Alex Martel-Undercover

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Alex Martel-Undercover
Ginger Herten

“Hey, Martel.” Sarge calls from his office door.  I am sitting at my desk typing up a report.  Paperwork is the bane of police officers everywhere, I am happy enough for an excuse to get away from it.  I head into the Sarge’s office.

There are three detectives I’d never met before in there with Sarge.  “Martel, these are Detectives Miller, Rodriguez, and Jones.  They think you can help them.  This would be good for your career.”  I smile at them and we all shake hands.

“We need an undercover officer, and we would like you to take the assignment.” Jones starts “I know this must come as a shock.”

“It is a surprise, I appreciate the opportunity though.”  I respond, curious why they would give this to me even though I am barely out of the academy.

“Well, of course we would normally use an officer with more experience, but we happen to need someone who can pass for a particular person, and you just happen to be a dead ringer for her.”  Jones explains.

Rodriguez stepped in.  “Miller will be undercover with you as your brother, Joe Lambert.  The targets met the person you will be 15 years ago when she was a 12 year old with braces, but they never met her older brother.  Here’s the file on Isabel Lambert, you can read it while we get everything set up.”

I start looking through it.  The basic description matches perfectly, 5’5″, brown eyes, 125lbs on an athletic build.  12 years old 15 years ago made her older than me, but there isn’t really a noticeable difference between the way someone looks in her early 20s looks versus her late 20s. The photo was pretty close to me, except for her hair, mine was very long when not up in the tight bun I wear while on duty, hers was just at her shoulders in the most recent photo, but long like mine in some of the earlier ones.  Looking at the changes through the years, she was obviously more adventurous about hair than I was.  I could see how if you hadn’t seen her since she was a teen you could think I was her.  Her mug shot and interrogation were on a CD not printed out, so I couldn’t see those till I would get a chance to sit at a computer.

“What’s our schedule now?” Miller asks.

“First, we need to hit a clothing store and get stuff that will fit Martel.” Rodriguez answers.  “Then we need to get to a barbershop.”

A strange chill went through my spine at the mention of a barbershop.  Did our targets somehow know that Isabel had shoulder length hair even though they hadn’t seen her for years?  My heart is pounding, but I am trying hard not to let my panic show.  Maybe it is for Miller, maybe he needs it, I looked at him, his sandy hair is kind of long, passed his collar.  Rodriguez had said barber, not stylist or salon.  Worst case, it wasn’t that short, not like a bob. I take a deep breath and tried to put it out of my mind.

Rodriguez is going over the rest of the schedule and I am barely able to pay attention.  “You look a bit concerned Martel, are you sure you’re up for this?”

I fight down the panicked voice in my head screaming NO I’M NOT UP FOR THIS! I can’t cut my hair and instead answer “I’ll be fine, it’s just a lot to take in.”

“OK, let’s hit the street, the meeting with the targets is tonight.”

Soon Jones, Rodriguez, Miller and I are in a car heading to the store.  The stop at the store was quick and soon I am out of uniform and we are back on the road heading to the babershop.  I am trying to focus on reading Isabel’s file as we drive, but my mind just keeps going back to praying the stop at the barbershop is for Miller instead of me.

We arrive at Joe’s barbershop.  I’d never been here before, but knew it is popular amongst the guys on the force.  It is pretty quiet since it is the middle of the day.  There are just a couple off old men getting trimmed down.  It is an old fashioned place; the swirling pole outside; black and white tile floors; chrome and leather chairs with elaborate foot rests; marble counters with jars full of combs and blue liquid.  I feel so out of place walking into this place that seems so male.  My heart pounds as I try to convince myself we’re not here for me.

We sit down in the waiting area.  Jones flashes his badge at the elderly gentlemen who is waiting.  “Official business, mind if we go next.” The old man is happy to help of course.  Soon one of the two barbers is available.

My heart is really pounding.

“Hi Joe, can you match color?  I need Miller here to pass as Officer Martel’s brother.”  Jones calls out pointing first at Miller then to me.

Oh thank god.  thankyou, thankyou, thankyou!  We are here for Miller.  I start breathing again, not having realized I had stopped before.

“Sure no problem, Let me see the color better.”

Everyone looks at me.

I start  taking out the pins holding my braided hair in a coil against my head.  My hands are shaky from the relief making it feel like it is taking way too long as these men stare at me.  I carefully pile the bobby pins on my lap so I would have them to put my hair back up while they are dying Millers hair.  The heavy braid comes down and slaps me on my back.  I pull the end of my braid over my shoulder and pull off the elastic.  I slip the elastic onto my wrist as I begin to undo the braid.

