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Headlights Girl

by Catherine Linda Michel

Pt.7

  

I won't bore you with the details of most of that second day, since there weren't any! I watched those damn tapes and soaked up the teachings they presented to my brain, without really thinking about it very much at all. Oh I stopped and had a bite to eat around noon or so, and there was a bathroom break or two, but you don't wanna know about them, right? Well, too bad! I'm not gonna TELL you! So there! (Giggle)

At around 3:30 or so, Eric came back to the house. I was just finishing up the last tape and he waited until I was done before speaking.

"Holly." he said, "You'd better hurry and get a shower. You're due at the salon in about an hour or so."

"SALON?!" I shrieked. "I'm going to a SALON?! I can't do that, Eric! I've never been in one of those places and I won't know how to act, or what to say or do!"

I jumped up out of the chair and stood, facing Eric.

"Can't this be put off til tomorrow or the next day? I know this might sound weird, but I'm really scared about this."

"Holly, Holly, Holly." He answered. "There's nothing to be concerned about. What you'll be getting today IS the 'full treatment', but there's no need for alarm. It'll merely be reinforcing what you've been learning from those tapes. Kind of like glueing it in place as it were. What'll be the upshot of it is, you'll kind of absorb every little thing that gets done to you today, integrating it with what's on those tapes. You'll remember it and be able to duplicate every single thing THEY do to you so weekly salon visits won't be a drain on your income. You'll only have to go back when you want to change something, either your hairdo, or something like that. Remember, you don't have to was, OR depilate anywhere on your body. The suit takes care of all that for you."

"Yeah, but Eric..." I started to reply, but he cut me off, saying,

"Look, Holly. Have I NOT been in that suit? Have I NOT experienced everything you can think of before you? Would I, after all of this, spring ANYTHING on you that I didn't think you needed to experience for your own good? Haven't you figured out yet, that I am NOT going to do anything TO you or FOR you that you don't need to know how to do?"

He paused for a second, gazing down into my eyes, then continued.

"Holly." He said firmly. "I have gone through every single thing that I am taking you through. It's done this way for a reason. The HEADLIGHTS people want every girl to be as convincing AND as relaxed and normal feeling in their roles, as is humanly possible. It's the best way for them to maintain their high standard of customer care and satisfaction, and it's the best way for every "girl" to maintain her looks and personality, not to mention her tip averages. Remember, the more you act like 'Holly', the more you ACT like 'Holly', the more comfortable Holly's regular customers will be at ease and tip accordingly. Holly, I swear to you, I am NEVER going to tell you to do something that isn't for your own good. Don't forget, you are also representing ME in that suit for the next three years or whatever. If you screw up, it'll come Back on ME and I have things to do in the foreseeable future that DON'T include bailing you out by having to take your place for whatever remains of your contract!"

Eric paused for breath and continued.

"That's the one thing I hadn't told you yet, as I'd hoped to wait and see if I'd HAVE to tell you. IF, for any reason you can't fulfill your contract, _I_ will be called back to serve out the remaining time! I didn't want to have to tell you that until you were more comfortable with being Holly, because I didn't want it to be a deciding factor in your taking the job and signing the contract. I didn't want you to feel obligated to me if you felt, at any time in the next three years, that you couldn't take it or do it anymore, and HAD to get out. I WOULD have told you at the end of this week, one way or the other, so you'd know how serious this is.

"For the next three years of your life, JIMMY, you are going to have to be TOTALLY Holly, ALL the time. There's no going back for anything less than a life or death emergency! You can't just decide that you've had enough and call it quits. Remember I told you that they have ways of 'locking' you into that suit? Well, they do, and they won't hesitate to do it if it's in their best interests to do it. It's only happened twice, that I know of, that someone has had to be called back to fill someone else's contract, but it HAS happened. Each time, the person who couldn't fill their contract was severely punished, financially and both of them ended up a lot worse off than they ever were before they started their contracts. I really can't say more than that. The management has ways of finding out things and if they learned that I had even told you THIS much, I could be punished to the tune of losing everything I've worked for these past three years."

