills from Sid and started scrutinizing it while Sid signed the papers.  'Dr Modi... there seems to be a mistake in the bill. Though your fees are waived off your everyday visit has been charged.'

Sid looked at the bill once again and realized that indeed that was the case. However, he then noticed that there was a resident medical officer's visit twice a day which was also charged. It was normal charge but here it just seemed to add to the bill. He looked Abhay questioningly. Abhay quite understood where Sid was coming from and sheepishly replied. 'Agar aap kisi ko bole nahi toh ek baat bolu.

Sid nodded reassuring Abhay that this chat will remain between them.

Abhay: Agar aap Dr Juhi ya phir Dr Riddhima se baat karle toh shayaad yeh charge knock off ho sakta hai ....... ya phir atleast discount ho sakta hai ............waise yeh toh regular charge hai but they do tend to make exceptions at times.

Hearing Riddhima's name Sid's eyes lit up. That seemed like a brilliant idea. Questioning her directly was out of the question Never did he do it earlier and nor would he do today but maybe he could get a hint. After all even when they were together they really never spoke, but somewhere both had learnt to read one and another's silence.  

Sid took the bills from Abhay and made way towards Riddhima's office.




Part 67
This was a giant step he had taken. He was not required to do this yet he felt compelled to. All the way he had debated to find reasons to justify this meeting. But he could not come up with one. The recent information about Riddhima disturbed him. But somehow he was finding his endeavor unnecessary. At one point he thought of scrapping the whole idea of meeting her. But then even if he did not want to meet her to know more about her, he needed to meet her nonetheless. The patient's bills needed to be corrected but more importantly discounted. He could not ask Abhay or Juhi to put in a word. It may not be taken well by the management or Riddhima. He had to do it himself. Finally, he decided to just talk to Riddhima about the bills and call it a day. He did not wish to interfere in anyone's personal life more so Riddhima. She was just his ex-wife nothing more than that. Today they stood far apart with him having no rights on her.

Having set his agenda he set forth and knocked on the door. Suddenly her breath was caught in her throat.She knew it was him and her fear was confirmed as she raised her eyes from the reports she was working on to see him standing there with a file in his hand.

He would never come to meet her casually and the file in his hand confirmed that there had to some issue for which he was here. What must have happened now? Why did it have to happen just when some of the tension had eased out? Every time it had been the same story. A step towards a better future had always been followed by being pulled two steps behind into the dark past. The frustration drained her completely. She plainly nodded to Sid's request to meet her.

She quickly got up as he slowly walked in to stand in front of her desk. His eyes once again were scanning the office as if trying to find something to hold his interest.

Riddhima could sense the restlessness. She did not understand what to do Wait for him to speak or ask him the reason for his visit.

Riddhima watched him quietly. One fleeting glance at her once again raised a million questions in his mind. He was here for a reason but suddenly he was at loss of words.
Sid stood there holding a file in his left hand while he rubbed his temple with his right hand. Unsure he was. He always did that when was unsure what to say or do.

Seeing this a faint smile flashed on her face. She still could read him. There was something that he wanted to speak but definitely was not upset. The thought comforted her.

They still waited for each other to break the silence. But how long was going to keep standing there so finally decided to speak up. 'Woh .........actually Mr Singh ......... mere patient ke bills main kuch problem hai........... My visit fees are still being charged when they were supposed to be waived off.

This was a serious issue. Riddhima never entertained such negligence. Riddhima: I am really sorry I will look into that immediately and have it rectified.' She quickly dialed the accounts department and had a quick chat with the person. Sid placed the file on Riddhima's desk in case she wanted to reference it and waited silently for her to finish.
Riddhima temper rose as the person on the other end kept giving explanations. 'I know the billing system automatically generates the bill based on the logs. But before dispatching the bill you need to check the same as it was a special case. I had given special instructions for this. I guess what we talk really does not matter right. Do you have any idea as to how much pressure the family and doctors are under here? And you all add to it by your careless attitude. If some person who does not have adequate money who is just barely trying to manage such expense just to save a loved one sees such a huge amount what would he or she have done?

