A Strong Girl
by Ghost Writer
For the rest of the week, Lucy had to wake at five in the morning to prepare and wait for the company bus that arrived at 5:45 am. Her house was one of the earliest stops of the bus route and it would take the bus over an hour to reach the Sun Horizon Building. Sunday was the one day of the week she could sleep in late.
So she wasn’t pleased when the phone rang
“Lucy? Oh, did I wake you? I’m sorry.”
“Oh Macy! No, it’s okay. I was getting up anyway. What’s up?”
“I just want you to know Simon was here last night.”
Lucy’s hand went to the side of the bed where her husband should be. There was another argument between them last night and she guessed it would make sense for him to go to his mother’s for the night.
“Yeah, thanks Macy.”
“Lucy… I don’t want to interfere… but are you guys in trouble?”
“Trouble? No, it’s just the usual fight…”
“A few months ago, Simon asked us for a loan.”
“Oh…” Lucy’s mind went into overdrive. Their financial position was tough but for Simon to ask money from his parents…
“Lucy? You there?”
“Yeah… look Macy. Don’t worry. We’ll okay. It will tide over soon.”
“You’re sure? Brad and I don’t have much but if…”
“No, it’s okay. Simon still there?”
“Yeah. He was drunk yesterday night.”
“He doesn’t drink.”
“No, he doesn’t.”
Well, now it made sense why Macy called her so early in the morning. With the request for money and the drinking, she must have been worried about her son. Abdullah’s words yesterday came to haunt her and Lucy made a quick decision.
“Macy, can you do me a favor?”
“Sure honey. What you need?”
“Tell Simon to go to the interview tomorrow.”
“He’ll know what I mean. Thanks Macy.”
Lucy put down the phone before her mother-in-law could answer. She put her hands on her face and wondered. Between Abdullah and Danielle, it was a tough day yesterday and she had to ask herself some tough questions.
Top of the list? Did she enjoy her job more than she admited, even to herself?
* * *
Simon didn’t come home for the rest of the day and when Monday arrived Lucy went to work knowing full well the shit was going to hit the fan. As she left the bus and put on her uniform, she knew instinctively that there would be consequences for what she said on Saturday. It was a given that Abdullah would find a way to punish her for her outburst so she wasn’t surprised when her DSO told her to go to Human Resources.
Lucy calmly went to the office and as Betty opened the door, she saw her husband sitting inside. Sitting in a chair, he turned to see her and Lucy saw his mouth formed a big “O”. Simon had never seen her in the niqaab before and Lucy knew it must have been a shock to his system seeing her like this. She also saw that the look on his face wasn’t one of disgust but strange bemusement. His eye lit up in… something. Guiltily, Lucy found that she was smiling beneath her veil. Right then, she decided to give Simon a show. She hoped Simon didn’t have a heart attack watching what comes next!
Falling on her hands and knees, she crawled on all fours towards him. Just before her head reached Simon’s chair, she turned and crawled towards Abdullah. Stopping before his desk, she prostrated herself. After a moment, Lucy heard a noncommittal noise and knew it was safe to lift up her head. She did not bother to ask permission to get up.
“Let’s get the formalities out of the way first shall we?” Abdullah smiled brightly at Simon. Lucy could immediately see why he was in human resources. When speaking to her, Abdullah’s expression was the one of patient contempt. Now the man had a warm smile that put people at ease. “Mr. Kelly, Sun Horizon is a conglomerate that is based out of the Middle East. We are a private company with subsidies throughout the world, mostly in Asia and the Middle East. This company is our first venture into America but it will not be the last. So if you join us, the prospects for you are good as there is room for growth. You will also be well-compensated for your work. Sun Horizon is always looking for talented men.”
Lucy had to admit Abdullah was nice and smooth; making it seem like the company was seeking to hire Simon for his skills instead of who his wife was. Fortunately, her husband was not buying it either.
“That and the fact you want my wife to continue with the company.”
“Ha, she’s just a bonus.”
“Yes! It’s you we want!” The lie came so smoothly even Lucy believed it for a second.
“Then why did the contract state that Sun Horizon would only accept my employment if my wife signed on the dotted line as well?” Simon asked the question in a calm, collected voice. Not angry, but merely inquisitive. Lucy had never been prouder of him than right now. He was holding his own against Abdullah.
