Chapter 2 - Denial

The Week I Turned Into Erin by Emily


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Synopsis: Aaron's first day of work and first day of changes.

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TUESDAY


Sometime in the middle of the night we both got uncomfortable and moved to our bedroom.  I woke with the sun streaming in the window.  Kathy was curled up around me, nuzzling my neck.  Speckles was laying at the edge of the bed on our feet.  I didn't have to be at my new job until 11, and today was Kathy’s day off.  


That was an incredible night of sex.  It’s been a while since it was THAT good.  I think the spontaneity of it really turned Kathy on.  And me.  In fact, I’m still turned on, noting my morning wood.


I turned my head to the side and stared at Kathy sleeping here.  She’s so cute the way she sleeps.  God I love her so much.  I would do anything for her.  I kissed her on her forehead.  I saw a small smile form on her lips while she slept.  I glanced at the clock and decided it was a good time to start getting up.   Time to get up and go to my first day of my new job.


I rolled out of bed, trying not to wake up my girlfriend or the dog.


I opened my dresser drawer and pulled out a fresh pair of boxer shorts.  My fingers brushed against an envelope I had hidden there,  I looked down at the edge of the envelope.  I knew what was in it.  It was an envelope of cash that I haven’t touched in months.  I started putting it aside for an engagement ring before the pandemic.  When I lost my last job I stopped saving.  We’re in a rough financial spot right now.  I’ve resisted the urge to take money from this envelope.  I really - really want to resume putting more money towards this.


I looked over to Kathy who was sleeping peacefully.  “One day Aaron.” I whispered to myself.  I slid my underwear drawer closed and made my way to the bathroom to take a shower.  I glanced at myself in the bathroom mirror.  My hair was a mess.  


I ran my hand through my hair.  “Huh,” I thought.  I guess I’m going to need a haircut soon.  I could’ve sworn I only got it cut recently.  I usually keep it short.


I turned on the shower and jumped in.  I let the hot water just cascade off my shoulders for a few minutes.  I shampooed my hair first, then grabbed the body wash.


I ran body wash over my chest and jumped when I lathered up my chest.  That hurts.  I looked down and my nipples were very erect.


I touched them again and jumped.  It felt like they were irritated.  This must be a side effect of the drug.   I looked down at my nails too.  I remember them looking long last night.  They were certainly longer than I usually kept them.  I put it all out of my mind and tried to avoid irritating my chest any further as I rinsed off and finished my shower.


The uniform for the grocery store was plain black on black with no writing on the shirt.  I didn’t have black jeans so I found a pair of black slacks in my closet.  I had a plain black polo shirt I could wear.  I quickly got dressed and headed out to the kitchen.


Speckles was not far behind me.  I let her outside and continued making myself breakfast.  I ate breakfast in my quiet house.  While I was eating, I skimmed the news on my phone.


When I was done eating, Kathy came out of the bedroom wearing just panties and one of my t-shirts.  She came over and gave me a very nice passionate morning kiss.


“Good Morning to you too.” I said smiling.


She sat down with her breakfast and just stared at it.


“Something wrong?”  I asked.  “You look nervous.”


“Oh” she said, her train of thought interrupted.  “Yeah.  It’s nothing.  It’s just weird not going to work today.”


“It’s OK.” I told her.  “This is just a phase.  This will all pass.  The world will return to normal. You’ll get to go back to work full time.  We’ll get through this together.”


She smiled at me.  “Thank you.” 


I deposited my breakfast bowl in the sink.  I then rummaged through the fridge and cabinets for something I could bring for lunch.


All we had was enough for a ham and cheese sandwich.  So I proceeded to make the sandwich and wrapped it in cellophane.


I had about 10 minutes to kill, so I checked my phone and scrolled through my emails.  There was some feedback to the latest blog I posted.  I read through those and responded.


Kathy stood up and wrapped her arms around me and kissed me. “Good luck on your first day of work” 


* * *


I parked in front of the grocery store and I got out of the car.  The breeze blew and made my hair fall into my face.  I pushed it back.  There was hair tickling my ear so I brushed it behind my ear.  OK.  That’s it.  After work I’m getting a haircut.  


I put my mask on and entered the store.  I went over to customer service and announced my presence.  Today’s manager, whose name is Mike, came out to greet me.  


“Hi Aaron.”  Mike said.  “Welcome to our team.”


