Chapter 19: Back to school. Cheryl is enrolled in Baroness Von Wytenbach's Finishing School for Young Ladies of all Genders
Monday, December 28, 2015
Swiss Miss Sissy, Chapter 19
Chapter 19: Back to school. Cheryl is enrolled in Baroness Von Wytenbach's Finishing School for Young Ladies of all Genders
After we returned from our barbecue, I was practically dragged upstairs where Mistress' daughters escorted me towards the bathroom.
“First, let's get you relaxed and smelling like roses, then we'll get to work on your hair,” Martina said as she opened the tab and filled the bathtub. She added several different fancy oils and powders to the steaming water.
She tested the water temperature. “Perfect. Get undressed, Cheryl, and get in.”
It was getting eerily similar to the first time I met these ladies, I thought. “Thank you, Miss Martina,” I replied awkwardly. “I can take it from here.”
“Oh no, you can't!” said Ingrid, who was standing next to Brigitt in the doorway. Both had a wicked smile on their faces. “Now, no more dawdling, Cheryl. Clothes off and into your bath!”
Yep, very similar indeed, I thought as I stripped.
I felt very self-conscious as I got naked, surrounded by these three women. They were talking amongst themselves as they watched me. I couldn't understand what they were saying, but I'm pretty sure I was the topic. Presumably they were discussing my appearance and what to do with it. Brigitt had a nasty tendency to underline her words by prodding and probing me, and even slapping my behind. I was glad I could escape her by getting in the foamy water.
“You just relax, Cheryl. We'll handle the rest,” Martina told me as they finally left the bathroom. I allowed myself to lean back and close my eyes, feeling only the warm water nurse my body. I smelled the scent of spring flowers.
Perhaps I had dozed off, as this moment of solitude was over far too quickly. I heard footsteps approach. I had just opened my eyes as Martina entered the bathroom.
“How are you, sissy? Nice and relaxed? Very good. Oh my, don't you smell lovely? Give me your hand. Hmm, your skin is very soft and smooth. Excellent. Let's get to work on your hair.” She said as she grabbed the showerhead, pouring a stream of water over my head.
Shampoo, conditioner, lotion, oil. She poured the contents of one bottle after another on my hair, each time extensively rubbing the fluid into a lather and then carefully rinsing my long blonde hair before continuing with another bottle. It had actually been rather relaxing, her fingers softly massaging my scalp as she casually talked about trivial matters.
As if on cue, her sisters entered just when I got out of the tub.
Brigitt eyes honed in on me. “Someone smells very feminine. And it sure isn't Ingrid,” Brigitt said with a chuckle, causing her sister to smack her arm.
“Ow! Hey, it's true!” She said with feigned indignation. Ingrid just smacked her again.
“Will you two quit fooling around and get Cheryl a towel?” Martina admonished her sisters.
Brigitt reacted quickly, grabbing a towel and holding it open, an expectant smile on her lips. I answered her smile dutifully, stepped up to her and let her wrap the towel around me. She was very meticulous as she rubbed my skin dry.
Ingrid brought me another towel, which she wrapped around my long blond hair.
“Let's get you ready for bed,” Martina said gently.
“Bedtime already?” I asked in surprise. The sun wasn't even down yet.
“Of course, silly girl. School starts early, and you need to be well rested,” she replied. “Besides, you can't show up at such an exclusive school looking ragged and dressed in sack-cloth. You must be a picture perfect sissy, one that makes Mutter proud. And that will take a while.”
She didn't have to tell me that. Despite weeks of practice, I'd still spent quite some time on my appearance each morning. Not that I wanted to obviously, but I had to be conscientious. Madame Directrice's tolerance for mistakes was lessening by the day.
Still, this was silly. Normally, my shift would not even have ended yet. I tried to tell these women, but they would have none of that.
“Oh, be quiet Cheryl,” Ingrid snapped. “Get your ass back to your room. We've still got a lot of work to do.”
Flanked by Ingrid and Brigitt I headed back. The latter had put her arm around my waist, making me nervous. Especially since I had had bad experiences with stern women guiding me to and from the bathroom. At least they didn't handcuff me like Mistress Margot's maids were wont to do.
