So far Kyle has found it difficult to keep a deal he made with his mother: That if he wears girls’ clothes for a month that she would buy him a moped. He’s not quite sure how it happened, but somehow he has become Demi, a full-time cross-dresser with a gay boyfriend and a lesbian lover. Everyone believes that Demi’s a transsexual, including her mother. Only Kyle knows he’s taking sex hormones, and only Kyle knows that he’d still rather be a boy. Part 15 ended with Demi’s getting ready for her date with Steve at the ballet. She’s just agreed to become Elvira’s niece. Meanwhile, Steve has a secret that he thinks will turn Demi against him forever.
Anything for a Moped? - Part 16 by: Dawn De Winter
Chapter Twenty: "Will Steve Die a Virgin?"
"Demi, you look … like a girl."
"Well, I should hope so. It sure took me long enough to get dressed up as one."
"No, I mean you look so much like a girl that you don’t look at all like Kyle. No matter what you were wearing, you always reminded me of Kyle. But now you don’t, not really. Maybe it’s the way you did your make-up or your hair. Maybe it’s that dress. It’s new, right? Anyway, you sure look like a girl."
"That’s okay, isn’t it, Steve? I wanted to dress up for you tonight, you know, considering what happened last night."
"What do you mean ‘happened last night’? Is that why you’re wearing that velvet dress? Is that the reason you drowned yourself in perfume? You’re punishing me for last night, right?"
"Punishing you? Why would I want to punish you?"
"Demi, how much do you remember about last night?"
"Not much at all," she admitted. "I woke up this morning, and you were gone. I had to spend the entire day alone with your mother," she said half-accusingly. It couldn’t be more than half, since she’d enjoyed her time with Auntie Elvie.
"I’m sorry about leaving you with my mother, but I just had to see my dad. I had to talk to him about … last night."
"Why? What do you mean? What happened last night?"
"We can’t talk about it here, Demi – not with all these people around."
"Because we don’t want them to know about Kyle, do we?" That’s what Steve said, for he knew it would silence Demi for the moment. His confession would have to wait until they were alone. A crowded lobby at Lincoln Center was not the place to talk about date rape.
That’s what Steve believed had happened last night. That’s what he was loath to discuss with Demi. His father had spent several hours that morning trying to convince Steve that he hadn’t molested Demi, but Steve was inconsolable. Indeed, he’d even asked his father whether he should turn himself into the police.
"Of course not," his father had replied. "You barely touched her. Come on, Steve, did you do anything to her after she’d passed out that you hadn’t already done with her permission when you were petting?"
"Past history doesn’t matter, dad," Steve had replied testily. "That’s what we learned at school. Officer Dunlop told us kids that it’s a crime to take advantage of a girl or boy who’s too drunk or high to give true consent." If Steve sounded like a lawyer, it was because he was already composing in his own mind the district attorney’s closing argument in the case of The State of Iowa versus Mike Lancer’s Rotten Kid.
Repeatedly Mike had attempted to convince Steve that he had not "raped" Demi. Granted, his fingers had strayed where they should not have gone, but Mile insisted, "no one’s going to convict you of rape, Steve. Christ, you never even took your own underpants off, and Demi always had on her fake boobs and vagina. Steve, be realistic – you would have seen more of her real body if she’d been wearing a bikini swimsuit."
Yet Steve knew what he’d done – he’d stripped off Demi’s negligee and panties after she’d fallen asleep. He’d told himself that he wouldn’t do anything more than look at her in the nude. He’d been desperate to see her naked ever since she’d showered in his house. No, it wasn’t Demi he wanted to see stark naked. It was Kyle.
But it was definitely Demi who lay naked in his bed. It had been dark in the room, its only light coming from the street lamps, and Steve wasn’t thinking too clearly after his spiked coffee. So when he saw the Vagi-Gaff, he’d mistaken it for the real thing! After all, his mother had offered to buy Demi a vagina. In his befuddled, agitated state, he concluded that the deal had already gone down, and that Demi had gotten her new genitals sometime that afternoon.
At first appalled that Kyle had agreed to his own castration, Steve had become steadily more curious as he had stared at Demi’s groin. Eventually, curiosity had overcome his better judgment, and he had gingerly inserted a finger into Demi’s "vagina". He had become excited, and briefly he’d contemplated "vaginal" intercourse. Fortunately for Demi, and fortunately for Steve, just as he was poised to betray their friendship, he suddenly came to his senses.
Possibly, it was his strong moral upbringing, the countless hours spent in church that cooled his ardor. More likely, it was the price tag still attached to the Vagi-Gaff. As his questing fingers came across it, Steve realized that Demi’s vagina was a fake. He broke into a paroxysm of laughter, which soon turned to sobbing heaves.
