Who's the Maid Now?
Victoria Lightfoot turned over in her bed as she saw the morning light piercing through the dark curtains of her room. She grinned at the feeling of her silk sheets as she pulled them across her smooth skin. Her eyes closed for a moment before she opened them to glance up at the Raphael inspired mosaic she had paid a small fortune to have installed on her bedroom ceiling the year before.
Her eyes tore away from the ostentatious reminder of her roots and privileges. Victoria lived a life she knew others would kill to possess for themselves.
The four-hundred million dollar fortune that her aristocratic parents had bequeathed her had left Victoria without a real worry for a lifetime. It had all come too fast for her though.
Despite her constant thoughts of him, she struggled to remember what her father looked like. It was only pictures that triggered her own memories, but she was no longer sure if her memories of how looked were truly her own or based on the images captured.
The four-hundred million dollar fortune that her aristocratic parents had bequeathed her had left Victoria without a real worry for a lifetime. It had all come too fast for her though.
The father she cherished, that had worshiped her as his darling little girl, had passed when she was only seven. He was much older than her mother, who even Victoria saw as little more than a trophy for her beloved father. He was someone she could not stop thinking about when she was alone.
Despite her constant thoughts of him, she struggled to remember what her father looked like. It was only pictures that triggered her own memories, but she was no longer sure if her memories of how looked were truly her own or based on the images captured.
If he had lived, it would have all been different for her. She was sure of it.
Despite the beauty that people had complimented her for since childhood, her mother had a way of making her feel not good enough. The older woman had six inches on her in height, making her tall for a girl height of 5'6" appear short by comparison. Boyfriends often lusted after her mother, who never failed to stroll around the home in strappy high heels, short hems and with her long, flowing, blonde hair down.
While Victoria was certain that her mother loved her, she often felt that the woman wanted her to know that she was a notch beneath her. At times, her mother showed her a disregard that she often reserved for her servants. At others, the woman was doting. Victoria self-worth was a slave to her mother's ever-shifting whims growing up; feeling cherished one moment and an afterthought the next.
It had been nearly a year since her mother had passed. The scandal of the woman dying of an overdose of antidepressants in the bed of her daughter's ex-boyfriend had made for headlines on the social pages. The barrage of negative press seemed like an insult to injury to Victoria, and she retreated as much as she could from the world after the funeral.
Her mother's death left her with no family. Despite the wealth of hangers-on that surrounded her day and night, willing to do anything she wanted, Victoria felt alone. She knew that her sycophants did not like her for who she was. They just wanted whatever change she was willing to spill from her pocketbook for them.
Still, Victoria felt that she had no right to complain. She was a 20-year-old beauty, an heiress and pampered. It was a life that most could only dream of, but it struck her as a hollow existence.
Everything in her life was safe. There was no excitement, only boredom as she knew what was coming around every corner.
Victoria was all too aware of what everyone thought of her too. She was nothing more than a spoiled rich girl to those that surrounded her. In their eyes, she had nothing more to show from her existence besides what she was handed by the fruits of her father's labors and her mother's genes.
She wanted to experience a different life where she could be seen as something more than the residue of her parents' success and good fortune. She had dreamed of it for years. Running away from everything she was and doing things that 'real girls' did. Getting a job at a retail store, waitressing, maybe even training and working her way into a salon as a hairdresser. The thought of being on the giving side rather than the receiving made a smile come to her face as she felt a tingling sensation followed by an increasing wetness that she could not help but notice.
The fantasy soon subsided though. There was always the risk of exposure. Her name could give her away at any point. She could not hide the name on her check or the connections her social security number could make at any time.
It was too risky for her to take a job in public. If the people she met through any job she took found out, Victoria would not be just a spoiled rich girl, but a fraud.
Victoria knew that she could pay people to give her the experience, but that seemed unfulfilling. She wanted it to be real. She did not want to Marie Antoinette playing a peasant shepherdess at the Hameau de la Reine. They all knew she was the Queen and let her play an idealized version of peasantry that was detached from reality. That was not what Victoria wanted at all. She wanted to feel the change in her bones.
There was only one option that appeared to be there for the taking for her. She pictured her maid toiling in the kitchen getting ready to prepare her breakfast that morning, as she did every morning.
Julia was the perfect vessel to indulge her fantasy with for a little bit. Julia was a young woman, not more than 2 years older than she was. She had an understated beauty that she played down, afraid of being accused of trying to compete with her mistress's looks if she did otherwise.
Julia's background struck Victoria as something out of a Tennessee William's play. Her abusive father left her drug-using mother. She grew up in poverty in a trailer park before her mother was sentenced to jail for 25 years to life for a third strike drug offense of selling crystal meth.
After that, Julia was sent to a series of foster homes and any ambition that the girl may have had was stripped from her by the indignities she suffered. Victoria had her tailed by private investigators before the girl was hired and after. She marveled at the way Julia only seemed to find her self-worth in the opinions that men had of her.
Victoria had planned the switch in her mind out from the moment she hired the girl. She was sure that Julia would go along. There was nothing to stop her from doing it to the hilt.
In Victoria's mind, it was not as if it was only going to be good for her. Julia would be getting a benefit too.
The money Victoria would offer was something Julia would never see under any other circumstances. It would probably double what she made in her lifetime. In a rational world, Julia would have no choice, but to accept the offer and everything it entailed.
Beyond the money, Julia would get the benefit of seeing life from a different perspective. She would probably walk away from the swap with a far better opinion of herself and would no longer only feel validated by the opinions of the opposite sex. Victoria rationalized that to not save Julia from that seemed positively anti-feminist.
Victoria pushed herself out of bed as she thought, 'This is the day.'
Victoria was determined not to put it off any longer. She was going to tell Julia that they were going to swap lives for a short while. They would each get to experience a different life. It was going to be perfect. She would see to it to ensure that it was just that.
Victoria slipped her arms through the three-quarter length, kimono sleeves of her soft, white robe. She tied the self-tie at the waist of the robe before she adjusted her lace trimmed, surplice neckline over her bust.
The familiar sensation between her legs returned as she drew the door open, determined to embrace her fantasy, no matter how briefly. She was certain that this was the day that she would not back down.
The wide hallway leading to the stairs seemed even longer than it was. With each of the original paintings her father collected she passed, Victoria began to reflect on her familiar doubts. She always harbored them. She wondered if Julia would laugh right in her face. Even Victoria acknowledged her request was absurd. Every time she asked herself the question of who would give up being an heiress to be a maid, the answer was the same, no one, except her.
Victoria walked down the staircase and started towards the dinning room. She sat down at the head of the table and rang her bell.
"Yes, Miss Lightfoot", Julia said while she hurried into the room. Julia's eyes were dutifully cast down at the floor as she awaited her orders.
"Julia, can we speak for a moment?"
Julia shuddered at her boss's words. She was sure that nothing positive would come of the conversation. Her boss never used her name. She took it as an ominous sign that her services were no longer needed.
"Yes, Miss Lightfoot", Julia replied with keeping her eyes downcast.
Victoria wanted to say the words but froze. She bit her lip as Julia glanced up at her, waiting for the other shoe to drop. Victoria clenched her eyes and told Julia to bring out her breakfast.
Julia felt a momentary sense of relief as she scurried into the kitchen. She set about finishing making her boss her breakfast while her stomach fluttered. She wondered if Victoria knew how sick to her stomach her passing words had made. Even if she did, she was sure that her boss would not care. She was certain that the feelings of others were beneath Victoria's concern.
Victoria clenched her fists as she listened through the walls while Julia toiled in the kitchen. She cursed herself for her cowardice.
"Why can't you say it?" She asked herself, angry at her failure to carry out her intentions once again.
"Are you okay?" Julia asked as she emerged from the kitchen with her mistress's breakfast.
Victoria was startled by the question from her maid. She paused. Her lips quivered before she managed to reply, "Yes, I'm fine. Thank you."
Julia nodded while she placed the meal in front of her boss. She stood off to the side of the table to await further orders as Victoria ate her breakfast with small bites.
Julia noticed the stressed and thoughtful look on her mistress's face. She knew that something was wrong. She only hoped that it did not involve her, but what other concerns did the heiress have. She was certain that she could be the only source of her mistress's consternation.
Once Victoria finished eating, Julia went to take the soiled plate and teacup from her. As she reached for them, Victoria clutched her maid's wrist.
Julia's head jerked to look at her mistress's face. Victoria stared up into Julia's eyes. Julia submissively darted her eyes away from Victoria's before her mistress said, "Please sit."
As awkward as she felt complying with the polite order, Julia sat down at the table to the left of her mistress. Victoria gave her maid a glance before she said, "I want to discuss something with you."
"What?" Julia asked as Victoria paused.
Victoria cringed before she said, "I have a proposition for you?"
The word proposition made Julia's skin crawl. She felt as if there had been too many propositions made to her already in her life. She wondered what her mistress wanted of her and prayed it was nothing sexual.
"Would you consider swapping places with me?"
Julia furrowed her brow. She gawked at the table unsure of what her employer meant. After nervously rubbing her right cheek, she answered, "Huh?"
Victoria's face twitched as she explained, "I would be you and you would be me."
"How could we do that?" Julia asked, confused by her mistress' question.
"Do you know about acting?" Victoria inquired.
"Yah", Julia replied slowly, waiting for a better response.
"It's just like that. You'll act like me, and I'll act like you."
