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Phil's Son Patrick by Manny
Sequel to "Rob's Neighbor Phil"
Rob heard a crash of shattering glass followed instantly by another smashing sound with an aftermath of scattering fragments. He rushed into his living room and saw a broken window with a baseball nestled among the shard of glass and porcelain from a large blue and white vase.
As he stooped over to begin picking up the broken glass, his neighbor Patrick bounded onto the stoop with his massive ginger plait swinging wildly from his nape. "I'm so sorry, Mr. Aldridge!" the college lad panted as waited for the front door to open. My friend Logan threw me a wild pitch and the ball went....well, you see...."
Rob finished Patrick's sentence. "....yes, it went through my window and broke a valuable Chinese vase. The antique store thought it might be from the Qing dynasty. Do you know how much...."
Just then another moptop, whose shoulder-length blond hair with natural highlights glistened, appeared on the scene. He flicked the massive forelock that hung down over his left eye nervously, unable to keep it out of his face.
"And this must be Logan, the pitcher who specializes in wild balls!" Rob snapped tersely. "I'll go get a broom and dustpan. You two start picking up the big pieces."
"Should we try to glue your pot back together?" Patrick asked hopefully as Rob returned with the broom and dustpan.
"Pot? A frigging pot? You make it sound like something from Home Depot, Patrick! No, it's going to be tossed. There will be no value in it now," Rob stated. "I'll discuss this incident with your father and see what we can work out. I wish I'd had it appraised when I first brought it back from Taiwan."
"Oh, please don't involve my father!" Patrick implored. "He's already stressed out with my mother getting laid off from her job. There's even a chance the bank will foreclose on our house. He's super maxed. Let's you and me resolve this, Mr. Aldridge."
"You, me and Logan," Rob replied, surveying the shy lad with the glorious mane of hair that was in need of serious pruning.
Patrick stooped over to start picking up the shards of glass and ceramics. As he did, his ginger tail dangled precariously above the broken pieces. The huge tuft at the end resembled a copious whiskbroom.
Rob felt like seizing the tail and use its tuft to sweep the broken glass. He smiled to himself, quite certain that by the end of the day, the tail would be his!
"I've got a little money saved up," Patrick said. "I was going to buy a new phone, but I can give it to you instead for the po...I mean, the vase," he murmured. "Logan, stop dawdling and help me clean this up!"
Logan's handsome face was hidden beneath the mane of blond hair that absolutely shimmered in the sun streaming through the broken window. He ran his fingers through it constantly, seeming to enjoy each time the silken strands slipped through them.
The duo worked quickly to sweep up the mess. The sound of broken glass being thrown into the dustbin filled the room.
"Take all the broken glass out to the side yard, Logan. There's a large trashcan there," Rob ordered.
As his friend left to dispose of the shards, Patrick walked over the broken window to examine it. His massive plait looked tantalizing as it swayed gently back and forth like the pendulum of a grandfather clock.
"You know what else needs to be tossed into the dustbin, Patrick?" Rob asked, approaching him from behind.
Patrick stood frozen, knowing what his neighbor was implying. He shuffled nervously on his feet before murmuring, "My tail...."
"That's right," Rob said tersely. "Because....."
Patrick pawed at his tail possessively before continuing the thought, "Because I should have it cut off, to get a job, to help my parents with the expenses. I should be paying rent and my share of the utilities. Instead, I'm like a kid, playing ball in the yard with Logan or hanging out with him in the basement playing videogames all day."
Rob grasped the tail firmly, taking possession of it, before giving it a quick yank. "That's right. Barber shop, crewcut and job interview on Monday at TechAssure. I'll let them know I sent you."
Just then, Logan came back in the front door.
"Oh, and a crewcut for Logan there too. My guess is that if he hadn't had all that hair in his face, my window and vase would be intact. Here's $40 to pay Chuck, the barber," Rob said, fishing out his wallet.
Logan's face was etched with panic. "I'm not cutting my hair, no way!" he stammered defiantly.
"You'll do as I tell you," Patrick said, whirling about, puffing his chest up in a dominant pose. "In fact, we're both going for crewcuts at Chuck's Barber Shop!"
Rob smiled as he watched the power play reach its resolution with Patrick driving Logan out the front door. But, once outside, Logan made a dash to freedom, his beautiful hair billowing in the sunlight as he ran.
Patrick turned back towards Rob, "Sorry, Mr. Aldridge, I tried. But Logan is quite fond of his long hair. Actually, I am too...." he murmured, caressing his tail. His eyes almost pled for mercy, to find another way out of his predicament.
"I think you might make a bit of money from your tail in the process of losing it and getting a nice-paying job. That's virgin hair, I suppose -- no perm chemicals or hair dyes on it, right?" Rob asked.
