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Her Lady Tigress
Writer Miss Anderson
  • G: General Audiences
  • PG: Parental Guidance Suggested
  • PG-13: Parents Strongly Cautioned
  • R: Restricted
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Her Lady Tigress
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Think hard, Speak softly.
Miss Anderson
Apr 16, 2018
7 Mins Read
No Plagiarism!fYr7BLbWiCCvC8dHy2xFposted on PENANA

"Madhuri, Nandita, I am so disappointed in you! Going to a party is one thing, but Mehul finds you behaving...like harlots?!" Bapi scolds. 43Please respect copyright.PENANAk39OGu1JSZ
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"Bapi, harlots, really? How can you say that? We were being teenagers! We aren't perfect. It's called FUN!"43Please respect copyright.PENANAO6U9ex3tiP
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"Madhuri, you better watch your mouth!" He puts a frustrated hand on his forehead. "I know I'm strict, but I do it for a reason.  Don't you understand?"43Please respect copyright.PENANAro73weTwUS
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"Yes, Bapi," Nandita snaps. "We understand that you PRETEND to care for us when your 'family' isn't around and then when they come around, you act like we are NOTHING to you---insignificant----and Emaye is just your mistress----"copyright protection39PENANAeHA9nfmpxS

Emaye steps forward, her expression threatening and intimidating all at once.copyright protection39PENANA85DQ4w8PAo

"Madhuri, Nandita, that will be enough. I am no one's mistress, for one. What your father and I had when we were young was done after you were born and before he was married. I am no one's fool. He takes care of us because you are his daughters. You understand that, girl?"43Please respect copyright.PENANAjeVt3CX5mP
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Nandita nods.copyright protection39PENANA83KJd7YAwv

"No, no, no." She lifts Nandita's chin sternly. "Hold your head up when you are talking to me. You didn't have any problem holding your head up when you insulted me. Speak up, where I can HEAR you."copyright protection39PENANAsFA6vFCEuc

"Yes ma'am, Emaye."copyright protection39PENANA2otiQ3y4Eo

"Now, I told you that I would THINK about the party. But you go and lie to Julie and Robert." She shakes her head. "They just try to look out for you. I told you that you could go if you were open with your father about it. You KNEW I would convince him for you, but he buys you all these new school clothes. He put them shoes on your feet, right there. Despite how you feel about him, you had no problem wearing them to the party." She nods her head to Nandita's converse. "You were smiling in his face when he brought you that new bag. Abhi, Mou, people make mistakes, but you have the decency to respect them for what they do right---especially if they don't have to do it. Your father doesn't have to go out and buy you nice things. Name brand is not a requirement for your care. You understand me? I'm not saying he is the best father in the world, and I'm sorry that our lives are quite dysfunctional.copyright protection39PENANA7MrRvFYufv

"But he DOES do something right, and you suddenly think he is the best father in the world when you are getting all the perks. Therefore, I expect your RESPECT to at least be consistent. He IS in your life, pays for your trips, buys for you like princesses. Whatever he may not do---to the best of your ability, you respect him for what he DOES do." Suddenly, she frowns at us. "And what's more, I work my BUTT off for you two. Every breath I TAKE, I'm thinking about you. And you couldn't even call and confirm with ME?" She strikes her chest with emphasis, but her hand stays there as if trying to hold together her shattered heart. "Honesty and integrity are priceless, girls. My point is that there was NO reason to lie about this, or to deceive anyone."copyright protection39PENANAZIbAOGgrlL

Nandita backs up against the door with her head bowed. I steal a glance at the clock on the office desk that reads a quarter til ten. After dropping off Roman first, Mehul and Jayanand waited with us until our parents got home about thirty minutes ago. Mehul tattled, and we were immediately escorted to the office. copyright protection39PENANADo97GZbf3P

I swallow hard, meeting Emaye's cold gaze. "Does this mean I can't go on the trip?"copyright protection39PENANADaB517K0B0

"You are already committed, so you're going. Together tonight, your father and I emailed your teacher personally to tell her what an amazing attribute we expect our daughter to make to this wildlife park. We intend to sponsor you personally, so another spot opened up for someone else to go. You see?"copyright protection39PENANAvBIGcwnsXJ

"Emaye. Bapi." I am speechless and somewhat ashamed. Despite our dysfunctional family, we must admit that our parents are always willing to go the extra mile, and that alone deserves SOME respect...even if Bapi completely disowns us when his wife and other children are around. He is at every game, every ballet recital, funding every trip within reason, providing the nicest clothes and shoes...and of course, Emaye, well, she's always been there.copyright protection39PENANAdB7mJOlU3p

Emaye clucks her tongue. "HOWEVER, for the next month, some of the staff will take paid vacations. Your chores will now consist of cleaning up after breakfast, helping Robert and Julie in the mornings, and keeping the pool house clean. You will go to school, and you will come home and study. I expect all A's this semester."copyright protection39PENANAKHzmNBtxC5

"No," Bapi argues. "They will come reside in my mansion, where they can be supervised at all times and where they can learn from their sister and brother. They will all be homeschooled together."copyright protection39PENANAx7GfOSMclK

