Tuesday, July 26, 2016

The McComber Switch - Chapter 47 Part 2 of 2



The McComber Switch
By Karen Singer

Chapter 47 Part 2 of 2 - Show and Shoot
March 14th


Olivia was in heaven.  After unexpectedly spending a few hours in Sarah’s styling chair, she now had a new hairdo that she absolutely loved!  To her it seemed much more grown-up, and all the little curls that Sarah had put in it really made it look so much fuller.  But the biggest difference now was the color.  After a lot of careful consideration, she and her mother…and Sarah, had decided to turn her already dark hair completely black.  As far as Olivia was concerned, the difference was totally striking.  And now both she and her mother had several shopping bags in their hands full of new clothes for her, and their shopping had only just begun. 
“Okay, baby,” Jane told her…
“Not so baby anymore!” Olivia quipped.
“Tough, girl.  You’ll always be my baby and you know it!”  To Jane, her daughter’s laugh had always been the most wonderful sound in the world – unlike all the loud shrieking she did all too often.  “Hey look,” Jane said as they entered another part of the store.  “Lots of underwear on sale.  Today is our lucky day!”
“I want to find some stuff that’s more grown up,” Olivia told her.  “And maybe some thongs.”
Jane looked at her horrified.  “Not on your life!”  She smiled a bit.  “But I think a twelve-year-old may be ready for some things that are slightly more interesting.”
Olivia laughed.  Okay, maybe she wouldn’t get any of the thongs she wanted to try, but she had no doubt that all her new underwear would be much sexier than her old underwear was.  She briefly wondered what Jimmy Jade would think about it, not that he’d probably ever get to see her in any of it. 
Her eyes caught sight of someone and it totally surprised her.  “Hey, isn’t that Aunt Susan?”
“Um…goodness.  Yes it is.  And there’s Jasmine with her too.”
“Jas?  Oh wow, it is.  And her hair is different too!” Olivia didn’t even think of waiting.  She literally ran to see her friend.  “Jade!  Jade!”
Jasmine turned at hearing someone calling his “Jade” name.  “Holy cow!  That’s Olivia!”  A moment later, he was hurrying toward her.  The two friends met halfway between their mothers.  “Wow.  Look at your hair!” Jasmine exclaimed.  “You look sooooo great!”
Olivia giggled, obviously glad for the complement.  “And your hair is all different too!”
“Not like yours!  You dyed it all black.  And it really looks…great!”
“Thank you,” Olivia said with an air of haughtiness, before she laughed again. 
“My Mom was talking today about maybe highlighting my hair for the summer.  But to me it sounds kind of…I don’t know.  I’m just not sure it’s something I want to do.”
“Oh God, Jade.  You should totally do it!  It would look so good on you.  I know it would!”
“Hi Olivia,” Susan said as she finally walked up.  “Your hair looks really nice!  And I love the new color.”
“Thank you Aunt Susan.  I was just telling Jade that he should go for the highlights he said you were talking about earlier.”
“He didn’t seem all that interested before,” Susan replied.
Olivia looked straight at Jasmine.  “Just do it.  You’ll love it!”
Jasmine shrugged.  “Maybe,” he said as his Aunt Jane walked up.  “Hi Aunt Jane.”
“Hi Jas,” Jane replied.  “Hi Susan.  I didn’t know you were coming shopping today.”
“I was just going after groceries, but someone here needs some bigger bras and I decided this morning that it really can’t wait anymore.”
“I wonder who that someone could be?” Jane said a she looked down at Jasmine.
Jasmine looked surprised.  “Don’t look at me.  It wasn’t my idea.”
“No,” Susan replied.  “But you could at least be a little more conscious of what fits and what doesn’t.”
“How should I know if it fits or not?  I don’t know anything about it.  And they’re what I’ve always worn.”
“And I guess that’s part of the problem.  Now come on and let’s see if we can find some help.  We may have to have you measured to find out how bad things are really getting for you.”
“What do you mean measured?” Jasmine asked.
“You’ll find out in a few minutes,” Susan told him.
“Oooo!” Olivia exclaimed.  “Can we watch, Mom?’
Jane shrugged.  “I don’t know.  I guess that depends on what Aunt Susan says.”
Susan thought about it for a moment.  “I don’t have any problem with it, as long as you help make sure he doesn’t run away before we get out of here.”
“Hey,” Olivia replied.  “I can totally do that!”

