The Price of Shelter


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The rain had started the moment she had left the beach and had been growing stronger and stronger since. Now Jane began to regret that she had staid longer to watch the sunset, while the others had left for yet another bar somewhere in the town over an hour ago. She had just needed some time for herself after being around people for days. The move from the United States to Spain had been stressful by itself. And since her arrival a little over a week ago, she was out with her fellow students all the time while organizing her new life in the spare time between parties, trips and various other student activities.

A wave of relief overwhelmed her as the first lights of the town came in sight at the end of the soaked sandy path. Her arms wrapped tightly around herself, she started to walk faster while warm rain was till poring own around her. By the time she reached the first buildings, her clothes were all soaked anyway, and her white shirt stuck tightly to her skin. It didn’t leave much of her body beneath to the imagination. Maybe it wasn’t all too bad after all that none of her fellow students were around any longer…

Despite the sudden onset of the rain, the streets were already fairly empty. Most tourists had probably returned to their hotels immediately when the first drops had started falling and the shops and cafes along the promenade just began to close too.

When she finally arrived at the bus stop, Jane cursed loudly. The place was only marked with a rusty old sign, but no bus shelter was to be seen. There was not even a timetable. No way to look up, when the next bus would come. And her phone battery had died hours ago. She sighted in resignation and gave the pole of the sign an angry kick. The way back home was too long to walk and despite the warm early October weather, the surprisingly cold rain would give her a serious cold if she could not find a dry place to stay.

Jane looked around. She could make out a night club down the street. Muffled but loud beats poured out onto the street, whenever the door opened. Groups of drunk students, tourists and locals huddled beneath the outside canopy. A bit closer, there also was an overfilled looking bar – but even the mere thought of squeezing herself in that small, muggy room gave her a headache. But it was not to be helped. And still better than going to the club in a wet shirt.

Just as she started to walk again, a metallic jarring sound behind her drew her attention. Jane turned her head and for the first time she noticed the small, dimly lit shop a few feet behind her. Just right now a young woman about her own age was about to close a series of foldable window panes, that could be pushed all the way to the side to open the room beyond towards the street.

Her heart began to beat faster, and she nervously tugged a soaking wet strand of hair behind her ear. Despite learning the language for years, Jane had not had many opportunities to use Spanish in an actual conversation with native speakers. But trying it now was as good as ever. She took a deep breath and headed through the still pouring rain towards the young women. As she came closer the girl looked up. She had a pretty, round face and smiled as she saw Jane approach.

“Oh, hello. I was sure there wouldn’t be any more customers today, so I was about to close up. But if you want something, we technically are not closed yet…”, she began in a cheerful voice. Jane had to smile too. The woman was easy to understand and seemed to be nice. Maybe it would not be that hard after all.

“No, thanks.”, she began, still searching for the right words in Spanish. “I was just wondering, if you could tell me when the next bus is going to come.”

The women shook her head and her short, brown locks danced around her face. “In around two hours. Or maybe tomorrow morning around 7 AM. Public transports are not very reliable around here…”

As she saw Jane’s miserable expression, she had to laugh. “Please don’t ask me why. But we all got used to it I suppose. Its why I got a car first thing after school.” After a moment of silence, the young women offered her hand. “Hi, I’m Alandra. I suppose you are not from around here?”

Jane took it happily and replied: “I’m Jane. Nice to meet you. I just moved here from the US. For university.”

“Well, nice to meet you, Jane. Anyway, please come in. I can’t let you stay out here now.” With a wide smile, she turned around and pulled Jane along in the shop behind her.

For the first time, Jane actually looked around the room. A queasy feeling grew in her, as she saw the shadowed silhouettes of padded seats, mirrors and drawers in the sparely lit room.

“This is a barbershop.”, she stated the obvious.

Alandra turned around with a surprised look on her face. “Of course, what did you think it was?” Jane shrugged uncomfortably. “I don’t know. I probably just didn’t notice.”

With a smooth fade the ceiling lights grew brighter as Alandra turned a switch on the wall.