Back in my room they did not put me to bed, but sat me down before my vanity mirror. Then the three of them went to work on the things that couldn't wait until morning. Ingrid started brushing my hair, then began placing curlers. Martina gave me a manicure, while Brigitt removed what was left of my makeup and other imperfections that had escaped attention.
When they were done my expertly clipped and filed nails were given a bright red polish, my hair was rolled tightly around the curlers and a few stray body hairs removed. Even my eyebrows and had been carefully plucked.
Ingrid placed a protective cap over my scalp, while Ingrid handed me a babydoll and panties to wear for the night. Both were so sheer I wasn't sure they were there at all. She had a wicked grin on her face as I put them on.
Martina took my hand and gently directed me to my bed. I sat down, and she handed me a glass of water. “Here, drink this. You need to stay hydrated.”
I noticed that I was indeed thirsty. Well, it had been a hot bath, so I must have been sweating a bit too. I thanked her as I accepted the glass and took a sip. Then I gulped down the rest.
I lay down on the mattress and Martina pulled the blankets over me. I yawned as a warm cloud enveloped me. I must have been more tired than I realized, I thought as my substance was lost among the soft sheets of my bed.
“Goodnight Cheryl,” Martina said from far away. I could see her outline at the side of my bed, but it had suddenly gone rather dark in my room. What time was it again? I thought about asking, but it didn't seem important, so I just said goodnight to no-one in particular as nothingness came over me.
Usually I'm the first to get up out of bed, so I can start with my chores while the rest of the household is still fast asleep. Today however, I was rudely woken when the three sisters barged into my room unexpectedly.
“Wake up, Cheryl. It's time for school,” Martina spoke as she sat down on the side of my bed. “Let's get you ready for your first day.”
“Wha..? Whaz-zizt?” I replied groggily, not sure where I was or what was happening around me. Martina urged me upright, and I struggled to regain my wits.
I had trouble focusing as I desperately wanted to go back to sleep again, but I noticed that the three ladies got me out of bed as meekly I followed their lead.
They placed me in front of my vanity mirror once more, and started to work on my appearance. I felt Ingrid remove the curlers, while Martina began applying makeup.
I was still dazed when Brigitt brought me my outfit for the day. I obeyed her instructions, even though I cannot remember what they were, and felt the various items cover me as she put them on. The tight but familiar pressure of the corset. The awkward prodding of the plug. The push of a gaff. The instability of the heels. She pulled a one-piece dress over my head, and then I was done.
The rest of the morning was a blur as well. I know I met Mistress, and we had breakfast together. I think I even had coffee, as unlikely as that may seem.
At some point my drowsiness was finally lifting. Though I still felt a rumble in my head that reminded me of a mild hangover. Did I have alcohol the other day?
“Are you awake, sleepy-head?” I heard Mistress say.
“Yes Mistress,” I answered, unable to suppress a yawn. I wanted to rub my eyes. But Mistress grabbed my hand. “Don't. You'll mess up you makeup.”
I blinked in surprise. “I'm sorry, Mistress. I must really have been exhausted from our picnic yesterday.” I focused on my surroundings. “Wait... where are we?”
I recognized the car. I was sitting next to Mistress on the back seat, while Madame Directrice sat behind the wheel. I felt motion as the car changed lanes.
Mistress ran her fingers through my hair, where I had leaned against the head rest. “We’re almost at Freistaat, my dear,” Mistress answered, misinterpreting my question. “I'm glad you woke on your own accord. I would have hated to disturb my sleeping beauty, but we cannot let the Baroness wait.”
“The Baroness?” I echoed hesitantly. Then I remembered
Oh, right. The Baroness Von Wytenbach, I thought. One of Mistress friends who shared her kink. Who had made a school dedicated to it. I was going to sissy-school...
I cold chill went down my spine. All traces of drowsiness were instantly gone.
The car left the main road and drove towards the industrial centre. We passed several warehouses, then came up to a gate. Several pedestrians were standing by a small building where guards in blue uniforms were checking papers.
When they saw us approach, the guards raised the barrier. Madame Directrice answered their greeting and drove into Freistaat. Now the bland architecture of the industrial district was replaced with the faux-traditional style of sissy-ville.
