A Second Chance
By Dawn Natelle
Here it is, the long awaited sleepover episode. (Well, not so long, this is only the 12th episode of a story that was first posted a couple weeks ago.) Enjoy. Dawn.
FRIDAY, May 6, 2016
Rachael woke to the sound of raindrops on the windowpane. The spell of good weather was over, and on the day of the sleepover as well. Oh well, it wasn’t as though they had been planning outdoor activities.
That morning, as Rachael served up Bobby his French Toast, she warned him to not wait for her to walk home, and to take the bus instead. Rachael would be taking the middle school bus, and it left several minutes before the primary school bus.
“What will you do if you forget, and the bus leaves, and then I don’t show up because I took my bus home?” she quizzed the boy.
Bobby was at a loss. “Walk home alone?” he suggested.
“Wrong. Do you know the way?”
“No I don’t. What should I do Rachael?”
“Well, first of all, don’t miss the bus. But if you do, then you go into the school and tell them in the office. You will have to wait for me to get home, and then they can phone me, and I will have to walk in the rain to get you, and you will have to walk home in the rain. And I will not be very happy about it. So don’t forget. Get on the bus.”
“And if for some reason you can’t get into the school to get them to call me, you could walk to the library. It is close enough you wouldn’t get lost. Do you know the phone number here?”
“Bobby thought. 555-1212?”
“That’s right. The library will let you call me, or they will call me. But the best way to do it is to not forget. You and Danni will need to take the bus today. You are the big boy, so it is up to you to remember. Okay.”
“That was amazing,” Maria said. “You just walked him through what could be a problem. You are born to be a mother, you know?”
“I guess I am,” Rachael said. “I just don’t want him to get stranded. It would be nice if the primary school bus went first, and I could make sure he was on it, but then he would get home before me and have to wait for me to unlock the door.”
Rachael walked Bobby to the bus stop with her umbrella, but really didn’t need to, as the boy ran off into the rain to splash in mud puddles. He had a yellow raincoat on, with a small sou’wester hat and big boots, so he should be fairly dry when he got to school. Rachel just stayed at the bus stop until her ride came rather than walking back to the house in the rain.
Of course today the bus seemed to be late. It always was. If she was late, it would have been early, but the rain seemed to have slowed things down for the driver. Not that driving was any harder – it was not a hurricane kind of storm. But everyone seemed to wait at their door ‘til they saw the bus, and then hurried out for it, causing delays at most stops.
Rachael was finally at school. Mikki was wound up tighter than a top, fussing about her party tonight, and Larissa was nearly as bad. Larissa had promised to go straight to Mikki’s after school to help set up. Rachael was also going early, but had to stop off at her house and wait for Bobby. Then they would walk to the Stoner house, where Rachael wanted to get started with her baking. The other girls were supposed to come at 8 p.m., but Rachael knew that at least some of them would be fashionably late.
There was Phys. Ed., today, and Ms. Smith was impressed at the improvement Larissa had made in only two days. Her shooting and ball handling skills were much better. Ms. Smith congratulated Rachael on the improvement, but she then was told that Larissa had been practicing with the captain of the boy’s basketball team.
The result was that in the game at the end of the class, Rachael’s team won handily, 28-14 over a team that had creamed them 21-7 just a week ago. Rachael had either herself or Larissa on the floor at all times. Larissa didn’t have the strategy or ball smarts to be a point guard like Rachael, but her size intimidated the other team, and she was unstoppable with a layup. During the few minutes that had both Rachael and Larissa on the floor together the team dominated the competition. But Rachael still made sure that all the other players still got time on the floor, and they all played much better than before. At the end of the game they were ecstatic. They were no longer the misfits and they celebrated into the shower room and then all the way to lunch.
During lunch Rachael went over to the cool kids table where Carly was sitting with Leon Michaels, the boy who Rachael had set her up with. “Leon,” she said. “You said the other day that ‘you owed me one’ for setting you up with Carly. I have an idea how you can repay me.”
“Well, my Grandpa is too old to cut his grass, and it is getting really long. I think a neighbor cut it once this year, but it is like a hayfield again. I wondered if you could cut it. Do you have a lawnmower?”
