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Marco, Age 16 by TyeSays

(Authors Note: This story is fully fictional. None of what you'll read actually happened.)

Marco was sixteen when he received his first forced and unwanted haircut. It was an experience he'll never forget.

It happened on the eve of his best friends seventeenth birthday. They had been celebrating for a good four hours when Xavier, the birthday boy, announces to the party that he was growing bored and wanted to do something that would get his adrenaline pumping.
"Like what?" Kaitlin, his then-girlfriend, asked. Xavier looked around the room as he tried to figure out what exactly he could do that would give him the rush he was craving.
"I got it!" He shouted after several minutes. Everyone stared at him, wondering what he'd come up with. They all watched in silence as Xavier stood up from the couch and approaches Marco.
"Hey buddy..mind turning around for me?" He asked, his voice so sugary sweet that it caught everyone off guard. Marco just stared at him.
"Why?" He asked after a good minute passed.
"Just do it," Xavier had replied impatiently. Marco, though a bit wary, did as he was told and turned his back to the birthday boy.
"Thank you," Xavier said before reaching into his pocket and pulling out his switchblade.

Before I continue, let me tell you a little bit about our lovely hair victim. Marcos hair, at that point of his life, had been really long. It fell in tangled and knotted waves down his back, stopping at least six inches bellow his waistline. Why he'd grown it that long, no one knew. He never told anyone, not even me - his closest friend.
Duo to its length though, Marco always felt obligated to braid his hair before attending school or going to school. That way it didn't get in people's way, nor did it get too messy. He only really wore it down when he was home.

Back to the story. Xavier, with the open switchblade in hand, grabbed ahold of Marcos braid. Before the boy had a chance to react, Xavier made a swipe. He didn't manage to cut it clean off, but he did manage to cut a large slice into the braid before Marco pulled away. I'll spare you the details on what happened afterwards. I will till you this: it wasn't pretty.

It must've taken Kaitlin and I at least twenty minutes to calm Marco down. I couldn't stop apologizing for not warning him. In my defense, I didn't think Xavier would be cruel enough to actually do it.
"We're going to have to cut the rest, you know that right?" Kaitlin told him, her eyes locked on the damaged braid.
"I know..." He sounded so devastated as he asked me and Kaitlin to do the deed. He made us promise not to go to short, and made us promise not to let Xavier near him. (We were still at the party. Marco didn't want to go out in public looking the way he did.)

I never told Marco this, but I actually enjoyed cutting off the damaged braid. I never was a fan of it, in all honesty I actually thought it looked rather ridiculous. Using actual scissors, I managed to severe the braid from his head with three snips.

Kaitlin did the rest. I watched with hidden pleasure as she evened out the back and sides - Marco told us he felt could as she exposed his ears and neck to the frigid kitchen air - and cut him bangs that were long enough to cover his eyes but short enough that they didn't pass his eyes. The cut, too me, looked like a more stylish version of a schoolboy haircut. When we showed Marco the cut, he nearly broke down sobbing. It was after we showed him the cut that Xavier revealed to us that he filmed the entire thing and uploaded it to YouTube. It took me and three other guys to keep Marco from attacking him.

"It's really not that bad," I had said as I drove Marco home (I was eighteen at the time and was one of the few in our group of friends that had a license). Marco didn't reply, "Honestly, I think you look great."
"It looks fine," he said after minutes of silence passed by, "Kaitlin did a good job.." He admitted, "..Remind me to kill Xavier later for doing this to me." And that had been the end of our conversation.

It took Marco about a week to warm up to the cut. It took me two months to get him to finally talk to Xavier again; though I know he never, at least fully, forgave him for doing what he did. Even though Marco warmed up to the cut, he told me he planned to grow it back out. And he did. As the years passed by, I watched as Marcos hair grew longer and longer. Little did Marco know..that, on the eve of his twenty-first, his thick tangled hair would soon fall victim to - not a pair of scissors - but a pair of clippers..

But that's a story for another time.

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