s&k ficverse adventures
SS

Rhapsody

“Rhapsody In Blue ― George Gershwin

2 years later

Delhi’s warm drizzle peppered an exhausted visage as Arnav dropped his head against the aging SUV.

Slipping an icy hand into the pocket of wool trousers, his fingers brushed against a cigarette. Running a callused thumb along the rounded tips absently, bleary eyes tracked a plane’s descent. He’d given them up over a year ago. Quit cold turkey when he realized each inhale only fueled a mounting agitation towards his surroundings. Yet, he hadn’t put an end to the habit of carrying them. The scent of unlit tobacco was reassuringly familiar.

Sentimental. Foolish. Both words he would never have associated with himself.

It was spreading. An incurable malignancy overtaking a weakened body, it tunneled through every vulnerable crevice until it paved ways to actions that would have been foreign to the Arnav Singh Raizada, Before Her.

Tonight was another case of such involuntary actions. Instead of going home after a punishing sixteen hours of negotiations, he had driven to the dirty parking lot of the congested terminal of Indira Gandhi. In the vain hopes that one of the planes descending from the darkened sky was carrying precious cargo; a passenger that may never return, a woman so rooted in the core of his depth that her removal from his life had made the world come to a standstill.

A streak of time had flown by.

Twenty six months, five days, eighteen hours and a handful of goddamn minutes.

As they faded into a blur, he had reconciled to a default mode of living. Dull and inanimate. Colorless and bleak. His life, before and after her.

What reason did you give her to stay? His mind sneered.

But.

He.

Loved.

The acknowledgement wasn’t nearly as castrating as he’d imagined it would be.

She’d taken the flight right after his own, landed mere hours after he had. Yet, she hadn’t come to him. She’d disappeared on the streets of London.

How the hell had she managed to slip onto a private plane? Where was she now? Who was she with? When was she coming back?

The unanswered questions gnawed at him.

That she would forever withhold herself from him was unpalatable.

Not his Khushi. Not if she realized that the heart she accused him of not having was untrue. In her absence it had writhed in screaming agony. It needed her to survive, her sunshine to grow again.

As the roar of engines announced the impending departure of another flight, his phone pinged with an incoming message.

With trepidation he swiped across the alert notification.

For a brief moment anger detonated in vicious red within him as his eyes scanned Aman’s crisp message.

“Apologies, sir. She was not listed on any domestic or international flight tonight.”

Minutes ticked by mercilessly as he stood motionless, allowing his mind to absorb the daily blow to sanity.

He deserved this, Arnav reminded himself. He had placed his trust in the wrong person.

The rush of memory assaulted him; his sister’s tear stained face, his grandmother’s brokenness, the haunting hollowness of their home. But nothing was worse than Shashi’s silent accusation, the mute blame within those sharp eyes.

He had soaked up every bit of their animosity for they were reminders of her. That she existed, even if she’d ceased to orbit his world.

But the mind was not so different from clay; malleable and twisted by the force of will. With a vehement mental shake, Arnav shoved past the all too familiar despondency. He deleted the offending message before his thumb moved to press down on the first digital speed dial.

Stomach cramping from nerves, he waited, head bent. A silent plea that just this once she would…

“Hello! Jiji do you think this thing is recording? Hello?”

A nervous giggle that made his body taut with tension, coiling further as her breathy voice filled his ears.

“You’ve reached Khushi… Raizada.”

He hated that hesitation. Hated how unsure she was because he was a fucking idiot.

Come back.

Once she’d begged now he would give anything for the opportunity. To be on his knees before her.

Come back and I’ll make sure you never doubt your place in my life.

“Sorry I missed you! Leave a name and message and I promise to return the call.”

Liar.

Exhaling on a rough breath, he slipped the phone back into his pocket. Around him people scurried by, avoiding the increasing onslaught of surging gray. He stood still, wishing the heavy drips would drench his thoughts as thoroughly as it soaked his clothes.

For a few moments each day, his existence narrowed to this minute connection.

Another man would have admitted defeat. But if nothing else, a successful businessman understood the value of patience. As long as that cell phone kept ringing, there was hope. That blinding light at the end of his dark tunnel had latched onto the center of his being, tugged him in a forward direction as it taunted and enchanted him from afar. Often lingering in the space between his waking hours, hope was electrifying in her beguile.

Someday one of those planes would bring her back. When she felt he had suffered enough, had paid his penance in full, his Khushi would be merciful.

It kept him going.

He refused to go back to his old impossible self. Or something worst, a creature hewn of despair and death.

He didn’t smoke. He no longer drank. He sure as fuck didn’t date.

He worked. He cared for their family. He waited.

He lived in an imagined boundary.

A life muted into suspension.