“My dad does. Just an old gas mower. I’ve thought about cutting grass for summer spending money. This might get me started. I guess doing one cut for free won’t hurt.”
“Actually, I could have a second customer for you too. It is the lady right next door to him. But she wouldn’t be a freebie. She is a music teacher, and said she would trade you guitar lessons in return for cutting her grass this summer.”
“That would be awesome,” Leon said. “I would love to learn to play. Then in high school, I could get a band going.”
“And with two customers, you would be able to tell other people that you are a business. You just walk along and look for the places that have long grass, and rap on the door and ask if they want it cut. Some people would even pay a few dollars to get you to do it if they were busy, or lazy. I’ll bet by the time school is out you would have a lot of customers.”
“And a lot of money for dates,” Carly said with wide eyes. “Thanks again Rachael. You are the best.”
The rest of the day went smoothly, although Mikki was increasingly distracted. At the end of the day, Larissa and Rachael practically had to pour her onto the bus home.
After Rachael got off, in rain that was now more drizzle than the downpour of the morning, she went to the house and got things ready for Bobby. There wasn’t much she needed, but she did get him the last cookie of the batch, since she knew he would be hungry and it would be at least an hour before the cookies were out of the oven at the Stoner’s.
Minutes later Bobby arrived, and she didn’t even let him get out of his rain gear. She just congratulated him on remembering to take the bus, and then they headed towards the Stoner house, with Bobby again needing to splash in every rain puddle he came across.
Once they got to the huge house, Andrea Stoner let them in, saying that Mikki and Larissa were down in the basement. As soon as Bobby was out of his wet things, he made a beeline for Danni’s room and its PlayStation.
“Do you want to go down to join the girls, or work up here in the kitchen? I’ve gotten everything from your list.”
“Actually, Mrs. Stoner, I’d like to talk to you for a minute or two first. It is about Danni. Have you noticed that he acts a little girlish?”
“Yes, but don’t say anything in front of his father. Bob just hates it.”
“Have you ever considered taking Danni to a child psychiatrist, or psychologist? I was talking to him the other day, and he told me that he felt he was a girl inside. This is classic language for a transsexual child.”
Mrs. Stoner gasped. “I wondered about that. He has told me the same thing on occasion, but whenever he mentioned it to his father Bob would be furious. He has resisted ‘sending his son to a two-bit shrink’ as he puts it. Do you think it is serious?”
“I do. I wouldn’t know so much about this, except that I had a cousin named Earl, who I discovered was really Emily. We were friends from when she was 11 until she turned 15. She suffered greatly by having to pretend to be a boy, and finally, when puberty struck she decided it was too much. She took her own life.”
Mrs. Stoner gasped again. “Could that happen to Danny?”
“Not at his age, usually,” Rachael said. “But when he gets older, and feels more and more ‘wrong’ the chances will keep growing. He might become depressed, and act out in other ways too.” She pulled up her sleeves and showed Mrs. Stoner the cut mark scars on her arms. “I had different problems, but before I found Jesus I did this to myself because I hated who I was.”
The woman’s eyes got wide looking at the scars. “I didn’t know you had it so bad, Rachael. Since Mikki and I have known you, you seem to be so stable and sensible.”
“It can be that fine a line with mental health, ma’am,” Rachael said, rolling her sleeves back down. “That is why I think you need to have Danni see a doctor. It might not be transsexualism or gender dysphoria. But if it is, you can save him, or her, a lot of pain and angst by having her see someone regularly.”
“He is my baby,” Mrs. Stoner said. “I will do everything I can for her. I will talk with Bob tonight.”
“You might want this,” Rachael handed her the memory stick. There are a lot of links and files on this I got from the Internet at school. You might want to read through some of them, during the lulls in the roar of the party.”
“Thank you for this,” she said, taking the stick. “Now I want you to enjoy the party. I will look after Danni.”
