“Aaaagh, I’m coming” Amos cried out as he began to convulse.
Wednesday, November 21, 2012
WHAT IF? – PART 19
“You know, I have been thinking of getting my hair cut, but then I’d have to curl it every night. Is that something you would learn to do for me, just like
does Agnes’ hair?” Mildred asked, feeling Amos’ hard member pulsating. Leon
“Yes dear, oh damn, I can’t control myself” Amos said, knowing Mildred would punish him if he came before she told him it was okay.
“That would be so nice dear. We could be just like Leon and Agnes, a loving couple like you said. And maybe I could set your hair too. I’d love to see you with a headful of curls.”
“Aaaagh, I’m coming” Amos cried out as he began to convulse.
“Aaaagh, I’m coming” Amos cried out as he began to convulse.
“Use your hankie” Mildred ordered sharply.
Amos had the pretty, lace trimmed handkerchief in his hand and wrapped it around his spurting cock. He knew he was already in trouble for coming without permission and did not want to add to his woes by getting anything “dirty” on Mildred’s silk nightie.
Mildred had been especially jittery all morning as she prepared for her meeting with Lin Lu. She had told Amos about her invitation for lunch with the “Whore of Babylon”, Amos’ mocking name he had used months ago to describe the entrepreneur.
“If I’m not back by midnight, I have probably been kidnapped to be sold as a sex slave” Mildred laughingly said to her husband while he was brushing her hair.
“I’m afraid I don’t begin to have enough money to buy such a beautiful woman as you, especially with the skills you have in bed. So I hope your new master is kind to you and doesn’t beat you too often” he said, pulling her hair taught back from her forehead.
“Do it especially tight and neat for me today, Amos. I aim to impress. Perhaps my eyes will look more slanted, like Miss Lu’s.”
“Yes, my dearest, but remember, you asked for it.”
Amos’ efforts did indeed pull Mildred’s eyes back and also brought tears from the pain. Amos wanted to loosen the bun but Mildred would have none of that.
She went through her wardrobe three times before she settled on a below the knee, navy blue skirt and a white satin blouse. She sighed as she looked in the mirror. She still looked dowdy, but she had looked the same since Amos had been ordained and began his ministry. It was the way a pastor’s wife should look. She had seen pictures of Lin Lu in the paper and knew that there was no way she could compete with the beautiful woman. She did do something very daring – she wore lipstick that Agnes insisted she needed.
She kissed Amos good bye and instructed him to hang up all the discarded clothes scattered around their bedroom. “And feel free to use the iron to touch up any that got wrinkled” she added with a smile. Amos did not return the smile.
When Mildred parked her car in the “Guest Parking” area at Dryfuss, she was immediately impressed. A young man, at least she believed he was a man, was immediately at her car to open the door. His pink blazer had an odd cut to it and his sharply creased white slacks seemed very tight. His white beret was set at an angle on his head and Mildred noticed two bobby pins to keep it attached to his hair. He had beautiful eyes and Mildred, no expert in this department, thought he might be wearing eye make-up. His lovely perfume was noticeable as he lead Mildred to the executive entrance. His shoes clicked on the concrete which drew Mildred to notice that he was wearing low heeled pink pumps.
“What the hell am I doing in a place like this?” she asked herself.
When the elevator doors opened on the sixth floor, the most beautiful woman Mildred had ever seen greeted her with a warm smile and a ladylike handshake. She had seen Lin Lu’s photo in the newspaper several times and knew she was a very attractive woman but seeing her in person overwhelmed her. Lin Lu wore a body fitting plum colored angora dress, sheer stockings and black heels. Her shiny raven hair was pinned behind her ears with pearl barrettes and fell in curls to the middle of her back. Mildred shocked herself when she thought how nice it would be to run her fingers through those curls. She felt very old with her modest Sear’s dress and old fashioned hairstyle.
“Welcome, Mrs. Reynolds, I am Lin Lu. It is such an honor to have you pay me a visit. May I show you around a little before we eat?”
“Yes, I’d love that, Miss Lu” Mildred replied, hoping that her nervousness was not too obvious.
“Please call me Lin, Mrs. Reynolds.”
