tagNovels and NovellasNo Future Ch. 42

No Future Ch. 42

bybradley_stoke©

XLII

A Well-Rounded Education

Primrose

2086




"Have you told your mother?" asked the voice at the other end of the phone line.

"Of course not, Gran," replied Primrose. "What do you think she'd say?"

"She wouldn't be pleased," said Karen to her granddaughter. "But such an innocent name: Empire Cleaning Services. Who would have thought?"

"It's a career," said Primrose.

"What's wrong with teaching, dear? Your mum's a teacher. I was a teacher. Isn't that a career?"

Primrose cast her eyes around Trafalgar Square where she was sitting on a bench. Lord Nelson was gazing down on her. Chinese and Vietnamese tourists were snapping photographs of the grand historic sites. Surrounding the square were bicycle rickshaws and a few hydrogen powered buses. She'd had this conversation with her grandmother so many times before.

"There aren't many opportunities any more, Gran," she said. "No one can afford to send their children to school these days. The fees and everything are too high."

"Whatever happened to free compulsory education?" her grandmother wondered. "What's this country coming to?"

"There aren't the jobs anymore," said Primrose. "There's hardly anything that can't be done by robots or computers. Most office jobs have disappeared. For what jobs there are you don't need a degree to do them."

"Like your job," said Primrose's grandmother bitterly. "All that education your mother's paid for. Do you think you'll ever be able to pay off your student loans?"

"I will now, Gran," said Primrose. "It's good money. And there are some management opportunities as well."

"It just doesn't seem right."

"You never had any objection to having sex with whoever you wanted," said Primrose.

"No one's ever paid me for it, dear. And I'm too old now to have more than the one man in my life. If it wasn't for the wonders of modern medicine, I wouldn't be able to have sex at all any longer. I'd just be an old spinster watching TV all day."

"You don't do doing badly, Gran," said Primrose. "You're not going to tell Mum, are you?"

"I don't betray confidences, dear. Why is it you can tell me all this and not your mother?"

"I guess because she's my Mum."

"Fair enough."

Primrose continued her chat while she also enjoyed the warmth from the spring sun on her bare arms and watched a gang of town pigeons that were pecking the ground about her feet. Rats and mice scurried about amongst the crumbs that tourists had scattered to feed the pigeons. They were much bolder than Primrose remembered them being when she was a child, but nowadays there was a lot more rubbish blowing about the streets since the council could no longer afford to employ street-cleaners. Most of Central London was filthy and shabby and only the attractions that wealthy tourists frequented were in anything resembling a good condition. In any case, such places were far too expensive for people like Primrose. Only tourists and the wealthy could afford to visit museums, art galleries and the privatised London parks, which were ringed in by barbed wire, surveillance cameras and scurrying security robots.

Primrose bid her grandmother goodbye and scrolled through the display on her tablet. She idly perused her list of engagements for the rest of the day. She felt better for having spoken to her grandmother about her job. She didn't expect to be commended for it and it wasn't what she'd have chosen if there'd been much choice, but Empire Cleaning Services did offer reasonable prospects for a well-educated, presentable woman with an attractive body and an appetite for sexual adventure. There might be some clients whose needs and requirements Primrose had no intention of ever satisfying, but she didn't worry about them. The type of women who would agree to address such clients' expectations tended to be illegal immigrants and asylum seekers of which there was absolutely no shortage these days. She also had little intention of pursuing this career for very long. This was a young person's occupation, but it was one which would enable her to pay off her loans and help gather together the capital to invest in other more respectable business ventures.

It was a month now since Primrose began working for Empire Cleaning Services. It was one of a number of similar businesses throughout England, though she was told that her employer was at the service of the more prestigious and exclusive client. She'd been lucky to get through to the second interview. Such was the competition for available positions that a university education was almost essential. This was a contrast to even a decade or so earlier when such a business would more or less have to employ whoever it could find. Lesser candidates would have to work for rather less estimable escort agencies.

The interview required Primrose to demonstrate her suitability for the work she was expected to do and not surprisingly this was what she'd been most nervous about. It wasn't exactly something she could revise for. She understood from the friends who'd recommended her the company that prostitution was something you either had a talent for or didn't. Primrose had had a good number of lovers over the years for which, like her grandmother, she had not once expected to be remunerated, but she was sure that her sexual boldness would put her in good stead. She'd had a wide range of lovers of both sexes in several combinations at the same time and all her orifices had been tested many times.

No, she was able to say in her interview, she wasn't troubled by the fact that the majority of clients were middle-aged or older. Yes, she would be willing to work with one or more other employees if that was what the client requested. No, she didn't object to mild spanking, choking or bondage. Yes, she would consider satisfying some of the clients' more peculiar fetishes. And yes, there were limits to how rough and how abusive a client could be with her. Was that a problem?

"Not at all," said Katrina Haussmann, the German woman on the interviewing panel who'd introduced herself as a dominatrix. "There are several employees willing to go the extra mile, but few are quite as good-looking and well-educated as you."

