Lilith Langtree’s – Chaos Magic

TG Fiction – Nothing is True and Everything is Permitted

Eww.

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March 4th, 2011 Posted 14:53

They went in, and eww. Now keep in mind the mass was 7X5 inches roughly. Yeah, I know.

They said ”hey, there’s fluid in here. Let’s take a sample.”

TWO LITERS LATER! That’s a freaking coke bottle worth of goo, people.  Think about that the next time you go to the store and pull down that 2 liter bottle of your favorite soda. I think I’ll drink water if it’s all the same to you.

“My that’s quite a sample you have there.”

Yes, that means it was a cyst. That’s good news in that the entire mass wasn’t cancer. And now we wait for the biopsy results. On the plus side, she’s like 5 pounds lighter. It’s like giving birth or something. Yeeesh. 

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Another Cute Star Sapphire image

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March 2nd, 2011 Posted 14:50

image

Click on the pic for larger image in order to read the word bubbles.

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A hard and soft day

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March 1st, 2011 Posted 19:50

Some of you may remember that someone that is close to me might or might not have ovarian cancer. I went with her to Mobile, Alabama to see an expert in the field.

It’s been two weeks (i think) since I rushed her to the emergency room for her CAT scan because of some intense abdominal pains she was having. The attending physician there told her it was ovarian cancer without doing any more tests than that.

Ladies and gentlemen introducing idiot number one. Idiot number two came in a few minutes later, an oncologist, who told her she was going to die and referred her to another clinic. 

Two days later i found out that there were no blood tests, and no biopsy performed. So what i was wondering was, how in the hell were they able to tell it was cancer? All you can tell from a CAT scan is that something is there, not what it is.

So, I took over and called around hunting down someone that could perform the biopsy. A private clinic an hour north of here raised their hand and said we can do it. So I made an appointment. Introducing idiot number three. We waited for another week, went there and the doctor told her that they don’t do that kind of test there. They thought I was calling to have a pap smear performed.

Excuse me, but what does having a pap smear and Ovarian Cancer have in common? Nothing. Pap Smears are for cervical cancer.

Luckily that doctor referred us to someone that could actually help. Thus today’s trip.

Now that we’ve seen him, we know that it could be a few different things, least of which could be a cyst, worst of which could be cancer, and he said they needed a biopsy in order to tell.

DUH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So, we’re sitting there in the consultation room , and there’s all these handy dandy cut-away models of the lower half of a woman. Don’t worry they weren’t real. 😉

She was crying after the examination, thinking the worst, like a lot of people do when the C-word is mentioned.  She pointed down at the cut-away half of a woman’s butt (a side shot… kinda gross now that I think about it.)  She giggles amidst her tears.

So I took advantage of the moment and picked it up acting like a professional… maybe a professor or something. “This is your butt.”

Then acting like a valley girl, “Really. OMG my butt’s never looked so awesome! I’m like a size zero or something! And it’s so firm!”

That got her laughing, but of course the doctor chose that moment to come in and look at me as if to say, “Quit fondling my plastic butt, I paid good money for that, and you’re not holding it right.”

The moral of this story is don’t be an idiot and leave the doctor’s plastic butt alone.

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Clichés

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February 15th, 2011 Posted 14:27

They are the bane of every writer’s existence. Reviewers call them on the overly used plotlines and oftentimes they are truly awful. I’ve tried to stay away from them as much as possible, but sometimes they are unavoidable.

The only way to nullify clichés is to make them your own.  It’s what I did with the Mary Sue element in a recent story and I think what I’m planning to do in my next one as well.

I’m taking on the Mall. You thought you’d be sick of hearing about a place where almost every TG writer describes in nauseating detail? Well, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet.

What are your most hated clichés? Maybe there’s a story there to make you say, “Man, I can’t believe she wrote that.” Whether it would be said in a good or a bad way would be for you to decide.

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Just a fun Image I found

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February 12th, 2011 Posted 13:54

image

 

Considering the material I’ve been writing about as of late, I thought this was appropriate.

If you need a larger image then click on this link.

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A little Update on the last blog

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October 27th, 2010 Posted 14:51

Just to add to the negativity that’s been running rampant –  there were more comments this week about not enough comments.

Here’s a hint. Read the last blog. Here’s a link: Last Blog

And it looks like that pop culture thing is spot on. remember when I said to go look at the list at Amazon and write something in those genres? Yeah? Okay, here’s an update on that as well

Courtroom Drama, Nerds Winning, Greek Pantheon, Magic (Fantasy style) , Mystery, and

OH SHIT! LOOK OUT EVERYONE! A SUPERHERO STORY! EGADS! TEH RETCON REALLY  IS RUINING MY INTERWEBS! 

Since it’s the week before elections, I’m not mentioning all the political Non-fiction books out there, and I don’t think Cooking Books are good subject matter out of the kitchen.

I’m kind of surprised at the number of “New Authors” this week though. (wink wink, nudge nudge)

Summaries still suck.

Join Stevie/Stevie as he goes somewhere boring and does boring stuff where you too can be bored reading thousand word chapters, once a week, twice if you’re lucky.

Here’s the deal:

Do you A: Want to release a 1000 words and just when the reader is getting into the story, pull the rug out from under her and expect 40 comments on a whole lot of nothing.

or

Do you B: Want to release 5000-8000+ words and actually give the readers something to comment about other than the fantastic shortness of your chapters.

“Man, your chapter sure is short. I wish I could remember what last week’s plot was about, but I can’t muster up enough energy to care, since I have better things to do than reread the previous chapter time and again to figure out what the hell is going on.”

Unless your story is a drabble or a scene out of a life (thus complete), then 1000 words chapters suck. I’ve written, and still write single scenes that span more than 1000 words, so do most successful authors.  I’ve heard the counter to this argument, already, so don’t bother. Here it is: Popular authors often have short chapters amidst their longer ones, sometimes a hundred words or less.

Yeah, but the key phrase here is AMONGST THE LONGER ONES!!!!111 eleventy 11!!!1

I’m going back to writing my Magic (Fantasy Style) (Notice that’s one of the current popular storylines) story. Still not done with the first chapter yet and it’s over 5000+ words already.  GASP!

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How to Garner the attention you deserve… or at least think you do.

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October 16th, 2010 Posted 13:42

There’s been a large spawn of negativity recently on BCTS, for various reasons: Reduction in comments, Kudos, Hits, RetCon still destroying their interwebs (even though there hasn’t been but one or two stories posted in that universe over the last two weeks), too many series, too little stand alone stories, etcetera, ad nauseum.

Go ahead and make up your own reason and it equates to a bunch of people bitching and bringing down the attitude of the whole. My own opinion? I think it boils down to a few things.

Warning: Some of you might be offended. If you have delicate sensibilities then you might not want to read these hard truths or sometimes course language.

1) Inadequacy – Some new authors or some older authors see others applauded for winning the Hit Count contest or not receiving well earned attention of their peers for something they’ve produced. They might be feeling that their story/plot/style/presentation wasn’t good enough. A semi-valid concern.

2) Jealousy – This one pretty much speaks for itself.  “Why should they get all of the attention? I’m great! I even have a friend here that says so, and they’re just as great as me!”

3) Genuine suckability – Their writing sucks, their plot sucks, their character development sucks, in fact everything about their attempt pretty much sucks. They couldn’t write their way out of cliché to save their word possessor, which by the way is Notepad, so even that sucks.

Here’s some ways to break out of that negativity and produce something that the masses will actually comment on, scramble to read, and leave kudos for.

Pre-first thing: You need to figure out if you write for yourself or for others. Frankly I think the writing for one’s self is a bullshit excuse that an author makes when they want to appear “above it all” when they really aren’t. If you were then why in God’s name are you posting it for public consumption and whining about not receiving accolades? If you are truthful then just go ahead and admit you want to be recognized in some way shape or form. Don’t worry, it’s human nature. Everyone wants and needs to feel appreciated for something that they put a lot of work into.

If someone tells you any different, then tell them to take their sanctimonious ass down the road and sell their shit somewhere else, because they’re a hypocrite.

First thing: If you’ve tried over and over again to produce something that you actually think is readable only receive nothing for your attempt, START OVER.  This means Create a nom de plume (pen name) because obviously everyone is avoiding your stuff because they equate your name to bad writing and clichéd plots. Do you have to stay this way and hide yourself? No. Eventually, once you start receiving the accolades you think you deserve, (After two or three successful stories) you can come out of the closet and let everyone know they can go suck on a pickle because it was you, and they’ve been wrong about your writing for some time. Oh, and I’m talking about an actual story…  10,000+ words, and not in 200 word chapters spaced a week apart.

Second thing: NEW MATERIAL!!!!! Nobody wants to read the same old boring crap over and over and over again unless they’re a Stephanie Meyers Twilight fan. (Hey, sometimes crap sells, who knew?) Anyway, even a cliché redone in a new way can be good. The trick is to present it in an interesting new way.  So how do you find that new and inventive way of finding out what’s popular? Introduce yourself to popular culture.

“What, you mean writing old Archie Bunker and Barney Miller jokes into my storyline won’t work because that was the seventies and this is 2010, and very few people will get it?”

Yes, that’s what I mean.

Open up your browser and go to Amazon.com. I’ll even give you the link.

Amazon’s Bestseller List

Look up the top selling books. What’s selling? Is it still clichéd vampire crap. Nope.

Here’s some of the latest topics:

Egyptian Pantheon story, Nerds winning story, Politics, Cloak & Dagger, Magic&Fantasy, Mystery thriller.

Now here’s a question for you: Do you see this subject anywhere on the list I just gave you? Whiney crossdresser endlessly describing the clothes they are putting on over and over again, scene after scene? How about, Everyday boring life of a crossdresser ‘getting away with it’ ?

It’s been done. TO DEATH! It’s been done so many times that the bones have been picked over, bleached in the sun, buried, only to be found by archeologists a billion years in the future fossilized and put into a museum .  But I bet you I can find five or six stories like this on the front page at BCTS and the author is sitting there wondering why they aren’t being celebrated as masterworks.

There has to be some kind of plot… an actual plot, where the main character is engaged in doing something other than  dressing in women’s clothes.

This doesn’t mean piling more clichéd crap on the old in order to make it ‘better’. Example of what not to do: “I know! I’ll have my crossdressing hero’s father or mother, disapprove! Holy crap, they’ll love it!!! I’ll even have them beat the hero or kick them out of the house! They’ll definitely love that!”

No, no we won’t. We’ll click the “Back” button and find something else to read. If that’s all you have to go on then you’ve already shot yourself in the foot and killed your story. Hence more suckage.

Still more plot advice”: Get over the annoying EMO character that is down in the dumps and wants to suck on the barrel of a pistol every five minutes. While there is always a place in your repertoire for a depressing story, the goal here is to IMPROVE your popularity. In other words, do it later, after you’ve established yourself and then you can show how diverse you are.

For the most part, people want to read about who they fantasize being. This means that they can identify with the main character, but then the character grows and becomes powerful/strong willed/brave/whatever. Why not break the stereotype and have the crossdresser be the one that solves the crime instead of being the whiny little bitch that everyone wants to slap up side the head for being a whiny little bitch.

Okay, you’ve got a new pen name, a semi-original plot, and an engaging character.

Write your story.

When you’re done and ready for posting, write a decent summary. Dear God, some of the summaries I’ve read…

“Steve becomes Stevie and learns about herself.”

Really? That’s the best you can do? It sucks. Try again.

“The trials and tribulations of Steve/Stevie.”

Oh—My—God. That sucks even worse. Anymore suckier and there will probably be a Black Hole involved somewhere.

“Steve turns into Stevie and then goes to a party, meets a boy, and gets taken home, only to find out that the boy is really a girl, they get married and live happily ever after. Read my story and please review because I can’t write a summary, but the story is really good.”

Congratulations, Earth has just been destroyed by a singularity.

Here’s a hint. If your summary sucks, odds are very very very very good that your story sucks just as much, so people are going to ignore it.  You’re setting the tone here. Do better… in fact, get someone else to write your summary.

Pictures: Some people don’t like them. I do. Ask yourself this: How do you shop? Well I go out and browse around until something catches my eye, then I look at it closer and decide if i want to buy it or not. Same thing goes into the packaging of your story. It needs to be eye-catching.

This means it needs a title better than “The Adventures of Steve/Stevie”

This means it needs a good summary

And this means it needs a nice picture, preferably of the main character, so people already have an face to put to the name when you invariably don’t describe your character well enough to begin with. (I do this all the time. Don’t feel bad.)

Post. Reap the Rewards. in comments, kudos, hits, whatever you need to validate yourself.

How was that? Did I say Suck too much?

And just because I like cool pictures… here’s one.

latex_princess_by_elenaevil1

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Birds of Prey (Unfinished Story)

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October 7th, 2010 Posted 12:23

This was originally going to be the Twisted Fanfiction story I mentioned a few times. It’s in the Morpheus Twisted Universe and credit goes to Morpheus for the original idea. I was writing along and then the whole FM pedo thing came about. I just haven’t had the heart to continue and promote a story that originates on a site like that, so I haven’t written any more and don’t plan to.

It’s about halfway finished and I’ll end the story with a summary of where I was going with the idea, so you’ll have some sort of closure.

“Are you coming out or what? We’re missing all the sun!” Dinah yelled from the other side of the door.

I looked at myself in the bathroom mirror and shook my head. “Go ahead, I’ll be right there.”

Why did I let her talk me into spending the day sunning in her back yard? Why, because I just had to brag about the beach back home. It was my own fault.

Ever since I moved to Spiral, I’ve been trying to fit in with my extended family. My parents were killed in a drive-by less than a year ago and my only surviving relatives were living smack dab in Twisted Central, the town of Spiral.

What’s Twisted, you may ask?

About fifty some odd years ago, some dumbass that ‘had’ to see Antarctica, contracted some funky disease called the Kinkaide Virus… or his name was Kinkaide and he caught the Antarctic Flu Virus, one of those things. Well a shitpot full of people died in America and those that lived, they had children. Those children are the Twisted.

Here’s where it gets all sci-fi.

There’s supposed to be some funky connection between the kids and ‘a quantum field’. Yeah, I know. You don’t have to tell me how out there this all sounds, but if you haven’t seen someone go through a twist, then I don’t want to hear a word from you. The first time I saw one was about six months ago during lunch at school.

One moment I was just sitting there enjoying — hold on, stop and rewind — I was just sitting there ‘not’ enjoying my ala carte meatloaf-a-roni (I swear, what will the school cafeteria think of next?) when some guy, two tables over, screams. ZZZZzztt!

Next thing I know the place is real quiet, which is unheard of in any high school cafeteria. Teachers are all rushing around. One’s got a blanket that they throw over the poor shmuck, and then they cart him off to the school nurse.

Oh, by the way, there was a burned spot where he was sitting. How screwed up is that? A couple of days later he shows back up for class, or rather I should say ‘she’ shows up. He twisted into a she. If I didn’t know any better I’d say that someone new had started, but word of mouth said it was ‘him’.

Thank god I don’t have to put up with that crap. I’m pure-bred one hundred percent normal human, no freaky genes. The problem is that I live in a town full of people that aren’t.

Not that I have a problem with that. It’s like being gay, having a different skin color, or being a different religion. As long as you don’t try to shove it down my throat, I couldn’t really give a crap.

This all leads me to my current predicament.

My next door neighbors, the Parks, are Twisted. Ha, sounds perverted don’t it? Ahem. Anyway, their youngest daughter had her twist about a month back. She’s been wheelchair bound for about three years of her life and was really going all out to hurry her twist along.

See, for the most part, whatever it is you are doing right before your twist, has an impact on what you turn into. Some people who happen to be working out at the time they twist, turn super buff and muscle bound. There’s this one girl, a cheerleader, that was picking on a freshman for spilling grape juice on her… and I quote, “Hundred and fifty dollar angora sweater, you bitch!”

She twisted soon after. Now she’s the biggest klutz on campus. Forget cheerleading. If she can actually make it to class without breaking something, there’s cause for celebration.

Where was I? Oh yeah, Barbie. Yeah, it really sucks to be her. She would spend all day, when she wasn’t at school, on her computer or reading superhero comics. She really got into them. See where I’m going with this? Barbie was really hoping that by concentrating all the time on superheroes she was convinced that she’d twist one of those times and wouldn’t be wheelchair bound anymore.

It was when she was designing her superhero outfit on her computer that she got zapped by the twist. In short, not a damn thing happened to her, physically. Mentally and personality wise was a different matter. Now she was a clothing genius, and she wasn’t too bad on the computer either, which she used to do her designs before working on actual outfits. Barbie will make a ton of money someday in the fashion industry, that is if she can work her way out of her depression.

So, where am I going with all of this? Here it is.

Dinah invited me over to the house. There were just a few days left of summer break. Her plan was to show Barbie how much fun we could have out back at the pool, and hopefully tempt her outside. I was the bait.

Back home I was practicing for a place on swim team before my parents… yeah, anyway… I was pretty trim. From what Dinah had told me, Barbie had a crush on me. That kind of took me off guard. I mean I’m no hunky quarterback. Oh, I’m not being down on myself, it’s just the way things are. I’m smaller than the average guy, and I probably always will be. It’s not a big deal. I’m not a shrimp or anything like that. I can take care of myself pretty well if need be.

There’s something to be said for taking martial arts ever since I was five. People only really mess with me once. Then they don’t mess with me any more.

Well, Barbie had a crush on me, and Dinah was my best friend. I swear, my life is like a bad sitcom sometimes.

Dinah bought me this really skimpy swimsuit to tease Barbie out of her room. Speedo probably threw out the design as being too revealing. I’d swear that it was a girl’s bikini bottom if the really tiny tag on the inside hadn’t declared the size to be Men’s Small.

