Devyn's Favor

Devyn’s Favor

What a night that was! Devyn was thirteen years old and living in a sparsely inhabited suburban area with his parents and his sister. He had four good friends who lived in the area. Kieran and Caitlin, fraternal twin sisters, lived a short distance down the street from him. Madeline lived fifty yards further down the street at the corner of a road that went up a steep hill for a few hundred yards. Tina lived at the top of that same steep road on the same side of the street as Madeline. Tina could actually see Madeline's bedroom window -- and vice versa. They were too far away to really see each other, but sometimes they would sit at their windows while they chatted on their cell phones.

It was Tina's birthday and she invited the four of them over to her house for a sleepover party. Tina was fond of getting dressed up and each year she used her birthday party -- among other things -- as an excuse to get dressed up. This party would be no different -- or would it?

After he got himself dressed, Devyn walked over to Kieran’s and Caitlin’s house and picked them up. Kieran and Caitlin were wearing pretty cotton dresses, white tights and Mary Janes. Nice, but still comfortable enough to have fun all night without worrying about damaging fancy clothes. Devyn was wearing some khaki trousers, boat shoes and a dark green collared t-shirt. He felt like yawning at the boredom of his outfit compared to those beautiful dresses.

The three of them went to Madeline's house next. Madeline was wearing a bathrobe when they arrived since she was still choosing between two beautiful dresses. One was white with a lavender pattern on it and the other was a nice pale yellow color with a wine colored floral pattern on it. They were both short sleeved, made of cotton and fell to just below the knee.

"What do you think?” Madeline sought feedback from her entourage. “Which dress looks better?"

"I think they're both very pretty. What’s the birthday girl wearing? You probably don’t want to match."

"No, we don’t want to match. I think she’s wearing white floral, now that I think of it. I'd better go with the yellow. Gee, thanks, Caitlin!"

Caitlin shrugged and smiled.

"What are friends for?"

Madeline smiled at her friends as she asked her next question.

“Which tights do you think look better? White or champagne?”

“Go with the champagne. They look perfect with that dress.”

“I think I will. Thanks, Kieran! I don’t know what I would do without my fashion advisers,” quipped Madeline, who had them all giggling.

Madeline changed in the bathroom and came out in the yellow, floral dress, champagne tights, and wine colored Mary Janes that matched the floral pattern in her dress.

She brushed her hair, braided it and put on simple make up. Then she was done. On their way out of her room, Kieran and Caitlin noticed that Madeline had left her dresser drawer open with the pair of white tights hanging out of it. She had also left her closet door open, and a pair of her shoes was sitting out on the floor instead of its usual place in the closet. They found it odd that Madeline the "neat freak" would leave her room less than tidy, but they dismissed it since they were running late, and on Tina’s birthday, no less.

Madeline picked up a large suitcase, as they headed out of her room. She explained that her parents had left half an hour earlier on business and she would be spending the weekend with Tina. When they got to the front door, Madeline let out a gasp.

“What is it, Maddy?” Kieran was fond of using Madeline's nickname and it was a matter of time before all four of Maddy’s friends began to use it as well.

“I forgot my house keys, damn it! Hold on one sec!”

She went back upstairs to her room for a minute and returned dangling her set of house keys from one finger.

“I’ve got them! Let’s go!”

Maddy locked her front door behind them and they walked up the hill, pleasantly chatting about all the things that were so important to teenagers. After the five minute walk, they were finally at Tina's. Maddy rang the bell and Tina answered the door almost immediately.

"Happy Birthday, Tina!"

"Thanks everyone! Come on in!"

She hugged each of them in turn, showed them where to put their things and cleared a space on the coffee table for the gifts they had brought her.

"Oh, damn! I forgot my cell phone. I lost it earlier today and I still haven't found it, but I promised my parents I'd bring it. I'll have to go home and look for it."

Kieran rolled her eyes as she chuckled at Maddy.

“Honestly, Maddy! Screw your head on right, will you, please?”

“Oh, suck it!”

Maddy was never at a loss for a snappy comeback.

“Hey, you two! Save it for your own birthdays! This one's mine." Tina grinned. "Don't worry, Maddy. We'll wait on the festivities until you get back."

"Thanks, Tina! May I use your bathroom before I go?"

“Need you ask?”

“I know.” They giggled at each other. “Thanks!”

Maddy left to use the bathroom while the rest of them chatted in the living room. While she was gone, Caitlin’s cell phone rang. It was Maddy’s friend Crystal calling. She had a computer problem and was trying to find Maddy, who was great with computers -- but Maddy wasn’t answering her phone. Caitlin explained that Maddy had lost her phone and that was why she wasn’t picking up. Then Crystal said she had to answer her front door and asked Caitlin to hold the phone for a second.

While Crystal checked her front door, Maddy poked her head in the living room.

“Okay, everyone, I’m heading back to find my cell phone. I shouldn’t be gone more than five or ten minutes.”

Maddy turned to leave.

“Hey, Maddy? Crystal’s on the phone with a computer problem. You're good with computers, right?"

“Yes, I am! I'll talk to her. Thanks, Caitlin.”

After talking with Crystal for a few moments, Maddy realized she'd be on the phone a while and asked Crystal to hold on. She took her house keys out of her bag and handed them to Devyn.

“Crystal, can you hold on for a sec, please? Thanks!”

Maddy turned to Devyn.

“Devyn, would you be a sweetheart and go to my house to look for my cell phone? If you don't find it in a few minutes, call up here and I'll come and help you look."

“Okay, sure!”

“Thank you, sweetie!”

“Sorry about that, Crystal...”

Maddy gave Devyn a wave and Devyn left for Maddy's house. It was getting dark outside, but he found his way to Maddy's front door, unlocked it and went in. He went up to her room to start looking around. When he opened her bedroom door, he saw her white floral dress carefully laid on her bed. She had left a pair of white, patent leather flats on the floor beneath the dress. On the bed next to the dress were a white bra, a white pair of panties, a white pair of tights and a note addressed to Devyn. What the hell was going on? Devyn wanted badly to put on those pretty clothes, but he made himself read the note first.

Hey Devyn!

I see you’ve found the note I left for you. I just wanted to give you a chance to be the girl you truly are, even if it’s only for a while. So, don’t be shy; go right ahead and get dressed up! Have fun being yourself and don’t worry -- we’ll always be really close no matter what!

Love you!
Maddy

Devyn was at a loss. How did she know?

* * * * *

Devyn's older sister Anna had dressed him up as a girl many times, sometimes with one or more of her most trusted friends present. Anna would dress him up with everything that a biological girl would wear. At first, Anna and her friends had had plenty of giggles at Devyn’s expense, but the sight of Devyn dressed as a pretty girl soon lost its novelty and the giggling ceased. Devyn was very pleased that they had stopped laughing because he felt more real as a girl when they didn’t treat it like a joke. Once that joking phase had passed, Anna and her friends treated Devyn like one of the girls whenever he was dressed up. Anna and her friends included Devyn in everything they did, from makeovers to experimenting with hairdos to girl talk. Devyn loved every minute of it. He felt as comfortable being a girl as a bird felt comfortable flying through the air. Devyn loved the times he spent as a girl with Anna and her friends.

One Friday night, his parents were out on a date and Anna had her two best friends over. Anna asked Devyn if they could dress him up again. Devyn had been hoping that she would and he jumped at the chance. Shortly before his parents arrived home that night, Anna gave Devyn the usual notice that he’d better turn back into a boy. Devyn had always felt disappointed at having to give up being a girl and each time the disappointment was worse than the last.

On that pivotal Friday night, he felt so upset about giving up being a girl that he couldn’t hold it in any longer. When he went back into Anna’s bathroom to change, he closed the door and silently cried for a few minutes. Devyn knew that he was transgendered, that he really was a girl on every emotional and mental level. He let his emotions vent as much as he dared, but he knew that Anna would check on him if he didn’t come out of the bathroom soon, and he began to pull himself together. He gently wiped the tears from his eyes, flushed the tissues down the toilet, and emerged from the bathroom dressed as a boy.

* * * * *

Devyn sat on Maddy’s bed, astounded by the contents of her letter. Devyn had never told a soul that he was transgendered. He hadn’t even told Anna. He wondered how Madeline had found out. Had his shoulder length hair been a giveaway? Was there something about his behavior? Anna had promised that she would never tell anyone other than her most trusted friends that Devyn loved being a girl. Devyn knew she would never do that. He wondered if one of Anna’s friends had told Maddy — not that it mattered for the moment. Anna’s friends were not present. Nor was Maddy, for that matter. Devyn would ask her how she knew — just as soon as he could garner up the nerve to admit that she was right about him — but it would not be that night, of this Devyn felt sure.