“Thanks.”  I said, smiling.  Then I realized he couldn’t see my smile behind this face mask.


Mike then proceeded to walk me around the store showing me employee-only areas, where to clock in, and where to take lunch.  I got a name badge  and I clocked in.


This took quite a while.  Mike stopped and talked with almost every employee in the store.  He didn’t introduce me to them, mind you, he just started up conversation with them about random things.  He started flirting with a teenage cashier.  Mike looked 40, so I’m not sure what’s up with that.  She rolled her eyes and glanced at me.  I shrugged my shoulders.  


We moved on to another section of the store.  “We have very nice people who work on our team.” he said.  “Very nice to look at too, if you know what I mean.” He laughed.


“Yeah”  I said, simply acknowledging that he was still talking.


Great. I work for a creep.  The less I interact with this guy, the better.


When Mike FINALLY got around to showing me my new job he brought me to the produce section.  Today’s task will be restocking it. He showed me where to get the boxes and the cart and where to put them.  


Mike left me to do something else, or likely to annoy someone else, and I finally got to work.  I got a cart full of apples and bananas and brought them to the apples section.


I opened the first box and started placing apples in their appropriate bin.


Next to me, stocking grapes, was another stocker who looked to be a high school guy with long hair in a ponytail.  He looked at me and nodded.


“Hi”  I said.  “I’m Aaron.  I’m the new guy.”


“Hi.” he said.  “I’m Ben.”


When I was done emptying the boxes of apples, I turned my attention to the bananas.  Ben had moved over to lettuce.


“So Aaron,” Ben said.  “What brings you to our  - quote Team?” He made air quotes with his hands, clearly making fun of this stores corporate culture.


“Well, I couldn’t find a job elsewhere.  Not many places hiring in-person jobs these days.”


“I feel ya.” he said.  “I just graduated.  No college.  No other jobs.  So I’m stuck here.”


“You just graduated?” I asked


“Yeah.  Class of 2020!  No prom.  No graduation.  Haven’t seen many of my friends since March.  Many of them have already left to go to college.”


“That sucks dude.” 


“Yeah.” he said.


We both stocked a little more.  I decided to make more small talk with Ben.  


“So how do you like working here?”


“It’s just OK.”  he replied.  “I need the money too.  Some of the people are nice.  That guy Mike, not so much.  He doesn’t even remember my name.  But I find that if you ignore him, he’s harmless.”


“Good advice.” I replied.


“I was thinking of applying for a job over at Starbucks across the street.” he said.  “But they’re not hiring at the moment and have layed off a whole bunch of people.”


I continued stocking.  After the bananas were done I went to get another cart of produce and started stocking those as well.  Around lunch time my muscles started to hurt.


I was rotating both arms and stretching my back.  I tried stretching my legs too.  Why are my muscles so tight?  I know I’ve been stationary since the pandemic started, but I didn't expect to be this out of shape.


I sat down in the break room and kept to myself.  The other employees in the break room were all friendly with each other.  But they were all much younger than me.  All either in their late teens like Ben, or in their 20’s.  I certainly felt like the old man in this situation.


I quickly devoured that sandwich I brought from home.  I was still hungry.  


I stood up from the table, but it hurt when I got up.  I grimaced as I walked it out.  Thankfully nobody noticed me.  They would have certainly called me an old man then.


I got the next cart of groceries to stock.  I pushed through the pain.  But it only got worse.  Everything hurt.  My shirt was rubbing up against my nipples.  They felt raw.  My skin felt warm.  Even my hair hurt.  I grimace behind my mask.  I looked at the time.  Only one more hour left to go in my shift.


I was putting cereal boxes on the top shelf when I realized I couldn’t reach the top shelf anymore.  I stretched and reached my arm to put the box up there.  It felt like it was getting harder and harder to do.  30 more minutes.


The pain was becoming more intense as I tried stretching to reach boxes.  My breathing was becoming more and more labored. And I'm still hungry! What’s wrong with me?  10 more minutes.


I finished with the cereal boxes.  I put the cart away and clocked-out right as the shift ended.


I was originally going to get a haircut after work.  I’m just not feeling up to that right now, so I walked out of the store and straight to my car.  It was so painful. Everything hurt. Even my feet.  Every step hurt.   I tried to hide the pain.  Thankfully I had a mask on or my face would give it away.