So, there I was in what amounted to a semi-thong. The thing was cut high on the sides, streamlined down into the crotch, and came up the back exposing half my buttcheeks. Thank god I kept up on my shaving down there.

No, I wasn’t gay. I was trying out for the swim team here in Spiral. Swim team guys lose their body hair. I wasn’t going through all of this training only to lose my position with two-tenths of a second because of friction drag. I’ve seen it happen.

Then only bad thing about it now was that if I had a bikini top I could probably make a halfway decent pre-pubescent chick. Guh! Damn bubble butt!

With a  resigned sigh and a scarlet colored face, due to extreme embarrassment, I opened the door. I took a few deep breaths and threw away all sense of self. One of the things I remember my dad saying to me when I came home from school one day crying about being teased over my height was, ‘the only person that can embarrass you is you.’ That was supposed to mean that I was to be proud of the way I looked and if I didn’t get embarrassed then people poking fun at me wouldn’t be embarrassing.

Yeah, I think Dad was full of it too.

Thank god Mr. and Mrs. Parks were at work. I don’t think I could stand the humiliation. The only reason I was doing this was to help Barbie.

Dinah’s eyes grew wide as I approached the chaise lounges by the pool. Her grin wasn’t too far behind.

“Whoa. Look at what Chippendale’s dragged in.”

I cocked my brow at her. “Please, this is more like Victoria’s Secret. Did you buy this thing at a lingerie store or something?”

“Her eyes held nothing but mirth as they were glued to my… hey!

“Uh, Ross, where’s your… um… thing.”

I looked down at the relatively smooth front of the suit. “Not one word, Di. I had to tuck it underneath. This thing is so low cut that I’d be poking out the top and I don’t think either one of us is ready to explain that to your parents if they happen to show up unexpectedly.”

Her face flushed with the thought. Whether it was of me tucking or the possibility of my springing free that got her red, I didn’t care. Just as long as she was embarrassed somewhere along the line, I felt somewhat vindicated.

“Is she looking out of her window yet?”

Di shot a quick glance up to Barbie’s second story window. “Nope, not yet.” When her attention was brought back to me she reached over and grabbed a brown bottle sitting on the tiny metal table between the lounges. “You better put on some lotion. You don’t want to burn all that pretty smooth skin.”

My shaving my legs and arms was an endless source of amusement to Dinah. For some reason she didn’t buy the swimming excuse. Well, she’d change her mind when I beat the pants off of the competition this fall. “Nuh-uh. I wear the revealing swimsuit, you apply the suntan lotion.”

She gave me a are you serious look. I just made myself comfortable on the lounge. “Well I guess me rubbing lotion on you might get her a little jealous. Good thinking, Ross.”

I just rolled my eyes and lay down on my stomach while she got to work. There was one reason to be thankful for the tight revealing swimsuit and for being tucked. I couldn’t really get an erection when her hands started roaming all over my backside.

There is something about a woman rubbing warm oil on my smooth legs that was intensely erotic. I was immensely pleased when I felt her hand move across my exposed half-cheek and duck down between my legs. I was sixteen for gods sake. I was in heaven.

“You have a really nice butt for a guy.”

How do you respond to something like that? “Uh, thanks. It’s the swimming. The muscles there get a strong workout.”

I heard her giggle. “Well what ever you are doing keep it up, because I think we’ve snagged us a sophomore fish.”

“She’s looking?”

I felt Dinah slowly caress my butt again. Okay, I don’t think the tuck thing was such a good idea anymore. Oww.

“Oh yeah, great big bug eyes.”

I was of two minds when Dinah proceeded up my back. It was good that she moved on, because… owww, but it sucked that she moved on, because what she was doing felt incredible. She did take her time on my back and then told me to flip over. I did so and covertly double checked that I wasn’t showing anything that I wasn’t supposed to.

That’s when the patio door opened and I heard Barbie’s wheelchair zipping across the patio. “Hey guys.”

I lifted my head up a little and gave Barbie a very genuine smile. It was great to see her out of the stupid house for once. “Hey Barbie. Coming to join us?”

Her attention went to me then to Dinah before dropping to my swimsuit. Gheeze, obvious much? I felt like a piece of meat on display. Not that it was a bad thing. Come on, I’m sixteen and a cute girl is checking me out. Give me a break.

“Would you mind standing up for a second?”

I glanced at Dinah and then shrugged. If Barbie asks me to bend over, I may just have a new birthday wish this year. “Okay.”

Standing up was kind of awkward seeing as how Barbie seemed to be eyeing me like a baby cougar with her first fresh thighbone. She nudged her wheelchair a tad bit closer.

“Turn around, please.”

Dinah snorted. “Barbie, he’s not a play-toy.”

Her sister glared. “Don’t be gross, Di.”

Thank whoever is in charge up there that I was completely turned around at that particular moment. Well, so much for that little fantasy I had running around in my head. I jerked a little when I felt fingers at the sides of my swimsuit tugging them up.

“You’re perfect.”

“Uhh, thanks?” I turned back around and gave her a questioning look. “Any particular reason you’re trying to give me a wedgie?”

Barbie’s eyes were glued to my flat front and a smile graced her face. It was the first one I’d seen in a long time. “I have the perfect Halloween costume for you.”

I blinked a couple of times and watched as she checked out my legs and then up my torso. “Hey, Barbie, that’s not for a couple of months.”

Sitting down let me see her eye to eye, and I was kind of surprised when she reached out to take my hand in hers. “Before…” she stopped and took a breath. “Before my twist, I made a costume that I’d hoped might…”

Dinah and I both nodded. We already knew about her failed attempt and didn’t want her to push herself any more than she should on that particular subject. She smiled again. “Anyway, I’m going as something else this year and I thought that we might enter the contest they’re having at the school, as a team, if you’re both willing.”

Ah, I see why she’s planning so early then. She’s making the costumes. I guess she needed the extra time for production.

Dinah looked a little wary. “Barbie, I don’t want to sound ungrateful, but I haven’t had my twist yet.” She cringed a little. “I don’t want to accidentally turn into a fairy princess or anything.”

Barbie shook her head. “You don’t have to worry. You already look like yours, it would be just another outfit for you. Ross’ would be the one that would be different and since he isn’t going to twist, he’s safe.”

Somewhere in there, I smelled a rat. Didn’t you?

“What kind of costume do you have in mind?”

Excitement ran through her face. “It’s already finished. Do you want to try it on?”

We followed her up to her room which was kind of slow in the mini elevator her parents had installed. “Ross, go shower that tanning lotion off. I don’t want you to get the costume all messy.”

Good point. “Okay…”

She pointed at her bathroom. “Use mine. There are some fresh towels in the cupboard. Dinah, give me a hand in the closet.”

Dinah and I swapped a shrug and went our separate ways.

~O~

By the time I got out of the shower, all I could hear from the bedroom was hushed whispering. I wrapped the towel around my waist and noticed that one of them, probably Dinah, snuck in while I was washing and left something for me.

“Am I suppose to wear this,” I called through the door.

Barbie’s returned voice was quick and excited. “Yes, Ross, if you wouldn’t mind.”

What I picked up was oddly familiar. It looked a lot like the swimsuit that Dinah had I had just taken off, but it was cut a little bit higher on the sides and it was most definitely not men’s styled. I was well familiar with women’s clothes seeing as one of my chores at home was doing laundry. Men’s underwear is more reinforced in the front to handle and support our package, if I may be blunt. Women’s underwear is smooth all over and reinforced in the crotch with an added layer where their package is. That’s what this particular item of clothing showed me.

“Uh, guys, I think I’ve got the wrong kind of… whatever this is.”

“Ross, are you decent?” Dinah asked from just on the other side of the door, like she was planning on coming in.

“Yeah.” Well I was wearing more than I was ten minutes ago.

She opened the door and slipped inside before shutting it firmly behind her. A worried look was plastered on her face before she began. “Hey,” she whispered. “Look, I know what I’m going to ask you is above and beyond what friends ask, but…” Dinah looked at the door like she could see straight through it to her sister. “This is the happiest I’ve seen Barbie in months. It’s like she’s focused again.”

I held up the girls underwear. “It’s a girl’s costume, isn’t it?”

She nodded. “It was her outfit, but since she’s not going to be able to walk, she opted for something else.” Her hand lay on my forearm and she squeezed lightly. “Would you mind… for her? I promise that nobody will ever find out and I won’t laugh at you or even tease you.”

Holding the article in the air for her I asked, “Have you seen this?”

Dinah nodded. “Yeah, skimpy aren’t they. You’ll have to do that tuck thing again.”

I cocked an eyebrow at her. “Tell me there’s more to this costume.”

Her eyes widened and she giggle just a little. “Oh, yeah. Those are just the panties. What she has planned is kind of like a…” she stopped and frowned. “You know what a girls one piece swimsuit looks like?”

I nodded.

“Well, sort of like that, but the bottoms are more like hot pants, and it’s padded in the right places.” Her hands lifted up to the chest area with the international sign for breasts. “Just try it out and if it looks horrible then we’ll let her down easy.”

“If?”

Dinah’s lips pursed and I could see the conflict written on her face. I already knew that she would pretty much do anything for her sister, and that she was holding back from forcing me to do something that I didn’t want to do. “What do you want, Ross? What will it take to get you to do this?”

The tips of her ears were already reddening with embarrassment. That’s where I got confused. Was she offering…

I backed up a little to give us some more room. “Nothing, I don’t want anything. I’ll do it just to see her happy. Just promise me you wont laugh.”

Her eyes glassed and she smiled again. “Thank you. I promise.” Energy filled her movements and she fidgeted for a sec. “I’ll leave so you can put on your panties.”

I frowned at her and she just smiled in return before disappearing to Barbie’s room.

They were even worse than the swimsuit. I tucked and tried to ignore the slick feeling of the material sliding between my cheeks and separating them. This was not natural, but it felt kind of nice at the same time. Looking at myself in the mirror once more I sighed. If my waist were a little smaller, these would look really good… if I were a chick.

Well, that was pretty much it. Nothing else to put on. I draped the towel around my waist again and opened the door. “Okay, all set.”

On the bed lay the costume full of purple and black colors. Beside the bed was Barbie in her wheelchair, fidgeting with her hands.

“Dinah, would you give Ross some help with the suit. I don’t think he’s worn women’s clothes before.”

How hard could it be? Clothes are clothes. I confidently walked over –remember how only I could embarrass me? — and picked up the first part, the swimsuit looking thing. Well Dinah was right about that, and about the padding. While the breast portion was gigantic, it was daunting at the same time.

Why the added padding for a costume that was made for a girl? Well, Barbie wasn’t very gifted in that area. If she was an A-cup, I’d be surprised.

“Turn it around,” Dinah said. “There’s a zip in the back.”

I did as instructed and saw the zipper that ran from the top of a fitted neck to about midway down the back. Man this thing was small. “Are you sure it will fit?”

Barbie nodded. “I have a good eye for sizes and as weird as it sounds, you could probably wear half of my wardrobe.”

That was comforting to know, thanks. Groan.

When I unzipped the back I looked up at the girls. “Uh, would you mind?” I twirled my finger at them.

Barbie just covered her eyes with a single hand and looked down while Dinah spun in place. It gave me a measure of privacy that I didn’t have before. Well, here goes nothing. I let the towel drop to the floor and stepped into the outfit, one leg at a time, and then shimmied it up my legs. It was sleeveless, so that was a plus, as it helped when I tugged it further into place.

The outfit was surprisingly soft and comfortable. When I reached behind me to lift the zipper into place I realized that I just wasn’t limber enough. “Okay, that’s as much as I can do.”

Barbie took me in with a critical eye and then waved me over. “Come here and turn around. Di get in front and help me tug it in place uniformly.”

When Dinah was sure that Barbie couldn’t see her, she mouthed quietly to me a ‘thank you.’ That was right before I felt Barbie’s hands at my sides giving the bottom portion a swift tug straight up. My eyes widened as I felt my manly portions compress in places they weren’t supposed to be compressed, and I had a firm wedgie working between my butt cheeks.

Barbie’s hand snuck under the suit and separated my cheeks even more. If I didn’t miss my guess, she was baring as much skin as humanly possible back there.

Dinah slipped her fingers into the bottoms of the sleeve opening right under my arms and tugged the top portion into a better fit.

“Okay, zip him up and let me take a look.”

I was spun around and I heard Dinah working the zip up while I felt the costume conform around the rest of my torso.

“Perfect. You look great, Ross.”

I was about to tug at the neck to relieve the pressure there when I realized that she was right in more ways than one. It was perfect. It felt perfect. I really liked the way the costume fit on me like nothing I had ever worn before.

“Hey, I got boobs!”

They weren’t gigantic like most of the comic book girls I’ve seen, maybe a big B-cup or a C. They were just the right size for my body.

“The wig, Di,” Barbie indicated.

My hair was still damp, but I didn’t have much to begin with, as I kept it really short for swim team.

“Sit here, Ross.” I moved to the small stool in front of Barbie and sat, which sent all kinds of feelings across my body. The wig was set on my head and arranged a little here and there before Barbie whipped out a little jar of clear liquid. The lid had a small brush attachment.

“What’s that?”

She dabbed the excess liquid off at the rim. “It’s wig adhesive. Don’t worry, it’s not permanent. It will make the edges look like they are part of your own scalp, so it will look like your natural hair.”

A few moments later and she seemed satisfied.

~O~

I can’t believe I just sat there while she put makeup on me. I felt like some little dolly that they were dressing up. But I just kept reassuring myself that this was for Barbie and that hopefully my sacrifice (okay, I’m overstating this a little) that my hour or so of being embarrassed would be the trigger that lets her get past the disappointment of not getting the twist she wanted.

Hey, aren’t I the greatest guy in the world? Don’t you want to date me? Hello, is there anybody out there? Are those crickets I’m hearing?

“You’re done.”

I blinked. My eyelids felt a little heavy, probably from the fourteen pounds of mascara that she put on my lashes. How to chicks do this every day? “That’s it?”

Barbie was glowing. “Well I haven’t finished the cape and I still need to get your accessories, and there’s the boots and mask, but you should be able to get a good idea about what you’ll look like for Halloween.”

Uh yeah, well, I’ll deal with breaking the news to her that there was no way I was going out in public dressed like this until later. There was simple embarrassment and then there’s letting everyone in Spiral think I’m a closet crossdresser or something.

The thing was, I was really eager to see what I looked like. “Got a mirror?”

She pointed to her closet. “On the back of the closet door.”

I stood and let the suit settle. God, it felt really good. I hoped that I didn’t get addicted to women’s clothes. That would really suck. Maybe it was because I kept my body shaved. It allowed the material to slide around my smooth skin, I reasoned. I could really see how certain guys could grow to like doing this.

Dinah was open-mouthed as she stared at me. “You look really good, Ross.”

I gave her a brief smile for not teasing me and proceeded to my unveiling.

Oh, holy crap.

I knew I was slightly effeminate looking but…

My toned body went perfectly with the outfit. It looked like I was a semi-muscled chick, dark and mysterious. The smoky makeup only reinforced the look. My hair, or the wig rather, dropped down to my shoulder blades. It looked totally natural. It must be real hair or something.

I turned to the side to see the back. Yep, there’s most of my butt, but it looked sexy as hell.

“Barbie,” Dinah nearly gasped. “You’re a freaking genius.”

“I know, right?”

“Can you make me look this good?” she asked.

“You’re gonna look like that.”

Pulling away from the mirror I glanced at what Barbie was pointing at. It was a poster with three girls on it, three super-heroines. The one in the middle was a red head in a wheelchair, with a laptop sitting on her legs. The one on the left was a girl in a black and purple outfit that looked very similar to what I was wearing, but she had thigh boots and a purple mask as well as these gloves that ran halfway up her arms.

“Is that me?” I asked.

Barbie nodded. “That’s the Huntress.”

“Oh,” Dinah exclaimed. “I’ll be the blonde?”

“Black Canary.” The whirr of Barbie’s wheelchair sounded and I felt her presence beside me. “See, your outfit will be almost exactly like hers. I’m making it out of latex, and you already have the fishnets, so some fingerless gloves and some calf boots…”

“That’s cool!” Dinah agreed. “I wouldn’t mind wearing that at all!”

“Who’s the girl in the chair?” I asked.

Barbie smiled. “That’ll be me. Oracle. She used to be Batgirl before the Joker shot her. They made a team, obviously.”

The bottom of the poster indicated that they were the ‘Birds of Prey’. An all girl crime fighting team; sexy as hell.

Barbie’s hand found mine and her fingers laced between mine. I looked down at her and saw her eyes were very glassy. “Thank you, Ross. This means a lot to me.”

I shrugged and hoped there was enough make up on my cheeks to mask the blush that was crawling its way across my face. “They’re just clothes. And…” I stopped myself from saying something incredibly stupid. However, Dinah and Barbie both wouldn’t just let it go.

“What?” Barbie urged. Dinah nodded. “We won’t make fun, really.”

I looked away nonetheless, back at the poster of the Birds and the character that Barbie turned me into. “I really like it.”

My eyes darted to the girls to see their reaction and then back to the poster. Dinah cleared her throat.

“You mean the whole thing? Dressing like a girl or just the superhe…”

I didn’t let her finish. “The whole thing.” I rushed the words out like I was trying to cover it up. God, what was I saying? Why wouldn’t my mouth just seal itself closed?

Out of the corner of my eye I could see them look at each other.

“Maybe I should go,” I offered. “I go get my clothes from downstairs.”

Barbie squeezed my hand. “You aren’t going anywhere.”

I looked down at her, fear in my eyes.