He looked at her pretty dress and he resolved to embrace this opportunity to be his true self while he looked for Maddy’s cellphone. Devyn reached for the underwear and froze as his brain began to connect dots. Maddy had forgotten about her cellphone until they reached Tina’s house. Yet, she had left a note addressed to him — complete with a full outfit of girl clothing -- on her bed. How did she know he was coming back to her house? Devyn supposed that Maddy had been planning to make up some excuse for Devyn to return to her house alone. Then, when Maddy forgot about her lost cellphone she had a perfect excuse.

Devyn decided that he didn’t care how she knew he’d be there. His desire to dress up as a girl was as strong as ever. He looked up the hill at Tina's house and it seemed far away. He couldn't see anything. Tina didn't have binoculars or a telescope, so they wouldn't be able to see him.

He brought everything into Maddy’s bathroom and dressed himself in Maddy's pretty clothes. His heart was pounding. As he stood there in Maddy's bathroom, looking at himself in the mirror, he smiled at the pretty girl looking back. He took his hair out of the ponytail and used Maddy's brush to primp it. Then he went into the bedroom to see what hair accessories he might borrow from Maddy. He found a lavender headband that matched his dress. He gently slipped on the headband and returned to the bathroom to see how it looked. When he looked in the mirror, he loved what he saw. For a moment, he stood there smiling at his reflection, basking in his girly joy.

After a few minutes, he came out of the bathroom to look for Maddy's cell phone. He looked around her bedroom, but he couldn't find it. He grabbed his cellphone in case Maddy called and went downstairs to look in the family room, nervous but excited about walking around her house dressed as a girl. He looked for her phone in the family room and didn't see it in there either. He paused for a moment, thinking of where to look next.

* * * * *

Maddy finally got off the phone with Crystal. She walked back into the living room where the other girls were chatting.

"Is Devyn back?"

"No. I wonder what's taking him so long."

"Yeah, beats me!”

“Let's find out! Come on."

Tina brought the girls upstairs to her room where they saw a brand new telescope. When Maddy saw it she felt the sensation of an icicle piercing her heart. This was supposed to be a private time for Devyn. If he was dressed as a girl, they would all know.

"My parents gave me this telescope for my birthday, and they gave it to me last night so I could look at the lunar eclipse we had."

"Excellent! Let's spy on Devyn!"

Maddy winced. Kieran was clearly eager to get started. The other girls began snickering as Tina pointed the telescope at Maddy’s house. Maddy had to know whether Devyn was dressed up before anyone else looked through Tina’s telescope.

"Tina, may I look first since I know where in my house to look?" Maddy put a big, innocent smile on her face.

“Okay. Sure.”

Maddy put a phony devilish smile on her face.

“Cool! Caitlin, may I borrow your cell phone so I can talk to him while I spy on him?”

She hated to talk like that, considering Devyn’s current circumstances, but it was that or let on that she didn’t want the girls to spy on him.

“Sure. Here you go!”

Caitlin handed Maddy her cell phone and Maddy called Devyn. She heard him answer on the second ring.

“Is that you, Maddy?”

"Hey, Devyn. Are you having any luck finding my cell?"

"Nope, I've looked in your room and I'm in the family room now. I don't see it anywhere. Should I check the kitchen next?"

As Maddy pointed the telescope at her family room and focused it, she saw him... dressed as a girl... wearing her dress, tights, shoes and headband. Maddy's heart rate sped up.

"Yeah, look in the kitchen."

"Okay."

Maddy put Caitlin’s phone on mute so that Devyn would not hear their conversation. She had to keep the other girls from looking through the telescope or Devyn’s secret would be out. That was not part of Maddy’s plan! She needed to think.

The other girls, however...

“Maddy do you see him?”

Maddy tried to look excited.

“Yeah, there he is, all right, looking for my cell phone.”

Tina jumped up, excited to spy on Devyn.

“Let the birthday girl look!”

Maddy had to do something! But what?

“O-okay, Tina, yeah of course,” she stammered. “Um, h—hey, can you see planets with this thing? Devyn’s kind of boring right now. Let’s look at something more exciting.”

Maddy giggled nervously as she stepped aside for Tina.

“Yeah, it’s great for planets. I was looking at Jupiter after the eclipse was over and you can even see its moons. Here, I’ll show you.”

She pointed the telescope at the sky and tried to find Jupiter. Maddy breathed a sigh of relief. Tina knew right where Jupiter would be found — behind a cloud that was blocking their view.

“Oop, we can’t see it right now. It’s behind a cloud. We’ll try again later–“

Maddy winced.

“W-well what about Saturn? I’ve always wanted to see the rings of Saturn through a telescope.”

Maddy desperately wanted Tina to point the telescope at anything other than Devyn.

“Hmm, Saturn is an excellent sight… but wait, Saturn rises early in the morning this time of year. It’s on other side of planet Earth right now.”

Maddy wouldn’t give up.

“How about the moon?”

“That’s on the other side of the house. Oh well. Let’s have a peek at Devyn.”

"Oh, no," thought Maddy.

Tina had a ghoulish grin on her face. Maddy had to figure out how to signal Devyn to change out of that dress and fast! She heard Devyn’s voice in her ear.

“It’s not here, Maddy. Where do I look next?”

Maddy was still on the phone with Devyn! Maybe she could tell him that Tina got a telescope for her birthday and he really should check it out when he got back. That way, he would know to change his clothes or hide until they were done with it. Maddy didn’t want to take that route since the other girls would realize something was up, but the situation had turned decidedly desperate. She turned off the mute and spoke quickly.

“Hey Devyn, listen--”

Tina squealed and Maddy hit the mute button again.

“Oh my God,” Tina exclaimed.

Shit, it’s too late! Damn it,” Maddy thought.

Tina had found Devyn walking around the kitchen, dressed as a girl, looking for Maddy's phone while holding his own phone to his ear. Tina watched as he glanced up at her house while still on hold, completely unaware she could see him. She threw her head back and laughed out loud.

"What, Tina?"

"Yeah, what is it?"

"Devyn’s dressed up like a girl!"

"What??"

The other girls laughed out loud. Maddy tried to think. If she asked them not to look at him then they would know Devyn had a secret. The same thing would happen if she directed him into her bathroom and out of view of the telescope. Maddy wanted to at least try to come up with an alternative to Devyn's secret coming out before she said anything about it.

"He's completely dressed in Maddy’s clothes. He's even wearing tights!"

This, Kieran had to see! She popped up out of her seat.

"Can I see? Please?"
“Yeah, sure. Line up, everyone!”

Kieran peered at Devyn through Tina’s telescope.

"He is dressed like a girl! He's looking right at me and he doesn't know I can see him!"

The girls all laughed. Caitlin took her turn and giggled madly at the sight.

“He looks adorable!”

“Doesn’t he?”

Maddy felt beyond horrible. She wanted to go into Tina’s bathroom and cry, but she had no time for that. She had to figure out what to do.

“Maddy? Are you there?”

Devyn’s voice came over the cellphone. Maddy wondered if she could make it look like Devyn was being forced into it. Either way, she absolutely had to go down there and talk to him. She just needed an excuse.

“Maddy, you have to see this. Come here!”

Maddy knew what to do. She put her phony devilish grin back on her face.

“Excellent. Let me see!”

She turned off the mute and spoke to Devyn.

“Hi, I’m sorry about that. Listen, let me put you on the line with Caitlin while I go to the bathroom, okay?”

“Okay.”

“Here Caitlin.” Maddy handed her the cellphone. “Tell him to look in the living room, please.”

“Okay.”

Maddy needed to ensure that Devyn would stay in the living room for a few minutes. If he knew about the telescope he might stop going where they told him.

“Don’t tell Devyn we’re looking at him and ruin it.”

“You got it.”

Caitlin told Devyn to check the living room. Maddy looked through the telescope, feeling terribly guilty about spying on Devyn, but she needed to stall for time while she figured out the details of Plan B. She pretended to admire the view for a few seconds and then she put Plan B into action.

"Good. He’s cooperating.”

“Cooperating with what?”

Maddy put a fake smug look on her face — and she hoped it would hide her tumultuous emotions.

