NaNoWriMo Day 29 – Neeraj: The Kiss

Hello Readers,

How’s your day going?

Mine was awesome. I get to post three chapters today, including this one as well. I get to write this chapter and had the entire story clear in my mind. And this chapter had also lead me to another chapter with Shravani.

I will explain more about that chapter in my next blog post, which would hopefully be today. I am taking a break for couple of hours before writing the said chapter and I would be left with two chapters, One huge battle scene, followed by it’s aftermath/epilogue.

I hope you like these chapters and I know that it needs extensive editing, some changes in the story that I had written earlier.

Without further ado, here’s today’s content with respect to Neeraj.


Neeraj: The Kiss

Neeraj was waiting for Bharghav to arrive from trailing after Surya. It had been couple of hours since he had sent him, and also Bhavana to meet up with his sister and check for her saftey, along with bringing him the old wooden box his grandparents had given to him. But he hadn’t seen either of them and it’s driving him crazy.
He shook his head, trying to forget his memory by immersing himself into practicing his physical magic.
He went towards the physical arena, which was much smaller than when compared to one back at his father’s palace, the one that was now occupied by Madhav.
Neeraj crouched, extending his hands and touching the sand. He took a deep breath and commanded the sand to come alive, to come and pack his body.
The sand slowly crawled, as if they were horde of ants, and up to his hands. He slowly imagined it to assume the shape of a long spear. It was much harder than commanding the sand to pack on his body, mentally exhausting. But he wanted his mind to be taking him away from his worries.
He failed. Sighing, he tried again. And again. Finally, he succeeded.
He held the spear made out of the sand, which felt as solid as the original spear, but more flexible.
He gripped the spear in two hands and started to practice the kata that Bharghav had taught him, the one from his family tradition.
It involved a kind of dance, slow and graceful and yet at the same time, demanding all his focus that he could perform the necessary twists, turns and flips in the air, extending the spear accordingly.
He had done it so many times, with real spear that he didn’t had to think about it. He thought about Bharghav instead.
But… Bhavana flashed before his eyes instead.
Neeraj banished the thought and tried to think about Bharghav, but Bhavana’s image flashed once again and he stumbled on his feet, fell down on the ground.
He rolled onto his back and instead of getting up, he fell back down, stretching his arms and legs and stared at the roof of the tent.
Bhavan’s image flashed once again and he sighed. He didn’t know what he felt for Bhavana, but the more time she spend with him, especially during these past few days where she stick herself to him when Bharghav was not available, the more he got used to her, her presence and her touch.
He did not love her, that he was sure. He loved Bharghav. He was faithful towards him and would spend the rest of his life with him. He had even welcomed exiled from Krishnarajyam to spend his life with Bharghav.
Then why was his heart wavering, started to pound harder every time he sees Bhavana?
He shook his head.
He didn’t want to admit it, but he was worried about her. More worried about her than for Bharghav. He knew that Bharghav was an expert warrior, could get away from any complex situation.
But Bhavana, she was frail, dangerously beautiful, the kind that attracts unwanted attraction, and he had sent her to fetch the old wooden box from Madhav’s camp.
He felt a fool. She was looking for ways to impress him. And since he had asked her to bring it, she would make sure she would bring it at any cost.
He was worried for her, more worried than he ever liked to admit.
“What’s wrong with you?” a familiar voice asked.
Neeraj looked up and smiled at Bharghav, hoping he wouldn’t guess that Neeraj had been thinking about Bhavana or hiding the fact that he had been thinking about Bhavana. “Nothing,” he said.
Bharghav frowned, stepped closer and looked him in the eye. It was just a glance, but his eyes had a mischievous glint in it, so unlike him, as he stepped away from him. “Definitely there’s something wrong about you. Have you been thinking about Bhavana. Again?” he asked.
Neeraj gasped. Again? How had he knew that he had been thinking about Bhavana lately? He had made sure that he had done that only when he was alone, like he had been today. “What are you talking about? I am not thinking about Bhavana. And are you a mind reader, a kind of a mage? Stop teasing me,” he said.
Bharghav grinned at him mischievously. “Since when did you get so defensive? The Neeraj I know would command others, and the way you are acting, I am sure that you had been thinking about Bhavana. What is it that you are thinking? Are you interested in her? Has your heart melted after seeing her shamelessly throw herself at you at every chance she had gotten?” he asked.
Neeraj glared at him. “She didn’t shamelessy threw herself at me. She just possessive and wanted to show to others that I belonged to her, when in reality, everyone knew whom I belonged to,” he said.
If anything, his smile became broader. “You are defending Bhavana? Since when did this happen? Had she kissed you? Have you gotten bored by me,” he said, leaning closer, so close that if either of them moved even a little, their lips would brush against each other.
Neeraj’s heart was pounding, his eyes closing automatically, but when he didn’t felt anything on his lips other than Bharghav’s breath, and after sometime, he didn’t even felt that, he opened his eyes to see Bharghav frowning at him.
Bharghav shook his head, muttered something under his breath, as if he were talking to someone else that were visible only to him, and sighed.
“You don’t want me anymore?” he asked, his voice hurt.
Neeraj felt as if someone twisted his heart. “What are you talking about? I even braved getting exiled to spend the rest of my life with you,” he said.
Bharghav stared at him. “I found that hard to believe when you practically spend most of your time with her, even when you were alone, you spend most of your time thinking about her. Have you forgotten about me?” he asked.
Neeraj shook his head. “How can I forgot about you? I love you. Only you. Bhavana was hopeless fool—” Neeraj winced at that, which Bharghav observed and snorted. “— who had been in love with me ever since we were children. It’s just that I was worried for her. I had sent her to visit my sister and bring me the old wooden box given to me by my grandparents. I am worried that it had been hours since she left and something might’ve happened to her.”
