Everyone is running here and there to prepare for the mehndi function. On Nyonika’s instructions, the function is held in the garden area under the sunlight. The garden area is beautifully decorated with flowers and there is a special seating arrangement for the bride and bridesmaids. 

Manik is the only one who is continuously running for doing one thing after another. He wants to make this day special for his sister. He even called mehndi artists to apply mehndi to all the ladies. He wants to fulfill all the responsibilities as a brother. 

Other than this he is also keeping an eye on Aryaman. He is getting negative vibes from him because he sees a different kind of possession in his eyes whenever he looks at Nandini. He knows this kind of possession in his eyes is not good for Nandini or anyone else.

Whereas Nandini also felt the creepy stares on herself but wasn’t able to find who is the person behind it. But she is relaxed because she is at the safest place right now. That’s her father’s arm. 

She is sitting beside her father. Raman’s hands are placed on her shoulder and Nandini’s head on his chest. Both the father-daughter indulge in their talks.

Nandini is continuously asking questions to Raman and he is answering all the questions lovingly as if he is explaining something to a five-year-old girl. 

She has been playing with his kurta buttons for the last 10 minutes. Raman exactly knows that she wants something from him, that’s why she is acting cute. 

Ram:- ( with raising eyebrows ) my princess….. Now, what do you want from me? 

Nandini smiles sheepishly and bites her tongue on being caught. 

Nan:- ( cutely ) Daddddddd……….

Raman also tried to act cute but failed miserably. 

Ram:- yes my darlinggggg………….

Nan:- today is the Mehndi function. Right!

Ram:- you are asking me or telling me. If you are telling me then I know this already. Now tell me the real thing. 

Nan:- ( showing her puppy eyes ) dad…. This time I also want to apply mehndi on my hands. 

Ram:- oh..KKK ……. ( wide eyes ) WHAT !!! …….NO….. 

Nan:- dad please….. ( cutely ) 

Ram:- No… my bachha ( baby ) please understand my concern too. 

Nan:- ( making baby faces ) dad…. Please…. Only this time I promise. 

Ram:- still it’s a NO from me. Why don’t you understand that whenever you apply this you get a cold and fever for two days? It doesn’t suit you, my baby girl. 

Nan:- ( cribbing ) dad, this time it won’t happen because I am a doctor. 

Raman rolls his eyes at his daughter’s lame excuse. 

Ram:- ( sarcastically ) so…. Where it is written that a doctor won’t get sick. 

Nan:- ( sadly )  dad…. Don’t you love me? Don’t you fulfill my small, tiny-winy wish? 

Now, she tries her last weapon and that’s to blackmail him with a sad face but Raman knows his daughter very well. 

Ram:- aww…. My darling, I know you very well so your blackmail trick won’t work on me. And one last thing you already knew how much I love you and I always try to fulfill your every wish only when there is no harm to you. 

Nandini pouted sadly, seeing all her efforts going in vain. But she is NANDINI MURTHY she won’t lose hope only in one try. 

Ish:- Now, what is this father-daughter doing here? 

Nan:- ( pouting sadly ) maa…. Dad is not allowing me to apply mehndi. 

Ish:- why? 

Ram:- ( gasped ) what do you mean by WHY!!!?  Don’t you remember she got ill last time when she applied it to her hand!

Ish:- she just got normal fever because of tiredness that too only for 2 days. 

Ishita said in a normal tone but Raman freaked out. 

Ram:- TWO DAYS!! ……that freaking two days had 48 HOURS, 2880 MINUTES, and 172800 SECONDS. 

Ish:- why are you making a scene of this little thing? And she was just a child back then… and trust me this time nothing would happen to your lovely daughter. 

Nan:- ( twinkling eyes ) yes… dad… I will take care of myself. 

Raman agreed reluctantly and Nandini squeals like a teenager. She danced happily making her parents chuckle. 

Suddenly there was a hustle-bustle among the guests because the bride made her entry into the venue. Alya is looking elegantly beautiful in her green floral Anarkali suit which goes perfectly with her skin tone. 

Raj and Nyonika walk beside their daughter and make her sit on the seat which is especially for her. 