“We’re sisters now; all three of us.”

The lump I just swallowed in my throat, hurt. When I brought my eyes to Dinah, I just saw a wistful smile on her face. “You’re going to need a new name. I don’t know of very many girls named Ross.” She grabbed her sister’s hand. “What is Huntress’ real name?”

Barbie answered without thought. “Helena, but that’s kind of meh. Her middle name is Rosa, how about that one?”

Dinah nodded. “Pretty close to Ross. What do you think, Rosa?”

I kneeled down to Barbie and she leaned forward to wrap her arms around me. “I’ll help you,” she whispered into my ear as we squeezed each other tight. “Like I said before, you could wear half my…”

I flinched at the feeling on my skin. Goosebumps raised all over my body and the fine hairs at the base of my neck stood on end. “Guys!” That’s about all I got out before it hit me like a lightening strike. My hands instinctively gripped Barbie and held on for the ride. Something coursed through me, overwhelming my senses, tearing at me, reshaping my existence. My thoughts ceased and I floated away like a feather in the breeze before losing it all to the darkness.

~O~

“How is it possible?” I heard a man’s voice. Mr. Parks.

An older, more upper crust New England tinged, answered. “If I had to hazard a guess I would say that young mister Owens, being in close contact with your daughter during his connection with the Darrington Field, initiated an unheard of second twist. I would be very interested in following up with a study…”

“Doctor…” I heard the annoyance in Mr. Parks voice.

“Oh, sorry. Scientific curiosity is having its best with me. My apologies.”

My brain seemed like it was coming back on line.

“Have you notified the boys guardians?”

Mr. Parks answered warily. “Yes, but as you can guess, they didn’t quite believe me. They should be here any second.”

I blinked my eyes open. From the angle I was at I could see I was in bed, Barbie’s bed.

“Ross? Son, how do you feel?”

I widened my eyes and blinked them clear. “Mr. Parks?” My voice was all wrong, so I tried clearing my throat.

“That’s right. You’re in Barbie’s room in our home. Barbie’s right next to you. Do you remember what happened?”

The rest of my body seemed to be easing its way back to reality. “She was… ” I cleared my throat again. “What wrong with my voice?”

Mr. Parks pulled a chair up next to the bed. “Well, son, it looks as if you had some twist in your genes after all.”

I tried to sit up and was held back by Mr. Parks hand. “Hold on for a second, Ross. You’ve changed quite a lot, and you’re also quite naked. The twist burned away all of your clothes.”

My natural reaction was to raise my hand to my chest to feel for the outfit that I was wearing before. It was gone, but in its place was something that I wasn’t prepared for. I froze and most probably went into a little bit of shock. “Why do I have breasts?”

“Daddy?”

Mr. Parks jumped up from the chair and circled the bed. “Pumpkin, stay still. You’ve gone through another twist. How do you feel?”

I looked over to Barbie and was kind of surprised to see that her previously brown hair was now red. Not the orange that most redheads are, but an almost strawberry-blond red that was actually very cute with her face and skin color.

Barbie drew in a very quick breath. “Daddy, I can feel my legs! Help me sit up! I can feel my legs!”

In the background I could hear the deep thumping of someone running up the stairs. I clutched the sheet to my neck and looked at the door.

“Barbie?” It was Dinah at the doorway. She looked at both of us in mild surprise.

“Di!” Barbie grabbed my hand. “Ross! You cured me!” She gasped. “You’re a girl! Oh my god, you twisted!”

She wouldn’t quit screaming in excitement, which I guess was understandable considering the circumstances, but gheeze.

“Barbie, calm down,” Mr. Parks said in a subdued tone. I could tell he was just as excited as his daughter, but his looks at me told me that he was trying to keep calm for my sake.

Dinah ran around to the other side of the bed and took her sister in her arms. “I’m so happy for you, Barbie.” Her eyes took me in as she was hugging her sibling. She was obviously surprised or stunned at what happened. I couldn’t tell which.

“Mr. Owens?” I turned my head to what I assumed was the doctor that Mr. Parks was talking to earlier. “I’m Doctor Wayan. I specialize in in young people like yourself that have twisted. You’re in good hands right now, and I want to reassure you that you appear very healthy.”

“Am I going to be alright?”

He smiled at me. “I assure you, Ross, that people in this town go through this all the time and come out just fine.”

Something about the situation seemed off to me. While it was certainly a shock to realize that I was apparently now a chick, I wasn’t as totally as freaked out as I should have been. I mean, just minutes… hours? ago I was under the serious impression that I was normal, and now I come to find out that I’m among the Twisted. Was it catching now? I’d always been under the impression that the condition was genetic.

“Paul!” I heard from downstairs, Mrs. Parks working her way up. “Steve and Jeri are here. Is Ross up there?”

It was about to get real crowded in this room. “Daddy, Ross and I need to get dressed.”

He nodded. “Right, I’ll go talk to your mom, and Ross, I’ll let your guardians know what’s going on. Come on down when you’re ready.” He stood and motioned to the guy beside me. “Doctor, lets give the girls some privacy.”

Once the door was closed, both Barbie and Dinah stared at me.

“I’m a girl.”

Dinah kind of smiled. “We noticed. Are you okay with that?”

I pulled the sheet out and looked down at my body, noting new additions as well as a couple of things that were missing. “I should be spazzing out right now, but…” I wasn’t.

Barbie’s grin widened. “We really are sisters now… Rosa.”

A rush of emotion tore its way through my chest, up and out of my throat with a sob. Barbie scooted over and took me in her arms. I dropped my sheet and returned her hug, never feeling so satisfied or content in my life as I was at that moment.

“Wow, the twist fairy was very nice to you,” commented Dinah.

Barbie pulled back to see what her sister was talking about. “I’d say so. I’m jealous.”

When I figured out they were looking at my breasts I covered them up with my forearms. “Sorry.”

Dinah reached out and touched my arm. “Sweetie, we’re all girls here, now. You’ll probably see mine soon enough.”

Barbie nodded and let her sheet drop. “See, while not as generous as yours, I’m told I’m a late bloomer. Mom was too, and she’s a D-cup. So, I’m hopeful.” She looked up at her sister. “Di, would you mind if Rosa borrows one of your bras? You’re a heck of a lot closer to her size than I am.”

Dinah giggled. “Good point. I’ll be right back.”

Bras? Oh, right. Girl now.

“Rosa, over there, top right drawer are full of panties. Help yourself and grab me a pair while you do?” She made it an offer and a request all in one sentence.

I sent my body on automatic and stood shakily from the bed. My legs felt a little rubbery, but strong, if that makes sense. On the way over to the dresser a long lock of hair dropped in front of my eyes. I stopped and looked at it for a second. It wasn’t the wig. I could feel myself tugging and I felt the pull on the other end.

“I have long hair now.” When I looked back at Barbie, she was running her hands over her thighs with a satisfied smile, and then glanced up at me.

“It looks really nice. You’re going to be a stunner when we get you to a salon.”

~O~

Dinah’s bra was a little tight, but serviceable once we adjusted it properly. While the capris that Barbie let me borrow fit perfectly, I had to go raid her sister’s closet for a decent top that didn’t squish my breasts any more than the bra I was using. Barbie also let me have a set of sandals that she wasn’t too fond of which completed the outfit.

They tag-teamed me with the makeup, not that I minded too much, which I was still kind of freaked about. Why was I suddenly all accepting about being a girl? It just wasn’t normal. I think I was more weirded out by that than actually being Twisted and being a girl.

Barbie held my hand the entire trip down the elevator while Dinah went ahead and told everyone we were on our way. One thing of note: while Barbie did have feeling in her legs, they were entirely too weak to do much more than wiggle her toes. However she was still more than pumped to begin her physical therapy.

“Are you nervous?” she asked.

I shook my hand. “More curious than anything. Why am I twisted? I thought…”

She squeezed my hand. “Your guardians might have some answers.”

I nodded then the elevator dinged at us. “Ready?”

The return grin was all I needed and I let her go ahead while I trailed close behind.

“Your hair!” Mrs. Parks exclaimed.

“I know, it’s gorgeous, right?”

“Ross?” Aunt Jeri asked as she rose to her feet.

I nodded in return. “I’m going by Rosa now.”

Uncle Steve sat there with his mouth moving like a fish, while his wife ran to me and stopped a half a step away and took in the whole picture. “You’re beautiful.”

I grinned almost bashfully. “Thank you.” The words hadn’t even left my mouth before she embraced me in a loving hug.

“Are you okay with this?”

I nodded in her neck. “I feel good, better than good actually. But my bra is too tight.”

She giggled and pulled away. “We’ll go shopping right away and get you something that fits properly.”

Which reminded me. “Don’t let me forget my wallet and clothes. We were tanning earlier. My allowance card is there.”

Aunt Jeri held me at arm’s length.  “Well it looks like you had your fill of tanning. Your skin is almost brown.”

“That’s from her Italian blood, Jeri. And I know why you are twisted, Ros… Rosa.”

Well that’s convenient. “Why? I thought Mom and Dad were normal.”

“They are,” he answered shortly. “but I don’t think your dad is actually your real dad, and once I find out the real answer I’m going to beat the living crap out of him.”

Uncle Steve probably wasn’t kidding. His twist happened when he was sparring in the ring down at the local gym. His arms are like cannons now. He loves to fight.

My eyebrows bunched up in confusion. Then something else weird happened. All the pieces started falling into place in my head. From the stories I used to hear growing up, my mom used to visit Spiral and her sister quite often. I’m guessing one of those times I was conceived. And Uncle Steve said it was my Italian blood showing through my tan. My mom is full-blooded Irish. Only my dad was Italian, and if he wasn’t my dad then that meant that my real father was Italian as well.

From what I remembered from school, the only strong-blooded Italian family are the Bertinelli’s, headed by Franco Bertinelli who just so happens to be the same age as my mom. The clincher was his twist. Franco’s twist just happens to be his seminal potency. No birth control works on him or his wife. They have like ten children.

“Franco Bertinelli,” I said with a gasp.

Uncle Steve’s eyes bugged out in surprise. “H-how…”

How indeed? How in the heck did I extrapolate all of that information and whip out a conclusion in less than five seconds? I cringed a little. “A guess?”

Aunt Jeri poked her husband in the ribs. “You don’t do anything until I’ve had a chance to talk to him, Steve. We don’t need another law suit because you went all Rocky on another jerk.”

Uncle Steve didn’t look too pleased, but he nodded. There’s no doubt about who wears the pants in our family. I don’t even want to tell you about her twist… okay, force it out of me why don’tcha. My guardians were involved in a little… ahem, roleplaying during her twist. They were only teenagers at the time, but Aunt Jeri has quite the dominating personality when she lets it loose, literally.

You don’t even want to know what I hear sometimes when they think I’m asleep. Oh, god, I think I threw up a little in my mouth.

“Are you feeling okay sweetie?”

I quickly nodded. You really don’t want to see that side of her. And if she thinks you’re hiding something and its important… Let’s just say that I have no doubt whatsoever that Franco Bertinelli will be spilling the beans or he’ll find himself handcuffed to the nearest bed with Aunt Jeri beating the crap out of him with a cat-o nine… whoops, too much information.

Dinah took that moment to poke her nose in. “Hey, everything cool?”

I nodded. “The coolest, thanks.”

She shook her head. “I can’t believe… I’m so happy for you, Rosa.”

Aunt Jeri gave her and then me a strange look when Dinah hugged me. “Look, we’re going to the doctors with Barbie. They want to see exactly what’s up with her back.” She kissed my cheek. “Rosa, anything you need, or want, you call us. Our family owes you so much.”

Mr. Parks nodded from behind her. “That goes double for me and the missus.”

“Thanks guys.”

“Rosa! Hugs!” Barbie called from the back.

I giggled and worked my way to her, kneeling down and letting her show her appreciation. “I love you girl. Thank you so much.”

That moment warmed my heart. “I love you too. You let me know when you start your therapy. I want to help.”

She nodded and then pulled back. Fresh tear tracks were drawn down her face.

~O~

We were in Aunt Jeri’s Jeep, rolling through the mall parking lot looking for a space, when she’d had enough of my silent contemplations. “Why was Dinah so happy for you?”

“Huh?”

She frowned. “Don’t say ‘huh’, Rosa. It’s not ladylike.”

I almost laughed, but caught myself. That’s right. I have to learn a whole new way of living. “Sorry.”

Aunt Jeri smiled at me. “That’s okay. I know you have a lot to learn and believe it or not, you’ve made my decade by twisting like this.”

For the second time that day, everything fell into place. I knew that she couldn’t conceive children. That was common knowledge. When I moved into their house, my Uncle Steve was ecstatic at having a boy he could play catch with and teach the secret ways of being a man. The sad part was that I had no interest in sports, aside from swimming, or traditional manly things.

Aunt Jeri, on the other hand, was happy at having a child to take care of. Not bouncing off the walls happy, but moderately pleased about becoming a mother figure in a small way. We never had a really close relationship, but I knew she cared about me. I could never figure out why we were never close. Now I knew.

“You always wanted a daughter.”

She hit the brake, which wasn’t a big deal. I think we were going all of five miles an hour. But she stopped and looked at me. Her mouth opened for a second and then closed.  After a strange look she nodded and then drove on. “You’re right.”

I swallowed a little before moving on to my next statement. “I have a lot to learn in a really short period of time. Could you teach me about being a girl… kind of like being a real mom?”

She found an empty space, pulled in and killed the engine before turning to me. Oh boy, hallmark moment; I could almost see it in her eyes. “Rosa, I could never replace your real mom.”

I nodded. “I know. But I also know that you’re my mom’s sister. I think she’d be really happy knowing that you are standing in for her. The plus side is, no dirty diapers.”

She giggled at me and pulled me into a hug. “Thank you baby. You don’t know how much I’ve wanted to hear that.”

We untangled ourselves from the seatbelts and made our way to the entrance with Aunt Jeri holding my hand like my mom used to. “By the way, I changed your diapers lots of times when you were a baby.”

~O~

We spent some time at the salon in the mall getting our nails done. She said she’d help me with my hair so we didn’t choose to get it cut or styled at the moment.  Then the real expedition occurred.  It took four stores before we could agree on a specific style to shoot for. I really didn’t care at first. I just wanted clothes, but the more I tried on, the more I got into exactly why girls liked to shop.

I decided on form fitting. I had some fantastic new curves and I had a desire to show them off to their every advantage. It really wasn’t a tease I was looking to be. I just felt, in control, and I wanted to use my assets to their greatest advantage. Against men that would be sex appeal, against women that would be power. Aunt Jeri knew about the power play and sex appeal so I let her know what I wanted and she took me to task.

My allowance card got a full workout that day. Oh, I’m being stupid. My parents estate was consolidated soon after their death and I had a monthly allowance for clothes and living expenses set up in a trust fund.  If I could show just cause for extravagant spending then I could withdraw more. I think turning into a girl would be placed under the category of ‘just cause’.

When we approached the third shoe store in hopes of finding some knee boots to go with a really nice mini I found at Forever 21 the police showed up.

“We’re closed,” the manager informed us. “Internal theft and the police are trying to find the culprit.

Crap! And look over there! The perfect boots!

I looked at the employees that were talking to the cops and my gaze intensified.

Aunt Jeri took my arm. “We can come back a little later, Rosa.”

“It’s the blonde with her hair pulled back.”

The manager looked at me for a second. “What?”

“She’s your thief.”

Aunt Jeri squeezed my arm. “Rosa, are you sure?”

I nodded. “Easy pick. I don’t know why you haven’t figured it out by now.” I directed that one to the manager that was keeping me from the perfect boots. “Let me guess. You have a community till that all the cashiers use to check people out. It’s been twenty dollars here and there for about a month or two. You’ve got it narrowed down to about three girls all of which are working today. Now something big has come up missing, so you shut the store and called the cops.”

Aunt Jeri’s eyes were riveted to me and then darted to the manager. “Is that true?”

He looked caught in the headlights. “Uh yeah.”

I nodded, confident in my deductions. “Ask the lady cop to come over here.”

Aunt Jeri smiled at me. “You really want those boots?”

I looked at her with astonishment. “Are you kidding. Look, third shelf from the end, over there.”

“Oh yeah, good eye.”

The officer approached and looked at my Aunt, but the manager stopped her before she said anything. “Not her.” He pointed at me. “Her.”

I smiled. “The manager says that you have information that leads you to believe that one of the girls here is stealing money out of the till?”

I nodded. “Here’s the deal. I get the girl busted, with the money she stole today and I get those boots over there in a seven and a half. You get to reopen and not spend the rest of your day closed and losing money.”

“Rosa,” Aunt Jane protested like she couldn’t believe what she was hearing from me.

“Deal,” the manager said without a second thought. He must really be hurting business wise to jump on that one. Damn, I could have milked him for three or four pair!

The officer gave me a disbelieving leer. “Okay miss smarty-pants give it your best shot.”

I smirked and waggled my eyebrows at Aunt Jeri. “See the blonde with the ponytail? She’s wearing really nice clothes. High quality, I know. I’ve been shopping all day.”

“So?”

“Check her out again. No jewelry, no watch, no earrings, no rings. Look at how she’s picking at her face. Twitchy, rocking slightly, like she’s trying to suppress something.”

“She’s nervous. They’re all nervous. What’s your point?”

I shook my head. “She’s not nervous. The bags under her eyes, even though they are covered in about four pounds of make up are the next tell. Put all of these together and you have classic methamphetamine use. She’s been dipping into the till to supplement the jewelry she’s been pawning for cash. Now she’s out of jewelry and she’s broke. Thus the big dip today.”

The manager’s eyes widened. “Are you sure?”

