Summer Intern - 4 Settling In

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Summer Intern - 4
Settling In

By Jessica C

Marti’s identity was found out by Sandy on his Spring Break...
Sandy and Hannah enjoyed helping Marti to Blossom...
And now she living 24/7 during her Summer Internship


Come Monday morning, I visit with Howard Sparks early, saying, “I don’t mind being called Martina but I want to be Marti or Martina Stanley.”

Howard asks me, “Please close the door behind you and sit down we need to talk. …You can go by what you will, it is your choice. But you need to know not only was it a decision from the front office but in counsel with your parents. They’re not sure they’re ready for you to be their daughter. I think they still believe you’ll go back to being their Marty.”

I can’t believe what I’m hearing; whether to curse or cry. I had come prepared to argue and stay strong and not weep. I do what I know to do when confronted with this something hard to believe. I take my phone and I call home. “Mom, this is Marti. …Is it true that you want me to go by being Stanton for now?”

Mom says, “We agreed with them it might be best until you’re sure.”

“But Mom, I told you I was sure. How long will it take for you and Dad to believe that?” Mom’s partially crying it’s hard to understand her, but I did understand. “…Over a year. We can decide before you get your degree.” I had enough and hung up.

Howard is now standing over close to me. He says, “Sorry, I don’t have the years of knowing the other Marty. It’s easier for me.”

“Bull s***, they’re family.” I try to get control of my emotions and tears, finally standing up, I ask, “Can I have fifteen minutes to myself to clean up.” I’m walking out as I hear Howard saying, “I’ll see you at one; if you’ve been drinking I’ll see you tomorrow.”


‘I can’t imagine drinking in the morning, though I’ve done it once. I guess it was Mr. Sparks letting me know it was understandable some, if I did.’ I go over to Café Gardens and make sure I get Melissa who’s my waitress of choice. I order a late breakfast, saying, “I needed some time to think things over.”

She says, “Is this a big change for you?” She puts in my order, brings my iced mint tea. She’s standing there, kind of waiting to see if I want to talk. ‘I don’t know if the “big change” is ‘my job’ or she knows more about me, like being ‘transgender’.’

I ask, “Have you known anyone who isn’t quite accepted for being who they are?”

She says, “On smaller things. Is it with your work or with family?”

I say, “Both but work and the university are better about it.”

Melissa says, “Your family has had longer thinking they knew you. You must have done a good job at keeping whatever as a secret.”

Melissa sees a light go on; she goes and brings back my meal. She says, “I shouldn’t but it’s slow enough I could take a break and sit with you awhile.”

“I’m transgender, you might not want too?” Melissa goes away and comes back drinking a cup of coffee.

She says, “You’re my customer and I care about you. I thought you might be, but it was so hard to know for sure. I thought you must have been out a long time. Is it just now that your parents have had trouble accepting you being this Marti?”

Melissa, “I’ve never heard here or from across the street people having trouble with you. I know someone said you do a good job for a rookie.”

We’re talking, I’m eating a little but not like usual. We’ve been talking thirty minutes before someone says to Melissa, “We have to get ready for noontime.” I thank her and she encouraged me to fix my makeup and hair. I do that and head back over to work. I don’t have it, but I leave $5 as a tip.

I check notes and see a request for information on two clients. Yasianna says, “They’re not expecting you back until 1:00. Take what time you need. They’ll put more than enough pressure on you when needed.” She smiles, “If you want we could shop over the noon hour.”

It is amazing how slow time goes, when I want it to speed up. I’m going to go with Yasianna come noon; till then I busy myself with research.

With Yasianna, I find new stores I hadn’t been to; they’re more in my price range. Yasi, has two boys and a daughter, she likes being out with me. Her daughter is twelve with her birthday is coming up. I can’t believe she’s asking me for ideas.

“She must be hinting aloud about something she wants. Besides getting that you should take her out shopping to have time with you.”

Yasi says, “Selena says she doesn’t like going with me. She says I’m too distracted and behave like a mother.”

“Does she have to compete with two brothers?” Yasi admits to having schedules to juggle. “She wants your time, maybe it is time for Mr. Landers to have his sons for the day or weekend.”

