Understanding – Part 2


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Erin’s visit was called off not long after it was set up. In true teenage fashion, she’d forgotten that she had other plans and arranged to visit the following weekend. Nicola wasn’t too disappointed because it would give her a little bit longer to get used to her new look before having to come face to face with her eldest daughter.

Nicola stood in front of the steamy bathroom mirror. She couldn’t believe that it was only a few days since she’d been able to stand there and see everyone’s idea of a middle-aged housewife, who wouldn’t get as much as a second glance most of the time, even from herself. She’d known what to expect, as had everyone else. A conventional story of marriage, kids and divorce. But now, convention wasn’t there to act as a guide anymore, either for Nicola or anyone else. She looked at her hairless scalp and then trailed a finger down to her smooth mound. If anything, shaving her pussy hair had been more of a surprise than when Andy shaved the last of the hair off her head. A bald pussy had been almost obligatory for years and she’d never felt the need to follow the crowd, but the sensation that was welling up now told her that she should have joined the party years ago. Who knows, it may have sparked some kind of renewed interest from her ex-husband. Maybe not, she thought. That tart that he went off with was probably waxed to within an inch of her life, so it probably wouldn’t have worked.

She thought about Andy touching her, fucking her, realised that he had made her feel alive again. She’d taken immense pleasure in her daughters and being there for them as they started to make their way in the world, but was starting to realise that being a mum shouldn’t exclude her from having a life of her own. Up until a few days ago, she acted and looked the way that everyone expected her to. Now she didn’t look the same and was certainly of the opinion that she shouldn’t act the same either. She knew that she had plenty of lost time to catch up on.

She hadn’t actually met anyone who mattered to her so far, even though she’d sent pictures to her daughters. The neighbours were rarely encountered and for some reason she’d not been out with established friends for a while. She realised that she’d withdrawn into herself. She smiled as that realisation coincided with the fingertip that had just slid between her lips. It hadn’t been deliberate by any means, it was just a happy side-effect of her contemplation in front of the mirror. She stopped before she started something that she’d have to finish and took a last look at herself in her new “natural” state. She went into the bedroom to choose something to wear.

She stared into her wardrobe. It screamed “conventional”, it screamed “middle aged”. She didn’t like either when she pictured what she’d just seen in the mirror. She decided that she’d have to buy something to complement her new look. She picked a summer dress off a hangar, one of her favourites in her previous existence. She’d worn it quite a few times, but as she slid it on now, it was as if it was completely new. She did up the last of the buttons and looked at herself in the mirror. The dress was pretending that it was just like the other times it had been worn, but this time was definitely different. This time there was nothing between it and the woman. No bra, no knickers. It was just her and the dress. Nicola, looked at her reflection from each side in turn, wondering if there was any sign that the only things securing her modesty at present were those little buttons. She smiled and went to the dresser to put on some make-up.

She hadn’t done anything different with her make up since she’d cut her hair. She’d kept it understated as it had always been. A few minutes later she looked at herself sitting there with the bright red lipstick that one of the girls had bought her one Christmas, but that she’d never used. Her eye make-up was heavier than she’d ever worn, even for a night out. It was bold. It wasn’t her. She reached for the make-up remover pads and then paused to take another look at herself. It really wasn’t her. That was good. She ran the tip of the lipstick over her lips once more and pursed them in the mirror. She thought that it looked slutty. She smiled, stood up and went downstairs.

She wanted to find something as a treat. Maybe for her, maybe for Andy if he bothered to get in touch again. She knew that she wasn’t dressed for town, where she might meet someone, so she decided that it had to be a city trip. There was more chance of finding something different there anyway. She picked up her purse and keys and went to the car, realising as she got in that there were inherent dangers in getting into a car when you’d decided to leave your underwear at home.

She smiled at the prospect of having possibly flashed her neighbour.She was sitting at traffic lights when she ran a hand subconsciously over her scalp. She’d known in the shower that something wasn’t quite right and there in the car, she realised what it was. She felt raspy rather than smooth. It had only been a matter of days and she’d lost the sensation of running her hand over her smooth scalp. She’d had doubts when Andy had first shaved her, she’d wanted to enjoy the clippered look for a while, but once she’d felt her hairless scalp a few times, she’d known that it was something to be enjoyed. Now that feeling was gone, even though to the casual observer, she was still a completely bald woman. She knew different now and that was what mattered. She wondered whether Becky would be available later, but then decided that she could always try somewhere new if she saw a place that she liked the look of. The lights changed and she drove on.

It wasn’t long before she’d parked and was getting out of the car again, smiling at the prospect of making someone’s day. She had no firm plan of where to go, but there were plenty of places, both in the malls and in the streets. She took a deep breath and started walking towards her first mass exposure to people as a bald woman. After a minute or so, she decided that it was no different to walking down the street as she always had. Some people looked in her direction, but then they always had for one reason or another. Someone liking what she’d got on, someone just naturally curious, some schoolboy imagining things that only a schoolboy can, but for the most part, the world left her alone.

She looked in a couple of shops, but then realised that they were the shops that she always looked in when she came here. They were unlikely to yield anything radically different to what was currently in her wardrobe. She walked out and headed back out into the stream of people. She passed a mall salon that was empty and soulless and of no interest to her. She looked in windows as she passed, but there was nothing that caught her eye. The automatic doors opened, allowing her onto the street. She turned left and walked, glancing in windows as she passed, marvelling that the number of discount stores and phone stores. How many phones could those places actually sell nowadays, she wondered.

That thought was interrupted by the sight of a mannequin in a window wearing a tight, shiny dress that wasn’t like anything she’d seen in the mall. She broke her step and paused, not sure whether it was rubber or PVC or something else. Whatever it was, it wasn’t something that you’d wear everyday. The collar round the mannequin’s neck confirmed that it was something for a very special occasion. Her eye caught movement where there shouldn’t have been any. What she’d thought of as a second mannequin in the tableau had just moved. Someone was doing some window dressing and had just happened to be still for that fleeting moment when Nicola was looking. Then they’d moved. The crouched figure looked up and caught Nicola’s eye. Shit, Nicola thought. She could feel the sense of obligation cascade over her. She couldn’t think of any way to disguise the fact that she’d been looking in the window and that the shiny dress had caught her eye. She’d have to go in.

‘Hi, I’ll be right with you’ the shop assistant said as Nicola went in.

‘I’m fine, thanks’ Nicola replied. She thought she heard the assistant say “indeed you are”, but wasn’t sure, such was her distraction at some of the stuff on display. Most of it shiny, most of it not what you’d see in ordinary shops. She wondered how anyone could walk in some of the shoes on display, with their spiky heels.