--- §§§§§§§§§§ ---

“Do what?” Jasmine asked, totally not believing what his mother had just said.
“Take your top off.  They can’t fit you for new bras with your top on.”
“You mean here?  In front of everyone else?”
Susan shook her head.  “Jas, we’re surrounded by nothing but changing rooms.  We’re not out in the middle of the store.  Now get that top off.  The saleslady will be right back.”
Jasmine started pulling his top off, then stopped and looked around at Olivia and his Aunt Jane.  “You’re sure?” he asked his mother.”
Olivia laughed.  “Jas, I’ve seen you in a bra before.  All the girls did at that sleepover.  Remember?”  Since he was so hesitant about it, she didn’t add that she was fairly sure he would have to remove the bra he was wearing too.
With one final uncertain look at everyone, Jasmine pulled his top off, just as the saleswoman entered the changing area. 
“Ah,” the saleswoman said with a big smile as she walked up with a tape measure in her hand.  “What’s your name?” she asked Jasmine.
“Jasmine,” Susan told her.
“Jade,” Olivia said at the same time.
The woman looked confused.  “Jasmine Jade,” Jasmine finally told her.  “Some people call me Jasmine, and some call me Jade.”
“Oh.  And what do you prefer?”
He shrugged as his eyes met with Olivia’s, “I guess Jade for today.”
“Very nice,” the woman said with a smile.  “I can already see that the bra you’re wearing is way too small.  Isn’t it uncomfortable?”
“I don’t know,” Jade replied.  “It’s the only kind I’ve ever worn.”
“Then I think it’s way past time we got you into something a bit more your size.  And I know you’ll be very happy about it.”  She physically grabbed his shoulders and turned him around.  “Now let’s get this little thing off of you and measure you for something better!”
Off?  Before he knew it, he felt the woman unfastening his bra.  He looked up at his mother with horror in his eyes, only to see her smiling back.  He looked at Olivia as the woman started pushing the straps over his shoulders and down his arms.  Olivia was trying not to giggle, and wasn’t exactly succeeding.  And then he felt the bra cups popping off of his tiny breasts, leaving them totally bare.  He gulped with his eyes wide.  His hands went up to his now naked breasts to cover them as his eyes went back to Olivia, who seemed way too interested.  And then before he could react anymore, the woman turned him around to face her. 
“Arms out away from your body please?” 
Jasmine held his arms away from his body as he looked up uncertainly at his mother again.  He looked down quickly though as the woman wrapped the tape measure all the way around his body and pulled it tight to check the measurement just below his breasts.  And then she eased up on the tape measure and moved it up a little and did it again – right over top of his breasts!  Once again, Jasmine looked up, wide-eyed at his mother.
“Relax Jas,” Susan told him. 
Relax?  His mother had to be kidding!
“Hmmm!” the woman muttered as she looked at the tape measure.  Then she dropped the end of it and it and pulled it away from the “girl” she was working on.  “Pretty much what I thought.”  She looked down at Jade and smiled.  “Jade, you’ve been wearing those tiny bras way too long.  You’ve still got a little growing to do, but you’re well on your way to being a full ‘A’ cup.”  She looked at Susan.  “I really wouldn’t go with anything less for her.  Especially since girls her age tend to grow quickly for a while.”
Susan nodded.  “That’s pretty much what I was guessing.”  She turned to Jasmine.  “Put your top back on now.  Let’s go pick out some better bras for you.”
Jasmine quickly grabbed his bra that he had set on the nearby bench along with his top and his purse.  He wanted to get it on and cover himself up as quickly as possible.  It was embarrassing having everyone see how big his breasts had grown now.  Especially Olivia and his Aunt Susan. 
“Don’t bother with the bra,” Susan told him.  “No sense putting it on again when it’s too small.  You can wear one of the new ones after we buy some.”
Uncertainly, Jasmine set the bra back on the bench, picked up his top and pulled it over his head.  He shook his hair out and ran his fingers though it a bit while his mother picked up his old bra and stuffed it down in her purse. 
Olivia walked over close to him and giggled.  “We wear the same bra size now.”
“Just don’t tell anyone.”
“That’s stupid.  Why not?”
“Because it’s embarrassing.”
“Why?  There’s nothing at all embarrassing about it.  In fact, I’m pretty sure all the Musketeers wear the same bra size now.”
He shook his head.  “Not all of them.”
“Who doesn’t?”
“The real Jasmine.  Jimmy Joe.”
“Why?  What size is she now?”
“Zero!”