As Riddhima continued to fire the accountant at the other end Sid could not help smiling 'She really has not changed. Hitler.'
Sid snapped out of his thoughts with the sound of Riddhima banging the phone down
Over the years Riddhima had mellowed down very much. But if her temper caught up she was the still same old self. Sid once again could not help not smiling seeing Riddhima such. He has had to bear the brunt of it so many times. Seeing a fleeting smile on Sid's face Riddhima felt embarrassed about her behavior 'Sorry ........... woh ...... accounting system ke problem ke wajah se tha ........ but don't worry it will be rectified immediately I am really sorry that you had to bother with such things

Sid: No its perfectly fine actually I just happened to notice it if not I am sure Dr Abhay would have done the needful In fact he was going to do it but ......

The ifs and buts in their life still persisted which bothered her. Riddhima nervously waited for Sid to talk further.

Sid continued to look around the room His eyes still refusing to look at her. Riddhima watched him quietly unconsciously playing with her fingers.

Sid: actually ............. I wanted a favor ............

Riddhima: Favor ???

Sid: Actually ............ In the ICU the fees of the medical officer in-charge also total to quite an amount. I was wondering if those could be waived off. Shah uncle is paying for the same but the treatment would still go on for some more days plus the medicine cost will also pile up I just thought if you could do something to adjust the cost of medical office in-charge's visits. Only if it is possible ......I mean if it does not want to inconvenience you ..........'

Riddhima kept looking at him in awe. How could he be so nice? Even today when he is asking for something he is not asking for himself but for a person who just his patient. Not once did he expect anything for himself. Her eyes started welling up. He had not changed after all these years. His heart still pure and giving. She proud of the man who stood there who was once the man who held her hand and walked her through the darkest phase of her life.

Sid: But if it is the slightest problem please don't bother ........... I will figure out something for it.

Riddhima: Nahi .......... don't worry it will be done ..........

Sid: but only if it ..........

Riddhima: Nahi hoga any problem ....... you please don't worry.............. itni si toh baat hai .....main kar loongi .............

Sid: Thank you..........

Riddhima: Anytime......

Sid: I will go now ......... I have already taken a lot of your time............. Sorry to have disturbed you............

Riddhima: It's perfectly fine ....... I anyways was not doing much........ Please don't say sorry ..........

Sid nodded his head and turned to leave when the person from the accounts team called Riddhima. Hearing this, Sid waited back to check if the additional charges would be waived. But throughout the conversation Riddhima did not bring up the topic

As Riddhima hung up the phone Sid turned to leave. He felt completely disappointed that Riddhima did not even attempt to have the charges waived. As he was going to walk out of the office Riddhima spoke 'Bills ready ho jaye hai. They will be here in a few minutes........... it would be great if you can check once If there is anything else then it can also be done.'

Riddhima's fake concern angered Sid but he controlled it. He wanted to leave from there. But before he could ...........

Riddhima: Don't you want to see them once. She could sense that something had suddenly changed but she was just trying her luck to buy some time with Sid.

Sid: No it's fine ........... as long as the needful changes are done the rest Uncle and I will take care of. Sid was reluctant to spend any more time there fearing that something may just trigger his rage again. Whatever Riddhima had done was adequate. He should not be expecting anything over and above that. 'I will make a move now.............anyways all the work done anyways .......' taunted sarcastically'

Riddhima sensed that Sid was definitely upset about something. Instead of beating round the bush she decided to ask Sid about it. It was better if he lets out the anger instead hurting himself by burying it inside him. Kua hua ......? you seem upset.

'No nothing ........... I am fine........... Main chalta hoon' Sid quickly turned to walk out again when a clerk walked in with the revised bills.

Clerk: Dr Riddhima revised bills Please check kar lijiye.

Riddhima signaled the man to hand it over to Sid and thanked the clerk for completing the task. Riddhima: I hope saare changes apne theek tarah se kar diye hai

Sid took the file but was very disinterested in checking the same. He wanted to set it aside but started glancing through it as he did not want to disrespect the efforts of the person who made the corrections to the bill.

As he glanced through it, the changes stunned Sid. Riddhima had not said anything to the accountant in front of him, then when was the instruction of waiving the medical officer's visit fees given. This question started troubling Sid.

The clerk continued to talk to Riddhima about the issue: Actually we had made a note your instructions to waived off Dr. Modi's and medical officer's visit fees right at the start but as you know the bill gets generated automatically and one would need to manually make the changes in special cases. The only mistake that happened that before the changes can be made, the bills got generated and dispatched

Riddhima: But someone should have checked them right?