* * *


When I got home, it felt like my bones and skin were on fire.  I couldn’t stand anymore, but I pushed through it.  I was sweating.  I went into the bathroom, holding onto the vanity.  I turned on the cold water and splashed it on my face.


Kathy called from our bedroom.  “Hey babe! How was your day?”


“It was fine.”  I said.  “I spent all day stocking shelves.”


I looked in the mirror at my now wet face.  Wait.  Is my hair even longer? It’s falling over my ears. My mind must be playing tricks on me.  I ran my hand through it again.  I’m able to grab a good handful of hair.  A little more I could tie it back.


I’m still sweating after splashing my face.  I’m burning up.


I opened one of the vanity drawers and pulled out a digital forehead thermometer.  I pressed it to my head.  It beeped and I looked down at the red display.  104 degrees.  


104?  Shit.


My first thought was I had Covid.  That damn vaccine.  I wasn’t coughing though. So maybe this was some 24 hour virus.  Food poisoning maybe?


My next thought was whether I should tell Kathy.  If I’m sick, then I can’t go work tomorrow.  If she’s sick, she can’t go to work tomorrow either.  We really need this money.


“Hey babe” I called out to her.  “I have the sniffles.  I think it’s best if we stay in separate rooms this evening.  I can sleep on the couch.”


“Are you sure?” she asked.


“Yeah.  Last thing we need is you not to be able to go to work tomorrow.”


“OK.” she replied.  “Is there anything I can get you?”


“No, No. I’m fine”


I found a bottle of Advil in our medicine cabinet.  I popped 3 tablets.  Hopefully this makes the pain and fever go away.


* * *


We both ate dinner separately.  She baked a frozen pizza. I let her get her slices first so I could keep my distance.  I ate the rest I was so hungry.


I managed to stay away from her the whole evening. I faked some sneezes. We had some casual conversations from separate rooms about my day and her day. I talked about work and my experience stocking shelves.  She talked about cleaning a few rooms of the house.  I tried hard to hide my condition from her.  She was looking forward to returning to work tomorrow.


“Babe.” she said from the bedroom.  “Should you even be going to work tomorrow?”


“Oh.”  I replied.  “I think I got the sniffles from work.  I bet I’ll be better in the morning.  But I’ll be careful.  I’ll make sure to check my temperature in the morning.”


The painkillers started to finally kick in, but they only worked a little bit.  I was able to at least sit down without feeling like I was dying.  But every time I stood up, I could feel sharp pains in my bones and joints.


As I was lying on the couch, Speckles came by and licked my face.  I pet her and she laid down on the floor right next to the couch.


I should call the clinic.  This isn’t right.


I think I put Dr. Fry’s business card on the counter yesterday when I emptied my pockets.  I got up from the couch and made my way to the kitchen.  I dug through the pile of mail on the counter and found the business card.


I gingerly walked to a corner of the house where Kathy couldn’t hear me.  I dialed the number and left a message. “Hi, Dr. Fry.  This is Aaron, one of your participants for Trial 1350 you saw yesterday.  I’m having some weird reactions to the drug you gave me.  I really need to see you tomorrow. You can give me a call back at the number on my paperwork.”  I hung up my phone.


Hopefully that works.


I played on my phone for a little bit, but it was getting difficult to focus.  I noticed Kathy turned the lights out in the hall and our bedroom.  I decided I needed to go to sleep too.  I found a blanket in the closet and brought it over to the couch. 


Once I closed my eyes, I was out.


* * *


I tossed and turned on the couch.  I was having crazy dreams.  


One dream I remembered was Mike was flirting - with ME!  He was asking when I was going to dump Kathy.  He complimented my smile.  Shit.  Where did my mask go?  Suddenly I fell to the floor in pain.  My skin was on fire again.  Mike just stood over me asking for my number.


I woke up still in pain.  The house was dark.  I was still sweating.  I stumbled to the bathroom in the dark trying not to turn on any lights to not wake Kathy.  I slammed my hip into the door frame.  Ow.  I turned on the light but was blinded by it. I popped 3 more Advils, turned off the light and went back to the couch.  I eventually passed out again.



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Emily

Hi, I'm Emily and I'm writing Gender Transformation Fiction! This site is a place for my to keep all of my stories in one place. I'm also a software developer in the daytime, so this site will also be a proving ground of cool new features that pop into my head. Feel free to message me on Twitter or at my Discord Server! You can also find me on TGStorytime.com and FictionMania.tv.

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