Sunday, 27 October 2013

Getting Laid

"Dark and edgy is what works."
"If you say so. I think, people flock to fluff and romance."
"That's because real life is dark and edgy."
"You bet! But, that is why people want to align with fluff and romance."

It was a regular weekday on a crisp winter morning in Delhi. They had both bunked work in favor of loitering around the city drinking tea and doing nothing in general. It was not a regular thing for either of them. In fact, it was a first for both. But, somehow it had happened. They had met at the bus stop near the office and said "hi" to each other and then together, "Doesn't it feel like Sunday?"
It had triggered-off a series of events that started with simultaneous bursting into giggles and then on a sudden impulse she had caught hold of his wrist and rushed them into a waiting auto-rickshaw. He had not asked any questions or objected when she told the driver to take them to the nearest open air restaurant.
It was mostly empty since everyone was at work so, they took up a place near the latticed terrace wall overlooking a green sea which was actually a canopy of trees.
"It's so nice up here. Isn't it? It is actually a perfect place to Sun bathe."
He merely smiled into his cup saying nothing.
She was obviously not used to long silences and said, "I read your blog posts the other day."
He looked up immediately and gave her his standard quizzical look. She jumped in again to fill in the silence.
"Your work is too positive, too romantic."
That is when the discussion veered towards dark and edgy versus romantic.
It was strange actually that he wrote on romance because his real life was very dark and edgy. Everyone knew that. He never hid the fact that he was a loner after his wife had run away with his best friend when his mother was at her death bed fighting a fast losing battle with cancer.
The double jolt, since his mother died within days of his wife running away had sobered him up. He had simply retreated into himself and no one messed with him.
It was well known that he did not like mixing up. He never moved with the pack. He even had his meals alone in the canteen. He was not abrupt or anti-social but, he liked being on his own. Too many people made him nervous and set his teeth on edge.
She had joined his team only a month back. A transfer case from another city. She knew nothing about anyone and was an exact opposite of what he was.
Since she never asked nor he explained, he thought that she did not possibly know about the dark and edgier side of his life. At least this is what he believed, till this moment.
Why were they having this conversation?
When she looked up to see him he saw it in her eyes. The defiance was palpable. One could even touch it with bare hands. She was stirring him up. She knew. She wanted to stir him up.
She had been setting him up for all this while. She had pulled him out of his self-imposed exile without him getting to know of it.
He still had a choice. She was giving him a choice.
He wanted to get up and go but, then he looked at her face for a second. She had asked for it. Should he not give it back to her?
The idea jolted him. It hit him like a punch below the belt. A snake long dead and awaiting cremation somewhere in the nether regions stirred up and opened its eyes.
She had asked for it.
Slowly he looked her deep in the eye and then, his own eyes roamed way below the point where it was uncivilized to stare.
She looked at him checking her out and squirmed in her seat. Had she gone too far this time?
But, even she was too far gone to care. The attraction was mutual but, he'd done nothing to stoke the fire. She had wanted to provoke him into action for too long but, everyone had advised her against it. So, she had taken the friendship route and he'd slowly but reluctantly accepted and here they were.
Finally, everything was out in the open and she took a deep breath to steady her racing heart. 'Will he rise to the bait?'
Slowly, she took her shoes off and brushed her right foot with his left calf. Without missing a beat, he caught her shapely ankle in his strong hand and started rubbing it slowly up and down. He pulled her leg to his thigh and continued messaging her ankles, moving up to her calves.
She settled down a little more on the chair with a sigh and he continued staring at all the wrong places. She held her breath.
The tea that the waiter had brought a while back was soon forgotten and then discarded because it had turned stone cold.
As if by tacit understanding, they rose together and without taking his eyes off her, he tossed some money out of his wallet on the table.
"Your home or mine?"
"Is your place romantic?"
"No. It is dark and edgy."
"Great! Then yours."
She smiled at him and walked ahead. He followed in the wake of her swishing skirt.

Part II coming soon!

(Part 2:

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