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The Greaser Challenge - Chapters 10 & 11 by HairF***er

Chapter 10 - The Nature of Loss

From having witnessed Tyler and Ryan's dramatic transformations, Luca knew he was in serious trouble, especially as the fate of his prized hair was literally going to be in the hands of his greatest rival.

He stood there, next to the arm-wrestling table, bare-chested and breathing heavily, as the Stylist approached with the leather collar and leash. As the Stylist reached forward and slipped the collar around Luca's muscular neck, his fingers lightly touched Luca's heavily-greased D.A.

The Stylist couldn't help but shudder in anticipation at what was to come. After all, it wasn't every day he got to contribute to the downfall of such a truly spectacular hairstyle. Destroying greaser haircuts had always been something he'd particularly enjoyed, especally given the lavishness with which they were styled and the fundamental role they played in the self-image of their owners.

He had no doubt that Luca's hair was one of his most prized possessions.

After the collar was buckled up, the Stylist clipped on the leather leash and then ceremoniously handed it over to Tommy. The rival greaser's grin widened as he took the leash, gave it a sharp yank and started to lead Luca across the studio floor to the Forfeit Station.

There was just one vacant barber's chair left now, and that one had Luca's name written all over it. 

A ripple of applause, more supportive than excited, traveled through the audience as Luca was frog-marched past the spectators.

They'd seen what Tommy had done, how he had cheated his way to victory. It was Tommy's jelly roll they wanted to see on the chopping block, not Luca's glorious black pompadour. But nothing's fair in love and war and certainly not on 'The Greaser Challenge'. Tommy had won and Luca had lost, and nothing was going to save Luca's hair from being penalized with maximum force.

Luca somehow looked even more beautiful in defeat, his handsome head slightly bowed, the leash tugging at the leather collar.

Many in the crowd couldn't help but admire his sculpted torso as it was exhibited before them. There were audible murmurs of appreciation for the breadth of his shoulders, for his muscular arms, for his toned and honed abs. 

A patch of curling black fur lay between his nipples that evolved into a narrow treasure trail as it went south, the hair thickening again as it disappeared beneath his belt and down into his blue jeans.

Some in the front row had to resist the urge just to lean forward and touch...
In many ways Luca was the epitome of a particular sort of male beauty, crowned by the greased glory of his shining black pompadour.

The Stylist, Tommy and Luca arrived at the Forfeit Station. Tyler and Ryan just sat and watched in silence as the third unlucky loser took his place.

Trying to muster as much dignity as he could, Luca eased his 6ft form into the third barber's chair, the red leather creaking as it took his weight. He slowly reclined back into it, placing his boots on the rubber footplate, his long fingers slightly hanging over the ends of the armrests.

Luca just stared ahead, not focusing on any of the sea of faces that were looking at him. He knew Lisa was in the studio somewhere, watching, but he didn't know where.

The audience looked on, spellbound, in a sort of reverential silence as the Stylist, not saying a word, slowly swiveled the chair to face the mirror so Luca was confronted with his own reflection.

Tommy stood and watched. Still bare-chested himself, he caught Luca's eyes in the mirror, flexed his biceps again and grinned.

Luca looked away, back towards his own reflection: his forehead was furrowed, his two thick black eyebrows knitted together almost in puzzlement. His mouth was a straight line, his lips pressed firmly together.

His eyes were inevitably drawn to his own treasured haircut: the most visible symbol of his identity and the most important feature of his entire self-image.

He noticed the deep black luster and the combination of grease and oil that hugged every strand. It looked so wet it could almost have been slicked with water. He noticed how the sides were artfully greased back and then combed up so the hair piled up on his head to form a classic pompadour profile.
He noticed the thick, heavy forelock that dangled from the center of his hairline and hung like a black question mark over his forehead until it reached between his eyebrows.

It was a handsome haircut for a very handsome man.

There hadn't been a single day in the past ten years when Luca hadn't styled his hair into a pompadour. And now Tommy Paul, of all the people in the world, would hold dominion over it.

In a very real sense, Luca's glorious hair was no longer his own.

The Stylist pulled out the white cape from the back of the chair, shook it out and flamboyantly floated it it over Luca's bare-chested body. It was then secured tightly at Luca's neck leaving just his beautiful head exposed.

The expanse of white cape focused everyone's attention on his black pompadour haircut, still glistening and vital in the bright studio lights.

