For the Love of my Sister

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December 2017 Christmas Dreams Story Contest Entry

For the Love of My Sister

I sat facing my girlfriend, Emma, for possibly, the most awkward conversation of my life. We were sitting on opposing sofas with a coffee table in between, in the flat she had rented with a couple of girlfriends, but they were out at the moment. I loved saying, even in my own mind, girlfriend. She was gorgeous. She was a bit curvaceous and some might describe her differently, but to me she was perfect. I was a bit worried that what I was about to discuss, might put her off me a bit.

We had only been going out 3 months, and I know that wasn't long, but, if I could have married her tomorrow, I would have. She was my first, and if I had my way, she would be my only. For me to have this conversation, she needed some of my unpleasant family history and I couldn't remember how much I had told her.

“Err... how much have I told you about my sister?”

“Not much. I think you told me she was 4 and very sick. Whenever you mentioned her, you got a bit upset and I changed the subject.”

“She has leukaemia, it started she was barely 3 and now, they have told us there is nothing more they can do.” Just thinking about it was tearing me up.

“Oh baby.” she swapped to my sofa and gave me hug.

“This could be her last Christmas. They are going to let her go home a couple of days before, I think they said, the 23rd.”

“When did you find out?”

“Yesterday. You know I go and visit her every Saturday. It's not too much of a surprise. We could all see where it was heading.”

“So you want to spend all of Christmas with her. I understand completely.”

“Yes, I want to spend as much time as possible with her, but that was not what I wanted to talk about.” I cuddled her a bit closer. “I think I need to tell you a bit about my family.” I sighed. “My mother had a one night stand 20 years ago. She knew who my father was, but he was also young. She was 16 and he was 17. He was not ready to take on any responsibility, and has never been in my life. His parents have been great and they helped mum along with her parents to bring me up.”

“I think they did a great job.” She said.

“Thanks. When my mum married Charles, my step-father, 10 years ago, I was happy for her. He seemed a nice guy, trying hard to look after her. I am not the most manly of men. I am a bit short.”

“You're the same height as me.”

“True. You, of course, are the perfect height. For a guy, I am a bit short, thin and not very muscular. It is just who I am, and has never really bothered me that much. Charles is the opposite. After he didn't have to impress mum, he started on the insults and generally being unpleasant to me. Never in front of her. I could have told her, but I didn't want to be the cause of her unhappiness. Anyway, what this meant was that I stayed out of the house as much as possible. When John, my brother was born, Charles was overjoyed, but mum went through a bit of post natal depression, so I helped out a fair bit. When it happened again with Katie, I was almost her sole carer for 3 months, so I am really close to both my siblings. My playing, I suppose you could call it a maternal role, with both of his kids, really brought out the nasty in Charles. He started to become unpleasant to me, even when mum was present. This made life a bit difficult. I wanted to be around Katie and John, but not around Charles. It doesn't help that he got laid off work and has not found a job since.”

“I love your caring nature.”

I smiled at Emma. “Thanks.” I lost my smile as I realised I needed to get to the heart of the matter. “When I visited Katie on Saturday, I asked her, if I could wave a magic wand, what would she wish for?”

“What did she say?”

“She wished I was her sister. Then Charles wouldn't be mad at me, and we could play with her dolls and have tea time together. Fun time between 2 girls. Since she has been ill, she hasn't had anyone to play with. I have had to stay away and John is not interested in playing anything girly.”

“So what are you going to do?”

“Well, this is going to sound a bit weird, and I hope you still respect me in the morning.”

She laughed, disengaged from the hug and faced me with a raised eyebrow.
“Would it be possible, I mean could you help me...errr..”

“What?”

I couldn't keep looking her directly in the eyes, so I looked down. “Could you help me grant her wish?”

She put her fingers under my chin and gently lifted until I had to meet her eyes. “You want me to help you look like you are her sister?”

“Yes.” I tried to bring my head down again. I didn't want to see a negative reaction. She prevented that with a very serious look in her eyes.

“Wish granted.” Then she leaned forwards and kissed me on the lips with more passion than she had ever shown me. What followed was wild. I have never been particularly aggressive and when it came to our love life, she had been the aggressor. That night she was like a thing possessed. She couldn't get enough of me and that stimulated my desire like crazy.

The next morning, heading towards lunchtime, we went for a walk in the park, mainly so we could have a talk without her flatmate's hearing us. We found a deserted bench with no one around and settled down to talk.
“Yesterday was amazing. Best day of my life.” I said smiling.

She smiled back, looking a bit embarrassed. “Mine too.”

“First of all I want to tell you what I have felt since the first moment I saw you. You are the one. I don't want to sound stalkerish, so I will leave it at that. You are my one and hopefully my only. Anything you say is highly unlikely to change that. So spill. What happened yesterday?”

“Err...well, it is a bit embarrassing.”

“More embarrassing that asking your girlfriend to help dress you up as a girl?”

“That's the thing. I don't see that as embarrassing, I see that as a turn on.”

“Does this mean you would like me to do that, regardless of my situation with Katie?”

