Female Stories
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Interlude in Bronze
by Leem

All of the photos in this story were taken by me in July 2011,
and may be freely reproduced under GFDL.

It began like one of those dreams where you’re naked in public. Some people call them nightmares, but I have to admit, I was always aroused by the fantasy of strangers ogling my naked body.

Of course, a fantasy is all it was. I would never have dreamt of acting it out for real, and yet now it seemed to be coming true. As if I was waking up after a long sleep, I slowly became aware that I was naked in a public place.

I was standing in a large room, surrounded by ornate tables and chairs, vases, art deco lampshades and bronze statuettes. My arms were raised to my head as if I was styling my hair, and my left leg was raised slightly. It felt as if there was something like a towel draped over my lower legs, and there seemed to be something tied around my right arm, though I couldn’t tell what.

A few people were milling about inspecting the various items. Something seemed a bit odd about the angle I was watching them from, but I couldn’t put my finger on it.

There was a sign in front of me advertising 25% off antiques, which confirmed my suspicion that this was some kind of antique showroom or auction house. I couldn’t figure out what I was doing there, though. I’d never bought antiques in my life, and I’d certainly never gone shopping while I was naked. The whole situation was just crazy.

Then again... maybe I was the crazy one. That could explain it - perhaps I was coming to my senses after some kind of nervous breakdown. With any luck I’d be able to successfully plead insanity at my trial for indecent exposure.

On that thought, I decided that I’d better turn myself in to the first member of staff I could find. I tried to move...

Oh, my god. Two nightmares for the price of one. I’d often had dreams about not being able to move, but I’d never heard of it happening in real life. People couldn’t just become frozen where they stood spontaneously, and yet... I was. No matter how I tried, I still couldn’t move. I couldn’t lower my arms or take a step forward.

I couldn’t speak either. I couldn’t cry for help.

All right, I told myself. There’s got to be a rational explanation for all this. Don’t panic.

Come to think of it, I wasn’t panicking. Under the circumstances, I seemed to be taking things surprisingly calmly. Actually, to tell the truth, the idea of being naked and helpless in public was beginning to make me feel horny.

After a while three people came over to look at me. There was a young woman who looked to be in her early 20s, about the same age as me, leading a middle-aged couple. I was sure I’d seen the man before, on television maybe. The girl seemed to be a salesperson. There was something familiar about her too, and I suddenly had the feeling that she had something to do with my current state.

Then it came to me. Her name was Vanessa. She was a physics student in the same year as me at college. We’d had a fling that lasted a couple of terms, but then I’d broken it off. Had she somehow frozen me like this just to get back at me?

While I pondered the question the three of them approached until they were looming over me. That’s what was wrong with my viewpoint. I wasn’t on the same level as everyone else. For me to be seeing them like this they’d have to be eleven feet tall...

...or I’d have to have been shrunk to less than three feet tall...

Oh, god. That was it. I was small, and naked, and I couldn’t speak or move... and I was in an antique store, surrounded by small, naked statuettes......

Jasmine as Merciť's statue of Diana After her Bath - front left, photo by LeemIt was impossible, but somehow it was happening. I was a statue! That bitch Vanessa had turned me into a statuette as revenge for breaking up with her, and now she was going to sell me to some collector with more money than sense!

“Now I think you might like this one, Your Lordship,” she told her customer. “An exceptionally fine contemporary bronze reproduction of Diana After her Bath by Marius Jean Antonin Merciť, complete with artist’s signature and founder’s seal. It’s very rare to find an example of this size and condition. Based on the valuation of similar works in recent sales and the opinions of leading art experts, we have priced this item at £104,000. However, with the 25% discount that comes to... let me see... just £78,000.”

It still felt like a dream. It couldn’t really be happening. I wasn’t Diana After her Bath, I was Jasmine Kettering, a geology student from Hemel Hempstead! I had my whole life ahead of me! I couldn’t spend the rest of it as a living ornament, naked and paralysed on some dusty mantelpiece!

But if it was a dream, I couldn’t wake up. I couldn’t do anything. I couldn’t ever do anything, unless Vanessa chose to restore me to normal, and that obviously wasn’t about to happen right away. I couldn’t even hate Vanessa for what she had done to me, but if I ever did get back to normal I’d have a few things to say to her.

“Oh, yes, this is a marvellous piece,” said the man. “Don’t you think so, dear?”

“Yes, dear,” his wife replied. “The detailing is exquisite, and she’s such a pretty little thing. I think this would suit the main hall very well, don’t you?”

Jasmine as Merciť's statue of Diana After her Bath - back, photo by LeemSome girls complain about being discussed like pieces of meat. Well, here I was being discussed like a piece of metal. Made a change, I supposed. But being ogled by this middle-aged couple was making me feel really horny, which was nice but weird.

I was sure I recognised the man now. He used to be an MP. There’d been talk of him standing for Prime Minister at one point, but he never did. A few years ago he left the Commons to take up his hereditary seat in the Lords. I’d never really seen eye to eye with his politics, but he’d always seemed like a decent enough sort.

