Hypnotized Into Wearing Dresses
Gloria knocked on the door of the dressing room, and Dr. Specks invited her in. He sat at his dressing table getting ready for his stage show.
"Can I help you?" he asked.
"I'm Gloria Stoner. I understand you were once able to hypnotize a man into wearing dresses. You got him so he experienced severe stomach cramps if he didn't dress like a woman. Is that correct?"
Dr. Specks motioned Gloria into a chair, and said, "That was completely unintentional. I would never do something like that on purpose.
"Really? Not even just for a day? Not even for a thousand dollars?"
She placed the money on the table. Ten one-hundred dollar bills. He smiled.
"Only just for the day?"
"I just thought it would be a fun little April Fool's day joke for my husband. It's on a Sunday, he won't be going into work anyway, so no harm done."
Dr. Specks looked at the money again.
"I really shouldn't do this. But you say it's only for the day?"
"Just one day. You can release him that evening."
"Look, it's very difficult to hypnotize someone into doing something he doesn't want to do. I don't say it's impossible, but it's very difficult. Do you think your husband would like to wear dresses?"
"My husband is an ex- Marine. He was a linebacker in college. He's a conservative Republican. So I would say that, no, he's probably never had any desire to wear women's clothing, which is what's going to make this joke so incredibly funny! He's big and muscular, and he'll never be able to fit into any of my clothes. I'll have to buy some him dresses of his own to wear."
Dr. Specks reached into a desk drawer and produced a bottle of medicine, which he gave to Gloria.
"You'll need to dose him with two drops of this. I'll be out to see him on March thirty-first, in the evening. Let's say about seven o'clock. Tell him I'm an insurance salesman. That'll be my cover. Before I get there, slip a few drops into a drink, and give it to him. He should be pretty compliant by the time I arrive."
"Let me have your address, please."
She wrote the address on a slip of paper, and gave it to him. She giggled.
"I can't wait to see what he looks like in a pretty dress. I know just what I'm going to make him wear. I saw it this afternoon at a big and tall dress shop downtown."
"Hang the dress in his wardrobe that night, next to his regular clothes. He'll put it on that morning."
"The lingerie can go in his underwear drawer. And I suppose there will be high heels, as well?"
She nodded, and smiled.
"And a wig, and some make-up, please. And some jewelry. And pantyhose, of course."
"Put it all in his underwear drawer."
"Oh, and there's some other dresses I'll want him to try on that day, so he has to be able to take off his dress and put on another dress without any stomach cramps. Lingerie, too. But he can't be allowed to wear any pants, even women's pants, even over his dress. I want him to really panic!"
"Very well. I really, really shouldn't be doing this. But if it's only for the day, I guess there's no harm done. I'll be by on March thirty-first to put him under, and then back on April first, seven o'clock, to release him."
Gloria left, giggling.
The morning of April first in the year 2001, Carl Stoner walked into the kitchen and asked his wife, "Honey, where did I leave the NBA tickets? The guys will be here any minute."
Gloria took one look at her husband and burst into laughter.
Dr. Specks had done it! Her muscular 6-foot-4-inch husband was wearing the sheer low-cut pink chiffon dress she'd bought for him! Beneath it she could see the lacy pink satin slip and the bra she'd bought, and when she looked at his legs in tan-colored pantyhose and pink high-heeled pumps, she saw that he'd even shaved his legs that morning! His face was adequately made-up, and he was wearing the wig she'd gotten for him, as well as her pink clip-on earrings and faux pearls!
"What's so funny?" he asked.
Incredible! He was dressed like a woman and he didn't even know it!
"Go take a look at yourself in the mirror," she said between gasps of laughter.
He went into the bedroom, thinking he had some little smudge on his face or something. His wife followed. He looked at himself in the full-length mirror.
"Look at yourself! You're wearing a dress!"
Suddenly his eyes widened and his jaw dropped. He reached out his hands to touch his dress. He couldn't believe it. Then he put his hands on his chest, feeling the falsies in his bra.
"Carl, if you wanted to wear my dresses, all you had to do was ask," said his wife, and laughed again. She was loving the scared expression on his face. It was all he could do to say a word. Carl had faced enemy combat in the Marines, but apparently that was nothing compared to the horror of wearing a pretty pink chiffon dress.
"Gloria, I swear I don't know how this happened."
"You don't? Someone just broke in here and slipped a dress over your head? Without your knowing it?"
"I swear I don't remember putting this on. I don't know what's happening."
"Oh, don't worry about it. You can wear my dresses if you want to. You look pretty in a dress. You should dress like a woman full-time."
He was going to protest, but suddenly his face took on a panicked expression.
"The guys will be here any minute! I've gotta get out of this get-up!"
"You just try," thought his wife.
He kicked his heels off and reached back to unbutton his dress. Suddenly he grabbed his midsection and doubled over in pain. He sat down on the bed.
"What's wrong?" his wife asked innocently.
"I don't know. I've got terrible stomach cramps."
"You've been a woman for five minutes, and already you've got cramps."
"This isn't funny. Something's wrong. I've got to get to the hospital."
"Maybe your girdle's too tight."
"The one you're wearing. Right here," she said, putting her hand at the top of his girdle, which she could feel through his slip.
She took a few steps across the room and retrieved the heels and put them back on his feet. Then she buttoned up his dress.
"How do you feel now?"
He stood up, wobbling a bit in his heels.
"Fine. What the hell is going on with me?"
"I don't know, honey. I guess you just like wearing dresses."
"I don't like wearing a dress!" he almost yelled.
"Then why are you wearing one?"
"Take it off! Get it off me!" He turned his back to her so she could unbutton his dress.
She unbuttoned it slowly, one button at a time, watching his reaction. She unbuckled the fabric-covered belt and unbuttoned the satin cuffs. She slipped his dress off of his shoulders and had him step out of it. He was standing there in his pink satin slip, pantyhose, high heels and lingerie, wig, make-up and jewelry.
"Something's wrong!" he said, grabbing his midsection.
"Put it back on! Button me up!"
She helped him back into his dress and quickly buckled his belt and did up his buttons. By the time she got to the top button, he was breathing easier.
"So, do you like wearing dresses or not?" she asked.
"Honey, I don't know what's going on. You've got to help me."
He heard a knock at the front door. Several knocks, in fact, and a lot of rowdy yelling. His friends were out front, ready to go to the game.
"Oh, no. Oh dear God."
He was really panicked.
"Honey, take it easy. So they see you in a dress. So they see you wearing pantyhose, and make-up. Big deal."
"They can't see me like this. Go out and tell them I'm sick. Tell 'em I can't go."
"But you never get sick. Couldn't I just tell 'em you're dressed like a girl?"
"Don't you dare!"
Gloria went to the front door and opened it. She told Carl's friends that he wouldn't be going to the game with them because he was sick.
"What's wrong with him?"
"I don't know," she said. "Stomach problems, I think."
"Man, stomach flu would never make me miss this game. What a pussy," said one of them, and then regretted it when he saw the look from Gloria.
"He has our tickets," said one of the guys.
"I'll get 'em," she said, and headed back toward the bedroom. Carl's friends followed her into the house.
At the door of the bedroom, one of them said, "Can we see him?"
She grinned wickedly.
"Sure. Why not?"
As she opened the door she barely saw Carl disappear under the bedcovers, his pretty skirts flying. He pulled the covers over his face.
His friends trooped into the room, and she went to the top bureau drawer and retrieved the tickets from a white envelope. She handed them to one of Carl's friends.
"You OK, Carl? You doin' OK there, buddy?"
Carl was shaking and shuddering, but Gloria thought he was probably faking it for their benefit. She noticed his friends looking at him oddly. It could be because he was lying on his back, and they noticed that he appeared to have breasts. Hopefully they thought it was due to the blanket having an odd fold or rumple in it.
"He needs his rest. Better leave him alone."
They trooped out again, and Gloria saw them to the door. They gave him their best wishes on the way out.
When she got back to the bedroom, she saw Carl awkwardly getting out from under the covers, his skirt hiking up as he slid out of bed, showing off his slip and his girdle. He stood up and smoothed down his skirt.
"Why did you let them in here?" he asked angrily.
"Why not? What's the big deal if they see you in a dress? What do you think they're going to do to you? Why is it any of their business if you like wearing dresses?"
He didn't bother to deny it again, just sat on the bed in consternation.
"Honey, if you're going to be wearing my dresses, you have to learn how to sit in a dress. Here, let me show you."
"Gloria, something is going on here and I think you know what it is. This isn't one of your dresses. It's too big for you."
"April Fool," she said, and laughed like a maniac. She sat next to him on the bed and put one hand on his shoulder. He didn't even smile.
"What's going on?"
"You remember the fellow who came here last night, trying to sell you insurance?"
"His name is Dr. Specks, and he's a hypnotist. He got you to dress like a woman, and this is how you're going to stay until seven o'clock tonight when he'll drop by and release you from the post hypnotic suggestion. Meanwhile, you get to find out how the other half lives. You get to see what it's like to wear pretty dresses and pantyhose and lipstick."
He stood up.
"I don't think that's very funny. Why would you want to humiliate me like this? What did I ever do to you?"
"Oh come on, honey, it was just a joke. Can't you take a joke?"
"You think it's funny, putting me through stomach cramps?"
"Oh, that's just the sort of thing we women have to put up with every so often. Must be your time of the month."
"Go to hell," he said and headed for the door. She ran after him as he went into his study and slammed the door, and locked it.
"Honey, I did this so we could spend the day as girls together! I thought it would be fun! I bought you some other dresses. Wouldn't you like to try them on?"
Nothing. She could hear him turning on his word processor to get a little work done.
"Honey, it was just a joke."
Nothing but the sound of her husband working.
He spent hours in that study. Gloria went out to the kitchen and made herself some lunch, hoping he would join her.
He was a corporate attorney, and she kept telling him he could get a lot more work done at home if he'd just get himself a computer, but he insisted that sort of thing was for secretaries. But he did occasionally work on a few legal briefs at home in the evening. He usually worked a 12-hour day six days a week, and at least half a day on Sunday. This was the first real day off he'd taken in awhile, and Gloria had to admit that it pissed her off that he was willing to take a day off to spend with his friends but not with her.
Well, he would be spending the day with her today, one way or another. She just had to let him cool down a little, and he'd see the humor in the whole thing and they'd both have a good laugh.