"So," said the Stylist, turning to Tommy, who was almost bouncing up and down with excitement. "What do you want to do to him?".

Luca closed his eyes.

Tommy's mind had raced through the possibilities ever since he'd been confirmed as the winner. Maybe a flat-top, or a crewcut, or a buzzcut!

The thought of seeing the clippers plow through Luca's gorgeous greasy pomp made Tommy's heart soar. Or a bowlcut. Yes, thought Tommy. A really short bowlcut. Or perhaps a mohawk or, even worse, a bihawk, so Luca left the chair with just two little strips of hair on his otherwise bald head.

'Bald'...the thought of seeing Luca bald, and on his orders, gave a Tommy an almost overwhelming thrill.

He looked down at Luca's greased and oiled hair. It never even occurred to Tommy to be lenient or to show some restraint. Although the winning contestant was encouraged to push for the most dramatic makeover, to 'encourage the extreme' as the announcer had said, it wasn't a stipulation of the rules. It was at the discretion of the victor.

But Tommy was enraptured with the prospect of revenge, sky-high on the reality of being $10,000 richer and with his great rival totally at his mercy. And mercy wasn't on the menu. Not today. He was consumed with the desire to humiliate.

So what would be the most humiliating haircut Tommy could think of... He thought, and then he remembered.

He turned eagerly to the Stylist and took him to one side. Whispering so Luca wouldn't hear, he told the Stylist exactly what he wanted for Luca's hair. 

The Stylist laughed. "Of course," he said. "It will be my pleasure."

Luca had no idea as he sat there looking his own reflection that he was going to receive one of the embarrassing haircuts known to man.

The Stylist took the sharpest scissors from the counter and, with an ironic bow, presented them to Tommy.

Tommy looked a little surprised. 

"You know what we're aiming for," said the Stylist. "So go to town!"

Standing directly behind the chair, Tommy and Luca's eyes met again in the mirror. Luca's face was drained of all expression but his gaze burned with resentment.

Grinning, Tommy held up the scissors in full view of Luca and the audience. He snapped the blades open and shut a few times.

Tommy reached forward, and using his thumb and index finger, he plucked up the long, thick greased lock of black hair that hung over Luca's forehead.

He pulled it up, away from from Luca's scalp.

It was long. Much longer than he thought it would be. Over six inches he guessed, at least. And heavy too, weighed down with its covering of greasy pomade. He could feel the oil on it, slippery and warm.

He was used to handling his own greased-up hair on a daily basis, but there was something fundamentally different about handing another guy's. It felt deeply personal in a way that took him completely by surprise.

Tommy opened the scissors and carefully inserted the forelock between the two sharp steel blades. He then moved the blades down the hair shafts until they were less than a couple of inches away from Luca's scalp.

With Luca watching every moment in the mirror, Tommy took a deep breath.

He thought of Lisa.

He thought of the $10,000 prize he'd just won.

He thought of how close he'd come to losing his own greased hair. 

And then Tommy took a deep breath, closed his eyes and slowly squeezed the scissors together, and he felt, as much as he heard, the *crunch* as the scissors severed Luca's treasured forelock from his head.

Luca let out a deep, involuntary groan as he watched his forelock being removed.

He'd been expecting his hair to be cut, of course, but seeing the reality of it? Seeing Tommy stood there, bare-chested, wielding the scissors... touching his hair, holding it, and then destroying it, almost on a whim?
And knowing Lisa was in the studio watching? Knowing his humiliation was going to be broadcast across the nation? That his friends and colleagues would see his entire ordeal. The whole greaser community watching as his pride and joy was eviscerated!

The feeling of degradation, of exposure, that swept over him was worse than he ever imagined.

There was a smattering of applause as Tommy turned to the audience and held up the oily forelock like some sort of sick trophy. It lay across his fingers like a limp, black eel.

"I love you, Lisa!!" he bellowed, provoking a few laughs from the crowd.

He then tossed the hair over Luca's shoulder. It slithered down Luca's chest and came to rest in his lap, incongruous against the pure white cape.

Tommy picked up another of the long locks at Luca's hairline and snipped it off in the same way, dumping it onto the cape to join the first one. Then he cut another, and another.

With just five or six snips of the scissors, Luca's oily fringe had been decimated, hacked down to little more than an inch in length, all the severed hair now joining a growing pile in Luca's lap.

The glorious pompadour was already irretrievably ruined.