“Emm, maybe.” I took her blushing cheeks in my hands and kissed her slowly. “Definitely.” She said. “You have to understand my upbringing. I've told you that I have 2 mums, Cathy and Drew. Well, one of my mums is biologically my dad. To me, a man dressing as a woman is an everyday occurrence. To be honest, before I met you, I thought I was a lesbian.”

“Wow, then I have come to the right person.”

“More than you know.” She turned away from me a bit. “Do you still want to go out with me?”

It was my turn to lift her chin to make sure we could keep eye contact. “Will you marry me?”

Her eyes went startlingly wide as shock hit her system. “Wh...Wh...What?”

“Yes, I still want to go out with you. To me you are the perfect woman. If you want me to dress up occasionally, so what. Most women want a fireman dress up rather than a French maid, but, let's be honest. I probably will fit the French maid better.”

She licked her lips, I think she was picturing me in a French maid outfit. Then shook her head. “We can deal with my fantasies later. What you have suggested is a fairly serious thing to do for your sister.”

“I know. I figured there were 2 ways to do it. I could say that Santa granted my wish and just be a girl for a few days or stay a girl in her presence until she is not with us any more.” The sadness of that statement started bringing tears to my eyes again. “Her Birthday is in late January and the doctors don't think she will make it. Boxing day the rest of the family comes round. I'm not sure I could do the female thing in front of my grandparents. No matter what I said, I don't think they would understand.”

“How far do you want to take it?”

“I have no idea how far you can take it. This is not something I have researched or thought about.”

“Do you know what my parents do for a living?”

“No. I think you said they ran a business and you wanted to do a business degree to help them. But I don't think you ever mentioned what business.”

“We own a luxury salon that also caters for the alternative lifestyle. To put it bluntly, we have all the usual salon stuff, but also offer extras to help men transform themselves to look like women. Quite a few of the staff are either transgender, lesbian or somewhere in that spectrum. With your, shall we call it non-masculine build, I'm pretty sure, we could make you completely passable.”

“You definitely are the right person to talk to. I was just thinking, have a shave, borrow some clothes, you help me with make up. If I have a choice, for Katie's last wish, I would like to go all out. How expensive is it?”

“Normally, the expense depends on how far you want to take it. Take breast forms for example. You can get foam jobs that from a distance look alright. They are pretty cheap. Top of the line, we match your skin tone, silicone with a similar weight and hang to real ones, semi-erect nipple. You glue them on and a bit of touch up make up for the almost invisible edges. The only person who would know they weren't real is you, when someone touches them and you can't feel anything. If you are willing, I will organise the works. It won't cost you a thing. It will almost be a present to myself. If Katie is coming home on the 23rd, I will set it up for the 22nd. Could I stay with you?”

“Considering Charles, it would probably be best if I slept elsewhere and came back each morning and left after Katie goes to bed. I know Charles is going to give me even more shit than usual, he may even use it as an excuse to chuck me out. For Katie, it will be worth it.”

“You can stay at mine and we can get the train in each morning. It will probably take us an hour each way, but I would so make it worth your while. The next issue is clothes.”

“I thought I could borrow yours. We are the same height.”

“We could do that, but we would have to pad you out a bit more than usual. If I had a choice, I would be slimmer, more like you. And you would have to get used to quite a weight on your chest.”

“If I could have your shape, I would be delighted. That would give me the perfect figure.”

“Flatterer, that kind of talk will get you ravished again.”

“After 5 times last night, I am not sure I have got it in me. But I am willing to give it the good old college try.”

She giggled. “Right. We need to get you to the salon today. You need to be measured and they need to get the skin tone. We can also choose a wig. You need to start growing your hair and eventually the wig won't be necessary. We are going to have to work on your voice though.”

She made some phone calls and then we travelled to this really expensive looking spa and I was ushered through to a back room. Emma stayed with me, for which I was grateful. I not only had to get stripped and measured, they explained how I could pop my testicles back inside and Emma measured the size of my penis, after applying some ice to get it as small as possible. That was to help them choose the right silicone vagina. Way embarrassing.

The actual date she managed to get us in was the 18th of December. We both were waxed, moisturised, massaged, manicured and pedicured. Partially, that was due to scheduling, but also, with the full body wax they had planned, my body needed a bit of time to recover, redness to go down, before the glueing session, that was on the 22nd December. Besides the breast forms, the vagina was also glued on and hip/ buttock forms. We were close enough in size after that for me to fit into Emma's clothes. They also fit the wig and did my make up. I would have to take it off and re do it the next day. God I hoped it made Katie happy.

Emma told her parents all about it and they booked for us all to go out that evening to a dinner and Christmas pantomime. I would be going out en femme, but I couldn't really say anything since so would one of her mum's. To be fair, when I met them, I couldn't tell which one was originally male and didn't want to make a guess. Not only that, but looking in the mirror, all made up, I don't think I would have guessed that I had been previously male. It probably helped that I had copied Emma's shape which was distinctly feminine. Everyone was very complimentary, but I didn't know how to take that. Was it a good thing that I made a very passable woman? Certainly for the purposes of making Katie's day it was.