Clerk: I agree doctor it seems like no one checked the bills before dispatching. They must have assumed all is fine and this cause all the trouble. We are really very sorry for the trouble caused due to this.

Sid hardened look softened immediately hearing the clerk's explanation. 'So Riddhima had already placed a request for waiving the charges.' He felt ashamed of himself for doubting Riddhima.

Riddhima: No problem par ainda se dhyaan rakhiye please.

Clerk: Sure Doctor we shall take care.

The clerk left but Sid waited back. Once again the nervous silence enveloped the room.

Riddhima noticed Sid once again running his hand on his temple nervously looking at the floor. He was thinking something. Whatever it was she knew he was no more upset like he looked before. What was playing on his mind?

Riddhima: Sab theek hai na ab.........

Sid: Hmmm ........

Riddhima: Agar kuch ho toh please don't hesitate.......

Sid: No No everything is just perfect ........... and Thank you ...........

Riddhima: For what?

Sid: Without being told you had the medical officer's fees waived off ......... and for taking so much effort for all this ..........

Riddhima: You waived off your entire fees ......so this was the least that the hospital could do ...........

Sid: But still ........ anyways ........ thank you once again......  

Riddhima: Thanks to you .......... us insaan ki zindagi bach gayi ............ agar ........

Sid: No No  maine kuch nahi kiya ........... it's no big deal .........anyways main chalta hoon ........ waise bhi I have wasted enought time of yours already I don't want to keep you back unnecessarily .......

Riddhima: Nahi aise koi baat nahi hai .......... please don't stress yourself because of that........

Sid: No but you are here since morning ......... duty time bhi khatam ho gaya hai........... You must be tired and because of me you had to wait ............ Main chalta hoon ............ bye ....... For the third time he turned to leave when he heard his name being called 'Siddhant'






Part 68

She had been holding herself back for so many weeks. She needed to know the answer to that one question which bothered her for the last 10 years. She kept reasoning but none were really affirmed by her heart except one; Sid's hurt his pain his anger should not aggravate.  
She felt helpless not knowing the answer though somewhere she knew what could be the answer but desperately hoped that he would not say so.

As he walked away her heart kept screamed 'Now or Never He is leaving Stop Him ''''...... 'Siddhant!!!'  

Every time she took his name it had evoked a different emotion but that was another phase of his life. 'Siddhant!!!' hearing that he flinched. The work was done he had already taken her leave. If he would have left earlier this would not have happened. He stopped in his tracks turning slightly towards her.

'Kaise ho?

It was a question not asked out of courtesy. The concern and anxiety in her voice could not missed He wondered what Riddhima wanted to know with this question. However, it seemed in best interests to take it at face value and answer

'Theek hoon' said Sid slowly turning to face Riddhima

Riddhima intently looked at Sid trying to decipher the emotion behind the fake answer. He was anything but fine. He still could not lie even If he wanted to save his skin. In fact he was too honest to lie to save his skin. The quality she liked the most ' His Honesty. Then why was he lying today? Maybe because he did not want to make her feel guilty. He never made her feel guilty That is why even when he walked away from the person whom he loved the most he had confirmed that he would always be fine because she was fine. She should pursue her happiness instead of worrying for his wellbeing. It pained her to him such then and now.

Sid wanted this conversation with Riddhima. That was the reason he wanted to meet her that evening but later had changed the agenda. He felt somewhere he would be intruding in her private life even though his intentions were just to check all was fine with her. Her wellbeing still mattered to him. How much ever he denied, it did?

Fate had given him the chance but he did not know whether to take it or leave without further probing. However, common courtesy insisted that he also check with her for her wellbeing Yes, he could do that after all he was just following normal courtesy norms. Assured that he was not be intruding her life he questioned her

'Aur aap?'

'Aap' Hearing that word Riddhima flinched Those 10 years had taken them so far away that he did not call her by her name still. It was he who had once insisted that they refer to each other as 'tum' cause they were friends. Maybe now they weren't even friends. 'Aap' was correct. Disappointed with herself for having brought them to this stage of life, she just nodded. Tears pricked the corners of her eyes as she stood there with her head bent down in defeat.

It pained Sid to see her so dejected. So much that his resolve came crashing down. Something bothered her and he had to know what. 'Ghar pe sab kaise hai?'

Her heart jumped at the hope that she did matter to him. There was still a ray of hope.

