Amelia looked at her phone.
It was past her curfew, her mom would be livid with her. The one she dreaded was a mad mother. She wasn’t getting out of this one: or could she?
When her friends left her on the curb, one block away from her house, the teenager snuck about the backyard and onto the roof. The lights in the house were off, she thought them asleep. She quickly snuck into her room and quietly dressed in her nightgown and pretended to dream peacefully.
No plan was more clever than hers, she thought: a hubris thought.But her mother wasn’t born yesterday. She would wake Amelia from her dream.
”Mom?”the girl pseudo-groggily said to the figure at the door of her room. She did not scream, yell, or any sort of angry gesture. The mother was smarter than that.
”Hey, sweetie”,she lulled,”Come. Let’s go”
Amelia looked to her clock, it was one in the morning.Then it hit her, the realization. She was terrified of what was to follow the wakening.
”Come on”,smiled her mother.
The girl could not do anything but follow her doom downstairs and into the kitchen.A chair waited for her, a childish yellow cape on the kitchen counter. The girl was above to lose what she loved.
”So”,said her mother, securing the cape around her daughter’s neck,”How was the party and more important, was it worth it?”
”I’m sorry I stayed past my curfew”,sobbed Amelia.
”Hush now”,charmed her mother,”I haven’t even started cutting”
”Can we..”started the child,”Can you not cut it short?”
”Do you think you are any position to order me around?”asked her mother.
The shamed daughter looked down, this was her doing and she was making it worse. She just hoped that her mother left most of her hair on her head.Anything was possible now.
”Head up”,her mother moved her jaw up, a comb in the hand,”This won’t take long”
The girl was nervous as her hair was pulled from her face. Her mother’s shadow masked her action to be. But the the pop gave her intent away.Blades descended into the girl’s view and she cried,”Please, no. Don’t shave me bald”
Her words were hummed over by the device as it rid her a row of follicles. The clippers went up and down her skull til all was short stubble.
”Time to clean you up”,clapped her mother, turning off the clippers and taking a can of shaving cream. She rubbed a big glob in her dainty hands and covered her daughter’s scalp with it.Rinsing her hands in the sink, her mother opened an ancient case of straight razors.
”I can remember when your father would need a shave every now and then”,chuckled the woman. She was very proud of her skills and never wasted an opportunity to show them off.This would be her finest shave ever.
Amelia’s head was lowered and her mother started to shave her.Whittling her down like a block of cedar. She would even some of the cream back over the shaved spots to wipe it off again.
”Just a few touch-ups”,eyed her mother, so focused on making sure Amelia’s head was smooth and hairless. One minute later, and Amelia was soft and sweetly shaven. She didn’t want to look at herself but her mother brought out a mirror and forced her to hold it up as she rotated another behind her.
”There’s my girl”,smiled the barber-mother,”Oh! I forgot something”
‘What’,Amelia groaned in her mind.
Her mother dusted her off and put powder on her bald head. Then she took a brush to mix it into the scalp. Amelia’s dome was then taken into her mother’s hands. Her head was tilted back to where her caregiver looked giant compared to her small figure.
”Hope you learned your lesson”,smiled the devilish woman.
”I did”, she replied.
”Good”,returned her mother,”Let’s clean up and get to bed”
The girl wanted to run away to her room and lock herself in for eternity but her keeper was a watchful eye and she was punished enough.All she wanted to do was get to bed as soon as possible. She had enough of this new day.
”Oh, by the way”,said her mother,”I will be shaving you once a week for the next three months. And you’re grounded for a year”
”What!”exploded Amelia,”You can’t do that”
Her mother was not happy at the outburst. She was very cross, taking her daughter by the ear and sitting her back into the chair. “Sit here, young lady”,ordered the woman, reapplying the cape to her kin and taking a much smaller clipper into her hand.
”I was content with shaving your head”,she put,”But you force my hand”
As her daughter begged for mercy, she activated the tiny clipper. Over Amelia’s brows, they went, eating away the young girl’s remaining eyebrow. She stopped only to a hairless head.
”I hate you”,sobbed the daughter,”How could you?”
”Believe me”,replied her mother,”This was all avoidable”
Her point was not translated well to her daughter who loathed the woman taking a razor to remove everything on her forehead. But a girl couldn’t be furious forever for she was in a state of doubt. Doubting her mother could do worse but to scared to test her.
”You know your routine for the coming months, right?”asked the barber, expecting one answer.
”Yes, ma’am”,replied Amelia.
”Good”,said her mother,”And I’ll be shaving you for the whole year now, eyebrows for three months”
Amelia wanted to protest but fear overpowered her other emotions. She hated this one-sided deal but this was the best she could get.Her hair was an example of her calm wrath.
”Goodnight”,her mother waved to her in the hall to her bedroom.