‘Looking for anything in particular?’ the assistant asked. Nicola was sure that the woman had uttered the words this time. She was probably in her early thirties, wearing an outfit that was conservative in comparison with what was on display, although the leather trousers probably weren’t everyday wear for many people. She wore a tee-shirt with a sequinned design of a peacock, but what stood out was the cascade of red hair that broke on her shoulders and continued down her back. “Red” probably wasn’t the right word or an adequate word. The colour was deep red, auburn maybe, but it seemed to change as the woman’s angle to the overhead lights changed. It looked gorgeous.

‘I’m just looking really. Thought maybe I’d find something a bit different, you know.’

‘You won’t find this stuff in the mall, that’s for sure’ the woman replied with a chuckle.

Nicola picked up one of the shoes on display, marvelling at the heels. How could you stand on them, let alone walk in them, she wondered.

‘They’re one of our best sellers, guys love them’ the woman observed.

‘Probably because they don’t have to wear them’ Nicola replied.

‘You should try them on, they’re fantastic once you get the hang of them.’

‘I don’t think they’re for me’ Nicola replied.

‘Why not?’ the assistant shot back.

Nicola looked at her. She realised that they weren’t for the Nicola that she’d been the week before. She wasn’t exactly sure what this week’s Nicola liked.

‘I’m a six’ Nicola replied with a smile. The assistant nodded. ‘Take a seat, I’ll be back in a sec’ she said, heading off to the store room. Nicola sat and looked around her at the stuff on display. Some of it wouldn’t necessarily get anyone thrown out of a church coffee morning, but most of it would probably get you refused entry in the first place. She wondered if those really were sex toys on display further up the shop. What was this, some sort of upmarket sex shop?

She looked to see where the woman was and whether she could just make a dash for the door, but then the assistant came back clutching a box, folding back the tissue paper as she walked. Nicola had no choice. She eased off her own shoes and sat bare foot while the assistant loosened the straps on the first shoe. She knelt in front of Nicola and took hold of her left foot gently.

‘I feel like Cinderella’ Nicola said. The assistant smiled and eased Nicola’s foot into the shoe. This was a far more personal service than Nicola had experienced in any of the usual shoe shops that she went to, ones that supposedly prided themselves on their high levels of customer service.

‘All I have to do now is stand up’ Nicola laughed, looking down at the impossibly angled shoe on her foot.

‘Best to wait for the other one. Less danger of toppling over if you’ve got the pair of them on’ the assistant replied with a smile.

Nicola adjusted her position to make it easier for the assistant to get the shoe on the other foot. She noticed a flicker in the woman’s expression, before it returned to the studied expression of before. Nicola instantly knew what had happened. Should she apologise? She wasn’t sure what the etiquette is when you’ve left your underwear in the drawer at home. She decided to say nothing.

The assistant eased back to allow Nicola the room to manoeuvre. She held out a steadying hand as Nicola struggled to stand upright, smiling encouragement like a parent teaching a child to ride a bike without stabilisers for the first time. ‘I really don’t think these are me’ Nicola said.

‘They’re not the sort of thing that you do the shopping in, but when you want to make an impression, you can’t beat them’ the assistant encouraged.

‘I’d be too afraid of falling over’ Nicola replied.

‘A little bit of practice and you’ll be shimmying across the bedroom like a pro’ the assistant said.

‘Depends what the “pro” is an abbreviation for’ Nicola responded quickly.

‘With these on, it only has one meaning’ the woman replied with that smile again. Nicola was eager to get the shoes off, but the assistant disagreed.

‘Keep them on while you look round. We’ll see if we can find something to go with them’ the assistant said.

‘I just hope I don’t wreck one of your displays when I fall over’ Nicola said, only half-joking. The assistant smiled. ‘Would you like to try that dress in the window?’ she asked.

‘I don’t think it’s me wherever I try it on’ Nicola replied, wondering whether she was being too clever with her reply.

‘Nonsense. Come down the end and we’ll change your mind.’

Nicola followed her, seeing that there were changing rooms at the far end of the shop. She was aware that the woman paused, but she kept walking to where she thought she was expected to go. The woman caught up with her, holding two of the dresses, one burgundy and one black. She drew back the curtain on the changing cubicle and hung the two dresses on the hooks.

‘Let me know if you need help’ she smiled, drawing the curtain behind her.

Nicola stood there looking at the dresses. They weren’t her, she knew. Who would she wear them for? She was aware of the assistant’s presence outside the cubicle and decided that she should at least try one on. She undid the stupid shoes and unbuttoned her dress, still astounded that she’d left the house naked but for that flimsy piece of cloth. She draped it over the back of a chair and lifted the burgundy dress off its hangar. The fabric felt so different, unlike anything she’d ever worn. She struggled to get into it, trying to ease it past her hips, before being able to pull it up. Eventually she’d managed to get it so that it was where a dress should be, but she couldn’t do the zipper. She looked in the full length mirror to see herself sheathed in the shiny material, both hips and bust more pronounced than she’d ever seen them. The reflection had “porn slut” written all over it. The look couldn’t be further from anything than she’d ever worn, even when she’d dressed up in expensive lingerie on the odd occasion. Who was she trying it on for? She hadn’t seen Andy since that momentous day. Had he lost interest now that he’d achieved his goal of shaving her head? Would this rekindle his interest? Was that what she wanted?

‘How’re you getting on?’ the assistant asked through the curtain.

‘Nearly there’ Nicola replied.

‘Let me help you’ the assistant said, drawing back the curtain uninvited. ‘Wow, look at you’ she exclaimed. Nicola could feel herself blush.

The assistant moved behind Nicola so that she could draw the zipper up and then stood to the side to give Nicola an uninterrupted view of herself in the mirror.

‘Well?’

‘I know that I keep saying it, but it’s really not me’ Nicola replied.

‘That’s the whole point. Put this on, be someone else. Let yourself go.’

The assistant bent down to put the shoes in a position for Nicola to put them back on and then stood expectantly. Nicola didn’t really want to go to the effort of putting them back on, but couldn’t avoid the proffered arm of support. With a little manipulation she got them on and looked at herself. She was aware of the assistant looking at her.

‘You look fabulous’ she told Nicola. ‘I’ve never seen anyone look so good in that dress.’

‘I can’t believe that’ Nicola countered.

‘I think it’s the bald head that sets it off. I hope you don’t mind me asking, but is it recent?’

‘A few days. A moment of madness’ Nicola replied, thinking back to kneeling in front of Andy.

‘It really suits you. You look so striking and that dress really sets it off’ the assistant replied. She watched Nicola look at herself in the full-length mirror and then realised that Nicola had seen enough.

‘Here let me help you’ she said, moving behind Nicola and tugging at the zip. Nicola was grateful at the prospect of getting out of the dress and returning to something that felt normal. She felt the assistant slip a hand across her shoulder to ease the dress off.