“I tricked him into dressing as a girl when he went back to look for my cellphone. I left him that outfit and a note on my bed telling him that I would be coming down there to help him look and if he wasn’t dressed as a girl when I got there then I would tell the three of you his deepest darkest secret.”

“Really? What’s his secret?”

“Well, he cooperated, so I’m not going to tell you.”

“Awwwwww!”

“Shut it, Kieran! Okay, everyone, we're going to give Devyn a nice surprise! I’m not done with him yet!"

The girls dissolved into laughter. Maddy hoped like hell her plan would work.

“What are you going to do to him next? Tell the birthday girl,” Tina insisted.

“Well, um, I’m figuring it out as I go, so I don’t know yet.”

Tina mock pouted.

“But here’s what we’ll do next. Caitlin, stay on the phone with him after I leave. If he asks, tell him I'm on the phone with Crystal again. Tina, may I borrow your cell phone and bring it with me?”

“Sure!” Tina giddily thrust out her hand with her cellphone in it.

“Thank you, Tina! Get ready to pick up your landline when I get near my house. Oh, and Tina, stay at the telescope because I'll need you to be my eyes. Meanwhile, I'm going to sneak up to my room and wait for him, so watch and wait for my signals.”

“Got it!”

Maddy left to return to her house. She wiped a couple of tears from her eyes as she walked down the hill. She had to talk to Devyn without the girls seeing it through Tina’s telescope. She thought about what parts of her house would be out of view from the telescope and she thought of the basement. There were two ways to get down there. There was one set of stairs by the front door near the living room and another in back, off the kitchen. The telescope would be on Devyn at the front stairs and Maddy would sneak down the back stairs, safely out of sight. When she was still about thirty feet away from her house, Maddy stood behind a tree near the back of her house and called Tina's landline. Tina picked up immediately.

"Hi. What do I do?"

"Is he still in the living room?"
"Yes."

"Okay, tell him that I said he should check the basement and let me know when he goes downstairs. Make sure that you stay on him!"

"Okay, hang on.”

In the background, Maddy heard Tina conveying her message to Caitlin.

“Okay, he's going toward the stairs...”

Maddy darted for the back door. She quietly let herself in, and closed and locked the back door.

“Okay, he’s going down the stairs.”

“Good. Let me think what to do next.”

“Okay."

Maddy put her phone on mute and snuck down the back stairs to the basement.

When Devyn arrived at the bottom of the front basement stairs, he saw Maddy coming down the back ones. Maddy frantically placed her extended pointer finger across her lips, hurried over to Devyn and showed him the tiny screen on Tina’s phone where it indicated that the mute was activated. Devyn understood that Maddy wanted him to mute his phone as well.

“Hey, Caitlin, um, I’m looking through some drawers down here, so I need to put the phone down for a second. Don’t go anywhere!”

“Okay!”

Devyn put his phone on mute, as Maddy requested and Maddy began to cry.

“Maddy, what’s the matter? What’s happened?”

Through her tears, Maddy managed to tell him what the girls were doing in Tina’s room.

“Tina got a telescope for her birthday. I’m so sorry, Devyn! I didn’t know! I tried to keep them from pointing it at you but I couldn’t stop them and they all took turns looking at you.”

Devyn was embarrassed, but he knew that this had not been what Maddy had intended for him. He put his arms around her and held her snugly for a few seconds.

“It’s okay, Maddy. You were right about me, you know.”

They pulled apart.

“Really?”

“Yes, Maddy. I am a girl. I'm transgendered or however you want to say it. It’s all the same. I’m a girl and I love being dressed this way. Now you know. Besides, if I don’t want to live in the closet the rest of my life then I’d better get used to being seen as a girl anyway.”

Devyn smiled at Maddy and she cheered up a bit.

“Maddy? Where are you?”

Tina’s voice came through the cellphone.

“Maddy, I’ll tell you all about me later, but what do we do right now?”

Maddy thought quickly.

“Well, do you want to change back now?”

Devyn’s face deflated as he looked at his hands and began to speak.

“Well, okay…”

“You know what? You don’t have to. There’s a way you can come to Tina’s party as a girl if you want to. I mean, if you feel ready for that.”

Devyn’s face brightened up.

“Really? Well…” He deliberated for about half a second. “Let’s do this! What do you have in mind?”

“Are you up for a little acting?”

“Sure!”

“Okay, then just go where Caitlin tells you and when you get to my room try to look surprised and follow my lead from there, okay?”

“Okay.”

“Maddy? Are you there??”

“All right, Devyn, I have to talk to her. Be quiet for a moment.”

“You got it.”

Maddy turned off the mute on her phone.

“Tina, I’m here. I was finding a hiding place so that we can direct him upstairs without seeing me. Is he still in the basement?”

Maddy rolled her eyes.

“Yes.”

“Okay. Did he find it?”

Maddy gestured for Devyn to turn off his mute and he dutifully did so.

“I’ll ask.” Maddy heard Tina convey the message to Tina and she barely heard Caitlin repeat it to Devyn. A few seconds later, Maddy heard Tina’s voice again.

“No dice, Maddy. No phone either.”

Tina and Maddy giggled.

“Okay. Tell him to check the master bedroom.”

Caitlin’s voice came through his phone.

“Devyn, Maddy wants you to look in the master bedroom.”

“Okay. I’m on my way.”

Devyn waved and smiled at Maddy as he headed up the front stairs to put their plan in motion.

"Tina, are you still there?”

“Yeah, I’m here.”

“Okay. Let me know when he gets there.”

“Okay.”

Maddy tiptoed up the back stairs and went halfway up to the second floor where she stopped and waited, safely out of sight of the telescope.

“Okay, he’s in the master bedroom. Where are you, Maddy?”

“Stay on him, Tina. I’m going to my room.”

“Okay.”

Maddy tip-toed the rest of the way up the stairs and snuck into her bedroom.

“I'm in my room now. I have his clothes!"

She dragged a smaller suitcase out from under her bed. Then she opened it and laid it on top of her bed. She picked up all of his clothes, including his underwear, and put them in the open suitcase. She sat down on the bed and spoke again into her cell phone.

"Okay, tell him I said to check my room one more time. Hang on.”

She walked over to her closet and got out a flashlight. Then she got back on the phone.

“Okay, I’m going to show you where my room is by shining a flashlight at you. Here I go. Do you see it?”

Maddy turned on the flashlight and waved it in the direction of Tina's window.

“Yes, I see it."

"Okay, keep an eye on Devyn until he gets here.”

"Will do!"

“Cool. Now put your landline on speakerphone. I'm going to do the same so be quiet over there."

"Okay, we will!"

Maddy put the cellphone on speakerphone and put it on the bed behind her back. She heard Devyn’s footsteps as he came back to her room. When he turned the corner to go to Maddy’s room, he saw Maddy sitting on her bed. The telescope was to Maddy’s right — hundreds of feet away -- and she winked her left eye so that only Devyn could see it. He began acting his part and stopped dead in his tracks.

"Hi, Devyn. Please forgive the surprise."

"But you were..."

"Yeah, I told them to tell you I was on the phone with Crystal again, but I was really on my way here. Please don't hate me."

Now he walked into her room, pretending to be unaware that the telescope was trained on him.

"I don't hate you, Maddy. I don't think anything could make me hate you.”

Maddy smiled at him as Devyn continued.

“Wow. I am really embarrassed. I guess I should take this stuff off now. Hey, why are my clothes in your suitcase?"

"Because you won't be needing them!"

Maddy closed the suitcase and spun the 4-digit number dials, locking the hard-shell suitcase shut. Devyn made his jaw drop. At that moment, he heard laughter coming from somewhere behind Maddy.

"What's going on, Maddy?" He heard more laughter. Maddy reached behind her and picked up Tina's cell phone. Devyn instantly knew it was on speakerphone. "Oh dear God, Maddy, please tell me what’s going on!"

“The girls know everything, Devyn. I told them about the blackmail note. I also told them that I’m not done with you yet. You see, Tina wants an all-girl party this year, so you’re just going to have to come as a girl.”

Tina’s eyebrows raised themselves as she listened to the conversation. Devyn had to fight not to look happy about his “predicament” as Maddy continued.

“Oh, by the way, you should probably know that the girls can see us from Tina's house. Tina's parents got her a telescope for her birthday and gave it to her last night so she could see the lunar eclipse. Now they're looking at us -- well, mostly at you. Like I said, please don't hate us."

Devyn made his jaw drop again. He looked up at Tina's house and gave Maddy's accomplices a nervous smile, a shrug, and a wave.

“Hi, girls!”