My fingers easily unbraid my smooth hair.  It is silky and tangle free from having been in a braid all day.  Soon the deep chocolate brown ripples cascade over my shoulders and down my breasts.

“That will look pretty natural on Miller, and it’ll be an easy process since it’s darker than his color.  Here Miller bring a sample to the sinks.” Joe says as he hands Miller a pair of scissors and starts walking towards the backroom.

Miller comes over to me and hands me the scissors.  My heart is pounding again, but I calm myself remembering one lock wasn’t going to show.  I take a lock from the back, where it’s well covered, and pull it to the front.  I smooth it briefly and cut 2 inches off the bottom.  I hand the lock and scissors to Miller.  “Thanks” he says looking mildly embarrassed.

As Joe comes back from the backroom stirring a bowl of something, the other barber is finishing up his client.  “Good, Sam can take care of you now Martel.” Rodriguez says to me nudging my shoulder.

Suddenly the panic is back.  My heart skips a few beats.  I know I need to stand up and start walking to the open chair, but am having a hard time getting my legs to work.  Deep breath, shoulder lengths not that bad.  I fumble to get the photo of Isabel from the file, stalling till I can get my legs working.

“Martel, don’t bother with the photo.”

“Why? It’s dated just two weeks ago.”

“Sure that photo’s from two weeks ago, but 3 days ago Isabel disguised herself as a man to get back in the country.”

Oh god.  My heart just dropped with that.  Turns out there was a possibility worse than shoulder length.  Even worse than the bob I had reassured myself that I wouldn’t have to get.  Suddenly I thought I might throw up.

Trying not to shake I stand up.  The bobby pins clatter to the floor and I realize I wouldn’t be needing them.  Every step towards that big red chair is a fight against myself.  I am determined not to show it though.  I sit in the chair.  My hand reflexively grasp the armrests in a white knuckled death grip as I stare at the mirror.

“Miss can you hold up your hair for me” Sam stood there holding an old fashioned striped cape.

I breath out slowly releasing my grip on the armrests.  I lean forward, so I am no longer sitting on my loose hair.  I gather the soft silky mass in my hands.  As I hold it against my head Sam shakes out the cape with an audible snap, then with a flourish drapes the billowing cape over me.  It settles down over my breasts and lap as the air slowly escapes from it.  Sam starts tucking tissue around my neck then fastens the cape tightly over it.

I watch in the mirror as I let go of my hair.  I love the ripple my hair has after it’s been in a braid all day.  Today it is perfect.  The hair once again is cascading over my shoulders and down my breast reaching almost to my lap.  It is so shiny it practically glows.

“So, what are we doing here?”  Sam asks looking from me to Rodriguez through the mirror.  His scissors and comb held ready in his hand.

Nervously I play with the hair elastic on my wrist and look towards Rodriguez.

“Short all over, like she is trying to look like a man.”

My mind screams, WHAT DOES THAT MEAN?!  Sam seems to understand because he just nods and starts coming towards me.  Don’t nob Sam say ‘no, no I can’t cut this beautiful hair.’

I want to scream and run.  I take a deep breath and manage to control myself and just sit there.  My hands return to their grip on the armrests.

Sam stands next to my right shoulder.  He lifts a handful of hair and runs the comb through it a couple of times.  He tucks the comb in his pocket and raises the sharp silver scissors.

My heart is pounding so hard I can hear it in my ears.  Then the sound of my pounding heart is replaced by the sound of crunching scissors.

Sam’s left hand is a few inches from my head holding up the handful of hair.  The scissors are buried in my hair just above his hand.  His right hand is rhythmically squeezing the scissors.  Each squeeze gives out the sickening crunch of hair being severed.

With one last scrunch Sam closes the scissors and the handful of my hair he is holding comes away from my head.  Short choppy locks fall against my cheek and ear.  Sam carelessly drops my cut off hair onto my arm.  I feel light headed for a moment.

I breath in deeply and the faint feeling passes.  I can feel something coming up in my throat, I am going to cry.  It is welling up.

I can’t cry.  Not in front of my colleagues.  I need to be professional.  This will make my career, I can’t cry.  Not in front of the guys.

Sam has lifted another handful of hair from my shoulder and is combing it.

My eyes are brimming with tears I am trying not to shed.  I suck in my quivering lip.

