The Marriage Bureau for Rich People
Mr. Ali nodded and suddenly remembered. 'Ha, ha!' he said. 'There is one important detail I forgot to mention. His mother is no more. She has gone to heaven.'
He pointed a finger up towards the sky.
Mr Raju was still frowning, but his wife brightened up.
'You mean...' she began.
'That's right, interrupted Mr Ali, 'your daughter won't have a mother-in-law. You know what they say: a woman without a mother-in-law is a very fortunate daughter-in-law.'
A Guide to the Birds of East Africa
For the last three years Mr Malik - brown, short, round and balding though he may be - has been passionately in love with Rose Mbikwa.
Valeria's Last Stand
Good Girls Shouldn't
Veena S Halai
Three Bags Full
"They don't have a pit there, but the dead don't just decay either. it looks like a garden, not a vegetable garden, but a garden anyway, and all very tidy. And do you know what they said about that garden?" Othello looked round at them, his eyes sparkling. They said it belonged to God".
The sheep stared at each other in horror. Fancy planting dead people in your garden! They liked God less and less.
'Your face certainly rings a bell.'
'Yours too. You look different though.'
'Yes, I'm the only woman here who's drenched in sweat,' said Emma, plucking at the fabric beneath her arms.
'You mean "perspiration".'
'Actually, no, this is sweat. I look like I've been dragged from a lake. Natural silk my eye!'
'Sort of an oriental theme, isn't it?'
'I call it my Fall of Saigon look. Chinese technically. Of course the trouble with one of these dresses is forty minutes later you want another one!' she said, and had that feeling, halfway through the sentence that she would have been better off not starting it. Did she imagine it, or did he roll his eyes a little? 'Sorry.'
'That's okay. I really like the dress. In fact me love it long time.'
A Civil Campaign
Lois McMaster Bujold
'Offer of what?' Rosalie wasn't likely to be bringing her a new garden design contract. But surely she couldn't mean -
'Marriage, what else? And from a proper Vor gentleman, too, I'm pleased to report. So old fashioned of the man, he sent a Baba all the way from Vorbar Sultana to your Da in South Continent - it quite bowled the old man over. Your Da called Hugo to pass on the particulars. We decided that after all that baba-ing rather than do it over the comconsole someone ought to tell you the good news in person. We're all so pleased to think you might be settled soon.'
The Stars in the Bright Sky
'That cheating besom's carrying her pint.'
Dona Nicanora's Hat Shop
'So tell me what that is,' the mayor said, defeated.
'Banana pancakes and computers,' Consuela replied. That's what keeps them here,' and she banged the table again with delight. The mayor had only to look around him to see at last that Consuela was right. Dona Consuela's Cyber Kitchen was humming. At last he understood what made the foreigners flock to the far-flung corners of the world. Consuela had the answer: pancakes and computers. These people would happily, willingly and diligently come to the depths of the remotest and primitive regions as long as when they got there they could buy a cup of milky, frothy coffee and spend the rest of their day in a dank smoke-filled room sending messages home.
She gives and she gives and she gives, he said. And she asks for nothing in return . . .
And he smiled almost tearily. Graziella smiled magnanimously.
Well you give too, darling, she said smiling.
And then she threw him a lascivious glance and laughed her famous laugh. He leaned over and kissed her on the mouth.
Fantastic, I thought. We're watching live gerontophiliac porn. Title : Idiot geriatric egotist goosed unhinged metisse interpreter.
I wondered where the evening could go from here. By now they were well into a deep soggy French kiss and were touching each other in strategic places. What was most disturbing was that every now and then Graziella looked at me and my husband and smiled.
Pursuit of Alice Thrift
'Of course you were," said their mother, 'but she's in Jesus' house now and free of pain, God rest her soul.'
Still, I was hoping to prove myself the kind of pleasant conversationalist who gets invited back. 'Where does purgatory come in?' I asked. 'I mean, under your afterlife guidelines, wouldn't she still be there?'
All the Frawleys were taking sips from their respective milk glasses or searching inside their potato skins for neglected morsels.
'Alice needs a weekend off,' said Leo.
Cooking with Fernet Branca
Life According to Lubka
'An! Aff! An! Aff! Vater! Stop! Vater! Stop!'
Zveta's blouse is soaked, Dora's backed herself into a vacant stall, seems to think it is the work of the Devil and by the look of Kichka's bulging pocketbook she's cleaned the place out of paper towels. This tour could turn out like a first grade field trip.
The Making of Henry
He can't eat. There is an obstruction where the food should pass. He can't drink either, all fluids gathering in a dam halfway down his oesophagus. Intermittently the dam bursts, leaking acids into Henry's system. This is how you know you're in love when you're Henry's age. It feels like indigestion. So anyone observing Henry and Lachlan when they meet on the stairs would guess they were competing to see who could hit his own chest harder. Some mornings they do no more than burp at each other as they pass.
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