It was still early, but already people were up and about. Most of them were locals, busy with opening their shops and businesses. Some tourists too, clearly anxious to witness the warped world of Freistaat.
As we drove past, I saw a sissy standing near the entrance of a store selling very adult items. The morning shadows still covered much of the narrow streets, but a single ray of sunshine had found its way between walls and rooftops to illuminate her purple dress. It was a pretty dress, but it looked alien or her. She was probably new and clearly needed a lot more training.
I saw light being reflected from tears. She was arguing with a woman, pointing at the store and shaking her head. The woman who looked at the sissy with amused contempt. Then she simply grabbed the sissy and dragged her through the shop's door like a petulant child.
Then we turned a corner and this slice of Freistaat life was out of my field of view.
We reached the small square at the centre of the district, and I saw the school loom over its north side. It was completely illuminated by the rising sun, giving life to the red brick walls and marble steps. Two pillars flanked the main entrance and carried the façade where the school's name was carved in stone: Von Wytenbach's Etikette-Schule für junge Damen aller Geschlechter.
Madame Directrice drove the car across the square and parked it near the steps in front of the main entrance. She got out of the car to open the door for the passengers as was customary, but Mistress was clearly impatient. She opened the door herself, got out and offered me her hand. Her smile was unusual, radiating... pride? Like she was anxious to show me off to the baroness.
I felt myself blush as I took her hand. Using her support for balance I got out with all the feminine grace I had. I heard my heels click on the stone tiles, and I sensed how low they were. Mistress pulled me upright and I felt the morning sun stroke my face. I looked down to inspect my appearance.
I straightened my dress, which only now I really noticed. It was a very simple pristine white party dress. It covered my shoulders, but left my arms bare. It showed some modest cleavage, but nothing trashy. It was cut a bit tight at my waist, but the skirt fell loose around my thighs, showing a lot of leg but keeping my panties well hidden. It didn't incorporate any frills or lace. Compared with the poofy monstrosities I usually wore, it actually looked rather classy.
My legs were bare, and ended in two white patent mary-janes that felt remarkably comfortable. I titled my foot to check the heel. No more than two inches, lower than anything I've worn since mistress' daughters introduced me to high heels.
Mistress saw my surprised expression. “I wanted you to wear your normal height, show off your pretty legs, but the baroness insisted you'd wear lower heels. Part of your training program, I reckon.”
“I see Mistress,” I replied absentmindedly. I was just happy to feel the unexpected freedom of not being continuously hobbled.
Still, it didn't expel my rising dread of being in drag in public. I looked around me. The square was mostly empty, for which I was grateful. I saw some pedestrians at the other side, but aside from some curious glances, they ignored us. I sighed, grateful it was still so early in the morning.
Another car was parked close by. I recognized it as miss Rosenberg's. “Margot is already inside,” Madame Directrice spoke as she looked up from her phone.
“Good. Let's join them,” Mistress replied, then turned to me. Her expression was grave. “Listen Cheryl, Gisele was so generous to let you enter her program even though it was already booked to capacity with a two-year waiting list. I expect you to show her all the respect, obedience and gratitude she is due, understand?”
I adjusted my posture before replying, my back erect daintily, my eyes lowered in a humble expression. “Yes mistress. I will be perfectly behaved and do nothing to dishonour myself or tarnish your good name.”
She was still holding my hand, but with her other she tilted my chin up, making me look into her eyes. She was smiling.
“I know, my dear.” Her hand went through my hair and she gave me a soft peck on the cheek. I felt an elated blush radiate from my cheeks.
“Shall we?” She asked me as she nodded towards the entrance.
“Yes Mistress,” I replied in my most feminine voice as she led me away.
Still holding my hand she escorted me to the doorway. I was glad Mistress was there to hold me, because with every click of my heels on the marble steps did my apprehension grow. My heart was pounding out of my chest when we finally reached the main door. It looked massive, like the main gate of some foreboding castle, completely impervious to any intruders trying to get inside.
Or any prisoners trying to get out, I suddenly thought.
There was a massive knocker in the middle of the door, but mistress ignored it in favour for an unremarkable button next to it. From an unseen source a mechanical voice asked us to state our intentions.
Mistress introduced us to the voice. “I'm Christina Jaeger, here to deliver Cheryl to Gisele.”