--- §§§§§§§§§§ ---

“Stand up straight dear and stop trying to look at yourself,” Susan told Jasmine as they headed back toward the car. 
“It’s kind of hard not to,” Jasmine replied.
“Just try to forget they’re there.”
“That’s pretty much impossible now.  I mean.  As far as I can see, you can’t miss them anymore.”
“And what’s so wrong with that?  Didn’t Oliva and Aunt Jane both tell you how nice you look?”
“Yeah…”
“Well then stop worrying about it.  Smile.  Be happy.”
“That’s easy for you to say.”
“You’re the one who wanted all the padding, dear.”
“I didn’t say that!  All I asked was if we could get something soft!”
“And that’s what you got.”
“But I didn’t know that it would mean that the bras would be that thick!”
“Oh for heaven’s sake Jas, they’re not big and they’re still one of the smallest bra sizes available.”
“But they still stick out more.”
“Not that much, Jas.  Not that much.”
“Well it seems like it to me.”
“Jas, stop a minute.” Susan said as she stopped walking and turned to him. 
“What?”
“Stand up straight!”  She ignored his eye rolling.  “Straighter.  Back straight and hold your head up.” 
It was all Jasmine could do to not roll his eyes yet again.  But he did as his mother asked.  And then he looked down at his chest again.  “See!  They stick out even more if I stand like this.”
“Don’t worry about it,” Susan told him.  “You look more normal that way.”
“I don’t feel normal.  I feel silly.”
“Why?  Because you’re a beautiful young girl?”
“No, because I’m not a beautiful young girl.”
“Then smile Jas, and you will be.”
He couldn’t stop his incessant eye rolling this time.  He also didn’t feel much like smiling.
“Now stand straight again,” Susan told him.  “No…straighter.  And keep your head up.  Stop trying to look at the ground.  And stop rolling your eyes!”
He rolled his eyes at that too.  “Can’t we just leave now?”
“Not until you start smiling.”
“What?”
“Smile!”
“But my boobs are sticking a mile out.”
“Stop it.  And they’re just barely more noticeable than they were before.”
“They don’t feel like it.”
“You said that earlier.”
“Well I meant it earlier.  Can we just leave now?”
“Not until you put a nice smile on your face and decide to keep it there while we go back to the car.”
“Do I have to?”
“We’re not leaving until you do.”
He started to think about that for a moment.
“Jas, the longer you don’t smile, the longer we’ll stay right here.  Is that what you want?”
“No.”
“Then smile.  Please?”
Once again he rolled his eyes, and once again he tried to force a smile to his face. 
“And don’t forget to stand up straight while you walk.”
Ugh!
Susan only had to stop him twice more on the way back to the car to get him to keep walking upright and to keep smiling.  After the second time, Jasmine didn’t even bother rolling his eyes, he mostly automatically corrected himself and they were able to keep going.
“Very good, dear,” Susan told him.  “Now we’ve just got to teach you how to move a little more femininely when you do anything else.”

