BOTH Mergers and Expansions (~BBW, ~BHM, ~FFA, stuffing, explicit ~sex, ~~WG)

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gythaogg

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Mergers and Expansions
by gythaogg (Demeter Dixon elsewhere online)​

Caution: contains explicit sexual content.

Ingrid is an independent, bookish first-year solicitor with a kink she's too shy to reveal and a crush on the gorgeous young lawyer down the hall. How can she thrive in the competitive, appearance-obsessed world of law when all she wants is to feel deliciously out of control?

Author's note: this is by far both the tropiest thing I've ever written and the most nervewracking thing I've ever posted online.

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Chapter One: Reasonable Doubt

Fuck, this is getting tight.

Ingrid shifted awkwardly at her desk, acutely, frustratingly aware of the taut fabric of her charcoal pencil skirt pressing against her stomach. Lunch had been a mistake – she could have gone with the other first years to that new Mexican place, been sensible, picked up a salad. But no, of course, she, in her hedonistic, antisocial foolishness just had to listen to that impulsive little voice in the back of her head that demanded pizza, dear god pizza, take lunch early and carve out a little time alone with A Clash of Kings.

Ingrid knew she should be trying to cement more friendships, that if she wanted to last through the first few crucial months at the firm she couldn’t leave her relationships with colleagues at stilted conversations about last weekend and next weekend and the malevolent printer’s desire to rule the human race forever. And she definitely knew she should be trying to eat a little more sensibly, that she couldn’t afford to fill up on comfort food whenever the new workplace made her nervous or her tongue cried out for just a little something sweet to get her through the bitterness of the afternoon reading miserable precedents and writing endless file notes. She knew her skirt was beginning to cling to the increasingly soft curve of her belly and ride up as she walked, that she was noticing the seams of her blouse straining just a little when she lifted a stack of folders or bent to pick up an errant pad of Post-Its. She knew that keeping a packet of fun-size Snickers bars in her desk drawer went beyond self-sabotage to actual Bridget Jones cliché. She knew that internally scoffing at the absurdity of describing tiny chocolate bars as “fun-size” was a step down a dangerous path. She knew these things. And yet.

Staring absently at her computer screen and feigning interest in the latest case one of the partners had asked her to summarise, she lowered her hand to rest against the swell of soft flesh below her waistline, constricted by the firm fabric of the skirt. She pressed at it gently. There was hardly any give, her usual softness spread and rounded and made hard and full. Pizza may not have been a mistake; four huge slices covered in toppings and a soft drink certainly was. But the book had been so engaging she’d barely felt the fullness and the warmth, barely tasted the tomato and cheese, felt the spice of the salami tingling on her tongue or appreciated the texture of the dough. If I’m going to eat this extravagantly, I should at least enjoy it.

No, what the hell am I thinking? I need to get this under control. I can’t let myself keep doing this. She returned her focus to the case, buried herself in the intricacies of recent developments in superannuation splitting, trying to ignore the pressure of her waistband and fight the sleepy trance of afternoon digestion. It wasn’t until she was completely engrossed in the case and in the middle of reading a judge’s minority opinion that she was startled from her reverie by one of the other first year lawyers.

“Friday afternoons, right? Just let it end already.”

Ari. Of course it was Ari, on the day she was feeling plumpest and frumpiest, of course it was Ari leaning against her office doorway. Of course he was looking as unbearably polished and cheerful as ever, his curly black hair just slightly too long for proper solicitor respectability, brushing his shoulders and curling over his ears, his suit skimming the lines of his broad, tall frame, his – oh my god is my hand still on my belly? Fuck. It’s fine, he didn’t notice, he’s not looking at my flab, I’m being insane. Just respond like a normal person.

“I know, just put it out of its misery. What have the taskmasters got you working on?” Smooth. It’s fine, it’s fine, he wasn’t looking. Not everyone is as obsessed with this sort of thing as you are.

“Singh. Forever and always Singh.”

“How many years has that file been running?”

“Ten thousand.” He grinned. The tiny crows’ feet around his eyes always crinkled when he grinned.

“So about the average for a family law dispute, then?”

“Oh no, this is nothing. I hear Eleanor’s working on a file from the late Cretaceous period.”

“Oh, of course, those brachiosaurus get really vicious about custody splits.”

