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By: CS Fox
In The Devil’s Dictionary, Ambrose Bierce once said “Wine, madam, is God’s next best gift to man.” When he wrote it, he meant it as both a positive and negative statement. Positive because it’s a wonderful liquid that can uplift us and liven a splendid meal. Negative, because too much of it… can have adverse affects on even the best of us.
My week had been a solid week of great wine. I was on a trip which departed from Paris , where I was starting a new semester next week. My first semester abroad.
Everyone I knew told me that to really enjoy France , you need to get out of the metropolitan areas and see the countryside. So that’s the first thing I did. I booked a bus tour that went for five days out into France ’s vast backyard.
“Visitez de nombreux domaines viticoles,” the flyer boasted. It meant to see the vineyard’s and wineries of France , at least that’s what I’d been told. I’m absolute rubbish with the language, but that was my reason for this trip, to study French in France . Where better to learn it right? So that’s where I found myself now. Comfortably seated on a tour bus, languidly staring out the window to the bumpy hills covered with grapes like patchwork quilts.
Every day was a little slice of paradise. We’d leave from a small Inn early in the morning and drive on to another Inn in some other quaint little town. Once you were there, you could walk about the old cobblestone streets and eat at splendid little sidewalk cafés, or make your way to the “viticoles.” The vineyards.
I was fortunate that our guide and most of the other tourists spoke French. This far out of the metro areas, nobody spoke any English, so I felt alienated quite quickly (not that I didn’t stand out in my khaki’s with gaudy camera hanging around my neck). I was also lucky that the majority of my tour group was about the same age as me. You see, my name is Andy and I’m 22 and going on my first semester as a senior in college. To save up for this adventure, it took me the better part of a year, but as things have gone so far, it’s been worth every penny.
“Attencion,” the tour guide said in her accented English. “We’re almost to Rouen . If you please, on our right is the Le Febure Viticoles, known for her antique wines. It’s rumored that there are bottles there aged and stored for more then two centuries!”
The mixed tourists ooh’ed and ahh’ed at the small brick house on the hill of which she spoke. I looked at it curiously. Perhaps I could find a few nice bottles to send home and have laid down for a few years at my mom’s? “Certainly worth a look,” I thought pleasantly with a smile.
The bus arrived at a small Inn . It was really just like a bed and breakfast. Nice large house with two dozen rooms, all booked for those of us on the bus. We got off, checked in, put our bags in our rooms and headed out for more sightseeing.
As with most of the things this week, I took my time. I had made friends with a few of the guys and gals on the trip, and I walked with them checking out little shops, sampling the food, and just having a good time. One of the girl’s was fluent in French, so she handled the blunt load of translating for us.
At one end of the town was a nice cathedral. It was really something to look at, been around since the medieval days. Next to it was a small catholic school, classes in session by the look of it.
As the day wound down, and the sun began to hang, I told my friends that I still wanted to go to that Le Febure Viticoles and check out the wines. Most of the group, having been to Viticoles every day for the past four days, weren’t as excited to trek back down the road to get outside town where it was. So, I parted with them, taking my pocket book of helpful phrases and started off to the vineyard.
About two miles down the road, I found myself walking up to the nice little stone house. Green ivy and vines had helped color its bottom half green, where the sun had baked the upper half from red to a brown. It still had its rustic charm though as I went into the open-air barn where a few men were bottling wine.
“Afternoon,” I said politely as I walked up. I felt sure it was pretty obvious I was a tourist. I had on my camera and a hiking backpack; I even had on my boonie hat which as I’d found out two days ago, was like screaming “I’m American! See! Complete lack of style!” But eh… so what. Give me functionality over style any day.
“Bonsoir monsieur,” replied a burly looking worker. He wiped his hands of blue-red juice and offered a handshake. I shook his hand and thumbed through my booklet for some phrases I’d dog eared on the walk here.
“Excusez-moi, je ne parle pas francais... Um… but… J' ai besoin d' aide pour choisir un bon vin.” Which if I played my cards right, should have said “Sorry, don’t speak French, but I’d like some help finding a good wine.” I said it and did my noble best to keep from offending them by my horrible use of their language. Somehow I felt that my stuttering vowels must have been like a rake on the chalkboard.
The man shook my hand again and then barked at another worker who took his spot at bottling. He motioned for me to follow and I did down toward a nice cool cellar. He was speaking a mile a minute, all of it in French of course, so I didn’t understand a word, except when he occasionally said “vin” which is wine. He gestured grandly at pictures hung on the wall. They were all the same picture really, but with a little variety of the person. The first was a man, then a man and his son; then that son a little older standing with a son of his, and so on and so fourth, all the way down the stairs. If I were to judge the generations of this family, by the number of pictures, I’d say this guy had wine in his veins since before America was recognized as a free land.
“Everything down here is wonderful! Best stuff in the country! Some of it is two centuries old! Beats the hell out of that grape juice in your California ! Been making it over ten generations now, every since my great great great blah blah blah” (you get the idea).
The cellar was just long rows of wine. Racks upon racks of wine. As I’d come to understand, you couldn’t drink some yet. The better wines were set after they were bottled and would lay undisturbed for the better part of a few years depending on the wine. The only movement that came to them was when the bottle was turned every now and then to prevent settiment, or something of that sort.
He led me along some of the middle racks, pointing and blabbering about the dust covered bottles as if they were liquid versions of the Mona Lisa. One thing about the men who made wine in France , they took serious pride in their goods. He took out a bottle and handed it to me. It had a small picture of the vineyard on the front, and a label with the year 1967. I smiled as I looked at the bottle.
“Combien? (How much?)” I asked.
140 euros was close to $180 on my conversion chart. I looked at the bottle again. It was an awful lot for just one bottle. I decided against it and waved it off. The man shrugged and led me on to another few bottles, each progressively lower in prince, but not by much. Age demands high price as you might guess.
The man was starting to get aggravated by my waving off every bottle he handed me. We were down to 80 euro bottles, which was just above $100. It was still too much for me. I apologized the best I could and decided I’d better leave. The man took it like a slap in the face. He seemed like I might as well ask him for bottles of coca-cola instead.
He stormed off and left me standing in the library of wine. I shrugged and started to pick my way back to the stairs before he found me again. He thrust another bottle at me, not saying a word. I took it and examined the cover. It read 1832.
“Holy jesus…” I sputtered. “How much? er.. Combien?”
I looked at him like he was mad. 20 euros? This couldn’t be real wine then. He probably poured antifreeze and ketchup in a bottle to sell off to the dumb American. I raised an eyebrow at him and repeated it. “20 euros?”
The man nodded and pointed to the date. I nodded back. “I see the date, that’s why I’m questioning you. How can you sell a bottle like this for 20 euros? This should be an heirloom for your daughter’s marriage or something,” I said accidentally reverting to English.
The man looked at me confused and just repeated 20 euros. I shrugged. He had shown me around his stock and I’d declined everything thus far, maybe he was doing me a good turn?
“Can I try a sip?” I asked. He stared blankly. I made a little motion with my hand and the bottle like I wanted to try a drop. He shook his head no and extended his hand for money. Since he’d been nice to me, and I wanted to at least have something, I gave him 20 euros, which he accepted with no happiness and led me back upstairs. I figured I could at least show the bottle to my companions and maybe get them to taste it before me should it be poisonous.
I left down the road once again for the Inn . The sun was going down now and I figured it’d be a good idea to meet with everyone before nightfall.
As I was walking, a funny thing happened. The bottle, which I had stored in my backpack, began to make a weird sloshing sound. I stopped for a second and took off my backpack and realized the damn cork had fallen out. There was wine all in my backpack.
“Oh great, wine from the civil war era… and its all over everything. Let’s see, ruined my phrase book, ruined my travel papers, oh my journal too. And look, passport. Least its mostly laminated.” I said a little less then happy. Stupid wine, this was that guy’s payback. I sat and took inventory of the bag. 85% of the things in it were virtually ruined, or at least soggy enough that even after they were aired out, they’d be all purple and crinkly. I took out the offending bottle, it was about half empty. I stuck it on the road while I finished cleaning out my pack.
“I need to f***ing drink now,” I said aloud as I crumpled up some of my journal notes where the ink had bled with the wine. All the days previous to this were now a blue smear on paper. I grabbed the bottle and gave it a good sniff. For being older then Michigan (home state) it sure smelt pretty good. I poured out a drop on my tongue. It tasted like pure grape flavored with heaven. Maybe I really had bought an heirloom? I sniffed again and licked another drop. Whatever it was, it didn’t taste bitter like I suspected poison might, and it still had that alcohol feel, so I knew that if I drank enough of it, it might actually do what wine should.
Needless to say, I upended the bottle and gulped down the last two mouthfuls left in the bottle. It was like letting pure ambrosia pour down your throat. It was so good, that if it was poison, I might as well have let it kill me because I’d never find a sweeter beverage after that.
I threw the bottle in the grass, and piled all my stuff into a stack of books and papers. I left my backpack mostly unzipped and on my back as I started walking back down the road with the papers in my hand. The sun was down now, and the sky had changed from purple to a slowly shadowing blue. In the back roads like these, there weren’t any street lights, so I was going to have a little difficulty of my walk, but luckily it wouldn’t be that far.
I kept walking until the road started to move. I stood still for a minute, but the road was still moving. It was wobbling left and right, the way a fish would swim upstream. “That’s… not right,” I said to myself, running my hand through my hair, knocking off my boonie cap and dropping my books. My hand felt weird too. “Am I drunk?” I said staring at my hand, it was looking a little fuzzy, and when I moved it, twelve copies of it moved a frame too slow.
I took a few steps forward, but if anything, the road wasn’t wobbling any more, it was slithering. I was close to the town so I tried to make it further. Suddenly, I was moving forward without telling myself too. I was falling. I hit the pavement at an angle, shoulder out. I rolled a little till I was in the ditch alongside the road… face in the grass. Darkness took me.
I felt cold… and wet. Wet like a flower covered with dew in the morning. My head felt like it had been donated to a train wreck, then returned to me. I tried to move, but commands from my brain failed my body. Someone was talking in French to me. It was a soft voice, somehow full of compassion. At the same time, it sounded worried. It sounded panicked.
“My god, she’s alive! I must get her inside… who could have left her in a ditch like this?”
Weightlessness… I was being carried. There was an arm around my back, and another under my knees. It felt like every part of me was made of solid lead. I tried to speak but all that got out was little bits of wind past my lips.
“Don’t worry child… I’ll find out whatever has been done to you…” Angélique could see the young girl trying to move her lips and caught a slight odor. “Are… are you drunk?” She kept rushing to her house. No doubt about it, the girl’s breath smelt of vin. Her clothes were also wrong too, making her seem even more slovenly. They looked like an adults’, but this girl couldn’t be past her teens.
I was inside now. I’m not sure where, but the arms that had carried me had brought me out of the cold. I felt my head and torso hit linen, and a few moments later, I felt my legs and arms, but it seemed they were on a time delay.
“Looks like the poor thing has wet herself… What an awful awful state… to be blitheringly drunk and to have fallen in a ditch in a complete state of utter miss-dress.” Angélique started to undress the girl and ran to get a cold cloth.
The darkness crept from the corners of my eyes once again. It was taking over the already blurred shadows of the room. Soon, things faded out.
Angélique tended to the girl well into the night. The poor thing was running a fever now but at least she was in fresh clothes. She’d dressed her in a night shirt, although meant for someone Angélique’s size, it was at least better then the saturated stuff she’d been wearing before. Still this girl was an oddity. As the school teacher, Angélique knew every teen this child’s age in Rouen . Was this girl a young runaway from another town? A little runaway with a drinking problem?
The pounding in my head woke me before the sun did. I groggily brought my hand up to paw at my forehead. At the same moment I attempted to open my eyes, but regretted it when I was met with bright golden light. I groaned and covered my eyes till the throbbing stopped for a moment.
I slowly opened my eyes once more and let them adjust to the room. It was a modest house, with wood floors and hazelnut colored furniture. There were fresh flowers about and a general clean order to the place. I did my best to remember how I’d gotten here.
I started to roll out of bed, but came upon a shock. Looking down at the blanket, I saw a large wet patch. It looked like someone had spilt a large glass of water on my lower half. I lifted up the blanket and found white sheets the same way, only… the patch was a little more yellow… then it hit me. It wasn’t water. My eyes popped open and a gasp escaped my lips. I threw off the sheets next and found a girly nightshirt in the same state.
“What in the name…” I stared down at my lower half… It was… it was wet. Had… Had I wet the bed? My eyes wandered a little farther, and I noticed something else out of place. My legs didn’t seem long enough. Not only that, they weren’t covered with short hair like they were supposed to be.
I brought my hands to my face. My head was throbbing again, and it wasn’t going to get better. I could feel I didn’t have my normal stubble, my face was smooth, more then smooth. I kept feeling on up, till I reach my hair. I didn’t have my spikey short hair, I had long silk hair. My hand kept tracing it all the way out till I could hold a long straw-colored strand of it before my eyes.
I burst from the bed, tripping, hitting a dresser, bumping the door upon, basically flying like a blind bat out of hell. I saw a bathroom at the end of the hall and made for it. Inside I looked up into a mirror, it was a little high on me.
Starring back at me was not a 22-year-old, no, staring back was blonde haired girl. I pulled the hair out of my face and stared at the gaped mouth reflection. It… was a mean trick… I leaned in turning my head, the reflection did the same. I turned the other way, staring as deep into those unfamiliar green eyes as I could. Who are you… I was grasping… hoping…. needing to find me. Because I certainly wasn’t here now.
I let out a scream. The type of scream you’d see in a movie. Tears came to my eyes as I backed away from the mirror.
“What’s happening to me!” I yelled in a foreign, girlish voice. I heard a startled response in another room down the hall. A young woman came out running to me.
“Are you okay?! Oh no, I shouldn’t have left you alone like this in a strange house…”
She was trying to console me in French, but I couldn’t understand a word of it. She had long brown hair, and a pretty face, but it didn’t penetrate my extreme state of shock. She tried to hug me close but I backed away. Her eyes looked at me worriedly.
“You… oh poor thing… looks like you wet yourself again… just how much wine did you drink?”
We stood in a stand off. Tears kept coming, she kept staring. Eventually my well had dried up and I was just standing still with a heavy dry crying shake. The woman put her hand on my shoulder and did her best to look concerned.
“What… what happened to me? What did you do to me?” I choked out. The woman looked at me strangely.
“You’re… you’re American? Maybe that explains the drinking. Do you speak French? I can’t speak English.”
I heard “parlez-vous français?” somewhere in her speech. I knew that phrase. I answered “no parlez-vous français…”
The woman nodded and took my hand. She walked us back to the room I’d been in and let go of my hand. She stripped the bed of sheets and blanket and put them in a basket in the hall. She came back and pulled the nightshirt off me. I shrieked in surprise, although I shouldn’t have been. I was… well equipped as a girl. I couldn’t really tell what age because I didn’t know developmental stages of girls, but I could see I was somewhere in the middle of it.
The lady came back in with another night shirt and fresh pair of panties. She handed them to me and I blushed and ran back off the bathroom. I don’t know why I did… I think it was because… I needed to cry again. Which I did.
There was a knock at the door. I got dressed again and opened it, while drying my eyes with my balled hand.
“Poor thing. Whatever you went through last night, looks like you had a hard time of it. Would you like some breakfastt?”
“I… I don’t understand you.”
The woman looked a little pressed. She realized a little fuller that communication between us would be difficult.
“Venez avec moi (come with me),” the lady said. She grabbed my hand even though I still didn’t get what she wanted. We went downstairs into a nice kitchen. The place was a little small and over crowded with stuff, mostly books. The living room, den, kitchen, library and study seemed to just occupy the main floor of the house as a single room. The lady lead me over to a table and had me sit down, while she went to a fridge.
“I guess it won’t really do much good to ask you what happened last night since you can’t speak French huh?” she looked for an answer.
French gibberish, I stared at her blankly.
“Thought as much… well,” Angélique pointed to herself, “I’m
The pointing and the phrase “Je suis,” coupled with the name
Angélique was fairly self-explainitory. Her name was
Angélique. I pointed to myself. “Je suis Anthony.”
“Anthony? Anthony is a boy’s name. No, tell me your real name.”
Angélique didn’t look satisfied with my answer, in fact she was shaking her head. I realized my name didn’t really match my new gender. I shrugged and tried to think of something French. The only thing that came to mind was that stupid song.
“Je suis Alouette,” I said.
“Alouette? Oh how cute, named after a bird! That does suit you well you little drinker gone drifter you. You gave me a hell of a scare last night.”
I think Angélique somehow thought that if she talked at me long enough, a light switch for the French language would just flip on and I’d be able to talk to her just like any one else of her countrymen… er… women as the case may be.
Angélique made me some buttered toast and orange juice. She made herself some after she’d set a plate down before me. I was famished so I tore at it like a jackal on the Serengeti.
“Good god, I’d heard American’s were snobbish, but never little animals.”
Her eyes staring at me in mild shock told me that I should probably eat the food a little slower. I did slowed down and she started too eat too. I took a moment to think my situation over. Somehow I wasn’t in my own body anymore, that or my body had been transformed into a young girl. My company led me to believe I was still in France …
“Oh crap! My bus! They leave in the morning!” I looked outside. It was morning now. They’d be looking for me, my friends would be wondering where I was last night.
I jumped up from the table and made a bee line for the door. I felt a hand grab at my nightshirt.
“You can’t go out like that! You’re just in a nightshirt. It’s not proper! I can’t in good conscience let you run out and get another bottle of wine.”
“Let me go! I have to get to my friends… I have to get to English speakers so I can straighten this nightmare out!!!”
French Whines… Deux
By: CS Fox
“Let me go!” I yelled at Angélique.
“Calm down, calm down. I think your still hung-over Alouette.”
“Why won’t you let go of me?”
For a brief moment I think she understood me. She maked me back into the chair and tugged at my shirt, as if to show it to me. I looked at it, then at her, then at myself. Maybe my original thoughts that she was trying to keep me in captivity were wrong? Looking at myself a little more, I realized she was trying to keep me in for modesty sake; I was only in a t-shirt and panties after all.
A loud knock stemmed from the front door. It made the two of us jump a little. Angélique crossed the room and opened the door. I was at an angle so that I couldn’t see who was there, but I got up and leaned over to see whoever was there.
“Bonjour Angélique,” said a round short man. He was a jolly sort of pudgy and had a ridiculous handle bar mustache. He also looked to be a policeman of sorts.
“Bonjour Monsieur Badeau.”
“Have you by chance seen a young American man? His name is Andy and he was here in town with a tour group before he went missing last night.”
“An American? No, can’t say I’ve seen an American Man… but strangest coincidence, I did find this young girl… Apparently she’s American.”
I heard the name Andy and immediately perked up. This officer was looking for me. When Angélique said something back to him, they both turned to me. I didn’t know what to say, I sort of froze and waited for them to make a connection. I know I’d told Angélique what my real name was, and maybe she’d pick up on the way I’d said it first.
“Is this the American girl?” Monsieur Badeau asked.
“That’s her. Was lying in the ditch by the back road out of town.”
