“You a good swimmer?” he directed his question to Erika as he flexed and stretched, showing off his six-pack abs and muscular arms.
“I can make it to the dock.” She started to the water’s edge again.
"Oh my God! I have a guy hitting on me! This is totally embarrassing!" Erika’s mind screamed.
By Anistasia Allread
As soon as Samantha was done, Phoenix gathered the girls and started back to the cabin with them. “You’ll need to change into your swimming suits, and grab your towels.”
Samantha moved up next to Erika. “I borrowed something that might help you out.” She whispered.
“Thanks.” Erika looked a bit relieved.
“Phoenix!” a voice rang through the trees. “Please hold on for a minute.”
The girls of Columbine cabin all turned to see Director Hobbs and a heavyset girl carrying a suitcase walking towards them.
“What can I do for you, Robin?” Phoenix asked when as they approached.
“Phoenix,” Director Hobbs began. “Columbine girls.” She added. “This is Krystal, and she will be joining your cabin for the summer.”
“Hello Krystal.” Phoenix greeted with a smile. “Come join us. We are going back to our cabin to change for the swimming assessments.”
“Hi.” Krystal greeted shyly with a soft soprano. Her eyes flicked up to meet Phoenix’s for a quick moment, darted around the group of girls to include them in the greeting, then fell back to the ground.
Erika and the other girls of the cabin stole glances at their new member as they made their way down the path and into their cabin. Krystal was a big girl. Plus sized definitely. She had dirty blonde hair that was cut to just touch her shoulders, and a fringe that veiled her green eyes. Pale skin similar to that of Erika told of little time in the sun. She wore baggy jeans and an oversized top that she used at an attempt to hide her weight.
“Krystal, you can have the lower bed of my bunk.” Victoria offered.
“Thanks.” Krystal’s voice was barely above a mutter.
“Krystal, go ahead and unpack, and then change into your bathing suit with the rest of us.” Phoenix instructed.
Erika went into her drawer and pulled out her swimming suit and dropped down on Samantha’s bed. She watched as Rachel with no modesty, stripped out of her clothes, even her bra, exposing, practically flaunting, her perky ‘b’ cup breasts before slipping into her bathing top. Erika swallowed hard and had to remain sitting while the tightness in her shorts subsided.
She looked around the room trying to avoid everyone else in their various stages of undress and looked to where Krystal was pulling things out of her suitcase and dropping them in various drawers. The whole bottom of her suitcase was mounded with books. Paperbacks of all colors and fonts of writing on their covers and spines.
That explains why she is as pale as I am. Erika told herself. She’s an outcast like me, instead of computers and comics, she escapes into books.
“Will you help me in the bathroom?” Samantha asked Erika, bringing her back to her current problem.
“Uh, sure.” She followed Samantha.
Once in the bathroom, Samantha quietly locked the door then turned to Erika. “While we were in the stables I came across this.” She smiled holding out the ends of a roll of duct tape. “I hope this will last until we can get to town.”
“I guess I’ll have to give it a try…. Let’s just hope it works.” Erika accepted the tape.
Erika looked at Samantha and smiled. Samantha stood there and smiled back.
“Could I get a little privacy here?” Erika asked.
“Oh. Sorry. Don’t forget to lock it this time.” Samantha exited the bathroom.
Erika stripped out of her clothes and stood in the bathroom naked, exposed. A boy with make-up and braided hair. She didn’t know what to think. She felt foolish. She felt false; an intruder in a world that she shouldn’t belong. She liked that she was being accepted by the other girls. She was beginning to make friends, something she hadn’t had for a very long time. The last real friend she had was Summer, and she committed suicide. Thinking of Summer began to bring up emotions that she couldn’t deal with at the moment. She didn’t have time to deal with them at the moment, she needed to hide as many traces of her male body as she could and take a swimming assessment.
She quickly tore off a few pieces of duct tape and temporarily stuck them to the sink. She then began tucking her male genitalia into place and carefully placed the duct tape. She stepped into her blue one-piece and was pulling it up when some one started banging on the door. “Come on, Erika, don’t hog the bathroom on the first day.”
“I’ll be right out.” Erika called back. She slid the suits straps over her shoulders, grabbed her breast forms and quickly tucked them inside her suit. She jumped into her shorts and grabbed her other clothes before joining the others in the cabin. Victoria dodged past her and into the bathroom.
“Krystal, you going to change into your bathing suit?” Phoenix asked.
