Lisa is overcome by strange new feelings and desires which concern her cubicle mate and his breast obsession.
"We come to love not by finding a perfect person, but by learning to see an imperfect person perfectly."
I think it all started one night when I had an orgasm in my sleep.
It was the first time that had ever happened to me and it woke me up. I found myself sweaty and quivering, curled up in a ball as it coursed through my body.
What had I been dreaming about? I wondered. The threads of the dream whispered through my mind. I ran though the possibilities. Sex? Spankings? Hairy chests? I went through the list of things which I normally found exciting.
Men? That felt right. Yes, there were certainly men in my dream. Breasts? Men staring at my breasts? Suddenly, I rose to a new climax, smaller this time, but still toe-curlingly delicious. Afterwards, I spent some time massaging my chest, which, for some reason, seemed to need it.
Men, staring at my breasts ... that was new for me. I had never dreamt about that before. But there was no denying how horny it made me feel. I rolled over and drifted back to sleep.
I'm an imprint. That is, I have the imprint gene IMPT4 on chromosome 13, near BRAC2 (the breast cancer gene).
I'm not the first imprint, as it turns out. My mother is an imprint, as was her mother, and my great-grand, as are about three-quarters of my aunts, cousins, and sisters (all of my 5 siblings are girls). We are quite the object of scientific study. "A new evolutionary stage for the human species," said Time Magazine. "Where will it lead?"
Fortunately the details of my imprinting have stayed out of the tabloid press. I am merely known as "Case-7" in scientific journals. My private life is jealously guarded and none of the news media have gotten wind of who I am.
Thank goodness, for I would surely die of shame if details of my imprinting were made public.
'Complimentary Bra Fitting, ' read the sign at the local Victoria's Secret. 'Let our Bra Specialists determine your perfect fit!'
Why not? I thought, and the saleslady, Sally, was happy to help.
"You're a 36C," she informed me. "The perfect size."
"What?" I said, shocked. "C? No wait ... are you sure?"
"Uh..." she hesitated, taken aback. "Well, here, let me check again..." she ran the tape measure again twice over my chest, once above my breasts and then a second time at the fullest part.
"No... 36... 38 and three quarters ... this is correct. I mean, technically you're probably a B+, or a B++, but you're supposed to round up if you're an in-between size. Why, are you surprised?"
"I've ... it's just ... I've always been a B," I responded, still trying to wrap my head around this new development. "A small B, actually. I've never thought of myself as a C. That's just ... I just ... I just don't know what to think."
"Oh, you are so not alone. Most women don't know how to determine their size. They're always getting a band size which is too big and a cup size which is too small, trying to come to a good fit. It's totally understandable. Do you normally wear a 38 B?"
"Uh ... no, actually ... normally a 36B, sometimes even a 36A, which is why this is so ... well I don't know what it is."
"Would you like to try on a few 36 C's? I think you'll discover that they'll fit you quite comfortably."
"I ... I guess I should," I replied, letting Sally lead me deeper into the store.
Two hours later and I left the store with several new bras, a couple new sexy T's in vibrant colors, and some replacement panties. Sally was a delight.
"Oh, that fits you so well!" she said, smiling. "And the best part is, it's such a classy fabric that you can easily wear it to work."
"Work?" I shuddered, looking at how the T-shirt hugged my new 36C's. "Oh, I don't think so."
"Well..." I looked around the store, "My cubicle mate ... he stares."
"Ohhhhh..." Sally responded knowingly. "I understand. I get that sometimes."
"Doesn't it just creep you out?"
"Oh, I don't know. I mean, sure, of course it does when he's being too obvious. But if he's just checking me out, and if he's cute ... I guess I just take it as a compliment. Besides, I figure I should wear what makes me feel good, and the rest of the world will just have to deal."
"I wish I could be like that," I said, wistfully.
"You can," Sally pointed out, grinning. "Just wear that T-shirt to work. Wish granted."
"I couldn't!" I said, shocked.
"Of course you can. When you wake up tomorrow morning, open the drawer, take out that shirt and put it on. Then go to work. Easy peasy."
