Kara was wearing a blouse so thin it was almost sheer; with the sun behind her, I could plainly see her high full breasts, silhouetted through the fabric.
I saw much of it last night, of course. When Kara stepped into that cold room and thrust her tits defiantly at me, I knew I wanted my hands on them. But that wasn't what clinched it.
She stepped into the dressing area, looking around. I watched her take it all in, the costumes, the mirrors, the dust motes on rays of sunlight through old barn windows. I watched her sit down, and almost caught my breath at the sight of her reflection -- her full golden hair, and sweet face and mouth made up especially for me.
But the blonde hair wasn't really the reason I picked her for my scene. Instead, it was what I saw before me. It was the uncertainty in her eyes as she looked upon her own face. It was the doubt that she had something worth giving to someone else. It was the utter lack of awareness that she was wildly sexy.
She would know tonight.
I was looking at my teeth in the mirror when I heard a wooden creaking noise. I spun around on my stool, to see... him. Climbing down a ladder from a part of the barn I didn't even know existed. How long had he been up there?
My heart was racing but I tried to stand up coolly, calmly. He was making his way nimbly down the ladder, and jumped to the ground off the third rung. He brushed his hands on his jeans and approached me, stopping right in front me. "I'm Tom Davis. I teach acting and technical theater, and I also produce plays and films. The festival managers hired me to put on the theatrical part of the haunted house. I'm sorry I didn't introduce myself last night."
While he's saying all this, he's looking straight into my eyes. It was very unsettling. I felt like I was naked in front of him.
Right then, no kidding, he said, "I need you to take your clothes off. You can leave your underwear on."
"I'm not kidding. The doctor's lab is our final scene, and it has to be right. The autopsy table is a special set piece, and your costume will have to work very carefully with it. I need to see if you can fit what we already had made for the other girl."
I swallowed, wondering how I could stall this.
Tom looked at me intently from over his glasses. "It's Kara, right? Are you up for this job? It's only one night. If you can't do it, tell me now." God, his eyes seemed to see through me.
I thought about my car. I thought about the night before, when I touched myself, thinking about this very man.
I think I'm in over my head. But it's only one night -- what can happen?
I began to unbutton my blouse. ********
While Kara wrestled internally over whether she was along for this ride, I reached for the rolling clothing rack. She began to kick off her boots and unbutton her blouse. I watched her while pushing hangers around on the rack. She looked down in embarrassment for a second, blonde hair falling forward to cover her face.
Then I saw a bravery kick in, like she'd flipped a switch. Kara's shirt was completely open when she snapped her head up defiantly, looking for me. She could feel my eyes on her, and gave the stare right back as she peeled the blouse back over her shoulders and let it fall to the ground.
Her skin was creamy, impossibly smooth for a teenager. Her breasts were full and round, covered modestly by a plain pink bra. I wanted to grab her by the waist, slip my tongue under the seam that curved over the cups of her tits... but I refrained.
Kara unbuttoned her skin-tight jeans and began to peel them down over her hips. I stepped out from behind the rack and stood before her -- openly, obviously watching her. I folded my arms. I wanted this to feel like an inspection; I wanted her to feel like a piece of meat.
Her pink bikini panties matched her bra. So sweet, and not at all surprising. As she bent over to push her jeans down to the ground, her long golden hair flipped over, and I was overcome right then with an urge to plunge my fingers into that thick hair, to grab this half-naked girl and pull her head forward into my stirring cock. But, it was far too soon.
She wobbled a little, stepping out of the wad of tight denim at her ankles. Then she stood straight up, defiantly, back arched again like the night before.
Kara had something to prove, and I was happy to let her. I gave her the courtesy of a complete once-over, starting at her toes and traveling up -- long golden legs, smooth tummy, pale breasts swelling out from pink cotton, slim shoulders, delicate hands and wrists. And that sweet face, in a careful mask of confidence that was belied only by scared eyes, seeking my approval.
"Turn around slowly." I twirled my finger as though she were modeling a wedding gown. She did as asked.
Her blonde hair fell down her back in soft curls. Her ass was pert and round, beautifully shaped. I never get tired of how ripe and ideal a college freshman is. They know everything, and nothing.
