Kristen Chapter #11: Pinkish

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Published on 23.02.06 11:27 Age: 15 yrs

Letters : 12263 Words : 2123

By: Nemo

Talks about sunburn

Exhaustion had taken a toll. When Kristen finally opened her eyes on Sunday morning and looked at the bedside alarm clock, she was surprised to see how late it was.

“I really need to get up,” she thought sleepily, but instead she snuggled more deeply into the covers and closed her eyes again. The bed was so cozy and comfortable that it seemed a terrible shame to have to get up. Only slowly did it dawn upon her that she was nude under the covers.

With that realization came the recollection of the wild events of the previous day. A tickling sensation rose in her stomach, and her heartbeat accelerated. Could it really be true? Had she really stood naked in the living room, in the presence of dozens of people she had known all her life?

The memory was so vivid, it couldn’t have been a dream. But the events were so bizarre, how could she believe that it had all really happened?

One thing was certain: she was naked now, and she wasn’t dreaming.

Kristen smiled. She focused her attention on the feel of the sheets against her bare skin. Some people like to sleep on satin sheets, she knew. She couldn’t imagine that anything could feel better than the downy texture of these simple sheets. What were they made of—cotton, linen, polyester? She didn’t know. She didn’t care. Whatever the fabric, it was perfect.

She reveled for a few moments in this sense of luxury, then sighed. Reluctantly she tossed aside the covers and got out of bed.

Kristen had wondered how she would handle this moment. The habit of many years called for her to cover up, and quickly. She was surprised to realize that she felt no desire to get dressed. The habit of many years seemed to vanish like a wisp of smoke.

Everything had changed so quickly. She felt as if she had lived her entire life inside a sturdy cage, and yesterday had suddenly discovered that the cage was an optical illusion, its stout iron bars nothing but shadows. She had always been free, but had never known it.

Was it possible that her parents’ joke was true—that she really was a full-blooded nudist? Had she inherited this? That was nonsense, of course. But it was difficult to understand how she could have changed so completely in just one day. The Kristen of Saturday morning would never recognize the Kristen of Sunday morning.

A nagging voice in the back of her mind insisted that her change had been too easy—that her newfound freedom, not the cage, was the illusion. She didn’t feel embarrassed about being naked now, but doubts were starting to take shape in her mind. Perhaps she was crazy. Maybe a blood clot or something had short-circuited the part of her brain that controls modesty. It might take nothing more than a few synapses that weren’t firing, or a few that were firing too rapidly. Maybe the previous night’s party—or her state of dress at the party—was nothing more than a vivid hallucination.

She didn’t really believe that she was crazy, or that she had suffered brain damage, but the more she listened to the nagging voice of doubt, the more she felt uneasy at the thought of going downstairs naked. How would her parents react? If everything was truly as she remembered from the previous day, they should welcome her nudity. But what if it was a hallucination, or some sort of bizarre misunderstanding? What then?

Kristen felt angry with herself as she felt a hot little knot of shame growing in the pit of her stomach. “Damn!” she whispered, through clenched teeth. “I thought I got over this yesterday.”

Her muscles were sore, as if she had been through a particularly challenging workout at the gym. Perhaps it was from all the climbing she had done at the beach the day before. But every muscle ached, not just her legs. She sensed that this pain was the residue of the embarrassed tension that had wracked her body yesterday.

She felt the hot sensation of shame growing in her gut. “I have to nip this in the bud,” she thought. With an effort of will, she opened the bedroom door and stepped out into the hallway. Slowly she made her way down the stairs. She smiled when she saw the gifts piled on the dining room table, just as she remembered them. That much, at least, had been no hallucination.

Her parents were sitting side by side on the living room couch, each engrossed in a section of the Sunday paper. As she crept down the stairs, her father looked up first.

“Good morning, sleepyhead!” he called cheerfully.

“Oh, you’re finally up,” her mother chimed in. “I’m sorry you missed breakfast. You seemed so tired, we just let you sleep.”

“Thanks,” Kristen said, smiling and nodding. “I was awfully tired. Too much excitement for one day, I suppose.” She felt her tension dissipate. They weren’t shocked that she was naked. She wasn’t crazy.

“Oh, my gosh!” her mother exclaimed. “You’re so pink!” She put down the paper and stood up. “Does it sting?”

Kristen was taken aback. “No, I—I feel fine. What—what is it?”

“Well, you seem kind of pinkish where your swimsuit would usually cover you. You might have been out in the sun too long yesterday. You have to be careful, you know. You don’t feel a sunburn until it’s too late.” She eyed Kristen’s body intently. “Turn around, slowly. Let me see if you’ve burned.”

Kristen felt her face turn “kind of pinkish,” but she dutifully turned around so her mother could inspect her naked body for signs of sunburn.

Her mother poked at a spot near the small of Kristen’s back. “Does that hurt?” she asked.

