Baby, check my dolls
By Neel Anil Panicker
He insists that she carry the teddy bears, all three, in her arms.
The last of the shoe-button black eyes have been stitched back into the softness of the mohair fur fabric when Benny holds grey Papa by the ears, and hands him to her along with white Mamma, and little brown Johnny.
Elena words her refusal in terms he will appreciate.
“While there is comfort in having you around, don’t you think three of these would arouse suspicion”?
She considers adding that even the fact that a lone woman past thirty carrying just one teddy bear in her arms would spell trouble, but decides but decides that this would overstate the point.
Benny chides her for being worried but warns that even now, especially with last month’s seizures across three airports__one each in Beijing, Hongkong, and Colombo__ security measures are still very tight, in fact very tight, he adds, and that she must play her role of a mature girl bringing surprise presents for her three adorable nieces to perfection, and not slip up, neither in her walk nor look.
“And there will be the papers, too”, forged off course, he says.
Elena had imagined this moment often—her first participation, in an international crime of this magnitude—but it seems odd that Benny, the smartest man she had ever met in her life, had chosen that her first ‘trip’ would be to Dubai, an airport she knew had the best machines and highest security checks.
She once again voices her concerns to Benny and as usual he brushes them aside with his customary braggadocio, explaining that a woman with an armful of teddy bears can easily pass through the green channel without much unwelcome attention and that this is a risk worth taking, adding, “for three million dollars, for us, for our baby, and our future together”.
Soothing though the words were, the question that kept niggling her as the two stepped out of the apartment was how come Miss Fanny Mendelssohn Agnethe, Assistant Professor of Anthropological Studies from the University of Heidelberg didn’t know a word of German.
Written for flash fiction challenge by