"No, sir," Patrick replied. "Would you like to see it unbound?"
"Yes, and perhaps we can photograph it and offer it up for sale online?" Rob replied. "I'm sure there would be some people out there willing to pay a pretty copper penny for your copper-colored mane.
"For the hair itself or for the ability to cut it off themselves?" Patrick asked, a bit intrigued.
"Either...or both!" Rob exclaimed.
Patrick was intrigued by the idea of offering his beautiful hair up for sale on the internet. He began to unfasten the long plait.
"Come inside," Rob suggested. I'll get my camera and a brush."
Unbraided, Patrick's hair was even longer -- hanging to the bottom of his rear end. The cascade of soft, glowing orange waves down his back looked stunning. Rob had him sit on a kitchen chair and began to brush through the marvelous mane. Patrick groaned softly with pleasure as the brush was pulled through the mass of ginger hair.
"Taking care of this must be a true labor of love," Rob said wistfully, knowing that Patrick was heading for a crewcut.
"Logan and I help take care of each other's hair," Patrick confided.
"Does that include washing it and plying it with cream rinse?" Rob asked.
"Yes, long sessions in the shower...." Patrick murmured.
"I would love to take a shears to this -- right here, at the nape," Rob stated, "Watch this long hair fall to my feet."
"For the price of a Chinese vase and window repair, you could do it," Patrick replied in a soft, firm voice. "The matter would be over and my father wouldn't even have to know about it."
Rob gathered up the long flowing hair and brought it to his face. The intoxicating smell of shampoo and the softness against his cheek was enough to have him agree to the bargain.
"Deal! I'll go get the shears...." Rob said softly before he scurried from the kitchen.
When Rob returned to the kitchen, brandishing the shears, he noticed that Patrick had been weeping.
"You don't want it cut, do you?" Rob asked tenderly.
Patrick shook his head no.
"But you know it's for the best?" Rob asked.
Patrick shook his head yes.
"Let me help you take off your shirt, Patrick," Rob said as his eager fingers reached for the buttons. Patrick was submissive and compliant. Without his shirt, the long hair streaming down his naked back gave him a sensation of bittersweet-ness.
Then Rob gently forced Patrick to sit as he pulled the long hair from off the lad's back and arranged it carefully as it dangled down, nearly to the floor.
Rob's hand shook with delight as he brought the scissors up to Patrick's nape. A good three feet of ginger locks would fall when he clamped the blades closed.
Rob slipped the shears into the locks and stood there, hand paralyzed. Patrick's hair looked so beautiful, yet so vulnerable.
Just as he was about to deliver the first chop, Logan burst into the kitchen. "STOP! This is all a lie!"
Patrick leapt from the chair to safeguard his flowing mane. "What are you talking about, Logan?"
"That priceless Chinese vase was purchased at TJMaxx for $14.99. Look, here's the base. The price tag is still on it!" Logan shouted, displaying his evidence. "When I was in your room getting my stuff, I remembered noticing the tag. I got curious and went to see exactly what was on it."
Rob's face flushed with anger. "What is this, Mr. Aldridge! Taking advantage of me....?" The legendary fiery temper of ginger lads was on full display.
"Oh, I'm so sorry. I just forgot," Rob stammered.
"Liar!" shouted Logan.
The tense exchange was interrupted by a voice from outside.
"What's all that shouting about?" It was Phil's father asking from the yard. "Is everything all right in there?"
"Yes, Dad," Patrick answered. "Mr. Aldridge is trying to persuade Logan and me to visit the barber. Logan's not keen on the idea."
"And, what about you, son?" Phil asked.
Patrick flashed a wicked grin at Rob.
"Yes, Mr. Aldridge promised to bring me on at TechAssure in a mid-level job, not an entry level one....with a very handsome salary plus benefits. Isn't that right Mr. Aldridge?" Patrick said, forcing Rob to pay dearly for his scheme-gone-sour. "I'll be one of the few in my class already working come graduation."
"That's wonderful, son!" Phil called out as he opened the kitchen door and entered.
"In fact, I asked Mr. Aldridge to cut off my long hair before he takes me to Chuck's Barber Shop. I told him I'd feel a little silly walking in there with hair down to my butt, sitting in a traditional barber's chair," Patrick said. "It's time for me to grow up, get a job and help out with the finances at home."
"I'm so proud of you, son," Phil replied, giving his soon-to-be college grad son a hug. "And so thankful to you, Rob!"
"Uh, well, uh, yes, if I can get HR to agree, which I think I can," Rob said nervously.
"And he's offered the same for me!" said Logan, jumping onto the gravy train.
"Logan and I are both excited about getting crewcuts. Long hair can be so much work," Patrick said, happy that his friend decided to join in with a transformation of his own.