The weirdest thing was these areas of my body that I just couldn't feel any more. The other areas of my body felt more sensitive after the waxing. So quite a contrast. My penis was fitted into this silicone tube as part of the artificial vagina. I was still able to go to the toilet, sitting down of course. It did constrict me, not too unpleasantly. It didn't help that Emma became more and more amorous with the transformation. I thought we would have to put that on hold once the vagina was glued on, but Emma had other ideas. She showed me that my penis was not the only way to bring me to orgasm and she was so loving and gentle that I may have even preferred it. It was less a physical act and more an emotional one.

I should have been very anxious going out dressed as I was. I had spent the period up to my appointments, practising my voice, my walk, in heels I might add, and my movements. Emma and youtube were very helpful. Still the first time going in public can be a very trying one. Emma and her parents kept distracting me until I could see that no one was paying me any attention and that I could relax. I was still me, just in different clothes. We had a wonderful time.

I had talked to mum and told her what I had planned. She was a bit unsure about the whole thing, but was willing to help with Charles. She told me she would speak to him, prepare the ground and ask him not to make a scene in front of Katie. She and Charles were going to pick Katie up, so I needed to be there for 11am to look after John.

That morning Emma helped me, choosing some thick tights, slacks, blouse and pink jumper. She spent some time on my hair and make up. She herself wore jeans, T-shirt and jumper. The only item from her wardrobe that didn't fit was the shoes. I didn't have big feet, but they were bigger than hers. We had worked that out earlier, so I had bought a couple of pairs of flats and one pair of black heels. She had had me practising walking in the heels as she said it would help with a feminine gait. I had quite a weight on my chest. 36DD according to the bra.

At the start of our train journey, I was a bit anxious again, worried about anyone looking at us, but Emma kept up our conversation and managed to distract me. Soon I found myself relaxing. We arrived early and we debated going for a walk before heading to my home. I realised that was just delaying the inevitable, so I presented myself to our front door at a little after 10am with Emma on my arm.

Charles opened the door. He looked me over from top to bottom with an expressionless face. Then called out. “The fruitcake's arrived. You deal with him, he turns my stomach.” Then he walked away, not even opening the door to let us in. Mum arrived shortly in her dressing gown. She was obviously in the process of getting herself ready, which was probably the only reason Charles had opened the door.

She fully opened the door. “Come in come in.” I could see her looking me over with a frown on her face. She then disappeared upstairs to finish getting ready. I did think it a bit rude. She had never seen Emma before.

“I'm sorry. You should get a better reception than this.”

“That's alright. I think everyone has bigger things to think about than me.”

I settled her on the sofa and got us both a cup of tea and then went in search of John. He was in his room playing on a small tablet. “Hi John.”

He barely looked up. “Hi.”

I left him to it. We cuddled together on the sofa, chatting idly. I think Charles was avoiding us as he would normally be sitting in his chair controlling the TV.

Mum came down shortly. “I'm not sure this is going to work. Charles is practically frothing at the mouth. He is holding himself back for my sake.” She said this like he was being heroic to do such a thing.

“I'm not doing this for him or you. Katie wanted this and I've given it my best shot.”

“Is it just for today?”

“That depends of Katie and how she reacts. If it brings her joy, I will do it everyday until it stops bringing her joy.”

“What about my parents and Peter and Joan? Do you want them to see you this way?”

Peter and Joan were my fathers parents and had been involved in my life since the beginning, despite their errant son. I hadn't been sure that I wanted them to see me like this, but under pressure from my mum, I felt myself feeling rebellious. “I won't be doing it for them either. This is for Katie. She is my priority and she should be yours too.”

“Don't take that tone of voice with your mother.” Charles shouted from the doorway.

I stood up to face him, but my mother moved between us. “No Charles. He is right. It doesn't matter what we think. We may only have Katie for a few more days, she is our priority.” Then she rushed off crying. Charles glared at me a bit longer and then followed her upstairs.

Emma pulled me back onto the sofa and we hugged. “I'm sorry Emma. You don't need this family drama, especially at Christmas. You should be enjoying your beautiful family atmosphere.”

“Hush. Katie is OUR priority. We will get our chance to have fun later. I think you should seriously think about moving out though. I know you are only here during the holidays but it doesn't feel safe for you to be here. You are welcome to stay at my house. I have already spoken to both mums.”

“That is very kind of you all. Let's see how it goes with me staying over this holiday.”

Mum came down after awhile. “I'm sorry I've not been very hospitable. Please introduce me to your friend.”

“It's alright mum, we know you have a lot going on. This is Emma, my future wife.” At that Emma laughed and my mum got bug eyed.

“You're engaged? And you don't mind him dressing like this?”

“No. We're not engaged yet.”

I loved the 'yet', so I cuddled her tight and whispered in her ear. “Yet.”

“He has asked, I just haven't answered him...yet.” She said quite deliberately. “As for his dress. Well they are my clothes, if I didn't think they looked good, I wouldn't have bought them. Do you think he would look better in a dress. I have a few in mind, but thought I would wait for Christmas.”

Mum spluttered and then laughed. “Nice one, you had me there. Nice to meet you, Emma.”

Mum got up and disappeared from view. Emma turned to me. “She thinks I'm joking? How can you be so accepting when you grew up with such …. intolerant parents.” I know there were other words she wanted to use.