“Please take a seat. I’ll be right back.” Alandra told her and then headed out through a door at the far side of the room. Jane looked around nervously. She had not been in a place like this for years. The last time probably had been when her mother had still taken her and her older brother to a barber, to get their haircuts together. That must have been until she had turned… maybe seven or eight? Her and her brother had always looked alike afterwards with almost the same short buzzcut. Her little sister had later been spared that fate. The memory made her smile for a moment. It was an awkward thought to take a seat in a barber’s chair again after all that time, without planning to get a haircut at that.

Nevertheless, she slowly let herself sink into one of the padded leather seats and spun it around to face the mirror.

Her light blond, lower-back long hair was still soaked from the pouring rain outside and wildly stuck to her face and torso. Her white shirt was in turn tightly stuck to her body and Jane could clearly see the red bikini beneath. In a vain attempt she pulled on the wet fabric but when she released it, it just sank back onto her skin and nothing was won. Jane sighted. She would have to wait until she was home. There was no chance of this getting dry any time soon.

At that moment Alandra’s mirror-image appeared behind her own. The young women had gotten rid of her green jacket and had rolled up the sleeves of her button-down shirt. With a wide smile she put her hands on Jane’s shoulders and asked: “So, what can I do for you today? Just some polishing or a real change?”

At first Jane was just too surprised to speak, then she carefully replied. “Well, I already told you I actually don’t need a haircut.” Then she added with a shy smile: “I just need a dry place to stay.”

But Alandra just shook her head and sent her locks bouncing in front of her face again before she began to gather them up into a loose bun. Only now Jane noticed her rather unique haircut for the first time; Her curly hair on top was cut into a short bob but the backside and the lower parts of the sides were shaved quite short. It quite prominently showed off the shape of her neck, when the hair was tied up this way.

“Noooo, no, no.”, the hairdresser replied in an almost lecturing tone, “I’m keeping the shop open for you, so you can’t expect me to just sit around, being bored, for the next two hours. I need to keep my fingers busy. This is a barbershop after all and people who come in here do get a haircut. It’s a matter of principal, you know. Just see it as a little compensation for sacrificing my evening. Quit pro quo or something of the sort.“ , she explained with her cheecy grin.

The flood of word overwhelmed Jane and she had to take a moment to truly comprehend what the young woman had said.

“Also,”, Alandra  added, while picking up one of Jane’s long, wet strands of hair, “you said you wouldn’t need a haircut? Seriously, it must be an eternity since you’ve last got a proper cut. You very well might not want one but take it from a professional: you definitely need one.”

With that Alandra turned around and disappeared from the mirror once again. Jane immediately spun her seat to look after her. She nervously chowed on her lip. An awkward mixture of fear and excitement had gradually risen inside her throughout Alandra’s little speech that made her stomach hurt.

She had never planned to get a haircut today, and all this went a bit too fast for her taste. She did not even have any idea of what kind of cut she wanted, or if she wanted one at all. With all the other things changing in her life, Jane just had not spent much thought on her hair recently. On the other hand, maybe this was a good first step to start off her new life around here…

“Alandra, seriously, I don’t even know…”

“Oh, come one! I’m sure you will like it. Just don’t think too much about it and let me do my thing.”

Alandra pushed a small cart on wheels up next to Jane’s seat. On the different levels of the small storage tower, there were boxes with all kind of equipment. With a gentle push, she turned the seat ninety degrees to the left, so that Jane faced out towards the rainy night outside.

Jane took a deep breath to calm herself down. It would be fine. Maybe this was not that bad after all. Alandra sure new what she was doing. She was a professional after all. And as she had said, it had been ages since her last proper haircut. In fact, since her early days of basically having a shorn head she only had had two major haircuts. The last time had been only a few months ago when her then roommate had chopped off almost a foot of her almost waist-long hair.

“OK. Fine. But just don’t go overboard. Maybe just take off an inch at the end and give it a nice shape again…”

Alandra did not reply. Instead, Jane could feel a towel being put around her head as the other girl started to dry her still wet hair. The light pressure of fingers on her scalp caused a pleasant prickling on her skin. Jane relaxed for a moment. After a while, the towel was put aside and Alandra grabbed a cape of slightly transparent, dark nylon. But just when she was about to put it around Jane’s neck, she hesitated.

“Sweetie, you really need to get rid of these wet clothes. You’ll get sick if you stay like that for the next few hours.” As Jane did not move right away, she added with a challenging grin: “Why so shy? I don’t think you are hiding something there I haven’t already seen. I can see that you’re wearing a bikini. So just get rid of the shirt.”