No longer interested in sex, he’d retreated to a chair in the corner, and there he’d sat, sniffling or crying, for more than three hours. The situation seemed tragic, and he held himself to blame: Having failed at protecting Kyle, he’d almost raped his best friend, the boy he claimed to love. Had Steve actually broken the law? He didn’t know and wasn’t sure it mattered. After all, rape had been in his heart. He was unworthy to be Kyle’s lover.
With that conclusion, he’d run out into the night, and after an hour of wandering amongst New York’s walking wounded, he had sought the sanctuary of his father’s brownstone in Chelsea. There he’d arrived at 5:30 in the morning. It had taken his father more than half an hour to get a coherent sentence out of him.
Understandably, Mike Lancer was upset, but not at his son. His son had, admittedly, behaved badly. He should never have undressed Demi or invaded her privacy. But there had been mitigating circumstances, all of which Mike blamed on his ex-wife.
In his opinion, Elvira had been pimping for her son, and had set up a crime scene by getting two underage children drunk and then telling one of them, her own son, that he had carte blanche to whatever he wanted with a "girlfriend" Elvira knew to be on the verge of passing out.
It was time for Mike to have a showdown with his ex-wife. Ever since she had caught him in bed with a tight end for the New York Giants, she’d called the shots: For fear of losing his career, he’d given her an uncontested divorce and sole custody of their son. Two weeks a year with Steve – that’s all she’d deigned to give him since the divorce.
It had been a tough decision for Mike to make – after all, he was Steve’s father! – and he’d regretted it every day, especially as he’d long known that his son was gay. He’d recognized his son as a chip off the old block ever since Steve had visited the Knicks’ dressing room for the first time at age eight.
Mike would never forget his panic when Steve went missing. There were, as usual, strangers in the dressing room, and Mike had feared the worst. However, the team trainer soon alleviated one fear while raising another: "Your son? I just saw him. He’s in the showers with three or four of the players."
It was true: Steve had stripped off all his clothes and was wandering around the shower room staring intently at the players’ genitalia and buttocks, which were, conveniently, at his eye level. Three of the players, all African American, reacted good-humoredly to Steve’s visit, as they joked that Steve was just showing the natural curiosity of a white boy in the presence of "ebony magnificence," but the fourth, an Eastern European, told Mike to keep his son away from the dressing room: "The kid needs counseling. He should see a priest," Jako said, "He had an erection the entire time he was in the showers. You’d better take steps now or he’ll never give you a grandchild."
Mike hadn’t taken any steps then, nor when Steve had started using his allowance at age ten to buy teen magazines, whose shirtless male centerfolds he’d begun taping to his bedroom wall. Mike had even remained silent a year later when one of his own gay porn magazines disappeared, and he’d found it, after two hours of frantically searching the house (starting with Elvira’s lingerie drawer) hidden in Steve’s duffel bag. So as neither to alert nor to alarm his son, Mike hadn’t taken the magazine away.
Nor did he say anything as the rest of his stash of porn "mysteriously" disappeared. Indeed, Mike began buying with his son’s education in mind, so that a gay sex manual, a box of condoms, five copies of a glossy magazine for gay teens, a book on gay rights, and a book about the "dos" and "don’ts" of dating for gay teens all found their way into Steve’s duffel bag.
Oddly, they never discussed Steve’s sexuality, not even after Elvira had caught Mike fondling the beanstalk of a New York Giant. True, Steve had "come out" to his mother the first time he’d heard her denounce his father as "a queer" after their divorce, but he and his father never discussed the one thing they most had in common – their sexual attraction to muscular males – until Steve had arrived in tears, his defenses entirely down, at his father’s brownstone.
To Steve’s relief, his father had been alone (as he usually was, given his abiding fear of scandal), and finally ready to talk about being a gay man who had raised a gay son. As Steve reported on his mother’s unceasing efforts to interest him in girls, even a demi-girl like Kyle, Mike’s guilt began to ease enough to talk about his own sexual past and his son’s sexual future.
When Steve told him that he still looked almost every day "at the stuff about gay teens you left for me to find," Mike broke down and sobbed. His body shook as Steve hugged him, and, his voice broken with emotion, said, "Thank you, dad, you’ve always been there for me – even when you’re two thousand miles away. Because of you, I’ve never been ashamed to be gay. I just want to grow up as big and as strong as you."
That morning Mike resolved to fight for his gay son and his best friend Kyle. He’d cut their puppet strings, so that Elvira would no longer be able to manipulate either boy. He’d not back down, even if Elvira threatened a media campaign to reveal his homosexuality, and thus shorten his days in the NBA. Hell, he let his ex-wife slam dunk his career, if she’d promise to end her full-court press against their son’s sexual identity and sense of self-worth.