Logan ran both his hands through his long, gorgeous locks. "Can't wait to have all this buzzed off. When will we start our new jobs, Mr. Aldridge?"
"You'll come in with me Monday to submit your applications...that is, if we can get to the barbershop before it closes. Start work on Tuesday, if HR offers you the positions. It's lucky I have two mid-level positions I need to fill."
Patrick sat back down on the kitchen chair. "Let the shearing begin! Where are your scissors, Mr. Aldridge?"
Rob seized them from the kitchen counter and held them up. "If we're going to be colleagues at work, you need to start calling me Rob!"
Phil whipped out his cell phone to video his son being parted from his long hair.
Quickly the shears went to Patrick's nape. This time Rob did not delay to clamp the sharp blades shut. CRUNCH! CRUNCH, CRUNCH!!
Mounds of gorgeous, long soft ginger hair fell to Rob's feet. It was a wonderful sight to behold. Rob stepped on the forlorn locks with a casual disdain as he thrust the shears in for another round of chopping. Patrick's white neck was clearly visible among the jungle copper hair that surrounded it.
Logan looked on in horrified glee. "I want you to hack off my long hair too, before we head to the barbershop, Rob!"
Rob began snipping Patrick's locks off his ears. CHOP, CHOP. And then he was given some very short bangs!
"You've missed your calling, Rob. It looks like you're a natural barber!" Phil laughed.
"Actually, I own a set of electric hair clippers. Perhaps you two would prefer kitchen butch cuts!" Rob suggested.
"I think they both would welcome old fashioned, amateur butches!" Phil said, feeling his own plush pelt of hair nervously.
Rob darted over to his pantry and pulled out a little box. He held up the clippers. "What will it be? A #1 all over? Nice stubble? Or a #2 to give it a bit of length?"
"A #1!" Patrick announced. "As long as I'm going in for a change, let's go all the way."
Patrick was very compliant in the chair as Rob brought the clippers to his mane. Ginger hair went everywhere. The floor was virtually carpeted with shimmering copper locks.
Watching his pal go from longhair to baldy energized Logan to follow suit. "I can't wait for my turn in the chair."
Over and over the clippers traversed Patrick's exposed scalp. Nothing was left! No length to speak of! He was bald!
After his divestiture ended, Patrick could not stop feeling his stubble. He laughed and squealed with delight at the feel of his naked head. "OMG! It's all gone! I'm practically bald! Is there a mirror where I can see what this looks like?"
Logan ripped off his shirt. "Now it's my turn with the boot camp barber! Take me down to the wood, Rob!"
"Do you want me to video your transformation, Logan?" Phil asked.
"Of course!" Logan replied.
Rob grabbed Logan by the mass of thick, blond hair and wrenched his head back like a real boot camp barber.
Logan enjoyed the way he was being manhandled.
Then the clippers were thrust into his prized mane. Clumps of his gorgeous hair began falling off in torrents as Rob mercilessly drove the clippers down the top of his head.
Patrick stumbled back in the kitchen, still looking and feeling dazed. "OMG! Logan you're looking like a marine recruit!"
Rob laughed. "Because I decided to give him a #0000 all over -- a true induction cut. He seemed so eager to go bald."
"Perhaps I can take him down to the skin," Patrick noted. "Steamy shower, lather, razor....scraped clean, after you finish with the clippers!"
"I'd love that," panted Logan. He held up a wad of cut hair that had collected on his lap and held it up before dropping it to the floor. "Good riddance."
The amount of cut hair collecting at Rob's feet was dramatic. It gave him such a feeling of power and authority as he sent the boys' pampered tresses to the floor. Then he eyed Phil's tidy pelt. "You're next in the chair. And I don't want any lip, understood?"
"You're not thinking of Logan's length for me?" Phil stammered.
"What length?" Rob laughed as he finished buzzing Logan's head so that it looked like a naked lightbulb. "Go see the new you, Logan. And, Phil, you start taking off your shirt. Or will you need help doing that?"
"Come on, Logan. I can't wait to scrape you clean over at our place." The two lads parted quickly, exploring one another's clipped pates.
"Phil! You're next!" Rob barked playfully.
"Oh, Rob, I just will feel so vulnerable and insecure without any hair...." Phil stammered.
"Do you want Patrick and Logan employed on Monday?" Rob threatened. "I can always change my mind...or instruct HR not to bring them onboard."
Phil hustled over to the chair, stepping on the cut long hair that surrounded the chair. His son had made a huge sacrifice. Maybe an induction cut would actually suit him.....bald by choice, the fellows at the office called it.
"Ready!" said Phil, gaining confidence as he took a seat in Rob's kitchen barber shop.
"And, I'm ready to be your permanent barber!" Rob replied as the clippers hit Phil's pelt.