'I mean ''..Dr Shashank kaise hai woh '''. Unhe dekha nahi hospital main itne dino mein'

'Papa heart attack ke baad '''.'

'Heart attack kab '''.. woh theek toh hai na ''' ? He always had high regards for Dr. Shashank and hearing him having a heart attack alarmed Sid greatly

'Woh theek hai .......... bahoot saalo pehle unhe heart attack aya tha ....... par uske baad unhone hospital aana kum kar diya ........... ab toh woh practice bhi nahi karte sirf administrative decision mein involve hote hai ...........isliye aur bhi kum aane lage hai hospital ....

'Hmmm aur Mumma ....... I mean .......'

'Mumma theek hai .......'

'Aur ........... arrr....maan'

Pain pierced her heart thinking of the enormous pain that Sid was going through. The man whom he considered his brother whom he trusted had back stabbed him and today he was standing in front of her trying to understand whether he was fine 'Kis mitti ke banne ho tum Siddhant ....... aaj bhi tum uski chinta kar rahe ho''''..Kya ho tum Sid'

'Usse bhi nahi dekha hai ......... Kaise hai woh ........' finally mustering the courage to ask what had bothered him for so long........... 'kya sab theek hai .........' There were too many reasons which scared him that all was not fine He so desparately wanted an affirmation that all was fine. Riddhima had gone through a lot of pain and the thought of more pain having come her way agonized him.

So much had changed between them yet many things remained the same. It was never difficult for Riddhima to read Sid. She was never oblivious of the unspoken thoughts and feelings which surged through him even if he tried to mask them.
Sid desperately tried to keep his voice calm but Riddhima still caught the anxiety in his voice.
It scared her to think of the pain that he may go through if his fears were to come true
'armaan tour pe hai isliye aur kuch nahi ''''.'

'Aur baaki sab'

'Sab theek hai' She tried hard to smile and hide the tears which were again pricking the corners of her eyes.

He was scared that his worst fears were going to come true He could not muster the courage to see her hurting He kept scanning the room while Riddhima lied about her life with armaan while trying to hide her pain and tears behind her fake smile

Sid felt relieved hearing about Riddhima's peaceful life That's what he always wanted, If not them, at least she was happy

He finally had answers to his questions 'Bahoot der hogayi hai ''..aapko ghar jaana hoga na ''.. Main chalta hoon '..bye'

'Siddhant tumne apne baare mein kuch nahi bataya ''''kaise ho tum'

'Bataya toh sahi ''.. Theek hoon'

'Kya tum khush ho?'

A small laugh escaped while thinking about the irony of his life. What was he going to say to her? Yes he always tried to be happy but life always played it's cruel games. This time round also it was the same story ''. Shilpa ''.. There was no point thinking of that now. It never mattered Riddhima and so why now. He should be content that she is happy.
'Kya aap khush hai?'

Riddhima once again nodded her head trying to hide the tragedy of her life in a bright smile

She was happy was enough for him If he was to tell her about their lives she would only feel guilt and it would upset her to no ends. There was no point in all this. It best left as it is

 'Main bhi' ....... Also trying to smile his brightest smile ..... 'Chalta hoon''.bye'



Part 69

Sid had not slept so peacefully since the day he had received the phone call informing him about Shilpa. When he woke up he felt refreshed and more so at peace. He still loved his sleep very much and hated getting up early. Surprising he had gotten up before day break. Instead of lazing it out like he would have done on other days, he promptly hopped out of his bed. He made himself some coffee and sat sipping on it terrace looking the sky. He enjoyed looking at the nature. The sight in front of him soothed him. The red morning sky just before sunrise in it's full glory. 'Red', her favourite color. He tried recollecting when he had last seen her wearing red. He stressed on her memory. '10 saal pehle shayaad '''..haan ''.. after all usse jo chahiye tha woh mil gaya' ''' His memory trailed to the conversation he had last evening 'Sab theek hai ''.. armaan theek hai '''. Aaj kal use kaam ke silsile se bahar jana padta hai '' who hota hai toh sab kuch kitne aasani se handle kar leta hai ki mujhe tension lene ki zaroorat nahi hoti hai ''..  ab woh nahi hai toh pura kaam ka bhoj mujhe pe aa gaya hai ''. uper papa ki health '''. Sab kuch toh wahi dekhta tha ''''

He felt relieved. He understood the reason why he slept so well. His mind was at rest. He had done the right thing of suppressing that momentary urge of talking about Shilpa to Riddhima when she had enquired about his wellbeing. It didn't even bother Sid that Riddhima had not asked about Shilpa. There seemed no point of bring up the relations from the past. May be it was best for all. He knew all was going to be fine now. He knew the way ahead.