‘I’m okay now thanks’ Nicola said, feeling the dress moving off her shoulder. The hand didn’t move away. Nicola felt what could only have been a light kiss on her scalp. She froze. There was a hand on her hip. The hand moved across her belly. Nicola was scared to move in case she toppled off the impossible shoes. She felt another kiss on her scalp and then the sensation of what could only be a tongue licking its way upwards. She thought of all the hours that she’d spent watching lesbian porn. It turned her on, but she’d never considered that she’d find herself in this sort of position.

‘I’d better be going’ she said, trying to ignore the not unpleasant sensations that the woman was provoking. The unseen mouth nibbled her ear, hands caressed her shiny body.

‘I can lock the door. No-one will come in’ the assistant said.

‘I can’t’ Nicola protested.

The tongue trailing across her scalp told her that she really wanted whatever it was that was on offer. The tight dress was protecting her at the moment, but the assistant had started to deal with that. Still caressing Nicola with one hand, the other was easing the dress off her other shoulder. It was loose, it was being eased down. Nicola went to put her hands up instinctively to cover her boobs, but the descending dress meant that there was about to be a more significant issue. Her neck was being nuzzled. She loved that, whoever was doing it. The fact that it was a woman was giving her more of a frisson than she’d ever felt. She was giving in, actively fighting the “old” Nicola and trying to let the “new” Nicola have a chance.

There were hands everywhere. The dress was at her feet, Nipples were tweaked, boobs caressed, her nape and scalp were kissed and licked a thousand times and then there it was. The woman’s finger had slid inside her. She’d just lost her lesbian virginity, she thought.

‘No’ Nicola protested. Her wetness was saying the opposite, but that wasn’t what she meant. ‘The door’ she said.

The assistant smiled at her and squeezed Nicola’s left breast playfully. ‘Don’t go away’ she said with a wicked smile.

Nicola watched her walk away, all too aware that she was standing in a shop naked except for a pair of shoes with heels higher than she could ever have imagined herself wearing. She wondered what she was doing and then suddenly looked around for security cameras. Why hadn’t she thought about that before. She covered herself with her hands, immediately feeling foolish for doing so. If there were cameras there, they’d already recorded everything that she had and also captured her “in flagrante” with the assistant.

She could hear footsteps coming back and then there was the assistant, beaming, a brightly-coloured box in her hand. Nicola watched her open it and brandish the contents at her.

‘Let’s go to my office, it’ll be more comfortable in there’ she said, winking lasciviously. She turned away, confident that Nicola would follow. Nicola clutched her dress to her front and looked down the length of the shop as she left the relative safety of the changing cubicle. She wondered if she could be seen from the street, but then realised that it was only a couple of paces to the gloom of a corridor. She went into the illuminated room, that was more parlour than office.

‘I don’t even know your name’ she said coyly.

‘Brooke’ the woman replied, moving in to kiss Nicola. One hand caressed Nicola’s scalp, the other trailed the newly-opened dildo across any piece of Nicola’s skin that it could find. Nicola thought about all of the films that she’d watched while sitting on her own with a glass of wine in her dimly-lit lounge. That was her little secret, shared only with Andy. This was something that she wouldn’t share with anyone. The woman’s fascination with the smoothness of Nicola’s scalp was clear, probably greater even than Andy’s had been and he’d been the one to launch her on this course. The woman’s tongue played with Nicola’s, wandering at will before it went off to see what her hand was doing. Nicola could sense the hand with the object trying to get in on the act.

‘Wait’ Nicola said, easing away. The woman looked at her concerned, disappointed. ‘I want to see you’ Nicola said softly. Here goes, she thought. She might not get the chance again and she’d kick herself if it turned out to be something that she’s enjoyed. She mused that the Nicola with hair would never have found herself in this position. That “Nicola” would’ve been mulling over the might-have-beens, wandering aimlessly down the aisle in the supermarket wondering about meeting a professional gent for some company and maybe more. The bald Nicola had fucked a student and was about to experience who knows what with another woman.

She watched the assistant lift her tee-shirt over her head, watched as the garment appeared to consume and then disgorge the plume of red hair. Nicola saw that the woman’s bra was conventional, nothing like she would’ve expected from someone surrounded by all manner of more adventurous undergarments. She reached behind and undid the clasp, fixing Nicola’s gaze as her full boobs found their natural place. Brooke dipped in for a quick kiss before reaching for the waistband of her jeans. She slid them down and looked at Nicola. Nicola looked lower. The woman’s knickers were flimsy enough that there was no shadow of pubes to be seen. Shaved. Nicola was glad that she’d freshly shaved her own pussy in the shower before she’d come out.

Nicola had been passive so far, uncertain, which wasn’t always her when she was in the company of men. She had been known to take the initiative and grab a guy by the crotch just to get a feel for what was to come. This was a different ball game though, she thought, amused at her own wit. She reached forward to cup another woman’s mound in the palm of her hand. There was something disappointing in it. Doing it to a guy gave an indication of what was to come. Now her hand just felt softness and the woman’s heat. Maybe that in its own way was what lay ahead, softness and warmth. Then Nicola remembered the dildo. Not all of it was going to be softness, she thought. Brooke smiled and closed her eyes in appreciation. Her own hand covered Nicola’s, holding it in place. Nicola kissed her, pushing her own tongue into Brooke’s mouth. She hoped that she’d paid enough attention to all those films that she’d watched. She didn’t want to disappoint the woman. She broke away.

‘I’ve never done this before, you know’ she said quietly.

‘Just do whatever feels right. You’re doing great so far’ Brooke replied, finally sliding her knickers down. She took Nicola’s hand and pressed it back to where it had been. Nicola kissed her again, cupping the back of Brooke’s head in her hand. She trailed it languorously through the redness, wondering how long it took her to keep it in such fabulous condition. She opened her eyes, examining the room, while Brooke stroked and tweaked and pressed. There was an obvious office area, but there was also a plush seating area, complete with music system and tv. For all those quiet hours without customers, Nicola thought. It was feminine, homely, very comfortable. You could live her, she thought. She wondered if Brooke did. She felt the toy nuzzle her, trying to get to where it knew it belonged.

Brooke eased back to lead Nicola towards the more comfortable part of the room. They passed the desk and Nicola picked up something that she wanted to play with. It was clear that Brooke wanted Nicola to lie down on the sofa, but Nicola appeared reluctant. Brooke looked at her, disappointment starting to form on her face.

‘You don’t have to. I thought you wanted to.’ she said with a note of concern.

‘I do want to, but I want to play first’ she said. Brooke looked at her. Looked at what Nicola was holding, wondered where she’d got them from, realised it was from her desk as they went past. Scissors. Brooke looked at her, waiting.