“One moment, please,” the metal voice replied.
After a couple of seconds I heard a hard click in the door and it swung open on it's own accord. It revealed a sizeable entrance hall where three people were already present.
I immediately recognized Miss Rosenberg and Daniëlle. The girl was wearing an outfit identical to mine, so I assumed it to be a uniform of sorts. Although she had said she had accepted her fate as a feminized sissy, she still looked far from happy. Her aunt held her by the neck as if she would otherwise bolt.
The third person was the baroness Von Wytenbach herself. She was inspecting Daniëlle like she was cattle, turning the girl's head side to side, then turned her around to have a good look at her from behind. I couldn't hear what was said, but it was clearly she was very content with the girl. Both ladies chatted elated with one another as they ignored Daniëlle's sulk.
“Gisele!” Mistress called out, causing the baroness to look up. A wide smile grew even wider as she saw us.
“Christina! Cheryl! Welcome, welcome,” she said as she hurried towards us, completely forgetting about Daniëlle. “So glad you could make it.”
“Well, we couldn't let Cheryl here miss her first day at your very expensive school, now could we?” Mistress said sniggering as the two woman greeted each other warmly.
The baroness laughed. “I usually do not play favourites, but for you and Margot I can rearrange the schedule a bit.”
There was some more chatter between the two, then Mistress turned to me. “Cheryl, where are your manners? Give the baroness a proper greeting. Now, young lady.”
“Of course, Mistress,” I answered hurriedly, startled by her sudden stern tone. It wasn't even my fault, I thought. Mistress was supposed to introduce me before I was even allowed to speak.
I bobbed a deep and respectful curtsey. “Greetings Freifrau Von Wytenbach,” I said humbly and submissively, trying to remember the words Mistress had whispered to me as we entered. “Thank you for inviting us and allowing me to enrol in your exclusive training program. I am overjoyed at this opportunity.” My voice didn't quite match the enthusiasm of my words. “I will strive to do the utmost to uphold the standards, practices, virtues and... er... traditions your school exemplifies.”
The baroness was silent as she regarded me, and I was getting worried that I might have gotten something wrong, or made a 'faux pas' somehow. Then she smiled as she turned towards Mistress.
“See Christina? Her bob is much better now. Always start with low heels when teaching them to curtsey. At least until they get it right.”
“Low heels? Where is the fun in that?” Mistress said with a snigger. “Next you'll tell me not to plug my sissies.”
The baroness shook her head in mock annoyance. “Don't tell me you plugged her? You did? Oh well, we can work around that. Get all those bad habits out of her.”
She observed me again, looking me up and down. Next she started to fiddle with me as she had done with Daniëlle, turning my head from side, turning me around, touching me in places that almost made me squirm.
Finally she looked straight at me, smiling thoughtfully, but directed her words to Mistress. “But I think you were right when you told me she is a natural. I have no doubt her performance will be exemplary in no-time.”
“Sounds like Cheryl will have it easy here,” Mistress replied.
A sense of relief came over me. Perhaps this would not be so bad after all. Just do as they say, learn my lessons, and do not attract any undue attention.
The baroness barked a laugh. “Oh goodness, no! Really Christina, do you think so little of me? That I would settle for good enough in my students? No, I strive for perfection! Unattainable for sure, but that does not mean one should stop trying. Everyone gets a education specifically tailored to her needs and capabilities. If Cheryl really is as talented as you say, we can just raise the bar higher for her. We'll keep her busy, be sure of that.”
I gasped in dismay, which both women surely heard but chose to ignore. Was I be spared nothing, I thought.
“Very good,” Mistress said with a content grin.
Mistress took my hand, then escorted me towards miss Rosenberg and Daniëlle. Mistress and Miss Margot exchanged some pleasantries, complementing each other with their very dainty sissies.
I curtsied for Miss Margot, saying something that was far too flattering for this horrid woman. Daniëlle bobbed for Mistress Christina. I noticed some improvement, but from Miss Rosenberg's frown I gathered it was far removed from anyone's standard.
I had actually contemplated performing a poor bob as well. If I underperformed, I might lower the standard the baroness would set for me. I decided against it, though. In mistress presence, I simply did not have the heart to do anything that would reflect ill on her. But I would do it later, I promised myself.