As Kara turned slowly in profile, I appreciated the swell of her tits, and the tiny glints off two or three short golden hairs peeking out of her bikini. My mouth watered at what awaited me underneath that cotton. Pink and gold, gold and pink.
"You're smaller than the other girl," I offered magnanimously. "I'm sure the costume will fit. Now, take off your underwear. Tie the gown in the front, not the back." I pulled a medical-green hospital gown off a hanger and tossed it to her.
"This?" Kara looked skeptically at the plain sack-like garment in her hand. "This was what you had to make sure fit me?"
I shrugged. "Well, ultimately I'm responsible for how it all looks. So I had to see the canvas we are working with." I turned away and made myself busy with something else on the clothing rack.
She blushed and reached for her bra hook.
I couldn't believe it. My brain was telling me to put my clothes back on, and run out the door. I would tell Kristin everything, and I would tell Nelson too.
Tom was scary. He looked at me like he wanted to eat me. Not like he wanted to eat me out... but like he wanted to cook me and eat me with a fork and knife. My heart was pounding so hard that I felt like he could probably see it beating in my chest. Yet, my hands kept fastening the gown. And between my legs, I was warm and slippery. I had never stripped for anyone before, even partly. It made me feel sexy, naughty. Scared.
"Come with me. It's time to get you into the autopsy table." Tom reached toward me. Without thinking, I put my hand in his. It was warm, and he enfolded my fingers completely. I know it's a total cliche, but I could feel energy pass between us.
Tom. It felt wrong to think of him by his first name. But what else should I call him? Doctor?
He led me through a curtain opening into the dark fabric depths of the haunted house. I realized that he took my hand because I didn't know where I was going in the dark, and not because he wanted to touch me.
"Oh my God, Kara," I thought, "You're being a child. Get your shit together. This is work." The undressing me, looking me at like a predator... that was clearly all in my head. I needed to stop acting like a stupid kid.
We stepped into the "operating room" of the mad scientist, the final scary scene of the haunted house. I clutched the gown closer to me, and looked around.
The space was maybe 10 foot by 10 foot. Four "walls" were made by black draping, with one on a rod to slide open for the show.
There was a skeleton on a rack, much like the one in my high school biology class. There was a large cage with a female mannequin inside -- presumably the doctor's next victim? There were shelves with apothecary jars holding liquids and eyeballs and gooey-looking things. Lights blinked around the room, and fake candles flickered in wall torches.
But the star of the show was clearly the autopsy table. It was a plain black wooden contraption with a thick bulky top, and took up most of the space in the room. It had flesh-colored mannequin legs attached to the top, with a body tag tied to one fake toe. Why just the legs? That's weird.
Tom waved me over.
"This is complicated. But you're about to see why you're so important." He reached across to the far side and lifted the top of the table off, a thin piece of plywood with the fake legs attached. There was now an inclined opening beneath. "Get in."
I raised my eyebrow. "Get 'in'? How do I get in the table?"
Tom grabbed me at the waist and lifted me off the floor. I could smell him, feel his breath on my neck, and his strong hands warm through the thin cotton gown, as he unceremoniously plopped me into the table opening. "Like this, Kara." He grabbed my knees, swinging my legs up and into the table. Then he arranged my arms and head, and placed the piece of leg-topped plywood back in place.
Okay, I think I get it. It was like a magic-trick box where they saw the girl in half. If you looked at me from the front of the scene, you would see my head, shoulders, chest and arms moving on top of the table, and the fake legs. There was a weird flat space where my stomach should be, which didn't make sense.
Tom opened one of the prop cabinets and removed a small white pillow. He brought it over and lifted my head, arranging the pillow underneath. I inhaled sharply at his nearness, and closed my eyes to get control. The voice in my head repeated, "This is work, Kara. It's just work. This is an acting job. You're an actor. This is all completely normal."
But inside the hospital gown I could feel my nipples hardening again. I could feel the heat of him, and then his hand was on my cheek. His hands were in my hair, fanning it out across the table. I could hear him breathing.
I watched Tom continue to prepare the scene. He was sexy, in an artsy way -- the collar-length brown messy hair, the day-old scruff of a beard, the jeans and oxford shirt. I couldn't stop thinking about his hands.
