The New Boss
Hi all. Taking a break from my series stories to write this relatively "short" one part story. Trying something different here. Narrating in third person and not in first person as usual. Also, there is very little elaborate description of actual sex like in my other stories. I think the fun is all in the build-up, the situation and the twist. I enjoyed writing it and hope you enjoy reading it too. In a couple of days, I'll return to writing the next parts of one of my series stories - Naked Delhi Daredevilry, The Shop Floor Guys and On The Road, all of which you can read by clicking on my profile.
Amishi got out of the cab, paid the driver, and walked towards the office building. She opened the glass door and walked towards the stairs, when a security guard called out to her,
"Yes madam? Can I help you?"
"I am just going upstairs." Amishi replied.
"But there is no one there, madam. It's all locked." the guard replied.
"No one there?" Amishi said, checking her watch in surprise. It was just 4 pm. Very unusual for an office to be completely empty at this time.
"Yes, everyone has gone for the party." he said.
"Party?" she asked.
"The farewell party for Mr. Bose. He is leaving the company, you know? They are having a party for him at a resort in Lonavala." the guard said.
"Oh, I did not know that. Which resort is it at, do you know?" Amishi asked.
"Yes, the Orchid Resort." he replied. "You can go there if you want. All employees, clients, suppliers are going to be there."
"Alright, thank you." said Amishi and left the building.
Amishi decided she should go to the party. What better way to meet everyone than at a party, she thought. Maybe Mr. Bose could introduce her to everyone and unofficially pass the baton, so to say. Because Amishi had come to Bombay to replace Mr. Bose as the head of the company's Bombay branch.
The company, a medium sized outsourcing firm, was owned by Amishi's father, Mr. Dayal. The company was headquartered in Gurgaon and had branches in Bombay and Bangalore. Mr. Bose had headed the Bombay branch right from the day it was started eight years ago. And now, he was about to leave the company and join a big multinational services firm as a vice-President.
Mr. Dayal had many businesses, ranging construction, manufacturing, hospitality to outsourcing. He had three sons, all of them heading one of the other businesses, and one daughter - Amishi, whom he had decided to groom to head the outsourcing business. Mr. Bose's resignation gave Mr. Dayal an ideal opportunity to give Amishi some hands on experience.
Amishi Dayal, 28 years old, had just returned from the United States. She had been living in the US since she was 18, when she had gone there for her bachelor's degree. After college, Mr. Dayal wanted his daughter to come back and join the family business. But Amishi wanted to stay on in the US for a few more years, and try working and living there as just a regular person, not a millionaire-owner's daughter. She wanted to rise up the ladder on the basis of her ability, and not because of who her father was. And rise she did. Started at entry level in a Fortune 500 IT services firm, she had worked hard, impressed her colleagues and superiors, and in a mere six years had become a senior manager in the firm, the youngest in that division's history.
Having achieved such success on her own dint, Amishi finally decided to agree to her father's pestering and decided to join the family business. Her father, delighted at her success in the big American firm, decided to have her head the Bombay branch of their outsourcing business, and eventually handle the business nationwide. She was actually supposed to start her work in the office a week from now, but her father suggested that she go from Delhi to Bombay early unannounced, and meet all the senior executives so that the day Mr. Bose officially handed the reins to her, she would know everyone.
So it was a confident and enthusiastic Amishi that walked into the Orchid Resort in Lonavala two hours later. The resort staff directed her to the poolside restaurant and lawn area where a party was in full swing.
The sheer number of people there surprised Amishi. She knew that the Bombay office had about 1000 employees, but just hearing the number is one thing and actually seeing a thousand people gathered in a small place is another thing. She felt lost and confused, unsure of whom to talk to. And suddenly, the enormity of the responsibility she was about to inherit dawned upon her. Even as a senior manager in her previous job, she had not supervised more than 20-25 people. And here suddenly, she was supposed to run a branch of a 1000 people? Would they obey her, respect her? She was just a 28-year old woman about to replace a 50-year old veteran. How could she command the kind of professional conduct and dedication from her employees? Had she bitten off more than she could chew? Amishi suddenly felt nervous and felt the confidence seep out of her.
As she was staring at the crowd around her, a waiter approached her with a tray of drinks. She absent-mindedly picked up a glass of orange liquid and sipped it. She winced at how strongly alcoholic the drink was. But maybe a strong drink was exactly what she needed to calm her frayed nerves. She sipped it faster than usual, surveying the scene around her.
