Bill had been dating Judy for several months. Of all the women he had dated recently, she was unique. What he found most fascinating was her calmness and solitude. Nothing seem to bother her. Plus they seemed to share some very common interests. He knew it was time to introduce her to an even high level of this inner peace.
He had met her at the local mall while shopping. It was day he needed a few things at an electronic shop. A large crowd that extended outwards from a new woman's fashion store had caught his attention. Being curious he went up and had to stand on his toes to see over the crowd. For the grand opening, the store was entertaining the crowd with clowns and a magic act.
Bill just smiled and started to turn away when he suddenly stopped and almost knocked over an elderly woman. Mumbling a polite apology, he slowly pushed his way through the crowd to get better look. Inside the store to the left of the crowd was the woman's dress department. Closely together were mannequins that stood on pedestals. They were elegantly dressed from evening wear to office outfits. One of them was wearing a nightie. It wasn't what the mannequins were wearing that got Bill's attention, but what he thought he saw. "There, again," he thought to himself. "That one moved!" Each of the mannequins was actually a real woman. They would hold their pose as long as possible and then with the slightest movement reposition themselves. Most of the customers swarming the store had not even noticed what the mannequins really were. Bill was almost in a trance watching these "living mannequins." Walking around each one, he was greatly impressed with their ability to stay immobile. Bill only sighed, thinking about his collection at home. Glancing at his watch he started to leave the store. At least when I get home I can admire my collection longer, he thought.
Changing his mind, he went opposite side of the store front to sit down on a bench to read. Taking a book from one of the shopping bags, Bill leaned back and started to flip the pages. Occasionally he glanced up at the "living mannequins." Amazingly, hardly anyone, but a few teenagers were paying attention to them. The girls had come up and made faces at the living mannequins, one even tried to lift a skirt, but a store manager shooed them away. Regardless of the attempts to make the mannequins move, they showed no response. "God, they are good" thought Bill. About an hour later, almost on cue the mannequins proceeded to slowly pull their arms towards their sides. They seem to stretch a bit and stepped off the pedestals. Casually, they walked to the back of the store to a door. The store manager was there and with a pleasant smile thanked them as they left one by one. Bill glanced at his watch and realized he hadn't eaten for a while. Getting up from the bench, he walked to the food court. Well at least when I get home, he thought, I can view my own mannequins. They aren't going anywhere. "Hmm, I left Susan, up in Angela's old room I'll have to move her down stairs next to her mother." Susan was his last acquisition. After being processed she turned out looking exactly like his old girl friend Angela. And Angela...well she was taken care of the garden.
A short walk later, Bill was in line waiting for his burger. Bill glanced over at one of the tables. There sitting alone, was one of the living mannequins. She was eating a salad and glancing around. Bill and her eyes had met. The looks that they exchanged only signaled that it was okay for Bill to come over to her table. Getting his lunch he proceeded to walk towards her. "Hi, my name is Bill. I saw your presentation at the new fashion store. It was really terrific." "Why thank-you," she replied. "I don't usually get too many compliments. Most people don't understand the art form." "Well I do," interjected Bill, "takes a lot of work and patience. My name is Bill. Mind if I join you?" "Not at all," she replied. "I saw you standing in front of me at the store. My name is Judy." Pulling a chair out Bill sat to the side of her. They exchanged a few more pleasantries while they ate their lunch. Picking up a french fry Bill looked at her "I have to just ask you this, Judy, how they heck do you and the other woman stay that way? How do you stay so immobile?"
"Well," said Judy while wiping her mouth with napkin, "we 'mannequins' all belong to a fashion agency. One of the departments called Dynamic Sculpture, specializes in living mannequins. Lots of stores ask for us when they open or have a fashion blitz. Producers of stage plays even come to us, when they need a prop that needs to move. We get some pretty extensive training. Essentially it's standard model training, makeup and a type of transcendental meditation / yoga philosophy. Once we get made up, we induce a trance. This is done when I concentrate on my mantra. While in this state, we call it 'being on display.' When you first start, an hour for us easy. The woman that have been doing this for years have been known to go up to 8 hours. I've been only doing it for 2 years now. The longest I've done it is about two and half hours."