I just stood there, looking at Eric through all of this. I'd known that this wasn't a 'lark', or something I could just stop doing for any less a reason than serious illness, or a family death, but I hadn't realized that Eric could be punished if I couldn't carry through with this! He'd been so kind and understanding and helpful to me through all I had been experiencing, all the new stuff I was learning and all the new things I was going through.

"NOW! Get moving, woman!" Eric suddenly shouted at me. "We have work to do! You gotta get ready for the salon. No excuses, young lady! Move it! Move it! MOVE it!" And he smacked me on my butt to hurry me along.

Well, I MOVED it! I scurried to the bathroom, undressed and got into the shower, keeping my hair dry, of course. I only stayed in there just long enough to get clean and then I grabbed a towel, wrapped myself up in it and scampered to the bedroom to get dressed.

At first I thought about just wearing a pair of jeans and a blouse, but then I thought about it and realized that if I did that, I'd be woefully underdressed when I came out after a makeover, so I decided on a knee length black skirt and an Ivory colored blouse with three quarter sleeves. Simple jewelry and just a dab of makeup completed the look and I stepped into a pair of low heeled pumps. Grabbing my purse and dumping in a few essentials, I hurried out to the kitchen area where Eric was waiting for me, tapping his foot impatiently.

"You women!" He said grumpily. "Always taking forever to get ready and ALWAYS at the last possible minute!"

I jabbed a finger at him in mock anger and said,

"Oh REALLY? Well, my dear, it wasn't THAT long ago that YOU were the "woman" in question, was it? I'll bet YOU were always late wherever you were going, now weren't you? Let's not be TOO judgmental, ok sweetie?"

Well, of course, we both broke up laughing and, after we wound down, he took me by the hand and looked into my eyes, saying quite seriously,

"You're going to do just fine as Holly, I know it. You're ALSO going to enjoy this session at a salon, being pampered and spoiled as a woman has a right to be, from time to time. This is something NO male can ever understand, this primping, pampering, painting and waxing that a woman claims, almost as a birthright. Well, today YOU are going to experience it for the first time in your life and, let me tell you, there's nothing like it. Additionally, when it's all finished, when all the makeup, facials, hair and all the rest is done, and you walk out of that salon looking like a couple of million dollars, PROUD of being who and what you are, well, there's no feeling like it in all the world. I can't even BEGIN to describe it to you, you're just going to have to experience it for yourself to know that I'm right."

"Well then what are we waiting for? Let's get going! Honestly! You MEN! Always talking and never really getting to any kind of a point! My goodness, Eric, you're going to make us late! Now, Move it, Move it, MOVE it!" I riposted.

He gave me one of THOSE looks. You know, those "What the hell?" looks, but then I reached out and smacked HIM on the butt and started to laugh again. He realized then, that I was still in a good mood and kidding him. He jumped to attention and saluted me, saying,

"Yes Ma'am! Right away, Ma'am!" And he did a military about face, marching toward the door. Once there, he stopped, smartly stepped aside and waited for me, while holding the door open for me. Once I exited, he stepped through the door, did another one of those about face things and locked the door. Then he did one more about face and, facing me said,

"Will you precede me to the vehicle Ma'am?"

I tried to maintain a stern expression, but finally I couldn't stand it any longer and I began to giggle.

"Okay, okay Eric. I give. Let's get giong so I can get pampered, painted and fussed over, like you said."

He also finally lost it and we laughed together as we walked to the Mustang. It was still a little odd to me that my rear end wanted to move from side to side the way it did, but I had been getting used to it, and I found it more than a little amusing that, when I glanced back at Eric, his gaze were firmly planted on my posterior. Apparently he was right about there being very few, if any, remaining female behaviors left over after a day or two out of the suit. Either that, or he was trying to remember what HIS posterior had looked like just two days earlier, when HE was wearing this thing!

He held the car door for me and assisted me into the little car, then climbed in the driver's side and started the car. The big V-8 rumbled into life and sounded so sweet. There's just something about the sound of a big V-8 that's sexy or something. I can't explain it, but it did the same things to me as Holy, that it did when I was Jimmy. Anyway, Eric put it in gear and we shot off toward the salon.