Until someday arrives.


… index

104 comments

    1. There are consequences to your words/acitons, our Mr. Raizada needs to learn this lesson, yes?

  1. Hi . I just found out this magical place. Do you just have to follow to read your pieces! Under the SS division, are all of the pieces in the same story? Or are they just separate stories? And how can read your fan fictions?

    1. Welcome to our humble home Monami! The best way to explore our site is by strolling through our main index page:

      https://ficverseadventures.com/whet-your-appetite/

      Click on the photos and it’ll lead down a few interesting rabbit holes 😉
      All stories have their own index to help ease confusion and our two FFs have their own sites. Have fun!

  2. Hi Nice update and thanks for the update.Eagerly waiting for next update.I think lot of story has to be revealed.

    1. I know everyone is wondering what the heck is going on with Khushi. The next update should clear up many questions and hurt your hearts a little 😉

  3. Hola there…so glad ..
    Cmon arnav…be patient just like we were…she might come back:-))

    1. Always lovely to see familiar faces in the PG!
      Oh, this writer felt the little jab. Yes, yes, patience is often rewarded. 😉

  4. Hugs, hugs, hugs! welcome back!
    I missed you two, dammit. So glad to have you back, as i am sure our Raizada will be to have his Kushi back. Gosh, your writing is phenomenal. I feel his misery in his breath, i feel his helplessness deep inside my bones, and i feel his inner strength, that conviction too in my spine.
    Wish you a fantastic 2018, filled with some of the most enjoyable writing!

    much love,

    1. *Hugs, hugs, hugs* Thank you PJ!
      Awww, color me flushed and delighted.
      I do feel terrible for the state of our Mr. Raizada, but he did put himself in his corner.
      Let’s hope his conviction in Happiness proves true. 😉

      Looking forward to more of your company as we mosey through this year. ^^

  5. I almost hate you for this update. Pouring salt all over my poor Arnav’s wounds.
    But damn Captain, you sure as hell can write!
    His pain, his loneliness, his remorse. They all pulse so strongly you can taste it.
    I volunteer for the licking.
    His thoughts while listening to her voicemail just kills me.
    Where is our girl?! I want Mr. Raizada to fulfill his promise, on his knees to boot! (One of the best ways to apologize to your woman yeah? 😉 ) LOL clearly still in possession of my dirty mind.

    Those last lines are haunting me. Damn!

    Don’t make us wait a year until the final two updates!

    1. OMFG! Both of you are here! Did California enter Armageddon? 😀
      Damn you both for disappearing, but all is forgiven. Just so glad to see you guys with an update as the fucking cherry on top!!

      Holy shit K!!!!!! I’ve told you this before, but the words you’ve woven together for saudade is among the best I’ve seen from you.
      The agony of separation is so perfectly described.
      I want to hug him as much as I want to hit him over the head for taking so long to come to these realizations.
      Of course he loves here! There are no universe that exists in which Arnav does not love his Khushi.

      I’m with S, all those thoughts while listening to her voicemail. And that ‘Liar’ at the end. Hhahaahah. She’s still pissed at you Arnavji!
      I hope the next update gives us a better idea of what is going on with Khushi. Two years is a long time to stay silence. This better not end up being a tragic story K! You KNOW I can’t handle those.

      But thank you for such a beautiful update.

      P.s. S that dirty mind better be put to good use soon!

      P.P.S. I’m greedy, are we getting UDS or CC anytime in next decade? C’mon, don’t leave your favorite person hanging!

      1. Do you kiss your babies with that mouth Mel Mel? 😛
        He does bring out those duality of emotions doesn’t he. It should come as no surprise that Mrs. Raizada has a strong case of crazy when she’s constantly battling the urge of kick him or kiss him. 😀
        I do think time is one of the most useful aides of healing. They both needed the distance, for realization and growth.
        But yes, the next update should shed much light on her prolonged silence. And hopefully that in a way that will cause me to end up on your hit list 😉

        In answer to that PPS…. the next decade has distinct possibilities. 😀

    2. Ha! We both know you would’ve happily put him through the wringer and worse.
      We so do enjoy torturing dear Mr. Raizada.
      Licking wounds can lead into dangerous territory 😉
      And was there ever a possibility of that mind separating from dirty deeds? 😛

      Does it help if I say I’m half through both drafts? Not sure how reassuring that is considering our track records. ^^

  6. Arrogant, proud Arnav Singh Raizada today is a broken man! His pain and desolation pinched my heart. 😔
    I hope his “Happiness” comes back to him…but, if and when she does return, I want him on his knees, groveling at her payal adorned feet!

