Clara sat on the side of the road, her pack and sword laying beside her. She cut a peculiar figure as she rested her tired legs: sandy blonde hair in a sensible bob cut, red longcoat with the tail flat on the grass behind her,black athletic shorts showing off her toned legs, and a pair of plain brown leather ankle boots. All in all, the outfit probably cost less than a meal at a decent restaurant but it was comfortable enough and gave her protection from the elements, even if it was infrequently washed at best. Though that was only half Clara’s fault
Adventuring was better than a regular job, but she never liked being away from basic conveniences for very long, to say nothing of hoofing it everywhere. Ever since that incident a year back, Claire back at the palace wouldn’t let her borrow any of her horses and she didn’t have the cash to shell out for another mode of transportation at the moment. Still, the tomboy figured it was good exercise, probably the only exercise she got regularly.
As she looked down the road, a sense of relief came over here. Straight ahead, just a few paces further, was the edge of a town with a big colorful sign erected on a cheap metal post. The sign read, in bright blue faux-handwritten script:
“THE TOWN OF BLISS WELCOMES YOU!”
Clara smiled, sure it had a hokey name but a town meant food and a warm bed. After a few more minutes of rest, she gathered her things and pushed past the town limits, countryside melting into rustic suburban houses, all of them small and orderly. The sunset painted the pale-walled homes a warm orange. All around her was the bustle of small-town life: dogs lounging on doorsteps, families enjoying a drink in their back yards... Clara gave an awkward half-smile at a middle-aged housewife who stopped sweeping her porch just long enough to wave at her.
“Gosh I don’t envy her,” Clara muttered to herself as she passed the stout woman. Even for a girl as laid back as she was, that was no life for her. One thing the young woman could proudly say about herself is that nobody would ever catch her in a dowdy old-fashioned dress like the wife wore, or doing chores all day waiting for her spouse to come home from his equally-dull drudgery. No sir, Clara was going to be a bachelorette for a long time.
It was some time later when Clara realized she had eaten the last of her rations earlier that day and her canteen had perhaps a swallow left in it. She huffed and dropped her bags on the curbside, going through her stuff just to make sure... and didn’t find so much as a crumb. “I have got to quit snacking so much on the road,” Clara mumbled. At least now she had an excuse to stop for the night. It wasn’t laziness if she was tired and out of provisions, right? She paced down another block looking for a good place to crash when she saw a two-story red-brick house, looking perfectly domestic with its slanted black roof and white fence around the lawn. On the porch sat a man who looked to be in his late twenties, dressed in a white work shirt and blue slacks, with medium-length brown hair made frizzy by the late summer humidity.
He thumbed through a dog-eared novel like the ones sold for a few pence at news stands. Clara put on a suitably haggard expression as she approached him, he looked up from his book, his brown eyes squinted as he smiled at her. There was something about his face that let Clara know he was an agreeable sort, or in more cynical terms: a sucker. It was more than just his soft chin and dimpled smile, it was the look he gave her, it was earnest and unguarded friendliness that one only ever saw in a small town like this.
She took a breath, then tried out her’lost girl’ approach, since it had worked for the last two stops she had to make. “Hey, I’m from out of town...” Clara said, playing up her fatigue like she was on stage. “...I think I’m lost, and I need some place to rest for the night. I promise I’ll...” Clara stalled for just a moment, hoping what she was about to say didn’t get her stuck cleaning out a barn like last time, “...I’ll make it worth your while, Mister.”
He smiled, his jaw working like he was chewing on something. “Well... For a gal as pretty as you, I don’t mind putting you up for the night!” His praise made Clara blush, she never considered vain but she couldn’t help but feel flattered with the stranger’s complement.
“I’m Morris” The man thrust his hand out and Clara took it, noting with some surprise his firm grip as they shook, “What’s your name, Miss?”
‘Clara...” The tomboy said, her green eyes meeting his, Clara had always believed looking them in the eye was the secret to getting a favor out of someone, “Nice to meet you, sir.” She mentally went over her plan again, get the guy to rent her a bed, do whatever errand he asked in return, then clear out before he noticed she raided his food. Rinse and repeat, she’d done it so many times before.
She followed him inside, breathing in the scent of fresh violets. The house was modern, yet rustic with a sleek hardwood floor and pale turquoise walls. Morris paused for a moment to glance at a portrait hanging on the wall with a solemn, nostalgic smile. Clara looked over his shoulder, the portrait was of him sitting in front of the house next to a rather thick-figured redhead in a deep blow dress. The way they held hands in the picture, the way they smiled... it gave Clara ideas as to who the redhead was.
