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Last updateTue, 17 Mar 2015 2pm

#RubyIyer: BOMBAY SHORTS 11 - All The Better To Eat You With

Recap: Ruby Iyer is pushed in front of a local train in Bombay, and wakes up with super powers. Her world is shaken even more when she meets Edward; now when she is face-to-face with her adversary, can she rise to the challenge? Read on—

- All The Better To Eat You With - 

His face: Oh! Those amazing cheekbones against which you could cut a soft chocolate-chip cookie, those grey-blue eyes in which she could just drown!

Ruby leaned into that now familiar whiff of his aftershave—like the first drops of rain on dry earth; and was delighted when she was immediately rewarded by that sweet tug at the base of her stomach: “how did you find me?”

“A journalist never reveals his sources!” Edward replied solemnly.

“You… you are a reporter?” The passion turned off faster than the water on Bombay roads drying up after a sudden shower. Ruby shrank back, walking to the other end of the room; which was not that far given the miniscule dimensions of the space.

“This is you, isn’t it?” She turned to see Edward holding out his iPhone screen to her; and there she was in full high resolution, taking the borrowed bike over the Ferrari.

“You followed me?” She burst out.

“Of course I did! I had to find out what you were going to do next now!”

“And… filmed me?” It was as if she was on a roller coaster, awaiting that inevitable hurtle down to the ground, after the build up to that first peak.

“You were spectacular!” He smiled: showing off his white, evenly-spaced teeth; the kind that everyone in the West seemed to possess, and which everyone in Bombay seemed to covet. All the better to eat you with? Why had that inane thought popped into her head?

She was no Little Red Riding Hood and he was not the Big Bad Wolf… He wasn’t, was he? “You know I am going to have to share this with the world now, don’t you?” Edward said, a shutter coming down over his face, so she could not quite read his feelings.

“Why…?” Ruby’s words stuck in her throat, like the 9am-traffic-jam on the streets.

“Because I have to: this is big news... Ruby. You understand, right!” Edward reached out his free hand and she pulled away from him, coming up against the wall.

“Don’t do it…” Ruby said in a low voice, mesmerised as he took one step forward, then another closing the gap between them, placing the same hand he had reached out, on the wall, just next to her cheek but without touching it.

He lowered his face towards her, so she could see the fine creases around his eyes; the skin on his forehead tanned a light brown by the Bombay sun.

Then, she was snatching the phone from his hands. Sliding out from beneath the arch of his arm, she ran taking a leap over the sofa, intent on making it to the door, only to be tackled from behind. She fell heavily on the settee—which promptly broke under the weight of their combined bodies—bracing herself for the weight of his body; but at the last minute Edward flung out his hands grunting as his biceps took the worst of his own body weight, keeping it from crashing on her.

“Ever the gentleman!” Ruby’s breaths came out in short gasps. Edward met her comment with his lips. She kept her eyes open… seeing herself reflected in his eyes. It was almost a relief to just let her body go limp, to be dragged under, to stop fighting and be swept along just for a little while.

She grasped his upper arm, feeling the hair roughened skin against the softer skin of her palm, tracing the muscles moving under them with her fingers; when her senses pinged open and just like that it wasn’t enough any more. Greedily she shoved at him, taking advantage of his surprise to flip him over so it was now her on top, imprisoning his legs with her own.

“Show off!” He said mildly, a smile playing around his lips, so that the dent of a dimple on his left cheek peeked at her. Not resisting the urge this time, she flicked out her tongue, to the slight hollow, just a fleeting hint of a taste of his salty skin which ran a shiver down her spine, and she saw her shock mirrored in the surprise in his eyes.

He grasped the back of her head, clutching a fistful of her hair bringing her down to him: and this time her eyelids shuttered down, already anticipating the crash of the kiss reverberating through the recesses of her mind, when: “RUBY!”

The door flew open, colliding against the wall.

--To be continued

Laxmi Hariharan is a kindle bestselling author. Find her @laxmi or at Young Adult Old Soul.

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