‘I want to cut your hair’ Nicola said, transported back to the dance with Andy that went through several manoeuvres before they both ended up bald.

Brooke’s hand went on the defensive, concealing itself in the curtain of her hair. She looked at Nicola standing over her in the spiked heels, thinking how apt it was. She’d egged this woman on and had awoken something that neither of them probably realised was there. She looked at the scissors.

‘I like my hair’ she said, the hand seeking another defensive position.

‘You like mine better’ Nicola smiled.

‘I could never…’

‘That’s what I said, but look at me now. Bald. Smooth. Sexy as fuck’ Nicola said, slowing down as she finished the sentence. She was almost embarrassed, thinking that she wasn’t a very good actress at all. She looked at the woman’s hair. It was beautiful. She couldn’t cut it. She couldn’t do that to the girl, but it was fun watching her face at the thought of it. Nicola pressed the point of the scissors to Brooke’s nipple. ‘I think you want me to cut it. Look how hard you are.’

Brooke held out the dildo towards Nicola, offering her the chance to swap weapon.

‘Sit down’ Nicola said, starting to enjoy herself. It was the first time she’d had a good look at the dildo or whatever you called it. She wasn’t sure that she liked the colour, but she thought that she’d have her eyes closed if it got anywhere near where it was meant to go, so the colour probably wasn’t that important. She watched in amazement as the girl looked around her for the best place to sit.

‘This one’ Nicola said, pointing to the chair with the best-looking back support.

Brooke sat down almost meekly, watching Nicola for any clue as to what she had in mind. Nicola was wondering what she had in mind too. She hadn’t expected Brooke to sit down and was wondering what to do. She took up a position behind the chair and ran her hands through Brooke’s hair. ‘Beautiful’ she said ‘but a little too long’ she teased.

Nicola gathered the red hair awkwardly into a ponytail while trying not to drop the scissors. It was glossy, silky. She stood closer and used the captured hair to caress herself, first her legs, then her belly. She swished the ends across her mound, closing her eyes to concentrate on the sensation. Not so long ago, her pussy was covered with its own hair. Now it was smooth, the way it should always have been, she’d decided. She let the hair go and ran her hand through it. She could see that Brooke was sitting, anticipating, but not getting much stimulation, Nicola leant forward and whispered in Brooke’s ear.

‘You really have got the most beautiful hair. Would you like me to cut it?’

‘No, please’ Brooke replied, an apprehensive tone in her voice.

‘Maybe just a little bit, then’ Nicola replied, flicking the tip of her tongue at Brooke’s earlobe. She wondered why she was getting turned on by Brooke’s discomfort. Brooke’s fingers were playing nervously with the dildo.

‘Slide your bum forward a bit and put that where it’s meant to go’ Nicola said softly. She stood and watched as Brooke slid forward, spreading her legs as she moved. Nicola thought that there was almost something awkward about watching this woman part her lips with one hand and slide the dildo in with the other. That sense was overcome by the realisation that as Brooke slid forward, the angle changed. Her back was straight, her head was tilted back slightly as she savoured the object slipping inside her. Nicola was caught up in the moment. The scissors moved, opened and shut before she realised what she was doing. It was as if she hadn’t really done anything at all, but the hank of hair on the floor said otherwise. It was about six inches long. Nicola looked at where it had come from.

There was a sort of crenellation effect, like on a castle. Long hair, a step to a shorter section and then longer hair again. Although she’d cut quite a big piece, Brooke’s hair was still long enough for many women to envy. The shortest bit wasn’t even at bra-strap length.

Nicola bent down and picked it up. She used it like a little brush to caress Brooke’s shoulder, down onto the swell of her breasts. Then there was the moment of realisation when Brooke noticed that there was a gap at either end of this piece of hair. She caught her breath, it wasn’t a sob as such, but it wasn’t far off.

‘My hair!’ she exclaimed.’

‘Don’t be a baby, it’s only a little trim’ Nicola said, a little sharper than she intended. ‘Let me even it up and you won’t know the difference.’

Brooke slid the dildo home. Nicola cut another piece, still not confident at what she was doing, still not sure what made her actually cut in the first place. Another piece of hair fell. Nicola concentrated, not wanting to mess up. She’d cut the kids’ hair in the past, but not for many years. They quickly got to an age where they couldn’t have “mommy haircuts” and had to go to a proper salon. Brooke seemed to be consoling herself with the dildo, but was starting to get a bit more mobile as the effect got more intense.

‘Keep still’ Nicola said. ‘You wouldn’t want me to cut too much, would you?’

‘No’ Brooke replied quietly, trying to control the sensations coursing through her.

‘There, all better’ Nicola said, pleased with her rescue attempt and pleased to have finished. It was harder than it looked to cut a straight line.

‘Mmmm’ Brooke uttered. Nicola wasn’t sure if that was as a result of her work or the work that Brooke was currently undertaking between her own legs.

‘You’d never know’ Nicola said, running her hand over Brooke’s scalp. She bent forward so that she could cup one of Brooke’s breasts, still finding it completely alien to be feeling soft things in a sexual context rather than the hoped-for hard ones. In her experience, soft was never good, but now she had to reconsider that view. She found herself slightly jealous of Brooke’s fuller boobs and spectacular nipples. Hard and dark, surrounded by dark brown saucers.

Nicola was happy enough with what she’d been given, but this was an extra portion of everything. She squeezed.

‘Did you like me cutting your hair?’ she teased breathlessly, wondering if that would help Brooke get to where she was obviously headed. Nicola lifted a tress

and swiped it across her own bald head. She could feel it catch slightly on the burr of her scalp. Smooth to anyone else, but rough to her own touch. She was surprised how she really didn’t like the feeling of long hair against her head, not even someone else’s.

‘I’m going to cut some more, would you like that?’ she teased. ‘Would you like short hair? Nothing to cover those titties of yours when you look in the mirror?’

Nicola watched Brooke slide the dildo most of the way out and the shove it home with a slightly unfeminine grunt. She marvelled at the shiny plastic disappearing inside. She forgot about cutting Brooke’s hair and went around to kneel in front of her, reaching for the dildo. Brooke moved her own hand away and let the newcomer take over. Nicola was uncertain, she hadn’t even used one herself before, always relying on her fingers if ever she felt the need. She twisted it slowly, drawing it out and then sliding it back in. Brooke was arching her back, pushing her pelvis forward and up. Nicola recognised the signs. She bent forward to trail her tongue over Brooke’s breasts, licking the nipples in turn, enjoying the change in texture between soft boob and hard nipple. She took one between her teeth, concerned at the little squeal from Brooke. She’d need more practise. Brooke wasn’t far off. Nicola guided Brooke’s hand back to the dildo to let her apply the finishing touches that she needed. She stood up and watched Brooke play. She squeezed her own boobs in turn, trying to convince herself that doing this while her eyes were locked with those of a masturbating woman was perfectly normal. Not in her world. Well, her old world anyway. This was a new one, where the old rules didn’t apply. This was a world of young lovers, female lovers, baldness. She reached forward at took hold of the curtain of hair at the right side of Brooke’s face. Brooke watched the scissors approach slowly. Her expression changed, she started to breath more rapidly. Her climax was approaching, the scissors were approaching. Hair fell. Brooke came.

