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NIGHT OF THE MATES
When the plane landed at Begumpet, Raja Rao left the airport with alacrity and with his heart in his mouth; he rushed to Roopa's place in a taxi.
Pacing up the steps, as he pressed the doorbell, he felt as though his heart was short-circuited, and when Roopa opened the door tentatively, as her heart missed its beat at his sight, she was breathless. Unable to comprehend their respective positions, staring at each other, they stood rooted at the threshold, he with his briefcase in hand and she with her bathing towel over her shoulders.
"Won't you let me come in?" he said, at last.
"Oh, I'm sorry," she gave him way, and bolted the door after him as though to secure him once and for all.
"How do you do?" he said looking at her longingly.
"Pulling on," she mumbled, unable to come to terms with his unexpected arrival.
"It's been so long since we last met," he said as he sat down.
"It's over seven months, I thought you'd forgotten me," she sighed as she said.
"How can you say that?" he said in protest.
"You would know if only you're a woman," she said in despair.
'Being a man, it's none the better for me," he said dejectedly.
"You should blame yourself for that," she sounded critical in spite herself.
"But how's that?" he exclaimed in pain.
"Haven't you prefixed forgetfulness to your maleness," she said in vexation.
'What do you mean?' he protested haplessly.
'Haven't you failed to turn up as promised?" she said as the bitterness his earlier failure to meet her overtook the sweetness his presence occasioned.
"You would never know how desperate I was to meet you then," he said as his tone got the measure of his frustration, as he recalled his state of mind in which he had to leave for Bangalore that day.
"Where there is a will there is a way, isn't it?" she said still smarting under the hurt of the perceived let down.
"Believe me Roopa, there was no way I could've come to see you. I had to catch the train on the move as it were," he said and added after a pause,
"I even thought of writing to you, but I couldn't bring myself to do that."
"You should've written, that would've made so much difference to me," she said in the same vein.
"Roopa, why don't you try to understand me?" he said with a loving tone.
"Oh, I'm sorry," she said as her love, aided by the presence of her lover, abetted her mind to overpower the bitterness it bore.
"Let bygones be bygones," he said smilingly.
"I only felt like pouring out my pain to you, go have your bath," she said placing his briefcase on the teapoy.
When he made it to the bathroom, she began setting the dinner ready for them.
"We'll wait for Sathyam," he said as he came out of the bathroom.
"I don't intend to starve you till he returns from his four-day tour; think of it, what a coincidence that he was away when you first came with Sandhya!" she said smiling.
But then, how were she to know about Sathyam's peccadilloes at Peddapuram on that supposedly official trip. Besides, at the threshold of the golden moment of her life, even if she were aware of it then, maybe, she couldn't have cared less.
'Oh, I see, I thought I could stay here for a couple of days," he said tentatively.
"Do you think I would show you the door after dinner?" she said smilingly.
"I didn't mean it that way," he said a little confounded.
'But I mean to tell you everything, wait, I'll have my bath and come," she said getting up from the dining chair.
'Probably, it's all over between us bar sighing,' he thought pensively, sinking into a dining chair. 'Hasn't she said that my letter would've made so much difference to her? Oh, does that not imply that I have lost out to Prasad? Is it any consolation that I was her first choice? What if her current concern is the courtesy of her past feelings? Or is her friendliness owing to my being Sandhya's husband? What sense does the relocation to Hyderabad make for me? Won't I feel miserable seeing her carrying on with someone else? What sort of a reward it would be for my unrequited love for her if Prasad were to turn up now. Won't that embarrass us all, and what's worse, my presence might lead to a misunderstanding between them. I better pack up after dinner for it's not fair to spoil her party with her paramour. How stupid I am to lose a woman like her when she could have been mine for the asking!'
'Isn't it Godsend,' thought Roopa in relief, making use of the soap he used, even as she recalled the bath of fetish that she had had with his soap during his first visit to her place. 'Have I not been waiting for this day all my life? Oh, finally my destiny seems to have kept its date with him! I'll make him mine even if it comes to raping him, won't I? How we could indulge in lovemaking day and night for three days at a stretch. Well, without a care in the world. How fortuitous that he came at a time when Prasad too went on a foreign jaunt! Why can't I expect him to take the initiative now? It's clear that his passion for me is kicking and alive though shrouded in hesitancy. Won't his manner reveal that? If only I signal my urge for him, won't he engulf me with his innate passion for me?