After discussing me for a few minutes they finally agreed that I would be the perfect addition to their collection. His Lordship told Vanessa to charge me to his store account, and she told him I’d be delivered on Thursday morning.

As they walked away contentedly Vanessa reached for my right arm. “All right,” she said quietly. “Let’s just replace your price label with a RESERVED tag.”

Once she had done that she smiled down at me and whispered: “I’ll talk to you before you’re shipped out, Jasmine... or should I say Diana? Until then, just relax. You’ve got no worries or responsibilities, and I’ve made sure you’re perfectly comfortable.”

Well, that confirmed my suspicions. Whatever science or sorcery had turned me to bronze, Vanessa was definitely behind it. As she strolled off I couldn’t help wondering about her motives. Was it really just revenge for our breakup? The more I thought about it the less likely it seemed. She’d never struck me as being that shallow.

Still, she was right about one thing. I really couldn’t worry about my situation, however surreal and helpless it was. I still felt calm and horny, and there was a part of me that actually liked being admired as a work of art.

So the rest of the afternoon passed in a kind of euphoric trance, until the last shoppers left and the lights went out. Shortly after that a pair of porters carefully lifted me onto a trolley and wheeled me to the service lift and down to the stockroom, where Vanessa was waiting for them.

“All right, boys,” she told them. “Tom’s taking this one up to Berkshire on Thursday morning. You might as well leave it until tomorrow to box it up. Just put it on the shelf here and I’ll put a plastic dust cover on it once I’ve finished checking the rest of the shipments.”

Once the porters had gone Vanessa knelt down to talk to me. There was a security camera behind her, but since she had her back to it, it would probably just look as though she was inspecting me for blemishes.

“Jasmine,” she said, “please don’t think I’m doing this for revenge. It’s true, I was hurt and angry when you broke up with me, but I got over that. Still... I really felt you were being too hasty, and I thought I should give you a chance to reconsider. And that’s what this is, Jasmine. A chance to think about our relationship, and our breakup, without emotions or distraction getting in the way.

“You see, I first tested this process on myself - that’s how I know it’s safe. I would never have risked using it on you if I hadn’t. And what I discovered was what you’re feeling right now - a state of calm, mildly erotic, euphoria, where all your stresses and anxieties can’t intrude. I guess you could call it the ultimate relaxation therapy. Who knows, I might even be able to market it some day. Just imagine - ‘Become a statue and let your cares melt away’.”

Then she chuckled as a new idea struck her. “Now there’s a thought. I could open a combined health spa and art gallery!

“Anyway, Jasmine, getting back to the point: now that you’re feeling this way, I want you to think again about our relationship and the reasons why you split up with me. Just think about them calmly and clearly, now that your emotions can’t cloud your judgement.”

Stiff from crouching, Vanessa stretched and rubbed her legs for a moment. I had to admit, her legs were two of the things that had attracted me to her in the first place...

“Now, where was I?” she said, crouching before me once more. “Oh, yes, that’s right, I was going to tell you the schedule. As I mentioned, you’re going to be delivered to His Lordship’s estate in Berkshire on Thursday. I’ve heard it’s a very nice place, and they entertain a lot of guests there so you’ll be able to get a fly-on-the-wall view of how the other half live. Well, a statue-on-the-mantelpiece view, anyway.

“Don’t worry, though, it won’t be forever. Some months from now there’s going to be a carefully planned and executed burglary, and several of His Lordship’s most priceless works of art will be stolen - including you, of course.” She grinned. “I suppose it’s just as well you didn’t catch some oil sheikh’s eye. Getting you back from somewhere like Saudi Arabia would have been a lot more complicated.

“Anyway, the stolen art treasures will eventually be traced to a small lock-up garage in Stoke-on-Trent and returned to their rightful home in Berkshire. There will be no fingerprints or DNA traces that could lead the police to the perpetrators, and their identity will forever remain a great unsolved mystery.

“Of course, the statue of Diana that His Lordship gratefully gets back will be the real one, because by that time I will have restored you to flesh and blood.

“And then...” she went on quietly: “And then I’ll ask you whether you’ve changed your mind about our breakup... whether you want to get back together with me. And no matter what your answer is, I’ll accept it.”

All the while she was talking Vanessa had also been feasting her eyes on my bronze nakedness, and it was doing incredible things to me. It was as if I could feel her gaze like a caress, and every passing moment was making me feel more and more pleasure until it was becoming hard to concentrate on what she was actually saying. Finally I reached a plateau of ecstasy that was better than any orgasm she’d ever given me in real life, and much, much longer.

Did she have any idea what she was doing to me? She claimed to have tested the transformation on herself, but did she have anyone look at her the same way while she was frozen? I felt sorry for her if she hadn’t.

Finally she slipped the plastic cover over me and I heard her footsteps receding. The semi-opaque dust cover left me in a state of sensory half-deprivation, and I slipped into my trance once more.

That was about three months ago, I think. It was summer when I began my life as a statuette, and now the trees outside the windows are all turning gold.

I must admit, Vanessa was right. Being a statue on the mantelpiece really isn’t all that bad. Just as she said, I’m calm and comfortable, and though I’d really like to be able to move again I’m not able to get stressed or upset about it. Right now my past life feels like a dream that I might or might not be able to return to at some point.