“A girlfriend of yours?” Clara said.
“Wife,” Morris said with a sigh, “I miss her every day...” Clara’s smile faltered as she saw the man reach out towards the picture frame, tracing his fingers along the name “Bonnie” written in neat cursive script along the bottom of the frame.
“Sorry...” Clara mumbled as Morris lead her upstairs into a cozy little guest room. It was decorated more warmly than the rest of the house, with scarlet and white striped wallpaper and deep blue carpet.
“Here’s your room for the night, It ain’t much but I reckon it’s better than a tent.” He smiled at Clara and the blonde looked down at the carpet. The room was kept clean as a shrine. The single bed looked like it had never been slept in, with nary a wrinkle on the flannel sheets.
“It’s nice!” Clara plopped her bag on the mattress as Morris made his way out. “Supper’s in an hour,” He said, turning to face her, “You must be hungry after all that traveling.” Clara grinned and nodded, ‘Jackpot!’she thought to herself. If there was one thing she knew about these small town types, it was that they had big meals and big meals meant plenty of leftovers they wouldn’t be missing.
Morris closed the door behind him, leaving Clara alone in the room with her thoughts. Just in case, she stashed her sheathed sword behind the headboard of the bed. Nothing in this town seemed dangerous in the least but Clara’s adventurer instincts told her to have her weapon close to her when she was sleeping. Better safe than dead, or however that saying went.
She dug into her pack for her books, most of them dime-store novels but she liked reading them all the same. Clara took the adventure novel and cracked it open to where she had left off, thankful that the guest room was well-equiped with a quartz lamp mounted on the ceiling.
She made it a couple more pages into the story of a brave sorceress battling the necromancer’s army of darkness when she realized her hands were feeling sweaty and stifled. The tomboy huffed and took off her leather gloves and dropped them in her bag, flexing her fingers and letting her hands breathe before returning to her novel. Finally, Clara was back to doing what she loved to do above all else: nothing.
After several minutes of reading pulp adventure fluff and indulging her slothfulness, Clara heard a knock on the door followed by Morris’ voice. “Supper’s ready, Clara! Get it while it’s hot!” Clara marked her place in the novel with a scrap of ribbon taken from the nightstand beside the bed and raced downstairs. The smell of the man’s cooking was positively divine, at once new to the adventurer and yet familiar, like she had been waking up to the smell for years.
In the dining room, Morris was setting out a covered pot on the table next to a plate of smoked ham and a loaf of whole wheat bread. The smell of the hot ham mixed with the smell of spices and vegetables as he lifted the lid off the pot. “Gosh,” Clara said, helping herself to a slice of bread as soon as she sat down at the table, “What is this? It smells so delicious!”
“Just some beef and vegetable stew and ham. It’s Bonnie’s recipe, I just follow it.” Morris said, dipping some out for the adventurer before fixing his own plate. Clara nodded as Morris handed her a cup of tea and then poured his own. She took a bite of the soup, closing her eyes as she took in every note of the taste. Savory, meaty, and warming... it was the comfiest comfort food Clara had ever eaten. “Bonnie must have been an awesome cook,” she said, dipping her bread in the stew. Normally she only ate when she needed to, but this was one of those rare instances where the taste of the meal alone was he reason to keep eating, and eating past her second helping.
“Oh, she was at that...” Morris said proudly. “Finest cook in town she was.” Morris smiled as he thought back to happier times and Clara took a sip of her tea. The tea had a mild, almost floral sweetness to it like it was flavored with honey.
“What was Bonnie like?” Clara said, hoping the tea wouldn’t keep her up all night.
“Best thing that ever did happen to me,” the man said reverently, “Nothing but kindness for everyone she met...” Morris finished his cup of tea and poured him and Clara some more. “...And hard workin’ too!” He gestured with his hands like he was showing the room around him off, “Every day she’d make sure this house was spotless, and she’d always have dinner on the table when I got back from the shop.”
“Shop?” Clara said, her spoon clicking against her now empty bowl, “What do you do?”
“Tailor...” Morris said, beaming with the kind of pride only tradesmen had, “Family business, took over after my pa retired. We make dresses and formal clothes mostly.”
Clara nodded, feigning interesting. She was already halfway through her second plate and still wasn’t slowing down.
“What about you, young lady?” Morris said as he smiled at her in a different sort of way, like he was checking Clara for something... Clara dismissed it as her imagination for the sake of keeping things civil with her meal ticket.
“I travel, doing things here and there.” Clara said, taking another bite of bread.
“Ever thought of settlin’ down?” Morris said, finishing the last scraps on his plate before taking his plate and cup up. He shuffled over to the sink, dropping them in with a dull clatter.