“I've had 10 years being called, fruitcake, pansy, sissy, even girl, like that was an insult. I came to the conclusion that people put labels on others to make them feel better about themselves. To some extent even I do it.” I leaned in so I was close to her ear and whispered. “In my mind I call him a Neanderthal, misogynist, egotistical thug. And that was when I was being kind.”

She laughed. “While we are waiting, why don't we go to your room. You can gather any bits you don't want to leave here. I was serious about you not being safe here. I may even coerce your compliance.”

“How would you do that?”

“Easy, deny you access.”

“What about you?”

“I have a friendly vibrator. I reckon I can outlast you.”

“Even when I am dressed like this?”

“You do have a point.” We hadn't quite reached my bedroom. She pushed me against the corridor wall and kissed me passionately.

When I could breathe again. “OK, OK. I give in. Whatever you want if you will keep doing that.”

She kissed me again.

We were in my room going through everything to see if there was anything that I wanted to keep, that wasn't already in my house share room near uni. I heard the front door shut, and looking at the time, knew that mum and Charles had just left for the hospital.

“How are you going to spend time with Katie when Charles is so antagonistic with you?”

“Katie was hoping that if I was her sister, he would behave differently. I can't grant that wish, still, if we play in her room, we can still have some sisterly fun. You will probably need to help me, I don't really know what girl play looks like.”

“Of course I'll help. We will just do whatever Katie wants. Is there anything we can't do because of her illness?”

“It is mainly about her immune system. We won't be able to go out and if any of us gets a sniffle we will have to stay away. At this stage, we judge how good a day it is by how much she eats and use her smiles to judge her pain levels.”

“What about John?”

“A lot of attention has been directed towards Katie, but John has always been the apple of Charles' eye. Even under these circumstances, I don't expect that Charles will spend a lot of time with Katie, he will probably take John to the park and do other things with him. I used to be quite close to him but he has been infected by Charles and has even started calling me some of the names Charles uses. Especially in his presence, which usually gets some kind of praise.”

“He is training him to be another arsehole.”

“Pretty much what I was thinking, but I can't do anything about it. He is his father.”

Half an hour later, I had finished in my room and just had a duffel bag worth of stuff to take back with us. Mainly memorabilia. We returned to the lounge to wait for the special girl. Every time I heard a car I couldn't help checking the window. Eventually, after what felt like an age, Charles' car pulled up and a tired looking girl got out. I opened the door and held my arms wide. Her face lit up and she ran to me. I gathered her up and held her close. I loved her so much. I was tearing up just holding her.

I carried her inside and sat on the sofa with her still in my arms. “Hello gorgeous.”

“Hello, er.. sister?”

“That's right. Didn't Santa tell you when he granted your wish?”

“But it is not Christmas yet.”

“Some wishes get granted early. He turned me into a girl.”

“Did it hurt?”

My mind flashed back to my waxing experience. This was not the time for honesty. “No, of course not.” I gestured to Emma. “And this is my girlfriend Emma.”

“Hi Emma.” She was a bit shy so she buried her face in my ample chest. Then her face popped out and looked at me. “What do I call you? I can't call you James.”

“Well you can call me sister or Jamie, whatever you prefer.” I heard Charles and mum come through and ignored it. “What girly fun did you want to have today?”

The three of us pretty much spent our entire day camped in Katie's room. Mum popped her head in occasionally. We stopped for lunch and Katie ate pretty well. She was the best I had seen her for months. We played with her doll house. We pretended that two of her dolls were getting married and had a dance afterwards. We sat on her bed and had pretend tea with her and her teddy. She started to get tired around the 4.30 pm time, so we got some snacks and watched a movie with her. She fell asleep in the middle of a Barbie movie in my arms. We settled her in her bed and crept out.

We sat at the dining room table to have some tea and biscuits with mum. Charles had taken John out to the park. It was dark outside but there was a park with ramps for skateboarders that was well lit and I suspected they had gone there.

“I'm sorry James, I've discussed this with Charles and he doesn't want you to come back tomorrow.”

I was devastated. I didn't know what to say. Katie had had a great day, surely that was what was most important. “Can I at least come round to tell Katie?”

“No. Charles doesn't think you are a good influence and he doesn't want to be blamed for you not seeing her.”

“What if I dressed as a man again? I only did this to make her happy.” And it worked, I wanted to say, but I wasn't going to beg. The person in front of me was not the one calling the shots.

“No. Charles wants your things out of the house. He says you are old enough to make your way in the world.”

“And what do you say?”

She wouldn't look me in the eyes. “He is the man of the house and what he says goes.”

I went to my room and took my bag that I had already prepared. I wasn't expecting this, but I didn't want to ever live here again. I stopped outside Katie's room and went in and kissed her on her forehead. Then I walked to the front door with Emma. I turned round to look at my mother sitting at the kitchen table still. “Mary.” I never normally called her anything but mum. “I am really disappointed in you. This is not about you or me or even him. This should only be about Katie and what makes her happy. He has always disgusted me with his attitude, but I thought better of you. Now I don't.” She didn't look up, but I could see her crying. For once, I didn't feel the urge to comfort her. I was glad she was crying. I felt a little bit bad about feeling that way, but, I guess, you feel what you feel.