--- §§§§§§§§§§ ---

The gunshots had been echoing through the neighborhood for most of the day.  In fact, they had echoed through the neighborhood for most of the week once the kids got home from school.  It was pretty irritating to most of the family, but Elliot competing in his first shooting competition kept everyone from complaining.  In fact, all the boys and most of the men in the family were in Pete’s backyard watching Elliot practice. 
But during the afternoon hours now, Elliot wasn’t the only one shooting guns, Pete had lined his son up right in the middle between Tommy, Hunter, Jimmy Joe, and Justin.  He wanted all that shooting going on at once so that Elliot could get used to all the gunfire around him and not be distracted by it.  The result was a tremendous amount of noise.  Enough noise that nobody even heard Susan and Jasmine arriving home.  And so naturally nobody came to help them unload the groceries from the car either.  Not that either of them expected any help.
Jasmine was just glad to be home.  From the department store they had gone to have lunch at a nice but cheap restaurant.  And while there, his mother had continually hounded him to sit up straight and smile.  And then she had started in with little things like, “Jas, please sit up straight and hold your head up.  Or, “Jas, please be a little more polite how you put your food into your mouth.”  Or, “Jas, have you ever thought about the way you use your eyes when you talk?  You should really watch your girlfriends sometime and take notes.”
Ugh!  And then once they had gotten to the grocery store, his mother had started in all over again.  “Stand up straight Jas.”  Or, “Smile Jas.”  Or, “Jas, try holding your elbows a little closer to your body.  You’re not a cowboy.” Or, “Jas, you don’t have to be so stiff when you walk.  Relax!”  Grocery shopping had been bad enough.  Having to go out in public as a girl again had been bad enough.  Having to walk around in public now with bigger boobs was bad enough.  But now getting lessons on how he should do things and move every part of his body was downright aggravating!  And then his mother had started all over again while they put the groceries away.  The constant loud annoying thunder of the guns in the background pretty much echoed the way his nerves felt.
“Thank you, Jas,” Susan said once they had finished.  “Why don’t you get out of here and find some of your friends for a while.”
But going out and possibly having his friends notice his bigger boobs wasn’t exactly high on his list.  “Can’t I just go to my room and relax?”
“Why would you ever?” Susan said.  “Now go say hi to everyone.  Either that, or we can spend more time practicing arm and hand movements.  And I noticed earlier that you’re not quite looking normal or comfortable yet when you sit down in that skirt.”
Jasmine’s jaw dropped.  He turned and ran to grab the light jacket he had been wearing all day.  He was out the door to the sound of his mother chuckling in the background.
Once out the door, even though the weather had turned really nice, he made sure to zip his jacket up all the way, trying to cover his new boobs as much as possible.  Of course, the jacket wouldn’t hide the skirt or tights he was wearing, and it wouldn’t hide what his mother had done with his hair earlier that morning either.  He tried his best not to think about any of that as he headed next door to Nichole’s house – where most of the family seemed to be hanging out in the backyard watching the guys shoot.
He found Nichole, Allison, Ashley, Lucas, and Aaron all standing back by the house watching the shooting.  All the girls were watching with their fingers in their ears to block some of the noise.  With all the gunfire going on, Jasmine simply raised his hand to say hi, and stuck his fingers in his own ears as he stood next to Nichole to watch everyone shooting too. 
His father was there standing behind Tommy and Jimmy Joe, ready to give them a few pointers to help in their own shooting, and he noticed that his Uncle Jed was there as well watching Hunter and Justin, neither of whom seemed to need any help at all.  Jasmine seriously doubted that any of the boys needed any help.  It was his Uncle Pete though that was heavily paying attention to what Elliot was doing.  He was paying attention, but he didn’t seem to be offering much help as he watched Elliot take shot after careful shot.  But then there was no doubt that Elliot was very good at it.
The gunfire finally stopped, much to everyone’s relief.  “Any problems with all the noise going on around you?” Pete asked his son.
Elliot shrugged.  “Some, but not much.  It’s harder to concentrate, but I don’t think it made much of a difference.”
Pete nodded.  “But if it was harder to concentrate, then it did make a difference.”  He looked around at everyone else.  “Let’s change those targets out and try it again.”
