By Karen Singer
Chapter 64 (Saturday – week 9 Part 7 of 7)
The knock on the door finally came and Chad bolted out of his seat to answer it – faster than Mel did. His nervousness increased drastically as he held the door wide open and watched as all the women judges filed in.
Mel was standing as they entered her apartment. She searched the faces of each of them for some kind of a clue, but she could determine nothing – other than the fact that none of them seemed to be smiling. They all simply looked… solemn.
“Have a seat Mel,” Gloria said. “You too Chad.”
Much like earlier in the day, Chad and Mel sat together on the couch while all the women lined up in front of them.
“I just want you both to know,” Gloria began, “that our decision was unanimous. And before we deliberated and weighed all the evidence as carefully as we could, we had all already reached the same unanimous conclusion. So all this time has been spent making sure of our decision.”
Chad felt Mel grab his hand again… and squeeze it. He squeezed back slightly. This was it! This was what the last two months had come down to! He held his breath.
“Before I tell you our decision,” Gloria said, “I want to remind you that you both agreed to abide by our decision. You asked us to decide, and we have. Agreed?”
“Yes!” Mel said, sounding agitated because it was taking so long.
“Yes,” Chad echoed in a voice that could barely speak.
Gloria nodded. “Just remember that!” She looked at both of them. “It is our unanimous decision… that the winner of this bet… is… neither of you! We all came to the conclusion that it was a perfect tie!”
It was a moment before either Mel or Chad could react. “What?” Mel asked incredulously. “That’s not a decision!”
“Yes it is!” Gloria insisted.
“That was our decision!” Andrea added.
“It was!” Robin added as well. “We all decided that!”
“We did!” Sandy confirmed.
“But it can’t be!” Mel argued.
“That’s what we decided!” Andrea insisted.
“No!” Mel argued as she got to her feet. “Somebody has to win and somebody has to lose!”
“You both won!” Cassie told her.
“And you both lost,” Sandy added.
“That’s not a decision!” Mel yelled angrily.
“Yes it is!” Gloria yelled right back at her. “That’s our decision – and it’s final!”
“So I lost?” Mel replied, only slightly calmer.
“No you didn’t,” Andrea told her. “Chad didn’t prove that he had all his control back.”
“Then I won!” Mel replied.
“No! Chad actually showed us some degree of control.”
“So I did lose!” Mel insisted.
“No you didn’t!” Gloria replied. “He didn’t show us that he had regained enough control!”
“So I won!”
“No! He did have some control!” Gloria insisted.
“Stop it Mel!” Andrea jumped in. “We all came to exactly the same conclusion before we even started talking about it. And then we took everything we all had seen and discussed it and discussed it till we were blue in the face!”
“And we all decided that it was a tie!” Robin concluded.
“All of us!” Cassie added for emphasis.
“Accept it!” Gloria said. “That is our decision, and we expect you to honor it!”
Mel plunked herself back down on the sofa. She didn’t know what to think. She was angry, she knew that much for sure!”
Chad had listened to all of Mel’s arguments, agreeing with every last one. But the one argument he had trouble agreeing with… was the judge’s decision. A tie? It couldn’t be. All that work… for what? “So what does it mean?” he finally asked.
“It means you both won… and you both lost,” Andrea replied. “It means that the terms and consequences of your bet are now null and void.”
Chad shook his head. It was hard to understand. He realized that he felt disbelief. And strangely, he also felt very disappointed. He hadn’t won… and he hadn’t lost? It was very hard to fathom – especially after two months. Two very long, very difficult months! All for… nothing? But that seemed to be what it came down to. All for – nothing!
“I’ve got to go!” Robin said. “This took way longer than I expected. She turned to Chad. “I’ll see you at work. And just for the record, I’m glad this thing is over… and I think it turned out for the best!”
“I agree with you there!” Gloria added.
“See you Monday, Chad,” Robin said as she headed for the door.
“Monday,” Chad mumbled. He was still trying to come to grips with everything.
“I better go too,” Andrea decided. “See you Monday,” she said to Mel.
Mel wasn’t smiling. It was all she could do to reply, “See you Monday.” She didn’t thank her for helping… her brain was so fuddled that the thought never even occurred to her.
“I think we all better go now,” Gloria said. “This bet is over! And it’s time we all realize that.”
