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A Short Story: Flash Fiction

For those who enjoy reading novels #fiction #ownvoice

Part 1

The man clenched his jaw. He circled me as he scanned my body, examining my arms, thighs, chest and behind. This unwanted stranger, who had not uttered a single word since he slithered into my bedroom, carried himself like he owned the air I breathed. Something about his eyes and the way his mouth contorted told me I disgusted him. Why was he even here?

'Not bad. Not bad at all,' the man finally muttered.

His voice was soft. Not at all what I expected from a man who looked so vile. And he had dull green eyes. When he leaned closer, I wilted under his gaze.

'Relax, love. I don't bite.' He grinned, the wrinkles under his eyelids deepening.

Hugging my legs, I glanced up and glared at him. 'I'm not scared.' Then I added 'Sir' as an afterthought.

'Then we have nothing to worry about, do we?' He gave me a sinister smile which revealed flawless, neat rows of pearly whites.

From the look of his clothes, shoes and accessories, he was from a wealthy background. He looked and smelt better than the others. I imagined he was the kind of man who could hand out a big fat cheque without wincing. Not that it mattered or changed the outcome of this encounter. I was worthless in my master's eyes.

'Nice hair,' the man said.

I jerked my hand towards my head which was covered with a triumphant carpet of long, brown weave. Not my choice of hairstyle. But according to the lady who had prepared me for these men, I looked better that way.

'Thank you, Sir.'

'No problem. I guess we better get started then,' the man said.

Adrenaline coursed through my veins at the thought of what was coming. Even though I had spent the entire morning steeling myself for this man's arrival, seeing him undress me with his lecherous eyes made me realise just how unprepared I was. I was never prepared.

'This will be quick, by the way. I got a meeting to attend. Then audits. After that, another meeting. It never ends, you know. You get it, don't you?'

It irked me how the men my master sent to me expected me to care about their lives. They griped and moaned, sharing their problems as if it was part of the package. Oh, how I wanted to tell them they were nothing but savages in my eyes. That my grasping of their world did not legitimise their presence in my room. But I knew my place, so I gave my usual Oscar-winning performance.

'Yes, Sir. You must be a very important man, Sir,' I said, forcing a smile.

'You're kind of sweet, you know that?' the man said.

'Thank you, Sir.'

My master insisted on perfection.

Nausea rose in my stomach when the man unbuckled his belt, dropped his trousers, and laid bare what was underneath. Oh, God, why me? My chest tightened, and I struggled to breathe.

Using a blue handkerchief, the man wiped glistening sweat from his forehead and tucked a wisp of ginger hair behind his ears. 'Don't worry. I am a simple man. Just take your clothes off and turn around. I will be done in a jiffy, as they say.' He gave a nervous laugh.

There was nothing simple about this man. Or any of the clients I had seen, for that matter. Hesitantly, I turned around as instructed. To my surprise, the man paused. Had he changed his mind and wanted to talk instead? My hope was in vain because it was not long before he ordered me to bend down. With fearful bewilderment rising inside me, I did as I was told and primed myself for what was coming.

Grabbing me by the waist, he thrust his manhood into me and rode me like a horse. To avoid wailing, I gritted my teeth and endured his stale breath and the perspiration dampening the small of my back.

As he did what he had come to do, my mind wandered back to my childhood - to the time I used to play 'skip skip' with my friends on the school playground. I imagined myself inside my mother's kitchen, sampling her fried pumpkin leaves and sadza. Life was simple back then, and there was nothing I would not give to go back and undo everything I had said to my parents when they tried to teach me right from wrong. If only I had listened to their ancient stories, which seemed ridiculous and far-fetched at the time. As I thought about all these things, I felt a wrenching inside. A sadness so encompassing I wanted to die. I had brought this upon myself. All of it.

A jerk and a groan later, it was all over.

The man quickly got dressed.

'Mind if I smoke?' the man said, dipping his hands into his pocket.

Shivering like a reed, I dipped a nod.

He drew a cigarette from a shiny silver case, inserted it between his lips, and lit up a match. Smoke billowed around the room as he took a drag and released. Despite wanting to puke in his face, I kept my countenance choreographed to his taste. The last thing I wanted was to piss him off.

'I'm Patrick, by the way. You?' He ejected another puff into the air.

'You already know my name, Sir.' I dodged his eyes.

'Yeah, yeah, I know your business name. But, I mean, what do your parents call you?'

If this was business, then I was Oprah freaking Winfrey, I thought. 'I'm Maka. Short for Makanyara.’

Patrick glanced down at me, and his mouth spread into a smile. 'I don't know what that means, but it sure sounds nice. Very nice.' His compliment curdled into mocking.

But I feigned another smile, despite the seething loathing in my heart.

Moments later, Patrick ambled towards the window, pushed it open and tossed the burning cigarette onto the lawn. Then, he shuffled back to where I sat, curled around the contours of my plump, fluffy pillow, unable to move.

'Look at me,' he said firmly.

When I glanced up, he tossed a wad of notes in front of me.

'Thank you, Sir,' I mumbled.

I watched Patrick as he sauntered towards the door. As he reached for the handle, he turned around and beamed. 'I shall be requesting your services again. I like you. Something about you.'

With those words, he stepped outside and slammed the door behind him.

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