Jane could feel her face redden. She knew it was no big deal, she had spent hours at the beach, wearing nothing more. But this somehow felt like it was not only about her getting sick. “I guess.”, she muttered and stood up to pull her wet shirt off. The wet fabric would not let go of her skin at first and a lot of dragging and pulling was required until she was finally out of it. Jane dropped the wet bundle on the metal counter next to the mirror and then stepped out of her hot-pants too. She somehow felt naked but also relieved, as she could feel the still surprisingly warm air of the night on her damp skin.

Hesitantly, Jane sat back down on the chair and Alandra took a stripe of white crepe paper and tightly wrapped it around her neck. Then she began to brush through Jane’s long mane until she finally held all of it in a thick ponytail. With a casual, spinning move Alandra pulled the hair up to free Jane’s neck, while her other hand tossed the cape around her customer and closed the clip in the back of her neck. The material felt cool and heavy on Jane’s skin, but it was not as stiff as expected. Alandra let go of the hair and began to search for something in her pile of equipment.

Then it once again grew quiet behind the seat. Jane did not know anything about this girl at all, but she had the subtle feeling that her weak protest from earlier would not keep Alandra from doing something extreme.

After a moment, Jane cleared her throat and began cautiously: “You won’t just cut the ends, am I right?”

“Yes, you are indeed.”

“But…”

“I told you, you will like it. Just let me think for a moment.”

Jane bit her tongue and stayed silent. She could just stand up and walk out. She could not imagine Alandra keeping her here against her will. But did she really want to leave? The thought of changing things up with her look still spooked around her head.

Just as the silence grew too suspenseful to bear, the hairdresser suddenly called out, “Yep, got it now. It will be perfect.” and a second later Jane could feel cold steel brush the side of her neck as something slice through the thick curtain of hair just below her jawline.

Jane’s mouth dropped open as twenty inches of wavy blond hair dropped onto the cape. With Jane still stunned and speechless, Alandra proceeded to slice off her long hair bit by bit. With quick and precise cuts, the hairdresser removed the long hair on the back and on the left side until nothing but the rough shape of a short bob-cut was left.

“Oh my god! What did you do!?”, Jane finally burst out. A feeling of panic rose inside her chest and she felt the dire need to jump up and run out into the night. This could not possibly be happening.

“Come one, sweetie, don’t panic. I barley did anything yet. I’m just removing some of the excess weight”, she could hear Alandra explain in her sweetest voice, as she gently placed her hands on Jane’s now exposed shoulders.

Jane forced herself to close her eyes and take a deep breath. She could feel her heartbeat slow down, though she was still shaking a little.

“Fine… But how about you tell me what you’re planning now? Another shock like that and I’ll die here and now from a heart attack.” She could almost feel Alandras grin in the back of her head.

“OK, as you wish.”, the hairdresser began as she slowly moved around the chair until she stood right in front of Jane. With her hands hidden behind her back she once again looked like she was about to make a momentous announcement. A smirk twisted her mouth as she began: “You know, long hair is just not fitting for the summer around here. When it’s hot, you are sweating horribly. When it is wet, it takes ages to dry. And worst of all, it is hiding this beautiful face of yours from all the nice boys and girls out there.” She took a short pause, as if she was about to make her grand reveal.

“So, I decided these are the only solution.”, she finally announced and with sparkling eyes she pulled out slim, silver clippers from behind her back. The machine was swinging in front of Jane’s face like a bad omen.

Somehow, she felled sick. And weirdly exited at the same time.

“Alandra, I’m really not sure if…”

“Oh please, call me Ala. You sound like my granny.”

“Ok, Ala then. But what I want to say is: I will look like a boy! It is already so short and you want to start shaving off even more?!” She turned her head and attempt to meet Alandras eyes and could feel her now short bangs swinging next to her face.

“No, you won’t. Short hair is pretty much the sexiest thing a woman can wear. And your face is perfect for it. Just trust me on this one.”, the hairdresser replied while she began to separate Jane’s hair on a hard edge around the crown and clipped it together in a knot on top of the head.

“Are you sure?”

“Yeeeees.”