I nodded. “One last thing. The money, It’s in her bra under her left breast. Granted some girls are a little lopsided in the breast department, but not by that much. By the difference in size and the amount of cash that had to be missing for you to close the store, I’d guess that she took everything under the till, where stores normally stick their hundreds and fifties. Off hand I’d guess about seven or eight hundred.”

“Six-fifty,” the manager verified.

I shrugged. “I am thirty-seven feet away. Give me a break.”

“Holy shit,” the officer whispered. “Wait here a sec.”

The officer went over and broke into the in-store interrogation, pulling away the detective that was questioning the employees. She brought him far enough away to not be overheard and pointed at me briefly before filling him in. A couple of minutes later the lady cop confronted ponytail girl who burst into tears mere seconds after.

My confident grin widened. “Busted. Boots please.”

The manager looked at me then back at the cop and the girl who was pulling a wad of cash out from her shirt under her left breast, then he looked back at me. “Uh… I’ll be right back.”

“That’s quite a trick you have there, Rosa.”

I glanced at Aunt Jeri. “It’s just logical deduction.”

She laughed and hugged me. “That, my girl is a full blown Twisted Trick. The detective didn’t even figure it out until you had him told, and you figured it out in seconds.” She paused for a moment while I was being wishy-washy. “That’s the third time I’ve seen you do it. You figured out that Bertinelli might be your real dad, and that I really wanted a daughter as well.”

A trick? That’s something that a lot of twisted can do after their change. Uncle Steve’s trick is to make his hands hard as rocks. They glow red while the trick is activated. Aunt Jeri’s trick is… uh, you really don’t want to know. Let’s just say that Uncle Steve can last a really long time, against his will, and leave it at that, m’kay? Barbie never developed a trick. Sometimes it doesn’t happen. Apparently my trick was instant deductive reasoning skills that made Sherlock Holmes sit up and bark. Woof.

“Oh, cool.”

~O~

We left a little info with the police and I had to sign a receipt for ‘security services rendered’ for product in lue of monetary payment. Aunt Jeri was extremely proud of me, which was nice. But I had my boots which was more than nice.

On the way home we wound up stopping at the local Target. Makeup lessons would begin tomorrow morning. Little odds and ends made up the rest of the purchases. It was truly amazing at how much it takes to be a girl. Special shampoo, special conditioner, special shaving gel not to mention a different razor. I used to shave my legs just fine with my guy razor, what was the big deal with the special ‘wider’ grip?

Then came the part that I wasn’t expecting.

“What?”

“Well tampons are a lot more practical if you are active. Maxi pads always make me feel like I’m wearing a diaper.”

Oh god.

“Rosa, are you okay?”

“Whatever you think’s best. I’ll take your word for it.”

Aunt Jeri gave me a knowing smirk before grabbing a box of tampons, not to mention one of panty liners, whatever those were for. My eyes narrowed. She was playing with me. Well two can play at that game.

I turned around and looked at the men’s side of that particular isle. “Is ribbed really for our pleasure? Can you actually tell the difference? Maybe I should get both kinds.”

Her eyes widened a little. I shrugged. “Well I want to be prepared for any eventuality. Maybe I should get a package of magnum sized, just in case.”

I think I took that one a little too far.

“You know of course that we’re having ‘the talk’ as soon as we get home.”

Oh god. I’m going to learn the female side of the birds and the bees from a Twisted dominatrix. Well, it ought to be entertaining any way you look at it. She grabbed an economy sized package of condoms, the regular sized ones, just to dig it in a little further. Me and my big mouth.

The Jeep was full to the brim by the time was got home. What I was wondering was why she had to go by the 24 Hour bookstore as our last stop. Did she really need a magazine that badly? And why does a book store stay open for twenty-four hours anyway? Oh wait, it’s three in the morning and I don’t have a thing to read! What am I gonna do now!!!

It took thirty minutes to rid myself of boy things and all of three continuous hours, non-stop mind you, to hang up the clothes, unpackage the necessities, set up the bathroom, and drag a spare makeup table into my room. The shoes stayed in their respective boxes until I acquired a proper shoe rack so they wouldn’t get scuffed.

“We’ll talk to your uncle about redecorating your room if you want.”

I nodded. “That’d be cool.”

She paused and smiled. “Ready for that talk?”

I dropped my head to my chest. I’d so hoped she’d forget about that little threat. “I guess.”

“Come on, I’ll make some tea and we can do this in the living room where you’ll be more comfortable.”

“Can I change first?”

She nodded. “I forgot you’re still wearing Dinah’s bra. Go ahead and bring out the loaners and I’ll show you how to wash your delicates.”

There was a special way to wash girls underwear? What that hell?

~O~

I chose a cute pair of white shorts and a blue tank that matched my eyes. Oh lordy, wearing a bra that actually fits is a godsend. I was enjoying the feel of being properly supported without being squeezed and without the straps digging in my shoulders while Aunt Jeri was teaching me the basics of lingerie care.

“Remember, cold water, like colors, Woolite, about fifteen minutes, then squeeze dry, don’t wring. Got it?”

I nodded. “Yes, ma’am.”

She leaned in and kissed my cheek. “You’re such a good girl.”

After witnessing the obligatory eye roll on my part, she pulled the tea bags out of our cups and we made our way to the living room sofa. That’s when I saw the brown paper bag that she brought out of the book store. Oh no, please tell me she didn’t buy me a book on girl sex. They have those?

“I’m sure you are already quite familiar with how things work from a boys perspective, the hormones, the sexual appetites, the urges…”

“Yes, Aunt Jeri.” My face was already reddening.

She smiled with the obvious pleasure she was receiving from making me squirm. “Good. Then you know the warning signs to look out for. So I’m going to go straight into the good stuff.”

What was that supposed to mean?

She grabbed the bag and stuck her hand inside before pausing. “You masturbated as a boy, correct?”

How exactly to you avoid telling an adult about a daily occurrence of your sexual activity or lack thereof. “Uh…”

“Don’t say ‘uh’ Rosa. It’s not ladylike.”

“Sorry.”

“Yes or no. Did you masturbate?”

I wondered if it was possible to actually die from parental-figure induced mortification.  “Yes.”

“Very good. It’s always good to take your sexuality well in hand… no pun intended. Don’t be embarrassed, sweetie. I frequently masturbate, your Uncle does too. Sometimes our romantic clock gets out of whack and we don’t make enough time to enjoy ourselves.”

The back door opened and in came the newly outted masturbator, Uncle Steve. “Hi honey, I’m home!”

She put the bag down and smiled wide. “How was your day?”

He shrugged and gave her a peck on the lips. “Same ole thing.” Uncle Steve saw my acute red-face-itus and cocked an eyebrow. “What are my favorite girls doing?”

Aunt Jeri ginned mischievously. “We’re bonding, and having a little sex talk. I just told her it was perfectly fine to masturbate, and you and I do it all the time, right sweetie?”

Okay, as red as I was, Uncle Steve was the polar opposite. He went as white as a sheet. “Uh…” It was sad. He looked like a trapped rabbit. “I gotta go change… and work on the car… might take a while.”

She was enjoying this way too much. I think it was giving her some sort of sick sadistic pleasure to see how much we could actually take before our heads explode. Normally I would fight fire with fire, like back at the condom isle at Target, but that backfired spectacularly. So much that I was reaping my own punishment hell of sex sharing with a woman fifteen years my elder. This doesn’t take into account the mental pictures I have running around in my head of my Uncle Steve whacking off in private. Oh, god, I hope he does it in private!

Blurp. There’s that vomit thing in my mouth again. Maybe I should start taking some acid reflux medication if this is what living as girl entails.

“Are you okay sweetie? You look a little green.”

I sipped on my tea to rid myself of the nasty taste in my mouth. “Fine.”

Aunt Jeri sat back down and picked up the brown bag again. I wanted to just rip the sucker open and end the stupid suspense. What the heck was in there?!

“Being sixteen is a trying time for a girl. Especially one as pretty as you. You’re going to have boys and possibly even girls wanting to spend some quality time with you.”

My jaw loosened at the thought and I stared blankly at my aunt.

“So you need to keep temptation at bay as much as possible. That’s why I recommend maintaining an active masturbation routine. If you are sexually satisfied, then your libido won’t have a strong hold on you.”

What the hell was this? I never heard this crap on the guys side of things. The ‘guy talk’ basically consisted of, ‘Do not, under any circumstances have sex without a rubber unless you are married! Good night, and sweet dreams, son.’ This was accompanied with a private subscription to a decent porno mag, a bottle of hand lotion, and a industrial sized box of tissues. You know… for those times that I had to have sex and didn’t have any condoms. Really… dammit!

“So, with that in mind, I’ve bought you a few things that will help you along.”

A few things? That bag was like the old grocery sacks they used to use, and it was bulging! She dug around in it for a second before coming up with a tube of something. Whew!

“A girl’s body will produce a natural lubricant, but sometimes,” she shrugged. “The well runs a little dry. So, in those times you need a little extra I like this brand. It’s not as sticky as KY and it’s water soluble, so you can use it with latex products without damage. Try to stay away from petroleum jelly unless you’re going the anal route.”

I couldn’t take anymore. “Aunt Jeri? Really, I appreciate everything you are doing for me, but I’m not really comfortable with this. I haven’t had sex, even as a guy. I don’t plan on having sex anytime in the near future and I promise, I swear, that if I even think a single sexual thought, I’ll come ask you about what to do.”

Of course, Uncle Steve took that moment to re-enter the living room. Why not? He took one look at what was in his wife’s hand and went white again before making a hasty exit out to the safety of his garage.

Traitor.

Aunt Jeri turned her head back around, and then glanced at the bag. “Okay, I’ll tone it down to the basics. But if I find out that you hid something from me, you will sit through every excruciating moment, and I have a lot of moments in that bag.”

She dug around a little more and withdrew two items that didn’t take any imagination whatsoever to figure out.

“This is a jelly dildo. I like purple.”

I face-palmed.

“It’s about the same size as the average male, and this one is a vibrator. Just take your time and do what comes natural. The jelly is for all around use and the vibrator stays out of the bathtub at all times. It’s not waterproof.”

I took them without any comment.

“Make sure you wash them both with anti-bacterial soap before the first use and after each use, then let them air dry. Your vagina is warm and wet at times. It’s a perfect breeding ground for bacterial infections. Your gynecologist will go more into that at your first visit.”

Okay, I give up. Can I be a boy again?

“I want to start you on the pill as well. Just to be on the safe side.”

Maybe if I start going into convulsions she’ll end this early.

~O~

It went on and on and on. The proper way to wipe, the proper way to clean, the array of doctors I will see on a reoccurring basis, the proper way to give myself a breast exam. Okay, I see the need for a lot of this, and I did ask her in the mall parking lot to teach me, but Jesus! All in one afternoon?

She produced a bottle of pepper spray, a six inch piece of metal that had an attached key ring, and a ‘screamer’ panic alarm that sounded like the world was soon coming to an end when activated. All of those were for protection.

Oh, and yes, there was a big honking book on sex. Apparently they did make books like that. What the hell was the internet for then?

She kept the rest of the things for future torture in case I was bad.

~O~

After I washed and stored the various devices of supposed pleasure, I made a mad dash out of the house and over to the Parks’. This was one place that I don’t think I will ever be turned away from… well, excluding my own home.

“Rosa.” Mrs. Parks was happy to see me. “The girls are upstairs.”

I received a unsolicited hug which made me feel good before trekking up to the scene of the crime. The stairs were and altogether new experience, as I had to slow down or be torn apart from the effect physics had on my new chest region. Once things were not flailing about as bad, I reached the top of the stairs and the end of the hall where Barbie’s door was open.

The chance to even knock was taken away from me when Dinah spotted me. “Rosa! Wow, girl! You look great.”

Barbie scanned me briefly and nodded her agreement. “Have fun shopping?”

I kicked off my sandals at the door and went to hop on her bed, as it was the only place to actually sit at the moment. “You wouldn’t believe the day I’ve had.”

Barbie smiled. “Me too.”

My eyes brightened. “Yeah? What did the doc have to say.” I dropped on my stomach to the bed and turned to face her while I slowly kicked my feet back and forth.

“Whatever we did together during your twist healed the broken nerves in my back. They’re like brand new.” She frown for the briefest of seconds before continuing. “The muscles in my legs are atrophied, so it’s going to be a while before I can walk. I’ve got a lot of physical therapy ahead.”

I nodded in sympathy. “I’m here for you whenever you need me.”

Her little grin came back and she returned my nod. “I see you’ve been to get your nails done.”

“Oh yeah.” I wiggled my fingers back and forth. “Cute, right?”

Dinah looked at me weird. “You are so girlie now.”

That took me off guard and made me stop what I was doing. I did a hair toss to the side and told them what was troubling me. “It’s like Ross never existed, sorta.”

“What do you mean?”

“Well…” I looked at the open door and Dinah made a move to close it so we could have some privacy. “Thanks. You remember when I told you this morning that I really liked being dressed up?”

They both nodded. “That really was the first time I’ve been in anything resembling girls clothes. No make up, no weird fantasies. For some reason it just all fell together for me and I knew I wanted more.”

Barbie leaned her elbows on her wheelchair arms. “You think maybe that you subconsciously wanted to be a girl? That’s why you changed?””

I shrugged. “I really don’t know, but I don’t hate it.” I cringed a little. “In fact I really like it.” With a deep frown I added. “Except for the stupid sex talk Jeri insisted on having.”

After a brief rundown of the generalities she put me through, Dinah and Barbie had a good ole time giggling away.

“Not even one day as a girl and you have your own vibrator,” Dinah wheezed through bouts of euphoria.

“Don’t forget the dildo and lube, hello.”

Barbie was fascinated. “I wonder what else she had in the bag?”

I rolled my eyes. “There’s no telling with her. I swear, it was probably loaded with sex toys, nipple clamps, whips.”

“Do you even like boys?” asked Dinah.

I paused, struck dumb for a second. “Uh… I have no idea.” Thinking of some famous faces for a minute or so I couldn’t really discount the possibility. “I’m not repulsed with the idea.”

“Do you like girls?” asked Barbie.

With a quick look at Dinah and then at her, I felt my face heat up. “I’m definitely not repulsed by that idea.”

“Uh oh,” remarked Dinah. “Did you have a boy crush on us when you were Ross?”

This was dangerous territory we were entering. I had to defuse that right away. “Guys, you two are like my best friends. I wouldn’t chance losing that on stupid hormones.”

Barbie was stunned. “Both of us?”

The redness on my face spread to my ears and neck, but I nodded.

“But I’m… I mean…” She looked down at her wheelchair.

“Barbie, I didn’t and still don’t give a crap about your chair. It’s not you. You are you. You aren’t your chair.”

“See,” added Dinah. “I told you.”

Barbie looked at her sister and her eyes started going glassy. “I never thought… I’d hoped, but I never thought you’d ever like me like that.”

“I still do.” Maybe there’s something about being a girl that loosens my fears or makes my inhibitions lessen, but I’ve never been so open about my feelings. Perhaps it’s just sharing my twist with them or maybe it’s what we went though this morning before the twist. I don’t really care.

“You do?”

I nodded.

“So when I let you see me this morning, all of me.”

I waggled my eyebrows and grinned.

“Oh god, I’m so embarrassed.” She buried her face in her hands.

“Don’t be, you’re beautiful.”

Dinah sniffed. “Stop it. You guys are gonna make me cry.”

~O~

The girls, or rather the Parks girls got called down for dinner soon after. I was offered a place at their table but politely declined. When I returned home, I was greeted with my aunt and uncle sitting at the dining room table deep in serious conversation. I could tell because Uncle Steve was holding her hand while Aunt Jeri looked like she was going to cry.

“What happened?” I asked in fear of what I was going to hear. Way too much emotional stuff had been going on.

Aunt Jeri shook her head. “Nothing that you need to concern yourself with, sweetie. Your uncle and I were just having a talk.”

I fidgeted for a second and stuffed my hands in my back pockets. “Can I do anything for you?”

She smiled at me and held her arms out. A couple of steps later I was hugging my aunt and staring at my uncle with questions in my eyes. He minutely shook his head, not to pursue the subject, so I just let Aunt Jeri get her fill of hugs before pulling away.

“Are you hungry?” she asked.

I shook my head. “Surprisingly no. I might make a sandwich later.”

“You need to watch what you eat until you find out how your new metabolism works, sweetheart.”

Crud. Another downside of being a girl, having to look your best all the time; well, at least the girls that don’t want to look like slobs. “Yes, ma’am.”

“You’re such a good girl, Rosa.”

That struck a chord deep inside me. It really made me happy that my aunt thought I was good and behaving properly. When I was a guy, it’s not that I really thought about it too much. It was the parents, or in their case the guardians, job to give their son type figure a hard time. Take out the garbage, clean your room, straighten out whatever. I just learned to ignore them unless the tone of their voice told me that they were ‘serious’.

Now it was like I was craving their attention.

With the whole happy to be a girl thing, and now this… something was seriously wrong in my head. It was like the twist did something to me beyond the gender change.

“You have an appointment with Doctor Wayan tomorrow at nine in the morning. Make sure you dress nice.”

A doctor’s appointment. Good idea. I have some serious questions. “Yes, ma’am.”

The corners of her eyes crinkled when she smiled at me. “Okay, go on sweetie. Have yourself a good night.”

It was still early, only sevenish, but I’d been interested in turning in early so I could go shower and maybe explore my new body a little. It is my body after all.

When I got to my room, I grabbed one of the nightgowns that Aunt Jeri suggested. It was simple, nothing fancy, a red chemise. A pair of matching panties and I made for the door. Something made me stop, and I turned to look at my nightstand where I stored those things my aunt got for me.

