Except the Naked Truth

To my fellow writers – how sweetly you indulge, enthrall, and inspire. Often all at once. 😉

Arnav Singh Raizada stood before his bedroom, back ramrod straight, hands clenched over the mirrored jewelry box his sister had just forced on him, a litany of curses at the tip of his tongue.

He contemplated smashing it against the panel doors. Perhaps the shattering of glass, the splintering of wood, would help him break free from the foolish sentiment that had infiltrated in an unguarded moment.

He thought he was immune, the throbbing ache threatening to choke the breath from his lungs since that night taught him otherwise.

He wanted his life—or lack of one—back dammit.

For that he needed to deal with the woman currently housed in his home, his room, his head, and the betraying organ that beat insistently for her.

On a sharp inhale he entered, freezing in place as he realized his error. Her scent hung in the air, as if waiting for just this moment to attack. Transparent coils of silk filled his nose with the custom blend of temple, amber and woman. He was well versed with this particular fragrance, familiarization imparted in those moments when his arms had automatically formed a safety net for her feminine form.

The rustle of the patio curtains drew his gaze. He didn’t require visual confirmation; a homing beacon sat at his center, uncomfortably reliable in its self-appointed task. His feet took him closer, a sweep of fabric revealed the woman who was doing a fine job of gnawing at his sanity.

His eyes swept over her. Unbelievable. Any other woman would look ridiculous in the too colorful skirt and the male dress shirt that hung loose over her shoulders, swallowing her petite frame. His gaze involuntarily dropped to the exposed skin of her chest where the upper button hung precariously.

She should look out of place, at the very least have the decency to appear unattractive. It was his stroke of misfortune that Khushi Kumari Gupta and should rarely go together. She liked to defy expectations, particularly his. Thus, she of course looked fuckable in his shirt.

He was close enough to catch the small flinch as the door slammed behind him. He welcomed the anger that flooded his body, drowning lust. It reminded him of everything that wasn’t, of everything she wasn’t.

The ever dutiful handmaiden of memory flipped on the stark photograph of her in another man’s arms, pairing it cruelly with piercing audio of her words. Damnable words of betrayal.

Had she deceived this family in flesh as well as thought?

Had they then laughed at his expense?

The incendiary thoughts struck him viciously, enough so that his hand was cruel as it curled around her upper arm. He dragged her unceremoniously to the lounge chair. The widening of doe eyes riled him further. For it was while peering into those glimmering pools that his ribcage first began to rattle in raucous defiance, persisting until his chest had cracked open and she’d slipped effortlessly inside, filling the dark crevices with the promise of her.

The faux-innocence needed to end, if nothing else then for the sake of his sanity.

Taking a knee he flipped open the lid, closing tense fingers over his mother’s gold, twin circles that held her blessings for her daughter-in-law. His fake heartless bride.

For a moment he held the kangans in a white knuckled grip.

In his focus he failed to see how her face softened as she took in the storminess of his eyes. He missed the worried light in the eyes that traced the rigidness of his facial muscles. Overlooked the pliancy of the hands he took into his own as he roughly thrust them through the eternal rings.

For long moments they sat in silence, heads bent.

The first splash of liquid onto the band didn’t register, until others followed the same trail, leaving him with a suspended river of gold.

Arnav’s head jerked upward, but he was distracted on the path to her eyes.

Khushi had bit down on her unadorned lower lip, drawing his attention to their trembling. He was acquainted with that tremble yet their language remains foreign. What did it mean? And why did it matter?

When an unknown girl had fallen into his arms he’d been transfixed by those lips. That first glimpse of trembling red peaks had ransacked his world.  The compulsion to steady them by pressing his lips over the lushness had never left him. It had birthed a hunger to learn every line, swell, and dip.

An evening of fielding reporters and watching the same set of models prance up and down the catwalk on the grounds of old nightmares had set his teeth on edge. Her unexpected appearance had added to the turmoil.

The purity she wore, real or contrived? He hadn’t been able to tell and had torn it off her as cleanly as the tug on a rope of pearls. He’d been wrong that day.

Yet, there was no denying what he saw on that terrace. If he could not trust his own eyes, what was there?

His lids clamped shut as another memory flashed through him. Arnav knew that as long as his mind was intact, the image of the woman in the carmine saree, surrounded by the soft glow of circling diyas, would haunt his night dreams and waking hours. To the end of his dying days he would be able to vividly recall the stolen moment against a shadowed corner of his garden. Of how those lips had trembled for him when he’d cupped her face.