Mel actually managed to wave a little. “Next week,” she said rather weakly.
Gloria smiled. “See you next week. Lunch on Monday?”
Mel nodded. “Lunch.”
“We better go too,” Cassie said. “And if you need anything – either of you, you know where we live.”
Chad nodded, as did Mel. “Thanks,” Mel finally said. “We’ll see you… around.”
A minute later, everyone had left except Chad. He was still sitting on the sofa next to her, trying to accept what the judges had declared. A tie! It was simply – hard to believe.
The apartment suddenly seemed very quiet as the two continued to sit next to each other. Mel finally looked over at him. “You could have won!” she said. “You could have won easily! But you put off trying until it was too late.”
Chad shook his head. “I don’t think it would have made any difference at all. I managed to do what I did by luck, and that’s about it.”
It was several moments before Chad forced himself to his feet. “I guess I better go too. You’ve got better things to do than to watch me mope around with my tail between my legs.”
“Not really,” Mel replied. “Stay if you want. I don’t care.”
Chad shook his head. “No. I think I better go.”
Mel nodded. “We’ll sort our stuff out tomorrow… after we’ve both had time to… accept things.”
Chad nodded. “See you tomorrow,” he said. He headed for the door where he grabbed the bag that held his new skirts and his purse – his purse that he would never have to worry about carrying anymore – and with a small smile back at her, he walked out.
Mel tried to smile back, but it was difficult. And all too soon, he walked out and the door closed behind him. It was over. It was hard to believe… but it was over.
She knew she should get up from the couch and do something, but the will simply wasn’t in her. She realized she no longer felt angry at the judges. As hard as it was to fathom, she was now beginning to accept their decision. A stupid decision, but yes, it was a decision. How many times had juries come back with a hung-jury decision? Even the courts had made allowances for that. And now, all her mind seemed to want to process, was the fact that the bet was over. Everything was over.
Her apartment felt lonely. He wasn’t going to be there anymore. He would never be there again for her to laugh at… or to order around and make him do the most weird and outrageous things… or to – force him to satisfy her sexually, even though he himself was totally denied. He wouldn’t be there any more for any of that. Ever again.
Oh, there was no doubt they would run into each other occasionally, maybe even get together for a laugh. She was sure that they would remember the things they had both gone through in the last two months and maybe even laugh over it once in a while. She would remember all of it fondly. But would he? Maybe – maybe not. None of it had been easy for him. But then, it had all been part of his wacked-out fantasies as well.
“I would kiss you till your body shudders… and you know how I feel about you.”
So strange. He had actually grown to… care about her.
“I would kiss you till your body shudders.”
Even though she had totally denied him any sexual enjoyment – at least no normal sexual enjoyment, he had still made love to her – possibly better and more completely than any man she had ever known. Ray included! Because she had always felt like Sissy… or rather Chad… had made love to her honestly. And he hadn’t run off as soon as it was all over. He had stayed right there holding her… which to her was one of the most important parts of it all. A girl doesn’t like to feel abandoned so soon after that much intimacy! And he hadn’t abandoned her – ever. In anything. For any reason.
“I would kiss you till your body shudders, and you know how I feel about you.”
She had wondered if he really did love her. And she had made the decision that, no he didn’t – only because he hadn’t used the word “love.” And… because he didn’t say he wanted to spend forever with her – no matter how the bet came out.
“And you know how I feel about you.”
But she realized now, that only someone who really did love her would be capable of saying something like that.
“I would kiss you till your body shudders… and you know how I feel about you.”
But he was all wrong for her for so many reasons. Besides, he wanted his self-respect – which he deserved. He wanted his friends – which he also deserved. And he wanted a life – a life that included more than just abject humiliation – which he totally deserved.
“I would kiss you till your body shudders… and you know how I feel about you.”
Get over it Mel! He’s all wrong for you! He would be laughable! Move on! The bet is over!
And she realized one other thing. Her dream of getting a new house and moving on with her life was over. She hadn’t won… and consequently… her dream… was over.
Chad closed his door, set the bag and his purse down on the floor, and walked over to his one and only piece of furniture – his lonely chair facing the wall of pictures that had now become totally meaningless.