Neither of us talked much on the way there. It seemed that we were both absorbed in our thoughts. I know _I_ was. A lot had happened to me in the last two days and absorbing all of it was almost getting to be too much. My thoughts were somewhat scattered and more than a little apprehensive. COULD I do this? SHOULD I do this? Could I drop out of it and let Eric down? Could I actually LIVE for the next three years as a woman? Living, maybe even LOVING as one? What about my family? Would they "buy" my story, accounting for three years or more, mostly out of touch with them?

Before I even knew it, we were at the salon. Eric parked the car and got out, coming around to my side to assist me. He held the door for me again as we entered the salon and were greeted by a cheerful, smiling young woman whose name tag said she was "SHELLEY".

She pretty much ignored Eric and spoke directly to me, saying,

"Hi! It's so good to see you, Holly! Your chair and stylist are waiting for you like always. Just follow me and we can get you started." She then turned to Eric saying, "You can wait here for her, sir, or you can come back in a couple of hours. We should be done with her in about two hours if that's okay with you?" With that, she turned her back on Eric and, motioning to me to follow her, she walked off into the salon proper.

I looked at Eric and he had this 'amused' expression on his face.

"She didn't treat me that way the last time I was here, but then again, I didn't look like an 'Eric' then." He mused. "Go ahead, Holly. Enjoy this experience. For your information, and for future reference, Holly comes here all the time. She's, or rather YOU'RE a regular. Everyone her knows you and, if you search your memory, you'll find names to go with all the faces here. Have fun. I'm going to the sporting goods place across the road, and to schedule some needed maintenance on the Mustang. I'll be back in a couple of hours." He kissed me on the cheek and gave me a little push to get me started, then off he went, out the door, leaving me all alone inside this bastion of femininity.

Well, with some misgivings and more than a little resignation I turned and followed 'SHELLEY'. She led me to a chair near the back of the salon and got me seated. Then she turned to leave, saying,

"Now don't you worry a bit, honey. Nancy will be right with you and you KNOW what a Wizard with hair SHE is! By the time you leave here today, you'll look just like the beauty queen you really are, just like always! Have fun, hon! I'll see you when you leave." And off SHE went. 'Sheesh! People are walking away from me in DROVES today.' I thought.

Before I had time to try to follow THAT thought line any further, a woman walked up to the chair I was seated in and announced that she was 'NANCY' as is stated on HER name tag. Well, I began to search my memory, as Eric had suggested I do and, by God, I DID remember her! I mean, my Holly mind had memories of her...well, YOU know what I mean. Anyway, once THAT happened, a LOT of memories started to make themselves known to me. Before too many more seconds went by, I was 'remembering' many other visits to this salon and was actually anticipating, with great expectations, the results of this one. I knew the 'girls' here would do a great job on me and I began to relax.

Over the course of the next two hours, I was plucked, painted, primped, pampered and massaged to within an inch of my life and I LOVED every minute of it! For a little while there I was wondering to myself, 'Why didn't I ever do this before? This is WONDERFUL!' until it came crashing in on me that if I HAD done this before, I'd have been looked at as JUST a little bit on the odd side. Well, that made me giggle and then laugh out loud. Imagine! Coming here as JIMMY! Oh my God! And off I went, into gales of laughter. 'NANCY' asked me what was so funny, and that made me laugh all the more. For a few minutes there I couldn't talk at all, only hiccup with laughter. Finally, I calmed down enough to be able to tell her,

"Oh, nothing important, Nancy. It's just something that Eric told me when he left. I just GOT it and it's SO funny. Maybe someday I'll tell you about it."

(Author's note) I won't bother going into all the different processes that go on inside a salon. I'm sure your imaginations can supply MANY more details, than my ability to present them here, can. I also realize that MY own experiences in a salon have been a total of one, so any explanations _I_ could supply would only be those gathered from other stories, so....read on. Sorry.

It seemed like no time at all before I was pronounced 'finished' by Nancy and the other girls there. My makeup had been done to a T, my nails sanded, polished, finished and sealed, my hair doing things hair was NEVER intended to do, and I looked absolutely FABULOUS! I was completely captivated by the image I saw in the mirror, So much so that I almost forgot that I wasn't REALLY Holly! Thoughts of how all the men were just going to DROOL when they saw me, filled my head, and all the tips I'd be getting if I went to work looking this good!

