“Don’t you think you are blabbering more than you should nowadays?” He held her against the wall, grabbing her buttocks in the process. She immediately retreated and pushed him aside and yelled “stay away from me.”
It was a hard earned job for Lalita that she hadn’t given up at any cost that far, not because of the regular harassment at least. She was a strong girl but being strong did not necessarily mean she had to fight for her rights every time she would face an unwanted attack on her young and perfectly carved body of early 20’s. She was resilient too. She had been overcoming her problems and moving forward without even talking about them.
The city, as fascinating as dreams, as it was in the early days of her arrival, had become dull and suffocating for Lalita with time. She only realized she had been living with the when she tried to stand on her own feet. Women were in the power for the first time after fights of decades, feminist movement was at its peak, and the argument about women enjoying the best time ever in history was ever-present everywhere. Privileged women were shouting the loudest, lying to regular women and demonizing non-privileged men, but regular women like Lalita never had an access anywhere. The country was still poor, and the same problem was suffocating regular men equally, forcing them to flee.
After several attempts for months, Lalita was hired. Her beauty must have had played a role in her recruitment, given that her boss was a world class perv. And there was a reason why more than seventy percent employees there were females. But he would present himself as the liberator of womankind in most of the discussions. Every female employee there had faced at least a boobgrab, and so did Lalita in the first day of her recruitment.
“What are you doing?” She immediately felt very uncomfortable. She looked around the closed meeting room, there were no CCTVs. “This is inappropriate.” She said.
“Nothing is inappropriate in here, beautiful.” The boss relaxed and sat on the chair “Pardon my hands.”
“You were supposed to brief my responsibilities,” Lalita said.
“What briefing am I supposed to do to a receptionist?” He said. “Just know about our services, smile at visitors, and entertain the phone calls.” He again approached her but what he heard next slowed him down.
“I am not the kind of person that you think I am,” Lalita yelled out of fear “I am well aware of legal actions, and you should be aware of the consequences.”
“This thing doesn’t leave us.” The boss slammed the door and left.
Lalita had been a strong girl all her life, but quitting the hard earned job and opt for starvation to prove her girl power was never an empowering act that she was aware of. She stayed there because she needed to. With time, his actions seemed like regular affairs. She learned to live with it as she was one of the rare ones in the office who had not suffered attacks on their genitals. The silence of the victims was encouraging the perv every other day.
The boss never felt bad for his acts. Instead, he would proudly explain his brave actions in the circle of his predator pack.
Lalita had been hating rich people from her childhood. She hated them more with time, and with her first job. She hated rich men who would stare at her like some pleasure machine, and the rich women who would give her a disgusted look for nothing. But that rich guy wasn’t like any other rich person she would encounter at her office.
“I am here to meet your boss. Would you please inform him that D.B. is here to see him?”
“your purpose, sir?”
“I am his friend. I am here for…, you know…, friend stuff.”
No friend of her boss had talked to her like that before. But D.B. was just another rich man she hated, only with a different approach.
“How come I never saw you before?” Lalita opened up as D.B. had to wait for a while.
“I was in the UK for six months to escape the summer.” He said.
D.B., like any other man, must had been carried away by Lalita’s beauty, and he must have had wanted to get close to her like any other man, but his approach was different. He respected women. D.B’s few regular visits made Lalita want to know about him more, but she did not proceed forward because she still wouldn’t trust rich people.
“Do you want to go to ‘women in music’ concert today?” D.B. asked Lalita during the women’s day. Like most of the offices, there wasn’t a practice to grant leave to women on that day. And no one cared because everyone knew those nonsense shouts made sense either for women of first world or for the privileged ones in their world. Joining the march meant losing a day’s wages for them.
“I do not know if I’d want to go there.” Lalita replied.
“I am paying for the tickets, and I can convince your boss for day off for the ladies. Its up to you.”
Lalita couldn’t deny D.B’s offer.
Lalita knew more about her crush during the concert. It was surprising to know that people who actually cared for the real cause existed in a time when Most would seek personal benefits in those causes. Her feeling for the rich good looking man started to grow more as she started to know about him more. And when she knew that the feeling was the same from the other end as well, there was nothing to delay about.
Lalita got in a relationship with a good person, but that person was also the friend of one of the worst persons she had ever encountered in her life. There was nothing to hide in the relationship. D.B. had to know what his friend was up-to.
“It is the fault of the women there, not his,” D.B. said after acknowledging about his friend’s acts. “Silence encourages predators like him.”
“People can not swap justice for basic needs,” Lalita said. “You’ll not understand,” She sighed “You’ll never know how hard it is to find a job and survive here.”
“Its better being harassed everyday than selling your body for living.”
Lalita was a strong girl, and the financial freedom that had come with her new relationship made her able to show her actual strength. She began opposing her boss’s behaviors in the workplace and encouraged others to do the same, but that little mutiny was to be scattered. The boss showed his actual colors that day when he called Lalita for a serious meeting. He grabbed her inappropriately after locking the door from inside and threatened to fire her. She freed herself and lunged away to a corner. She then grabbed a 2 pound microphone. When he attempted to grab her again, she charged the mic in his head with all her power. The impact was so big that he fell to the ground, and his head started bleeding. out of anxiety, Lalita kicked on his balls several times. Seeing him helpless, she approached the door.
“Your days are over, you motherfucker.” Lalita yelled
She then unlocked the doors and flashed out of the room.
“Its over.” She yelled as she ran out “He is going to jail.”
Lalita stormed out of the office, leaving everyone speechless. People gathered around their injured boss, who was drowning in a pool of shame and bleeding at the same time. The girls gathered in a corner window and looked outside to see Lalita, who was rushing somewhere, speaking on her phone.
“Here goes the gold digger,” one of her colleagues said. “But we have nowhere to go.”