After a few hours she heard him leave his study, but it was only to go to the bathroom. She giggled, thinking of him trying to go to the bathroom in a dress for the first time. Pulling down his girdle and his pantyhose and his panties. Pulling up his dress and trying to sit down. Getting caught in a tangle of skirts. It would probably take him several tries. Maybe she should go and help. No, better to just leave him alone until he cooled off.
Finally, at six o'clock, he came into the kitchen. And when Gloria saw him she just started laughing all over again.
"I'm sorry," she said, "I forgot how pretty you look in a dress!"
"I didn't come in here for you to laugh at me. I came in here because I'm hungry. I haven't eaten all day."
"Sit down. I'll heat you up some leftovers. Dr. Specks is coming by in an hour, and then you'll be able to take off your dress. Stop being such a grump about this. No one saw you but me. One more hour and it will all be over."
Seven o'clock came, and no Dr. Specks. By eight o'clock he still hadn't arrived. Gloria was starting to get worried, because she knew his nightclub show started at eight.
"I'm going to the nightclub and find out what happened to Dr. Specks. Stay here."
Carl angrily replied that he had no intention of going anywhere, dressed as he was.
Gloria got in the car and headed to the nightclub. When she got there she found that his show had been canceled. She knocked on the door until she got the manager.
"Where is Dr. Specks?" she asked.
"Are you a relative?"
"Well, I'm afraid he had an accident. He was crossing the street and got run over by a drunk driver. They took him to County General."
When she got to County General it took her some time to find the doctor in charge of his case. Finally she did, and she was told that the patient was in a coma.
"How long do you expect him to be like this?"
"There's no way of knowing. It could be days, weeks, even months. Are you a relative?"
"A client. Could I be informed when he comes out of the coma?"
She left her address at the front desk, and drove home. She had a bad feeling about this. She dreaded having to tell her husband that he would have to wear dresses for days or weeks or even months. When she got home she gave him the bad news. He stared at her incredulously.
"Damn it!" he said. "It has to have worn off by now!"
He got up from the table and hurried to the bedroom, going as fast as he could go in three-inch heels. He grabbed a pair of pants from a hanger in the wardrobe, and threw them on the bed.
"OK," he said, "take the dress off me as fast as you can, and I'm going to try to put these pants on."
She started by unbuttoning his cuffs. Then she unbuckled the belt on his dress. Then she unbuttoned his dress as quickly as she could, and pulled it down until it was a little pink puddle on the floor. He cried out in pain, but he grabbed the pants, sat down on the floor, put one leg in, then the other. He was still wearing his high heels. He pulled the pants up as far as his knees.
And that was as far as he got. He grabbed his midsection and yelled "Get 'em off! Get 'em off me!"
She pulled his pants off, then took his dress and starting trying to pull it over his head.
"You have to sit up, honey!"
"I can't. Too much pain."
She wound up having to push his body into his dress. When he realized what she was trying to do, he helped a little by pushing against the floor with his high heels. Finally, his head popped out of the collar.
"How do you feel now?"
"Can you stand up?
"I think so."
He stood up. He put his arms into his sleeves and buttoned the cuffs while his wife buttoned him up the back. He was shaking.
"That's the worst pain I've ever felt in my life."
"I'm sorry, honey. I never meant for this to happen. Not for this long, anyway. It was just supposed to be a little April Fool's day joke."
"Gloria, there's no way you can ever apologize enough for doing this to me, so don't even try, OK?"
He pushed past her and went back to the kitchen. She followed. He sat at the table and tried to think. She wanted to tell him about tucking his skirt behind him when he sat down, but now was probably not the time.
"Can't you just call in sick?" she asked.
"How long am I supposed to be sick? Weeks? Months? I couldn't do that to the firm. I'm heavily involved in several major suits right now."
"I'm just going to have to tell them the truth. And you'll have to come with me, tomorrow, to help me explain. I don't know what else to do. If I have to wear dresses to work, I have to wear dresses to work, I guess. Unless they fire me immediately, and I wouldn't blame them if they did. Damn it, Gloria, how could you do this to me? Damn these shoes! My feet are killing me."
He took off one of his pumps, and suddenly felt the pain in his midsection again. Not as bad as before, but still pretty bad.
"Damn it!" he said, putting his shoe back on. "I can't even take off these high heels! How am I ever going to take a shower if I can't take off these damn clothes?"
"I think I have an idea on that," she said. "Come on."
They went back to the bedroom. She laid a blue polyester dress and a lacy black slip on the bed. It was pretty clear from the size of them that she'd bought them for her husband to wear.
"I want you to take off your dress and your pink slip and put these on."
"No. I'm not taking off my dress again. I've had enough pain for one night."
"Honey, I'm pretty sure you can take off your dress without pain, if you're taking it off just to put on another dress. Please, just try it, for me."
"Unbutton me, again."
She undid his buttons, he unbuttoned the cuffs on his dress and unbuckled the belt himself. He took off his dress, without pain. Then he flipped the two straps of his slip off of his shoulders, and wriggled out of his slip. Gloria giggled to see him in just a girdle, a longline bra with falsies, panties, pantyhose and pink high heeled pumps.
"What's so funny?"
"Nothing. Hurry, put on your black slip. Don't delay."
He pulled his slip over his head and tugged it into place.
"Now the blue dress."
He pulled it over his head. It buttoned up the front, and had a matching sash, which he tied. She brought some black patent leather pumps out of the closet and put them on the floor in front of him. They were the same size as the pink high heels he was wearing.
"Put these on."
"What is the point of all this, Gloria?"
"We need to know what will cause you pain and what won't. Please, just put on the black pumps."
He stepped out of his pink heels and into his black pumps without any stomach cramps.
"OK," she said, "I think I know how you'll be able to take a shower. Let's try this."
She took his pink chiffon dress and headed into the bathroom with it. He followed.
She hung his dress up on the door, then got some more lingerie for him to wear. She placed it on a chair, and put his pink pumps on the floor, all in plain sight.
"OK, we're going to see if you can take off all your clothes long enough for a shower. I want you to take off your dress, but keep in mind that you're only doing it to put on your pink chiffon dress over here. You're only taking off one dress to put on another one. Same with your slip. Then take off your pumps, your girdle, your nylons, but you're only doing it to put on your other lingerie. Then if you can take off all your clothes without any pain, we'll see if it will last long enough for you to take a shower."
He started to unbutton his blue dress down the front. He untied the sash and slipped out of his dress. He took off his slip and stepped out of his pumps. No pain so far. He carefully pulled his girdle down to the floor and stepped out of it. He peeled off his pantyhose, and took off his white satin panties. Still no pain.
He was still wearing a wig and make-up and some jewelry, but the only piece of lingerie he was wearing was his bra. His wife had bought him a longline bra, which is different from a standard bra in that it extended from the cups almost down to his waist, so it had a lot more hooks to undo in the back. His wife undid all the hooks for him.
The moment of truth. Telling himself over and over again that he was only taking off his bra so he could put on another one, he took it off.
And he clutched his midsection and fell to the floor in pain.
"Damn it! Damn it! Put it back on me! You said this would work!"
His wife helped him with his bra, and he soon found that he had to put his lingerie back on one piece after another without pausing, or the pain would start again. He put back on all the lingerie he'd been wearing. His wife had to show him how to put on his pantyhose, even though he'd put them on himself that morning. But he was in some sort of a hypnotic trance, then.
Finally he buttoned up his blue polyester dress and stepped into his pumps, and was able to breathe easier.
"OK, honey, it looks like you can't be naked, because when you're naked you're not dressed like a woman. And you've been hypnotically conditioned to dress like a woman and to wear dresses and pantyhose and lingerie and high heels at all times."
"So I can't ever be naked? Until Dr. Specks releases me from all this?"
"I guess so."
"Then how will I take a shower?"
"Well," she said, looking him over from head to toe, "I guess you'll just have to wear what you're wearing."
"In the shower! You expect me to shower in a dress and pantyhose and a slip? And a bra and a girdle?"
"Well, polyester is washable. And you can unbutton the front of your dress and reach in to soap up your underarms. You can pull your sleeves back and soap your arms, and you can soap your legs right through your pantyhose."
"And then what? Go to work soaking wet?"
"No, you can take off your dress and your lingerie and change into dry clothes. We'll have to dry you off as you go, and make sure you're never completely naked. We better try it, just to make sure it'll work. We'll put aside the dress you're wearing, and keep it in the bathroom. It'll be only for showering in."
"I'm not showering in a dress!"
"It's either that or no showers at all."
She walked over to the shower and turned it on, adjusting the temperature. He shook his head in disbelief. He couldn't believe this was happening to him. He walked over to the shower, then looked down at his heels.
"Can I at least take off my high heels?"
"If you think you can stand the pain."
"No, no more pain. I can't take any more pain tonight."
He stepped into the shower, being careful not to slip in his high heels. The hot water hit his dress, making it cling to his body. He unbuttoned the front of his dress and soaped his underarms. No pain. He buttoned his dress up again, pulled his sleeves back and soaped his arms. Then he did his best to soap his legs through his pantyhose.
While he was showering, his wife went into the bedroom and got her pink flannel nightgown, to see if he could wear it to bed. It was about the only thing she owned that was roomy enough for him to fit into.
She came back just as he stepped out of the shower. She giggled at the sight of him.
"What's so funny?"
"You, in your soaking wet dress."
He glared at her.
"I hate you for doing this to me," he said. "I will never, ever forgive you for this. Laugh at that."
There was nothing she could say to that, so she grabbed a towel to help him dry off. He took off his dress, and she dried him as best she could. He knew he had to keep taking off his clothes without pausing, or the pain would begin. He stepped out of his heels, took off his girdle, pantyhose, and panties. His wife kept drying him. Once again he was only wearing a bra, and he was dry from the waist down.
"Give me those panties, quick!" he said.
His wife grabbed his dry panties from the chair and gave them to Carl. He put them on. Then she gave him a brand new pair of tan pantyhose, never been worn. He was having difficulty putting them on, but as long as he didn't pause or rest, the painful stomach cramps didn't come.
"Brand new pantyhose are always a lot harder to put on than ones you've worn a few times," said Gloria.
While he put on his pantyhose, she started unhooking his bra. She got it unhooked, then she waited for him to finish putting his pantyhose on. She helped him off with his bra, took the falsies out of the cups, dried him quickly, then grabbed another longline bra from the chair. It was not much different from the other bra, just a lot more lacy and feminine.