“Hmmm, she’s not from the tour group then. They’re group is all college age so she’s not old enough. Wonder where she came from?”
“Why don’t you ask her? She apparently doesn’t speak a word of French.”
“Well my English isn’t great, but I’ll give it a shot.”
The man stepped up to me. He smelt kind of like cloves and didn’t look very clean kept. His uniform said “Policia,” and had little bright yellow patches and stuff on it. He leaned down to me the way Santa might if he had to ask what you wanted while standing up.
“Where from you?”
I think he wanted to know where I was from. My mind suddenly grasped the idea he might know a little English.
“I’m Anthony! I was in the tour group! Help me! I’ve been hit with medieval witchcraft or something! I swear I was a guy yesterday!” I was talking so fast I was panting. Angélique looked at me a little surprised at my outburst. The officer did too.
“What… did she say?
“Is this girl right in the head? She said that she was the man I’m looking for? She said her name’s Anthony?”
“Hmm… she did say that name to me earlier... But… I really must tell you, she was really drunk last night. I picked her up and she was just a mess. Still kind of is this morning.”
The officer looked at me again.
“Please not lie mademoiselle. They missing a man, not a girl.”
“I’m not lying! I’m Anthony!”
“She says she’s Anthony.”
“Her name’s Alouette, I have no idea why she keeps saying that.”
“She may know what happened to the young man though. You said she’d mentioned his name earlier?”
“Yes, before you came in when we were having breakfast.”
“How else could she have known it?”
“Maybe she met the young man? What time did he go missing?”
“He just never came back last night. His friends last saw him around 6pm in the afternoon.”
“I picked this girl up around 8pm . She had been drinking really heavily. From the state she was in, I’d say she had probably been drinking long before 8. Maybe she met him in her stupor?”
“Well, if you could, keep her here and get her to sober up. Maybe she can help us find this young man. For now, I don’t think she’s going to be any help to us.”
“I’ll see to it that she cleans up a bit.”
“Try to keep her here. If she knows something, or worse, if she was involved in his disappearance, we’ll need her for questioning.”
“Oui Monsieur Badeau, I understand.”
The officer tipped his hat to Angélique and looked at me one more time.
“Don’t go!! I’m Anthony!” I said jumping out at him. Angélique caught me by the shoulder and kept me in. The man looked at me like I was a threat for a moment, then shook his head like he felt pitty for me.
“Take care of this girl poor girl, she’s still not right.”
And with whatever French he spewed, he left and Angélique shut the door behind him. I felt like my ship had just left harbor and I was standing on the dock. How could he not believe me? I struggled to get Angélique’s hand off my shoulder and get out the door after him.
Her hand clamped down, and I felt tears come to my eyes again as I started yelling once more “Let me go! I’m Anthony! I’ll miss the bus!” I was trying to push my feet forward, but Angélique brought her other arm around my waist. My tears came heavier now and I still tried to yell it. I don’t know why I was crying. I think it was because I was suddenly helpless, and the voice that was yelling was not mine. It was the voice of a young girl, and my mind didn’t want to accept the fact that I was the speaker of it.
“You’re not well Alouette, please stop yelling that foolishness.”
My body gave up its fight, and I surrendered to my tears and a hug from Angélique. I softly hit her shoulder, just repeating “I’m Anthony… I’m Anthony…” But even my mind was registering how ridiculous it sounded in my feminine voice. Her hand patted my back, and the other gently stroked the back of my head. The tears eventually stopped coming and I just let my head lean against her shoulder. She pushed me back a little and looked into my eyes.
“Certainly do cry a lot, no? Poor girl…”
I looked away and stared at the floor. Angélique sighed and took my hand, leading me back upstairs.
“Take a long bath, it will clean you up a little better and help you sober up. I’ll figure out what to do with you afterward.”
Angélique brought me to the bathroom and started the running water in the old style porcelain tub. I just stood like a zombie. Whatever spirit had been in me to run before, was gone now with that good cry.
Angélique left to a closet in the hall and came back with some towels. By now the tub was full of hot water. She put the folded pile of towels on the floor.
“Just come get me when you’re done.”
I looked at her blankly once more, still no idea what she was saying. She pointed at the water, then pointed at the towels, then pointed at herself.
She left the bathroom and shut the door behind her. I stood for another moment not really sure what I felt like doing, but in the end I took off the night shirt and panties and gingerly got into the tub. After having pissed myself last night, I really wanted to take a bath anyways… and maybe it would help rid me of this horrible headache.
I found a new problem with the bath though. Like everything else I’d done this morning, it felt like I was doing it with a stranger, or doing it for the first time. This body was absolutely foreign to me. It was weak where it should have been strong, it was soft where it should have been rough. It was every which way it shouldn’t have been.
The remnants of man in me, was even curious to explore this new body, but at the same time repulsed by the idea. As stupid as it sounds, my new body was underage… and it just felt… well it felt wrong. Just flat wrong. I washed those parts of me in the same way someone did a chore they hated doing; quickly and with as little enthusiasm as possible.
Afterwards I just laid in the tub. I was wishing this was all a dream. Some bad dream where I was liable to wake up any minute… but I knew it wasn’t a dream. It was too real, I’d felt Angélique’s hand on my shoulder earlier, I felt the hot water around me now… It couldn’t be fake. What’s worse, was the officer’s affirmation that Anthony…er.. I.. was missing. So it wasn’t like I just up and disappeared, my body was turned into this one.
Eventually I got out of the tub and pulled the plug. I dried myself off with a towel and wrapped it around my body. I wasn’t really sure what to do with my hair. It went a little ways past my shoulders and I’d never had so much hair in my life. I was used to just running my hand through it like five times and poof, it was dry. Not sure what to do now, I tried to dry it off with another towel, and that worked somewhat, but didn’t get me too far.
I opened the door to the hallway and Angélique poked her head out of the room I’d been in down the hall when I woke up this morning. She was changing the linens. It made me blush a little because I knew why she needed to do it. I trudged slowly down the hall to her, holding my towel up.
“Blah blah blah to you too.”
Angélique rolled her eyes. She may not have gotten the words, but she got the tone. She plucked the towel from me. I quickly covered myself with my hands as she went and got some clothes from another room.
Now I felt thoroughly stupid standing naked. Angélique came back in the room with some clothes, girls clothes of course. Rather then be naked I took them. I slipped on another pair of panties, slightly big on me of course. Then a t-shirt, also slightly big, and a pair of pants. The pants were corduroy jeans, and lavender purple. For some reason they seemed to fit fairly well on me. I tucked in my shirt, but being as big as it was, it still bagged over the edge of my pants.
I caught a look at myself in the mirror, or rather I caught a look at Alouette in the mirror, because as far as I was concerned, that girl wasn’t me, it was just my temporary insanity. Still I looked at the girl and she looked ridiculous, just like a girl who’d borrowed her big sister’s clothes.
A phone started to ring. Angélique left me standing and admiring mirror, while she went downstairs to answer it.
“Oh Monsieur Badeau…? Oui, I can have her to the station. Sure, be right there.”
Angélique came back into the room and took my hand once more.
“We’re going to the police station.”
She said something Policia, so I cheered up, thinking that maybe my ship hadn’t left yet. Angélique led me out her front door by her hand again. I felt a little uncomfortable being pulled along like a child with her hand. I tried to tug away, but she increased her grip. She didn’t want me running off or even walking on my own I guess.
Apparently Angélique lived in a little home just inside the borders of town. It was a nice white brick house. Somewhere half-way up its face they had tried to do some type of siding, but didn’t finish the job on the lower half. At least the entire thing was white, with a black shingle roof.
We walked up the winding roads that led to the center of town. The place was built on a generally sloping hill, so that if you wanted to get to the center of town, you were walking up hill no matter which direction you came of.
As we neared the top of the street, I could see Le Febure Viticoles outside of town. My mind shot back to the wine and I realized that maybe it had a part to play in my new body.
“That’s the place!! That damn ancient wine may have messed me up!” I said pointing at it with my free hand. Angélique tugged me a little rudely.
“Yes that’s the viticoles… I think you drank enough vin last night though. Try to keep away from it for a while, your too young to drink anyways.”
I think she didn’t like me and the idea of a winery. I didn’t point at it any more, but I kept my eye on it as we continued up the hill.
We came to a police station. It looked more like a barber shop in a row of townhouses. We both walked up the front steps and went into the small office.
“Bonjour Angélique,” said an officer behind the main counter. He smiled and then looked at me suspiciously. “Inspector Badeau will be right with you. Go ahead and head to his office. Oh and Angélique?”
“How’s my Sophie doing in school?”
“Needs work on her mathematics, but otherwise, one of my top.”
The officer smiled at their exchange of words and waved us to an office in the back. We walked back and found the man who had come by Angélique’s house earlier. There was also another man next to him, a taller man who seemed a little older, and getting that horseshoe baldness going.
“That boy was located. They found him this morning at the hotel, after having scared all his friends half to death. Apparently he drank a little too much last night and passed out in the wrong room at the hotel.”
“Is he still around? I want to give him a piece of my mind, I bet he got this poor girl drunk!”
“No, he left already. Their tour group was already really behind in their schedule… Why, did the girl say that the boy did anything to her?”
The three looked at me. They had talked a little bit and stared at me as if I had an answer to a question never asked. The tall man spoke up in very good English.
“My name is Inspector Vachel Facet. How are you feeling?”
The sound of my language spoken so well almost made me want to hug the man.
“My head hurts, but otherwise fine.”
“That’s good… Now, last night. Did Anthony… do anything to you?”
“Do anything to me? What are you talking about? I am Anthony!”
The tall man translated my statement and the three of them looked at each other hesitantly. Inspector Bedeau spoke up.
“I questioned Anthony before he left this morning. He said he didn’t see a girl last night, and Javier said he’d sold wine to the boy, but that when he was at Le Febre he was alone. Fact is, no one in town has seen an American girl of this age and she wasn’t part of that tour group,”
“Where is she from then? A girl this old doesn’t just walk out this far into the country on her own? You think maybe she took a train?” asked Inspector Facet.
They’re eyes were on me again. Questioning me, I realized every time I said my name was Anthony, I didn’t look very sane.
“I um… Why what happened that would make you think. Something… happened to me?” I asked. I was trying to get information, without backing down and saying I wasn’t Anthony.
“Monsieur Anthony left on the bus a half hour ago. We just wanted to make sure that you were all right so that we didn’t have to get the bus back here.”
My heart dropped and my stomach flipped. “I… left? But but, how can that be?” I felt my knees get weak, and I started to topple. Angélique caught me before I completely hit the ground.
“I don’t think she’s well, she’s been like this all day,” Angélique said. Inspector Facet plowed on.
“Where are you from Alouette?”
I let the name thing go, but still took a few deep breaths before answering. “ Lansing , Michigan .”
“What are you doing in France ?”
“Here to study.”
“How old are you?”
That answer didn’t bode well. He explained to Angélique and Inspector Bedeau. They all looked at me like I’d told a bad joke.
“How old are you really?”
“What do you mean how old am I really? I’m 22.”
“Okay, you’re very close to being rated clinically insane. You are not 22, you are not a boy named Anthony. Do you want a mirror to confirm these facts?”
The word insane carried weight with it. I realized where this might go. I also realized how I must look telling them the things I was with the body I was in. I sulked my head. Time to make a story…
“Okay fine, my name is Alouette. I’m from Michigan , 15-years-old, and just woke up thinking it’d be fun to try and pull a joke on all of you.” I tacked on as much sarcasm as I could. Once again he translated and this time they looked a little relieved, but also a little more unhappy.
“Where is your family?”
“So you’re an orphan?”
“Sure, why not.”
“This is serious Alouette. You do realize you’re on your own right? There’s no one checked into any of these hotels that we haven’t already talked to today. There’s no other American that could plausible be from your family.”
“Looks like I’m up sh*ts creak huh?”
I could tell he was getting a little impatient with me, but somehow I didn’t care. They don’t want to believe the truth, so why not just be an ass in spite?
“Be serious. What the hell are you going to do?”
“Run away and join the circus.”
He looked about ready to slap cuffs on me. He turned to Angélique.
“Did you find any identification, any money, anything about this girl when you picked her up?”
“I don’t think she was wearing her own clothes. Her clothes were kind of big and didn’t have anything in the pockets.”
“You said she was drunk too, right?”
I was really starting to dislike my inability with the French language, it was like I was not part of the conversation that probably controlled a very important part of my immediate future. The three of them turned to me once more after they had conferred with each other.
“Where did you get wine last night?” Inspector Facet asked me.
“Le Febre viticoles.”
“Liar, I talked to Javier this morning. He said he only sold to Anthony, and more specifically that you weren’t with Anthony.”
“No, he sold wine to me, I can swear my life on that.”
“Javier is godfather to my son. He was in my grammar school with me. His word is bond.”
“Look, that’s where I got my wine. I’ve got a wicked headache now… Okay? No one is going to come for me, my bus left this morning, what do you want from me?”
“I don’t know what to do with this snobbish little American. She’s probably some sort of gypsy liar. Just roaming around saying whatever she can to cause trouble.”
“Want I should deport her to a juvenile center in Paris ?” Inspector Bedeau asked.
Angélique interjected. “No! She didn’t really do anything wrong. Think about it, she’s had a rougher time of it then you think. She’s got no one for her, and she was reduced to lies like these, don’t you feel as sorry for her as I do?”
“Perhaps you’re right, but what are we going to do with her?”
There was silence for a moment and I got a little uncomfortable. I think they thought I was absolutely crazy. To a point I didn’t blame them. I felt I should act quick.
“I uh… have amnesia. It happens… after having wine...”
Inspector Facet explained again, the other two looked a little more concerned now. They looked at me like my having wine that wiped my memory was much more digestible then me being a 22-year-old male.
Suddenly… I felt something bad. My lavender corduroys began to get a little clammy. Angélique looked on at me and her eyes bulged a little. I looked down and found a growing wet spot spread forth from my crotch. The two inspectors looked on and made a face like “ah, just as I thought.”
“She’s… well that’s the third time since I picked her up that she’s done that.”
Inspector Bedeau shook his head. “Poor girl… poor sick girl.”
“Would it be okay if I just took her to live with me for a little while?”
“I think that might be best,” commented Inspector Bedeau.
My eyes started to water as I suddenly felt like shrinking behind Angélique.
“Something tells me she’s been through a lot more then she wants to let on. Maybe she just needs a good home for a while.”
Inspector Facet smiled ruefully at me. “Do 22-year-olds wet themselves Alouette?”
Well my RPG artist lives in France . His name is Carotte and he does all those drawings that I put in my game. He liked this story, but noted many mistakes with my grasp of a few concepts. First “Viticoles” is not vineyards. Viticoles is used with words like regions and domains. It translates as “used for wine.” Vineyards would be “Vignobles.”
Second, Police in French is still Police (Thanks Cathy). Police in Spanish is Policia. Oooopps. Also, Rouen is a big town, about 1/10 the size of Paris . Sooo yeah, pretend it’s a little backwater town for now. Lastly, it’s also very important to note that there's no such thing as two century old wine, it would be very toxic. It also wouldn’t turn you into a girl, so suspend that one too.
Okay, so if anyone is still reading after all those errors, enjoy!
PS: Snow day on campus, so I’m blessed with more time to finish this story =D
French Whines… Trois
By: CS Fox
Back during my days at the University of Michigan , which as Anthony, would have been only one month ago… I used to play rugby on Saturday mornings. It was great to beat the hell out of each other. It was also great to laugh at any girl who was making a walk of shame to her dorm early in the morning. Lots of the partiers always did, and lots of us guys always laughed.
Today… Today, I was the one making such a walk. I don’t even know what to think of it. It doesn’t even matter, I’m not really here anyways… Anthony has left the building people. Or more accurately, has left the body. Just call me Alouette.
Angélique gently squeezed my hand, I didn’t take much notice. I was pre-occupied and walking a little awkward because I was trying to hold down my baggy t-shirt over my wet corduroys.
“Your not great friends with the wash room are you? Do you always just wet yourself like this?”
She spoke to me while squeezing my hand again. I didn’t reply. I couldn’t understand her, and I wasn’t in much of a mood for talk anyways. Our little meeting with the police hadn’t gone how I’d hoped. Instead of arguing my case as a 22-year-old man somehow transformed into a girl, I had instead found that the man… that I… had left. I’d also managed to solidify myself as a 15-year-old girl in their eyes. It was backwards progress if anything.
We went down the hill towards Angélique’s house. About mid-street we took a quick detour to another house. I followed along in sort of a daze, till my mind picked up on the fact that there would be people in the house, and that people would look at me and see me with wet pants… and then make a judgment.
Wouldn’t that make a great first impression on town locals, ‘Hi, I’m the psycho American girl who pees herself!’ I started dragging my feet. “Don’t trot me around on display Angélique! This is mean!”
“Stop struggling I just need some advice from Madame Agnew.”
Despite my struggling, and ignoring Angélique’s inane admonishments, I was dragged to the front door. As soon as her hand hit the knocker, I quickly hid myself behind her. Maybe I could just hide there and die.
A young girl answered the door; she looked to be about my age. She had long brown hair and wore a big baggy sweater. Behind her was an even younger girl in a dress, she had a dolly in one hand and her thumb in her mouth. Both of them sort of leaned over so they could see around Angélique to me. I tried not to make eye contact.
“Teacher? What are you doing here? It’s Saturday. I um… don’t need to do my homework till tomorrow since it’s not due till Monday right?”
“Hello Papillon, and no, I’m not here to nag you about your homework. Although, if you have it done on Monday that would certainly be a surprise,” Angélique said.
The girl my age blushed. “Then what are you doing here?”
“At least speak with a little more courtesy Papillon. I’m here to see your mom. Is she in?”
From what I could tell, Angélique knew the older child, and in their brief conversation so far, she hadn’t mentioned me, which relieved me a little. The girl my age turned her head and called out for her “Maman.”
An older lady came down the stairs with an infant on her hip. She looked a little raggad, but still pretty underneath the fatigue. “Oh Angélique, how nice to see you…” said Jeanne warmly. Then her eyes shot to Papillon. “Wait, what’s Papillon done this time?”
“Oh nothing nothing Jeanne. I just came to speak to you.”
“Well come in, you know your welcome to visit any time.”
“I um.. think I better not.”
Angélique stuttered for a moment and looked down at me. I gulped loudly realizing that it was probably time I reveal myself in my state of embarrassment. The lady, whom I assumed to be the mother of these three, followed Angélique’s eyes to me.
“Oh who’s that Angélique? Is she a new student of yours?”
“Actually she’s an American runaway. I’m going to be taking care of her for a while, till we can find her parents anyway.”
“A little girl like that? On her own? My goodness.”
“She actually um…” Angélique leaned forward and motioned for Jeanne to come closer so she could whisper.
It was bad enough that they were talking in French, but to have whispered stuff to each other in French too? What is this? Overlapping layers of security? I didn’t think it mattered, I knew what they were talking about… hell what they were talking about was starting to feel cold and uncomfortable under my shirt.
“My word, three times already?”