“Joe, will say, when he can.” Yasi thinks, “I think Selena and I need to set a time and just tell them, we’re going.” We get two pairs of jeans, Selena will like. We both get something to eat and back to the office.

When I see Mr. Howard, he asks, “So what will it be?”


“I guess it is Martina Stanton for the summer maybe forever.” My voice is shaky but neither it nor I breakdown.

He says, “I have information on two clients on your desk. On the Andrews account I want you to figure a $25,000 dollar investment and monthly investments of $1,300. They like companies that make a product. They don’t do a lot of buying and selling.”

I say, “I saw that, but I’ll need to do more figuring with the information you just gave. Do you have some ways you’re leaning? A company you need more information on?”

Howard asks about Thor vs. NCI Construction systems. I ask about Ingersoll-Rand. We agree I’m to do research on all three. He wants my report before the stock market closes on Wednesday.

He says, “The Montgomerys are in a different realm, we’re talking a portfolio of millions. I’ve marked an investment they think has run its course. They need a strategy on divesting the stock and getting into emerging industries. They’ll praise themselves on what goes right and blame us for what goes wrong. We’ll do are best, I will make the decisions. I’ll be meeting with them on Friday. They might act quickly or drag it out for a month. Our job is not only making good investments but to make sure our information doesn’t leak. They’re selling could influence the market.”


I’m leaving at 5:40 p.m. and I’m to meet with Tricia, Steph and a Monica at a watering hole. Yasianna has a call to me as I’m leaving. “I love you and Selena loves you. We’re getting away Friday night and will be back Sunday morning. She couldn’t believe I was serious and committed to getting away. Thank you, thank you!”

I only respond, “It was your idea, once you thought it through. It’s you she wants to be proud of.”

“Selena says, she knows who you are and wants to meet you.”

I meet with my counsellor come Tuesday. I am able to unload my grief; she even encourages me to yell out. She is happy that I haven’t stopped taking my medicine. She did suggest I talk to my other doctor if I needed something for anxiety or depression.


Tricia and I shop at a store Yasianna took me to. I get another swimsuit and a bikini that is only for tanning. Since spring my manhood has begun to shrink. Several vials of semen have been harvested. But I’m told by my GYN that may be coming to an end.

Tricia and I made love Friday night, fairly sure I was shooting blanks. Tricia says, “I’m already three days late, so if you did it, it’s already done.” Seeing my frightened look she says, “Do you see my water build up? I expect my period to start tonight or tomorrow?”

Tonight Tricia has my breast forms off and is suckling on the little I have. It excites me immensely. My gaff is back in place and she is arousing me as Martina. “Martina, I am enjoying you becoming more like me. I think I could really like this. But my dad wants someone who can give me a name and children.” We continue to talk and she doesn’t really know why my mood has changed.

I’m wondering if everyone is going to have a “but” where it comes to me.

We drive over to Florence and see Francis Marion University and the city again. I’ve already seen the museum at South Carolina University and we’re going to take time next Thursday to visit the campus and admissions people there. I’m looking forward the coming weekend to go visit the Sparks at Hilton Head. It’ll be Father’s Day weekend, but they assure me I’m wanted and passed due for a visit.

I like Florence and could see myself happy at the university here; Barb in Admissions asks, “Do you know someone is planning on funding your education? They did say, they were hopeful you might choose the University of South Carolina. Please let us know if there is anything we can do to persuade you of our interest in having you as our FMU student.”

I ask, “Can the University help me in becoming a woman?” I can see Director Barb Adderley swallow and think before she answers.

She says, “I’m sure they can help you to consider everything you should. I’m not quite sure how to answer your question.”

I ask, “Is it covered by the insurance I can get through the university?”

“I’m not sure if it requires that it be a necessity.”

“It’s necessary if I’m going to be a woman.” I pause, knowing there is no good answer. “Don’t worry that is not your problem in me coming here.”

I did ask, “Do you know if South Carolina Investments has an office here?”

She says, “I think they have a office with some investment associates. I don’t know more than that.”


Tricia and I go out to an oriental restaurant for dinner. They have Thai, as well as Chinese and Korean dishes that they serve. The Tai sushi is the first time I eat raw fish other than clams. I kind of like it, but it is definitely not a favorite yet.