"Just a second," said Carl. He took advantage of the fact that he wasn't wearing a bra or a girdle, and took a few deep breaths. That one brief pause was about all he could afford to take. Then he let his wife help him put on his bra and hook it up in back. She put his falsies in the cups.
"I need the girdle," he said. She handed him his girdle, and he put it on. He walked over to the chair and grabbed the pink slip he'd been wearing for most of the day, and pulled it on over his head, then tugged it down into place.
"Try this," she said, handing him her nightgown. "Maybe you can sleep in it."
He pulled it over his head, and waited.
"Nope, not gonna work," he said, grabbing his midsection. He pulled it off over his head so quickly he almost pulled his wig off, too.
"Damn it!" he said, "I was so close to getting through this with no more pain. Give me my dress!"
She took his pink chiffon dress, the one he'd been wearing almost all day long, off its hanger and unbuttoned it for him. She held it out for him and told him to step into it. He took it from her and quickly stepped into it, first one leg, then the other, being careful not to get his heels caught. As soon as he pulled it up his body and put his arms in the sleeves, the pain stopped.
His pink slip was caught in the back. Gloria freed it, and buttoned his dress for him. She reached under his skirt and tugged down his slip.
"Sorry, honey. I was thinking you could sleep in one of my nightgowns, but you can't. I guess a nightgown just isn't a dress."
"So I have to sleep in my dress? It's not bad enough I have to shower in a dress, I have to sleep in one, too?"
"Looks like it."
"Great. Just great. I can't believe I have to wear dresses! I can't believe I have to go to work tomorrow morning wearing a dress!"
"Why don't we get some sleep, honey? It won't be so bad."
Gloria took his wet lingerie and his wet blue polyester dress and put them in the dryer, and turned it on. Carl went into the bedroom and pulled back the covers. He still couldn't believe this was happening to him. He set the alarm so he could get to work as early as possible.
He was used to taking off his bedroom slippers before he got into bed, so out of force of habit he took off his high heels and got under the covers. Painful stomach cramps reminded him that he had to put them back on.
"I have to wear high heels to bed!" he thought, slipping his feet back into his pumps. "Great! Just great!"
He slid back under the covers, not caring in the slightest that he was hiking his skirt and his slip above his waist. Gloria got into bed beside him and turned off the lights. He closed his eyes and tried to get some sleep, tried to ignore his brastraps digging into his shoulders, tried to ignore the fact that he could barely breathe in that damn girdle, tried to ignore his throbbing feet in his pink high heels. Every movement of his body reminded him that he was wearing a dress.
He awoke in the middle of the night with an urgent need to relieve himself. He turned on the bedside light and pulled back the covers.
"What the hell am I wearing?" he thought, and then remembered that he had to wear dresses every single hour of every day of his life, until he was released from this living hell.
He was sleepy, and as he stepped onto the floor he forgot he was wearing high heels, which is an easy thing to forget if you're in bed and you're also a man. His heels stabbed the carpet, and when he tried to stand up he wound up falling backward and landing hard on the floor.
"Damn it!" he yelled, waking up his wife. He grabbed his pumps and threw them across the room. And then grabbed his stomach and remembered all over again that he couldn't do that.
He sat up and got onto his knees, then tried to get to get to his pumps by crawling across the floor on his knees, still holding his stomach. His skirt got caught and he fell forward onto his face, the back of his dress flying up above his waist.
His wife giggled at the sight of her husband lying on the ground with his dress above his waist, exposing his pink satin slip.
"My heels!" he cried out. "Get my high heels!"
She got out of bed and grabbed his pumps, and put them back on his feet.
"You are so helpless, I swear," she said.
He stood up, unsteadily.
"You're going to ruin your pantyhose, crawling around like that. Fix your skirt, honey, your slip is showing."
He tugged down his dress, taking a look in the mirror to make sure it looked OK.
"What were you doing, anyway?"
"I had to go to the bathroom."
"So go. Need any help?"
"Of course not!"
"No, you've done a great job of it so far. Fallen down twice and you haven't even gotten out of the bedroom yet. Honey, you have to be careful when you're wearing high heels. Which for you is always."
Her husband said not another word, just angrily walked past her to the bathroom. She got a big kick out of seeing his skirts swish and swirl about his nylon-clad legs as he strode out of the room.
She was having so much fun watching her husband have to wear dresses, and it was only just beginning!
The alarm woke him in the morning. Of course, he was still hoping it was all a dream, and that he didn't really have to dress like a woman 24 hours a day, but reaching for the alarm and feeling his brastrap tug at his shoulder reminded him of the terrible humiliation that was in store for him.
He got out of bed, unsteady on his high heels. He was sweaty under his pink chiffon dress and his lacy pink slip, from having slept with too many covers on. His dress was wrinkled all over. He walked around the bed and looked at his wife.
"Damn you," he thought. "How could you do this me?"
Then he shook her awake. She opened her sleepy eyes and looked at him.
"Hi," she said, and giggled.
"Hi. I'm going to take a shower. I'm all sweaty. Where's my blue dress?"
"In the dryer. I'll get it."
She brought back his dress and his lingerie. He took off his pink chiffon dress and let it fall to the floor.
"Change your slip, too," said Gloria.
He took off his pink slip and handed it to his wife, then put on his lacy black one. Then he put on his blue dress, and buttoned it up the front. He went into the bathroom and changed into his black pumps, which were still moist from the night before.
Then he took a shower, and afterwards his wife helped dry him and helped him change into dry lingerie, like she'd done the night before. When he was back in his pink slip and high heels, he realized he'd left his pink dress on the floor of the bedroom. Rushing back as fast as he could go in his heels, he hurried back into the bedroom and picked up his dress from the floor.
"Carl, don't wear that dress, it's all wrinkled. You slept in it."
"What possible difference could it make?"
"Well, if it doesn't make any difference, then wear one of your other dresses."
He could already start to feel the stomach cramps starting.
"Fine! Give me whatever dress you want me to wear, right now!"
She ran to the closet and took out a pink satin sheath with a back zipper. It was belted, so she was pretty sure it would fit him. She unzipped it for him and unfastened the belt, and when he stepped into it and put his arms into the long sleeves, his stomach cramps stopped.
His slip was caught in the zipper, and she reached in and freed it. She zipped up his dress for him, and he fastened the belt.
"How many dresses did you buy me?" he asked.
"Four. Would you like to see the other one?"
"Not really. Gloria, I have to shave. Put some clothes on. I want to get to work right now and find out if I still have a job."
He headed into the bathroom, and as soon as he took a step he realized that his dress had a very tight skirt. He couldn't take a full stride. It would take him nearly twice as many steps to walk from one room to another.
He lathered up his face, and Gloria rushed in with a checkered tablecloth, and tied it around his neck.
"I don't want you to get any spots on your dress," she said.
"No, of course not. That would make me look ridiculous, wouldn't it?"
He shaved and went back into the bedroom. Gloria was dressed. He didn't comment on the fact that she'd chosen to wear slacks and comfortable shoes. Well, that's what he would wear if he could.
"Carl, if you don't mind? Your make-up is a mess."
"Fine! Whatever! Just hurry! I want to get going."
He sat on the edge of the bed, and his wife removed his make-up for him.
"Wait a minute. Maybe I don't have to wear make-up."
He waited. Then he clutched his stomach in pain, and realized it was ridiculous that he should be able to go to work with no make-up on. That would be like putting on a pair of pants, instead of wearing a dress! It would be like walking around in comfortable loafers instead of wearing high heels! It would be like not wearing a bra, or not wearing pantyhose, or not wearing a slip! What did he think he was, anyway? A man?
"Put it on me," he said miserably.
She applied foundation, lipstick, eye shadow, mascara, face powder and blush to his face. He looked in the mirror and couldn't see any difference. He looked like a 6-foot-4-inch muscular man in a tight-fitting pink satin dress, wearing make-up.
"Your wig is pretty ratty. I got you another one."
She took it from the closet and gave it to him. He took off the wig he'd slept in, and put on the new one. There was no difference between the two, except that the new wig was a longer style.
"Can we go now?" he asked
He grabbed a blanket from the bed.
"What's that for?"
"You're going to drive me to work. I'll stay in the back seat."
"Under a blanket?"
"Yes! I'm going to hide under a blanket because I'm dressed like a woman and I don't want people to see me, and I really don't give a damn if you think that's cowardly, or stupid, or if it's going to wrinkle my damn dress or smudge my make-up, or anything else you've got to say! We're going, right now!"
He draped the blanket over his head and body so the neighbors couldn't see him, and went outside to the car, like a vampire fearing the sunlight. He jumped in the back seat and curled up in a fetal position, and pulled the blanket over his body. He could feel the blanket pulling across his legs in his sheer pantyhose. Gloria got in the front seat and started up the car.
"I really think you're being silly about this."
"Drive!" he said.
"OK, we're going, keep your pants on. I mean, keep your dress on. No need to get hysterical."
By the time they finally got to his firm, it was seven o'clock in the morning. His boss was the Vice-President in charge of Civil Litigation, and he was usually in his office by six. He directed Gloria to go around to the back entrance and park by the stairs.
"Anyone in sight?"
"OK. We're going to take the stairs to the seventh floor. You get out first."
Gloria got out of the front seat and slammed the door shut. When he was sure she was out, Carl threw the blanket aside and slid out of the car as quickly as he could, which meant that his pink dress got hiked up almost to his waist, revealing at least six inches of his lacy pink satin slip.
Gloria laughed like it was the funniest thing she'd ever seen in her life.
"Shut up!" said Carl. "Stop laughing!"
"I'm sorry," she said, "I know I shouldn't laugh but…"
And she started in again.
"I just can't help it!" she said.
He tugged down his dress and headed for the stairs, not waiting for her to stop laughing. He motioned for her to follow. His pink high heels clicked across the pavement; her comfortable shoes were soundless. Usually she had a hard time keeping up with him when he was in a hurry, but because he couldn't take a full stride in his tight pink dress, she was able to get to the door leading to the stairs before him.
She held the door open for him. She didn't say "ladies first", but she was thinking about it.
When they got in the stairwell, he said, "Gloria, this is not funny. There's every possibility that I'm about to be fired because I wear dresses, and then everything I've worked for, everything I've accomplished in this firm will all be for nothing. So I'd appreciate it if you'd knock it off with the laughter and the jokes."
"What jokes? I didn't make any jokes."
"No. But you thought it."