=======================================


Riddhima had disturbed sleep through the night and finally she lay in bed stark awake. She hated lazing in bed. Thinking she would make an early start to her day she hopped out of her only to find that it was too early. Finally she decided to make herself some coffee and try catching up on the book she was reading. After that night, when she sensed Sid she did not have a chance to touch that book. She sat with the book but mind kept trailing

Sid!!! Woh theek tarah se jhoot bhi nahi bol sakta ........... usne keh diya ki woh theek hai par woh theek nahi lag raha tha................ kuch toh hai.........kaise pata karo '''.. aise kaun hai jisse main pooch sakti hoon ''. ek baar jab jaanane ko koshish ki thi tab ''''

Riddhima: Hello!!! Can I speak to Dr Yuvraj Oberoi?

Yuvi: Yes, this is him.

Riddhima: Hi........

Yuvi: Hi

Riddhima: Yuvi ......kaise ho?

Yuvi: I am fine ......... but I am sorry may I know whom I am speaking with?

Riddhima: main ...... Riddhima .........

Yuvi: Ohh.......... Yes Dr Riddhima how can I help you? Is there any case that you intent to transfer to US Sanjeevani?

Riddhima: Nahi Yuvi .............

Yuvi: Dr Yuvraj Oberoi ........

Riddhima: Sorry .......... Dr Yuvraj ............actually main tumse kuch baat karna chahati thi ........

Yuvi: Kya baat karni thi aapko?

Riddhima: Yuvi ....... Dr Yuvraj ........ main  .............. mujhe Sid ke baare main baat karni thi  .......

Yuvi: Interesting ......... Sid ........... kya baat karni hai ?

Riddhima: kaise hai Sid? Woh theek toh hai na?

Yuvi: Aap janana chahati hai Sid ke baare mein. Kyu?

Riddhima: Bahoot fikar ho rahi thi uski ........... Main bahoot dino se koshish kar rahi hoon usse contact karne ki lekin uska number bhi nahi lag raha ........ aur poochne par pata chala ki ab woh US Sanjeevani mein kaam nahi karta.............. kaha hai woh? Woh Sanjeevani chod ke kaha gaya hai?

Yuvi: This is really interesting ...... ok very honestly I have a lot of work to be done ........ so let's cut this conversation short

Riddhima: I am sorry main tumhe disturb kar rahi hoon par mujhe Sid ki bahoot fikar ho rahi thi isliye...............

Yuvi: Can I speak?

Riddhima: Sorry ..........

Yuvi: Better be ......... ok answers to your question kaise hai Sid? Zinda hai !!! Woh theek toh hai na? mar nahi raha hai woh................

Riddhima: Yuvraaj !!! enough .........

Yuvi: main toh sirf jawab de raha tha .........  ohh aap janana chahati thi na ki woh kaha hai ........aisi jagah jaha pe uske emotions ke saath koi kilvad nahi karta ...........
Mil gaye saare jawab ab main phone rakhu.......

Riddhima: Yuvraaj please ........ please phone mat rakho ek baar meri baat sun lo ...............

After a long pause ........ 'Main jaanti hoon maine Sid ke saath bahoot bura kiya lekin mujhe aaj bhi uski fikar hai ........ main sirf yeh janana ke koshish kar rahi thi ki woh theek hai ........

Yuvraj: I think I have answered your questions

Riddhima: Kya mujhe uska number de sakte ho ........please please mujhe usse ek baar baat karni hai ........... please

Yuvi: Itna sab kuch hone ke baad bhi aap uska number maang rahi hai ............. ab aur kya baaki hai karne ka ...........kya haal kar diya uska ........ uska gunaah kya tha ki usne aape pe vishwas kiya aapse pyaar kiya ...... sirf itna ......... aur badle main kya diya aapne ........

Riddhima: Please Yuvi Please

Yuvi: Dr Riddhima .......the name is Dr Yuvraj Oberoi nothing more nothing less than that .........

Riddhima: Haq banta hai mere janane ka ......

