Brad - Brave for the Shave by Manny
As I strolled down the sidewalk and approached the defunct cafe that was being remodeled to become a new Irish pub, I noticed an object of great interest hanging from the nape of a handsome, muscular fellow: a very thick and lengthy ginger braid! The shimmering braid approximated the circumference of a baseball bat where the scrunchy gathered the masses of shimmering copper together.
Fellow longhairs interested me, and I had a particular fondness for ginger braids. I just had to engage him in a bit of chit chat!
The three fellows were hanging around a moving truck and seemed to be taking a bit of a break from what they'd been doing.
As I approached the trio, I called out, "Is the new pub getting ready for its grand opening?"
"No, that won't be for another week. Tonight there will be a special fund raiser taking place," one of the fellows replied.
Then the guy with the ginger braid told the others, "Okay, fellows, five more minutes to rest and save up your strength so that we can haul out the last of the barber chairs. After then it'll be a round of beers on me inside."
Barber chairs?! My heart skipped a beat. There was only thing I liked more than observing a lush ginger braid swinging carefree down the back of a handsome Celt, and that was watching a redhead getting caped up and prepared for a major divestiture.
Two fellows went inside and I was left alone with "Brady".
"A fundraiser with barber chairs? Is this some sort of cancer cure drive?" I asked.
"Yep," Brady replied. "Brave the Shave. There'll be 75 of us getting caped up this evening."
"Us?" I repeated. "Meaning that long braid of yours is on the endangered list?!"
Brady pulled his chord-like mass forward and fondled it tenderly. "Yep. Tomorrow this will be in the mail en route to getting turned into wigs for kids with cancer -- and I'll be bald! Every last bit of it shaved off with lather and a razor. I can't believe it," he said, eyeing the braid rather mournfully.
Then the fellow eyed my lush mane of thick, wavy blond hair that cascaded past my shoulders. "It's not too late to sign up, actually. You have enough length there, I think, to make the cut -- pun intended!"
The bold suggestion made me recoil a bit.
"Turn around, let me see if you have the minimum mandatory length." I complied meekly and he took my locks into his hands and pulled them together into a makeshift tale. "Oh, this is more than enough! Almost a foot of hair here if we clipped you bald."
"But I haven't raised any donations. It would be rather pointless," I argued.
"It would be a lot of fun! And, you'd still donate your hair. Think of some sweet little girl longing for beautiful blond wavy hair," he laughed. "I'm Brad, by the way," he said, offering his hand to shake.
"Nice to meet you. I'm Walt," I replied. I got up my courage to reciprocate his treatment of my hair and grasped him by the braid. "This is an amazing braid!" I exclaimed, squeezing the heavy cord of hair. "How long have you let it grow uncut?" I asked pulling it through my fingers, counting off about three feet of hair.
"Forever! It is so thick and heavy. Must weigh a good five pounds. I can't imagine what it'll feel like once it's gone. The word 'lightheaded' will take on new meaning for me," he laughed nervously.
"And what pushed you ever the edge to put it on the chopping block? A relative with cancer?" I asked.
"No, thank heavens. No sick relatives. I think it was more a moment of weakness, coupled with a lot of peer pressure and a few too many beers. We were out having fun when someone circulated a list for the event. I succumbed to the chants of 'do it, do it' and the next thing I knew, donations were flying in for my treasured braid! Now this baby is worth over $1000 once it's been chopped off and turned over to the organizers."
Just then the other two fellows came out of the pub. "We're ready for the last behemoth. Those chairs weigh a ton!" one of them chirped.
"Need an extra hand?" I said, volunteering my services.
"Sure!" Brad replied. "This is Walt, by the way, guys."
"I bet that pretty mane of yours raised a pretty penny," one of the the fellows commented, assuming I was one of the shavees.
"Oh, I'm not having my hair cut tonight," I quickly explained.
"He's too much of a sissy pretty boy," Brad teased.
As we struggled to get the heavy, vintage barber chair into the new pub, my hair flopped wildly around in a very irritating way. The chair weighed a ton with it's heavy white enamel base. Finally, we got it in place. The three matching barber chairs looked very nice up on a sort of stage area.
"Go help yourselves to the beer in the cooler in back of the truck," Brad told his pals.
"What's your order in the shaving order?" I asked Brad. "Maybe I'll come back to watch your transformation to cueball!"