That afternoon Mike tracked down the waiters, taxi drivers and hotel staff who could corroborate Steve’s statement that his mother had deliberately gotten an unsuspecting fourteen-year-old drunk. While no one could verify that Steve’s mother had urged him to break the law by having intercourse with a "girl" without her consent, a couple of the maids said they were eager to tell a court that Mrs. Lancer had booked two teens into a room for honeymooners and then plied them with liquor.
Even Fatima took Demi’s side (or at least stopped calling her "a whore") when she learned that the girl was such an innocent that she’d hadn’t even known she was boozing at the café. As Mike assembled the case with the help of his lawyer in the late afternoon, it became obvious to Mike that Elvira was guilty of corrupting a minor, two minors in fact.
He didn’t want to see Elvira in jail. Not only was she his son’s mother, but he also held himself partially to blame for her recent excesses. She hadn’t been noticeably homophobic when they’d first met. Otherwise, he would never have cared or dared to marry her.
If she now seemed infernally afraid of her son’s homosexuality, "then it has something to do with me," Mike felt. "If I hadn’t cheated on her with a man, she mightn’t be so hostile to gay people. She might even be ready to accept that Kyle doesn’t have to become Demi in order to make love to Steve."
No, Mike had no desire to involve the law; but he’d threaten to unleash its full fury if Elvira didn’t see the wisdom of allowing their son and Kyle to follow their own stars. From all that he’d heard about Kyle, the boy was probably happy being a girl. Even so, Mike felt that Demi had a right to develop at her own pace. She shouldn’t be pushed into changing her sex permanently simply to suit the temporary needs of her boyfriend’s mother. All this, and more, Mike intended to tell Elvira at the ballet while the two teens were distracted by a story of a swan-loving prince.
Elvira was far from keen about spending the first act of the ballet talking to her ex-husband about Steve and Demi, for she’d read in The Des Moines Arts Review and Shoppers’ Bargain Guide that the Bolshoi Ballet of St. Petersburg (formerly the Tampa Bay Modern Dance Collective) had devised "a revolutionary new version of Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake," which they were presenting to "refined audiences in America and abroad." How refined? Well, it seemed that the only American cities sophisticated enough to appreciate the St. Petersburg company were Orlando, Miami, Pensacola, Tallahassee, and New York.
How did New York get onto this list? Well, it may have been by accident: An impresario may have confused the company with the better-known Bolshoi Ballet of Moscow, Russia. However, he bridled at any suggestion that he’d ever made a mistake.
"You say that nobody has ever heard of these dancers from Florida?" Rudi Comokoch had rhetorically asked in inquiring reporter. "Precisely. And why has no one heard of them? Because they’ve not played in New York! Everyone is an unknown until he, or they, have performed in the Big Apple. The world is divided into two parts," he lectured, "the vast horde of pathetic nobodies who’ve never been booked into a major New York hall, and the fabulous somebodies like the Bolshoi Ballet of St. Petersburg who’ve had this honor."
To ensure that the Bolshoi Ballet filled a hall at Lincoln Center, Rudi took advantage of New York’s premier position in the world of media hype to spread word of its "revolutionary" new version of Swan Lake. As word spread, and interest mounted, he finally convinced the company’s part-time choreographer to realize Rudi’s dream Swan Lake: an all-female version. True, a one-sex ballet was not genuinely revolutionary: The men of the Ballet Trocadero de Monte Carlo had been doing Swan Lake for decades, and the male swans of a British ballet company had recently been the toast of Broadway.
Even so, no one, so far as Rudi knew, had presented an all-female version of Swan Lake to a New York audience. And if anyone had, he was sure they hadn’t come up with his idea for the swan costumes. Rather than wear tutus, the girls were going to be garbed entirely in feathers, which would be glued to their bodies in small enough clumps to leave little to the imagination.
As the dancers had performed nude several times in Florida (according to their arrest records), they would have been willing to dance without feathers, but Rudi insisted on the proprieties. Besides, the company was so small that two of its male dancers would have to masquerade as females, and they would need the feathers as well as some bad lighting towards the rear of the stage.
Elvira had bought tickets to the Bolshoi when she read about its presenting an all-female version. She figured that a stage full of beautiful women would get Steve thinking about sex with Demi, while giving Demi a feminine ideal to strive for. With luck, she’d come away from the performance with dreams of becoming a ballerina.
Never entirely trusting to luck, Elvira had in fact already arranged for a ballet school in Des Moines to offer Demi "a year of free lessons as a sales promotion" as soon as they returned from New York. Elvira considered their expense "trivial" if they further feminized Demi. And wouldn’t they? Would Kyle be willing to show his face again in Des Moines after Demi had performed on television in a pink leotard, matching tights and ballet shoes, and a white tutu? Elvira thought it unlikely.
