Based on characters created by Bare Lin and posted on WoL. Continuing the adventures of Kimberly Tanner, her husband Jerry Tanner, their college age twin daughters Tammy and Marla, and the work associates at Mary Jerkins Real Estate
Kimberly Tanner, age 42, Realtor
Jerry Tanner, age 43, CPA
Marla and Tammy Tanner, age 22, college students
Brad Benton, 23, college student/Marla’s boyfriend
Kirsten Lovett, 22, college friend of the twins
Mary Jerkins, age 48, employer of Kimberly and Kirsten
Shirley Stevens, age 28, Kirsten’s co-worker
Jan Riley, age 26, Mary Jerkins administrative assistant
Andrew Adams, age 44, Kirsten’s co-worker
Kirsten Lovett was, once again, spending the night at her friend Tammy Tanner’s home.
The two college students had brought their summer cheer camp squad to regional finals competition on August 14th with the expectation that cheer camp would be over on the next day and Kirsten and Tammy would have seventeen days to relax before the fall semester of their senior year in college.
As luck would have it, both the junior high school and high school squads Kirsten and Tammy coached placed in the top three teams in their age groups at regionals and had advanced to the state wide competition to be held on August 21st. Worse, should either team finish highly enough to go to the national competition Kirsten and Tammy would be committed to their duties through Labor Day, the first Monday of September, and only two days before the start of classes.
Both girls were due to start Teaching Practicum in the Fall Semester. After two weeks of class room preparation they would be sent to the schools designated for their student teaching, and ten weeks later it was back to the class rooms in college to write the thesis based on their experiences. But if either of the age groups the girls were mentoring achieved success in national competition and were selected to go on to the international competitions in November all this might be put on hold.
“Read that to me again,” Tammy asked her friend and fellow coach.
“All teams participating as Absolutes shall have the squads performing routines and any manager, coach, or spotter within the performance area must be properly body painted in the colors of the school or organization for whom they are competing. It is rule seventeen paragraph two, Tammy,” Kirsten noted, then added, “There are illustrations in the appendix as to what is proper body painting. It looks like just dying carpet and curtains won’t be enough to satisfy the rules.”
“Who do we know who can air brush kids, and who would be willing to take the trip to State finals with us?” Tammy asked her friend, hoping Kirsten would know someone.
“No one that I know who would be back on campus already, Tam. What about the art group your mom belongs to? Maybe one of the people their can help or knows someone who can.”
The pair left Tammy’s room and headed downstairs to the family room.
“Ugh, MOM, get a room,” Tammy jokingly yelped upon seeing her mother nestled on her father’s lap, both snuggling and kissing passionately.
Her parents broke their kiss and her father responded, “In case you have forgotten this is OUR HOUSE, college girl.” He then stuck his tongue out at his daughter and broke into a wide grin.
Kimberly wiggled a bit on Jeff’s lap. Kirsten suspected Tammy’s mother did so to hide her husband’s erection, and nudged Tammy, “We can come back later and ask, Tam, we interrupted them.”
“Trust me,” Kimberly responded, “the moment has passed. What is it you girls needed to ask us?”
The girls ran down the problem they had with State finals and the need to airbrush the two squads of fifteen girls and boys each at both the middle school/junior high level and high school level.. “No one we know or could ask to help is around until after the competition is over. We were hoping someone in your art league could help us or would know of someone who might help.” Tammy looked at her mother pleadingly.
It was her father who cleared his throat and drew the women’s attention. “My administrative assistant, Stella Maris, is engaged to a young man who does custom air brushing for everything from surf boards to hot rod automobiles. I don’t know if he could do a bunch of kids, but he would probably know of someone who could. Let me call her and see if she can ask his help.”
It took less than an hour back and forth between Jeff Tanner and Stella Maris to get the arrangements made. Stella’s fiancé, Tony, would not only do the work, but would provide the equipment and use his van to transport everything to the competition site. All he asked in return was a program mention. To make the girls on the squad feel more comfortable both Stella and another air brush artist, a female, would also be on site to assist Tony. Jeff gladly gave Stella the time off with pay for her help and dipped into his non-existing pockets for the supplies Tony would need to buy.
It was now just past eleven o’clock in the evening and the Tanner household retired to bed.
