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AN UNEQUAL ROMANCE - 2 - The confusing night


She asked me to lie down first, by the window and lie on my side to make space for her to lie down. She kept one bedsheet and a blanket at the corner towards my leg. The rest of the sheets and the remaining blanket, she kept down on her bag under the berth. She then kept her handbag at the corner towards my head. Then she laid down sideways too, facing me. Her legs had to be bent as she could not stretch them fully, the berth being too short for her. She reached up and put off the night lamp of the berth.

After lying down, she smiled at me and said, please excuse me, my knees and legs can go over yours, as otherwise if they protrude outside, they will touch people walking down the aisle.

I said, No problems. I understand that.
She said, Are you comfortable ? Is the space too tight.

I said, I'm fine. The space will definitely be tight, two of us lying on this berth, which as it is, is quite narrow and small. You be careful, don't fall down from the berth. It is more uncomfortable for you, since you are so tall.

She said, I'm ok. It's only that I can't fit this left hand of mine, which is going under my body. If I bend it beside my head, my elbow will hit your face. If you please don't mind, can I stretch my hand under you head. You can rest your head on my upper arm.

I said, No issues. And I lifted my head, so that she could stretch her left arm over the pillow towards the wall. Then she nodded to me to put my head down. head rested on a soft, but thick upper arm. Looking up at her face, so close to me lying on her arm, I saw her smiling down at me. Even lying down, she loomed over my head. Her body was also quite wide shouldered. So lying sideways so close to each other, face to face, I was almost hidden by her.

She somehow could understand what I might be thinking, and said, Is my big size beside you, bothering you ? Don't worry, the curtain is drawn, so you needn't feel embarrassed.

Then suddenly, thinking something, she sat up, and took the bedsheet and blanket from beneath my feet. Then she carefully first unfolded the bedsheet and then spread the blanket over it, and pulled the two covering both our bodies. Then she laid down again on her side, putting her left hand under my head. She pulled the bedsheet and blanket up to her chests, so that it covered me almost to my chin. I was now totally hidden beside her.
She said to me, they maximize the AC at night and it's already starting to become chilly. We will be comfortable under the blanket. And this way, you'll not feel embarrassed. Anybody even catching a glimpse from the curtain sides, won't even know that you are lying in here beside me. They will see my back only.
I said, You make me feel so small.

She smiled and said, Does it bother you ? You actually are so much smaller to me.

I said, With this height of yours, you should be a Basketball player.

She smiled again and said, I was a district level Volleyball player. I also was a state level athlete. I was in the state Javelin and Discuss throwing team.

I said, Wow, that's great. But why not national level.

She said, I got a bad injury, spraining my ankle. So couldn't make that grade.

I said, But did you get a job in the sports quota ?

She smiled and said, I'm with the Railway Police. And that's where I'm going now. To join my duty. I had come home to my family on leave.

Ohh, I said, That's why you said you are not scared of me ? Because you are a police woman.

She laughed and said, No no. Even if I weren't in police, I wouldn't have been scared of you. Look how small you are compared to me, you are already hidden behind my whole body. Do you think you stand any chance against me? I can overpower you in no time.

I said, But I'm a man and you are a woman.

She said, So what ? There are quite a few women like me, who on any day are stronger than most men.

I said, Ok ok. Since there's no way to verify that, I'll take your word for it.

She said, If you want to get it verified, then I can prove it to you.

I said, How? We can't wrestle in the train.
She said, Not in the train. But I'll prove it to you somehow...

I said, Ok. Cool it, cool it. I was just joking with you. Don't get upset.

She didn't answer, her face looked grumpy.

I asked her, You didn't tell me why you said you were not married, but still put Sindoor on your head ?

She didn't reply. She was still upset.
I said, Seema, shall I tell you something ? We men are very egoistic. We cannot accept many things which hurt our pride and ego. If a man finds that a woman is stronger than him physically, it is very difficult for him to digest that fact. I had made that generalised statement only. If you want to know about me, I love women who are taller and stronger than me. That has been my fantasy ever since I became adolescent. Meeting you today has been my dream come true. So you need not be upset with me atleast on this count.