"I'm a C," I kept saying to myself for the rest of the day. "I've got C's".
I couldn't believe it and I couldn't help but be proud of them. My new C's. I wanted to hold them, play with them, dress them up, and look at them in the mirror - all of which I did once I got home. I even had a nice little orgasm, playing with them while imagining men ogling me.
And never, not one single time, did I ever consider that perhaps my new-found size was not simply due to some early measurement error. At no time did I think that perhaps there was another reason why I suddenly had larger breasts.
Not once did I consider that perhaps they were growing.
There has been so much wild speculation in the blogosphere about 'how to recognize an Imprint'. All I can say is, from experience, everything written about the subject is wrong, without exception.
Of course no one cares about Imprints after they've imprinted. They want to find them before, preferably right before, ignoring the fact that even if you could recognize someone who was in the process of imprinting it would already be too late.
The truth is that before imprinting I was a completely ordinary young woman. I went on dates, I broke up with boyfriends, I went to college, I got my degree in design, and then went to work as a web designer.
My only concern was to work hard, do a good job, and make something of myself. All of which just goes to show how powerful the imprint gene is, and how much it changes you.
"That's, uh, a really nice shirt," John said.
"Really? You like it?" I replied, sitting up. I felt a warm glow run through me.
John's eyes drifted lower, his gaze settling on my breasts which were clearly outlined by my new tight, turtleneck T. I could actually feel his eyes, as if they were little laser points, drifting across my chest, tracing feather light circles over my curves.
"Y-yes", he stammered, struggling to lift his eyes up. "I'm sorry!" he said quickly, turning away.
"No, no, it's okay!" I said, blushing furiously. "I shouldn't have ... I mean ... Oh, never mind."
Why did I do that? I thought to myself, angrily. Why am I wearing this shirt to work? I thought back to when I had gotten dressed this morning. It had seemed like a good idea at the time. I was so bored of wearing those ugly, baggy, office-blouses.
I have always known that John, my cubicle mate had a perverted tendency for staring. When we first met, he openly leered at my breasts until I slapped him. Yes, I actually slapped him across the face. It was harsh medicine, but it taught him quickly how to behave.
Since then, I've been wearing mostly drapey, concealing clothes with sports bras and nipple minimizers. Nothing revealing or tight. Nothing tempting or curvaceous. Nothing that would unduly draw the eye. And John has mostly behaved.
Oh sure, a couple of times he couldn't help himself, but then I would just cover my chest with my arms and glare at him, and he would utter a bashful "sorry" and then quickly turn back to work.
But what was wrong with me today?? I practically begged him to ogle me! I had thrust my boobies right out there and had enjoyed it when he looked! Hell, it even turned me on a bit.
And what was with this outfit? Wasn't it enough that my breasts were feeling tender and swollen? Did I have to put on that push-up bra from Victoria's secret and then this too-tight T-shirt? I cursed Sally for goading me into it.
I put on the cardigan I always keep at work, ignoring John's little sigh of disappointment.
Unfortunately, I hadn't counted on the air conditioning. Since our project was so far behind, John and I were forced to work late, and at 5:30 pm, like clockwork, the air-conditioning shuts down. And to make matters worse, our cubicle has five computers all pumping out heat.
I was fine until 6.
From 6 to 6:30 it was bearable.
But then I began to sweat.
"Don't think I'm doing this for you," I cautioned, taking off my cardigan.
"Of course not," John replied, his eyes drifting ... just a bit.
"Good, it's only because I'm hot," John's sudden grin made me realize my wording was unfortunate. "What I meant is, it's only because it's hot in this cubicle," I said, with a huff. "I'm not trying to show off, or undress for your benefit, or increase the level of intimacy between us, or tease you, or display my assets, or encourage you in any way..." I trailed off, realizing how ridiculous I sounded.
"Of course, of course!" John replied, "I would never think any of those things. You're just taking off your sweater."
"That's right," I said, with emphasis. "Just removing my sweater."
