A Serialized Novel by Wilson Barbers
"You'll be working with people who'll primarily be resistant to you," Max Venn said. Bob struggled to look dutifully attentive, but it was an effort. Grey-haired and bespectacled, the paunchy Venn was hardly the type you'd imagine as head of an exercise and nutrition camp. He leaned against his metal desk, pompously delivering his orientation lecture, belly overlapping his belt. "Most of 'em see exercise as work not fun. Your job will be to get them physically involved in ways that they've never tried before." He paused, adjusted his belt and turned to the window. Outside, the sound of female voices could be heard chanting in a complaining tone: Bob had seen them sullenly doing calisthenics in the June sun as he drove into camp.
"What's the ratio of staff to client?" Bob asked.
"We have thirty residents at any given time - and a waiting list twice that long," Venn said, not quite answering Bob's question. "The time each client spends is dependent on their individual goal, of course. We're not inexpensive, so most of our clients are motivated to lose as fast as they can - unless they're peeved at their husbands."
"Twenty-eight of our current clients are female, most of 'em sent by hubbies sick of the way these gals've let themselves go" Venn said. "We get few men at the camp. You know how it is: you can still get away with a little bulk if you're a male." He patted his own sizable gut for emphasis. "But not if you're a woman who first met her hubby in slimmer days."
Bob nodded. He'd been listening to this jerk for a half hour, holding back yawns as he was given the history of Camp Venn, a summary of all the press coverage it had received and an outline of Venn's philosophy of life. As far as Bob could tell, Venn didn't have the vaguest idea of what a Recreation Counselor should do, only the knowledge that his camp needed one to remain legit.
Bob had already gotten the staffing situation from Tina, the receptionist: the last counselor had left two months ago to market his own exercise video; the camp had been trying to make due without a full-fledged rec person all that time. Several college students and the camp nutritionist had been taking up the slack that Bob was now expected to fill.
His schedule was eight to six on weekdays with an occasional evening activity; his salary five thousand dollars higher than his previous - this obviously was a lucrative field. The benefits weren't bad either.
When Venn finished his spiel, he buzzed Tina to show Bob around the camp. Tina was a slim redhead with elaborately moussed hair and a makeup design just this side of trashy. Obviously attracted to Bob, she took every opportunity to shoot a flirtatious glance his way.
Camp Venn was a remodeled motel by a wooded lake. All its buildings, even the new ones, were done in a mock rustic style that made Bob think of the Catskills. Venn's office was behind the old check-in area; the guest rooms were in two single-story buildings located on the right about two hundred yards from the water. To the left of Venn's office stood the newest building in the camp: an indoor gymnasium with pool and hot tubs as well as the obligatory weighing areas. Much of the equipment, Bob noted, looked old enough to have been picked up at a garage sale.
The dining hall was the old motel restaurant, attached to Venn's office. According to Tina, Venn liked to monitor diners without leaving his office. "He had strategic peepholes built into the wall," she said with a smirk.
"So what's the big deal?" Bob said. "Why doesn't he just come out to the dining room and join people?"
"You don't know Venn," the receptionist said. "He prefers to watch."
"He's not a man for mingling; that's what he pays you to do."
They walked around the lawns, which were well manicured, and the tennis courts (which weren't). The day was hot and humid. This was obviously a rest period for most of the residents: Bob passed several clusters of fat femmes dressed in sweat-suits, stretched out on the lawn or on deck chairs, talking among themselves. More than once, he thought he felt someone's eyes on him as he and Tina walked by. Perhaps they were just envying Tina's small frame, he thought.
When they got to the lake, she showed him Venn's house, which was on a small peninsula left of the beach.
"Nice digs," he whistled in admiration, wondering if he wasn't getting underpaid, after all. "All that for one guy?"
"Oh, no," Tina answered. "There's a Mrs. Venn, but I've never seen her. She's supposed to be the money behind this place, but she's even less accessible than Venn. Brian, the guy who had your job before you, told me about her, though. Apparently, she makes our biggest client look teeny."
"From what he said, Venn's wife is humongous, the fattest woman he'd ever seen. Not all that old either: it was his theory that she'd gotten that way just to piss Venn off."
"Sounds like a wonderful relationship," Bob said. He thought of Venn's orientation lecture, his reference to women who drug their feet on weight loss just to "peeve their hubbies." Perhaps he was speaking from personal experience?
"You haven't known our boss long," Tina said with a laugh, "but let me assure you: he probably deserves it."
Bob didn't answer. He knew better than to start bad-mouthing the boss so early.