No, it’s a little too early for that. I just wanted to have a nice shower… maybe a bath. Yeah, that sounded a lot better. A bath. I’ll probably need something to read. Oh what the hell, I might as well flip through the book she got me.

Checking down the hall to make sure the coast was clear I ran back to the nightstand and opened the drawer. I frowned when I’d seen Aunt Jeri had been there and added to the quickly growing pile inside. The two toys were there, along with the lube and the book, but there was a much smaller and thinner dildo looking thing and two more books.

The first one was ‘A Good Girl’s Guide to Sex’, the second one was ‘Who Want’s to be a Good Girl For Pete’s Sake?’, and the last one was the big thick sex encyclopedia that she originally gave me. Since I wasn’t currently perving, I chose the first one and then closed the drawer. No toys this round. I swear, my aunt is so weird.

Not knowing what to put in the bath, I tried a little bit of everything. Some bath beads that were supposed to make bubbles, some oil beads that were supposed to make my skin soft, some mineral salts that were supposed to help me relax. I wasn’t tense, but what the hell. With a satisfied nod at the growing mound of pink, purple, and blue bubbles I slipped out of my shorts and tank. The undies came off last and I spent a little time in front of the mirror noting the many changes in my body.

Those hips were definitely wider. I think my midsection stayed pretty much the same. It was firm and I could see strong hints of muscle definition underneath. Maybe my waist was a little smaller. The breasts were wonders of modern DNA. I don’t think I have ever seen more perfect breasts on a girl… or I should say on a model. They were kind of a perky teardrop shape that sloped into a… okay, maybe that’s a little too much information for this tale.

By the time I ended my little narcissistic endeavor I noticed the bubbles were a little much. “Whoops. Too much of something.”

I grabbed a towel and my book to set on the closed toilet seat while I made myself comfortable.

I think I might have had a small orgasm from the water and the feel of all the additives I put in. Okay, maybe not, but damn it felt good. I may never take another shower again. I did a quick wash down, while the bubbles settled a bit, before checking to see if I needed to shave. This may be a big asset girl-wise. My body hair should be thinner and grow back slower. No more daily shaving! Whoopee!

Forgetting the book I lay back and enjoyed the sensation  of rubbing my legs together in the oily water. That led to a slight clenching sensation down below. My nipples hardened and my body went to a place that could only be described as turned on, horny, in sexual need, uh… okay, it could be described in a lot of different ways.

~O~

Boys don’t know what they are missing. It was like my body was supercharged for one reason only and that was for sex. Every square inch of my skin was alive and I felt like I had just climbed the highest mountain in the world and then jumped off the peak into freefall.

When I had came down from the most wondrous sensation I had ever felt I hoped to god that my aunt and uncle didn’t hear me. I may have been just a little too vocal. I couldn’t help it! The noises I made were just so natural coming from my mouth, and once I started, I couldn’t stop. I actually tried, which resulted in me biting the inside of my mouth, which wasn’t too pleasant.

All of that was from me just playing with myself. A few fingers, a pinch here, a caress there. Just a little entry into that oh so special place, and that magical button that the top that sent me into oblivion.

After a look in the mirror, I hoped that my glowing skin was just the result of the hot water and not a byproduct of my playing around. If I showed that much a difference after a simple session of masturbation then I was screwed. Everyone would know, and there is no way that I was going to stop doing this. Every day, maybe three or four times a day.

Okay, I see why Aunt Jeri sat me down and embarrassed the hell out of me. If sex was better than this, then I might as well go ahead and toss the Good Girl book, cause I was definitely going to be bad.

The whole lotion after a bath thing was a little annoying, but she told me that it would keep my skin soft and supple. I though that was what the oils were for?

The one thing I loved about my little bout in the tub? No mess! Woohoo! I’d save a ton of money in the tissue department. Kleenex might be losing their biggest customer. Drop all your stock now before it’s too late!

With a silly smile on my face and my red chemise and panties on I opened the door.

Of course my aunt would be standing there wearing her biggest shit-eating grin. “Have fun?”

I cringed and maybe moaned a little. “You heard?”

She nodded. “I think the neighbors three streets over heard. Barbie called to find out if you were okay.”

My eyes bugged. “No, no, don’t tell me that.”

“All true.” She straightened herself out and winked at me. “I added something to your drawer that might help with that problem, at least until we can sound proof your bedroom and the bathroom.”

“Mooom…” Aunt Jeri froze and blinked at me. That kind of took me off guard for a second there too. “Uh… sorry, I mean…”

“No, don’t you dare say you’re sorry.”

In a second I was wrapped in her arms and I think she was weeping in my hair. I don’t know how long we stood there while she squeezed me tighter and tighter, but eventually she sniffed a couple of times and then stepped back. Her eyes were bloodshot and tear tracks ran all over her face. She grabbed me by the hand and we closed ourselves in my room.

I dropped my book on the night table and sat on the bed while Aunt Jeri grabbed a tissue and fixed her face as much as she could before joining me.

“Rosa, I know you’ve been through a lot over the last year, especially over the last day.”

I nodded.

“Since the beginning of summer I’ve been talking to your uncle about a certain subject, but he’s been putting me off for good reasons that have to do with your emotional well being.”

I really tried to understand where she was going with this, but I didn’t have a clue.

“I want to ask you a question, and I want you to know that you don’t have to give me an answer right away. And either way you answer I’ll be perfectly fine, okay?”

With a nod I allowed her to go on.

She took a deep breath, visibly steeling herself. “What you did just now, calling me mom. Would you like to make that official?”

“Wha…”

Then her mouth went into an overdrive rapid fire pace. “We didn’t want to overburden you since your parent’s death, and you just turned sixteen so there’s only two years, well less than two year until you graduate high school, and its silly but we really think of you as our son or rather our daughter now, and nothing would make us happier that to… ” she was looking everywhere but at me, eyes darting around, nothing like the confident woman I’d come to really love over the last year. “… part of the family either way, it’s not like making it official will change how we feel about you.”

“Aunt Jeri…”

“So you take your time thinking about what I’ve said…”

“Aunt Jeri…”

“And get back to us whenever you feel comfortable…”

“MOM!”

She shuttered to a stop and looked wide-eyed at me.

“I think I’d like that, if you let me call you mom and Uncle Steve, dad.” That didn’t sound quite right coming from my mouth. “Or maybe daddy, whichever, if that’s alright with him.”

She nodded quickly.

“Would I get to keep my last name, or maybe I could change it to Owens-Stuart?”

“You’re serious? You want us to adopt you?” she asked hopefully.

I nodded. “You guys are my parents now in everything but name. I love you guys just as much.” Something I would never admitted to as Ross, well, not without extreme coercion involved. Maybe thumbscrews or a Britney song or two.

Aunt Jeri, Mom, looked like she was on the verge of tears again. She must have started her sentence five times before getting it out. “I’ll get Steve to start the paperwork. You get a good nights rest, sweetie. We have to get up early to work on your makeup lessons.”

I nodded and jumped up to pull down the covers. My sheets had been changed and replaced with something that was soft and silky. When I slipped under the covers, Mom kissed me on the forehead. “I love you so much, Rosa. You always remember that, okay?”

I nodded. “I love you too, Mom.”

She breathed in a satisfied breath and rubbed her cheek along mine before turning and leaving the room.

God, what was tomorrow going to bring?

~O~

I was warm, encased in soft silky sheets and the slightest glimmer of daylight was peeking through my window shades when I woke up feeling like it was the first day of a new life. In a way, it was.

Bounding out of bed I dashed to my closet and found the coverup we bought yesterday before jetting out of the room to the kitchen. The coffee pot was already set up and I started it going. Then I turned around and sped to the bathroom to wash my hair. It wasn’t dirty, but Mom… I giggled at the thought… Mom wanted me to wash and condition it daily to keep it at its best. Right now, in this little warp of time, I wanted nothing more than to please her.

I got the turban thing to work after an annoying five tries. With a couple of quick movements of my head I declared it relatively secure. That’s when I zipped out of the bathroom and nearly ran into Uncle Steve.

“Whoa, slow down. Where’s the fire?”

I smiled, just a bit bashfully, then stood on my tiptoes to kiss his cheek. “Morning Daddy.” Giving him my triumphant grin at the goofy look on his face I side-stepped him and ran into my bedroom. Behind my closed door I heard Mom say, “She’s already got you wrapped around her little finger.”

That was funny, but what he said sent me into giggles. “Yeah, like you were any different last night.”

Delving into my closet, I heard a knock on my door before Mom stuck her head in. “Need any help?”

I popped my head out of the closet and nodded with a smile. “Thanks.”

While I was weighing the pros and cons of wearing a miniskirt to the doctor’s office, Mom stepped in and kissed my cheek while she gave me a one armed hug. “Morning sunshine. Aren’t you a bundle of energy today.”

“I think I slept too much. Going to bed at eight-thirty is a tad too early.”

“Here.” She chose a yellow sundress that bared my shoulders with just a hint of cleavage. “Wear this with the matching strappy sandals. You’ll need to learn those heels and two inches is perfect for beginners.”

Grabbing the dress, I leaned down and flipped open the box I knew the shoes were in. I couldn’t wait to walk around in high heels! Okay what the hell?

“Rosa?”

I looked up at my mom. “Something’s wrong with me.” I clutched the heels against my breast.

She grabbed my shoulders. “Tell me what’s wrong.” Mom looked on the verge of panic. “Are you sick? What hurts?”

I shook my head. “Not like that. When I picked up my shoes I got really excited about wearing high heels. It was like there would be nothing cooler in the world than to see how high I could get.”

Her eyebrows bunched up. “What?”

“Mom, yesterday morning I was a guy, and now I’m almost deliriously happy about prancing around in shoes that make my butt stick out and show off my legs.”

She pulled me to her and petted the nape of my neck in lue of my hair which was currently occupied in a towel. “Sweetie, it’s probably part of your twist. Sometimes it messes with our heads a little. For some reason it’s making you very accepting about being a girl. It’s not a bad thing if you think about it.” She stepped back and held my shoulders at arms length. “Would you rather be angsting over every little thing, driving yourself crazy?”

Confusion ran through my head. “I guess not. I just keep catching myself doing really girlie things. It’s putting me off or something.”

“I understand. We’re seeing the doctor at nine and we’ll put that at the top of the list of things to ask about, okay?”

I looked down and nodded.

“You okay now?”

I nodded again. “Yes ma’am.”

“Okay, get dressed and come to my room when you’re done, and we’ll do our hair and makeup together.”

Once I put the weirdness of over-acceptance to the back of my head I found some cute yellow bikini panties that matched. The sundress had something built in so I didn’t have to wear a bra. That was going to be strange. I set a reminder in my head so that I remembered not to run around or dash up stairs. That could really hurt.

I only had to ponder for a second on how to put the dress on. This was a lot easier yesterday when Mom was in the dressing room with me. After unzipping the small zipper in the back, I stepped into the dress and brought it up until it was situated on my breasts. Then I reached back and fastened the zipped with one hand. My, aren’t I flexible!

Smoothing out my dress, I sat down on the bed and slid my feet into the sandals and did up the straps to hold them in place on my feet. My toes look so cute now, not like the bony things I had as a boy. And there we go again! Okay, set it aside and back there with the other overly-girlie self-observations.

I grabbed my little gold watch for my left wrist and a couple of matching bracelets for my right. We didn’t get a chance to have my ears pierced yesterday. I need to get that done quick if their going to heal in time for school. I have too much hair to wear starter studs all the time. Must have dangly earrings! Groan, move, file for later.

Knowing Mom, she was running a little behind me since I had already washed my hair, so I took the extra time to grab my wallet and switch everything over to my new pocketbook that apparently could hold about fifty credit cards, four hundred dollars in loose change, and various sundry pictures, etcetera. Pictures! Oh!

It didn’t take me long to hunt down pictures of Dinah and Barbie, not to mention my original mom and dad. I needed ones of my new parents, definitely.

Stuffing my wallet in a decently matching purse, I followed it with my cell phone, and a little pack of tissue. Necessities! Moving to the bathroom I grabbed a couple of tampons, two panty liners, and a bottle of Midol. They went into a pocket all by themselves. Good.

Back in my room, I looked around for anything that I might need to stick in my urban survival bag. That’s when my eyes fell on the makeup table. I stopped and listened carefully. The water was still running in my parents bathroom. Oh what the heck, I could always wash it off.

~O~

“Rosa, what’s taking you so… long.”

I was just finishing with my lipstick when Mom came in. Reaching for a tissue, I blotted my lips. “Sorry, Mom. I wanted to see if I could do it myself.”

She was stunned, stymied, perplexed, mystified — one of those. “How…”

I winced. “Is it awful?”

“No, it’s not. It’s perfectly fine. Where on earth did you learn how to do that?”

I shrugged and looked back at the mirror. It wasn’t like I was a masterpiece or anything, just a little eyeshadow, a touch of eyeliner, mascara, a hint of blush, a tad of eyebrow pencil, and some lipstick, was all. I didn’t have to use any foundation since my skin was flawless already. Well, it was brand new, sort of. I did use a little moisturizer as a base.

“Did you use to watch your mom do her makeup?”

I cocked an eyebrow at her with the absurdity of that question.

“And you’ve never worn makeup before today?”

“No.”

“Huh.” She was about to say something and then changed her mind for a different topic. “I take it you’ve never styled that much hair before either.”

“Uh, no. I just blew it dry for about five minutes and brushed it out.”

Mom deflated. “And it fell like that?”

Turning back to the mirror I primped one side. “Is it bad?”

“No darling. It’s just fine.” She closed behind me and ran her fingers through a few strands with a pout. “You know, some of us women have to actually try to look as good as you.”

That was when I noticed what she was wearing. It wasn’t an exact duplicate of my dress, but it was darn close. “Hey, we match!” I spun around and took her in.

“Do you mind?”

I gave her my biggest smile. “Are you kidding? Our first day as mother and daughter. I think it’s a great idea.”

Mom glowed at my praise, then before moving on she looked to the bed, at my purse. “Got everything you’ll need?”

“I think so. Would you mind checking it out?”

“You moved your things from your wallet in here?” She waved my pocketbook at me and I nodded. After a few unzips and a returning rezips, she commented. “I don’t think you’ll have to worry about your period this soon, but it’s always best to be prepared.”

I grinned and blushed just a little.

“You’ll need your lipstick, mascara, and some powder. It’s still hot out there and your face will shine in the heat.”

I snapped my fingers. “Oh yeah, right. I forgot.” Gathering the makeup she indicated I found another empty pocket and secured it properly then shouldered my bag.

Mom shook her head and giggled a little. “Go get some breakfast, sweetheart while I get ready. And save me another cup of coffee. I have a feeling I’m going to need the caffeine today.”

~O~

“Can I get my ears pierced today?”

“May I.”

I think my mother is turning into my English teacher. “Sorry, may I get my ears pierced today? There’s this place at the mall that advertises they can do it painlessly.”

A whimsical smile graced Mom’s face. “I know the place, and they’re right. One of their employees has a trick where she can deaden the area first. It only lasts a few hours, but it’s worth it.”

I almost bounced in my seat. “So, may I?”

“Just your ears?”

The thought hadn’t crossed my mind about piercing any other place. I guess I could maybe do my navel too. Those piercing are still too cute. “Well, if you’re willing to let me, I’d like to get my navel done too. They need parents permission for that.”

She glanced at me for a second. “Okay, but that’s it for one day.”

That’s it? What else could you get pierced. I definitely don’t want anything out there like my eyebrows or lip done.

“Thanks, Mom.”

“You’re welcome, sweetie.”

~O~

I had no interest in the magazines in the waiting room. Mom filled out the proper forms for the insurance company, asking me all along questions about my twist. You should have seen the room they left for personality changes, tricks, compulsions, physical changes, you name it, it was there, and Mom was a writing fiend.

“Miss Owens?” a nurse said from behind one of those stupid frosted glass thingies that she just rolled open. (Like they have super important government top secret secrets they were hiding or something) “Doctor Wayan will see you now. Just through that door.”

I grabbed my purse and stood. “Can my mom come with me?”

She nodded and then closed the window, so she could probably finish painting her nails without being spied upon.

More questions from Doctor Wayan. He had my records from my regular non-twisted doctor send over, and then performed some routine tests including height, weight, blood pressure, and so on. I found out that I had lost an inch in height, and lost twenty-three pounds in weight. I had thought that I’d just shifted things around a little, but from what the doc said, I’d probably lost a significant amount of muscle mass and had it replaced with fatty deposits for my breasts and hips. The thing I was wondering about was why my arms and my legs… oh there it is.

My legs didn’t look nearly as muscular as they did before. Now there were soft curves and only hints of firm muscle to shape my calves and thighs. Well poop. I worked hard on those legs.

One of the tests was a combination tanning bed and something else. It lasted for about fifteen minutes. Then I found out it wasn’t a tanning bed. Science had finally caught up with Star Trek. The doctor was punching away on his keyboard and then poof, there I was in  holographic 3D glory for everyone to see.

“You are in excellent physical condition. I’d say nothing has changed there. You are a swimmer correct?”

I nodded.

“Well you’ll be happy to learn that you’ll be able to try out for the girls team this fall, since…” he clicked a couple more keys and my holo body disappeared and you could see my insides, oh eww. “… most definitely a girl, through and through.”

He pointed at three specific places. “These are your ovaries, and uterus.” He stopped for a second and then punched a few more buttons.  “That’s odd.”

I almost jumped when Mom closed in over my shoulder and scared the crap out of me. “What’s wrong?”

The doctor shook his head lightly. “Oh, nothing wrong, just odd. Rosa will be experiencing her first monthly cycle in just a few days.”

I groaned.