I turned back to my computer, relieved that I was now feeling cooler, but embarrassed by my rambling.
If only my breasts didn't feel so constricted! I rolled my shoulders, trying to get them comfortable.
"Are you okay?" John asked.
"Yeah ... it's just that..."
"Oh, nothing. It's just this bra. It felt fine this morning, but now ... it feels tight."
"You could always..." John halted in mid-sentence.
"What? Take it off? Oh, you'd like that, wouldn't you?" I said, sarcastically.
"No!" John protested, "I didn't mean that ... well..."
"Don't bother. I know what you're thinking. The bra stays. Pervert."
Of course at the time I didn't know what was happening. I didn't know that I was sexually imprinting. Imprints and the imprint gene hadn't been discovered yet. And here I was, just after my 120th menstruation cycle, entering stage one, spending all day and all night trying to finish this stupid deadline for this stupid, stupid client, forced to work literally side-by-side next to a horny, lonely, breast-obsessed, nerd.
It's all about proximity. Close proximity over long periods of time allow an imprint to "harmonize" with her target. It doesn't matter how it happens. It could be pre-planned as it was for my youngest sister, for example. Or it can be sought out, as it is unconsciously by most imprints, or it can happen accidentally - as it did for me.
Back then, there was no way for me to know - there was no warning at all. I didn't understand what was happening to my body.
What if I had known? I often ask myself that question. Would I have done anything differently?
As it turned out, I didn't have any choice in the matter. Circumstances forced me to work closely with John, and our daily interactions were more than enough to bend my mind to his subconscious desires.
"Shoulders!" John exclaimed, smiling.
I looked down. Damn it, he was right. My shoulders were exposed. Why had I worn this tight boatneck T-shirt today? What was wrong with me?
"What, you've never seen a girl's shoulders before?" I asked, haughtily.
"Of course I have," he said. "It's just that ... uh ... I've never seen your shoulders before."
I turned away, not knowing what to say. I automatically reached for my cardigan...
... but it was gone.
"My sweater!" I exclaimed.
I rummaged through the drawers of my desk, looked behind the guest chair and under the desk.
"Very funny, John. What'd you do with my sweater?"
"What? What do you mean, what did I do? You took it home last night, don't you remember?"
"No ... I..."
Suddenly, I had to stop and think. As soon as John said it, I realized I had taken it home last night. Why had I done that? It was my office sweater, it was the one I always left at the office so I would always have something to cover up with. Why would I take it home?
"I ... I guess you're right. Sorry. I didn't mean to accuse you."
"Oh, I think you did," John said, with a snort. "Listen, Lisa. Are you feeling all right? I mean ... you've been acting really strangely lately."
"It's ... I'm fine. It's just the pressure of this deadline. Sorry."
Damn it, I thought to myself, what was wrong with me? First, I decide to wear these ridiculously clingy T-shirts, and then I go and take my cover-up home and leave it there. And now here I am, my breasts out on display for my perverted cubicle mate with nothing to hide them.
What could be worse?
Just then, I felt a chill across my bare shoulders.
The evil air-conditioning, coming on full-blast during the day.
I felt my nipples crinkle and pop out thanks to the cold.
"Lisa?" John called out from behind me.
"Uh-huh?" I answered, not looking back.
"Could you take a look at this? Is this what you were thinking of for the tab transition?"
"I ... um ... I'm in the middle of something. Could I get back to you?"
"It would only take a second. Please, then I can get this PTR off my back."
I sighed, took a deep breath and then turned around.
"It's not exactly the wipe you were looking for, but I think that..." John stumbled and then stopped talking altogether.
To make matters worse, my normal sports bra, the one with the nipple minimizers, didn't fit anymore. I had been forced to wear this sheer, silky one that had been too large just a few days ago.
And so there they were. My nips. Perky and standing at attention in the cold.
Nothing to do but just grin and bear it, I thought to my self with more confidence than I felt. If he wants to look, then let him look, I thought, stupidly ignoring the pleasurable blush that washed over me as I saw his eyes linger.