The College had extended the use of the dormitory for the cheer squads to stay over and use the training facilities in preparation for State finals. Tammy and Kirsten gathered the thirty cheerleaders together for a meeting first thing in the morning. Kirsten read the rules of the competition to the group with Tammy stopping her periodically to explain phrases that might be too technical for the younger cheerleaders.
Kirsten read rule seventeen twice. It then sunk in to the older girls and boys, but Tammy still had to break it down for the youngsters. “What it means is, before any of us goes on stage to perform, spot, or coach we all have to be painted from head to toe, not just our hair above and below,” she had pointed to her head and crotch, “but every bit of us has to be covered in paint, or we cannot compete.”
“We are three days away from competition, people,” Kirsten spoke up, “we need to have a dress rehearsal, perhaps even two, because the feel of your bodies will change with the paint on them and you flyers will want to be sure your catchers know how firmly to grasp you as you go through your routines. This rule could skew everything toward the textile teams who have practiced in clothing all through competition, people, so if we want to win we have to get it right in only a few days. Can we do it?”
“YES!” Thirty voices roared.
“Then let me introduce you to Tony, Stella and Misty,” Tammy told the group and the three artists stepped forward. “They are your painters. Listen to them, follow their directions and once all of you are painted and dry we will run through our routines.”
The team pictures said it all. Thirty kids and two coaches, painted maroon and gold, harlequin fashion, in a water based breathable latex paint, proudly displaying silver medals indicating they had placed second to a textile team from across the state.
National rules allowed that each state might send a textile team and an Absolute team to national competition. Kirsten and Tammy’s second place team automatically became first as Absolutes under national rules.
Thanksgiving would be spent in Austin, Texas where the current national champions were based and where the National Championship would be held. The two squads gathered every Friday evening and spent Friday, Saturday and Sunday practicing their routines. As the summer camp qualified as a club and not as a school, each of the children involved attended their regular school Monday to Friday. Kirsten and Tammy were given a leave of absence from their college work. As the college would give them credit for their training of the two squads, every aspect of their plans and other related squad business was monitored by their Teaching Education advisor.
“Oh crud!” Tammy was reading the National Competitive Cheerleading manual. “Could they be any more vague?”
“Professor Renaldo might be able to sort that out,” Kirsten offered, “She is versed in translating the obscure.”
Phone calls found the professor in her office and within ten minutes Kirsten and Tammy were knocking on the door to the oak paneled suite that a department chairperson rated at the college.
“All participants shall be properly clothed in accordance to the standards set by the governing organization,” Professor Renaldo read aloud. She thought for a moment and then rose from behind her desk to pace. A woman in her fifties, with short gray hair on her head and sparse graying hair on her pubic region, Renaldo had come to the Absolute lifestyle after raising three children, the youngest now a high school senior. She had voluntarily surrendered her clothing as a show of support during the week her daughter participated in the Nude In Public program and while her daughter had reclothed herself after the week, Jane Renaldo never returned to the land of the textiled.
The two nude students sitting on the towels from the stack the professor kept by her office door were not an oddity for the professor. She regularly counseled students of both genders as to the Absolute lifestyle and its ramifications. She had also become well versed in the hidden language of contracts concerning Absolutes in the educational employment arena. Today’s Absolute was treated in many ways like the gay and lesbian community was treated during the era of ‘don‘t ask, don’t tell’. She continued her pacing, then turned and stopped, smiling at the student coaches knowingly.
“It is the word THE. If the National Cheerleading Organization had been speaking of itself, they would have used THIS governing organization. By using THE, NCO leaves the uniform standard in the hands of each school or cheer club. You girls set our school and club standard at State when your squads competed in body paint. My interpretation is that is what shall be expected when you appear in Austin. To be sure I will run this past the college law division. However, I am rarely overruled in these matters so build your performances for your squads around the same body paint you used at State.” Professor Renaldo smiled, shook the two student coaches hands and saw them out of the office, while her next appointment waited in her secretary’s sitting area.
“Oh and girls, as this was a summer cheer camp project, the college has asked that our name not be used. Based on your body paint I am going to suggest you register your teams as the West Hamlin Harlequins Cheer Club, though you will still have full logistical and tactical support from college resources.” Professor Renaldo then added, “This will separate our cheer squads from your club so that the NCAA and regional conference does not sanction either of us with rules violations.”
