Ngo-kwang said, “Yesterday, while kneeling at attention for Ms. Mao, I noticed the floor was warm.” Mailgirls, being naked at all times, could sense things that clothed people could not, for example Ngo-kwang, sensitive to sensations on her bare knees and bare feet.
“You should tell Tang, then. It might be a heating problem on 5.” Ms. Mao’s office was on 6.
“Oh gosh, I don’t want to do that. I hate that man!”
“I’ll go with you,” Tami said.
The five-pointed star of foot massagers was sitting on the open platform they shared on the ground floor, that served as their bed, their dining room, and their hangout. The quiet burble of their voices echoed through the huge space, interrupted only by grunts from the HVAC system, or the aquarium on 4 outside Ms. Hua’s office. Their breasts jiggled as they vigorously worked on plantar muscles and metatarsal tendons, and intertwined fingers with toes.
Huiqing’s cell phone gave its little “ding!”, signaling the end of footstretch. The naked Mailgirls got up, worked the kinks out of their legs, then rummaged around their bags, checking out the “booty” they had gotten on their second trip to the local mall. Once a month they were allowed to leave the building and were taken by limo downtown. They were allowed to buy anything they wanted (that is, except clothes or shoes) up to a total of 60,000 Yuan between them (about 1000 American dollars), on the Hsa business card.
Huiqing picked up a big bottle of red sauce. “What is this?”
“That’s Cantonese hot sauce,” Xifeng said. “Careful it’s hot. Like I’m hot right now!” She pulled Ngo-kwang up by the arm and led her to the stairs. They all knew what that meant. Xifeng, the hung-up child of a religious shrine keeper and farmer from down near Vietnam, had broken through to her first-ever orgasm here during the second week, and ever since then had become an orgasm hog, wanting five or six at a time, every night and every morning. Ngo-kwang, by now an “out” lesbian, was the most skillful at pleasing her, and had become her favorite. She gave the others a tolerant, exasperated smile as she was led along. They heard two pairs of leathery soles scampering up the stairs, five and six and seven flights (easy for a Mailgirl), until they got to the hog’s favorite spot, that alcove on 8 with the two chairs she could really spread her legs on, leaving Ngo-kwang with a clear tongue-path to her open vagina and anus. Soon they heard Xifeng’s loud cries echoing through the atrium.
“She’s right, it’s incredibly hot,” Yingtai said, referring to the Cantonese sauce.
“Let me try,” Tami said, having to raise her voice. “I like hot stuff.” By now they were used to conversing with Xifeng’s orgasms as a backdrop.
“Ohhh!! Jesus!!” That wasn’t Xifeng, but Tami, trying the sauce -- just two drops on a tortilla shell. She hopped around, mouth open, tongue out. Only an emergency glass of milk from the fridge put out the fire. Afterwards she lay prone, her nipples scraping the rough carpet, sweat on her forehead. “How the hell can anyone -- what possible purpose does that stuff serve?? Who created it? Why does it exist??” The others looked on in amusement.
Of course more practical things had been purchased -- new electronic gadgets, cushions to sit back on, candles. And things that make girls feel pretty, despite being deprived of clothes and shoes -- bows and highlights for their hair, makeup, fingernail and toenail polish, sparkles to sprinkle over the tops of their breasts, even a little wide-toothed comb that turned out to be perfect for preparing their pubic hair for the world’s gaze.
“Do you think it’s okay to put on rainbow nails?” Yingtai had said once, during a foot stretch. “I think so,” Tami said. She was the big sister they went to for advice. “But,” she said, “if your nails said ‘f**k me’, like Xifeng might do, they would not take kindly to that.” That got a laugh.
That was their second outing. Their first had not gone so smoothly. It was a bitingly cold day and they had not been outside since being stripped. Cringing in the foyer, they wondered if they would survive the 100 yards of icy sidewalk that led to the limo, where the driver was waiting in his gloves, Russian hat and overcoat. Tami set an example. “A few seconds out there won’t hurt you! Watch.” She strode slowly and comfortably, taking a full three minutes, as if not feeling the frigid Siberian wind attacking every inch of her nakedness. Walking slowly is necessary, she explained, because ice is slippery under a girl’s bare feet. Inside the limo, they hugged each other in the big back seat during the 50-kilometer drive.
Once in the mall they were protected by security guards who watched from a distance. They tried to ignore the shocked stares from housewives and doctors and teachers and kids. “In the building they expect us to be naked,” Huiqing explained later, “but at that mall, walking in front of all those surprised people, it was different.” Indeed they had at first covered their nipples and pussies with their hands as they walked along, despite Tami discouraging it. Eventually they realized they couldn’t cover up and carry bags at the same time. “I was afraid my parents would be there!” Ngo-kwang said, even though their families lived hundreds of miles away. Finally, they could not decide what to buy. Only a last-minute splurge on expensive skin cream got them up to 60,000.
Huiqing lingered at the window of a clothing store, then found that Tami was standing next to her. Tami had a dry mouth, but cleared her throat and said, “You shouldn’t torture yourself. Let’s go.”