He laughed. “Yeah, they’re all, ‘Yargh, I want the eggs at least three weekends a month!’”

“In all seriousness, did you hear about that case from the UK a while back where a family had been fighting over an inheritance for a hundred and seven years or something?”

“Actually?”

“Actually. They whittled this huge chunk of money down to nothing in legal fees. The judge’s comments were amazing.”

“I need to read that right now.”

“But what about poor long-suffering Mr Singh and his sixteenth application?” She raised an eyebrow at him. “You just came over here to find more ways to procrastinate.”

“How dare you. I am a dedicated and tireless advocate and I do not at all want to punch my own client in the face and burn all his documents.”

Ingrid grinned. “Check your email in five minutes.”

“Yes! I am in your debt.”

You could take me to coffee.

“Hah, it’s no problem. I, too, know the pain of Friday afternoons. I’d better get back to it though, before I get a death glare from Jacobs.”

“No worries. My inbox is ready.” He turned to go, started to say something, seemed to change his mind, and strode back to his cubicle.

Ingrid struggled to make conversation with some of the other first years, just as she’d always struggled to form real friendships with most of her law school compatriots and preferred the company of students from other departments. They were certainly nice enough, in a smooth, unblemished, tennis-at-the-club sort of way, but she could always feel the appraising looks and the undertone of competition, and so often she felt as if she was losing some game she’d never signed up to play. There was a certain young lawyer ‘look’ – your suit needed to be, or at least seem, tailored and expensive, your hair exquisitely styled, your skin a moderate golden tan, the glow of the denizens of ski slopes and salons, and you definitely needed to be slim. And while young lawyers certainly knew how to party, sometimes it felt as if they never let their collective guard down, as if they were still constantly comparing even in moments of drunken nightclub tomfoolery or while giggling over brunch.

Ari, though, was reassuringly frank and irreverent, and around him Ingrid felt less constantly self-conscious about her jokes and her tendency to spout trivia in casual conversation. Well, less verbally self-conscious. Her hand returned to her lap and she ruefully traced a fingertip over the offending bulge of her belly. Ari was bigger than some of the other gym-toned young solicitors, admittedly, but men could get away with that, especially with a frame like Ari’s. He was big everywhere – everything about his form suggested strength and shelter, something Ingrid suspected the clients noticed and found comforting. She, in contrast, felt as if her size – her expanding size, for goodness’ sake, what was she thinking eating all that pizza – implied a sort of reckless weakness, a lack of strength and self control. She knew she had a knack with clients – they were certainly easier to talk to than lawyers – but she worried that in those first few crucial seconds after she strode into a conference room and shook some new client’s hand, they were thinking, She can’t even keep herself together, so how can she manage my case?

In truth, Ingrid could have kept herself together, she knew. She could, if she really wanted to. She knew how to be sensible about nutrition. It wasn’t as if she gulped down McDonalds for every meal or refused to drink anything but soda. She had never exactly hated exercise, although she had certainly hated how slow and lumbering and ungainly she felt when she tried to keep up while playing team sports. She loved to swim, as long as she was alone. But her quiet frustrations with her soft squishiness never seemed to translate into real, sustained action, and it wasn’t just laziness or preoccupation with more important things that kept her plump. Quietly and deep down, she liked that softness. She liked the feeling of being just a little bit out of control. She knew other people relished the satisfaction of a full meal and the feeling of stuffed contentment that came afterward, but she knew they almost certainly didn’t relish it the way she did, didn’t feel quite the same indulgent buzz. You were supposed to feel embarrassed and upset when your clothes started clinging to your body too tightly, and Ingrid did, but she also felt just a little self-congratulatory, a little pleased and fascinated. When she felt full like this, she felt the ordinary fuzzy sluggishness that other people described, but she also felt strangely heightened and sharpened, aware of every inch of her own body, its rounded curves, the way her diaphragm felt just slightly constricted by the waistband of her skirt, her breaths a little shallower, the way the buttons of her blouse pressed into her skin, even the way her ass felt both tightly restrained by fabric and spread luxuriantly across her computer chair. In the private corners of her mind, she had to admit to herself that everything about her own fullness and softness worried her, concerned her, made her feel out of place in this world of sharp angles and carefully chosen words and striving for perfection, but it also turned her on. And it wasn’t just on her that the look and feel of a surfeit of flesh was appealing. Ari’s refreshing openness and keen sense of humour were wonderful of course, but there was a part of her that couldn’t stop thinking about just how … big he was. Big everywhere. Big laugh, big personality, broad shoulders, thick arms, thick waist, thick…

Just focus on getting the work done. You probably aren’t his type anyway.