Looking at Seema, I saw her beaming. Her eyes were bright with joy. She whispered to me, Are you saying all this to me to please me ? Since I am upset ?

I said, Why do I need to please you Seema ? I have hardly met you about 2 hours back. I don't even know whether such a tall lady like you, with such an attractive figure, will even consider me, a man half your size, to be even worthy of being your friend ?

Seema blushed, although her dark complexion showed nothing. She smiled shyly and said, Did you really mean what you said just now , Sandip ?

I said, You don't know Seema, how lucky I feel myself, to be lying like this now, so close to your beautiful body, resting my head on your strong but soft arms and feeling so small having to look up to you, even to meet your eyes.

Seema said nothing, just put her right hand around to my back, and hugged me tight, so that my whole body got pressed to hers. With her hand, she pulled the back of my head and pressed my face inside her neck. She just held me tight like that possibly for more than a minute, not saying anything. Then she released her pressure and pulled back my face, smiling down at me. I saw tears were running down her cheek.

I put up my hand and wiped her tears. Whats the matter, Seema ? I said.

She caught my hand in her big palm and held it tight inside hers. Looking down at me, she said, Why didn't I meet you earlier Sandip ?

I said, It's ok. We have now met. We'll be good friends.

She shook her head, her eyes still watery. No, she said, I am not worthy to be your friend.

You are a true gentleman and you are innocent too of the evils of the world. You are also too trusting. I am not a good woman, Sandip. I cannot be your friend.

I said, Seema, I don't understand why you are saying all this. I don't find anything bad in you.

She said, That is why I'm saying that you are too innocent. What sort of a woman do you think I am ? I met you only a few hours back in this train, and here you are, I've made you lie on my arm and held you tightly to my chest.

I looked up at her flabbergasted. What are you saying, Seema ? What are you implying ? You only said you are in the Railway Police. I thought that is why you are travelling by this AC 2 tier coach. You are confusing me, you said you are not married, but you have sindoor on your forehead. Aren't you with the Police ?

Seema, smiled at me. You are too much of a simple guy. Never mind who I am. Come let's try and get some sleep. The train will reach by 7 in the morning.

I said, But Seema...
She cut me short, put her fingers on my lips. No more buts, she said. By the time, we say goodbye tomorrow morning, I'll tell you who I am. Now, just don't think about this anymore and go to sleep.

Then she put her palm over my face, so that I had to close my eyes.

I was trying to sleep, my head resting on her upper arm, my face very close to her neck, our bodies touching. She placed her free right hand around my back. Her left leg is pushed angularly under both my legs, and her right leg is lying lightly over both my legs, trapping both my legs between her tall legs. I felt that she is dropping off to sleep.

My mind was working fast. Who is she ? She is clearly giving me a hint. But why should she give me a hint like this ? No, it can't be what I'm thinking, what she wants to imply. But if she is not with the Railway police, how can she afford such an expensive 2nd AC ticket ? She doesn't look rich. In fact, everything about her clearly shows her mediocrity.
Then again, the way she is sleeping now, embracing me fully against her body. If she was married or an unmarried woman of decent background, could she be holding a man whom she has known for only a few hours, like this in her arms while sleeping ? The more I thought, the more convinced I was that she is exactly what she was trying to imply.... But what do I do now ? Why is she befriending me like this ? What does she want from me ? Does she expect money in exchange for this closeness. Does she want to loot me ? But I'm not carrying much cash. I've got office documents only and few clothes for 3 days. Yes, my Debit card is there, but that won't help her. No, she can't steal much. Also she cannot get off the train before me. The way she is sleeping, all around me, I'll know if she wakes up. This put my mind at peace, and slowly I also drifted off to a deep sleep.