The next phone call Tammy made was to her father’s office. She cleared the dates of the competition with Stella who agreed to tell Misty and Tony they would be spending Turkey Day weekend in Texas.
Everything was in place for the squads to compete by the Monday before Thanksgiving. Wednesday was the travel day. Luckily, the airplane the school chartered during football and basketball seasons to carry the team to away games was dropping the football team off in Las Vegas for a Thanksgiving afternoon game. The cheer squads hitched a ride with the team and were dropped off in Austin, but not before the college cheer squad hugged and kissed every one of the middle school and high school cheerleaders. Unknown to the younger kids, the college cheer squad was flying in from Las Vegas early Friday morning to sit in the crowd and root the youngsters on.
According to the schedule of events, the four days of the National Cheer competition would begin Thursday afternoon with a participant parade from the hotel where the teams were housed to the arena where the competition would take place. The teams would be judged on poise, posture and the ability to parade in step while stopping periodically to do a short routine for the parade crowd.
The scores of all teams for the parade would remain sealed and not known to the floor judges unless two teams tie for first place in a category. Then the team with the best parade score would be declared the winner. Categories were club team age six to nine, club team age nine to thirteen and club team age fourteen to eighteen. Also, for school sponsored teams, grade school, middle school, and high school. For the finals the best club team and school team in similar age/grade levels would compete against each other to determine the Grand National champion in each level.
The rest of Thursday would be spent speaking to the credentialing committees and the press and doing photo ops with the public.
Friday was round robin double eliminations in the morning. After a lunch break the top three teams in each age/grade level would go head to head to declare a champion in the category.
Saturday morning the club versus school team competition would determine the Grand National Champion. Saturday afternoon the awards ceremony would be televised nationally and in the evening an exhibition of champions would be followed by a banquet.
Tony, Stella and Misty were to be busy from Thursday morning on, applying body paint and keeping the teams and coaches touched up and presentable. It had not helped the airbrushing team at all that a sudden cloudburst hit over the parade route just as Kirsten and Tammy were presenting their teams before the judges. The harlequin pattern on the coaches and cheerleaders soon became mottled streaks of orangey red and yellowish pink while the rains continued washing the thirty-two nude but for their body paint participants with heavy warm drops of water.
Despite the unforeseen adversity, the two teams performed their parade routines perfectly in front of the judge’s stand. They then reformed their parade ranks and continued on their march to the arena. Tony, Stella and Misty met them in the lobby area and tossed thirty-two towels to the team. As they dried off the next group from the parade entered the lobby. This squad was a fully clothed textile high school group from Ohio, slightly upstate from the town of West Hamlin in which the college Kirsten and Tammy attended was located.
“You guys are sooo lucky,” one of the bedraggled girls from the clothed squad called over to Sonya Walsh, one of the high school age girls from the Harlequin team. “Towel dry yourselves blow out your hair and your all set to compete. Look at me,” with that the girl began to peel off a wet sweater, wet polyester wool short pleated skirt, wet cotton blouse, soggy sports bra, squishing saddle shoes, wet knee length socks, dripping cheer bloomers and finally a soggy cotton bikini panty. Although seventeen or eighteen her A cup breasts and shaven pubic area made her look like one of Kirsten and Tammy’s middle school team. She yelped, “I did NIP two weeks ago and it was less embarrassing than wearing all of that sodden drooping mess in the rain. I wish our coaches would let us cheer the way you guys do.”
Sonya tossed the girl a towel and offered to dry her back. Giggling, the pair exchanged introductions and Jillian Tokes was introduced all around to the West Hamlin Harlequins.
Several minutes passed and the coaches from Jillian’s team, still dripping wet, came over to Kirsten and Tammy and loudly asked, “Where is our girl? We found her uniform lying on the floor of the lobby and now we have a naked missing team member wandering about as a public disgrace to our team and our town.” The older female coach, in her early fifties, was shooting daggers from her eyes at the two nude co-ed coaches in front of her as if blaming them for the teenager’s disappearance.