That was the trouble, Ingrid reflected as she emailed Ari the link to the British case. With enough work, enough rigorous calorie counting, she could almost look the way most men seemed to prefer women – curvy, soft, but never actually crossing that line into chubby, never out of control, never taking up too much space. She had managed before, temporarily, to diet and sweat her way down to a more moderate figure. It never lasted. It never felt quite right, and she never quite trusted the men who went after her during those periodic thin phases. She didn’t trust the way they looked at her. She didn’t like the way they talked about girls who looked the way she used to look. Because she never quite made it to undeniably-slim, only to curvy-almost-pudgy, she especially didn’t like the way they sometimes watched the way she ate, constantly tensed for the mouthful that would finally ruin her in their eyes. She found herself sabotaging, drifting away, failing to answer text messages, choosing casual arrangements or, usually, nights alone with her fingers and her imagination to keep her company. And the occasional bowl of ice cream. Or tub of ice cream. And before long, she wasn’t worrying what they thought about her anymore; she had her body to herself, just the way she liked it, soft and squeezable and strokeable and overflowing and out of control.

She knew there were men with different preferences, of course, and men who didn’t care as much about body types. One of her friends from high school, Lena, a sweet, kind girl, had once tearfully confided to Ingrid in a moment of particularly low self-esteem that she weighed almost a hundred kilos, and Ingrid hadn’t doubted her. Lena had grown into a good-humoured, competent woman, a nurse now, and whenever Ingrid saw her with her husband, his total adoration for Lena was palpable. It shone from his face; it filled the room. Ingrid wanted to believe she could find someone who looked at her that way. But whenever her body was the way she liked it, she hesitated. She refrained from flirting, partly because she remembered those comments she heard about fat girls whenever she was in what she thought of as her thin-girl disguise, and partly because she didn’t know how on earth to explain what turned her on. She couldn’t imagine saying it to anyone else. I like how big I am. I like how big you are. Any sane person would be weirded out by the first and insulted by the second, surely.

By the time Ingrid was done for the day and thoroughly sick of looking at cases and CCH guides, the sky outside her window was dark and the office was almost empty. Shrugging on her coat and slinging her handbag over her shoulder, she walked past Ari’s office. His light was still on. She peered through the frosted glass of his office wall and saw movement. She knocked.

“Other people are still here?” he called from inside. “Come in, fellow no-lifer!”

She opened the door. Ari was at his desk, surrounded by open binders and manila folders, staring intently at his computer with a Chinese takeaway container in one hand and a pair of chopsticks lifted halfway to his lips in the other. His jacket was off, his tie hanging undone from his neck, his shirtsleeves rolled to the elbow, exposing olive forearms that looked surprisingly strong for a man who spent his days – and evenings – at the office. He absently popped a piece of what looked like satay beef into his mouth as he finished reading whatever was on the screen, then looked up.

“Ingrid! What are you still doing here?” He hurriedly returned the takeaway container to his desk and pulled himself to his feet.

“Got caught up in research. Still on Singh, right?”

“Yup. I swear that man is singlehandedly wrecking my diet. Takeaway in the office for the second time this week, and” – he looked down at his shirt ruefully – “I’m sure it’s starting to show.”

The shirt fit well enough, but Ingrid could see what he meant; that thick waist of his was looking a little thicker than she remembered. He was always gorgeous, but right now, just that little bit larger, he looked particularly enticing, a ripening fruit. Ingrid could feel warmth spreading through her.

“What are you talking about? You look fine.” You look sexy. “And that file would take its toll on anyone. He’s insisting on asking for the most ridiculous orders.”

“I don’t even want to talk about it. I’m still working on his sister’s new affidavit. You heading off?”

“I am.”

“Well, say hello to the outside world for me.”

“I will. Goodnight!”

“Night.” He resettled himself among the folders and returned his attention to the screen.