“I didn’t bring one.” Krystal stared at the floor before her. “Besides, I don’t know how to swim.”
“You should have brought it anyway.” Phoenix smiled. “We have classes for beginners. There are actually a lot of teens who come to camp and don’t know how to swim.”
“Oh.” She blushed still looking at the ground.
“Well maybe when we go to town to do laundry, you can find one.” Phoenix suggested. “We’ll need all the help we can in the end of the summer festivities.”
“Okay.” Krystal was non-committal.
Samantha came up to Erika while she was putting her stuff back in the drawer. “Well, is it working?”
“So far. I just hope that It is waterproof enough, and that it doesn’t show.” Erika smoothed her shorts down so that Samantha could see the smooth front of her lower abdomen with no sign of bulge.
Victoria came out of the bathroom and walked up to Erika and Samantha. “You left this in the bathroom.” She said handing the roll of duct tape over to Erika. “I thought you said we didn’t have any duct tape?” She questioned.
Erika’s heart pounded against her rib cage. If it beat any harder, she felt that her breast forms would start pulsating. A chill ran it’s icy finger down her spine as adrenaline charged through her body.
“I found it in the tack room at the stables.” Samantha leaped in Erika’s defense.
“Why do you need duct tape?” Victoria asked, curiously.
“Her suit had a tear in the lining and it was a quick way to fix it.” Samantha jumped in again.
“Yeah.” Erika managed. “I told her about it after breakfast, and Samantha was kind enough to help me out.”
Victoria looked from one to the other, curiously. “Well don’t take it off the list. We are going to need some more.” She then went over to her bunk that she shared with Krystal and picked up her towel.
Although it was still early in Summer and still an hour before lunch, the sun around the lake felt quite warm. A small sandy beach held an elevated lifeguard chair. A dock on one end of the beach ran fifty meters straight out into the lake before turning to parallel the beach. A diving platform reached up three meters from the boards of the dock. Next to it was a diving board which pointed back towards shore. The wind was just starting to pick up a little bit, causing the water to ripple on the exterior side of the dock.
“Good morning campers.” An Asian man in a white tank top and red shorts greeted the several cabins that had gathered on the beach.
“Good morning.” A few of the campers greeted back.
“That didn’t sound very exciting.” He grinned, showing white teeth against his tanned, olive skin. “Good morning campers.” He repeated.
“Good morning.” Everyone on the beach greeted with enthusiasm.
“That is much better.” He ran his hand through jet black hair and swept his gaze across the group. “My name is Todd and I’m the head lifeguard and swimming instructor here at Camp Kumoniwanalaya. Why don’t you all take a seat where you are so I can go over my rules of the lake?” Todd waited a moment for everyone to sit down and relax in the already warm sand.
“This here.” Todd pointed at the expanse of blue behind him. “This is MY lake! In order to do any boating, kayaking or canoeing on MY lake you have to follow MY rules, show a fundamental ability to tread water and swim a basic crawl stroke.” He paused for it to sink in.
“It doesn’t have to look pretty. It just has to keep you alive. If you show that you can do those three simple things then you can have a lot of fun on MY lake. If however, you need help in learning how to swim or improving your current skills you can still have fun on MY lake, but I will ask you to confine yourselves to the shallow swimming area marked off by that rope of floats there.” Todd pointed behind him to the defining line that lay 10 meters out into the water from the beach. “Now before we get to the assessment, lets go over MY rules.”
“He’s cute.” Rachel murmured just loud enough for the circle around her to hear.
“Too short for me.” Katie sighed.
“He does have a nice butt.” Dani commented.
“Check out his legs.” Victoria urged.
“I think I’m going to be spending a lot of time down here at the lake." Rachel grinned.
The group giggled quietly. All except Erika and Krystal. The newcomer sat a few feet away from the already meshing group and stayed silent. "Her eyes," Erika noticed, "Were staring off across the lake at nothing, or staring at the sand, as if counting the grains."
“Okay, you all can make this as easy or as hard as you wish.” Todd came back to the subject of the assessment. “The swimming test will be to swim out to the dock. If you are not a swimmer yet, or if you don’t think you can make it, please step over there.” He pointed off to the shade of a tree. “If you want to show off your abilities or think you can make it out there, I will have you try in just a moment.” Once you reach the dock, I would like you to stay in the water and wait for further instructions.” Todd held up a hand of something green in one hand and something red in the other.