“That’s simple. She will make you work harder.”
“You think having a couple working together makes them work harder?”
Abdullah was quick with his reply. “It’s true. A family that works together will also work harder for each other. However… that’s not what you really want to ask about, is it?”
“Why yes, I guess you get this a lot so I’ll just come out and ask. Why the veils?”
“The official line is that having the women in veils caused the men of the company to be less distracted. With the men being less distracted, they will be more productive.”
“You said “the official line”. What’s the unofficial line?”
“Girl! What are the three things you must remember when addressing a male employee of Sun Horizon?”
Thus far the two men had been ignoring her so Lucy was a little caught out by the question. Luckily, she already knew the answer by heart. “This girl must refer to herself in the third person; this girl must address all male employees with a “Sir”, and this girl must have a respectful tone when addressing a male.”
“Tell me Mr. Kelly, have you ever seen your wife like this?”
“Have you ever had her calling you “sir”? Do you enjoy hearing her call you “sir”?” Simon’s silence answered the question. “Now imagine coming to work everyday to a workplace where all the girls are respectful and treat you like a superior. Would you want to work at a place like this?”
“You can have the rules without the veil.”
“We, Sun Horizon, tried that before in other countries. We have all the rules but without any uniform. You know what happened?” Simon shrugged. “By the end of the first month, girls were coming in short mini-skirts. By the end of six months, girls were coming in wearing bikinis. Needless to say, men were distracted and productive suffered.”
“So have a standard uniform. Why veils?”
“It is a uniform, Simon. You don’t mind me calling you that right?” Simon nodded in acceptance and Abdullah continued. “We at Sun Horizon knew that we need a uniform that enforce the superior roles of males in the company, yet at the same time not be a distraction to them.”
“And the veils were your solution?”
“It worked and it’s still working. Ask your wife how many of her male colleagues have called in sick since Sun Horizon took over. They now want, even look forward to coming to work. Also, they are now more productive than ever because they are not distracted when they are working.”
“So what’s your explanation for the “whistle-girls”? I would think they would be distractions.”
“They are mailroom staff that comes and goes. They walk in, give something for the men to enjoy, then walk out in less than a minute. No one can work without stop, that something even we must accept. The “whistle-girls” give the guys a short lift, a little eye-candy. They are distractions but short ones, less than a minute or two then they are gone and the guys all feel better for it.”
Simon gave a chuckle at that. “That’s not very… uh, Middle Eastern of you. I thought you guys are all about your women being all covered up and stuff.”
“Veiling is a cultural and religious thing. Sun Horizon is a business. The girls in our company are veiled strictly because we believe men worked better in such an environment, not due to any religious dogma. In fact, we at Sun Horizon believe guys are happier working in such an environment!”
“What about your female employees? Your girls? They are happy in such an environment?”
“Yes, most of them are.” Simon and Lucy both looked at him incredulously. Abdullah continued, “The girls love the ritual and ceremony of what they do here. There is a time limit for everything they do everyday and they love it. Think about it; if they truly hate it, why do we have so little resignations from them?”
“There were a string of resignations from your female employees when you took over.”
“Yes, the girls resigned before they gave their new jobs and the rituals a chance. If they had stayed, they’ll probably grow to enjoy their job like Lucy did.”
“Abdullah, I can tell you for a certainty my wife does not enjoy her job.”
“Does she hate it? Do you hate your job Lucy?”
Both men looked at Lucy and Lucy felt herself withering under their gaze. She knew the answer she was supposed to give, the answer expected by society, her husband, even herself. But the “yes” was stuck in her throat. Like what she told Danielle, Lucy didn’t really hate her job. She looked at the ground and let the silence answered the question for her.
“So…” Simon hesitantly replied, “we were talking about my job offer?”
“Oh yes!” Abdullah smiled. “However we have a problem here.”
“A problem?” Simon’s surprise was evident.
“ Yes,” Abdullah’s smile never dropped. “It has to do with your wife.”
“Oh yes, she was very disrespectful with me last week. Frankly, we now have a question of whether she truly wants to stay at Sun Horizon.”
“I thought you said it was me you guys want?”
“You both are! You are both a team right? A husband and wife team even. However, if one of you don’t wish to… well, let just say we have no wish to force anyone to do anything she don’t want to.”
