Helen’s Sublet

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Simon and I decided. If we’d gone to the same high school, we would have ended up dating. A relationship could have been plausible if I hadn’t chosen a college in Columbus while he attended the liberal arts school back in Athens. When I came home for winter break, he had a new girlfriend. We spent new years together in the city. Despite my jealousy, Amanda and I really hit it off.  

During summer break, I got an apartment in the city and she stayed with me for a few weeks. Her blonde hair used to be as long as mine, down past her bra strap. However when she visited, her hair was cut into a shaggy pixie.

“Yeah. I guess Simon has a real thing for girls cutting their hair short.” she divulged over our third appletini, “You would not believe the way he loved me after. I’m never gonna be the same.”

I twisted my wavy brown hair and wondered lustfully what it would be like to wear such a short style. Everyone loved my healthy, beautiful hair so I’d never before thought to change it.

“Anyway,” Amanda continued, “After a few weeks, things went back to normal and he wanted me to cut my hair even shorter. I mean really? I already don’t have any hair! I said ‘no thanks’. I miss having hair and I want to grow it out again.”

“Oh.” I nodded, “Yeah. In the end, you have to do what you want to do.”

For the first time, I thought maybe I’d like to have short hair myself. It had been somewhat of a chore, taking care of my locks. It’s not like I was overly concerned with how people saw me. I wasn’t skinny and stylish like Amanda but I had the healthy curves of a dance student.

During the fall semester, I heard about Amanda and Simon breaking up. I made it a point to call and check on him.

“I’m going to be okay,” he said, exhaling a cigarette, “I wish you were here. All my old friends are gone. I hope over winter break, we get to hang out a lot.”

I decided to take two risks. First, I rented a sublet back in Athens for winter break. It was a one room little cottage, furnished and near downtown. My parents lived out in the country and for what I intended, they would just cramp my style.

My first night in the sublet, I had Simon over. We immediately warmed to each other but I still couldn’t breathe easy. Not until I took my second risk. What if he knew that I knew his thing for short haircuts? What if he wasn’t actually that into me? We spun records, drank wine, and cooked orange rolls in my toaster oven.

“I’d better start sobering up if I’m going to be driving home.” he noted, looking pained. I drank in the sight of him; tall and strong looking without the bulk of a football player.

“Well.” I started. It was time to test my courage. Oh god. “While you’re waiting to sober up, do you think you could cut my hair?”

I caught him tremble slightly, sipping water. “I’m kind of drunk. I’m afraid I might mess it up.” He studied me, “What kind of haircut do you want?”

I stepped closer to him, feeling his warmth just inches from my face. I couldn’t look him in the eye. “I want to try cutting my hair really really short. I think I might like it. For now though, I don’t want to get hair all over me. I just want you to take off all the length. You know. I just want to be with you when it all comes off. To give me courage.”

He licked his lips and answered, “Okay. I will do that. Do you have shears?”

“They’re in my suitcase. I got a Wahl clipper and hair cutting kit.”

We wrapped a bath towel around my shoulders and put out our cigarettes.

“Oh my god.” I squirmed in excitement, “I’ve never had short hair before. I’m so excited.”

“You’re going to look so hot,” he responded, brushing my locks straight down my back. All the while I gazed lustfully into his brown eyes. “Are you ready?”

“Oh fuck yeah.” I enthused and giggled, as I heard the first crunch of scissors directly behind my right ear.

He cut carefully across my hairline, giving me a bob an inch above my chin.

“Are you done?”

“Yeah. I think so.”

I ran to the bathroom and did some hair flips in the mirror. It felt so good. My neck felt so cool. I collided with Simon when he came to join me. I held him close and listened to his heart. He held on to me and didn’t let go. I felt he had a boner and looked up into his eyes. My breathing became shaky, feeling the warmth of his body on my face and lips. As my eyes started to water, I kissed him.

He kissed me back. I felt him breathing and brushing his moist lips on my bare neck. I lost my shirt and bra. With impossible force, he unfolded the hide-a-bed. Even though I consented, I don’t think I could have stopped what we did. It’s a good thing I was on the pill. He came in me at least twice and I came like I never knew I could. I don’t think I ever knew before what it was like to be desired. Not like this.

We laid there for a while, dozing. I must have fallen a sleep for some time at least. Since I felt sober, he probably felt sober too.

“Simon?” I asked, nuzzling into his shoulder.

“Yes sweet one?”

“I want you to finish my hair cut. I want a buzz cut.”

“I think that would look so hot on you,” he remarked. “When do you want it?”

“Now.” I answered, standing up. “I looked at the clipper kit. I want the #3 guard all over. I’ve been wanting to try that out. If I don’t like it after a while, I want to try the #2.”

“That sounds great.” he smiled, “Thanks for letting me do this. I always hoped we’d get to explore this side of each other.”

“Me too.” I answered, daring to add, “You know I got this place for the whole month.”

He buzzed my hair in the bathroom so I could watch my waves be peeled away. I watched myself become an exotic beauty. Striking. Bold. Elegant. I ran a hand over my remaining fuzz, giving a moan of satisfaction. Through my remaining pelt, I felt the warmth of his voice.

It said, “Thank you.”

We took a long shower together. At some point that winter, we must have gone out to celebrate Christmas and buy food. Surely my family was shocked by my new style. It didn’t matter. With Simon, I had the best winter of my life.

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