He heard them howl with laughter again. Continuing his act, he covered his hands with his face and turned back to Maddy.

"I don't hate any of you. Actually I think you’re pretty clever!"

“It was mostly Maddy, so you can thank her for everything!”

"Yes, Tina’s right. It was all my idea. The girls were wondering what was taking you so long and that was when Tina showed us her new telescope. Anyway, it's really okay, Devyn. They're all okay with having you join us as a girl this evening. They’re not wigged out or anything. They just think it's very funny."

"Oh, good, that makes me feel a lot better. I guess it is funny!”

He decided he’d better ask one little thing to keep up appearances.

“Are you sure I can’t convince you to let me have my clothes back?”

"Yes, I’m sure.” Maddy placed the suitcase under the bed. “I promise to give you your clothes back tomorrow morning after the party. Okay, everyone, we'll be back in a flash!"

Maddy hung up Tina's phone. Devyn hung his up as well. He pretended to be speechless about his predicament in case the telescope was still focused on him — which it was.

“Do you think they’re still peeping?”

“Oh, I’m sure they're still taking turns looking at you.”

Maddy smiled.

“You should put on a different dress if you’re going to be a girl at Tina’s party. You don’t want to match the birthday girl! Come here.”

They went over to her closet. She pulled out another cotton dress. This one was a solid pink color and had three-quarter sleeves. It also had a matching sweater. While Devyn went to the bathroom to switch dresses and put on the sweater, Maddy pulled out a duffle bag from under her bed and began to pack it with some additional items. A minute or two later, Devyn emerged from the bathroom.

"Maddy, please don't let them be mean. I am a little bit nervous about this."

"I promise I won't let them do anything cruel. You'll only be wearing things that I would wear myself. Okay?"

"Okay."

"You're cool."

Now Devyn was smiling at her.

“Maddy?”

“Yes?”

“Would you, erm, help me with my hair a minute?”

He held up a scrunchy that matched his dress as he gestured toward the bathroom — which was out of view of the telescope -- and she followed him in.

“Thank you for this awesome opportunity to be myself.”

He embraced her warmly.

“You’re welcome.”

They held each other for a few moments and Devyn then put his hair in a ponytail with the scrunchy.

“Have you done this before?”

Devyn smiled at her.

“Yes, I have. Anna has dressed me up many times. I’ve always loved it.”

“Well, I’m glad to help — now that I know I’m actually helping.”

Devyn smiled girlishly as they giggled and Maddy embraced him. Then they put straight faces on and left the bathroom. Maddy gathered an extra bra, extra pair of panties, a nightgown, an outfit for the following day and everything else Devyn would need. Maddy opened the duffle bag and placed the clothes inside it. Devyn began to feel nervous about returning to Tina's party as a girl. He definitely wanted to, but he was nervous about keeping Tina’s mother fooled. Devyn decided that they should still be acting for the telescope, even if the girls could no longer hear them.

“Maddy, please let me have my clothes back. I-I don’t think I can go through with this.”

He secretly winked at her when she looked up at him. Maddy stopped what she was doing and came to look Devyn in the eyes face to face. She took his hands before she continued their act.

“Devyn, do you trust me?”

“Well, yes, I do, you know I do.”

She smiled.

“Good. Would I do anything to hurt you, get you in trouble or put you in any danger?”

“No, of course not.”

“Of course I wouldn’t. I’m not going to tonight either. I promise.”

“Let’s go back to Tina's now.”

He smiled inwardly as they began to walk down the stairs. Halfway down the stairs, out of view of the telescope, Devyn stopped.

“Wow, I’m more nervous about this than I thought.”

“This will go just fine, sweetie. Anyone who messes with you will have to deal with me.”

She kissed him on the cheek. That helped him relax a bit!

“Thanks Maddy. You’re the best!”

Devyn reciprocated Maddy’s kiss. They headed down the stairs and before they reached the front door, he noticed that she had only brought the duffle bag downstairs. That meant they would be leaving his clothes at her house! Devyn began to get nervous again… yet very excited and even relieved. Seconds later, they were outside, and Maddy's front door was securely locked behind them. For the first time, Devyn was being his true self outside the house. The walk to Tina's felt great, but there was absolutely nobody about, and it wasn't that much different than walking around Maddy's house. When they reached Tina's front door again, and Maddy rang the bell, his heart began racing. Tina answered her door while her mother was in the kitchen and smuggled her friends upstairs to her bedroom where the other two girls were waiting. Maddy made the formal introduction.

"Hi, everyone. Girls, meet the new Devyn!"

He walked into the room and let the other girls see him. They all laughed again.

“Hi, girls!”

Devyn gave them a girly wave and they gathered around him. He was really nervous, but he was also enjoying the experience. Maddy gave him a hug and the other girls did the same. Devyn loved hugging all of the girls. He was glad that he was still accepted by them -- and now he was beginning to feel that he was one of them!

“Well, Tina, I guess we’re having an all-girl party tonight, just like you wanted!”

“Yeah, I guess we are.”

Tina glanced at Maddy.

“Now, remember everyone, that it’s not Devyn’s idea to come to the party as a girl. It’s my idea to make her a girl for the night and I’ve promised to return her clothes tomorrow morning after the party.”

“Wow, Maddy, you’re really making him a girl for the whole night?”

“Yes, I am, but no one is allowed to be mean, okay?”

“We don’t want to be mean to Devyn.”

“I know, Caitlin. It’s just that I’m being mean enough to Devyn by making him do this.”

“Well, Devyn, I’m very happy to have you at my party as a girl.”

Tina giggled… and set off the rest of them as well.

“Thanks, Tina.”

"You look pretty, Devyn. I hope it's okay for me to say so."

Caitlin wasn’t a mean person, so he knew that she was not teasing him. He smiled at the compliment.

"It's okay for you to say that, Caitlin. Thanks. I'm glad I’m wearing something that looks nice, and not something that looks... sleazy or something."

Kieran threw in a joke to make Devyn feel better.

"I don't think Maddy has any sleazy clothes. She's too much of a prude."

Kieran’s joke did its thing and and they all laughed. Maddy, however, was not to be outdone.

"Yeah, almost as much as you are a wiseass!"

The girls went back up to Tina's room and this time they looked at the moon with her new telescope. When it was Devyn’s turn he also looked down at Maddy's room to see what they had seen. He could almost read the open book on Maddy’s desk. He had been very plain to see.
Downstairs, Tina's mom called up that it would be time for dinner in ten minutes.

"Okay Mom!” Tina's head jerked up as something occurred to her. “Hey Devyn, we can't use your real name or my mom will know that it's you under there. We'll just have to call you… Lori."

Devyn flashed a nervous smile as he thought about being called by a girl’s name all night.

"Well, whatever you have to do is okay."

Lori loved the idea of being called by a girl's name but she wasn't ready for anyone except Maddy to know it. Maddy decided to take things further, but she was doing it out of necessity as much as she was for fun.

"Lori, let me put some makeup on you so Tina's mom won't recognize you."

"Yeah, that might be a good idea, Lori. Girls like to get gussied up for a night like tonight and you’ll draw attention if you’re not gussied up like the rest of us."

Tina was getting into this as much as Maddy.

“Okay, do whatever you need to do, I guess.”

They put lipstick, eyeliner and mascara on Lori and left it at that. Then they put reddish pink nail polish on her fingernails. Tina put a silver necklace around Lori’s neck with a small, heart shaped pendant on it. Maddy put one of her rings on Lori’s right ring finger. Tina ran Lori’s hair through a curling iron. Finally, Tina and Maddy brought Lori over to Tina's mirror. When she saw herself, she didn't know what to say other than, "Wow! I look so pretty!"

The other girls giggled at Lori softly. Lori felt wonderful. The clothes felt wonderful. It felt great to free her hair from its ponytail. The nail polish and jewelry felt terrific. Lori was very happy to be one of the girls!

"Okay, we'd better go downstairs for dinner before Mom starts asking questions!"

The thought of Tina’s mother finding out about Lori made her nervous. They started for the door as Lori stood there staring at herself in the mirror.

"Come on, Lori!"

"Coming!"

She hurried after them and headed down the stairs as one of the girls. She tried to relax, since being nervous would only get her found out by Tina's mother. Lori figured that even if she was nervous about being dressed as a girl, she could still have fun. Besides, they weren’t going to leave the house.

Tina's mother didn't recognize Lori when she saw her.

"Oh, hello there! I see Tina has a new friend from school?"

