A woman wants to help out her young daughter with school.
Jim Fletcher opened the door of his home ready to relax for the evening. He had put in a full day of work at the research center and had dealt with his share of problems throughout the day.
’Honey, I’m home!’ he sang out as he does every night. But this time he was greeted with silence.
’Honey?... Is anybody home?’
He heard a muffled sound from the kitchen and then a cracking voice spoke.
’Sorry... I... I’m in here...’
It was his wife’s voice and it was obvious that she was crying.
’Angie...What’s wrong he asked suddenly worried about their daughter who was nowhere to be seen ’Is Lara OK?’
’Not exactly.... I put her to bed early..... I had a meeting with her teacher today....’ she answered in between sobs.
Jim felt a little relieved. He knew his wife could be a little dramatic sometimes and he figured this was shaping up to be one of them. ’~And~....?’ he asked.
’The teacher thinks maybe she should retake Kindergarten and not go on to first grade with the rest of the class......’ she said before breaking out in sobs again.
’They say she is too immature and is withdrawn... not making any friends.... and.... just doesn’t seem...ready. I know she’s small for her age and younger than the other kids but to hold her back??? The school system here won’t accept anyone in first grade without the Kindergarten administration’s ’OK’. ’
’Well, maybe it’s a good thing? I’m sure the school knows best. Her birthday did fall right on the line so I guess that time can make a lot of difference.’ Jim said trying to reassure her.
’Nooooo...She’ll be devastated. I was small for my age but I learned to cope and she can too. Imagine how she’ll be put down and made fun of if she gets held back? All her friends will be moving on and she’ll still be .... It’s not fair for her...It’s the teacher’s fault! They should do better!’
’Honey! You just said the teacher said she didn’t have any friends and now you’re worried because her friends will move up a grade and she won’t? I think you’re making too big of a deal out of this. After all, she is only 5! The teachers should know what is best. Think about it.’
’I ~have~ thought about it! She’ll be a laughing stock. It’ll be too much for her. Think about who always got bullied or called names in school....the ones that were held back! When kids got punished they were threatened with being held back! ’
Jim realized that atleast that part of the story was true. A lot of the kids did pick on students that were held back.... but this was only kindergarten. It wasn’t the same as an older kid being held back he figured. ’Angie, it’s not the same...’
’Same? Same as what? Same as when we were kids? Same as a boy being held back? I’m a girl and I know what she’ll be thinking. Every tease will sting. She can’t ~make~ herself grow either.’
’But in another year maybe she ~will~ be closer in size and maturity with the other kids?’
’Yes... ~maybe~ And maybe she’ll grow and be ready for the class she’s in now? But ~nooooo~ she’ll be teased and tormented for being ...Slow...’
More tears streamed down her face. Jim realized that she had made up her mind and he wasn’t going to change it. Atleast not any time soon. Not being a girl, he also wondered if Angie may not be over-reacting as much as he imagined.
Angie continued ’She just needs a friend..to listen..to guide her...to give her confidence! I wish I could be there with her...’
Those words rang out in Jim’s head. ’Maybe you could’ he said softly.
’What? No, I’d just bring more trouble and embarrass her. She’d never live it down having her mother there with her. She needs someone her own age’
’That’s what I meant’ he told her. ’You, but you need to be her age.’
’I wish there ~was~ a way. I know exactly how she feels and how to help’ Angie answered solemnly.
’Maybe there is....’ Jim replied.
’Is? Is what?’ What are you saying?’
’I probably shouldn’t say anything. Forget it. We’ll think of something.’
’JIM! Tell me what you are talking about! If you know something that might help Lara you have to tell me! ~Jim~.... now!’
’You could be her age... I really don’t think it is a good idea. I shouldn’t have even brought it up.’
’Well, you DID bring it up. Now, what the hell are you talking about!?’
’Promise you won’t repeat this...or any part of it... we’ve never really been ordered to not talk but it has been ummmm ~strongly implied~.’
’I promise. Tell me, dammit!’
’We’ve been working on a drug that reverses the aging process. We’re quite far along actually...’
’Are you serious? That’s impossible! You’re pulling my leg!’
Jim took a breath and continued ’No, it’s for real. It is extremely safe as best as we can tell in limited testing and it is reversable. Unfortunately, we don’t know exactly ~how~ it works but we know it works. Each pill essientially halves a persons age. A 30 year old taking one dose would find himself or herself regressing into a 15 year old in a matter of hours. If they took another dose, or two at once, they would become a 7 1/2 year old. That is where it gets a bit ~sticky~’
’You absolutely look serious! What do you mean by ’sticky’. You said it is reversible.’