Then we greeted one another. We both curtsied. I couldn't help that mine was better, but I did my best not to upstage her. The poor girl had just come to terms with being a sissy, and I would not let anyone get the impression she's a poor one at that.
I matched Daniëlle's slow and awkward pace, giving her time to remember the necessary moves that by now came natural to me. I made sure we simultaneously dipped to our lowest point and then stood erect again.
We didn't get any further instructions from our keepers, so we just exchanged some meaningless pleasantries.
“Pleasure to see you, Cheryl. You look lovely today.”
“Thank you, Daniëlle. As do you. Your dress is really becoming.”
“You are too kind. Are you as excited as me to starts our education here?”
“I love your hair,” I suddenly said.
From the edge of my vision I saw the surprise in the baroness' face. I heard Miss Margot chuckle.
“My... hair?” Daniëlle said with a blush on her face.
Daniëlle's tresses were slightly longer than mine, but usually bound in a ponytail or some ridiculous hairdo her aunt forced on her. Now however, she wore it loose, and her chestnut brown locks of hair fell over her shoulders and onto her back, like a halo around her face. It gave her the playful wildness of a girl that was on the verge of being a woman.
“Yes, It's beautiful...” I said mesmerized as Daniëlle played with a loose tress. Then I remembered we were being observed and regained my senses. “Er... I mean, I compliment you on... your choice of hairdo. It is very pretty.” I looked to the side to see if my slip had been noticed. Margot and Mistress were grinning knowingly, while the baroness observed us with interest.
Now I felt I was blushing furiously as well.
“Is something going on between those two?” The baroness asked.
“Just some harmless sissy love, Gisele. Isn't it cute?” Miss Margot said with a wide smile. “Though you may need to keep an eye on these two, because they simply cannot wait to nibble each other's clitties, can't you girls?” Miss Rosenberg gave us a mean wink. It made me shiver with confusion and humiliation. Daniëlle closely studied the tips of her shoes.
“That certainly didn't take long,” the baroness replied.
“Well, we are partially to blame for that,” Mistress told her. “We've kept them paired up the last few weeks. So they could learn from one another, you understand. As a matter of fact, that is the reason why we are enrolling them together.”
The baroness had a thoughtful expression. “I see. But you must realize that at this school we tend to... discourage... these kinds of friendships. The training puts emphasis on a sissy's commitment to her dominant, and infatuations between sissies are a needless distraction from their education.”
I looked up confounded. Why was she implying Daniëlle and I had feelings for one another? She was just my friend! And how dare she interfere with our friendship. I said nothing, though.
Miss Margot made a dismissive gesture with her hand. “Do as you please, Gisele. We wouldn't dare second guess your methods.” Mistress nodded in agreement.
“And I'm sure the girls feel the way. Isn't that right, you two?”
Daniëlle and I uttered an affirmation, but it lacked enthusiasm.
“Excellent,” the baroness said. “Then I suggest we'll introduce the sissies to their classmates. Follow me, ladies.”
She led us through a side door and down a corridor, towards a part of the complex she called the 'novice'-wing.
On some unspoken agreement Mistress and miss Rosenberg had traded sissies, with the latter locking arms with me while Mistress as holding Daniëlle's hand. They marched us down the corridor while the baroness told us some trivia about the school.
I felt very uncomfortable to be back in this mean woman's embrace, but a small part of my mind was mulling about something very peculiar.
Where were all the students? We passed a couple of staff members in the corridor, and I could hear activity on the other side of the walls. But I saw not a single sissy.
And where had Madame Directrice gone?
We passed a heavy-set door and came to an elevator, where the baroness gestured us inside. She turned to the control panel, but ignored the buttons and took out a keycard that she held in front of a sensor. There was a confirming beep, and the doors closed.
Another mystery. There were four buttons on the panel. Basement, ground floor, first floor and second floor. That seemed to correspond with the height of the building when I saw it from the outside. Was there another floor I had missed somehow?
Then I felt it. We were going down. To the basement? Daniëlle noticed too, her eyes were wide with confusion.
I watched the display. It turned from zero to minus one. But the elevator kept moving.
