TPR Chap 60 – Painful Truths
Morning Sunday Sundae is here yet again for your reading pleasure. The story moves on, relationships are tested and trust is broken. What we believed to be true was all lies and falsehood…sigh, how will Maan cope and how will Geet manage to help him in her own way? Please do comment love to read them! And excuse the errors I was writing bleary eyed till two last night so there are bound to be many. Thank you guys for your enthusiasm every week ;)) Love ya!
Pandey stared at Patel and stroked his ample chins. Didn’t Shankar say Patel must be running a successful business on the side? So why had he turned up in dirty ragged clothes? Even when he was working here in Delhi, he never looked this bad, the man standing before him was unshaven, ragged, totally beat and smelt like he hadn’t had a wash for days.
Patel watched Pandey’s face closely, had he overdone the downbeat look a little too much? He wanted Pandey to leave him alone so he could go back to Rupnagar and carry on his bootleg business with Geet’s uncle. But the way Pandey was ghooring him didn’t bode well, maybe he should have washed at least.
“So! Patel what have you been doing there all this time? You went to check up on Geet’s background but didn’t seem to want to come back…..hmmm is that place so wonderful? Tell me all about it, how have you been occupying yourself, I mean Geet is here and now and married to Maan Sigh so …..”
He wasn’t going to bite, Pandey was trying to trick him into blabbering. “Well I have been unwell really for quite a while so I have laid low. You know how it is if I had come back I still would have been no use to you, I mean being unwell, I had fever and chills for months. Luckily I chanced upon a small empty derelict place so I have been just been recovering there slowly. Kuane me paada raha tha, not troubling anyone so they let me be.”
“Oh! Really …?” Pandey’s eyes stripped him like lasers. “So how come Shankar told me you have been sending money to your old mum here in Delhi? If you have been so ill where did you get the money from?”
Patel muttered a few choice curses in his head to Shankar. “Errrr he is mistaken…..did someone send money to my mum? God bless his soul. I haven’t made any money for months, I mean look at me, do I look like I have made it good.”
“Hmmm….” Pandey muttered, perhaps you don’t want me to find out what you are up to there in case I ask for a piece of the action Patel, I know you, you’re a scoundrel through and through!”
“Pandey! I am shocked you would think such a thing. I may be a scoundrel but have I not been your most loyal worker all these years. Always standing by you through thick and thin, Shankar just wants to cause trouble for me I know. He wants to be your favourite. Naya naya aaya hai and he wants to take command.” Patel pretended to be deeply hurt. “ Now I am getting old you too want to replace me, but I am telling you, you wont find a loyal worker like me anywhere.”
Pandey rolled his eyes at Patel’s drama, “bas bas, Patel , if you were so ill why didn’t you send for help? I would have been happy to send you some money for medicines.”
More like leave me to die Patel thought pursing his lips, Pandey wouldnt send money to his own dying mother. “Yes I should have done, that but I didn’t want to trouble you. Tell me why did you want to see me?”
“So after all that time did you find out any of Geet’s weak points in that village?”
“No it was a waste of time. Maan Singh’s man came and made his uncle clear out of their old house and they left for a new village…I don’t know where.”
“Didn’t she have siblings?”
“Err yeah they went with the uncle and then you know as I said I fell ill, after that I don’t know where they went or what they are doing.” Patel said as vaguely as he could hoping Pandey wouldnt catch him out.
Pandey sighed, oh well so that was a dead end. But still he had the information from Deepak to work with. He would have to find that father of Maan Singh Khurana and work with him to get his revenge, from what Deepak had been saying there was no love lost between father and son.
“Err Boss if you don’t need me, I will be off …I…I still don’t feel too well.” Crossing his fingers he hoped Pandey would buy it.
Pandey stared at him for a little longer and then decided Patel was of no use to him at the moment. He could let him go for now, baad mein dekha jayeega.
“Err Are you going back to Rupnagar?”
“Haan,” Patel said, “I need to go back to sort things out, but don’t worry I will be back soon.”
Pandey looked at him thoughtfully and said, “Ok but if Geet’s sibling come back you let me know straight away.”
Hanging his head Patel waved goodbye to Pandey and slowly trudged out of the room, only to break into a huge grin as he came out on to the road. Thank god he had got away with it. Now to get back to his business in Rupnagar. Did Pandey really believe he would come back and dutifully tell him about Geet’s siblings? Chotu was his security, he could always entice Chotu away to make more money when and if he needed to and escape if things got too hot. Pandey could go to hell!
“Bolo! Deepak..Now tell us why you wanted to see Maan?” Geet asked again very gently now they had finally managed to quieten him down. It was almost evening and she should have been heading home to take care of daadima, instead she was caught up in this nightmare.
“Madamji…that Ajeet is a very bad man, he made this whole plan to dupe his mother.”
Geet’s eyes blazed at him, “Wh..what are you saying?” Her heart sank.
“I am telling you the truth madam…kasam se….Ajeet hired me a long time back. He promised me lots of money if I worked for him. Dheere dheere I realised that he was not a good man, but by then I was into deep and was worried about what Ajeet would do to me so I went along with his plan.”