“I will if you call me Millie” she answered. “Oh my gosh, I haven’t used that name since I was in high school! I don’t know what made me say that. I’ve been called Mildred all my adult life.”
“I will be happy to call you anything you want but, please forgive my boldness, Mildred just doesn’t seem to fit a beautiful young lady like yourself. You strike me much more like a Millie.”
“Then Millie it is, Lin.”
“Wonderful. I think maybe we are going to become good friends. May I first introduce you to what I call My Team. They are the brains of this operation.”
One by one Lin Lu led Mildred to each team members office. Mildred knew a few of them from church or other ladies’ events in town. She was impressed by their looks – all impeccably dressed in the latest fashions, tastefully made up, and all looking like the had just stepped out of the beauty parlor with perfectly styled hair. (In fact, three of them had indeed been pampered by Bradley in the spa this morning.) Lin Lu explained each of their functions in the business. On two occasions, Mildred’s visit interrupted dictation. Mildred had trouble identifying the gender of the person with the notebook and pencil. They wore identical uniforms of mauve shorts and starched white blouses. Each wore sheer nylons and black patent leather shoes with silver buckles. Their hairstyles were almost identical too – short, tightly permed hair that had been a popular style for women ten years ago. But something told Mildred that these were both boys. This was confirmed by their name tags which read “Roger” and “Bernard”. No mistaking these names as woman’s. And each stood up and curtsied when she and Lin Lu entered the room.
Once the tour was completed, Mildred commented “So, is this an all woman department, Lin?”
“Yes, all my team and all my managers and supervisors are women, but of course the two taking dictation are obviously male. They are apprentices in the steno pool and both are excellent typists – minimum of eighty words a minute. They are required to wear uniform clothes and hair styles, nice and curly, until they graduate and then they can dress as they like as long as it is proper office attire.”
“May I be bold enough to ask what ‘proper office attire’ is?”
Lin Lu smiled and said “Nothing unusual – dress or skirt and blouse, nylons and heels, modest makeup and feminine hair style. Nail polish is optional but you will notice most of my employees wear it. One thing I do insist on – no slacks. First because it is not formal and second, most important, I want my women to flaunt their femininity. It’s who they are. They do not need to dress as men to do a man’s job. I remember at MIT, there was a female professor of economics, pretty much exclusively a man’s field, who actually wore a man’s suit, tie and shirt and had her hair cut at a barber shop. I hated that. I want feminine attire to be normal for female executives.
Now, let me show you my pride and joy – the Dryfuss Spa.”
Lin Lu opened the unusual door, for an office at least, and directed Mildred inside. She was stunned at what she saw and smelled.
“Why, it’s a beauty parlor “ she exclaimed. “I never heard of such a thing in a business. Who uses it?”
“Myself and my team have unlimited use, not only the salon services but massages and laundering too. Other employees are given passes for outstanding achievement, which we are very liberal awarding. I would be happy to provide a pass for you if you’d like, Millie.”
“Oh my, I don’t know if my husband would approve, though it does look delightful. I haven’t been in a beauty parlor since my wedding. Mmmmm, I smell a permanent wave being performed. I remember that from going with my mother when she had her hair done. I was so scared of that scary machine with all the wires and clamps.”
“Well, you don’t have to worry about that anymore. They’re all cold waves today. Come meet our top notch hairdresser, looks like he’s just finishing applying the wave solution.”
Mildred was very confused. There were only four other people in the salon, the woman getting the perm, another under the dryer getting her nails done by a pink uniformed girl with her hair in curlers and a very tall, attractive hairdresser. Why did Lin Lu refer to her as a “he”? But then, everything was not normal in this place. Was it possible the hairdresser with the pretty, curly up-do, wearing a pink nylon uniform with a very obvious lacy slip under the sheer material, and high heels was a man? If he was, he had some very realistic falsies.
“Bradley, may I interrupt you to introduce Mrs. Mildred Reynolds? Millie, this is my husband, Bradley.”
Oh boy, this is indeed a very strange place, Mildred thought.
“Oh my dear, it is indeed a pleasure to meet you, finally. I have seen you at various affairs around town and always admired your beauty. And that hair! I’ve never seen such a well done bun” Bradley gushed and gently patted Mildred’s netted bun. “Did you do it yourself, dear?”
