Chariss, Coffee, and a Barbershop – Chapter 2

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Chapter Two

A week had passed, and Chariss was looking at her hair. She thought the inch they took off at the salon yesterday felt like a lot. But her hair still looked nice and long as she examined her tresses in the mirror. She got dressed and headed out to the coffee shop. It was a little cloudy today but still nice. She finished her coffee and decided to check out the shops downtown. One moment she was looking at some cute jackets and then…”

Next!” She saw a man getting out of the chair on the right in the barbershop she had been in last time. A boy was getting his hair cut in the other chair. “You’re next, miss!” Her heart began to race but then Chariss realized the barber wasn’t talking to her. She watched as a girl got up. The girl looked familiar. Who was she? Oh yes, Tamara Belcher, this year’s high school homecoming queen. Though she was just in casual clothes, Chariss couldn’t help but envision her in that red sequined dress and tiara she had worn the night of her victory. The beautiful eighteen-year-old girl slowly walked to the chair. She was dressed in a nice red top with lace, tight blue jeans, and high heels. Her brunette hair with highlights was gorgeous to behold. It fell in curls just a few inches from her butt. “What is she doing here?” Chariss thought. “Surely, she goes to a top dollar salon. And she will be competing in the state beauty pageant next month.” Tamara takes a seat in the chair with elegance, yet with an expression that lacks that intimidating confidence she displays on stage. The barber talks to her and then hands her a paper. As she signs it there are gasps from some in the waiting chairs. Chariss can’t understand what the paper means. The cape is placed over this year’s homecoming queen. Her hair now flows over it like a waterfall of curls.  The barber turns back around and looks at the hair in front of him. Click, Bzzzzzzz! “Clippers? Clippers?! No, not for her, no, surely the barber won’t…”

Chariss watches in disbelief as the barber brings them up under the hair in front of Tamara’s left ear and they move up. In one stroke curls fall to the cape. Tamara’s eyes widen. Another stroke and these curls fall on her shoulder. Her eyes stay wide briefly then go to a look of submission. Behind each stroke is pale skin. Tamara’s thick curls are no match for the clippers. Chariss is stunned, staring as the barber continues to shear the homecoming queen like a sheep. He firmly pushes her head forward to clipper off the long thick hair in the back. Chariss observes how submissive this looks. It is as if the queen is bowing to the power of another. The size of the piles of brunette hair that have gathered on the floor are hard to believe. Some of them get caught on the barber’s shoes as he moves. The barber begins on the other side moving the clippers up and dropping more curls. He finishes shearing the last long strand of curls from the homecoming queen’s head. Chariss looks at the carnage. There are piles of curls on the floor, but they are also scattered on the cape and pooling in her lap. Chariss closes her eyes and remembers what Tamara looked like on her winning night and now opens them to a breathtaking sight of what has happened to that glorious hair. Now the barber takes her remaining hair on top, lifts it up high, and scissors through it, dropping it in her lap. Tamara just stares at the pile of curls on the cape in front of her. The barber straightens the homecoming queen’s head and says, “Hold still!” He uses a very large comb in the hair left on top and clippers off the hair above it. He continues to shear it off until it is close to her head. When he removes the comb, there is a very short flattop left. The barber stops the clippers and turns around. Is he finished? Chariss hears a “Whoosh” and sees the barber has shaving cream on his hands. He rubs it all over the sides and back of Tamara’s head. Chariss thinks it looks like a mess on the homecoming queen’s head. Humiliating. The barber places his hand on her head and manipulates it this way and that as he slowly scrapes away the cream from her soft scalp. Chariss notices Tamara’s eyes are watery. He continues slowly scraping, wiping the excess on a towel on her shoulder. As more of the shaved portion of her head comes into view, Chariss notices that the stubble left by the clippers is completely gone, just smooth skin. It begins to look as if there was never any hair there in the first place, like those beautiful curls had never been attached there. The barber continues as he holds her head with one hand and shaves the back and sides with the other. Chariss looks again at all the pretty curls on the floor and on the cape. It is the same hair, but it doesn’t look pretty anymore as it lies lifeless there. Then she looks at Tamara. She has a severe flattop on top and emerging shiny bald sides and back. A tear rolls down Chariss’s face. She decides she has had enough and walks out.

(Chapter 3 is coming soon)

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