’Well, regressing to a teenager doesn’t seem to have a serious impact on a person’s mental state. The hormones and stuff do, I guess, but not like when you cross backwards through puberty. Somehow it seems that there is a chemical connection with memories that gets ummm foggy as the brain regresses physically. If a subject was to regress to infancy... the reversal doesn’t bring back their adult faculties. I guess they get too young to retain them. But even just regressing to childhood can have the same consequences if the person is not careful. We’ve found that if the ’subject’ maintains adult activities and doesn’t allow themself to uhhhhh sink into a child’s world, that they maintain their personality and adult faculties upon reversal. Maybe some slight differences but that is probably just from seeing the world once again from a child’s eyes. But, let’s see.... In my example if the 7 1/2 year old were to take another dose then that person would then regress to less than 4 yrs old. As hard as it is for the 7 year old to keep remembering their adult self, the 4 year old has it much harder. Maybe it is because the 7 yr old has a longer attention span. I don’t know. Like I said, we’re still studying this. It is pretty important work.... and word really shouldn’t leak out. That’s why I never said anything.’
Angie was stunned. She knew her husband didn’t spin stories. She also realized that her wish to be Lara’s age could come true! It was a bit scary thinking that it could actually happen. ’You said it could be reversed?’
’The same ohhhh uhhhhh ....our bodies retain a code. Like a record of where we’ve been and maybe even where we are going. The same principles of the youthening process that fools the code into regressing also can be fooled into returning the subject back to the age they would be in calender years. We also figure that there must be a way to age a person past where they would be in calender years but we haven’t been able to do that. It’s almost like we’ve found the rewind button but can’t find the fast forward button. We can’t age a person past their true age.... Maybe that part of the code is not stored yet?.... nor can we control the amount of regression except as I already said. Anyway, it is reversible with pills. It is kind of a ’bot’ technology like we saw on TV the other night.’
’So that is why you were laughing?’
’Yeah, we are quite a bit further along in the technology than that show would lead you to believe’
’Ok, I’m 26. One ~pill~ will make me 13.... and then the next 6 1/2...right? This is spooky to even think about!’
’Yeah, but it is probably not a good idea. You’re not serious. Just forget I mentioned it.’
’Too late. You know you can get the pills or you wouldn’t have said anything in the first place. You said it is safe. Obviously, you’ve done tests....ummmmmm how did you know about the infancy problem?’
’Early on we had volunteers. A couple of prisoners with nothing to lose. We regressed and aged them continually and noted the process in both long-term and short-term testing. I’m sure they are better off anyway. We suspected it from animal testing but the human testing proved it. we mainly work with animals. The first phase is fairly complete.’
’The I’m gonna do it! Get me the pills!’ Angie boldly stated. ’I was small enough at 6 1/2 to pass for a younger child. This is perfectly incredible!’
’No ’Buts’! It’ll just be for a week or so. We can tell the kindergarten that I am Lara’s cousin and that there’s a family crisis and I’ll be enrolling temporarily. With all the single family homes and domestic problems they do that all the time anymore!’
’I don’t know... I mean it seems like an awfully small problem for sucj extreme measures. It’s not like they will just smile and hand me the pills! And you can never tell anyone anything about this...even Lara!’
’You’ve worked there a long time. You ~know~ what to do. This is for Lara! You can just tell her I’m her second cousin or something.’
Jim did know he could get the drugs. He knew it really shouldn’t be a problem to get a couple of the regression pills or reversing dosage. After all, only a few people worked at the center and security was low mainly because they felt heavy security would lead to too many questions.... and the center trusted its employees. A trust that Jim was now about to break.
With the discussion settled Angie’s mood improved and she went about the evening’s business. If all went as planned she would have the regression drugs Friday evening. Jim still felt uneasy about the plan and worried that Angie was over-reacting to the problem. None-the-less he felt that the process was safe and that the plan could very well help Lara adjust to school....even if it was a bit extreme. He also started contemplating what life was going to be like with two children in the house for the next couple of weeks. They talked through the plan and discussed what was to happen for the next few days. Nothing he could say could change Angie’s mind.
Morning arrived and Angie was in a very good mood. Her mind was at peace with what she was going to do. Jim and Lara watched her bounce around the room like the weight of the world had been lifted from her shoulders.