“It’s a given that male to female gender changes with the twisted start their menstrual cycles at day six. I’ve never heard of someone developing so far along, so soon after their twist.” Turning to me he started up with the questions again. “Have you been experiencing any bloating, moodiness, aches or pains…”

“I feel normal, Doctor.”

He shrugged. “Well that’s about to change, very soon.” After thinking for a moment he glanced at Mom and then asked me, “Have you engaged in any sexual activity since your twist?”

My eyes bugged and I threw a look at Mom. She smiled. Oh god.

“She masturbated for the first time as a female last night, Doctor.”

His lips quirked ever so slightly. “It’s nothing to be ashamed of Rosa. Everyone does it, even if they say they don’t. It’s all part of human nature. What I was getting at was, have you had sexual intercourse with another person.”

I shook my head, rapidly.

He shrugged again. “I really don’t have even a guess as to why this is happening, but it’s not out of the realm of possibility and it’s a very natural function of the female body.”

“Uh huh.”

“Rosa,” warned Mom.

“Sorry, yes, sir.”

“Doctor, I’d like to start Rosa off on birth control.”

He nodded and reached into his pocket to withdraw a small tablet. “That’s a very responsible attitude to have. I’m going to prescribe something that should have the positive side effect of regulating your cycle and easing the traditional symptoms associated with PMS.”

Mom took the prescription while I fidgeted.

“Do you have any questions about the physical aspects of your change?”

I was about to ask about the whole girlie thing, but I guess that would be considered mental and not physical, so I shook my head. “No sir.”

“Well I believe Doctor Meyers should be ready to help you with any psychological aspects of your twist.”

Great, this is what I actually wanted to learn about. Learning that I was going to be bleeding and cramping in just a couple of days was not on my list of desired surprises for the day.

Mom, had to go to the waiting room for this one. It was important that I be allowed to express myself freely to the next doctor. There was a stupid test I had to take on the computer that wound up being like 200 questions long. Afterwards I got to talk to the doctor while she looked at the results.

Apparently they wanted to learn if I was going to be an axe murderer or something. I know what you’re thinking. Isn’t that going a little bit overboard? No, it isn’t. There are some of the Twisted that happen to be butchers in the meat department, or maybe they were watching a horror movie, or something like getting mugged at the time of their twist. They turned violent and had to be shipped off to the loony bin. Sometimes they could be given medication, sometimes they had to be locked away. Luckily I didn’t have any desire to find out what the insides of any of my friends taste like.

‘Have you noticed any changes in your personality since your twist?”

Thank you! “Yes! I keep catching myself doing really girlie things, like getting excited about wearing high heels, or looking cute, or kissing my dad on the cheek. I never used to do this. Oh! And this morning, I did my makeup and hair all by myself, no help.”

The doctor’s eyebrows lifted slightly. “Really? Have you had any previous experience putting any on?”

Why does everyone think that I was a closet transvestite? I narrowed my eyes at her. “No. Well, I passed a girl getting one of those makeovers at Macy’s a few times, but the makeup and perfume sections are at the front of the store. It’s not like you can avoid them or anything.”

She smiled at me. “So, no training.”

I shook my head. As she wrote that in her notes she asked if there was anything else.

I shrugged. “Um, well, I think I may have a trick, or at least Mom thinks it is.”

“Tell me about it.”

“I figure things out really easy now.”

“How so?”

Sitting up in my seat, I crossed my legs. “I make Sherlock Holmes look like an amateur.”

“Really,” she said in a tone that let me know she was really interested.

I told her about the three instances from yesterday that the average person wouldn’t really figure out given the information provided. The doctor nodded at all the right places and then she asked me to see if there was anything about her or the office I could tell her from a casual glance. I shrugged and looked around for a few seconds before returning my eyes to the doctor.

“You grew up poor, or at least not as well off as others around you. Working your way through college you met, married, and then lost a husband. You take your morning coffee black with sugar and drink it throughout the day. You like running and really enjoy the high you get afterward. You don’t have any children, but you love being around them.”

On and on I went describing her life and her face just showed more and more surprise. And here I thought that psychiatrists were supposed to be unemotional.

“That’s amazing. I understand how you deduced the coffee, seeing the carafe and the half empty sugar bowl, but how did you know about the children?”

“Pictures on the shelf over there.” I thumbed behind me. “I saw them on the way in. There are lots of kids, all different. They resemble the adults they are with and not you. You are really happy in the pictures and there are none on your desk of your own family.”

She nodded. “And my past monetary status?”

“The diplomas on the wall. The first is an Associates Degree from the local community college that nobody goes to unless they can’t afford the higher end schools. Your second degree was from out of state, from a very nice school. You wound up with a scholarship that paid your way. Plus the fact that you surround yourself with unnecessarily high end things. People with old money don’t feel the need to show it off by having gold plated desk organizers or flashy jewelry at work. The stuff they have is more subdued, like antiques, or practical, even if it’s expensive.”

“Fascinating.” She looked thoughtful for a moment before asking, “Would you mind if I performed a little experiment?”

I closed up. “This doesn’t involve needles, does it?”

She laughed and shook her head. “No, I’m going to go ask you some questions and I want you to tell me if I’m lying and specifically what I’m lying about.”

Seeing the apprehension on my face she added, “This isn’t required for your psychological evaluation, Rosa.”

It only took me a few seconds to agree.

“Okay, let’s begin. My name is Sandy Meyers and I’m thirty-nine years old.”

Something seemed off about the last part of her statement. “You’re lying about your age.”

“How do you know?”

I shrugged. “Nothing specific, I don’t know.”

“That’s okay. Next statement.”

Given warning that I knew to look for something, I focused on her upper body.

“I live in Briarwood and I have an aboveground pool.”

As she was talking, everything about her face became infinitely clear in my eyes. I could almost see the small pores on her nose, and they were covered with makeup.

“Both are lies.”

“Again. When I was a little girl I used to borrow my sister’s clothes without her knowledge.”

Now I was surprised. “You used to be a boy, and you did borrow her clothes.”

I still couldn’t figure out what I was looking for. It was like I instinctually knew when she was telling the truth.

“I had a very happy childhood.”

Something was off about that statement. “Half-truth.”

“Thank you, Rosa.”

“I’m a human lie detector?”

The doctor smiled. “Not exactly. Without further testing I can’t be positive, but I don’t think this is a trick in the traditional sense. I think that your natural awareness, something that everyone has in a small degree, has been amplified. What the average person sees in passing, they discount unless it is important to them. You, on the other hand, absorb everything around you, even with a casual glance.”

“What’s that mean?”

“It means, Rosa, that you have excellent career opportunities that involve attention to detail: law enforcement, scientist, even psychiatry to name a few.”

I smiled my first genuine smile since arriving at the clinic. “Really?”

She nodded. “A fair warning, though. There aren’t a lot of people out there, friends specifically, that will appreciate your lie detection skills.”

“What do you mean? They’d probably think it was cool.”

The doctor laced her fingers in front of her on the desk. “Think of it this way, Rosa. Have any of your girlfriends ever asked if something looked nice, but it really didn’t and you wanted to spare their feelings?”

I nodded.

“Well think of it from their point of view. If they knew that you could tell they were telling even the littlest of white lies, how do you think they would react?”

A frown dropped over my face. “They’d think I was a freak.”

She chuckled. “Probably not, but they’d definitely be very careful about what they said around you. Your friendship would most likely turn into a casual acquaintance, and very few people would want to get close to you.”

“So, I need to keep my mouth shut about that.”

She shrugged her shoulders a little. “That’s your choice. I’m sure you wouldn’t want to tell everyone. Just be careful.”

~O~

The doctor that I saw that specialized in tricks verified what the psychiatrist said. My ability was an enhancement of my senses and not an actual trick. He tried to reassure me that sometimes it takes a while for something to manifest itself an not to worry about it. While it might be cool to have a ‘power’ of some sort, I wasn’t put off by not having one, or at least not having one yet.

Thus endth the medical aspect of my day. Now for the fun stuff. It was just after lunch, and Mom drove me to the mall. Granted mall food was life’s blood to teenagers, but I took my mother’s advice and had a small turkey sandwich and a side salad from the only healthy fast food joint in the food court.

The mall was kind of quiet after the lunch rush and the click of our heels on the granite tiles made me quite aware of how I was dressed. I guess the tops of my breasts poking out of the sundress I was wearing should have been doing that in the first place, but still.

The tattoo/piercing parlor was stuck down one of the offshoots, kind of like the black sheep store in the mall. There were a couple of girls sitting in an array of seats out front, talking when they saw us approach. One was littered with tattoos and the other with piercings. I guessed they were advertising or something.

The girl with the nose ring with attached chain leading to her ear kind of gave me the wary eye while the tattooed one seemed mostly friendly. “Can we help you ladies?”

I nodded. “I wanted to get my ears and navel pierced.”

The black-haired goth chick pushed up on the seat. “That’s me. Come on.” She led me through the parlor and I looked at the many different pieces of jewelry that people used to decorate themselves.

“Have a seat in the chair. We’ll do your ears first.”

She donned some latex gloves and tore a package open before laying out her tools on a stainless steel table with a blue paper cloth on top. I saw a really big needle and cringed a little.

“Don’t you guys use some sort of gun to do that?”

She flicked her eyes to me in annoyance. “Yeah, if you want to get some funky infection. That’s what the jewelry stores do. Here, at the professional piercing place, we actually sterilize our equipment before we use it.”

“Oh, eww.”

“Yeah. Those places hire anyone off the street. I’m actually trained to know where the blood vessels are and not send you to the hospital to stop a gaping head wound.”

“Blood vessels?”

“Look.” She stuck out her tongue along with the attached barbell and curled it upward before pulling it back in. “See the two blue veins on either side under my tongue?”

I nodded.

“Clip one of those and they’ll have to cauterize that.”

“I don’t want my tongue pierced.”

She grinned. “Relax princess. Ears and navel only. I’m just giving you an example.”

I shot her a small glare at the princess crack.

“Just relax and think of fluffy bunnies or something.”

Settling back on the headrest I stared at some of the artwork stapled to the wall. That’s when she pinched my earlobe with her fingers. The part she pinched went numb. A few seconds later she declared she was finished with that one.

“I didn’t even feel anything!”

The girl rubbed her fingers together. “That’s my trick. I can make it where it doesn’t hurt.”

“Oh, cool.”

She pinched the other lobe. “Okay, remember the fluffy bunnies.”

~O~

“Kim is an acquired taste,” noted my mom.

“She looked like she wanted to taste me when I had to lift my dress up to let her do my navel.”

Mom laughed. “That’s Kim.”

I looked at her for a second. “You’ve gotten more than your ears pierced there.”

She shrugged. “I’ve had my ears pierced since I was five.”

“Aaaannnd?”

“My nipples and my clitoral hood. Kim does good work. Didn’t feel a thing until later and even then it was just sore.”

I tried to imagine that girl slipping a needle through my new nipples. Uh, no thanks. That’s just too much for me. Maybe when I’m old, grey and sagging.

“Miss Owens,” came a voice from behind us.

We turned around and I recognized the manager from the shoe store yesterday.

He nodded toward my mother and then. “Sorry, I didn’t have your phone number and the police wouldn’t help me with something like that.”

“Can I help you?”

He smiled. “I was wondering if you were working anywhere at the moment?”

I shook my head. “No, thank you. I don’t think shoe sales are in my future. I’m still in high school.”

“I was thinking more along the lines of working for the mall. I was talking to some of the other managers, friends of mine. I didn’t mention any names, but I told them about how you nailed Sabrina in just a few seconds.”

I looked at my mom, but she genuinely seemed interested in what the guy was talking about.

“What did you have in mind?” she asked.

He shrugged his shoulders. “Mall security is always looking for people to…”

I laughed. “I don’t think I’d look too good in the outfit.” A rent-a-cop, no thanks.

He shook his head. “That wasn’t what I was going to suggest. This weekend is the Back-to-School tax free holiday. This place is going to be packed to the gills with people and besides Christmas, it’s the biggest shoplifting weekend of the year.”

I cocked my head to the side.

“That’s where you would come in. You’d spend time in each of our stores, four of them so far. We’ll get you a radio mike and have our own security guys to take care of the shoplifters. You’d just point them out.”

“How much would she get paid?”

“Ten percent of the net merchandise she saves.”

“Give us a minute,” Mom said before pulling me away. We sat at one of the wooden benches about fifteen feet away. “What do you think, Rosa?”

“I don’t know. Are they serious?”

“Depending on how good you are, ten percent would be a nice take. I might be able to work them higher.”

I considered it for a few seconds. It would be cool to have some spending money. The allowance card was stretched to the end at the moment and I still had three weeks until it was refilled. I nodded.

Mom waved the guy over. “She’ll do it for forty percent of the gross loss.”

My eyes widened in shock. Go mom!

“Forty percent, ma’am?”

She shrugged. “Or you could go ahead and lose a hundred percent. Seems like a bargain to me.”

He glowered. “Twenty percent net.”

“Thirty, gross.”

His lips turned inward and he bit on lower. “Twenty-five and lunch in the food court.”

“Gross?”

“The food? I think the Chinese is pretty good.”

Mom rolled her eyes. “Not the food, the saved product.”

“Oh.” He blushed a little. “Uh, I’ll have to okay it with the others.”

“Who are the others?” I asked.

He turned and pointed out the store across from his. “Janus Jewelry, Winsome Leather, Baldonbooks, and my store, of course.”

Cha-ching!

~O~

“So you’re Batman,” Dinah said amidst the giggling.

“I’m not Batman.”

“She the Huntress,” Barbie shot to her sister.

“I’m not the Huntress.” Barbie pouted and it was so sweet looking. “Okay, fine. I’m the Huntress.”

“Yea!” Her eyes went manic. “You’ll need a costume! Oh my god, I’ve got to get to work.”

“Barbie, I’ll be in the middle of the mall. I don’t think wearing spandex and latex will let me blend in very well.”

The pout was back. “How about a utility belt?”

I shook my head. “Nobody wears a utility belt in public unless they are like construction workers or something.”

“Handcuffs?”

“Security is doing the takedowns. I just point them out.”

She huffed in disappointment.

~O~

Friday flew by. I stopped in to fill out some paperwork and they showed me where I would be and the rotation schedule. The jewelry store was the least likely to get hit, because they always had an off duty cop there for security during the busy times. From the way the stores were set up, I deduced that the bookstore was the most likely to be hit, seconded only by the leather store, with the shoe store being at the bottom of the list.

The deal was, that I would receive, the twenty-five percent of the gross merchandise value that was stolen, only if it was recovered, of course. Meals would be on them. They had the mall set up a kiosk in the middle, so I could have a decent view of each of the stores. They would put pamphlets and coupon books on the cart. My cover was that I was there only to refill the cart when needed. I wouldn’t have to sell anything, so having me there all day wouldn’t look out of place.

Saturday came and I was there bright and early in denim stretch jeans, a sleeveless vee-neck blue blouse, and my cell phone. My first provided meal was from Chick-Fil-A. A breakfast biscuit, and a large Diet Coke. I needed the caffeine.

They gave me a headset that was connected to a little radio attached to my belt. I had my I-Pod clipped there so it looked like I was listening to that or talking on my phone.

“Radio check, Rosa.”

“Uh, hello?

“Can you hear me now?”

“Hello?”

“Are you messing with me, Rosa.”

“Kinda.”

“Are you that bored already?”

“Yeah, when do we start the show?”

“They’re unlocking the doors now. I hope you used the bathroom.”

“Uh oh.”

People are freaking crazy. They think they are saving all of this money by buying their supplies on a tax free weekend. In actuality, they are saving about eight percent here in Spiral. Now take into account the fact that the stores jack up the merchandise price by fifteen percent before the weekend starts. Lay on top of that the extra fifteen percent mark up for shopping at the mall when you could buy most of the stuff here in solo stores and in actuality you are paying an extra twenty-two percent for the privilege of the “tax free” gimmick.

And people are rushing in here like it’s the best savings EVAR!

Damn that didn’t take long. I clicked on the mic. “Three girls at the front of the bookstore. Redhead just stuffed a copy of Twilight in her purse.”

“Copy. We’re on it.”

Of all the things to be caught stealing.

Too bad it was a paperback. At $7.99 I took in less than two bucks. Come on people, show your dark side! Go for the high end stuff.

I went another thirty minutes without dropping the dime on anyone. Then it all came at once. It was like a organized hit of ten different people.

“Holy crap.” I clicked the mic. “Call in back up, everyone’s getting hammered at once. Old guy loose blue shirt, shoe store, pack of socks. Three guys and a blonde girl in the leather store. She’s got a jacket vest and a purse. They’re covering for her.”

I spun in my chair. “Old lady with giant pink purse is filling it up with … bookmarkers?” What the hell?

“Where the hell is the cop? Oh shit, guy with a gun in the jewelry store.”

Too much for me. I was out of there.

“We’re, on it Rosa. Stay where you are. We just called the police.”

“You just called them? What about the people behind the counter that he’s waving the gun at?”

“We’re not armed security. All we can do is call the police.”

I ripped the headset off, tossing it on the cart and looked around. Ohgodohgodohgod. The cart next to mine was loaded down with umbrellas. I grabbed two of the stoutest looking ones.

“Hey!” the perky blonde that manning the cart almost yelled at me.

“I’m with security. Take a chill pill and get over here.”

“Whatever, pay for them or put them back,” she snapped at me.

I point with one of the umbrellas. “The jewelry store is being robbed.” She opened her mouth to scream and I whacked her over the head. “Don’t scream, idiot. Do you want to get shot?”

Ducking down, I waited until the guy was handed a large shopping bag and he shoved his little snub-nosed gun in his jacket pocket. A jacket in August?