“Nah, I’m not really looking for that right now.” Clara followed him, setting her dishes in the murky dishwater.
“I see,” Morris’s eyes lingered on Clara just long enough for that apprehensive feeling to nag at the back of her mind again, “You should head on up to bed...been a long day.” Morris said as he scrubbed the kitchenware with an old sponge. Clara silently nodded as she made her way up the stares, not one to argue with that kind of advice.
She kicked her boots off when she reached the guest room, letting out a contented sigh as she fell back onto the mattress. She was drowsy in the way one only got after a good meal. She didn’t bother getting under the covers, simply fluffing the pillow up in her hands and laying back. Just moments after closing her eyes, Clara fell into a deep and dreamless sleep.
Clara awoke to the feeling of the clean, warm flannel sheets on her skin."Uhnnn" the tomboy moaned, as she sat up. "What happened..." the young woman sluggishly pulled herself into a sitting position, she felt the gentle touch of fabric all over her, like she was naked.
" Did I..." Her memories of last night were fuzzy, dissolving into obscurity the closer she got to the time she fell asleep. "Must've really been out of it" Looking under the sheets, Clara confirmed she was indeed naked, and from the looks of it, like she was washed too. The dirt and grime from the road now gone. With her eyes open, she also saw that she was a little... thicker around the hips than she remembered, though that could just have been a trick of the light. The quartz lamp was at full brightness, stinging her eyes when she looked up at it. The young woman shook her head; she felt groggy, sluggish all over.
The varnished wooden door across from the foot of the bed lay open just barely, along with something else in the far corner of the room, which Clara spied just out of the corner of her eye... "Now what's this then?" She fetched a pair of underwear from the dresser and shuffled over to investigate the curious item, still not completely awake.
Not really paying attention to what she had grabbed, Clara slipped the garment on as he stumbled to the corner of the room.
Looking down from where she stood, she recognized it as a neatly folded one-piece dress. Beneath it she could see a set of long stockings and garters, while atop of the whole pile was a black leather choker, with a bright, shiny blue heart-shaped clasp on it.
Taken aback by the curious assortment of clothes, Clara noticed that what she had put on felt a little too supportive to be briefs. She looked down at her crotch... panties... she was wearing panties...Quite frilly panties at that, with a delicate lace trim. Turning to see the mirror, Clara's heart fluttered for a moment. An errant thought entered her head then, looking at her broad hips and plumped buttocks. ‘I'm looking better every day since coming here.’
Clara smiled and turned around in front of the mirror before realizing exactly what she was doing. "This is getting seriously creepy." She muttered to herself as she dug through the dresser drawers looking for something, anything else to wear.The drawers just revealed more of the same of what was folded on the floor.
One dresser had several smock dresses, though some were pink, there were also blues and greens and deep reds. Another dresser had more panties from pure white to jet black, and all with plenty of frilly laces. The next dresser had nothing but stockings, some even with stripes or polkadots. The last dresser had both garter belts and ribbons in a variety of colors.
Clara was blushing like a schoolgirl now. She sighed and took the outfit from the corner of the room and slipped the stockings on first, at least she’d have a fun story to tell at the next town on her way.The tan nylon stockings slid smoothly up Clara's leg, stretching up to the midpoint of her thighs, fitting snuggling on her toes. Her heart beat like a drum in her chest as a bead of sweat rolled down her forehead.
The garters clipped around her waist and to her stockings easily, the buckles giving a satisfying click as each was secured. Then came the blue dress with white polka dots, which slid over her head and onto her tomboyish frame easily. The skirt of the dress was a little short, leaving a bit of Clara’s thigh still exposed.
Another intrusive thought: ‘Now to just slip my necklace on’ but that didn’t feel quite right, but the stockings were so cool and smooth on her legs, and she did look good albeit a little more plump around the waist than she recalled... or did she really remember? Hesitantly, she picked the choker up, clasping it gently around her neck. Clara then turned back to the mirror. she didn't know why but she almost felt... natural wearing the outfit.
The clothes did all fit rather well, and perhaps most importantly, comfortably. The choker exerted a comforting pressure around her neck, an assuring presence that was settled and at ease where it was. Looking at the mirror again, a proud smile quickly set itself up on Clara's face as she observed her curvy waist and broad hips in the form-fitting dress. She could swear she really was getting prettier every day, but then ladies didn't swear, that was rude.
Clara giggled, doing a little twirl in front of the mirror. She hadn't felt this good about herself in years, though this didn't completely check out. Even her hair looked and felt different. Smoother and silkier, with little streaks of lustrous red showing up in Clara’s naturally blonde, wavy locks. At least, she remembered her hair being wavy... almost.
there were gaps in her memory she was becoming more aware of, little increments of time she had no recall of.