Jane took another deep breath and tightly held on to the arm rest of the seat. She still felt unsure on the surface, but she also knew that she would end up doing this despite all doubts. An old photo of her and her brother with freshly shorn heads – grinning into the camera – flashed through her mind but she pushed it down. She was no little kid any more. It would not be the same.

“Ok, go on then.”

“Good. I’ll start with a number 4 guard and we’re gonna see to the rest later.”

“I honestly have no idea what that means.”

“Well, you’re going to see.”

Alandra grabbed a plastic guard from the top box on her wagon, put it on the clippers and plugged in the machine. A low buzzing sound began to fill the small room and Jane could feel goose bumps rising on her skin.

“Trust me Jane, this absolutely is the best part. Enjoy it.”, the hairdresser added, before she stepped back behind the chair.

Jane closed her eyes. With gentle pressure Alandra pushed Jane’s head forward until her chin lay flat on her chest. Then the buzzing sound suddenly changed into a lower crackling one, as the vibrating blades toughed the hairline in the back of her head. The clippers were slowly pushed up her neck to the point where the hair was separated. The vibration took her breath and sent mild waves of pleasure through Janes body. She never had experienced anything quite like this before. It felt just really good.

Time after time the razor was pushed up Jane’s neck and sent long, blond strands of hair flying. For a few minutes, Jane only sat there with closed eyes, completely focusing on this exciting, vibrating sensation on her scalp. Then the buzzing sound stopped and the machine was put aside.

“So?”, Alandra’s voice reached her as from far away. Jane felt as if she was waking up from a beautiful dream, slowly fading back into reality. For the first time, she noticed that her hand had wandered down between her thighs and under the slip of her bikini, gently stroking the wet slit of her vagina with the fingertips. She could feel her face flush red again and instantly snapped back her hand, resting it in her lab almost violently.

What the hell was going on here? Had she turned completely mad to touch herself in front of a stranger? But she could feel that it was already too late. The transparent fabric of the cape barely concealed anything beneath and Alandra must have seen what she was doing minutes ago.

With her eyes fixed at the ground before her, Jane’s voice was no more than muttering when she spoke “I… uh…”, she began, “well…”

“You do not need to feel bad for enjoying this. Many people do. Especially women, in my experience.”

And with a wink she added: “Feel free to do whatever you like, as long as you don’t move your head to much.” Jane blushed again and wanted to reply something, but she could not find the right words. Then the clippers were turned on again and this time it was mainly excitement, not fear, that the buzzing sound caused in Jane.

Her head was slightly pushed to the left as Alandra began to drive the electric razor up the right side. The strands that had covered her ears for years were shaved off in seconds, leaving behind an exciting feeling of freedom as the cool air touched the skin for the first time. Jane had closed her eyes again and this time she was fully aware as her fingers slit back into her crotch. It was just too hard to resist the urge. The vibrating sensation of the razor and her own, rhythmical work between her legs sent waves of pleasure through her body and she had to force herself to not moan loudly. Alandra then went over to her other side and continued her work there, until the sides and the back of Jane’s head were evenly shaved to short stubbles. The razor was turned off and put aside.

Still dizzy, Jane drew back her hand and sat straight again. A pleasant warm feeling still lingered in her lower body while her head felt light and cool. In a slow spinning motion Jane moved her head around. No hair was toughing her shoulders as she put her head back into her neck. She could almost feel the air moving around her.

“Oh wow…”, she muttered, half to herself.

“So, did I promise too much?”

“No, this was amazing! I never knew a haircut could feel this exciting.”

Jane wiggled out her left arm from under the cape and lightly stroked over the back of her head. The short hair felt soft under her touch and the excitement form a moment ago immediately returned as the prickly fur of stubbles was moved about by her fingers. Alandra let her enjoy the moment, but after a time she picked up a comb used it to give her a friendly pet on her hand.

“Enough for now. I am far from finished.”

“Fine…” Jane drew back her hand in acted disappointment and Alandra removed the clip from the top of her head. She began to brush back the remaining hair with long smooth strokes. Then, without warning, she suddenly spun the seat back so that Jane faced the mirror again.

Jane’s mouth dropped open in surprise, as a stranger glanced back at her. She attempted to say something, but no sound would come out of her mouth. Her light blond mane had vanished and for the first time she could clearly see the shape of her slender neck and her head. The shaved sides seemed to fade smoothly into her fair skin tone and made her face look slimmer and finer. And somehow her lips and eyes seemed bigger and brighter than before.