“Isn’t that awful? I’m not sure what to do about it.”
“Hehe so you thought to come to me? The girl with three children and ask advice?”
“I thought you’d know best,” Angélique said with a smile.
“And don’t ever let anyone tell you otherwise.”
“Do you think its coincidence?”
“No, she probably has poor potty habits. Let me pack you a bag. I’d say…” Jeanne looked at her daughter Papillon who was staring at her intently. Her mother’s whispering was opening that curious intent of hers. “Papillon go upstairs, and take your little sister.”
The girl my age frowned and wandered off with the girl behind her. Her mother waited till she was up the stairs and then started talking in a quieter voice to Angélique.
“Papillon would never talk to me for a year if she knew I’m going to tell you this, but she used to wet the bed till she was 10. I bet that’s the problem with this girl. Just diaper her before bed and keep her in some thicker panties during the day. Like trainers or something… or if it’s really bad, those disposable things at the market.”
“That’ll be great.”
“Here I’ll get some of Papillon’s old stuff, I’ll be right back.”
The mother left the doorway and went upstairs. Angélique turned around to me and crouched down.
“Désolé…” she said softly. I wasn’t really sure what she said or what to say back. I was appreciative that she hadn’t blown my spot to everyone, or at least she hadn’t done what I was imagining she’d do. I felt for sure she’d step behind me, push me forward and pull my shirt up so their was no doubting what she was whispering about… but then when she’d done the whispering and the mother sent the young girl away, I realized she was trying to help me.
The mother returned shortly with a brown bag. It was left over from a trip to the grocery store by the look of it. She handed it to Angélique and we left.
We walked in silence. I wanted to know what was in the bag, but if Angélique were to tell me I wouldn’t understand anyway. It was a short distance to her house and when we got in she had me bathe again. I got some more fresh clothes, but something odd this time, the panties she gave me seemed a little tighter, rather then looser like the other pair I’d worn. Also, they seemed a bit… thicker.
“Wow it’s already lunchtime. Are you hungry?”
I stared at her blankly. She tapped her chin with her forefinger and looked perplexed.
“Lunchtime… would you like food?” she asked while rubbing her tummy.
“Oh… lunchtime. Yes, I’m hungry,” I said nodding my head. It seemed our best communication was cave-manish sign language. She took me downstairs and sat me at her kitchen table.
Once again I listened to a steady diatribe of French. It might as well have been elevator music. Bleeb-ba-dee-blah-blah-bleee… I mimicked her motor mouth with my hand while she had her back to me. She was chopping something up and probably telling me everything about herself, even though by now, she HAD to know that I didn’t understand any of it. Maybe she just liked to have someone to talk to, even if they couldn’t really properly respond back.
“So when I turned 23 I came back here to Rouen . Toulouse was nice, but you just can’t beat the warmth and serenity of your hometown. Luckily, they needed another teacher at my old catholic school. I applied and got the position, and here I’ve been for the last 4 years. It’s quiet, but comfortable.”
Angélique turned in time to catch me looking boredly off into space and doing the talking hand thing. She frowned and roughly put a bowl of soup down in front of me. The noise of it on the table shook me out of a trance.
“What? Sorry, I just can’t understand you. How do you expect me to pay attention?”
Eating went by in quiet. I will say that Angélique is a good cook. In fact, as I sipped (more slurped) from my spoon, I took the time to actually really look her over. Something in my head told me I needed to look her over, but at the same time, I didn’t really see what was that interesting. She was pretty, but not more so then the other lady we’d stopped to talk to earlier. She was just, a nice girl… Not too old, like, motherhood age I suppose.
“Why are you staring at me?”
Her voice broke me out of yet another trance. I nervously looked down at my soup and went back to slurping.
“Maybe I took on too difficult a task. It’s not going to be easy taking care of someone who can’t understand me...”
Lunch didn’t last too long, and afterward we were just left staring at each other. Seems I was stuck with her, since no one believed my story, and the law enmakement thought me a crazy liar.
“Do you have a computer?” I asked on a random thought.
She shook her head no… I walked over to her phone and picked it up. Angélique looked at me crossly and then came over to hang up the phone for me.
I looked at her, “Can I make a phone call?”
She knew what I was asking. “Non. You’ll call some boy to come break you out so you can just hit the road again. Don’t you think its time you turned your life around?”
I frowned and left the phone alone. Somewhere in town there was a phone or computer I could use. Maybe I could access my old e-mail or something to get help from my friends. Or maybe I could sneak out and get a phone card to call the US ? I bet if I could reach my real parents, they’d at least listen to me if I told them things only Anthony would know. That would have to wait though; I didn’t have any money.
Angélique took my hand and led me across the room to two chairs by the fire place. She sat me in one and went to get a book from a stack on her desk. She put the book in my lap and sat down next to me. I looked at the title; it was apparently a grammar book.
“You want me to learn French?”
Angélique nodded and opened the book for me. She pointed at the first page, it had the alphabet and numbers 0-9. I shrugged, why not… this was why I came here anyway.
We got into the lesson. She would read something, and I would try to repeat exactly what she’d read. In this way, I was learning some of the basic soundings of the language. Small stuff like how “oui” which meant yes, came out as a “we” sound. It was the first stone of the foundation anyway.
We kept at it all afternoon, till I suddenly felt a little tickly feeling. I flung the book from my lap, startling Angélique and flew up the stairs. I made it to the bathroom and slammed the door behind me. I heard her come up the stairs a moment after me, lightly tapping at the door.
“Are you okay Alouette?”
I ignored the voice beyond the door. By some miracle, I’d managed to make it up the stairs to the bathroom before once more creating a pond in my panties. Not only that, but after I’d sat down, I was surprised to find that it wasn’t just pee that I needed to do.
The door opened and Angélique’s head poked through. I yelled at her for privacy, but I couldn’t mistake the quick happiness that was there at seeing me sitting the way I was.
“Look at you! You can do it!” she said coming into the room.
“Shut up! Whatever you’re saying, I don’t want to hear it!” I said trying to wave her off.
She walked up to me and checked my panties the way she would a preschooler. She frowned a little to find them wet, but was still happy that at least the majority of it was in the toilet. I on the other hand was a little bit less then happy. To me, it was like only predicting the rain after it had already started. I honestly would have probably just completely wet myself earlier if it had not been for the fact that I felt it first before it got too bad. Not only that, but I didn’t even feel the need to do number 2, but as I could tell now… I did.
Angélique turned around and at least give me a tiny bit of privacy in cleaning myself up. When I flushed and was pulling my pants back up, she wouldn’t stop with the praises, it was thoroughly embarrassing; I knew that it was inappropriate for her to be doing it to a girl of my apparent age.
“Let me get another pair of panties for you, those are wet.”
Angélique was holding her hand out to stop, so I stayed with my pants up to about my knees, frowning at whatever she wanted me to do. She left the room and came back just as quick with another pair of the smaller, yet thicker panties. I didn’t complain because my other pair was wet. Sadly, by my count, this was the fourth pair of clean panties I was putting on today after having wet another pair. Not a very noble record.
When I was fresh again, we went back downstairs and called it quits on the studying. Angélique babbled in French some more and grabbed her purse. I wasn’t sure what she wanted but I soon found that we were going to go out shopping. It was just about evening now as we started walking up into town.
Angélique was actually being pretty nice to me. She bought some clothes for me; nothing too fancy, just clothes that would fit and that I could wear. She let me choose them out, and of course I choose out the most boyish things I could find, but she didn’t seem to complain too much, as long as the clothes still came from the girl’s section of the small store. Oddly enough she didn’t have me buy any more underwear, which to me, was probably what I needed most, but oh well. Fitting clothes were nice to have.
We also stopped by the grocery store, where Angélique picked up a few things. I found myself wandering up and down the isles till I found a payphone towards the back of the store. I tried to get back there to use it, but when I did… I didn’t have any money or a calling card. Angélique found me a few moments later and called me over to her with a stern look on her face.
“You’re intent to call somebody aren’t you? Well I won’t have it.”
We went home and had dinner. It was a simple meat and potatoes meal, but it was good and I was glad for it. Angélique the windbag continued her optimistic overuse of French in the hopes I’d catch on, but I just ate and nodded politely. After a while I even started talking to her in the gaps of silence, hoping that maybe the reverse would happen to her with English.
The rest of the evening went by fairly fast. I sat in the chair by the fireplace and browsed through some of her books. They were textbooks of various kinds, and I could tell they were aimed at younger audiences. So I just looked at pictures and went page to page.
Angélique sat in the other chair and read from a novel. She seemed pleased at my reading the textbooks. I think her opinion of me, was that I was just an unscrupulous trouble maker, who probably hadn’t had any schooling… but the fact of the matter was, when it came down to the amount of schooling I’d had, I’d probably had a higher education then her. Still I read till I found it hard to read and myself yawning more and more frequently.
“I’m getting tired, and I can tell by your yawns that you are. What do you say we head up to bed?”
Angélique caught me nodding off. She piled the books on her desk again and led me upstairs. I was tired by now, so I didn’t really complain. Thinking a bit smartly, I went into the bathroom before heading to my bedroom, which Angélique was all smiles about. Unfortunately I didn’t have to go, but the thought was there at least.
When I got to what I assumed was going to be my bedroom for the time being, Angélique was waiting with the brown paper bag from that house we’d stopped at earlier. I raised a cautious eyebrow at her.
“Alouette, please sit here, I need to talk to you.”
Angélique was patting the bed next to were she was crouching. I slowly went and sat there.
“After working a number on this mattress last night, I’m going to listen to what Jeanne said and keep you in diapers tonight. Is that okay?”
I really wanted to know what she was saying here, it sounded important, but I still had no idea. When she was done talking, I nodded slowly. Angélique started to fish something out of the bag, it was bundles of cloth. She stood me up and pulled off my shirt and then unbuttoned my pants and let them fall to the floor.
“New pajama’s?” I asked while looking at the white cloth and being undressed. It felt a little awkward to have someone undressing me, but I didn’t really fuss about it. She slid my panties down and patted for me to lie down on the bed. I did so a little nervously. I wasn’t sure how I was going to get dressed while lying down.
She took a few layers of the cloth and started to fold it up. She lifted my legs and in that moment, I realized what it looked like she was doing, and then hit even harder that it wasn’t just looking like she was doing it, she was ACTUALLY doing it. She was putting a diaper on me.
“Now hold on!” I yelped trying to jump up. She caught me with her hand.
“Lay down, this will only take a minute.”
“Don’t you dare diaper me! I’m not a baby! The old me wasn’t! And even though this new body is younger, it’s not a baby!”
Angélique wasn’t taking my argument too well. She stopped for a moment and got up. She walked across the room and opened the laundry hamper and looked inside without touching anything.
“That’s 1, 2, 3, 4 pairs of wet underwear. Not to mention the sheets I put in the wash this morning!”
She was counting things off on her hand. I blushed; I knew what she was counting. She was making her argument against why I should be diapered tonight. She walked back over and pushed me to lying back down. I resisted, but let her push me all the way down.
She slid the layers under me and then neatly brought them up and pinned them on. She reached into the bag and pulled out a pair of plastic panties which she worked on over them. She pulled me up and off the bed. I brought my arm up to covered my chest, not really sure why, just felt I needed too, and I looked over at myself in the mirror.
I looked stupid. Mid-teen girl in a diaper. I was almost glad that I wasn’t a guy, because if I was caught like this as a guy, I’d never live it down.
Angélique brought in another long night shirt and put it on me. She pulled back the covers and insisted on tucking me in, just the way a mother would. I resented it a little, even more so because the plastic pants were a loud tell-tale, but at the same time a part of me knew that she was doing me a kindness. I’d probably still be at the police station if not for her.
“What about if I wake up and have to use the bathroom?” I asked.
She gave me the look of not understanding. I pointed at me, and then at the bathroom down the hall.
“You already went before bed right? You shouldn’t need to go then before I get you up tomorrow morning. We’re going to get up bright and early. I always go to church on Sundays, and I think the first step on the road to a healthy lifestyle for you, will be going back to church.”
“Never mind, sorry I asked,” I said as I rolled over. I was really starting to get fed up with even trying to get my point across.
She gently patted my head once and left the room turning out the light. I heard the door shut, and suddenly I was alone. The thought sort of scared me.
For the billionth time today, I started to cry. Now that I was actually alone, all of my thoughts ganged up on me. I really was alone. I didn’t have any friends. I didn’t have anyone who believed me. I was diapered because I couldn’t control myself. It was a horrible, rotten, nightmare…
I sobbed into my pillow, till somewhere down the way, my body gave out and went to sleep.
French Whines… Quatre
By: CS Fox
It started with singing. I heard a sweet voice floating from downstairs and steadily migrating upstairs. I groggily blinked my eyes open in time to see Angélique come into the room.
“Alouette, gentille Alouette
Alouette je te plumerai…
Je te plumerai la tte
Je te plumerai la tte
Et la tte… et la tte
I quickly rolled over and flopped face down into the pillow. “Not funny Angélique, hear me? Non… not funny,” I mumbled into the pillow. Her spirits were high and she put her hand on my back, playfully shaking me awake.
“Its time to get up lil’ Alouette, the church bells will ring in two hours.”
“Speak French later, let me sleep now.”
Angélique pulled the covers back and they fluttered off like a parachute. I scrunched my knees up to my chest to guard against the sudden chill. Doing so made my diaper crinkle loudly and I cringed as last night came up into memory. I felt a hand being placed against my diaper. I immediately shot forward.
“Abuse abuse!” I yelled and looked back at Angélique.
“It’s a good thing I listened to Jeanne. We’d have lake pee in here if I hadn’t.”
I stared at her a little apprehensively for a moment. She pointed at my diapered butt. I turned over and patted at the front of it with my hand.
“Oh jesus it’s wet,” I said barely believing what my hand was feeling. My voice also cracked a little with that whiney sobby tone. Angélique nodded.
She took my hand and led me to the bathroom, starting the tub. She then left me to my own devices. I removed my clothes and took off the wet diaper, balling it up with the plastic pants and leaving it in a soggy pile by the door. I got in the tub and just floated a minute staring at the ceiling.
“Alouette… who are you?” I asked the ceiling. It hurt inside … I was already starting to think of Anthony as a separate person… I mean think about it, he’d left and somehow, I hadn’t. Was someone else being Anthony? Was some joker wearing me like a suit off in Paris right now? The thought was hideous.
“Alouette… who are you?” I asked again. My mind made up other answers. Maybe a girl had switched bodies with me. I had hers, now she had mine. That was possible. Or maybe it was like a bad episode of a sci-fi TV show, and I’d hit split infinity and broken into two people. One being the regular me, the other… being my polar opposite?
Actually scratch all that, it all sounded insane. Under the same guidelines I could really just be some 15-year-old girl who got drunk so often she developed fake memories that by chance coincided with a visiting student. In any case, none of it mattered, what did matter was the here and now. Right now, I am a girl. Right now, I can’t change or ignore that. Right now I have no friends, and know no one to believe me. I wanted to cry again.
I washed myself with the same unfamiliar care. I was just going to take basic care of this body, because I didn’t expect to use it very long. This was a temporary shell for my consciousness, and it would never take over. I toweled off once more, with the same awkwardness of wet hair. I found Angélique in my room laying out clothes on the bed.
“Let’s get you in your underclothes then work on your hair before you try on this dress. Hopefully it fits; I used to wear it to church when I was your age. Brings back a lot of memories actually.”
Angélique had laid out a black dress with white trim. I froze, what the HELL was that doing on the bed? Didn’t I just get some new, relatively boyish clothes yesterday?
“Wow bath not go so well? You look mad.”
Angélique walked up to me and took the ends of the towel to tussle my hair. I was still not amused. She handed me an undershirt and pair of panties, which I put on, but then she stopped at the dress and grabbed a brush.
“I think it might be nice if we try doing something with that hair, rather then just letting it lay flat.”
She began brushing my hair, but it kind of tugged my head back. I swatted her hand away.
“Stop that! It hurts!”
Angélique put her hands on her hips. “You’ve probably never brushed it in your life, and somehow I doubt you conditioned it in the bathroom, its going to be a little rough getting out the tangles at first.”
“Leave it alone, it’ll dry and be fine straight,” I said as I started to turn away. Angélique grabbed my shoulder and started to try and brush my hair as I resisted.
“This… *brush brush* won’t… *brush brush* take but a… *brush brush* moment.”
“Get the hell away from my hair!” I yelled twisting and turning as my head was pulled back every time the brush ran through my wet hair. Eventually she gave up and threw the brush on the bed.
“I give up, finish your hair yourself!”
I stood with my arms crossed and smiled. Seems I’d won a little battle and she was going to leave my hair be. She moved to get the dress, my smile fled. *Ding* round two.
“No! Non! Not wearing a dress!” I made a break for the door once again, but her hand was like that of a cat on a running mouse.
“Stop it! Must you resist everything I try to do for you? What’s wrong with this dress? Why do you hate dressing up like a girl so much?”
“Non non! Leave me alone!”
Angélique let out a controlled scream and stormed out of my room, slamming the door behind her.
“That was completely unfair!” I said aloud to myself. “Why couldn’t I be the one to leave?” I went over and plopped down on the bed.
I sat grumpy for a little while. Angélique was being so pushy. Take a bath. Comb your hair. Wear a dress. What the hell was she trying to do, train me to be a girl? What would I do afterwards, get some practice with her on making curtsies? I laid down staring up at the ceiling once again. I noticed the dress was lying next to me. I pushed it on the floor.
After I’d calmed down I went out of my room to find Angélique. She was in her room, with the door cracked open a little. I’d never seen her room, so I approached the door quietly.
Her room was very rustic looking and filled with wooden, antique looking furniture. She had a large bed with four tall bed posts and a canopy. In one corner was a make-up table with oval mirror, she was seated in front of it doing her own hair. She saw me peering at her from the crack of the door in the reflection of the mirror.
She didn’t turn to me, “Do whatever you want; I don’t care how you look. You’re going to church in that underwear if that’s how it has to be.”
She sounded angry. Angry, and also a little hurt at the same time. I left her to finish with her hair. I wandered back into my room, feeling a little guilty. She was really mad. All because I was making anything she wanted to do for me a chore.
I reviewed everything that had happened. She wanted me to take a bath, which was because I’d had a wet diaper (which was probably still lying on the bathroom floor). Then she’d wanted to brush my hair. I looked over in the mirror… it was a mess, so maybe that wasn’t uncalled for either. But… she had also wanted me to wear a dress.
I looked at the black dress lying in a pile on the floor and picked it up. “Only a girl would wear such a thing…” I said coldly.
My own use of the word “girl” rang in my ears. I looked at the dress again and then stepped over to the mirror. Staring at me was a blonde haired GIRL, her hair was a bit tangled, still not quite dry… her green uncertain eyes, always looking at themselves as if not to trust what they saw. There was no doubt; there was a girl in the mirror, at least by physical appearance. There may be a boy inside, but there was a girl outside. That’s what Angélique had to go on. She still didn’t believe or have the remotest thought that I was a boy, so she was trying to do what she could to take care of a girl… because that’s what she thought me to be.