As Clara tried to mentally probe for specifics as to what had been happening, a contented sigh escaped her lips as she recalled Morris taking her in, feeding her, offering a bed in his place, and overall just being a perfect gentleman.
Standing there as she was, Clara's body changed in small increments. Overall she was shrinking, losing a few inches in height, while her lips grew fuller and thicker, becoming pillowy and kissable as the rest of her face matured gracefully, going from almost boyish to the soft chin and rosy cheeks of a proper lady.
"Oh Morris~" Clara sighed as she took the hairbrush from the dresser and started combing her hair. Her hair had grown out some more as her body changed, with even more streaks of red replacing her natural color as her hair started to curl.
A shiver went up and down Clara's spine as she thought about the kindly tailor. ‘There must be some way I can treat him to show how thankful I am.’ As the little thought wriggled and persisted, Clara’s hair fell down around her shoulders in thick, luxurious curls. She felt a shivering sensation spread throughout her body, becoming a pleasant tingle as her wiry athletic figure gave way to gentle, classically feminine curves.
Brushing her hair, Clara occasionally struck her ears with the bristles, stinging them slightly. As she groomed herself, another change came over her. Her chest tingled as the skin around the area felt hot and cramped. With a soft, wet sound her bosom grew out, pushing gently against the front of her dress. Clara was always pretty small-chested, but watching her breasts fill out more and more... moving up cup size by cup size as her whole body buzzed with dull throbbing pleasure... she felt more than a little proud, a little excited.
Her bust reached a full and very respectable C-cup,not so big as to be lewd. But again, the former tomboy felt like something was very, very wrong... like her sense of danger had failed her. The strange force at work caught this thought and re-shaped it as Clara was thinking it. Something was indeed wrong, but instead it had to do with her new assets sagging. ‘What would Morris think?’
And without any further nudging by the arcane influence, Clara took a lacy bra from the dresser and slipped her dress off just long enough to correct this oversight. She fumbled with the clasps a couple times but eventually she managed. She redressed and looked at herself once more in the mirror. She bore absolutely no resemblance to the woman she once was, but Clara was only the foggiest bit aware of this. All that remained was an inarticulate nagging at the back of her mind... but Clara had a pretty good idea what it was.
“Philip's going to love my look, but I bet he'd love seeing me in the kitchen making him a nice hearty breakfast.” Clara gave her reflection a wink and strolled into the kitchen. A house this size, there had to be plenty to make a breakfast fit for a working man. She opened the icebox, taking out the ham from last night first and setting it aside.
“ A breakfast needs eggs”, she mused to herself.
Leaving the room, Clara was given a moment of pause as she walked up the stairs from the basement of all places. She could have sworn the guest room-- ‘I haven't been in the guest room for a long time’, she remembered, continuing her way up the stairs.
Clara went about the kitchen, gather the eggs and ham and makings for toast as well. She hummed a song to herself, getting everything cooking before setting up a pot of coffee to brew as well. As Clara settled into closely monitoring how the meal was progressing, she heard the heavy footsteps of Morris coming down, the stairs thumping and squeaking as he came closer to the kitchen.
Philip entered the kitchen wearing a pair of jeans and nothing else. He smiled as he looked over to Clara. "Come here," he said, taking a seat at the table and beckoning with his hands.
Bonnie... Clara's heart fluttered as she walked over, sitting close to Philip. "I made you breakfast to thank you for last night!" She said, her voice much more breathy and soft than it once was.
"Aww, thanks sweetie," Morris said as he reached over and started petting Clara... Bonnie's head. It wasn't long before he reached over and planted a loving kiss on Bonnie’s cheek. It felt good to be noticed by her man... Bonnie thought.
The name ‘Clara’ became less and less significant as Morris pulled Bonnie closer, his lips meeting her own as they kissed once more, the demure little woman moaning as his hand trailed naughtily down between her legs. “Breakfast smells delicious, honey... when we get married, how about you cook for me every day like that?” Morris said with a sly grin admiring how completely his guest, his darling Bonnie had been re-made.
“I’d love that!” Bonnie said with a dreamy sigh.
“And since this is the weekend...” The tailor said, running his fingers through Bonnie’s gorgeous vermillion curls, “...The shop is closed, we can make up for lost time.”
Bonnie felt her heart soar when he said that. “Oh Morris!” She grabbed him, taking him in a tight embrace. She had never felt quite so happy as when she heard him say that. Indeed, it was time for a girl like her to settle down.