I looked at the baroness, who give me an emphatic smile, then turned to Mistress. “They generally get a bit confused at this point.” Mistress and miss Rosenberg sniggered. They obviously knew more than I did.
The elevator hummed as it descended further and further.
Finally the baroness turned to me and Daniëlle and answered our unspoken question. “We are going to an underground bunker complex. It was here before the school opened. Before Freistaat even. But the old entrance opened up right beneath this building. At first I did not know what to do with it, but after a couple of... unfortunate incidents, I decided to move the nursery and novice wing there. Much more secure.”
I gasped. “It's a prison!?” I cried out in disbelief.
“Cheryl! Behave!” Miss Margot snapped at me. “How dare you talk to the baroness like that? Apologize this instant!”
I wanted to protest. Tell her this was insane. That they were all insane. I looked at Mistress, who gave me a stern look.
I bobbed a respectful curtsey instead. “I'm very sorry, baroness. I... I don't know what came over me. You are gracious enough to take me into your exclusive school, and I had the audacity to speak ill of it.”
The baroness did not seem offended at all. More like amused, if anything. “It's all right, Cheryl. I know this is a bit strange for you. Besides, 'prison' is not the worst term I've heard. Even some of my staff members like to call it 'the pit', and this the 'hellevator',” she said with a chuckle.
I must have grown pale on the spot.
“They are just joking, girl!” the baroness quickly added. “You'll see it is very cosy and has all the comforts you could wish for. It's just that not all sissies are as well-behaved as you are. Some are even...” she let a pause fall “...unruly.”
I gasped. A hidden spot at the back of my mind thought: 'good for them!'. Everything else simply felt that resisting one's feminization was very unnatural.
Then her face grew serious again. “So for their own protection is was necessary to have them... adjust... to their situation in a environment we completely control. Until we are certain we can safely place them in one of the Houses above ground.”
“Houses?” I asked hesitantly.
“I'll come to that later,” she told me. “For now, just be your proper sissy-self and you'll be fine. See this as an opportunity to further your feminization without any outside distractions.”
“That's great, baroness.” I said with a difficult smile.
She smiled in return, then the elevator finally stopped. “Ah, we are here.”
The door slid open and revealed sissy-school's underworld.
I had to admit the underworld looked nothing like I had feared. After stepping out of the elevator we arrived in a empty room, with concrete floor, walls and ceiling. Hard fluorescent lights removed all traces or darkness.
Several doors opened up on the room. The baroness nodded towards the one on the left. “That's the nursery,” she said, but did not elaborate further.
She walked over to the one on the opposite wall. It was a heavy steel door that could probably survive a nuclear blast. She held her card in front of a sensor, then typed in a number code on a keypad. A buzz was audible form the door, and the baroness turned the handle.
What I saw on the other side could be described in one word: posh.
The baroness gestured me and Daniëlle to enter. Wonder-struck I stepped over the threshold, Daniëlle at my side. The girl's surprise even overcame her taciturnity “Wow... This is amazing.”
“This is the common area,” the baroness explained. Here you and your fellow students can relax after a hard day studying, though some tasks and exercises take place here as well.”
The room was very spacious. And completely redecorated. Not a trace remained of its origins as a bunker. The floor was completely laminated and interspersed with plush carpets. Most of the walls were plastered in white, though there was some warm yellow as well. The ceiling consisted of bright wooden planks. Even the metal door through which we had come was covered with wood on this side.
It was hard to imagine that this place was goodness knows how far under the ground. There was even a fireplace on the far end. And windows! On the left and right walls were small opaque windows, through which bright sunlight fell, which mixed with the light of the various lamps.
The baroness smiled as she saw my wonder. “This helps maintain the natural day-night cycle,” she explained. “Depending on the time of day lamps shine on the windows. Bright lights at daytime, reddish at twilight and darkness at night.”
Daniëlle was standing next to me as were looked around the room. I suddenly realized she was holding my hand.
The room was decorated like a lounge area, with modern furniture. Sofas were placed around the fireplace, close to which was also a large television set. A wide table with comfortable chairs was placed on the other side. A large bookcase completed the homely picture.
For a room made for the training of sissies, it didn't even look all that girly. The only concessions seemed to be a large mirror and fully stocked vanity table, as well as a couple of stuffed animals and dolls scattered around the room.