They told him then that something mattered, but he was too afraid to believe in the innocence of the siren. He’d chosen to embrace the abrupt return to reality. He’d been wrong that day.

Suddenly, he sensed eyes on them. The gut instincts that had served him well over the course of amassing his current net worth kicked in. He was judging on a singular event when he knew better. The whole picture could only be delivered in connecting all the dots, something he’d been too afraid to do.

On that thought, Arnav shot up to his full height. He felt her curious gaze as he moved about the room, flicking his wrist to release the heavy drapes, shielding them from view. Spying the wall of switches, his hand slammed across them, plunging the room into semi opaque gray. If someone asked him the reason for his subsequent actions, he would be at a loss.

He turned to study her still figure. She’d jerked to her feet when he’d taken away the light. In that mad state of raging hurt that the heart he coveted had been handed to another, had he missed something?

With muffled steps he came back to her. Unclasping her hand, Arnav pulled Khushi flushed against him.


Just his name. But wrapped by her voice, it effectively fractured the wall of pretend indifference. Every interaction with her echoed of their prior encounters, until the sum of them culminated into an inescapable thread that knotted around his every cell.

His left arm curved around her shoulders, sealing the space between the fronts of their bodies. He welcomed her surprise gasp. It was a sound he wanted to drink to addiction.

“What are you doing?” she whispered.

“You know what I’m doing,” he replied.

His head dipped, nuzzling against the silky strands he wanted to see fanned across his pillow.

“Kiss me,” he demanded.

Khushi blinked, shocked into being guilelessly truthful, “I…. I don’t’ know how.”

“Then I want you to mirror what I do.”

He released her shoulders and cupped the delicate jaw, deliberately sending them back to that interrupted moment. This time, he had no intention of allowing escape, for her or himself.

With a tender patience he had never given to another, he lined their lips. The uncontrollable quaking movements of hers ricocheted through him, lighting a carnal path in its wake. He paused, inhaling the staccato of warm breaths.

Be real. I need you to be real. And mine.

Feeling exposed he closed the gap, bending his head so that their lips lightly touched, a delicate lingering graze. It wasn’t enough. Not for them, not after so long.

Suddenly impatient, he deepened the kiss, marveling at the harmonizing fit, as if hers had been carved to meet the exact contours of his own. His tongue traced her Cupid’s bow, effectively setting a spark to carefully laid timber.

For the first time in their acquaintance, Khushi did exactly as told. She mirrored his every movement, kissing him as if she too was starved.

His reached for the edge of the shirt, yanking it over her head. His feet maneuvered them through the forward and backward steps that took them to the bed, urgent hands stripping unwanted fabrics from the heightened sensitivity of overheated skin along the way.

He took another kiss, this one bold and demanding, before he tumbled them onto the mattress. His fingers speared through her hair, tilting her head back until their eyes met.

Do you want this? Do you want me?

In answer her arms stole around his neck, raising herself up, she pressed kisses along his jawline, each one letting him know she was right there with him. No more running. No more denials.

Bracing on his arms, Arnav’s eyes locked on Khushi’s, watching them fill as he entered her, the lines of their bodies shifting and merging until they were no longer separate forms, but one.

He made no effort to muffle the twin sharp cry and throaty moan. They drummed a deafening declaration of uninhibited desire into his ears. She met him touch for touch. Enthralled, he set a gentle rhythm, one that quickly heated into an abandoned dance of passion as they gave themselves over to the intense shattering that bonded them to this moment and to each other.

Much later he shifted until she reclined against the solid wall of his chest, running his fingers through damp fragrant strands of inky black. As he held her, skin to skin, his mind finally caught up to what his heart had known all along.

Their story had always been a silent language of looks that told more than full sentences, accidental touches that revealed more than outpourings of speech. And this was the most honest conversation they’d ever had.

Reaching over, he flipped on the lamp on the nightstand. The burn in his chest had eased, but as he leaned back to survey her flushed nudeness, it took a different shape. A possessive one that, unlike the anger she’d soothed away, wouldn’t follow a similar fate.

He slowly took in the red streak of vermillion in her maang, the string of black beads that rested at the base of her throat, the circles of gold wrapped around slender wrists that belied their true strength.

His marks. Marks that should’ve been placed on a bride with gentle hands, instead he’d been true to form, marring their significance with brutality. Yet, despite everything, here she was, in his home, his room, his bed – his wife in full.