Looking down at the harvested hair on the white cape, Luca realized how much of his life it represented. Whether styling it to perfection before his first date with Lisa, going to watch a movie at the Vineland drive-in, or hanging out at the diner with his greaser buddies, his pomp had been an ever-present part of his identity for a decade. And now it was being stripped away like it was so much trash.

He glanced up at Tommy in the mirror as his rival continued to indiscriminately destroy his hair, his eyes fixing on Tommy's perfectly-styled jelly roll: lush and dense, and greased, it was Tommy's own pride and joy. 

And Luca knew, absolutely knew in that moment that he'd annihilate Tommy's hair, even if it was the last thing he ever did.

By now Tommy had moved on to the crown of Luca's head. Luca could actually feel the scissors being laid flat against his scalp as they snipped off his hair.
Tommy was just grabbing handfuls of it now, big fistfuls of greasy black hair, and was hacking it off as close to the roots as he could get.
Whooping with shear delight, he threw the locks up in the air and laughed as they fell heavily back to earth, covering Luca's head, face and shoulders, the oily strands littering the cape just as they littered the floor around the chair.

Tommy exulted in the thrill of devastation. He knew exactly what Luca's hair meant to him as it was what his own hair meant to himself, and that only made its destruction even more satisfying. 

As each handful of Luca's black mane was hurled into the air, an indescribable wave of power swept through Tommy. He wasn't just changing Luca's appearance, he was dismantling his sense of self. It was a physical act of dominance that would have far-reaching emotional and psychological consequences, and Tommy found it utterly intoxicating.

The Stylist watched on with amused interest. He'd seen it all before, of course. Many times. Give a man the opportunity to humiliate another guy by screwing with his hair... well, it was like catnip to them.

Once they started they couldn't get enough of it.

Weird, huh. Domination and humiliation - the two poles around which so many male relationships revolved.

With each snip, Luca's humiliation continued. He dipped his head down and raised his thick eyebrows as he tried to see what damage had been inflicted on the top of his dome.

To his dismay, he discovered that the crown of his head had been clipped almost completely bald, an irregular combination of white skin and short, stubbly black hair.

It looked even more grotesque when contrasted with the longer hacked remains of his hairline.

And then it was done. Tommy was almost panting as he handed the grease-slicked scissors back to the Stylist.

"I've finished", he said, breathlessly, his hands covered in long strands of Luca's oily black hair. "It's up to you now."

Chapter 11 - Encouraging the Extreme

The Stylist nodded in understanding and picked the Wahl clippers off the counter, flicking them on with his thumb.

With a very firm grip on top of Luca's dome, he carefully used the clippers to incise a line that went around Luca's entire head, just above the top of his ears.

He then followed it by creating another perfect line above the first one, leaving Luca with two lines encircling his head separated by about an inch.

Tommy then watched with satisfaction as the Stylist used the clippers to remove every single hair growing below the lowest of the two circles.

An amazing amount of hair came off as the sides were mown to stubble. The slick locks piled up in front of the clipper blades like snow before a plow before curling over in a black wave and either tumbling to the floor or joining the mountain of hair on Luca's lap.

The lower half of Luca's cherished D.A., already bisected by the two incised lines, was ruthlessly shaved away as was all the hair around his ears and his thick, moderately long sideburns.

It was an amazing sight as the lustrous dark hair was replaced with white, buzzed skin. As one particularly fat lock fell to the floor Tommy scooped it up, rubbed it between his fingers and inhaled the scent of Luca's perfumed pomade: cinnamon and citrus.

Once the Stylist was done with this first phase, Luca's proud pompadour had been reduced to little more than a very botched, very short bowlcut.
Looking in the mirror, Luca was dismayed by how much his ears now seemed to stick out from the sides of his head. His bangs had been reduced to an absurd straight line running about an inch below his natural hairline.

He slowly turned his head to the left and right to get a better look at the carnage. It really did look like he had a shallow black bowl upturned on his head.
His stomach turned with disgust. His face and the cape were plastered in his own oiled hair, from long black strands to thick greased clumps and the finest of fine stubble.

Turning the chair away from the mirror so Luca was facing the audience, the Stylist turned on the clippers again. This time he started buzzing all the hair above the uppermost of the two incised lines he'd created earlier. 

Everything above this line was swiftly reduced to prickly stubble leaving almost no indication of the lush, thick growth that had been sprouting from Luca's scalp just an hour earlier.

Luca winced as he felt the clippers roaming across his crown. Whatever humiliation haircut Tommy had decided on, it was obviously going to be extreme.

