Naåīmah Muħammad Ħasan must have heard me.
“It’s Al Ůzrah Al Ħabīb on line there,” she said.
I perked up immediately.
“Okay. Thanks.” I stabbed the button for line three. “Hi, sweetheart.”
“Is it a good time?” Al Ůzrah Al Ħabīb said. “I tried calling your cell phone, but you didn’t answer.”
“Sorry,” I said. “I was on another call. An important one.” I frowned at the memory, but then took a deep breath and forced a smile. “What can I do for you?”
“I need help, Durgesh,” she said frankly, and I sat forward.
“Naåīmah Muħammad Ħasan,” I bellowed, ignoring the intercom.
“You don’t have to shout,” she smiled when she appeared in the door. “I’m right here.”
“Book me on the next flight to Blacksburg, Virginia,” I said. “And have a rental car waiting at the airport. Also, call U-Haul, or Ryder, or whoever, and rent a truck for a one-way trip.”
“Are you on a white knight errand?” she asked, smiling wryly.
“My little girl needs help.”
Naåīmah Muħammad Ħasan leaned against the doorframe. “What happened?”
“Her car died and she doesn’t have a way to get home from Office. The dealership told her it would be two weeks before they’d have the parts. Damned Eurotrash imports!”
She rolled her eyes.
It was one of his frequent rants.
“Anyway,” I continued, “it’s a good time for me to go—”
“To escape, you mean,” she smiled teasing me.
“—and I’m…” I turned impish myself. “Am I that obvious?”
She smiled fondly and shook her head.
“Yeah, I guess I’m taking an impromptu vacation. But I won’t really be out of contact. I’ll have my laptop and my cell phone. Pramod can handle Raytheon, and you can handle everything here.”
“So I’m going to rescue my little girl.”
“She isn’t your little girl.” Naåīmah Muħammad Ħasan smiled, “She is already twenty eight and her Ammī, Al Rashīdah Al Faisal, is forty eight already. Give Rashīdah auntie some time for herself now, please. She left her husband for you when Al Ůzrah Al Ħabīb was actually a little girl. You’re enjoying Rashīdah auntie’s dazzling Musalmān beauty for more than twenty years now. Still you bulldoze her so much that she was complaining.”
“Nonsense,” I smiled winking at Naåīmah Muħammad Ħasan, “Al Rashīdah Al Faisal is still ravenous when I bulldoze her on the bed. Sālī, you want me to bulldoze only Jet Musalmān Beauties. Below forty only.”
Naåīmah Muħammad Ħasan winked at me.
“What’s wrong in that? We need your permanently stanch, ever implausible, sixty-five years old, ultimate accomplished, unique, utmost prominent, Uncut Hindu Lund more into our more ravenous, more needy Musalmān Cunts than those above forty. They have enjoyed their share already too much.”
I smiled cunningly.
Naåīmah Muħammad Ħasan smiled cunningly herself.
She didn’t respond to it, deliberately.
“I’ll make all the arrangements,” she added. “Do you want me to drive you to the airport?”
I considered for a moment, but then shook my head.
I didn’t want to inconvenience her.
Besides, I needed her running things in the office.
“I’ll take a limo,” I said.
“I’ll have the driver meet you at the house.”
With a nod and a smile, I turned back to my computer.
I had a dozen e-mails to send before I left.
I’d also have to tell Al Rashīdah Al Faisal, but she wouldn’t care.
She and Al Kulsoom Al Faisal had a pageant in San Diego.
I vaguely recalled that it was part of the Miss California USA competition, but I didn’t give it a second thought.
Virginia was hot.
Hot and sticky.
I had already worked up a sweat just walking to my rental car.
Five minutes later, with the air conditioner on full blast, I was headed toward Blacksburg and the Virginia Tech campus.
I called Al Ůzrah Al Ħabīb once I was sure of my bearings.
She gave me directions to her dorm, but I remembered the place from when I’d brought her to her Office.
She met me in the lobby and my eyes lit up when I saw her.
Unlike Al Rashīdah Al Faisal and Al Kulsoom Al Faisal—who were salon blondes—Al Ůzrah Al Ħabīb was dark-haired.
And while Al Rashīdah Al Faisal and Al Kulsoom Al Faisal were busty—courtesy of very expensive boob jobs—Al Ůzrah Al Ħabīb was petite and natural.
She was nothing like her mother or sister, and I liked that just fine.
She hugged me tight.
“Thanks for coming. I could’ve driven home by myself, but…”
“Nonsense,” I said. “That’s what I’m for. They say I can’t see any Musalmān damsel in distress ever.”
She laughed, looped her arm through mine and leaned her head on my shoulder.
We picked up the rental truck and returned to the dorm, where they loaded Al Ůzrah Al Ħabīb’s things.
I couldn’t imagine how she’d fit so much stuff in her tiny dorm room.
It filled nearly half of the small truck.
After she checked out of the dorm, we had dinner and spent the night in a hotel.
Her car was still with the dealer, but I arranged for us to send it cross-country when the repairs were complete.
The service manager had balked at my “request,” but the dealership’s general manager understood the unspoken threat in my voice.
The next morning, Al Ůzrah Al Ħabīb and I were on the road by seven o’clock, with sausage biscuits and hot coffee.
I cringed at Naåīmah Muħammad Ħasan’s imagined reproach, but I savored the buttery biscuit and willed her to silence.
“What’re you smirking at?” Al Ůzrah Al Ħabīb asked.
I controlled heating my cheeks.
“Yeah. Just now. You were smirking.”
“I shouldn’t be eating this,” I admitted.
“Because of your cholesterol?”
In the blink of an eye, she snatched the biscuit and began rolling down her window.