On the train ride back to her apartment, Ingrid could feel her skirt’s waistband still gripping her tightly, cutting into her flesh. The pizza had been hours ago and she was starting to feel the first subtle rumblings of hunger, but her belly was still warring with her outfit, which meant her own overeating was definitely beginning to catch up with her in a less temporary way. Guess Ari’s not the only one. She tried to read on the journey home, but she couldn’t shake her distraction. She was preoccupied by the thought of Ari and that takeaway box, and before long she was imagining him in that office, night after night, putting on pounds as he racked up billable hours, his ass spreading in his chair, his impeccably fitted suits finally starting to stretch and cling in all the wrong ways, mmm, in all the right ways...

Well, she couldn’t have Ari, but she could have what he was having. She swung by The Good Luck Dinner Club on the way home and ordered a serve of satay beef to go. And rice. And spring rolls.

The minute she unlocked her apartment door, her elderly tabby cat, Ginger, was rubbing at Ingrid’s stockinged legs, welcoming her home and demanding his evening meal. She poured him some water and doled out half a tin of Frisky Cat. He dug in cheerfully. Well, at least someone’s eating sensibly around here.
Ingrid set the takeaway on the kitchen table and settled herself on a chair. She’d barely registered the pizza, but she wasn’t going to make the same mistake now. Slowly, bite by deliberate bite, she made her way through first the thick, flaky, lightly oily spring rolls and then the beef and rice, relishing the warm richness of the peanut sauce, the tenderness of the beef and freshness of the vegetables, the fluffy white wholesomeness of the rice. The Good Luck Dinner Club served generous portions, and by halfway through the meal Ingrid had to unbutton and unzip her skirt, letting her increasingly round, full belly rest more freely in her lap. By the time she was two thirds of the way through the meal, Ginger was curled up on the big blue couch, satisfied and content as only a cat can be, and even Ingrid’s pantyhose were starting to feel a little restrictive. She stood, reaching under her skirt, and rolled the clinging hose down off her stomach, hips and ass, down her soft thighs and kicked them off onto the floor. Now almost entirely unrestrained, her belly swelled in her lap; looking straight down, she could see a sliver of its curve extending past her breasts. Ingrid reflected that she really ought to be wearing control top pantyhose to work if she was going to get away with this particular skirt much longer.

Control. That was exactly what she needed. She should not be eating so much that she regularly felt like bursting out of her clothes. She should not be letting herself go this way, no matter how good it made her feel. She closed the takeaway containers and rushed them to the fridge, finding a place for them right at the back of a shelf. Enough. You’ve made enough of a pig of yourself. Returning to the kitchen she knelt to retrieve the pantyhose under the table, feeling oddly thrilled by the realisation that her full stomach was making it just a little difficult for her to bend.

As she carried the hose to the bedroom and dropped them into her laundry basket, she had a peculiar urge. Feeling oddly self-conscious for a woman alone in her own home apart from a sleepy old cat, she closed the bedroom door behind her and faced the full-length mirror mounted on her door. She stared.
Her skirt looked ridiculous. Even unzipped, it clung to her absurdly, making her look belly look swollen, round, heavy. She could already picture some well-meaning fellow commuter standing to offer her a seat, asking her when the baby was due. Her blouse looked less absurd, but she was definitely beginning to outgrow the poor thing. Her chest was straining at the buttons more than usual. Unprofessional. I can’t wear this to the office again. A shame; the blouse was one of her favourites, the indigo blue fabric striking against her pale skin and wavy chocolate brown hair. Its thin fabric clung a little more than it should to the flesh of her stomach and upper arms, and when she turned and stretched to examine herself from behind, she noticed that it emphasised the little rolls of softness puckering just below her bra.

Turning away from the mirror, she pulled the skirt down, wiggling and squirming, struggling to get the damn thing over the swell of her hips and the curve of her ass. Either I need to lose weight or I need to move up a size. Neither prospect particularly appealed. Off with the skirt, off with the blouse, and as she turned back to toss them into the basket, her gaze was drawn, again, to the mirror.