There were two more doors visible. “That corridor leads to your private quarters, the bathroom and dining room,” the baroness told us. “The other one to the classrooms.”
“Where is everyone?” Daniëlle suddenly asked. “Where are the other students?”
The baroness gave her a knowing smile. “We do not want to disturb your classmates, so they are in their rooms until your sponsors have left. ”
“Yes. The ladies that have paid a lot of money for you to start your training here.” She nodded to Mistress Christina and Margot. “Your aunt even offered double the usual fare so you could start on such short notice. Isn't that nice of her.”
Daniëlle suddenly felt the need to study the floor. “Yes, Gisele. Very nice...”
“I refused, of course,” the baroness added. “Being allowed to instruct the precious niece of my good friend was reward enough.”
“Say 'thank you', Daniëlle,” Miss Rosenberg told the girl.
“Thank you,” her niece muttered.
“Daniëlle...” Miss Margot said warningly.
Daniëlle looked up, a forced smile on her face. “Thank you for enrolling me to your school, Gisele. And for giving me priority. I'm honoured that you consider me worthy of special consideration. I hope I can live up to your expectations.” Then she bobbed a curtsey, as hopeless as ever.
“I have no doubt you will,” the baroness said tenderly “You'll be a proper young lady in no-time.”
“How long would that be?” I heard myself say. “Er... I mean, how long is our education, baroness?”
“That depends entirely on you,” she said, but nothing more.
One of the doors suddenly opened. Out stepped madame Directrice.
“Ah, ladies. There you are already. I brought the girl's luggage to their rooms. Everything seems to be in order.”
“Thank you, Esther. What do you say, Christina? Shall we kiss these little ladies goodbye and leave them in Gisele's good care?” Mistress simply nodded.
“You... are leaving?” I said dismayed. “Already?”
Mistress Christina put her arm around me. “Of course, silly girl,” she told me gently. “You need to focus on your studies. I would just get in the way. But don't worry. We'll see each other soon enough.”
“When?” I asked pleading.
She didn't answer that one. “I'll walk you to your room.”
Disheartened, I let Mistress guide me to the door.
I suddenly noticed a plastic box in the corner, a glass circle reflecting the light.
“Is... Is that a camera?” I asked.
“Of course it is, silly girl,” the baroness said. “Your tutors cannot be here all the time. For your own safety, we need to keep a watchful eye on you.”
“Oh...” I didn't have the heart to think too much about that.
We walked down the corridor, passing several doors. “These are the rooms of your classmates,” the baroness explained. I looked at the doors. They seemed normal enough, but somehow reminded me of those found in a prison.
The baroness gestured at two entrances at the end. “These are yours. Daniëlle, you take the one on the left. Cheryl the other one.”
Mistress escorted me inside. The room was smaller than my room at her mansion, but not by much. The bed looked soft and inviting and there was a small table with a plush chair. Obviously there was a mirror and vanity table that doubled as a writing desk. There was one of those false windows in the far wall, albeit a much smaller one.
Mistress sat me down on the chair, then kissed me on the cheek. “Now, be a good girl, Cheryl. I expect you to obey your tutor's commands like they were my own, understand?”
“Now you just wait here until Gisele comes to collect you.” She pointed to a small display and speaker with a green button next to the door. “See that? If you need anything, just press that button and say what's on your mind.”
I did not say anything. I wanted to beg her not to leave me here. To take me back with her. I'd be good, I promise.
But that is not what she'd want to hear. So I just nodded.
She gave me another kiss, then turned around and walked out without looking back.
Then Miss Rosenberg came in. “I couldn't leave without saying goodbye to my favourite house guest,” she said with a grin.
I was too downhearted to be afraid of her, but was unprepared for her vicious kiss. She put her mouth aggressively over mine and stuck her tongue in deep. I was gasping when she finally pulled out. “Have fun, my dear,” she said as she closed the door behind her. It fell shut with a loud clang.
I watched the door until all was quiet in the corridor. I walked over to door and tried the handle. I was not surprised to find it wouldn't budge.
I looked at the green button, but decided against asking for information. I sat down on the chair and just waited for my education, whatever it might encompass, to begin.