He returned to the cabinet, and took out a doctor's lab coat. It was splashed red with prop blood. He slipped it on, and I could see Dr. Frankenstein written on the pocket. Nice touch.
He took out a sheet of black plastic tarp, and placed it over my plywood "stomach". Then he disappeared for a few minutes, saying, "I have to go get the rest of your body."
Maybe another mannequin piece? So weird. Under the table top, I wriggled. I felt naked despite the hospital gown, and I hated being so vulnerable. The wooden table compartment wasn't exceptionally comfortable to begin with.
To distract myself, I thought about how I would describe to Kristin what happened in the dressing room. What was the right tone to take? I was furious, right? I would be pissed off when I told her. I would tell her how I was so angry that I almost left and got Nelson.
But then I would play it casual, and say, "But, really, what's the big deal. He's in theater. That kind of thing happens all the time backstage, I'm sure." I would be totally cool about it. I would seem very sophisticated, like the theater people always do.
I would leave out the part about his eyes moving over me, fucking me while I stripped. I wouldn't mention that I was turned on and embarrassed at the same time. Kristin wouldn't understand.
I thought about Tom's warm hands, and the heat of his breath near my ear. My eyes closed and my hips began to roll, involuntarily. I could see his eyes lingering on me, on my bra and panties...
Kara had her eyes closed again when I came into the scene room. She had put one hand up and behind her head on the table, and I could see her breasts rising and her body moving ever so slightly. She was incredible to look at. Her lips were swollen, pinker than before. The wet tip of her tongue darted out to pass over them. My lovely corpse was aroused.
I dropped a foam cooler next to the table with a thud. Her eyes flew open, startled again.
I was growing to adore that brief scared moment that passed her eyes, before she regained control and became cool and brave. Chasing that look of fear could lead me to great trouble.
Nothing I haven't managed before, though.
I stood next to Kara and took a tiny glass vial of liquid out of the pocket of my lab coat. I showed it to her. "Do you trust me?"
She giggled nervously. "What is that? Is it a prop?" Her blue eyes darted over me -- the vial, my face, my hands. She was more than startled, now.
"Do you trust me?" I repeated in a whisper as I leaned down next to her face. I traced the exposed skin of her upturned arm with my fingertips, and Kara gasped without thinking.
"I trust you," she whispered, looking away.
I took her chin in my hand, turning her face back toward me. "You don't have to trust me. But don't lie to me." She nodded, almost imperceptibly.
I opened the vial and passed it near her nose. "This is rose absolute. Flower oil." I tipped the vial onto my index finger, just a couple of drops, and smeared her upper lip with it. "So the smell of the meat doesn't make you sick tonight."
I opened the cooler and took out the raw, bloody slab of beef brisket that would stand in for her torso in tonight's performance. I laid the slab of meat carefully atop the plastic tarp, and then covered her whole "body" with a white sheet. The blood from the meat would begin to seep through the top of the sheet. The lights and noise would finish the effects.
And the mad doctor would go to work.
Finally. Finally, I got the optical illusion that would scare the kids coming through the haunted house. Here I was, reclined in this false-topped table. And I'd be lying there quiet and still, when the group walked up. And "Doctor" Tom would hit that slab of beef with a butcher's knife and it would look like my stomach -- which was actually safe inside under the plywood.
The strobe lights and sheet would prevent sharp eyes from noticing the seams between my actual body, the meat and the fake legs. I would scream and flail my arms, and they would all scream and squeal and gasp in horror. It was really clever.
"When I slap the knife down, scream. Remember that. Your only job tonight is to play dead until the people come, and then when I cut you, turn to them and scream bloody murder."
So that was a sentence I didn't expect to hear this weekend. Was I in real danger? This guy was really sick and weird.
But did I care anymore? My phone was on silent, in my bag, back in the dressing room, along with my clothes. It's not like anyone knew how to find me nor could I call someone to come help me. Now with a ten-pound beef roast, wooden legs and plywood over me, I wasn't even sure I could get out of this table by myself.
Tom was turning on a red darkroom light mounted in a corner when the cat recording yowled next door at the witches' station. "Someone's coming." He turned to the curtain.
It slid open with a rattle. Nelson had changed into a Grim Reaper cloak. "Checking in. How you guys doing?" Nelson looked me over on the table. "That's a good-looking corpse, Doc. You're right, she's worth the money."