Sam raises the scissors.  The side of the scissors catch the light with a flash as they opened.  He places the shiny open blades around my hair just above his hands.

I blink and feel a warm tear start to roll down my cheek.

The crunching begins again.  I squeeze my eyes closed.  Runch, runch, runch, runch, clack.

I open my eyes as more short choppy locks hit my neck.  The severed hair floats to the floor where it lands in a coil next to the chair.

Sam moves to the back of me, impatiently kicking the coil of my hair out of his way.

I look up and meet Rodriguez’s eyes in the mirror through the tears that I had lost my fight to control.  His brow is furrow and he frowns as he looks back at me.

“It’s OK, I’m OK.”  my mouth is dry and it comes out as less than a whisper.  I meant it though, or at least I am trying to.  The worst of the shock is over.

Then, a chill goes down my spine.  I feel a thin piece of cold steel rest against my neck.

I move my eyes back to Sam who has the scissor held at my nape.  The still long hair in the back is fanned out over the back of the chair.

His hand starts to close the scissors.  Slowly a foot of hair begins to fall, but is caught by the cape till Sam flicks it off with his comb.

He keeps cutting his way across the back.  The sound different from when he cut the side.  Each stroke a long shlick.  My neck starts to feel cold and bare.  Now he is cutting right at the hair line, so there is no hair to feel against my skin; just the cold blades of the scissors.

Soon the only long hair I have left is what is over my left shoulder.  I slip a hand up to grab it just before Sam slices through the last bit along my neckline.

Sam stands at my left shoulder and frowns down at me impatiently.  Reluctantly I release the last of my long hair to him.  I try to commit to memory how the ends feel curled around my fingers.  I knew it was going to be a long time before I experienced it again.

He parts the hair on the side, combs through it briefly and the crunching begins again.  He picks up the final handful of hair.  He doesn’t even bother to comb this time.  Just lifts it up and starts cutting.

I look at myself in the mirror as Sam roughly combs out what looks like a hacked off page boy cut.

He kicks the huge pile of my hair under the counter.  I stare at it and think what a waste.  If I’d known I’d have had him cut off a ponytail first to donate.  It is too late now, it just lays there waiting to be swept up and put in the garbage.

He goes to the counter to get his spray bottle and I take the chance to wipe away tears having given up on hiding that I am crying.

The spraying starts now.  Sam goes round my my head squirting and combing till I feel water running down my neck.  He puts the sprayer back on the counter.

Comb in one hand scissors in the other he starts to cut.  He combs up the now short hair above my neck and slices through it, blades over comb.  He is making it shorter but neater.  Chunks of wet hair starts falling.  Heavy on my shoulder, sticking to my face.  My hair is coming off fast now.

I look up at the mirror.  My eyes are red but I am all cried out and no new tears are falling.  The rough page boy cut is disappearing.  Developing in it’s place is a more modern boys crop.  I shake the cape to get the cut hairs off.  Sam raises his eyebrows at me in the mirror.

Miller sits down in the chair next to mine to. Joe is roughly towel drying Miller.  I suddenly realize my hair is shorter than his now.  A flash of jealous anger goes through me and I feel the tears well up again.  I guess they aren’t totally spent.

Joe had finished toweling off Miller and gets out a cut throat straight razor.  He places it on the counter and goes to his lather.  “Your 5 o’clock shadow doesn’t match the color,  I’ll have that fix up in a jiffy.”  He is massaging the lather into Millers face.  Joe picks up the razor and starts to strope the razor along a big leather belt hanging from the side of the chair.  Then a chunk of my own hair falls onto my nose bringing my attention back to my own haircut.

Sam is working on the top now.  The comb is back in his pocket and he is lifting the locks up with his fingers.  He holds a lock pinched between his fingers about an inch and a half above my head.  He snips the wet lock off just above his fingers.  The wet lock falls much heavier than the dry hair that had fallen earlier.  I watch as one after another fall before my eyes.  Strange seeing it double, both right before my eyes and simultaneously in the mirror.  A pile of 3 to 4 inch long wet locks is accumulating in my lap.

After the last lock hits my lap Sam gives what is left of my hair a quick tussle.  There wasn’t much left to tussle.  It is just enough to bury fingers in at the top.  On the sides though you could still see Sam’s finger as they move through my hair.

The idea of calling this barely more than an inch of hair MY hair is heart breaking.  MY hair was long and soft, not short and prickly.  My hair I held in my hand as I gently combed through the well conditioned ends while it slowly dried.  My lifetime spent carefully lavishing my beautiful hair to keep from damaging it.  I avoided hair dryers and flat or curling irons.  I spent a fortune on shampoos and conditioners to prevent split ends and put off trims as long as possible, because I hated giving up even just an inch of my beloved hair.