"That is really neat," said Bill while sipping a drink. "Do you see the people around you and hear them?" "Well sometimes we do but mostly no. Though, our eyes are open and blink incredible slow, we usually are dreaming of something pleasant. Once in a while we'll see what's happening. This occurs when the crowds get real noisy. Like today, when I saw you." For a moment there was a silence between Bill and Judy. They locked eyes for a moment. While Judy was playing with her salad, she looked back up and said to Bill "you know, you are kind of cute."
Bill blushed a beet red. Taking a sip of his soda he looked back and replied "Well, you're more than cute. You are incredibly beautiful." Judy didn't even blush. Her training gave her the ability to suppress and control her body language. She slowly returned a slight smile. "Would you like to go to a movie," asked Bill? "Sure, that sounds..." Judy had stopped in mid-sentence. Bill was a little puzzled at her action. As he waited for her to continue, he noticed that Judy was staring right through him. "Judy? Judy? Are you okay?" He waived his hand in front of her face and she didn't move. "Good God, she had 'gone on display.'" Bill controlled himself. A few customers eating their lunch had glanced over at Bill. He didn't want them to think he was a nut and eating lunch with a mannequin. Not that the idea had some appeal to him.
He sat there finishing his lunch and kept staring back at Judy. Her lips were slightly parted from the words she was about to say. Bill couldn't help from really giving Judy a good look. Her blonde hair was impeccably coiffured. She had bangs to her eyebrows and shoulder length. Blue eyes set off by dark eyeliner and the longest eyelashes Bill had ever seen. Her blush gave her face a slight angular, or chiseled look to it. It added to the mannequin mystique but Bill thought it was stunning. She had on an ivory blouse that buttoned to her neck with a dark cameo at the collar. For her skirt she wore a deep purple skirt that was ankle length, set off by her high heel boots. She was dressed as of she was going to an office for work. Carefully he reached out and touched her fingers that were holding a fork. They felt soft and warm, but he could feel the rigidity in the fingers. he traced his fingers around the her knuckles. There was no shaking or any nervous twitch from Judy.
About 10 minutes later, Judy blinked. She began to start speaking and picked up where she had left off "...like a good idea." Bill had a bit of astonishment. "Wow, why did you do that? What happened? You just went 'on display' for ten minutes." "Oh, I am sorry, Bill. Sometimes when I return from a long trance a residue effect kicks in. It usually happens within the first hour. It's pretty harmless. Last week when I went home I went 'on display' while drying myself off after a shower. Good thing I didn't do it in the shower, I might have drowned."
"Well I am glad it didn't happen. That would have been terrible." said Bill. He had finished his lunch and was putting the remnants into a trash bucket near by. "But," he continued, "the frozen look you had on your face, when you were caught in mid-sentence was kind of neat. Really nice." "Why, thank you Bill" replied Judy. "I kind of find it a bit of a turn on," she added. "I've too have always been fascinated," continued Bill "by living mannequins. If you know what I mean." Bill slowly stretched out his hand and gently took Judy's hand. They slightly squeezed and both stood up. "So any ways," asked Bill, "what about that movie?" "Well there is a cinema here by, let's check it out" answered Judy. Pulling her chair out for her, Bill and Judy walked out of the food court to the cinema at the end of the mall. They spent a few minutes deciding what to see. The new science fiction movie seemed to be the best choice.
Bill and Judy impromptu date ended in a pleasant evening. Bill walked Judy to her car and kissed her good night. The both drove to their own homes. Bill was immersed in deep thought while driving home. Judy was so nice. He would love to add her to his collection. But, he would like to have an assistant. Angela had done a great job but she wanted to stay frozen most of the time. It was fun posing Angela in different positions. It was even great fooling around with Angela when she was frozen in place. But he did need help with his collection. They need to dusted, changed and repositioned at least once a week. Judy might be that person to help him.