Elvira always protested her innocence when she was later accused of knowingly taking her son to a burlesque show: "I had no idea, none whatsoever, that the girls would be wearing almost nothing. And how was I to know that they were going to glue their feathers on with the same weak-bond stuff that goes onto the back of Post-it Notes? No one would have predicted that all the swans would molt!"
How could she have known? How indeed? She always thought it totally unfair that Mike amended his "bill of indictment" after the performance to include the stark naked swans – especially the two male swans who accidentally got stuck together – when he accused Elvira of corrupting two minors.
The swan striptease did not figure in Mike’s first assault on Elvira’s self-righteousness. Instead, he besieged her with sworn statements, Steve’s among them, about her misbehavior the preceding day. Mike also said that Steve suspected her of blackmailing Kyle into dressing and behaving more femininely.
To spare her feelings, Mike didn’t tell her that Steve also suspected her of practising voodoo to turn Kyle into a cross-dressing zombie. Any mother, Mike reasoned, would be upset to learn that her son had painstakingly searched their house for the magic potion or doll that she had used to transform Kyle into Demi.
Mike stuck to the provable, while intimating that he was going to quiz Demi at the intermission. "I’m sure the courts will find very interesting what she has to say about your dealings with her over the past few weeks. Have you been threatening her? Bribing her? It doesn’t matter which tactic you’ve been using, Elvira, for I’m sure that the judge will frown on your efforts to pressure a mere child into becoming a transsexual."
"I’m not pressuring Demi into anything," Elvira spluttered. "She’s happy that Kyle is gone, never to return, for she’s anxious to complete her transition to girlhood. I’m just trying to help her," Elvira whined.
She then caved, for she dared not have Demi talk to the authorities. There was no telling what stories the girl, a known liar, might tell!
"What do you want from me?" she resignedly asked Mike.
"Not much, considering how many laws you’ve broken."
"First, I want you to promise to leave Demi alone from now on. If it’s her destiny to become a woman, she’ll thank you one day for the money you set aside for her operation. In the meantime, leave her alone! She’s not your child, and she’s never going to be your daughter. Hands off of Demi! Understood?"
When Elvira nodded, Mike demanded that she sign a petition asking the Iowa courts to award him joint custody of Steve. She resisted briefly, but signed when he warned her that her only alternative was to lose Steve entirely. Once the courts knew about the seduction scenes she’d set up – not just at the hotel but also in a darkened home in Des Moines – they were likely to strip her of parental rights. That at least was the opinion of Mike and his lawyer, and Elvira reluctantly agreed to share her son: Steve would spend his school holidays and summer with his father, and the rest of the year (when Mike would be constantly traveling with his team) with his mother.
There were two last conditions: Elvira was finally to accept that her son was irredeemably gay and to permit him to date boys who refused to wear dresses.
"If I ever hear," menaced Mike, "that you’ve tried to impose another girl or demi-girl on Steve, I swear I’ll turn you into the police, Elvira. I’ll give them everything I’ve got on your attempts to corrupt Steve and Demi. You’re finally to accept that you raised a gay son. Got it?"
Once again Elvira saw no choice but to agree – a gay son was preferable to no son at all.
And the last condition? It was an apology. Mike told Elvira, "You’re going to have to apologize to your son for the harm you’ve done to him. Because of you, he thinks he’s a rapist. Do you understand that, Elvira? Last night you made your son the unhappiest kid in this city. He’ll probably never forget the trauma you put him through, and he’ll certainly never forgive you unless … unless you tell him you messed up big time, and beg for his forgiveness."
She was still mulling over this last condition when the audience, Steve and Demi leading the way, burst into the lobby for intermission. Surprisingly, considering that Swan Lake was a tragic love story, the room resounded with giggles and guffaws as the audience discussed and re-enacted the spills and thrills of the first act.
Only Steve seemed disconsolate. Indeed, he sourly asked if they could go. "There’s not a guy in the whole freaking show," he complained, as he shot a withering look at his mother.
"But dear," Elvira replied. "Tchaikovsky’s music is so beautiful. If you don’t like the dancers, just lean back in your chair, close your eyes, and listen, really listen."
"Who could listen? I could barely hear the music," Steve complained. "Everyone was laughing. I thought you told me this was a really sad story." He eyed her suspiciously, as though he’d caught her in yet another falsehood.
"Laughing? How can that be?" Elvira asked. She and Mike had been so engrossed in their conversation that neither had heard the gales of laughter rocking the theater.
Mike, who had been eavesdropping on conversations in the lobby, explained: "Elvira, it seems that this is a comic spoof of Swan Lake. The people beside me were having fits of laughter as they talked about four swans dancing wing-in-wing together. I gather it’s a famous duet. Anyway, the swans played it for maximum laughs, for one of them pretended to trip and they all went over like bowling pins. The woman beside me said it was the most inspired comedy she’d seen in New York since Mayor Guiliani last performed in drag."