’Have another piece of toast. I made plenty!’ she said as she refilled everyone’s orange juice.
’No thanks... I probably oughtta get to work a little early today...if you know what I mean’ Jim said as he took one last sip of his orange juice and slid it back on the table. ’Gotta go! By ladies... ummmm kids!’ he said with a grin crossing his face as he looked at Angie.
’Bye Bye Daddy’ Lara said smiling.
’Bye Daddy’ Angie said with a sly grin.
Jim hurried out the door and was off to work. Angie and Lara finished up at the house and then Angie drove Lara to Kindergarten. Lara’s mood instantly changed as they arrived at the school. ’Do I hafta’ she protested ’I feel kinda sick!’
’Now Lara, you were just fine a few minutes ago. You shouldn’t fib about that! Are you really sick?’
Lara shook her head to indicate ’no’. ’Huh uh...’ she said slowly.
’You be a good girl for mommy and run on in there. Tomorrow is Saturday and you might have company.’
’Who!?’ Lara asked excitedly.
’We’ll just have to wait and see.... Now get to school and have fun!’
Angie watched Lara run up the steps amongst the other children. She shivered a bit thinking if all goes as planned she would be one of them come Monday morning!
After seeing Lara was safely inside, she drove to the shopping center to find some new clothing.... children’s clothing. Suddenly, she had a strange revelation.... she wasn’t looking for clothing that she thought would look cute on a child but rather clothes that she, as a child, would like. It was a strange moment. She remembered the times that she had been with her mother and her mother would chose her clothes, and then the times that she had taken Lara shopping and chosen Lara’s clothing. That seemed proper then but now it didn’t! Some things that she thought would be ~cute~ for a child wasn’t really something SHE’D want to wear as a child. After a while she had picked out some outfits consisting of shorts and T-shirts, sneakers and sandals. A perfect wardrobe for an active 6 year old girl. She paid for the items and then returned home to prepare the house for a ~second~ little girl. She put her new clothes in the guest bedroom and also made sure that the guestroom TV was hooked up and working. That would be an important connection to the adult world she figured.
Tension built as she awaited Jim’s arrival. Lara was now home and watching cartoons. Dinner was ready but Jim was running late. Finally, the door swung open.
’Honey? I’m home!’
’DADDY!’ Lara yelled as she ran and hopped on Jim to hug him.
’ummmm Did Daddy bring anything ~special~ home with him?’ Angie asked in a sing song voice.
Jim shook his head affirming that he indeed DID have something ~special~. ’Yes, ~Daddy~ has ~it~’
’Great!’ Angie replied as Jim put Lara back on the floor. He realized that soon he would be able to lift his wife just that easily also! It still seemed too surreal for him but he knew there was no changing Angie’s mind.
They all had dinner and watched television. Lara’s bedtime came and they both tucked her in.
Angie kissed her daughter on the forehead and told her ’Lara, mommy might have to leave for a few days but if she does your little cousin Angie will be coming to see you...’
’She has the same name as you mommy!!??’ Lara asked as if that shouldn’t be.
Angie looked up at Jim who had a smirk on face. It was an ’I told you so’ look. One that was meant to show that this wasn’t going to be as easy to pull of as she had hoped.
Angie looke back down at Lara and told her ’She’s a lot like me so they named her after me’ and then shot a look at Jim to imply that she could work around any snags in the plan.
They left the room and then went back downstairs.
’OK, so do I take ’em now?’ Angie asked.
Jim looked at the clock ’Yeah, I suppose now is as good as a time as any. It’ll take about all night for the complete regression. You probably won’t sleep well, what with all the changes and everything so I brought you a sleeping pill to help. I’ll put the reversal doseage up here in this pitcher so that it is hidden. We don’t need any more questions like from your little name slip up there to Lara.’
’Ok, Ok... let’s get started.’
’Why so fast? No second thoughts at all?’
’Maybe...It’s all kinda scary... but cool too I guess. I don’t want to change my mind. C’mon!’
Jim handed her the two regression pills and the sleeping pill.
’Do I really need the sleeping pill?’
’I think so... It can’t hurt and you’ll need to be fully rested for tomorrow.’
Angie quickly downed all three pills and then looked in the mirror as if to immediatley see a difference.
’Settle down. It took 26 years to get that way’ he said pointing at her reflection in the mirror ’It’ll take more than a few minutes to erase it!’
She smiled knowing he was right but really didn’t know what to expect.