Somehow, my nipples got even harder. The points at the front of my shirt were practically pornographic.
"So, how about that tab wipe?" I asked.
"Uh, sure!" John said, turning back to his computer, blushing.
Well, at least he has the decency to look guilty about it.
That night on the way home, I got out early enough so I could stop at the mall and buy some new bras.
"I wonder if John would like this?" I muttered to myself.
"Wait a minute!" I stopped and shook my head. "What do I care what he likes?"
"May I help you?"
"Sally!" I said, happy to see her friendly face. "Hey, cute sweater dress!"
"Don't you love it? A new shipment just arrived. But hey, did you wear that T-shirt to work? How did it go?"
Like two school girls, I told Sally all about my recent fashion exploits.
"But that brings me to these," I said, motioning at my breasts.
"What's the matter?"
"My bra ... it feels tight again!"
"That's impossible," Sally said, with an abundance of confidence. "I measured you myself. The straps must be adjusted wrong. Here, let's check..."
Sally pulled me into the dressing room where I pulled my shirt off.
"Hmmm..." she muttered.
"No, no. Here, let me just measure you again," Sally pulled out her tape measure and ran it across my chest.
"You're definitely borderline," she concluded.
"But how can I be? I mean, the bra feels tighter, not looser."
"Oh, I meant that you're a C cup, bordering on D."
"D??" I squeaked. "How could I be a D? That's ... that's impossible! There's no way I could be that big."
"Well ... let me measure you again."
No way could I be a D! D's were ... well, they were big, there's just no other description. B's are small, C's are ... well, perfect, and D's were ... big! Women with D-cups had big breasts, titanic tits, massive mammaries, huge hooters...
Suddenly my mind was filled with images of me with enormous breasts. At the beach, walking down the street, tits swaying under my tight, curve-hugging clothing, going into work ... having John stare at them...
Stop that! I scolded myself. Horrified, I realized that I was actually getting excited at the thought.
"The measurement's the same," Sally said, "but really, it's nothing to be concerned about."
"Nothing to be concerned about??"
"Lisa, it's fine! I'm sure that they're just swollen. Are you near your period?"
"Are you ... uh ... pregnant?"
"Sorry, never mind then. Listen, I'm sure they're just a bit swollen for some reason or another, and that in a few days they'll be back to normal. Our bodies just do weird things for no reason at all. It's nothing to be concerned about."
"Are you sure?" I asked, in a small voice.
"Oh honey, of course I'm sure," Sally pulled me into a warm embrace. "But in the mean time, I think you may want to try some of these, uh, looser styles ... you know, just temporarily."
"I used to work in the 'business world'," Sally said. We were in a nearby wine bar, swapping war stories.
"Really?" I asked. "Where?"
"Proctor and Gamble. I was group president of global fabric care."
"Wow! Impressed I am!"
"Don't be. They have, like, dozens of presidents."
"But even so, if you were a president at P&G, why ... why are you..."
"Why am I working as a sales clerk at a Victoria's Secret? I just got so tired of the business culture, you know?"
"No ... not really..."
"When I was in business," Sally continued, "I acted like a man, I thought like a man, and I even dressed like a man. And then, one day, I just woke up and thought to myself: 'What am I doing? I'm not a man, I'm a woman!' It just all felt so false, you know? Having to bottle up my natural tendencies just to fit into that corporate culture and get ahead. And for what? A bigger house? A bigger paycheck to spend on my unhappy, non-existent life?"
"So what did you do?"
"I quit. Once day, I just walked into my boss's office with my resignation and left. It was completely unplanned, but afterwards I felt so free! It was amazing. It took a while, but eventually I got my shit together, sold my house, and bought this Victoria's Secret franchise, where I've been ever since."
"You mean ... you own the store?" I asked, surprised.
"Yup. Great little business too. I think I wanted to run something as girly and flirty as possible, but, you know, still classy."
"Well, mission accomplished." I paused. "I wish I could be half as brave as you."
"But you are! You wore that nice flirty T-shirt to work, right? And that turned out all right, didn't it?"