Primrose now knew that for sure, though she could hardly be described as a veteran after having only worked in her new job for just over a fortnight. Several women employed by Empire Cleaning Services were obviously not employed for their youth or good looks. Most of these were immigrants of one kind or another who feared the very real threat of deportation. Many now came from the Holy Land from which there still came a steady stream of evacuees. There were many Arabs, several Indians, a few Africans and many from the irradiated Republic of Israel.

Although Primrose was anxious about giving a demonstration of her professional skills to the interview panel, it didn't turn out to be as bad as she'd dreaded. She wasn't required to have sexual intercourse, although her vagina and anus were closely examined for any potential problem that might hinder her ability to provide the services she was expected to perform. A handjob and blowjob were all she needed to demonstrate while the interview panel took notes, including the middle-aged gentleman to whom she was ministering,. As was explained to her, only a minority of customers really wanted a fuck and she wasn't normally expected to consent to this unless she felt comfortable.

"You may find that skills you'd never expected to use in this profession become rather more useful than just your receptiveness to vaginal penetration," said the dominatrix. "For instance, I was previously employed as a teacher in Physical Education. I notice you've trained to be an English and Drama teacher. You might find this expertise useful with clients who enjoy role-playing."

Primrose idly regarded Trafalgar Square. She had another hour or so until she needed to catch the tube to Maida Vale where she had an appointment with a client whose preference was exactly what Katrina the dominatrix had suggested. This would be her first appointment with the man identified as Percy although most probably that was not his real name. If he was anything like her other clients who'd specified a role-playing activity then this engagement would indeed be very much like the drama exercises she'd trained for at Teacher Training College. In this case, Percy was excited by the opportunity to play an infant to Primrose's mother. Although Primrose knew nothing about motherhood and she was in no doubt that masturbation wasn't normally associated with a maternal role, this was the kind of assignment she most enjoyed.

Not all assignments were especially pleasant. Some were quite distressing. But, as she'd learnt from her colleagues, this was something which given time and more assignments she'd soon take entirely in her stride.

"You've done it up the arse before, haven't you?" asked Kelly, a girl who probably came from Thailand or Cambodia.

"Yes," said Primrose. "But I'd been expecting it."

"And he used a condom, I hope?"

"Yes. I put it on him. Just the way we're told to."

"Next time you have a new client, make sure you have lube on hand," Kelly advised her. "Apply it before you do anything at all, just in case. It's a risk you take. Most clients don't fuck you about like that. They don't often overstep the mark. But if they do, make sure you reprimand them afterwards. Preferably after you've been paid. You've got to protect the other girls."

The gap between assignments was the best part of the job. It was like the spells in the school staff room that Primrose had once thought would be integral to her professional life. She could relax as she was doing now, suck a strong mint to disguise the sour taste of semen, and watch the world around her. This was glorious on a nice day though when it rained she had to kill time in a coffee shop or wine bar. She couldn't help notice that her absurdly prim but curiously impractical maid's costume attracted attention. How many maids wore such high heels and such sheer black stockings? Perhaps the people who so often stared at her knew exactly what services Empire Cleaning Services provided for its clients.

"There's a possibility you might actually be expected to do some cleaning," said Mrs. Haussmann. "It doesn't happen very often, but when a client has unexpected visitors this is a useful ruse if he doesn't want the real reason for your presence to be identified. Don't worry. You won't be expected to do a very good job and you'll get paid exactly the same amount."

Primrose had killed enough time and had to head off to her next appointment. She strode across Trafalgar Square past the stone lions at the foot of Nelson's Column and down the steps to the underground. It was almost as bad travelling by tube as it was to do the work for which she was paid. The decrepit trains were always crowded and broke down rather too frequently. She'd several times had to abandon a journey when the train got stuck in a tunnel and she'd had to improvise the rest of her journey by a series of rickshaws and even, in an emergency, a hydrogen-fuel taxi.

Her current destination was a part of London she'd never been to before. There was a possibility that it might be relatively interesting but it was more likely to be rather depressing. Primrose relied heavily on the satellite navigation app on her mobile phone to find the client's address and this invariably led her past decaying homes, dilapidated housing estates and the shanty towns that were sprouting up all over the more rundown parts of London. Her clients never lived in such places of course. They weren't the ones sitting on the kerb of the pavement trying to sell shoe repairs, battery charging or illicit drugs. They weren't the ones whose clothes were greasy, unwashed and patched up. Where the clients lived there was always a reliable source of electricity, water flowed from the taps and rooms were temperature-controlled.

Nevertheless, there was a price to pay for this affluence as Primrose noticed when she arrived at the security gate of the type she always needed to pass through to get to a client's home. Surrounding the property was the inevitable elaborate security. There were high walls, electric fences and face-recognition cameras all around the estate.

Her clients were isolated from the poor and downtrodden not only by virtue of their relative wealth, but even more so by fear and disgust.

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