The Arrangement

By: P.G. Van


“It’s a fancy structure, Mahi. Would you mind moving the movie industry here so I can be close to you guys?” his mother joked as they neared the entrance that was decked out for the opening.

“On it, Ma.” Mahen laughed.

As the employees waited eagerly to get into their new space, Mahen’s mother did the honors of cutting the ribbon tied across the entrance. His mother kissed Mahen on his forehead and turned to look at the gathered crowd and said, “All the best to the Mahendra team!”

“Wave to Naani, Ma.” Mahen pointed at the camera that was providing live coverage to the families and friends of the employees. The event was strictly for the employees and not their family members, but Mahen made an exception for Niha. Technically she was the ‘Corporate Wellness Coordinator’ for the entire corporation, although not an employee.

“Mahi, I want to go home and hang out with my mother-in-law. Any concerns if I leave right away?” His mother winked, and he smiled.

“Thanks, Ma.” He put his arm around her, gesturing to the men in uniform to take her home.

“Baby, thank you for letting me back into your life. I know you guys just got married, but all I want is a grandbaby now.” Mahen’s mom touched Niha’s cheek, making her blush.

“You just sounded like Naani, Ma.”

“Yes, because I want to be a Naani soon.” She laughed, slipping on her sunglasses before turning away from them.

Standing in the main lobby, they watched her get into the car. Mahen bent to take a long whiff of the jasmine strand that was clipped in Niha’s hair as a decoration. “The smell of jasmine is driving me nuts.”

“They are your favorite, aren’t they?”

“Anything that’s on you is my favorite.” He squeezed her hand and added, “I may be able to give you a private tour of my office right about now.”

“I’m excited. Let’s go.” She winked.

He led her toward the elevator and stopped. “The elevator isn’t operational yet, and it’s a five-floor climb.”

She laughed, reaching for her high-heeled sandals, taking them into her hands. “Let’s do this.”

Mahen shook his head, the end of his mouth twisting up. “I can’t make my beautiful wife sweat, at least not this way.”

She blushed, remembering the times he had made her hot and sweaty. “Mahen, you’re driving me nuts right now.”

“That’s it. I can’t take it anymore. I’m taking you out of here,” he said, taking her hand in his not even waiting for her to put her sandals back on.

“Out where?”

“Anywhere I can get inside you,” he growled in her ear, before going down on one knee to help her put on her sandals.

“Mahen, what are you doing?” She squealed as he took her foot to place it back inside her sandal.

“Helping my wife.” He repeated with the other sandal and stood up.

“You’re the President and CEO of Rayudu Corporation. You can’t be doing this in the office. At home, it’s okay.” She followed him as he led her to the car.

Without another word, he nodded at the driver, indicating that he was going to be driving the car and took the keys. He got into the driver’s seat after helping Niha into the passenger seat and looked at her. “I may be the President and CEO of all the corporations out there, but I’m going to be this way. If I need to do something for you, I’ll do it. Doesn’t matter where or when.”

She smiled, biting her lip. “This is what I’m going to tell next time when I’m interviewed and asked about why I fell for you.”

He laughed. “That I help you put on your sandals?”

“Whatever.” She rolled her eyes and was about to make a retaliating comment, but her mind went blank as a screen of darkness spanned in front of her.

She pressed her fingers to her temple and said, “Mahen, drive slowly, your driving is making me sick.”

He turned to look at her. “Sweetheart, we haven’t moved an inch.”

“What’s going on?”

She shut her eyes tightly, fighting the roll in her stomach. “I should not have eaten such a heavy breakfast this morning.”

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