When her lashes swept up to reveal clear hazel Arnav knew his arms held nothing except the naked truth.

And to the dear readers of this blog – warm wishes for a cheerful holiday celebration. Bottoms up!


  1. “Short fiction seems more targeted – hand grenades of ideas, if you will. When they work, they hit, they explode, and you never forget them.” Paolo Bacigalupi

    Everything about this OS is enticing, the bone-scraping emotional honesty; the narrator; the surprise; your solid command of language; the urgency and profundity of it and a great play of words in the title (triple play K?)

    Your piece had a dreamlike quality with little or no dialogue but a perfectly clear sense of the situation and the dynamics between the characters. You have satisfied the need to go into the heads of the character for realistic emotion. I can feel Arnav’s angst, rage, jealousy, melancholy, misery and slivers of hope; the latest popping out through different events and memories (where he wasn’t wrong). This fussy, angular, angst and raging mood succeeds in making this a starkly individual perspective. All of those emotions are about his longing to belong to another heart, to himself. You keep it real and write fresh sentences, ensuring that the setting is not described but lived through your characters. Thus your setting is both memorable and imaginable; it can be picked up (doors are slamming; aromas are filling the room), it can be plunged into darkness or lit up; it can be looked through (curtains being pulled), walked around.

    So far the piece is filled with metaphors and symbolism, to the point that I needed to stop a few times to let their meaning come through properly. It reflects his mood; his mind and heart being pulled into two directions, drowning in his own misgivings and jealousy, maintaining the illusion, trying to justify that little hope.

    And then there is that consummation. It shows touch, connection, a smorgasboard of nude and sexual imagery. It is all pared back, you focus on reality, rather than trying to obscure facts in metaphor, or veiled euphemisms or overwrought and tired clichés. There is no throbbing manhood or core; no mounds or shivering spines. It is not the mechanics of the act or the “weaponry” that makes good erotica, it is the emotional dynamics that makes it intriguing. That’s why I feel that you have engaged all my senses in this part. It is not about full lips or breasts, or washboard abs, it’s all about the strangeness and darkness, sadness and vulnerability of the act. Symbolism doesn’t work in erotica, that’s why this scene is diaphanous, beautiful, carefree. It is difficult to do, but so much better than all the repetitions of the act I have read. A lot of writers aren’t confident enough to write about what’s actually happening. They talk about other things like stars exploding above them, rather than talking about how it actually feels and the emotions. Your alpha male works because he isn’t defined by the fact he was subjugating a woman. He still asks her, letting her choose, but still leave room for him to be the alpha.

    It was a perfect scene. I loved all the embellishment and the nakedness of the style that makes this piece stand out. Now I hunger for more.

    Beam me up, Scotty!

  2. Beautiful OS
    Loved the way you took shirt scene and made memorable for us
    This is the Arnav we fell in love with

  3. K, you are amazing. We needed you when ipkknd was so brutally being wrapped up.

    I have just read few chapters of fwn, before it was locked. I hope some day I will get a chance to read it. White shirt is my favorite.

  4. Oh K I am so sorry for the delay in showing my presence. Life can be a bitch sometimes and so can my wifi! This was an outstanding piece we have here. I so loved this newer and probably better version of IPK!

    His doubts on her and the better clarity and his own judgement against the prejudice he had. To overcome that preconceived notion and act upon what his heart really wanted. That was pure brilliance and sheer extraordinary! I couldn’t have asked you for a better OS Mark the jashn! And how beautifully you had written the whole OS and the best thing was how you made us read the silent conversation and how you brought to the forefront the hidden language. Was there any dialogue at all? Except the one single word? You told so much without telling much!

    Thank you for this masterpiece! And sorry for such prolonged absence from here and from yours and S’s blog. Blame it all an my network connection!

    For more to come,

    1. You know they communicate purely through eye locks and rabba ves Sadh! :p
      Not a masterpiece, but a thoroughly enjoyable flexing of writing muscles as I tried not to embarrass myself with so many talented pens on showcase. As always, thank you for the love. Muak!

      1. Out with the modesty, already! You deserve the best compliments for this perfect masterpiece, so just bow your head and accept those compliments.. Kay? Muak.

  5. I read OS’s of this series which were posted on IF , but i didnt knew there were other stories too.Disadvantages of being restricted to IF.Anyways such a beautiful version of shirt scene.and your writing is amazing 🙂
    Also got to know about your farewell winter night story.Hope to read it someday

  6. it’s amazing how you take out just one scene and give it so much more meaning with your own words! loved it!!!

