The Unwilling Participants

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From as early as I can remember, my parents argued about everything. As the oldest of 3 girls, I felt that it was necessary to make sure my sisters were shielded from much of what was going on between mom and dad. The fights were never physical, but their yelling could be heard from across the street. They decided to split up when I first started high school, and I couldn’t have been happier. Being a daughter of divorce changed how I interacted with my parents. Tabitha, Maureen, and I had all decided to live with mom, because it just felt natural to be with her. Dad slinked away and buried himself in his work. Throughout much of our childhood, we saw Dad on major holidays and birthdays, but rarely anytime in between. Not having him around didn’t scar us like many people would have thought. We loved our father, and we knew that he loved us, but we knew our presense only got in the way of his career goals. Knowing so little about him made his untimely death even more unsettling. Having just turned 30, I felt awkward getting in front of a funeral home full of people and not being able to say anything about my father. I felt ashamed, like I should have tried more to reconnect with him in my adulthood. My sisters weren’t much better than I was at communicating with him. Tabitha followed her dream and became a Lawyer, Maureen teaches elementary school, and I became a chemist. Being a chemist was the only thing I had in common with my late father. Sitting at his funeral, I now wish I had spent more time talking about our passions, maybe then I could have said something at the podium.

“You okay Sabrina?” Tabitha whispered, placing a hand on my knee.

“Yeah.” I replied back with a shy smile. “Just feeling guilty about dad.”

“It’s a two way street hun.” she smiled back. “Hell, I don’t think I got a birthday card from him the past few years.”

After the service the three of us headed to an old bar to unwind. The bar had definitely seen better days. We definitely turned a few heads as three young and attractive professionals. Maureen was the tallest and youngest of us and had beautiful shoulder length red hair. Tabitha was petite and had dark brown hair that was always kept up in a bun. I was average in height, but I always kept an athletic build, and had blonde hair cut into a chin length bob. The two bar flies that were present when we arrive definitely took notice of us either because we looked good, or because we looked like we had just come from a funeral.

“Here’s to dad.” Maureen said lifting her glass of wine. “May he finally take a day off in the afterlife.”

We all chuckled awkwardly at Maureen’s joke, but it was a little too true.

“I really don’t think I remember Dad ever taking a vacation from the lab.” I said taking a sip of my drink. “Hell, I don’t even know what Dad was researching.”

“Well, we’ll probably find out tomorrow when we go through his house.” Tabitha said matter of factly. “Going to need to get the place ready to sell, and I’m sure we’ll find boxes of his research.”

“Something feels wrong about going through his stuff.” Maureen replied.

“Maury, it’s not like he’s going to get mad at us.” I said with a smile as I reached out for her hand. “Besides, it’ll give us a chance to hang out some. It feels like I haven’t seen you two in forever.”

“A little sister bonding as we rifle through a dead man’s house?” Tabitha said with a smirk. “Sounds like a blast!”

Tabitha always did know how to lighten the mood. We finished our drinks and walked back to the hotel to relax. In the morning, we all met at Dad’s house to start cleaning. Tabitha took a key out of a manilla envelope and unlocked the door.

“Ya’ll ready to get some work done?” She said as she opened the door. “Holy shit.”

We were greeted with a wall of newspapers and banker boxes absolutely filling the entry way.

“Well, looks like we may be at this for longer than we thought.” I said as I pushed my way though a gap in the newspaper stacks. “Dad was officially a hoarder.”

“He never really struck me as one.” Maureen replied as she followed me into the darkness.

Once we officially got inside, Dad’s obsession was even more pronounced. It didn’t look like he had through away anything in the last several years of his life. What we saw was the life of a lonely man, literally buried in work.

“Lets split up and take different floors to start.” Tabitha said as she looked around in wonder. “I’ll start working on the main floor. Maureen can start upstairs, and Sabrina and work on Dad’s lab in the basement”

We all agreed and I walked down the stairs into my father’s lab. Unlike the rest of the house, his lab area looked pristine. The room was set up with 2 long metal lab tables running parallel in the center and a work station along the back wall. Many of the flasks and beakers in his apparatus still had unknown chemicals in them. As I made my way back to his workstation, I tried to identify the chemicals, but was unable to. Sitting on his workstation were lab notes entitled “The Smooth Goddess Project. As I flipped through his notes, I discovered that Dad was contracted by a large pharmaceutical company, and the Smooth Goddess Project was what he was working on when he died. Dad was in the process of developing a compound for permanent hair removal. Each page of notes showed me more and more about how close he was getting. The last page was dated 2 days before he died, and spoke of the tablets he had created for the trial groups. I placed his lab notes into my purse and decided to join my sisters upstairs. As I started out of the lab, I noticed a small brown pill bottle sitting on the edge of one of the tables. The bottle had a simple printed label the with initials “SGP” written on it. placing the bottle in my purse along with the notes, I went back upstairs.

