31. CLOSE-UP TEETH

Ma:- family! my foot ………

Seeing the person Mukti shouts in happiness and hugs the person tightly. 

Muk:- BHAI…….

Mr. Aryaman Vardhan. Mukti’s elder brother. Loves her a lot and treats her like his child. Owns his dad’s company. Live with his parents in Delhi. He is a secret lover of Nandini, who is known to Manik. This is the only reason why they both have a bitter relationship. He just considers Manik as Nandini’s overprotective friend. Recently he told his parents about his love for Nandini. Now, he comes here with a determination to make Nandini his. 

Arya:- how are you, my baby?

Muk:- ( breaking the hug ) I am angry with you. Yesterday you told me that you are going to Chicago for a meeting and won’t be able to come here.

Arya:- sorry my baby, I lied to you because I want to give a surprise to you, soon to be Mumma.

Muk:- ( hugging him again in happiness ) I loved your surprise. Where is maa and paa?

Mukti’s parents:- we are here baby.

Ashutosh and Reena Vardhan. Mukti and Aryaman’s parents. Loves both the children equally. Knows about Arya’s love for Nandini. Now, they come here to talk with MURTHY’s about Aryaman and Nandini’s alliance. They know that Nandini is best for their son. She is a combo of beauty, intelligence, and cuteness.

Alya:- Aryaman, you are late?

Arya:- really sorry, Alya. please forgive me…

Alya nods with a bright smile while the rest greets them happily. Aryaman comes towards Nandini and stands in front of her showing his teeth. He takes her in a bear hug, making her gasp. 

Nandini took aback by this sudden hug. For the very first time, she feels uncomfortable in the hug. She feels something strange in the hug which is unexplainable. She felt more uncomfortable when he kissed her on the left cheek.

Seeing them together, Aryaman’s parents bless them in their minds. Whereas Nandini’s uncomfortableness is read by Raman and Manik.

Raman is ready to make them apart. He doesn’t like him kissing his daughter’s cheek. He is expecting Manik to break his yellowish teeth.

Here, Manik’s condition is the worst. He just wants to break Aryaman’s CLOSE-UP TEETH. He is ready to erupt like a volcano seeing Aryaman kissing Nandini’s cheek. He turns his face to another side not wanting to create a scene in his sister’s wedding. 

Raj too got angry seeing Aryaman’s behavior but he controlled himself seeing his VOLCANIC SON.

Raj:- ( to Manik, in a whisper ) what happened? Why is your MAGMA boiling?

Ma:- Is this a time for a joke?

He said this in anger but Raj became serious. 

Raj:- I don’t think so……. Usually, what is the correct time for a joke?

Ram:- ( to Manik ) you are breaking his teeth or else I will do the honors. ( Pointing Raj )

Ma:- ( glaring Aryaman ) you do that, I have to break someone else’s CLOSE-UP TEETH.

Their not-so-happy conversation stopped in the middle because of Aryaman. Who comes and stands in front of Manik giving him his toothy smile. Whereas Manik gives him his fakest smile. 

Arya:- I am very happy to see you again, Manik.

Ma:- ( with a fake smile ) hope, I can say the same.

Arya:- why so grumpy, Malhotra? Let’s make you happy. I will tell you a secret. ( In his ears ) I come here to make your best friend mine.

Manik smiles seeing him daydreaming about the girl who is HIS, ONLY HIS!

Ma:- not even in your dreams.

Saying this Manik walks out making Aryaman angry at his remark.

Everyone mingled easily and had a happy time. But Nandini’s mind is still stuck on Aryaman’s behavior because he never did this type of thing before. Her uncomfortableness is making Manik restless.

Nandini stood up and moved towards the garden side to clear her mind. Manik too stands up to go behind her but stops seeing Raman’s glare. He gestures to Raj to handle Raman.

Raj immediately holds Raman’s hand, stopping him from following Manik.

Ram:- ( angrily ) leave my hand, you moron…

Raj:- No……. My son said not to let you go.