I realize the bottle of argan oil I had spent $30 on and only used once is now pointless.  I wipe away another tear.

Sam puts down the scissors and picks up huge clippers.  He plugs it in and starts adjusting it.

Rodriguez interrupts “Don’t make it too clean, it needs to look 3 days old.”

“I’ll skip the razor and leave a bit of stubble on the neck.”  His hand is on the back of my head now pushing my chin to my chest.

The clippers come to life with a clunk then settle into a hum.  I feel the teeth of the comb on my scalp just above the nape of my neck.  Sam places the vibrating clipper blades against my neck.  He moves them up slowly and they start to bite into the edge of my hairline.  The clippers change to an angrier tone as they encounter resistance from my hair, but Sam keeps them moving slowly upward.  They tug my neck hairs ever so slightly.  When they get to the comb they slowly move away from my head.

Prickly little hair splinters are falling on to my neck and face.  I close my eyes.

The clipping goes on and on.  Up my neck over and over.  My neck starts getting sore from the warm blades nibbling at the hair.  Then they go around my ears.  Sam squares off my sideburns.

Finally I feel the towel rubbing my neck.  Then Sam dusts me off with powder.  He starts blowing the hair drier over me.  After a moment I realize he is mostly using it to blow the loose hair and powder off me, since my hair was dry within seconds.

“There you go Officer Martel.”  Sam smiles as he releases me from the cape.

My legs feel like rubber as I get up.  Standing there, I look in the mirror.  I did not look like the woman who had accepted this assignment this morning.  I slowly raise my hand to my neck.  It is covered in a slight velvety stubble, that gradually gives way to a thicker pelt.

I make my way shakily over to the waiting area where the old guy, Rodriguez and Jones are sitting.  Jones is totally distracted talking to the old guy about cars.

Rodriguez stands up and gently puts his hands on my shoulder turning me to inspect the results.

“I’m going to take Martel to the restroom to get cleaned up, she smells like barber powder.  You settle up with Joe when Miller’s finished.”  He said to Jones.

Gently he guides me through the door into the backroom where there is a very basic restroom off to the side.

“Joe’s doesn’t have separate men’s and women’s rooms since it’s usually a males only establishment.”  He pauses and looks at me sadly “I’m sorry Martel, I didn’t realize this would be so hard on you.”

“Really, it’s Ok.”  I say as I take off my shirt and hand it to him through the open door.  I turn on the water and start lathering up my neck and face.  “My career means more to me than my hair does, did.  I’ll be Ok.  You can stop looking so guilty.”  He smiles at me sheepishly.  “You can call me Alex by the way.”

I look up in the mirror to see if I’d rinsed all the lather.  “On second thought, maybe I should go with Alexandra instead of Alex with this haircut.”  Another tear escapes down my cheek and I splash more cold water on my face.

“Tom” and his smile broadens.  Then he’s frowning again,  “I feel bad it didn’t occur to me to give you all the details back at the precinct.  It didn’t realize till I noticed how hard you were crying, that I should have warned you about the hair.”

Great, he thinks I’m a cry baby.  “I just need to get used to looking like one of the boys.”

“You still look like a woman.  A stunning, strong, beautiful woman.  Isabel does too, her disguise was a failure it’s why we caught her.” He chuckles.

Well, I guess if he’s calling me strong he doesn’t think I’m a cry baby.  I take the hair elastic off my wrist and toss it in the garbage.  Take a deep breath and dry my face.

“Your haircut is much better than hers though”  Tom adds as he hands me back my shirt.

I raise my eyebrows quizzically at him finding it hard to imagine anything worse than this.  I turn back to the mirror and try to play with what little is left of my hair.  I pull my bangs down, they are still slightly damp from my washing my face.  The hair doesn’t even reach my eyebrows.  I gave up and just push back up through it leaving it tousled.  Tousled was cute, at least.

“You’ll see what I mean when you look at the mug shot and watch the video of the interrogation.”

We head downtown to the precinct Jones, Miller, and Rodriguez are stationed at.  Miller was getting a ribbing from the other detectives about his dyed hair.  I am dreading the attention I will get when I go back to my own precinct after this assignment is over.

Jones takes me to an office where I can pull up the files on the CD.  I start clicking though, reading each item twice to try to internalize as much as possible.