We walked to the train station. Emma was trying to hug me as we walked. The journey back was mostly quiet. When we got most of the way back and I had had time to digest it, Emma started trying to get me to talk.

“Do you want to talk about it?”

I sighed. “We probably should, but I am feeling....depressed.” I had to think to work out which emotion was predominant.

“Do you associate it with dressing en femme?”

“No. That went well. What I really wanted was Katie to see me as her sister and play with me that way. She did and we had a wonderful time. When I went out with your parents I had a great time and your attentions have made me enjoy it even more. No. It is the thought of not seeing Katie again. Maybe ever.” And then I started to cry. Emma caught me in a hug and held me close. My crying turned to sobs.

She guided me back to her house. Her parents were at the door when she opened it. I couldn't look at them, I was a mess. I think she used sign language gestures for them to not say anything and sorted me out first. She wiped off the rest of my make up. A lot of it was left on her jumper after my crying. She helped me out of my clothes and wig and got me into bed. She left briefly to talk to her parents and then she was back and curled up behind me spooning me, stroking my hair. I fell asleep to her ministrations.

The next morning I woke up feeling sort of dead inside. It was Christmas eve and I couldn't be a downer for everyone else, so I decided that I would have to fake it. Emma was already up. I slipped into the shower for a wash. I still had everything glued on. I contemplated removing it all, but it wasn't the cause of my issue and Emma really liked it on.

The other question was, did I like it. I didn't have the wig on or any make up. With the large breasts now free from the bra and feeling like quite a weight on my chest, I had automatically altered my posture, arching my back slightly, giving me a proud stance. That in combination with the hip padding and the vagina gave me the very pleasing hourglass female look. I wasn't expecting it to be me, but I liked the look. There was no hurry to remove it.

When I came out of the bathroom I found clothes laid out on the bed. The underwear was a bit racey. White lace with a see through crotch. The bra seemed to make my assets appear even bigger or maybe just more obvious. Thick tights again and a full dress. Considering I was used to seeing Emma in jeans and T-shirts more than anything else, I think she was teasing me with her choice of clothes for me. I came down to the kitchen. Emma was sitting at the kitchen table with a cup of tea steaming in front of her. As soon as she saw me she jumped up and led me back to the bathroom to sort out my make up and get the wig situated properly.

“My mums are out for a walk at the moment. How are you feeling, honey?”

“I am going to be honest with you for a few moments and then I want you to help me pretend. Emotionally, I feel terrible. I don't want to dwell on it and I don't want to be a Debbie Downer all day. So, in answer to your question, I feel great. What do you want to do today?” I then tried to smile. I don't know how convincing it was.

“Cathy and Drew have a lunch planned at a nice restaurant. I hope it is OK with you, but I asked them to increase the reservation to 4 people, so we can join them. Christmas tends to be quite a quiet affair at our house. When Drew transitioned, her family pretty much disowned her and Cathy's family became very distant. They have made a lot of friends since and have a busy social calendar. We have tended to treat Christmas as a family time, which for the longest time has been just the 3 of us. We are happy to include you.”

Emma kept me busy. We both cooked breakfast for all 4 of us and when her mums returned we served it up with a flourish. We cleaned up, put everything away and then went for a walk and fed the ducks. There were a few times when we seemed to dip towards the unpleasant subjects, but one of us realised it and we moved onto other things. The policy was distract, distract, distract. Ignore the elephant in the room and Cathy and Drew played the same game.

They were great company and kept the conversation flowing nicely. Lunch was delightful. They had chosen it for having great food, but also a strange flowing design to the floor layout that meant everyone sitting felt they had their own private space. We even talked about my dressing up. They knew the basic story from Emma, but were impressed with the ease with which I seemed to take on the role. The questions they asked sounded like psychology questions, trying to get to the heart of my gender identity.

“I feel like you are asking me something without asking me something. Can I be blunt here? You have welcomed me in your home and I feel very comfortable in your presence. Your daughter is my version of a Goddess. The only way I am leaving Emma is if I am forcibly ejected. I think it is highly unlikely that anything you ask is going to damage our relationship.”

They looked at each other, doing a silent communication thing then Drew said. “We were wondering if you were more female than male on an emotional level. You've said that you have not looked into this and I believe you. Physically, you are maybe a bit short and underdeveloped for a man, but almost average for a woman, so it is unsurprising that, with a few enhancements, you can be made to look like a woman. The way you walk and move, gesture or move your hands while talking, the musicality of your voice, all these things that you do naturally in a feminine way, could just show your talents as a mimic or actor. Maybe Actress. None of that indicates whether your brain is male or female.”

“Huh?”

“As you can imagine, I am very interested in any research that involves gender identity. From a young age, maybe 4 or 5, I have felt that I should have been a girl. It affected me severely until I did something about it. My anxiety was lessened by dressing up in girl clothes, so that was almost like an addiction for me. But not everyone is like me. Transgender essentially means girl brain in boy body or boy brain in girl body. Research has shown that there is a difference between the brains of the 2 sexes. We don't just behave differently because of how we are brought up, but at a fundamental level, girls are different to boys. They think differently. Some things are obvious. We can say your caring nature is more in line with female thinking than male. That is not to say men can't be caring, but it comes more naturally to women.”

