The Stupid Red Dress
Right.. I love writing romance novels and I hope that you all like this one. Just a new one about looks, and how real love is more important. Might do character pictures if you want. Thanks guys..
The red dress stood in the shop window, which I was pressed up against. I shook my head, there was no way I would wear it. It wasn’t...me. It belonged to a skinny, beautiful cheerleader. Not a geeky, loner girl who somehow keeps going down in the social stats. I couldn’t stop looking at it; it twinkles and flashed glittery red. I wish I could wear it, wear it all the time. Let it hug my hips, let it twirl alongside me. The shop bell jingled as entered, and everyone turned to look. I didn’t class myself as beautiful. I was average height, average build. I had blue eyes, the kind that didn’t twinkle in the light, and mousy hair. I made my way towards the dress, it’s fabric tickled my fingers. I looked at the price tag. It was $25 dollars, I grabbed it quickly.
The shop attendant looked at me. “Nice dress, going somewhere?” he asked. I hated making small talk, or talking in general. I shook my head, handing him the money. “Oh..” he said. “Have a nice day.” he handed me the bagged dress and I made my way out of the shop.
The first day I wore it, people began to notice me. The whole senior population of Robert D High had turned their heads towards the girl in the red dress. The beautiful, glistening red dress. I felt small, and I wanted the ground to swallow me up. I made my way through the crowds and up to my locker. Locker 54. I opened it, and grabbed my books. When I turned back, I fell into somebody’s arms. “I- I didn’t see you. I’m sorry.” I said, breathlessly. Green eyes, brown hair, I recognised him. He was in my homeroom, and most of my classes. Austin Lowe, the most popular guy at school. What was he doing at my locker? What did he want with me. “It’s fine, Jess.” I blinked, I had no idea he knew I existed, much like anyone in this hell-hole. I smiled at him, weakly. He caught a strand of my hair in his fingers and twirled it. I hit his hand away. “What do you want, Austin?” I asked. He fumbled through his pockets, until he handed me an envelope. “I’m having a party, tonight. I hope you can come. And,” he made his way down the corridor, and said “Bring the red dress.” I looked down, unsure why it was such a big hit. The day passed quickly, and I didn’t bother to open the envelope. I didn’t feel worthy to have it…
“You were invited to Austin’s party, too?” A voice said. Beside me was Haley Richmond. She was the most popular girl at school, and I had no idea why she was talking to me. I nodded, showing her the envelope. She looked straight at me, her eyes widening. “Why don’t I take you?” she suggested. “I barely know you.” I said, half-heartedly. She laughed. “You know that nobody rejects my offers, right?” she replied. I nodded. She clasped her hands together. “Pick you up at 8 sharp.” Her huge, high stilettos clicked along the corridor as she left me. I took a deep breath, Homeroom 7 seemed like a daunting place to go into. Eighteen sleepy faces were on me, and I halted. I scanned the room, my best friend, Beck Night, was nowhere to be seen. “Here.” Austin’s voice called from the back. He was offering me a seat, beside the most popular people in school. I sighed heavily, wondering if I was dreaming. Had I hit my head? Was I the star of a new prank show? I shook my head, and sat down beside them. “I can’t wait until tonight. You’ll look great.” Austin whispered. His voice was hushed and soft, and I felt uneasy as he spoke. Did he seriously think we had a chance of being together? I certainly didn’t. I sat back, loosening my tense shoulders, and focused on the front of the classroom. The morning went swiftly and I found myself in the queue in the dining room. I hated waiting in queues, I was extremely inpatient. I looked over at the containers, to see what I could eat. It was a typical lunch here, and almost all choices had the signature ‘mystery meat’ in them. I ignored my urge to gag, and grabbed an apple and water. I scanned the dining room, searching for an empty seat.
It was hard to get the best spot here, amongst the thousand or so students. Austin, looking as smug as ever, was sat there. He patted a seat, which I joined. “Why do you keep being so nice to me?” I demanded. He placed a hand on my lap. “I always liked you, you know.” He said. I smiled, weakly. His hand suddenly came upwards, and upwards and- “Stop!” I said. His tray of food suddenly came towards him, the whole dining room erupted with laughter. I rushed out quickly.