And then Amishi noticed something else. Everyone was dressed very casually, in shorts, t-shirts, tank tops, sarongs, flip-flops. And she was dressed in a black formal pantsuit. Her business attire seemed comically out of place at this fun party, and sure enough, she noticed some people giving her strange looks. And she realized - at her first ever interaction with her employees, she would be overdressed. That only added to her nervousness, and she gulped the whole drink down.
A waiter appeared at once, taking the empty glass from her hand, and giving her a full one. She looked at the drink in the glass. It was brown, and seemed to be cola. But one sip, and she realized that it was Long Island Iced Tea. The drink is usually very strong, but this one was particularly potent. She started sipping it, still unable to decide whom to talk to. And that's when she heard someone pointedly clear their throat behind her.
"Hello." a young man said, with a wide smile on her face.
"Hi." Amishi responded a tad too cheerfully, feeling a little buzzed from the drinks.
"You've come from Delhi, right?" he asked.
"Yes, I have." Amishi replied, surprised that she had been recognized. Having been in the US for close to ten years, she had never had any contact with anyone who worked for her father. Since she worked for another company, her picture had never been published in the company's reports or brochures either, although her father's and brothers' pictures were always present."
"Well, come with me then. Mr. Bose and the other senior guys are in a suite." the young man said, turned around and started walking.
Amishi followed him as they walked out of the poolside lawn area and through a corridor.
"Excuse me, but you are?" she asked.
"Oh, I am Dilip. I am an executive assistant to Mr. Bose. I am the one who called up your people in Delhi, and they described you, so I knew how to recognize you." he replied.
Amishi was surprised to hear this. Her father had been the one who had insisted that this week-early visit be unannounced, so that she could see all aspects of the business as they usually were. When employees knew that a new boss was coming, they usually did their best to hide the flaws and the problems. Unannounced visits, Mr. Dayal always maintained, were essential to keep your employees on their toes. So as far as she knew, no one apart from her father, mother and her brothers knew that she was coming to Bombay.
"OK, what did they tell you exactly? And who talked to you?" Amishi asked.
"It was a Ms. Priya who I talked to I think." Dilip said.
Priya? That was the name of her father's secretary. Stupid woman must have blabbed about her visit. Amishi decided to call her father later and ask him to scold Priya for spoiling the whole point behind her unannounced visit.
"She told me you were the one coming." Dilip continued. "And she described you perfectly - tall, slim, straight shiny hair, grey eyes. Nice outfit by the way."
"Oh, thank you." Amishi said taking another sip from the glass in her hand. "I was actually just thinking I felt quite out of place in it. Overdressed for the occasion."
"Oh, nonsense. Actually, the pantsuit is perfect for the occasion. Gives you a very corporate executive look. As for being overdressed, well, in your line of work, it is better to be overdressed, at least initially." Dilip said, leading her up a flight of stairs.
Amishi remembered that her father had told her the exact same thing. In her old company in the US, the culture was to dress casually. Even the CEO rarely wore suits. But her father said that won't work in India. At least for the first few weeks, he told her, dress very formally. Conveys professionalism and authority. Later on, you can dress a bit more casually if you like.
"Yes, my father says the same thing." Amishi said.
"Your father???" Dilip asked with a look of incredulity on his face. "Your father gives you advice about your....work?"
"Yes, why shouldn't he?" Amishi asked, surprised at Dilip's surprise, "He knows this business better than anyone else I think."
"If you say so." Dilip said, and walked on silently.
As they walked through a corridor, Amishi noticed a tray table, and put her empty glass on it. She realized that she had downed two strong drinks much faster than she usually did. Finally, Dilip came to a stop. He led her inside a big suite, and asked her to sit on the couch in the suite's living room. The door to the next room was closed.
"Just a second, I'll let them know you are here." Dilip said, and knocked on the door.
The door opened and a middle aged man's bald head poked out. Dilip whispered something to him, and he whispered back, looking at Amishi. They spoke in whispers like that for a few seconds, and the bald head went back inside and the door was shut.
"They are all in a meeting. Let's wait here for a while. I've told him to let the others know that you are here, so they'll try to wrap up the meeting soon." Dilip said.
"Who all is in there?" Amishi asked.