He had expected Bharghav to be hurt, or even get jealous a little bit. But instead, his mischievous glint returned in his eyes.
“Oh. So, you are worried about her?” he asked.
“That is what I had said earlier.”
“Which means you have been thinking about her? Which means she had entered your heart and would soon kick away. Is that what you meant? That you would leave me and go to Bhavana?” Bharghav asked
“No. What in the name of sands are you even thinking. I am worried abut Bhavana, but there’s nothing more to that. I am in love with you. I will spend the rest of our lives with you. No matter what happens, I will not leave you. You are struck with me forever,” he said.
“You don’t get it. I think you would leave me if you know about my secret. It’s been bothering you. I have seen you contemplate on that many times and had asked around others. I think you would leave me,” he said.
“No matter what that secret might be, I will always love you. As I said earlier, you are stuck with me forever, even in here when we were alive and in our afterlives, when we die,” Neeraj said.
Bharghav’s eyes reddened and he stumbled away, saying there’s something that he should oversee.
Soon, Neeraj was alone. He stood up, dusted the sand off his trousers and began to pace.
He loved Bharghav. He didn’t care about the secret. No matter how dangerous of a secret it is, there was nothing that would make him leave Bharghav. Even if the secret might be like he was an assassin sent by enemy kingdom to kill him, he knew that Bharghav loved him and would forgive him for that, if provided, he wouldn’t leave him.
Once his heart was settled, his mind was once again flashed with Bhavana. Why hadn’t she come? It’s been couple of hours already.
She hadn’t gotten caught right?
He began pacing, imagining various situations that put Bhavana’s life in danger, and in each situation, his heart twisted and hurt more than he would like to admit.
He heard footsteps and he stopped pacing, turned around and found Bhavana, her eyes reddened, as if she had been crying.
She had been hurt. SHE. HAD. BEEN. HURT.
That though consumed him entirely and he ran towards her, took her in his arms, putting her head on his chest and patted her back.
She put her arms around mine and cried. For a long time.
Neeraj didn’t know how long she cried, but she finally stopped. He wanted to step away from her, but didn’t gave him any chance to wiggle. He sighed and continued hugging, hoping that Bharghav wouldn’t see them like this. Especially after what he had said to him. He felt guilty now.
But… his head was a confused mess right now. He know that he was in love with Bharghav. There was no doubt about that. But Bhavana… she slowly wormed her way into his heart.
He was so afraid that Bharghav would find out about that and leave him alone that he started to act around Bhavana like he had hated her. Ignored her forwardness and treated her harshly.
But still, she continued to love him and it messed up his head.
Was he in love with her? He didn’t know. But… he might be in love with her. But at the same time, he was in love with Bharghav also.
He thought it was not time for him to think about that. He wanted to know about his sister and the old wooden box.
“Are you alright? Why are you crying? Did they do anything to you?” he asked instead.
“No. Your sister, is alright,” she said and became silent.
He asked her once again and she described everything that had happened over there. When she explained the part where she was stripped and prodded by the old woman in front of the guards, he became so angry that he had summoned the sand into a sword.
It shattered the moment Bhavana touched it. He was embarrassed. He didn’t want her to think that… think what?
He shook his head.
What’s happening to him today?
“Bharghav told me that you were worried about me. I didn’t believed him at first… but after seeing you summoning the sword…” she looked at him, her eyes brimmed with hope.
Neeraj groaned. What was she doing to him? He wanted to just stare at her eyes and do nothing. There was something familiar about her eyes.
He forced his gaze away from her. He had to find something to distract himself.
The old wooden box. She hadn’t spoken to him about it. Knowing her, she would’ve returned only after she got her hands on it.
“Did you get the wooden box?” he asked.
She snorted, then opened her clutched hands.
“That damned witch had broke the old wooden box. And it turned to dust as I walked towards the camp. This is the only thing I could save and I believe that you were looking for this?” she asked.
Neeraj stared at the chain, with the locket with one half empty and other, containing black pearl.
Just before he was exiled, he knew that enemy forces were going to attack them and he switched the contents of the old wooden box, given to him by his grand parents, with the family heirloom.
It was the one that her sister was supposed to deliver to her destined. But since she was in captive, and he was worried that the Powerful One would look for the family heirloom, he had wanted to keep it with himself and give it to his sister’s destined.
Now, that it was in from of him, he couldn’t control himself any longer and looked at Bhavana.
Her eyes.
It was familiar to him in a way, that was looking at him with an intimate way that was so similar to Bharghav’s. That was why he had been confused about his feelings towards Bhavana. Her body must’ve reminded her of Bharghav and was confused like the way he was now.
He lenaed towards her, not thinking what he had been doing and closed the distance between them.
His lips touched hers and he forgot everything that was happening around them.
Just him and Bhavana, kissing as if it was the last time they are going to see each other.
When he realized what he was doing, he tried to push back, but Bhavana put her hands on his head and brought his head back and kissed him.
He wanted to feel guilty about kissing her, but he didn’t. It felt like he had been kissing Bharghav, and not Bhavana. But…
He didn’t know how long they kissed, but once they were finished, she stared at him in horror and put the chain in his hands, pushed herself to her feet and ran away, squealing and screaming in horror.
What had I done?


What did you think about this? I am so excited to write this chapter, as it showed that Neeraj loved both Bhavana and Bharghav and also that he felt Bharghav when he see her eyes. Now that you had read so far, you would know that Bharghav and Bhavana were same, shapeshifter capable of changing their gender upon their will.

Share your thoughts in comments.

Until Next Time,

Nagendra Kumar Yadav T.


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