Monday, 21 March 2016

CLEANER II: Chapter Six - Part Six


I felt drugged-up all the way back to my hotel on the cranky old bus, tipping sideways over the potholes; jolting my tender stomach and making my flab shudder.

All I could think about was Melissa’s absurd offer and its insanely tempting nature.

Because of course, in some ways, that was exactly what I wanted. It was what I had wanted all along. Of course it was. I had wondered what life would be like if I truly became Melissa. I had wished for a magical transformation to occur. I had aped her life and longed to live it fully. This Greek charade was very close to that preposterous ideal but it was also a million miles away from it.

But it was preposterous. And there was a world of difference between playing this game that we had been playing and going all the way as it were.

I had put on a costume here in Greece. I was pretending to be someone else. I had even put on a vast amount of weight and trained my eyes to grow dim and watery. But nothing I had done was as drastic or potentially irrevocable as what Melissa was now suggesting.

Was it even possible, through surgery, to make us really look like one another? And though talked about reversing it whenever I wished, surely it wasn’t so simple. We were talking a serious piece of surgery. The change really could be one way. Let’s say it was even possible... How much trauma could the human face stand and still bounce back from it? The change into her might be possible but trying to change back could make a hash of any beauty I had or wanted to get back to.

Though I had my doubts even that was possible. I was so grossly obese now. My eyesight was ruined. The habits of overeating as well as the booze and the cigarettes was so deep-rooted now. I wondered if I would ever be able to give them up. I wondered if we even swapped back now whether I would have a chance of recovering my former looks. Surely they were lost to me now. Surely I was going to remain corpulent and homely for the rest of my life, even if I was Dahlia Western again. Surely the old me was lost forever. I didn’t know where Melissa had found the motivation to lose all that weight and gain so much in fitness. I envied her that. I didn’t feel I could ever do it.

And if I was going to be fat and four-eyed for the rest of my life, maybe I should stay as Melissa. She made a better Dahlia than I did nowadays. That was abundantly clear. It felt wrong for me to steal that away from her. I was undeserving surely now. I'd let everybody down; most of all myself. I couldn’t bear to think about Tommy or Katherine, or... or my brother. I couldn’t bear it. And I couldn’t bear the thought of going back to England looking like I did and trying to pretend I was really myself again. Tommy and Katherine would look at me and know I had gone mad.

And what of the press? If they got wind of how low I’d fallen, how clearly ill I had to be mentally to allow such a thing, they would ridicule me into obscurity. After all the years of admiration and esteem for my beauty, that I couldn’t cope with.

Maybe Melissa was right. Maybe this was the best option. Maybe it was my only option. And surely if I could really pull it off; really become her and assume her life; I could be happy... with her husband. If he loved me anywhere near as much as he loved her then I would be content forever.

The bus rattled to a shaky stop and I got out, wheezing as I climbed down the narrow steps awkwardly, worried I might lose my footing and topple out headfirst like a gargantuan, misshapen peach. I thanked the diver in pigeon Greek and walked back to the hotel, resenting the heat and the way it made me sweat beneath my breasts and in the folds of my fat.

As I walked I imagined the reality of taking on Melissa’s face and completely subsuming her identity. The arousal growled away in my lower regions but so did a scratching anxiety at the back of my brain that made my eyes feel parched and too big for their sockets. Maybe Melissa was right and it was just a continuation of the game. It wasn’t real. I could back out at any time. I could go back to my real life.

Or maybe deep down she hated me. Maybe all this was about her stealing my life and never giving it back.

I shuddered to think such a thing of my friend. I made the conscious choice to place that thought to the side and away.

Maxine and one of the other cleaners were chatting in the foyer of the hotel. They had cleaning implements out but, as usual, weren’t using them. In fact I’d seldom seen Maxine ever doing work herself. She mainly chatted while her flunkies flitted round her doing it themselves.

“Hey, look who it is!” she cried, grinning. “It’s Big Piggy!”

I frowned at the new version of my nickname, noticing that this time she didn’t even bother to mention he shift. I looked down at my bulging body and shrugged inwardly. It was nothing if not descriptive. And what did I care? I’d brought this on myself. Still, it did hurt me; it really did; but only as much as it gave me a certain thrill of masochistic pleasure. It made me feel both good and bad that she ridiculed me so openly. It meant I was accepted. It meant I was part of her social group. That was as much a turn-on as anything else.

I gave a self-deprecatory smile and shambled over to them. “Hi.”

“Careful,” said Maxine, smirking, “you might crack the floor tiles you’re so fat now.” She chuckled. “You should win an award or something, the amount of weight you’ve put on. If I didn’t know better I’d think you’d done it on purpose, but no woman I know would ever willingly get as fat as you. You’re a real porker now. You’re massive!”