Yuvi: Koi haq nahi banta ........... Sid aur aapka divorce ho chukka hai ........ so koi haq nahi banta hai par aapko toh sirf haq jatana aata hai ........

Riddhima: Please .........

Yuvi: I really don't want to have any conversation further on this .......aur ab kuch professional baat karni hai toh theek hai nahi toh main phone rak raha hoon .............

Aur haan agar aap seriously uske baare mein fikar karti hai then do him one favour please leave him alone koi zaroorat nahi hai uske baare main poochne ki usse baat karne ki .......... just leave him alone.

Waise Yuvi ne jo kaha woh sach hi tha ........uske baad bhi jab bhi koshish ki sirf nakami haath aayi .............  aur aaj bhi main kisi se pooch nahi saakti ........ himmat hi nahi hoti ............

========================================

Every morning it was just a single cup of coffee and a hearty breakfast. Today he had gotten up too early so he skipped the thought of having breakfast with his morning cup of coffee. He planned to make himself breakfast later. Sid poured himself another cup of coffee and returned to the terrace to enjoy the beauty of nature. As he sipped on his coffee his mind drifted to the conversation he had overhead in the cafeteria

'Dr Riddhima unko wajah nahi lagti kabhi kabhi toh unka lunch aur dinner dono coffee hota hai ........ agar woh Dr Juhi dimaag ki surgery wali woh na ho toh woh ek coffee leti ke ya order kar ke chali jaati hai ...........'

'Actually Hai toh ek doctor ..........doosro ko sahet bananeki salah deti hai aur interns ka toh bahoot khayal rakhti hai par kudh ki doosro ko sahet bananeki salah deti hai aur interns ka toh bahoot khayal rakhti hai par kudh ki sahet coffee pee ke banati hai ................ 

'armaan yaha nahi hai iss wajah se kaam ke pressure hoga ......... aur issi wajah se shayaad hospital mein long hours rukhti hai ......... par health ko leke Riddhima bahoot careful thi ...... aise kya hua ki woh aaj itni laparvah ho gayi hai ........ kya usse baacha na hona ....... maybe .......... but then how come ......... 10 saal ho gaye hai ....... phir bhi ........  may be there was some medical reason ........... but then too now a days everything is so advanced .......... Sue's friend Mrinalini also had major issues but then the doctors managed to help her and today she is a mother of twins.'

'Wait if armaan managed everything otherwise then that nurse should have known about him but she denied that any person of that name works there ........... what is it? Everything is all over the place. Kuch connect nahi ho paa raha hai ......... '

'Kal Riddhima ne bol toh diya ki sab kuch theek hai par woh hamesha itni uncomfortable kyu hoti hai .. Kya main wajah hoon ........ shayaad ........... mujhe dekh ke hadbarda gayi hogi........... aur waise bhi main idiot ki tarah usko itna sab kuch bol diya .......... aur hamesh muh latkaye ghoomta rehta hoon ....... usse lagta hoga ki main abhi bhi usse upset hoon ........... actually sab meri wajah se hai ....... mujhe jaana hi nahi chahiye tha Sanjeevani ........... '

'Bas ab aur tension nahi doonga tumhe Riddhima ......... Yeh case handover kar ke issi hafte Panchgani ke liye nikal jaata hoon ............  yahi theek rahega ...... don't worry Riddhima aur tension nahi doonga tumhe ......'

======================================================

Riddhima: Kaise fikar na karo '''..  kuch bhi toh pata nahi hai uske, uski zindagi ke baare mein ''.. kya hua in 10 saalo mein ........ Kya kuch hua hai uske saath in 10 saalo mein jiska asar hai ya phir main ''' kal bhi mujhe aise kyu laga ki woh mujhse kuch kehene ki koshish kar raha tha '' batana chahata tha mujhe kuch '''. Par kya  ''..  

She kept trying to return her attention to her book but could not. Frustrated with herself she threw away the book and got up to get ready for work.