Maybe I was being unfair to Angélique. I could see why she was angry now. She understood that I didn’t usually do these things, and that I needed help to get them done, and she wanted to help. I of course, finding them offensive and like a little stab at my male integrity, shoved them rudely back in her face.
I let out a deep sigh and went back to the bed. I sat down and picked up the brush, and tried brushing out my hair.
French Whines… Cinq
By: CS Fox
“I’m ready…” I said looking through the crack in Angélique’s door. She was pulling up her hose and stepping into a nice pair of shoes. Hearing my voice she looked up at me and her eyes just lit up.
“Oh your gorgeous!” she said with a huge smile. She waved me into the room and clasped her hands together. “It looks wonderful.”
I walked into the room feeling a little stupid. I was wearing a foofy, girly, uncomfortable dress; but at least it set Angélique abuzz with happy sounds. Her voice was just about in song again as she came up to primp and finish out the last few details I’d missed. I was happy that I had at least relinquished her anger.
“Thank you Alouette. I really appreciate what you’ve done. I’m sorry I was mad earlier, but I’ve decided if I’m going to care for you, I’m going to do it like I teach my classes. I’ll be your teacher first, and your friend later.”
I heard “merci” coupled with my name. There was also another long thread of speech with it, but I think they were just more praises that I’d given in and done what she’d asked.
All smiles now, Angélique went to a drawer and got out a white ribbon. She came to me and started to play with my hair. I stifled back the urge to bolt and let her do what she wanted. I’ve come this far, might as well let her have her day. Taking a handful of hair from the right side of my head, and then another from the left side, she started to braid it together; she left the good majority of the hair in the middle going straight down my back. In the end, I had my hair braided into a pony tail, on top of straight hair in the back, with a white ribbon on the end. The overall process wasn’t too horrible, but I still felt a little more girly then I would have cared too.
“Perfect,” Angélique said with a smile. She finished getting ready just as church bells began to ring somewhere in the town.
“We’re going to church?” I said a little curiously. The clothes and preparations suddenly made a lot more sense now. Angélique didn’t answer my question, probably because she couldn’t understand it, but it didn’t matter, I knew the answer. It had been a long time since I’d been to church. My family is a Christmas and Easter family as far as church is concerned.
As for me personally, I guess you could say I’m spiritual. I was raised being read the bible by my grandma, but you could probably only say I’ve taken it half to heart. Still church would be interesting. It would be like my debut upon the town.
“There’s St. Oren’s bells. Let’s be on our way.”
Once again my hand was grabbed and off we went; down the stairs and out the door and into the little town once more (yay, it rhymes).
The church was on the east side of town. We weaved around the lower hill, having only to walk about four blocks once we were actually in the town. From the looks of things, everyone went to church on Sunday. Families and neighbors were all in their best and on their way to where they had heard the bells calling. Angélique said “bonjour” to half a dozen people about every block we passed and answered what I assumed to be inquiries about me.
“Who’s that Angélique? One of your students?”
“This is Allouette, an American girl who will be staying with me for a while.”
“Well doesn’t she look pretty!”
“Mommy, she doesn’t really… walk like a girl.”
“Shhhh, that’s just how American’s walk. Don’t make fun.”
The church was very pretty. I realized I’d passed it my first day here. It was next to the little catholic school, and looked about as old as that accursed winery. Its stone structure and large double doors were inviting all to come in, including a little stranger like me.
Angélique led me in, saying a bunch more “bonjours” mixed in with polite gossip, and a nod to one of the priory standing at the door. I did my best to keep my eyes on the floor, and avoid everyone’s questioning gaze. Apparently a new face in a close-nit church was cause for stares.
Taking a moment to sit and brush the damn foofy dress flat, I noticed that I wasn’t the only one my age. There were at least ten or fifteen boys and girls about my age. I could even see that girl whose house we’d stopped by the other day. She was sitting with her mother and father, and also the two other children of her family.
Further down the rows, I could see Inspector Facet, who shot me a mean smirk. I stuck my tongue out at him and he mouthed the words in English “that’s a nice dress” to which I was about to flick him off, but Angélique caught my hand before I could do it and gave it a gentle slap. A few more rings of the bells and the organ started to play. The chatter of the congregation died down and everyone started to fish out the hymnals from the pews.
Now if you’ve ever been to a foreign movie with no subtitles, then you’ve had an experience like I have at St. Oren’s. The pastor was very animated and proceeded to shout fire and brimstone in that French eloquence that I have no comprehension of.
Boredom gripped me in less then ten minutes. As a rule, I’ve always considered myself to have a mild case of attention deficit disorder. All the way since elementary school, I’ve found my mind wanders away from just about everything that doesn’t have a TV or computer screen attached to it. Sightseeing didn’t count, because there was the novelty of something new attached to that, but as far as church went, there was nothing new about this church, only the language selected for its sermon.
I got to fidgeting, which didn’t please Angélique. I switched gears to just flipping through the hymnals and prayer books, hoping for something interesting. In the back of the prayer books they had some pictures, so I amused myself a little while looking at them and making up a story to go along with them. I’d share them here, but most of them were fairly blasphemous, so it’s probably better left undone.
The sermon dragged on for the better part of an hour. Then everyone was on their feet, and singing in high volume; followed by offering, sacrament and communion, second offering and finally, more singing. I went through the motions, and even started to sing along to “Ave Maria” which was played during second offering. I knew a little bit of Latin, and that song was obviously the same in the US as it was here, so I got by with that tiny piece of vocal familiarity. The only problem was that my singing voice was not familiar, although, I must say with a blush, I can sing rather well now.
After church we lined up in wait to meet the pastor. It seemed the whole town gleefully got in line to shake his hand and say hello. Angélique of course, was in no rush so we were towards the back of the line. I really wanted to be in a rush, but I didn’t know what I needed to rush for. I really didn’t have anything to do, except try and find out some very important questions that I had no idea how to start answering.
“Angélique, you bring a new face to my flock?” Father Salade asked warmly.
“This is Alouette, Father. She is from America , and going to be with me for a little while.”
Angélique was talking to the pastor, and after saying my name, he extended his hand to me. I shook it a little nervously tried not to look into his eyes very much, but he seemed like a nice enough individual. I gave him a weak “hello.”
“Ah, so this is the girl that Inspector Facet and Bedeau had mentioned. You know, that’s an awfully nice thing you’re doing for her.”
“Thank you father. I couldn’t help it really. Her story just broke my heart.”
“I don’t know it really. I found her drunk in the ditch in the back road behind town. She can’t speak French, and everything she said in English seemed to be nothing but lies to try and confuse us. Truth be told, I think she’s been a runaway for a few years now, and it just made me sad to think how long she’s been living on the streets.”
“You have a heart of gold Angélique, and everyone will smile at you for it. Bless you child.”
The pastor and Angélique exchanged pleasantries for a while, and occasionally, the pastor would look down at me with this horrible expression. He looked like he wanted to say “Oh you poor pathetic thing.” It made me feel rotten, because somehow I think my story was starting to get around, and from what I’d gathered, it read something like “Young runaway, drinks a lot, winds up in ditch… pees herself.” That last part I’m not sure if everyone knew, because I think up to now it hadn’t happened publicly, which I was hoping to keep that way. Still, it felt miserable to be the outsider, and even worse to be the pitiable one.
We left the church and started walking back towards Angélique’s house. I wasn’t really sure what the rest of the afternoon held, probably some French lessons. Angélique seemed in high spirits, like her big day on the town had gone well. I think more like she was happy I didn’t cause a scene like I’d done everywhere else.
As if on cue, I froze. Angélique stopped walking as she felt my hand tug at hers from the stop of momentum. A small trail of liquid rain down my leg and pooled around my shoes on the cobblestone, staining my stocks as it traveled over them.
It wasn’t a lot, but it was enough to start the waterworks in my eyes. Angélique had a rising look of anger in hers, until she saw the tears forming. She quickly bent down and her face changed to a serene look of care and concern.
“Awww Alouette, you really can’t help it can you?”
She was giving me that same pity look the pastor had.
“Come on, let’s get you home quick.”
We hurried home a little faster. It was almost routine now what we did. She had me take off the wet things, and then hop in the tub. When I was out, I came back to the room, and Angélique had a few more of the cloth diapers lying on the bed.
“NON!” I shouted when I saw them. Angélique looked at me a little torn.
“I knew this would be a delicate situation. It was like this last night too.”
“I’m not wearing. No. Non.”
Angélique pointed at the laundry bin again. I shrugged. “So what? I’d rather make mountains of laundry then wear a diaper all day.”
Angélique could see the frustration written on my face. “I’d be upset if I were you too. I know you can’t control it, but it’s just easier this way. I was hopeful last night when you made it to the bathroom, but you’re just going to have to deal with this till I can help you get better.”
She patted the bed next to her. I didn’t budge. I could tell by her voice she wanted to reason with me, but I was beyond reason. She’d gotten me in a dress earlier, she should be happy with that. She came over and grabbed my hand. I resisted, but only half heartedly. My towel was starting to fall off, so I used my free hand to grab at that while still resisting her grip on my hand.
“Non… I don’t want too….” I said softly. It was hard because I knew that I probably should be wearing them. With the exception of that one time, it seemed like I just wet whenever my body felt like. Angélique lifted me by the waist and laid me down on the bed. I started to cry softly, but gave up resisting.
“Awww it’s okay Alouette… This will just be a temporary solution…”
I imagine her words would be much more comforting if I could understand them. I laid there like a whimpering puppy, as she powered and diapered me. My will was broken now, on top of being a girl, I’d have to accept the fact that this girl was not well potty trained.
The plastic pants came up, and she handed me a training bra which we had bought yesterday. I got off the bed and stood up. I knew the mirror was in the corner, but I dared not turn to it, I didn’t even want to know what I looked like. Angélique handed me a pair of Khaki pants we’d also bought yesterday; I took them and tried to put them on, but they wouldn’t come on over the diapers. My tears refreshed anew as I tried to pull the pants on in frustration.
Angélique smiled that pity smile and kneeled down to hug me. I just broke down from there. It came out in rivers and heaves, my whole body shaking. I cried because I was a girl, I cried because I wasn’t supposed to be a girl. I cried because I was in diapers, and I cried because now I wouldn’t be able to hide it.
“There there… nono don’t cry. We’ll think of something.”
She waited till I was done, then went back down the hall and came out with a sundress. It was light-blue and very plain. She helped get it over my head and it fell over my hips, and extended slightly with the extra padding I was wearing. It came down to about my shins, so I was a little happier that I could perhaps hide this secret, even if it had to be done by a dress.
The day’s agenda seemed to be chores. For staying with her, she put me to work. First she made me brunch, since it was about mid-morning. Then she set me up with laundry, which, to be fair, was almost totally mine anyway. The machine was your every day standard and she asked some French question about it, I waved her off, saying I knew how to do laundry, but being as she didn’t trust anything about me, she did a mock process for the first load and watched me start on the actual one.
With laundry getting done, she had me start dusting some of the house. I felt like a little maid, but did the chores without saying anything. It didn’t take too long anyways, but when I’d finished that, it was to the French books.
Angélique and I had gotten some of the basics down. We had developed an understanding of hand gestures and oui and non for most things. I’d also learned important phrases like “Excusez-moi, je suis americain,” which was “pardon me, I’m American.” Angélique hoped I could use as an umbrella excuse for everything, including my bad manners, boyish behavior and nervous fidgeting (the main things she saw wrong with me).
After starting another load of laundry, Angélique wanted us to go somewhere. Being dressed and crinkling as I was, I didn’t like the idea of leaving the house. I dragged my feet and gave every impression I could that I wanted to stay, but I got the strong message that she did not intend to leave me alone to somehow get into more trouble.
We left the house, with me being as careful when I walked as if I knew the street was mined. If I walked with my legs just wide enough, the plastic panties didn’t seem to make as much noise since they didn’t bunch together. The drawback was, that my waddle made me look even more ridiculous then I probably already did.
We came back to the little grocer, and Angélique brought me to the pharmacy section. I was immediately unhappy we were there. She got two packages of the largest size training pants and baby diapers should could. My body was small enough they’d probably fit, and even though the packages were full of French writing, you can’t mistake the image on the front of a smiling toddler. I started fussing and complaining, till I noticed an older lady take attention to the commotion. I shut up because it was obvious who they would be for.
Angélique didn’t drag out our purchase, and I thanked my lucky stars the items fit into a large brown paper bag, so you couldn’t tell what she was carrying. As soon as we were out of the shop, she had me carry the bag. I promptly threw it down on the street when she gave it to me. She looked at me sternly for a moment and then picked up the bag and carried it herself.
“You know, I got these for you. They’ll be thin enough for you to wear them under normal pants. These pull-ups shouldn’t be any different then regular panties as far as you’re concerned. The diapers will cut back on your laundry too after your apparent nightly problem.”
I didn’t dignify her comments with a response; I just started walking back towards her house, in my proud, stupid, waddle. She sighed behind me and started to follow after she’d picked up the bag.
As we were heading back to her house, a gang of kids came up. They saw me and looked on with interest. My joints paralyzed. Angélique saw them and smiled and waved with her free hand.
“Bonjour!” She said excitedly. The gang sort of slinked away. They were all boys, roughly my age. One had a soccer ball and carried it under an arm. The gang kept leaving except for two boys who just stayed, staring at me.
“Who is that girl Angélique?”
“I’m your teacher Marcel, use better etiquette. Call me teacher or mademoiselle.”
“Who is that girl… teacher?” asked Marcel. His brother Gérard smirked at his defiance.
“This is Alouette.”
“Is she related to you?”
“Non, she’s visiting from America and staying with me.”
“Will she be in our class?”
Angélique paused for a moment. The thought hadn’t occurred to her. Why not, what else would she do the five days of the week she’d be teaching her classes? “Oui, she will be in your class. She’s a year older then you, she’s 15, like your brother.”
The two boys looked at each other, then at me again. Some of their gang had wandered back to see what the hold-up was.
“I don’t like her, don’t sit her near me.”
Angélique frowned. “That’s a not very nice, you don’t even know her Marcel. And I’d advise you to stop giving me orders… or you may just find yourself sitting next to her afterall.”
“Hey Alouette, do you play sports at all?” asked Gérard. He was usually Marcel’s handyman… funny how the younger was the boss.
One of the boys was talking to me. He looked at me and said my name coupled with a few things. I didn’t really know what he was saying so I just nodded.
“She only speaks English Gérard. She can’t understand me.”
“Well she’s nodding like she can.”
One of the gang behind them rolled the soccer ball my way. I think they were gauging me up for a game or something. I smiled ruefully and started to move, but heard the crinkle crinkle under my dress. I slowed down and stutter stepped causing some of the boys to giggle.
Hearing their giggle only poured some fuel on the fire and I lined my foot up perfectly with the ball, attacking it from an angle. I’d spent a few years playing pick-up games, true my sports were rugby and baseball, but that doesn’t mean I can’t handle a soccer ball.
Like a white/black round rocket, the ball shot right into Gérard’s face. He started to duck, but didn’t quite react in time and the ball glanced him on the right side of the face. I smiled, and Angélique laughed a little.
“Wow, you’re pretty good Alouette,” Angélique said.
I could tell some of the other boys were impressed, but not the two that had stayed behind to talk. They sneared at me and the taller one who had questioned me ordered them all to move along. They did so with reluctance and Angélique and I left on our way. I was happy our encounter hadn’t turned to exposure, and that I was able to at least display a little of my lost manliness in front of Angélique.
She chatted right along till we got to our house. I think she was impressed with my athletic display and maybe had put me a notch higher in her book (so now I was one rung above teenage-wino).
We got the finished laundry and I folded it. Angélique got on the phone and made a phone call to someone and kept saying my name which worried me a little.
“Yes, that girl I brought to church today. I’d like to enroll her in my class. Alouette only speaks English, which may be a bit of a problem, but I’m tutoring her every day, I think she’ll pick up the language quick since she’s in a sink or swim situation as it is… Uh huh, I’ll just get her to change into one of the uniforms when we get to school tomorrow morning… thanks for allowing her in.”
Angélique hung up the phone and looked at me with a smile. I raised an eyebrow cautiously…
“Okay, why are you smiling? Did you just order really girly clothes for me or something?” I asked. She didn’t answer and walked by playfully patting me on the head. I shrugged and finished folding laundry.
It was well on into the afternoon by now. Angélique had gone to her books, and I had gotten to memorizing the numbers.
“Un, duex, trios, quatre, cinq, six, sept, huit…” My voice trailed off to a whisper. I felt my diaper growing warm. The sudden quiet got Angélique to look up from her book. I bit my lower lip, getting a bit nervous and not really sure what to say.
“Are you okay?”
Angélique noticed my change in demeanor. She got up and came to my chair. I sat still biting my lip.
“The only time you get that quiet…”
She started to reach down for my dress but I brought my hand out and stopped her. I didn’t say anything; I just put the book down and nodded. I started walking up the stairs feeling a little defeated with myself. Angélique came up a moment later. I waited awkwardly by the bed.
“How do you want to do this?” I asked as she came in with the brown bag from the store. She quietly patted the bed, and I laid down. She got out the package of pull-ups and tore the top, taking one out. She then took down the plastic panties and undid my diaper. In the package she’d also gotten some baby wipes and things and she took one of those out.
There was a pause of hesitation and an awkward moment between us. I think it was more for her then me, because of what she was doing. I didn’t much care, because I considered anything below my waist foreign territory to me that I really had no intention of exploring anyway.
She wiped me up and then helped me slide into a pair of the pull-ups. When I had them on, I really must admit, they were a lot better then the bulky cloth diaper. Felt much more like regular panties… I mean underwear… geeze, got me thinking they’re panties now.
With these new pull-ups I got out the pair of khakis I hadn’t been able to wear earlier. I pulled them on with ease and felt a little better now. Angélique smiled.
“And you through them down when I asked you to carry them.”
I realized she must have been commenting about my reaction earlier. I looked meekly at her… “Merci.”
She smiled again and tussled my hair. “It’s a good thing I got them. I can’t imagine how embarrassed you’d be if you had to wear those cloth diapers to class tomorrow.”
Angélique kept talking, and I listened but didn’t understand. I went over to the dresser and found one of the t-shirts we’d bought. It was just a plain white t-shirt with a nike logo on it. I put it on and felt much less like a girl. I did notice however that the pull-up came up a little high, and was a bit obvious if my shirt rode up. I hoped that wouldn’t be much of a problem sense we didn’t seem to leave the house much anyway. I was kind of glad that Angélique seemed to be a homebody.
We went downstairs and she started on dinner while I got back to my French. She made a game of naming off every item that went into our dish. She’d say it, show it to me, and I’d repeat it. After a while she’d just say “ha” and hold something up, like a little visual quiz, I’d repeat it (if I knew it). We did this till dinner was ready and I was more then ready to eat.
French Whines… Six
By: CS Fox
“Ow! Hey what was that for?”
Angélique frowned and pointed with her fork at mine.
“What, I’m eating! I’m not allowed to eat?”
