As his eyes flickered open, his senses were drawn immediately to the women in his arms...
He stared in awe at his wife...
His first night back in his bed...with his wife...and he wanted her...in every way.
This could NOT be the end, it had to the beginning; the beginning of madness...he thought as he smiled...
It took every ounce of control he possessed to pull away from her.
Looking at her, sleeping peacefully in his bed, was as gut-wrenching as kissing her.
He wanted to climb back in beside her'the consequences be damned.
Holding his hand steady, he brushed her tumbling hair back from her face...
His eyes focused on her kiss-pouted mouth.
He wanted to haul her into his arms and take her so fiercely, so thoroughly, that she would be bound to him forever.
He wanted to enslave her with passion so that she would never turn away from him.
He reached out and cupped her face..."Khushi..."
He wanted to drown in those beautiful eyes she lifted to him.
Temptation ripped through him, and he almost gave in...her lazy sultry voice sent shockwaves through him...
He knew, looking down at her, that he would be the one enslaved.
"Goodmorning..." he whispered
Khushi sat up abruptly...
Her mind took her back to months before and she quickly tried to distance herself from him...
"Why did you marry me!?" her voice was shaking...
Arnav saw confusion in her dark eyes and his heart began to pound with fright...
"Khushi? ...There was a storm last night...you had to stay here..."
She looked around the room...
Arnav could see her mind working to recall the present...
He stood up and walked towards her...
Her eyes flashed up..."I'm sorry, I...I forgot where I was..."
He took her in his arms and slowly pressed his mouth down on hers...
What started as a gentle 'goodmorning' kiss turned into an explosive assault.
Suddenly becoming anxious, Khushi tried to hold him off, she struggled briefly in his arms.
Then the drugging power of Arnav Singh Raizada took over.
She welcomed him, reveled in him, feasted on him.
The incredible joy of being held by him blotted out everything else.
Need flamed in her.
She pressed closer, trying to merge her body with his.
Vaguely she was aware of soft sounds, whimperings of desire that were her own.
Khushi felt safe.
Even when she felt fearful of him, she still felt safe...
Nothing mattered at that moment except being in Arnav's arms, being kissed by him.
She absorbed him, the familiar taste of him, fresh and delicious and somehow very masculine; the familiar shape of his mouth, beautifully molded and firm, exactly right for kissing; the familiar feel of him, broad and solid and enduring.
Home, she thought.
Home is being held next to her husband's heart.
She felt him pulling back, ending the kiss.
"No." she said softly...
Winding her hands in his hair, she pulled his head back down.
She had to have more of him.
Something to get her through the rest of the day once she went home...
His lips touched hers again.
The room became steamy with their harsh breathing.
She called upon an unknown strength to let him go, then broke away and stood back.
"I'm...I'm not sure how this keeps happening..."
He reached out and touched her cheek.
She hoped he didn't feel its heat.
"You know EXACTLY how this keeps happening...you look extra beautiful after I kiss you"
When he removed his hand from her cheek, she felt deprived.
She stood still feeling helpless...not knowing what to do...
"I've been wanting to kiss you since I woke up..."
Khushi looked up at him...
He pulled her into his arms and held her tight.
"Arnavji..." She knew she'd made only a token protest.
She could no more resist his arms than she could fly.
He pressed her head against his shoulder.
It fit perfectly'as it always had.
"It's been almost 6 months since I've seen you, Khushi. I don't intend to let that happen again."
He tipped her head back...
"You're so damned beautiful, I ache every time I look at you."
Then his lips were on hers.
It was the tenderest of kisses, a warm, sweet sensation that enfolded her heart.
There was no urgency, no demand in the kiss, only a precious touching.
It was the kiss of a man in love.
The sweetness continued for so long, her resolve faltered.
She was caught up in the embrace.
As they kissed, his hands gently massaged her back, tenderly smoothed her hair.
She died a little inside, knowing it couldn't last...
Arnav thought back to the day she left...
She had found him...
She had rescued him from Shyam...
Then as he watched her walk away, he realized that nothing mattered anymore...
What mattered was that he had driven away the only woman he had ever loved, the only woman he could ever love.
Too late, the realization swept over him.
But now, as he held her, He could never forgive himself if he lost her again.
He'd been fooling himself for long enough...
It was ironic to him that he could be so clearheaded in business and so blind about love.
His heart had been shouting the truth to him ever since he'd met her, but he had refused to listen.
He'd plunged stubbornly ahead, widening the chasm that had made it almost impossible.
With the wonderful knowledge of love now coursing through him, he never considered any other possibility except winning her back...
He would have her, and anything that tried to come between them had better be prepared to do battle with the devil.
"I love you Khushi...I don't want a divorce..."
Her eyes lifted and she shook her head slowly..."Arnavji...It's over between us..."
Arnav drew back, but he kept his hold on her, cupping her face and holding it so close to his that they seemed to breathe as one..."It will never be over between us...just remember that!"
"Once I believed that. Not anymore, Arnavji..."
Silently Arnav cursed the fates that had torn them apart...
Inside, he raged against the empty first months of their marriage...
He wanted to smash his fist against the wall.
He wanted to run until he fell in his tracks.
He wanted to shout his fury until the very rafters of the house fell down.
Instead, he continued holding her beautiful face, his thumbs massaging her jaw as he gazed down at her.
"I'll make you believe it."
Letting her go, knowing she didn't believe in his love, was one of the hardest things he'd ever done.
He released her, realizing that winning her again would take time.
At that moment he wished for some of the superpowers the press had credited him with...
Serious, playful, passionate'he'd be whatever it took to win Khushi again.
"Never. Your expectations are exceeded only by your arrogance."
Thank God, he thought, she had gotten her spunk back.
"I take that as a challenge, Khushi. And you know how I love a challenge."
"I don't deny that I feel desire in your arms."
"I'll accept that..."
"But I can never trust your love again."
"You can and you will." He scooped her up into his arms...
Arnav had her so mesmerized, she hardly noticed.
"Stubborn woman. I could kiss you into submission."
Arnav hoped the flush on her cheeks and the brightness in her eyes meant that he was disturbing her.
He knew the passions that raged beneath her cool exterior.
Refusing an Arnav who said he hated her was hard for her... refusing an Arnav who vowed to love forever her was almost impossible.
She didn't know what was true anymore.
Dare she take that chance again?