Rachael went down to the basement studio and put her sleeping back and backpack along the wall next to Larissa’s and Mikki’s. The girls were setting up the lights for the photo shoot, and had put tape down on the carpet to form ‘walls’. “This area will be for makeup,” Mikki said. “This is the studio. It is important that nobody is in this area while I am shooting. Having too many people around here could mean lights could get knocked over, and they are expensive. And dangerous: when they have been on for a while they will burn you if you touch the wrong parts. This area is the catwalk, for those who want to do a model’s strut, and over there is the dressing room. I hope no one is shy, because these ‘walls’ are only a millimeter high,” she giggled. The later area had several clothing racks set up, with all of Mikki’s late aunt Susan’s costumes, wigs, boots and shoes. On a shelf sat the three sets of breast forms, and a collection of bras along with some hats and other accessories.
“Too bad the other girls aren’t coming all at once, or we could each put on a set of boobs to surprise them,” Rachael said.
“Oh, that would be so cool,” Mikki picked up on the idea. “We can each put one on now, and leave them in until the last girl comes, then we will let them have a chance to try them.”
“If we do, I want the smallest set,” Rachael said. “I’m going to be upstairs baking and prepping the pizzas, and I don’t want to burn a boob on a hot pan because it is sticking out more than I am used to.”
Larissa lost the argument over who would wear the huge set. On her taller body they would blend in better, or at least that was the excuse that Mikki went with. Each girl found an appropriate bra, and then Rachael left them to go to the kitchen while they monkeyed around with camera’s and lights.
At about a quarter to eight Lucy rang, and stopped and gaped when she saw Rachael's enhanced chest. “You ain’t seen nothin’ yet,” Rachael quipped, and sent her downstairs where Lucy could be heard squealing with glee at the sight of the other two girls. Lucy had a corner of the studio reserved for her to do makeup for the other girls.
Rachael was just taking a batch of chocolate chip cookies out of the oven when Janice arrived just after eight. She also giggled at the sight of Rachael, who was starting to get used to the feeling of the breast forms. “It smells wonderful up here,” she said. “What are you making?”
“That is the first batch of cookies. I expect it will lure some young boys down in three, two, and there they are.” Bobby and Danni appeared in the kitchen.
“You have boobies,” Danni said with a gasp, looking at Rachael with a longing look in his eyes.
“They aren’t as big as Mommas,” Bobby noted. “How did you get boobies so fast?”
“They aren’t real,” Rachael said. “They are pretend boobies. Now I know you boys want a cookie, but these are too hot. You go back upstairs and play. Danni, show Janice to the studio, won’t you?”
“Can I come back and help?” she asked, and Rachael couldn’t say no to that cute face.
“Okay honey, but take Janice down.”
Danni was back a minute later, and with the two of them alone in the kitchen, she felt safe in asking: “Can I have boobies too? If I have boobies, everyone will know I am a girl.”
“No honey, you are too little. If your mother takes you to a doctor, and he or she says that you are really a girl, then they have shots or pills that will help you grow boobies of your own, when you are a teenager like Mikki and me. When you are that old you can have fake boobies too, if you think the ones you grow on your own are too small.”
“I don’t like shots,” Danni said. “But I would get them if it gives me boobies.”
Carly, Layla and Becca arrived at about a quarter past eight. Danni had just taken cookies up to Bobby, and then some to the girls downstairs, where he was astonished to see the even bigger breast forms his sister and Larissa were wearing.
She was back up, wide-eyed to lead the last three girls down to the studio. Rachael had another batch of cookies in the oven, but felt she had enough time to stop downstairs and switch out of her enhanced torso and back to normal. This was not to be, as the girls insisted she switch into another, larger set of breasts, and then she had to run upstairs to get her cookies out before they burned. Of course that was when Maria arrived to take Bobbie home.
“My goodness, Rachael. Is that you?” Maria said in surprise.
“Yes Momma,” she said, looking down at the huge breasts poking out the front of her t-shirt. The girls made me do it. Do you want to come down and see our setup? You know Bobby is going to have to finish a level or something.”
“Momma alert,” Rachael called as she started down the stairs. “This is where all the action is. So far I have mostly been in the kitchen, but the girls are going great guns down here.”
“Hi, Rachael’s Mom,” Carly said while wearing a black cat suit, complete with tail and ears. “You are so young. You could be one of the girls at the sleepover, instead of a Mom. Except you wouldn’t need any fake boobs. Your’s are awesome.”
“Thanks sweetheart,” Maria said. “I think there is an estrogen overload down here. I feel like I need to escape.”