"No way! I'm not living in the same house with your stuck-up wife and spoiled kids---"43Please respect copyright.PENANA4aWZjbwnFP
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"Yes, Madhuri, but they are twice individuals you have become---"43Please respect copyright.PENANAc6dk9Jy3gs
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"Of course you would think that---"copyright protection39PENANAGuBnKpgxCB

"Madhuri, Nandita, ENOUGH!" Emaye snaps. Turning to Bapi, she replies in a softer, more hesitant tone, "Workneh, you will NOT take my daughters from me."43Please respect copyright.PENANAVzHR3Lt0QP
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"They are my daughters too."copyright protection39PENANAl1wXgDn8fk

"We will NOT go with you," I argue. "We stay together, and we stay with our mother!"43Please respect copyright.PENANAQV0MUkYrHD
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"You are MY daughters, and you will do what I say. I expect your things packed in the morning."copyright protection39PENANAapMk3mpNML

"Workneh---"copyright protection39PENANAy8M453IscX

"You have done well with them, Konnie, but they obviously need a stronger hand now. It is time for them to be preened into young women." He puts his hand on her shoulder.  "My wife will teach them everything they need to know about etiquette and honor. I will tell her that you have reached hard times and I have taken them on so that they won't have to go to foster--"copyright protection39PENANANOTC1ccELj

"Like I'm what, Workneh?! Some kind of charity case?" She leans back and puts her hand on her hip. "You will NOT take my daughters from me."43Please respect copyright.PENANAgUJufTeNWu
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"You left Emaye to go be with your wife, and we don't want to learn anything from your wife, Bapi. Emaye is a better woman than she will ever be," I put in.43Please respect copyright.PENANAfS4XJ8Id8z
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"Your wife doesn't even like us. She treats us like second-class citizens. I HATE her!"43Please respect copyright.PENANA3Yu4LppJR7
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I dodge to the side as Emaye grabs Nandita sternly by the arm. Muttering something in amharic, she tightens her grip meaningfully. "What have I always told you? You HATE no one, girl!" She turns back to me, trapped in a corner by a statue. "Your mouths is getting mighty out of control. You understand me? Now, that is ENOUGH!" Her tongue is lashing, and her accent is more prominent than ever---sending chills down my spine.43Please respect copyright.PENANAn826ChZQ4W
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Still, I shake my head. "We are only defending you, Emaye."43Please respect copyright.PENANAlkOqhyy0MH
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Sniffling a couple of times, Nandita bursts into tears. "Emaye, PLEASE don't let him take us away. They will treat us like trash, and he won't care. He disowns us when they are around. You KNOW that."copyright protection39PENANAeHkyugTtnS

Equally frustrated, Emaye releases my sister, and I snatch her into the corner against me. "Workneh, you are not taking my daughters."43Please respect copyright.PENANAzPG4Urujbl
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"Then you can get out of my hotel. I will not be disrespected in my own establishment, Konjit." Bapi stalks toward the door. "Now, I mean it. Pack you shit, and get out. I try to take care of you and our daughters, and you won't even let me have a say in their upbringing. Nah, nah, woman. They are smart alecks just like you."43Please respect copyright.PENANAqyttF6KEXO
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Emaye frowns at him. "You would put me and your children on the street?"copyright protection39PENANAndxHM2XFvl

"You don't need me." He glances at Nandita, hurt reflected in his eyes. "THEY don't need me."43Please respect copyright.PENANAAi9pJrYhrK
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"Workneh, where will we go? They don't know any different than these rooms---"copyright protection39PENANAjz58HXnIkm

"I do not care where you go, Konjit. I have been disgraced for the last time. Get out of my business, or I will escort you out." He opens the door. "My FAMILY will be here in the morning. Any sign of your existence will be given to charity."copyright protection39PENANAyHA5pm7m2D

Emaye seems to shrink two sizes. "Your mother would be ashamed of you---"copyright protection39PENANAIAoTU63zLa

"My MOTHER has nothing to do with this, so keep her name out of your mouth." He holds a finger under Emaye's nose, but she slaps it away.copyright protection39PENANAe4KkdsiAaC

I am frozen like the statue on the table beside me. Grabbing my wrist, Emaye pulls me behind her. 43Please respect copyright.PENANAZ1zF6u7AOi
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"We don't need anything from you," Nandita replies coldly, and I feel Emaye's grip tighten around my wrist, willing us to shut up. 43Please respect copyright.PENANAVeRpIwvsbs
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Unlike my sister, I oblige but ask, "Where will we go?"43Please respect copyright.PENANAgMLqcuRaMj
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"Just pack your things, and hurry."43Please respect copyright.PENANAULkuqrYx1M
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"This is our fault, Emaye..." I whisper.copyright protection39PENANA5muCkc3oY4

She pulls me close and whispers in my ear, "It has been a long time coming, Mou. Time for us to stand on our own."copyright protection39PENANAeVk8CUfLMX

And so, our lives are about to change.copyright protection39PENANA5hC86QZFYN

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