“So you are saying that I may have a female brain, even though I had no desire to dress in women's clothing?”

“Yes. These things are not black and white. There are girly men and tomboyish girls. They are still men and they are still girls. There are questions devised by psychologists that give you a clue as to whether you are more male or female. I was asking you a few of those, because you have fitted the female role so well, I was curious if part of the reason was because your brain was already there. Would it bother you if you found out you have a female brain?”

“A lot of men, boys really, that I grew up with, tended to think of women as lesser. A strong insult would be to suggest you were a girl in some way. Like, you throw like a girl or you catch like a girl. I have never really understood that. Yes, men tend to be physically stronger, but I always thought it would be more important to be mentally stronger. Maybe that was because I was never that big and strong. If I found out that I have a female brain, it would clash with my self image a bit. I don't think it would upset me too much. I am who I am.”

“We don't mind where you are on the spectrum or whether you dress one way or another. All we can see is a kind caring respectful person. We will not judge you in any way. If you did want to, I could direct you to an online questionnaire, but there is no pressure from us. From my personal point of view, I found it helpful to know and yes, it did help guide my decisions.”

We moved onto lighter subjects but it did make me think. I started to wonder about a lot of my past and my reactions to different things. I'll admit, I knew I was not like everybody else. I just thought I was a bit odd. When we got back that afternoon, when I needed to be distracted again, I spoke to Drew and spent an hour doing an online questionnaire. The result was immediately emailed to me and showed that I was pretty much sitting on the fence. Slightly more female than male, but not by much. Wearing the female clothing and going out in it, no longer stressed me and maybe, if I didn't have to have these forms fitted to maintain the right shape, I could consider it on a more permanent basis. As it was, I was unable to feel a good portion of my body due to the silicone covering it, so, an occasional showing would be fine, a permanent shift was not on the cards. I was going to need to discuss with Emma how often she wanted me like this. What did she want for Christmas? I figured we would have a private talk when we went to bed.

That was not to be. At about 7pm I received a call from Mary. I could see immediately who was calling and debated whether to answer, knowing there was a good chance that a conversation with her would spoil my good mood and make us all see the elephant. I couldn't not answer though, so I picked up the phone. “Hi Mary.”

There was a pause. I almost thought she had put the phone down. “I don't like it when you call me that.”

“I don't like it that your husband has called me much worse than my given name for 10 years, sometimes in your presence. I believe calling you Mary is respectful.”

She sighed. “We have a situation here and I was hoping you and Emma's family could help.”

“I can't speak for Emma's family, but I can certainly ask them. How may we help?”

“Charles told Katie this morning that you weren't coming. He might have even said that you didn't want to come.”

“There is no might have is there Mary? That is just cruel. How did she react?”

“She has spent the whole day moping in bed. She has hardly eaten a thing. Before you get too angry, it might have been the best thing to happen.”

“Err...what?”

“We have all come down with something. Sore throat, bit of a ticklish cough. Fortunately, she has not been around us, so she seems fine, but she can't stay here. I don't want to send her back to hospital for Christmas. We have all these presents for her as well. This was going to be her best Christmas ever. Either you pick her up or she will have to go back to the hospital.”

“Give me 5 minutes to clear it with Emma and her family and I will call you back.” I didn't even wait for her to put the phone down. “Emma did you hear that?” I had moved out of the lounge and into the kitchen to get a little privacy on the phone, but I had held onto Emma so she had come with me.

“I only heard your side of the conversation, so, not really. What is going on?”

“We need to speak to your parents.” I dragged her back into the lounge. “I have a huge favour to ask you.”

They looked at each other completely puzzled. “What?” Drew asked.

“Could we pick up Katie and bring her here for Christmas?”

“We are not kidnapping her or anything, are we?” Cathy asked.

“No. They have all come down sick. She is alright, but she can't stay there. All the grandparents are either in retirement homes or villages. Her only option is us or the hospital.”

“Of course she can come here. We would love to have her.”

“Oh, thank you, thank you.” My emotions had gone from a background depression that I was trying to ignore to supreme elation. I phoned Mary again. I was too jazzed up to say much, so I passed the phone to Cathy who assured mum that Katie would be welcomed. They talked practicalities like when we would pick her up, which was straight away, what food she liked to eat and how we were going to do it without anyone risking getting sick, which was going to be face masks and instant hand sanitiser. The other question was, how long was she going to stay, which was really difficult to answer. She couldn't go back until no one was sick at the house and the house had been sanitized. She would only go to hospital if she seemed to stop eating and showed that she was in pain. There were these dis-solvable wafers that were a type of morphine that she could be given, but, if it got that bad, she was probably better off in hospital.

Cathy drove. No one had mentioned that Emma had 2 mum's as parents and we thought it prudent to not say anything. Drew would try and stay out of the picture when Charles or Mary was about. I apologised and they didn't have to do it. We weren't going to lie to anybody, but knowing Charles as I did, I worried about his reaction if he found out and I really didn't want Katie's last Christmas to be in hospital.