“This…”

“How do you like it so far?”

“Wow, this is amazing.”

“And do you still think you look like a boy?”

Jane slowly shook her head, still fascinated by the sight of her new self. Alandra smiled her bright, cheeky smile.

“You see, I told you. So, where should we go from here? You seem to have acquired a taste for it, so I hope I can leave the decision to you without you chickening out. I think a classic undercut would fit you well”, she said as she combed the remaining hair to left side, “or…”

“How short do you think I can go?” Jane suddenly blurted out with a shy smile. A poster at the back side of the shop had cough her eye. It showed a model with light blond hair not unlike hers and an ultra-short cut, glancing alluringly into the world. The sides were buzzed even shorter than hers and the top was left just barely long enough to flatten the hair and give it a certain direction. An hour ago, she would never even have tough about getting a haircut like this, but now that she was already half way there, the idea had a certain allure to it. She could feel the excitement twisting her stomach once more.

Alandra followed her line of sight and her smile became a grin as she realized where Jane was looking.

“Wow, you really have acquired a taste for it. Actually, I think you got the perfect face for a really short cut like that. You just need to tell me roughly what you want.”

Jane pointed towards the poster with a move of her head. The nervous anxiety was mostly gone by now and a flow of anticipation and excitement had caught her.

“Something like that would be great I think. Maybe even with a really short fade towards the hairline in the back.”

“Oh, suddenly you know what you want.”, Alandra teased her as she began to rummage around  in her box of equipment. “But I won’t complain. Better late than never.” Jane had to smile at that.

Then Alandra finally pulled one of the longer guards out of the pile and attached it to the razor. With a buzzing sound, the machine came to life again.

“OK, I’m going to shave the top down to a bit under an inch for now and finish the rest with scissors. The sides and back will be number 2 with a fade into number 1 and bare blades at the bottom. Last chance to change your mind.”, she reminded Jane, but Jane just shook her head.

Alandra then turned the seat again and stepped behind her customer. With one hand, she held back the long hair on top while the other one was positioning the clippers at Jane’s forehead. The buzzing blades cut through the last bit of long hair as Alandra slowly but steadily pushed them back over the crown of Jane’s head. Long strands were falling down to the cape as the bangs slowly disappeared from Jane’s sight and her head finally seemed to lose the last bit of weight. She chewed on her lip to suppress the once more rising excitement. She was actually sitting on her hands to keep them under control.

Then the last strands were shaved off and the razor turned silent again. Alandra drove her hand through the now short top to remove some last loose hairs. Finally, she tousled them a little, making the short strands point in all directions. The hairdresser had to laugh at that sight.

“You look cute that way. Kind of like a boy.”

“Ala…”, Jane began in a worried tone.

“Just kidding. Let’s give it a bit of edge and turn cute into sexy.”

With that Alandra grabbed the clippers again and switched to a number 2 guard.

“Have fun. Seriously. I don’t mind.”, she told Jane with a knowing grin, before the buzzing sound started to fill the room again and the blades were run up her neck. It was the same stimulating vibrating from earlier but even better, as the hair was shaved off just a quarter of an inch above her skin. The excitement and the pleasure were immediate and this time Jane had no reserve at all to comfort herself. Her fingers ran down her body and under her bikini while thousands of tiny stubbles were shaved off and trickled onto the cape. Gently, she stroked and pressured her sensitive zones while the buzzing still sent waves of pleasure through her body. After a time Alandra switched to the number 1 guard without barely disrupting the cutting. As she began to shave down the back hairline without any guard, an incredible wave of arousal pulsed through Jane’s body. Her fingers slid deeply into the wet slit between her legs and she stifled a sudden moan of pleasure. Alandra continued to fade out the cut with a content smile on her face.

Another minute later she finally switched of the electric razor and put it aside. Jane had her eyes closed and was breathing heavily. Alandra could make out her hand still resting between her thighs under the transparent cape. She picked up a scissor instead and began to shape the longer section on the top. With quick and precise cuts, she took off the vary ends of the strands and thinned them out, thus removing the bristly look from the razor and giving the hair a smooth finish.