“No, my… ah, actually yes, I did” Mildred answered, knowing she almost revealed a big secret.
“Oh, you must show me how to do it so perfectly, Mrs. Reynolds.”
“You flatter me, Mr. Dryfuss, and please call me Mildred.”
“I would prefer that he continue to call you Mrs. Reynolds” Lin Lu said sharply.
“Sorry, I must get back to my customer to check the progress of the processing. I’d be in big trouble if I burned the hair of a vice-president. But please do come back sometime, Mrs. Reynolds. I would love to do your hair.”
The woman getting the perm and the one under the dryer waved as Lin Lu led Mildred to the back of the salon.
“Here is our laundry room” she said, holding the door for Mildred to enter. This was indeed a busy place. She could hear, and smell, the washer and dryer running. At one side, a girl in the same style pink uniform as Bradley including the slip, but wearing white gloves, was ironing a blouse while another, similarly dressed girl, also with the white gloves, worked at a large table at the other end folding clothes. Each wore tight fitting black hair nets and white nurses’ shoes. They curtsied together when Lin Lu entered.
“These two are also apprentices performing their field work for their Home Ec class at school. As long as they pass all their requirements they will graduate with diplomas in Domestic Arts, a job much in demand today with so many women in the workplace. Keep up the good work, boys.”
Outside the room, Mildred turned to Lin Lu and asked “Boys?”
“Yes, great to see a couple of boys doing laundry, isn’t it? Of course, they also have homework doing the same tasks in their homes. They’ll make good wives someday.”
“Excuse my curiosity, but why are they wearing hair nets and gloves?”
“Oh, partly because of my fussy hygiene standards. The nets keep hair out of the clothes. You wouldn’t want to find someone’s hair in your panties, would you? The gloves are for much the same reason, keeping their hands from touching your delicates. When they do hand wash, they wear rubber gloves.”
“Good reasons, I agree with you. And the manicurist – boy or girl?”
“Boy. He’s in the cosmetology program at school, again an apprentice. This is someone that will become a beautician when he graduates. Did the curlers fool you? We believe in total immersion. He has to wear curlers in his hair the entire time he’s here. He even has to wear them home, with a scarf, of course.”
“Yes, I’ve never seen a boy in curlers. Guess I just don’t get around much in this whole new world. But I have to admit, I like it. I like it very much.”
“Thanks, Millie, that means a lot to me. Come on, lunch is ready” Lin Lu said, taking Mildred by the hand.
The tastefully decorated dining room had been set up with just one table. Lin Lu held out the chair for Mildred and helped seat her. They chatted through the meal about things going on in town and shared their upbringining. Mildred was in awe of the meal – watercress soup, lemon sole wild rice and asparagus, and a small, but absolutely delicious lemon tart. Mildred even dared, under promise of absolute secrecy, to have a glass of a wonderful Chablis.
“Us Baptists are not supposed to drink, you know” she said with a smile.
When they were finished, they adjourned to Lin Lu’s office where they sat across from another around a small coffee table.
“So, down to business” Lin Lu said seriously. “I am concerned about what your husband preached about last Sunday. I wasn’t there, of course, but I do have my spies who reported everything to me. Perhaps it would help if I told you my background and what my goals were when I began this project, if I’m not boring you.”
“Certainly not, Lin, I’d love to know more about you. I am already fascinated by all you have done. But first, may I ask a very personal question?”
“Sure, go ahead.”
“Ah, oh boy, this is awkward, the, ah, person in the beauty salon, you called her your husband. And you called him Bradley. I know the head of Dryfuss Enterprises was Bradley Dryfuss. Is there a connection, because I know what he looks like and that’s not who I saw in the beauty parlor. I’m confused.”
“Sorry, you have a right to be confused. I should have explained. That is indeed my husband, after a few, shall we say, alterations. He is the former owner, Bradley Dryfuss. Bradley was not a very good man and is being punished for his misdeeds, some of which were absolutely horrible, especially what he did to his sister, Rose. Along with his training as a hairdresser, he also serves as my live-in maid, and is very good at both. He is now quite content with his new position, as am I.”