We found a Chemist still open and bought the paper face masks, some instant hand sanitiser and some disinfectant wipes. Since it was past Katie's bed time, we were able to load the boot up with her Christmas presents with her none the wiser. Charles, Mary and John stayed out of our way so as not to infect us and every time we touched something that could contain germs, we used the sanitiser.

I carried a sleeping Katie to the car and strapped her in to the car seat we had moved from Charles' car. I sat on one side of her and Emma on the other.

“You realise this means you are going to have to stay en femme for a while now.” Emma whispered to me with a big grin on her face.

“I would have done it anyway if it was going to make you happy. Now it can make you and Katie happy.”

The journey back to Emma's parents house was uneventful, but I enjoyed just looking at Katie sleeping with the innocence of an angel. Thinking about it, I definitely had a maternal side. I had enjoyed my time with Katie as a baby and would love to have my own someday. I carried her inside and Drew indicated which room to put her in. Once we put her to bed we brought the presents in and placed them under the tree in the lounge.

Cathy and Drew disappeared to their bedroom and Emma and I had some fun in hers. When we were both ready to sleep, I borrowed a nightie and slipped into bed with Katie. I didn't want her to wake up in an unfamiliar bed with no one there to reassure her. I was woken up at some early time by a very excited girl, practically jumping on me.

“You're here, you're here. Daddy said you didn't want to see me, but I didn't believe him. Even when Santa turned you into a girl, daddy didn't like you. What happened to your hair?”

I reached up sleepily to touch my hair and realised that I had taken my wig off last night. Thinking fast. “When Santa turned me into a girl he didn't change my hair, so I have to borrow some. I'll show you later. Merry Christmas, Angel.”

“Why doesn't daddy like you? He says he loves me and I am a girl.”

“All daddy's love their little girls, but Charles is not my daddy. And of course I wanted to see you. I'm afraid mummy and daddy and John aren't very well today, so it is going to be me and Emma and her mummies.”

“Emma has more than one mummy?” I could see her squirming, so I got up and led her to the bathroom. My nightie had ridden up while I was sleeping so I was glad that we had gone all out and I had kept the vagina glued on. I'm sure she got a flash before I managed to bring it down.

“Yes, Emma is really lucky and has 2 mummies. So in this house there are no boys at all. Has Santa been? Shall I show you where the Christmas tree is so we can look.”

“Yes. Yes. Yes.”

I led her down to the lounge and we could see the Christmas tree with all the presents underneath. As soon as she saw them she was rushing down to see them. “He's been, he's been. Can I open them?”

“Not yet sweetie. Let's wait until everyone is up. Then you can open some and show us what you have got. Alright?”

“Just one. Please. Pretty please?”

She was really hard to resist. She had these amazing puppy eyes when she wanted. “I tell you what. You stay here and don't touch any presents and I will go and get you my Christmas present. Can you do that? Can you promise to stay here and be good?”

“Yes Jamie, I will be good.”

I crept to Emma's room and tried to sneak in and find Katie's present. It was pretty dark in the room and I bumped into something making a bit of noise and woke Emma. “Is that you Jamie?”

“Yes, Katie is up and desperate to open presents, so I thought I would give her mine. I'm struggling to find it in the dark.”

“How is Katie?”

“She is so excited. It really brings the energy back into Christmas. She doesn't seem to mind the change in venue.”

“Give me a sec. I want to see too. Don't let her open it until I am downstairs.” She put her side light on and I was able to find my wrapped prezzie. I took it to Katie but told her we had to wait just a little longer so Emma was here as well. The house had central heating and they kept it pretty high. I was certainly comfortable just in my nightie and Katie was only in her PJ's. Emma came down in her satin PJ's and a dressing gown.

Once Emma joined me on the couch I told Katie. “OK Katie, just this one. The rest will have to wait until Drew and Cathy are up.”

Katie hardly acknowledged me and just started tearing into the wrapping paper to reveal a new Barbie movie that I knew she didn't have.

“Can we watch it?”

I turned to Emma, she smiled and took the DVD from Katie and set it up. When Cathy and Drew came downstairs we were all snuggled up on the sofa under a fluffy pink blanket watching a Barbie movie. Katie can be a bit shy, so when she saw them, she popped her head under the blanket to hide. I uncovered her but held her in a cuddle to reassure her and introduced her.

“Hello Katie. Merry Christmas. What would you like for breakfast? We have toast and jam, your mum said you liked that.”

“Yes please.” She mumbled to me. So I nodded to Cathy.

“Can I open my presents now?” Katie asked.

“What is your family tradition, Emma? When do you normally open your presents?”

“It has been awhile since we had lots of presents under the tree. The last few years we have done our presents at lunch time. When do you normally do yours?”

“Usually as soon as everyone is awake. I think if we tried to make her wait until lunchtime she might explode.”

“I'll go and talk to mum, we can do it after breakfast.”