“What exactly was his plan?” She asked softly worrying about whether she wanted to really hear the answer.
“His plan was to starve himself, play act at being a coolie so to soften your daadima’s heart. He said that if he didn’t win her on sympathy she would never take him back.”
“Bu..but he is her son..and Anwar is her grandson! Why wouldn’t she take him back?” Pinky puzzled, her face screwing up in a frown.
Deepak smiled a sad smile. “Madam you don’t know, he is evil through and through. So many very bad people are after him. He owes a lot of people a lot of money. Gambling, drinking, drugs…and I am sure that Anwar is not really his son either, but of that I have no proof. All this had come to such a climax he had to get away from it all so he made this plan to get back into the Khurana household. He could live in luxury, Maan Singh Khurana and Savtridevi would look after him he knew. Eventually he would get Maan Singh to pay off his debts and enjoy life.”
All three of them had their mouths open in shock.
“T..This cant be true!” A tortured whisper escaped Geet. “Maan…. daadima!” Her eyes filled with tears and they rolled down her cheeks. Dear God this was going to cut their trust into shreds.
She jumped up from her chair grabbing Deepak by the shoulders, shaking him violently.
“Tell me you are lying! This is NOT true. Maan….Daadima! His own father!”
“I…I am so sorry madam, but it is true.”
Adi and Pinky stood still in shock like statues. How could anyone have sunk so low so as to go about planning to swindle his own mother and son.
“NO! I don’t believe it!” Geet turned, sobs racked her slender frame, she gulped them back. “It cant be true!”
“What cant be true? What is going on here? Geet why are you crying? Who is this man?” Maan’s gruff voice questioned from the doorway.
“M….Maan sir!” Adi mumbled.
Her tear filled eyes turned to his puzzled face. He strode in, his posture tense.
“Geet! Adi! Pinky!” He fired at them. “Bolo!”
“Err…M…Maan sir Geet says this is the man who met them at TuglakabadStation. “
Maan’s eyes homed in on the thin dark terrified looking man.
“How did you find him?” Dark eyes pinned her for an answer. Why did she look so broken up? Did she go out chasing after low life yet again when he had expressly told her not to.
“He came by himself to see you.” Pinky piped up.
“Me?” Maan homed in on the man.
Deepak stared at Maan Singh Khurana with terrified eyes. He had seen him at the station but hadn’t realised from so far away what a strong presence he had.
Pulling herself together Geet said, “Maan he came to see you because he wanted to tell you…”
“What?” Maan fired at her as she again stopped mid sentence. From the look on her face it didn’t sound good at all.
“He says….he saysssss…” She couldn’t tell him. How could she tell him his father had planned such a swindle.
Adi stared at Geet, she looked heartbroken, he could understand why. He had to step up to the job.
“M…Maan sir,” he said that your F…F..Ajeet planned to come back into your lives and swindle you and daadima.”
His face filled with so much pain, a collective gasp escaped the rest of them in the room. Sooty fringed eyes turned into dark orbs of pain.
Geet reached out to him but his hand came up and stopped her. He couldn’t let any emotion engulf him now. His mind had to be completely clear in order to understand what was happening here.
Maan stared at Deepak with such intensity for a long time. Finally he crossed his arms in front of him in a gesture that screamed he had closed off from everyone and firmly voiced to Deepak, “Start from the beginning, I want to know every single detail. Don’t leave anything out.”
They all listened with rapt attention as Deepak slowly and hesitantly started at the beginning and told them exactly what Ajeet had planned.
“Sir..Madam…I..decided that I had to tell you everything..I kept seeing your mother face and feeling bad. I too have a elderly mother who is sick and wouldn’t want anyone to swindle her like this. I couldn’t face myself if I let it happen to yours. I am just sorry I got myself involved with a scoundrel like Ajeet!” Paling instantly as he realised that he was actually saying bad things about Maan’s father.
It all made sense now. What Major Saab had told him about the people all after him, debts galore, gambling, Anwar and his drugs….it all made sense and at the same time it broke his heart. The only reason why Ajeet had even come back was because he was at a dead end, he had no where to go so he had come back to swindle his own flesh and blood. How could a man do that to his own mother! His expression became so fierce Deepak shrank back into his chair.
“Don’t worry.” Seeing the little man’s worried look. “You will be rewarded handsomely for what your actions. It couldn’t have been easy coming out and telling the truth when we could have easily handed you over to the police.”
Deepak realised the glaring difference between father and son.
“I…don’t want anything Sir…I just want to go back to my village and live a peaceful life.”
“You will, you will don’t worry, no one will harm you from now on. I will make sure of that.” Maan assured him. “Adi, arrange for Deepak to live somewhere safe for now. Give him some cash for expenses from my personal account.
“Err Sir its best if I go back to my village. But if you need me I will come back.” Deepak was just relived that Maan and the others believed him.
“Adi take all the details of his address and a number.”
“Err Sir I don’t have a number.”
“Adi give him a phone, Deepak make sure you have that on. It wont cost you anything we will make sure its fully paid for.”
