I thought my mother was nothing more but a beautician on the south end but I soon caught a whiff of her status.
The first time I could see her talent was two days before my aunt’s wedding, she asked my mother for the special, mother would always change the special of the day so my aunt had no idea what she would do.
A white, see-through cape was thrown over my aunt, my mother put her hands on her sister’s shoulders and kissed her scalp as if saying her goodbyes.
I shifted my feet on the sofa as mother got into her bag of toys and pulled out guardless clippers.
As you might’ve guessed, my aunt walked down the isle bald as a woman could be, mother also did her brows but didn’t shave them; part of me wished she did.
Now, we live in an apartment complex on the east side, my mother’s name has spread far and wide here.
I woke up one early morning and went to the kitchen for something to eat.
I was startled by the appearance of a random woman sitting in a chair about the table, she halted her texting to look at me.
”Um…” I paused,”Can I help you?”
” Oh”,she smiled sheepishly,”I’m-“
“Hey baby”,my mother sung as she met us both,”This is Cara, the woman across the hall”
I remembered Cara her because she used the laundromat when we did, I will admit, mother and her would flirt during that period but that was it: just flirting.
”So…”I was still confused,”What is she doing in our house?”
”Why, what I do best”,mother smiled,”I’m doing her hair”
Cara had bronze skin and long, slightly-puffy black hair past her breast.
“Hm”, I shrugged while taking a seat to watch.
Mother started a session of flirting before beginning her task, but this, ended in a loving kiss on the cheek;”Let’s get you caped up”,mother said.
Cara chuckled silently when mother took up the cape and sniffed it.
“You know”,mother said,”I was quite surprised when I had you try this on in the laundromat, Cara”
”Yeah”,agreed Cara,”I thought it would be too big but when stopped at my ankles, I was so happy it fit me”
”Why?” I asked.
”Cause”,mother replied, securing the white cape under a mass of black tresses,”Cara here is staying with us”
”Renovations”, mother explained, retrieving her scissors.
”Yeah”, Cara solidified my mother’s story,”They’re ripping out my carpet, I can’t afford to clean it”
”And”, my mother put,”I’m cutting her hair as a trade for letting her stay here”
”Ah”,I yawned, mother sheathed her blade and brushed Cara’s hair with passion.
I reclined as mother took much hair into her peaced fingers and snipped it close to the base of her Asian-friend’s neck.
”Mmm”,Cara cooed,”Nice clean cut”
”That’s nothing”,mother swooned,”Wait til I get out the clippers”
I couldn’t wait; mother cut more and more, when Cara had a bob haircut, my mother sectioned off her front hair and clipped it in front of her eyes.
She lifted the secured section and smiled,”Ready?”
She took from her bag the device that shaved my aunt, I turned over to hide my thing but peeped the process.
Mother turned it on, raised the hair in the back, and moved up her scalp.
Cara laughed as the vibration reached her top, mother made sure not to go too far.
Passes were slow and steady, up and up Cara’s head til it was buzzed.
A brush dusted off the head and cape, I had to get a broom and dustpan and sweep up the fallen hair; they didn’t even noticed my straight-stick.
Mother was wiping the head of Cara clean of cream she shaved off with a razor.
Back on the sofa, I watched as my mother gave Cara a straight fringe, it was kinda funny to see mother line it all up and trim.
”There”,mother swept off Cara’s nose,”Cute as a button”
Cara leaned in for a kiss and mother met her lips with her cheek.
”You will have to buy me dinner first before you can get a taste of these luscious lips”,mother charmed as Cara steadily laughed.
The show was over for me so I exited to my room, behind closed doors, I grasped my pleasure and imagined mother finishing the shave, taking the clippers and taking off the shelf of hair.
Fingering her chin, my mother would stare into closed eyes and take off her brows as well.
But that’s a fantasy, Cara still sported her fringe and cooked for us all every other night.
She was a tailor, making my mother a 50’s inspired cooking dress and apron, of which she helped to tie its huge, white bow.
Mother asked me if I liked Cara.
”Of course”, I said,”With bangs, right?”
She laughed,”No, sweetie, as a person”
I shrugged,”She’s nice”
”I’m thinking about marrying her”, she said with the largest smile of her career,”Is that alright?”
Again, I shrugged,”On one condition, when her hair grows too long, you have to do her hair”
She smiled,”As you wish”