Ram:- oh…. agyakari purush ( dutiful man ) I said leave me. I have to talk with Nandini. She is looking disturbed.

Raj:- you don’t worry, Manik is with her he will handle her.

Ram:- I don’t trust him with my daughter. Now, leave me…….

Raj:- you don’t even trust bread with peanut butter too, it’s delicious. 

Ram:- from where this bread comes?

Raj:- from the breakfast table.

Ram:- ( annoyed ) are you mad?

Raj:- No….. I am Raj Malhotra.

Ram:- ( with sharp eyes ) both are the same.

Seeing them fighting everyone gives a look of disbelief. But the Vardhan’s are a little shocked because of their behavior. 

Raj became angry and banged his hand on the table showing his anger. Seeing this move Raman too bangs his hand on the same spot where Raj punched a few seconds ago with more power. 

Ca:- Alya, why don’t you keep popcorn on the snacks menu?

Al:- who keeps popcorn at their wedding as a snack?

Ca:- Normal people don’t. But you know na our fathers is not less than any entertaining movie.

Nav:- what do you mean by “normal people don’t”. Do we look abnormal?

Ca:- not you Navya. I am talking about us.

This makes her confused. She is analyzing his words and seeing a perfect opportunity to escape, Raman ran towards the door followed by Raj. 

Ca:- ( confused ) Dhruv, why don’t you tell me about this? ( Pointing towards Raj and Raman’s retreating figure )

Dhr:- what??

Ca:- that you kept a racing competition in your engagement function.

Al:- ( annoyed ) yes, it’s true we keep a racing game. Now you stand up and run till you reach Murthy mansion.

On the other hand, Manik reached the garden and saw Nandini standing in a corner. He moves towards her and pulls her towards himself holding her hands. Seeing her serene face his anger went into the dustbin.

Ma:- what happened?

Although he knows what happened to her still he wants her to say.

Nandini digs her face in his chest calming her nerves and shakes her head in No. He didn’t ask her further and kept his chin on her head holding her tight in his arms. He knows that whenever she feels like she will tell him herself.

At the same time Raman comes there behind him Raj too comes while huffing badly because of running. Both witnessed their moment.

Raj:-( glaring Raman ) see… I told you that Manik will handle her. But you never listen to any of my talks.

Ram:- I don’t give my precious attention to the dog’s bark.

Raj:- ( horrified ) you compare me with a dog?

Ram:- ( sarcastically ) No… I just compared your voice with a dog’s bark.

Raj:- Why are you so sarcastic today?

Ram:- why can’t I behave sarcastically? Is there a particular day to give sarcastic replies? And for your kind information, I am not sarcastic.

Raman turns his head towards Manan’s direction with a sheepish smile.

Here, the couple is still in each other’s arms. After almost a minute Manik calls Nandini twice but she doesn’t respond. She is lost in her thoughts. She is still not recovered from the feeling of that hug. She is confused between her mind and heart. Her mind says that the hug is just a friendly hug there is nothing else.

But her heart says that the hug is not just a friendly hug. The way Aryaman holds her waist is not the way friends hold each other. The main reason for her behavior is that she doesn’t want to give any kind of wrong signals to anyone. SHE IS TRULY AND PURELY MANIK’S PROPERTY. There is no one in her heart except Manik and only Manik.

Manik breaks the hug forcefully and intertwines her hand with his. 

He rubs her left cheek to remove Aryaman’s touch from her body. Feeling his moving fingers on her cheek she comes out from her thinking zone and looks at him lovingly.

Ma:- WHY YOU LET THAT CLOSE-UP TEETH TO KISS OR HUG YOU? WHY DON’T YOU STOP HIM?

Nan:- ( confused ) I don’t know anyone named CLOSE-UP TEETH. Who is he/she?

Ma:- CLOSE-UP TEETH means that show off teeth Aryaman.

Seeing him calling Aryaman close-up teeth she bursts into laughter. Seeing her finally laughing, forgetting about anything Manik signed in relief. 

To be continued …

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