'But to be more woman like, what if I wait for his advances,' she thought having developed second thoughts about her own abashment. 'Surely he has come in the hope of possessing me. But still he may be constrained to overtly seek me for fear of scandalizing me. Oh no, now if I fail to be explicit in my invitation, won't he take me to be a flirt and dismiss me forever? If I don't let him have me now, I might as well forget about him in this life, maybe in the lives that follow. Well, come what may, I shall grab this opportunity of a lifetime, now and here, with both hands at that. Once he has me, won't he keep me in his embrace forever as I lay there in coyness? Haven't I suffered enough to deserve the solace of his love? Have I any stomach left for misery, anymore?'
Soon, as they sat for dinner, she served him silently as if the distraction of their conversation would hamper his partaking. However, construing her contemplative mood as a proof of her embarrassment, he felt depressed at the tragedy of his own making.
At length, when they rose from the table, sensing his predicament, giving him pan, she opened up,
"I'm glad you haven' gone to the Ritz now, did Sandhya prevail upon you?"
"You know Sandhya is at Kakinada now," he said.
"I'm sorry," she said extending her hand.
I've come to see you on my own," he said taking it heartily.
"That makes it doubly welcome, won't it?" she said bringing her other hand into the equation.
"I'm doubly grateful," he said pressing her hand with his.
"Now that you've expressed your gratitude, shall I bid you goodnight?" she said coyly.
"No, tell me about you," finding her gesture inviting, he played his move, to probe her position.
"Don't you know that face is the index of mind," she said bowing her head.
"You look a little pulled down," he said lovingly.
"Didn't I tell you that I'm just pulling on?" she said looking into his eyes ardently.
"Sandhya wrote to me that you're having a hard time," he said hesitantly
"Do you think Sathyam's neglect and Prasad's pestering could bother me really, they are just allergies, but my ailment is different," she said as though showing her cards.
"May I know what it is, if it's not personal," he said sensing her mood.
"I always thought that you knew that," she said coyly.
"But then how can I conclude from my own diagnosis?" he said with rising hope.
"Why not take a second opinion?" she said as if she were begging to be asked by him.
"Tell me then," he said to reach out for the approaching moment.
"Haven't you heard my body language!" she said.
"But still." he was at a loss how to respond.
"Maybe you need more privacy than here to express yourself," she said as she went into the bedroom in an apparent invitation for him to cross the threshold.
'Thank God, my fears seem to be liars,' he felt ecstatic. 'Is she not expecting me to break the ice and thaw it out? Why, hasn't she left enough hints already about that? After all her advances, does it make any sense for me to hold back now? Oh, in the entire path of love, the steps that lead up to sex are the most slippery, one false step and it could make man slip out of woman's favor, forever. All the same, if he were not to venture, how could it ever result in an adventure? What else a lover should do than to enter into his beloved's orbit of familiarity? Then, won't she suck him into her arena of lovemaking? Where else one can find a better jaunt for that than the precincts of her bedroom?'
Even as Raja Rao began to stir in hope, leaving the door ajar, Roopa started shedding her sari.
'Why cover myself when he's coveting me,' she felt amused as she undressed languidly as if to allow him time to catch her in the act.
Soon, in nude, she turned towards the door, and not finding her lover though it was ajar, she reached her wardrobe. Then, she pulled out the nylon lingerie that she earmarked for the occasion, and fondling it lovingly, she wore it leisurely. Slowly, she stepped in front of the mirror and thought amusedly,
'Won't it reveal my mind to him besides my body? It's time I find out.'
When Roopa was about to pull open the door, Raja Rao pushed it open to get in.
"I love you," he took her into his arms ardently.
"I'm lovesick," she said pressing against him, "I need your treatment."
"Oh, how I've been dying for you," he said, lifting her head and looking into her eyes with all his longing.
"I wonder why I didn't turn mad craving for you," she said holding him deliriously.
"I felt wretched fearing that I might've lost you," he said tightening his hold on her.
"Raja, I was worried to death that I may not have you," she said as she began to sob.
"Roopa, don't cry, now I am yours forever," he said as he kissed her tears.
'Darling, longing for you, I became an urchin of love," she said cuddling him.
"Roopa, I always felt your love in the pulsations of my heart," he caressed her head even as she wetted his shoulder.
But when he felt her heavy, realizing that she has fainted, he glided her tenderly to her bed, and rushed for some water.
"Are you Ok, darling?" he asked her, as she opened her eyes.
"I never felt better dear," she stretched her hands, inviting him into her embrace.
"I always felt you are mine," he rested his head on her ample breasts, turned heady by her heaving.
"You'll never know how I craved to be yours," she said, running her fingers through his curly hair.
"It didn't take me long to realise that my life would be half empty without you," he said pushing his head into her enticing valley.
"I was scared of leading a loveless life," she pressed him into her, further.
"I'll give you so much love that you can spare as much as you want to Sathyam," he said enigmatically.