"Okay…for how long?" Julia asked with raised eyebrows.
"Just a few months."
"Months, a year, two years tops", Victoria replied, unable to hold herself back from adding more time to the proposed swap.
"You think you'd wanna to be me for two years?" Julia replied with a mix of shock, horror and bemusement.
Her maid's evident disbelief made Victoria uneasy. She figured she would fall into line without much prodding, like everyone else in her life had always done. Still, on another level, Victoria enjoyed it because Julia was giving her a taste of what she wanted.
"What if I sweetened the deal for you?"
"Watcha yah mean?"
"How does a million dollars sound?"
"A million dollars!"
"A million dollars", Victoria responded with a nod of her head to her excited maid.
"To act like you?" Julia inquired for confirmation as she thought, 'Shit, I'd do that free.'
"That's right", Victoria replied.
Julia gave her boss a disbelieving look, but the look in Victoria's eyes told her that she was not joking. A smile came to Victoria's face as she asked, "So, what do you say?"
"What'd ya want me to say?" Julia inquired.
"What do you think?" Victoria replied.
"I don't think you'd want me to say?" Julia answered.
Victoria laughed before she said, "Will you do it?"
"Is this a joke?" Julia asked, unable to suspend her disbelief any longer.
"No. I'm being serious."
"No. Really, is this a joke?"
Victoria started to grow exasperated as she rejoined, "I already told you this isn't a joke. Do you want to do it or not?"
"Of course, I wanna do it", Julia replied.
A tingle went up Victoria's spine as she heard the words her maid spoke to her. The grin that came across Victoria's face made Julia certain that she was the subject of a ruse by her employer.
"So, what do we do now?" Julia asked, waiting for the hammer to fall on her, as it had never seemed to fail to before.
"I have no idea", Victoria admitted.
"Do we just sit here?" Julia asked as she looked around the room and crossed her hands over her apron.
"No. I've got to make some calls and…"
"Do yah wanna wear my apron while you make 'em", Julia asked with a laugh.
The laughter of her maid sounded almost derisive to Victoria. It was something she had never experienced from a servant before, but she had never proposed to swap places with one either. She wondered if she deserved the mockery. She was almost sure she did. She knew that she should turn down her maid, but the feeling of butterflies in her stomach grew more intense and, then, into an unceasing tingling. It spread down to her clitoris and throughout her body while she thought about taking her up on her offer.
Victoria blushed as she looked at Julia and said, "That's a great idea."
Julia was surprised by her words. She began to take off the apron. She waited for her boss to tell her to stop. As the last knot came untied, Julia was shocked that the words never made their way through her boss's lips before she removed the apron.
She folded it and held it out in front of Victoria. Victoria gave it a wary glance. Her hands slowly moved towards the apron. She knew that it was her fantasy to put it on, but doing so would give Julia the upper hand for once. It seemed almost dangerous to her to take it, but she wanted danger. She needed something to make her life more interesting.
Victoria took hold of the apron and began to inspect it. She furrowed her brow as he looked at it.
"What's wrong?" Julia asked.
"It's nothing, it's…it's just…"
"It doesn't go with whatcha wearing", Julia replied, cutting her boss off.
"That's right", Victoria admitted.
"Do yah want my dress too?" Julia asked.
"I couldn't…I mean…what would you wear?" Victoria replied with blushing cheeks.
"Do yah got sometin that'll fit me?" Julia inquired.
"I may", Victoria admitted as she struggled to get to her feet.
"What's wrong?" Julia asked as she noticed the wobble in Victoria's legs. They appeared to be unlike the stable, confident sauntering legs that she had been around the last year.
Victoria's heart raced as she stared at her maid. She fidgeted with her hands before she said, "It's nothing…I think I got something that might work for you."
Julia nodded while she followed behind Victoria as she led her up the stairs to her room. Julia's eyes darted around, looking to see if she someone else was in the house. She was certain it was setup, but she was in no position other than to take any cruel abuse the young heiress wanted to heap upon her.
Julia's eyes fixated on Victoria while they entered her spacious bedroom. The room was darkened by the curtains that were only drawn open when Julia cleaned the room.
Victoria turned on the lights with her tremulous fingers. Her nervousness was not lost on Julia.
'What is going on?' Julia asked herself while Victoria walked towards her closet with halting steps that made Julia believe that the girl was giving serious thought to her proposition.
Each step Victoria took made the young heiress feel more vulnerable. She knew she should stop right then. If she did, she could play it off as a teasing trick on her maid. It was not as if anyone would believe the girl over her or think that Victoria was serious about the swap. All she had to do was turn around and say it was a ruse. The tingle between her legs, however, urged her to follow through with her fantasy.
Victoria drew the doors to her walk in closet open and turned on the lights. Julia stepped in behind her mistress and gazed around at the wardrobe that had filled her with nothing but resentment and envy before. There were glamorous things that she was sure would never fit her right.
Victoria put the apron down on a dresser in the room while her eyes searched the racks of clothing. Victoria's eyes came to a stop as they came upon a loose fitting, silk maxi dress. She turned and looked back at Julia. She was certain it would fit her, but she felt the twinge of doubt return. Her rationality's momentary triumph over her libido, however, was short lived.
Julia watched as Victoria removed the v-necked dress from the hanger and handed it to her. Julia gave a curious look and said, "Do yah think this'll fit me?"
"It should", Victoria said before sucking her lips into her mouth.
"Where do yah want me to change?"
"Here is good", Victoria answered, looking around as she said the words.
"Can't I get some privacy?" Julia inquired.
"Oh…Sure…Sorry", Victoria replied, uneasy about apologizing to a maid, but feeling it was appropriate under the circumstances.
Victoria stepped out of the closet and closed the door. A smile came to her face as she felt a tingle go up her spine from being effectively ordered out of her closet.
"This is happening", Victoria squealed to herself, sure that Julia had not heard her.
Julia's head jerked towards the door as she heard the words and wondered, 'What is wrong with this girl?'
Julia was nervous as she pulled the dress over her head. A smile came across her face as she felt the soft fabric rubbing against her skin. It was far softer and more comfortable than most garments she had worn in her life. She pulled it down over her stomach. While it took a little doing to get the empire waist down to where it belonged, she was able to fit into the dress.
After she finished situating the dress on her body, she turned and smiled at her reflection in the mirror. The spaghetti straps and sweetheart neckline showed off her ample cleavage that she was used to concealing all day behind cheap uniforms.
Julia felt a strange sense of confidence while she walked towards the door and slowly drew it open. Victoria's head jerked towards the opening door and her eyes widened as she saw Julia out of uniform for the first time.
"Well, look at you", Victoria said with a forced smile.
Julia could tell that her mistress was trying to seem kind to her. She doubted her motives as she approached the girl and said, "I'm a little too big for this."
"Nonsense, but you've to take off those socks", Victoria replied to hush the girl.
Julia complied, taking off her sneakers and socks before Victoria told the girl that she would feel better once she did her makeup. While Julia doubted Victoria's words, she figured that getting a makeover was better than working, so she decided to go along with her employer.
Julia sat before Victoria's vanity. Her eyes focused on Victoria's efforts to locate cosmetics she felt would be best suited for Julia's skin tone.
Julia watched Victoria's efforts with careful attention as she added cosmetic after cosmetic to her face. She was silent while she watched Victoria's work. She was amazed by the difference Victoria's skilled hands had on her. She wanted to know how to do it herself, but she was too nervous to ask, sure that Victoria would realize her foolishness if she did so.
As she continued to work on Julia's makeup, Victoria started telling her about how she and her childhood friends practiced putting makeup on each other growing up. Julia could not help but feel jealous of her mistress's upbringing as she listened to her stories.
Her mother's problems had forced her to keep any would be friends at a good distance. There were girls that she was friendly with, but she could never let them get close for fear of finding out what her family was doing. Once the news hit the papers of her mother's arrest, whatever friendly acquaintances she had deserted her.
Once Victoria finished with Julia's makeup, she turned her attention to Julia's hair. The hair was far frizzier and frayed than she ever expected. The flat brown color was too plain in her eyes too.
Victoria knew that it was going to take more than her skills to make Julia's hair presentable. Still, she decided to do her best until proper arrangements could be made.
As Victoria styled her hair, she advised Julia to get highlights to make her hair more attractive. Julia nodded before she said, "I ain't no good with that sort of stuff."
"I'll get you a good stylist", Victoria replied with a smile while she coated Julia's hair with hairspray to keep it in place.
With Julia's hair done, Victoria straightened her back as she stood up. Julia turned and smiled at her reflection. She could never remember looking better than she did at that moment.
"Thank you", Julia said while Victoria squirmed in silence at the praise.
"What about my feet?" Julia then inquired.
"What about them?"
"You made me take off my socks and sneakers."
"Oh, we'll get you into something. Follow me", Victoria said.
"Okay", Julia responded before following Victoria back into her closet.
Victoria's eyes searched through the sandals in her shoe racks. She hoped that Julia could fit into one of her opened back sandals.
She handed a pair of backless, t-strap sandals to Julia. A smile came upon Julia's face as she worked her unpainted toenails into the right sandal and said, "They fit like a glove."
"Great", Victoria replied with knots in her stomach, wondering if they wore the same size as Julia put the other sandal on her foot.
Once Julia finished gazing down at how her feet looked in the shoes, she turned to Victoria and inquired, "Are yah gonna get changed too?"
