Road Less Travelled :: Chapter 9


Chapter 9

 

Arnav peeped into the small room with his sister and Khushi through the small square glass fixed in the frame of the rickety wooden door that separated them. He clenched his fists tight, perspiring with nervousness as he looked at the proceedings.

 

 

Khushi was kneeling down in front of Anjali, with one of her hands in hers, while Anjali continued to look away.

 

 

———-

Khushi tried rubbing Anjali’s palms warm. Something would work. Something would get her attention. Had she even noticed me sitting here? She hadn’t looked at me once. But, she was purposely looking away?

 

 

Khushi looked around the room, there was nothing particularly interesting that could have caught her attention. A single bed, a metal cupboard at the corner of the room, and the chair she sat on sitting in the center of the room. That was all.

 

 

Then, she noticed a clipboard hanging by the back of the door, and Arnav immediately looking away, as she met his eyes through the piece of glass.

She turned to Anjali once again. She cupped her face gently, and turned her so that she was facing her.

 

 

“Anjali ji..” She whispered softly.

 

 

Khushi noticed Anjali’s eyes widen as she said her name. Then, she rid her hands from Khushi’s, and pursed them between her knees. She began whimpering and looking away.

 

 

Khushi didn’t understand what was happening. She looked out of the glass screen, to ask Arnav what was happening.

 

 

Then there was a shrill scream from Anjali, as she tried to get up and move away and she fumbled and fell to the ground. Khushi tried to help her up, but Anjali pushed her away, refusing any help.

 

 

Arnav was trying to get in.

 

 

Anjali’s breaths paced up, and she began hyperventilating.

 

 

The meds rushed in and ordered Khushi out.

 

 

———-

 

 

The doctor gestured Arnav to follow him and Khushi followed suit.

 

 

Once inside the doctors’ cabin, Khushi noticed how tense Arnav looked. She could see the veins on his neck rise and fall back as he breathed.

 

 

“Doctor, what’s wrong? What just happened to Di?” Arnav asked before even the doctor was seated.

 

 

The Doctor smiled at Arnav, “Mr.Raizada, there’s no need to panic. Please, take a seat, and then we can discuss.” Arnav hastily drew a chair and sat across the Doctor’s table, waiting to get answers, waiting for the Doctor to tell him, that his Di was better.

 

 

The Doctor turned to Khushi and asked her to sit as well, before he proceeded.

“Doctor, did I do something? I mean.. I don’t know.” Khushi uttered, uncertain of what was happening, blaming herself for what had happened to Anjali. She had never seen Anjali like that. She was always so calm, and composed. But now, she seemed so frail and fragile.

 

 

The doctor shook his head at Khushi, and turned to Arnav who, the doctor could have sworn, would throw something off his desk at him if he made him wait any longer.

 

 

“Mr.Raizada, you should not be worried. but you should be enthused, this is the most receptive your sister has got over the years. I was almost beginning to lose hope on her case, but after seeing today’s proceedings, I think, there could be chances.. I see a ray of hope.”, said the doctor, smiling at the two very worried people sitting across him.

 

 

Then he looked at Khushi, and asked, “What’s your name beta?”

“Khushi.”

 

 

“Then, Mr.Raizada should thank you Khushi. You didn’t make anything worse Khushi, you’re our chance at making Anjali Raizada better.” The doctor beamed at Khushi, who gulped in air, as she turned from looking at the doctor, to face Arnav, who was looking at her intently.

 

 

Arnav could not believe the words the doctor had just said. Would he finally have his sister back? He had begun to lose hope too. But the doctor said.. Khushi could. She could help bring her back to him.

 

 

“But doctor..” Khushi asked, while constantly looking back at Arnav, waiting for his face to give out some of his reaction, but his face never let out any emotions. It was his eyes, his eyes that were begging her to help. “What would I need to do?”

 

 

“You, will have to help stimulate the patient. out of all the people, she has responded to you the most. And, I’m just hoping, she’ll continue to. I’m hoping, the case progresses positively in that direction. Through you, we will revive Anjali.” said the doctor pensively, while flipping through some of Anjali’s reports, going over her case history, to see if she had responded to anyone else before her.

 

 

“How long will the process take, doctor?” asked Khushi.

 

 

“It can’t be said. If we’re lucky, it may take only a few weeks, but, it could also take a few months.”

 

 

Khushi pursed her lips, and said nervously, “But, I don’t..” she stole a glance of Arnav, who was looking at her expectantly, “I don’t live here.”

 

 

The doctor’s eyebrow’s furrowed, folded his arms and said, “Well, that’s up to you now.”

 

 

Khushi, pulled herself together, and stood up, and said, “I need time to think.” and exit the room.

 

 

Arnav followed Khushi out of the room. She needed to think? What was there to think about, she had to stay. I wasn’t going to let her go. I was at least going to try.

 

———-

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