I woke up from sleep at around 4am. I needed to go to the wash room. But what is this ? I'm no longer lying on my side on the inside of the berth. Instead I found Seema lying straight occupying the full berth. And I'm lying on top of her, face down on her full body. Both her arms are around my back holding me over her. My legs resting on hers. And she is still in deep sleep. She, in fact, is supporting my entire body weight on her body and snoring away with a very low rumble.

But I do need to go to the washroom. I raised my head and tried to sit up. But how can I sit up on her body. In my efforts, Seema stirred. She opened her eyes and asked me, What happened?

I said, I have to go to the washroom.
She released her hold on my back, and said, Ok go.

On my return, I found that she was awake still. I got into the berth and asked her to lie on her side. She said that she cannot lie on her side for long and she cannot move her hands and legs lying continuously on her side. That is why, she had pulled me upon her body, while I was in deep sleep.

She said, Come on Sandip, lie down on me, you were sleeping nicely on me.

I didn't know what to say. It was no time to argue. Both of us were very sleepy. Besides, I had nowhere else where I could go and spend the rest of the night. I lay down on her body. She pulled my head down on her chest. I could feel a hard strong woman's body underneath me. It was a comfortable bed for me no doubt. She pulled the bedsheet with blanket over our bodies, covering me right upto my neck. I felt her two hands around my back clasping me tightly me down on her body. Before no time I was again into a deep sleep.

The next time my eyes opened, I found Seema fondly playing with my hair and smiling sweetly at me. Wake up, she said, it's 6 already, the train will reach by 7am. Get up and let's get freshened up, before there is a long queue for the wash rooms.

She moved to one side and let me slide off her body. I'll go first, you keep my handbag and purse, she said to me.

Once she was gone, I was tempted to look into her purse. She must be carrying some sort of identity proof. If she is actually with the railway police, there has to be an ID card. But, opening a lady's purse is not what I've been taught at home or school.

After she returned, I went to the washroom. Once we were through, it was around 6.20 am. Still 40 minutes before we reach. I was silent from the morning, confused at last night's conversations with Seema before going to sleep.

She asked me, What happened, you are not talking to me ? I didn't reply.

We were sitting at opposite ends of the berth, resting our backs on the sides. She called me to her side.

I said, There won't be space.

She said, Come, we'll squeeze in. It's not possible to talk so openly in the train. Come closer.

I said, There's nothing to talk.

She said, It's another 40 mins. more. Why are you fighting ? Come here.

I moved over to her side. We squeezed in and sat side by side, her eyes, high above mine.
She pulled the berth curtain fully, secluding us from the other passengers. Then she opened her purse and took out an Identity card and handed it over to me. I saw her name, her picture in police uniform and the Government seal on the official ID card. I looked up at her smiling, and handed her back the card.

Then what nonsense were you talking last night ? I said.

She smiled broadly. That was necessary, she said. See, there was no way both of us could have a proper sleep, unless we slept on one side. I also found you to be a true gentleman, not like the men I generally come across. Also I had taken a liking towards you, which you had later further accentuated by sharing your feelings towards tall and strong women. So I had decided, that it is safe to sleep in that sort of a position with you. But then I thought, that you are still a man. And I had only met you only a few hours back. What if I am wrong in my deduction about you and you try to be a little adventurous at night. That is why, I planted that doubt in your mind about my credentials, to confuse you.

I said, I find that not only do you have a great height, you have got a very shrewd brain.

But one thing I still don't understand is whether or not you are married.

She said, I told you Sandip, that I am not married. If you are thinking about the sindoor, that is for security on my train and long distance travels. Men generally do not bother a married woman, they are not aware whether the husband is around or not. Although I had been pestered sometimes even then, and I am capable of tackling such ruffians myself. Also my police ID card helps. But still I prefer to put the sindoor on for a peaceful journey.
I had a beaming smile.

She extended her hand to me and said, Can we be friends Sandeep ? I like you very much.
I took her big palm and held it with both my hands. I said, I can't imagine that I finally have my dream girl friend.

Seema said, You will be in this town for 3 days now. So let's plan where to meet and when. I want to spend as much time with you as possible.

To be continued...
Next ...Chapter 3
In the Hotel ...