Victoria paused before she gave Julia a silent nod. In the face of Victoria's continued silence, Julia asked, "Do yah wan me to leave?"
Victoria nodded again before Julia stepped out of the closet. She drew the door closed behind her, leaving her mistress to dress in privacy.
Victoria's eyes fixated on the maid's dress that had been dropped on the floor, not far from the socks and sneakers that Julia had worn to her home that morning. Reaching for the dress, she slowly stood up, clutching it in her small, smooth hands.
The cheap polyester felt unlike anything that she had ever considered putting on before. Victoria turned and looked in the mirror as she held the dress to her body. She moved about for a few seconds as she pictured wearing it, but she knew that she would never fully visualize it until it was covering her body.
Victoria undid her bathrobe, letting it fall to the ground near where Julia had left her uniform on the floor. Her eyes turned back to the dress she had placed on the dresser top.
She reached for the black dress. Victoria paused before she pulled it over her head. As the dress came over her head, the cheap, dampened fabric felt slightly sticky on her body as it descended down her breasts to her stomach.
Once she secured it over her body, she pulled at the hem that rested over her smooth legs. Her eyes darted back to the mirror and gazed at her reflection after she set about buttoning the two front buttons of the dress over her bust.
Victoria could not believe how humbled she looked in the dress that was decorated with a wide white lapels and cuffs. There was nothing more to it than that. The cheap dress that was unmistakably designed to be a cleaner's uniform made her look the part.
A grin came across her face as she thought about the shame she would feel if her mother or a lackey could come upon her that moment. She could never explain away why she was dressed in a used cleaner's uniform. She was not born for the role. Still, she felt the need to separate herself from what she had been.
Victoria bent down and clasped Julia's socks. She turned her nose at the dampness of the socks before she brought them to her face. She sniffed the socks and smelt a distinct odor of feet that was less powerful than she anticipated.
Blushing at what she had done, Victoria lifted one foot to put on the sock before she did the same with her other foot. She then worked her feet into Julia's white canvas sneakers before she laced them up.
"A perfect fit", she said to herself with a smile that quickly left her face.
Standing up, Victoria gazed back in the mirror. The apparent maid in the mirror mimicked her every movement. Her eyes caught sight of the apron she had left on top of the dresser.
She turned and grabbed the apron. She put it on before she tied the apron straps. The way the straps apron brought the loose dress closer to her body was not lost on Victoria. She felt that the maid's uniform was now hugging her form.
She gawked in silence at how lowly she appeared. If anyone stumbled upon her at that moment, she was certain that there would be no confusion about what role she held in her own household.
Victoria's quiet gaze was soon interrupted by a knock on the door.
"Miss…Victoria, are yah all right", Julia asked through the door, catching herself before she referred to her mistress as she normally did.
"I'm fine, thank you", Victoria replied.
'You're not fine', a voice in her head retorted before it continued, 'Look at you.'
Victoria's eyes veered back to her mirror. The discontent caused by one voice dissipated as she looked at herself again. She knew she looked the part she wanted to play for real. Her hands crept towards her panties, but they drew away as another knock on the door came.
"Do yah need help?" Julia asked.
'Does she think I'm stupid?' Victoria wondered before she moved towards the door to show herself to her mistress in waiting.
'Don't open that door', a voice of caution counseled from within her. The feeling between her legs, however, let her know that opening the door was exactly what she wanted.
Victoria drew the doors open and saw Julia turn to face her. Julia's jaw dropped as she looked at her rich mistress wearing the uniform that she had worn to her home that day.
The maid's dress was loose around Victoria's waist, but the apron she tied around her held it closer to her body. The socks and shoes were clearly hers as well. Julia could not believe that the heiress had gone through with it.
Victoria felt exposed as she stood before her maid being gawked at for wearing the very outfit Julia had put on that morning. She wondered if Julia felt out of place seeing it on someone else.
Julia was dumbstruck. She did not know how to break the silence between them. It had never been her place to break it before.
Sensing Julia's confusion about what to do next, Victoria took the initiative, "What's my first task, Miss Julia?"
Julia was taken aback by the respectful tone used by Victoria. She had never spoken to her in such a way. She could never remember anyone showing such respect to her. Men had showed her a lesser, passing respect, but that was only in an effort to flatter her as a means to an end.
Victoria was the first woman to ever show her any modicum of respect. It caused an odd feeling to stir inside of her.
Julia gazed at the nervous and eager heiress standing before her in a maid's dress. A smile came to her face as she decided to give her mistress what she wanted.
Julia nodded as she said, "You can start by cleaning up in here."
"Yes, Miss Julia", Victoria replied with a quiver in her tone.
Julia then added, "And when you're done, go and clean up the dinning room and kitchen."
"Yes, Miss Julia", Victoria replied again, enjoying the quick succession of orders she was given.
Victoria turned and went towards the bed to make it. Julia stopped her before she said, "Don't start with the bed. Yah need to get some natural light on the subject to see all the dust."
Victoria blinked in silence wondering what she meant before Victoria drew open the curtains in the bedroom. Victoria winced from the bright light that filled the room.
The natural light bathed upon her as she stared off into the horizon. At that moment, Victoria was happy that she was several acres from the nearest home and that the tree lined street kept her windows largely out of the view of cars passing by her mansion.
Victoria then turned to Julia and said, "Thank you."
"Don't mention it", Julia replied, knowing that she should be thanking her mistress instead.
That thought made Julia freeze. She turned to Victoria and asked, "What should I do?"
"Just do what I…what a mistress would do", Victoria answered.
Julia nodded as she walked out of the room and went down the stairs. She took hold of Victoria's kindle and stepped into the warm backyard to layout in one of her mistress's pool chairs.
While Julia sunned herself, Victoria went to retrieve the cleaning supplies from the supply closet that was beneath the staircase. She walked down the hallway she had passed through thousands of times feeling very different. The expensive paintings appeared out of place to her, almost as if she was undeserving of them as she passed them wearing something that she was sure their prior owners never would have considered dressing in.
Victoria felt alien to her familiar surrounding while she made her way downstairs. The sound of the sneakers on the hardwood floor seemed far different from the normal sounds of her slippers, flats and heels made on it.
Victoria drew open the door to the closet beneath the stairs and looked inside. She could not recall ever opening it until the fantasy entered her mind. Since that moment, however, she had developed a good familiarity with where Julia placed everything.
She wasted little time in retrieving the wood cleaner and a rag before starting up the stairs for her bedroom. She walked up the stairs and went back into her room and began to clean the dust off the furniture while she polished it.
Once she finished, Victoria turned her attention to the bed. The sheets were the familiar mess she left them in each day.
Until the fantasy started playing out in her head, she had never made her bed a day in her life, except as a rare form of punishment from her mother. She pulled off the comforter before she fixed the pillows as Julia had done for everyday of her service.
A familiar sense of excitement ran through her as she thought about Julia sleeping in the bed that night. It would be just the opposite of the day before. She would be making it for Julia, and she would be only allowed in the room for the purpose of cleaning it.
Victoria giggled to herself as she tucked the soft silken sheets under the bed before she laid the comforter back over the bed. After she adjusted the comforter to get in place, Victoria carried the cleaner and rag out of the room to retrieve the vacuum from the closet.
The vacuum was far heavier than most things she carried in her life. It was not heavy to her, but it weighed her down as she trudged upstairs.
Carrying it down the hallway was a far more comfortable task for her before she stepped into her bedroom to plug the machine in. With the plug in the outlet, Victoria fiddled with the controls before she turned the machine on.
The loud hum drove many thoughts out of her mind. She found that it was difficult to think of anything other than what the machine was being dragged across while she made her way over every inch of the plush carpeting.
After she finished vacuuming, Victoria carried the vacuum back down the stairs. She put it away and started towards the dinning room. She collected her soiled plate and cup that Julia had gone to grab before she had clutched her wrist. She smiled as she knew it was now her job to clean them while she brought the cup, plate and utensils into the kitchen.
She carried the dirtied items into the kitchen and started towards the sink. She came to a stop as she saw looked out the window and saw Julia basking the sunlight reading her kindle.
Victoria was stunned by the sight of her relaxing maid. Julia looked far more elegant than she imagined she could be as she splayed across the patio lounge chair. Victoria's eyes lingered on the girl's shapely legs, which were crossed and peeking out from beneath the ankle length hem of the dress that she had pulled far up her legs.
Victoria started to laugh as she thought what her mother would have said if she caught her maid using one of her electronic devices and relaxing in her house. She knew that her mother would have fired the girl right on the spot. Victoria paused before she shook the thought away as she thought, 'No. I'm the maid now.'
Reaffirming that thought, Victoria repeated it to herself like a mantra while she scoured clean the plate and cup she had used that morning before she put them aside to dry. She laughed as she thought about how her mother refused to get a dishwasher, preferring the cleanliness provided by manual labor.
Victoria was certain that her maid would have preferred the machine, but she never got one after she inherited the home. The thought of having to clean each item by hand made her nether regions tingle. She realized that she would be the victim of her mother's preference to not make the helps' life any easier, which was something that she never considered before that moment either.
Looking up at the clock, Victoria felt her stomach start to rumble. She was surprised by how late it had gotten already given how little she felt she had accomplished. She walked out of the kitchen and opened the door to the backyard.
She felt the warm summer sun on her. It heated her quickly through the black polyester of the uniform.
Victoria was shocked that even the warm sun felt different in a maid's dress. Everything felt different to her already.