He had lost… but he had won? No, there was no winning for him. Not at all. If he had lost, then he would still have Mel for another year. He would still have all the delightful fun humiliation she seemed to enjoy dishing out to him for another year. Yes, he would have more problems than he knew what to do with because of it, but losing would have still been like winning.
And if he had won… well, he would have had an apartment full of fantastic stuff… not to mention a pool table… that would have been the envy of everyone he knew – or might know in the future. Winning would have been – well… winning of course.
But a tie? No winner? No loser? As far as he was concerned, he had simply lost! Okay, maybe he could still save some face… but toward who? Robin? She knew everything! And since Ray had everything all mixed up at work now, even going back there would be easier. He could explain it all to everyone… somehow.
But still, all he had… was loss. He didn’t win… so he had lost!
And the one biggest thing that he had lost, wasn’t his sissy dresses, it wasn’t his sissy diapers, it wasn’t even all the humiliating things she had made him do. The one biggest thing he had lost – was her.
“Why can’t you just lose?”
He should have lost – purposely! But he hadn’t. He had let his stupid male pride get in the way. And so now he had – nothing! Nothing! Nothing! Especially not – Mel.
“Why can’t you just lose?”
And now… it was too late.
He sat there as the sun went down and darkness invaded his apartment. He had no reason to get up and bother to turn on a light. Even dinner didn’t seem important. He did get up once though, to change his diaper when it started leaking. And when he was done, he came right back to sit again in his one solitary chair… and brood.
He had lived a dream. For two full months he had lived… a dream. And now… that dream was over.
It was getting late and he had just decided to head to bed when his phone rang. He jumped out of his chair to answer it. The phone rang and rang as he fumbled with trying to fish the darn thing out of his purse. He already knew it would be Mel who was calling – nobody else ever called him. “Hello?”
“I have an idea.”
Chapter 65 ( Epilogue – Ten Months Later)
Robin checked the directions for the fifth time as she drove out into the country. She wasn’t all that far out of the city, but she had made some turns onto roads that she wasn’t familiar with. She thought again about Chad. She hadn’t seen him since that day when they had declared the bet a tie. He hadn’t even shown up for work the next week.
After a two days of wondering what had happened to him, Tom Robinson had come down and told her that Chad would be working part time from home from now on. Then he moved her to another desk where she wouldn’t be isolated from anyone anymore. It had seemed strange at first having a number of other women around her to talk with, but she did enjoy the extra company of her friends.
Over the next few months, she had received a few emails from Chad concerning work... and only work. She had asked several times about what was happening with him in those exchanges, but not once had he ever answered any of her personal questions. It was as if he was purposely avoiding answering them. She had even tried to call him once to talk to him, but he hadn’t answered his phone. As strange as it seemed, the only contact she had with him anymore was through those few work related emails.
So she had been very surprised to receive the invitation to their wedding several months ago. And right after it arrived, Chad had sent several emails begging her to attend. But the more she thought about it, the more reasons she found for not going – mostly because she was afraid of what kind of wedding she might be attending. While nothing in the invitation mentioned it, she didn’t want to attend a wedding where both the bride and groom might be wearing a wedding dress.
So she continued to deal with Chad through emails only, and only about business. And those emails were relatively few. Her imagination could only assume the worst about what he and Mel were doing, especially when she saw the slight shift in his return email address after their wedding – changing his last name to match Mel’s.
And then she had received this latest invitation… along with several emails begging her to attend their new house-warming party. She had strongly considered not going, but her curiosity finally got the better of her. She had to know for sure what had become of him. So now here she was, driving down a street she had never heard of before, a street lined with nothing but really nice homes… homes that to her, were mansions.
She started checking the house numbers on the widely spaced mailboxes. She slowed down as she got closer. That was it! She quickly glanced up before she turned into the winding driveway and she caught sight of what appeared to be another mansion – impressive and beautiful! And it was obviously new. While the colorful landscaping was fully installed, she could see that many of the shrubs were still very young.
She parked her car in a small parking area next to several other cars. As she walked back toward the front door she steeled herself for what she might find. Would he answer wearing his maid’s uniform as she fully expected. Would he still be diapered underneath? She was really afraid to find out. But she had to know!
She almost chickened out before ringing the doorbell but she forced herself to stay. The doorbell sounded with rich tones from somewhere inside, and a moment later, the door opened… and Chad stood there… and she was totally surprised.