“Ow!” Kristen responded. “It only hurts because you’re poking too hard.” Her mother probed more gently at a few other spots on her body.

“Good,” she said finally. “It doesn’t look like you started to burn. But you’re going to have to be careful. In the places where you have a tan, the tan itself provides some protection against sunburn. But now you’re showing a lot of skin that hasn’t been exposed to the sun before, including some pretty sensitive areas like your nipples and your pubes.”

Kristen turned a bright scarlet and turned her face away from her mother.

“Now, listen to me, Kristen,” her mother continued. “This is the voice of experience. When you go down to the beach and put on your sunscreen, you can’t afford to get all modest. You’ve got to put it everywhere. You should probably put a little extra on your nipples, because they’re extra sensitive. And that little patch of hair down there isn’t going to stop you from burning. You’ve got to rub the lotion in good. Make sure you cover the lips down there.”

“Mother, please!” Kristen said.

“Well, it’s the truth,” her mother responded. “I know from personal experience that you do not want to get burned down there, okay?” Now she blushed a little herself.

Kristen nodded sullenly, her face bright red.

“Okay,” her mother continued. “You have to cover the cheeks of your butt, but keep in mind that you’ve got to got to get the sunscreen down in the crack of your butt, too. And you’re not going to be able to reach every part of your back by yourself. I want you to promise me that you’ll ask someone to help you put the lotion on your back.”

Kristen nodded again. “Okay,” she murmured.

“Good,” her mother said, nodding, “and then you can help her with her sunscreen… or him, I suppose.”

“Say,” Kristen’s father said, “you should give Kristen the recipe for that sunburn cream you concocted. It really works wonders.”

Her mother smiled and shook her head. “Oh, I’m sure they have a pretty well-stocked first aid cabinet at the lifeguard service. The lifeguards at Black Knife Beach probably know more about sunburns and sunscreens than any hundred mothers.” She turned back to Kristen. “So, Kristen, you missed breakfast, and lunch won’t be ready for a while. Would you like me to fix you something to eat? It won’t be any trouble at all.”

“No thanks,” Kristen replied. “I’m not very hungry yet.” She rubbed her bare stomach. “My stomach feels a little… queasy for some reason.”

Her mother looked steadily into Kristen’s eyes. “Are you feeling kind of achy all over?” she asked.

Kristen nodded. “A little. I think—I—I think it’s probably from all that climbing on the trail at the beach.”

Her mother gave her a knowing smile. “You’re really trying very hard, aren’t you?”

Kristen returned a puzzled gaze. “I—I’m sorry, I don’t know what you mean…”

Her mother took Kristen’s hand in her own and patted it gently. “Why don’t you make yourself comfortable and read the paper. I know you like the comics. I’ll bring you something to settle your stomach.”

While her mother trotted into the kitchen, Kristen picked up the comics section of the paper, relieved that the detailed discussion of her anatomy was over.

She sat at the opposite end of the couch from her father. Her father looked at her, nodded and smiled, and silently turned his attention back to the paper. Kristen unfolded the comics section and started reading. Shortly her mother returned from the kitchen with a glass of milk and a couple slices of hot buttered toast for Kristen. Kristen accepted them with thanks, and her mother resumed her seat in the center of the couch.

Kristen munched serenely on a slice of toast and breathed a contented sigh. This was what she needed—an island of calm where she could sort out her tangled feelings about everything that was happening. It was a quiet Sunday morning, just like any other Sunday morning, except for the fact that she was naked. She listened to the soothing whir of the clothes dryer off in the laundry room. She turned a page in the newspaper. The fact that she was naked now seemed like such a trivial detail.

After a moment, Kristen lowered the paper and turned to her parents. “Mom, Dad… I—I was wondering about something…”

Her parents both gave her their full attention. “What is it, sweetie?” her mother asked.

“Well,” Kristen continued, “after what you told me yesterday, I was wondering why you’re both still dressed. I thought maybe you would want to go nude around the house, too.”

Both her parents blushed. “Well,” her father answered, “even nudists wear clothes sometimes. We, uh, talked about it last night, after you went to bed. And we realized that we’ve been wearing clothes at home as long as you have. It—it’s going to take us a while to get used to the idea of going nude again.”

Her mother nodded, saying, “It’s more than that. We—well, we’re not as young as we used to be, and I think we both bulge or sag in places where we really shouldn’t.”

Kristen rolled her eyes. “Oh, yeah. You’re both pretty old and wrinkled up. Not as old and wrinkled up as some of the people at last night’s party, but… somehow I got the impression that nudism wasn’t supposed to be all about youth and beauty. So what’s up?”

With a pained expression, her father said, “The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.” He smiled. “Don’t worry, Kristen. Sometime this summer, your mother and I are going to come down to see you at your new job. We’re both looking forward to it.”

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