She cupped her hands together in front of her waist while she said, "Excuse me, Miss Julia."
Julia smiled as she veered her eyes away from the screen. She was startled for a second by how meek her mistress looked.
"Uh…yes?" Julia replied.
"Would you like something for lunch?"
Julia paused before she said, "Sure. That'd be nice."
"What would you like?"
"Surprise me", Julia replied to Victoria's evident displeasure. She wanted to correct herself in the face of Victoria's disappointment, but Victoria nodded and made an obedient turn into the home.
Julia shook her head at what she witnessed as she thought, 'That crazy bitch is really going with this.'
Victoria felt conflicted as she started making a sandwich for Julia. She had hoped for a detailed order. Something that would take her out of her comfort zone and remove any choice she had concerning the subject. Victoria sensed that Julia noticed her disappointed response. She stepped away quickly though, knowing that she had to condition Julia to be a proper assertive mistress of the home.
Victoria knew that Julia was going to require more training than she could give her though. She made mental notes to herself as she put the porcelain plate containing Julia's sandwich on a silver platter beside a bottle of sparkling water.
Julia watched in amazement as her boss presented her with her lunch the same way she presented her lunch and dinner each day. Julia thanked her mistress, not thinking to give her another order. The lack of further instruction disappointed Victoria as she went back inside to fix her own lunch.
Victoria ate her meal on her feet while she researched speech therapists to work with Julia. After searching online for a short time, she found a highly regarded one in her area. She called to make an appointment. The woman on the other end was hardly eager to make the house call that Victoria requested, but the significant amount she was willing to pay over the therapist's regular hourly fee made the woman change her mind. The arrangement was set for a morning training session each weekday with the speech therapist before Victoria called a personal trainer.
Personal trainers were a subject she had far more familiarity with than speech therapists. She had used a personal trainer since her mother hired one for her when was thirteen, believing that her daughter was starting to carry too much weight in her stomach. Personal trainers had helped shape every inch of her body before she let her most recent trainer go a week earlier as part of her efforts to cut herself off from the gilded existence of Victoria Lightfoot.
The personal trainer was easier to book for several hours each afternoon than the speech therapist had been. Victoria figured that Julia would chafe at having to work with them, especially after having a day to lounge about, but she was sure that the girl would quickly come to understand that it was all being done for a greater purpose.
Victoria then made arrangements for Julia to go to a beauty salon the following day. That was going to follow the day of shopping she had planned for the girl. Victoria figured that if she better looked the part, Julia might grow a little more into the role in the interim.
With the arrangements finalized, Victoria started towards the dinning room. She cleaned every inch of it before she went into the great room to begin to clean it.
As she cleaned it, Julia walked into the room. Victoria and Julia caught eyes for a second before Julia turned to exit the room.
"Miss Julia, what's wrong?" Victoria asked, struggling not to smile at calling her maid "Miss."
"It's nothin. I was just gonna put on the TV."
"You can watch it. I'll clean up in here later", Victoria replied, hoping that Julia would understand that she was supposed to play a dominant role and take her up on the offer.
"Oh, okay. Yah. Let's do that", Julia replied.
Victoria gave her an obedient bob of the head before she asked, "What would you like for dinner, Miss Julia?"
"I don't know…"
"Is there really nothing you want?" Victoria replied, cutting off Julia before she could leave the decision to Victoria again.
"Well, what do we have?" Julia asked.
Victoria furrowed her brow. She knew that Julia had been there when the deliveryman dropped off the packages from the grocer the morning before.
Julia sensed Victoria's frustration and thought about the steak filets that had been dropped off. She smiled as she asked for something she rarely ever had in her life, "I'd like a steak."
"Yes, Miss Julia", Victoria replied with a bob.
She grinned at her maid's realization of what was expected of her. Victoria scurried off for the kitchen.
Julia shook her head at her mistress's eagerness to serve her. As she turned on the television, she thought, 'The bitch has gone crazy!'
Victoria went into the kitchen and retrieved the steak. She then reached for one of the cookbooks that had been purchased by her mother for the help to see how to prepare the steak.
Victoria reached for a cast iron frying pan and was shocked by the weight of it. She had difficulty getting it onto the stove before she prepared the meat for her pretend mistress.
Victoria set about preparing the steak and side dishes. The preparation of the side dishes took far longer than she ever expected.
Once she finished, Victoria carried the dishes to the dinning room table for Julia. She set the table, like her maids had always done for her, before she told Julia that her dinner was ready. Julia thanked Victoria while she got up to head into the dinning room.
Victoria then retrieved a bottle of wine for Julia at her request before she served the girl and stood to the side of the table awaiting further orders. She was surprised that none came before Julia started reaching for a serving spoon.
"I'll get that for you, Miss Julia", Victoria replied as she rushed to the table.
"Umm…thanks", Julia said after some hesitation.
"What's wrong, Miss Julia?"
"I'm used to not bein' treated like a child", Julia answered.
Victoria was struck by the response. She wondered if her pampered existence was nothing more than an extended childlike state. She had not been allowed to serve herself or otherwise take care of herself her entire life.
'No wonder I'm so stunted', Victoria thought, stunned by the perceived astuteness of her maid's observation.
Victoria collected herself and served Julia while she said, "You'll get used to it."
"I guess", Julia replied, her tone belying her belief in her words.
Once Julia finished eating, Victoria cleaned up the dinning room. She cleaned Julia's plate, utensils and wine glass before she started to think about what to make herself for dinner.
Her eyes darted to the leftover side dishes she had prepared. While there was no meat left, the vegetables and mashed potatoes were a quick fix that would keep from having to spend too much time on herself.
The thought of eating her maid's scraps excited her the more she thought about it as she took to cleaning the cast iron frying pan. By the time she finished cleaning the last pot she used to cook, she convinced herself that it was the only rational choice under the circumstances.
As she took the first bite of the lukewarm leftovers, Victoria felt as if she had lowered herself more than by putting on the dress and serving her maid. She felt not even deserving enough of a meal of her own as she ate out of the porcelain serving bowls, not wanting to soil another plate she would have to clean by hand.
Once she finished, Victoria went to the living room to tell Julia about what was in store for her. Victoria was unsurprised that Julia was hardly thrilled about the prospect of having to work with a speech therapist and a personal trainer each day. Still, the girl offered no active resistance to the arrangements and seemed to enjoy the prospect of the day of shopping and beauty treatments Victoria had planned for the following day.
Once they finished talking, Julia stood up and said, "I guess I should be gettin' home."
"What are you talking about?" Victoria inquired.
Julia gave her a curios look before Victoria said, "You're the mistress of this home, now. You can stay in any room you want."
"Even yours?" Julia asked with raised eyebrows.
"It's not mine if you want it", Victoria replied to Julia's shock.
Julia picked up the hint that Victoria wanted her to take it while she replied, "Okay, but where will you sleep?"
"I'll go to the au pair quarters."
"That's what that room is?" Julia inquired as she thought about the room that was located off the kitchen.
Victoria nodded before Julia said, "I thought it was a Maid's Quarters."
Victoria shrugged before Julia added with a laugh, "I guess it is now."
'It is', Victoria thought. A quick smile came to her face, but it left just as quickly as Victoria felt a quiver over sleeping in her maid's quarters.
As doubts began to return to her mind, Victoria hastily changed the subject and asked Julia if she needed help taking off her makeup.
Julia shrugged and nodded before they went up to the master bedroom. They proceed into the bathroom where Victoria took hold of her makeup remover. Victoria set about wiping away Julia's makeup before Julia removed her dress and dressed in one of Victoria's lacy sleepshirts.
Julia decided to rest as she turned on the television in the room. Victoria turned to Julia and asked, "Will you be needing anything else tonight, Miss Julia?"
Julia shook her head as she turned on a reality television show. Victoria walked out of the room and closed the door behind her, knowing that she had to improve the quality of the television that Julia watched. She figured that that, however, should wait for the next day.
Victoria went back downstairs and started for the au pair quarters that was located off the kitchen. It was a room Julia rarely entered because it was never used. Victoria pushed the door open and stared at the room she had made up the night before. The cheap, discount retailer comforter and sheets were unlike the luxuries that she had made up for Julia that morning.
Victoria took off her maid's dress, socks and sneakers and got into the shower of the bathroom that was the only other room beside the bedroom area in the au pair's quarters.
Once she finished showering, Victoria climbed into bed. The aches in her body eased up as her muscles relaxed before she fell swiftly to sleep.
The next morning, Victoria scrunched her eyes at the grating sound of the alarm going off. She was not used to rising so early. Still, she knew that her new mistress was used to getting up early, so she figured that she had to be prepared for her to rise.
Victoria forced herself out of bed and went into her bathroom. After a quick shower, she dressed in her uniform and pulled her hair back into a low ponytail. Thoughts about putting makeup on quickly left her mind. She did not want anything on her to show that she was anything other than she wanted to show herself to be.
She walked out of her quarters and went into the kitchen to make Julia breakfast. She set about preparing it in relative silence. Julia was surprised to find that her breakfast was waiting for her when she got up early, as she was conditioned to do so each morning.
Julia thanked Victoria before she ate, not noticing Victoria's discomfort for being thanked for doing her duty. Once she finished, Victoria asked, "Miss Julia, would you like to get dressed now?"
"Uh…sure", Julia replied with a smile.
Julia went Victoria up to the master bedroom. Julia took off Victoria's silk bathrobe and put on the same outfit she had worn the day prior before Victoria did her makeup and her hair the same way.
