"Take it off baby,"
the slightly drunken portly man up front chanted, "let's see some
It was another
typical Saturday night at Charlie's bar and strip club. The place
was hopping as usual. A massive wave of men and women were
crammed into the dirty little nightclub. They had come together
to share a drink or two and take in the night's entertainment.
She half stood and half squatted on the tiny stage, flooded in
red light. Hoots of joy and pleasure rang through the place above
the seductive music she had chosen for her performance. Seventeen
year old Ariel seemed to be quite the crowd enticer and Charlie
sat behind the bar catcalling and whistling along with the throng
"Here pretty lady,"
the balding middle aged man called extending a ten dollar bill,
"something to buy some new clothes with."
Ariel flashed one of
her disarming smiles at him and gracefully gyrated over to him.
She wore a very scanty bra that pushed her young breasts
heavenward in the most enticing way. A g-string bottom allowed
very little modesty. She bounced her ample cleavage up and down a
few times in front of the silly man then allowed him to slip the
money into her g-string. She blew him a kiss as she danced her
way back to the center of the stage. Sweat was starting to
collect on her forehead and lips. As the tempo of the music
increased she slowly and deliberately shed her top. This she
unceremoniously flung into the outstretched hands of the crowd.
Chaos erupted the men closest to the stage scrambled to retrieve
the treasure she had thrown form her perch above them. Finally
someone stood up screaming waving the black sequin top. He pushed
his nose deep into the fabric and smiled a wolfish smile.
"How's about sending
me the string as well," he screeched at Ariel.
Laughter rang through
the bar. One of the man's buddies clapped his friend on the back
and he threw a fifty dollar bill onto the stage at Ariel's feet.
The music finally came to an end and her audience now in a frenzy
called out to her for a repeat of the activities she had so
professional delivered. She curtseyed to her adoring fans and
made a hasty retreat off the stage. Rosie one of the other girls
took her place in the limelight as Ariel went to the small
dressing room in back of the stage. Ariel smiled to herself. Life
was good she thought. It was not a difficult thing getting that
fake drivers license. It had also not been much harder
convincing Charlie she could make the grade as a stripper. He had
taken one look at her act and hired her on the spot. Ariel just
hoped her dad, the minister, would never discover her secret.
There would be hell to be paid if he did. She took a bottle of
water from the small refrigerator which Charlie had so sweetly
placed there for his ladies.
"Great show," Charlie
said smiling from the doorway, "wish all my girls could dance the
way you do. Must say I had my doubts about you, but seems I was
"Thanks boss," Ariel
said taking a swallow of her water, "I am to please."
She began removing
the grease paint from her face and tried desperately to get her
long curly blonde hair to lose some of the frizz. She took a
clean towel and started drying the perspiration from her chest
and arms. After she had rested for a few minutes she pulled on
her jeans and t-shirt she had worn to work that evening. Not yet
satisfied with the way she looked she swept her hair up and back
into a ponytail.
"There," she said to
the wholesome young girl in the mirror, "now you look cute as a
Ariel took the bus
home and arrived at exactly five o'clock that morning. Her father
the local minister at the First Baptist Church was still fast
asleep. She walked silently to her bedroom and pulled on her
nightgown. Before she went to sleep she counted up her night's
earnings. Five hundred dollars lay scattered across her pink
comforter. She neatly gathered the money together and hid it as
usual in her panty drawer behind her tampons. Exhausted from her
performance it was not too long before she fell to sleep.
At seven o'clock
Ariel's father knocked on her door. He had already dressed and
fixed himself a hearty breakfast.
"Ariel I am heading
to church," he said, "I hope to see you there this
Ariel opened one
bloodshot eye and whispered, "Sorry Dad had a busy night working
at Walmart. Maybe next Sunday I can make it."
"Okay honey," he
replied, "you get some rest and I'll see you later."
answered pulling herself up into a sitting position, "Ren wants
me to spend some time with him. So it may be later tonight before
I see you."
Ariel's father rolled
his eyes and a look of disappointed replaced the smile.
"You know I don't
like that boy. Dance, dance, dance that's all he wants to do. I
think you are spending way too much time with him," Ariel's
father said bitterly.
"Okay Dad, whatever,"
Ariel responded laying her head back on her pillow and pulling
the covers up over her face.
"Just worried about
you." he said, "I do love you."
"Love you, too."
Ariel muttered half under her breath.
After her father had
gone Ariel fell back to sleep. Dreams of one day becoming a
famous dancer and finally escaping her small time nightmare made
a smile appear as she slept.
Ariel continued to
work for Charlie and attend school. Her father it seemed would
probably never discover her secret. Ren had been most helpful in
teaching her some very innovative moves and each time Ariel hit
the stage at the club the crowd would go wild.
Two weeks before
Christmas her double life came to an abrupt end. She had worked
her Friday night shift and the club and all had gone well. Ariel
took the bus as usual and arrived home at five o'clock. What
Ariel didn't suspect was her father was waiting for her as she
entered the house.
"Ariel," he said the
disappointment was obvious in his voice, "we need to talk. I know
you have been lying to me about working midnights at Walmart. I
went shopping last night and came by to see if you could take a
break and grab a bite with me. They told me you didn't work there
and never have. So come clean with me. What have you been up to?
It's that boy Ren, isn't it? What have you been doing with
Ariel sat down on the
oversized sofa in the living room. She sighed and looked at her
father that she loved and respected.
"Dad," she explained
trying to clear the lump in her throat, "I have been working, but
not at Walmart. I work for Charlie who owns the bar and strip
Ariel waited for the
explosion. She knew it was wrong to lie to her Dad and just hoped
he would not be too hurt by her actions. He sat there for a
moment and then started to cry. Ariel walked over to him and
placed a hand on his shoulder. His reaction was one as if someone
had slapped him.
"How dare you do such
a thing!" he snapped, "I thought I had raised you better than
that. What else have you been lying about? Are you sleeping with
that Ren boy as well?"
"No Dad!" Ariel
replied emphatically, "Ren has just been helping me with my
dancing. You see Dad I do have someone special in my life but her
name is Rosie."