“I don’t know if this is true, but I heard through the grapevine that his sister also lives with you.”
“Yes, it is true. She is my lover.”
Mildred was at a loss for words and stared, open mouthed, at Lin Lu before asking, “You’re, ah, you’re a…”
“Yes, Millie, Rose and I are lesbians. Am I shocking you? Would you prefer to leave now?”
“Yes, I am shocked. Like I said, I don’t get around much, at least outside my very parochial group of church women. Don’t believe we have any lesbians in our congregation. And no, I don’t want to leave. I can’t remember the last time I had so much fun. Please continue.”
Lin Lu described her upbringing and the great trust her father had placed in her, despite the prevailing world wide consensus that women did not belong running a business, and his own personal reluctance to have his daughter take on such a formidable task.
“Of course, I did not tell Daddy about my hidden agenda of not only having the business run completely by woman, but changing the whole structure of society in the town. I truly believe that having women in charge of both businesses and homes would be a far better thing – less crime, more cooperation, less selfish competition, and more sensitivity for males in their relationships with themselves and with females in general. I have not completed my goals yet but I believe that any objective survey of how the town is today versus what it was before I came would reveal a much happier, and more prosperous, population. If you walked through the entire plant you would see how happy most of my employees are. This is infectious. Walk down
Main Street and see how people greet each other with smiles and take the time to chat and learn how their neighbors are doing. It’s a little early to confirm this but our students are performing much better than they used to, especially the girls, which is my aim. I am told by a reliable source that mental health has improved, measured by the considerable decrease in divorces and suicides and family disturbances. Consider this scene, which I witnessed just last week and tell me if this is something wonderful or an abomination before god. A husband and wife and three children were walking in the park. The mother looked lovely in a bright yellow sun dress and her hair beautifully styled. The father wore white peddle pushers and a pink satin shell. He had low heeled sandals that showed his red polished toenails. He had a lovely page boy hairstyle. He was pushing the pram with the baby inside. The two children, boy and girl – I think – walked hand in hand, laughing all the way. Though they were not twins, they were dressed alike – light blue shorts, sandals, white knee socks and white blouses with peter pan collars. Their hair was in pig tails with blue ribbons. Ten years ago, they would have been jeered at and the parents probably reported to child services for abuse. Last week, people gave them admiring looks and many complimented them on being such a beautiful, happy family. Do you know that a man’s knitting group – I’m not kidding you – has set a goal for themselves to knit a hundred pairs of mittens and hats for poor children by Christmas? Is all this wrong, Millie?”
“No, I don’t think so” Mildred replied softly.
“Really? I’m surprised. Just one more thing. Sometimes you hear about men being made slaves to their wives and treated harshly. I question how much of that is true except in the sleazy porn publications. I have never advocated that. I want to see men just as happy with their lifestyle as women. I won’t go so far as to say a husband and wife are equal but certainly I hope that a man would accept his wife as the head of the house and be content with that and even enjoy it. With the exception of maybe a hard spanking and the occasional mouth washing for vulgar language, I would never condone physical abuse of the man by his wife.
Millie, I have tried to create a climate of friendship and acceptance since I took over Dryfuss Enterprises but it seems that I have an adversary in your husband. I would like to see if we can come to some sort of common ground, if that is possible. Is it?”
“Than you for being so open, Lin. Yes, it is very possible, especially now.”
“Why now? I don’t understand. Your husband pretty much put all the blame on my head for the so called evil things going on in our community just a few days ago.”
“Yes, he did, but that was before a lightning strike almost killed him. Are we still under the privacy agreement we had in the dining room? I’m very serious about it.”
“Yes, of course. You have my word, which I value very much, that nothing we say today will ever leave this room. And at the risk of giving away a closely guarded company secret, I made sure the recording devices in this room, and the dining room, were shut off.”
“I would never have thought of such a thing, but then I’m just an older pastor’s wife who doesn’t get around much.”