“Police! Freeze!”

Oh shit. It was the off duty cop still hiking his pants up. He was in the bathroom. Joy. Is this guy stupid? He didn’t even have his gun out! Oh, but the robber did, and to top the whole thing off he was headed this way.

“Down, get down,” I snapped at the girl beside me. The guy was backing away at a fast pace, barely looking where he was going when he passed the cart I was at. I pressed the release buttons for both umbrellas. They were still secured by their Velcro straps so they didn’t open, but they did double in length. My first strike came atop the hand holding the gun. The second strike came to the back of his head, well it would have been the back if he didn’t turn his face to me at the last second.

Don’t think that this put him down. They were just umbrellas, and nothing solid enough to do any real damage, but it was enough to disorient him for about a single second. Enough time for me to wheel back around and clock him in the throat with the first umbrella.

During all of this there was screaming. The girl behind me, parents with their kids, me while I was whacking the guy over and over with the umbrellas as he was gasping for breath.

“Kids are here, you ass!” Whack whack! “You don’t bring a stupid gun…” Whack whack! “To a mall and pull it out…” Whack whack! “With kids around!” WHACK WHACK!

“Rosa! We got him, stop hitting him.”

By this time I was out of breath and adrenaline was racing throughout my body.

~O~

My hands were shaking as I sat in the security office at the mall, trying to sip at some water. I peed about three times from the nervousness. It was interesting watching the police of Spiral work. I don’t know who the off duty cop was that screwed the pooch, but he was let go by the store.

It took them a couple of minutes to pull the umbrellas from my hands, I was gripping them so tight. I think I broke them. Actually I’m pretty sure I broke them. They weren’t supposed to bend at an angle like that. were they?

That wing of the mall was shut down and people were being questioned left and right. I was lucky. I had my own personal detective to tend to me.

“What did you do then?”

I narrowed my eyes at him. “Did you see the camera footage? I have. I whacked him… a lot.”

“Where did you learn to use those umbrellas like that?’

“Karate. They didn’t teach that exactly, but they worked in the end.”

“He was screaming for a lawyer. That he was going to sue the mall and that girl for brutality.”

“You’re kidding. He had a gun.”

The detective shrugged. “You’re not a cop.”

“Rosa!”

“Mom!”

My mother burst through the doors at the mall office, rushed in and gave me a hug. “You’re quitting. You don’t need money this bad.”

I nodded in her neck. “Okay.”

“Who are you?” she snapped at the cop.

“Detective Martinez, ma’am. I was just taking Rosa’s statement.”

I pulled back. “Mom, the guy that had the gun and was pointing it at everyone is going to sue me for beating him up.”

“What?”

The detective shrugged. “Looks like.”

Mom looked down at the tablet. “And you are taking the statement of a minor without her parents permission or legal representation, why exactly?”

At that moment my stomach started hurting. My hand drifted south to my abdomen. Mom noticed. “Sweetie? Did he hurt you. Did he lay a finger on you?”

I shook my head. “No Mom, I think it’s just…” I looked at the detective and then back at Mom. Trying to mindmeld with my mother wasn’t working exactly. “I need my purse. I have to go to the bathroom.

Detective Martinez handed me my bag.

“Why did you have her purse? Did you search it? Is my daughter a common criminal now?”

I let her deal with the cop as I disappeared to the girls room.

Perfect. A perfect end to the perfect day. Having already read the directions on the box of Tampax while at home. I already knew what to do. Luckily I wasn’t gushing blood anywhere, but there were a few drops in my panties.

You know the commercials were the smiling girls are playing volleyball, surfing, skating, and dancing while a Tampax is supposedly in them. They’re all bullshit. I could actually feel it in there, and while I was attaching my panty liner to the extra set I carried with me, I cramped up hard.

“Oh crap. Looking good is so not worth this.”

After washing my hands I popped two Midol and a handful of water.

Mom was waiting for me in the hall with pages from the legal pad the cop was writing on in her hand.

“Are you okay sweetie?”

I shook my head. “Can we go home?”

She put her arm around me and opened the outer door. We wound our way around the maze that is the only exit away from the offices which emptied not too far away from the food court.

“There she is. There she is.”

“Oh shit.” Holy crap, Mom cussed!

Before I realized it three microphones were shoved in my face. “Rosa, what was it like to take down a hardened criminal bent on murder!” “Rosa, Why did you do it?” “Rosa, Rosa, are you Twisted? Did you use your powers to stop him?” “The suspect says that he was brutally attacked by you, any comments?”

“Mom?”

She whipped me around to her back and held up a glowing red hand. “You, back off now if you ever want to have another erection ever again.”

“Hey, you can’t say that on TV!”

Three of the guys scurried backward, keeping a good five feet away while Mom pulled me through the building mob.

~O~

I spent the rest of the day in bed, except for when I had to get up every few hours to do sanitary duty. Ugh.

Around four in the afternoon Mom woke me up to say Dinah and Barbie were in the living room.

“Can they come in here. I really don’t feel like getting out of the bed.”

“Of course sweetie.”

A few minutes later I heard the whirr of Barbie’s wheelchair down the hall before Dinah stuck her head in.

“Hey,” she quietly greeted me. “How are you feeling?”

Barbie was right behind her and gave me a little wave. She looked about as good as I did.

“Fine, crampy.”

“You too?” said Barbie while rubbing her tummy.

I nodded. Dinah leaned over and gave me a brief hug. “Welcome to womanhood, sister.”

With a quick roll of my eyes and a smile. “Can I turn my membership card in?”

“Nope. Got to have a baby first, then if you can look at that baby and not want to be a woman it’s okay.”

“Gah. No thanks.”

Barbie wheeled forward and held my hand while Dinah climbed on the bed and sat cross-legged beside me.

“We saw you on TV.” I groaned when Barbie said that. “No way.”

She nodded sympathetically.

“Did they show where Mom threatened to castrate the reporters?”

The girls looked at each other and smiled. “Mom?” asked Dinah.

Pulling the covers up to kind of hide my smile I nodded. “They’re going to adopt me.”

A loud squeal erupted from Dinah’s mouth and she dropped down to hug me. “That’s great news, Rosa.”

“Yeah.”

“They showed you beating the crap out of that guy with the gun,” said Barbie.

Dinah rolled her eyes. “The guy’s already got a lawyer and says they want to sue you for assault and excessive use of force;  that you violated his civil rights.”

I groaned. “He had a freaking gun in a mall full of kids. Was I supposed to just let him go on his merry way and maybe take me or one of the kids as hostage so he could get away?”

Dinah shook her head. “Everyone already knows that you did the right thing. You made the national news. All the talking heads are behind you, except for that guy on MSNBC with the hair.”

They caught me off guard with that. “What?”

Barbie smiled at me. “Yeah. They’ve got like three different angles, not counting the security camera. People had their cell phones out and one even had sound.”

“No way.”

Dinah got up off the bed and turned my TV on. I caught half a glimpse of a cooking show before she switched it through three news channels until she found one that was currently covering the story. Half the screen was filled with a salt and pepper haired white guy and the other was a fairly decent capture of me whacking the robber.

“Turn the sound up,” I said as I was kind of in awe.

“… only had a pair of umbrellas. Someone needs to give that girl an award instead of us talking about how violent she is. It was a measured response to a deadly threat. Did she know he didn’t have another weapon somewhere on his person? No. Did she think that her life and those around her were in danger? Yes. In my book she’s a hero and should be treated as such.”

The picture changed and there was an aloof looking lady that looked like someone stuffed a piece of smelly cheese under her nose. “She is one of the Twisted and everyone knows that they are mentally deficient and violently unstable. How someone didn’t get hurt is a miracle. I say leave the law enforcement to the police and lock up the mutants like this girl before someone gets seriously hurt. Any one of those children could have been shot. We need to do it for the children.”

My mouth dropped at that one.

“They don’t know what to do about you,” said Dinah as she lowered the volume. “The Conservatives that hate Twisted, but love the fact that you took the guy down are confused, and the Liberals that are tolerant of the Twisted are up in arms because they think that you’re unstable and went overboard on the guy with the gun.”

“Slow news day?” I asked.

Barbie squeezed my hand. “No, not really. The President bowed to someone again, and some failing reality show parents are going to jail for tossing their kid off a bridge and claiming they were bungee jumping just to get ratings. You’re the hot topic right now.”

Dinah nodded. “Pro-Twisted lobbyists are touting you as a hero and the other side thinks that you’re okay because you’ve just twisted and you’re not quite as insane as the rest of us, like it’s left over from when you were just a norm.”

Barbie grabbed her tummy again and flinched. “I forgot what it was like.”

I frowned. You didn’t have cramps before?”

She shook her head. “I’m sure I did, but now that I can feel everything again, it’s like it’s making up for lost time or something.”

With a scoot over, in my bed, I lifted the covers. “Want to share?”

~O~

Strange dreams that night. I was wearing the full Huntress get up including cape, thigh high boots, utility belt, a pair of crossbow pistols, and a mask that covered half my face.

I was back at the mall, sitting on the stool, replaying the horrible scene all over again. Except this time, I was prepared. When the robber neared the cart this time, I lashed out with my steel-toed boots, snapping his wrist. The full length arm gloves had large weighted, metal studs coving my knuckles. I wasted no time in using them to pummel the guy into submission.

There was only the thrill of excitement running through my veins instead of the gallons of adrenaline that I’d previously had.

I’d cuffed him and then stood up to see that everyone was gone. The shoppers had disappeared and I could hear my breathing almost echoing in the empty mall.

The whirr of Barbie’s wheelchair came from around the corner. I turned and there she was, except she was different. Her hair was more red than the new strawberry-blond that had popped up after her second twist. Rectangular glasses were perched atop her nose and she was smiling at me.

“I knew I’d find you here.” She looked at me approvingly. “I like the outfit.”

I looked down and saw exactly how tight it was, leaving absolutely nothing to the imagination. It might as well have been painted on.

When she stopped in front of me, Barbie locked the brakes and pushed herself up to her feet. I didn’t help her, because I knew that she hated having to rely on anyone for help. She accepted it graciously, but resented it all the same. When she was at her full height, we met eye to eye.

“Ready for your reward?”

I nodded, wondering what she had planned when she leaned in and kissed me. The next thing I knew, we were in my room at home and the costume was gone, along with the outfit Barbie had on. We were in bed and I was awash with excitement at hearing her scream my name at the height of her pleasure.

“Rosa!”

~O~

Our eyes snapped opened at the same time. Barbie’s name was on my lips and mine on hers. A thin sheen of sweat glistened off her face and her breathing matched mine at a rapid pace. We both just froze there staring at one another through the span of two inches.

My body was still coming down off of what had to be the mother of all wet dreams: nipples pushing hard against the violet chemise I was wearing, inner thighs damp and hot, abdomen quivering, pulsing with the beat of my heart.

Then it all fell apart when I saw the fear on her face.

“I have to go,” she blurted out. She threw the covers off and struggled to sit up.

“Barbie…” A musky scent filled the air, and I instinctively knew it to be the smell of sex, from both of us. “Wait,” I said with just a little forcefulness added. She froze again, stopped as she was trying to pull her tee-shirt on over the chemise I’d lent her.

“You can’t leave like this. If you do then things are going to be really weird between us. Like not talking weird and ignoring each other weird.”

She released a breath and shuddered. “I didn’t touch you, I swear.”

“I know. And I didn’t touch you.” Although it felt like it. “But I dreamed I did.”

Her head swiveled around slightly, but not enough to where she could see me. “Me too.”

Something in my mind clicked, images fast forwarded across my field of vision, comments played themselves back in my ears, little clues of our lives since my twist all came together.

“Your dream. Did it start at the mall?”

This time she did turn all the way around, and when she did, her mouth dropped open. “You were wearing the outfit I was designing.”

“I beat the crap out of the robber.”

“My hair was red.”

“You stood on your own.”

Barbie smile at remembering that. “Then I kissed you.”

I nodded, not wanting to go into what happened after. “I think something happened during my twist.”

She tilted her head. “Really? What gives you that idea?”

That deserved an eye roll, but at least she was making fun of me and not angsting over our mutual… um, whatever it was.

We went through our morning routine. This time, Barbie was able to borrow some of my clothes. She had to wear the same bra she had on the previous day, but it was easier to wear something too big than too small. All she had to do was tie off a tee at the small of her back and she was good to go. Something deep within me was very satisfied, or content knowing that Barbie was wearing my clothes. I didn’t pretend to understand it, instead I just filed it away for future reference.

I swear, I think my head has become some sort of giant file cabinet or maybe a computer… and there I go with another comparison.

Mom was pouring what looked to be her third mug of coffee, she didn’t look like she got much sleep the night before.

“Hey sweetie, feeling better?”

I nodded. “Yeah, a lot actually.”

She grinned at me and gave me one of her ‘knowing’ eyes. “Sounded like it. I take it you an Barbie are have past the ‘good friends’ stage?”

Thank god Barbie was still in the bedroom finishing her make up. “Uh, sort of, not exactly. That’s what I wanted to talk to you about.”

Mom took her mug and sat down at the breakfast table while I retrieved two mugs for Barbie and me. “I need to go see Doctor Wayan again.”

She blinked at the change in topic. “What’s wrong? Did something happen?”

I shrugged. “Sort of. I think I know why I’ve been acting all weird, accepting, and girlish.”

“Really? Why?” I had her full attention now.

“I think something happened during my twist while I was hugging Barbie.”

Mom nodded. “Well obviously, a second twist is unheard of, anything could have happened.”

I shook my head. “I don’t mean that.” I battled at exactly how much I should reveal, considering my mom would eat this up with a spoon forever if given a chance. “We made some sort of connection, mentally.”

Now she was confused. “How so?”

I scanned for my friend before lowering my voice. “We shared a dream last night. Literally shared it, like we had the exact same dream.”

I caught her just as she was about to take another sip of coffee and she stop, with the mug in mid tilt. “Was that what I heard just a little while ago?”

I closed my eyes and almost groaned. “Probably.”

She smiled slightly. “Okay, let me rephrase. Was it a sexy dream or did you and Barbie wake up and have morning sex.”

Do all women talk to their daughters like this? “Sexy dream.”

Without missing a beat, Mom went right in the direction that I didn’t want her to go. “And did you enjoy it?”

“Mooom,” I groaned.

“Answer the question, Rosa. Did you enjoy making love to Barbie?”

My head thumped onto the table. “Yes, it was the best moment in my life. Is that what you want to hear?”

She chuckled faintly. “While it’s always nice to hear when my daughter is in love, I’m not the one that needed to hear it.”

Turning my head to the side, I gave her a weird look. “What?”

She waggled her eyebrows and looked behind me. Oh god, please no. “Is Barbie in the hallway looking at me right now?”

All Mom did was grin.

“You are an evil evil woman.”

NOW I hear the whirr of her wheelchair. Damn selective hear thing I’ve got going on right now.

“I’ll let you two talk while I go get ready. I’ll give Doctor Wayan a call and see if he can slip us in.” On her way by me she moved a chair to make room for Barbie’s wheelchair at the table. Of course, she made the empty space as close as humanly possible to me without actually being in my lap.

Thankfully Barbie’s face was as red as mine, currently. “I guess you told her.”

I nodded. “We need to see Doctor Wayan about this. I couldn’t really not tell her the reason.”

She shook her head. “No, you’re right. I guess I’m just a little weirded about being shuffled out of the closet.”

My eyes dropped back to the coffee mug. “Sorry. I can tell her not to tell anyone if you want.”

I felt my hand being taken before I saw it happening. “It’s okay. As long as you’re okay with it.”

Looking up across the small corner of the table, I saw how nervous Barbie was. “This really isn’t the way I wanted you to find out about how I felt.”

She took a small breath and the corners of her mouth quirked up. “Me neither. I guess you already knew about my crush on you.”

I nodded. “That was before though, when I was Ross.”

She nodded. “I thought I’d feel different. I mean when you let me dress you up in the Huntress costume at first, I thought I’d never seen you look so good, and that was in a costume for a girl.”

“Really?”

She nodded. “Well, it was sexy.” Her blush deepened. “You’ve always been… not effeminate, but not afraid to do things that might be considered gay or girlie. I mean, your two best friends are girls, you shave your body, you didn’t put up an annoying fight when I asked you to try out the costume.” She saw my defensive argument coming. It was hard not to. “I know you have reasons for all of those things, and that’s cool. I’m just saying that you’re different from other guys. It wasn’t a bad thing.”

“So, I was a borderline girl anyway?”

Barbie huffed at me. “That’s not what I was saying. I thought you were beautiful before, when you were Ross, and I think you’re beautiful now that you are Rosa. So yeah, I still have a crush on you. That’s what I’m saying.”

We sat there for a minute in an uncomfortable silence while she took her offered mug of coffee and sipped at it.

“I’m sorry.”

“For what,” she asked.

“For being an ass.” I sucked it up and whet ahead to tell her what had been on my mind all morning. “I really really like you, Barbie. I really wished that the dream wasn’t just a dream, not because I enjoyed what we did, but because I finally acted on my feelings instead of being scared of losing our friendship.” She looked at me in pleasant surprise. “That’s why I haven’t done anything about us. I was scared of screwing it up and losing you and Dinah.”

I don’t know which I found more interesting, looking at the expression on her face or the fine wood grains of the breakfast table.

“Rosa, would you do me a favor?” I nodded without looking. “I want to see if my dream was as good as the real thing. Would you kiss me?”

I didn’t answer, instead I leaned forward and tilted my head, as did she. The last thing I saw was her eyes closing before I closed mine.