A silence reigned in the room.
“So…” Simon finally asked. “What did Lucy do?”
“First she never referred to herself in the third person, she did not address me as “Sir”, she wasn’t respectful, and to top it off, she told me to “Fuck off”.” Abdullah’s smile was directed at Lucy. “I’m afraid Sun Horizon can’t just let that stand.”
Lucy raged. Lucy understood what was going on. This was Abdullah’s punishment. The bastard wasn’t going to do anything to her directly, he was going through Simon. He was going to take away the job offer and he’s making it known it was her fault this was happening. Simon seems to understand this as well.
“So you are taking away the job offer?”
“Oh no!” Abdullah directed his smile back to Simon. “However we would like you to show that you are a team player and the man of your house. Just a little example will do for us.”
“What kind of example?”
Abdullah reached into a drawer and took out something. He placed in on his desk. “This is a bamboo cane. I say… ten strokes on Lucy’s ass would do.”
You could hear a pin dropped in the ensuring silence. Lucy’s mind raced. Something wasn’t right. Abdullah could have just taken the job offer away and it would be the end of the matter, so why was he now having this show for no reason? Then Lucy remembered that Abdullah had said that he was almost ordered to retain Lucy. It would stand to reason that Abdullah couldn’t take away the job offer without hurting his own standing in Sun Horizon, so he was now trying to force Lucy and Simon to reject Sun Horizon’s job offers. The silence did not last long.
Surprisingly, it was broken by Simon’s laughter. Lucy and Abdullah looked at him while Simon tried to control himself.
“I’m… I’m sorry. I’m truly sorry… but did you really think I would beat my wife just for a job?”
“Well…” for a moment Abdullah seemed out of words. He quickly recovered. “Well Simon, this is just a test. To prove that you…”
He was cut off when Lucy stood up. Both men looked at her, waiting to see her reaction. Lucy knew that Simon was going to reject the offer, but if he did, Abdullah won. And if there is something Lucy hated, it was to lose!
Lucy walked to the desk and took the bamboo cane with both hands. She looked at Abdullah for a moment and was glad to see that he was nervous. He was afraid of what she was going to use the cane on him but if she did that, he wins in the end. It would be the perfect excuse for Abdullah to cancel the job offer. No way was Lucy going to let that happen.
Lucy turned back to Simon. She walked slowly toward her husband. Standing just before him, Lucy knelt and watched Simon’s face change before her eyes. She now understood the face. It was the same face he had when he first saw her in her niqaab. It was a look of lust.
Lucy knelt with her knees apart and lifted the cane above her head with both hands. Holding the cane in her upturned palms, she whispered the words that would change her life forever. “My lord.”
The title came out of her mouth and Lucy knew it was perfect. Simon wasn’t just a normal “sir” to her, he was her husband. It was the perfect title to address him in the office. Simon took the cane in a daze and Lucy, still on her knees, turned her back to him. She bowed her head to the floor, and raised her ass high in the air.
She heard Simon standing up and felt him getting in position. She heard the cane a moment before her ass exploded in pain. SWISH! Her cry echoed in the room.
SWISH! The second stroke was delivered before she recovered and Lucy cried again.
“Lucy? You okay?” Simon’s concern could clearly be heard.
Lucy said the only thing she could. She wasn’t going to let Abdullah win. “Two, my lord! Please continue.”
The next three strokes came together! Lucy cried again but she discovered the pain wasn’t as bad now. Her ass was still on fire but Simon was so fast her pain seemed to have lessened. Either that or her ass was getting numb.
“Five, my lord! Please continue.”
“I’m going to give you a choice, Lucy. You want me to do all five together or one at a time?”
Lucy thought for a moment. She had never been caned before, even as a kid, so she didn’t have any reference to go on. She went with her gut. “Please give me all five together my lord.” She was never a girl who delayed the inevitable.
Simon struck the moment Lucy gave the word. He did not give Lucy a moment to get ready and Lucy immediately knew she made the wrong choice. Her body was wracked with pain but Lucy did not break her position.
Lucy broke. She curled up on the floor and tears flowed. Even then she should hear the voice of Abdullah, reluctantly congratulating Simon on a job well done. He was going to get the job.
She had won.
End of part 4
Copyright© 2012 by Ghost Writer. All rights reserved.