"I guess so. It was fine. He ... well he mostly behaved himself."
"I'm a big believer in wear what you want - within reason, of course. I don't think we should all run around topless, of course."
"Oh my god. John's head would explode."
Sally laughed, "wouldn't that be a hoot? But what's next? How about that sweater dress you just bought?"
"Oh, I don't know. It's kind of ... you know ... low cut."
"It's not that bad, honestly. You should go for it."
"But John, you know, my cubicle mate ... I mean..."
"Let him look. What harm can come from it? Now that I'm free of P&G, I flirt all the time. I love it! It makes him feel good and it makes me feel good. I'd say go for it."
"Do you really think so?" The possibilities were swirling around my head. Could I do it? Wear something that clingy to work? Just the thought of John scoping out my new outfit caused me to squirm with pleasure.
"Absolutely. Be brave. Wear what you want."
'It's so nice to shop', I thought to myself, putting my new things away. What a relief to throw away all of those old frumpy things and finally do something nice for myself.
On the fringes of my consciousness, I think I knew, even then, that something wasn't right.
That's the problem with imprinting. Your brain says one thing, but your gut says another. And when you move into transition, the gut starts to take over and it's weird. It all feels so natural. You float through the day, not realizing what you're doing. It's like a mental defense mechanism I suppose - sending you down a path which you would normally fight tooth and nail.
Until one moment you stop and really think for a moment. Those were my "what the fuck?" moments, and they started coming more and more frequently.
"Woah!" John said, then whistled.
"You like?" I twirled around, giving him a 360-degree scan of my new sweater dress. It hugged my curves from top to bottom. The new bra didn't hurt either.
"Very much," said John, admiringly.
"I'm so glad," I said, as I held my hands behind my back, thrusting my chest forward.
"But why the change?"
"Don't you like it?"
"Of course! I think you look great!"
"I just wondered ... you know ... why you were dressing up these days? Is there something happening in your life ... something I don't know about?"
"I..." I hesitated. "I just felt like it, that's all," I said in a huff. "Why do you have to question it?"
"I'm sorry," John said quickly. "I didn't mean to pry. It's just that ... this is all so different for you."
For some reason I was nearly in tears. I got out a tissue and blew my nose.
"I ... I know," I said, haltingly. "I just felt like dressing up a bit, that's all. Isn't that okay?"
"Of course! Nothing wrong with that," John said. "You look absolutely fabulous, by the way. I was just wondering if maybe you'd found some new boyfriend or something."
A new boyfriend?? Just the thought made me sick. Stifling a sob, I excused myself and ran to the bathroom.
In the stall, I had a good cry, going over and over our conversation. Why had it upset me so much? What did I care if John was curious? What did I care if John thought I had boyfriend? I should have boyfriend!
But the thought made me so sad, I almost couldn't bear it.
Eventually, I settled down. But then I looked at my wet tissues and got another shock.
I had put makeup on that morning! I never put on makeup for work.
But looking in the mirror, it was unmistakable. My waterproof mascara was running. So there was nothing else to do but open my purse, find the makeup (all brand new, from the looks of it), and fix my face.
This morning I decided to start wearing makeup to work, apparently.
What the fuck?
For the rest of the day, I could feel John struggle.
He wanted to look. I could sense it. He wanted to take his time and fully scope out his new bosomy cubicle mate.
But also, I could tell that knew he shouldn't. He knew it was wrong, and he was doing his best to concentrate solely on the job at hand.
I wasn't making it easy for him.
"Here, let me show you," with one hand gently on his back and my tits practically in his face, I leaned over, took the mouse and resized the DIV tag.
I turned to face John, my tits perfectly at eye level.
"See? We have plenty of room. It's okay if it covers the logo, because it's just a temporary pop-up."
"Uh ... sure, I see," he mumbled, tearing his eyes away from my rack and returning to work.
"John?" I asked, sweetly, later that day.
"I ... I have this thread sticking out. Could you cut it off for me?"
"Sure," John said, fetching a pair of scissors. "Where is it?"