Steve was unimpressed. He’d much rather have seen a sports event. Even Elvira could tell that he was, this night, in a dark and stormy mood. Demi, by contrast, was bubbling with joy. This was her first ballet, and to her surprise she loved it.
"But who wouldn’t?" Demi thought. "There are so many beautiful girls. They move so … so elegantly, and they’ve got almost nothing on!" (And would soon have even less.)
While most of the audience had focused on the company’s miscues, Demi had been fantasizing about making love to the dancers. In her mind’s eye, she was a swan making love, as she danced, to the most beautiful ballerina of them all, the princess who’d been turned into a white swan by an evil sorcerer. Even when Demi suddenly realized that her fantasy required that she be a ballerina, she clung to it. Love and romance were definitely worth a tutu.
As Demi gushed over the White Swan, Elvira got an inspiration. Or maybe she had planned the purchase all along. In any case, she persuaded the two teens (with some difficulty in the case of Steve) to accompany her to a stand in the lobby where the Bolshoi Ballet was hawking its wares in order to pay for its return bus fare to Florida.
Steve’s eye immediately locked on a large poster of two men in an affectionate pas de deux. Their bare chests rippling with muscles, they were wearing sheer dance tights and dance belts that exposed rather than hid their virility.
The poster advertised the company’s most innovative ballet (at least, until they reached New York) – "Romeo and Julius," their take on the Shakespearean classic done to the music of Ad Hominem, the rapper. Steve was staring so intently at the poster that he didn’t realize his mother had bought it for him – not until the staff rolled it up and handed it to him.
Elvira nodded when Steve looked her way. He almost smiled. For the first time that day, Steve’s anger toward his mother abated. While it would take more than a poster for him to forgive her, it was, he recognized, a step in the right direction.
What about Demi? Was there nothing for her? She would have settled for a poster of "Brytnya Spyrzia", the "White Swan" in that night’s performance. Instead, she got something much more exciting, certainly more fetishistic: Brytnya’s used ballet shoes. If purchased as an ensemble, her leotards and tights would cost just fifteen dollars extra. Pink and frayed, like the shoes, they revealed the history of Brytnya’s frantic practising, her seat and knees being especially worn thanks to her many trips and falls. So Demi found herself the new owner of a ballerina’s used clothes.
Elvira’s purchases were as suggestive as the Bolshoi’s costumes. Yet they would have confused Mike had he been there to observe them. Steve’s poster revealed that Elvira had declared a truce – maybe even a permanent end to hostilities – in her war on Steve’s homosexuality. So why did she buy Demi a ballerina’s outfit? Hadn’t Elvira promised Mike that she’d stopped pushing Demi towards a final sex change?
Yes she had. And she took her promise seriously. Never again would she bribe or blackmail Demi. Nor would Elvira try to convince Demi to become her ‘daughter’. Not for a moment had she forgotten that Demi had a mother already, and a pretty good one, as even Elvira had to admit.
Yet Elvira was unwilling to give up her newfound role as Auntie Elvie. She wanted to remain part of Demi’s life, especially as gaps had just opened up in her own. Demi had promised Elvira that she’d dress as a girl whenever they vacationed together out of town, even if Kyle took Demi’s place in Des Moines. As Elvira contemplated the loneliness of her first Christmas and school breaks without Steve, she clung to Demi. With luck, her "niece" would agree to accompany her to amusement parks in California and Florida when her son was visiting his father.
Elvira also expected to see a lot of Demi in Des Moines once the girl, having finally decided on her sex change, came to appreciate what a positive force her Auntie Elvie had been in her life. Even Demi’s mother Barb would become a friend, a real friend, of Elvira’s once she realized that it was Elvira’s money that was making possible the transformation of her son, who seemed destined to sell motorcycles for a living, into Demi, a Smith graduate and society matron. At least, that was the plan, or rather Elvira’s vision for Demi’s future.
In pursuit of that vision, she was determined to shower presents on Demi. Elvira had been right: Demi did indeed covet the ballet outfit, just as she did the panties or night wear of all the girls she found sexually exciting.
And, in the privacy of her own room, Demi would wear Brytnya’s leotard and tights almost every night for the next two weeks – that is, until Steve let slip to Jo that Demi had acquired another girl’s tights, and Demi had sheepishly admitted to Jo that she’d worn them to bed.
Jo, no dummy, recognized she had competition in Florida. To squelch it, she got Demi to promise that she’d never again wear Brytnya’s outfit in private until she had worn it in public. This pledge, plus Elvira’s offer of free ballet lessons, had Demi seriously contemplating taking up the ballet, despite Kyle’s admonitions to her that he’d "rather die than be seen by anyone frolicking about in a tutu."