I finally turned from the mirror and thanked Nancy and all the other girls there for all their work.

"You've really outdone yourself, Nancy!" I gushed. "You and your staff are the BEST!" Then I went over to her and hugged her as further thanks. I swept out to the lobby and settled my bill with 'SHELLEY' and added a huge tip. She said,

"Oh, Holly! You look just wonderful, of course, you always do anyway! Sometimes I don't know why you even bother coming here at all. You always look so youthful, so beautiful! It's like you never even AGE!" Then she leaned closer to me and whispered, "You're going to HAVE to tell me your secret someday, girl. I'd give ANYTHING to look as good as you always do."

Well, I cracked up again. I laughed so hard that tears came from my eyes. When I could finally se again, I noticed that Shelley had a kind of hurt look on her face. I quickly went to her and hugged her, assuring her that I wasn't laughing at her. I just felt so good about myself and what I was doing and how I looked right then that I HAD to laugh about it. It just felt so GOOD! Shelley finally understood that and she apologised for thinking that I was laughing at her. I told her,

"Shelley, my dear, don't EVER feel bad about the way you look. You are just GORGEOUS. I just know that you break hearts every time you go out, and any guy would have to consider himself lucky as hell to have you on his arm."

She smiled at me and I guess that meant we were friends still. I hugged her and right about then, Eric walked in. I saw him and disengaged myself from Shelley. I twirled for Eric, saying,

"Well, Eric, how do I look? Do I pass inspection?"

He pursed his lips, walked around me a couple of times, looking up and down my body, then he came right up and looked at my face closely. Then he backed off a couple of steps and shook his head, saying,

"Well, it's not bad. I guess it'll just have to do for now. Next time I expect MUCH better from you and the girls, okay Nancy?"

I was shocked! I couldn't believe what I was hearing!

""Eric!" I almost screamed at him. "What the hell do you think you're doing? I look wonderful and these women have worked SO hard and you're acting like they just whitewashed a fence, and BADLY at that! How DARE you insult them and ME like this!"

I was fuming! I couldn't believe that Eric could be so insulting and condescending! I was getting ready to give him some more grief when I noticed that Nancy and all the women were smiling at me. All of a sudden I got a sinking feeling in my stomach. I looked at Eric and he was smiling too! He looked back at me and said, in a loud voice,

"GOTCHA!" And then he started to laugh. I stood there, not knowing quite what to think What was going on NOW?

Finally Eric calmed down enough to talk to me and he said,

"It's okay, Holly. All the women here know about HEADLIGHTS and the girls who work there. This is an official outlet OF the HEADLIGHTS chain and all the girls come here to get their hair and makeup and other stuff done. They even know who _I_ am, or who I used to be, and they know that I was only teasing you, and them. I'm sorry if it caused you any concern. You just looked so pleased with yourself that I HAD to mess with you a little bit. Truthfully, you DO look incredible! It's easy to see that Nancy and her staff haven't lost their touch at all!"

Well, now I was embarrassed. To think that all these women KNEW that I was really a guy! Oh my God! I wanted to rush out of there, get back to the house, strip out of this damned suit and THROW it at Eric. OH! I was mad! I tried to swing a punch at Eric, but he just caught my hand effortlessly and pulled me into a tight embrace so I couldn't even move. Embarrassment on top of embarrassment! I even punched like a girl, and Eric handled me with no effort at all!

Well, I fumed and struggled and screeched at Eric for a minute or so until it became apparent to me that I couldn't get loose or hurt him at all. Finally I calmed a little bit and I could hear him trying to get me to chill out.

"Holly. Holly! It was just a joke! I didn't mean anything by it. C'Mon! Calm DOWN!"

It took awhile, and it also took all the women in the place to finally convince me that everything was okay, but they finally did it. I still was convinced that this whole business with the suit was over and all I wanted to do was get out of it and call off the deal though.

Nancy looked really concerned and she looked at Eric and gave him a kind of nod. He tensed a little(I could feel that because he still hadn't let go of me)and then he said,

"EXTREME HOLLY, ON!"

(PART 8 COMING RIGHT UP!)

  

  

  

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