Nicola looked at the seated woman. Looked at the hank of hair in the woman’s lap, covering the hand that still held the dildo inside her. She looked at the cascading hair on the one side and the hair that gave up before it reached the shoulder on the other. This wasn’t a cut that could be blended in by a skilled professional. It was the makings of a bob.

‘Shit, I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to’ Nicola stammered. She looked at the woman sitting naked in front of her, dildo in hand, a spectacular head of hair not looking quite as spectacular anymore. The scissors felt heavy in Nicola’s hand. She watched Brooke lift a hand to locate the beginning of her shortened hair.

Nicola could see the consternation on the woman’s face that she had to lift her hand so high to make contact.

‘It’s ruined’ she said quietly. The intense pleasure of only seconds ago seemed forgotten.

‘You’re still beautiful’ Nicola said, trying to console the woman at the same time as trying to convince herself that it wasn’t really her fault. The scissors in her hand testified otherwise. Brooke was fingering the severed ends of her hair. Nicola started to feel uncomfortable, standing there naked except for the stupid shoes. The mood was ruined. Nicola thought that it was probably time to go, but felt obliged to try to sort out the mess that she had made.

‘Let me just even it out and I’ll pay for a hairdresser to do it properly’ she offered.

Brooke brandished the dildo menacingly, but it was no match for Nicola’s scissors if things turned ugly, She pressed the tip of the dildo to Nicola’s belly, just below her navel and started to move it downwards slowly. Nicola watched its progress, felt it reach the start of her slit. It carried on its journey, sliding comfortably to where it knew that it would find warmth and safety. Nicola turned her gaze to the uneven Brooke and eased her feet apart uncertainly.

This wasn’t the moment to take a tumble off the shoes. The tip of the dildo was enveloped by her lips and she watched the smile spread across Brooke’s face as it slid home. Nicola gasped and bent her knees slightly to get more comfortable. She needed to take the shoes off.

‘Wait, let me take these off’ she said.

‘No, I want to fuck you with them on’ Brooke replied. Nicola thought that she couldn’t really object. Brooke was kissing Nicola’s torso, manipulating the dildo with some skill as she alternated between tiny kisses and long slides of her tongue. She moved her stance to make a bid to get one of Nicola’s boobs in her mouth, but it was never going to work. They might be smaller than her own, but Nicola was still confident that she had much more than a mouthful to offer.

Nicola pulled Brooke’s head in to her like she’d seen in the films, her fingers entwined in Brooke’s hair. Her senses were more excited than they had been, possibly ever. She’d thought that getting screwed by a young man was as good as it would ever get for her, but now she was starting to think that she’d been mistaken. Whatever was happening between her and this woman was exciting her much more. She lifted her hand up from Brooke’s head, the hair still entwined in her fingers. She cut with the other and. She heard a muffled sound from Brooke, but wasn’t sure how to interpret it. She gathered a second handful and cut again. Close to the scalp.

Nicola had no idea what had come over her. She knew that she’d got carried away. Brooke seemed to be just letting it happen, but surely she’d regret it once the moment had passed. Nicola looked down at the forlorn tuft standing upright because it could do nothing else. Could it be rescued, she wondered. The she realised that whatever anyone tried to do, there would be that piece standing up and it would only become more obvious as it grew. It would always stick out from the crowd. Nicola selected another piece and cut again. Brooke made her muffled sound. Nicola yelped as Brooke nipped a nipple with her teeth in retaliation. Nicola grabbed a handful of hair and drew Brooke’s head away from her. She looked Brooke in the eye.

‘Sit down while I cut the rest of this off’ she said, trying to sound in control. She knew that she’d lost control for a couple of moments and that this woman had paid the price with her hair. Maybe that’s what happens when a woman you don’t know shoves a dildo in you, she mused.

Brooke sat on the chair again and looked up at Nicola plaintively. Nicola wondered about the practicalities of getting to where she needed to be while perched on spiked heels with a dildo inside her. Talk about First World problems, she thought. The shoes were made for strutting, but Nicola did more of a shuffle, muscles clenched to hang on to the invader. She took a deep breath and lifted another tress of silky red hair. The scissor blades touched Brooke’s scalp and the blades closed. She dropped the hank into Brooke’s lap. Brooke picked it up and held it while the process was repeated again and again until Brooke was left with ragged remnants of what had been her most striking feature. When she was dressed, of course. Naked, there would be stiff competition from her boobs.

Nicola put the scissors back on the desk where she’d found them and then returned to plant a kiss on Brooke’s prickly scalp. She caressed Brooke’s face and felt a hand ease between her own legs. The dildo was out and then it was back in again. She reached for Brooke’s forearm and urged her to stand up. Nicola ran a hand over Brooke’s scalp and hated it. Her own had felt bad enough with just its light covering a fuzz, but this was just wrong. It was between two worlds and not a good place at all.

‘I need to go out and get some things to make you beautiful. Will you wait for me?’ she said.

Brooke shrugged.

Nicola sat down and took the shoes off. There was no way that she could walk anywhere in them. In moments she was back in her own dress and shoes and heading for the door. She’d passed a chemist a few doors away and knew that she could be there and back in a couple of minutes. She realised that she couldn’t lock the shop door behind her and hoped that the sign saying “Back in a few minutes” would be sufficient to deter potential shoppers. She hurried to the chemist and headed for the male grooming section. She grabbed what she needed and was back in the shop before anyone had tried to get in. She locked the door behind her and hurried to the back room. Nicola was on the phone, in normal business mode, talking to what sounded like a supplier. She was naked and shorn, but back to being a businesswoman. One with a foot resting on the desk while she was sliding the dildo in and out slowly.

Nicola unwrapped her purchases, pleased to have a moment to read the instructions. She looked at the selection of guards, looked at Brooke, trying to judge which one would be best. It had to be the shortest. She fitted the “Number 1” and looked for a power socket. She hoped that the clippers were as easy to use as Becky had made them seem when she used them on her. Nicola was hoping that once they were plugged in, it was flick the switch and away you go. She’d bought the most expensive ones that she could find, in the hope that they’d be both efficient and novice-proof. She saw the perfect socket and plugged them in. She flicked the switch to see how much noise they made. Hardly any. Perfect. Brooke was still listening to whoever it was on the other end of the phone when Nicola ran the clippers across the top of her head. It was an instant improvement on the ragged landscape that Nicola had crafted with the scissors. The clippers left hardly anything, but what there was still had that lovely deep red hue. She made a second pass aware that Brooke was wrapping up the call. By the time the third pass was complete, the call was done and the top of Brooke’s head was an even next-to-nothingness.