There was no way I could go to that party, he wouldn’t let me inside. It was worth a try I guess. I dressed quickly, and waited for the car. Just as I let my mind wander, the sound of a loud car horn came to my ears. Haley’s red Jaguar car made it’s way onto my driveway, and she was waving. I waved back, and made my way out. “Wow, Jessie. You look awesome, Austin will love you.” Just the mention of Austin made me sick. Haley was wearing a tight pink dress, which showed all her valuable assets. Her hair was clipped back with a flower barrette. She placed her hands on the wheel, and drove us to Austin’s house. I always knew he was rich, but I had no idea. There were butlers, serving what I suspected was alcohol. And there was a ice sculpture, that I guessed looked like Austin. If you squinted. “Jess.” His voice was soft and calming. “You look, amazing.” His hands were on my waist. “And I forgive you for earlier, girls get lost in my eyes.” I scoffed, releasing his grip. The music filled the house and street, and Haley was lost in the crowd. “Do you want to dance?” he asked. I shrugged, he was a jerk, a cute jerk. I nodded. He took one hand, his hand on my waist. I closed my eyes, hoping my feet would follow his. I felt his hand wandering, and I slapped it back. I was strong, I knew, because he winced slightly. I leant in closer, and smelt the musky alcohol on his clothes. I leant my head on his shoulder, swaying slightly to the music. It was peaceful, and I kind of liked it. He pulled away, as the song stopped. He staggered his way to the DJ booth at the front of his house. I made my way through the crowd of drunk kids, and found Haley in the corner. Her hair was messed up, she had puke on her dress. “Let’s get you home.” I said, in a sigh. Truth be told, I was the one who needed to be home. It was past midnight, and I couldn’t locate my way home with just the help of the streetlights. I ignored her drunk protests of “I don’t wanna go. I was-I was just about to-“ I laughed. We left the car, Haley insisted she’d pick it up in the morning. We walked to Haley’s house, and then I headed to mine. I slipped inside, quietly, and made my way upstairs. I undressed, leaving the red dress in my closet, and slept until morning.
I awoke to feel groggy. I hadn’t drunk alcohol, but I felt hung over. Last night was a blur to me, apart from Austin’s dancing. I laughed as I remembered it. I got up, pushing the warm, soft covers away from me. I retreated to the kitchen. I grabbed a fresh mug, and poured out coffee. It warmed me up, and I felt at ease. I dressed in a simple outfit, packed my bag, and made my way outside.
Robert D High School was only a short walk from my house, and I waited in the parking lot until Haley pulled in. I laughed as I saw her coming. Her eyes were covered by huge black sunglasses, despite the fact it was spring and raining. She clutched her head and said “Oh my God, last night was wow. My head is pounding.” She looked down at me, and frowned. “Where’s the dress?” I frowned at her. “I just- I guess I didn’t want to wear it.” I lied. What did she expect? I had other clothes, too. I sighed, and made my way into the hallways. I opened my locker, and red roses tumbled out. “Girl in the red dress, I hope you can meet me at the park today.” I raised an eyebrow. Today? I looked at Haley and said “What do I do?” she pressed her lips together. “You can’t turn Austin down!!!” she shrieked. I nodded, heading out. “Cover for me.” I said. She winked.
I pulled my hood up, and retreated outside of school. The park was just a quick walk away. Austin was there, hidden by the oak tree. He looked me down, and frowned. “Everyone wants the red dress?” I said, raising an eyebrow. Austin came forward, twirled a strand of my hair in his icy fingers, and said “I like you just the way you are.” And then, without hesitation, his lips were on mine. I didn’t care if he was lying, if it was just his way to kiss me. I loved his lips, so soft and velvety. I pulled away, sighing to myself. He rested against the tree, his muscles showing through his black t-shirt. I sighed heavily, my hands on his shoulders. “I think, I think we should head back to school.” I said. Austin’s lips came onto mine, and I couldn’t resist. “There’s no need to go back.” He said, in between breathes. He kissed me again, a long, beautiful kiss and I eased slightly. He ran his fingers through my hair, catching the ends. “Haley says you can try out.” He announced, as if I was excited or shocked by the news. “For cheerleading?” I squeaked. He sniggered, nodding at me like I was a fool. I wasn’t strong, skinny or athletic. His hands were on my waist when he whispered “Give it a try, Haley thinks you’ll give the team “something”” I laughed as he mimicked her, and did air quotes. He turned to face me. “And plus,” he began. “If you got in the cheer squad, you’d get to wear that short skirt and tank top. You’d look great.” He said. I scoffed again. I took a look at my watch, school had ended. I stood on my tiptoes, I was small compared to him, and kissed him. “I’d better go, see you tomorrow.” I said. He hesitated, but let me go from the kiss. I felt on top of the world, like nothing could ruin my mood.