We had a light breakfast and then we all gathered in the lounge to watch the mad delight of an almost 5 year old at Christmas devouring her presents. She had a wonderful haul this year. There were Barbies, mermaids, horses. Lego friends. Other DVD's. A few clothes, but she wasn't really bothered by them, some hats, sparkly pens with colouring books based around the Disney Princesses.

I gave Emma a necklace and earring set that I had found in an antique shop. They had these turquoise stones that really matched her eyes. She gave me a cheque book with naughty delights written in and said I could cash them whenever I wanted. And she gave me an earring set. Considering I didn't have my ears pierced, I thought that was a pretty unsubtle hint. Emma and I had shopped together to get clothes for Drew and Cathy. Under Emma's suggestion we got them some sexy underwear. They gave Emma a card with £1000 for a proper shopping trip and they gave me a gold card that entitled me to use the spa free of charge for a year.

We spent the day pretty much doing whatever Katie wanted. She seemed so full of energy. This was supposed to be a sick kid, not expecting to live out the month. She ate well, didn't give any signs that she was struggling and even got us involved in some of her games. We all played hide and seek, although we had to pretend a bit. Let's face it, an almost 5 year old is surprised that you can see her behind a curtain. We all found our inner child and had fun. Katie was going full speed and the next thing you know, she was fast asleep. I carried her to bed. Mum phoned at lunch time and I got Katie to thank her for her presents. She, of course, told me that most of her presents came from Santa, but did what I asked and politely thanked mum. Charles and John didn't bother to talk on the phone.

I helped as much as I could with the cooking and the cleaning. Katie wanted to help too. Sometimes she was more of a hindrance, but Drew and Cathy were thoroughly charmed and had the patience of saints. It was an amazing day. Once she was asleep and in bed, we gathered downstairs.

“You have a delightful sister. I can understand why you would do anything for her.” Drew remarked. “Are you sure she is so poorly? That did not look like someone on death's door.”

“The 2 days I have spent with her as her sister have been magical and you are right, I have not seen her this well, almost since this began.” I said.

“The mind is an amazing thing. Do you think becoming her sister could help heal her? I have heard of someone curing himself by watching funny videos. Stranger things have happened.” Cathy commented. “But what are you going to do if she keeps getting better?”

I looked up towards the ceiling. “God, if my being a girl will cure my sister. I promise I will stay a girl permanently. If it just means she lives what life she has left happier, I will stay this way until she is no longer with us. That is my promise.”

There was a pause while they digested my words. I meant them too. If someone had offered me a choice, lose your maleness and I will cure your sister, I would have taken it. Hell, if they would have let me swap, I would have done it. Becoming or looking like a girl was a very small price to pay in my book.

Drew cleared her throat. “If it ever comes to it. We will help you. There are a lot of hoops to jump through, trials and tribulations if you like. We would be there for you, regardless of your relationship with Emma. I see the way you and Emma look at each other. If it wasn't so sweet, it would be sickening.”

“She is my everything.” That was how I felt.

“Aww, I love you too.” She said and kissed me on the cheek. We were in front of her parents after all.

We had a couple more weeks before we had to go back to Uni and we didn't know how long we would have Katie for. We also couldn't take her outside as that was deemed too risky. Drew and Cathy managed the salon between them and pretty much set their own hours. They did have quite a few social evenings planned with friends. Any that were scheduled for their house inside that 2 week timeframe, they rescheduled.

What this meant was that we lavished attention on Katie. We played with her, watched movies with her. If we could think of something to enhance her experience we did it. We even did some brain storming after she went to bed to come up with plans. Like camping in the lounge. We got all these chairs together with sheets and blankets and cushions and tried to make a play house with her. Or laying mattresses down the stairs and at the bottom and trying to toboggan down them. That one was not that successful. Still it was hilarious. We got books out of the library and read to her. And Katie went from strength to strength.

I had to take off my silicone body suit to let my skin breathe, but I did that after Katie had gone to sleep and set an early alarm so that by the time she saw me, I was looking as girly as ever. Emma would only dress me in her most girly gear. Dresses and skirts, no trousers allowed. I got quite used to it.

Pretty much every day mum would phone and talk to Katie and also give us an update as to how they were doing. After a week they were all better. Mum gave it an extra day to be sure and try and sanitize everything. We had told her how well she was doing so before mum took her home, we went to the hospital with her. They did various tests with her, but the results would take a few days to come back. We managed to get mum to agree that she would bring Katie back for a few hours of play every weekend. It was the best she could do. Charles was still dead against it, but he played golf on a Sunday from quite early to late so it was doable.

The first few days without Katie with us, felt so empty. I took the forms off to give my skin a proper chance to recover, but carried on dressing en femme. Partly that was because I was so used to it, partly it was because I was holding out hope that her results from her test would be good. I knew what I promised, truthfully, I did not know what that entailed but I would keep my promise to God.

The tests were done on the Monday and we were hoping for results on Thursday. I phoned frequently but the results weren't in. Friday lunchtime we finally heard. Complete remission. I cried, Emma cried, Drew and Cathy cried. It was a Christmas miracle. Did my efforts in any way or shape make a difference? We will never know. But I had a promise to keep and a slightly different life ahead of me to work out. I had support though. Strong support and I knew I would be OK. Better than OK, I would be loved.



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