Charlotte Finds A New Employment : Ch.3 : Strippers
Chapter 3 : Strippers
Charlotte found herself relaxing as they served the food. The Chinese men were polite mainly, saying ‘thankyou’ a lot and smiling. Amongst themselves they spoke Chinese at the table and she did not know what on earth they were talking about. But she found each time she approached a table some or other of the men on the table, and sometimes the whole table, would turn their attention to her. They asked her innocuous questions like, “Where do we go to eat good English food around here?” or “Have you met the King?” Nowadays the King’s Palace, Buckingham, in the centre of London, was falling to pieces, and the Royal Purse could not afford the workmen and materials to restore it. Balmoral had long been sold to a Saudi prince!
“No I never met the King,” she laughed. “I hear he travels about still in taxis, but he hasn’t been abroad for a long time.”
To make conversation, as the Chinaman had encouraged them to do, she asked the Far Eastern men about where they came from and which line of work they were in, without becoming too dull or nosey. Many of them worked for Far Eastern conglomerates, and were here to site cheap labour factories in the fallen West, or they had come to buy up properties or nearly collapsed British interests from their impecunious owners.
The City of London as the financial hub of the world economy had collapsed quickly those few years ago. Newer stock exchange trading markets had been developing in China and other areas of the East. Shanghai and Hong Kong became the centre of gravity of the world’s investment markets. The biggest corporations were now in the East, and trade in their shares took place there, not in London. Even New York’s Wall Street had declined. It was still big and influential, but the USA was not what it had once been.
The stockbrokers had shed staff and closed offices. The money had drained out of London in stages. It had not happened all at once. Financial markets and the property market had slowed and crashed. The markets stabilised in turn and then crashed again, resulting in an inexorable collapse. The money had seemed to flow out of London with the River Thames.
“Are you married lady,” asked one of the Chinese men, who seemed to be looking at her with close interest.
“I am,” she replied honestly.
“What will your husband think of you coming here with us?”
“I don’t know! But he’ll have to accept it if I do tell him. There’s no money coming from anywhere else.”
“We are sorry if we place you in a difficult situation. You have something we wish to acquire, while we have plenty of something you wish for. Therefore we do a trade. It is a fair trade?”
“I suppose it is,” she agreed, “and quite an adventure too,” she giggled, feeling nervous about what might be to come.
The Chinaman placed his hand in her naked crotch. She felt invaded, like a product to be tested and purchased, and yet thrilled at the same time. The thrill of a stranger’s hand between her legs was something new, exciting. For many years now nothing good, nothing different or exciting had happened to her. This in a sense was another humiliation to pile upon her other woes; but instead it excited her. She liked to be wanted, not for the work she could do, but because she was a woman, for the person she was. To think that strangers could make her feel wanted in this way was good. Her body was not her persona, but it was part of the real her. She tingled because it was not her husband touching her. She realised her husband’s touch had become too familiar. At last someone else, it did not necessarily matter who, was interested in her.
After the food, and while the businessmen were being served their coffees and drinking more alcohol if they chose, it was time for the strip show to begin. The lights dimmed further and a spotlight hit the ‘stage’. Two younger ladies, attractive early twentysomethings hit the stage, one at a time and then together. The first to appear was blonde and classically built, like a naked magazine model of years gone by, tanned skin, as if she had been on holiday in the South of France or Majorca, where models went in the old days. Without doubt she had a beautiful strong face. The other was brown haired and slim, possessing the natural grace of youth. They danced against an imaginary pole, bending and smiling erotically, while their flimsy clothes peeled off one by one. How could they dance so beautifully? They both looked fabulous.
She supposed that she had almost looked that good when she was younger, but now she sagged in some of those places, and her flesh did not seem so smooth. Charlotte raged with jealousy. She had been feeling good about this party. The eastern men seemed appreciative of them and had condescended to flirt with them. She had been feeling that these men would be glad to pay for sexual favours from them all. With the arrival of these young beauties the charm of her friends and herself, inexorably entering middle age seemed to evaporate. Every one of these men would be aching for contact with the young ladies’ fresh beauty. She knew they were beautiful. They were completely gorgeous. She almost wanted to touch them herself. They were so sexual, even though she had never been one for experimenting with other women. It would have been like touching her own daughter. She could never do that! She had no doubt the men would not feel that way about their age difference with these young ladies.
As they came off stage through the enraptured ranks of Far Eastern men the applause was loud. The men were polite too, as if every one of them was behaving themselves in case they might be lucky enough to receive the favours of the young goddesses. The Chinaman, who was hosting the evening at the microphone, spoke in Chinese to the guests. Presumably he was thanking the ‘girls’ and remarking upon their energising performance. Sharon leaned towards the Chinese gentlemen closest to her at their table. “What’s he saying?”
“He say thankyou to young ladies for beautiful performance. He say we can ask them later if any of us would like more private and personal show, but he is not sure they will do anything extra. They have fulfilled their contract and have been paid well for their performance, he say. He also say he will ask would any of you waitresses like to have a go at striptease on stage for short while.”
“No fear,” said Charlotte. “There is no way I am going to make a fool of myself up there, particularly after those youngsters have shown us how it should be done.”
“Its only a bit of fun,” said Sharon. “They don’t expect us to be too professional. I think I might have a go, not on my own though. Aw come on Charlotte. It’ll be fun. Can’t you see these gentlemen are all hot for it. Haven’t you seen the way they’re all over you already. You’ll look great. They’re gagging for you!”