She and the other cleaner had a good laugh at my expense and I laughed along with them feeling uneasy and a little angry. I wanted to talk back to her but I just didn’t have the confidence anymore. She was right. I was gargantuan. I looked like a prize pig being fattened up for slaughter.

“Where are you off to Big Piggy?” asked Maxine.

I shrugged. “Don’t know. Up to my room.”

“They have loads of leftovers from lunch in the kitchen if you want to go on fattening yourself up. Get in there before they chuck it out.”

I stepped to do as she said and saw the smirk break out on her lips. That made me hesitate, blushing.

“Go on,” she said, coaxing me. “We won’t judge you. You’ve got a big appetite. It’s nothing to be ashamed of.”

I shuffled on the spot for a minute, questioning myself. I didn’t have to go on shovelling food down my throat. I had reached my target weight. Soon I was going to start slimming down. And if I went and got it then they’d laugh behind my back. I knew they would.

But my tummy was rumbling and I really fancied something good and greasy. I was starving. And what did it matter? If I went along with Melissa’s plan then it might even help.

Melissa’s plan...

“Go on Lard-arse,” said Maxine. “You’ll have to waddle in there quick or you’ll miss your chance.”

I turned the corners of my mouth up and said, “Thanks for telling me.”

I hurried toward the kitchen door, my fat swinging pendulously with each step, and behind me Maxine and her friend’s sniggers turned into laughter. With burning cheeks I pushed open the kitchen door and fell on the piles of leftover food, scooping it onto a plate, my mouth salivating as I eagerly imagined how good it was going to taste.


  1. Another spectacular episode!!! Thank you so much for keeping them coming so quickly!!

    Melissa planted a seed and it seems she did so in fertile ground since it seems to have sprouted. Dahlia is in such bad shape physically and emotionally she feels that Melissa is more deserving of Dahlia Western's life and identity.
    She knows that she has to go home eventually and she fears ridicule by the press and doesn't want to deal with the disappointment from Katherine and Tommy. They'd probably have her committed for playing this game to such extent.
    She's actually feeling guilty for taking her life away from Melissa! The thought that Melissa's intent may be malicious is quickly dismissed. Is Dahlia really so far gone that she can't see that stealing her life is exactly what Melissa wants? Once Melissa is in England firmly rooted in Dahlia's life, Dahlia is in for quite the battle if she wants her life back!


    1. You may be right... on several counts.

    2. I think Melissa's confidence and control will grow immensely once she looks in the mirror and see's Dahlia's face, only it will then be uniquely hers and the old Dahlia will be no longer.

      Dahlia is so deep into her fantasy, she doesn't seem feel she has the willpower or drive to lose the weight and get her life back. In her lucid moments, she knows that beneath the glasses and chubby cheeks, her former beautiful face lies hidden away, but what is going to happen when she knows it's gone and Melissa is wearing it?

      This could go so many different ways!


    3. It must be an extremely powerful experience to be living out a fantasy in such a thorough way...

    4. It's a fantasy for Dahlia, but for Melissa I think it is something else. Melissa is playing for keeps.
      Melissa is slowly siphoning Dahlia's identity and soon she will have it all and Dahlia will have none.


    5. Am I way off? Does Melissa still view the whole thing as a fantasy too? Dahlia feels safe wrapped in the cocoon of Melissa's life and it prevents her from having to deal with the realities of her own life. I guess Melissa is also trying to escape her former existence as well wrapping herself up in Dahlia's life, but I think that living as Dahlia has awakened something sinister in Melissa. It seems that living as Dahlia Western is within her grasp. Dahlia is still struggling with her inner demons which makes her vulnerable to Melissa's manipulations.


    6. I think a very key point here is that the woman Melissa has become isn't anything like the Dahlia who existed just before the switch started occurring.

      I also think that both women are rather detached from the nuts and bolts of everyday life. This whole thing is pretty crazy and extreme for both of them.

      Even though Melissa seems to be getting the better end of the deal it's still pretty whacked.