'Honestly, I cannot love anyone but you and moreover he doesn't need my love anymore," she said dismissively.
"Roopa, you know I love you, but still it's only a part of our life – yours as well as mine - and that is the reality of our life, and of what avail is all our love if it won't bring happiness to our lives. If not for his sake, at least for our accord, love your husband and make him happy so that we can be happier ourselves. Moreover if you are morose in your house, there is no way I can be lively in my home, in spite of Sandhya," he said endearingly.
She sat up electrified, and smothered him with kisses.
"Oh my Raja, I've always felt that I loved the right man, but now I know that I've a noble soul for a mate. I promise you dear that for your sake, I shall love him as much as I possibly could," she cried in ecstasy.
"I'm glad really," he kissed her hand.
'Know I love you more than I love myself," she cried, rubbing her face against his.
"Roopa, I can never picture to you my pleasure in loving you and the pain I felt wanting you," he said gripping her all the more.
"I'll give you every joy that a woman could give her man," she said, reaching for his lips.
"You would find me more than reciprocating," he said, after a kiss that both felt had lasted a lifetime,
While he was fondling her adoringly, suddenly, she jumped up onto the bed, and as she dropped her lingerie languidly, he watched her mesmerically.
"I so much fantasized about our lovemaking that I don't feel shy about it anymore," she cried joyously.
"I'd never imagined that a five meter sari would've hidden so much of a beauty! What a fabulous figure you have, my darling!" he said sizing her up in nude.
"Oh, how your gaze makes me feel nude in your looks as well as in my thoughts!
I dreamt a thousand dreams in which every inch of me gave you joy," she said ecstatically, as he kneeled up to her in embrace.
"What a beautiful bush Roopa," he said, caressing her crotch in delight.
"Isn't it on fire to warm my Raja," she said joyously.
"Oh, what a scent," he said euphoniously.
"You may find it's tasty too," she said coyly, ruffling his hair.
"Why, haven't you been told?" he said raising his head.
"Orals my dear, I've reserved for us," she said pressing him to her declivity all again.
"What a honeycomb it is!" he said in delight, pausing.
"Drain it to the dregs dear," she cried rapturously.
"What a love it is Roopa," he said to her at length.
"It's my life Raja," she said pressing his head into her once again.
"You're my wife no less," he sputtered.
"Hubby dear husband your ardour," she said pulling him away.
"I'm nursing it for you," he said ecstatically as she herself fell on him libidinously.
"Let me have my mouthful too," she took him greedily.
"Roopa, all my fantasies pale before your fare!" he said dreamily.
'Oh, how I practiced with dummies for this day?" she muttered.
"You know how to love a man," he said affectionately, caressing her back.
"Thank your maleness for that," she said, reaching for his hairy chest.
"Roopa how fortunate we both are," he said caressing her head.
"But darling I felt wretched all these days," she said, unable to get over her bitterness of her past suffering.
"We'll make it all the sweeter for that, "he said reaching up to her lips.
As though to draw the nectar of love to sustain her nascent life, grabbing his eager lips with her throbbing ones, she deep-kissed him for long.
'I'll ensure that you'll lead a fulfilled life," he said as she freed his lips.
"Know that I've only lived wanting to be yours," she said kissing his hand.
"I've never seen any so sumptuous, how they've been haunting me ever since I saw you last June," he said, fondling her breasts.
"How my hands ached squeezing them for you," she joined him in the act.
"Don't I owe it to them then," he kissed her palms.
"Take it," she pushed her breast into his eager mouth.
"Splendid," he sputtered.
"Bite it," she crooned in his ear.
"Maddening," he said, as he took the other one.
"Pocking," she crooned, licking his ear.
"Roopa," he said in pleasure.
"Raja, make me yours," she said in want.
"Have me then," he said with urge.
"Inaugurate," she said, as she pushed up her bottom to him.
"So, it's our nuptials!" he said kneeling behind her.
"That makes me your wife," she helped him penetrate her.
"How it came true!" he thrust with pleasure.
"Courtesy Sandhya!" she moaned in pain.
"Never better," he was ecstatic.
"Go to the roots," she said, pushing herself all the closer to him.
"Well, I'm there," he said joyously.
"Make it count," she said with passion.
"Roopa, I'm fulfilled!" he moaned at length.
"Raja, you've injected life!" she cried in relief
"Oh God, how good," he said lying motionless on her back.
"I don't mind dropping dead now," she clasped him as they came to rest.
"But I want more of you," he crooned into her ears.
"How I wish Sandhya sees us mate," she exclaimed.
This is anepisode from the author's maiden novel "Benign Flame: Saga of Love"
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