"Well, you've seen it all," Tina was saying, leading him back to the office. "Before I get you filling our your W-2s, there's one thing I wanted to ask you."
"Are you taken?"
He'd been waiting for this. Bob smiled and lifted his hands in a gesture of apology. Tina looked cute - had a lot of the same physical characteristics as his girlfriend, Ann, in fact - but he wasn't going to blow his current relationship with some short-term fling. That didn't stop his body from perking up with interest at the proposition, of course. Though neither woman truthfully came close to his physical ideal, to his mind the admission of attraction was as strong a component as any physical traits. He eyed hr up and down, her firm bod encased in a jeans skirt and Camp Venn polo shirt, and said: "I'm afraid I am."
Tina shrugged her shoulders. "Had to ask. We don't get many new guys up here." She turned and paced back to the office, exaggerating her hip sway in the process. Bob grinned to himself and felt proudly virtuous. Maybe he'd tell Ann about this rejected pass that night.
The rest of the day passed with him filling out the rest of his necessary work forms, then skimming current client files. He didn't want to be introduced to the group until he knew more about them as individuals. Bob ate lunch in his tiny office alongside the gym, met the seven college students who'd be working with him this summer, and said "hi" to the occasional round face. He got off early, went to an Italian takeout and brought home a pair of meatball subs with chips; though it wasn't part of her usual diet, Ann devoured her half of the meal with relish.
"Trying to fatten me up?" she joked, and despite her light tone, he knew there was an aura of seriousness behind the joke. All night she'd seemed cautious around him - as if fatness were a transmittable condition she could somehow pick up touching him.
"Sure," he answered, careful to keep his tone light, "then I could have you with me at work!"
Bob got up early next day, eager to beat all but the earliest risers. He wanted to meet the campers on his own terms, one at a time. Looking himself over in the doorway mirror, he thought he looked professional yet accessible, healthy but not aggressively so. Dressed in jeans and a Reebok tee-shirt, he rubbed his fingers through his typically unruly hair and thought it would have to do.
The drive to Camp Venn grew pleasant after about twenty minutes, suburbs turning into small towns and country, prairie into wooded landscape. The day was bright and sunny, the trees' shadows clearly delineated. He passed through the camp gate with a sense of anticipation.
First client Bob met was one of the camp's two males. Bob was slowly driving up the winding gravel roadway when a porky figure backed out of the trees. Dressed in the obligatory sweat-suit, his massive belly divided by a snug waistband, he was youngish, clean-cut and embarrassed. What have we here? Bob thought. He stopped the car and got out to introduce himself.
Soon as he got close to the fat young man, Bob knew the reason for his embarrassment. There was a definite whiff of cinnamon about him: the guy had a food stash somewhere. Searching through his memories of the files he'd read yesterday, he came up with a name.
"Dale Harvey?" he asked, extending his hand.
Say this for Harvey: once he got past his initial surprise, he maintained his poise. Grinning a jowly grin, h returned the shake after first trying to wipe the last vestige of his snacking off the legs of his pants. "You must be the new rec guy," the fat camper said. "I'm kinda new here myself."
"Not so new that you haven't already set up your own private noshing place, I see."
Harvey chuckled. "You got me," he said. "Gonna turn me in?"
That was a good question. For an instant, Bob found himself wishing he hadn't come upon the diet cheat. Ethical dilemmas on his first full day of work: weren't you supposed to be on the job several weeks at least before these started cropping up?
"Naw," he finally decided. "I'm just in charge of rec. I've got nuthin' to do with the calorie counting end of it."
Harvey's smile of relief told Bob he'd made the right decision. It was going to be hard enough to get some of these folks to exercise, he thought, without having them think of him as the enemy. He'd let the nutrition staff worry about the rest.
He held the car door open and offered Harvey a ride back in. The fat man accepted: he sat on the passenger side, pushing the seat back to accommodate his ultra-prominent gut. They rode down the drive to camp, Bob slowing to negotiate the rickety camel-back bridge that had helped shield Harvey from the rest of the camp. As they reached the staff parking lot, Tina drove up in a cloud of dust. She leapt lithely from her beat-up VW, and Bob noticed that she'd changed her hair color.
So did Harvey. "She's a redhead now," he said softly. "It suits her." He stared out the car window at her swaying ass, looking at her like she was a chocolate sundae.
Dale Harvey was unmarried, Bob knew from the files: an executive in some kind of computer company trying to shape himself up to a more modern business image. His company had apparently paid for a month at Camp Venn as part of their corporate fitness program; he'd just started his visit two days ago.