With Julia dressed, Victoria took to dressing herself in her closet. She decided to go for an understated look. While she could not go shopping as a maid locally, she did not want to detract attention from Julia.
Victoria searched her wardrobe for the plainest outfit she could manage to put together. Settling on a plain, black, short-sleeved tee shirt and dark jeans, she dressed herself in them before stepping into a pair of white flip-flops that she normally reserved for the beach.
She smiled at the sound the cheapest footwear in her closet made as it slapped against the soles of her feet while she went into her bathroom. Julia watched her in silence, surprised to see her mistress in something other than a dress, leggings or a skirt. She could not remember seeing her wearing non-heeled shoes outside either. She thought to herself, 'She's really gonna let herself be seen like that?'
Victoria retied her hair back in a mid high ponytail with a black ponytail holder before she put on light, understated makeup. Victoria gazed at her unusually plain appearance in the mirror. A smirk came across her face as she wondered what the girls at the salon would think of her out of character look.
Julia's eyes widened as she saw her mistress's understated look when she emerged from the bathroom. She had never seen her face with less color. Her hair had never been anything but down when she stepped out of the home either. She could not believe that she would really step out the door looking as she did while she followed Victoria into the garage.
"What car are we takin?" Julia asked.
"We're going to have a lot of bags, so we've got to take the Range Rover."
"Oh", Julia replied, clearly disappointed to not get a chance to ride her in her boss's white, convertible Lamborghini.
"Don't worry. You'll get your chance to drive the Lambo", Victoria replied, trying to cheer up the girl.
Julia perked up at the words before Victoria handed her the keys and said, "Here."
"You want me to drive?"
"You have a license", Victoria countered.
"But it's your car."
"No, Miss Julia, it's your car, now", Victoria responded with a smile.
"So, does that make my Honda yours?" Julia asked with a laugh.
"I guess so", Victoria replied thinking about the old, light blue, cloth seated Honda with a dented in bumper that was parked outside of the house.
Julia shook her head with a laugh that made Victoria uncomfortable. Victoria got into the passenger seat and thought, 'She thinks I'm nuts! Maybe I am. What the hell is wrong with me? Why am I doing this to myself? I can start again and be myself! I don't have to be someone else for a while to do it!'
The ring of her cell phone in the car broke her concentration. Julia peered over at Victoria while she pulled out of the garage and asked, "Who is it?"
"It's no one. Don't answer it", Victoria answered, not wanting to speak to her discarded toady.
Julia nodded in response before she pulled out of the driveway and started down the street. She followed Victoria directions to the nearest mall before they parked and made their way inside.
They walked through the mall before veering into a high-end department store Julia had never stepped foot in before. They made their way to the lady's section to peruse through the various racks of clothing.
Julia was aghast at the prices that Victoria did not even blink an eye at while she gave her former maid outfit after outfit to try on. Julia accepted them in stunned silence, knowing that many of the dresses were retailing for more money than she had been taking home in month.
Victoria led Julia into the dressing room and waited for her to try on each outfit. Julia came out after trying each outfit on to receive Victoria's opinion of how she looked in it. Julia could not find one that she felt did not flatter her, but Victoria found flaws with various outfits that whittled down her selections before they settled on what she was going to buy Julia.
Julia was excited by the outfits she carried to the shoe department. She looked around the department and asked, "Do I need shoes?"
"A girl can never have enough", Victoria rejoined.
"But yours fit", Julia whispered.
"My sandals fit you. That doesn't mean you'll fit into the shoes that don't have an open back", Victoria replied, wanting Julia to get her own footwear to differentiate herself from her former mistress.
Julia nodded as she watched Victoria select a few shoes before she had Julia's foot measured. With the measurement done, the salesgirl retrieve shoes in her size and had Julia try them on. As Julia walked around the store in the shoes, she could never remember having pairs of heels that fit so perfectly or were so comfortably padded.
"I could get used to this", Julia gushed as the clerk stepped aside.
"You should…at least for a little bit", Victoria replied with a nudge.
Julia smiled before the clerk rung up their selections and they headed for the makeup department. The girls at the makeup counter swarmed around them. They started giving Victoria recommendations about buying and applying makeup.
Victoria was humiliated by their publicly stated conclusions, hopeful that no one overheard them. She wanted to retort that she was perfectly capable of selecting and applying her own makeup, but her deliberately plain appearance made the salesgirls' assumptions seem valid to her. Victoria brushed aside their words and told them they were only shopping for Julia.
Julia felt self-conscious as they unleashed a barrage of recommendations of various products for her face and nails. As Julia processed them, she thought, 'Why don't yah just say I'm ugly?'
As insignificant as the salesclerks were making her feel, Julia nodded and tried to internalize their recommendations before Victoria slipped her the money to pay for the cosmetics. After the cosmetics were paid for, the two carried Julia's bags to the car.
"Thank you for everything ", Julia said as she got into the drivers seat.
"It was my pleasure", Victoria replied before adding, "Now, I've got to get some uniforms for me, and we'll be good to go."
"Yah could just wear my clothes. I mean who's gonna see yah" Julia countered.
The idea caused a smile to come to Victoria's face. She figured that Julia's secondhand clothing was more fitting to complete their swap than any thing else she could buy.
"That's a good idea. Do you mind stopping by your place?"
"Well, yes. We have to pick your clothes up."
Although Victoria could tell Julia was hesitant to let her see where she lived, she figured it was best to get it out in the open. Julia started the car and drove towards her home.
Victoria sensed the continued unease on Julia's face. Julia's eyes darted away from Victoria as they pulled into her neighborhood.
The boards over a number of windows they passed turned Victoria's stomach. Julia saw the mortified look on Victoria's face and asked, "Still wanna switch lives with me?"
Julia punctuated her question with an uneasy laugh. The neighborhood looked even worse to her than usual after her day of being catered to by people who were better off than she had ever been.
Julia's eyes glazed over while she pulled over in front of a decrepit looking building. Victoria tried to overlook the building's overgrown lawn and damaged and discolored asbestos shingles, as she endeavored to sound impressed, "You have your own home?"
Julia gave her boss a blank look before she shook her head as she replied, "The house was split up into three parts. My landlord rents to three of us, but one lady has got like 10 people living there, I swear."
Victoria nodded, slowly realizing her naivety, before Julia got out of the car. Victoria hesitated as she reached for her door handle. She had never stepped foot in an area like this before.
'This isn't safe', she told herself. Her reservations prompted an internal rebuttal though, 'This is what you want! You didn't want to be safe. You wanted real!'
With that thought in mind, Victoria opened her car door and got out. She hurried behind Julia and followed her up the stoop to the back door of the multifamily home.
Julia unlocked three locks before they stepped into the apartment. The apartment was tidy, but the interior walls and flooring were nearly as discolored as the outside walls and roof. Victoria figured that no amount of cleaning could make Julia's cramped quarters seem clean.
"Welcome to my palace", Julia said, offering another self-deprecating joke.
"It's nice", Victoria lied.
Julia gave her a disbelieving look before she joked again, "I almost hate to give it up."
"Really?" Victoria inquired.
Julia smirked at Victoria's shocked response. She could not believe the sheltered girl actually believed such an obvious lie.
"Well, it is yours. No one can take that away from", Victoria remarked.
'Except the landlord', Julia rebutted her boss in her mind, but elected to keep to herself while they walked into her bedroom. Julia then drew open her closet, revealing the many uniforms she possessed.
"Wow", Victoria exclaimed with wide eyes.
"You bought 'em for me", Julia noted to her boss, shaking her head at her surprise by the number of uniforms.
"Well, I sent the money to the store. I didn't know it bought so many."
'Must be nice', Julia thought to herself with a shake of her head at her mistress's unfamiliarity with the value of a dollar.
"Do you have anything to put them in?" Victoria asked.
"I've got some garbage bags."
"Do you have anything else?" Victoria inquired, turning her nose at the prospect of putting her new clothes in garbage bags.
"They're clean", Julia retorted.
"I know, but…it doesn't matter", Victoria replied as Julia left to retrieve the bags.
'They're all mine', Victoria thought as she turned and faced the uniforms again.
'Why does that excite you?' A voice countered from within.
"Here are the bags", Julia said, breaking her mistress's inner monologue.
"Oh, thanks", Victoria responded before she and Julia went about putting the uniforms in the trash bags. As they packed away Julia's clothing, Julia asked, "You're really fine with my hand me downs?"
'Are you?' A voice in Victoria's head demanded an answer.
"It's just for a little while. I'm already spending enough money on new clothes for you", Victoria answered Julia, trying to justify her choice to both of them.
Julia nodded before she joked, "Well, if yah put on a few pounds, they'll fit yah anyway."
Victoria blushed in response to Julia's attempt at humor. Julia grimaced as she saw the look on Victoria's face. She was sure that she had gone too far.
Victoria, however, did not say a word as they approached Julia's dresser. As they began to put away Julia's intimates, Victoria was struggling not to smile at the thought of putting on 15 to 20 pounds to make Julia's clothing a better fit for her body.
Her mother always reminded Victoria that she had her father's body type. From the pictures she cherished, she knew that he had a perpetual beer belly. It was only her constant exercise that kept away the pudginess that her stomach started to take on when she transitioned from a tween to a teen. She felt a tingle as she thought that it would not take long to put the weight back on.