Indeed, Kyle was unable to prevent her signing up for the winter session, starting in January. However, he did arrange their life in such a way that Demi was never able to show up for those lessons.
As one part of Demi definitely wanted to become a ballerina (or at least to hang out with ballerinas), Elvira’s present had been welcome, even if an embarrassing one to receive in a crowded lobby in the presence of Steve. Demi even kissed Elvira – which was more than Steve was yet willing to do – and readily agreed to keep the outfit a secret from Mike, who might, according to Elvira, begrudge her its cost.
Not every secret did Demi keep. During the remainder of the intermission, she got quite gossipy about her life since September, as Mike wrote down her answer to one leading question after another. Elvira overheard just enough to realize that Demi would be a damning witness if Mike ever went to court to demand either full custody of Steve or the State’s custody of his ex-wife, and she resolved to keep her promises about giving Steve the space to grow into a self-confident and proud gay man with the help of his gay father.
Yet the more that Steve threatened to slip away, the more important it became to Elvira to keep Demi close by. Elvira was, therefore, even indulgent about Demi’s gossiping. It just proved how remarkably feminine the girl really was. Elvira thought to herself about "all those years in which Demi pretended to be a boy named Kyle." She had played the role of "all-American boy" so convincingly that Demi obviously had innate talent as an actress.
"Wouldn’t it be great," Elvira mused, "if one day Demi played an ingénue on Broadway? If she takes dance lessons, she could even do that "tits and ass" number in Chorus Line!"
Elvira made a mental note to add acting lessons to Demi’s winter schedule. "If she kisses a few boys – lusty heterosexual boys, not gay boys like Steve – at her acting school, then she may discover how much she likes men. Then there’ll be no more foolish talk from her of being a lesbian."
Steve frostily intruded into her warm thoughts about Demi: "Mom, I wanna leave. Ballet sucks. Can’t I go somewhere with Dad? Maybe he could take me to a movie." (Steve was wondering whether every New York’s cinema was crammed to the rafters with gay males.)
Mike had overheard. Before Elvira could reply, he interjected, "Since you don’t like ballet, this might be the perfect time and place for you to talk with your mother about last night. I want you to spend some time with your mother in the lobby. Maybe she can find you some eats. Meanwhile, I’ll watch the second half with Demi so that you can have a heart-to-heart talk with your mother. I think you both need it."
And so it happened that it was Mike who had to cope with Demi’s wild mood swings during the last act of Swan Lake. At first, it was the giggles as Demi responded to the swan striptease like a fourteen-year-old boy – in other words, like most of the males in the audience. So hysterically funny did Demi find the first three or four molts that Mike briefly feared she’d hyperventilate.
But then, suddenly, Demi became deadly quiet and serious as she realized that entrancing Brytnya was – thanks to close contact with her "Prince" – losing feathers in all the right places. The White Swan was fast becoming a plucked chick. As Demi gazed at only the second female, and the first adult, to appear before her naked, she understood why so many women loved going to the ballet – it was a lesbian’s playground!
Soon lust gave way to passion. As Demi followed the White Swan’s every move, she became aware, as so few teens ever did, of the ballet’s poignancy. "It’s about someone like me," she thought. "I’m just like the White Swan. Someone’s bewitched me. Someone’s changed me into a swan. Here I am looking for love, just like her. But my time is running short, just like hers."
Demi began to cry – so silently that only her tears and the occasional shudder in her shoulders gave her emotion away. She was hoping that the White Swan would escape her fate, and become once again a real woman who could live happily ever after with the Prince (who had wider hips and a fuller bosom than most of the cast).
Instead, the most haunting notes in the ballet repertoire impelled the White Swan to rejoin the swans and then to fly off, leaving behind an inconsolable "Prince". As "he" drowned himself in Swan Lake, Demi began to wail.
Almost everyone else was laughing hysterically, for the departing swans, mistiming their exit, had all ended up in a heap which looked – considering their loss of feathers – a lot like an orgy. As Demi became aware of the laughter, she got even more upset.
Between sobs, she challenged Mike: "How can they laugh? Don’t they know that the White Swan will never be a girl again and that her one chance to have a boyfriend is gone forever?"
As Mike didn’t really have an answer, he simply held Demi and let her weep on his shoulder over the tragic fate of the enchanted swan who simply wanted to be a girl again.
It was not only Demi and Mike who were discovering how emotional an experience Swan Lake can be. Steve and Elvira could hear its haunting chords through an open door as they sat in an alcove off the lobby and rehashed the events of the last twenty-four hours, and then for good measure, of the last fourteen years.
Steve did graciously accept her apology for interfering in his romance with "Demi", even though he resented his mother for not calling his boyfriend "Kyle". They even hugged a little when Elvira professed her desire to be in future "the best mother any homosexual ever had." And Elvira shed the desired tears when Steve accused her of turning him "into a rapist." Indeed, it was a wonder that she didn’t cry out in terror, for Steve never clarified that he hadn’t done much more than molest a Vagi-Gaff.
