Allison's Test: Chapter 4

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“I’m sorry Ma’am,” The voice on the other end of the phone said. “We can’t accommodate a transgender individual at our shelter. While I’m sure he’s a great…person, we can’t house him with the women.”

“You can’t house her with the men either!” I said angrily. “Do you know what could happen?”

“Did you try the shelter over on Bradbury?” The woman asked. I wanted to jump through the phone and strangle her.

“Of course I tried them,” I snapped. “They said the exact same thing and this is INSANE! You can’t just turn people away! Hello? Hello?!”

I pulled the phone away from my ear, the call had been disconnected. Of course it had, what else was I expecting?

“This is exhausting,” Remy sighed as she put her own phone down. “We’ve called like every shelter in the city, what are we supposed to do?”

“Can’t we just let her stay here?” I pleaded. “Just for tonight?”

“Look, Allison,” Remy said, shaking her head. “As much as I want to, it’s not my decision. If the AR board finds out about it, they’ll fine us. They really will. They’re not going to let it slide just because you live here. It’s not just your mom we’re dealing with here, okay? There are rules.”

“Those rules are bullshit,” I growled.

“Those rules literally keep us safe. Physically, and from losing our charter,” Remy reminded me. “Do I need to bring up the Woodcrest thing again? You remember what happened there, right?”

“Um,” I said. “Of course I remember, it was all over the news, but you know what? Maybe we could get some help from them. They dealt with a similar situation, after all. I mean, how did they fix it in the beginning?”

“Um, they traumatized her, got their charter pulled, and I’m pretty sure their ex-president got into organized crime,” Remy picked up the phone again and started to dial.

“Who are you calling?” I asked curiously. “I think we’ve covered all the shelters.”

“I’m calling your sister,” She said with a sigh. “I give up.”

“I thought you said-“

“I know what I said, now go upstairs and check on Angela.”

I rose from the felt-coated chair and wiped static electricity off my skirt as I made my way toward the stairs. I heard Remy speaking with my sister briefly as I ascended the stairs, keeping to the right with my hand on the rail – it was really a force of habit now. Walked around upstairs, I had to check a few rooms before I figured out where Angela was being kept, and I smiled a bit as I walked in on them. Laura, Michelle, Cassandra, Veronica and Angela were sitting together in the room, and to be honest, I only knew it was Angela because I know everyone else in the room personally. They’d done an amazing job, she looked exactly like a girl. They’d used one of my old wigs to frame her face and put her in an orange sundress with a flared skirt. It was a little bit overdone, considering, but I remembered how I was before I came to Alpha Gamma, or Alpha Ro, whichever you prefer. Being ‘overdone’ was kind of a thing with me, I wanted to be as girly as possible and it was still something I hadn’t quite shaken.

“Well hey,” I said from the doorway. “How’s it going?”

“Angela here is a natural,” Cassandra said. “Like she’s been practicing.”

The thing I noticed the most was that Angela couldn’t stop smiling, I kind of got it, but it wasn’t something that I’d been able to experience myself. All of my dressing had been in private, but when I’d finally been given ‘help’, I kind of felt like my soul had been doused in gasoline and set ablaze. Though let’s be honest, I kind of brought that on myself. The look on Angela’s face was genuine happiness, and I hoped it wouldn’t be fleeting. I had to wonder what other worries were weighing her down, and it was kind of hopeful that she was actually able to enjoy herself.

“That’s great,” I said with kind of an empty smile. “Um, so, Angela, we…weren’t able to get you into a shelter…”

“Wait, what?” Laura stood up from the bed aiming a concerned look in my direction. “Did you call every place? There’s no way they all turned her down.”

“Yeah it’s because-“ I started, but Angela interrupted me.

“I’m trans,” Angela said. “They don’t want to put me with other women. Um, I mean, if it’s a problem we can just say I’m a guy…I mean…I am…I kinda have boy parts and—”

“Not a good idea,” I said. “That’s not something I would be okay with, not at this point anyway. I don’t think you’d be comfortable.”

I could see it in her face honestly, she definitely wouldn’t have been comfortable.

“What are we going to do then?” Cassandra stared at me expectantly. “I don’t think Remy’s going to let her stay here…”

“Remy’s calling Brianna,” I explained. “She’s going to stay there for the night.”

Laura shot me a strange look, it wasn’t one of relief, it was almost as if she were worried. What was the problem? We’d solved the problem, right? Just as I was about to ask her what her problem was, Remy strode into the room with phone in hand.

“Okay,” Remy looked at each of us and glanced briefly at Angela who nervously twiddled her thumbs as she sat on the edge of the bed. “Brianna has agreed to house Angela, but just for tonight. Allison? You’re going over there-“

“I don’t really think that’s necessary,” I argued. I really didn’t want to leave the house.

“I don’t want to do a lot of things either, but here we are,” Remy shrugged. “Also, Brianna brought up a really good point: none of us thought to call the police.”

“The police?” Angela’s eyes went wide, she began to inch toward the edge of the bed, as if she were about to bolt toward the door. The girl was newly eighteen years old so it’s not like she had a criminal record.

“What’s wrong?” I asked her. “They’re right, we need to get you some help and maybe…I don’t know, track down whoever hurt you?”

“It’s just…” Angela continued to move toward the end of the bed; Laura stared intently at her. “If the police come…they…what if they talk to my parents? What if my parents find out I left?”