The first thing I noticed was the texture of our lipsticks and then the delightful pressure of her lips against mine. In almost no time we each opened our mouths and deepened the kiss. The faint taste of coffee was soon overpowered by the wonderful taste I remembered from last night, something so completely Barbie.

I heard her moan slightly in my mouth, matching my own. It was like we were one being, pleasing and being pleased, knowing exactly when to move our heads, lips, tongues to satisfy some deep seated desire.

My nipples tightened and I really wanted to see if the rest of last night was as satisfying as the kiss we were currently experiencing. With that in mind, I pulled away before things got out of hand. Mom was only a room away, after all.

I think our smiles matched. “Yeah,” we said at the same time. “Better.”

“I see that I’ll need to get you a couple of new books,” Mom said as she entered the room, just a little too happily. I so know she was watching. Nobody’s timing is that good.

“Thanks Mom. We’ll put them to good use.” Now, lets see her top that one.

She tickled the back of my neck with her nails as she passed, which sent a shiver down my spine. Dammit! Why did I put my hair up in a ponytail today?

“Remind me that we have to have another conversation when we get back home.”

I groaned again and let my head hit the table. When will I learn? The plus side was that Barbie let her fingers glide over my neck, which countered the spine shivering, but had the added effect of making my nipples hard again.

~O~

We got scanned again, both of us this time. Wayan was in a Doctor’s wet dream at the moment. The possibility of being able to make medical history was within his grasp. The holographic display had been whittled away until only our brains were showing, and by the way… eww.

The image changed again. Blue, red, and yellow colors swam across the screen, pulsing, changing, shifting.

“The blue coloring are the autonomic functions of your body, things that take care of themselves without conscious thought. The red is the part that you are consciously using, and the yellow are your subconscious.”

Hold on, they can see what I’m thinking?

The blue is very similar in most people, only changing for health reasons. The red is always in constant flux. But here is the interesting part the yellow is always vastly different from person to person. There are certain similarities, like fingerprints, but each person is unique.

Any moron could tell where he was going with this. I looked back and forth between the two images: Barbie’s brain and mine. Our subconscious were exactly the same.

“The unique nature of your twist and the resulting second twist of Barbie’s makes make this a very interesting case study.”

Barbie and I glanced at each other and in turn we looked back at our moms. Her mom was the first to say anything.

“Are they in any danger?”

The doctor was pulled out of his musings. “What? No, of course not. This, however, explains quite a bit of young Rosa’s personality quirks. Her acceptance of her gender change is not out of the ordinary, but knowledge of being female, the mannerisms involved, the innate experience of everyday female behavior is beyond the realm of most of the Twisted.”

I shook my head a little to clear the cobwebs out. “Are you saying I sucked her brain?”

He shrugged. “Crudely put, but accurate to an extent. And she yours, to a degree, or else there would not be an equilibrium such as this.”

The doctor punched a few buttons on the keyboard and we followed the nerve endings of our brains down to the bottom middle of our spines. “I would even venture to guess that she took some of your healthy nerve cells and replaced the most injured ones at her T11.”

I had no idea what he was talking about until Barbie took my hand. “I sucked your spinal cord. I guess we’re even.”

That got a grin from the doctor. “There may be more than that. I’m notifying the hospital that I am taking a sabbatical, that is if you’ll allow me to study your case to fruition.”

“What will that involve?” Mom asked.

He shrugged. “I’ll take a more detailed scan of each of your daughters…”

More detailed than this?

“… then I’ll work out exactly what each took away from the other. It might make diagnosing future problems a lot simpler. Of course I only have Barbie’s yearly check up scan as a baseline, since she came from a known twisted family, but with that I should be able to find the points where the changes have taken place.”

“And what do you get out of this,” asked Mom a little skeptically.

He smiled somewhat nervously at her tone. “A chance to publish the case study. With everyone’s permission, of course.”

I held up my hand, not unlike how I would if I were in school. “I have a question.”

The doctor laced his fingers in front of him. “Yes?”

“What about the psychic thing we have going on?”

He lifted his eyebrows. “Purely subconscious thoughts? We’ll try a quick experiment. Barbie, if you would, think of a number between one and a hundred. Rosa, concentrate and try to guess the number.”

Barbie looked up in the air and then smiled. “Okay. I’ve got one.”

Mom smiled. “Think of another number Barbie, even I could guess that one.”

Barbie’s face went scarlet and then she nodded. I closed my eyes and concentrated, but came up clueless. “I don’t know.”

The doctor nodded in conformation. “I doubt you’ll have any direct connection while you are conscious. You also never had any connection when you sleep in your own houses either, so I’d also conclude that close proximity would be in order for it to work. So unless you two are planning on doing a lot of sleeping together…”

Mom coughed. Some way, some how, I will have my revenge.

“How much is this going to cost, Doctor,” asked Mrs. Parks.

Good question.

“Oh, nothing. The research is unique and thus self-sustaining, paid for by the hospital if I get approval, and I see no reason why I shouldn’t.” he paused for a moment. “Think of it like this: if we are able to find out why Rosa’s twist initiated a second twist in Barbie, there might be a way to reverse some of the more tragically life altering twists that are out there.”

“You really think that’s possible?” asked Barbie

The doctor nodded. “There will probably be quite a lot of research done on this subject. For instance the question of convenience will have to be answered. Was it the close proximity of your bodies at the time of the twist the cause? Perhaps it was what you were thinking at the time, or what you ate. There’s no telling right now, but after the research is through we will have a better idea about what happened and perhaps, if possible, how to recreate the occurrence.”

~O~

Barbie and I sat in the back seat, holding hands, on the way back home. Mrs. Parks occasionally gave a confused eye through the rearview mirror. It’s not like we were making out or something, we were just holding hands; it could have been for any number of reasons. Girls hold hands on occasion, right?

When we turned on the street where our houses sat, Mrs. Parks was the first to notice. “Oh no.”

Mom gasped, then Barbie and I squeezed together to see what was the matter. Cars and vans filled half the street, but not just regular vehicles. It was vans with aerials, satellite dishes, and those futuristic looking transmitting forks on top.

“Jeri, what do you want to do?”

Mom turned around in her seat to see my face. I was shocked, to be sure, but not any more than the rest of us were. “How do you feel about talking to them sweetie?”

“Are you serious?” I asked with not a small amount of disbelief.

She pressed her lips together and looked at me with sorrow that she had to be the barer of bad news. “You’ve seen what news people can be like on TV, sweetie. They’re relentless, especially if they think you have something to hide. If you come out and answer reasonable questions in the beginning they won’t smell blood in the water… or at least not as much.”

I exchanged glances with Barbie. She was no help, looking like she was still shocked by the whole situation. “Okay, Mom.”

She nodded at Mrs. Parks. “Just drop us off in front of the driveway.”

While we approached, I started getting even more nervous than I was at seeing the street filled. “Do I look okay?”

Barbie pulled on my arm and when I was within range she kissed me lightly. “You look beautiful as always.” She cringed a little. “Sorry, fix your lipstick.”

I giggled a little while I shakily pulled out a tube and dabbed at my lips, then I fingered away a little smudge. “How’s that.”

She smiled at me. “Perfect.” Before letting me go she looked me in the eyes. “Would you like me to stay with you?”

“Always,” I said without thinking, then it clicked what her meaning was. “Sorry, I mean I can handle it.”

Her smile was contagious. “I like the first part better. Does that mean you want me to be your girlfriend?”

I squeezed her hand and looked down before I nodded.

“Good, me too.”

The SUV rocked a little as we pulled into the Parks’ driveway.

Popping my seatbelt I leaned over and hugged my new girlfriend. “Thanks.”

“Call me when you get in.”

I nodded and then steeled myself. Mom looked at us, smiling sweetly. “Got everything worked out?”

I gave her a stern look not to mess with me right now especially over this subject. At least she knew when to back off.

“Remember, you were the victim here. You had to defend yourself against a crazy man with a gun that was waving it around with kids in the area.” With a nod of conformation from me she held her hand up. “Just wait here for a second while I get them organized, or else they’ll be like rats on a block of cheese.”

She barely got the door opened before she was swarmed. I could see her holding her hands up but it was a futile effort. Something protective wound its way through my belly and I shoved my hand into the purse hanging on my shoulder.

The back door to the SUV popped open before I realized it, and I was out and pressing the panic button to the electronic screamer Mom had gotten me. An extremely loud keening wail rang out over the crowd. People closest to me flinched away, covering their ears while I made my way to my mom. It was hurting my ears just as much as theirs, but I had control and could focus the direction of the noise for the most part.

When the cameras had gone down and the microphones were lowered, I disarmed the screamer.

“Ten minutes!” I yelled at the them. “I will be back out here in ten minutes to answer your questions, but if you can’t act like human beings then I’m going right back in that house and calling the police to have you removed. So get organized and act like adults for god’s sake.”

I got a couple of looks for that one. But at least they had direction now. By the time we were inside Mom was on the warpath.

“You’re not going out there alone.”

I shook my head and smiled at her protective nature. Now that I had accepted her as my mom, she had taken the job to heart with a vengeance. “It was the only way I figured that I could get them to calm down.”

She looked me over for a second and then waved me to her. “We need to fix your hair. I want you looking as innocent as possible.

~O~

A quick look at the lawn outside and I saw a makeshift microphone stand in the middle of the yard and several camera’s set up with reporters talking directly to them.

“Mom, turn on the news.” Oh, I had such a bad feeling about this.

“Why,” she asked as she thumbed the power button on the remote and entered one of the cable network news stations.

I didn’t answer right away and waited for the channel to show. Then there it was. A talking head with my house in the background. My knees went weak and I found myself involuntarily sitting down. She clicked over to another station, and another. Jesus, do these people have a life? There had to be a more important story to talk about other than me. Can’t some stupid senator make some racist comments or something?

“You don’t have to do this, sweetie.”

She clicked off the TV and I swallowed with some difficulty. “It’ll be worse if I don’t.”

Reluctantly, Mom nodded. “Let’s do it then.”

I hadn’t let go of the screamer since I’d stepped out of the car, but I did switch it to my other hand when I realized my palm was very sweaty.

Checking myself on last time in the mirror by the door I adjusted one of the four cute blue and pink butterfly clips in my hair. The quick outfit change from something less doctor’s office’ish to an above the knee skirt and a pink sleeveless vee-neck button-down gave me the look of an average teen girl on the way to the mall for shopping trip.

I took a cleansing breath and nodded to my mom. She opened the door and we swept outside, hand in hand.

Several of the reporters half turned and then focused back on their cameras for a second. I could almost envision in my mind what it would look like on TV. Like any one of a hundred times I’d seen them surrounding some poor idiot for an impromptu statement.

Mom beat me to the mic. “Rosa will answer your questions, one at a time. Any questions not related to the episode at the mall and we will turn around and leave.”

When Mom stepped away I took the provided space and they didn’t waste any time starting.

“Trace Donavan CNN, Miss Owens.” At least they were well informed. They knew my name. “Would you like to tell us, in your own words what transpired on the day in question, from your point of view?”

“Sure.” I almost said ‘Um’, but ladies don’t speak that way. See, Mom’s already affecting the way I speak. I’ll be a real girl before you know it. “Well, I was sitting on my stool looking out for shoplifters.”

“Excuse me? You were working for the mall?”

I nodded. “Sort of. I was hired two days before by four of the shop managers. They’d arranged for me to help them out because the tax-free weekend.”

“Why you?” came from another reporter. This was going to be a long Q&A if this keeps up.

“As some of you may know, I’m a Twisted. As a result of my twist earlier this week, I’m a lot more…” I looked for the proper word. “… aware of things going on around me. I was able to tell local police who was dipping into the till of one of the shops a couple of days ago. The store was able to open a little while later, so they didn’t lose a lot of money having to stay closed. So a few of them got together and hired me.”

Another reporter raised her hand at me. “So, your trick is you’re an amateur detective.”

I giggled and the tension eased up a little. “Hardly. Anyone can do what I do, they just have to pay attention. I’m told I don’t possess a trick as of yet.”

“Then how are you able to do what you do?” Mr. Donavan asked.

I looked at him. “You take great pride in your appearance, Mr. Donavan. I suppose since you are on TV that’s a lot of it, but you go a bit above the pale. You’re recently divorced, and approaching middle age. You have had… a tryst recently, most likely last night, someone you’ve only just become involved with.”

The other reports almost exploded with questions and I watched as Mr. Donavan went pale. The rest of them smelled blood in the water. Several ‘how did you knows’ were yelled out.

I held up my hands until they calmed down. “Some of you might think that I’m psychic or something. That can’t be further from the truth. It’s all in observing the things around you and making logical deductions.” I turned to the reporter in question and grimaced a little. “I’m sorry, Mr. Donavan, but you were the one asking that particular question. It stared with your shoes. They are perfectly spit-shined. Reporter’s shoes are never on TV so why else would you make sure they looked so good? Because you take pride in your appearance.”

He looked down at them and nodded in understanding.

“You aren’t wearing a wedding band, but I can see that there is a tan line around your ring finger, so you’re obviously divorced or a widower. If you were a widower, then that wouldn’t explain something else that I noticed, so I made the deduction that you were divorced.”

He held up his hand to the rest of the reporters could see the obviously white portion of his tanned hand.

“The last part was the excess of makeup on your neck, concealing what I’m guessing is a love bite. If you had a regular lover they would know not to mark you, because you are a TV reporter and that would look bad. So, it would have to be a new lover, and recent because of the amount of make up that you had to use to cover the mark.”

The blond girl who asked one of the questions earlier didn’t look convinced. “How do we know that you two didn’t arrange for you to say all of these things?”

I eyed her for a few moments and then smiled. “Would you like me to tell everyone what you were doing this morning, and who you were doing it with?”

She may have been a professional, but even she didn’t know how I knew that she had been with her lesbian lover, and I knew for a fact that she was married to a male, having seen them on TV together. Or perhaps that was maybe all a scam to let the viewers think she was straight-laced. It was a toss-up.

Mr. Donavan seemed to be grateful for the limelight to be spread, either way. The next reporter in line raised his hand, but didn’t wait to be called on before asking his question.

“You’re aware of by now that the alleged robber has acquired legal council and will be seeking monetary compensation for abuse at your hands. Any comment?”

I pursed my lips a little in annoyance. “You’ve seen the video, and unless you’re an idiot then you’ve seen the number of small children standing around in terror of a coward swinging a loaded gun around the middle of the mall. I warned the mall security and they refused to do anything about it saying only that they were allowed to call the cops.” Setting my hands on my hips, I glared at the people standing in front of me.

“Tell me that if you had the means to take down the person that was threatening dozens of people that you wouldn’t. He could have grabbed any child there. He could have grabbed me. Pardon me if I don’t exactly want to end up laying on the side of the road, dead, so that this guy can have his civil rights upheld.”

After sweeping my glare around, I focused back on the guy asking the question. “Mall security wasn’t going to do anything and I darn sure wasn’t going to let him up so he could have a chance to grab another weapon and possibly kill me.”

“But…” the reporter started off before I interrupted him in mid sentence.

“Now if I had been hitting him with those batons cops use, well that would be a whole different matter, but I used umbrellas, which given my strength didn’t really hurt him. Has anyone bothered to find out exactly the range of injuries I supposedly inflicted?”

Someone held their hand up in the back. “A bruised wrist.”

I swirled my hand in the air. “Well there you go.”

Summary ending: The charges are dropped. Dinah eventually has her twist and she obviously turns into Black Canary during the Halloween Contest. They all form a crime fighting unit, and move away to a big city to blend in to anonymity while fighting the forces of uh… bad guys.

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Using New Software and a little update

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October 6th, 2010 Posted 16:04

Hey all. I finally got Live Writer to work on this thing so I should be updating a little more often than never.

Really have been writing too much this last week. When I publish something, like for it to actually be exposed for more than a few hours so that people can see that I have a new story out and have a chance to read it. Since I post primarily at BCTS that has been a problem recently. It’s like an avalanche of stories there over the last week.

Is this a bad thing? Not at all. They come in waves. It’s the nature of the medium.

I’ll be waiting for when it slows down a tad. In the meantime, I’ll just peck away at other stories. Some days it seems as if I’m just adding a sentence or two, even though I wrote several pages today.

I need something to even my thoughts out. It feels like a full moon every day recently. I can’t think on full moons, in case you’re wondering. I know, it makes no sense, but I feel scatterbrained, one day out of the blue. I’ll go outside that night and there it is. Full moon. It’s odd.

And here’s a random photo to go with my random thoughts. It’s Mercy Dante from Grimm Fairy Tales: Inferno mini-series. I thought it apt for the upcoming holiday. Maybe I’ll write a story.

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The Center: Universe

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July 23rd, 2010 Posted 13:44

Um, wow! I’m stunned by the number of authors that have added stories to The Center.

The Center by Me (Canon)

Taking Wing by Drakira

Guardian by Korran Weaver

Magic Tricks by Me (Canon)

Shit Happens by Maggie Finson (Canon)

The Syndicate: Darkest Before the Dawn by Enemyoffun (Canon)

Face of the Enemy by Enemyoffun (Canon)

Weight Problem by Enemyoffun

Patient Zero by Starbuck

Off Center by Me (Canon)

Cloak & Ageis by Crescent Pulsar

Smells by Jennifer Sue

Crossroads by (Matt)VeryZenn (Canon)

Best Served Cold by Enemyoffun (Canon)

Christmas Comes Once a Year by Enemyoffun (Canon)

(FYI: Only completed stories are considered for canon.)

(Side note: If I’ve forgotten your story by accident then please contact me and I’ll put it up.)

I never really thought that it would be as big as it is. I spent most of last night emailing three additional authors that seem pretty passionate about doing their own as well.

I can only say thanks everyone. You’re making the story really come alive.

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