Angélique pointed at herself and then took a knife and daintily cut a small piece of beef and then skewered it with her fork before eating it. I waited patiently till she was done, then did the same, only making my portion a little larger. Angélique groaned. I cut that portion in half. Another groan… I angrily cut it in half once again. No groan this time. I wolfed the piece down.
“You eat like a pig? Do you understand this? Oink oink. Pig!”
Apparently my hunger was a crime here. I dropped the fork and grabbed the meat in my hand and took a bite out of it like a chicken leg. “Oink” I said keeping my eyes locked with hers. She sneered and cut up her piece the same way she had before. I put down the beef, wiped my hand on a napkin and ate the same way I had before with my slightly larger chunks. I’d made my point; I’ll eat how I want.
The remainder of dinner was held in silence. The only noise came from my chewing as noisily as I could. It put Angélique in a brooding mood, so I decided not to taunt her further. When we were done, my conscience got the better of me and I felt a little guilty so I was kind enough to bring my plate up to the sink and do our dishes.
To make up for lost ground, Angélique made up for any dinner frustrations with my language lessons. We began with an emphasis on assigning masculine and feminine tags to French words. She was drilling relentlessly because I didn’t comprehend it all. To me it’s ridiculous to assign gender to an inanimate object. I mean why refer to Lady Crack Pipe or Good Sir Dishrag when neither one looked any more female or male then the other?
After a solid hour, Angélique wandered upstairs rubbing her temples and looking like I’d just put her through slow torture. It seemed like there were two levels of feeling towards me. Either she was mad and frustrated, or she was worried and pitying. I heard the bathroom door shut. The noise of the door echoed in my head a bit. I sat looking at the books a little longer till something dawned on me. I was alone. For the first time since I’d woken up in Angélique’s house, I was under no supervision… My eyes shot to the door and found it unguarded.
I put down the books nervously, and tip toed to the door. I knew that Angélique would go nuts if she knew I was going to do exactly what she didn’t want me to, but so what, she wouldn’t believe my case, so I was going to prove it. There was bound to be some evidence left on that back road.
I left the house and started to run. My shoes weren’t much of a help, so I kicked them off in Angélique’s front path and ran barefoot. I had a decent grasp of the town now. I knew if I followed the road to the main hill, I could take the split and run out the back of town to that vineyard. The last thing I remember in my male life was walking from that horrid place and then, well you know what happened after that.
“Alouette? Could you come up here?” Angélique asked. There was no answer. “Alouette?” she asked again a little louder. She began to feel a small twitch in the pit of her stomach, like the absence of reply was signaling something wrong. She went downstairs a little faster then usual, and found no one in the living room. Angélique ran for the phone.
I rounded the split street in a rush. I knew it wouldn’t take long for Angélique to realize my absence and figured she’d react as rashly as she did with everything. It was kind of dark now, and there really was not a lot of activity. A lot of the houses had their lights on, and I could even make out some music from one place, but there wasn’t much in the way of people or cars milling about.
I made it to the outskirts of town, and the streetlamps got farther and farther apart and then not at all. I knew I was close. I could make out the vague impression of the vineyard on the skyline. I stopped my jog and started to root through the side of the road. I’d had a good amount of stuff with me when I was a guy; I’d had a backpack and my books which I’d dropped, and my clothes and hat. Some of it had to be around here somewhere.
I eased my way down into the ditch and started to root around in the dim light. It wasn’t impossible to see, but it wasn’t easy to make anything out either.
“Is there nothing here?” I asked after I’d rooted around for a little bit. I felt sure I’d find something of mine. Some little scrap of who I’d been. I climbed up and out of the ditch. Still no sign of a book or paper, then my foot connected with something. I reached down and picked up something glass.
My eyes widened when I realized what it was. It was the bottle. I’d found proof. I climbed my way back over to the road and started walking back to town. I had something, something that proved it wasn’t all a dream. It was an essential piece to my mental stability. Just as I was nearing the main part of town, there was a sudden blip blip followed by some colorful lights.
“Oh crap the po’po’s!” I bolted. I didn’t have to stop to think, I knew they were after me. The car sped up a little, so I moved to the sidewalk, in the hopes the damn thing wouldn’t run me over. I turned at the main intersection again and passed a couple standing on the sidewalk. They looked at me a bit oddly as the police car rounded the corner too. It sped up on the straight and stopped a half block ahead of me. Inspecter Facet stepped out of the car, and Inspector Bedeau got out on the other side. I skidded to a halt. They both looked a little comical. Their car was kind of a hatchback and seeing chunky Bedeau and tall/skinny Facet get out of it… I might as well have been chased down by a Laurel and Hardy movie.
“Little runaway, do you want to go to a juvenile hall?” Inspector Facet asked coldly. I stood still, but did my best to look angry.
“What iz zee meaning of zis? You so ungrateful to Angélique!” chimed in Bedeau in his accent. Still I held my ground. The two started to approach me.
“I’m not running away! I just needed to find answers!” I yelled as the two came at me.
“Answers to what? Have you been drinking? Cause if that’s what I think it is under your arm, then we’ve got a problem.”
I tucked the bottle a little closer to my body and started walking around them in a circle. Bedeau moved to block me in his heavy wobble walk. The two began to advance on me again. It wasn’t really threatening, more like the way someone would approach a dog they intend to collar. I backed up and brought the bottle close to my chest.
“Look at her… she’s holding that bottle like a teddy bear,” chuckled Inspector Facet.
“Angélique said she was drunk when she found her. I didn’t really believe it cause of how young she is, but now… jeeze, she’s an addict.”
I held the bottle as close as I could. Any tighter and I would have broken it. It was the only proof I had right now, the only proof that confirmed what my mind knew, but no eyes believed. I noticed the lights and commotion were starting to attract attention. The eyes and faces of the locals were peering through blinds and curtains of nearby houses. I gulped loudly as the two men stopped in front of me. I felt my pull-up get warm.
Angélique heard a car roll up outside. She rushed to the window and saw the multi-colored lights filling the night. There was a knock at the door.
“We picked up a little runaway…” Inspector Facet said with a grim smile. Bedeau marched me into Angélique’s house. She was waiting in the living room, looking at me strangely. I couldn’t get an emotional read from her; her face wasn’t displaying anything at all. It scared me worse then if she had been really angry.
I was quick to blurt out. “I wasn’t running away… I just needed to look at something.” Her expression remained unchanged, she looked to Facet.
“What did she say?”
“That she needed a drink,” Facet answered. Angélique nodded, and Bedeau gave him an odd look, but didn’t follow it up with a comment. Facet approached me.
“Maybe I should make this clear… This is for your own good. Angélique here is doing this out of the kindness of her heart. She didn’t have to take you in… If you run away again, I will send you to a juvenile hall.”
I nodded meekly, his tone was so serious it could probably cut me.
“The girls at juvenile halls don’t mess around. How do you think they’ll like an American girl who wets herself and claims some of the things you claim?”
I cringed, for being a jerk, what he said made sense.
“So why don’t you ‘Play Ball’ as you American’s say? It will be better for you I think.”
I again nodded meekly. The two inspectors looked at me a little angrily, then at Angélique with a little bit of pity. Inspector Facet flashed out my bottle of wine, and without thinking I made a grab for it, but he jerked it away with a sneer before turning to walk out. I was about to make chase, but Angélique grabbed my shoulder. When they were gone she went up and shut the door. Her emotions still hadn’t surfaced. She calmly walked back to me and slapped me across the face.
“HOW DARE YOU!?”
My eyes started watering before I even knew what happened. My hand slowly went up to my cheek, feeling the warmth of the slap there.
“You ran away to drink? You retched retched girl… I’ve got half a mind to send you off wherever Inspector Facet was talking about. You have done absolutely nothing but throw any help I give you right back in my face!”
Her face had plenty of emotion now. She was pissed, and I guess she had every right to be. I held my hand to my cheek, feeling a tear roll down it. I couldn’t understand her words, but there’s still something about raw feelings conveyed through tones. The moment I’d run out of her house, without saying why, I stepped over a line with her.
“You just don’t care! You don’t care at all! You don’t care that I’m trying to help you, or that you could find yourself in a really scary place, alone. The only thing you seem to care about is damn vin!”
I heard vin emphasized at the end of her sentence. She thought this was about the wine. She made a dramatic motion at the door and then threw her hands up in the air. I think her meaning was something to the effect of… Leave again and you’re on your own. Angélique went upstairs. I stood with hand to cheek, and sobbed a little softly. In trouble with the police, in trouble at home… things weren’t going well.
I went upstairs when I’d calmed. It was getting late and I knew I should probably go to bed. Angélique was in her room, door wide up. She watched me go by in silence while sitting on her bed. I went into my room and just laid down on mine, once again looking to my friend the ceiling.
“You’ve done it this time. Now no one trusts you and your one step from no one wanting you either…” I said to myself. The thought brought fresh tears.
The noise of a paper bag brought me back to reality. Angélique came into the room with the bag from earlier. She grabbed a few things from it and came up to me.
“I’m so mad. I’ve never been this mad before.”
She was still mad, I could hear it in her voice.
“Why did you run? Do you hate my care that much? Do you need to drink that bad?”
She started to remove my pants as she talked in a raised voice. I didn’t do anything to hamper her and moved my hips to help a little. I knew now was not the time to be difficult.
“And your pull-up is soaked too… guess I should have expected that. I don’t even think you need them, so far you haven’t done anything but pee everything.”
She tore off the sides of my pull-up. I knew it was wet. She took out a wet wipe and ran it over me a little before getting out a disposable diaper and unfolding it to lay under me. I felt juvenile of course, and a part of me wanted to protest, but I stayed mum.
She sprinkled a little powder on me, then brought the diaper up between my legs and tapped it in place. I laid there wondering what next, but to my surprise she took the bag and left the room, closing the door a little harshly.
I felt pretty bad again. It seemed like I couldn’t do anything right in this body, and searching for my real body only led to more trouble. Tears leapt from my eyes, I wasn’t even crying anymore, it just seemed like my eyes began to water every time I reflected on the current state of things. I got up and went over to the dresser. I removed my shirt and bra, since they were the only things I had on besides the diaper, and pulled on an oversized night shirt. I walked back over to my bed and crawled in.
The emotional and physical strain on me today had worn me out completely… but somehow I couldn’t sleep. Try as I might, I couldn’t make myself to clear my mind and go to sleep. I laid there and in my mind watched Angélique yell at me over and over, like I was the dog who had done one bad thing to many. Why did I have to go look for that damn bottle? Was my proving her wrong worth the risk of losing everything?
My throat got dry and my nose runny after laying down so long crying and not being able to sleep. Groggily I got up to go get a drink from downstairs. It was dark and probably the middle of the night by now. I didn’t make any noise as I softly tip toed downstairs to the kitchen. I couldn’t see anything because it was so dark, but I did find the fridge and when I opened it, the little light was enough to go by.
Her fridge was filled with various things you’d expect to see from a girl who cooked healthy. She had some carrot juice on the top shelf, but that really didn’t look appetizing. I was kind of in the mood for a soda, since all the crying had made my throat hurt a little.
I moved things around a little and found a bright bottle in the back. The text on the label was French and none of the words on it looked much like easily translatable English words. I’d say it was a liquor bottle, but it looked too much like a glass coca-cola bottle to be one. I picked it up. The stuff inside was green and fizzy and the front had some long sentences on it circling a picture of a green fairy. It looked like soda…
I fished around for a cup and poured a little out. I tried to sniff at it, but my nose was runny from crying. I took a good sip, and immediately spit it out into the sink, spraying the counter a little. Definitely liquor, hard liquor.. really really hard liquor. What the hell was Angélique doing with this stuff?
I quickly capped the bottle and turned on the faucet to get a drunk with my head under it. I decided I better hide the fact I’d tried it, or Angélique would have even more bad evidence against me. I started to head back up stairs, feeling a little dizzy. At the very least, I could tell even the sip of that stuff was going to help me sleep. I crawled in under the covers and curled up to my pillow. My eyes were heavy now, and it didn’t take much effort to close them.
“Hey girlie,” Anthony said to me. My eyes shot open and I saw myself… the male version of myself, seated at a round table with two shadows. He was shuffling a deck of cards.
I hesitantly got out of bed and walked over to him. He began to deal out the cards to the shadows and I stood behind him, looking at his hand.
“I’m you… right?” I asked a little uncertain.
“You tell me diaper girl… You don’t look much like me.”
“You’re not even looking at me,” I commented. It’s true he was just looking at his cards and watching the shadows as they sorted through theirs.
“I don’t need to look at you. I heard you crinkling a mile away. Stupid baby.”
“I’m not a baby, I’m you. It doesn’t matter what you say, because I know I’m you.”
“You can believe whatever you want to believe. As for me,” He turned around and looked into my eyes. It was a hard nostalgic feeling; those were my own real eyes looking into me. “I’m going to believe what I see right now… and what I see, is a blonde babe in a diaper.”
I really wanted to hit myself. I wanted to tell me I was a jerk, but all that happened instead was I cried. It seemed like my only defense now. Anthony smirked and turned back to his game.
“Poor little girl… Least you have someone to take care of you now. Why don’t you go off and enjoy that for a while.”
I looked up through blurry tears and found he was gone; the table of cards was gone with him. I was in a new room; it was pink and white, and infantile. It was a nursery. Angélique walked up to me.
“Oh there there little Aluoette,” she said in unaccented English. Her voice was very sweet and very calm. It slowed my tears. “Why are you crying?”
“I… don’t want to be a baby. I want to be who I used to be.”
“Oh nonsense, you are who you’ve always been. Here let me help you up.” She gave me a hand and pulled me to my feet. I was still in my long night shirt with a diaper underneath.
“Where are we?”
“We’re in the nursery of course. It’s the room for little kids under three years old.”
“But why am I in here? I’m not 3.”
She patted my diapered behind. “It’s the only room with a changing table, so for now, you’re an honorary three year old.”
“But I’m not three?”
“I’m not three!”
A hand was gently shaking me awake. I bolted upright in bed, panting. Angélique was there and had her hand on my shoulder.
“You were having a nightmare. I could hear you all the way from my room.”
“I’m not three! I’m not a girl! I’m a guy, my name is Anthony!” I was blubbering.
Angélique wanted to be mad. She still WAS mad from earlier, but seeing this, seeing how upset poor Aluoette was, she just couldn’t bring herself to it. She eased Aluoette back down to the pillow. “It’s okay… it was just a dream.”
“I’m not three,” I said again. My voice was shaky and my head hurt. I couldn’t think straight. I just knew I was in trouble, that my body was upset. I rolled out of bed and hit the floor. Angélique jumped to get me in surprise, but not before I threw up.
I was taken to the bathroom. My head was heavy still and now my stomach wasn’t doing so great either. I felt another hurl coming, but it wasn’t as strong and I kept it down. Angélique had a wet washcloth and dabbed at my forehead.
“Maybe this will teach you not drink so much vin, eh Aluoette?”
“No… no vin…”
When I was feeling a little better, Angélique helped me back to my room, and cleaned up my little mess. She got me back into bed, and found my diaper wet, so she changed it. I rolled over and tried to straighten out my head. My eyes found Angélique.
“I… I’m… I’m sorry.” I searched for the right words… “Désolé…”
Angélique smiled at me. It almost instantly made me feel better. “I forgive you, just… please don’t make this so difficult.” She kissed me on the forehead. “And if you get sick again, you’re on your own in terms of clean up.”
She left my room and me to sleep. I hit the pillow like a block of cement and went dead to the world. My head was still heavy… I thought, ‘the first thing I do when I learn good enough French, is question her about that bottle in the fridge.’
Sleep and I met again at last, but our time together was over before I could get rid of whatever had plagued me. Angélique was in my room at the crack of dawn, bright and chipper, as if nothing out of the ordinary had gone on last night. I buried my head under the pillows.
French Whines… Sept
By: CS Fox
“What am I going to do with you? You’d sleep right through school wouldn’t you?”
“No no, speak your French to someone else.” I said hiding under the pillow. “My offices don’t open till 10am .”
“Whatever you’re saying, I hope it’s a lot of regret for last night. You’re lucky I’m in a good mood this morning.”
Once again I felt the covers stripped from my body. I curled up and shivered, Angélique’s house could get soo cold during the night.
She was in her sing-song voice this morning, actually, she was in her sing-song voice every morning. She was just one of those morning people. And like the day before, I felt a hand patting my diapered bottom.
“Abuse abuse!” I said moving myself away and groping a blind hand over my back to stop the intrusion, and possibly regain my warm covers.
“You said that yesterday morning too… What is this ‘abuse’ mean?”
“Yes yes, abuse! You’re repeating it, but somehow I don’t think you’ll stop it.” When her hand was away, I patted myself down there. My diaper was wet and brought a frown to my face. I didn’t really expect it to be any other way, but I could always hope.
“Today you start school! You’re picking up French with good progress, which makes me want to think you’re smart for a runaway. Hopefully you won’t be too far behind my class.”
I heard “français” somewhere in her morning complaints of my sleeping habits; she wanted me to get started on our lessons. “Fine, French lessons later. I don’t see any reason why we have to get up so early for it now.”
The pillow protecting my head was being pulled free. I gripped my hands onto it, flopping over so that I had the pillow firmly as Angélique tugged it away from me. I dug my heals into the edge of the bed as I put my back to the wall. What a sight we must have been. Me with heels dug into the bed, resisting my removal from it with all my might. I saw a smirk growing on Angélique’s face, and just as I was about to let go, she beat me to it. The make of my resistance returned to me and sent me hard into the wall I’d been leaning against; I fumbled with the pillow a moment before throwing it in frustration at Angélique. She ducked the pillow with ease and giggled.
“Wash and get dressed, I’ll start on breakfast.”
Angélique left a towel on my dresser and opened one of the drawers on her way out. It was her non-verbal hint for me to bathe and dress. I waited till she was gone before gathering my bedding from the floor and heaping them back on my bed. I started the water in the bathroom at the end of the hall.
I untaped the wet diaper I was wearing and balled it up to throw away in the trashcan. Just out of hope I sat on the toilet, but nothing really happened, I just sat there and realized there was no communication between my lower half and my upper half as far as bathroom habits went. Sighing, I got in the tub and cleaned up.
I got dressed for the day; I figured it would be prudent to wear pull-ups, so I did. Wearing them allowed me to still hide my problem even when wearing plain slacks. I put on a bra for my A barely B cup, followed by a t-shirt with a flower on it. Looking in the mirror, my hair still damp, I frowned at my reality.
“Another day… and I’m still a girl,” I said unhappily. “Day 3, here we go.”
Angélique had breakfast waiting on the table. I noticed she was dressed up nicer then she had been on Saturday. She was a step down from church Sunday, but still better then casual. Made me wonder what today had in store.
“We’ll have to get your uniform when we get to school.”
“Yes, whatever, breakfast is fine.”
I picked at my food. Something didn’t seem right. I couldn’t put my finger on it. When we’d finished eating, we left the house. Angélique packed up a lot of the books scattered around her desk and we headed into town. I let myself be taken, I couldn’t really dictate what we were to do anyway.
“I think Sophie used to take English lessons, so that should help us out a lot. I’ll make sure you sit by her in class.”