“No,” called out Mikki from her camera station. “Over here. I want a picture of the two of you.” Maria and Rachael complied, and posed as Mikki directed then in several poses, ending up with one where Rachael hugged her mother, with fake breasts smashing into real ones of about the same size.”
“Hurry back down,” Janice called as the two headed up the stairs. “I need your boobies for the Jessica Rabbit costume.”
Bobby was still on his game, when they got back up. An ashen-faced Mrs. Stoner came out to greet her guest. “Are you alright, Andrea?” an alarmed Maria asked.
“Yes. No. I’m not sure. Rachael has given me some things to read, and they are somewhat alarming. I am being a poor host though. Can I get you something? Coffee, tea? There are some of your daughter’s incredible cookies.”
Just then Bobby appeared at the stairway above. “Do I have to go home? Danny says I can sleep over with him.”
“Yes honey, we have to go home. You wouldn’t want your poor tired mother to have to go home all alone to an empty house, would you?” She turned to Andrea. “Sorry, but its been a long day. Perhaps I will take a rain check on the coffee, and leave you to the madness down there.”
After Maria and Bobby left (the boy with another cookie in hand), Mrs. Stoner turned to Danni and asked if he had put away all the games Bobby had been playing. The little sprite jumped up and ran up the stairs to clean up her room.
“What I have been reading, is it all true?” the woman asked. “So many young lives, over. Just like that?”
“As far as I know it is all true,” Rachael said. “Things are better now, and I understand the younger a person transitions, the better. There is a TV show about a girl named Jazz, and she looks really good. You should watch it.”
“I guess I should. I wonder if Netflicks has it, You go back to your party sweetheart. Thanks for everything you have done. I will definitely be talking to Bob about this. Not asking him. Telling him that Danny is going to see a doctor. If there is nothing wrong, fine. But I won’t allow my son … child to become another one of these statistics.”
Rachael went down to the studio with another big plate of cookies, only to be mobbed by the girls. Most of them took one or two of the cookies, while Janice reached into her shirt and pulled out the breast forms she was wearing, leaving Rachael with a largely empty bra flopping around under her t-shirt.
She went over to the dressing area and pulled the bra off, only to have another girl grab it. Rachael went over to Lucy, who made her sit down. “You are the only one I haven’t done,” her former nemesis said. “I know you used to do the Goth thing, so I want to try something lighter with you. Hold still.”
“Have you just been sitting here the whole time?” Rachael asked in surprise. “You are a guest, just like everyone else. You should be dressing up and enjoying yourself, like the rest. We love that you are doing our makeup, but you need to have some fun too.”
“Rachael, I am having the most fun I have ever had in my life,” the girl replied. “I love doing this, and I really love all the girls. I chummed around with Carly a few years ago, but the rest of you are just great. I was missing so much by thinking that I was better than you. Mikki is a riot. I did go over and get my picture taken in a couple of outfits when no one needed makeup. Mostly it is just touch ups now. And Larissa: did you know she is a model? She has been showing all the girls the moves. And she even helped me with the makeup, suggesting I tone it down, and let each girl’s personality shine through, rather than trying to paint a new face over their’s.”
“Well, so long as you are having fun.”
“Says the girl who has been upstairs half the time making treats for us. Your cookies are amazing. I can’t wait ‘til the pizza comes out.”
“Oh, here is your grab bag. Mrs. Stoner got us each one. It is awesome, full of cosmetics. Good stuff too.”
“Well, I don’t have to go back up for that for another hour or so, I … oh my God, oh my God.” Rachael had just seen Janice in the Jessica Rabbit costume. She had all three sets of breast forms crammed into the largest bra, and really looked like the cartoon character, down to the long red wig she was wearing, and the prop cigarette holder.
“Everybody has had a chance in that one,” Lucy said. “Except you. Nobody else gets boobs while someone is doing a Jessica, so we all kinda sit around and cheer them.”
“I don’t know if I want to try that one,” Rachael said. “Boobs that big would be … difficult.”
“I saw your Mom, girlfriend,” Lucy said. “I think you better get used to the idea of big boobs, whether you like them or not.”
Rachael went to the costume area and picked out a Victorian gown, and started to put it on.