“How’s it going up here Tabby?” I asked finding Tabitha making paths for all of us on the main floor.

“Slowly.” She replied wiping off sweat from her brow. “We may need to hire a company to move all of this newspaper.”

”The lab is clean, but we’ll need to be careful dismantling the lab equipment.” I replied. “It looks like dad left a lot of unknown chemicals laying around.”

”Maybe we can find someone that can help us take care of that too.” Tabby said. “It’s going to take a team to get this place ready.”

”Agreed. I found some of dad’s research notes about his last project.” I said patting my purse.

“Anything good?” Maureen asked as she cane downstairs. “By the way, if you think downstairs is bad, you should see up here.”

”Dad was working on a permanent body hair remover, and by the looks of his notes, he was getting close.” I replied. “He even made samples for trial, but I don’t know if he ever got it to the pharmaceutical company.”

”Hold on.” Tabitha said is disbelief. “Dad invented a pill that can make it so I never have to shave again? Sign me up!”

”That actually sounds wonderful!” Maureen said in agreement. “How does it work?”

”I don’t know yet.” I replied pulling the notes and pills out of my purse. “This is all I have to work with.”

”Are those the samples?” My sisters said in unison.

”Let’s pop one to see if it works.” Tabitha said holding her hand out.

”No.” I said pulling the bottle close to me. “We don’t know what in this, or what it will do. It hasn’t gone through trials yet.”

”Yeah, but we could trial it first.” Maureen replied. “He was our dad. We should get first crack at something this amazing.

”Come in Sabrina.” Tabby said reaching out to touch my shoulder. “You know dad wouldn’t have created samples of something that he thought was dangerous.”

While I was thinking about what my sisters were saying, Tabitha snatched the pill bottle out of my hands and stepped back.

”I’ll go first.” Tabitha said with a smile as she popped the top of the bottle.

Maureen and I watched as Tabitha removed the small blue pill from the bottle and and placed it on her tongue.

”Woah.” Tabitha said in amazement. “It resolved instantly before I could swallow.”

”Give me one.” Maureen said reaching out her hand. “I’ll be a hero to my husband if I come home all smooth.”

Before I could protest, Tabitha placed a pill in Maureen’s hand, and was immediately put into her mouth.

”What about you Sabrina?” Tabitha said with her arm outstretched. “Are you going to join the cool kids?”

”You two are insane.” I replied. “You just ingested an unknown chemical compound that we found in dad’s lab.”

”So is that a yes or a no?” Tabitha retorted. “My arm is getting tired and we have work to do.”

”Just give me the damn pill.” I said snatching the pill out of her hand and popping it into my mouth.

Just as Tabitha said, the pill dissolved instantly on my tongue and had a faint berry taste to it.

”Does anyone feel anything yet?” Maureen asked pulling at one of her arm hairs.

”It wouldn’t happen that quickly.” I replied as I replaced the remaining pills and notes back into my purse. “Depending on what we just took, it could take an hour or so before we saw any change.”

”So what Sabrina is saying is that we should go get lunch, hire a team to clear out the house, and relax.” Tabitha said putting her arm around my shoulder.

We left dad’s house and ate a quick lunch before returning to our hotel rooms. Tabitha said that she was going to make a few phone calls to find some help and Maureen decided to take a shower to help clear her sinuses from all of the dust from dad’s house. Meanwhile, I took the opportunity to pour through the research notes. The notes revealed that the chemical compound dad created attacks hair follicles, damaging them so the hair falls out, and stops all regrowth. The science behind it was impressive, but dad didn’t reveal in his notes if it worked on humans and how it only targeted body hair.