  7. Your words leave me speechless…… i dont know how does ur mind work in this fine intricate way……how beautifully u compared the burn of ones desire wit spark that set fire to the timber…..i just keep falling i love wth the framework of words that u have used , every time i read.

  8. This was a very beautiful and soothing read,K!
    It started with the storm raging in his heart where he wanted a relif even if it came from breaking things or splintering wood.He wanted to let out his frustration. The turmoil, the dilemma was so perfectly conveyed through your words. To hate and yet to love, to be wanting to do nothing with her and yet to fill her life so completely that there was not an iota of space left for anyone or anything else…he has always been living with conflicting emotions.
    There were so many lines which touched my heart.
    “Their story had always been a silent language of looks that told more than full sentences,accidental touches that revealed more than outpourings of speech.”
    brilliant writing.
    His salvation laid with her. It was in her arms where he finally felt home.
    The ending was perfect.
    “When her lashes swept up to reveal clear hazel Arnav knew his arms held nothing except naked truth.”
    With warm regards
    Fitzcy (N)

  9. Wow..that was beautiful… loved the way Arnav overcame his insecurities and trusting his feelings over everything… wished this wud have happened in show as well..Sigh

  10. The title is so very apt! A very beautiful piece of writing, i must say.
    The essence of the two characters was maintained so well in its subtlety. I say subtle because of the beauty of their silent conversation and connection. This line – “for the first time in their acquaintance, Khushi did exactly as told” sums up their relationship perfectly! I LOLed. Preach it. Fucking oath.
    Arnav’s perspective – there is a need to believe in her innocence as much as there is a need to be right. Needless to say, the stark contrast of his desires is overwhelming. As loud and rebellious Khushi was made to be in the show, she always carried a quiet strength about her and that shone through in the OS. I’ve always loved her surety about him despite everything going on and it resonated at the end through her “clear, hazel eyes”.
    Omg i also just realised !i – the ‘i’ is an upside down ‘!’ – THAT’S ACTUALLY SO COOL i’m so amused! I’m a bit ditsy now this is my cue to go. Don’t ever stop writing, i loved it bas!

    1. Awww thanks Srishti! I used to go into mini rages over how Khushi’s maturity went by the wayside. Had it not been for the wonderful Ficverse, my sanity would have met with the same fate. 😛

  11. Omg….looks like all my posts are going to begin like this. Awesome fantabulous….you have a way with words…seriously can I get inside your brain to see how you form the words…blatant maska puri…..will it give me access to password protected story I sure can try he hehe

    On a serious note…loved the raw emotions and finally Arnav giving in and acting on it

  12. Tired of me yet?

    But youuuuuuuu! Omg what are you doing to meeeeeee. I’ve missed this Arnav and Khushi. Making me relive the moments again. Seriously this should have happened on the show. It would have been amazing and so exotic! The way Arnav actually found the truth via the passionate Khushi was truly just beautiful. He may be demanding and powerful but that’s our Arnav. Like it or not our Khushi loves him like that. This OS was just so calming and had such a good ring to it in my head.

    I applaud you both. Y’all amazing

    Li xx

  13. Wow, this makes me want to hunt down the scene and watch it again and visualsie where they left off based on your words.

  14. Wow. This was simple and sweet – true to what a KISS entails, the kiss which brought upon everything just happened.

    “…a sweep of fabric revealed the woman who was doing a fine job of gnawing at his sanity…”

    The few lines you write, and I have no idea if they are conscious or unconscious, but they stand out. And stand out they do with their arms spread, to take you in their embrace and the embrace is mutual.

    And I have just this word coming to my mind , time and again for this – pretty!

    Reveur 💕

  15. This was amazing! I can’t believe I hadn’t discovered the Rabbit Hole until recently! There are true gems hidden here! I love this Arnav who’s so new yet still has the same essence of self-conflict within him. To be honest, the last line was the most beautiful out of everything else that was written.

  16. OKAY there is no word to describe your stories. i can call it awesome, amazing, the best but they wont be enough. But I love how your stories have the uniqueness in them, different than any other stories.

  17. OH MY GOD! i just love how you give new directions to our favourite arshi scenes. Loved our arnav and khushi here. the way arnav realises by the end and the way he takes over control of khushi. just loved every bit of it. Love your writing.