He looked up at the stairwell, then down at his pink satin dress, his legs in his sheer nylon pantyhose, and his pink three-inch high heeled pumps. Then, filled with pure envy, he looked at Gloria in her slacks and her comfortable shoes. Then he looked up at the stairwell again. Seven flights of stairs in high heels. But it was better than being seen by the people who would be taking the elevator.
"Let's go," he said. They headed up.
When they got to the seventh floor, his feet were aching. He would've loved to take off his heels and wiggle his toes for a minute, but he knew what would happen if he did.
He punched in the security code, then opened the door a crack. There were a few people in the hallway.
"OK," he said to Gloria, "We're going directly to my boss's office, and we're not going to stop and talk to anyone, no matter what anyone says to us."
"Fine," she said.
Carl opened the door, and they headed down the hall. Carl went as fast as he could, and Gloria had no problem keeping up with him. Reactions ranged from "what the hell?" to "Carl, is that you?" and even some outright laughter.
He opened the door to his boss's office, and didn't bother holding it for Gloria, because he wasn't in much of a mood to be a gentleman while he was wearing a dress, pantyhose, a slip, a bra and a girdle, and high-heeled pumps. He rushed in past his boss's secretary without a word, and went into the office of the Vice-President in charge of Civil Litigation. His boss was on the phone, but he put the phone down quickly when he got a look at Carl.
"What---what is this about? What the hell? What are you wearing?"
The Vice-President in charge of Civil Litigation never laughed at anything.
"I'm sorry about this, George. Believe me, you have no idea how sorry I am."
"What the hell is this? Why are you dressed like a woman?"
Carl directed his wife to explain the whole thing. While she was telling the story, he found a chair and sat down to rest his aching feet. He tried to cross his legs the way a man usually crosses his legs, but found that he couldn't do it in his tight pink satin dress.
Of course he couldn't cross his legs that way! What did he think he was, anyway? A man? He told himself to cross his legs properly, with one knee above the other, to show off his pretty legs in his sheer nylon pantyhose. After all, that was his function now, to put on a pretty dress and show off his pretty legs. It's not like they'd ever give him much else to do around here. Not now.
When Gloria finished the story, the Vice-President in charge of Civil Litigation said, "You're kidding. You're telling me that you have to dress like a woman or you get physically ill? And this could go on for months?"
"I swear that if I could stand the pain, I would. But this is the worst pain I've ever felt, and I've been wounded in combat. I'd give just about anything if I didn't have to wear a dress."
"Carl, how the hell could you let something like this happen?"
"It was my fault," said Gloria.
"You shouldn't have done this, Gloria," said the Vice-President in charge of Civil Litigation. "An attorney might get away with something like this if we were in San Francisco. But this is Houston, for cryin' out loud!"
"I'm sorry," said Gloria. "It was just supposed to be for one day. Just a little joke."
The Vice-President in charge of Civil Litigation sat awhile in thought.
"There's got to be a cure for this," he said. "And we're going to find it. Until then, this is what we're going to do. Carl, we're going to move you to the small office on the first floor. You can come in the back entrance, and you probably won't be seen by too many people. We're going to have to delegate most of your workload to junior associates, because you can't go into court dressed that way, and you damn sure can't meet with any clients. Every day I want you to sequester yourself in your office. Don't go out for any reason, not even lunch. Get your secretary to bring you lunch. We can't take the chance of any of our clients seeing you."
"I'll have to pee, sometime," said Carl.
"Fine, leave to use the Men's room, but that's it. I take it you still use the Men's room?"
Carl nodded. He looked down at himself, and his face reddened in embarrassment.
"Carl, you know that if it were anyone else I would have to fire you, but you're our top litigator, and we need your expertise. You'll answer questions and function in an advisory capacity, but until this is over the own real work we'll be giving you is some low-priority correspondence. If you're going to dress like a secretary, that's how we're going to treat you."
Carl nodded. It was about what he expected.
"Couldn't he work from home?" asked Gloria.
"We have strict rules against any of our attorneys working from home during the week."
"Couldn't you make an exception for him?"
"Look at him, Gloria! The man is wearing a pink dress, a slip, pantyhose and high heels and make-up! You don't think we're making an exception already? You don't think this violates the dress code a little?"
How did the Vice-President in charge of Civil Litigation know that Carl was wearing a slip? Carl looked down. Damn. How long had he been sitting there with his slip showing and didn't even notice it? He was going to have to be a lot more careful about that, now that he had to wear dresses every single hour of every day of his life, for who knows how long?
"Carl, get down to the office right now, and stay there. You know the one. I'll send your secretary down there. We're going to have to start delegating right away. And listen, don't expect anyone to be understanding about this. There's no one in the entire firm who's not going to make of fun of you, and I'm not going to tell them they can't"
"Thank you for not firing me, George."
"Don't thank me yet, just get down there right now. Don't hang around here. We've got some clients coming in soon."
The Vice-President in charge of Civil Litigation, who was a fellow Marine, shook his head in wonder.
"If the Corp could see you now," he said.
Carl thanked him again, and he and his wife left. As they went out the door they had to go through a small crowd of people who wanted to know why the hell Carl was dressed like a girl. Carl said not a word to any of them, and they headed back to the stairs.
Carl soon found that, as hard as it is to walk up seven flights of stairs in high heels, walking down seven flights of stairs in high heels is a lot more frightening and dangerous. He held onto the railing and took them slowly.
"You see," said Gloria, "this isn't gonna be so bad. But why does he care if the clients see you?"
"Gloria, we're a conservative firm, we handle petroleum companies and big tobacco, among others. If it ever gets out that a man who wears dresses and pantyhose and high heels 24 hours a day works for this firm, we could lose clients left and right."
"Listen, I want you to check with another hypnotist. See if there's any hope for my escape from pantyhose without Dr. Specks. We've got to at least try."
When they got to the small vacant office, Carl sat in a chair and put his throbbing feet up on the desk with his legs crossed.
"OK, Gloria. You have to go buy me…"
"You have to go buy me some new dresses. And some new lingerie and pantyhose and high heels and…oh, you know what you have to buy me, just go do it. Buy me whatever I need to wear to make those terrible painful stomach cramps go away."
"You're going to look adorable," she said.
"Gloria, I don't think any of this is funny. This is going to be humiliating."
"Oh, you're making too much of this. I'll pick you up tonight. You're going to love wearing dresses."
She left before he could say anything.
She drove out of the parking garage and found a phone booth, and looked up a hypnotist in the yellow pages. She went to see him without an appointment, and he agreed to see her for a short interview.
She explained the situation. The hypnotist nodded, and said, "I see. Well, I'm sure you know that Dr. Specks is the only one who can release your husband from the post hypnotic suggestion, but I wouldn't worry about it. A P.H.S. can usually only last a few days on it's own, without reinforcement. A week at the most."
"I see," she said. She was holding the bottle of medicine Dr. Specks had given her, to dose her husband.
"What's that?" asked the doctor.
"This is what Dr. Specks gave me. I put it in my husband's drink, just like he told me to."
"Could I see it?"
She handed it over. He examined it, and said, "Where did he get this?"
"I don't know."
"This is a highly experimental psychotropic drug. It hasn't been approved by the F.D.A. He shouldn't have been using this. The government is conducting experiments with this drug, trying to permanently alter the behavior patterns of rapists and child molesters."
"So what are you saying?"
"I'm saying that if this was used on your husband, there's every chance that the P.H.S. might be permanent. At least until Dr. Specks can remove it himself."
He pulled the stopper out of the bottle, and poured the drug down the sink.
"What did you do that for?"
"You shouldn't have this."
"But what if Dr. Specks needs that? To fix up my husband?"
"Wherever he got it, he can get more."
Gloria thanked the doctor for his time, and left.
She felt a little bad about what her husband was going through, so she decided to make it up to him by buying him two dozen of the most beautiful, colorful, feminine dresses she could find. She went to the same big and tall dress shop she'd frequented before, and bought him several beautiful chiffon dresses in pink and white and yellow and powder blue, and several floral prints. She bought him low-cut velvet dresses in deep purple and scarlet. She bought him satin dresses in red and blue and pink and white and gold. She bought him silk mini-dresses in solid colors and in colorful prints. She bought him pink and white dresses of lace and cashmere. She marveled that so many feminine dresses were available in such large sizes. But maybe large women have even more of a need to feel feminine than other women.
Some of the dresses were belted or had a matching sash, but many of them didn't and would need to be taken in a bit at the waist. Which meant that Carl was going to have to model them that night, so she could make a few alterations.
And he'd probably complain about having to do that, as well. Why couldn't he just accept that he had to dress like a girl for awhile, and stop whining about it?
The last dress she bought was a little too frilly to wear to work, but it was so adorable she just couldn't resist it. It was a short pink dress with a ruffled white lace collar, puff sleeves trimmed with white lace, and a full ruffled skirt that floated out over sewn-in petticoats. Carl was going to look so darling!
She then went to a department store and bought Carl some more satiny girdles and longline bras in white and black and pink. She bought him some more pantyhose, and some patent leather pumps in white and black and pink and yellow and red. She bought him some purses, and she bought him several wigs, all in the same style and hair color, since he was going to have to wear a wig to bed every night, and even in the shower. She bought him a serape to wear while he was shaving in the morning, to protect his pretty dresses.
She brought Carl's new dresses and other apparel home with her, and hung his dresses on his side of the wardrobe. She had to take out several of his suits to make room. She put the suits upstairs in the attic with the other useless things.
Then she went to pick up Carl.
"How was your day?" she asked Carl as he got in the back seat.
"I don't want to talk about it," he said, and threw the blanket over him.
Carl had been meeting all day with junior associates, giving away all his projects. He hid in his office, and his secretary wouldn't let anyone in to see him unless they had official business. Many employees showed up just hoping to get a look at him so they could gawk and laugh and make fun of him.
Most of the women who came in to see him started out the discussion by looking him over from head to toe, and then laughing like maniacs. Carl would just sigh and look down, and embarrassment would color his face. After that they usually managed to get through the discussion without laughing, but some of them still had a hard time keeping a straight face. Carl didn't smile. He didn't think any of this was funny.
The men who had to come and talk to him were mainly just embarrassed, and they tended to look away a lot. Carl was starting to realize that no one really believed his story. They seemed to think he wore dresses because he liked it. Well, if this had happened to someone else, Carl probably wouldn't have believed it, either.