Deepak’s eyes grew wider and wider as he listened to Maan firing off instructions. He had never met anyone like him. He nodded.
“Adi please take care of him.” With that he turned sharply on his heel and went out.
Nodding to Pinky and Adi, Geet ran after him.
But he wasn’t listening He strode out of the offices without once looking back.
“Geet you will have to give him time.” Pinky whispered from next to her.
His heart was broken she knew, but she wouldn’t let him face this alone. She had promised him they would face it together. And she knew he would also have to gain control of himself for daadima’s sake.
“Pinky I am going home will you take care of things here?”
She gave her a big hug as Pinky nodded her big brown eyes filled with tears as she said take care of yourself, daadima and Maan.
She would give him a little time to absorb what Deepak had just divulged, he would need it. But after that she was going after him, she knew where would be.
Maan jumped into his car and start driving, he didn’t have a clue where. The words Deepak had spoken went round and round his head, he felt as if he was being torn apart from the inside.
The evening had set in and the skies were lit with a bright fiery orange almost as if they reflected the fire and anger in his heart. He had been prepared to adjust his life, to include back his father and his new found brother, if he really was his brother. But this killed any hope of that ever happening. Ajeet had left both his mother and him a long time ago, Maan wished the scum had never come back.
Without realising how he even got there, he reached the outhouse. His posture tense he walked into the open plan room and shrugged off his shirt. Anger coursed through him like a furious tide that breached all barriers. He struggled to control his breathing as wave after wave of pain engulfed him. Closing his eyes he held in the pain, smashing his fist against a desk, the sound bounced around the room like a ricocheting bullet. The beauty of the moon shining through the tall windows surpassed him completely.
Without conscious thought he started moving around the room performing the hardest moves from his kata’s that strained his every muscle. Fast and furiously he worked out as the anger coursed through him. Why had he allowed them back into his house? Damn it! Rage made his fist fly and he smashed it into a wall shattering the plaster and creating a cavity.
Geet’s pain filled scream echoed through the hall. She knew he would be here, working out, punishing himself, stretching his body to the limit. She ran up to him and caught his fist in her hands. Blood smeared his knuckles. Her face filled with pain.
“Why are you punishing yourself?”
“Geet jawo yaha se!” The words exploded from him.
“Nahi Maan!” She was not going anywhere. Her tear filled eyes homed in on his face. Anger, betrayal, pain, showed clearly as she knew it would. She gently put her lips to his bruised and bleeding knuckles kissing them.
Violently he pulled out his fist from her grasp. “Geet suna nahi meine kya kaha! Get out of here!”
He turned his back on her, not wanting her to see him like this.
In reply she slipped her arms around from behind pulling him back into her, hugging him tightly. She could feel his heaving breaths as he sought to control himself.
“Maan, I promised we would face this together!”
“No! this is not your fight!” He tried to pull away but she clung on to him tightly.
“I am not leaving you like this!”
He trembled with the force of his feelings. Why didn’t she realise he was not safe to be around at the moment?
“I am warning you Geet get out of here or face the consequences!” He whipped around pushing her against a wall none too gently using his body. His every sinew strained.
“Maan tumne suna nahi, I am not leaving you like this!” Her eyes full of love she beseeched him to let her in. Her hands reached out again and she gently cupped his face. Her lips touched his in a butterfly soft kiss, her tongue tracing the bow shape of his lips. She had to get through to him somehow.
Why didn’t she just listen and leave him! He didn’t want to hurt her, but she was pushing his control in every way to the limit.
“You just don’t listen do you!” Emotion filled his every word. He looked so pained.
Dark orbs full of anger, he looked at her for a moment, roughly taking her wrists he pulled them over her head against the wall enclosing both wrists he pushed himself into her space, arching her into him.
“I said leave me be but you wont listen!” As if he couldn’t help himself, his lips took her in searing kiss that made her tremble from top to toe.
Her eyes closed as she felt the rage within him, he was taut as a bowstring. His mouth plundered hers, kissing her hard, his tongue delving deep seeking her honeyed taste. As he kissed her she felt the rage quieten and something else dark and out of control take its place. The atmosphere changed and became charged, the air between them so thick it could be cut with a knife.
“Maan!” She gasped out his name as he let her take a heaving breath before his searing assault began again. Lips scorched and trailed across her face, down her throat. They suckled her breast through her kurti. He pressed himself against her pushing her into the wall.
He was totally out of control, the rage had evolved and turned into uncontrolled passion. He felt it course through him, his every nerve ending screamed for release. He needed oblivion, he needed to loose himself, to forget everything. In her arms he could.
“Open your eyes!” His demanding tone was gruff and thick with uncontrolled emotion.
Slowly she dragged her eyes open. Her breath came out in short bursts. Dear god! He was something else. Flames of uncontrolled desire burned in his dark eyes. Untamed, unleashed and out of control! He emitted danger and much more.
Her amber pools impossibly wide, they stared into his, they mirrored his passion. His desperate need. They glowed with love.
Without a word he picked her up in his arms and started climbing the stairs to the outhouse bedroom.