"I'm the show's grand opening!" he replied, plopping into the middle chair. "I decided I wanted to get it over as soon as possible. Less time to feel anxious and chicken out. Go ahead, Walt, cape me up. I need to practice not looking nervous. The capes and clippers are in that box there."
My juices were flowing as I pretended to play barber. My skill in casting the cape surprised Bradley. "My, you're almost a professional, Walt! Where did you learn to handle a barber cape like that?"
"I'm equally skilled with the clippers," I said, reaching into the box and pulling out a huge set of Oster's. Again, I grasped his tail and pressed the naked, still teeth into the base of the tail, right at the nape. Even with a powerful machine, it would take some work to cut through it completely. "This is so much hair here at the nape, I can hardly get my fingers around it. It's thicker than my wrist, maybe even my calf!" Then, I held the braid aloft and then let it fall with a thud. Brad's braid danced about a little before hanging still down the back of the chair. "Oh, sorry about the whip lash!"
The clippers in my hand sort of spooked Brad. He scurried out of the car and pulled the cape off. "Now, let me see what kind of hidden barbering skills I have. Your turn in the chair, Walt!"
What a dream -- a hunk with a huge ginger tail playing barber and caping me up. I climbed up onto the foot rest and took a seat. I ran my fingers through my dense golden locks. It had been ages since I'd sat in a real barber's chair. The flimsy little imitation chairs at the salon I used were no comparison.
Brad struggled to get the cape on me. He stood back and looked at me. "You look quite content to be sitting in the barber chair, Walt. Shall I sign you up for the event? I can do it right here on my phone." Then he picked up the clippers and plugged them in. "Or, perhaps you'd like to donate your pretty hair anonymously? Let me shave you bald right here, right now." He snapped on the machine and grasped the thick lock that covered my eye. Then, he lifted it gently and brought the humming machine up close.
I sat, paralyzed with fear and suppressed excitement, unspeaking. My eyes looked longingly at Brad and then darted towards the huge set of Oster's.
"I've never been shaved bald before," I stammered.
"I'd so much like a buzzcut buddy, so that when I lose my long braid this evening, I can leave this place with someone to commiserate along side of me," Brad explained. "I'd like someone who is as uneasy as I am about shedding my identity as a long-term longhair." His eyes looked tender and imploring. "You have such marvelous hair, Walt," he whispered as he fondled it gently. "Let me send it to the cape! Let it all fall to the floor at my feet. We can comfort each other on our shared loss after the event ends."
I sat there unable to speak for what seemed like an eternity. My tongue would not respond to what my brain ordered.
Finally, I gripped the chair arms firmly and gathered my courage. "Take my hair, Brad! All of it. Shave me bald!" I blurted out.
Instantly, the machine was thrust into my mane and shanks of hair began falling down past my face. I watched huge clumps collect on my lap. The lovely waves, lifeless. I was making a huge sacrifice for Brad.
He shaved me in silence, manipulating my head about so that he could effectively strip off all my hair. When the clippers hit my nape, I exploded in pleasure. The vibration on the sensitive area was overwhelming.
"You're really enjoying this," Brad purred. "I only hope I feel the same when my braid is harvested in a few hours."
After a long session buzzing me repeatedly, Brad finally snapped off the machine and took a long look at me. He smiled sweetly and brushed his had against the stubbled pelt. "You look so different, Walt. So innocent and sweet with your baldy."
I smiled sheepishly. "I did it for you...."
"I know you did," he said, unfastening the cape. "Now, let my take you into the bathroom so you can see the new you....oh, you look like a sweet, innocent lad without that awesome mane."
When I was free from the constraints of the cape, I fingered my clipped head. Brad had taken me down close to the wood. I smiled as I stimulated the tidy pelt. "You gave me a real baldy look, Brad."
He pushed open the door of the john and I instantly saw myself for the first time without hair. I gasped at the sight. It was a different person looking at me in the mirror.
Brad grasped his braid. "I don't want to give this up," he pouted. "I don't want a baldy! And I really don't want a cueball, scraped clean!"
"You know you don't have a choice!" I said, laughing at his misery. I grabbed him by the tail and gave it a good yank. Then, with force, I dragged him by the braid out of the bathroom, back to the barber chairs.
"Go ahead, Brad! Take a seat!" I ordered.
He stared at my with a frightened look on his face.