Out of habit I reach up to tuck any stray hairs that came loose from my bun back behind my ear.  Instead of the whisps I normally encounter, my knuckled encounter the soft brush that is all that’s left of the hair on the side of my head.   I lean my head against my hand and dig my finger tips  into the 1 1/2 inches that is that’s left of my hair.   How could Isabel’s be worse than this.

I had been putting it off but finally I open the mugshot.  Yes worse than mine was possible.  It was bad, not just because it was so short, it was just bad looking.  It would have looked awful on a guy.

The whole back and sides were stubble like what I had on my neck now.  It was so short you could see her scalp under the dark stubble.  That wasn’t the bad part.  The top was about a half inch or so.  The line where the top met the sides was rough and completely unblended.  The half inch top had a few chunks missing here and there as though who ever had cut it made a few mistakes.  The edges had been shaved.  She had a few nicks here and there.  the hair line along the neck went not quite straight from ear to ear.  Her sideburn weren’t squared off like mine, they were just gone.  Wow.

I decide to grab and cup of coffee and donuts from the breakroom so I have something to munch on while watching the video of the interrogation.  As I’m pouring the coffee I catch my reflection in the reflective surface of the toaster.  I’m once again shocked by it, but am finally not on the verge of tears.  It’s short and a men’s cut, but at least it’s a good men’s cut and looks decent on me.  I don’t stand out like a sore thumb the way Isabel does.

I settle back down in front of the computer with my snack, and start watching.  Jones and Rodriguez are conducting the interrogation of Isabel.  I skip over parts where Jones or Rodriguez are doing most of the talking.  Most of it is stuff I had already read in the file.  It’s a family business, officially a travel agency, in reality drug trafficking.  Isabel’s been working the west coast, but this trip she was going to be taking over the east coast for her aunt who landed in hospital with a broken hip and is planning to retire when she is released.  The fake passport Isabel had used to get out of the country was compromised and the only replacement that she could get quickly was a man’s.

I have finished my snack and am at the point in the interview where Isabel explained how she disguised herself.  “I had to look like a guy, so I sent my brother Joe off to get me some man’s clothing and an ace bandage.  I asked Jorge to cut my hair off.”

“Jorge is the the boyfriend who owns the hotel you do business from down there?”  Jones checked.

“That’s right.  He’s a great fuck, though a lousy hairdresser.”  Isabel chuckled as she ran her hand over her shorn hair.  “He had an old hair clipper in the lost and found box at the hotel.  There was only one attachment, the half inch one.  First we just ran that all over my head.  Poor Jorge look stricken when the hair came off.  You’d have thought he was the girl losing her hair.” She laughed deeply.

“I still didn’t really look much like a guy, so I asked Jorge to try tapering it.  As you can see that went badly.”

I pause the video.  I don’t quite get Isabel.  She seemed to barely care at all that her hair, so like mine in color and texture, was completely ruined.  Sure, her face was pretty enough to pull of the lack of hair.  Just as I still looked pretty when my hair was completely covered by my uniforms cap, knowing it was there under the cap though was always a comfort.  Well, not anymore.

I watch a bit more.  Then I close my eyes and try to imagine what it was like to be Isabel.  Of course the haircut is what kept creeping into my thoughts.

There in a lousy hotel room with her boyfriend.  She causally takes off her blouse and sits on the stool in her bra, bluejeans and bare feet.  There are newspapers spread out on the floor to keep the carpet clean.  Him nervously and reluctantly cutting off the beautiful hair he cared more about than she did.  I imagine her just sitting there calmly as his shaking hands placed the old clipper to her forehead and pulled them back over her scalp.  That vibrating sensation I had felt on my neck, she would have felt it all over.  The hum filling her ears.  The tone changing as it meets her hairline.  She closes her eyes, her boyfriend must watch as her hair slides from her head.  I thought about her shoulder length tress just falling gently to her bared shoulder.  Her boyfriend’s hands gently cradling her head.

He moves the clipper to make another pass next to the strip of now short hair.  His hands are still shaky but he does it anyway.  He pulls the clippers through and another shower of hair falls to her shoulder.  The weight is too much and it slides from her shoulder to the waiting newspaper, leaving a few strands caught in her bra strap.

He’s at the side of her head now.  He gently folds her ear down so he can clip around it.  His hands have stopped shaking now.  As he moves her fallen hair is tangling in his toes.  This is a sensual experience for them.