Her eyes moved back and forth between them.

“Yeah, I should introduce you! This is Lori. Lori, this is my mother.”

"Hi! It’s nice to meet you!"

Lori was glad that their school was big enough that a new face was no surprise.

"It’s nice to meet you, too, dear! We’re so glad you could come. Where's Devyn, by the way?"

Maddy fielded the question.

"He ate some bad fish last night and so he's home tonight -- but we made him promise to call Tina on her birthday or else!"

"Oh, the poor kid. Well, he'd better call!" They all giggled at that. “Okay, girls, I have a surprise for Tina!”

“Really, Mom? What is it?”

“We’re going to your favorite restaurant for dinner!”

Tina’s eyes went wide. She was genuinely excited to be going to her favorite restaurant, but she was nervous that making Lori a girl for the night might backfire. As she looked over at Maddy and Lori, she decided to focus on her excitement to avoid suspicion. She didn’t truly have a choice anyhow — not without revealing what was going on.

“Oh, Mom, that sounds wonderful! Thank you!”

She ran over and gave her mother a big hug. The girls piled into Tina’s mother’s minivan for the ride to the restaurant. Maddy had Lori sit in the far rear seat with her and Tina so they could talk. She whispered to Caitlin and Kieran to keep up the conversation in front to cover for them and they were more than willing. Once they were all seated, Caitlin and Kieran began chatting with Tina’s mom. Tina contributed to their conversation every once in a while. Meanwhile, Maddy, Lori and Tina whispered amongst themselves in the back of the car.

“Lori, I’m sorry. I did not see this coming.”

“It’s okay Maddy, you couldn’t have known about this surprise.”

“Yeah, Maddy, it’s not your fault.”

“Yes it is. If I had given you back your clothes instead of making you a girl for the night you wouldn’t be in this mess.”

“Yes, but I would be in another mess called boyhood,” he thought.

“Maddy, you were blindsided with this surprise,” Tina insisted.

“I guess.”

“You haven’t done anything wrong,” Devyn agreed with Tina.

Maddy smiled at Lori again. Lori was becoming quite fond of seeing Maddy smile — and of Maddy herself.

“Okay.”

Tina leaned forward in her seat to add to the conversation up front and Lori used the opportunity to whisper to Maddy privately.

“Hey, Maddy?”

“I’m here,” she whispered back, her face inches from Lori’s.

“How did you know about me? I never told anyone before I told you in the basement.”

Maddy smiled sheepishly at Lori.

“I didn’t. It was just that you have had your hair as long as a girl for a long time and you’re very different from any other boy I’ve ever known. I have been wondering about you for a while. I was only testing you tonight. I guess I have some explaining of my own to do.”

She reached over and gently stroked Lori’s chin. Lori smiled warmly at Maddy and took her hand.

“We’ll talk later.”

“Okay, we’ll talk sometime after we get back from the restaurant. I just hope this is a good experience for you.”

“I am happy to be doing this. If Tina’s mother finds out and she can’t handle it then, well, that’s her problem.”

Maddy smiled at Lori once more.

“Yeah, I guess. Well, we’d better join the conversation up front.”

“Okay, I guess you’re right.”

They held hands to reassure each other and they began chatting with everyone else in the car about various things. A few minutes later they arrived at the restaurant. Lori was really nervous as they walked in. She was in public for the first time. The restaurant was packed. Lori didn’t know if she could do this. She did know that she didn’t have a choice. She felt like things were happening too fast. She took a breath and tried to relax, telling herself that she was doing it to keep Tina from getting in trouble on her birthday -- and because she didn’t want to be in the closet one more second. Maddy hooked her arm in Lori’s to reassure her.

It was a nice Italian restaurant, with Tuscan style interior décor and dim, mood-setting lighting. They were given a nice table in back since it was Tina’s birthday. On instinct, Lori decided to try to get a seat facing away from the door. Maddy and Tina understood what she was doing and made sure she was successful. Maddy sat across from Lori. When Lori sat down, she swept her dress out from under her and crossed her legs at her knees. She felt very nervous to be dressed as a girl at that restaurant. She was glad that she looked so much like a girl that nobody would know what was going on. She was greatly enjoying being at a restaurant dressed as a girl, but she couldn’t stop being nervous. She tried to stay calm. A waitress came to the table and they ordered. While she was taking Lori’s order, she winked at her. Lori smiled back at her.

Halfway through the meal, Lori realized that she had to go to the bathroom. She had seen her sister ask her friends to come to the bathroom with her, so she asked Maddy to come along with her. Maddy happily obliged her and they told Tina they’d be right back. On the way to the bathroom, Maddy whispered to Lori that she was doing great and reminded her to sit down and use some toilet paper when they went into the bathroom. Lori nodded at her to let her know that she understood. After she was done and got herself dressed again, Lori walked out of the stall to the sink to wash her hands. Maddy did the same. They touched up their lipstick briefly. When they were done, they turned to leave the bathroom.
They had taken two steps towards the door when it opened and in walked Anna! Maddy and Lori stopped in their tracks. Anna’s eyes got very wide and she gasped, putting one hand over her mouth as she smirked.

“Oh, my--” She looked around to make sure the three of them were alone in the bathroom. They were. “Devyn?”

“Hi, Anna. Yes, it’s me. Please don’t say anything to Mom and Dad.”

“I won’t say anything, but… what’s going on? Why are you dressed like a girl here — and why are you in a girls’ bathroom?”

“It’s a very long story and I promise to explain it all to you when I get home tomorrow.”

Anna wondered if there might be more to the picture than they were letting on. She had always had the feeling that her little brother might really be a girl.

“You probably shouldn’t be here.”

“I know. We didn’t know we were going out for dinner. This is Tina’s favorite restaurant and Tina’s mom surprised her by bringing us here on her birthday.”

“Yes, and I thought we’d draw a lot more attention if I walked into the boys’ bathroom dressed like this.”

“Hmm, you’re probably right. Well, be careful out there because Mom and Dad are here and I don’t want them to see you like this just yet — and Mom might be coming in here soon, so watch yourself.”

Lori was feeling very nervous again. Too many things seemed to be going wrong.

“Don’t worry, we will!”

“You sure do look great. Did Maddy help you?”

“Yes, of course.”

“Well, Maddy certainly made you pretty.”

Maddy and Lori thanked her in near-perfect unison, making all three of them giggle.

“May I ask you a question?”

“Okay.”

“I know that you really love being dressed as a girl, but is there anything more to it?”

“Yes, there is. I'm transgendered.”

Anna had a big smile on her face.

“Well, Devyn, I kind of knew that anyway — or at least I suspected — but I’m really, really happy that you have it figured out now!”

Anna hugged Lori quickly.

“Please, call me Lori.”

“That’s a totally cute name! Okay, Lori, I have to pee now, so have a fun night!”

She began to giggle at me.

“Thanks for not saying anything, sis!”

“You’re welcome! You and I have to celebrate in style, sis!”

“Okay! I would love to!”

“Cool — and Maddy, you should be there, too!”

“I certainly will,” Maddy chirped. “Bye, Anna!”

“Bye Maddy — and bye, Lori!”

Maddy and Lori left the bathroom as Anna dashed for a stall. They made it safely back to their table. Tina smiled at them, relieved to see they were back safely. When they finished eating, the waitress asked them if they wanted desert. Tina’s mom politely declined and explained that they were having birthday cake when they got home. When the waitress heard it was Tina’s birthday, she excused herself and returned with a cupcake that had a single lit birthday candle in it — and she had two waiters in tow!

Tina looked over at Maddy and Lori as they all began loudly singing Happy Birthday. The entire restaurant began to join in the singing, which meant that Lori’s parents might be looking in their direction. Lori looked at Maddy inquisitively, hoping she would understand Lori’s silent request for her to check. She did. She scanned the room and located Lori’s family. Then she giggled and looked back at Lori. She motioned for her to lean forward. When she did, Maddy whispered that Anna had covered for Lori by deliberately spilling her glass of water and returning their attention to their table. Then their waiter came over to clean up the water and fortuitously blocked their view. Lori giggled, too, when she heard that.

Fortunately, her parents seemed not to have noticed anything. She had a pretty cool big sister and she whispered to Maddy that she would have to thank her sister profusely when this was over, especially since their parents might be annoyed at her for spilling her water. Finally, the singing died down… but then the entire restaurant applauded. Tina blushed. The waiters left and Tina gave the girls and her mother a bite of her cupcake. There was no way she was eating a chocolate cupcake with chocolate frosting all by herself — and it was one big cupcake. A couple of minutes later the waitress returned with the bill. After Tina’s mom signed the bill, they were off.

