Short Story: A Little off the Top

Author’s note: Sometimes an idea just gets in your head and amuses you for no real reason. This story is the result of one such idea.

“I only wanted a little off the top! You’ve buzzed me down to nothing!”

Ricardo’s flowing locks moved about as if they were in slow motion. His chiseled good looks and rippling muscles were not stereotypical for a barber, but he was known for his skills with a razor. He looked like he stepped off the covers of a romance novel.

“No, no. You do not see the subtle finish. The way that it frame your face. The way that it catch the light and make you look so good to the ladies.”

He had a bit of an accent. The kind that was hard to place, but titillated. Made you curious. Made him seem more mysterious. Which was why he faked it.

“You will be the talk of the town. The ladies they like very much. You will like very much.”

Samuel Philips did not like very much. This was the second time he had been to Ricardo. Both times he had asked for a trim. Both times he found himself shaved bald before he even knew what was going on.

He didn’t even remember the clippers turning on. It was like he fell asleep or something.

Samuel’s wife wouldn’t like it very much either. Why did he come back to Ricardo? He had planned to go to Sal’s. Every intention. And then he found himself sitting back down at Ricardo’s. What was it about this place? It was screwing with his head.

“I’m not paying for this! You promised not to do this again!”

“I so sorry. I misunderstand. You no pay.” His hair blew in the wind of the oscillating fan. It seemed even longer and more lustrous than when Samuel arrived, but that was crazy.

Samuel knew his wife was going to be upset. She liked his hair longer and it had taken him months to regrow it after the last visit.

He had to get Ricardo back somehow.

—-

It wasn’t hard to find Ricardo’s home, he lived above the shop. Samuel snuck back in just before closing and hid. And waited.

He sat in silence inside the shop for hours until he was certain that Ricardo was asleep. Let’s see how he likes getting his hair buzzed.

He grabbed a set of clippers and crept quietly up the stairs to Ricardo’s apartment. Samuel paused at the entrance and listened, He could hear the sounds of snoring, so he cautiously moved towards the noise.

The bedroom was filled by an enormous four-post bed. Ricardo slept on his back. His hair framed his face perfectly. Samuel had to admit it was a shame that he had to do this. The man’s hair was a gift to the world.

But that didn’t stop him.

He found an empty outlet and got to work. He was afraid Ricardo would wake during the process, but he seemed to go into an even heavier sleep. In just a few moments, it was done.

Samuel awakened feeling different. He couldn’t put his finger on it. He was filled with energy, even a terrible haircut couldn’t ruin his day.

“Honey your hair!” Melinda cried out.

Samuel turned to face her on the bed. “I’m sorry, I know it isn’t what we discus-”

She cut him off, “It looks so sexy.”

“But-”

She ran her fingers through his long, flowing locks. Samuel looked down in confusion.

“Uh…I’m glad you like it.”

Samuel didn’t know why, but he felt an urge to return back to Ricardo’s. Maybe he could apologize? That wasn’t really it though. He felt an insane urge to cut hair.

He stepped into the shop expecting to find an angry and bald Ricardo.

Instead, he found Ricardo just as he was the day before, with long, flowing locks swaying as he worked.

The customer seemed dazed as Ricardo moved around him quickly shaving. “It is quite easy once you get them in the chair. If you rotate it back and forth just so, along with the hum of the clippers, they will be in a trance in no time.”

“What? What’s going on? What happened to your accent?” Samuel asked.

“You shaved the head of a hair vampire. You are one of us now. Blessed with the hair of the angels. Cursed to shave heads for the rest of eternity.”

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