If words alone mattered, then the reconciliation went well. But words are not everything, especially when it comes to mother and child. And Elvira could tell from Steve’s body language that he hadn’t really forgiven her. Indeed, as they locked eyes just as the music of Swan Lake reached its last crescendo, Elvira realized, "I’ve never seen that look before. Something is gone."
Suddenly she realized what it was: "Das Kind war tod – the child was dead." She recalled the phrase from one of her favorite movies, one she cherished because it had so much resonance with her own life. The Burning Secret – that was its name – told the story of a woman, emotionally abandoned but desperate for love, who had taken her young son to an Austrian sanatorium for a cure.
The story line suggested he had a lung condition, but Elvira knew what his real problem was – rarely had she seen such a fey and delicate boy on the big screen. He was obviously gay. Could a sanatorium cure a boy of being sexually attracted to war veterans, as this child seemed to be? Elvira thought not.
Yet she loved the film because the mother was able to have a night of romance and passion, and her son had successfully fought the temptation to tell his "burning secret" – his knowledge of the affair – to his cuckold father. His mother’s affair killed the child in him; but he emerged stronger from the crisis. His mother had made a man out of him.
Had her own son kept his burning secret? No, he’d told his father everything. He had acted like a child. So why then did his eyes tell her "the child was dead"? As she met his cold and efficient stare, Elvira suddenly realized that she’d been misinterpreting the movie. Only now did she comprehend that the giant step taken by the boy in the film toward becoming a man had taken him far away from his mother emotionally.
Elvira’s fledgling had taken flight, and she’d never felt so completely alone. She was so disconsolate that she even stopped scheming – for the rest of the evening.
Demi and Steve were, therefore, stone cold sober when they faced each other alone in their hotel room. To Steve’s relief, it now contained a cot ready for his use. There was an awkward silence, which Steve finally broke by suggesting that Demi try on the ballet costume – "to see if it fits you. I just know you’re dying of curiosity."
The suggestion surprised Demi: "Steve usually wants me to look as much like a guy as possible. A pink leotard and tights? I would have thought that would be the last thing he’d like to see me wear."
And she was right. Steve had proposed that she put on the ballet costume for the same reason boys took cold showers: to cool his ardor. Aware of his own raging, adolescent hormones, Steve feared that he might "jump Kyle’s bones" if Kyle looked at all boyish in their love nest. After his disgraceful behavior last night, Steve vowed to control himself. It would help him to resist temptation if Demi dressed in pink and pranced around the room "like a silly girl."
And so, after Demi had changed into her ballet costume (modestly in the bathroom), Steve encouraged her to stand in front of the full-length mirror and do her best "to dance like Brytnya."
At first, all went well from Steve’s perspective, for Demi was losing all semblance of masculinity as she tossed up her arms and attempted to force her feet to assume the various ballet positions. Steve even thought to himself, "I can’t believe I’ve been wasting my time trying to get Demi into the sack. I should be going after a real man – someone who’s macho like my dad. Someone like Brad."
Had Brad’s image lingered for long in Steve’s imagination, Steve probably would have spent the night, as planned, on the cot masturbating. However, that image shattered the moment a heart-shaped side table and lamp did. Demi had been trying to stand on point, without the advantage of a wooden block, or training, or talent.
Just as she reached her maximum stretch, just as she was about to cry out, "Look at me!", she toppled over onto the table, whose legs crumpled as it broke her fall. As she lay amidst the wreckage, the table legs apparently stuck into her side, the lamp flickering on her belly, she looked seriously hurt.
As Steve kneeled to help her, electricity raced through the two teens as they touched. Steve might have been able to resist its impulse had his hands been resting on the more artificial, more feminine parts of Demi’s body; but his right hand had found her biceps, and there the reminder that Demi had the muscles of a boy. Steve’s affinity for the cot weakened, especially after Demi surprised him with a kiss.
Briefly their tongues tangoed, but then Steve brusquely pulled away. "I can’t," he said. "We shouldn’t. It wouldn’t be right, not after what happened last night."
"After what happened last night?" Demi repeated. "After what we did last night, kissing is nothing." Then, blushing furiously, she added, "This time let’s do it more slowly so that I remember it better."
"What are you talking about?" Steve demanded. "What do you think happened last night?"
"Well you know," said Demi sheepishly. She then formed a circle with a finger and her right thumb, which she penetrated several times with the index finger of her left hand.
"We didn’t do that," Steve barked. "Who told you we had sex, ‘cause we didn’t. Not really. Not the way you’re suggesting."
Confused, Demi replied, "Your mother told me. She said you did … almost everything to me that a guy can do to a girl. She said that you took my virginity – by any definition."