"I usually prefer 'em with a bit more meat on their bones," the fat man said. "But I've gotta admit: she's got one of those walks that just shouts sexuality. The right attitude can make up for a lot." He pushed himself out of the car and hiked his sweat-pants to the circumference of his belly. "Gotta hurry back to the room and brush my teeth," he said conspiratorially. "See you at breakfast." With that he ambled off toward the living quarters.
Bob followed Tina into the office. "You've got an admirer," he said, coming up behind as she was filling the Krup.
"Hope it's you," she replied, flicking on the machine. "You have some second thoughts last night in bed?"
"My life's full of second thoughts," he said with a grin. "But I was referring to Mr. Harvey."
"Him," Tina snorted. "One thing I've learned about the men who come here as clients: they may talk a good game, but their minds are all on food."
Bob picked a Styrofoam cup and started spooning Creamora into it. "This 'un could be an exception," he teased. "He definitely liked your new 'do."
She sat at her desk and considered his words. "You're just tryin' to give me grief," she finally said.
"Not me," Bob protested, pouring himself a cup from the half-filled pot, the scent of scalding coffee arising from the heating element. "I'm totally sincere." He left for the dining area.
First breakfasters he met were a trio of matronly middle-aged wives, suburban types who'd probably spent all their vacation money for some time away from the spouses. They were all about fifteen years his senior, and though they may have been attractive in their high school years, the bloom had faded into lines of querulousness. He introduced himself, flirted mildly with all three, and hopped to meet another client.
She was two tables over, seated by herself and picking at her melon slice. A long-haired fresh-faced brunette, she was dressed in a sleeveless white tee-shirt that hugged her buxom top and accentuated her full upper arms. She was round-cheeked with a trace of a double chin, an obviously tall girl who bore her 200-plus poundage well. Her breasts were in the DD upper forties; unfettered by a bra, they framed her belly. Bob guesstimated her to be in her late teens, the youngest client in the camp. As he sat down across from her, she looked at him appraisingly.
He introduced himself, holding out a hand to shake. She accepted his offer, pendulous breasts wavering as she leaned across the table. Her face had the open prettiness of a men's mag plumper, the kind of model whose pudginess translated into full-blown exaggeration of the female form.
She was not the kind of woman for Bob at all, but the longer he sat in front of her, the more he felt himself getting interested. What was it Harvey had said? "I like a woman with meat on her bones?" With this girl, he could see what the fat man was talking about. Though the thought was heretical, the truth was undeniable: she was made to be this size!
Her name was Maureen Dowl. A college student in her second stay at Venn, her folks had first sent her the year before when they saw how much she'd gained at school. "I'm only here for a couple weeks," she explained. "They can't afford any more, but they're so weight conscious they feel like they're obligated to send me. That way when I don't lose any weight, they can say, 'It's not my fault!'"
"Don't you want to slim down?" Bob asked, startled at both her attitude and candor.
"Not especially," Mo answered. "I like to eat, and I like to eat a lot. The weight gain is just a side effect, one that doesn't particularly bother me. There are plenty of guys who like me as I am. I feel healthy - what else is there to worry about?" She held her head back, double chin almost disappearing, and thrust her breasts for emphasis. The act was both childlike and sensual.
Bob had never met a woman quite like this; in his experience women automatically thought they were too fat - or at least verging on it. Yet here was one almost challenging about her size. It was definitely sexy, he thought, surprised at himself for thinking it.
"You look thoughtful," she said, scraping the rind of her melon. "Surprised at the fact that a gal my size can have boyfriends?"
"No," he said, with more sincerity than he would have thought possible.
"Lemme show you something," she said, standing suddenly. "You're new here, and you deserve to learn about it." She started for the dining room door, giving him the first full glimpse of her wide derriere and beautifully rounded calves. Her figure was an old-fashioned hourglass, like you saw in photos of turn-of-the-century showgirls, and when she moved, she knew how to make the package work. "C'mon," she said, standing in the doorway, "this won't take long."
He scanned the rest of the dining room: a cluster of women was standing in the cafeteria line, but no one else was seated and eating. What the hell, he thought, following the young plumper out of the hall. She lead him to the second building of sleeping quarters.
"Saw Tina giving you a tour," she said with a knowing tone, "but I'm sure she didn't show you this." Holding his hands in her pudgy fingers, she took him down the carpeted hall to a closet marked "Cleaning Supplies." The door was locked, but apparently they were teaching lock picking at college these days. She opened it with two wires that she'd picked out from between the carpet and the wall.