I lifted my arm. "Here," I said, pointing to the seam which ran down the side of the dress, right next to my left tit.
John blushed. "Oh ... okay," he said, clearly embarrassed but loving it. Carefully, John plucked at the thread, cut it, and then quickly turned away.
"Thanks!" I said, giving him a quick hug from behind.
The next couple of days went about the same. I just couldn't seem to stop myself.
"I'm so sorry!" I would say to John. "I just don't know what's come over me."
"It's okay," he would reply with a goofy grin.
I promised over and over to be more professional, but then I would just go back to doing all those things. Flirty things. Suggestive things.
I would touch his arm as we spoke. I would brush against him with my breasts as I pointed out stuff on his computer. I switched to shirts with a deep V necklines, exposing more cleavage. Late at night, I took advantage of the empty office to give him a neck rub. I put on perfume. I actually would pinch my nipples before turning to talk to him, to make sure they were nice and pointy.
Once I actually brushed a nipple across his cheek!
What was wrong with me??
I tried everything. I made detailed tasks lists to follow. If John wasn't around, I would slap myself. I tried pinching a finger in the desk drawer - hoping the pain would force me to focus. I put "Concentrate on Work!" on a post-it note and stuck it on my computer. I gave myself mental deadlines, like "I must finish this mock-up before I turn around," or "one more help page and then I can talk to John again."
It was a losing battle. I would be sitting there, working, and then I would blink, and realize that 5 or 10 minutes had passed, and that my hand was stroking my breast and I was breathing heavy. It was awful.
Or I'd be there, trying to chose some pantone color or another, and then suddenly I'd start wondering what John's favorite pantone color was, and then I though 'why don't I ask him?' and then I would start to smile, and giggle, and the urge to turn around and ask him would almost overwhelm me...
John! Why John? My nerdy, breast-obsessed, perverted, un-social, creepy, probably-still-sleeps-in-super-hero-underwear, cubicle mate! John, John, John, John, John!!! Why John??? It was driving me crazy. Nothing about him ever appealed to me. Ever. He was ... IS ... so wrong for me! Nothing at all of what I would ever want in a man...
Except he is kind-of cute...
And I get horny just thinking about being next to him.
Did I just say horny? HORNY?
What the fuck?
What I mean is that when he looks at me, I don't care how, I mean he could be staring directly at my nipples which are getting hard right now just thinking about how he might be staring at them getting hard...
Listen, what I mean is that when he looks at me I just feel like we're connected, you know? Connected with some indescribably deep connection.
And yes. That makes me horny.
Originally, the scientists thought that Imprints were just really good at picking up subtle cues as to what other people were thinking. They found it hard to imagine that it was more than that.
And when I was asked by Dr. Morely (yes, the famous Dr. Morely, only he wasn't famous when I first met him, of course) what it feels like, I had a hard time describing it.
It's like you just know things, you know what I mean? Only, that's not right. Or you just feel them, but that's not right either. I mean, "knowing" and "feeling" are terms which describe things that are so ... discrete. Definitive. As in there is something that you can point to, some fact that you "know" or some feeling that you "have".
And it's really not like that. It's more like some things just "are". It's like someone went back in time and chose a different sperm to fertilize your egg. And now you're grown and you're a completely different person. You can't remember it being any different. When someone asks you what it feels like, you can't answer because it just is. Is it something you "know" or "feel"? It's more than that. It's deeper than that.
That's what it's like.
A few days later, I woke up in the morning and instantly knew that something was wrong. I didn't know why or how, but I knew it.
So that day I dug out an old pair of jeans and simple baggy blouse and took a cardigan to work.
Of course, I couldn't wear my old bras, they wouldn't fit anymore. I had grown to something like a C+++ (I was still denying that I was a D). So I put on one of my new, push-up bras, grimacing at how it put my tits on display.
And when I stepped out of the house, I was like, 'this is great! I'm cured! I'm back to my old self!'
But it didn't feel great. It felt awful. Something was wrong. I felt like crying.