Lori felt a bit more relaxed once they got back in the car. Tina, Maddy and Lori sat in back again on the ride home. They told Tina about running into Lori’s sister in the bathroom and about how she covered for Lori when the singing started. Tina asked if Lori’s parents noticed anything. Maddy replied that her parents looked in their direction briefly before Anna spilled her glass of water but they didn’t seem to notice.

When they got back to Tina’s house, Tina’s mom ducked into the kitchen to get the cake ready. Maddy used the opportunity to remind Lori that Devyn was supposed to call Tina on her birthday.

"How are you going to make that phone call?"

"Simple. Tina's mom only has to hear the phone ring. Tina can fake the call from there. Watch and learn!"

Maddy was actually giggling. Lori didn't know the real reason Maddy was giggling.

“You'd better hurry. Tina's mom will be in here any second."

Lori took out her cellphone and dialed Tina's cellphone. Tina answered her phone.

"Hi, Tina! Happy birthday!"

Tina put one hand over her mouth as she started giggling. Lori put her extended pointer finger over her mouth, hung up her phone, and put it back in her sweater pocket. Tina began faking the conversation and talking loudly so her mother could hear it. Then her mother came out of the kitchen and headed straight for Tina.

"I thought I heard a cellphone in here. May I say hello to Devyn?"

"Sure, Mom-- what, Devyn? Oh, no! Okay, no problem, I'll let you go. Thanks for calling me! Bye!” Tina snapped her cell phone shut. “Sorry, Mom. He had to throw up again."

Maddy and I had to fight to keep our faces straight.

"That's too bad, the poor dear. Oh well, shall we have some cake?"

"Yes!”

Tina’s mom walked back into the kitchen and came back out with the cake, complete with thirteen lit candles. They all started singing happy birthday to Tina. The cake was delicious. After it was over, they took their dishes into the kitchen and Tina's mom suggested that Tina open her gifts. Lori paused for a moment, trying to remember what she'd brought for Tina, but then she remembered that she was giving Tina a pair of earrings. Lori decided it was probably a typical gift from one girl to another and wouldn't give her away.

Tina opened her gifts, one by one. Other than the earrings Lori gave her, she got a necklace from Maddy, and CDs from Kieran and Caitlin. She was heartily pleased with her new gifts and put them carefully away in their boxes.

As they cleaned up the table, Lori’s cell phone began vibrating. She looked for Tina’s mom and saw that she had gone back to the kitchen to do the desert dishes. Lori answered her phone. It was her sister calling. Anna said that their mother had noticed Lori wasn’t at the table during the singing and wanted her to call Lori to see where she was. Anna had decided to use the opportunity to check on Lori. Lori thanked her profusely for covering for her and told her to tell their mother that Lori had been in the bathroom during the singing. Anna had him hold on while she told their mother. When she came back on the line Lori asked her if their parents suspected anything. Anna said that their mother had a puzzled expression on her face, but she looked like she was dismissing it and seemed satisfied with the answer they had given her. Lori had to keep herself from laughing. Finally, she thanked her sister again and promised to repay her in full one day. Anna told her not to worry about it and told her how much she loved her new sister. Lori thanked her profusely for being such a loving big sister and after heartfelt goodnights, they hung up.
As Lori put her cellphone back in her sweater pocket, Tina’s landline phone rang. It was her father calling to wish her a happy birthday. She politely excused herself and eagerly went to speak with her father. Maddy tapped Lori on the shoulder.

“Hey, Lori, come here,”

Maddy went over and sat down on the love seat in the living room, patting the space next to her as she looked at Lori. Joining her on the love seat, Lori smiled at her and put one arm around her.

“What’s up, Maddy?”

“While we were in the car we decided that we’d talk later on. I guess now is as good a time as any.”

“Oh, that’s right! Let’s talk!”

Lori told Maddy all about how Anna had dressed up Lori and treated her as one of the girls. Lori described how much she loved spending time as a girl with Anna and her friends and how she felt more upset each time about having to go back to being a boy. Lori described the night that she broke down crying in the bathroom because she was so upset about having to give up being a girl and how she finally understood that night that she was transgendered. Maddy listened raptly. When Lori was finished, Maddy hugged her warmly and tightly.

“Lori, like I said in my note, we will always be really close no matter what.”

Lori smiled at her.

“I know, Maddy.” Lori gently stroked Maddy’s chin and Maddy returned her smile.

“Well, now it’s my turn to do some explaining--”

“Hey everyone! How about a night time swim?”

Tina had obviously finished talking with her father.

“Oh, well. I guess I’ll have to tell you later.”

“Yeah, I guess so. Oh well, no worries.”

Lori and Maddy gave each other a brief hug. At first Lori thought a night time swim sounded appealing but then she remembered that she was a girl for the night and wondered how they would handle this. Maddy noticed that Lori was getting nervous and gently squeezed her hand in reassurance. She leaned over and whispered in her ear.

"Don't worry — I’ve got you covered."

Tina began to mobilize her guests.

"Come on, girls, let's get changed."

Once they got upstairs, Maddy got out two swimsuits, one from her suitcase, and one from the duffel bag she’d brought. Lori found herself hoping that she would be wearing one of them. Sure enough, Maddy handed one to her. Lori felt nervous about pulling off this part of the evening. Maddy and Tina had Lori change in the bathroom and wait in there until they came and got her. Lori walked into the bathroom, closed the door, and took her clothes off. The swimsuit was a purple Speedo. It was Lycra Spandex and the straps made an X in back. She slipped it on, and fumbled a bit, but eventually got it on, making an adjustment or two to make it look right. It felt very soft, snug and girly. She knew that a girl wouldn't go swimming with a scrunchy in her hair, so she took it off, laid it on the counter, and let her hair down. She brushed it a little bit with Tina's brush and tucked it behind her ears. Finally, she heard a knock on the door. "Okay, Lori, are you ready?"

"Yes. Here I come."

Lori walked out of the bathroom, now clad only in Maddy's swimsuit. The girls all giggled at her.

"Wow, that swimsuit fits you pretty darn well, Lori!"

"Um, thanks!”

She tried to smile. She knew that she would have fun swimming. Besides, it wasn’t a public pool or anything — although part of Lori almost wished it were.

"Put on these sandals."

"Okay."

They were made of some kind of cork with a glossy surface and had a red faux velvet thong on top. They were actually very comfortable. Lori saw the nail polish on her toes, now that her feet were out of the shoes. She thought her feet looked very cute. All of this felt wonderful to Lori and she beamed as she let it all sink in.

"Okay, let's go swimming!"

They all went outside into Tina's backyard and got in the pool. As Lori got in the pool and began to swim around with the other girls, she was amazed at how good it felt to swim around in a girl's swimsuit. She truly loved being one of the girls. They were in the pool for about an hour when they decided to move to the hot tub. They climbed out of the pool and Lori looked around for Tina’s mother, who was well out of earshot. As they headed for the hot tub, Lori caught up to Maddy and hooked one arm in hers.

“Hi there.”

“Hi, Lori!”

They smiled warmly at each other and then Lori looked around for a moment.

“Do you think the other girls are ready to hear all about me?”

Maddy looked Lori in the eyes.

“Yes, I’m sure they are.”

“Okay, then. When we get in the hot tub, let’s tell them everything!”

“Okay, let’s!”

As they all climbed into the toasty waters of the hot tub, Maddy and Lori sat next to each other. Tina’s mom was still inside and out of earshot.

“Okay, everyone! Gather around because we have to talk!”

All of the girls looked over at Maddy with expressions of curiosity on their faces as Maddy continued.

“First, I have a confession to make. I never lost my cell phone. I had it with me the whole time.”

They all gaped at her in shock. Kieran and Tina had questions.

“Then why did you ask Lori to go back to your house and look for it?”

“Yes, and why did you ask to borrow Tina’s phone when you had your own?”

“It will all become clear, I promise. Let me start from the beginning--”

“Why don’t you let me tell them about me first, Maddy? I think it will make things easier.”

Maddy looked back at Lori and hooked one arm in hers.

“Yeah, you’re probably right. Go ahead!”

“Okay.” Everyone quieted down to listen. “I’m not sure how many of you know this — or suspect it anyway — but I really am a girl. I know I look like a boy–“ They all laughed at her. “–well, okay, not right now I don’t!”

Lori laughed before she continued.