"Step inside," she said. He flicked on the hanging light as she ducked out of sight. "I'm in the room on the right," he heard her say. "See if you can see me!"
Bob checked out the wall on his right and found two shelves full of cleaning fluid. But because he had an inkling of what he was looking for, he began to pull the bottles off to get a fuller look at the wall. He found two peepholes behind a quart of Clorox.
Mo's room was designed in basic motel, a single twin bed and end tables piled with much-read mystery paperbacks. The holes were one inch in diameter and apparently behind a two-way mirror. He leaned over the shelf, knocking down a container of scouring powder, to get a better view. Maureen slowly came into sight.
She stood before the bed, seemingly oblivious to his presence as observer, and stretched her chubby arms toward the ceiling. Shaking her longish hair, she reached for the elastic of her khaki twill shorts with both hands, pulling it out and letting her belly expand with the freedom. Then she bent over and slid her shorts down her legs. As she leaned toward him, her breasts dangled deliciously; the cleavage of her tee-shirt was dark and inviting. Her underwear was a bikini style that barely covered her womanhood; her belly pushed over it by about an inch, shifting with each adjustment of her body.
She was not, he thought a second time, the kind of woman for him at all. And yet, as he leaned over the cleaning shelf peering into the room, he felt himself growing aroused like he'd never been before. Bob couldn't believe the intensity of his reaction. Talk about your ethical dilemmas: here he was, standing in this cleaning closet, getting a stiff one over a client on his first day of work! He should've walked out of the cupboard right then.
But he didn't.
Maureen was lifting off her tee-shirt now, fat-laden breasts exposed to his eyes. They were light-skinned and beautifully blue-veined, with hazily rimmed aureolae: each one quivered gelatinously as she dangled and roped her shirt to the floor. Then she posed for him, crossing her arms under the hang of her fulsome mounds and displaying them to him.
She smiled seductively, biting the left corner of her out-thrust lower lip. Her young eyes looked directly at him, then she lifted her left and slightly larger breast to her mouth. A wicked glint in her eyes, Maureen licked and suckled on her barely visible nipple, making it pop into prominence. Then she worked a similar magic in its twin.
He strained to take in the rest of her Rubenesque body. Her smooth large thighs, pressing against each other and obscuring the straps of her bikini brief. Her womanly hips. Her round dimpled knees and beautifully shaped calves. He couldn't see any lower, but it didn't matter since the sexy plumper was now lying back on the bed, lifting her feet and pulling the resisting briefs up her legs. She kicked them away and made a "v" with her legs, then traced her pudgy fingers down her thighs to her crotch. She had to spread her legs to get free access to her vagina; otherwise, her full inner thighs got in the way.
Bob was close to losing it by now; he hadn't felt so manically aroused since high school.
Maureen's pubic covering was full and dark; she dug into it and found her waiting lips. As she parted them, Bob realized for the first time how silent everything was, like an old porn loop in a peepshow. He should be hearing her making some sounds, but the wall was too thick.
The fat girl grew deeper into herself and grew more frantic, whole body shimmying as she built to orgasm. When she reached her climax, Mo let out a scream loud enough to come through the wall. She suddenly dropped her feet to the floor, hand vanishing as her thighs flowed around it, and lay there shivering, breasts rolling up and down as she gasped to catch her breath.
Bob watched as she calmed and relaxed on the bed. Her body was an endlessly exciting thing, full of changes and fleshy permutations with every move she made. The way her upper arms flattened against her torso. The roll of support fat that ringed on both sides of her, starting at the base of each breast. The way her thighs overflowed at the join behind her knees. All his life he'd been taught to think that fat was ugly. Maureen refuted that belief.
The closet was stifling. He peaked out into the hall, crotch aching from its unrelease. What a way to start a job, he thought once more, as a thirtyish redhead came out of her room. She winked as she strolled by him, the kind of woman who gained most of her considerable weight in her haunches. He watched her elephantine end moving down the hall; in sweat-pants every bit of bulge was noticeable. Bob found himself stiffening with renewed vigor; he turned away only to find himself face-to-face with Maureen.
"Like the show?" she teased.
He gulped and worked to recover his bearings. "Quite a display," he said finally.
"One thing more you need to know," she said. "All the cleaning closets have their holes, so watch where you are if you're trying to sneak some time with a client."
"I've already got someone at home."
"That may be," Mo said, "but if you change your mind, I'll be around for the next seven days." She kissed two fat fingertips then placed them on his cheek. "See you later!" She wiggled off in the direction of the beach.
That made his second proposition in as many days. The surprising thing was: this had been the harder one to turn down.