The noise in the backyard increased again as the boys grabbed some new targets and started walking the length of the backyard.  But it wasn’t the noise of gunfire.  Some of Pete’s dogs started barking at everyone crossing the backyard.  Nobody paid any attention at all to the dogs.
The new targets were put in place and the guns were reloaded.  But before anyone got ready to shoot, Clint turned around and looked at Jasmine.  “Hold on a minute,” he said to Pete to make sure nobody would start shooting yet.  Then he turned again toward Jasmine.  “Jas, get over here and take a turn.  I want to see you shoot this gun again.”
“Dad?” Jimmy Joe said, not happy to hear that at all.
“Me?” Jasmine said, totally surprised and not interested in the least.
“Jas, you know the family rules.  Everyone has to know how to shoot the guns.  There could be an emergency of some kind, and it’s been a while now since you’ve done it.”
“Good idea,” Pete said as he turned to look at all the girls still watching.  “Nichole, you get over here too.”  He turned to Hunter.  “Hunter, let her use your gun for a turn.”
“Ashley, you too,” Jed said to his daughter.  “You can use Justin’s gun.”  He looked to Allison.  “Don’t think you’re getting out of this either.  Get over there and grab Tommy’s gun.”
“This should be good!” Hunter said with a laugh as he handed his gun to Nichole.
“Real good!” Tommy agreed as he handed his gun to Allison.
“Okay everyone, don’t start firing until I tell you,” Pete announced.  “Take your time.  Aim carefully, and do your best.  And let’s see if any of you young ladies can do better than Elliot here.  None of the guys seemed to manage it.”  There was some laughter from all the boys at that remark.
“Okay,” Pete said.  “Is everyone ready?”  He looked around.  “Then start shooting!”
The shooting didn’t start quickly.  All of the girls had shot the guns before, they just didn’t do it often.  Elliot though was the first to take a shot.  Allison had to be reminded by Clint to take the safety off before the gun would fire.  Ashley was the second one to shoot.  Of all the girls, she and Jade probably had the most experience shooting the guns.  Jade because he was really Jimmy, and Ashley because Jed pretty much made sure his whole family was very familiar with the guns and the dangers of where they lived.  Of all the girls, Allison probably had the least experience.  Her family was busier with their medical responsibilities and had less time for target shooting in the backyard.  But that didn’t mean she didn’t know how to shoot.  She just rarely ever did it.
Jasmine actually enjoyed the target shooting and he found the sudden competition to be exciting.  It wasn’t anything at all like killing some poor animal.  The gun had been given to him for Christmas, but it was really his sister’s gun.  He had only fired a couple of rounds out of it once, so the gun was still new to him, but as he fired it he remembered now that it had been a fairly comfortable gun to shoot.  As the rifle shots rang all around him, he sighted in over and over again on the target and slowly pulled the trigger.  With the targets so far off, it was difficult to tell how he was doing.  He just hoped he was doing better than the rest of the girls…in the spirit of competition.  He knew he didn’t have a prayer of beating Elliot.
One by one, everyone finished shooting.  Allison being the slowest and last.  But everyone waited patiently for her while Clint watched her closely.  Once all the guns had been put down, everyone, girls, boys, and men, headed across the yard to the barking of the dogs in the pen.  The men pulled the targets down to compare them.  Elliot’s was quickly thrown out.  Nobody even came close.  But it was the other four targets that were scrutinized carefully.  As expected, Allison didn’t do that well.  Only a couple of shots actually hit the target, and two of them were on the paper border.  Nichole was a lot better.  The majority of her shots had hit the paper, but they were very widely scattered.  It was the targets that Jasmine and Ashley had shot at that were compared really closely, and it was fairly evident that Jasmine had outshot her, despite the fact that Ashley had done really well. 
“Nice shooting Jas,” Clint said with very satisfied smile.  “Not quite as good as Jimmy, but darn good.”
Jimmy playfully punched Jasmine’s arm.  “Ha!  Got ya!  I’m still a better shot.”
“Yeah, but you practice and get to shoot that gun a lot more,” Clint told her.  “Jas here almost never gets to fire a gun anymore.”
“Doesn’t matter,” Jimmy Joe replied.  “I’m still the better shot.”
Jimmy’s stupid taunting grated on Jasmine’s nerves.  He desperately wanted to say something that could put his sister in her place – at least in something.  And finding that something to taunt back with was all too easy.  “Yeah,” he replied.  “But I’ve got bigger boobs, and you don’t have any!”  Despite their situation, Jasmine was glad to note the angry look that flashed across his sister’s face.  He walked away before she could say anything back.