“A group of girls just went off to the ladies locker rooms looking for hair driers,” Kirsten offered. “Perhaps you will find your girl there.”
Muttering loudly enough that all around her could hear her, the older coach set off, her voice tailing, “Nasty naked sluts, this isn’t the Garden of Eden, you should be ashamed of yourselves parading those naked children and yourselves around in public and calling yourselves cheerleaders….”
Jillian peeked out from behind Sonya and Susie Ackerman, where she had ducked down to avoid her coaches, “See what I have to put up with? I graduate this year and I so intend to do my college where you guys practice. They are going to wreck me when I show up. Our school has a disciplinary policy that includes public spanking with a strop. I’m probably good for fifty lashes based upon today.”
“Who says you have to go back with them?” Sonya looked pleadingly at her coaches and the air brush painters, “Why don’t we paint her up like one of us and let her spot our routines, tomorrow? We are an open enrolment club, put Jillian on our roster as a substitute/spotter.”
Several of the girls and boys on the squad nodded yes or muttered, “Yeah” in response.
Tammy spoke to the Harlequins after she and Kirsten had a side bar conversation, “That might save Jillian for this weekend, but what does she do next Monday when she is disciplined at her school?”
“Look, squad, I respect my parents, so I am textile when I am around them. But by law any person over the age of sixteen has the right to declare himself or herself legally an Absolute. There is even a box on your driver license where you can indicate that preference. Jillian could affirm her decision in front of us, we witnessed her voluntary stripping off of clothing, and legally the matter would be settled. But, Jillian attends a textile high school where both NIP and corporal punishment are viewed as disciplinary actions. She has to survive there until graduation in May. Six months as an Absolute in a hostile environment might be more than Jillian could bear.”
A few of the squad laughed at Kirsten’s last choice of words, but seeing the serious look on her face mad them realize this was not a joking matter.
Stella Maris, Jeff Tanners administrative assistant and Tony the airbrush artist’s girl friend, offered a solution. “Get Professor Renaldo on the phone. If we can get Jillian accepted into the early acceptance/early enrolment program at the college, she can skip the second high school term and start college in January.”
Susie Ackerman was rooting about in her back pack, looking for her comb and hairbrush, but also hoping against hope that a certain paper was still tucked into the Health and Human Sexuality book she had brought to study and read for a test the next week.
“Coach, maybe this will help,” Susie waved the paper in the air.
The paper was a boilerplate legal document for declaring oneself an Absolute.
I, [INSERT NAME HERE], BEING OVER THE AGE OF SIXTEEN YEARS, MY BIRTHDAY BEING MONTH/DAY/YEAR, HAVE OF MY OWN FREE WILL AND IN GOOD CONSCIENCE COME TO THE REALIZATION THAT I WISH TO LIVE MY LIFE AS AN ABSOLUTE. AS OF THIS DATE I [INSERT NAME] SHALL FORGO THE WEARING OF CLOTHING IN ALL PLACES PUBLIC AND PRIVATE.
SIGNED AND DATED
Jillian read the form, filled in the blanks and signed and dated the document. Kirsten and Tammy signed as witnesses.
Copies were made and distributed to Jillian’s school coaching staff, the national cheerleading competition staff, and to Jillian’s parents who were there to watch their daughter compete. Jillian’s coach was outraged to the point of going red in the face. The national cheer staff asked the school coach if Jillian would still be participating. Told in no way would she compete for the high school team nude, the national judges penciled Jillian out of her original roster. She was immediately added to the roster of the West Hamlin Harlequins as a substitute/flier and was given a spotter slot for the Friday competition.
Her parents had the best reaction of all concerned. Simply hugging her and telling her they saw the decision coming as soon as her week NIP was completed. “She always looked so confined and uncomfortable in her clothes after that,” her mother had said, “we knew sooner or later it would come to this.”
The Friday morning round robin competition was fraught with problems of a technical nature. The stage crew had placed down the floor mats in a pattern that was fully two feet smaller than the competition standard for high school and college level cheer. The judges, having seen three grade school and middle school teams perform, had not noticed the mix up until it was time for the West Hamlin Harlequins to do their first high school age routine.