“These are bracelets, similar to those you get if you are in the hospital. In other words, they are a pain in the ass to get off.” Todd waited for the chuckles and giggles to subside. “Swimmers will get green. ‘Soon to be’ swimmers will receive red.” He paused. “Red bracelets will have to stay in the shallows until they can past the test, which they can take at anytime they feel they are ready. Once you pass the test, you will receive green. Swimmers with green bracelets. If you are caught breaking any of MY rules on MY lake, You will be stripped of the green and given red. Anyone breaking the rules a second time will be given a yellow bracelet.” Todd pulled one out of his pocket.
“Bearers of this color are banned from the water period. End of story.” Todd motioned to the side and two girls and three guys wearing the same clothes as Todd jogged across the sand towards them. “These are MY assistants. They will be here to enforce MY rules on MY lake and speak with MY authority. They are also here to keep you safe and to help teach you how to swim if you wish.”
Two of the assistants took the red bracelets from him and headed over to the shaded area. The other three took up positions out on the docks. One half way out into the water, the other two took up places out on the far dock.
“Those who are ‘soon to be’ swimmers please accept and rejoice at getting this free ruby red fashionable piece of jewelry. Those who wish to take the assessment, please ready yourselves on the edge of the lake, but do not get wet.”
Erika stood up and smoothed down the front of her shorts, making sure that the tape was sticking. The one-piece was riding up her butt crack, but she couldn’t get to it through her shorts. She noticed Krystal was still staring at the sand.
“Wanna hand?” She asked the large girl.
Krystal looked up, a flush of red covered her face.
“Come on. No one is looking, they are all getting ready to chicken out or embarrass themselves.” Erika held out a hand to the new girl of the cabin.
Krystal smiled, still embarrassed and rolled onto her knees before taking Erika’s hand.
Erika helped her to her feet and smiled at her. “I’m going to go embarrass myself. “Would you watch my towel and clothes for me?”
“Yeah, sure.” Krystal glanced up from the sand for only long enough to accept the clothing, and looked back down. She turned and slowly made her way to the shade to join the others who were getting their red bracelets.
Erika looked quickly around to make sure no one was watching then as discreetly as she could removed the suit from between cheeks.
Victoria was the other member of the cabin who was heading towards the shade.
“She not even going to try?” Erika asked Samantha.
Samantha shook her head. “She says she just learned how to swim and that the dock is further than she can swim right now.”
“Shall we show the boys what cabin Columbine is made of?” Rachel grinned at the four remaining girls. “It’s only half the distance for you, Kaite.” She smirked. “Unfortunately, it’s almost twice the distance for you, Dani.”
“Like I haven’t heard that one before.” Dani rolled her eyes. “If you are going to tease me, Rachel, come up with something original.” She started towards the waters edge. The rest of the girls following behind.
“Can you see any of the tape?” Erika asked Samantha.
Samantha looked her up and down as they walked. “No. you look like a girl heading out to the beach, except you’re kinda white.”
“Hello Erika.” A voice came from behind her. Erika and Samantha turned around to come face to face with Josh.
“Oh, hi, Josh.” Erika acknowledged absently.
“Hi, Josh.” Samantha welcomed with more enthusiasm.
“You a good swimmer?” he directed his question to Erika as he flexed and stretched, showing off his six-pack abs and muscular arms.
“I can make it to the dock.” She started to the water’s edge again.
Oh my God! I have a guy hitting on me. This is totally embarrassing. Erika’s mind screamed.
“I was on the swim team when I was a kid.” He commented.
“Cool.” Samantha smiled at him. “I’ll bet you’re fast.”
Wipe the drool from your mouth, Samantha. Erika wanted to shake her friend. Guys like Josh have big enough heads.
“Okay, wanna be swimmers.” Todd called out as he walked in front of them, ankle deep in the water. “This is not a race. I know some of you macho guys wanna prove you’re the alpha male and all, but I don’t want to have to come and save your drowning butts, because you cramp up half way there.” He looked at Josh. “Go ahead and spread out, you are going to need some space.” He paused as they all opened up so that they were at least fingertip to fingertip apart.
“When I blow my whistle, I want you to swim to the dock and once you get there, wait until I give you further directions. If you aren’t a strong swimmer, don’t over do it trying to reach the dock. Take your time, all you have to do is prove you can swim that far. In fact it will be easier for you if you hang back until the alpha-males and alpha-females, are past the rope before you start.” He looked at Rachel. “Okay, get ready.” He walked up on to the beach and behind the line. As soon as he was past them he blew the whistle.