“You’re eighteen, right?” Cassandra said, stepping forward and taking Angela’s hand while simultaneously placing one on her shoulder, almost as if she intended to keep her from running. I didn’t blame her, we’d already had that incident. “They can’t do anything to you, they can’t touch you, they can’t—”

“I guess…I’m still afraid of disappointing them,” Angela said quietly as she stared down at her knees, still fidgeting with her hands and shifting her weight a bit under Cassandra’s grip. “I don’t want them to be…hurt.”

“What the hell?!” I demanded. “After what they—”

“Woah!” Remy said, walking around and placing a hand on my arm. “Allison, I think we need to go have a talk!”

“But!” I started to interject, but she was already pulling me out into the hall and leading me off toward her room. As we walked into the presidential suite I couldn’t help but think we needed to come here more often together.

“Okay, let me ask you a question,” Remy said, pushing me toward the bed until I lost my balance and plopped down onto the mattress. “Why did you pledge Alpha Gamma?”

“Uh…” I started, wondering if I was being asked a trick question. “I didn’t…really have a choice, did I?”

“I feel like you had a choice,” Remy said, crossing her arms and staring at me. “Let’s see, you could have just told your mom to go screw herself, applied for financial aid…probably even recovered your reputation within a year, I mean…but…you didn’t. Why?”

“I guess I didn’t want to disappoint my mom, or Brianna,” I said. “It just felt…I don’t know…”

“Because they’re your family, and you feel a responsibility to them,” She said. “You grew up with them, you grew to respect them, and your dad to a lesser extent.”

“It’s hard to respect someone through plate glass,” I muttered.

“Regardless!” Remy interrupted me. “Imagine if you’d been raised to respect them and…they were against your transition? What if you’d been raised to believe that everything you are…is wrong. Say for example you know you’re trans, but your parents don’t know, and as you grow up you constantly hear them making transphobic or homophobic remarks, you know they hate it, and you know that the respect for them that’s been instilled into you is contingent on you being what they want. You didn’t drop out of AG because you were fulfilling your implied pledge to your family. Angela is getting used to the idea that she’s about to break her pledge to HER family in order to be who she wants. Now, here’s the kicker, Allison. You want to help her, you want to take on the role of ‘savior’, which is admirable, but you’re going to have to understand that the two of you come from very different walks of life. What’s simple for you isn’t going to be simple for her. You need to be patient, and you need to not project yourself onto her. Am I making sense?”

“I…think so,” I nodded. “I think maybe we need help, or…I need help. I don’t think I can do this all alone.”

“Of course you can’t do it alone, Allison,” Remy said to me very matter of factly. “There are people who go to school for years for this, and you? You’re still pretty wet behind the ears. If you’re going to be a mentor of any type you’re going to have to ask for help, guidance, otherwise you’ll get yourself and others hurt. Don’t be stubborn, there’s a lot on the line, okay?”

“Okay,” I nodded. “I really appreciate you helping me with this, it’s all really…confusing.”

“You want to know what’s really confusing?” She asked, stepping toward me and grinning downward. “You have a closet full of your own clothes…and you’re wearing my top.”

“Uh…” I flushed a bit, embarrassed. “I…”

“Why do you keep wearing my stuff?”

“I guess…I just…I like feeling closer to you?” I admitted as she stepped a little closer. Suddenly she dropped down, straddling my lap and placed her hands on my waist.

“Is this close enough?” She giggled a bit. I squirmed, her legs held me in place.

“I think we have a lot to deal wi—“ I started to object, but suddenly, she began to tickle my sides. I squealed, but she silenced me by leaning in and pressing her lips against mine. Finally, she pulled away and grinned again. “What about Angela?”

“Laura and the others are taking care of Angela, and the police have been called,” Remy informed me. “Now I have something I want to work on with you. When we make out, about five minutes in, you crap out on me and stop kissing. I have to do all the work. So here’s what we’re going to do. You kiss me, get that tongue going, and every time you start slacking, I start tickling. Sound good?”

“What? No that doesn’t sound—” She cut me off by practically slamming our faces together and shoving her tongue down my throat. I grunted and tried to recoil, completely stunned, but the moment I did, she went to work with her hands. If she hadn’t been kissing me I probably would have started squealing but instead I thrust my tongue forward and started doing my half of the job. As promised, she ceased tickling. A few minutes later, I slowed, she started again. I struggled to squirm out of her grasp but only succeeded in making her push me toward the center of the bed. “Remy come on, can’t we just make out like normal people!”

“Apparently you can’t,” She laughed. “Come on, we’re not done yet.”

“God dammit!” I cursed as she dropped down and pressed her lips against mine again. I finally managed to squirm just enough that she lost her balance and rolled to the right, but instead of letting go, she dragged me with her toward the edge of the bed. “Oh holy shit!”

We immediately tumbled over the edge, slamming into the carpet and dragging the bedsheets with us. Remy laughed hysterically, I groaned and moved to jump on top of her.

“My turn!” I shouted.

“Ahem,” Laura’s voice came from the bedroom of Remy’s presidential suite. Like a shot, we both sat up and looked toward the door. To our horror, Laura, Cassanda, Michelle, and Angela were standing there, flanked by two uniformed police officers.

“Uh…hi…” Remy said, straightening her hair with the palm of her hand.

“Police are here,” Laura informed us.

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