“No, no, no,” Carly said, coming over teetering on the six inch stripper heels. “You have to wear this, if you want to wear that.” She tossed over a cream-white garment.
“What is this? Is it a …”
“A corset. Yes. It goes with that outfit. Let me help you put it on. A teetering Carly, who was nearly as tall as Larissa in those shoes, or would be if Larissa hadn’t been wearing four-inch heels like she was born in them, helped Rachael into the constricting torture device. Then, as she was pulling the device tight, she slipped on her heels, and pulled especially hard on the laces to prevent falling. She recovered and then tied the laces.”
“There, now you can try on the dress,” Carly said.
“I can’t breathe,” Rachael said in a whisper.
“Nonsense. We have all worn it. Look in the mirror. A waistline.”
Rachael did look, and was astonished to see that the corset had indeed pushed all her baby fat to the sides and she now had a feminine figure, albeit with empty bra cups above. She decided that she was not dying from lack of air, so she continued. Janice had just finished with her Jessica Rabbit shoot, and all the girls came over to help Rachael into her first costume. “Which set of boobs do you want?” Janice asked.
“The small ones?”
“No way,” Becca called out. “They will disappear into that corset. Use the big ones.”
In the end Rachael took the middle pair, and two different girls each put one in, and then massaged it into position. Another two girls then helped her into a petticoat, and then into the dress itself, with it’s bustle rear hanging on her own natural bustle.
This is so weird, Rachael thought as she looked at the selection of wigs. There was a Marie Antoinette wig that seemed to go with the outfit, but it was one of the cheaper wigs, so instead she took the long red wig that Janice had used with Jessica Rabbit. Janice had been the last of the girls to wear that outfit, and Rachael didn’t intend to try it. Finally, in a three-inch pair of court shoes, Rachael teetered over to Mikki, who was doing something on the computer.
“That looks fantastic, Rach,” Mikki said as she started clicking away, suggesting poses and looks for her BFF to try.
“Are you stuck back here behind the camera all night?” Rachael asked.
“No. Larissa knows how to use the camera, so I took a couple breaks and tried out some costumes. I was the first one in the Jessica Rabbit costume. Or at least the first one with all the boobs. Man, is it every heavy with all that weight up there. It nearly knocks you over. There are butt pads for it too, with double layers of stuff in there to add several inches to your butt. I used the corset for it too. Most of the other skinny girls didn’t need to.”
“I think I will take a pass on that outfit,” Rachael said.
“Oh no, you can’t. I’m planning a montage of all of us in that same outfit, lined up across the picture. If it turns out, it will be awesome.”
Rachael went through two or three more costume changes, and finally was wearing the cat suit when she went up stairs to make pizza. Danni went up to her, and hugged her, playing with her tail. “I like that one the best,” the little blonde said.
“Well, it is all me,” Rachael said. “I left all the boobies downstairs. Do you want to help me make pizza?”
“Yes please,” the small girlish voice said. Rachel had made her biscuit bases for the pies earlier, and had prepped all the ingredients, so she and Danni just had to sprinkle the toppings on the tomato sauce, with Rachel being careful to make sure that her little helper was keeping the various ingredients in the proper positions.
Andrea came in as they were sprinkling on the mozzarella. She came up to Danni from behind and gave her a deep hug. Rachael knew what she was thinking. A girl Danni is better than a dead son. “Can you put Danni’s in first,” she said. “It is way past her bedtime.” Rachael noted the change in her use of pronoun. Then she looked up at the clock. It was a few minutes past midnight. Wow, she hadn’t realized it was so late. And all the cookies had kept the girls from getting hungry.
That changed as the smells of the first two pizzas cooked, with the aromas curling down the stairs to the studio and hooking one girl after the other, bringing them up to the kitchen like a cartoon scene. When the first two pizzas came out, one Hawaiian was vegetarian, and one half Canadian (mushroom, pepperoni and bacon), with the other half without mushrooms. Danni and all the girls got a slice to munch on when Rachael sliced each pie into eight pieces. Several girls were on second and third slices when the third all dressed pie came out of the oven.
“Rachael, you have spoiled me for pizza,” Carly fake-complained. “How can I ever eat the dreck from a pizzeria after tasting this.” The others agreed.