"Mr. Bose of course. The man this party is in the honor of. By the way, please keep that in mind. This whole thing is mainly for Mr. Bose's benefit. Everyone else present here is secondary. It is all about Mr. Bose. It's his day, or rather his night now. Hope you know what I mean." he said.
"Yes, I understand." Amishi said nodding her head. Dilip, a loyal executive assistant was probably worried that the welcome for the new boss, who was the owner's daughter, might overshadow the farewell for Mr. Bose. She decided not to step into the limelight too much. "Who else is in there?"
"There's Mr. Desai the finance VP, Mr. Singh the Sales VP, Mr. Kulkarni, the Marketing Chief, Mr. Shah from HR, whom you just saw, and then Mr. Reddy the Operations VP." Dilip said. "But remember, no matter what the others say or do, this night is all about Mr. Bose."
"Yeah, OK." Amishi said. The mention of all the main executives made that sinking feeling in her stomach return. She would have to think about all these things - finance, sales, marketing, HR, operations. In her old job, she was only in charge of one thing. Here....this was going to be so overwhelming.
"What are they discussing in there?" she asked.
"Oh, boring stuff really. Just giving him a summary of all the things in their domains. The pluses and minuses, strengths and weaknesses and all that." Dilip said.
"That sounds interesting. Maybe I should go in too!" Amishi said.
"Haha, no, trust me, it will just bore you out of your mind. The time for you to go in is later. Just sit here. Actually," Dilip walked to a cabinet in the side of the room and opened the minibar, revealing a lot of liquor bottles, "let me pour us both something to drink. You look a tad nervous. Maybe this will help."
Dilip walked towards her with a big bottle of tequila and two shot glasses. He filled them both, and handed one to Amishi.
"There you go. Bottoms up!" he said and downed the whole shot. Amishi also did the same, feeling her throat burn with the tequila. She winced and looked at Dilip.
"I usually don't drink much, you know. And this is my third drink in like 15 minutes. I don't know why, I am just feeling very nervous today." she said.
"I understand. I can't imagine being in your position, obviously, but if I were, I'd be nervous too." Dilip said. "Here, have one more."
"No, no, I mustn't." Amishi said.
"Come on. Just one more. To give me company. I am nervous too, you know?" Dilip said and poured the tequila again. Once more, both of them downed the shots and winced.
"Why are you...nev..nev...nervous?" Amishi said slurring, and realizing that she had started to cross the line from buzzed into drunk.
"Well, because frankly.... being around too many bosses makes me nervous even usually. And tonight." Dilip said, also slurring a bit. "Plus, you are just so beautiful. Even that pantsuit can not hide the fact that you have a hot body."
"Hehehe, thank you." Amishi giggled flirtatiously... and then suddenly realized... this is not something she should allow a subordinate of hers to say. "Dilip...." she continued
"What?" Dilip said, pouring himself another shot of tequila.
"Dilip...that is very inop...inop..." Amishi struggled to get the word right "Very inappropriate. Remember, you are just an executive assistant to Mr. Bose."
"Yes, sorry." he said, downing his third shot in minutes, "I only meant to compliment you."
"That's fine. Just don't" Amishi said, and then suddenly wagging her finger and breaking into a mild laughter she continued "don't let it happen again or I will punish you."
Amishi was giggling like a school girl for some reason, and despite wanting to stop, she was unable to. Dilip also started laughing. He was about to say something when the phone rang. He answered it, and said to Amishi,
"I am sorry, I need to see to something. I'll be back soon. If they call you in, go in. Best of luck."
And Dilip left. Amishi sat there, drunk, thinking about what to say to everyone. She closed her eyes, and rested back on the couch. About ten minutes later, the door opened and a waiter came in, pushing a cart of food and cocktails. He knocked on the door, and the same bald head of Mr. Shah poked out.
"Oh, the food and drinks are here." he said looking back inside the room. He stood back and opened the door to let the waiter roll the cart in. He then looked at Amishi, smiled and said, "You can come in too now, Miss."
"OK." Amishi said and got up. She took one step, but wobbled uncertainly and fell back on the couch. She was now quite drunk. "I am sorry" she slurred.
"That's fine, let me help you." Shah said and stepping forward, offered her a hand. Amishi grabbed his hand and got up. Shah put an arm around her to hold her steady and lead her inside the room.