====================================================

Juhi had every reason to be upset with Riddhima. Riddhima off late was being very rude and towards her. Whenever Juhi tried reasoning Riddhima's change in behaviour she came to a dead end. Was it Sid and her relationship the reason for Riddhima's aloofness towards her? Or was there something between Sid and her? All in all there was something that Riddhima was hiding from her due to which all was not fitting right. She could ask Sid but considering the sensitivity of the issue she ruled it out. What reason was she going to tell him for asking about the connection between Riddhima and him? She definitely could not say that Riddhima's aloofness was due to their growing relationship
She needed to sort matters out with Riddhima. She did not want Sid affecting Riddhima and her friendship.
Somewhere, Juhi kept feeling guilty of neglecting Riddhima. She was spending more and more time with Sid since he arrived in Sanjeevani. She could not rule out the possibility that this could be another reason for Riddhima wierd behaviour

Out and out she needed to spend time with Riddhima. For many days Juhi had planned to go a play and to her luck one of her friends gave her two passes for the same. Many had talked well about the play and Juhi was very keen on seeing it. Riddhima also enjoyed watching plays and it had been a long time since they had been to one. This seemed like a perfect chance to make up for the lost time.

Riddhima was in no mood to go for the play. Her conversation with Sid and his fake answers loomed large over her mind. When Juhi checked with Riddhima about her availability, Riddhima kindly refused citing additional work as a reason.

On other day's she would keep persuading and pestering Riddhima. At times pretend cancelling the plan to emotionally blackmail Riddhima to agreeing with her plans. This time she just did not feel up for it. She thought it was best to give Riddhima the time to sort out herself.

Juhi settled in her office after her rounds. Her eyes fell on the passes on her desk. She did not want to miss the play under any circumstance. She wondered who else she could take when Sid walked in

Seeing Sid Juhi exclaimed loudly much to her embarrassment later on 'Mil gaya bakra'

Sid was shocked with Juhi statement 'What do you mean by bakra? Main tumhe bakra dikta hoon'

Juhi: Arree it's a phrase... .. forget it why am I explaining an US return hindi .............

Sid: Hello I know the meaning of that ........... and what do you plan making me a scapegoat for? Whatever it is I am not going to let you succeed ............ I refuse............

Juhi: Please ............. go and give this 'I refuse' to someone else ............ I do not take no for an answer

Sid: Par hai kya ? ............ shocked at Juhi's audacity of dictating orders to him...........

Skeptical if Sid comes to know of the play he may completely back out. She needed to keep the suspense like she had done when she took him home the first time

Juhi: Pata chal jayega .............

The naughty twinkly in Juhi's eyes confirmed Sid's suspicion. He was not going to agree to anything this time round before knowing Juhi's plan: Pehle batau ............ Nahi toh last time ki tarah kuch toh dramatic hoga .......

Juhi: Hello ......... that was good plan .......... agar pehle pata deti toh kya tum ghar aate

Sid: Oh!!! that means last time ki tarah tumhare dimaag mein kuch ajeeb plan chal raha hai .........

Juhi: Jyada kuch nahi

Sid: It's a flat no ............... NO!!! NO!!! NO!!!

Juhi: I am deaf when you say those words

Sid: Ok ........... fine with me I am deaf to your plans when you want me to be a part of the it without telling me what the plan is

This time round Sid was not going to relent if she did not tell him the plan and she desparately wanted to go for the play so decided to tell Sid about it

Juhi: Acha sunoh .............. I have passes for a play .............

If Sid was given an option of doing nothing and watching a play he would do nothing. Plays never interested Sid.

Sid: Play no ways ............... Main nahi aa raha hoon

Juhi: Please bahoot interesting hai .............. bahoot tarif ki hai mere friends ne please ...............

Sid: Main nahi jaa raha hoon ............. aur tum try bhi nahi karna............. haar jaogi ............

Juhi: Nahi harne wali hoon main

Sid: Shilpa bhi haar gayi ............ usne ek baar try kiya tha............. finally frustrate hoke usne sab ke tickets phad diye ............. Bichara Vishal usko bhi dekhne ko nahi mila ........' laughed remembering old moments

Juhi: Main na nahi sunn rahi hoon ............  tumhe aana hoga ........

Sid: aree your friends liked it so take one of them ..............Take Riddhima she will definitely like it par mujhe baksh do .please

Juhi: Uss sanate koh pooch chuki usse bhi nahi jaana hai ..............  damn yaar koi toh chalo .......

Sid: Oh my God ............ Sannata ........ woh tumhari boss hai aur tum usse Sannata bulati ho ...........?

Juhi: Nahi ............ aur bahoot kuch hai......... Meena Kumari, dukhi atma, bhatakti atma............ aur haan not to forget ............. Main chup rahongi

Sid was taken aback at Juhi's brashness Riddhima was her boss and she freely was saying such stuff about her. 'That is not a great thing you are doing ........... She is your friend and you are being rude towards her Does she know this?'