She paused to let Brooke feel it.

‘That’s so fucking short’ she said.

‘But it’s so fucking sexy’ Nicola countered. She moved the clippers up the side of Brooke’s head, delighted that the clippers were so easy to use and were making such a good job of tidying up the mess. She wondered just how long it would take Brooke’s hair to regain its former length. She went over the woman’s whole head, creating uniform reddish stubble. She turned the clippers off and stood in front of Brooke, looking at what she’d done to the woman. Brooke ran a hand over her scalp.

‘My boyfriend’s going to kill me’ she said.

‘He’ll love it’ Nicola said trying to keep the note of hope out of her voice.

Nicola looked at Brooke once more, the image of her with flowing red hair so fresh in her memory.

‘Let me just go over it again to make sure it’s even’ Nicola said. Brooke took her hand away. Nicola moved behind Brooke and ran a hand over the stubbly scalp to assess it. She blew on the head of the clippers to clear them of any remnants of Brooke’s hair and was just about to start when she had a thought. She took the guard off and made the first pass across Brooke’s crown. The stubble slid away. In for a penny, Nicola thought.

She cast her mind back to when Andy shaved her and how disappointed she’d been at first because she liked the way that Becky had cut it for her. Super short, but still feminine. Brooke wasn’t going to be disappointed like she had been to lose her own crafted stubble. She wasn’t going to be any more angry at the loss of the last fraction, given how much was lying on the floor already. Nicola worked as quickly as she could and then switched the clippers off, pronouncing herself done. She unplugged the clippers without comment and went to put them back in the box. She had her back to Brooke when the latter must have decided to see whether that “just making sure” cut had made any difference.

‘You’ve fucking shaved it!’ Brooke exclaimed. Nicola turned to her and held up the second of her purchases.

‘Not yet, but if you do mine, I’ll do yours’ she replied.

Brooke looked at the can of shaving foam and packet of safety razors, one hand still on her scalp.

‘You want to bic it?’

‘I was going to find a salon to shave mine for me, but I thought that you could do it. What do you think?’

Brooke looked at her. Nicola wasn’t sure what Brooke was thinking.

‘Take that dress off and sit down’ Brooke said.

Nicola hadn’t actually realised that she hadn’t got undressed again before she’d launched into her barberette routine. She put the bits and pieces down and did as she was asked. Brooke stood up and went over to where Nicola was sitting expectantly. Nicola’s left boob was squeezed a little more firmly than was comfortable. I asked for that, Nicola thought, wincing. She watched Brooke undo the packet of razors and pick up the can of shaving foam. Nicola really hoped that Brooke’s thoughts of vengeance extended no further than inflicting a sore boob.

Brooke squirted shaving foam onto the crown of Nicola’s head and smothered it across her scalp. Her touch now was gentle, sensuous even. Nicola thought she was careful, even though not as practised as Becky. Nicola relaxed and closed her eyes. She felt first contact and sighed quietly. After the first few strokes, she realised that she was able to do what she couldn’t have if she’d gone to a proper salon. She spread her legs and got busy. Brooke worked away, as did Nicola.

After several minutes, the rhythm of the razor slowed, signalling that the job was just about complete. Nicola opened her eyes just in time to see her view obscured. It took a moment to process what she’d just glimpsed.

‘No, please’ she said.

After what you did to me, I think you should just shut up’ Brooke said. Nicola couldn’t really disagree and closed her eyes again.

Despite the harsh tone in Brooke’s voice, her touch was still gentle. There was the lightest touch as her finger glided just above Nicola’s eye and then another sensation. Nicola dreaded to think what she’d look like, but she couldn’t object given the comparative size of her loss. The sensations were repeated on the other side before Brooke told her that she was done. Nicola stood, looking for a mirror, forgetting all about her offer to shave Brooke’s head for her. She spotted a rather ornate mirror and went over to it, dreading what she’d see. She stared at the alien looking back at her. There were still flecks of white shaving cream on her scalp and one cheek. There was a trace of white where her eyebrows had been. So little hair, such a big loss, she thought.

Nicola turned back towards Brooke, only to see her sitting expectantly in the chair that Nicola had just vacated. She was smearing shaving cream over her own scalp.

‘So you’re not mad at me?’

Brooke smiled. ‘I’d thought about doing this a while ago, but just needed a little push’ she replied.

‘What about your boyfriend?’

‘There isn’t one. I just made that up.’

‘You had me really worried.’

‘Not so worried that it stopped you diddling yourself’ she observed.

‘A girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do’ Nicola replied, sliding a finger between her legs. She moved towards Brooke, a new razor held high. She returned the slightly too hard boob squeeze and then started to shave.

‘I can’t believe that you wanted to do this all along’ she said, stroking the razor across Brooke’s scalp.

‘I probably wouldn’t have walked in somewhere and asked them to do it. There’s no fun in that, but it seemed to me like you were up for a bit of fun. Maybe if you’d put some knickers on this morning I wouldn’t have suspected that you weren’t all you pretend to be’ she replied. Nicola smiled at the confirmation that Brooke had got a flash when she was trying on the shoes as she’d suspected. Silence fell again. It really didn’t seem odd to Nicola any more to be standing here naked, shaving another woman’s head while that woman played with herself. She’d always thought that the lesbian porn that she watched lacked credibility, but here she was starring in her own scene, which she really couldn’t have made up. After a couple more minutes, she checked her work and declared herself finished.

Brooke put a hand to her scalp and closed her eyes as she stroked the smoothness. The other hand went to the only other place that was natural. Nicola bent forward and kissed the bare skin, tasting the faint remnants of the shaving cream. ‘You could’ve left my eyebrows alone’ she said.

‘Just a bit of fun, that’s all’ Brooke told her.

‘How about we do yours?’ Nicola ventured.

‘I’m good like this for now. I want to save them for another time’ she replied, eyes open now and business personality re-established. She stood up and kissed Nicola chastely on the cheek. Nicola was surprised at the apparent formality, but then felt the hand cup her mound. Brooke led her to the couch and all was well with Nicola’s world.

Nicola had no idea how much time had passed, but she and Brooke had got through everything that needed to be done. Brooke needed to get the shop re-opened, so both of them tidied themselves up in the surprisingly high-end bathroom.

Nicola looked at herself in the mirror. She looked so odd without eyebrows.