I mostly ignored Angélique and just let my eyes wander lazily around the town. It was waking up and getting ready for the day as we walked through it. People were driving out of the little place in their cars and kids were walking up the street in the direction we were heading.
As we neared the school and I noticed a lot of kids walking into the yard, I realized something. A lot of those kids were my age, and Angélique was taking me in that direction.
“OH NO! I am not going to school!” I said suddenly putting on the brakes and trying to tug away from Angélique.
“Merd… I knew this would happen. You didn’t understand a word I’d said did you? I don’t care, you’re going to school. A girl your age needs to be in school!”
“No! No school!”
Any of the kids still on their way to school, or talking in the yard began to look my way. We were making a scene, and I was a new face.
“That’s the girl who was arrested outside my house last night!” said one girl excitedly.
“Why is she fighting with our teacher?” asked another.
“She’s just American,” Papillon said with modest disinterest. “She’s living with our teacher for a little while.”
The voices and eyes of my peers began to make me feel a little nervous. I stopped resisting. Angélique tugged at my hand and caused me to stumble a little behind her as we headed up the sidewalk between groups of students to the school. A few looked me over, sizing me up, seeing what new show had just entered their midst. Seeing how I was being dragged by Angélique, a few just laughed.
Angélique called to one of the girls in the yard. She came up to us a little shyly. “Sophie, I could use your help. Please come here a moment.”
A girl with glasses and reddish-brown hair cautiously approached Angelique. She didn't say anything, but just stared expectantly, probably waiting for the reason she'd been beckoned.
"This is Aluoette, she's a new student in my class. Could you take her to the headmistress?"
The girl had a voice just above a whisper, like she was afraid to talk with it. "Why me?"
"Your dad told me that you used to take English lessons at your old school. Aluoette here can't speak any French, she only speaks English and I'd really appreciate if you'd help me by translating."
The girl looked at me. Her blue eyes scanned me behind the safety of her glasses, but she quickly returned her eyes to the floor when she noticed me returning the inspection.
“My name’s Sophie,” she said with a slight accent. “Teacher said she’ll need my help talking to you.”
I hugged her. It surprised her a bit, but finding another person speaking English made me very happy. Up till now, only a-hole policemen spoke English around here. Finding this girl elevated her to Queen of the country in my eyes.
“Andy? It’s not Alouette?” she said in her quiet whisper.
“Oh, yeah, I was only kidding, it’s Alouette,” I said cursing myself for the slip inside. “But you said… teacher? Is Angélique your teacher?”
“She’s your teacher too.”
Angélique smiled at us both. “I’m going to let you be a little late to class, please take her to the headmistress’ office. I’m so glad you’re doing this for me Sophie. I’ll be sure to give you extra credit.”
“Merci,” replied Sophie with a little curtsey. Angélique left us and headed down the hall.
“She’s a teacher?” I said looking dumbfounded as she walked away.
Sophie looked in the same direction as me, and nodded. Then she turned and started walking the other way down the hall, I jogged to catch up. She broke the silence in her timid accented voice. “Was it true you were arrested last night?”
“Um… that’s a long story.”
“I think… we’ll have time. Teacher said we could be late to class so that you could meet the headmistress and get a uniform.”
I looked at Sophie a little oddly, but then realized that she and every other student here had been dressed exactly alike. The boys all had the same slacks and polo shirt, and the girls had identical outfits except with a skirt instead of slacks. When I’d walked into the school yard today, I must have looked even more an outsider being dressed a little boyishly in slacks with a t-shirt.
I did my best to explain the business with the dumb inspectors last night to Sophie. I decided it would be best not to tell her why the police were chasing me, but rather modify the story to say “they thought I was running away again.” Which I’d hoped would lesson any opinions of me as a wino.
For the most part, Sophie seemed like a nice girl. I couldn’t really catch much in the way of emotions, she seemed sort of like a shy and kind of spacey girl. She was also a little shorter then me, but just as skinny.
“Papa said you have a drinking problem,” Sophie said as we neared the end of the hall. The question made me flinch. So everyone in the town knew about it already I guess.
“No… it’s a bad miss understanding.”
“I don’t think so. My Papa is a police officer.”
My mouth dropped… “You’re last name’s not… Bedeau or Facet is it?”
“No no no, my dad is the desk man, he’s not an inspector.”
The events at the station two days ago flashed back to my head. “Oh right… I did meet him.”
We got to the end of the hall and Sophie opened the door to a small office for me. An elderly lady with horn rimmed glasses sat behind a desk, next to another door.
“Can I help you?”
“A new girl to see the headmistress.”
“Take a seat, she’ll be with you both momentarily.”
Sophie took my hand and led me to sit down with her in a few chairs. First day and I was essentially in the Principle’s office. It was high school all over again, like I had rewound the clock 7 years. I looked about and saw a few catholic icons. This was apparently a religious school, which made sense being attached to the church and all. Still it would be interesting to be in a school again. Maybe not even that hard since I’d done all this before… only… in English.
I felt my pull-up get a little warm and I frowned, then I panicked a little. I didn’t have a spare one. Luckily it seemed like a tiny wet, but if this school was like any other, it was going to be a long day ahead of me. This might be a little tricky.
“She’ll see you both now…” The elderly lady said opening the office door.
Sophie led me into the office and we found a nun looking over some papers. She looked up and smiled at me warmly.
“Hello Sophie, who’s this?”
Sophie had that same nervous twitch and found it even harder to speak now. “A new student, her name is Aluoette.”
“Ah… Aluoette,” she said nodding at me. I shyly waved my hand. “Angélique called about you yesterday.” Her warm smile turned to a frown. “Inspector Facet also called about you yesterday.”
I heard “Inspector Facet,” and immediately knew I was boned. My reputation preceded me.
“Parlez-vous français?” the Nun asked at me continuing her scowl. I shook my head no. She turned to Sophie, making the connection.
“Tell her that if I so much as smell wine on her breath at any time here, I’m going to march her straight to Inspector Facet’s office.”
Sophie looked a little nervous and didn’t say anything for a moment. The nun shouted at her and she delivered the threat to me. Honestly I could have guessed it hearing the key words “Vin” and “Inspector Facet.”
The nun proceeded to list off the ten commandments of the school. I began to wonder where she’d conjured up that smile as we’d walked in, because there was no hint of it now. She plowed right on through the justice system of her little school. Everything began with her, and ended with her kicking you to the curb. That’s at least what I got out of it. Sophie seemed to be in a rather uncomfortable spot. It sounded like the Nun was yelling at her, even though the yells were meant for me, and really didn’t have the desired effect, because the relay spoke to me like a French mouse.
Finally the nun got up from her desk and went to a closet and returned with a few garments neatly folded in a stack.
“They’re your size, and if they aren’t too bad.”
She opened the door for us to leave. I was holding my new uniform and just left as quickly as I could with Sophie. The old lady at the desk was trying to hide a smirk as we left.
“That wasn’t the nicest welcome I’ve gotten so far…” I said a little flatly as I tipped my clothes to look at them a little better. Seemed to be an exact replica of Sophie’s. The lady at the desk rolled her eyes at me, and I realized she couldn’t understand what I’d said. I smiled “You have ugly glasses.” I said turning to walk out of the room. She nodded, and Sophie started to translate, but I quickly yanked her out into the hall with me.
“Where can I get changed?”
“You told me you didn’t have a problem with wine,” Sophie said in her quiet way.
“Then why was the headmistress so mad?”
“Because she talked to Inspector Facet, he’s a jerk. Anyone who talks to him gets mad.”
Sophie seemed to weigh what I’d just said in her head. While she was still deciding she started walking down another hallway again. I hurried after her.
We came to a gymnasium. It wasn’t really big. Only one basketball court sized room. No bleachers, a few scattered folding chairs, and some aerobic mats stacked in the corner. Sophie kept walking and led me to two doors.
“The bathroom here is where we change for PE she said,” she went in one of the doors. I turned and went for the other. “WHAT-ARE-YOU-DOING?” she exclaimed. Her accent caused her words to mash together in her hurry to get them out. Her voice also nearly rose to a normal level. I stopped mid-step and retracted my hand from the door, noticing the little blue circle with a white stick-figure man on it.
“Ohhh right,” I said feeling stupid once more. She grabbed my hand and tugged me into the girl’s room. I felt a little nervous; being a girl was one thing, entering their world was another. Luckily there was no one in the room.
I put the pile of clothes down on a bench in the middle of some locker rows. I started to unbutton my pants, then… noticed what I was wearing underneath. I quickly re-buttoned them and sighed in relief that Sophie wasn’t paying attention to my undergarments. I grabbed the bundle of clothes and scurried to one of the bathroom stalls. I immerged a few moments later in my white shirt and pleated skirt.
“Here she is, Miss Stupid-looking me!” I said doing a little twirl, before the big mirrors near the sinks.
“Why are you wearing your skirt like that?” Sophie asked from behind me. I had to ask her to repeat it because her voice didn’t carry but two feet.
“Wearing it like what?”
“You’re… you’re supposed to roll the top up a few times, so that the skirt is shorter. The way you’re wearing it is prude.”
“Prude? No, its practical, I don’t want anyone to see up it.”
Sophie looked a little hesitant at me. I realized she had her skirt on the way she was talking about, with the end of it just above her knees. Mine went down just below them.
“I don’t want anyone to see up my skirt either,” she said softly. “But giving the boys a little to look at is what all the girls do. Don’t you ever want a boyfriend?” She asked. I could tell that she wasn’t as comfortable with this idea as she wanted to portray she was. She was just going along with what had become fashion standard.
I thought of the slightly damp pull-up thinly concealed by this skirt. “Umm… no. I don’t want a boyfriend… and I DEFFINATELY don’t want anyone looking up my skirt.”
“Um… I’d always heard Americans were exactly the opposite of you.”
“Consider me the exception.”
I felt a finger poke my chest. I quickly covered it with my arm and swatted her hand away.
“HEY!” I yelped. “They’re real okay?”
“Are you a boy?”
I felt like I’d just been punched with words. They knocked the wind straight out of me, but it was the happiest verbal KO I’d ever felt. I wanted to hug her again, but as I took a step toward her she stepped back. Instead of a hug I smiled broadly.
“Why are you smiling?” she asked looking at me weirdly.
“Why did you ask that question?”
“First you said you’re name was Andy. Then you walked into the boy’s room, and now you just said you don’t even like boys.”
I laughed a little. I was tempted to tell her my crazy story. Maybe she’d believe it, but I decided to hold it back. I’d get to know her better. I unbuttoned my shirt a little, and showed her my chest concealed in its small bra.
“Satisfied?” I asked with a smirk.
“Do you… like girls?” she asked taking another step away.
My smirk faded and I rolled my eyes; should have seen this one coming. I buttoned my shirt back up. “I only said I didn’t want a boyfriend,” I said. “I still like…” I had to make myself to say this one. “I like boys.”
Sophie seemed to calm a little. “You don’t think you’re ready for a relationship?”
“No, I already had a lot, they were all crap.”
“I take back what I said earlier, you are like every American I’ve heard about.”
I rolled my eyes, and mouthed the word “thanks.” She led me out of the little room and onward to our class. I hoped that I could figure out what to do with my pull-up.
French Whines… Huit
By: CS Fox
“Do you like our town?” Sophie asked as we walked to class.
“No, can’t say I’ve had that much fun…”
“…But it’s a nice small town.”
“And a minnow is a nice small fish. But right now, I think I’m sick of fish. If that makes sense,” I replied coldly. Sophie shut up looking a little hurt. We walked in silence and with the absence of chatter I began to feel a little guilty. I could tell that Sophie was the type who usually stayed quiet, and by trying to make small talk, she was probably doing something bold for her shy nature.
“Well, its not that I don’t like it… I mean it’s a nice place and all. I just miss… Me.”
She screwed up her face and looked at me incredulously, “You?”
“Er… home. I miss home.”
Sophie looked thoughtful. “Has it been hard not being able to understand everyone?”
I stopped walking. “Yes. Yes it has.”
We found my new classroom. It looked like it was white walled at one time, but had now faded to an off yellow. Wooden desks faced a much used green chalk board, which Angélique was in front of at a large desk of her own. She was looking through a book while a dozen students were busy writing. As Sophie opened the door, Angélique looked up and smiled at me.
“Ah, here’s our new student. Class, this is Aluoette,” Angélique said to her class.
I heard my name and blushed as everyone looked up at me. I waved a little shyly, and noticed Sophie just hurried to her desk, to avoid attention. Angélique looked full of pride, like I’d just been pronounced clean at an AA meeting or something. She walked up to me and bent down putting both of her hands on my shoulders.
“You look wonderful in that uniform, let’s get you seated for class.”
Angélique pointed to an open desk in the back row. Sophie sat to the right of it, and on the other side sat a boy. I carefully went to my seat, conscious that all eyes followed me as I did so. The boy sneered at me and I realized I recognized him. He was in the group of boys in the street the other day. I think his name was Marcel.
“Aluoette will be in our class for a little while. She’s visiting from America . I want you all to make her feel welcome.”
Angélique was talking about me again, no idea what though. I looked around my desk and frowned. I didn’t have books, pen, paper, or anything a normal student might have.
“Um… could I get… some school supplies?”
Angélique looked back at me a little hotly. I think she thought I was interrupting her. She started to walk back towards me. I quickly reached over and tugged at Sophie’s sleeve. She gave me a look like she didn’t know me. I tugged a little harder.
“She says she doesn’t have anything to write on,” Sophie said reluctantly.
Angélique stopped walking towards me. She smiled and playfully slapped her forehead. “Silly me, I completely forgot she’d need school supplies,” and started back towards her desk. As soon as her back was turned a ball of paper hit me in the side of the head. In front of Marcel sat the bigger boy of that group from the other day, Gérard.
“There’s some paper for you to write on Amerloque,” Gérard said with a laugh, Marcel and a few others sitting nearby chuckled too.
Gérard = ass-hat. Okay, that’s the first thing I learned in French school. No idea what he said, which is just as good; if I can’t understand their stupid remarks, then I can’t be affected by them.
Angélique came back with some paper and a pen, and also one of the books on French I’d been using most of the weekend. She just flipped it open to where I’d left off. After a few more minutes of blabbering about me, she began in on one of her lessons.
Class was fairly dull. Angélique droned on about this or that. Occasionally I could guess what she was talking about when she’d point to a map and say a few things. I think she was a civics teacher of sorts, but later, she switched gears and started talking about some reading all the students (except me) had been doing. They all took out the same book and took turns reading aloud. I busied myself with my book, and occasionally stared around the classroom. Some of the kids I’d seen in town or at church before. Including the ass-hat boys nearby and also that girl whose house I’d stopped at the other day.
Eventually a bell rang somewhere close to noon . I watched as the boys clustered together and looked at me menacingly before leaving the room, and some of the girls didn’t really look at me favorably either. Sophie left the room quietly, and by herself, leaving me alone with Angélique.
I went to the door and made sure no one was nearby. Satisfied, I went to Angélique who was busy making a few notes on a piece of paper at her desk.
“It’s lunchtime now Aluoette, you don’t need to stay,” she said motioning to the door.
I recognized the French word for Lunch, but I didn’t need to know about where I should have been going, I needed to talk to her.
“I don’t have another pull-up,” I said in a whisper. She knew the word pull-up and her eyes widened.
“You know we didn’t plan today very well did we? You go to lunch, I’ll see if I can’t run home really quickly.”
I really wanted to know what she was saying. She eventually got to our best form of communication and pointed at herself, then walked her fingers across the desk, then pointed out the window. She was going to run home real quick. I smiled and nodded. She patted my shoulder and left for her house, I went out into the hallway and found it mostly deserted, and I realized I didn’t know where lunch was.
I turned right and started down that hall. I found the ladies room (I made sure to remind myself not to futz up on the men’s room thing again) and went into the bathroom. It was empty, which I was happy about. I carefully went into one of the stalls and sat down. It’d been a while since I’d wet and I knew that I would probably need to go to the bathroom, even if I couldn’t really feel it. Luckily, I was right. Not only was I right, I was right on umm… both accounts. Gave me a shudder thinking I’d never be able to hide… well if I messed myself, I don’t think pull-ups are really meant to handle it. Thankfully I had managed to get to the toilet for that need lately.
The door to the bathroom opened. I froze up. I looked about nervously and noticed that my pull-up was around my ankles and probably visible from outside the stall, so I reached forward and brought it up to my knees.
“Do you want to skip class?”
“Yeah why not, it’s getting so annoying to have to go every day…”
I smelt cigarette smoke. Sounded like two voices holding a quiet conversation in French near the window.
“Did you see the new girl today?”
“I heard she’s American, and that she was arrested last night.”
“Makes me feel kind of stupid just smoking cigarettes, I bet that American girl knows how to have fun… We’ll have to talk to her sometime.”
“Hehe, you love getting into trouble.”
“What else is there to do in this town?”
“Heh I know what you mean.”
The two girls giggled and stopped talking for a little bit. I heard them eventually leave the bathroom and I breathed a sigh of relief before getting up to finish my business and leave the bathroom too.
I was extra cautious to leave the bathroom. I knew that things like cigarette smoke would easily be blamed on me since I apparently had the benefit of immediately being guilty for whatever wrong doing went on nearby me. Finding the coast clear, I made my escape and started down the hall once again.
I walked to the other side of the building, where I started to hear the collective noise of a lot of students. I followed it and reached a large hall which served as the lunch room. I smiled and went to a counter to get a small tray of food. It was very basic, milk, chips and a sandwich. Faces looked up at me, like they had when I’d come into the schoolyard this morning. I nervously looked about for a place to sit and found most of the tables were pretty full. I didn’t really feel like talking to anyone (since probably none of them could understand me anyway). I found a spot towards the middle that didn’t have any people near for like six or seven seats down the table.
My class was interspersed around the room. Sophie was in a corner, sitting near some people, but she was reading a book and really didn’t look much like she was associating with them. That other girl from my class talking excitedly with her friends, if Sophie was the quiet reader, this girl was her opposite.
I finished my lunch in silence, trying to avoid the stares of the people around me. A part of me had entertained thoughts during class of ruling this school. I had done it all before, so why couldn’t I do it all again and do it better then before?
I got my answer in the form of an intentional bump on my back as Gérard passed by me with an empty tray. He tried to make it look like an accident, but I could tell by the smiles from his friends, that it wasn’t. I didn’t say anything and kept eating.
After lunch, everyone started wandering back to their classrooms. As the lunchroom crowd thinned, I took the cue to head back too. Angélique was waiting for me as I returned to her room. She had a small handbag and handed it to me with a wink. I thanked her and scurried off to the bathroom again. It turned out that I had wet my pull-up a little more during lunch, and hadn’t even noticed it. I was thankful to have the dry one.
I got back to class and took my seat. Lessons resumed and I was bored out of my mind. I could only make myself to study French so much. After two more hours of it, I wanted to throw the book out the window. I had taken to doodling on my paper. I was even making up songs. This one I adapted from “Les Mes” since I was Le Miserable…
“In the university of Paireeeeee ,
there is a cheeseburger waiting for me…
Its sits next to a nice cold beer,
And English is the only sound I hear.”