Once they finished putting away the clothing, Victoria told Julia change into one of her new outfits. Julia felt ridiculous as she went to change in her cramped bathroom. The luxurious outfit looked out of place given her squalid surroundings. She pulled off the dress that barely fit her and put on a floral print, silk, Georgette dress and high-heeled, beige sandals.
Julia could not help but contrast her expensive, mid-thigh length dress with her water stained walls her landlord refused to paint. They appeared too incongruous to co-exist together. The walls she paid to surround her almost seemed to mock her as she pulled the dress down her body.
Her eyes turned to face her reflection. Julia shook her head at it as she finished changing. She hung her head and muttered, "I look like a fraud."
Emerging from the bathroom, Julia was showered with compliments by her boss. The words brought a smile to her face, even as she could not cast away her doubts about the true nature of Victoria's plans nor their inevitable failure.
At Victoria's request, Julia helped Victoria carry the trash bags containing her uniforms out to Victoria's car. They packed the clothing away in the car before Julia started to drive them back towards Victoria's home.
Once Julia started down the street, Victoria turned to her and said, "You know, you really should have refused my request."
"Why?" Julia asked with surprise that Victoria expected her to say no to her reasonable request for assistance.
"A mistress is not supposed to help her maid do her duty", Victoria lectured.
"I'm sorry", Julia apologized with a confused look on her face to Victoria's shaking head.
"And don't apologize to your maid, you're supposed to be the mistress", Victoria lectured, trying to get Julia to take on a more authoritative personality.
Julia only nodded in response while she thought, 'She is bat shit crazy!'
The two were quiet as Julia continued to drive before Victoria said, "Make a left."
Julia gave Victoria an inquisitive look before she asked, "Why?"
"Because I told you to", Victoria answered.
"I thought I was the boss", Julia inquired, trying to be more assertive in her role.
"You're not a mistress yet, but this will get you closer", Victoria answered.
Julia nodded, confused by her employer's words. As she drove, Victoria continued to direct her while they made their way into a neighboring town. Julia parked the car and started down the main street sidewalk, wondering where her boss was taking her.
A smile came to her face when she caught a glimpse of the prestigious salon that Victoria was known to frequent. While she knew that Victoria had made arrangements with a salon, she was certain that it would not be at Victoria's exclusive salon.
Victoria held the door open for her and said, "After you."
"Thanks", Julia replied as she walked through the doors she never expected to pass through.
"Good afternoon, Victoria", the receptionist said with a smile that belied her hatred of the heiress. Although Victoria had mellowed significantly since her mother's death, many of the staff still hated Victoria for the demanding nature she had frequently shown with respect to the cut of each strand of her hair while her hypercritical mother was alive. It was only Victoria's tipping that made her tolerable to most of the staff.
Victoria gave the girl a smile as she told her about the appointment. The receptionist turned to look up the appointment. She tried not to smirk at Victoria's appearance. She wanted to say something about it, even though she knew that she could not. The girl who never left with a hair of place was easily the shabbiest looking girl in the establishment at the moment.
The receptionist confirmed the appointment before she said, "Marcy will be ready for you in just a moment."
"Oh, it's not for me", Victoria countered to the receptionist's surprise before Victoria explained that they were there for Julia. The receptionist gave Julia a curious look. The high quality of the girls clothing and makeup were in sharp contrast to her hair. She saw the split ends and evidence of substandard hair maintenance that was absent from the clientele that regularly entered the salon.
Julia's squirming under her glance only further served to make the receptionist certain that Julia did not belong in such an establishment. She smiled at Victoria and said, "I never saw your friend before."
"She's new to the neighborhood. This is my welcoming treat", Victoria explained.
"Oh, how nice", the receptionist replied with feigned niceness before telling them to have a seat.
Once the shampoo girl was ready, Julia was taken back to get her hair washed. Victoria watched as Julia's hair was washed before she was brought over to the stylist.
Victoria helped Julia and the stylist select a new style for Julia. Once she started shaping Julia's hair, Victoria stood to the side and watched with a smile as Julia's hair was given layers that made her hair seem more dynamic than Julia ever thought was possible. Julia gazed in quiet amazement as the stylist transformed her scruffy hair into something she no longer wanted to deemphasize with a utilitarian ponytail.
After her hair was finished, Victoria paid the stylist and brought Julia to the salon's manicurist. The manicurist struggled with Julia's rough hands and feet that were uncommon among the women that entered the salon. She removed Julia's calluses and filed and shaped her nails before she painted them in a French manicure style.
With her hair and nails done, Victoria led Julia out to the car. Due to the paint on her nails, Victoria got in the driver's seat and drove them back to Victoria's home.
Julia thanked Victoria on the drive. Victoria deflected the gratitude, feeling it was unbecoming of the mistress she was trying to shape Julia into becoming.
Once they got back to Victoria's home, Julia went to help Victoria carry the bags into the home. Victoria told her no. While Julia insisted on helping despite her employer's words earlier that afternoon, Victoria reminded her about her nails and told them she would mess them up if she helped.
Julia gave her former boss a reluctant nod as she went inside, understanding her point. She went into the living room and turned on the television, while Victoria began to carry in the shopping bags containing Julia's new clothes first.
As she walked into the home, Victoria paused to glance at the sight of Julia watching her big screen television. Julia was sunken into the couch, watching with a voyeur's eyes as the women of the reality television show screamed at each other.
"What are you doing?" Victoria asked as she walked up to Julia.
"What's wrong?" Julia inquired with a racing heart as she pushed her up from the plush couch.
"You're not going to become a proper mistress watching this trash…"
"But they're rich", Julia interjected before covering her mouth, uncomfortable with challenging her employer.
"They're new rich. They have money, but they're still white trash", Victoria countered before she changed the channel to a scripted period piece.
"This is more appropriate", Victoria added before she left Julia to continue putting away the bags of clothing.
Julia began to calm down as she sat back down on the couch. She sunk in the seat as she began to be drawn into the show. She tried to figure out the meaning of the occasional strange word from the context while she grew more interested in the glorified soap opera as it continued to play.
While Julia watched the television program, Victoria carried in each new bag of clothes and hung it in Julia's closet. She thought about removing her own clothing, but decided against it since she figured that the clothing might fit Julia once she lost some weight.
Victoria then went back to the car to begin carrying in the trash bags containing her new, used outfits. The bags had a distinctive heavy plastic scent as she reached her hands into them to pull out the maid's outfits that she hung in her new quarters. Once she finished putting away the last dress, Julia's undergarments and aprons maid their way into her white dresser.
A grin came to Victoria's face after she put away the last garment and gazed at the new collection of uniforms at her disposal. The dresses ran the gamut in colors and designs. The black, pink, blue and green dresses each had a unique design that distinguished them from one and other. She had insisted the uniform supplier give each distinct uniform dress to Julia. She grinned at the thought that they were now hers.
Victoria paused as she tried to examine her excitement. She wondered how she could possibly find exciting the idea of wearing the utilitarian uniforms that were far more uncomfortable and austere than anything in the wardrobe she was lending to Julia until further notice.
Deciding that dwelling on it would only make matters worse, Victoria reached into the closet to take hold of a uniform. She paused as her hand started towards a dress with large, white contrast lapels and cuffs. She caught herself and redirected her hands towards a plain pink dress.
She clutched the dress and started towards the bathroom. She stripped out of her clothes and placed her arms through the short-sleeved button front dress. She fastened each button starting from her knees and proceeded up to her body.
As she buttoned the last button to conceal her bust, she looked at her self in the mirror. The non-tapered dress hung off her body without giving it any shape. It made her bust seem less significant, while making her waist appear larger.
Her eyes gazed down at the large, plastic buttons that were in one solid row. While the dress lacked the telltale contrast elements of most of the other uniforms, she knew that there would be no mistaking the dress for something a woman would wear of her own volition.
Her hands moved away from her dress and reached for her makeup remover. She removed the small amount of makeup on her face before she retied her hair back in a low ponytail and gazed at herself in astonishment.
In the course of twenty minutes, Victoria felt that she had gone from looking like a beautiful heiress to a homely maid. Stripped of her fineries and makeup felt even plainer looking than she had been in the black and white maid's uniform the day before.
"This is almost unreal", Victoria told herself as she touched her makeup free face to confirm it was really her.
Her hands drew away from her face before she slipped her feet into a pair of Julia's white, ankle socks and white, canvas sneakers. She walked out of her quarters and went to ask Julia what she wanted for dinner.
Once she asked the question, Julia turned to her. She recoiled for a second at the still strange sight of her boss wearing a uniform. Although she knew to expect it, it was a surprise to her.
Julia gave her a request before Victoria went to find a recipe to make it. She spent her time attending to the task while Julia continued to watch television.
Julia came in for dinner when she felt ready and ate while Victoria stood to the side when she was not serving her. After dinner, Victoria cleaned up before Julia tried to channel her boss as she told her, "You're dismissed for the night."
"Thank you, Miss Jacobs", Victoria replied with a dutiful bob of her head, mimicking Julia's normal behavior.
Victoria walked back into her quarters and turned on the television. She sat on the small loveseat that was across from the bed and changed the channel to the one she had turned off for Julia. She smiled at the classless women while she tried to ape the screaming women's phraseology before turning into bed for the night.
The next day, Victoria made breakfast for Julia. Shortly after she finished cleaning up, a renowned speech therapist knocked upon the front door.