He looked at his watch. "We're opening the doors in five minutes, so wrap up your prep. Overhead barn lights are about to go off, and we're turning on all the music effects." Nelson pulled his mask down. "It's showtime, folks. Five minutes."
I watched him flip the curtain closed and leave. I wasn't sorry to not be working for that guy any more.
Tom was cleaning fake blood off a prop cleaver, and watching me watch Nelson. "He's not that bad, Kara. Just an old guy trying to make some money."
I shrugged. "Whatever. He creeps me out." I turned to look at Tom. "And since I'm not lying... you creep me out too." I said it flirty and winked at him, to show that I was being smart-mouthed and clever.
I was being smart-mouthed. But I wasn't lying. This guy turned me on and scared the fuck out of me, at the same time.
Tom leaned over, just as the overhead lights in the barn went out. I could smell his cologne, and roses. He pushed my hair aside, and put his lips on my ear. "Thank you, Kara, for your honesty," he whispered. He inhaled deeply.
His breathing was maddening. It was warm, and tickly through the hair against my ear, and I could feel it tingling between my legs. I knew he could probably hear me getting excited. Hell, he could probably read my thoughts.
I fought the compulsion to put my arm up around his neck and pull him onto me. I'd never done anything like that before; in fact, I'd never been this close to a grown man that wasn't family, before.
A cat yowled, again. The recording from the witches' brew station meant that the first group of guests had just arrived in our area of the haunted house.
Tom stood up. He flipped on the strobe lights and pulled the curtain open. "Close your eyes, darling. The children are coming and it's time to play dead. And remember to scream when I stick the knife in you."
Over the next couple of hours, Kara and I settled into a routine. She performed admirably (for an education major). She would lie completely still as the spectators approached the scene and stopped. A recording played overhead, sounds of bubbling potions and beeping machines. I would sharpen my cleaver and rant madly about "my newest creation" and "bringing a person back from the dead" and so on, very Vincent Price. Then I would raise the cleaver high overhead, laugh maniacally, and smack it down into the meat slab on the table. Kara's eyes would spring open, and she would scream, high-pitched and blood-curdling, then reach toward the children as they shrieked and ran away to the next attraction.
Again. Strobes pulsing. Cat yowl. Eyes closed. Sharpen cleaver. My latest creation. Laugh maniacally. Stab the meat. Scream. Turn toward the children.
Again. Strobes pulsing. Cat yowl. Remove cleaver. Eyes closed. Children arrive. Sharpen cleaver. My latest creation. Stab the meat. Scream. Turn toward the children.
Strobe. Cat. Play dead. Children. Rant. Laugh. Stab. Scream. Repeat.
After the third or fourth group had been led through, I knew Kara had her part down cold. I was ready to entertain us both by spicing up my rant.
This time as I sharpened my cleaver, I bellowed, "What have we here, a new specimen to dissect! What will I learn as I split her wide open? I could create something very beautiful indeed." I raised my cleaver.
"I wonder if this poor dead girl knows what's about to happen to her powerless body?"
Laugh maniacally. Thwack! Kara screams. Children scream. And, scene.
The strobes pulse away as she turns to look at me. "Split her wide open? Create something beautiful? Really?"
"Mm. Do you like the new lines?"
Kara looked straight at me. "I bet you create beautiful things all the time," she prodded.
I set the cleaver down and folded back the white sheet that covered her inside the prop bed. Her eyes were locked on mine, as I untied the top of her medical gown. This girl was gorgeous, even in strobe lighting and an unflattering hospital gown. I put the palm of my hand against her sternum, fingertips at her throat. Her skin was cool and soft. I could feel her heart racing, in the pulse of her neck, and in the soft swell of her tits under my hand.
"Sometimes I don't have to create beauty. It just finds me."
It was a cheesy, awful line, and yet sometimes the simple ones work best. She closed her eyes for a moment and swallowed. I knew she didn't want me to look into her.
The cat yowled. Kara's eyes flew open and her hands moved instinctively to re-fasten her gown. I flicked them away. "Leave it open," I ordered. I pulled the sheet back up to cover her exposed breasts. "Close your eyes. They're here."