Okay so songwriter I’m not, but it aptly described how I felt. As time passed, the lessons finally changed once again. This time, to my great happiness, Angélique started in on math. A big smile came to my lips. Math was universal, language wasn’t a barrier here.
“Okay, we’ll start with today’s bonus problem. As usual I don’t expect anyone to get it, but its something great to try.”
Angélique started writing on the board. She wrote some French with a series of numbers behind it. I reached over to Sophie and tugged at her sleave once more.
“What’s it say? What’s before the numbers? I need to know, I might actually be able to participate in class if I can understand that.”
Sophie hesitated but looked to me after getting a glare from ass-hat and little ass-hat. “It says ‘Find the lowest whole number evenly divisible by’,” and she turned to the board again, I looked on. The numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 and 10 were written out under the French writing.
I looked at some of the other kids around. Sophie got out a paper and started multiplying the numbers together. I saw the other kids doing similar long steps too. I looked at the problem and thought about it again. I was a comp-sci major in college and math was a strong point. This problem was a factoring one.
I took out a piece of paper and copied the numbers down, then started to factor them out. I wrote a 1 below one, then a 2 below 2, then a 3 below 3, and another 2 below 4, 5 below 5, nothing for 6, one 7, another 2 for 8, another 3 for 9 and nothing for 10. After I’d done it, I had the numbers 1, 2, 3, 2, 5, 7, 2, 3 written below the original ten. I quickly multiplied them all together and started walking up towards the board.
“Aluoette? Why are you coming up towards the board?”
Angélique was questioning my movement. I held up my paper.
“You solved the problem? But you don’t even have a calculator? You shouldn’t know how to do this yet.”
I ignored whatever she was saying and started drawing lines and numbers under the original ten on the board. The class watched in silence as I wrote like a girl possessed. I factored each number again and then multiplied them quickly to come out with a final product. 2520.
Angélique looked at me incredulously as I put the chalk down and walked back to my desk. The students looked up at the board trying to figure out what I’d done.
“Teacher? How did she get a 2 out of 4, then nothing out of 6?” asked a boy in the front of the class.
Angélique was silent a moment. “She factored out the problem. The factors of 6, which are 2 and 3, were already present in the equation…”
“How did she know to do that?” asked Sophie.
“I… I’m not sure.”
Some of the class looked back at me a little stunned. I smiled smugly. Math, the best language.
I proved that I knew every answer for the rest of the lesson. Not only did I know every answer, I knew them without calculators… I think I raised myself a notch in Angélique’s eyes. She wasn’t expecting any talent out of me. She seemed to drag the lesson out, probably just to test how good I really was. I didn’t mind at all.
Class let out about 3 o’clock . Groups of kids left in just about the same order they had for lunch. I gathered my stuff and put it on Angélique’s desk, where she was busy writing more notes. She beckoned Sophie forward too, who apparently hadn’t left the classroom.
“I’m going to be staying after a little bit. Could you tell Aluoette to wait for me in the library and then take her there? You usually stay after anyways right? I’ve seen you in the library before,” said Angélique, but Sophie paused a moment. “Sophie? Could you do this for me?.... Sophie?”
Sophie turned to me. “She has work to do, wants me to take you to the library.”
I just nodded absently. “Lead on,” I said still feeling bored. We left the classroom. Angélique looking at Sophie curiously as if still waiting for an answer when she’d left the room.
“You don’t like playing translator much do you?” I asked once we were in the hall. Sophie stayed quiet. “You went quiet as soon as we got back to the room earlier.”
“I just like to read, I don’t like trouble,” Sophie said in her soft quiet voice.
“Papa told me about your drinking, then all the girls were talking about you getting arrested again this morning, and then teacher made me take you to the office where I was yelled at so I could repeat it to you.”
I felt a little guilty. She was making a lot of sense. All except my drinking thing. “Well… I didn’t really ask for a translator… but it sure does sound nice to hear someone else who can understand me.”
“You didn’t sound too happy earlier when you had just changed into the uniform,” she said indignantly. I nodded and apologized.
“Sorry about that, I was in a bad mood. I didn’t really want to have to go to school all over again.”
“You’ve gone before?”
“Yeah, I graduated 3 years ago; I’m really a junior in college now.”
Sophie stopped walking and looked at me with a sneer. “LIAR!” she squeaked, raising her voice to a normal level. “This is why I hate what I have to do. I don’t like liars, and troublemakers, none of them understand I want to just read and be left alone.”
I felt stupid. Seemed no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t keep my damn mouth from spewing forth more crap about what I really was, but no one believed.
“I was just joking… but… thanks. For translating and all.”
Sophie didn’t reply. She just walked in silence and led me to the library. As we walked I felt my pull-up get a little warm once again. I frowned but kept walking, only it kept getting warm. I was wetting pretty good. I walked a little slower, till Sophie noticed she was getting kind of far ahead of me. I could tell I was still peeing. A small trickle started to go down my leg.
“Hurry up, I just want to show you where it is and…” Sophie had walked back to me, and saw the little trickle. My eyes began to water and I hesitated to say something.
French Whines… Neuf
By: CS Fox
“Did you just…?” Sophie’s voice trailed off as her eyes focused on the yellow liquid. Tears came and I did my best not to meet her gaze. There was an intense silence that fell between us like a thick layer of smoke. She opened her mouth to say something, but before she could, my heart began to pound and I just ran. I don’t know why I did, but it felt like the only thing I could do. The lid was off the pot and like any teen, instead of explaining it; I was going to run away from it.
I flew down the hall, turned, kept running and turned again. My shoulder hit the girl’s room door and I quickly found my way to a stall. I didn’t pull the wet pull-up down; I just sat and buried my face in my hands. Sophie had just seen what I was trying to hide… This could potentially be the catalyst for making school absolute hell. Good god, crying again? What the hell am I doing… I hadn’t even made it through the first day.
“Teacher?” Sophie asked in her shy voice as she pushed the door open to her classroom.
“You’re back Sophie?” Angélique said looking up. “I thought you’d be in the library with Alouette?”
Sophie shrugged. “We… didn’t exactly make it there.”
Angélique stopped writing. “She didn’t run away did she?”
“No… I don’t think she did.”
Angélique got out of her chair and walked around her desk to Sophie. Sophie gulped loudly as Angélique stood before her. “Sophie… Where is Alouette?”
“I think… she peed herself. And then ran off somewhere in the school.”
Angélique’s eyes bulged a little. “But.. but she had on a pull-up?”
Sophie’s eyes bulged a little too, and she fought back a giggle. “A what?”
“A something that if you open your mouth will lead to five times more math homework then you already have.” Angélique snapped at her.
Sophie gasped. Could teachers threaten students? It wasn’t a violent threat, but it was a threat all the same. Her lips pursed in a seal.
“What direction did she run off in?” Angélique asked, with a slightly less friendly voice then Sophie was used too.
“Towards the lunchroom when we were near the library.”
“Okay, follow me Sophie, we need to talk on the way.”
The two of them left the classroom in search of Alouette. Sophie couldn’t help but wish she’d just never gotten involved. It seemed like every time in her life that she’d take a single step further then necessary, something like this always happened.
My tears didn’t stop. Just like my potty skills, my tear ducts did not obey what I wished them too. I just cried and sobbed, and sobbed and cried; occasionally blowing my noise on a wad of toilet paper because crying so much made you snotty.
Everything was just wrong… I shouldn’t be a girl. I shouldn’t be wetting myself. I shouldn’t be in school again. I shouldn’t even be in this part of the country. A million shouldn’t be’s… And just as I was feeling my tears come anew as I wallowed in self pity, I heard the bathroom door open.
It was Angélique. I didn’t answer, but a pair of footsteps found their way to the door of my stall. I think they could hear my sobbing.
“Go away…” I said meekly.
Angélique pinched Sophie’s shoulder. “Remember what we discussed Sophie. You don’t know… Okay?”
“Teacher wants you to come out…” said a soft voice. I recognized it as Sophie’s. She was the other pair of feet next to Angélique.
“I just want to be alone… I’m not feeling well.”
Sophie turned to Angélique. She was doing her least favorite thing, which was playing interpreter in shaky circumstances. “She says she’s not feeling well.”
Angélique nodded “Tell her you went and got me because you thought as much, and that I’m here to help. Then go wait for us outside the bathroom.”
Sophie spoke up shyly, “You weren’t looking to good back in the hallway, that’s why I brought our teacher, I’ll uh… be out in the hall.”
The soft voice left with soft footsteps, and Angélique opened the door to my stall. I looked up at her, wiping tears off my cheeks with a fist. I couldn’t tell if she was smiling maternally, condescendingly, or even mockingly… She just seemed to somehow say “I didn’t expect anything else” on her face.
“I’m beginning to think these pull-ups aren’t enough. You must have really wet to get Sophie’s attention like that.”
She said something about my pull-up and Sophie. It didn’t stop my sobbing, I think she was confirming that Sophie knew now. Angélique gave me a hand and pulled me up and out of the stall. She hiked my uniform skirt up a little and looked at my sodden garment. She made a low whistle, which didn’t help any either.
She had a bag over her shoulder, which she reached into and took out another pull up. I took off the soaked one and threw it away, putting on the dry one. Angélique waited till I was done, and pointed toward the door. We left together and found… an empty hall. Angélique looked around and didn’t find Sophie. She frowned.
“That girl… I told her to wait. Oh well, she’ll get some extra homework for this tomorrow,” Angélique said. I didn’t really pay any attention because I couldn’t understand it. She took my hand and motioned outside. “Let’s go home, I can’t really get any more work done anyway.”
We went back to our classroom and gathered some stuff before we left the school. I was sort of at a miss for why were leaving, or even why we’d stayed after. The only thing I knew was that tomorrow would suck. With my current luck, every student would know from Sophie how I was even stranger then I already seemed.
The school yard was empty, but people were bustling around in the streets of town. It was about that hour when people were driving back into town from their jobs, and some of the kids from the school were out playing around in the fair early evening weather. I of course, was not playing, and I don’t think I would have if Angélique had wanted me too. I was just a tripping, stumbling, sad girl, alone and wondering what next.
We got back to Angélique’s house. She brought me straight upstairs and had me lay down so she could diaper me. I didn’t really blame her. She didn’t want me having another accident, which now, I was accepting would assuredly happen no matter how much I didn’t want it too.
She did let me change out of the school uniform. I got into a pair of overalls which had probably once been Angélique’s. They were the only thing that really concealed my diaper and yet were still full clothes. Although, there was still a faint crinkling sound even more pronounced then the plastic pants had been.
“Alouette, I’ve got something for you here…” Angélique said as I came downstairs. She motioned for me to join her at the table. I found she had a sheet of paper with a bunch of mathematical problems on it. I smiled tiredly. “I was trying to write a note to the headmistress earlier, but didn’t have a chance to finish it because of your accident.”
She smiled back and gave me a pen. The math problems were all upper level. Some of them were even things I’d only touched on last year in college. I did my best and I know I got them all right. I wasn’t about to let this opportunity slip. It was my only chance to possibly prove that I was more then just a girl in her mid teens.
Angélique had started to cook something, but kept coming over to check my progress. A few times she gasped and started punching numbers into a calculator she fetched from her writing desk. It didn’t take me that long to finish the dozen problems. I was above average for a college level comp sci major, and I’m sure, light years above most 15-year-old girls.
“You certainly don’t have a problem with math. I’m going to have to give this to the headmistress tomorrow. She won’t believe what a prodigy you are.”
Angélique looked like I’d just written Shakespeare. I actually felt a little proud. At least one thing had gone right today. She put the paper with her stack of books and got to finishing dinner.
I ate in silence… or more accurately, I didn’t contribute to Angélique’s long monologue. I recognized a few bits of praise for my math skills, but they were few and I heard pull-up and diaper far more often in her rambling. To a point it was almost discouraging. I knew it hadn’t been a week yet, but it felt like after all my trying, even when I desperately needed to understand the language, I hadn’t gotten any better. All that I had learned were very basic excuses, questions, numbers and greetings. Not even enough to hold an intelligent conversation for longer then ten seconds.
After dinner I just tramped upstairs to bed. I was beat and didn’t have anything to stay up for anyway. I came into the room and just flopped down on the bed. I think my diaper was a little wet, but I didn’t care. I also think it wasn’t wise to sleep fully clothed, but I didn’t care about that either. I just wanted the total blankness of unconscious rest.
Morning found me grumpy and in a wet diaper (err… wetter diaper). It found Angélique singing and gaily playing another pillow game to get me out of bed. It slowly erupted into a war between America and France , resulting in the end, with French victory. She succeeded in annexing my bed and removing me from it.
Then something odd happened. After I’d had my morning bath, Angélique was back in my room waiting for me. I didn’t really pay her any mind because I figured she was doing laundry, but as I came in, she took my shoulder and had me lay down on the bed. I looked up at her questioningly.
“We have to do this… Pull-ups just aren’t working,” she said firmly.
I heard pull-up. I rolled my eyes. Why did she want to be the one to put it on me? It was a stupid pull-up.
Angélique went over to a dresser and I pressed my head a little harder into the bed. My head kind of felt a little light this morning. I also had a few butterflies in my stomach. It was probably because I had a school day of humiliation to look forward too. Angélique came back over and pulled the towel off me. I looked up nonchalantly just in time to see her unfold a disposable diaper and start putting it under me.
“WOAH! Hold on a tick!” I said immediately trying to jump up. Angélique put her hand down on my abdomen, keeping me in place. She had the diaper up quicker then I could kick my feet and swat her hands away.
“The pull-up was no good. You have to wear a diaper.”
“NO!” I said immaturely while stamping my foot. I started working at the tapes. Angélique came up and took my hands in hers.
“Alouette…” she said slowly. I stared into her eyes defiantly.
“You like this don’t you…” I said hotly. “You know that Sophie told everyone yesterday, and now today you’re just going to take it up a level. Ooooo the new American girl… what a freak, in diapers and running from the police.”
Angélique looked at me for a few moments. She couldn’t tell what I was saying, but my sarcasm was so heavy, that it penetrated the language wall. “You’re not making it to the bathroom. You no bathroom…”
I understood something like ‘no bathroom’ in French. I think she was saying I wasn’t aloud to use the bathroom anymore. I felt my anger rise.
“WHAT!? No bathroom?” I yelled, repeating some of her words. Angélique took a deep sigh and dropped my hands. She pointed at the trashcan, where she’d tossed my wet diaper this morning. We’d played this game before. “So what?” I said, still being snippy.
Angélique frowned. “Diaper,” she said sternly and left the room. I balled my hands into fists, and walked slowly over to the bed. I picked up a pillow, thrust it in my face, and let out a muffled scream.
I came downstairs in the school uniform with a pull-up on underneath. The diaper I’d been wearing was taped on Angélique’s bedroom door. She had a small backpack set for me on the table. She threw it at me, a little harshly, but I was ready for it. We set off towards the school.
We walked in silence. It was a little chilly this morning, both in terms of weather, and company. At least it felt that way walking around in a pleated skirt. As we got closer to the school, Angélique walked a little faster and left me sort of straggling behind. I raised my hand to call after her, but she turned and waved me off, taking out something from her bag and hurrying inside. I stood staring a little blankly, as she left.
“Hey Amerloque!” A wad of paper hit the back of my head.
“Oh good, Ass-Hat…” I said to myself in a grumble before turning around. Sure enough, the taller boy Gérard, the slightly shorter boy Marcel, and about three other boys were looking at me and sniggering.
“Why don’t you go back to your own country. We don’t want you around here,” Gérard said as menacingly as possible.
Its almost no fun when you don’t understand insults… how in the hell should I gauge my level of angry response. Did he say something about my mother? Or my appearance? Both of which wouldn’t even hurt much anyway the way things were now. The good thing was that he didn’t say anything about pull-ups and or diapers, which I was sure he would. He just apparently liked to call me Amerloque, whatever that was.
“You were good at math yesterday, how about this one…”
Gérard was doing something with his hands and fingers. He was doing like a 1 + 1 dance, only using the middle fingers.. and showing that 1 + 1 = fist in palm. It was like retarded troll mathematics. I tried to stifle back a giggle. My smirk didn’t go over too well with Gérard though. He started advancing on me.
Marcel stepped forward and put a hand on Gérard’s arm. He stopped and sneered at Marcel.
“Don’t fight, you’ll just get in trouble again,” Marcel said coolly.
“She’s asking for it… she’s laughing at us. The way she did on the street the other day!”
Apparently their was dissention in the ranks. It seemed like mini-ass-hat was a little more level headed then ass-hat. While I watched their gibberish argument, I noticed a scurry of movement out of the corner of my eye. Sophie had noticed me and the moment our eyes met, she ran for the school building, bumping into a few other students that happened to be in her way.
A girl stepped in front of me.
“That’s low, even for you two. Picking on a girl,” said Papillon.
Marcel frowned and pointed. “That’s not a normal girl.”
“Why because she won’t run when you threaten her?”
A girl who was somehow vaguely familiar had stepped in front of me. I walked to her side and looked at her curiously. It was the girl whose house I’d stopped at a few days ago. She was sticking up for me?
“She just won’t back down to verbal threats because she doesn’t understand them,” Gérard said, grinning evilly. He started advancing on me once again. This time Marcel did not stop him.
“Ummm… this does not look like forward progress for peace,” I said with a frown as Gérard walked up to me. The girl looked at him incredulously.
“You’re going to hit a girl now? What the hell is wrong with you?” Papillon shrieked angrily. She looked like she was about ready to hit Gérard herself.
“I’m not going to hit the Amerloque… I’m just going to,” his arm shoved me stiffly, “shove her a bit.”
Pushing me, my body jerked a little in a defensive reaction to keep my balance. Gérard smiled at this result and was about to do it again.
“I’ve a mind to beat you myself, you big sack of s**t. Why the hell you picking on the new girl?”
“Because,” shove me, “it’s” shove me, “fun.”
This was just a game to them. They were all laughing. The girl wasn’t but all the guys were. I wasn’t in the mood for games, and it stopped being a game as I balled my fist up and connected it like a block of cobblestone to Gérard’s left cheek. His friends gasped, but I didn’t give him a chance to react, I used my forward foot to kick the inside of his knee and shouldered him off his feet. I didn’t do it hard enough to break anything, but it was hard enough so that he’d be walking that one off for a week. He fell over backward. The girl roared with laughter and the boys around him looked at me transfixed, but none more so then Marcel.
I shouldered my backpack, just as the bell rang, and walked inside the building, that same girl, clapping me on the shoulder and babbling in French. Ahhhhh that felt good. I didn't notice one of Marcel's lackies ran off in the other direction down the hall.
French Whines… 10 (Got tired of counting in French)
By: CS Fox
Ah to be back in school… How I foundly remember hating it back then too. If it’s possible, I think I hate it more now. Usually when you do something twice, you find it’s easier the second time around… not for me though.
Maybe it’s the fact that my second high school education is being given to me in different circumstances. This time around, I’m an outsider with few, if any, friends. I also can’t understand anyone since I don’t speak the language, and I seem to have a problem controlling my bladder. Possibly the worst thing though… for my secondary, secondary education, I’m having to take it as a girl. Not mentally… but… physically… I’m in a girl’s body… Your guess is as good as mine as to how this happened.