“Robin!” he exclaimed. “You don’t know how glad we are that you came!”
He was holding the door for her to come in, but she was still too surprised to move. She had to look closely at him first. He wasn’t dressed like a maid. He wasn’t dressed like a baby. He wasn’t even dressed like a sissy… or a woman. He was dressed… and looked… like a guy. Mostly. “Mostly” because she quickly noticed the obviously expensive diamond studs he wore in his ears and her woman’s eyes couldn’t help but catch the sparkle from the ring on his left hand. When she took a moment to glance closer, she saw that it was a woman’s wedding set he wore on that finger. But the pony tail his hair was pulled back in somehow looked totally… masculine. “Hi Chad,” she finally replied.
“Come on in,” Chad said welcomingly.
Robin stepped over the doorsill and immediately started looking around. Rich! Opulent! Gorgeous! As she followed Chad past several rooms, she noticed a mixture of old and modern. The affect only added to the opulent feeling she had already gotten. Just how much money did Mel make as a lawyer? It had to be a lot! It was certainly a big step up from the apartment she used to live in.
All too quickly, Chad led her into the living room.
“Robin!” Mel’s excited voice called as she got up from her chair to greet her latest guest.
Robin took in Mel as well. She too looked good, although the only real change other than her updated hairstyle that she saw was the wedding ring she now sported on her left hand. The two women hugged and Mel feigned a kiss near Robin’s cheek. Only when Mel stepped back did she have a chance to see who else had shown up for the party – Gloria, Sandy, Cassie, and Andrea – all the judges who had decided the bet. Robin got a brief hug from each of them before she finally took a seat.
“Wow, what a house!” Robin exclaimed as she continued to look around from her seated position.
“Isn’t it super?” Cassie replied. “Sandy was the decorator for the entire thing.”
“Well, actually Mel had a lot of stuff from her old house that I just had to find a place for,” Sandy said. “But some of the rooms here are defiantly my creation.”
“Oh that’s right!” Mel exclaimed, “you haven’t seen the house yet.” She got to her feet. “Come on, let me give you the ten-cent tour.”
Robin didn’t need a second invitation. As she was led from room to room, she wasn’t sure who was giving the tour, Mel or Sandy, but she was duly impressed by every room they went through.
The kitchen was huge! To her, it looked like they could feed an army from it. All the appliances were professional grade, the type that a major restaurant would probably have. The kitchen also smelled good – dinner she guessed. While they were there, Chad took a moment to lower one of the oven doors to check what was inside. Satisfied, he closed it again a few seconds later.
A few minutes after that, she found herself in the largest game room she had ever seen… not that she had seen all that many. The room was dominated by a pool table, but she saw a very nice looking poker table off to one end of the room as well. The room was lined with cabinets and had its own little kitchenette as well as what appeared to be a very well stocked bar.
But by then Robin’s curiosity finally got the better of her. “Okay,” she said to Mel, “I have to ask. During the bet, you dominated Chad unmercifully. When I drove up here today I was really expecting him to be dressed as your maid… or even a baby. But he’s not. He looks totally like a great looking guy… even with the earrings and the wedding band he’s wearing. I don’t see any sign of what I expected to see at all. Other than his earrings and that ring, there’s nothing the least bit sissyish that I see at all. What changed?
“Nothing,” Mel replied. “It’s simply his turn right now.”
“Mm hm. It took us a few months to figure it out, but so far, the system we’ve settled on seems to be working quite nicely for both of us.”
“We have a pair of dice,” Chad explained.
“A very large pair,” Mel added.
Chad nodded. “Yeah, they’re fairly big,” he agreed. “Anyway, we each throw one and the total on the dice is the number of months that our individual turns last.” Robin saw him pause to smile at Mel before he continued speaking. “When it’s Mel’s turn, she gets to dominate me in any way she likes for the number of months represented by the dice.”
“And my turn is coming up tomorrow,” Mel sang teasingly. Chad nodded at her with a smile on his face as well.
“And what happens when it’s your turn?” Robin asked Chad. “Do you dominate her? Because let me tell you, I just don’t see it.”
Chad laughed. “No, not at all. During those months I get to be me, Chad, fully a guy in any way I want.”
“I still come home though and frequently find him in one of his maid’s dresses or a skirt,” Mel whispered loudly.