Friday, July 22, 2016

The McComber Switch - Chapter 47 Part 1 of 2 - Show and Shoot



The McComber Switch
By Karen Singer

Chapter 47 Part 1 of 2 - Show and Shoot
March 14th


Two days of her kids being themselves wasn’t enough for Susan.  Not nearly.  But at the same time, neither of her twins really seemed to look like themselves, even when they were being themselves.  Both of them now looked more like the other…or perhaps at times, something in between, which was even more disconcerting.  Still, for those two days, she could at least pretend that her family was normal.  It was the visual reality of the situation that continually spoiled the illusion.
Saturday morning once again brought with it the change in her kids that now had them appearing all too normal – even though it was all too wrong.  And for once, on a weekend, Jimmy Joe was at the breakfast table.  Her Uncle Jed wasn’t picking her up until later in the morning.  Susan didn’t know where they were going, only that he was taking her and his two boys out to look at some new equipment.  Susan had an idea that the real Jimmy would probably love looking at whatever machinery Jed was after more than Jimmy Joe would.  But that option was currently out for her real son – who once again appeared to be too much of a girl – messy hair and all.  “You couldn’t at least run a brush through your hair before you came out of your room?” Susan asked him.
“What for?” Jasmine Jade replied.  “I’ve got to wash it later.
With kids, sometimes there was just no winning.  “Don’t make any plans today with your friends,” Susan told him.  “We’ve got shopping to do.”
“Oh Mom…” Jade complained.  “Again?”
“We need groceries!  Between the three of you kids, you’re eating us out of house and home.”
Jade rolled his eyes.  “Whatever.  It’s okay.  And besides, Olivia won’t be around today anyway.  She and Aunt Jane are doing her birthday shopping.” 
“I know dear.  Aunt Jane told me.”
Jade suddenly felt himself being kicked under the table.  He turned to his sister who was now unfortunately his brother.  “What?” he asked, totally annoyed with her.
Jimmy Joe didn’t want to say it out loud, but she mouthed the words.  “Ask her!”
Jade rolled his eyes again.  “Um…Mom?”
“Yes?” Susan replied, not missing the little interchange between her twins.
“Um…we’re out of the skin lotion in our bathroom.”
“No you’re not,” Susan replied.  “I took it out last week.  You don’t need it!  I wish my skin was half as soft as yours is now.”  She turned to her other twin.  “And you certainly don’t need it!  That’s not stuff for boys to use!”
“But Mom,” Jimmy Joe complained.  “I don’t use it when I’m being a boy.  I need it for when I get to be me!”
“Forget it.  It’s not going to help anymore.”
Jimmy Joe felt like screaming again.  Was the whole world against her?

--- §§§§§§§§§§ ---

It wasn’t that Jade minded taking a bath.  In fact, he was rather starting to enjoy them.  He didn’t even mind the nicely scented bath water or the smell that clung to his body afterwards.  It was really kind of nice.  What he minded was having his mother in there with him to wash his hair.  He didn’t like being naked in front of her, and he particularly didn’t like having to dunk his head continually under the tub faucet to rinse his hair out three different times while his mother not only washed it for him, she also took the time to fill it with conditioner that had to be massaged in and then rinsed out again too.  He could have done it all very easily in the shower by himself, but his bath had been interrupted and invaded before he got out of the tub. 
“Okay,” Susan told him as she started the tub draining, “get out of there and dry yourself off.  I’ll be back in a minute.”
“Mom?” Jade asked as he stood up and reached for a towel.
“Yes dear?”
“Um…what’s going on?  How come you did my hair?”
“Because it’s a mess,” Susan told him.  “Now I’ll be right back.  Oh, and don’t dry your hair.  Just rub the towel over it a little so it doesn’t drip too bad and then leave it wet.”
Jade dried himself off, but his mother hadn’t returned yet.  Was he supposed to wait in the bathroom or could he go back to his room and get dressed.  Since she wasn’t there, he put his robe back on and was just about to walk out the door when his mother opened it.  He noticed that she had a brush, a comb, and…scissors in her hands.
“Okay dear,” Susan told him as she closed the door behind her.  “Sorry I took so long.”  She looked at him.  “Why don’t you take that robe off and just wrap your towel around you again so your robe won’t get wet.”
Once again, for just a brief moment, he was naked in front of his mother.  He grabbed his bath towel quickly and wrapped it around his waist.
“Not like that Jas,” Susan told him.  She shook her head.  “Look, from now on, whoever you’re having to be, I think you’re going to need to wrap that around you much higher.  You’ve got boobs now that need to be covered up.  Wrap it just under your armpits and over your breasts.”  She waited until he had awkwardly done that.  “Much better,” she declared happily.  “Now sit down on the toilet lid and let me trim your hair a bit.”  With him turned as much away from her as possible, she grabbed the comb and started combing his hair straight down and straight back. 
“You’re not going to have your hairdresser do this again?” Jasmine asked.
“Why?  I’m only going to trim it a bit to even it out.  I used to do your sister’s hair all the time.”
Once she had his hair where she wanted it, she eyeballed where she wanted to cut it, and trimmed just a tiny bit off from most of the bottom all the way around.  It took longer than Jasmine figured it should, but he sat there not daring to move a muscle.
“There!” Susan declared happily.  “Now grab your blow dryer and dry it out before you get dressed.”  She left him there to put the things she had brought in away. 
Jasmine looked at his hair in the bathroom mirror, but he couldn’t tell much of a difference, other than it all looked to be about the same length, coming down about halfway between his chin and his shoulders.  The hairstyle the hairdresser had given him had been very easy to take care of.  Mostly he didn’t have to do anything with it until fairly recently.  He had a feeling he’d be spending a lot more time trying to take care of his hair now.  With another roll of his eyes, he grabbed the blow dryer and turned it on. 

