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He just stepped off the plane and spotted a sign baring his name and a familiar face. It was his aunt. He smiled as she ran over to him to give him a hug. “Look at you. It’s been too long.” she said letting him go so she could look him over some more.
    
He nodded with a smile. “Yeah, It has.”
    
She hugged him once more before they proceeded to baggage claim. After he picked up his luggage, his aunt lead him to her car.
    
“So tell me how your flight was kiddo.” she asked him while they drove to her place.
    
“It was pretty good Aunt Trish.” He replied looking at her briefly before he went back to looking out the window at the scenery zooming past.
    
“I’m glad you took me up on my offer on moving out here with me. I’m just sorry I couldn’t take you back then.” She said.
    
“Don’t worry about it. You just moved out here when it happened and that foster family took care off took care of me.”
    
She glanced at him. “I know but I knew your mother would have wanted me to take care of you instead.”
    
He looked at her. “I lived. I’m alright.” He assured her.
    
“Ok, but this is a whole new beginning for you. New place equals new life.  We’re gonna go shopping to get you a new wardrobe. I’m also going to personally give you a new haircut.”

“Oh yeah, you work at a salon don’t you?”

She smiled. “I own and run my own place.”

“We’re here” she announced pulling into the driveway of a very expensive looking house.

He stepped out of the car awestruck. “You live here?”

“Sure do.” She beamed.

He thought the car was nice and his aunt had pretty expensive looking clothes on but never imagined pulling up to a mansion. “I never knew you were rich.”

Trish looked at him, almost offended. “didn’t your birthday and Christmas gifts give you some sort of clue?”

He thought for a moment. The gifts he got from her were  pretty expensive and the latest thing. “Sorry.”

She laughed. “Come on, Pete. I’ll help you unpack.”
    
Later that day, Trish took Pete out for lunch at her favorite bistro. “So how do you like Beverly Hills so far?” she asked in between bites of her salad.

“I like it but it’s so hot here. I don’t see how people can stand it.”

“Well it’s summer in California. And with that thick mop on top of your head no wonder you’re sweating.” She chuckled.

He nodded. “Yeah,  I normally get my hair cut short for summer but I haven’t had the chance to yet.”

She smiled. “How about we swing by the salon after we finish lunch and we take care of that today instead.”

“Sure.”

He was amazed as he set foot inside the salon. “Wow. This place is huge.”

Trish smiled at Pete. “Thanks.” She replied leading him towards the back of the vast salon.  Pete looked at the various people getting their hair done. “I’ll take you to my private room.”

“You have a private room?”

“We get various celebrities whom we take to our private rooms. There’s a private entrance which they use so our costumers in here never see them.” She waved at various people along the way and opened up the door to let Pete in.

The room has spacious with framed pictures of various clients adorning the walls. Aside from the famous faces on the walls the room look much like a station you would find in any other salon. “Have a seat Pete.” She said patting the chair. He sat in the chair and looked around the room. In front of him was a mirror with a desk below which held the various instruments of hair cutting and styling. To the left there was another chair with a sink behind it for washing hair.

Pete looked into the mirror and say the reflection of his aunt standing behind him. “So Pete. You have any ideas on what you’d like to do?”

He looked at his reflection. He had been letting his hair grow out since winter. His hair was brown and untidy. He usually kept it short since it was easier to manage and people said he looked better that way. “Well, usually I get buzzes.” he told her.

“We could do that. What number would you like?”

“Well. Umm.”

Trish looked at him in the mirror with concern. “What is it Pete?”

“Well. There’s been something I always wanted to try but never did.”

She smiled at him. “That’s the whole point of moving here, try new things. This is your new life. It’s the perfect time to do something new.”

He looked uneasy. “Well okay.  I was kind of thinking about shaving my head.”

She didn’t bat an eye. “Clipper shaved or razor smooth?” she asked him in a professional manner.

He was afraid that she would think he was some weirdo but she didn’t seem to care. ” Razor..”

She nodded. “Somebody with your build definitely look good bald.”

He felt a weight lift of his chest.  He was on the athletic side and was often told that short hair suited him. He smiled nervously. You couldn’t get shorter than bald. He thought.

“So is that what you want?”

“Yes.” he nodded.

Trish grabbed a cape out of a drawer and a piece of tissue. She placed the tissue around the neck and then fastened the cape around is neck.  She then walked over to the drawer again to grab a pair of clippers. She plugged them in and walked behind Pete. The guard was removed and the clippers roared to life.

“Is there anything you want to do after your haircut?” she asked him causally as the clippers tore a path on the right side of his head.

“I don’t know.” He said.

She worked her way up towards the top. “How about we take a dip in the pool? I know you told me you liked swimming.”

He watched as clumps of his hair fell  off his scalp with the aide of the hungry clippers. “Yeah, I do. And that sounds great.” Pete just stared at the strange person appearing before him in the mirror.

Trish noticed his expression. “It looks good so far Pete.”

“Really?”

She flashed him a smile. “Of course. You’re not the first head I shaved before.” The whole right side of his head as now short stubble. She moved the clippers to finish off the top. “I’m known for my head shaves.” Her gentle hands tilted his head to right. “When I first started I even offered to do barber shop shaves.” She said going to work on the left side. “It took me a while to get the hang of using the straight razor.” he she dusted of his hairy shoulders. “I practiced on my legs first. Let me tell you. They were smooth but I got plenty of nicks at first.” She pushed his head forward. “Then started offering the shaves when I was confident enough. Then one day one of my regulars asked me if I would shave his head.” The whirling of the clippers died. “People like to kid me that I made more men bald than male pattern baldness.” She walked over to the desk to put the clippers away and to grab a new pair. These were smaller and silver. This new pair was quickly brought to life nibbling the stubble on his head even shorter. ” I never thought I would be shaving your head though.” She smiled.

The tiny clippers  flipped off and were exchanged for a fluffy pink brush which Trish whisked on top of his head to sweep away any stray hair. She set down the brush and fetched a hot towel which she placed carefully on top of his head. “I’m just going out to see how everyone else is doing and I’ll be back. Just relax and enjoy.” She said gently slipping out.

Pete took a deep cleansing breath and relaxed. He relaxed so much he didn’t notice his Aunt Trish coming back into the room. “Every is ok out there. How about in here?’ She asked taking off the towel.

“Great.” he said.

She smiled. “Glad to hear that.”

Pete was taken by surprise when he felt someth
ing warm and moist on top his . He closed his eyes and enjoyed the sensation of the warm lather being  smeared over his head. “Feels good huh?” He just moaned with delight. Music to her ears. Soon the sound of the straight razor could be heard scraping over his scalp. He felt the occasional finger checking for smoothness. Once the finger was satisfied another hot towel wiped his bare head clean. A few seconds later he was treaded to head massage as his aunt worked in some baby oil. He moaned softly at the sensation.

“All done.” She announced.

He opened his eyes and smiled at the image he saw. Was it him or just a picture of a bald person staring at him. Was it all a dream? A the bare scalp his hand felt told him “no.”

“So how do you like it?”

“I’m bald.” He said amazed.

Trish continued to smile. “Is that a good thing?”

“Yeah!”

All the drive home Pete stared at his reflection and felt his bare naked scalp. “So is that your new look?” Trish asked him.

“You bet! But I’m going to need to get some razors and shaving cream.”

“I’ll get a hot lather machine and a straight razor for home if you want.”

He looked at her. “You’d do this everyday for me?”

“Of course I will.” She said pasting the same faked look of offense. “I had fun taking care of your noggin.”

He smiled and went back to staring at his bald head. His new life had just taken a great first step.

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