"Hey John," I called out, trying to sound breezy and carefree as I stepped into the office, fifteen minutes early than usual.
"Oh! Hey Lisa," John said, reacting with a jolt.
I knew instantly that he had just closed a web browser with something he didn't want me to see. Something serious.
"I see you're back to dressing like your old self?" he asked.
"Yeah," I said casually, "I ... uh ... just felt that I should."
"Of course," he said.
I could feel the wave of disappointment that radiated from him and it made me so confused!
He wants me to dress up for him! On the one hand, I was elated!
But then, what was wrong? Something was wrong, I was certain of it.
About a half hour later, John went to the bathroom, and in a flash I was at his computer. Of course his screen saver was locked, but I entered the password, brought up Firefox, and checked out the browser history.
Did I just enter his password? How the fuck did I know his password?
But then I saw it.
"Sexual Harassment" - the web page from the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
Oh my god.
I quickly closed the history, re-locked the computer, and returned to my desk, a whirl of emotions.
He thought I was sexually harassing him! I was making his work environment uncomfortable! Oh my god, what was I going to do?
Here I was losing him, all because of some stupid government rule which shouldn't apply but then why did I feel that he really wanted me to, but then why was he looking at that site?
Of course, I mean, everyone knows that office romances are terrible and should be avoided at all costs, but this was different! I mean, it was, wasn't it? Was I making him uncomfortable? Was he afraid of being with me because we both happened to work at the same office??
"Lisa, are you okay?" John looked at me, concerned.
I looked up at him briefly, my eyes brimming over. "I ... I'm sorry!"
I grabbed my purse and ran to the bathroom, where I sobbed my eyes out.
What was I going to do? It felt like the entire office was pointing fingers at me and how foolishly I was acting.
And now I was going to lose John, because of the rules, and because I was making him uncomfortable at work, and ... and...
But wait, I thought again. So what if I lose John? What do I care? I don't even like the guy! He's just a breast obsessed pervert...
Breaking down into fresh sobs, I tried to figure out why that line of reasoning felt so false all of a sudden.
It took a while, but I realized there was really only one possible solution.
After washing my face in cold water, I went back to my desk, where, still a little shaky, I typed up a letter.
"Are you okay?" John asked.
The concern I felt from him was heart-breaking.
"No..." I said, "I ... I'm not feeling well. I ... have to go home."
"Oh. Well ... of course. I hope you feel better!"
All I did was nod.
"And if there's anything I can do for you, just let me know, okay?"
I want things to return to how they were yesterday!!!
But I didn't say that out-loud. Instead I just said "Good bye, John," choked down a sob, and left.
My younger sister, in this same situation, committed suicide. I'm the second oldest of my sisters, and the first to imprint. She was the third oldest, and we hadn't figured out what was going on before we got the call from her college roommate that she had killed herself in the shower.
She had accidentally imprinted on a college professor, who had been tutoring her after school. Unfortunately, he was married and concerned for his job, so he rejected her in a way that she could sense was irreversible. And so she saw no alternative but to end her life.
What made it all the more tragic is that the professor ended up killing himself as well. They had both progressed too far together.
After leaving my resignation on my boss' desk, I went home, closed all the curtains, and crawled into bed. My mind numb. Too depressed to cry.
The phone rang and I couldn't stand the sound so I unplugged it and threw it out the window. My cell-phone rang, so I removed the batteries and smashed it with a hammer.
Suicide and John were the only things I thought about. Suicide was more of a "when" than an "if", and John was more like an abstract thought. A 'situation'. I didn't dare think about my feelings for him, or why he suddenly mattered to me so much.
And then there was a knock.
"Lisa?" It was John.
It was as if my body levitated to the door.
"John? What are you doing here?" I asked, stupidly, opening the door a crack.
"Can I come in? What are you doing here in the dark?"
When had it gotten so dark? What time was it? I turned on a light and let John follow me into the living room.
John guided me to the sofa, and then took a chair opposite.
"What's the matter?" he asked, concerned. "Is something wrong? We're all so worried about you at work, and I'm so confused!"