‘I don’t suppose you’ve got an eyebrow pencil?’ she asked.

‘Even if I had, I wouldn’t give it to you. Go out there and be different. You look fabulous, so just stare at everyone of those soccer moms on the school run and say “Fuck you, look at me, I’m gorgeous!”

‘That probably won’t go down too well.’

‘You know what I mean. They all look the same, but you’ll stand out in a crowd.’

‘I know, because someone shaved my eyebrows off!’ Nicola exclaimed.

‘You look great, now let me get my shop open.’

Nicola went and fetched her bag, ready to go.

‘Don’t go without these’ Brooke said, picking up the dress and bending down to get the shoes.

‘I’ll take the dress, but I couldn’t wear the shoes without doing myself an injury’ she said, starting to open her bag.

‘Don’t be silly, I don’t want any money. Take the dress and I’ll get you a pair of the same shoes with a lower heel, how about that?’

Nicola looked at her and thanked her for her generosity and for the experience that they’d shared.

‘You know where I am if you need some fashion advice’ Brooke said as Nicola walked down the shop. She raised a hand in a goodbye gesture knowing that she needed to get out before she did anything else.

Nicola walked down the street feeling even more self-conscious than she had the first time she went out with a shaven head. That was nerve-wracking enough and now here she was with no eyebrows. She could feel people staring, but maybe that was because she was a woman of a certain age with a carrier bag advertising a store that no self-respecting middle-aged woman should be anywhere near. She headed back to her car, with a quick detour to the chemist to get an eyebrow pencil. The thought that was uppermost in her mind as she walked was how she had managed to stumble into that situation in the first place. What were the chances of meeting someone like Brooke without even trying? Nicola didn’t know, didn’t care and was just grateful that the opportunity had presented itself.

She was alert when she approached the house, on the lookout for any sign of a neighbour. Thankfully there was none evident, so she pulled up on the drive and rushed into the house. She closed the front door and leaned back against it, pleased to have made it back to her sanctuary. She put her bag down and headed upstairs with her purchases and gifts from an eventful morning. She was back in the shower again before it had time to drain fully from her visit first thing.

She washed her scalp, pleased that Brooke had done an excellent job. The resistance that had been there earlier was gone and now her fingers just slid across the skin. She put a tentative finger to her right eyebrow, but that just confirmed that there was smoothness there too. She thought about the events of the whole morning, the initial thrill of going out without underwear, to realising that she’d flashed the shop assistant, all the way to her first taste of another woman. It had cost her her eyebrows, but she’d gained a new outfit and many memories to rekindle in her dotage.

Over the course of the next few days, Nicola became quite the expert at drawing eyebrows. She experimented with a full look, all the way down to a minimal super-thin line which she actually quite liked, particularly when she tried the dress on with the more sensible shoes that Brooke had given her. She’s never thought of four-inch heels as sensible, but compared with the initial pair, they were positively mundane. She still wasn’t convinced about going completely browless, but she did try a couple of times, just around the house.

Her mind turned to getting ready for Erin’s visit at the weekend. Nicola smiled when she thought that Erin would only have had to contend with a bald mother if she’d come when she originally said, but now she was going to have to get her head round a bald, browless mother. What would she make of that?

Nicola found out soon enough. She was doing a final tidy up when she heard the front door. Her stomach fluttered slightly as she heard Erin close the door behind her.

‘Hellooooo’ Erin called, unsure where her mother would be.

Nicola went into the entrance hall, ready to give her daughter a hug, but the initial approach was thwarted.

‘Not so fast, old lady’ Erin said with a smile. She held her mother’s outstretched hands in her own and looked her mother up and down.

‘Well?’ Nicola asked.

‘I can’t believe you did that. You look beautiful’ she said. Nicola could see her take a closer look. ‘Eyebrows too. There’s no stopping you is there?’

She allowed Nicola to hug her, which gave her the chance for a little stroke. They let go of each other and it was Nicola’s turn to pass judgement.

‘You’re not the little girl that I drove to university either. Look at you, all grown up’ she said.

They went into the kitchen and spent a couple of hours catching up, each excited at the change in the other’s life since they’d last spent time together. Erin talked about her boyfriend, Nicola skirted round hers, if that was what Andy was. At present, he was someone who’d screwed her and shaved her, but who she hadn’t seen since that eventful day. She also thought it best not to mention her dalliance as a lesbian for a morning, again unsure as to whether that would be repeated. A couple of things struck her while she was talking to Erin: she wasn’t in a relationship; she hadn’t pursued the opportunities that had presented themselves; she was horny. She was also embarrassed that Erin told her that her boyfriend had called Nicola a “bald MILF”, but had never passed comment on her prior to seeing the picture of her with her shaved head. Erin said that she’d pressed him about it and he’d said that “given the choice, he’d struggle to choose between Erin or her mother.” Nicola was overtly shocked and disappointed at what Erin had said, but had to acknowledge to herself that she was flattered. Although the boyfriend hadn’t seen the latest modification.

Nicola and Erin agreed that “all men are bastards”, a thought which had a little edge for Nicola given her recent experimentation. She was pleased to see that Erin had clearly given the matter much thought and was being rational about it. She closed the conversation down when Erin started to tell her that she’d withdrawn the boyfriend’s “privileges” in retaliation. That was a little too much for a Saturday afternoon.

Afternoon tea was meant to have been followed by a trip to town, but they talked so much that they decided that it was too late to be worthwhile. They ended up getting some food delivered and opening a bottle of wine instead. The wine steered the conversation back to boyfriends, men in general, Nicola’s “decision” to shave her head, reactions to it, all manner of things that made the evening slide by.

Erin offered to do the dishes and Nicola popped upstairs. She was so happy to have Erin home again and happier still that they could spend time just chatting like girlfriends. Nicola still hadn’t mentioned Andy or Brooke, because neither of those could be put back in the bottle once they were out and Nicola still wasn’t sure that it was a risk worth taking, if neither experience was to be repeated. She checked herself in the bathroom mirror to make sure that her “eyebrows” still looked alright. Happy that all was as it should, she went to turn the light off and then paused. She opened the drawer in the vanity unit and then headed back downstairs.

Erin had finished the dishes and had the coffee on.

‘I’ve got just the thing for that boyfriend of yours’ she said, one hand behind her back.

‘What? A bloody great slap?’ Erin asked.

Nicola took her hand from behind her back and held it out towards Erin. Erin looked at her, eyes wide open.

‘You’re kidding?’ she said.

‘Sounds to me like he’d love it’ she said.

‘You think I’d do that for him?’

‘Do it for you. You’re curious about it, give it a go. You never know until you try something’ Nicola said, her mind dragged back again to the major events in her life since that fateful argument in the store with Roger. Who knew what doors that spat had opened up and who knew what doors still awaited. She put the boxed clippers on the breakfast bar.