  18. wonderful piece of writing..white and innocence so much intertwined. but its your way of weaving magic that has left me asking for more…i am simply in love with the way you pen down the inner turmoil . beautiful OS

  19. Love your stories but can’t get access to you Flawless Winter Nights , plz requesting for the Password to that stories, read you Tranquil sea first time and fell in love with your stories.

  20. Beautifully and well written guys,k hushi’s innocence and arnav angry shade of love balance the equation,loved it 😍😍😍👏👏👌

  21. Gosh! I cant believe I didnt come across these OSs earlier!! Thank you for sending me the link to these!! !
    Amazing one! How I wish the same had happened in the Show as well…… if only Arnav had seen and believed the truth in Khushi’s eyes – we couldve avoided the non-sensical melodrama that followed!!!

    Very beautifully written!

  22. Well written… nice imagination… when i was watching the episode i use to thk why arnav is not seeing the truth in kushi… and here when u made arnav to see the truth… wow… if only it had happen in the episode…

  23. Liked it. It links all the Arnav Khushi encounters and connects the dots. Their silent interactions spoke more than when they opened their mouths. Wished there was a similar scene where Arnav himself understood Khushi’s innocence, than with any proof or explanations from others.

  24. How can you write these mind boggling pieces😍
    I’ve no words to say except that it’s just awesome and i wish the makers got this piece. ☺

  25. Another master piece i must say love the way you give new direction to Arahi scenes felt very satisfied after reading your work you do justice with feelings of readers just keep giving us beautiful stories like that thanx

  26. I am so bummed at the thought that I might be the very last idiot in the ARHI universe to discover the Rabbit Hole😭 Anyway I am working fast to diminish my mistake and going through your artistic and very talented works on our lovely couple. I love your idea of Khushi, the mature and very humane in accepting her passion and according response to Arnav. I love this alternate universe where both of them are on the same page, at least as far as the basic human nature is concerned. Thank you for introducing me to this exciting journey. Hope you would continue churning up more of such fantastic fantasy.
    Loads of love

  27. The play of words in this OS is seamless. There are less dialogues. Yet, I can visualise each and every emotion expressed by Arnav- be it angst, anger, jealousy, melancholy, doubt, hunger or honesty.
    The metaphors have such deep meaning that it takes a moment to sink in.
    How come I had skipped this wondrous piece!
    Anyway, better late than never. Right? 😉

  28. Mindblowing.. so amazing.. Just cant describe in words..
    Ps: Yesterday i came to now about your blog and from then i am stalking each n every story of yours.
    Pps:I want password for your FWN outtake and other night please.. send at aadeeptc.bansal@gmail.com

  29. Wow .. this is so beautiful. The way you have taken given a different twist to the scene is commendable . It evokes so many feeling of honesty , guilt, jealousy and the crux of Arshi relantionship which was based on silent understanding rather than verbal declarations. The consummation was erotic more b’cos if was filled with emotions from both sides rather than the description of the act itself . A absolutely whole knew persceptive of the scene and very enjoyable. Hats off to the way it is written.

  30. Wow…
    I think I am not just gonna be ur fan… but turning into a fanatic… I had a totally different idea about this story when I started reading… But until I came to the end everything changed so beautifully… Think will be reading it again and again… Thank u for such wonderful works…

  31. What can I say? Every time I read your work I am so speechless that i would have to re-read so I can remember everything I needed to say. The raw emotion in this was just beautiful and heartwarming. And you’ve written it in such a way that every feeling that Arnav was going through in this was also felt by me and the story and setting described here it’s something highly realistic with their relationship.
    I loved this so much and especially certain lines like the last one: “When her lashes swept up to reveal clear hazel Arnav knew his arms held nothing except the naked truth.” This story was aptly named! Thank you for giving me another story for me to fall in love with! 😀

  32. Wow another brilliant remake of the original scene

    Loved how the battle to conquer led to the truth reigning over lies

    There’s no lie in true love it gives freely readily without restraint and Khushi did just that her trust her ability to give herself completely won his heart

  33. Beautifully written. I just love the emotions your writing churns every time I read your work. You are truly gifted with penmanship. All your thoughts and stories just flow so naturally and effortlessly that it just sucks one into the world that you create and leaves the reader wanting more and more !! This piece was an absolute treat !! ship13(IF)

  34. Spellbinding! I loved the graphics at the top of the page, brought back so many memories 🙂
    This scene was one thats frustrated me when I watched it, it could have been done differently, but this was just right. Brilliant!

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