Soft. Everything about her looked so soft, so round, from the slope of her shoulders and the curving thickness of her upper arms to the ample excesses of her hips. People said, sometimes, appreciatively, that a woman had full lips. Ingrid, right now, had full everything. Fewer planes than she remembered, and more … bulges. Her breasts bubbled over the cups of her simple black bra. Her waist had widened with her hips; those curves had grown less smooth and defined. Her belly, almost the biggest she’d ever seen it, pooched out defiantly, deliciously, decadently, rolling over the seam of her black cotton underwear. She grabbed at the flesh of her waist and felt her fingers sink in deep, squeezing, stroking. Her fingers dug into her lovehandles, her thighs, her wide, round ass, and she heard herself sigh, so quietly it was barely even a sound, felt the heat and the wetness growing between her legs.
“You’re getting huge,” she told the woman in the mirror, running a palm over her belly, lifting and weighing it in her hand, feeling its fullness, its heft. “You’re letting yourself go. Look at you. Plump and pudgy and greedy, and only getting worse.” She should feel ashamed, upset. She felt intoxicated. Her left hand slid between her legs, beneath her underwear, as her right hand continued to rove over her body, poking and pinching and prodding. “You’re going to get properly fat if you keep this up. Look at that gut.” Her left hand moved rhythmically back and forth, stroking; she was soaking wet. Her breathing grew heavier; everything about her felt heavier, round and ripe and full to bursting. The movements of her left hand sped as she stared at herself. She bent her right arm and unclasped her bra, removed it hastily, tossed it aside, cupped one of her breasts, traced a finger around and around her nipple, felt herself shiver. Suddenly her legs felt weak; she let herself fall onto the bed behind her, and now both hands were between her legs and she remembered how exquisitely tight that skirt had been, imagined wearing it back to the pizza joint in the city and eating and eating until the fabric strained and stretched and the button popped off and the zipper slid down and her belly bulged and everyone could see what a greedy little glutton she was, how big and fat she was, how much bigger and fatter she was going to get if she kept this up, how…. mmmnnh…

She relaxed. Her breathing began to slow, and she managed to rouse herself long enough to crawl under the blankets before letting herself sink into the warmth and the glow. As Ingrid curled up, tired and content, she couldn’t help but wonder, distantly, how on earth she was ever going to fit in at work, or fit into the erotic imagination of someone normal like Ari, or fit back into that damn skirt.
 

strataadvance

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This is Exquisite. Reminds of the writing of Swordfish with the Amazing Inward reflection of the characters. Please keep posting this wonderful story.
 

Sweetsally

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"And before long, she wasn’t worrying what they thought about her anymore; she had her body to herself, just the way she liked it, soft and squeezable and strokeable and overflowing and out of control."

Oh my gosh, your writing is fantastic. This line is one of many of my favorites. Thank you! I hope you will keep it going. Incidentally, you made me crave the last slice of leftover pizza in my fridge...;)
 

Xyantha Reborn

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Love, love, love! I adore the conversations. This has been the summer of BHMish stories! Can't wait for more!!!

Only suggestion is that breaking up the paragraphs will help a little. Reading this on the phone was pretty dense...the white space makes it easier.
 

gythaogg

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Thank you so much everyone! I have some non-fiction writing projects due over the next week, but after that I'm looking forward to throwing myself into the next chapter.
 

kc2014

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Love it. Really well written and engaging, but more than anything I love how much I can relate to Ingrid, so thank you. So looking forward to the next instalment!
 

JimBob

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I so wish this one could have continued, it was yummy.
 

agouderia

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I so wish this one could have continued, it was yummy.

Indeed - this one looked very promising. Gythaogg - any chance you're still around and might be able to take care of your poor abandoned story baby??

It is so sad that the proportion of never finished BBW stories is so high - that also makes it difficult finding material for the public library.
 

gythaogg

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Ah, my poor abandoned story! I won't abandon it forever - I just sort of got incredibly busy working a full time job and doing some freelance work, but I'll be back to finish it yet!

By the way, Lurkymcduck, you asked about the setting - it takes place in a major city in Australia, which is why the legal language is so very Australian.
 

JimBob

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No trouble at all, we've all been there (and some of us are still). I myself am particularly interested in this one partly because of the intriguing dilemma of the protagonist and partly because I'm delving into the legal world meself (UK rather than Aus). Whenever you have the time to finish, we'll all be eagerly awaiting!
 
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