Lunchtime came, and Carl had to borrow some money from his secretary, since he'd forgot his wallet. He ate lunch in his office. He tried to hold it in, but by mid-afternoon he had to go to the Men's room. He headed out of his office, and they were all there waiting for him.
It would be fair to say that Carl was not well-liked by most of the junior associates. He's been known to bully and harass them, and had even called one of them a faggot because of his longish hair. So when he headed to the Men's room, they were waiting, and the hooting and the catcalling and the whistling began immediately. Names like "pansy" and "sissy" and "fag" were heard. Carl kept his eyes averted, and did his best not to give them any reaction. When he walked past them, one of them grabbed his skirt and hiked it up above his waist. Everyone got a view of his lacy pink slip, and they all laughed. Carl pulled his skirt back down and moved away as quickly as possible. Someone snapped his brastrap, and someone else grabbed his butt and pawed his fake breasts.
Carl wanted to hit one of them, but they'd have a perfect case for assault. He just looked away and tried not to react. But he was taking names, and he promised himself all they'd be sorry as soon as he was back in pants.
He went into the Men's room, and all the guys looked over the top of the stall to see what it looked like when a man in a dress took a pee.
He got back to his office and hid for the rest of the day until Gloria came to pick him up.
When they got home, Carl got a look at his new clothes, and groaned. He examined his new purses.
"Who are these for?"
"For you, of course."
"I'm not carrying a purse."
"I'm not carrying a purse!"
"Carl, you're dressed like a woman from head to toe. Why in the world wouldn't you carry a purse? What do you expect to do, carry your wallet around in your teeth all day?"
"Fine. Whatever. I'll carry a purse! You win! You win, again!"
They sat down to dinner in silence, and after dinner Gloria informed him that he would have to model some of his dresses for her so she could make some alterations. Some of his dresses needed to be taken in a little.
"Whatever," he said.
He slipped into one of his pretty silk dresses, a gleaming sheath in a colorful floral print of red and yellow and orange. He wore his white slip, and since his dress was mostly red his wife told him to wear his red pumps. He stood on a footstool so his wife could pin up his dress.
"They're taking all my cases away from me," he said. "I've been working on some of them for over a year. Now someone else will get all the credit for all my hard work. I'm going to be a glorified paralegal."
"You shouldn't let them do that to you," she said. "You should walk right into George's office and have it out with him, man to man. Oh, wait, I forgot. You can't; one of you wears dresses!"
She giggled. He stared at her.
"Why do you have to make fun of me?" he asked. "Isn't it enough you're making me wear dresses and lipstick and pantyhose 24 hours a day?"
"Oh, you don't have it so bad."
"I hope someday someone humiliates you like you've done to me. And I hope I'm there to see it."
He modeled several other dresses for her, then changed back into the dress he'd worn to work, and they went to bed.
They established their pattern over the next week. He would get up and change into the same black slip and blue polyester dress and black heels, and take a shower. She would pick out some lingerie for him and leave it in the bathroom for him to change into, then pick out one of his dresses for him to wear. He said he didn't care which dress he wore. He was going to look ridiculous whatever he put on.
"A dress is a dress," he said.
Then he'd dry off and change his lingerie, shave and let his wife change his make-up. His wife put his serape around his shoulders while he shaved. He'd put on a different wig, let his wife choose his jewelry, then he'd wrap the blanket around himself and go out to the car. They never bothered to eat breakfast.
The humiliation at work kept getting worse, not better. His tormentors were there every morning to ridicule him on his way to the office. There seemed to be getting more of them every day. Many of them were taking photographs.
He still wasn't used to wearing dresses, still trying to put his hands in nonexistent pockets. Women at work seemed to realize that it hurt his feelings to be laughed at, so when they had to talk to him about something they tried not to laugh at him. Sometimes they'd get all the way through the discussion without laughing, but then he'd do something without thinking, and they'd burst into laughter. He'd look at them, wondering what he'd done, then realized that, without even thinking, he'd reached over to adjust a brastrap.
Tuesday she had him wear his low cut gleaming gold satin sheath with his black high heels. His dress had long sleeves, it was belted and it had a peplum. At dinner that evening, she complained about the way he sat down. She said he was wrinkling his dress.
"Wrinkling it? I have to sleep in it!" he said. "I have to dress like a girl to stop this bonecrushing pain, but no one ever said I had to act like one. I'm still going to sit like a man. I'm going to walk like a man and talk like a man and do everything like a man. I'm still a real man inside, even if I have to wear high heels and pantyhose and a dress and a slip. I drink beer, I watch sports, I belch, I scratch, I work on my car, and I'm still the same man I always was, even if I wear dresses. These are just clothes. They don't change who I am inside."
"That's a real good speech," she said. "You should tell that to your buddies when they come over for poker tomorrow night."
She laughed at his shocked and panicked expression. Even in his three-inch pumps he was a blur of gold satin as he rushed to the phone to call his buddies.
"Hello, Benny! Yeah, I'm still sick. Don't come over for poker tomorrow night. No, I do NOT sound like I'm getting better."
She laughed again as he got off the phone.
"Why didn't you remind me about tomorrow night?"
"I thought I just did. I love how you keep wanting to have it both ways, Carl. You're still a real man, but you don't have enough courage to let your buddies see you in your pretty dresses, and you hide under a blanket on the way to work and cower in your pantyhose. Why is it such a big deal for you to sit like a woman? Look at yourself, Carl! You wear a dress every single hour of every day of your life! You put on a dress to go to work, you sleep in a dress, you even wear a dress in the shower, for Pete's sake! You dress like a woman, why can't you start acting like one? If you made your movements a little bit more feminine, people wouldn't laugh at you so much, and you'd get along a lot better!"
Carl said nothing, just sat down without tucking his skirt under him, and started eating dinner.
Wednesday Gloria had him wear his clingy gleaming fuchsia silk sheath, with black spike heels. His dress had long sleeves, a draped neckline, shoulder pads, a natural waist and a tight skirt that came to just above the knee.
When he got to work, he walked down the hallway past a woman named Debbie, who was going the other way.
Debbie and Carl were both wearing the same dress.
They stopped and looked at each other. Same draped neckline, same shoulder pads, same long sleeves, same gleaming fuchsia silk, same tight skirt that came to just above the knee. They were even wearing the same black spike heels and tan colored pantyhose. Only Debbie was a size six, and Carl was not. And Debbie was blonde, and Carl was not. And Debbie was a woman, and Carl was not.
Everyone else in the hallway noticed, and started laughing. Carl and Debbie both turned and walked away from each other, as quickly as possible.
In the afternoon, Carl got a call from the Vice-President in charge of Civil Litigation.
"Carl, I need you in my office. There's a videotape of an accident I need you to look at. I need your opinion."
"Can't you just send it down here?"
"What are you going to watch it on?"
"There's got to be a VCR down here somewhere."
"There isn't. I checked. I promise we'll get a VCR and a monitor down on the first floor by tomorrow."
"Then why don't I watch it tomorrow?"
"I need your opinion NOW, Carl. It'll just be you and me in my office. No embarrassment."
"What about all the people between here and there?"
"Carl, the sooner you get up here, the sooner we can get it over with."
So Carl agreed to come up. On the way to the elevator he encountered two women who giggled at him with their hands covering their mouths. Then there was another woman who didn't bother to suppress her laughter. She laughed right out loud. Next he encountered a man. The bastard who had hiked up his skirt that first day. Carl just glared at him, daring him to make a move. Instead, the bastard just laughed and walked away. Carl didn't turn his back on him until he was at a safe distance.
Then there was a woman who came up to him and said, "Debbie, I wanted to talk with you about---oh, you're not Debbie! I can never tell you girls apart!" Then she laughed at her own joke and walked away. If she expected Carl to smile at this, she was disappointed.
But at least he never encountered Debbie in the hallway. He pushed the button for the elevator. And when it arrived, the door opened and there was Debbie, coming up from the parking garage.
He almost considered taking another elevator. But the sooner he got going, the sooner it would be over. So he went into the elevator and stood next to Debbie, and saw that she was going to the seventh floor, too. Great.
The door closed.
"This is really embarrassing," she said.
"It's OK. Don't worry about it. Maybe no one will see us."
The elevator stopped at the third floor, and there were three women waiting to get on. It took a second for them to register what they were seeing, then they burst into laughter.
"I think I've seen this one!" one of the women said. "The Patty Duke Show, right?"
"Will you two girls be wearing the same dresses every day from now on?"
"They look like a before and after picture, for a weight loss clinic that dabbles in sexual reassignment."
"I can't tell them apart! The only difference is that Debbie is a blonde, and Carl is a man who wears pantyhose and high heels and a dress. Other than that---"
"Are you getting on or not?" asked Debbie, irritably.
They got on. They were only going up one floor, so there was only time for one of them to say, "So, Debbie, what's it like to know you have the same taste in dresses as a man? Maybe you'll be able to borrow each other's clothes. Probably not, though."
They got off the elevator at the fourth floor. Debbie said, "This is my favorite dress. I can never wear it to work again."
"Debbie, I promise I'll never again wear this dress to work."
"Fine, but if I ever wore this dress in here again, everyone would say I'm dressing like a man."
"It might make you feel a little bit better if you compare your situation to mine."
Debbie looked down.
"Sorry. I guess there's a tendency for women like me who like wearing dresses, to think that a man would start to like wearing a dress too, if he ever tried it. But I guess, intellectually I know that that's not true. I'm sure you hate wearing dresses, Carl. It must be completely humiliating for a man to have to dress like a woman all the time. I'm really sorry this happened to you."
"Thank you," he said.
"So, what did you pay for yours?"
"I don't know. My wife buys all my dresses."
The elevator door opened at the seventh floor. They both got out, and they both saw that they were heading in the same direction. So Debbie decided to wait around for Carl to go ahead.
After Carl concluded his meeting with the Vice-President in charge of Civil Litigation, he went back to his office. Everything proceeded well until about four in the afternoon, when a cataclysmic event happened to Carl in the Men's room.
His secretary Abigail saw him running past her desk as fast as he could go in his tight silk dress and high heels, his hand pressing against a spot just below his shoulder. Abigail was always required to address the former Marine not as 'Carl' or 'Mr. Stoner,' but always as 'Sir.' And there was a more recent requirement. Under no circumstances was she allowed to laugh at her boss.
Abigail got a safety pin out of her purse and went in to help her boss. He was sitting at his desk, still holding the spot just below his shoulder.
"Everything OK, sir?"