Victoria put her head down while she approached the door. Reaching for the door, her chin was nearly touching two of the front buttons of her grey and white uniform that ran down the front of her dress in parallel lines.
She drew the front door open to let the woman into the home. Victoria greeted the woman who responded to her presence with polite indifference. The woman gave Victoria a condescending glance before she looked about the ornate mansion. Victoria could sense that the woman only wanted to speak with the mistress of the home.
"Where is Miss Jacobs, girl?" The speech therapist asked.
A tingle ran through Victoria as she processed her demanding words.
"I'll show you to her", Victoria replied with her head held down, feeling unworthy of looking the haughty sounding woman in the eyes.
Victoria led the woman to Julia and made the introduction before Julia excused her from the room to get back to her duties. Victoria smiled as she listened the woman begin to correct Julia's every word.
While Victoria was certain that Julia was going to be frustrated by having to be retrained on how to speak, she knew that it was critical to her fantasy. She did not just want Julia to smell and look the part, but to sound like a refined mistress of the house as well.
The former part of her desire was being further addressed by the personal shopper she had enlisted to help further build up Julia's wardrobe with designer dresses to go along with what she was loaning her for the duration of the swap.
It was also being helped by the personal trainer that Victoria had decided to hire after she canceled her own. The personal trainer came in shortly after lunch.
Victoria could see that Julia was hardly happy about having to go down to the home gym to workout after spending her whole morning working with a speech therapist. She figured that the girl wanted to spend some time relaxing, but there would be time for that in the future in Victoria's mind. She was not there yet. Julia needed to be a better fit for her surroundings first before she could truly enjoy them.
After the first day, Julia accepted that she was going to be spending her weekdays working on her speech and body. Her initial resentment passed as she realized that the trainer and therapist were helping improve her. While it was frustrating to be berated for not meeting their standards, she was sure that it was a better way to spend her time than cleaning up another's home.
Victoria's labors around the home were predictable for her. She broke up the task of cleaning the mansion by working on certain parts on certain days, as Julia had done for her and the prior maids had done for her parents.
As she caught parts of Julia's training with the speech therapist, she made sure to imitate the speech that was being corrected. She felt a tingle every time she used an unsophisticated phraseology that the therapist was endeavoring to train out of Julia.
The calls she received from those she had cut herself off from grew less frequent. Some of her more scheming sycophants refused to leave her alone, however. While she avoided them by refusing to answer the door for them, the few times she spoke with them over the phone made her self-conscious.
Every crude phrase she used raised alarms to those on the other ends of the lines. Victoria was afraid that one would find their way into her home and catch her in the act. They would see her serving Julia. They would hear her unsophisticated speech and see the 10 pounds she already packed on over the first three weeks of the swap. She needed to get away from them and quick.
The easiest answer in her mind was to move. She made arrangements to rent a deluxe condominium in the city. It would get her away from the country estate that was attracting her desperate, discarded toadies. The only other choice was turning back and going back to what she was. The more she thought about, the more she was certain that she needed a clean break from the group of leeches that she had cultivated around her. She knew they only cared about her money. She needed to separate herself from them totally to make sure that she did not let them back into her life.
Julia was surprised by the sudden announcement that they were moving. She gave Victoria a queer smile as she retorted, "I thought I was the mistress. Wasn't that the deal?"
"It was, but I…need yah to do this. We've got to go somewhere where we can be ourselves in peace", Victoria answered with her downcast eyes unable to meet Julia's.
'Ourselves', Julia thought while a smile came to her face. She knew that they were far from themselves. She could hear it in their voices, she could see it how in the how they dressed and how they acted. It was her that was speaking more articulately, it was her walking with her head held high, it was her with a wiggle in her walk, not Victoria anymore.
While Julia wanted to make a show of power to Victoria, she knew that she had to do it for Victoria. It was going to be the best for her too. They could make a clean start as mistress and maid, and Julia was going to make the most of it.
Julia offered no objections before Victoria made arrangements for her speech therapy and personal training to be continued in the city. Trips to the most expensive spas and salons were booked for her first few weekends as well. Julia knew that the impending pampering was going to beyond even what she was growing used to in the villages and towns that surrounded the country estate she had been handed dominion over.
The night before the move, Julia dismissed Victoria from her service early to let them rest for the move. Victoria felt relieved to be able to get off duty early. She went into her chambers and went into the small bathroom.
She lined the sink with newspaper before she took out the hair dye kit she had purchased a few days earlier. With the risk of exposure nearly extinguished, she felt that it was the perfect time to take the next step. She needed to further separate herself from the woman she had been to fully live the role. She prepared the dye and applied it to her hair.
The stench turned her nose, but it was something she was accustomed to smelling. Of course, she was far more used to someone else dyeing her hair and applying highlights to it to attract more attention to her. That was not the purpose of the dye she had purchased the day before. She, now, wanted to attract less attention not more.
Once she finished washing the dye out of her hair, Victoria dried it. The instant change from highlighted, dark blonde to a flat, dark brown color was obvious to her. She felt that she almost looked like a different person.
Victoria closed her eyes and thought back to what she looked like when she proposed the swap with Julia. The long blonde hair was now dark brown, the face that was constantly adorned with makeup now had not a trace of it and her perfectly trimmed body was now closer to that of most girls she saw.
Her fingernails and toenails had been stripped bare of the expensive designs she had them coated with over the years. Her short fingernails would be unrecognizable to the manicurists that had long worked on her perennially long nails that were unsuited for her manual labor.
She clutched her hands together and could feel the roughness that they had taken on since she stopped her daily moisturization regime. Her fingers had blistered in places, but the soreness was giving way to calluses. Her hands showed little evidence of the pampered life she had lived until recently.
Victoria opened her eyes and stared at her eyebrows. It had been a while since she had them waxed. Hairs were growing in. It was time to wax them again, but that was not something that Julia's eyebrows had shown evidence of before she started going to the salon.
Reaching into a drawer of the vanity, Victoria retrieved a pair of tweezers. She started plucking at the emerging hairs, but decided not to leave it at that. Her eyes widened with each hair she removed. She plucked her expertly shaped eyebrows until they took on shaky arches that showed the evidence of being self manicured.
Her hand shook as she put the tweezers down and examined her work. The woman in the mirror struck her as a poor facsimile version of the girl she had been. The rich men whose eyes she caught would look past her now. Stripped of her golden, highlighted tresses, makeup, designer clothes, salon quality eyebrows and nails, she felt she looked plain.
It was a new feeling for her. She felt almost as if she could be invisible for the first time in her life.
There was one thing more that she felt could help her on her quest for anonymity. Victoria took out the pair of glasses she ordered online. She did not need glasses, and they were little more than a prop as they offered no magnification as she put them on.
The large framed plastic glasses made her smile. They almost appeared to reshape her face that had been spared any effects of her weight gain that seemed to all collect on her stomach.
"I'm ready", Victoria told herself before she took off her glasses and headed to bed. She reached between her legs as she climbed beneath the sheets. She teased herself, not wanting to bring herself to orgasm. She wanted herself horny, fearing that she would back out of the move if she was not.
Julia awoke the following morning to a breakfast already waiting on the table for her as the movers began to file into the home. After Julia finishing eating, Victoria watched her emerge through the kitchen door with a smile, the taste of her breakfast mimosa still lingering on Julia's tongue.
The smile on Julia's face dissipated as she caught sight of Victoria. Victoria grimaced as a look of shock came upon Julia's face. Victoria worried that she had gone too far. She wondered if the elegant woman was as disgusted by what she had done to herself as the small doubting part of Victoria was at that moment.
She had spent the whole morning wondering what Julia would say about her transformation. She had her doubts about what Julia would think. She was sure that the woman would think was crazy by changing her appearance so radically. It was all fixable though. Victoria told herself that at any moment she wanted it to end she could. Still, she doubted if she could find the will to do it. She had come too far to back off. She wondered if she would ever be able to do so.
Julia was dumbfounded by Victoria's new appearance at first. It took a few moments to process what she was seeing.
She gave the self-doubting girl a shake of her head, realizing just how deep Victoria's desire to be something other than she had been truly was. She looked little like the heiress she had served not long before. It was only the telltale bone structure that remained as a reminder of Victoria's true identity.
Collecting herself, Julia ignored Victoria's presence and went to address the movers. Once she finished, she turned to Victoria and motioned for her to follow her.
Victoria helped Julia get dressed in her outfit for the move before she sent Victoria to help the movers. Julia gave direction to the movers on what was being sent to the city condominium and what was staying. Victoria helped the movers where she could, but she spent most of the morning walking around the family home that was being partially harvested to furnish their temporary residence.
Once the last mover was out the door, she locked up the home and turned on the alarms before she saw Julia. Victoria followed behind her mistress with her head held low. She followed her to the limousine that was waiting to whisk them to the high rise, condominium building they would be calling home for the near future.
To Victoria's surprise, Julia let her into the back of the limousine with her and said with an imperious tone, "I need to speak with you, girl."
"Yes, Miss Julia", Victoria replied as Julia closed the door.
As the vehicle started forward Julia said, "Victoria, I didn't want to go to the city. You did. Are we clear?"
"Yes, Miss Julia."
"You said that you wanted to go there to get a clean start where you could be a maid in peace, right?"
"Yes, Miss Julia", Victoria replied before swallowing hard as her hands gripped the seat beneath it.
"Now, that we've established that, I trust that you won't have any objections to what I'm about to tell you."