He moves around in front of her to get to the other side.  His legs rub against hers even though there is plenty of room to get passed her.  He begins buzzing the other side of her head.  There is a huge amount of hair caught in her bra strap on this side.  As he pulls it free, he follow the line of the bra strap down to the full cup.  He caresses her breast in his hand for a moment before releasing the ruined hair into her lap and reaching back up to once again fold down her ear.  This side, he is cutting more slowly.  His nervousness gone, he realizes he is enjoying this experience.  Transforming the woman he makes love to.

“Finish up” she whispers “we can fuck when you’ve finished.”

He’s torn between wanting to rush because he’s almost ready to burst, and wanting to linger because this foreplay is incredible.  His tight bluejeans are just keeping things in check, otherwise he might have blown it already.

He moves to the back of her head.  He presses himself against her buttocks.  His hand gently pushes her head down so he can get at her neck, then he lifts up the last of her hair.  The humming clippers in his other hand are now pressed against her long slender neck.  They move into her wispy hair line leaving it choppy looking.  The last of her hair is falling over her ear on the way to her knees and feet.

She looks at the mirror across the room.  “I just look like a girl with her hair chopped off.  You need to shape it, like yours. Can you taper the back.”

He takes the attachment off the clippers.  He tries to think, what does my barber do?  He’s never done it himself though.  His hands are shaking again.  He places the metal blades against her neck.  He figures it can’t be that hard.  Just slowly curve the blades away from her head as arched head as you go up.  The blades move up leaving a path of stubble.  He can’t see the blades buried in her hair but tries to slowly leave more hair.  It’s working but his hand is unsteady and the shape looks off.  He tries again next to the last pass.  He can’t see through the short hair clipping collecting around the blades.  As he pulls the clippers free from the hair and the clipping fall to her neck and shoulder he can see the two passes don’t match.  This isn’t working.

There is nothing left for it but to just buzz of the sides and back.  He finds himself aroused at the idea of this anyway.  He starts over.  He begins again at her neck.  He hold the clippers to her scalp the whole way up, simply stopping when he gets to the top.  He has left a path of velvet.  He tips the clipping off the end of the clippers to the floor.  The clippings fall like snow.

He goes back for another pass. He’s happier now, this is like before when he reduced her long hair to the half inch, but the stubble he is leaving behind feels amazing to the fingers of his free hand.

He now needs to make the hair line look harder and more masculine.  He thinks for a moment and says “Hang on I’ll get a razor to clean up the hair line like my barber does.”  The only razor he has is a safety razor.  He goes the bathroom to get it and some shaving cream.  He spreads the cream over her neck and around her ears.  He starts behind one ear and shaves straight across to the other.  Then stokes down her neck from there.  The wide safety razor is clumsy around her ears and by the time he’s done she has no side burns.

He takes a wet wash cloth and wipes her off.

She looks to the mirror, “well, this looks like crap.  Why are you grinning so.”

He smiles back “It may look like crap, but rub it, it feels fucking amazing.”  As he guides her hand to her head.

They start fucking right there on the floor in the pile of her hair.

WOW, that’s one crazy fantasy I just had.  I feel chilled just imagining it, but there Isabel sat in the interrogation having gone through it laughing it off as though it were nothing.

Rodriguez comes in and says “You ready?  It’s time to go.”  I realize since I don’t know what Isabel’s boyfriend Jorge looks like I had been imagining him as the handsome Tom Rodriguez.  I blush deeply and hope Tom doesn’t notice.

That night the bust went perfectly.  Our targets didn’t question that I was Isabel at all.  They didn’t bother to search me for a wire, and we got them making a huge drug deal with me and my “brother” on tape.  They talked on and on with little prompting giving me tons of details I would find helpful taking over the business.  The entire organization was going down.

We were up all night, paperwork of course.

I have the next day off to sleep.  I have forgotten my hair is gone as I first wake up.  I open my eyes and am shocked looking at the pillow not covered in a curtain of hair like usual.  My hand goes to my head.  The short carpet that it finds brings me back to reality.  I pull the sheets up over my head.  If I could just fall back to sleep maybe this would be a dream and my hair would be back when I really wake up.

It isn’t working I am really awake, my hair is really gone, and I need to pee.

That night, Tom Rodriguez shows up on my door step with a bottle of champagne.  When we hit the bedroom Tom can’t keep his hands out of my short hair.

His tongue runs up the back of my neck following the path the clippers had set.  Each cool breath sends shivers through me that remind me of the cold steel scissors that had bared my neck.

Maybe short hair isn’t so bad after all.

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