’Sit down’ he ordered and she took a seat. ’I really want to go through everything again. I guess we know now that you will still be called Angie. Angie ummmm Shelton. How about that?’
’That was my mother’s maiden name and so there is a distant connection if someone was to poke around.’
’Sure, fine’ She shrugged.
’OK, the reversal dosage is in the pitcher there. Don’t let anyone throw that out! I don’t want to have to get more! Now, don’t forget what I said about maintaining an adult ritual. It is important. You’re going be surrounded by 5 and 6 year olds all day long so try and interact with the teachers some. If there is something to read, even if it is milk carton, READ IT! I imagine I’m over-reacting myself but I don’t want you to lose you adult self. If you were to hang around children too much you might just slip so make sure you come straight home after...~kindergarten~’ he had to stop and shake his head at that last sentence...he was ordering his ~wife~ to come home after her kindergarten class! ’There shouldn’t be a problem, you won’t get too young so that you can’t stay focused...as long as you try. I still don’t think this is a good idea. I wished I’d never even been involved in this research. Right now I wish I had just kept up the guitar lessons and skipped college altogether!’’
Jim kept talking and Angie yawned. The sleeping pill was taking affect.
’Are you listening?’ Jim asked noticing his wife’s eyes starting to look heavy.
’Uh huh.....I’m [yawn] listening’ she said stretching and fighting sleep. As she stretched the bottom of her sweater raised revealing her stomach. She felt a slight chill on her bare skin. and she proceeded to stretch the sweater to cover herself. As she looked down she noticed her stomach looked flatter. At 26 she had gained a couple of pounds and hadn’t really took the time time work them off. Jim’s pills had doe it for her! ’My stomach! I’ve lost weight!’
’Ya, and a couple of years too. I’d say you look closer to 24 now. That ~is~ to be expected, you know?’ Jim said.
She laughed nervously ’I guess you’re right... Wow... you’re a genius! It works!’
Jim smiled but still didn’t feel comfortable. He wished he would have never mentioned this possibility to her. More than anything he worried because this just wasn’t ~right~.
[Yawn] ’I’m gonna change and [Yawn] get ready for bed. That sleeping pill packs a wallop’ she told Jim as she made her way upstairs and to her room.
Jim could see that she was even slimmer now. He had never thought of her as overweight but her youthening revealed that she had gained a few extra pounds in the last couple of years. She pulled the hair from under her sweater and Jim could swear it even looked longer and now had more fullness and life. She was gone for an extended period of time. Jim figured it would only take her a couple of minutes to change into her night clothes but then again he figured she was admiring the return of her college co-ed figure.
Jim was half right... she had spent some time admiring her firmer and younger nude body in the mirror. Then she sit down, as she does every night, and began to apply lotion to her still firming legs and arms. Had she thought about it, she would have realized that no lotion was going to be necessary to rejuvenate and moisturize her skin on this night! She was amazed at how soft and smooth her skin felt as she applied the moisturizer. Each application was a little but slower. Finally, the powerful sleeping pill won out and she dozed off while still rubbing the lotion on her body. It was only when the bottle of moisturizer hit the floor a couple of hours later that she awoke. She heard the TV still on downstairs and wondered how long she had been asleep. She groggily slipped on her robe and slippers and hurried back downstairs. She never noticed that the robe was now slightly bigger... or that she was slightly smaller! Had she glimpsed her reflection in the mirror she would have a seen a teenager! A college freshman.... or maybe even a high school senior was what the mirror was reflecting.
’Hey Sleepyhead’ Angie said in a more girlish voice upon seeing Jim had Dozed off on the couch. ’Wakeup! [Yawn]’
He looked up and his eyes widened. He had expected to watch the transformation rather than be surprised by suddenly seeing a younger version of his wife. He hadn’t known her in high school but he now knew that she was a vision! Her pictures hadn’t done her justice. Her days as a cheerleader had paid off leaving her a firm, trim, very fit young lady. Her long curly flowing blonde hair framed an innocent face while her blue eyes sparkled brightly.
’Am I still getting younger? Geez I ’like’ forgot to look cuz I fell asleep and I knew you were, like, down here waiting....’
’Slow down....Slow down. If you’d just listen to yourself you’d realize that you re-entered teen-dom.’ Jim told her while still soaking in his wife’s innocent beauty.