--- §§§§§§§§§§ ---

For Jasmine, getting dressed was another thing that wasn’t as easy anymore.  It used to be great when his sister planned all his outfits for him ahead of time, even leaving him easy to follow instructions for it all.  Now he had to figure everything out for himself.  He had just gotten his bra and panties on and was in the process of figuring out which pair of ridiculously colored tights he was going to wear for the day when his mother opened his bedroom door and walked in. 
“Mom!  I’m still getting dressed,” he complained quickly.
“I know dear.  Don’t worry about it.  That’s partially why I’m here.  Now that your hair is dry, let’s see what else we can do with it.”
He grabbed his robe to slip over himself. 
“Don’t bother with that, dear, just sit in your chair and let’s play with your hair a bit.”
Oh goodie!  Not!  He sat down with his back to her and stared at himself in the mirror over his desk. His hair of course was just barely brushed.  But that didn’t stop his mother from brushing it again, and again, and again. 
Susan pulled the brush through his hair, but her eyes not only noticed his hair, they also couldn’t help but notice his bra and the sides of his breasts sticking out from it.  She pursed her lips at the situation, but her son really did need a bigger bra.  She didn’t mention it.  Instead she said, “Your hair feels nice and soft.”
He reached up and felt some of his hair again.  He did that a lot more now than he used to.  “I guess,” he replied noncommittally.  But it did feel nice and soft.  More so than usual.  “Is that because of the conditioner you put in it?”
Susan stopped brushing and looked at his face in the mirror.  “You don’t use the conditioner every time you wash it?”
“I never use it.  Why should I?”
“To make your hair look and feel better.  Also to help with the tangles too.”
“Oh.”
Susan shook her head.  Obviously it wasn’t a big deal to him.  She brushed his hair around several different ways trying to find something different to do with it.  She finally sectioned off part of the middle and pulled it all straight back.  “Now this could be nice,” she told him.
“What?”
“Grab one of your hair clips,” she told him.  “A nice wide one.”
He leaned forward, and started searching in the box on the desk.  He pulled out three and his mother selected the biggest one she could find, then she went back to arranging his hair again.
“Your sister…um…the other you…”
“Joe,” Jasmine said.
“Yes, dear.  Um, Joe will be having her annual birthday sleepover with Nichole in a few weeks.”
“I know,” he said.
“And I told her that since it’s the only day of the week that you two are going to be yourselves anymore, then you won’t be allowed to be there.”
“I know,” he said again.  “She took an awful lot of delight in telling me that over and over again.  And then I had to sit there and listen while she and the other girls all planned the party.”
“Why did you sit and listen?”
“I don’t know.  I had nowhere else to go, I guess.”
Susan nodded.  “Jas, how do you feel about not being able to be at that party?  I mean, really.  How do you feel?”
He shrugged as she pulled extra hard on that sectioned bit of hair behind his head.  “Ow!”  The pressure eased up as he felt her slipping the hairclip in place and then fastening it. 
“Sorry,” Susan said as she tried to flatten and fan out the hair where it came out of the hairclip.  “Does not being able to go to the party bother you?”
“Not really,” he said.  “It’s fine.”
But the way he said it, seemed to indicate that he wasn’t really all that fine with it.  “So in other words, you’re disappointed.”
It was a moment before he answered.  “A little, I guess.”  He turned his head to look somewhat back at her.  “I don’t know why I should feel that way.  I mean, they’re really all her friends.  And she didn’t get to go to the parties I was at.  Why shouldn’t she get the chance to go to this one?  Besides, it’s her birthday.”
“And it’s your birthday too, and they’re also your friends.”
“So?”
“So, is there anything you want to do instead?  Grab your curling iron from the drawer please.”
The dreaded curling iron!  He pulled it out of the bottom drawer and handed it up to her. 
“Nothing special you want to do for your birthday?” she asked again after she had plugged it in.
He thought about that.  “Not that I can think of.”
“Well, let your father or me know if you think of anything,” she told him as she waited for the curling iron to heat up.  “How about the other girls?  How do they feel about you not being able to be there?”
“I don’t know.  They haven’t really said anything.  Except Olivia, I guess.  She seemed kind of disappointed.”
“But the other girls haven’t said anything?”
“Not to me.”
Susan nodded and pulled lightly on the hair she had pulled through the hairclip to look at it.  A small thought struck her.  “You know what we should try sometime?”
“What?”
“Some blonde highlights.  Especially now that the weather is getting a bit warmer.  I think they would look really nice in your hair.”
Ugh!