Two university type guys come over and offer to take us out. Mark says, he’s a second year grad-assistant at the university. John says, he’s graduated but taking some time in trying to make it in music and theatre.

Tricia turns to me and asks, “So is this the night?”

I ask, “Are we safe with you?” John goes by Jack, and he says, “If you want safe, you better go with Mark. But you’re the one I’m interested in.”

Tricia says, “If you get her, you better be ready for what you get into.”

Jack says, “I’m a musician, I was born kinky.”

Tricia and I retreat to the women’s room before giving an answer. Tricia says, “I think Jack is more talk. But he’s opened his mouth so I think he’s committed himself. Mark, I know being with the University better be decent. If you want to give it a try; I can take Mark or either one.”

I say, “I don’t need to be out long or stay with them if we don’t like how it goes. But we do need to get up early if we stay the night. Mr. Sparks will understand if I’m a little late.”

I feel a little awkward going with a guy, especially with Tricia being with me. It seems more important to her to see how I am with a guy. Tricia says, “We need to watch each other’s drinks. We order new if there is any doubt.”

Tricia did ask to see Marks university card before we leave. Jack says, “There’s ‘Beyond Therapy’ they have live music as well as drinking and nightlife. Why don’t we see if anything is happening there?”

Tricia says, “That’s a good choice.”

We get there and I can’t believe I’m next to Jack with his hand around my waist. I thought it would be repulsive, but he’s attractive and acting nice. That when we sit down, he’s close but not in my space. I like that. He asks me, “Would it be okay if I order you a peach daiquiri? It has a nice taste and is smooth drinking.”

I say, “I’ve had a daiquiri before; yes I’ll try a peach one.” Tricia starts with a Mai Tai. Mark chooses a locally brewed beer that’s on tap there. Jack has gone with a rum and coke. The music is lively, and lucky for me not country. I know if I stay down here I need to get use to it. Thankfully not tonight…

The night goes well enough. We dance and share several embraces and kisses. During the band’s intermission they come over to visit with Jack and Mark whom they know. Galen even says he’s seen Tricia before. He even knows she should be a junior this fall. He asks, “If I remember you met someone you liked over spring break. Do you hear anything from then?”

“Yes, we’re both interning this summer in Columbia. Martina and I get together some of the time.” Jack knows I’m Marti and is wondering if I’m Martina. Pretty soon he cools to me. It is 11:30 when we call it a night and head back to Columbia instead of getting a room.

We have little trouble staying awake as we talk of our time together and the evening with the guys. It becomes important to both of us that we were attracted to the guys while we were together.

Tricia says, “I thought we might each have the delight of having a man until something changed for Jack. Were you open to him having you?”

“It would have been a mutual thing of us having the other. It was strange, I wouldn’t think I’d want to be with a musician. They are like butterflies flitting about with no sense of direction.

I am driving but it is Tricia’s car, so I drive to my place. We shower together and use my cleanser and moisturizer. I like watching her take care of herself. We’re warm to each other and we’re satisfied with being close.

Come morning she uses the outfit she took to Florence. It’s yellow, reds and white frame her body well. We kiss and linger as it will be tomorrow when we’re ready to Hilton Head that we’re together. I know Tricia has more friends here, I worry one is a boy boyfriend.


I stopped at the Café Gardens for coffee and a Danish. Melissa is happy I am in a joyful mood. She hopes I’d say more, but I do not share as another woman might. She does confirm for me that my makeup and clothes are ready for a good day.

Howard tells me of his meeting with Mr. Andrews and Andrews’ decision to invest $20 thousand both in NCI Construction and Ingersoll-Rand. He says, “Some clients are like that if they are impressed with the information we give them. They’ve upped their monthly investment to two thousand five hundred. We’ll invest that quarterly into their stock portfolio.

He tells me, “I need the reports for the Montgomerys by the end of the day. I think they are anxious and will be in early, but that’s only a guess. If you get that work done, you might get a salon appointment to reward yourself…”

I know his assistant Danial Stephenson and another worker will be giving input as well…

To be continued…

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