Wednesday, 19 November 2014

The Magic of a Touch

It was 10 pm and the sky, a magical shade of dark. Sunaina smoothed her fuchsia evening dress and entered the grand ballroom of the Lalit hotel. Today was the first big office part she was attending. She did not have a date, and nobody to dance with. The doorman ushered her into the dark room with psychedelic lights zigzagging all around the place. She scanned the entire hall and noticed the several circles that seemed impenetrable.

Towards the door were a dozen tables, each thronged by half a dozen colleagues Sunaina sort of recognized from office. Whoever told her of the formal dress code was out of her mind! Every girl wore the skimpiest dress in her wardrobe. Some even paired their outfits with fishnet stockings. Isn't fishnet a strict no-no at work? Sunaina was flummoxed. She saw the DJ taking requests and playing all chartbusters one after another. Near the DJ's box revolved circles of the most outspoken people in office. They danced like no one was watching.

Sunaina glanced to her left where the 20 metre long bar table was installed. She wondered if she should have a drink to avoid interacting with the crowd she could not seem to manoeuvre. That is when Tanveer tapped her on the shoulder and asked her to join him for a drink. Sunaina gladly accepted the offer. She would now at least have someone to talk to, even if the noise level disallowed any sort of talking.

"White rum", Tanveer hollered across the bar to the bartender. "Small or large?" asked the barman shaking a drink for someone else's order. Tanveer looked at Sunaina, who mouthed "small". "Two large" ordered Tanveer and winked at Sunaina. Sunaina furrowed her forehead, admonishing Tanveer, but he drew closer and said, "it's only a drink!" The bartender plonked two large shots of a strange looking liquid on the table. "Bottoms up", Tanveer said to Sunaina. "Um.. ok.." Sunaina was unsure, but thought she'd take a chance anyway. She took half a sip and felt the  alcohol burning her throat. Tanveer glared at her mockingly, "C'mon! Bottoms up! That's not fair". "I'm trying!" Sunaina gulped the rest of her drink and held on to the bar table for support. The rum was smooth, but way too strong for her. She was built for milder stuff - vodka with cranberry, late harvest wines, and craft beers.

Tanveer held her hand and swiftly pulled her across to the center of the ballroom. Sunaina smiled, slightly intoxicated by the sudden rush of alcohol. She placed her left hand on his dark brown blazer and held his left hand with her right. She giggled as Tanveer gripped her palm sensuously and twirled her after every three steps. His hands snaked up the curve of her waist and rested firmly on her back. He was skillfully closing the gap between them. This was an office party. They could not kiss. But he drew his face closer to hers. Her heart skipped a beat. Tanveer brought his lips to her ear and whispered, "Nice dress!" Sunaina blushed. She was finally having a nice time at her first office party.

This short story has been written to highlight the magic of  touch. #BringBackTheTouch

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