Several weeks had pass. Bill and Judy were seeing each other frequently. The day came when Judy asked Bill to come to her apartment for dinner. Dressing rather casual he showed up with a small bouquet of flowers for her. "Oh, how sweet," she said. "Let me put them in water." As Judy left the room, Bill took a look at Judy's living room. It was rather modern with plush carpet and comfortable looking chairs and a sofa. Scattered about the room was pieces of small sculpture of famous works. Very well done he thought. Judy returned placing the flowers on the table and took Bill by the arm. "Let me show you my place," she said.
He got the ten cent tour, but was a little perplexed when he went into Judy's bedroom. It was a typical woman's bedroom: soft colours, a vanity, a few stuffed animals and the scent of perfume. But in the corner with a halogen lamp shining on it was a two foot square pedestal. "What are you using that for," asked Bill. "Oh that's my pedestal for practicing when I want to 'go on display.' I am trying to get up to 10 hours like a few of the other woman at work. There is more money in it. Seems that the stores like to really fool the crowd, by minimizing our breaks. The longer we can 'go on display' the more money we make for the fashion agency. Of course we get a percentage of it."
"Well that's a really easy way to make money," said Bill. "To bad you just don't dip yourself into wax." "Oh, getting kinky are we?" said Judy with a smile. "One of the girls did that at work. I don't know how she did it. But I understood it took her hours to get it off. She did set the record though: ten and half hours!" Can you believe it? Her commission was really good that week. Come on let's have dinner." Bill went to the kitchen to help Judy. During dinner they had a pleasant conversation, but Bill kept thinking in the back of his mind that this is was too good to be true. Heck, if I could get her to move in with me. She could work all day as a 'living mannequin.' At night when she comes home she could be my assistant. The evening was pleasant and it ended with Bill and Judy going to bed. Before falling asleep, Judy turned to Bill. "Just wanted you to know, that I usually 'go on display' at 6 AM. I practice from that time for two hours and then go to work. So if you get up and find me on my pedestal, just help yourself to the refrigerator. Okay?" "No problem," said Bill, he was getting sleepy. Judy wore him out. Must be all that saved up energy she has.
Bill woke up with the sun shining in his face. He was a little disoriented and stumbled a bit while going to the bathroom. Coming back out he noticed that Judy wasn't in bed, but was on her pedestal. She was on display. "Wow!" he said. He almost stumbled backwards. Judy had gotten up early and had gotten dressed for 'work.' She was decked out in a black corset, garters and black stockings and high heels. She had on a shoulder length auburn wig. Her makeup was impeccable. Attached to the corset was a price tag. Bill walked up and took a look at the tag. It was from a local woman's lingerie store. Laying on a chair near by was Judy's trench coat. She must be going to be putting that on when she leaves work, thought Bill.
Walking around Judy, Bill couldn't help but admire this living mannequin. He gently reached out and touched Judy on the stomach. No reaction. Then her legs and finally he cupped her breasts. Still no reaction. Amazing he thought. Judy and I need to talk. Bill quietly went to the refrigerator and got some fruit for breakfast. Getting dressed he walked up to Judy and kissed her on the lips. "See you later, dear."
Friday night, Bill called Judy. "Hi Judy, yes I miss you too. Would you like to come over tomorrow for a picnic? Great! By the way, I just finished installing a fish pond. Even have a golden statue of a Greek Goddess, I think you might like it. Kind of like the small statues you have, but this one is life size. Okay, see you around noon time."
"Oh, what a beautiful garden you have. That statue, it's so exquisite! Where did you get it," asked Judy. A small chickadee had alighted on the statue's shoulder and began to sing. "Oh, I've had it for a long time," replied Bill while placing down a picnic basket. "You might say it was something that took along time get. A lot of work and patience, but it was worth it, really does something for the garden." The chickadee finished it's lonesome song and flew away. Judy walked closer to the stature and touched it. Turning she smiled at Bill, her new boyfriend. "This is a great place for our picnic." "Sure is" replied Bill, "I like to come here often to relax." He winked at Angela and sat down next to his new girlfriend. Angela tried to giggle.
....to be continued..