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Two hours later, Jade watched as his mother drove straight past the grocery store.  “Mom.  The supermarket is back there!”
“I know dear,” Susan replied.  “I think we’re going to need to pick up a few other things first.”
“Oh.  You didn’t tell me that.”
“No,” Susan replied with a sigh.  “I didn’t.”
Jasmine Jade wasn’t all that surprised when they stopped at one of the larger department stores he had been to with his mother before.  “What do you need?” he asked as they got out of the car to walk across the parking lot.
“It’s not what I need. I’m afraid it’s what you need.  Underwear.”
“I do?  Why?”
“Because it doesn’t fit you anymore.”
“Oh.  It doesn’t?”
“Jas, have you seen how you’re already hanging out of those bras you’re wearing?  And I’m afraid your panties are getting too small too.”
Jasmine stopped and stood there.  “You mean…I have to get some new bras?”
“You need them Jas.  I’m afraid you’ve needed them for a little while now and I just didn’t want to believe it.”
“You mean they’re going to be bigger?”
“‘Friad so.  You’ve really outgrown those tiny little training bras.”  She started walking again and was glad to see that he was now walking with her.
“So does that mean that they’ll be more noticeable?”
“Of course!  And they should be more comfortable for you too.”
“Comfortable would be very good!” he decided.  “I’m just not so sure about the noticeable part.”
“Jas, every girl your age wants bigger boobs.  You should be glad.”
“I’m not every girl.”
“No.  That’s true I’m afraid.  But you might as well enjoy it and be happy about it.”
“And suppose I’m not?”
That surprised Susan.  “I thought you said you were liking being a girl now?”
It was a few moments before he could answer.  “That’s my problem.  I do.  Too much sometimes.”
“So why should this be any different?”
“I don’t know.  Maybe because it’s one of the things I still haven’t decided about yet.  It’s just…kind of embarrassing!”
“Jas, what’s embarrassing about a girl finally growing breasts?”
“I’m not a girl!”
“Close enough, Jas.  As much as I hate to say it, you’re close enough.”
He wanted to say that he wasn’t close enough to attend the birthday sleepover, but he didn’t mention it. 
They reached the doors and Susan paused before opening one of them.  “Now smile Jas.  Getting a bigger bra is a big event for a girl.  You should be really excited about it.  So smile!”
He didn’t exactly feel that way…even though a tiny part of him was interested.  Once again he showed her his “worst” mock smile.  And once again he was rewarded to see her laugh.
“Your impossible, young lady!” Susan joked.
Jasmine Jade couldn’t help himself, his little joke had him smiling broadly as he walked through the doors into the department store. 
“You’re so much prettier when you smile like that!” Susan happily told him.

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