Victoria took a deep breath as she waited her mistress's words.
Julia saw that she had her maid's rapt attention. She forced away a smile while she gave Victoria a stern gaze and said, "In order to avoid any slipups, we will be changing how we refer to one another."
Victoria nodded, unsure of what else she could do at that moment. Julia continued, "While we are in the city you are only to speak to me and refer to me as Lady Julia. Am I understood?"
A familiar tingling inside Victoria met Julia's words. Victoria's mouth felt dry as she replied, "Yes, Lady Julia."
Julia gave Victoria's subservient response to her order an approving nod. She then added, "And I will not be referring to you as Victoria anymore. I will be calling you Girl or Maid. Is that understood?"
"Yes, Lady Julia."
"And you have no reservations about doing so?"
"No, Lady Julia", Victoria replied to Julia's delight. She enjoyed hearing each obedient answer that her once ostentatious mistress spoke.
Victoria sat, struggling not to touch herself while she processed the new realities of their roles that felt realer than ever. It almost did not feel like a role-playing anymore to her. It felt real. Part of her was terrified that it was, but another part embraced it and wanted to be driven further into the lowly role she had paid Julia handsomely to obtain.
Julia's imperious tone seemed more like her mother's than hers ever had. Her mother was far curter with the help than she was and made a point of never knowing their names. Victoria had taken after her self-made father in viewing the help as beneath her, but worthy of her polite acknowledgement. It was a trait her mother tried in vain to extinguish from both of them, but Victoria held on tightly to anything that reminded her of her father.
Julia leaned back in her seat and stared out the window for a second before she added, "And Victoria, that name is completely improper for a girl like you. It's too putting on airs. You're a maid, not a princess. So, if anyone asks your name, girl, you will tell them that it's Maria."
"Maria?" Victoria asked, nearly floored that Julia was renaming her.
"There are many maids named Maria."
"But, isn't it a Spanish name?"
"Most maid's are Spanish or from some other third world country", Julia responded dismissively to her maid's inquiry.
Victoria felt a wetness in her panties. She had never thought it would reach this level, but Julia was stripping away not only her name, but also her racial identity. She was forcing her to pass herself off as a poor, Hispanic girl, albeit, one that did not speak many words of Spanish. The thought of doing it, however, turned her on.
Julia could sense the effect her words had on Victoria. She decided to leave her with those words while they rode in silence to the condominium building.
Walking into the building with her head held high, Julia greeted the staff as she identified herself. The doorman was happy to greet her as he gave a coy smile to Victoria.
The guard confirmed their identities as new residents in the building before he showed Julia to the elevators. As Victoria stood beside her, the guard gave her a wayward glance.
Ignoring Victoria's presence, he told Julia, "Miss Jacobs, we offer a service elevator for the help."
"That sounds lovely", Julia said before the elevator opened.
"Can you show my girl to it", Julia asked as she entered the elevator.
"It would be my pleasure, Miss Jacobs."
Julia thanked the man who grew far less amiable as the doors to the elevator closed. He gave Victoria a dismissive look and said, "Follow me."
Victoria walked behind the guard as he brought her to the back of the building and showed her the servant's elevator and entrance.
"This is where you enter, and this is the elevator you take. Our residents don't pay millions of dollars to share an elevator with the help", the man explained in a perfunctory fashion.
Victoria nodded. She understood the guard's point before she got onto the elevator and pressed the number for her mistress's floor. As the doors closed, a grin came across Victoria's face as she began to ride the separate and clearly unequal elevator. She felt a tingling while she thought about being considered not good enough for something for the first time.
"This is happening", she squealed as her mistress's floor neared.
"Girl, don't expect me before 3 a.m. You can go to bed after you're done with putting my new dresses away."
Maria nodded before Julia added, "And don't you fold them like last time! Understand?"
"Yes, Lady Julia. I'm very sorry."
"As you should be, girl", Julia replied while she checked her purse.
Maria gave the bag a jealous glance. The bag was beautiful, but it was more than she could ever afford on her meager salary.
Maria caught herself as she sensed a reminder of the folly of such a thought. A voice screamed from within, 'You bought that purse! You're Victoria Lightfoot, you damn fool!'
In that moment, everything that had happened came back to her. Every choice she had made from the moment she decided that she needed an escape from the expectations that came with being Victoria Lightfoot. All the trappings of that life she had given over to Lady Julia were within her mind's eye.
From the luxurious furnishing within the condominium's walls that everyone thought were Lady Julia's to the evening gown, purse and heels that Victoria Lightfoot had once worn out for society events. She seemed ill suited for what Lady Julia surrounded herself with now.
Every ounce of carefully honed grace and class had been meticulously self-trained out of her. The cheap polyester uniforms she wore reminded her to stay in her place whether she was tidying up after mistress or not. Her deliberately coarse, uneducated speech had long ago become second nature. She knew the words she used to utilize as Lady Julia and her guests spoke them, but she could not bring herself to use them herself.
Her efforts were only reinforced by the way that the strangers turned acquaintances who surrounded Maria treated her. She no longer expected to be deferred to, but to defer herself to others. No one she encountered ever hinted that they thought she was better than they were anymore.
The moment she most dreaded had passed without incident too. As she had walked down the street in her teal uniform dress, low-heeled black shoes and nude pantyhose, she saw the faces of two of Victoria Lightfoot' lackeys.
While they were beneath her before, the two men seemed superior to her at that moment. While their family's wealth paled to Victoria Lightfoot's, they were the ones dressed in designer clothing. They walked right towards her.
Her cheeks burned red while she waited to be confronted. Her nervous hands burrowed deep into the side pockets of the dress to hide her calloused palms and self-manicured nails.
One glanced right at her while they passed each other. She trembled with fear, but his eyes showed no hint of recognizing her. She felt it was if he had looked through her as though she was invisible in her uniform and glasses. With a glance over her shoulder, she noticed that neither man had turned to give a second look back at her pouch-stomached form.
Maria wondered how she could have possibly fooled them. Her hands touched her oily, mousy, dull brown hair before they moved to the budding double chin that had developed when she gained the weight that had made Julia's old uniforms a perfect fit for her. She wondered if the changes were really that total that she could fool her former intimate companions while her head stayed in its normal downcast position.
Since that day, she had passed without notice in front of five more of Victoria Lightfoot' former associates without issue, including one she served at one of Lady Julia's parties. The more she thought about it, the more she was certain that none of them had ever truly liked Victoria Lightfoot or even looked at her. She was nothing more than a means to an end for them, since she already had her inheritance in hand.
With each passing day, she was also thinking more and more of Lady Julia as her true superior, as someone entitled to give her orders. In her mind, it was difficult to comprehend how she could think otherwise.
After all, it was Lady Julia that was making the scene at wealthy events, busy socializing with the rich and the famous. She had little time for Maria since the move, only giving her orders and berating her work from time to time or speaking out of turn.
Lady Julia's hours were consumed with the frivolities of conspicuous consumption. Art shows, charity galas, societal parties that she had worked her way into with her well-trained charm and the arms of rich men that she frequently was escorted about town on took up all her time.
Lady Julia's dismissive treatment of Maria made her maid's cheeks burn at times. She could not help but to feel frustrated. She wanted to end it all, but she still felt the tingling when she thought about what she had made happen to her.
Her mind drifted to the doorman she had been sleeping with to help reduce her near constant arousal while she reveled in her fallen state. That Lady Julia knew that she had gone from sleeping with rich men to those that served them only made her more eager to keep sleeping with the man.
She knew that she had to break it off though. She was getting too far deep into it. The doorman was giving hints that he was going to propose to her. She knew that she could not accept it. She was a fraud, and she did not want to hurt him. She feared the answer that she would give him, even as the dread of that answer made her even hornier.
Lady Julia sensed it all within her former boss. She could see the dutifulness in her maid and embraced the role she had been selected for by Victoria Lightfoot.
Lady Julia took to playing the role of the strict mistress to the hilt. Maria's every mistake led to the sting of berating words. While Lady Julia held back at first, Maria's evident arousal at being talked down to only served to push her farther. With a former sycophant of Victoria Lightfoot in earshot, Lady Julia took to scolding Maria's serving skills at a party. Maria sunk lower as her mistress's guests saw nothing wrong with Lady Julia's words to her lesser.
Lady Julia was shocked that, even under those circumstances, her maid appeared simultaneously terrified and aroused. After that moment, there was no holding back by Lady Julia.
As Maria thought of the yawning chasm that existed between the two, she realized that her thoughts that she could end it all were the true folly. She felt that neither of them were the women they were before. She would be every bit the farce as a woman of society that Julia had been when she first put on a pair of Victoria Lightfoot's sandals.
After she zipped her purse closed, Julia stared down at Maria. Maria averted her eyes from her mistress's glance as the imperious woman noted, "I'll wake you if I need help undressing."
"Yes, Lady Julia. Have a great night out."
Julia nodded as she stepped out of the condominium. Julia smiled as Maria closed the door behind her with her head held low, giving her mistress a good view of the bob cut that she had recently adopted at her mistress's insistence. In Julia's mind, Maria was looking every inch the domestic she had been, maybe even more, before the girl bit her lip.
It seemed unbelievable to either of them that Maria had ever been Victoria Lightfoot. There was no fight at all in the girl. No sign of her sophisticated upbringing.
Taking the arm of her date, Julia was certain that Maria was going to be happy serving her mistress for the rest of their lives.