Chad shrugged. “What can I say? I like it!”
“But when it’s my turn,” Mel added, “he doesn’t get the choice to do anything but what I demand!” She leveled a cruel but teasing look at Chad. “Anything!”
Chad smiled back at her for a few moments before he continued. “Actually,” he said, “this little get together is more than just a house-warming celebration. It really marks the one year anniversary of the day our bet started.
Robin realized now that it had been one full year. “It looks to me like things have changed a lot for you since then.”
“Yeah, they have,” Chad agreed. “Quite a bit I guess.”
Their tour continued and Robin soon found herself in the biggest bedroom suite she had ever seen – complete with its own living room and small kitchenette. “Wow! Nice,” she said. “If I had a room like this I’d never want to leave it.”
Chad laughed. “This is Mel’s room… and sometimes, mine.”
“Sometimes?” Robin asked.
But it was Sandy who practically pulled Robin out of that room and further down the hall. “You’ve got to see this,” she said excitedly. She opened a door that was closed, and Robin suddenly found herself in the most amazing little-girl nursery she could imagine.
“And… this is my room,” Chad told her.
“Actually, the floor plan matches the suite next door. It’s just decorated a bit… differently,” Sandy explained.
Robin looked around. All the furniture was girly, and babyish, and it all looked plenty big enough to hold an adult – from the amazing baby crib to the small play table and chairs, to the… “Is that a playpen?” she asked as she took in the large barred area in the corner.
“It sure is,” Sandy replied. “And look at his closet,” she said as she headed toward a door at the far side. “It’s as big as the closet in the other room.”
Sandy opened the door, and Robin looked inside – and got dizzy. That was a closet? From what little she could see from the doorway it looked humongous! On one side of the main aisle, she saw long racks of silly colorful dresses as well as what looked like maid’s uniforms. The other side was lined by floor to ceiling wooden cabinets. And that was just the one aisle she could see! A wall of shelves at the back that held shoes seemed to stretch in both directions.
“It’s mostly empty so far,” Chad explained. “We made it overly large so that there would be plenty of space to hold whatever we get in the future.”
“Not… full?” Robin asked. She turned away from the closet, not wanting to see any more of the too large space.
“Not… full?” Robin asked. She turned away from the closet, not wanting to see any more of the too large space.
Sandy giggled. “If you think this is something, you should see the new room we built for him at Mel’s office building.”
“New room?” Robin asked.
“Yeah, they had this wonderful office that wasn’t being used right across the hall from Mel’s, but instead of redecorating that, we added onto the back of the building and put another kind of office / playroom in there for him.
“It really is adorable!” Andrea added.
“That’s where he works from now,” Mel said. “If he’s not here working around the house, then he comes in with me and works out of that office. That way I can have him help with some of my work as well as let him play with just the web stuff he normally does.”
Chad checked his watch. “Um… if you’ll excuse me,” he said, “I need to check on dinner again.”
A short while later, Mel finished her tour and Robin found herself again in the front living room. “It’s an amazing house!” Robin told Mel. “And it’s gorgeous!”
“Thank you,” Mel replied, obviously pleased by Robin’s comments.
But now that they were back, Robin had a few more questions. “I noticed from his emails that he now has your last name,” she said. That kind of surprised me a bit.
Mel shrugged. “Why not? I’m the major breadwinner. I’m the dominant one in the house. It only seemed right.” She leaned in a bit closer to Robin. “Most of the wedding arrangements were made during my turn,” she said, “even though the wedding itself occurred during Chad’s. While we were doing all the paperwork and making the arrangements,” she paused for a moment before continuing, “I took the opportunity to ‘brand’ myself into Chad a little bit more, so to speak.” There was a note of amusement in her voice. “Not only did we change his last name to mine, but his middle name is now Melissa!”
Robin was slightly shocked. “You changed his middle name to your name?”
“Just to make sure he won’t forget me.” Mel replied with a giggle.
“Really?” Robin asked, then found herself giggling too.
“Really!” Mel confirmed.
“Was that when you picked out his wedding ring too?” Robin asked. “I noticed it’s a woman’s ring.”
“With a smile, Mel held out her left hand so Robin could examine her ring.
“God! What a diamond!” Robin exclaimed. “It’s gorgeous!”