As for the here and now; I’m walking with a girl named Papillon. I discovered her name somewhere in her long inane babbling. It was the only word I soaked up as her tidal wave of speech washed over me. Everything was just sort of chatter that I was pretty good at ignoring by now. I know that sounds kind of mean for me to say, but this girl knew perfectly well I couldn’t speak French or understand her. She, like everybody in this tiny town, seemed not to care I couldn’t understand when they told me their life story.
Papillon was awfully impressed with how I’d decked Gérard. She beat her fist down into her hand and laughed each time as she re-lived the moment.
“I don’t ever want to forget that moment. The look of surprise on his face when you cracked into his jaw… Princeless.”
I began to suspect she’d had beef with him in the past, and she really enjoyed this comeuppance. Still, I guess it was good to have someone impressed with me. It was something new, and something that I really hadn’t expected to happen today.
I walked into class feeling oddly proud. It was the morning of my second day at this little school, and I realized just how little it was. The other students whispered amongst themselves as I went by. Apparently news travels really fast, and my fight minutes before had made front page.
I found Sophie at her desk, and we made eye contact, but she quickly turned away. I don’t think she was the happiest about the fight. Papillon left me for her desk and the company of some of her chatty friends who actually understood her. I just took my seat and looked up to see that Angélique wasn’t here. Marcel and Gérard were here though. They were both at their desks, which were dangerously close by. Gérard’s lip was puffed out a little. I tried not to look at him, but smiled when I caught this small change in his appearance. “Take that ass-hat,” I whispered to myself smugly.
The class talked and whispered amongst itself for a few minutes until Angélique finally did appear. As she came into the room, everyone quieted down and started to take their seats. All seats filled up, except one.
“Sorry I’m a little late getting here,” Angélique said. “I had to speak with our headmistress this morning…”
A smile grew on Gérard’s swollen lips. No doubt his little crony Louise had reported the fight to his teacher and the headmistress… didn’t matter what Marcel wanted him to do. All he had to do now was just sit back, relax, and watch for storming nuns.
Angélique noticed the single empty chair. “Where is Louise?” She inquired politely.
Gérard looked a little surprised. Louise should have been to the office with her and headmistress.
“Oh well, no matter… When they come around for attendance later, I’ll let them know Louise is playing hooky.”
I noticed a peculiarity. There was a boy missing in class. I don’t know his name, but I know he’s one of Marcel’s little retarded gang members. His absence didn’t affect me though, so I just settled in and waited.
Class began just as it had the day before. Everyone cracked open their books, I shifted a little uncomfortably in my seat, dreadfully aware of my pull-up underneath my skirt, and I did my best to follow along in the foreign lesson.
Angélique dumbed it down a little for me, but I was still very much lost through most of it. I opened my book and looked at the pictures. At one point, I tried to get Sophie’s attention, but she ignored me. I think she knew that Marcel and Gérard were officially watching anything I did or anyone I talked too. Either that, or Sophie just really didn’t like her translating task and was taking it out on me.
Three and half hours of boringness later, it was finally lunch time. I stayed at my desk until Marcel and his lot had left, noticing the mean look they gave me. With everyone gone I went to Angélique’s desk.
“My class was very chatty today. I think a lot of them were talking about you… Second day here and already the whole school is a buzz about you,” Angélique said sweetly tossling my hair. I just grinned and nodded, it’s the best thing to do when someone who has reason to possibly be mad is happy with you instead.
Angélique looked around the room for a second, making sure no one was in ear shot, and no one was, since they’d left a minute before for lunch. She looked at me, “Now do you… need to go to the bathroom? Did you use your diaper?”
I blushed. I knew she was asking me about my diaper, only she didn’t know I hadn’t worn the diaper. I’d put on a pair of pull-ups this morning instead… I discreetly patted underneath my skirt and found them a little wet, but holding up. I had a spare in my bag, so I told her as best I could that I was okay, and that I was going to the restroom.
Angélique nodded. “I think that would be best, hurry off. Maybe you can prove me wrong and not actually need that diaper.”
“Sure, whatever,” I said waving her off as I left the classroom. I made my way to the bathroom. I wasn’t really sure if I needed to go, it just felt like it couldn’t hurt to try, rather then just letting it happen as the day went on. Besides, probably wouldn’t hurt to change into a dry pair of pull-ups.
Coming around the hall corner, I found Marcel’s gang. Only they weren’t looking at me. They were helping someone out of a wall locker. I pressed myself to the wall and watched as they tugged free the boy who’d been missing in class.
“Louise, where the hell did you go? Did you report the fight to the Headmistress?” Gérard asked.
The boy looked slightly contorted, having been stuffed in the locker for a few hours. Marcel kicked the boy in the shine and looked sternly at Gérard. “Idiot, I told you not to report it. You’ll both get nailed if the headmistress finds out.”
“Shut up Marcel.”
Marcel hit Gérard across the jaw, not nearly as hard as I had, more like a hard tap. Spooked him a bit. “Never tell me to shut up big brother. I’ll kick your ass.” He turned to the boy who’d been rescued from the locker. “Sorry this happened to you Louise, but seriously, you knew I didn’t want this reported, you need to listen to me next time, not ox head my brother. Bust still, who did this to you? Was it the American girl?”
The locker-boy shook his head no. I think they were questioning who’d stuffed him in the locker.
“It was Cyprien and Jeanne. The jumped me as soon as I started running for the headmistress office.”
“Those two? What the hell do they care about you for?”
“I… I dunno…”
I felt a hand grab my shoulder. I turned and nearly screamed in fright finding Papillon there. She held a finger up to my mouth, to show me I needed to be quiet, and luckily I had enough sense not to make any noise. The ass-hat club hadn’t noticed me thus far and so I creeped off with Papillon.
“You just look for trouble, don’t ya?” Papillon said admirably. “Those boys aren’t your biggest fans, and yet you follow them around.”
I still didn’t understand this girl, so I just changed the subject of whatever she was talking about. “Sorry, I don’t really know what you mean, and I wasn’t doing anything more then some harmless eavesdropping on the ass-hats.” She looked at me blankly, and we kept walking the long way towards the lunch hall. As we got near I spied the bathroom and made to head inside. Papillon followed.
I locked myself in one of the stalls and pulled down my pull-ups so that I could sit down and take care of business… Once again I was somehow fortunate to do… um… two… on the toilet. Its weird cause I can’t usually feel the need, but I can seem to control it a little… I dunno.
“Are you almost done?” Papillon asked.
I blushed and immediately pulled up my wet undergarment. If she looked at the right angle, she’d certainly see it. “I don’t need you here, or to wait for me, or whatever you want. I didn’t ask you to follow me in, you just did.” I called out. It didn’t make her leave though.
I tried to figure out what to do. I had a spare pull-up in my bag, but changing into it would mean I’d have to throw the wet one away, which I couldn’t do with Papillon waiting outside the stall. I frowned and didn’t change it.
“Took you a while, come on, Lunch is already half way over.”
I went to go wash my hands. Papillon looked around to make sure no one was nearby for a second and came to whisper to me. “What was it my mom gave you when you came to visit? I think I know what it was… and if its what I think it was… I’ll tell everyone you have a problem if you tell them I used too. They um… weren’t even mine in the first place.”
I stopped washing my hands and turned to Papillon. “English… Learn to speak English.” I said. She tilted her head at me and made sort of an “oh” face and nothing more was said.
We went to the lunch room and got lunch. Papillon wanted me to sit with her friends at her table. But, with the morning I’d had, I politely waved the offer off, and found Sophie sitting by herself. Whatever had happened to make her like me even less then usual needed to be remedied, because at the moment, she was the only one in school who spoke English.
I sat down across from her with my tray and she looked up with a glare from her reading. Without saying a word she closed her book and got up to leave.
“No wait… Please, I’m sorry for whatever made you mad.”
“Don’t be sorry when you don’t even know why,” she said.
“That’s what bugs me more, I really want to know why you’re mad. I can’t stand not knowing why someone is mad at me. Especially when that person is the only one who can understand me.”
“I just want to be left alone… and you don’t understand that… no one does. That’s why I’m mad.” And with that she stormed off.
I sighed and slumped down in my chair. I played with my fork in the fruit mix or whatever it was and wondered how I could get her back to the cordial level she’d be at when I first met her. I needed an English speaking friend. After I’d sat thinking for a few moments, a piece of carrot landed on my tray. I rolled my eyes, ass-hats… Least they couldn’t aim.
After lunch I snuck off to the bathroom. The first one I came to had two girls smoking in it. They had their backs to me, so I quickly ran off to another. I managed to get into my dry pull-up and get back to class without being late.
Afternoon class was way better then morning class. I was able to show off once more in Math. Just like yesterday Angélique started class with some tricky upper level math question… I smiled because I knew she was testing me again. I didn’t disappoint.
Somewhere in the lesson, I wet my pull-up. I was mid-way through some graphing when I felt my seat get a bit warm. My face flushed red and I stopped my pencil to check and see if anyone had noticed… I waited and luckily everyone was engrossed in their lesson. Heaving a sigh of relief I went back to work. Towards the end of class though… my pull-up had leaked a little. There’s a fine difference between the moist feeling of the padding, and the wet feeling of pooled pee. I was definitely feeling a little bit of the wetness, and my skirt also started to feel a little damp on my leg.
I dropped my pencil, and then hesitated on picking it up. Angélique looked up from her desk, giving me a questioning glance. I was about in tears, but to my absolute good fortune, the bell rang a moment later, and the class slowly started to leave. I sat perfectly still, not daring to move an inch.
“Later Alouette,” Papillon said to me as she walked by. She paused to pick up my pencil and put it on my desk before she left, giving me a slightly weird look since I didn’t say anything and just sat very still.
Sophie was one of the last people to leave and Angélique stopped her before she did. Angélique tried to be as nice as she could, knowing she was a bit mean the day before. “I want you to take your math seriously with Alouette, I really think you both can help each other out. She doesn’t have a lot of friends.”
“I’m sure she has plenty after what she did this morning…”
“What do you mean?”
Sophie rolled her eyes, teachers could be really clueless sometimes. “She...”
Sophie looked at me. Her and Angélique were talking about something and I think it involved me. She knows about my problem… she has to given that I had an accident yesterday right in front of her. Before she could say another word I just blurted out.
“Tell Angélique I can’t get up. My… my skirt’s wet.”
Sophie looked at me incredulously. “Why is your skirt….” It dawned on her.
Angélique looked at us both and then focused on Sophie. “So are you going to study then? What did Alouette say?”
Sophie paused. Once again she was caught in the middle. “She said that… she can’t get up.”
Angélique walked up to me. I tried not to meet her gaze. I think she was about to find out that I didn’t wear what she’d asked me to wear. She took my hand and yanked me up out of my seat. I yelped a little and put my hands over my rear to try and hide what I knew was probably there.
“Your skirts wet.” Angélique said matter-of-factly to me. Sophie shrugged, that’s what she was going to say if given the time.
My eyes went wide and I quickly tried to bring my hands around to the front as Angélique lifted up my skirt right in front of Sophie. It was only a few inches before Angélique noticed what I was wearing and she stared sternly at me. Sophie looked slightly aghast.
I pushed down my skirt from Angélique’s hands and quietly said “non.” I’d rather not be chastised in front of someone. “It… just happened.”
“Well, I see you haven’t made any progress at all, and that you didn’t listen to me this morning. Now do you see why I think you need to be in diapers?” Angélique said while poking at the wet part of my skirt. I understood “diaper” and from her example of my wet skirt, I understand her complete lack of faith in my bathroom habits.
“Diapers?” Sophie asked in her soft voice. Angélique and I turned to see her standing there, and everything suddenly got really awkward and embarrassing… Angélique looked like she was about to say something but I walked to Sophie first.
“It’s a really long story… I…wasn’t always…” I felt tears welling up, and quickly stopped the story. I forgot that she didn’t believe it yet either.
“Alouette doesn’t have any bladder control. She’s wet herself every day for almost a week and as far as I know, has all her life,” Angélique said calmly. “You saw her do the same thing yesterday.”
“You need diapers?” Sophie asked me cautiously. I wanted to say no, but I just shook my head yes. I think Angélique took it as a small victory her way too.
“Please don’t tell anyone.”
It took a little while for things to get straightened out. Angélique and Sophie talked for a little while. Sophie got emotional about it, and made a few wild hand gestures at me and Angélique every now and then. I just sat holding the ends of my skirt down and waiting for the hallway to clear of people.
When it finally had, Angélique sent us out. I held a book over my butt as we snuck off with my wet skirt to the gym. Sophie had a spare skirt in her gym locker.
Angélique was mad, and I think she wasn’t looking much to help me out. Usually she was down right motherly when dealing with my embarrassment because of an accident, but today she seemed to leave me on my own since I’d disobeyed her.
“What did Angélique say earlier?” I asked Sophie, in the hopes she wouldn’t be upset with me from lunch. Seems everyone’s upset with me lately.
“She didn’t know you were in a fight this morning, and I didn’t tell her. It would just make more drama if she knew…”
“Thanks…” I said dryly.
“She also wants me to get math tutoring from you, and for me to help you with French.”
Her voice was still a little shy and low, and I looked at her hopefully. “Could you… help me? I don’t care much about the French, I’d be happy just having someone to talk too who spoke English.”
“I…” she sounded sad but slightly annoyed. “I just wanted to be left alone. All you’ve done is attract attention to yourself. Your different, your new, you fight… you wet yourself.”
I stopped walking and felt tears well up again. “That hurt…” I said softly.
She raised her voice a little, “well you do! Why are we going to the gym right now if you don’t? Angélique wants us to be best friends. Do you know what that’ll mean?”
I didn’t answer.
“It means that I’ll be associated with you… Whenever you get attention, my name will be tagged on, and people will bother me… What if they find out you’re going to be wearing diapers, the first thing they’ll ask themselves is if I do too. I don’t want any attention! I just…”
“Don’t want to be bothered,” I said finishing her sentence and feeling a little tear. I’d never had to ask for a friend before… Even worse, I’d never been shot down by one. I pushed past her at a jog and made for the bathroom. I couldn’t really stop the tears now. She was right. I couldn’t control myself and I needed to wear diapers. If I wasn’t already the center of every conversation, if my secret broke, I’d have no chance of ever fitting in.
Second day, second time… I found myself on the exact same stall in the ladies room. Crying quietly to myself. My skirt was still wet, but it was probably going to dry by the time I got out, so it didn’t even seem to bother me that much.
I heard the bathroom door open and the soft shuffle of feet. Sophie spoke up. “Alouette?”
“Like you, I don’t want to be bothered,” I said as coldly between tears as I could.
She was quiet for a little bit, before opening my stall door and looking at me. Her expression was hard to place. I don’t think she was used to having to deal with anything like this before. She was just a quiet girl and suddenly she’d be thrust into a loud situation. She took off her glasses. I wasn’t buying it.
“I think I understand why you don’t want to be bothered,” I said. “Because you never are.”
She screwed up her face in a question. “Huh?”
“I knew people like you back when I first went to high school. You were so quiet and lonely that somewhere along the way you gave up trying have a friend accept you. You’re defensively solitary. People don’t concern themselves with you, so why should you concern yourself with them?”
Her face changed somewhat. I don’t think I was making the shot, but I was hitting the backboard. Her voice hit normal level and she quickly put her glasses back on. “You don’t know anything about me.”
“Your right! I don’t! But I wanted to. You speak English, and so do I. That puts you leaps and bounds ahead of anyone else if I had a choice of making friends with. I’m sorry Angélique is pressuring you into the situation, and if you want, I won’t be your friend, I’ll just be your hard ass math tutor. I’ll be..”
“I don’t need any friends or any math tutors. Okay?” she said interrupting me. “Sorry if I hurt your feelings, but I just want to be left alone. I don’t want any attention, I don’t want any friends.”
She started to walk out, but I got out of the stall and stood behind her. “That’s because you’ve never really had a friend isn’t it?!” I shouted at her.
Her reply was something of a muffled roar as she tackled me. Her hand grabbed some of my hair, my hand grabbed some of hers, and we tugged like mad.
“Take that back!” she cried. I didn’t reply, but just stayed in the lock with her, occasionally making a whimper or general noise of pain as my hair was pulled. “I said take it back!”
“Its true isn’t it?”
“No, everything was great until I came to this school. I had friends in Paris , but no one wanted to be my friend around here!”
“I want to be your friend!” I said as I pulled extra hard.
“No you don’t!”
“Yes I do! And if you don’t take your knee off my abdomen I’ll leak all over your skirt too.”
Sophie started cracking up. She let go of my hair, and slumped backwards. I did the same.
“I think I would have preferred if you’d hit me in the jaw like I did Gérard, rather then pull my hair…” I said while patting my head. Stings a bit.
“I never thought someone would fight me for friendship… I don’t even know if it is friendship.”
“I’ve had plenty of friends I wanted to beat up all the time. You’ll get used to it. And you’ll also get used to the fact I’m going to have to bother you… and bother you a lot, since I can’t speak French.”
Sophie’s laughter died down. “I don’t want any attention.”
“You think I want attention? That I want a fight every morning? That I want people to know I piss myself? Trust me, if I could, I’d fade into gray like you.”
Sophie frowned, but paused a moment in reflection. “Are… you… really going to be able to help me with Math?”
“Yeah, that’ll be easy. Are you going to be able to deal with me being around?”
“No, that’ll be hard. But I will… I mean… I’ll try my best.”
I got up and offered her a hand, helping her to her feet. “I can deal with that.” And with that… I’d made my first real friend as a girl.
My skirt was dry now so we didn’t bother going to the gym for me to change. We headed for the library, and since we’d wasted so much time, Angélique came in to get me only like 10 mins after we’d started with her Math lesson. She also picked at my hair a little bit and I assume she asked why it looked askew, but Sophie replied for me with a wink and Angélique did ask anything further.
She took me home and brought me straight up to my room. She wasn’t amused about the diaper taped to her door and so for the rest of the evening, didn’t give me a dress or skirt or anything to cover the diaper she put me in. Through dinner and homework, she grumpily enmaked me to wear just a t-shirt and diaper, which I did without wanting to add more to whatever number of fights I’d had both verbal and physical today.
As I was finishing up my homework, the phone rang. It scared me a bit because it hadn’t happened often since I’d been here. My mind immediately started to race with thoughts of whom it could be… most of those thoughts worrying about a stupid Inspector.
“Leroy!” Angélique said happily as she answered the phone. I scratched my head. Who was Leroy?
“Your going to be back in town? That’s wonderful! You have to come by for dinner tomorrow. No no, I insist. I’ve had company the last few days… silly, it’s a girl, I’d never replace you with another guy… Actually she’s a young girl, one of my students now. Yep, you’ll meet her tomorrow.”
Who the heck is Leroy? I couldn’t figure it out, but Angélique seemed excited to hear from him. Indeed she was more sing song then usual right up until she put me to bed. Whatever, didn’t matter, I’d made a friend today, and at least that was something.
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