Juhi gleefully replied 'Yes .............. uske muh pe bolti hoon ........... actually apart from her only you know I call her all this'

'And she does not take offense?' Sid wondered aloud thinking of all the times Riddhima's temper flew when he naughtily refered to her such.

'Nahi ......... kyu lege .........saach hi toh bol rahi hoon ........ bahoot baar jab main usse milne jaati hoon toh woh aapne khayaalo main khoyi rehti hai ............ its not difficult to get lost in some far away land of her thoughts aur phir ghanto aise hi bina baat kiye bhaiti rahegi .......... ya phir bolte bolte chup ho jayegi ...........'

'aree but aise bhi ho sakta hai that she is busy with work after all sab kaam usse hi dekhna pad raha hai ab.....'

'Nopes .......... she is always like this ............ dukhi atma ............ I was not surprised when she said no for the play .............. usse kahi bahar leke jaana ke liye itne papad belne padte hai .............. kitna emotionl blackmail karti hoon tab jaa ke manti hai ...............itne saalo se sa jaanti hoon usse .............. agar kuch kaam nahi hai toh phir ............ dhund leti hai ............. ya phir apne office main baith ke kuch karti rehti hai ............'

Amazed to hear this about Riddhima aroused Sid's curiosity again 'If she was happy why was she such'

Juhi continued 'Imagine karo ........ same hospital and close friends ............ you will definitely try to catch up spend time outside work also but Riddhima ............... you know when is the last time we went out for dinner .......'

Sid shook his head not wanting to try guessing also.

'Around 7 ' 8 months back ............ Jaane do ............ its no point woh sudharne nahi wali hai ......... dukhi atma ki dukhi atma hi rahegi............. par tum toh sweetheart ho ..............chalo na .............' once again trying to coax Sid.

Sid finally relented understanding there was no point arguing Juhi. Juhi had been really understanding towards him inspite of hardly knowing him. This is the least he could do for her happiness. 'Theek hai chalta hoon'

Juhi happy with herself 'Yay!!! I told ya it's impossible to say no to me'

Sid: chalo then see you in the evening ............waise kitne bhaaje ..........

Juhi: 6 o'clock  ............ meet me at the hospital yahi se chalenge ...........

Sid nodded in agreement

Juhi remembering about Sid's patient for which he may have come to meet her: aree Mr Singh ko general ward mein shift kar rahe hai aaj'

Sid: Hmm I know ............actually i wanted to talk to you about that.............. He is fine now............ and ab meri zaroorat nahi hai ............ you will be able to handle everything ............. I actually wanted to do a hand over for the case ..............'

Sid doing a handover would mean he would not come to Sanjeevani anymore. This alarmed Juhi. 'That means you will not come here anymore'

Sid once again nodded. Seeing Sid answer affirmatively saddened Juhi 'That means we will not meet anymore'

Sid: Nothing of the kind but when I come back to Mumbai before leaving we will definitely meet but I guess tonight will be it.  Main Panchgani jaa raha hoon after some days Rohan ka visa ready ho jayega then we will leave for US

Juhi disappointed with Sid's decision. She had earlier also reasoned with Sid to let Rohan complete his term but he seemed adamant on leaving as soon as possible. 'Kyu kar rahe hoo aise ............let him finish its a matter of what a month more only Why waste it?'

Sid: Kya karonga main yaha pe and Rohan will also need time to adjust there ...............after all he is going back after so many years now'

Though she was disappointed earlier she thought of again trying her luck 'Siddhant see you can always take up consultancy on a temporary basis here itself or if you don't want Sanjeevani some other hospital  You will be occupied and Rohan ka term bhi khatam ho jayega.........I would say still think about it ............ but after all its your decision'

Initailly it was his anger towards Riddhima which had stopped him but now it was her discomfort. He did not want to make things difficult for her. He could not tell Juhi about all this so 'Nahi re ....... I don't wanna take up anything now .............. I might as well wrap up and leave Its best for all.'

Juhi: Theek hai its your call waise I already spoke to one of my friends in the management team He said they would love to have you here for sometime. But ultimately its your call.

Sid once again just nodded. He did not want to discuss further on this matter. He quickly bid Juhi goodbye and left.


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