Since several hours had gone by since I took one of the pills, I decided to inspect the progress. I retired to the bathroom and slipped out of my clothes. Carefully I ran my hands through my trimmed pubic hair. Very minimal hair fall was noted. It looks like dad’s final project was a dud. Still, I took the opportunity to admire my athletic body in all of its glory.

Tabby called my cell and told me to meet her in Maureen’s room to discuss the company she wanted to hire. I threw on my clothes and found my way down to the hall to Maureen’s room. I walked in on Tabitha and Maureen talking. Maureen was dressed but still had her hair tied up in a towel.

”Did your hair fall out yet?” Maureen asked with a smile.

”No, did yours?” I replied curiously.

“Yes!” Maureen said offering me her arm. “Feel it.”

I ran my hands over her arm and was surprised to find it completely smooth.

”Did any other hair fall out?” I asked, still rubbing her arm.

”I don’t have a reason to be called fire crotch anymore, if that’s what you’re asking.” Maureen said with a chuckle. “It all fell out after my shower when I was drying off.

”What about you Tabitha?” I asked

”I wasn’t so lucky.” Tabitha replied. “Still as hairy as I was before.”

”Maybe it only works with certain hair types and colors.” I said.

”Well, I’m glad it worked for me!” Maureen said as she did her little happy dance. “We need to sell those pills to a pharmaceutical company and make a fortune.”

”Dad was contracted by a company already.” I replied matter of factly. “They likely already own his research.”

”Yeah and I don’t think finders keepers works either.” Tabitha said with a chuckle. “Sabrina is right. The company will eventually want their property back.”

”You two are only saying that because it didn’t work for you.” Maureen said with some sass. “Jealous, much?”

”Whatever.” Tabitha said dismissively. “I found a moving company to help clear out dad’s house. We’re going to meet the team there in 39 minutes to let them in and give directions. So get ready to go.”

”Fine.” Maureen said with her arms crossed. “Let me go blow dry my hair and I’ll be ready.”

With that, Maureen went into the bathroom while Tabitha and I sat on the side of her bed waiting. Just as we heard the dryer turn on, we heard a loud crash followed by a scream.

When we entered the bathroom, we saw

Maureen standing in front of the mirror with a look of horror on her face. She was completely bald. On the floor next to her was the towel she had tied into her head after her shower, full of flaming red hair. I walked up to her to try and calm her down.

”It’s all gone.” She said in disbelief. “I’m bald. What will my husband say?”

I led Maureen back to her bed to inspected her now hairless scalp. Maureen looked as if she never had hair. A few stray hairs were still clinging on to her head, but fell out with no fight as my hand passed over them. Maureen looked like she had suddenly developed alopecia totalis in a period of hours after taking the pill.

As I inspected Maureen’s hairless state, I looked up to see Tabitha stroke her own hair, obviously worried about it happening to her as well.

”Still attached Tabby?” I asked, pulling Maureen into my arms as she started sobbing. “It’s okay Maureen. You look beautiful like this. Your husband will love you no matter what.”

”You really think I look good?” Maureen said catching her breath from crying.

”Absolutely Maury.” Tabitha said sitting back on the bed with us. “You have such beautiful skin and facial features to pull it off. You rock the bald look!”

With that, Maureen got up and walked over to the mirror to admire her new look. It took her a few minutes, but eventually a smile grew over her face and she caressed her now completely smooth head.

”Maybe you’re right.” Maureen said. “It does feel really good. And I don’t look half bad.”

”That’s the spirit Maury.” I said standing beside her at the mirror. “You look better than how Tabitha and I would look bald.”

”Do you think it’ll still happen to us?” Tabitha asked  with some alarm in her voice.

”It’s a likelihood considering how completely it happened to Maureen.” I said pulling my hair into a short ponytail. “We might as well prepare for it to happen and be pleasantly surprised if it doesn’t. As a scientist I welcome the opportunity to experience the process so I can understand it better.”

”What’s the matter Tabby?” Maureen asked, taking Tabitha’s hand and guiding it to her smooth scalp. “Are you afraid of being as bald as me?”

”It’s not that.” Tabitha stammered. “I have to maintain a certain look in court, and hair is a part of it.”

”It’s called buying a wig Tabby.” I said back to her. “Besides, Maureen is a teacher and is held to similar standards. So don’t act all high and mighty as a lawyer.”

”Now I’m hoping for it to happen.” Maureen said with a smirk. “I want to see what you’ll look like completely bald.