"Fine. Get out. Leave me alone."
"I brought a safety pin, sir."
"Why would I need a safety pin?"
"Sir, it's pretty obvious what's happened."
Carl let his hand fall to his lap. It rested there in the folds of his skirt.
"Leave the safety pin," he said. "I'll take care of it."
"Let me help, sir."
"I'll do it myself."
"Sir, who's going to unzip your dress?"
"I can unzip my own dress."
"You know that's not true, sir."
He looked up at her with a forlorn expression on his face.
"This is so humiliating," he said. "I don't want you to see me like this. I don't want you to see my bra."
"Sir, it's not as if I didn't know you were wearing a bra. There's nothing to be ashamed of. I'm wearing a bra, and I'm not ashamed."
"Abigail, I've never seen your bra," he said. "I've never seen your slip."
She was rather taken aback by this.
"Sir, I hope you're not suggesting I should take off my dress to make you feel better about taking off yours. I'm willing to help in any reasonable way, but that's asking too much, sir."
"I meant, I know you're wearing a bra as well, but that doesn't mean I should get to see it. Anyway, you NEED to wear a bra."
"Well, sir, because of your unfortunate difficulty, you need to wear a bra, too, sir."
"Abigail, if one more woman says it's no big deal that I have to wear a bra, or a dress, or a slip because she wears one, I swear I'm gonna strangle her."
"I realize it's difficult for you, sir. But you'd better let me help you."
He looked down at his dress.
"This is a brand new bra," he said. "How could this happen?"
"It's happened to me, sir. Sometimes one of the straps is a little warped. You learn to check for that before you put on your bra, sir."
He looked up at her, sadly.
"I just don't want you to treat me like a woman," he said. "I'm not a woman."
"Sir, I'm not under the impression that there's more than one woman in this room. No one in this firm will ever think you're a woman, sir, no matter what you wear. We're not both women, sir. But we do both wear dresses, as well as pantyhose and high heels and lingerie, for the time being at least. I know you wear a dress far more often than I do, sir, but I still have a lot more experience wearing these things, and I don't know why you shouldn't take advantage of my experience. It true that people who wear the clothes you and I are wearing, sir, are usually women, but just because I offer to help you with your bra doesn't mean I'm treating you like a woman. It only means I'm treating you like a person who's wearing a bra that needs mending, which is what you are, sir. Also, remember, I just declined to take off my dress in front of you, sir, and the reason I declined is that you're a man. If you were a woman I would have no such objection, sir."
He sighed. He stood up.
"Lock the door," he said.
She did so. He presented his back to her.
"Very pretty dress, sir. Lovely color."
He didn't respond to the compliment. She unfastened the little hook and eye clasp just above the zipper, and then unzipped his dress.
"Take off your dress, sir."
"I can't take it completely off." So he pulled it off his shoulders and let it hang from his arms, his elbows bent.
"Lovely slip you're wearing, sir. I wish I could afford a slip like this."
"I really don't need any more compliments about my clothes just now, Abigail."
"Sorry, sir. But you do have to wear a dress, and a slip, and a bra and so forth, so it's nice that your wife took the time to buy you some attractive dresses and lingerie."
"Yeah, she's a real sweetheart."
She slid one of the straps of his slip to one side and let it fall off his shoulder, then brought together the two ends of his brastrap and attached them with the safety pin, being careful not to let the pin stick her boss.
"All done. You can put on your dress, sir."
He pulled his dress back on over his shoulders, and she zipped him up and refastened the hook and eye clasp.
"Thank you," he said, tugging down his dress and his slip. "Now please get out of here. I need to get some work done."
"Before I go, sir, I wanted to mention your lipstick again."
He rolled his eyes. "Abigail, I told you I'm not going to do that."
"Please, sir, just a little touch-up. It would help so much. It would make your lips look a lot nicer."
"I don't care if my lips look nice or not."
"Sir, most women touch up their lipstick after lunch, and I know you're not a woman, sir, but you do wear lipstick. Please, sir. I'll help, if you like."
So to placate his secretary he took his lipstick and a compact mirror out of his purse, and with Abigail watching and correcting him, he applied a fresh coat of lipstick.
"Happy? I really hate doing this."
"I know, sir, but I'm sure it won't be forever."
"It feels like it," he said.
Thursday Gloria had him wear his white silk dress covered in ruffles and lace about the bodice and cuffs. It had a lace collar and several little buttons down to the waist, but they were merely decorative. It had a back zipper, long sleeves, and a natural waist with no belt, and Gloria had done a good job of altering it so that it fit him very well.
As Gloria was helping him off with his longline bra to put on another one, he noticed for the first time the red marks on his shoulders left by the straps. In fact, his bra had left red marks all about his chest. He groaned, looking at them. He touched them tenderly, but he didn't have time to dwell on it, because he had to put on another bra right away. When he got around to taking off his girdle he noticed similar red marks about his abdomen.
Thursday night Gloria said that Carl needed to shave his legs again, or at least use a depilatory. So he put on his blue polyester dress and black high heels again, and got in the bathtub and turned on the tap. He pulled down his girdle, pantyhose and panties as far as they would go, without taking them off. Then his wife rubbed a depilatory all over his legs.
"You've got to take off your girdle, Carl."
"I'm NOT taking off my girdle."
So she stuck her hands in there as far down as they would go, and got the depilatory all over his legs. Then she put some on his arms, and unbuttoned his dress and put some on his chest, too. When she was done he was smooth and clean all over his arms and legs and chest, and they had managed to do it all without causing any of those terrible stomach cramps. They did this every four days afterwards.
Friday evening he was sitting around after dinner in his blue velvet mini-dress, dark hose and black pumps, reading the paper. His wife said, "Good news. Margaret confirmed for tomorrow."
"Margaret, from down the block. She'll be here tomorrow. Oh, I don't know if I told you. A lot of the girls from the neighborhood are coming over tomorrow night. We're having a little fashion show."
He put down his paper and stood up.
"Where am I supposed to be while all this is happening?"
"Oh, you'll be right here. Who do you think is the star of our fashion show?"
"Now this is what I want you to do, honey. When you come out of the bedroom, I want you to stop right here, turn, smile at the audience, then curtsey. Then I want you to sit down over here---"
"Hold it! Are you telling me that women from the neighborhood are coming here tomorrow night, and they know that I wear dresses? How did they find out?"
"I told them you wear dresses."
"Why did you have to tell them that?"
"Why not? Is it a big secret?"
"Of course it's a big secret! Why would I want anyone to know I have to wear dresses and pantyhose and high heels 24 hours a day? Didn't you see me covering myself up in the blanket every time we went out to the car?"
"And you didn't think they'd be asking me about that? I told them, and they want to see you in all your pretty dresses, Carl. So we're having a little fashion show."
"No. Please, no. What about all the guys? What will they think?"
"The guys aren't coming. They don't seem to like dresses as much as you do, Carl. But we're taking plenty of photos, and all the girls will get to have a souvenir photo to show their hubbies. Just in case the guys don't believe them."
"Why are you doing this to me?"
"Because I think it's silly, hiding like that every day when you go to the car. The neighbors are going to find out sooner or later, anyway. Might as well do it this way, and have some fun with it. Besides, the lawn needs mowing and I'm not doing it, and you'll never get it done if you hide indoors all weekend."
"You're crazy if you think I'm prancing around here like a little girl in all my dresses."
"You won't be our model?"
"Of course not!"
"OK, I'll just have to expand the guest list a bit. I'm sure your Marine Corp buddies are free on Saturday. I think I'll start with Benny."
Carl looked down at himself in his tight-fitting blue velvet dress.
"Why would you make me do a thing like this? Haven't you humiliated me enough?"
"I know it may not seem like it to you, honey, but I'm doing this for your own good. You need to loosen up a little, and you need to learn some more feminine movements. If you can just learn to laugh at yourself a little, things will go better for you. Stop taking yourself so seriously! So everyone laughs at you! So I laugh at you! Big deal. Look at that as a good thing. You're like a comedian! You're bringing joy and laughter into the world in your pretty dresses. You're like Groucho Marx in pantyhose! You're like David Letterman in a longline bra! You're like---"
"Alright! Alright! Just show me what you want me to do."
"That's better. After you change dresses in the bedroom, I want you to walk out here---and I want you to walk properly, in a straight line, the way someone who wearing a dress and high heels should walk---and I want you to stop right here, turn and face everyone, give us a twirl, curtsey, then walk over here and sit down on the chair. Sit down properly, this time. Tuck your skirt in properly, cross your legs properly, then, just to tease everyone, pull your skirt up just a bit and let everyone see your slip. Then get up, and I want you to skip into the bedroom and change into your next dress."
"No. No skipping. Please, no skipping."
She put one hand on his shoulder, close to his brastrap, and patted him gently.
"OK. No skipping."
"And make sure everyone knows that I'm not doing this voluntarily. You're making me do this. And one more thing. I'm not smiling. I'm not ever, ever smiling."
"OK, fine," she said. "Don't smile. But you'll be the only one not smiling in THAT room."
Saturday night they had their fashion show. Ladies from the entire neighborhood showed up, and they all laughed at Carl as soon as they saw him. They all wore pants. Carl was the only one wearing a dress in the entire house.
Carl never actually did any of the things that Gloria asked him to, the twirling and the curtseying, but Gloria decided not to make an issue of it because the get-together was a big success anyway. Watching Carl model his dresses, it should've been obvious to anyone that he was embarrassed and miserable. He made eye contact with no one as he walked out in dress after dress. Humiliation colored his face. He kept his eyes downcast.
But the ladies from the neighborhood didn't care, of course. They all laughed and applauded, and took plenty of pictures.
Sunday he drank a few beers and watched sports on television, then he changed into his green silk dress and black pumps and went outside to mow the lawn. A few other guys from the neighborhood were out working. They glanced at him quickly, then looked away, doing their best not to stare at him. None of them came over to talk to him.
Monday morning his wife decided he would be wearing his pink cashmere dress and pink pumps with spike heels. Gloria helped him into his dress, and Carl went out to the car, not bothering to wrap himself in a blanket for the long walk from the house. However, he still hid under the blanket while they drove to work. When he got to work he found that his boss had paid for a hypnotist to come to the firm, to see if he could be released from the post-hypnotic suggestion. No luck.
The humiliation continued unabated. A number of guys just couldn't start the day until they saw for themselves "what that little fruit is wearing today." They showed up to take pictures and to call him names and make fun of him. There were even a few women starting to join in the fun. Carl just looked away and tried not to respond, and hoped they'd get tired of it eventually.