    1. You and the entire sisterhood sweetheart. 😀
      I do love a heartfelt delicious serving of male groveling.

    1. Hello stranger! Good to see you here. ^^
      Ah… AD is allowing a wee bit of playtime, so we’re making the most of it. 😀
      How have you been?

  7. Nice to have you back… khushi left him! In a way good. Arnav needed the reality check n to use his Harvard brain during those time. Who did khushi go with? N that too on a private jet? Waiting for the next.

    1. Awww good to see you here! Ha! That boy does need a reality check from time to time. All that arrogance yeah? 😉
      I think the next update will answer many questions – stay tune!

  8. Can see me dancing 💃💃 cheerfully knowing that you are back di 😁
    Damm !! I missed you so very much ❤️
    I really Admire the way you write, Your Writings are Amazingly AWESOME 👌👌
    & You are an extremely Excellent Writer✍️ di.
    Its my Good fortune that I got the prevalige to read your Beautiful, Fantastic Stories 🌸
    This chapter is so intriguing, I’m so curious to know why khushi left Arnav ?? What’s in the past 🤔
    Well I’m waiting desperately for the next chapter.
    Thanks 🙏 so much di …….
    Loveeeee you ~ Hameshaa 😘❤️
    Take care ❤️

    1. Hahaha you are so damn cute sweetie. I’m glad to be back among our hardy adventurers. That you gals never give up on waiting for us to update is the best beacon of inspiration a writer can hope for. ^^

  9. I cried reading Duet but this gives me hope. He knows for sure she flew to London,the cell phone is still active,no mention of snake ( taken care of my him I hope) . But then private plane and London and silence for two years…I am back to what has happened to her 😢

    1. Duet was one of the hardest updates for me to write. So much emotions from both of them it was nearly suffocating.
      I think it’s pretty clear that saudade is a mood piece and not very plot driven. I wanted to delve into the pain of separation and hopefully that gets delivered. The next update should provide you gals with some insight to Khushi 😉

      1. I always forget that if I am feeling the anguish how hard it must be for the writer to write this! Thank you. Yes I get it is not plot driven…but you have way with words that their anguish and pain of separation is very visual ( like exhausted visage/aging SUV). 😊

    1. There is never a doubt that Arnav loves Khushi, but unfortunately our man is a bit stunted when it comes to emotional intelligence yes? 😉
      Good to have you here sunaina!

    1. Hey dimpy…. if you think of saudade as a mood piece instead of a plot driven story it would make more sense.
      I wanted to capture the pain of their separation, his anguish and regret, and her journey to forgiveness.
      Although, the next update should clarify things a bit. Hang tight!

  10. He erred, he repents and waits – 26 months, five days, eighteen hours and a handful of goddamn minutes.😢😢😢😢
    Ab bahut hua!

    Looking forward to finding out how and why Khushi is awol and still immune to Arnav’s penance.

    Beautiful writing K

    1. Aww so glad to see you’re still Monica!
      Now you know our girl, would she be so cruel to her beloved Arnav on purpose? 😉

  11. Welcome back… read the previous part to refresh my memory and girl, it feels u never stopped thinking about them… feel bad for him but at least he gets to hear her voice😑…

    1. There’s something about an anguished Arnav that tears at my heart (even while I’m the one making him suffer 😛 )
      I don’t know if a voicemail playing the same message over and over again is an emotional comfort – more like a kick in the gut each time no?

      1. True that! But things have to get a lot worse before they get any better! So why don’t I do the dirty for u… I m going to stick that knife in his sexy smooth chest and twist it inch by inch🤢 See he’s hurting… now things get better, right?

  12. So glad that you are back and that too with such an awesome update. I adored the angsty tone of the story and can actually feel Arnav’s despair and helplessness. Can’t wait for more.
    Are you going to resume writing FWN? Or you have dropped the idea of re writing it again?
    I hope we will be to read more from you as u r an amazing writer.

    1. Heh, you gals do enjoy keeping us on our toes.
      I can’t make any promises on what will come after I wrap up saudade. We feel terrible when we leave you guys hanging. Let’s see what AD permits and where our midnight ink dips decides to lead yeah?
      Thanks for being here, it’s truly heartwarming and a definite motivator for us to get our asses back on track 😀

  13. arnav sucks, yet its hard to have him in pain. get them together. now! awesome to have you writing again.

    1. Hahaha, yes the man’s pride has always been a source of deep suckage :p
      We’ll have to check in on Khushi to see when we can reunite our lovers.

    1. Hey! Good to see you (and is that pretty Lee Min Ho?)
      saudade is really a mood piece without much plot, but I do think many questions you gals have will be answered in the next update.

  14. So happy to see you back. Love the update. His feelings and his thoughts you express so wonderfully. Feeling bad for him.. hope will get next update soon and I hope this new year will bring you a lot of happiness. Thank u for update. Lots of Love.

