The next day… the morning after
Namrata was breathing deeply still aroused thinking about the last night. She didn’t want to morally judge herself. It was the best night of her life. She touched her lips… she was sure they were swollen. She reflexly touched her neck… She could still feel his lips…
Her core clenched as a new wave of pleasure spread through her, she shivered and hugged herself. She felt free… after ages.
But where was he? The silence in the room indicated he was not there. Namrata moved to get out of the bed. Her muscles were protesting. She wanted to groan but it got a smile to her lips instead. She covered herself with the bed sheet and looked around for her clothes. She saw her dress neatly folded and kept on the centre table. As she went to pick it up she saw a note. He had scribbled on it. She picked it up and read,
Dear little sparrow
The time spent with you was priceless. The room is yours for today. Stay as long as you like.
But I don’t renege on my words, you see.
Take the cover. I hope it’s enough. Else you can contact the number or address mentioned below…
RM tech park
Lake Vihar cirlcle,
The Giant Eagle.
Namrata nervously picked the envelope placed near her crumpled gown. She opened it with trembling hands and saw few pink two thousand rupee notes. She counted them… 10000/-
OH MY GOD…Namrata thought, almost dropping the envelope…
‘What did I do? Did I sell myself? Did he see me as a whore?’
Suddenly all air drained out of her body and she plonked down on the carpet. She held the crumpled dress close to her chest and cried her heart out. Her heart and soul were crumpled too…
After a while she had made her mind. It was 10AM. She freshened up in the aesthetically done bathroom. Any other time she would have admired the beautifully crafted bathroom fixtures… but today she was in tatters inside out. She rushed out of the room and the hotel, gripping her purse tightly to her chest. She hoped no one would notice her haggard appearance…
After reaching home she had a bath… trying to scrub herself till her skin burnt. She wanted to remove the feel of him… But tears kept flowing. Luckily for her, no one was at home. Her mother was at the local NGO which was handling her paralysis treatment as well as providing some employment to her through their schemes. Her younger brother was in school. Namrata looked at herself in the mirror… A skinny girl with hollow eyes stared back at her.
She, Namrata Kiri had been a strong girl. But she had completely broken down when a car accident six years ago, had taken away her father and left her mother paralysed below the waist. She was only sixteen years old and her brother was barely eight. Overnight she had to take over the responsibilities of the household. Her father had left behind a pile of debt and all the meagre savings were used to pay some of them off. Including the house they lived in then, was sold to pay for her mother’s long hospital stay and rehabilitation.
Namrata had always lived frugally and last six years she had been stretched in all directions… physically, mentally, financially and… emotionally. She had completed her studies with great difficulty by working shifts as a data entry operator, or an office girl, occasionally giving tuitions… any avenue which would get her extra money. She even skipped dinner at times. She tried to be strong for her brother and mostly her mother who needed her the most.
But she was always short of money. She rarely spent for herself. But her brother was growing up and had requirements of any teenager… his school and tuition fees, clothes and occasional treats.
Her current job, just after graduation came as a blessing. But still, expenses were mounting and she struggled towards countering them. Especially her father’s debts. She still owed couple banks totally to a tune of ten lakhs taken as personal loans along with the interest. The interest was only clambering up. What was her father thinking?
She was exhausted physically and mentally. She often wished she could live her life like a regular twenty two year old but she didn’t have a choice.
She had jumped at the opportunity to work after hours last evening. And what an evening it had been…
She was such a fool to have been carried away… She thought he was attracted to her… she had never felt a physical pull of such intensity towards anyone before yesterday
She was totally drained out by her emotional outburst. But her decision was made.
She reported sick at work. She noted the address and the number mentioned in his letter. She didn’t want to call and warn him.
She made a quick snack for herself and kept some cash for her brother to get some for himself. She then hailed an auto and proceeded to her destination…
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