  2. WOW! Great chapter, veyr well written. Robert is right, Fertile ground indeed. The firtile ground of D's madness. It is truly written that whom the gods destroy they first make mad.
    D has made a quick turn around from the confidence & decission she had earlier. Why? maybe the temptation of the easy way out of escaping from her former life & persona?
    Several new points were raised. Now D seems worried about that the press will say & how her pracious princess image will be destroyed & the redicule she will now get of how she delrately ruined her beauty & her eyes. & how disapointed Tommy & Katherine will be. Also, it has come home again thata maybe she CAN'T lose the weight or give up drinking or smoking or even stop eating the way she is now.
    She thinks once again also that maybe M deserves to stay D, she has lost the weight & turned i=herself into a better her. Which is very true. & how she hides from the truth ( which maybe she knows subconciously) that M is NOT HER FRIEND! & is planning to steal her life. Also she knows that the surgery may not be reversalable but she is thinking of doing it anyway. Also thiinking that M is so generous as to give D her 'kind' husband.
    Great writing Emma! You've made it believable that D will do what & go ahead with the utter insanity of tthe surgery. Also it is the eay way out, to escape from herself & hr responciblity of returnign to Dahlia Western.
    Thanks again, & continue to improve.

    1. Yeah. This story is all about substantiating the crazy decisions that Dahlia and Melissa make. It's effectively why the first chapter of the original tale has ended up being two entire books. You just can't establish this kind of thought process in a small number of pages.

  3. Beautifully done Emma.
    You describe Dahlia`s thinking so well.
    My own feelings are that she is already past the point of no return, her self esteem is "rock bottom" coupled with her fear of being exposed as mad for doing what she`s done to herself and her realisation that Melissa is now doing a better job of being "her".
    All compounded of course with her need to feed her acquired addictions.


    1. Speaking of feeding one's addictions, I better go and have breakfast. I'm starving!

    2. Glad to be of help Emma.
      BillA :-)

  4. Great writing, Emma, as always... ;-)
    Until now, I was of the opinion that D needed the transformation into the Melissa persona as a temporary means, to come to terms with the "burdens" of her career, the pressure of always looking beautiful as well as the death of her relatives. There might have been some kinky aspects as well, but I did not think that D ever really played with the thought of swapping lives forever or even for an indefinite amount of time.
    You explained very well and comprehensible how D feels about returning to her supermodel life in her current shape, how she fears for the news coverage by the tabloid press as well as Katherine`s and Tommy`s reactions to her "transformation".

    But...what I don`t really understand and what I find hard to believe is that D - after all these months - still attends to all her cleaning duties without any contradiction and that she still likes the prospects of a cleaner`s life in general, scrubbing floors day and night. Sexual arousement alone shouldn`t help here much either, because these feelings normally come in episodes that do not last indefinitely. So there should have been enough time for D to think through what she had already done to herself and if she really wanted that sort of menial labour to endure longer, maybe even forever...

    If I am right about D`s motives for the swap with M, the burdens of supermodeling and the guilt about her brother`s death should have been processed by now, at least to some degree.
    Has D changed in the meantime? Does she regard the hard labour of a cleaner no longer as punishment but her true purpose? Does she yearn for such a pitiful existence in earnest and still hate her supermodel life? Does she want to stay as cleaner forever now only because of her submissive tendencies? Or out of fear of her friends`s reactions?

    If not, wouldn`t she stop the charade as long as she was still in control? Even if attempted to continue by certain "desires", wouldn`t a woman with D`s abilities at least create some sort of "backdoor", to regain control if things got out of hand...?
    I doubt that D would do the surgery and surrender that much control to M without being sure of having the means to get her life back...should necessity require it.

    Of course ... such an assessment of risks might be wrong as well and D`s emergency plans might be thwarted by a cunning M...

    Maybe it all depends on the kind of story Emma wants to tell.
    Is it the story of a supermodel that gradually gives up all control to another woman until nothing is left of her old self and she has to continue living as the pitiful person she always yearned to be?
    Or is it the tale of a supermodel with kinky desires, haughty and twisted enough to play with fate, going further and further, losing more and more of herself while always believing of still being in control...until she went too far. Finding all emergency exits closed and any possibilities to regain control taken from her, she has to realize that she wasn`t in control but the victim of her own desires and another person`s greed and envy... all along.

    Only Emma knows what`s really going on in D`s mind...

    I pray that you do not lose your momentum and continue with this masterwork, Emma. Stay healthy.


    1. Hmmm... You've raised some interesting points but there are more than two options for Dahlia's inner struggles I would say.

      The thing to bear in mind here is that unlike in the original story, this Dahlia is turning out to have some pretty deep seated issues. It remains to be seen just how deep...

  5. very powerful scene. I once made a conscious effort to set aside "baseless" mistrust for someone I cared about. later on I was amazed at how much you can block yourself from seeing if you don't want to know.

    1. PS I love the cycle of shame part.

    2. Yeah absolutely. I think if someone wants to go along with something then they will very successfully block out other concerns. Just look at the risks of smoking, drinking and overeating. People do those every day.