Then, he snapped, "I have a choice, Walt! I do!" And with that, he was gone, out the door. The long ginger braid danced in the sunlight as Brad ran away from the pub, down the sidewalk.
I was left, standing in the pub, with all my beautiful wavy blond hair at my feet. Feeling my clipped, bald head, I felt quite helpless and alone.
Just then the other two fellows climbed out of the back of the truck. "Is Brad in there still?" one called out as they neared the door.
As the walked in, one sputtered, "Your hair! OMG - you're bald! But you look better," he said, suppressing a snicker.
"Brad shaved my head," I explained. "He wants moral support for tonight, when his ginger braid is taken from him."
"Tonight?" the other fellow stammered, confused. "Brad's not part of the event tonight. We have a big moving assignment that'll put us on the road for a few days. In fact, we need to head on out of here son."
"But, he told me he had raised over $1000 in donations and that his head was getting shaved tonight....at the event!" I exclaimed.
"He's pulling your leg. Brad is a huge prankster! And he's super attached to his hair. He'd never shave it off," the fellow replied.
"Besides, this gig moving the barber chairs just popped onto our radar screen late morning. He didn't even know this event was taking place here until a few hours ago. I can assure you he's not one of the shavees!" the other guy confirmed.
My face was crest fallen. I'd been duped.
In that moment of awful, silent realization, a mocking laugh rang out from behind me. It was Brad! He'd circled the block and come in through the back door of the pub while we were talking.
"Ha, ha, ha...." his laughter peeled through the empty pub. "No, Walt, a baldy cut isn't for me! But you look so innocent and sweet with yours... And that was so kind of you to want to give me moral support. And, my friend is right, I'm extremely attached to my hair!" Then he pointed at my cut locks strewn around the base of the barber chair. "I'm as attached to my hair as you have been detached from yours!"
I looked at him in rage! He needed to learn a lesson. I flew towards him and grabbed the braid. "Help me, fellows!" I called out to the other two.
In an instant, they were by my side, helping subdue the strong, but out-numbered and overpowered Brad. "We've been the objects of his pranks too many times and know how it feels."
"Let's strap him to the chair. Quick, go get that duct tape that's in the truck!" the other one added.
The braid made an excellent device to grip and control Brad with. It felt wonderful to use Brad's beloved braid against his strategic interest. He fought hard, but the three of us finally succeeded in strapping him into the barber chair. Fear was etched all over his eyes. I caped him up.
"Oh, look at this lovely ginger braid!" I exclaimed as I squeezed the chord of hair vigorously. Then I began unfastening the tie and scrunchy.
Long billows of wavy red hair hung all the way down the back of the chair, past the bottom of the seat, only about a foot off the floor. Unbound, the hair was over four feet in length. "Take a nice before picture," I encouraged one of the guys.
"Please, don't cut my hair," begged Brad.
"You'll look so handsome with a baldy," I taunted. "But first, this length needs some attention," I said, picking up a set of shears. "Perhaps just a trim...." I taunted, slipping the blades under the masses of hair right at his nape.
He tried desperately to evade the BIG CHOP. But, was unsuccessful.
CRUNCH! I delivered the first blow and a mass of wavy ginger hair fell to the floor. Then I grabbed another shank, brutally hacked it off, and dangled the shorn mass in front of Brad's anguished face.
"Won't Brad's girlfriend be surprised," one of the fellow's remarked. "She's been after him for years to cut his hair!"
"Girlfriend?!" I stammered, feeling even more betrayed. "I thought...." I was seldom wrong on these issues. He was a master deceiver! "Hand me the clippers, fellows!" I barked. "One of you run down to the CVS on the corner and pick up a razor and shaving cream. He's leaving here without a hint of this shimmering mane!"
My shaving of Brad's head was brutal and humiliating. Once I firmly manhandled him, he became cooperative and submissive. I thoroughly enjoyed every second of it, yanking his head around and making sure every strand of hair was taken off right at the scalp. The floor looked like a carpet of ginger and gold. A beautiful modern design.
I stroked his bald head. "Oh, your girlfriend will so enjoy your new look, Brady! Where's the shaving cream. Let's lather him up."
"Please, not a cueball!" Brad begged.
The three of us howled in laughter.
"Shave it all, shave it all!" the two chanted as I applied the lather.
"Brave for the shave, remember the slogan for tonight's event?" I laughed as I pulled the razor across his scalp, beginning the final leg of poor Brad's big transformation.