“Al Ůzrah Al Ħabīb, no!”
She tossed it out, wrapper and all.
“Al Ůzrah Al Ħabīb, that was my breakfast!”
“We’ll stop for an early lunch,” she said, unperturbed.
I glared at her.
“You know Naåīmah Muħammad Ħasan’s going to ask me how you ate,” she said. “And I won’t lie to her.”
“You could’ve lied this once,” I muttered, half serious, half joking.
“No, I couldn’t’ve. If you won’t take care of yourself, the women in your life will just have to do it for you.”
I wondered whether Al Ůzrah Al Ħabīb had really gone through Parkāyā Pravésh.
Or was it her Abbū, Al Muħammad Al Ħabīb himself who had gone through Parkāyā Pravésh?*
Kħadījah Muħammad, my outqueen, my confidential secretary, my everything, smiled at me.
“Mr. BrahmRaxak Bachhalyā, an executive type is anxiously and impatiently waiting in the outer office.”
“BrahmRaxak Bachhalyā ?” I asked.
Kħadījah Muħammad was only two years younger than me.
Yet she never looked more than thirty four.
“He wants to consult me?”
“Nonsense,” Kħadījah Muħammad retorted, “Nobody is as capable as you are. You have almost infinite Shaktimān, almost infinite experiences, almost omnipotent you are. The Bachhalyās are your sons from Brahm Jagdambās and their descendants only. There’s almost infinite difference in your Shaktimān and capabilities, etcetera.”
“Did he tell you something about what he wants me to consult about?”
“No,” Kħadījah Muħammad kept smiling, “Sorry. That’s a mystery.”
“What’s the mystery?”
“All he has told me is that he is willing to pay any fee reasonable to have you a buffet dinner tonight.”
“Kħadījah , you should have told Mr. BrahmRaxak Bachhalyā that I’m never a paid entertainer. We are busy people. It’s Infinite BrāhmKalp now. We have a busy schedule today already. I see clients only by appointment.”
“Kħadījah Muħammad, I…”
“As if he himself doesn’t have,”
“Mr. BrahmRaxak Bachhalyā has only countless bodies.”
“What?” I was startled.
“He hopes you owe him to help in keeping his present wife, Anjali Chaturvedī to him now.”
I was dumbfounded.*
Kħadījah Muħammad looked at me dubiously.
“I don’t think that BrahmRaxak Bachhalyā wants you as a social lion. He said he would like to have you get a feminine partner of your own choosing, and that he would like to have you observe a certain person and give him your impression of that person.”
“That’s what he said.”
“Yet Kaliyug has its projection still now for 4, 27, 000 years. Don’t forget it. It’s essential.”
“How the hell can I? It’s disturbing us most frequently everywhere.”
Kħadījah Muħammad flashed me a seductive grateful smile, returned to the outer office and a moment later was back with a man somewhere in his late twenties.
He had steady black eyes that flashed out from under his smart eyebrows.
It was an integral characteristic of the Bachhalyās that they were always young, handsome and powerful.
I was their father and the Brahm Jagdambās were their mothers.
Bachhalyās were always number one administrators consequently undisputedly.
The traditional Brāhmañs were the third.
The Muslims were the fourth.
Infinite BrāhmKalp lacked the other societies basically.
I smiled slightly.
“I thought so.”
“A student of character would so classify you.”
“I see. You mean you are a student of character?”
“Any trial lawyer, any politician, likes to think that he is. If he’s at all successful he has to be. Won’t you be seated?”
“Thank you, Your Excellency,”
“Sir,” he said politely, “that is one of the reasons I came to you despite my past experiences of you, are that you would again throw me to the wolves if there comes any beautiful lady that deserves protection more than I do.”
“I see. What’s the reason?”
“That’s right. I suffered from a severe heart attack and couldn’t keep my life then.”
I eyed him sympathetically.
“My family rejected me to keep me as her Sun. She needed a better Sun, you.”
“I was a damnfool then, Your Excellency,”
“Call me ‘Durgesh’. I prefer to be called thus more. If you don’t have any adverse prejudice against it, I mean.” I smiled.
“Even if the husband doesn’t care to fulfill his duties towards her?”
“Well, a family needs sacrifice if we want to keep it.”
“Sacrifice from a wife always?”
“And since Arundhatī Joshī didn’t divorce you, she ‘cheated’ you instead, you let a heart attack dominate you. What a manly step! Arundhatī Joshī was the only woman for you in the entire Multiverse? Why couldn’t you yourself divorce Arundhatī Joshī , if you felt she cheated you? Vinod Sharmā, a woman appreciates a strong man, not a man as weak as you were when you were Vinod Sharmā.”
“I accepted that I learned my lesson in the hard way, Sir. I thought you were my friend and…”
“Well, you said I should let her suck my penis, to have anal sex with her.”
“And you couldn’t do it?”
“I understand, now.”
“It’s your reincarnation, Punarjanm?”
“Sure. Who else can know more about the Bachhalyās than the original Bachhalyā that caused Satī Dāxāyañī Brahmāpautrī to establish an endless Bachhalyā Empire destroying the traditional Brāhmañ Empire then forever?”
“I hate every tradition if it isn’t scientific anymore, progressive and ‘Janébhyah’.”
“There are some problems when you belong to a Bachhalyā family.”
“That’s right. But I’m telling something else.”
“I am listening to your observation.”
“I understand what you want to say.” I smiled, “You have come here from a traditional Brāhmañ family. It isn’t easy for you to plan something clandestine for the utmost brilliant Vishishŧ Brahms of your family. You want my help? Okay. Tell me what your actual problem is now.”
4. On History
6. On Hinduism
7. On Islam