“We are almost done.”

Jane opened her eyes, still with a happy smile on her face, and straightened. Alandra gently pushed her head forward and pulled out a smaller clipper without guard, that emitted a more high-pitched humming sound. Then she began to even out the back hairline and free the skin in her neck from fine hairs.

“Close your eyes.”

Jane did as she was asked and Alandra pulled her head in the neck and began to shape the hairline around the ears and forehead, shortening the very first strains of the bangs even further to half an inch.

“And… I am done!”, Alandra declared as she switched off the trimmer and opened the clip of the cape. With a wide swing she drew it aside and a rain of light blond locks and stubbles rained to the floor. Then she spun the seat back towards the mirror with a content grin. Jane had been ready for everything after the first revelation but the sight of her own image still stopped her from breathing. The buzzed sides were fading almost seamlessly into the fair skin of her neck. The top section, while extremely short, still had a smooth direction to it, that gave the look more distinct femininity than her long hair had ever done. It was perfect.

A wide smile lit up her face and Jane could feel her eyes getting wet. She would never have dared to cut her hair short a just about an hour ago, and now that it was done, it probably was one of the coolest things that had ever happened to her. Alandra gave her a worried look through the mirror.

“Are you fine? Don’t you like it?”

“No, no. I mean: Yes, I do.”, she said while she leaped up and gave the hairdresser a hug, “It is amazing. Thank you.”

At first Alandra seemed surprised by the exuberant reaction, then she had to laugh and returned the hug, while slightly stroking over the shaved back of Jane’s head.

“I’m glad you like it. And”, she added with a cheeky grin, “I think you discovered kind of a new, let’s say, passion.”

Jane reddened a bit, bashfully running her hand up and down her shaved neck and avoiding Alandras eyes. But she knew she had nothing to hide, the hairdresser did already know.

“This is crazy. I had short hair before, but it was never like this. I never knew a haircut could be so exciting and sensual and… and…”, she looked for the right word in vain.

“… sexual?”, Alandra proposed. Jane agreed with a nod while reddening even further.

“Well, now you know. I can guarantee you that you are not the only one feeling that way. It’s the same for me and a fair amount of my customers – men as well as women. Although”, she added with a wink, “none of them were as extreme as you.”

“Ala, I’m sorry if I made you feel…”

But before Jane could even finish, Alandra began to laugh again and tussled her hair once again.

“Oh, don’t worry, Jane. I had my fun too. It’s cool to see that you enjoy my work.”

Then she turned around and began to clean her equipment and the floor. For a moment, both of them stayed silent and Jane for the first time noticed, that the pattering of the rain had stopped. The air had cooled down and a slight breeze came in through the open front of the shop. She grabbed her still wet clothes from the shelf but decided not to put them on. Just as Alandra was about to finish her work, Jane spoke out the question that had been nagging her for the past minutes:

“Hey Ala, what do I owe you for all this? You know – for saving me from the rain and the amazing haircut and, well…this special experience.”

The hairdresser looked at her and shot Jane her cheesy smile, while putting her jacket on and dimming down the lights.

“Nothing. I told you, letting me cut your hair in the first place was your payment for taking shelter. And coming back next week for a touch-up will payment for all the rest.”

Jane returned the smile. She knew she just had found her first friend in her new home. As there was nothing more to do or say, both women stepped out on the promenade. While Alandra was closing the shop window and lowering the grating, Jane stood on the sidewalk with her eyes closed, enjoying the cool air toughing the skin of her head. One more time she moved her hand up and down her shaved sides. The prickly feeling immediately sent an arousing shudder through her body and she had no doubt that it would not take long until Alandra got the rest her payment.

 

 

If you liked this:

  • I wrote this story forever ago and revised it a few times over the years as my English skills got better. Still, im not a native speaker so please excuse the stuff I got wrong after all.
  • This is part 1 of a series. I already did part 2 but the text still needs some revision. But I’ll publish that soon too. I’ll linke it here as soon as it is online.
  • Also, all the dialogue in this story is supposed to be in Spanish. I do not speak Spanish and I suppose neither do most of you, so its written out in English. Just use your imagination 🙂 
  • And finally: copyright -name obscured- (me), 2018 (please be decent human being and don’t steal what is not yours)

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