“Isn’t it?” Mel replied. “Chad’s rings exactly match mine.”
“They match?” Robin exclaimed. She didn’t want to even think about what two rings like that had to cost… let alone one.
“He’s actually quite proud of his rings… even when he’s trying to be a man,” Mel added. She caught sight of the clock. “Please excuse me, I need to see if Chad needs any help with dinner. When it’s his turn, I do my best to try to help with some things.”
As soon as Mel was gone, Robin leaned over toward Gloria. “I have to tell you,” she said, “you could have knocked me over with a feather when I heard about their wedding. I didn’t see that coming at all!”
“Me either,” Cassie replied.
“Or me!” Andrea added.
“Oh I saw it coming!” Gloria replied. “I saw it almost from the beginning. You don’t know how many times I wanted to knock their heads together to bang some sense into those two, and then tell them to just forget all about that stupid bet and just get married!”
“You did?” Robin asked, finding it hard to believe.
“Oh yeah! Look at it. Mel is just like you and me. She needs someone to pay attention to her, someone to cuddle her, she needs a little romance once in a while… she needs to be loved.
“But at the same time, she’s got this pushy streak in her… this need to direct things… to be in charge. And she’s got something of a mean streak as well… her dominant side. She can’t ever be really happy unless she has someone she can push around a bit… someone whose buttons she can push. And make no mistake about it, she does like to push those buttons!
“And on the other side, Chad of course has this totally submissive streak in him. He needs someone to push him around a bit… he needs someone to constantly push his buttons. That’s what makes him happy.
“Each of them by themselves can’t feel fulfilled… they’re not whole. But together, they’re perfect for each other. They need each other. They were really lucky to find each other.”
Only once Gloria had put it like that, did Robin really see it. And it now made perfect sense.
“Still,” Robin replied, “after that weird outcome of their bet, I was surprised that they managed to get together at all… and so quickly! Especially since neither one of them won. They both should have wound up going their own separate way! And I would have expected Mel to be going out with someone more like Derek than with Chad… let alone marry him!”
Gloria shrugged. “Sometimes… we can’t help who we love. It just took Mel and Chad a while to realize that. And like I said, they were lucky. But the way the bet turned out, was the best way it could possibly have ended. If it had ended any other way, they most likely wouldn’t have gotten married and neither one of them would be as happy as they are today.
“An agreement such as theirs can’t exist on the basis of a bet. Somewhere along the way resentment would rear its ugly head. It has to be based on a mutual agreement, and understanding, and trust. Without that, they would both wind up miserable and eventually tear each other apart.”
Robin easily saw the wisdom in that so she could only agree. “And how about you?” she asked. “I know I’ve heard from some of the women at work that they’ve been out with Derek, but weren’t you seeing Ray? I don’t hear much about him at work.”
Gloria smiled. “He still comes around once in a while, but you know Ray, when it comes to women, he’s definitely got a wandering eye. He likes his variety and I don’t think there’s going to be any changing that. At least not yet.”
They were interrupted by Mel coming back into the room. “Dinner’s ready,” she announced.
In a distant part of the house, the old grandfather clock began chiming midnight as Chad and Mel walked into the game room together. Chad went straight over to one of the glass cabinets and took out an ornate wooden box. He brought it over to the pool table where he opened the lid – revealing a pair of very large red dice with white dots. He held the box out to Mel and she took one. He grabbed the other one before setting the box aside.
“Ready?” Mel asked. There was a definite gleam of anticipation in her eye.
“Ready!” Chad confirmed.
“One!” Mel said.
“Two!” Chad replied.
Together they shouted “Three!” and together they rolled the dice down the length of the table. The dice tumbled and spun and came to rest. Even before Chad and Mel could reach the far side, they could see the large number of dots displayed on top.
Mel was laughing delightedly. “Finally!” she said. “I couldn’t believe how many times we rolled such low numbers before.” A quick glance was all it took to confirm the number of months she would now be totally in charge of him. “Eleven!” she declared. “It’s not twelve, but it’s close enough. I’ve been planning this from almost the beginning – just waiting for enough time to do it. And now I’ve got plenty!” She lowered her most evil gaze directly at him. “You’re never going to recover from this one!”
With a smile of anticipation, Chad curtseyed. “Yes Mistress.”