Her silence was the girl’s answer.
The young lady went to her bed, the giant mirror across from it gave her pause. She hated the bald girl looking back at her. She wanted to smash the mirror and end her image but settled on yelling at her reflection instead.
”You’re so ugly!”she roared,”I hate you!”
But she stopped, dogs barked as a result of her action.A tear left her red eyes, she wanted to apologize to the hurt bald girl but how could she? The only path was to sleep away the pain and try to forget the night.
”Good morning”,said her mother who was making breakfast,”How did you sleep?”
”That’s good”,smiled her mother, rubbing her daughter’s head from crown to nape, feeling the micro stubble growing in,”You will need a shave before the photographer gets here, your hair grows fast”
”What?”gasped her daughter,”What photographer?”
” I’m having a sweet lady come and take our photo”,she explained.
”No no no”,Amelia refused,” I will not have my photo on the internet”
”Why on earth do you think I am going to upload a photo of you to the internet?”her mother returned,” I just want a picture for the scrapbook”
”Still”, said Amelia,” I don’t want anyone to see me like this”
”There is no shame in being bald”,replied her mother.
” I look sick”,Amelia cried.
“You look fine”,waved her mother,”Now, come sit”
Amelia made a loud groan as she sat in the chair for the third time, her mother wrapping her up rubbing her head up and down. She was embarrassed and nervous as her hairdressing mother swirled the white stuff over her head and covered her brows. The razor made quick work of the cream and left the girl with a smooth finish. A knock came at the door as her head was powdered again.
”Oh”,clapped her mother,”That must be her”
‘Please’,Amelia begged,‘Don’t open the door’
But the ecstatic lady threw open the door and greeted the woman.
”Miss Shelly”,beamed Amelia’s mother,”Come in. I was just shaving my daughter, powdering her up now”
”Nice to meet you two”,Shelly looked about the house,”You have a very nice home”
”Thank you”,replied the barbering mother, finishing buffing her child’s head,”I always spruce it up every so often”
”Alright”,smiled her mother to her daughter, removing the cape,”Go into my room. I have set an outfit out for you on my bed. Put it on and come back downstairs”
Amelia did as she was told and returned in a dark-blue dress that stopped just short of her knees.A white bow was about her head.
”Don’t you look scrumptious”,her mother complimented the outfit,”Wouldn’t you agree, Miss Shelly”
”She certainly has style”,replied Shelly.
’I look ridiculous’, Amelia thought.
”Sweetie”,said her mother,”Stand there and pose for the camera”
She then turned to Shelly,” I want a few pictures of her on the stairs. I’m going to spruce up the couch for our mother-daughter pictures”
Shelly nodded and positioned the girl how she wanted as the mother decorated the living room. When Shelly had her fill, she and the girl went to survey the mother’s work. She had completely revamped the whole room.
”All done?”Amelia’s mother queried.
”Yep”,Shelly nodded,”All I have to get is you and daughter photos”
”Great”,said the mother,”Amelia, darling. Come and sit”
The child hated to be posed, all bald and having to wear her mother’s choice of outfit, she wanted to just say no. But she forced a smile onto her face and wrapped her arms around her mother or had her hands on her lap as the shutter took and snapped. She didn’t really want to see the end result.
But Shelly showed the duo the pictures she taken. A photo that showed a beautiful wife and, in Amelia’s opinion, her hideous daughter. Her mother, on the other hand, thought it was the beautiful thing she ever saw.
”You have very chubby cheeks”,smiled her mother,”I like that about you”
’Please, don’t mock me and the one thing I hate about myself’,replied Amelia in her mind.
Shelly left to process the photos and said she would mail them back to them in a week’s time.That was not pleasant for Amelia to hear. She never wanted to see her bald mug again.
For the next three months, Amelia was subjected to a full headshave and she couldn’t complain: growing accustomed to the ritual, even secretly wanting her mother to shave off her eyebrows when that part of the punishment was over.
Going back to school was an adjustment, everyone was surprised at her shaved head and wanted to know more. She was made fun of for being the bald girl but the bald girl soon grew to put the bullies in their place. One fight took it too far, Amelia Hearthstone was expelled soon after.
Her mother didn’t punish her for being kicked out of school, she understood reason and her mothering nature would damn her if she did. Instead, Amelia was homeschooled for the remainder of the year.Her mother was a holder of an education degree after all.
The girl had her head shaven once a week now, she had no choice in that. After breakfast, every morning, her mother would break out the clippers and have her daughter take her seat. The girl would do so and anticipate the humming of the clippers.What hair she managed to style was quickly buzzed off.
The coolness of the shaving cream was her favorite part, although she dare not show it.Her mother would use the razor and in a moment, she was shown the bald girl. A girl she hated before but one she grew to appreciate.