“What I mean is that I have the body of a boy. The rest of me, though -- emotions, mind, heart, soul and all of that — is totally female. I understand girls way better than boys and I find it way easier to make friends with girls. I love being dressed as a girl, too. I always have and I always will.”

Lori went on to tell the tale of her dress-up sessions with Anna. She described how she felt sad to give up being a girl and how those feelings got worse each time until that critical Friday night when she broke down and cried in the bathroom because she finally knew that she was a girl. Lori’s audience remained very silent and Maddy took over for Lori.

“We all know that Lori has had long hair like that ever since we’ve known her -- and I’ve always wondered why. I had a feeling that there was more to it than just her hair and I wanted to see if I was right. I didn’t want her to be embarrassed or anything; I just wanted to experiment to see what would happen and see if it would answer my question. So, I came up with the idea of finding a way for her to be at my house alone. I decided I would leave a dress out and leave a bra, a pair of panties, a pair of tights and a pair of shoes next to it. I left a note with the outfit encouraging her to be herself and have fun. If she decided to do just that, then I would know because the clothes would not be on the bed where I left them. I planned to go back down there and check on her to see if she had taken me up on my offer — but it never had anything to do with blackmail. I made that part up. At the time, I was only guessing that Lori was transgendered and while it was partly a test, it was also honestly to give her a chance to be herself at least for a little while. I didn’t know about her adventures with Anna until tonight.

“Anyway, an opportunity to give Lori that time to be herself presented itself this weekend, what with my parents being away. I figured that we’d have some time at the beginning of the party before things got into full swing and I decided it would be a perfect time to give it a try. So, before we came here today, I had everything ready. Before anyone arrived at my house, I made sure that the back door was unlocked so that I’d be able to get into my house after I gave Lori the keys. Then, I deliberately made myself late getting changed so that I could purposely ask Devyn and Kieran and Caitlin which dress they liked better. When Kieran suggested that I think about what Tina was wearing and I decided on wearing my yellow dress, I deliberately asked the girls whether they thought my white tights or my champagne tights would look better with that dress. I wanted to get Lori thinking about girl clothes. On our way out the door, when I said I forgot my house keys, I was really laying out the outfit and putting the note next to it.

“Later, once we got here, I needed a reason to give Lori my keys and send her to my house alone so that she could be herself. When Crystal called, I had my reason — only it wasn’t Crystal. It was me. I wasn’t really in the bathroom. I snuck off to call Caitlin’s cell phone and I pretended to be Crystal. I blocked my caller ID so that Caitlin wouldn’t know it was me. Once I had Caitlin on the line, I pretended that Crystal had to answer her door and I put Caitlin on hold. That was my chance to get back to the living room. The only tricky part was that I had to make it back to the living room without hanging up. Otherwise, the little screen on Caitlin’s phone would tell her the call was ended and she might figure out it was me because of the timing. So, while I had Caitlin on hold, I put my phone in my purse with the connection still active. When I got back to the living room and Caitlin handed me her phone, I pretended that I would be on it for a while. Then, when I reached into my bag to grab my keys for Lori, I secretly hung up my phone. Then, of course, I faked the conversation -- which is why I was giggling at you, Lori, when you called Tina on her phone. I was way ahead of you!"

They giggled at Maddy.

“Unfortunately my plan hit a major snag when Tina surprised us with her telescope. I had intended for Lori to be herself privately. When I saw that telescope I was really upset. I never said anything in my note to Lori about anybody seeing her and I felt just terrible.”
Maddy began to choke up and Lori hugged her tightly. Maddy continued while she lingered in Lori’s arms.

“I asked to look though the telescope first so that I could at least check and see if Lori had dressed herself up as a girl — and she had, of course. I tried to think of anything I could to protect Lori’s secret. I was afraid to admit that I had never lost my phone because I didn’t know what to say and what not to at that point, so I borrowed Caitlin’s cellphone to call Lori and try to stall for time, but then the birthday girl wanted to have a look. Then I asked if Tina’s telescope was good for seeing planets. That almost worked; Tina started to find Jupiter but it was behind a cloud. I asked about Saturn instead and even the moon but we couldn’t see those either and Tina began to point the telescope at Lori. I was horrified. I tried to think of something, anything to save Lori. I was still on the phone with Lori and I was just about to tell her to look in my bathroom so she’d be out of sight of the telescope but before I could get the words out, Tina saw Lori dressed as a girl and it was too late! I put the phone on mute so Lori wouldn’t hear Tina screeching about it. Kieran and Caitlin lined up to have a look, and then they encouraged me to have a look because I just had to see you dressed as a girl and I felt so awful I just wanted to cry.”

Maddy, still in Lori’s arms, choked up again and Lori gently stroked her hair and cooed quietly in her ear.

“It’s okay Maddy. You did a very good thing for me — and I’m really, really glad you did. Everything is turning out great. Thank you.”

Maddy looked up at her with a smile on her face and kissed her squarely on her lips, to Lori’s delight and everyone’s surprise. Tina gently interrupted Maddy’s narration.

“Er, Maddy, hon, is there something else you want to tell us?”

Maddy looked back at her with a silly smile on her face and one hand on her mouth. Then she looked back at Lori and nodded.

“Oh, yes, I think there is--” She looked back at Tina. “–but let me finish this first.”

“Okay, lover-girl, whatever you say!”

The girls chuckled at Maddy and Lori as Maddy continued.

“Okay, anyway, when everyone started taking turns spying on poor Lori,” Maddy gently touched Lori’s chin, “I claimed that I had blackmailed Lori into it.” Maddy looked into Lori’s eyes. “I told them that the note said that you had to dress as a girl and if you weren’t a girl by the time I got there then they would know about you.” Maddy’s face took on a pained look. “I was never going to tell them that, I swear, Lori, I was trying to protect your secret any way I could.”

A couple of tears leaked from Maddy’s eyes and Lori wiped them with her hot-tub-warmed hand.

“I never had any intention of outing you!”

Lori hugged her tightly.

“I know.”

Maddy briefly smiled up at her and turned back to her audience.

“Anyway, I decided I had to go down there and talk to her. That was when I asked to take Tina’s cellphone with me when I went home. I borrowed Tina’s cellphone for the same reason I borrowed Caitlin’s. I didn’t know what I should reveal yet. When I got back to my house I told Tina I was hiding while I figured out what to do next, but I wasn’t hiding, Tina.”

Tina’s eyebrows went up.

“I directed Lori into the living room at the front of the house so you would follow him with the telescope and I could get to the basement stairs in the back. Then I had Caitlin direct Lori to the basement so I could sneak a talk with Lori and tell her what had happened. That was when she told me I was right about her being a girl. I gave her the option of changing back, but she didn’t want to be a boy again. I could see that the idea of changing back into boy clothes was upsetting her. So, I said I’d bring her here as a girl and tell everyone it was part of the blackmail. I didn’t want you three to know that I had talked secretly with Lori because you know that I was making up the blackmail. So I told Caitlin to have Lori go to the master bedroom, again at the front of the house, so I could get up to my bedroom using the back stairs without Tina seeing me through the telescope. When Lori got to my room, we did a little play-acting from there on. Even after we hung up our cellphones, we knew Tina would be watching since she's such a perv," Everyone laughed. "and so we kept acting until we left my house.”

They were all pretty astonished with Maddy’s elaborate plan.

“Wow, you’re pretty tricky, Maddy.”

“Thanks, Tina! Oh, I almost forgot! When we went to the bathroom at the restaurant, we ran into Anna!”

Maddy recounted Anna’s heroic distraction of her parents for the girls who hadn’t heard and completed her speech.

"This has certainly been an interesting night," quipped Kieran. "Is that everything, Maddy?"

“Well… I guess it’s time to explain why I just kissed Lori like that.”

“You’re a lesbian, aren’t you?” Tina had known it when she saw that kiss.

“Yes, I am. Lori, in the car and later in the living room, I said I had explaining of my own to do. The reason I wondered whether you might be a girl is that the more I get to know you the more I love you. It’s always been that way -- but I’m a lesbian. I wondered why I began to have feelings for you and I decided to experiment tonight to find out. That’s what I was going to tell you.”

Maddy looked at Lori and smiled happily at her. Lori lovingly returned her smile.

“Well, Maddy, I have always loved you, too, and it just gets stronger for me as well. Thanks to you, this has been the best night of my life.”

Lori reciprocated Maddy’s kiss and this time they lingered while the other girls applauded and cat-called.