    1. Awww thanks SPJ! I’ll drink to those wishes and hopefully this will be a good year of adventures for the Ficverse. Cheers!

  15. Oh my god😯.. best surprise of 2018 so far.. i was waiting for fwn but you came with another delicious offering. After your brilliant array of words, i m short of them.. pain of arnav, heartbreak, wait, longing, hope, agony- name it & all r here..i don’t know wat u r planning with khushi but with your comments i get a feeling has she moved on?? I don’t know how i m going to feel if that happens..but regardless waiting for your nxt offering.. Cheers

    1. Sweetheart if this was your best surprise, you need to go grab yourself some new adventures and a partner in crime! 😉
      Although very glad to have you joining us here.
      Heh heh, could our Khushi ever remove Mr. Raizada from her Arnav shaped heart? Do I appear like I want to be lynched by a mob? 😛
      I think you gals will enjoy the next update, it’ll answer the questions and hopefully make your soul ache a little.

      1. Hahaha.. i just said uptil now.. with a newborn, its hard to do anything else other than running around her😉.. not that i m not loving it.. & i agree a lil heartache is good for health.. bring it on..

  16. OMG!!! Did a jig when I saw the notification and I didn’t care who saw me. It’s so intense. Such searing emotions. Loved, loved, loved it.

  17. 26 months and more before he realizes he cannot let go and he wonders why she hesitates her last name..very interesting and looking forward to see what transpired in the past and those agonizing months between!

    1. It didn’t take him 26 months to come to this realization, but even after recognizing her importance to him, fate is keeping her out of his reach. Which is a very frustrating thing for a man who likes to be in control. I do think much will be answered in the next update!

  18. A biggggg hug for coming back after a very long time but it is really nice to read your update why is khushi not with him waiting for more and a humble request if you can pls give access to the rest part of fwn whenever you can

    1. I don’t even remember how long we’ve been away this time, but it can definitely be filed under the umbrella of too damn long. Good to see that you gals are still here and still eager for adventures. 😀
      We’ll address the lounge soon, I actually still need to migrate the old site to this new one before we can start issuing invites again.

  19. my heart broke just a little and my eyes teared up. I felt that. i really did. How do you do that? I’m here wishing she returns to him someday soon.

    1. His pain is palpable isn’t it? Grisly and raw, it tears at you.
      It’s been an absolute pleasure reading your comments jj. Thank you for sharing them and joining me on this journey. ^^

  20. OMG 😱 an update 😱 “unbelievable” …. *Rubs eyes* ….happy tears 😭😭😭 …
    It feels so good to see update after so long 😭😭😭😭😭
    It was a delight to have Mr ASR back with us … Hope he gets his Khushi back too 👍…
    This is just beginning …Mr Raizada seem to b hiding a lot….😝😝 Hope he reveals soon soone soonest 😊😝

    1. Heh heh, such dramatics 😉
      Good to be back after so long and even better to see you gals still in orbit!
      Keep those fingers tightly crossed.

  21. Ah an update after what seems to be so many years in btw!!!..but what a lovely one K, very nice, though I need to read back couple of times to understand the mystery, will wait for more updates..do hurry ok..:)

  22. Oh how the mightly have fallen. But the best part is the hope he is keeping alive and how?

    He chose live life in this way so he can have himself to offer when Khushi comes back. Kill me.

    Now i know why La, hoped that he will forget if not forgive. So she has his khushi. But khushi is staying away for a reason, hopefully its all for good and she will comeback to make it a happy ending.

    Welcome back K!

  23. He is waiting for her….

    Why did they separate in first place?.

    Your writing is amazing

  24. Arnav Singh Raizada is in so much pain and he is counting days.. he really have changed.. hoping with his hope that his Khushi will forgive him and come back to him.. as it seems he is going through his own created hell very badly.. amazing part.. good to see you back..

  25. Once again a warm warm warm welcome to both of you
    Good to see you both here after such a long long time gals

    GreAt going – I think our Raizada has grovelled and suffered much – poor baby – his emotions have been beautifully written – could really feel what he is feeling – high time we get a POV of our khushi – let’s see where our madam ji is?
    Will eagerly wait for the next part dear

  26. I just teared reading this update………..Khushi came behind him to London and disappeared once she landed is a surprise……..was she in trouble…….if she came for him, why did she not meet him……..I am eagerly waiting to know how she is doing………..Poor Arnav is waiting for her forever…………..can’t wait to know what Khushi is doing?,,,,

  27. Wow….just beautiful…..Arnav’s plight , his agony, his sufferings woven into such heartfelt words.. waiting eagerly for khushi to come back where she belongs !

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