Danni went to bed part way through the feast, hugging all the girls before she left. “Your sister is super cute,” Lucy commented and Mikki was about to say that Danny was a boy when Rachael interrupted.
“Mikki, did you know that the sauce on these pizzas is Mamma DaSilva’s old family recipe?”
“She gave you the recipe?” Mikki asked in amazement.
“No she said I would have to marry Tony to get that, and I’m leaving him for you. She made up a jar of sauce for the party though. There is enough left in the jar that I think you can make a spaghetti feast for your family.”
“I will,” Mikki promised.
“The Italian kid’s mother made this?” Layla said rudely. “They are just immigrants.”
“They run the best shop in town for a lot of stuff,” Rachael defended her friends. “All the ingredients for the pizza came from there, and they have the best fruits and vegetables in town.”
“Immigrants,” Layla snorted quietly although she wondered if she shouldn’t check out the little store.
Somehow the girls got talking about the Bread Baron next, as well as the other stores along that block. When it was mentioned that Xcuts Hair Salon was opening soon, the girls all squealed in delight. Just the sound of the name made it seem like a cool place to get a haircut or style. Rachael just sighed. Her short hair would take months more to grow before it needed styling.
After lying around after pizza, the girls seemed to get a second wind. When the options of watching a movie on Netflicks, or going back down to the studio came, the vote was nearly unanimous to go back down.
“But I wanted to see a movie,” Rachael complained.
“No, you have to do a Jessica Rabbit,” Mikki insisted. “I left a spot for you between Larissa and me in my montage plan. It will look stupid with a gap there, and the two of us holding on to an invisible Rachael.”
Rachel was again forced into the corset, although this time it was not tied so tightly. “This would have been better on an empty stomach,” she gasped as the device was laced. Then she was poured into the dress. Apparently for that dress it worked best if you put the boobs in after getting the dress on, and Rachael felt several hands pushing and squeezing the three sets of boobs into position.
Then it was over to Lucy, who touched up her makeup, making her look particularly vampish. The red wig completed the look, and then they went over to the camera position. “Larissa, put on the shoes you wore when you did your Jessica costume. Mikki then posed Rachael meticulously, moving her an inch this way and then an inch that way. Larissa stood close to her on the left and Rachael was told to put her hand around the taller girl’s waist. Mikki focused, and determined everything was right, and then got up and went to stand on her right, with Rachael putting her hand on Mikki’s shoulder, holding the cigarette holder.
“Okay, now you just have to hold that pose while Larissa and I disappear.” With that Mikki darted back to the camera, and Larissa moved away, leaving Rachael with her hands in the air as she snapped away. “Your cigarette hand is drooping. Raise it about a half inch,” the photographer ordered and clicked again. “That’s it. Perfect.”
Rachael then put the cigarette holder to her lips and mimed taking a long drag, which the other girls found hysterical.
The dress up continued for another hour, until the lights at the top of the stairs flicked on and off several times. “All right girls, that’s enough. It is 2 a.m. Time to actually get some sleep into this sleepover.”
It actually took another half hour to get things ready. The photography lights had to be turned off, and the camera put away. There was a stream of trips to the small basement washroom, and Lucy made sure that everyone used cleanser to wipe the makeup off their faces. Sleeping bags were rolled out, and everyone finally settled down. Within minutes Rachael could tell that most of the girls had fallen asleep instantly. No one snored, but they were all sleeping deeply.
Thank you for such a wonderful night. We have all made friends, new and old and I’m sure we are all better together than apart. Please help Mrs. Stoner and Danni.
Then she heard a gasp beside her. It was Carly, not quite asleep. “What was that?” she whispered.
“I was just praying, thanking God for such a wonderful fun time.”
“I’ve never prayed before,” Carly said. “Do you think I could?”
“Sure. I’m certain that you can. Some people pray just to ask for things, but I think it works best if you thank God for what he has done for you, and only ask for really important things, like for people to be kept healthy.”
Rachael heard some mumbling from the other girl, and then a gasp. “Oh my, I just felt a sort of warm feeling run through me.”
“I get that too,” Rachael said. “I think it means that the prayer was received.”
And with that she felt the same warm feeling course through her. Minutes later she was asleep.
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