“Well. This has been one hell of a birthday party! I don’t think I’ll ever forget it!”

“That’s just fine with me, Tina. I won’t forget it either,” Lori agreed.

Tina came over to give Lori a hug. Then she hugged Maddy, too.

“Come here, you big lesbo!”

Tina hugged Maddy, too.

“So, Lori, does you family know about you?”

“I told Anna in the ladies’ room--” the girls laughed at her “--and she’s totally cool with it. My parents do not know yet, but I think — well, I hope — they will be okay with it.”

Lori began to feel a bit nervous. Maddy playfully tightened her grip on Lori.

“Yeah, they’ll be fine with it. You’ll see.”

“Yeah, you’re probably right, you sweet thing, you.”

Lori kissed Maddy again. Tina had enough of watching her girl friends kiss in the hot tub and she put a diplomatic end to the show.

“All right, everyone. It’s time to for us get out of this hot tub and dry off — and for you two to cool off — so that we can head up to my room and give Lori a proper welcome into her girlhood.”

“What do you have in mind, Tina?”

“I’m not sure yet, but I’ll know by the time we get up there and get changed for the night.”

“Okay!”

Lori and Maddy helped each other out of the hot tub and they all toweled off. Then they processed up to Tina’s room and changed into their nightclothes. When they were done, Tina closed her bedroom door and gathered everyone into the center of her bedroom.

“Okay, everyone. Now that Lori is entering her girlhood, we have to help her do that right.” She paused for a moment as she deliberated something. “Well, this will be optional, I guess, but I would like each one of us to give Lori one piece of jewelry so that she can start her collection.”

Maddy was instantly smitten with the idea.

“Yeah, that’s a wonderful idea!”

“Awwwww! That’s the sweetest thing ever. You don’t have to do that.”

“But we want to,” Maddy answered for Tina.

“I don’t know what to say except thank you so much — and Tina don’t you dare give me back your birthday earrings! I’ll be insulted!!”

The girls giggled as Lori gave Tina a hug. Then she gave Maddy a bigger one.

“I’ll go first!”

Maddy briefly squeezed Lori’s hands and scurried to her overnight bag. She pulled out the silver chain with the heart shaped pendant that she'd put on Lori earlier. She placed it around Lori’s neck and whispered in her ear while she did so.

“Let this be your reminder that Maddy loves you!”

Lori turned around to face her with a tear leaking from one eye.

“Maddy, I love it! Thank you!”

Lori whispered in Maddy’s ear.

“Whenever you see me wearing it, let it remind you that Lori loves you.”

They hugged each other warmly and Maddy kept her arms around Lori as Lori turned to face Tina. Tina had picked out a piece of jewelry to give to Lori. It was a pair of silver hoop earrings about as big around as quarters. They were clip-on since Lori’s ears were not yet pierced. Tina fixed them to Lori’s ears for her.

“You gave me earrings for my birthday, so I’m giving you some of mine. When you put these on you can remember your first night out as a girl."

"Thank you, Tina! I love them!”

Tina knew that Maddy wasn’t about to let go of Lori and Tina leaned in to hug Lori instead.

“My turn!”

Kieran approached with a ring which she slid on Lori’s right hand. The ring was a thin band of silver perhaps three millimeters wide and had colorless stones set into it single-file all the way around.

“This one’s from me. They call this a promise ring — don’t ask me why. Anyway, you’ve had to live with only a promise of ever becoming the real you and now that promise is pretty much fulfilled, so this is for you.”

“Thanks, Kieran! It’s really pretty.”

Lori reached out her arms — from within Maddy’s embrace — and Kieran leaned in for her hug.

“Now me!”

Caitlin made her way to Lori and placed another ring on Lori’s left hand. It was also a thin band of silver but it had a pink butterfly made of cubic zirconium on it. It was the same ring that she'd put on Lori just before dinner.

“Well, now that you’re coming out of your cocoon, just like a butterfly, I think this ring is perfect for you!”

“A butterfly! It is perfect! I love it! Thank you Caitlin!”

Caitlin leaned right in for her hug. She had watched the others and she knew the drill. Tina got things moving again.

“Okay, Lori. You are officially a girl. You are one of us!”

The girls cheered for Lori who blushed and leaned her head on Maddy’s.

“Now, what this ceremony needs is a reception. We need food — and we have a bottle of Martinelli’s sparkling apple juice, too. Let’s snag it! Come on, girls!”

They went down to the kitchen and brought the bottle of sparkling apple juice back up to Tina’s room with some plastic cups — along with some pretzels and chips.

“Tina, I don’t want to usurp your birthday celebration.”

“Oh yeah?” Tina put her hands on her hips. “Well, I’m the birthday girl and you have to do what I say and I say you are celebrating with me tonight. So there!”

The girls laughed at each other. Tina turned on her stereo and played a bunch of great “chick tunes”. They had a great night secretly celebrating Lori’s girlhood along with Tina’s birthday.

The next morning, Tina and Maddy dressed Lori in a denim skirt, red cotton tank top, and saddle colored sandals. After breakfast, it was time for Lori to walk back to Maddy’s with her. Lori loitered at the table and she lingered in Tina’s bedroom when she and Maddy went up there to grab Maddy’s duffle bag. On the way out of Tina’s house, Lori gave everyone another round of hugs and sadly left to face putting her boy clothes on again. Once they got back to Maddy’s house, Lori avoided changing back into her boy clothes.

“Maddy, can we… just stay here for a little while?”

Maddy was putting her things in her hamper. She finished quickly, sat down on her bed next to Lori and put her arms around her.

“Yeah, we can do that. I know you don’t want to dress like a boy anymore.”

“Screw dressing like a boy.”

“Yeah. We’ll hang out here for a little while.”

Maddy paused and kissed Lori again. Then she softly touched Lori’s face with one hand.

“You know, Lori, you are a girl no matter what you’re wearing.”

“I know.” Lori kissed Maddy. “I just want to be myself now and not pretend anymore.”

“Of course you do. Well, don’t worry we’ll stay here for a little whi--”

Lori’s cellphone began ringing. The little screen on her phone indicated that Anna wished to speak with her. She answered without hesitation.

“Hi Anna.”

“Hi Lori. Did I get you at a good time?”

“Yeah, of course, Anna!”

“Good. I just wanted to check on you and see how you’re doing. I’m really happy for you that you’re a girl.”

“Yeah, me too. I just wish I didn’t have to turn back into a boy ever again, but Mom and Dad don’t know yet--”

“–well, if you’re on your way home, Mom and Dad are out taking a ride and won’t be back until dinner time. That’s kind of why I’m calling. If you want to, you can stay at Tina’s a while longer and after dinner I’ll dress you up and we’ll do some girl stuff.”

Lori’s face brightened up immensely.

“Really?”

“Of course!”

“Okay, great! Well, I’m glad for the extra time because Maddy and I hooked up last night.”

“Really? Well done, Lori! I’m thrilled about that, too — she is so adorable!”

Lori looked at Maddy with a smile on her face.

“Yeah, she’s totally adorable!”

Maddy put her arms around Lori and rested her head against Lori’s. Lori let her listen in on the conversation.

“Okay sis — damn, but your life is coming together!”

“Yup. It sure is! Anna, do you think Mom and Dad will accept me as a girl?”

“Psssh! Shit, yeah, they will! Do you really think they haven’t noticed anything?”

“Good point.”

“Yup. They’ve both noticed all right — starting oh, I’d say about three years ago.”

“Wow, really?”

“Oh yeah. Mom’s been very discrete. You know how a bottle of nail polish or a fresh pack of hair bands or something just mysteriously appears in my room sometimes when you’re being yourself?”

“Yes?”

“Mom smuggles those things to me when she knocks on the door to tell me something. Usually it’s to tell me ‘Here, she’ll love this!’ and I’m dead serious!”

Relief began to flood through Lori. Maddy gently squeezed her shoulder.

“Really?”

“Shit, yeah!”

“How come she hasn’t said anything to me?”

“She’s just waiting for you to tell her when you’re ready. Same with Dad, basically, except he doesn’t pick out nail polish for you — thank God!”

“Thank God is right!”

There was laughter all around.

“Okay, Anna, well I am staying put until dinner time and I’ll see you then!”

“Okay, Lori! See you then. Have fun, little girl!”

“You, too! Bye!”

“Bye!”

Maddy grabbed her keys and Lori’s hand and dragged her all the way back up the hill to Tina’s house.

THE END?

[ Other Stories By Mona Lisa ]



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