He looked out into the audience again, searching for Lisa, but he just saw a crowd of strangers, their eyes fixed on every moment of his transformation. He felt acutely vulnerable and exposed.

The Stylist snapped off the clippers and replaced them on the counter. Picking up a brush, he swept Luca's head clean of loose hair.

There was a pause, and then Luca felt something warm and wet being applied over large parts of his head: to the back, down to the nape of his neck, all over his crown and around the sides. 

He suddenly realized it was shaving foam and that Tommy was intent on seeing him shaved slick bald. His cheeks reddened as he felt his ears being pulled forward; the foam applied around the back and to the front where his sideburns had once grown.

The first touch of the Stylist's straight razor on top of Luca's scalp was electrifying. It reinforced the brutal reality of his transformation like almost nothing else had.

He'd never expected to shave his head, ever. And now it was being done for him, against his wishes, in front of television cameras and an audience of spectators.

Luca could only sit there, trapped beneath the barber's cape, as the steel blade scraped the remains of his vandalized pompadour from off his head. 

He was aware of Ryan and Tyler sat in the barber's chairs next to him, no doubt watching his transformation with the same mixture of curiosity and horror with which he'd watched their own.

Luca felt his head being relathered and reshaved, this time against the grain. It seemed even the slightest trace of stubble wasn't going to be spared.

After the Stylist had wiped Luca's head with a towel, he picked up the scissors and comb and spent some minutes putting the final touches to his latest creation.

And then it was time for the reveal. Draping a towel back over Luca's head, completely obscuring his vision, the Stylist turned the chair so it was once again facing the mirror.

Luca sat there in the darkness, his heart thumping in his chest. He could hear Tommy laughing to himself off to one side. His head felt...different. Lighter, yes, but also colder without its covering of warm, greased hair.

He braced himself for what he was going to see when the towel was removed. 

The big denouement.

"Five! Four! Three! Two! One!" counted the audience.

And the Stylist whipped the towel off Luca's head with a flourish.

"Behold!", he announced. "The Friar Tuck!"

Luca was instantly confronted with a vision of himself that was so ludicrous he could hardly believe what his eyes were showing him.

'Friar Tuck' was indeed accurate because that's exactly what Luca had been given: an expertly-crafted, precisely-cut monk's tonsure. His pale bald dome rose up from a narrow ring of black hair that seemed to encompass his entire head. 

The ring of hair was around an inch wide, an inch long and neatly combed. It was still sleek from the residual pomade left over from Luca's now-vanished pompadour.

Beneath the ring of hair was nothing but smooth, white skin and his jutting ears.

Luca had never had his scalp exposed to view before, and now there it was, looming like an egg on the top of his head, for everyone to see, untanned and almost luminous in the bright studio lights.

A few years earlier Tommy had seen a tv show that he'd loved, with sword-fighting, and one of the episodes had been set in a monastery. And the monks... the guys playing the monks had had the worst haircuts he'd ever seen. 

It had preoccupied Tommy for days after. He used to lie in bed thinking about it, sweating, with Lisa at his side - thinking about how the actors had to go about their regular lives with *that* done to their hair...

He'd felt strangely humiliated on their behalf. Vicariously. He couldn't imagine it, what it would feel like to have that haircut, to be seen with that haircut. To live with it, on a day-to-day basis. How conspicuous he would feel. The embarrassment of every social interaction.

And then he'd remembered it again in this very studio, years later.

The Stylist bowed as the audience politely applauded. Tommy reached out and slowly stroked the top of Luca's bald head, while Luca just looked at his transformed appearance in the mirror.

The tonsure wasn't just a deeply humiliating haircut. Like his pompadour, it was a symbol - but a symbol not of pride but of subservience, not of rebelliion but of submission, and not of virility but of chastity.

Luca, a virile, sexually active man, now looked like he'd just taken a vow of celibacy. He thought of Lisa and his ears flared red with shame.

It was a complete reversal of Luca's conception of himself: physically, emotionally, culturally and socially.

If it was even possible for him to feel more humiliated then he didn't know how.

"What about his eyebrows?" asked the Stylist.

Tommy looked at the Stylist, then at Luca's reflection, and back at the Stylist.

"His eyebrows?" asked Tommy.

"Of course," clarified the Stylist. "You're the winner and poor Mr Barbieri here is the loser. And this is a makeover. If you wish to... uh...'re-style' Luca's eyebrows then that is the winner's prerogative. Luca would've been granted the same rights over your appearance, should he have won."

