At nearly midnight, Arnav walked out of the Raizada mansion behind his restless wife. Arnav rubbed his eyes trying to fight his sleepiness away.
They didn’t bother to change their clothes; Khushi was in her pajama pants and top, while Arnav in his sweatpants and t shirt.
After getting her into the car, he got into the driver’s seat and began driving. Khushi’s face lit up as Arnav slowed the car in front of the place.
The chimes above the door made a musical noise as Arnav pushed the door forward for Khushi to enter. Once inside he laced his fingers around Khushi’s and they walked straight to the ice cream counter.
Arnav stifled his yawn as he looked at Khushi narrowing her eyes trying to select an ice cream from the ice cream tubs. Arnav knew better than to hurry her up so he remained silent.
Khushi smiled at the middle aged woman waiting for her order and said, “Umm’ a vanilla ice cream with chocolate syrup on it.” The woman smiled at Khushi and made the ice cream. She handed it over to Khushi and they exchanged a smile.
Arnav paid for the ice cream and then they found a table to sit at. Khushi finished her ice cream, quicker than normal. She was just about to tell Arnav to order another one for her, when she felt the urge to use the washroom.
She got up, “Woh, mein washroom ja rahi hoon.” (I’m going to the washroom.)
Arnav nodded and Khushi left.
Arnav strummed his fingers against the table while waiting for Khushi. Just then Arnav heard a familiar voice call him, making him look up.
Arnav saw Akash and Payal standing in front of him.
“Bhai aap yahan?” (Bhai, you here?)
“Arnavji, Khushi kahan hai?” (Arnavji, where is Khushi?)
Arnav replied to his brother, “Khushi wanted ice cream.” He looked in Payal’s direction and replied, “She’s in the washroom.”
Akash put his arm around Payal, “Payal wanted ice cream too.”
Khushi came back at that same time, “Jiji, Jiju.”
Khushi continued, “Jiji, aap ko bhi ice cream chaiye thi?!” (Jiji, you too wanted ice cream?!)
Khushi said, “Arnavji aap ek aur ice cream le aaye na, Wahi waala” (Arnavji, bring another ice cream, the same one.)
Arnav nodded and walked towards the counter to get Khushi’s ice cream. After finding out which one Payal wanted, Akash too went to the counter.
Payal and Khushi sat down opposite each other and chattered with each other while they awaited their respective husbands.
Payal was 4 months pregnant while Khushi was 7 months. Both sisters couldn’t be happier; they lived together since they were younger, they got married to brothers and continued living under the same roof.
And now they were pregnant at the same time; their kids would be born around the same time and they would grow up together.
Arnav and Akash returned to find their wives laughing away. They settled next to their wives and handed over the ice creams.
In no time, Khushi and Payal started devouring their ice creams. Arnav and Akash snickered as they looked at their wives.
They finished eating and chatted for a while.
Soon after Khushi started getting restless; her back was hurting and she was constantly yawning. She tried to stay awake but she was falling asleep on Arnav’s shoulder.
Arnav looked at his wife and said, “So I guess we should leave, it’s late.”
Payal and Khushi got up and sat on the bench outside the shop. Arnav and Akash went to the counter to settle the bill, since they decided to buy a tub of ice cream to keep at home just in case.
The same middle aged woman smiled as she gave Arnav and Akash their change, “It’s your first?”
Arnav and Akash looked up, “Huh?”
The woman repeated, “It’s your first baby?!”
Arnav grinned, “Yeah.” Akash smiled, “Yes it is.”
The woman smiled and held her two hands on Akash and Arnav’s heads, “Congratulations, God bless you both, and always keep your wives happy.”
The woman said, “Just a minute, I have something for you two.”
The brothers looked at each other as the woman returned. The woman brought back two pendants, she placed them in Akash and Arnav’s hands.
Akash asked, “But, this?”
Arnav continued, “Why”
The woman smiled, “Actually, in the shop we mostly have pregnant couples at this hour of the night, so I thought why not buy some tokens to give to the couples when they come, as a blessing.“
The brothers smiled warmly at the woman’s gesture.
Arnav and Akash both said, “Thank you.”
They came out of the shop to see their wives patiently waiting.
They both made their wives stand up and they both stood behind them. They moved their hair to one side of their shoulders and placed the pendants around their necks.
Payal and Khushi both looked at the pendants in awe.
Khushi turned to Arnav, “Ye aap ne karidi?” (You bought this?)
Payal looked up, “Akash, ye?” (Akash this?)
Arnav replied, “We didn’t, actually the aunty inside gave them to us for you both.”
Khushi and Payal turned towards the shop and saw the aunty waving at them. All four of them smiled at the aunty and waved back. After Khushi and Payal personally thanked the aunty, they all made their way back to the Raizada Mansion.