“Would any of you waitress ladies be willing to do a short strip for the men? You will all of you, I am sure, reveal yourselves to the businessmen soon as our party warms up, although perhaps not on the main stage. It would be nice to see what you have to offer us. Please come up, don’t be shy. I know you will all be appreciated.” The Chinaman made his offer in English to the ladies. He seemed to know Sharon was tempted to take the stage, must have seen it on her face, because he looked at her straight and asked her directly, “I can see you pretty woman might be persuaded. Why don’t you. It need not be for long!”
“Come on Charlotte get up with me. I don’t want to do it on my own,” said Sharon.
“Not after what we’ve just seen. Definitely not! Those two young things were in the prime of life, and they know how to dance. I can’t compete with that, even you can’t.” Sharon realised there was no way Charlotte was getting up there in front of these daunting Far Eastern men.
Even if Charlotte had enjoyed being a performer she would not have wanted that kind of humiliation. In the past she had been regarded as attractive. She had believed herself to be attractive. But these last few years had seen a lowering of her estimations of herself. The economy had made her a smaller person than she had been in her youth, and awareness of her age made her doubly cautious. She had never been one so proud of her body that she would reveal it to strangers.
Sharon, on the other hand, appeared to be whipped up by the flattery she had received from the tongues and eyes of the Far Eastern men. Sharon knew she was judged a beauty. She had proved that she was well regarded by men, and she knew it well. There had been a time, in recent years, when Sharon had offered herself to men for money on the streets of London. She knew well their passion for her.
“Come lady I can see you wish to please us,” said the Chinaman, “I think you have a body to match the young ladies we have just seen. Come, give us a showing!”
“Well I’ll see if Veronica will do it with me,” Sharon whispered to Charlotte. “It’s just a bit of fun!”
Sharon beckoned to Veronica, gesturing towards the stage and winking meaningfully, but Veronica glared back angrily, “No way” she said. I’m here for the money and I don’t want to be embarrassed any more than I have to be thankyou!
Another woman whom Sharon knew well, but Charlotte did not, was persuaded to perform.
“I will pay you an extra 40 pounds, ladies if you strip in front of the men, on the stage,” chimed the Chinaman, just at the right moment to persuade Carole to perform. Charlotte could see the direct effect of the offer of extra money upon her face. Greed or need infected the woman with the extra courage she needed to bare all. Carole was a slim, tall woman with pleasant features, but Charlotte wasn’t sure she would have the grace of the younger women who had just performed.
“Okay Sharon! I am a bit nervous but if you take centre stage, I’ll do it!” said Carole.
“That’s all I’m asking for, some back up so I don’t feel all alone,” said Sharon. “We don’t have to be perfect. Yim only wants us to up the atmosphere, to get the party going. All we have to do is take our clothes off in front of these men. I don’t think they’re too fussy somehow.”
The DJ put a vibrant soul classic on the sound system. That was their cue to mount the stage and show these men what they had.
“I love this record,” declared Sharon. “We can dance to this I’m sure.”
“If we can’t dance to this then we can’t dance to anything,” said Carole, following Sharon onto the stage. The lights fell upon them catching them in the spotlight. Sharon began to dance as if this were one of those nightclubs, which, just a few years before, she used to frequent. Carole followed her leave, a good mover it seemed. Without much further ado Sharon bent over to offer her backside, wiggling it gracefully, letting the men see the shape of her body, even before it became unclothed.
Carole copied her, performing a similar movement. The stagelight found its focus, emphasising the two beauties on the stage by illuminating them as they tantalisingly allowed their attire to drop away by degrees. Charlotte could see the reactions of the foreign men as they became enchanted by the revealed nakedness. She could see that Sharon’s ample body was in great shape. She was a natural beauty and she moved in such a naturally sexual way that the men adored her. Carole was inspiring them too. In the stagelight, which altered in colour and brightness, she looked mysterious, her lovely dark hair, and the slender taut torso, creating a definite response in the crowd. Some of the Chinese men were more open in their interest than others. They came forward to the stage to get close to the two objects of desire upon it. They cheered and clapped to the right movements, and the increasing nudity. Others stayed seated further back.
The Chinaman who had fondled her crotch through her skirt and panties before the food was served had gone forward for the young strippers and stayed there for Sharon and Carole’s strip, looking mesmerised by the ladies in the spotlight. Charlotte felt released from immediate pressures, but perhaps a little peeved that the man who had seemed to be showing her so much interest before had gone off to ogle the strippers.
Meanwhile a Chinaman on Charlotte’s table had one hand beneath the table, and a concentrated expression upon his face. As she glanced towards him she could see movement, fairly gentle, as his hand massaged what must be his cock underneath the table. Realising that no one observed her at present, while the action of her friends upon the stage continued, she observed the man again.
‘How disgusting,’ she thought to herself. ‘Men can be quite pathetic!’ She knew men, her husband and earlier boyfriends all retained a private sexual life, even when their sexual life with her had been good or active. Most of them liked to wank sometimes. Men would always be motivated by the images of varied or beautiful women. Her inner thoughts relented almost immediately. She was actually quite aroused by the furtive activity she was witnessing. It seemed a long time since she had seen a man actively aroused, and many years since she had seen anything like this in a public place. Recent years had become so money orientated, so drab and dowdy. Sexual adventure of any sort, whether in fantasy or reality had ceased to be a priority or even a likelihood. The idea that this man might be so turned on by her friend Sharon, or by Carole, made her slightly jealous, but that perversely made her feel she was losing out on the action.
Veronica was sat closer to the man who stroked his cock. Charlotte was stunned to see Veronica, who had completely refused to strip minutes ago, sidling up closer to the man in the offstage darkness. Clandestinely she reached under the table towards his cock and lent her hand to the stroking of it. She saw him clearly nod his appreciation.