“You’re far from old, Millie and I think you’re a lot smarter than you let on” Lin Lu said softly and placed her hand on Mildred’s. “As for getting around, I’d love to change that for you”
“Well, the reason I have confidence in a change in the environment is that Amos has seen the error of his ways. The close call with the lightning strike sure put the fear of god in him, literally. He is going to take a sabbatical and I assure you it will be a very different man in the pulpit when he returns, if they let him return. Meanwhile, I will take over as many of his responsibilities as I can get away with. This may come as a shock to you, but both Amos and myself are really closet liberals. However, in order to keep his job, we both have had to play the roles of conservative, bible carrying pastor and wife, with everything that goes along with it. All that is going to change. And I think that you will be very pleased with the results, as long as there isn’t another lightning strike that puts us back in our “proper” places.
My grandmother was a suffragette and my mother was even more liberal and way ahead of her time. She wrote a short book, under an assumed name, of course, that urged all women to free themselves from the slavery of marriage. Granted, it was somewhat radical. But what she was really saying was that women should have all the same choices in life as their husbands. And if that meant that a woman entered the workplace in her chosen field and climbed the ladder, there was absolutely no reason why her husband could not stay home and take on the role of wife. She went so far as to suggest that many men might actually prefer this role, though none would admit it. She even had a set of photos in the book showing a man - yes, a real man agreed to pose for them – wearing a flowered housedress and ruffled apron, with his hair set in pin curls and a bandanna around his head ironing, vacuuming, baking, cleaning the bathroom and then looking lovely in a skirt and blouse, hair nicely arranged, greeting his wife when she came home from work. The closing caption read ‘I love serving my beautiful wife’.”
“I can’t believe it. This was how long ago? Do you have a copy of the book? I would love to read it” Lin Lu said, her excitement obvious.
“Well, maybe if I get invited to another splendid lunch like today’s, I might manage to bring the book along.”
“Deal” Lin Lu said quickly. “But how could a daughter of that woman become a pastor’s wife?”
“Fate. While Amos was in divinity school, I was a student at Radcliffe, the sister school to Harvard. We had a class together. It was truly love at first sight, for both of us. He was so handsome and his challenging positions in class impressed me. I had to have him. First my mother had to approve, not an easy thing with her beliefs. Since I commuted, I asked Amos to dinner, which he jumped at. He could only afford to go home except at Christmas and summer break so he was lonesome. Mother questioned him all through the meal and I could tell his answers pleased him, though I was embarrassed by some of her questions. You won’t believe what she did to test him. When we finished eating, she stood up and casually asked Amos if would mind picking up and washing the dishes while she and I worked on a dress she was making for me. I went from total embarrassment to absolute shock when he meekly agreed. Mother had an apron around him before you could shake a stick.
“We’ll be in my sewing room when you’re done, Amos. It’s off the livingroom.”
“Yes, ma’m” he answered politely.
“Mommy, you’re terrible” I said but giggled at the same time. “Poor Amos is never going to ask me out again. You’ve scared him off.”
“We’ll see, and don’t forget it was you that asked him out, right? I have good vibes about that boy. You’ll see.”
I was standing on a stool while Mommy pinned the hem when Amos came in the room, still wearing his apron.
“This reminds me of home. My mother made almost all her own clothes and much of mine too. She would often have me be her dummy to make dresses for my cousins, just like you’re doing now.”
“Amos, you wore a dress?” I asked.
“Well, not really, just while Mommy was fitting it, though sometimes I had to keep it on for a while if she got interrupted doing something else.”
“Did she teach you to sew?” Mother asked casually, apparently pretty sure of his response.
Amos blushed but admitted he did indeed learn to sew and actually made a dress for his mother.’’
“That’s good, Amos. I think your mother and I could be good friends. What else did she teach you?” Mother fished, again with the confidence that there were many other things that his mother taught him.
“Oh, you know, ah, things around the house, like…” he stammered.
“I’ll bet she taught you to iron, right?”
“How did you know that?” he asked, confirming what Mother had surmised.
“Oh, just logical progression. Anyone that gets involved in sewing must learn to iron. Bet she started you pressing seams and then hems and before long you were ironing the whole dress.”
“Yes, that’s exactly what happened” he admitted, surprised by Mother’s insight.
“Do you still sew and iron?”