‘Just like that?’

‘Up to you’ Nicola replied.

‘I’d need more wine’ Erin said, pushing her hair back off her forehead. Nicola looked at her daughter’s dark blonde hair. It was shorter than when she’d last seen her, but still grazing her collar. It suited her like that, made her look more grown up than when they’d last seen each other. Nicola’s eyes strayed to the spot where the memory of being shaved by Andy was still vivid. She’d shaved his pubes just there, had her head shaved, now she was thinking about pandering to her daughter’s boyfriend. She wondered if she would actually do it, if given the opportunity and then told herself not to be so stupid. One young man was one too many for a woman her age. Maybe that was why she hadn’t got in touch with him again. Maybe she would when Erin had gone home. Erin was pouring herself a glass of wine.

‘Easy’ Nicola counselled.

‘I think I’m allowed when I’m about to shave my fucking hair off’ Erin said, before realising that she may just have spent a lovely afternoon and evening with Nicola, but Nicola was still her mother rather than a friend.

‘Just for that, I am going to shave your fucking hair off, young lady’ Nicola said with a smile.

‘No, I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to swear, really’ she protested.

‘Okay, don’t do it again. I didn’t bring my daughters up to swear like troopers.’

‘I didn’t grow up thinking that my mother would look like a dyke one day’ Erin countered with a glint of defiance.

‘I think you’ve had more than enough of that, young lady’ Nicola said with a gesture towards the glass in Erin’s hand. She felt wounded by the observation. Is that what she looked like? A lesbian. What would Erin say if she found out about Brooke?

‘Sorry, I didn’t mean it. Some of my best friends are lesbians’ she said, trying to sound contrite.

‘Mine too’ Nicola said, instantly regretting it.

‘You wouldn’t know a lesbian if one came up and bit you.’

‘And who says one hasn’t already?’

‘You’re thinking about vampires’ Erin giggled.

‘Ahh, yes, that’s right. It was a vampire with big boobs.’

‘Mum!’ Erin said, disapprovingly, taking a slurp of wine.

‘Sorry. Are we doing this or not?’ Nicola asked.

‘Why the fuck not? I’ll go home fucking bald and tell him that he can’t fuck me, see how he fucking likes that’ Erin said, almost laughing.

‘Maybe we should think about it’ Nicola said quietly.

‘Now or never’ Erin said.

‘Maybe it’s not such a good idea after all.’

‘I want to do it’ Erin said. ‘I’ve thought about it ever since I saw your picture. And I’m not drunk if that’s what you’re thinking’ she said, sitting down on a kitchen chair.

‘I can’t reach you over there, the cord’s not long enough’ Nicola said.

Erin moved the stool closer.

‘You’re sure?’ Nicola asked. Erin pulled her shirt over her head and draped the kitchen towel around her shoulders. She closed her eyes.

Nicola paused. ‘I’ll start with a long guard’ she said.

Erin sat expectantly. Nicola wondered if she should wait until the morning to let Erin sleep on it. Despite the protestations, Nicola did think that Erin was a little the worse for the wine. She picked a guard out of the box and quickly put it back, in favour of another one. She fitted the second guard and looked at the clippers. Should she? She’d chosen a number four, so it wasn’t desperately short, relatively speaking, but it was still a huge thing for any woman to do.

Nicola couldn’t believe that she was about to cut her daughter’s hair off. She couldn’t believe that she was doing it because her daughter’s boyfriend found a bald woman attractive, particularly when she happened to be the woman in question. That prompted her to think again.

The boyfriend found a bald woman attractive, not a woman with a buzzcut, she told herself. She slipped the guard off and placed the clippers at Erin’s forehead.

‘You’re quite sure Erin?’ Nicola asked.

‘Yes, I’m sure, now just do it’ Erin replied.

Nicola slid the clippers backwards, immediately regretting it. She was shaving her daughter’s head. How could she? It was too late, she’d ploughed a bald track across Erin’s crown. She paused and then continued with the inevitable. Erin picked a tuft of hair from her lap and held it up.

‘He’s going to be paying for this for a very long time’ Erin said. Nicola didn’t want to think how. Instead she tried to think back to shaving Brooke’s head, how that had filled her with trepidation, but then how Brooke had actually welcomed it. She really hoped that Erin would respond in a similar fashion, Without the dildo and the other things, of course, she chuckled to herself.

There was little of Erin’s hair now that wasn’t either in her lap or on the floor around her. The clippers had done their job again and Nicola wondered whether she could get away without the razor shave. Surely this was enough. She retraced the path that the clippers had taken to make sure that the finish was as good as she could get it and then turned them off with a flourish.

‘Happy now?’ she asked.

Erin reached up and felt it. ‘It’s not as smooth as yours’ she said.

‘Mine’s done with a razor’ Nicola replied.

‘And?’

‘It’ll take longer to grow back if you do it with a razor’

‘Who says I want to grow it back?’ Erin replied.

‘Anything for your man. You’ll make the sisterhood on campus very proud’ Nicola said with a wry smile, swapping the clippers for the can of shaving foam. She smeared the foam over Erin’s head using firm swirls of her hands, trying to be as functional as possible. She knew only too well the effect of dancing fingertips during this part of the process and wanted to avoid that at all costs. She took care during the actual shaving, but again was as business-like as she she could muster. Erin sat stoically until the end when Nicola patted her daughter’s bald head playfully.

‘That’s you, young lady, bald as the day you were born.’ She watched Erin go through the same process as she had, the one hand reaching up tentatively, before the other followed to see what all the fuss was about.

‘It’s sticky!’

‘Go and wash it off then’ Nicola replied. She watched Erin get up and leave the room. She looked at the pile of her daughter’s hair on the floor and picked up a piece ruefully. She was still holding it when Erin came back into the room. Her expression was giving nothing away, but at least there was no sign of crying.

Nicola saw that Erin was holding her phone. Erin held it up to her to show the exchange with the boyfriend. The picture was clearly Erin in the bathroom mirror.

The response was “Fuck, better than your old lady. Come home.xxx”

‘That upsets me in so many ways!’ Nicola said with a smile. She hugged Erin and rubbed her head. Erin insisted that they pose together for a selfie, which Nicola refused until Erin put her top back on. She busied herself tidying up while Erin shared her new look with the world, wondering why young people couldn’t ever just enjoy a moment to themselves. Erin seemed happy with what she’d done. Nicola was happy with what she’d done. Now she just had to work out which direction her life was going to take now. She picked up her own phone and started to scroll down her contacts list. She flicked between “A” and “B”. Andy or Brooke? That was a position she never thought she’d find herself in. Did she have to choose? She tapped out a quick message and put the phone away.

 

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