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Food on the Table

by Kusum Choppra
(Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India)

The glow blossomed radiantly on her face. He gazed at it in wonder.

How could such a scrawny body, those thin limbs with long feet hide such a lusty abandon?
He had glimpsed her twice, striding purposefully into HR to pose queries at various desks, the last meaningful enough to land on his internal mail.
The name was unknown...Shubra Nayyar, LinkedIn was meagre.
He never knew what caught his attention, may be just her outrageous logic? Purposely he walked thru, ears perked to hear her out as she harangued someone or other. Her unshapely cotton saris got a derisive glance.
'Unionist activist type,' he dismissed, not knowing he would soon be at the receiving end of a farrago.
"You must, you must listen to me, Sir, " it became a demand. Her sister had been dismissed after repeated warnings of laxness. And her job put food on the table.
He listened with an ear only, his eyes sizing her up lazily. At the first stirrings in his loins, he wondered 'Would she be good?'
He couldn't remember how he did it. Yet here they were in bed together after an amazingly high soar sky high... with Little Miss Cotton Sari!
She stirred. Looking up, her eyes widened at him; then a slow smile shaped tentatively, widening at his quick respond.
"Shubhra, you really pack a punch, my girl," he smiled unctuously. Her eyes lowered, lower lip between teeth. He almost gasped.
As she sat up, her hair cascaded down. Her thin stick like arms sped up to wound it into a bun that rose above her, making her as almost...
"Who, no, what are you? Fairy, nymph, urchin or Aphrodite?" He asked bemused, as she pulled a corner of her sari to slither over her breasts,before turning to give a smile.
"Does it really matter? You got what you wanted. Now give my sister the job back."
"I thought it was give n take right here. Once more?" he beguiled.
She looked him top to toe pointedly as she stood up, proudly naked. "You over estimate yourself, Sir. (Emphasis added) May be some other time?" The indifference and cocked eyebrow sent his blood to his face.
Ice shards shot from his eyes and throat.
"How much?"
She looked up from pleating her sari.
"Re-appointment letter. Now. And no shim sham later, mind you."
"And if I 've taped you?"
"I have you," she gave a tight smile, sitting on his couch, crossing her legs and swinging her slippered foot.
Panic stricken eyes flitted around, narrowing at her purse nearby. He lunged.
"Bingo," she clapped her hands, "but master s somewhere else. So letter please. Pronto," she glanced at her watch.
"What s the hurry, sweetie? Stick around a bit," he offered, picking up his mobile.
"Look, this is business. Letter now. I have another client to service and you've overshot your timeline."
As his mouth sagged, he thanked his lucky stars his back was to her.
She tucked the letter neatly in her bag and rose gracefully. As she walked out, her mouth drooped.
'He was not an evil person. But business is business. This put food on my table too.'
She drew herself up and consoled herself.

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