Carl used to work twelve-hour days, but that was over, now. They barely gave him enough work to keep him busy for eight hours. So Gloria started picking him up at five.
Monday evening, when he got home, Gloria asked him to come into the bedroom. She took out a suede skirt and a pale pink blouse she'd bought for him, and dropped them on the bed.
"Try these on," she said.
He looked at the clothes.
"I want to see if you can wear a blouse and a skirt."
"No. I'm not trying them on."
"Why not, for Pete's sake?"
"Because it's not a dress. I learned my lesson when I tried on that nightgown. You know as well as I do that I have to wear a dress, and if I try these on I'm just going to be in pain again. And if I'm not in pain, then what have I gained? I can wear a blouse and skirt to work. Big deal. How is that any better than wearing a dress? I'm tired of you running experiments on me like I'm a lab rat."
Gloria shrugged. She didn't bother telling Carl that it might be a little bit easier for him to go to the bathroom in a skirt and blouse than in a dress. Carl was probably right, anyway. In a blouse and skirt he'd probably wind up on the floor clutching his stomach in pain. And once she got him back in a dress, he'd be even grumpier all evening, and he was getting to be a pain to live with already.
Tuesday evening at home, Carl got a phone call. His wife told him it was Benny.
"Hi, Benny!" said Carl in a chipper voice, as though nothing was different.
"Hi," said Benny, and Carl could tell by the sound of his voice that Benny had something on his mind.
"What's up?" asked Carl.
"Uh…Carl, I know somebody at your firm. He kind of told me something about you."
"What did he tell you?" asked Carl miserably, hoping it was something else, anything, but knowing it couldn't be.
"I think you know what he told me, Carl."
Carl looked down at himself. He looked at his pink lace dress. His heart was beating so fast and hard, he was surprised it didn't make the falsies in his bra vibrate.
Carl didn't know what to say. Finally he just said, "It's true."
"Look, just believe me when I tell you I don't want to be doing this. I'm doing it because I have to, not because I want to. Don't ask me to explain, because you wouldn't believe me, anyway. No one else does. Just do me a favor. Don't tell the guys about this, and don't come to see me. I don't want any of you to see me like this."
"Well, it's kind of too late, Carl. We all saw a photo."
Carl groaned. Great! Just great! His Marine Corp buddies! How would he ever face them again?
"Benny," he said, "this won't be forever. Things will be back to normal soon, then I'll look you up and we'll do something together. OK?"
"Um---OK, Carl. I might be busy."
Carl closed his eyes. He groaned again.
"Yeah, whatever, Benny. You take good care of yourself, OK?"
"Sure, Carl. Bye."
Carl got off the phone. His wife asked him what it was about.
"Benny knows I wear dresses. He told my friends."
"So that means you can't use that to blackmail me any more."
Gloria thought to herself, "Maybe not, but there's still your father. I could always threaten to call him. I wonder how your Dad the General would feel about seeing his new sissy son."
Later that evening, Gloria heard her husband cry out from the bedroom. She ran in to find her husband on the floor in his pink lace dress, a pair of blue jeans half-way up his nylon-clad legs. She clucked her tongue at him.
"Am I going to have to take your pants away from you?" she asked as she pulled off his pants and tugged down his skirt.
"I thought it might've worn off. I thought maybe I could wear pants outside my dress."
"Well, you can't, so don't try it again. Dr. Specks will be up and around soon. Until then you just have to be patient."
Wednesday she had him wear his pretty short pink dress with puff sleeves and a full ruffled skirt that floated out over sewn-in petticoats. He looked at it rather oddly when he got out of the shower and saw it hanging there, but he put it on and didn't complain. A dress is a dress.
Every morning Abigail heard the little click click click of her boss's high heels as he headed into the office, and every morning she had to prepare herself for her first sight of him. She thought it would be getting easier not to laugh at him every morning, but it wasn't. She'd hold her hands together tightly, and when Carl would come in she'd take a glimpse at him in the dress he'd be wearing that day, then she'd look quickly away, close her eyes and squeeze her hands together, trying not to laugh. If she could get through it in the morning, she'd be OK for the rest of the day.
But when Carl came in in his short pink dress with petticoats, her eyes went wide as saucers, she clapped one hand over her mouth and doubled over, trying not to laugh. A few little sounds escaped from her and her eyes watered a little, but for the most part she managed to hold it together. Carl glared at her and went past into the inner office. Abigail had to get up and go to the Ladies Room for a good laugh.
The next time she saw him she almost laughed again, but instead she said, "Sir, that is a darling dress! That has got to be the prettiest dress I've ever seen you wear! You just look adorable!"
"I look like a little girl," he said.
"No, sir, I wouldn't say that."
"Then you'd be the only secretary in the whole damn building who hasn't said it."
Carl could see how much trouble Abigail was having controlling her laughter. He thought of letting her laugh, just this once, but he wasn't in a very charitable mood.
Wednesday evening Gloria came to pick him up. She giggled at the sight of her husband trying to hold down his skirts, with the wind blowing through the underground parking lot. He got in the back seat, and said, "I hate this dress! I'm never wearing it again!"
"What's wrong, now?"
"Why'd you buy me this dress? All the secretaries said that this is a little girl's dress. You think I'm a little girl?"
"You're not a woman, either, but you wear a dress. What difference does it make? I believe a former private first class in the Marine Corp once said, 'A dress is a dress.' And he should know because he has a lot of them, and he wears them all the time."
"Why'd you make me wear this dress?"
"I didn't make you wear it! If you don't want to wear frilly dresses to work, don't wear them! You're the one who asked me to pick out a dress for you every morning. Pick out your own dress, if you want. You're a grown-up. Wear whatever dress you like!"
Carl stared at her.
"You really don't think this is a big deal, do you? You don't even feel sorry for me that I have to wear dresses to work every day."
"If I felt sorry for you I'd have to feel sorry for every woman in that building. Are women at your firm allowed to wear pants to work?"
"So they're forced to wear dresses? Sounds familiar. Let's see, now, you're forced to wear dresses and pantyhose and high heels and make-up to work every day, everyone is condescending to you, no one takes you seriously or thinks you're competent because you wear dresses, and every so often you get terrible cramps. I'm glad I'm not in your shoes."
"You're not in my shoes! You're in a pair of comfortable flats and a pair of slacks and a top! Why don't you ever wear dresses any more?"
"Because taking care of your lingerie and dresses every day is a full time job. I've been so busy rinsing your pantyhose I haven't had time to rinse my own. Besides, wearing pants is something you can't do, so I like to take advantage of it. I always believe that every marriage should have only ONE person who wears a dress. Anyway, what difference does it make?"
"If I saw you in a dress sometime, I might feel like I wasn't going through this all by myself."
"Oh, you're doing this all by yourself, huh? I suppose your lingerie just washes itself? I suppose your dresses just hem themselves? I suppose your bra just hooks itself up? I suppose your pretty dresses just dance themselves down to the dry cleaners themselves?"
"Forget it! Just drive!" he said, and got under the blanket.
He didn't bother to tell his wife about the fire alarm. He didn't believe that there was any dress he could wear that would be more humiliating than any of his other dresses, so he was surprised at the reaction to his short, pink dress. Women were laughing at him that had never laughed at him before. And then someone decided Carl's dress was just so cute that it just had to be seen by the entire building. Someone pulled the fire alarm, and everyone had to go outside. It was a windy day, and everyone got a big laugh out of Carl trying to hold his skirts down, his lacy petticoats showing.
That evening at dinner, Gloria ate her steak and looked at her husband. Finally about half-way through dinner she burst out laughing.
"You just look so darling in that dress!" she said.
"That's it!" he said, standing up. "You see? You laugh at me in this dress, and you haven't laughed at me in three or four days! That does it! I'm changing. I'm putting on another dress!"
"Fine! You're a grown-up. Wear whatever dress you like!" she said.
He stormed into the bedroom. Then he came out a few minutes later and said, "Unzip me!"
She unzipped his dress He went into the bedroom and came out in his blue satin dress with a button front. It was just about the only dress he owned that he could put on himself, except for the blue polyester dress he took a shower in every morning. He was still wearing his pink high heels.
"Honey, change your shoes! You can't wear pink heels with a blue dress! Wear your black pumps!"
"This is what I'm wearing!" he said, and sat down to dinner.
"Honey, what if someone comes by? Everyone knows I pick out your clothes for you. This reflects badly on me."
"Tough!" he said, and resumed eating.
Thursday Gloria had him wear his low-cut tight fitting black satin sheath with long sleeves, along with his black patent leather heels. His dress had a sexy lustrous metallic sheen to it, it was very short and it had just a little bit of spandex for a tight fit.
When he got home, he said, "Gloria, the place is a mess. Why is it always a mess in here?"
"Well," she said, "why don't you slip into a cute little French maid's outfit and clean up around here, then?"
"Hey, you're pretty close to it already in that sexy dress. Just add an apron and a little maid's cap and a feather duster and you're ready to go. Or maybe a pinafore. Oh, you'd look so cute!"
"Knock it off!" he said, and stormed into his study, which is where he always went when he got sick of Gloria's mocking.
Friday Gloria had him wear his long-sleeved pink satin minidress, with pink high heels. When she applied his make-up, she said, "I thought I'd try something a little new."
Carl looked at it.
"Matches your dress."
The dress wasn't belted, but Gloria had done a good job of altering it so it fit him pretty well, even though it was a little tight. He did like the fact that it was a lot easier to walk in a minidress, because he could take a full stride, but he felt a lot more exposed, like he was naked. All day at work he kept self-consciously tugging down his skirt, even when he was by himself. His dress was just barely long enough to cover his short slip. After dinner he asked her if she had any more humiliating things planned for him this weekend.
"No, nothing planned. Why?"
"Because I'm wearing this dress all weekend."
"OK. You like it that much, Carl?"
"No, I don't like it that much! I'm tired of risking stomach cramps every time I take off my dress. I'm going to wear the same dress all weekend, and I'm not going to shower. I'll shave, but that's it."
"Fine. I was just wondering if you'd finally started to relax a little about wearing dresses. Maybe even started to enjoy it."
