(This story is an ongoing continuation from Chapter I)
At thirteen years of age the slight hair on his legs was still very thin and blond, and undetectable. His mother therefore decided knee socks would do, and handed him a pair of white ones with pink trim. “Perhaps if we dress you a little frillier, it just might distract them enough to camouflage that you’re a boy.”
He stepped into the pink pleaded skirt, pulled it up and then pulled up the side zipper with ease; his
mother instantly realizing that he'd done this before. She pushed a white blouse at him. But before he put it on, she said “Wait, turn.” Standing behind him, she instructed him to raise his arms and before he knew what happened she slid a bra on him and clasped the back. She stuffed it lightly with tissue: “a 13-year old girl will at least be starting to develop.”
He slipped on the blouse, stepped into a pair of white shoes, and looked reasonably-well put together. His mother had left the room. By the time he was ready to leave, she returned, sat him on the bed and positioned a short black bobbed-wig atop his head. “There, that’s better. It’s an older style for me, but at least it’s a girl style.”
They headed for the stairs. “Smile; be demure and polite, nod, say yes, thank you, and then excuse yourself at the earliest opportunity. Tell them you were reading and want to finish.”
Remember, you’re Maria, so anything you mention about your home, mom, dad, brothers, cousins can be the truth; only from your cousin’s point of view: you are her! I am AUNT Stephanie. Don’t screw this up!”
They each took a deep breath and then descended the staircase; Ricky wobbled once, but his mother steadied him. He sauntered into the living room as Stephanie watched, amazed how easily he glided in the shoes. He has definitely done many times before today!
“Ladies, this is my niece Maria. Sorry for the delay, I had to all but rip her away from her storybook, and then of course being thirteen, she had to change. Maria, these are my friends Dorothy, Joan, Betty and JoAnne.” Ricky curtsied in the doorway and said, in a weak subservient voice, “good afternoon ladies, nice to meet you.”
“How darling she is Stephanie!” Ricky waited a moment, and then attempted to turn away and leave. Dorothy inched over on the couch, saying “Come Maria, sit here by me.” Joan stood “Yes, get comfortable on the sofa, I’ll get another chair from the dining room. “
“But I was just going to ...”
“You can read later dear, come visit with us a moment, won’t you? We’ve heard so much about you and your sisters over the years.”
Ricky looked at his mom, not knowing what to do, his eyes begging for help.
The pressure was mounting and this pack of women was circling him. Stephanie was in a box; if she were too eager to shush Ricky away the women may become suspicious. So she took her son by the arm and eased him to the couch.
“Maria dear, would you like some tea?” Joan asked. “Here, use this glass, I’ll get another.”
Before she left the room Betty was already pouring. Everything was moving so quickly. Stephanie wasn’t used to not being in control, and she didn't like it one bit. Rather than a quick meet-n-greet, Maria was now being urged to settle in with these women for the afternoon as they continued to fawn over her. Could Ricky really pull this off?
Ricky surveyed the situation. Dorothy was dressed in a yellow dress and matching pumps; red hair in a
Joan returned promptly, and her navy blue dress seemed to float more than the others, in a fun and flirty way. Betty’s outfit, well, there was nothing to notice about that fashion-less outfit. It was brown, the color of shit.
“Joan, we only needed one more glass.”
“Oh, I forgot to tell you all,” she said excitedly. “I thought this week we’d do something a little different, so I invited my friend Michelle to come by and give us all a makeover demonstration. Isn’t that great? She is doing so well selling Mary Kay Cosmetics that the demonstration is free, as well as samples! If we like it we buy some, if we don’t, then we don’t. But it’s all free makeovers either way.”
As if the idea then just hit her, “Hey, this is great timing. Maria is what … 13, 14? It’s just the right age for a young woman to start learning how to use makeup!”