’Whoa! I’m a teenager? Already?’ Her excitement at her newfound teenage body was now counteracting the sleeping pill. She ran her hands up and down her sides and eventually made her way to her perky breasts. ’WOW... I guess these’ll be going soon won’t they?’ she asked sounding a bit disappointed.
’I’m afraid so...’ Jim answered.
’I imagine you are’ Angie replied coyishly.
After more inspection she stated ’Everything is so....uhhhh ~tight~’
Jim watched then young beauty begin to trace her unlined face with her hands.
’My skin feels so soft...softer than I, like, remember! ....Uh oh.... Oooooooo... Noooooo’
’What?’ Jim asks worriedly.
’I’ve got a ~zit~! Grossssssss I wanted to, like, look all pretty for you and stuff’ She told him as she started to cry.
Jim got up and put his arm around his youthening wife. ’It’ll be OK. You’re the prettiest girl I know!’
He lead her to the couch and sat down beside her.
’You make me feel so good. I don’t ever want to be with anyone but ~you~.’ she told him.
’You ~are~ my wife’
Her crying stopped and she giggled ’Oh yeah! Cool!’ and gave him a quick peck on the cheek and then looked sheepishly away.
Jim smiled and turned her toward him. He brushed her hair back with his hand and put his finger on her chin to gently tilt her head back and kiss her. It was all that was on his mind. As her head raised and her eyes moved up to meet his he suddenly pushed her back.
’Awww shit! I can’t! You can’t be a day over 16!’
She was shocked by Jim’s sudden outburst and then a tear formed and rolled down her cheek ’You think..... I’m..... ugly!’
’No, Angie...I think you’re ~too young~. I told you this would all be complicated. You’re beautiful... but you’re too young to be my wife.’
’But I...I... I ~am~ your wife!’ the now 15 year old cried out.
’I’m sorry Angie but you should have thought about this. I can’t treat you like my wife when you look more like you should be my daughter! Please understand.’
’I’m sorry Jimmy...Jim..... You’re right [Yawn] I guess.... But it’s so hard now. [Yawn]’
The sleeping pill was beginning to work again. Angie laid her head against Jim and he lightly stroked her hair. ’No one said this would be easy, Angie. But you wanted to do it.’
’I know’ she sniffed.’ I’m just kinda like mixed up right now, ya know? [Yawn]’
’Maybe you should get to bed now?’ Jim offered.
’[Yawn]~Ok~’ the sleepy 13 year old replied as Jim helped her up.
Her robe hung much lower now. Almost touching the floor. The sleeves were over her hands now and Jim helped her roll them up. Even her hair was no longer as full and thick as it was only a short while earlier. Neither said anything but both of them also realized that the front of the robe now laid flat against her chest. After a couple of steps of fighting the over-sized slippers she kicked them off, grumbling ’They’re ugly dumb old slippers anyway!’
As they approached the guest bedroom she tugged on Jims hand ’ummmm I’m in here now. OK?’
’Oh alright. You thought about our little problem before?’
’Yip, but I’m so mixed up it kinda like lost its ummmmm like importance earlier... kinda I guess’
Angie sat on the bed and Jim went and retrieved one of her old T-shirts. ’Here, you better put this on’ he said, once again waking her when he returned.
She sat back up and slid forward on the bed.’ Thanks’ she answered in an even higher voice.
Jim turned around so that she could put on the T-shirt with some privacy.
’Ok, you can turn back now’ she said sound even more juvenile.
Jim turned around and noticed how much she had changed in just the last few moments. Her toes barely touched the floor as she sat on the bed. Her features were very childlike. The T-shirt seemed to be slowly swallowing her.
’You better sleep now, hon’ Jim told her ’I’ll stay here and keep an eye on you.’
’K, Nighty night’ she answered in a child’s voice and quickly fell back into sleep.
Jim walked over and placed a blanket on her. He marveled at how innocent she looked. A mere child now with no real trace of womanhood. She seemed to get increasing restless, tossing and turning, as her body youthened even further into childhood.
A hand and leg were left uncovered after one of her bouts of turning. Jim walked over to cover them but before he could her hand and foot seemed to slide up under the cover as they shrank even more. She was now getting positively tiny. Jim now understood just what she had meant when she spoke of how small she was for age. Jim managed to fall asleep in the chair as he watched over little Angie.
Sunlight crept into the room as morning broke. Just as Jim was about to rub his sleepy eyes and check on Angie he was bolted awake by her sudden screams.
’Angie...settle down!’ he said trying to calm her.
’I want my MOMMY!!!!!