The hall I’m in is very large and elegant, with a painted ceiling, fine carpets, ornate furniture, huge windows giving me a view of the grounds, and even a big mirror between two of the windows that I can look at myself in. The statue body that Vanessa gave me really is quite pretty, and I spend a fair amount of time admiring it. I suppose you could call that narcissistic, but after all, it’s not my real body.

As in the shop, I’m surrounded by many other beautiful works of art, but I suppose I’m the only one that can think - unless Vanessa had other test subjects that she wasn’t telling me about.

Vanessa was right about His Lordship’s guests. They’re quite a varied lot, from high-ranking military types to leaders of the church and government by way of poets, painters, company executives and bankers. I even caught some glimpses of foreign heads of state and even the odd royal or two, usually with their spouses. Most of the movers and shakers were male, even in this day and age, but I saw some evidence that feminism was beginning to infiltrate their refined circles.

Whatever else you could say about my current owner, he’d certainly made himself some friends in high places, and he loved showing off his art collection to his friends. One by one, day after day, week after week, male and female, they would cast their eyes over my beautiful bronze body, which would make me feel hornier and hornier until I was virtually coming for what seemed like hours. Oh, god, I can’t describe how good it felt.

I just wished there were some way I could thank them. Maybe once I’m mobile again I’ll send them all anonymous Christmas cards.

Now it’s night and the hall is deserted and quiet. A crescent moon is partly visible through one of the windows. The only sounds are a clock ticking quietly in the distance, and the faint roar of a plane far overhead.

I can’t sleep in my current state, but freed from the distractions of the day I can let my mind drift into a kind of meditation. Tonight, though, I’m wondering when Vanessa’s burglary is going to take place. Some time in late autumn or early winter, I suppose, when the days are shorter, but probably before there’s any snowfall. That’s a shame. I wouldn’t mind seeing the grounds in snow. I’m guessing it’ll be early in December, before the Christmas shopping rush to avoid road congestion.

I can’t help wondering how the thieves will get in, past all the guard dogs and hidden alarms. Maybe Vanessa’s got someone working inside the house. I guess I’ll know that for sure if the dogs do nothing in the night-time.

I must admit, assuming the burglary goes as planned, I’ll miss my time here. It’s been a unique and interesting experience. Maybe once Vanessa’s opened her health-spa-cum-art-gallery I’ll sign up for a few sessions.

Still, I would like to get back to my old life again. I wonder how Vanessa will explain my long absence? She’ll have a good excuse worked out for me, that’s all I’m sure of. Can’t wait to hear what it is.

And I can’t wait to meet her again... because I have done what she asked. I’ve thought clearly and calmly about the reason I broke up with her, and whether it really would be a good idea for us to get back together again.

I’m looking forward to giving her my answer.


Jasmine as Merciť's statue of Diana After her Bath - upper front, photo by Leem

The inspiration for this story came from seeing some bronze nudes on display at a well-known London store. I decided to take some photos of the statues while I was there and managed to get some reasonably good results despite the low light levels. I admit, my new vibration-reducing lens helped a lot... I just wish I’d had it when I photographed the Tate’s temporary New Sculpture display in 2010 (you can see the results of that photo session here and here).

Anyway, none of the store staff objected to my snapping away. I suppose as far as they were concerned I could have been photographing them for a potential buyer to look at. One of the statues in question was indeed Diana After her Bath by Marius Jean Antonin Merciť and the price tag was indeed £104,000 - according to xe.com this is approximately US$169,000 or Ä119,000 in 2011 money. From what I’ve seen that’s actually pretty steep for a bronze statuette of this size. Either this was an exceptionally fine example, or the store was making one hell of a profit. Whatever the case, it’s far outside my tax bracket, which is why I stick to just photographing fine art instead of being mad enough to actually collect it.

Anyway, looking through my photos of that session convinced me that I had to use at least one of them as the inspiration for a story. OK, so obviously in the story the Diana statuette is really alive, but how did she get there? Was the transformation voluntary or not? What does it feel like for her? Where does she go when someone buys her? From such cloth was the story cut (he said pretentiously).

Just a couple more points. You might notice that the name “Jasmine Kettering” has similarities to Jaskri and Ketrin. Maybe she’s an ancestor of both of them. Of course, that would assume that she does get unfrozen at least long enough to have heterosexual intercourse, or artificial insemination, and bring a pregnancy to term... or at least to donate some egg cells.

As for “Vanessa”... well, I guess I just wanted a “vanilla” kind of name...

I deliberately left the ending ambiguous. Is Jasmine anxious to tell Vanessa she wants to get back with her, or to say she doesn’t hate Vanessa but thinks they should just be friends? I don’t have a definitive answer to that, although I do suspect that once Vanessa develops her transformation process commercially Jasmine may apply to become her business partner.

Just for the record, this is the first story I’ve written (in almost 12½ years) to feature miniaturisation, and one of the few where the “victim” looks like she’ll actually get unpetrified again.

PS: The reference to the dogs doing nothing in the night-time...
oh come on, do I really need to tell you where I got that one from?!

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