During the tumbling, the three cheerleaders on point in the routine tumbled awkwardly off of the mats. The performance continued through the dance and gymnastics aspects and into the final aerials with the fliers and catchers adjusting awkwardly to the size limitations of the ground protection.
Kirsten and Tammy, along with two other squad coaches, filed a protest with the judges. When the mats were measured and the technical error was verified, the squad from West Hamlin was permitted a second judging, to be held at the very end of the round robin. A halt to the competition was executed while the stage crew refitted the mats properly. While the delay occurred, Sonya Walsh, who had been one of the tumblers in the first routine, went to Kirsten and Tammy and reported both her right ankle and left wrist were beginning to hurt and were swelling.
Hastily, Jillian Tokes was shown the tumbling floor routine by her new teammates. The moves only varied slightly from routines she had performed in the past and she picked up on her positioning and the music quickly. Her catchers worked with her on the launch, spin and catch landing for the aerial routine. Jillian had never done a two and one half revolution helicopter aerial before, but again grit and gymnastics training gave her the courage to try the routine.
The second performance, with the proper mats in place, went flawlessly. Jillian shined with her routine perfectly and smoothly inserted into the squad that had practiced the moves for weeks.
West Hamlin harlequins were advancing to the next round within ten performance points of their nearest high school competition and four performance points above the cheer club team that occupied third place. Watching all of this quietly from the audience and behind stage were the thirty women and men from the West Hamlin college campus cheer squad and their coaches.
West Hamlin Harlequins easily surpassed the last club team in the finals and edged up to within three points of the high school team they would face for the Grand National Championship in their age group. The middle school Harlequins came in second to a club from California made up of all twelve-year-old all-stars from various clubs and teams in their county.
“Okay, squad, we already have a group second and a group first for club cheer. All of our Harlequins are champions and you middlers have room to grow for next year’s competitions. Now, for the real challenge, can we beat Our Lady of Perpetual Sorrows High School for the Grand National Championship tomorrow morning?” Tammy was leading the team meeting with Kirsten in the background at the moment. “I believe we can. Remember this, we have an all-new judging panel tomorrow; they have seen neither of the two teams compete. Our scores from yesterday and our parade scores will be sealed to them until after they cast their votes. Our Lady is a conservative textile religious school we are a secular Absolute club. Much will depend upon how the judges view the new societal standard for public nudity in cheering as against the traditional costumed cheer team. I can only ask that you go out and give your routines just a little bit more than you did in the two rounds of competition earlier today. Airbrushing starts at seven a.m., we are due on stage at nine forty-five, breakfast will be a buffet you can graze before during and after your painting. GO HARLEQUINS!”
Kirsten then spoke. “As you know, Sonya has been sidelined with injuries. Jillian has stepped up and done courageous work for not knowing us or our routines very well.” A round of affirmation and applause came from the team and Jillian blushed at the attention. “All of you deserve a round of applause as well, for making Jillian feel so comfortable and allowing her to fit into our program seamlessly.” The team applauded at that and Jillian joined in. “Up your game to one hundred fifteen per cent from your usual one hundred ten and we can wipe the mats with Our Lady and their fancy uniforms.” This drew more laughing and applause from the team.
With that curfew was declared and the team and coaches retired to bed. Alarms and wake up calls began at five forty five and all thirty-three team members were showered and ready to be painted within an hour.
The middler squad was in uniform to receive their second place medals and trophy. They would also participate in the winner’s exhibition performance later in the day. The senior squad of the West Hamlin Harlequins had one last goal in mind. Already club national champions, they would compete for the coveted Grand National Champion crown and the bragging rights that accompany it.
Both Our Lady and the Harlequins performed flawless and technically challenging routines. Each of the five judges could award up to twenty points and a total of one hundred would be a perfect score. Each squad finished with a score of ninety-seven.
It would come down to the parade scoring and with both squads on stage the emcee ripped open the sealed envelope to read, and the best parade performance by a high school level cheer club or school team went to [dramatic pause] Our Lady Of Perpetual Sorrows for poise, costuming and performance. Congratulations Our Lady Of Perpetual Sorrows, you are this year’s Grand National Champions.”
After congratulating the winning squad and receiving heir medals and trophy for the club championship, the Harlequins left the stage.
Part 3 of 5. To be continued...