“No, actually my father put a stop to all that when I was sixteen. He thought it was just a passing phase when I started at ten but when he discovered I was doing almost all the laundry, along with vacuuming, dusting and a little cooking he decided that this was not proper behavior for a man, especially a man that was slated to become a preacher.”
“So who does your laundry now?” Mother continued to probe and I suspected that she had a purpose to her questions.
“The college does, for a fee, of course.”
“Is that why your clothes are wrinkled? Don’t they have laundry rooms in the dorms?”
Wow, Mother was really drilling him now. I was sure I would not have another date with Amos.
“Well, they do, but they are in the women’s dorms and I’m too embarrassed to use them. I doubt that you would find a single guy doing his laundry there, never mind standing over the ironing board in full view of everyone. No, I can get by with my wrinkled clothes, just like most of the guys.”
“Unacceptable!” Mother said sharply. “Women do not like to see men wearing wrinkled clothes but they do love to watch a man ironing, right Millie?”
“Yes, Mommy” I answered meekly.
“So, young man, I think it’s time you became reacquainted with an iron and ironing board and a needle and thread. Plan on that on your next visit” she ordered.
I was shocked to hear Amos respond “Yes, ma’m.”
So, a few days later, and for almost every night for the next two years, Amos and I caught the same train from
to my house and he spent most of his time washing and ironing my clothes and stitching tears and mending hems on my dresses and skirts. Mother even had him make an apron for himself – a very frilly pink apron, the first of many. Quite an interesting courtship, wasn’t it? Would you believe Amos and my mother actually made my wedding gown together along with most of my lingerie? Of course, Amos did all the ironing of the silks and satins. While Mommy loves to sew, she hates to iron. It was all so beautiful and everyone asked who my designer was. I told them it was a secret.” Cambridge
“And today?” Lin Lu asked.
Mildred hesitated before answering, a sly grin on her face.
“Today? Well, he hasn’t made another wedding dress since the first one. No divorces in our family.”
“Millie! You’re teasing me, you know what I mean. Is Pastor Reynolds still like that?”
“Yes, he is, and has been every day of our marriage. I am clearly the head of our household and Amos loves it. But if you breathe a word of this to anyone I’ll shave your head, and worse.”
“This is all so fascinating. It’s hard to believe. I really think this should be broadcast all over the plant” Lin Lu said, picking up the microphone for the PA system.
Mildred smiled. “Go ahead, you’ll look lovely with all that pretty hair gone and you’re left with a shiny scalp. It’ll be fun to see.”
“You know I’m kidding, don’t you?” Lin Lu said, putting down the microphone. “I promised that everything we said, and do, will remain between ourselves, and I keep my promises. May I kiss you, Millie?” she asked, getting out of her chair.
“Maybe just a little peck on the cheek” Mildred answered but Lin Lu saw
the gleam in her eyes.
Lin Lu crossed over to Mildred’s chair and bent down and put a quick kiss on Mildred’s cheek.
“See, I did what I was told. But now I feel like being naughty and doing something awful.”
She kissed Mildred on the lips and held that position for several long minutes.
Mildred sighed and stood up. She put her arms around Lin Lu and said “I suppose proper manners would dictate that I return your gift.”
She then kissed Lin Lu for longer than the first kiss. Mildred moaned when she felt Lin Lu’s tongue probing her mouth. When the kiss ended, they hugged for several more minutes. Mildred unconsciously let her hands run down the soft material of Lin Lu’s dress to her bottom. Then suddenly conscious at what she was doing, she caressed the soft cheeks through the dress and slip underneath.
“Naughty girl” she said and spanked Lin Lu’s bottom. “You’re not wearing a girdle.”
“That’s not all I’m not wearing, my dear” Lin Lu whispered into Mildred’s ear as she continued her assault of the latter’s mouth with her tongue.
“Lin, my dear, as much as I want to take this to the next level, I can’t. I love my husband very much and I would never betray him. Furthermore, I’m not sure I could keep such a beautiful affair quiet. So again, for Amos’ sake, I have to be satisfied with us being kissing cousins. Okay?”
Mildred kissed Lin Lu again, briefly and pulled away from her.
“Cousins are known to get together often” Lin Lu said and winked.