Tommy looked back at Luca's reflection.

He met Luca's eyes in the mirror.

Luca just sat in the chair, watching him. He wanted to beg. He actually wanted to plead with Tommy to spare his eyebrows. To beg in full view of the audience and the cameras. In front of Lisa. He wanted to plead with Tommy not to destroy his eyebrows.

But he didn't.

He wouldn't give Tommy the satisfaction.

So he sat in silence, expressionless. He knew, as soon as the Stylist had mentioned his eyebrows, he *knew* that Tommy would want to take them, as a trophy, to signal to the world in the most degrading way that he'd won and Luca had lost.

"How?" Tommy asked the Stylist.

"Anyhow you like," the Stylist replied.

Tommy went and stood behind the barber's chair as a hushed silence settled over the audience. The entire studio seemed to hold its collective breath waiting to see what Tommy would do next.

Tommy put his fingers on Luca's forehead and pulled his head back so Luca was looking up into the studio lights.

Luca's eyebrows were thick, around three inches long, each one consisting of hundreds of shiny, dense black hairs.
Luca closed his eyes tightly in anticipation as Tommy ran a finger over one of the brows. 'Soft', Tommy thought.

It was probably the most intimate thing he'd ever done with another man.

He reached over, picked up the hair clippers from the counter and turned them on.

They vibrated in his hand. 

He placed the clippers at the tail of Luca's right eyebrow. Luca could feel the vibrations through his skull.

The audience waited.

Luca waited, and Tommy waited.

The moment stretched on.

And then...

"Please, don't...," whispered Luca.


Tommy paused and then, slowly, hair by hair, he pushed the chattering teeth through Luca's beautiful black eyebrow and shaved it off to the skin.

Even over the sound of the clippers, as each eyebrow was decimated, Tommy heard Luca let out a deep, guttural groan of pure misery.

Once both of Luca's eyebrows were off, Tommy blew across his face sending the hundreds of little dark hairs up into the air where they gradually floated down to join the remains of Luca's pompadour on the studio floor.

The Stylist stepped in with the straight razor and swiftly removed the stubble. Once he'd finished, it was like Luca's eyebrows never even existed.

Luca opened his eyes and looked at himself.

Shocking as it seemed, the removal of Luca's thick eyebrows had changed his appearance even more profoundly than the loss of his iconic pompadour.

After all, 'Friar Luca' had still looked like Luca, even without his iconic greased haircut. But with no eyebrows...

They'd been just two small strips of dark hair but now, without them, he looked like a totally different person. And not just different but absurd. 

He didn't even look like a man anymore, at least not like he had before. The eradication of his eyebrows had given his face a strangely androgynous appearance that was almost effeminate. For Luca, it was as disorientating as it was crushing.

If he looked surprised then it was simply because now, without his eyebrows, looking surprised was his default expression.

As Luca surveyed the outcome of this final humiliation, he felt something shrivel up inside him. Whether it was a part of his masculinity or his dignity, or his pride in himself, he felt it disappear like snow in summer.

The chair was turned towards the audience so they could see the full outcome of Luca's makeover on 'The Greaser Challenge'.

There was some applause, some murmurs, but there was mostly just an awkward silence. Luca thought he heard a muffled cry of horror, and he knew it was Lisa.

Tyler, Ryan and Luca - the three losing contestants.

The Stylist removed Luca's cape sending a shower of greased black hair cascading onto the floor.

Luca sat in the chair, bare-chested, overcome with humiliation and embarrassment, and an overwhelming desire for revenge.

Tommy had won, but for how long?

[Author's note - I'm sorry this turned into such a long story, and I'm aware that it probably isn't to everyone's taste on here. I had a lot of fun coming up with the scenario and writing it though, and Luca's crushing transformation sort of wrote itself in the end. I love the psychology behind haircuts, especially forced haircuts, and especially bad haircuts, and maybe that comes across in the story: the multiple ways in which guys might react to giving or receiving an uwnwanted haircut. I find it endlessly interesting and I hope I did it justice. I'm planning to write a spin-off that sees Luca get his revenge on Tommy's luscious jelly roll, so Tommy will finally end up with the haircut he deserves! And I've also almost finished 'The Greaser Challenge - Episode 2', with four new guys, and the Stylist's work is far from over. Thanks for reading! - HF]

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