”Grow up you two!” Tabitha snapped. “I’m going to the house to meet the movers.”

Tabitha stormed out of the hotel room, leaving Maureen and I alone to discuss things.

”You really wouldn’t mind looking like this?” Maureen asked while touching my hair.

“I took the same dose as you did.” I said back enjoying the feeing of Maureen running her hands through my hair. “I fully expect for it to happen to me. So why should I fight it?”

”I’m not seeing any hair come out.” Maureen said as she continued to pet me. “Maybe it was the hot shower that I took that sealed my fate.”

”Heated activated?” I responded deep in thought. “That could be the case. Maybe we should check your theory out.”

I stood up from the bed and made my way to Maureen’s shower, taking my clothes off along the way.

”You don’t have to do this Sabrina.” Maureen called out to me as I turned on the shower. “Maybe the chemical wears off of you don’t activate it. You could keep your hair.”

I turned back and smiled at my sister before climbing into the steaming shower. I made sure to allow the hot water to beat down on my hair before I lathered up with Maureen’s shampoo. I allowed the water to hit all of my hairy parts before rinsing and stepping out. Maureen handed me a towel as I stepped out.

”I didn’t notice anything until I started towering off.” Maureen said as I started drying off.

As the towel passed over my mound, I made sure to apply a decent amount of pressure. I looked down in disbelief at my perfectly smooth pubic area. A few hairs clung on, but were easily wiped away.

”Looks like you were right Maury.” I said shaking my pubic hair off of the towel. “I hope I look half as good bald as you do.”

”Sabrina.” Maureen said as she brushed my hair behind my ears. “I love you. I’m sure you’ll look gorgeous without all of this hair.”

I focused my efforts on my legs, and watched as my two day stubble was wiped away to complete smoothness. Next, my arms and underarms. Satisfied with the results thus far, I took a small hand towel and walked up to the bathroom mirror. Slowly, I raised the towel to the crown of my head and made small, circular motions. After moving the towel aside, I was greeted with a small, but very pronounced bald spot where I rubbed.

“Here’s hoping I have a nice shaped head like you.” I said looking back to Maureen with a smile. “Looks like this is my last chance to say goodbye to my hair.”

”Can I help?” Maureen said as she approached me.

I handed Maureen the hand towel and she continued where I left off, widening the bald spot. Slowly, I watched as my hair was wiped off of my head, revealing my pristine white scalp. Eventually Maureen finished with the top of my head, leaving me with a fringe of hair on the sides and back. I reach up and grabbed a fist full of hair, and tugged lightly to release it from my head. Together, we rendered myself bald in minutes.

”You look beautiful Sabby!” Maureen said as she caressed my now hairless head.

It was weird, of course to see myself bald, but I couldn’t help feeing that I loved it on so many different levels. I looked around at the sheer amount of hair that littered the floor.

”I’m hoping that this really is permanent like dad’s notes say.” I said admiring myself in the mirror. “I feel amazing.”

”I just hope my husband thinks I look as good as we both feel.” Maureen said, stepping in for a hug. “Thank you for balding yourself for me Sabby.”

“I’m sure he will think you look more beautiful than ever.” I said as I started to get dressed. “You think we should convince Tabby to take a hot shower?”

”She seemed legitimately freaked out about going bald.” Maureen said as she gathered our hair into a pile. “So, yes?”

”We just won’t tell her about the heat activation. That way I can see if there is a time limit on the hair removal effect.” I said looking at myself in the mirror. “But she will be bald like us soon.”

Maureen laughed with me as we exited the bathroom. As we walked out of the hotel towards dad’s house, we could feel heads turning as we passed people.

“Looks like we’re turning heads Sabby.” Maureen said, putting her arm around my shoulder.

”Sure seems like it.” I said back with a smile. “Let’s go say hi to Tabby and the moving guys.”

 

To Be Continued

 

 

 

 

 

7 responses to “The Unwilling Participants

  1. This is a great story. Lots of different directions that could be traveled. The one I find interesting is if they some how end up taking more of the blue pills. Also would love to have a part 3 on the lake house.

  2. That is a great story. You have so many way to continue. I would like to know what happens if for some reason they take more of the blue pills.
    I would also like to know what happens in part 3 of the lake house. That is my favorite story so far.

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