Erika and Samantha both held back. As she expected, Rachel was splashing into the water at a sprint, racing Josh. She didn’t however expect to see Dani splashing her way into the water in the first wave. She dove into the shallows and swam under water for a bit and emerged on the other side of the rope, just behind Rachel and Josh, diving over the barrier.
“Lets go.” Samantha urged and took off at a jog through the water. Erika followed. She gritted her teeth and swore as she felt the cold water of the lake splashing up onto her upper legs and torso.
When the frigid water reached her thighs, Erika dove in and felt something slip. She panicked as the impact from the water made her breast forms shift in her suit, one slipped out of the suit completely. Oh shit! Erika almost screamed underwater as she flailed about, to try and grab the missing appliance. Her fingers touched it. She stopped dead in the water and made another grab at it, catching it awkwardly in her hand. She surfaced, took a breath of air and submerged again and quickly stuffed the form back into her suit before starting her crawl stroke towards the dock.
She had never been swimming in a one-piece before. She could feel the buttocks of the suit starting to slide between her legs and into her groin. The material acted as an insulator, keeping the water on her lower chest and abdomen, just a touch warmer than her exposed body parts. The added bulkiness of the breast forms were a nuisance. They kept slipping inside her suit as she reached out ahead of her to pull more water.
I’ve got to duct tape these to my chest next time. She made a mental note.
Finally she made it to the dock. She reached out and pulled herself to the wood, next to Samantha.
“What happened?” Samantha inquired. “I thought you were right there with me, but every time I checked to see where you were, you looked as though you were struggling.”
“My forms keep slipping out.” Erika muttered just low enough for Samantha to hear.
“Oh shit.” Samantha’s eyes got big.
“I lost one, when I dove into the water, but was just able to grab it before it floated out of reach. I’ve spent half the time getting out here, tucking them back into place.”
“There is a glue that we can get that will keep them in place.” Samantha informed her. “Put it on the list for when we go shopping. What are we going to do until the trip to town?”
“Duct tape.” Erika answered.
The last of the swimmers had reached the dock and were waiting in the water for Todd to give them further instructions. A few campers were being pulled to the safety of the dock. Their swimming stroke wasn’t as strong as they had thought, or the dock was just too far for them. Erika felt a bit of pity for them, but they at least tried.
“Listen up, wanna be swimmers!” Todd got their attention. For those who have made it out here to the dock, congratulations. You’re half way done.” He paced back and forth the length of the dock. “When I blow my whistle, you are all to push off away from the dock and begin treading water. You must be able to tread water for three minutes to play in MY lake. Three minutes is a long time when you are treading water. But for us," He pointed to himself and his assistants, “Three minutes is barely enough time for us to get a rescue underway from the beach to the middle of the lake.”
Todd blew the whistle and everyone pushed off and kicked out a little ways and began the slow steady rhythm of keeping their heads above water.
“So, Erika.” Josh swam a few strokes in her direction and was just a little ways away.
“So, Josh.” Erika repeated, dryly.
“Tomorrow night the camp has scheduled an evening of free time.” His powerful arms easily kept his head above water.
“So?” Erika looked over at the dark haired guy.
“So I was wondering if you might want to hang out, maybe go canoeing?”
I’d rather be playing on my computer. Erika frowned to her self. She looked over to Samantha who smiled back at her and nodded her head. I don’t want to be alone with this guy, especially when I’m supposed to be a girl. Erika whined in her head. “Tell you what, Josh. Find a cute friend for Samantha and we can hang out.”
Josh looked a bit crestfallen, but smiled big and winked at her. “Cool. I’ll talk to you later, to work out the details. Okay?”
“Sure.” Erika shrugged. She looked back over to Samantha who was grinning from ear to ear, and if they had been on dry land, she was sure that Samantha would have been jumping up and down with excitement.
It seemed to take for ever for Todd to blow the whistle. During the three minutes, four other campers had to be helped on to the docks for the long humiliating walk back to shore to receive a red bracelet. Finally the whistle sounded and everyone stroked over to the dock where they rested their weary arms.
“Good job everyone.” Todd smiled down at all of them. You are all allowed to play and swim in MY lake. Once you come aboard, I’ll have you line up to get fitted for your green bracelets. If any of you are caught lending, selling, or giving your bracelet to a ‘soon to be’ swimmer, you will automatically be given a yellow one.” He paused. “Okay, come on out of MY lake and get your new piece of jewelry.”
End of Chapter Eight
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