"I can’t believe she told you that, Demi. We didn’t have sex, not really. She lied to you. My mother is always lying to people," he bitterly replied.
Was Demi relieved or disappointed to find out that she was, technically, still a virgin? She wasn’t sure. But she was certainly curious about Steve’s "not really". So she asked, "What did we do last night after we got back to the room? Did we neck or pet? What did we do? Who took off all my clothes?" She shamefacedly admitted, "I don’t remember anything."
Haltingly Steve told her what happened. As he expected either to be slapped by Demi or slugged by Kyle, Steve deliberately ended his sorry tale with his face within easy reach. Stoically, he was ready for whatever punishment his best friend (if Kyle still wanted that designation) meted out.
But Demi was more impressed than angered by Steve’s revelation. "You’re such a gentleman," she blurted out. "You really are a sweetheart."
She wondered if she would have behaved so chivalrously had their positions been reversed.
Since she had already lost her virginity in her mind, Demi was now anxious to lose it in the flesh. She also figured that Steve wouldn’t feel as bad about "the night before" if she now proved to him that she had arrived in New York ready and willing to lose her virginity. Actually, she hadn’t been, but a lot had changed in twenty-four hours.
So finally, at long last, Demi was anxious to get laid – provided that Steve treated her like a lady. She had made a promise to Auntie Elvie that she intended to keep: intercourse would be vaginal only, and Steve wouldn’t be allowed to treat her "like a boy".
The seduction proved easy. All Demi had to say was, "I don’t care about last night. All I care about is tonight." And all she had to do was to caress Steve between his legs for about four seconds. Testosterone-soaked adolescence then won out.
To their mutual surprise, their long-anticipated intercourse began with Demi wearing the pink ballet costume to bed. But it took less than five minutes for both teens to get naked (which in Demi’s case meant stripping down to her breast forms and gaff).
Steve, still guilty over the "night before," at first deferred to Demi’s every whim, which meant he had exploded twice inside her Vagi-Gaff before he started calling her Kyle and asking for her to let him love her "like the boy you really are."
As Steve’s roaming hands made Demi hot, she feverishly reconsidered her promise to Elvira: "She lied to me, didn’t she? That’s what Steve said. So I can do anything I want with Steve. I’m a free woman."
And what did she want? Shockingly, she wanted to have Steve enter her body for real. The Vagi-Gaff wasn’t good enough, for it gave only superficial pleasure. Briefly, she wished the plastic tube were real. "If only I had a real vagina," Demi thought, "I’d soon be in seventh heaven." But she wasn’t in heaven, and this wasn’t going to be fantasy sex. It was going to be earthy, sweaty, and carnal. With her own hands Demi guided Steve to the closest thing to a vagina that each boy has.
As their bodies locked together, Steve did his best to free Kyle from Demi’s grasp. He talked up a storm. "It’s you I love, Kyle – not Demi. It’s Kyle, a boy, who’s making love to me. Kyle, you’re turned on because you’re a boy having great sex with another boy. Kyle, we’re two gay boys getting our rocks off. Come on, Kyle, tell me you’re a boy. Tell me you’re going to be a boy from now on. Tell me you like having me deep inside you, inside the real you, and that you’ll be wanting boy-on-boy sex from now on."
The strangest thoughts were going through Kyle’s head. Here was another boy "using him like a girl," yet he hadn’t felt so much like a boy in three months.
Demi’s defenses were down. The girl was in retreat. She didn’t even resist Steve when he yanked on her breast forms to free Kyle from their constraint.
"Kyle, do you enjoy being a boy? Kyle, do you like having your boy’s belly caressed by another boy?"
"Yes, yes," Kyle sighed.
Steve smiled. It was working out just as he’d planned. As he saw it, Jo had used sex to seduce Kyle into becoming Demi, and he was now using it to return Kyle to the world of men.
Out loud Steve said, "I just know you really want to be a boy, Kyle. You’re as anxious as I am to see the last of Demi. After you’ve sexed it up with me, I promise you that you’ll never allow anyone to call you Demi, ever again. From this moment forward, it will always be Kyle, Steve’s macho boyfriend Kyle."
Steve then moved his hands upward towards Kyle’s nipples to prove to him that he’d have more fun in bed, and in life, if he didn’t cover them up with "fake tits."
"Kyle, it’s sure good being a boy. Isn’t it Kyle? How about it, Kyle?"
Kyle moaned in apparent agreement.
As Steve’s hands finally found Kyle’s chest, a look of panic came over Steve’s face. At first, he couldn’t find any words. But finally he blurted out, "Demi, you’ve got lumps. Demi, you’ve got breast cancer!"
A terrified Demi had never felt more like a girl.
To be continued in Chapter 21, where we will learn what the doctor told Demi.
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