"Enjoy it? Enjoy it?" He stood up from the dinner table and looked down at himself. "What is there to enjoy? My shoulders hurt from my stupid bra, my legs itch from my stupid pantyhose, I'm always freezing to death in these skimpy dresses you pick out for me, I can't take a deep breath because of my damn girdle, my dresses are so tight I can barely walk, my feet have been killing me for two weeks straight, and as if that weren't enough, I've got these terrible painful stomach cramps to deal with! My time of the month is every damn day! Every time I take off my dress I have to worry if I'm changing into another dress fast enough to avoid these horrible stomach pains! The only time I get to take off my high heels is to put on another pair of heels! My aching feet get a few seconds of relief when I wiggle my toes, and that's it!"
"You don't have it any worse than any other woman."
"I'm not a woman, damn it! Show me the woman who has to put on a dress and pantyhose and a slip and high heels before she takes a shower! I've almost slipped three times in the shower in my damn heels! Show me the woman who has to sleep in a dress! Show me the woman who has to wear a bra and a girdle and pantyhose and a slip and high heels to bed! I haven't had a decent night's sleep in two weeks! Show me the woman who can't take off her high heels for more than ten seconds! Show me the woman who can't even put on a lousy pair of pants without collapsing to the floor in agony! I swear I'm gonna go crazy if I keep having to wear dresses and nylons and lipstick!"
"Come on, Carl, after two weeks of wearing dresses you can't tell me that you don't enjoy slipping into a brand new frilly dress, just a little bit."
"I hate it! How many different ways can I say this? I---hate---wearing---dresses! You're just like those stupid women who keep coming by my office and treating me like I'm a girl, just because I'm dressed like one. They keep bringing their stupid fashion magazines and wanting to talk about hemlines. What the hell do I care about hemlines? As long as my skirt is long enough so my slip doesn't show, that's all I need to know about hemlines."
"OK, if you don't like wearing dresses, why do you keep saying 'my dresses' or 'my pantyhose' or 'my slip'?"
"Because they ARE mine! What kind of a question is that? You bought them for me, but I'm the one who has to wear them. You couldn't wear any of my dresses; they're too big for you. Just because I say 'I'm wearing MY pink satin dress', that's supposed to mean I like wearing dresses? That's crazy! As soon as Dr. Specks releases me from this hell on earth, I'm going to take MY dresses and MY pantyhose and MY lingerie and MY high-heeled pumps and put them all in a big pile in the backyard, and douse them with kerosene, and turn them into MY bonfire! I dare you, I DARE you to say I like wearing dresses, then!"
Carl concluded the argument by storming past her into his study, and locking the door.
On Saturday morning, Carl was mowing the lawn in his pink satin minidress. It was difficult mowing in high heels; he had to practically walk on tip-toe all afternoon. It was looking overcast, storm clouds were coming in, and it looked like it could rain any at moment, so Carl wanted to get the lawn mowed before the rain started. He barely noticed his wife getting into the car to go shopping.
Carl didn't finish before the rain started. It was pouring down pretty heavy, so he thought he'd better shut off the mower and go inside to wait out the rain. He ran to the house as fast as his high heels could carry him. His dress was getting soaked, and so were his legs.
He got to the back door, and it was locked. "That's strange," he thought, and went around to the front door. It was locked as well. He looked for the key under the mat. It was gone.
He thought he better take shelter in the garage. He got there, and the damn garage door was locked! It was never locked!
"That bitch locked me out!" he thought. "What does she think she's proving by doing this?"
He tried to take shelter under the eaves, but he hadn't cleaned his gutters, and the water was flowing off the roof and blowing onto him. He was freezing. His dress was soaked, his pantyhose were soaked, he was soaked through and through.
If he wasn't stuck in a dress, he'd go over to his next door neighbor Jim and ask if he could wait out the rain. But now he was embarrassed to be seen. He took a look. His neighbor was home.
The hell with it. He decided he wasn't going to stand out in the rain and freeze in his skimpy short satin dress, just because his wife had decided to play games with him. Any embarrassment would be better than this. It couldn't possibly be worse than what he went through every day at work.
He ran to his next door neighbor's house and pounded on the side door. He tugged down his dress as he waited for his neighbor.
When Jim came to the door, Carl said, "Jim my wife locked me out and I'm sorry I'm wearing this dress and all but I'd like to come in and get dry OK thank you!"
He pushed past Jim and went inside, dripping all over the floor. Jim looked him over from wig to high heels. When Carl looked back, Jim looked away. Then Carl looked down at himself.
"I'm sorry about this," said Carl. "This is really embarrassing."
"No, it's fine."
Jim glanced at Carl's legs. When Carl saw him doing it, Jim looked away again. Then Carl reached down and tugged at his skirt self-consciously.
"Why did I have to be wearing pink?" Carl thought.
"Why don't I get you a towel?" said Jim.
"No, that's OK," said Carl, but Jim was off to the bathroom, and back with a large yellow towel. He gave it to Carl, though he sort of looked away from him as he handed him the towel. Jim clearly didn't know where to look. They were both embarrassed. Carl took the towel and dried himself off, especially his legs. He took off one pink high-heeled pump and poured the water out of it, then put it back on and did the same with his other pump. Carl noticed Jim taking another look at his legs.
"I'm sorry, I'm getting water all over," said Carl.
"That's OK. Why don't you sit down?"
Carl grabbed a chair and sat. He held his knees tightly together.
"Your clothes are all wet," said Jim. "I don't suppose---my wife, Melissa---she's got some---I mean---she's a size six---I don't know if that would work."
"No, it wouldn't work," said Carl.
"Sorry. I don't know how all this works, exactly. I'm really sorry this happened to you."
"So am I. I can't believe my wife locked me out, like that. She must've done it on purpose. I don't know what she thinks she's accomplishing by doing this. She makes me so damn mad."
"I notice you don't cross your legs the way a woman does."
"That's because I'm a man," said Carl.
Jim looked away, out of embarrassment. Then Carl looked away, then Jim took another look at Carl's legs. Carl noticed him doing it, and self-consciously tugged at his short skirt, again.
"Jim, this is embarrassing enough without you looking at my legs all the time."
"I don't have any choice in wearing a dress, but you don't have to look at my legs."
"You didn't have to wear a dress that short, did you?" Jim said, and immediately regretted saying it. Carl looked down at himself.
"It's easier to walk in a short dress," said Carl, irritably.
"I'm sorry for saying that. You don't have to explain anything to me."
"You think I'm wearing my short dress so I can show off my legs, so you can look at them? Is that what you think?"
"No, of course not."
"You're doing it again."
"Sorry," said Jim, and looked away from Carl's legs.
Carl stood up and said, "Everyone laughs at me at work. I'd rather have laughter than that creepy behavior."
"Sorry. It's just---I have kind of a thing for women in wet clothes. Especially, you know, legs"
Carl started pacing back and forth, exasperated.
"That's crazy. I'm not a woman, and I don't like you looking at me that way. My legs don't look any different from any other man's legs."
"I don't have any choice in that. If you can't tell the difference between my legs and a woman's legs, you've got a problem. You're the one with the problem, not me."
"Sorry. Look, let's just take it easy. Have a seat. Maybe you can put a towel over your legs."
"Oh, fine. You can't stop staring at 'em unless I cover them up! So it's my fault, now?"
"Just sit down. Please. I'll try not to look any more."
Carl went back to the chair, looked down, and saw something that scared the hell out of him. A big damn rat, crawling right next to his foot. And what he did next was pure reflex, and it made him angry at himself when he did it. He jumped up on top of the chair.
It's one thing to deal with a rat when you're in jeans and work boots, but when you've got on nothing but sheer pantyhose to protect you from a rat biting your leg, it's a different situation.
Jim grabbed a heavy frying pan from the stove and smashed the rodent. He picked up the dead creature by the tail and threw it in the trash basket under the sink.
Carl got down off the chair and said, "I don't know what made me do that."
"That's OK. Perfectly natural."
Carl turned on Jim, and started taking a few steps towards him.
"Perfectly natural," he said. "Perfectly natural for a woman, you mean."
"I didn't say that."
"Why not? What, did you think I wasn't a woman or something? I've got these beautiful legs you can't keep your eyes off of. I'm wearing pantyhose. Do men wear pantyhose? Are you wearing pantyhose? Of course not. So I must be a woman, right?"
"Take it easy, Carl," said Jim, taking a few steps back. Carl kept advancing on him.
"Why, Jim? Do you still think I'm not a woman, or something? I'm wearing a dress, aren't I? I'm wearing a bra. What reason would a man have for wearing a bra? I have on a slip, Jim. You don't believe me? Here it is."
He slid his damp dress up a few inches, revealing his short, lacy satin slip.
"Carl, come on! Take it easy!"
"Aren't I pretty enough for you, Jim? Is that it? You like looking at my legs well enough. Don't you think I'm pretty, Jim? Don't you want to kiss me, Jim?"
Carl grabbed him and pulled him closer, and said, "Come on, kiss me, Jim. Don't shy away from me. Don't you want to kiss me, Jim?"
"Would you two rather be alone?" said Gloria, looking in from the side door.
"Gloria!" said Carl, and let go of Jim.
"I understand. Three's a crowd," said Gloria, and laughed. She headed back to the house. Carl went out the door and ran after her. The rain had stopped.
"That wasn't what it looked like."
"Look, if you'd rather get involved with Jim, I'm not going to stand in the way of romance, but Melissa will be heartbroken," said Gloria, laughing.
"You locked me out! I was freezing to death!"
"So you just decided to go next door and kiss a man."
"Why the hell did you lock me out?"
"Just being secure."
"Look, please don't tell anyone about this."
"I don't know. I'll think about it."
"I said I'll think about it."
They both went inside, and Carl went right to the tub and took a hot bath to warm up, not bothering to change into his blue polyester dress.
While he was soaking, Gloria came in. She held up an ugly blue bridesmaid's dress.
"You wanted me to keep it to myself?" she said. "This is the price. My sister needs another bridesmaid at her wedding."
Carl stared at her, and stared at the ugly blue dress.
"But that's two month's away!"
"I could be cured by then. Specks could be out of his coma, and I could be a normal man again."
"Then think of it as a nostalgic return to pantyhose."
Carl considered, and said, "No. I'm not doing it."
"OK. Don't say I didn't give you a chance."
Carl continued soaking, and Gloria left to use the phone.
It was late, and Carl was tired. He sat soaking for awhile. Eventually he got out of the tub, and dried himself off as well as he could. Gloria was off the phone by that time, so she helped him change into some dry lingerie and a new silk dress. Then they both went to sleep.
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