The room seemed to Amishi like it was spinning. Taking slow steps, she reached a couch and sat down on it, next to two middle aged men.
"Here's our guest from Delhi. Your surprise, Mr. Bose." Shah said.
Everybody smiled and stared at Amishi. Amishi, resting back on the couch, stared back at them.
"Let me introduce everyone. I am Shah, and these guys are Desai and Reddy next to you, Kulkarni on that chair, Singh over there. And that is Mr. Bose, our boss whom this night is in the honor of." Shah said pointed at the relevant people.
Amishi saw that they were all middle aged men, dressed in t-shirts and shorts, in the spirit of the party.
"Tell us your name...or rather." Shah smiled, "tell us your nickname."
"My nickname?" Amishi slurred.
"Yes, knowing you, all of you usually have nicknames, right? What is yours?" Shah asked.
"Pinky." Amishi said and started giggling. That was the name that everyone in her family called her by.
"Pinky? That's a very sweet name." said Desai, who was seated next to her, with a smile on his face.
"Yes, my nickname is Pinky." Amishi said looking at him squarely, "You see, Daddy said that when I was born my skin was very pink. And my Mommy would always dress me up in pink. So Daddy said I looked completely pink, and everyone started calling me Pinky."
"Interesting." said Bose from the other end of the room. "Do you always talk so much about your Daddy and Mommy at such times?"
Amishi started giggling some more. After a while she stopped giggling and said,
"Sorry, I am just a bit tipsy. I had a lot to drink waiting for you."
"Oh, I see." Desai said. "Well, then we must also drink together."
He gestured to the waiter, and he brought a glass in front of Amishi. She took it tentatively and said,
"I really shouldn't. I have already had so much. I don't want to act all silly and make a bad first impression on you."
"Aww, don't worry." Desai said, putting an arm around her shoulders and pulling her closer. "You have already made a great first impression on us."
A small voice in Amishi's brain told her to brush Desai's hand away. But he had grabbed her in a very cozy manner, and her head felt nice rested on his shoulder.
"Really?" she said looking into Desai's eyes.
"Really. Have your drink. It's scotch - 18 years old. How old are you?" he asked.
"I am 28. Don't you know?" she said. "I thought all of you must have already been talking about my age. After all you are all so much older."
"You know, you don't look 28 at all" Singh said. "I'd have guessed your age to be 20. You have taken really good care of yourself."
"Thank you." Amishi said, sipping the scotch. "But now that the age thing has come up, let me...let me talk about it."
Amishi pushed Desai's arm away and tried to stand up. Again, she lost her footing and fell back on the couch. As she did, half the scotch in her glass spiller all over her blazer, and on Desai's shirt.
"Oh shit, I am so sorry." she slurred. "I just couldn't stand up."
"That's OK." Desai said, "Here, let me help you take your blazer off. It's got scotch all over it."
He took the drink from her hand and kept it on the table. He then put his hand on the lapel of her blazer, and pulled it back. Amishi stretched her hands back and let him take it off. She was now sitting there in her shirt.
"Okay, about my age." she slurred again "I am sorry, Mr. Bose, I know this night is all about you, but I want to say a few words to the rest of these gentlemen, if it is okay with you."
"Sure." Mr. Bose said with a mix of confusion and amusement.
"Okay, gentlemen." she said looking at them and trying to gather some words. "So I am 28. We know that. And you are all in your 40s and 50s. But that only makes you older. And me younger. Nothing more. You know what I mean?"
The men smiled at each other and nodded.
"So what I am saying is, age is age. Remember that age has nothing to do with how you perform." she continued.
"Well, it has something to do with performance for sure." Reddy said and started laughing. All the men in the room started laughing too, and this annoyed Amishi.
"Stop. Don't laugh. What I am saying is, what matters to me is performance and to you too it should matter as well, that is my performance. It is all about performance." Amishi said, sensing that she was rambling, "Anyway, what I am saying is, just because I am younger does not mean you can push me around. I deserve respect too."
"Sure, sure, we respect women like you a lot!" Singh said and they all started laughing again.
"Okay, Singh, that.... that is very rude of you. I don't like it. You understand?" Amishi said, raising her voice. "Remember, just because I am younger than you does not mean I will shy from riding you all hard. If I don't get the performance I expect, I will ride you all very hard. Get it?"