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STARBOUND (sixth)

          “How would you like to try out as Shawna’s replacement?” said Marnie as she filled her coffee maker.

          “I… I’d love to.  But I’m not sure I’m ready”, Sylvia said.

          “There’s only one way to find out for sure”, said Marnie, looking at Sylvia.

          “Is there an audition?” Sylvia asked eagerly.

          “Yes.  In the Ratchford studio on Wednesday afternoon.  Shawna will arrange for you to get in on it”, said Marnie.

          “Wednesday afternoon?” Sylvia groaned.  “I can’t get ready by Wednesday afternoon”.

          “Of course you can, Sweetie”, said Marnie.  “Don’t be silly.  Relax.  Come on, I want you to try on the new costume I made for you”.

Sylvia dropped her street cloths to the floor around her feet while Marnie brought out the “slave girl” costume on a plastic hanger.  Marnie looked up and saw Sylvia standing naked in the glow of the ceiling lights.  She stopped and looked Sylvia up and down, slowly, taking in the glowing alabaster coloured skin, the china-doll face and the magnificently shaped legs that seemed too long for the petite young woman.

          “Lordy, lordy, lordy young lady.  You are one delicious piece o’ stuff.  Almost makes me wish I still had my Willie.  Here… try this on”.

Sylvia slipped into the costume and looked at her reflection in a large mirrored section of wall.

          “It’s fabulous, Marnie.  Everything you design and make is fabulous.  If you ever stop dancing, you can make a good living as a fashion or costume designer”.

          “I already make more money making clothes and hats than I do dancing, Sweetie”, said Marnie with a laugh.  Sylvia turned and looked at the tall black girl.

          “Then why the Hell do you dance”, she said.

          “I like it, Sweetie.  Just like you like it.  You know damn well you like it.  You love the way those guys feed on the fantasies that you stimulate in them.  And I’ve seen the way you give special smiles to the sad cases… the guys in wheelchairs, or the ones that are morbidly obese.  It makes you happy to feed their inner needs.  You like it for your reasons… probably because you’re so damned gorgeous”.

          “And you”, said Sylvia, turning back to the mirror, surveying her own image in the slave girl costume.  She looked over her shoulder in the mirror and watched Marnie eyeing her backside lasciviously.  “Why do you love to dance naked”.

          “For one thing, Sweetie”, Marnie said, taking another joint from the coffee table, “it’s a thrill for me to be a transsexual and be lusted after as a woman.  And besides, it’s a great way for me to meet men… find lovers.  It’s not that easy, being a big, tall black woman”.  Marnie took off her luxuriant blond wig and placed it lovingly on a bust of herself.  She fluffed it briefly and turned back to face Sylvia.  She was startled to find Sylvia standing close behind her.

          “The slave girl costume is fabulous, Marnie.  All the clothes you make for me are fabulous”, said Sylvia, looking up into Marnie’s dark eyes.  “I can’t thank you enough”.

          “Yes you can, Sweetie”, said Marnie.  Her long arms reached out and her big hands engulfed Sylvia’s shoulders.  She drew Sylvia into her and against her body.  Sylvia did not resist, but floated into Marnie’s warm hug, never turning her face down, never ceasing to look up into Marnie’s face.  Her eyes looked at the full lips, glowing with red lipstick and wanted to feel them on her own pink lips.  Marnie bent her face down to Sylvia’s uplifted mouth.  Her mouth devoured Sylvia’s, and Sylvia closed her eyes and parted her lips to let Marnie’s tongue enter and explore.  Sylvia felt weak, and was glad for the comfortable support of Marnie’s strong arms.

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