Please read the part I here –> The way you love me
A 21 year old Laxmi was drying her long hair in the second floor balcony of the Palatial bungalow of the Naik family in Nigdi, on the outskirts Pune. Her fair skin was glowing in the soothing sunrays coming from behind a rain cloud. It had just rained a few hours back and Laxmi pulverised the dullness in the clouds with her charm. So busy was the beautiful maiden in killing the approaches from the nature that she didn’t realise her cell phone was ringing continuously. When the sunrays were sufficiently charged with her radiance, she came back to her room.
As a kid, Keshav used to stand in front of Laxmi after she came out of the shower. He would love to have the water droplets of, what he called mini shower, sprayed all over him. Every family was jealous of the lovely relationship this brother and sister shared. And all of them despised the animosity their parents had between them. As a child Laxmi had no one but Keshav to look upto. He was her elder brother and the only one she could share her life and stay happy. Her fatehr hardly had time to spend with them and her mother hardly came out of her social circle. Both the Naik siblings always hated being born in a high profile family.
Laxmi casually checked her mobile phone. 14 missed calls 1 sms, it read. Must be Ankit, she thought. Besides being a beautiful girl, Laxmi was also a very good badminton player. She had picked this legacy from her father, Sudarshan Naik. So naturally she endured a fan following, especially amongst guys. Ankit was one such stalker. He was a niceguy, rich and qualified. But Laxmi wasn’t interested. She hated being associated with a guy. She had seen the love marriage of her parents fall apart like a pack or cards. She had seen her mother remarry to a guy who hated a person she loved so much, Keshav. She had seen her father succumb to alchohol. She hated marriage!
It took her only a split second to register that the calls were actually from Southern Command. Oh so Keshav was already here? She thought. May be Keshav was already in town and was coming to meet her. May be not. “This is Maj. Veerwani from Southern Command. Please call immediately. Regarding Keshav.” Read the message. Laxmi’s heart began to pound heavily.
“Hello… Major Veerwani? … Yes this is Laxmi… Yes… Sorry? Come again?……” … and Laxmi almost fainted.
The next thing she remembered was being on a flight to Delhi. Keshav was her only support and to say, only family member here and she was not prepared to let him slip away. Laxmi was still very young when the fights between her parent started to grow wilder. She remembered Keshav holding her tightly and sitting under the table while their parents fought on a trivial issue. She remembered the long fought battle over the custody of her and Keshav during her parent’s divorce. She was just 10 and Keshav was 14 and a half. The judge calledit split. Laxmi had to be hospitalised for dehydration, for she had cried so much. She remembered how Keshav would sneak in to meet her at her house or her school… and how some guys had roughed him up during her college days thinking he was her boy friend.
Keshav had lost lot of blood due to explosion. Moreover his right fibula and the joint with the knee were badly damaged. The Army medical facilities at Srinagar were not sufficient to deal with it. And Keshav had to be saved. They shifted him to AIIMS in Delhi. The department of Orthopaedics had taken 11 hours flat to bring the bone back in shape. When Laxmi landed in the ward 121 reserved fro Army Jawans, she was greeted with a stinking smell of spirit and blood. Orthopaedics ward is not meant for weak hearted patients. Laxmi was no exception. But all the fear vanished when she looked at Keshav, speeping in a two bed room. His leg was all plastered and his face looked considerably withered.
Keshav pulled all his energies to raise a hand, as if he was saluting her. Laxmi’s emotions knew no bounds that day. She wept inconsolably that night.
The doctors had given up hope on Keshav. He was too weak and had lost to much of blood. But what happened in the next few weeks was more than a miracle. Laxmi worked relentlessly to get her pillar back in shape, so that she could again rest on him. Keshav had fully recovred in 3 months flat. Although he was now unfit to join the active posts in the Army any longer. He was offered a post to be an instructor in Khadakvasla in the National Defense Academy. He is still there and is considered the toughest guy in the regiment.
Laxmi mean while, gave away to Ankit’s advances and married him. But the way she loved her brother has now become a story to tell in the entire Army circles and others.