Nandini happily came towards her and applied a Kohl’s black dot behind her ear to keep her safe from every evil eye. 

Nan:- haye bhagwan……aapko kisi ki nazar na lage. ( God, will keep you away from every evil eye ) 

Everyone chuckled at this cute bundle of joy. Alya goes all Awww on her. She pulls her towards herself and places a sweet kiss on her cheek making her eyes twinkle. 

Nyonika comes forward and also applies the Kohl’s black dot behind Nandini’s ear whereas she smiles cutely at her gesture. 

Manik is admiring all the leading ladies of his life. He is capturing all the moments in his heart to keep it safe. 

Nyo:- ( lovingly while cupping Nandini’s face ) God will also keep my daughter safe from every evil eye. 

Manik who is admiring till now gasped hearing Nyonika’s words “MY DAUGHTER”. Nyonika has treated Nandini as her daughter since childhood but damn she is not his sister. He will disown his parents if they ever try to adopt her. 

After reading all the emotions from his face Raj came and stood beside him and spoke slowly. 

Raj:- Don’t worry we won’t ever adopt her. She will always be our daughter but not your sister. 

Ma:- did I speak loudly? 

Raj:- ( confusingly ) No…

Ma:- Then, how do you know what I am thinking? 

Raj:- ( proudly ) come on, we are MALHOTRA’S and we always think alike when it comes to our partners.

Ram:- what’s happening here? Hope you both didn’t plan to murder me. 

Raj:- ( angrily ) How can you even think that? 

Ram:- ( surprisingly ) sorry yr…..  I was joking. 

Raj:- ( angrily ) No… tell me, How can you even think that? How can you……. I …. You tell me, I will let you die in just one attempt? I will kill you slowly-slowly and brutally. 

Manik rolls his eyes and mumbles “why my dad chose to join the business when he is a brilliant Actor. He can make a fool of anyone with his brilliant acting skills”. 

Otherside Raman glares at Raj for making him scared for a second. 

Nyo:- ohhhh…. What happened? Why are you guys glaring at each other again? Sometimes I feel you guys fight more than Tom and Jerry. 

Ma:- maa, correction …not sometimes ALWAYS.

The younger clan giggles after hearing the new names of Raj and Raman. But these two have no effect. They are still fighting and blaming each other. 

Ish:- Nyo, leave them. We will start the rituals shubh muhurat nikala jaa raha hai. ( Auspicious moment is passing ) 

All the older ladies come forward and apply a little henna on Alya’s hand as a shagun. 

Ma:- ( hesitantly ) maa,….. Will I also apply mehndi to Alya di? Just a simple dot. I want to do that. ( Rubbing his nape in nervousness ) I promise I will not spoil her hand. 

Before Nyonika could respond Alya spoke. 

Aly:- now, you will take permission to come near me. 

Ma:- No….. it was just…

Nyo:- don’t waste time just go and apply mehndi to your sister. 

Manik came ahead and took Alya’s right hand in his hand to place a simple small dot at the corner. 

Aly:- ( giving him the cone which is filled with henna ) take this and write Dhruv’s name here in the middle. 

Ma:- ( with wide eyes ) di…. How can I? I will spoil your hand. 

Aly:- shut up! And do your work quickly. 

Manik is doing his work with full concentration. He looks so nervous while writing a name on her hand. 

Everyone chuckled seeing the businessman who is tough like a tree trunk, who handles two companies single-handedly is pouting adorably while writing a mere name in his sister’s hand. 

Nandini is watching her child like a man with a sweet smile. 

Nan pov. 

Awww….. he is so sweet like a rasgulla. I want to gobble him. Who will say that he is the same man who always scolds me for pouting because he is not able to resist it. Now see, what is he doing? He is indeed the best son, best brother, best friend that anyone could have and not forget the best boyfriend too.

Ayiaapaa, why do you make him so perfect and irresistible? I am so lucky to have him as my other half. Thank you Aiyappa for this precious gift. I love you Ayiaapaa and I also love this child-like monster a lot. Get ready for a surprise, my monster. I am especially applying mehndi for you. 

To be continued…

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