My Mother was stood at the door, her arms folded and a scowl on her face. I made my way to the staircase, but hesitated. “Your principal called, said you didn’t attend classes.” She announced. Oh no. I paused for a few seconds to think. “I was at the nurses office,” I began, trying to make it believable. I coughed loudly, and rubbed my throat. “Oh, my poor darling,” she began, she saw straight through me. She frowned slightly. “You get some rest, dinner will be ready in an hour.” I smiled at her, she wasn’t being truthful, but I wasn’t going to tell her anything. I slumped down onto my bed, and thought for a minute. Thought about everything. How I had two perfect days, all because of a wardrobe change. I couldn’t believe it, any of it. Austin kissing me, Haley asking me to try out. I felt like I had been dreaming, and I pinched myself slightly. Nope, not a dream, just sweet, sweet reality. I pressed my lips together and formed a smile.
Dinner was awkward, Mom still wanted me to spill. I closed my mouth, focusing on my glass of sparkling juice. “You’ve changed,” she began, her blue eyes glittering with tears. “since we moved here. You’ve become so distant, so different. Where’s the Jessica I know?” she asked. I smiled slightly, I couldn’t stop talking to her- she clearly was upset. “She’s still here, Mom.” I reassured. We just need to find her, I thought under breath. I helped Mom clean up after dinner, in my attempt for her to forget what had happened, and she was still staring at me. “You have your Father’s eyes.” she said. I smiled, feeling uneasy at the mention of my Father. He was in prison, for a crime I’m sure he didn’t commit, before I was born. Mom has yet to tell me what the crime was, but all I know is that it didn’t end well. It ended with the hissing silver electric chair, and my sobbing Mother being led away. I felt a lump in my throat, and made my way upstairs. I carefully shut the door of my road, and collapsed into the soft sheets.
Haley, along with the other cheerleaders at Robert D High, were showing us the routine. I blinked, unable to take in the series of dance moves, flips and tricks. Probably because of the short skirts and tank tops they were wearing. Maybe because of the huge guy in the dolphin costume (in honour of the Robert D Dolphins). “Hey, Jess!” Haley said, beaming at me. She gave me a huge bear hug, and I gasped for breath. She pulled away “Sorry, I’m just glad you made it.” She squeaked. She sat with the ‘judges’ and watched. The rest of the girls either attempted or excelled, whereas I failed. Miserably. I couldn’t keep in time, I was messed up. Haley clapped and cheered, just to be friendly. She looked at the two other girls and they exchanged a whisper for a few minutes. Haley placed her hands down on the table and said “You made the team.” I smiled, reluctantly. I grabbed the blue and white uniform, and made my way out of the gym. Austin was waiting outside, leant against the white frame of the building casually.”I see you made the team.” He said, matter-of-factly. I smirked at him, “No, of course not.” I added jokingly. He shoved me lightly, and then proceeded to kiss the tip of my nose. I squeaked with happiness. “I love it when you make that sound.” Austin declared. I smiled at him, kissing him fully on the lips. I was so fixated on his eyes, I barely noticed him slip Haley some money.
It was my imagination, I told myself, he wouldn’t do that to me. After all, he was my boyfriend. Though that was to be declared by him before I started to flaunt my new status. He invited me to his house, and I accepted. He held my hand the whole way, like I was a vulnerable kid. His house was a small, country style house. Completely not what I expected of him. He placed his hand over my eyes, and opened the door. “Welcome home, Jess.” He said. I opened my eyes to see the modern, open plan house. I blinked at it again, and he laughed. “My parents are out, I don’t know if they’ll be back.” He placed himself down on the couch, and I sat beside him. He took a deep breath, turned his whole body towards me and whispered “We’re alone.” his voice gave me the chills, pleasant chills of course. I nodded, he was right. We were alone, completely, alone. I clutched my cheer uniform, hoping he wouldn’t want a fashion show from me. He raised an eyebrow at it, and then at me. I sighed heavily, swallowing hard. I changed into it quickly, and said to Austin “How do I look?” he smiled menacingly. He folded his arms and said “Beautiful.” He picked me up in his huge arms and whirled me around. I hit him hard, and he put me down. “Did you give Haley money today?” I asked him, I wanted to know the truth. He shook his head. “I swear, I wouldn’t.” I wanted to believe him, but I couldn’t. I fought back tears, and ignored his protests. I made my way outside, and headed back home.
Tears flowed down my cheeks, and I rushed to my bedroom. I slammed the door, and buried my head in my pillow. I hated everything, everyone. I just wanted everything and everyone to go away.