"I don't know what's wrong," I replied, softly, realizing for the first time that something was actually wrong with me.
I had just quit my job and was contemplating suicide! Of course something was wrong! Why hadn't I seen it before?
"Why are you quitting? Was it something I did?"
Tears started to well up in my eyes.
"No, of course not!" I wailed, trying to put a lid on my emotions.
"Then what's the matter?"
"I saw you reading that website about Sexual Harassment. And I realized ... I don't know what I realized! Am I harassing you??"
"No!" He said, quickly. "I was worried that I was harassing you! Or, I was worried..."
And then suddenly I knew.
"You thought I was trying to set a trap for you," I said, horrified.
"Yes," John said, looking at the floor. "I ... I had no idea that you'd react like this. Honestly. I would have never ... I mean..."
"Why would you ever think that?" I asked, pained to the core.
"Because I just couldn't figure it out! I mean, here you are, dressing up nice, standing so close to me, touching me, wearing tight clothes ... And why? You've only ever just tolerated me before. And I've done nothing to deserve all this new attention. It ... it's all just so confusing!"
"Maybe it's just because..." I hesitated, realizing for the first time a fundamental truth, "Maybe it's because I like you," I finished.
"Really?" John asked, in a hushed whisper.
I looked up and stared him straight in the eyes.
"Yes," I said, feeling our souls connect.
"Oh my god," John said. "But why? Why now? Why all of a sudden? What's changed?"
"I don't know!!" I wailed, bursting into tears. "I don't know what's changed! All I know is that I want to do things to please you. And it kills me to think you don't want them, but you do like it when I dress nice, don't you? And is it so terrible when I'm nice to you? Am I really harassing you? Do I really make you uncomfortable at work???"
"No! I think it's completely wonderful!"
"Maybe it's Karma," I said. "For all of those days when I was a total bitch to you."
"Oh, you weren't that bad..."
"Oh, no. I was."
"No worse than any other beautiful woman has treated me."
"You think I'm beautiful?" my heart lept up into my throat.
"Well, yeah. I mean, duh."
"Oh John! That's the sweetest thing you've ever said to me."
"Oh come on. I said it when we were first introduced."
"I think you said, 'hey good lookin''."
"No, John, it's not," I said, feeling just a little bit like my old self again.
We both paused for a moment, trying to work through all of these new revelations.
"You could tell me what to wear!" I blurted out, suddenly taken by my brilliant new plan.
"If you're concerned about the whole sexual harassment thing," I said, trying to think it through as I was speaking, "you could tell me what to wear. So it would be impossible for me to make you uncomfortable, don't you see? Because you would be in complete control of the situation."
"But..." John sputtered, "but that only solves half the problem. I mean, sure, I can no longer sue you for sexual harassment, but you could still sue me."
"But, I would be willingly wearing what you told me to wear!"
"I don't know, it would look pretty strange from the outside."
"I know! I'll write a letter," I raced to my bedroom and came back with some note paper.
"A letter giving you permission!" I started writing, "I'll say that I, Lisa Franklin, give you, John Sturbridge, permission to choose my clothing on a daily basis. In fact, I would very, very much like for you to control what I wear at all times. I promise to wear whatever you tell me to wear, no matter what, and no exceptions. That such an arrangement does not make me uncomfortable, in fact, any other arrangement would make me uncomfortable, so you really have no choice, do you? And that I am giving you this control over me because I like you, and..."
I looked into his eyes.
" ... because I want to dress up. Just for you."
I signed it, and then, for good measure, kissed it before handing it over to John.
"Are you serious?" He said, staring at me, eyes wide.
"Yes. Please," I pleaded.
There must have been something in my eyes, because just then I felt a little ray of hope enter my heart.
"Okay," said John, with a smile. "I ... I guess I'm just going to have to enjoy this, aren't I?"
"Yes," I said, beaming.
"Okay then. You'll be back at work tomorrow?"
"Yes, I will."
"Well then, Lisa. I would like for you to wear your sweater dress tomorrow."
"I will, John. Just for you."