One evening, to her surprise, Maiya found her English sir in the bhatti, gulping down rakshi and chewing choyala baji. “Oh ho, good evening sir”, Maiya greeted him the way she greeted him in the school. “Welcome to our little bhatti. Eh aama, hamro English sir”, she called out to Motti didi, stressing on English.
Motti didi was busy cooking buff chowmien for other customers. She turned her head towards Maiya, smiled and said, “la la sir lai ramro sanga satkaar gara”.
He chomped a big piece of bara and swallowed it down with the soup. “Motti didi”, he patted Maiya’s shoulder, “tapai ko chhori ekdam ramri chhey”. The ambiguity of ‘ramri’ hung silently in the room as he kept holding on her shoulder, “ekdam ramri chhey”.
He swallowed one last glass of rakshi and staggered up on his feet. The sweet jhyaap of rakshi made him slightly silly. “You know Maiya, I didn’t know this was your bhatti”. In a rakshi induced British accent he said, “From now on, you know, I’ll be a regula: costuma:” Her eyes glowed like a star, she smiled and said, “bholi pani aaunus na, you will have my special treatment”. May be it was the rakhsi. May be it was her smile. English sir wanted to hold Maiya’s hands, dance with her and listen to her melodious voice, again and again. An orgasmic sensation erupted in English sir’s head. He couldn’t wait for tomorrow.
~ ~ ~
English sir had always been searching of inner peace. He tried everything. Meditation was the obvious choice. He found that it was not really his plate of momo. He tried marijuana. It just made him more lethargic. He tried reading Zen stories. They were too short. He tried reading Osho. It sounded so fake.
Teaching was just a way to remain away from home, kill the time and pass the days. The students were always brats. Beating them was fun but it was not allowed in the school anymore. There were rules. And everyone talked about ‘rights’. Once, he had pinched hard on the soft bicep of a girl for not doing homework. He felt a strange emotion rushing through his veins. He had never felt such sensation. The pain. Her muscles. His hand. He found his soul, after a long time, closer to inner peace. A realization dawned upon him – it was the reason he was meant to be a teacher.
From that moment, he just wanted to touch young girls. He would stroll around the class, patting the shoulders, squeezing the arms and caressing the backs of the girls – stealing divine ounce of inner piece. He never touched Maiya, though. It was as if he could sense subconsciously that she was holy, and that she was not meant to be provoked.
Everything changed after their encounter in the bhatti last night.
~ ~ ~
So, there he was again in the bhatti next evening… searching for inner peace.
Motti didi was delighted to see him come again, and so was Maiya. All three exchanged smiles. She quickly sat him on a chair and cleaned the table. As Maiya set the table with a plate of gidi fry and soup, she let him fondle her hand without any resistance. English sir closed his eyes and savored the moment.
The evening slipped away to welcome an unpleasantly cold night. One by one, the drunk and semi-drunk customers paid money to Motti didi and wobbled out of the bhatti, whistling and singing dohori songs. English sir too wanted to get up and go home. But the desire to attain absolute inner peace overpowered his idea of going home. The night thickened, and English sir was the only one left. He could open up to Maiya now. “What’s the special treatment you talked about last night?” He asked Maiya as he slithered his right arm around her hips. “Have some patience sir,” she replied filling in his glass with rakshi.
Motti didi lighted a bunch of incense and suggested her daughter, “Sir lai kotha ma liyera jaa na ta”. Did he hear it right? He was not sure. He felt quite helpless when Maiya held his arm and gently whisked him through the kitchen into the back room. The delicate fragrance of incense followed them.
“This is a surprise”, he pondered and looked with curiosity around the dimly lit room. Maiya breathed into his ear, “Why don’t you relax for a while, I’ll arrange the inner peace for you”. Surprised and confused, he asked, “How do know about it?” without demanding any explanation. “I know what you have been looking for all these years, sir”, she said – the last word ‘sir’ lingered in the air.
One could say that there was something saintly about Maiya’s smile. It was so ominous, so poisonous. She blushed with the same smile when English sir slid near to her, and put his arm around her shoulder. She was waiting for him to make the first move. She turned toward him and gazed deep into his eyes. Her lips hissed, “I want to have you”, her eyes whispered, “I want to taste you”. She kept staring at him, but it was not her dreamy gaze that made him twitch – it was the sharp knife which she shoved behind his back. Muffled grunts and uneasy groans bellowed out of the teacher’s mouth. She twisted the knife… slowly and then hugged him like a mother hugs her new born child.
“Did you just stab me?”
“With a knife?”
Dizziness took over him and everything around him slowed down in a blurry circular motion. It was a very strange feeling, a perfect blend of stinging pain and pure exhilaration. He had never felt it before. He moaned:
“Am I bleeding?”
“Am I going to die?”
“Stop yes sir-ing me?”
“Sssssss… don’t speak, sir.”
She enjoyed their little intimate chit-chat but it was time for the kill. She grabbed a rusty iron rod and jabbed it through his neck. The teacher jerked violently but Maiya wrapped him in her iron-grip. He had never imagined that death would be so slow and so painful. He moved his lips, trying to say something but only bloody gurgles gashed out of his mouth.
Maiya peered into his eyes. There were a few curious yet terrified WHYs questioning back at her. “This is your inner peace, my dear sir”, she murmured into his ear and yanked out the dripping rod from his bleeding neck. His blood squirted all over her body, on the walls and on the floor. When Maiya finally released him from her embrace, he slumped down on the floor and slumbered off into darkness, his wide cold eyes screaming deceit and betrayal.
Maiya felt bad for a moment as she watched her English teacher turn into a lifeless meat. She will miss him, especially his usual rant – Tooooo much halla became, all body keep quite!!! She smiled a little remembering how he used to shout and sweat in the class, and how he used to walk around touching and fondling girls. “Enjoy your eternal peace,” she mumbled and closed her eyes.
When she opened her eyes, Motti didi was already on her knees besides the warm corpse. Lest it might get cold, she too joined in. Tonight, they would slice it up and consume it piece by piece, muscle by muscle.