A Brown Dress

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Children Stories  |  House: Young Adult Readers And Writers
Laura's bizarre experience with a dress, just weeks from high school prom.
Warning: May contain a plot twist!

Submitted: December 26, 2015

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Submitted: December 26, 2015

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There are a few events that mark a girl's life, and for many, Prom is one of them. Though the participants are young adults, the party excites the dormant fantasies that were born from fairytales in infancy.
The long-awaited date was fast approaching.
While everyone was preparing their gowns and make up for that evening with happy hearts, there was one girl, at least, who was most seriously displeased.

A door opened and quickly closed making an unpleasant noise.
Laura had come into her room, terribly pissed off after a fight with her parents. She sat in front of her dresser, and looked at her reflection: a pretty face made ugly by red eyes, a runny nose and tear stains everywhere.
“I just can’t believe it!" She shouted, partly with an intention of letting her parents downstairs hear. "My graduation is on Saturday and my parents are stingier than ever.”  She cried her lungs out.
Since graduating from high school is a one-in-a-life time event, Laura had asked her parents for some special presents. The worst part of the story was that she had not even asked for much.
“I want to renew my mobile because it already has two years of use and everybody has the newest iPhone model.  My computer is also too old for me - old things are for losers, and I don't want to be a loser in college. By the way, just a heads up that I'm already 18 and haven't received my first car yet. I've had to make 100 excuses to my friends, but I don't want to do that in college, please! Oh, I also need some new magazines and make up, because my friends are buying a lot of them, and I need to keep up with the latest style. Oh, but don’t dare you forget that I want a turquoise dress with a lot of brilliant silver stones on it for my graduation party. Remember the drawing I showed you? I won't accept any alterations on it. I want to look like a sparkling star, but I also want the dress to be turquoise because that color is popular these days.” Those had been her words. For some unfathomable reason, however, her parents rejected her idea. A huge, serious argument ensued, with her mother complaining that she was using too much of their money, and that she was being immature. The fight ended without resolving when both of them sent Laura to her room.
“I'll stay here until they give up and change their mind. I shall starve myself to death, and I won't go to school.” She knew she could do anything if she was determined enough.
While she was staring at her face, she saw it become even uglier with a frown. Her usual complaints left her mouth. “Why don’t I have blond, curly hair and blue eyes! If I had them, I wouldn't need my friends to be the popular girl at school. If I had them, I'd have had as many boyfriends as Sasha. Or maybe at least one. Or maybe at least a handsome guy to invite me to prom." She growled when she remembered that she was supposed to think of an excuse to not attend pre-prom. She did not want to be there without a partner, surrounded by all the couples. New tears started forming on her eyes.
She brought both hands to her eyes, wiping the tears off, and making her sight go dark. She stayed like that for some moments, thinking how the darkness matched her inner struggle. She could have stayed like that for a very long time, but unfortunately her arms soon became tired. She dropped her arms to her sides, and returned to broad daylight.

Suddenly, she noticed something weird in her reflection. She jumped out of her chair, and looked behind her to find that a lot of stuff was scattered on her bed. She could have sworn that a few moments ago there had been nothing on her bed!
The things she saw were marvelous. There was a brand-new laptop and the latest iPhone, laying among a pile of magazines and tons of make-up. She approached her bed, sat on it and grabbed one of the make up cases to see if they were real. Whether this was all a dream. The case was silky to the touch, and had its weight. She reached for the laptop, and stroked its cool and hard surface. Her fingerprints stayed on the iPhone's screen.  They were real.
Thinking that she had gone mad, she turned desperately to the door to run and call her parents, when she noticed a dull, brown dress hanging from her doorknob.  She scowled at the gown.  “What's up with that color? And that horrendously boring style? Did they forget I'm only eighteen? This dress looks like it'd fit my grandma better.” She grabbed the dress from the doorknob, and threw it to the floor. “In dreams I'm going to wear it," she said while glaring at it with animosity.
When she was done complaining about the gown, she sat back in front of the dresser. However annoyed she was about the choice of gown, she was still quite surprised by all her new possessions. She wondered why her parents had acted like idiots when they had already gotten her all that she needed, and she also thought that she had a little more potential in convincing them to buy her a car too.
Pleased with herself, Laura rested her face on her arms and closed her eyes. She started daydreaming herself with curly, shimmering blond hair that almost seemed made out of gold, eyes that were blue, but not like the ocean because she was aware the ocean was rather moss greenish at closer inspection. She wore a beautiful long turquoise dress which had shiny silver designs on it.

All of a sudden, Laura was woken up from her daydreams by loud popular music. What is going on?
Her room was no longer her room: she was standing in a large hall with golden walls decorated with red and cream, and a beautiful carpet that covered the entire place, except for a rectangular space that was saved for the dance floor. There were a lot of people, though Laura was too busy looking at the gorgeous chandeliers, the whole set up of tables, and the served luxurious plates to pay attention to anyone. When she was going to move towards the long table with the plates, she noticed that she was still wearing the turquoise dress she had designed. She touched her hair, and it was as soft as a bunny's fur, and she could see that the tips were golden.
That moment she was convinced that this was not just prom. This was her prom.
She knew she looked gorgeous, and that all the gazes in the room were on her every second. She knew she looked as if she had stepped out of a fairytale. There may have been eyes that viewed her with jealousy, but she thought that was even better, for it made her feel that she was the center of admiration.

Then, when she was just walking towards the table, she saw him. It was Kevin, the handsomest guy in her class, who was also one of Sasha's ex-boyfriends. He was a tall guy in many Varsity teams, and Laura particularly admired his attractive gray eyes and his dimples, which formed on his cheeks every time he parted lips to reveal the whitest smile. She had always dreamed that Kevin would be so captivated by her beauty the day of prom, that he would ask her out. Then they would become sweethearts for some time, and eventually marry in a beautiful chapel.
That Kevin was, as always, surrounded by a bunch of girls who believed had a chance at seducing him. However, this time Laura saw that his smile looked less genuine than when she normally saw him at school. He was also a little nervous and seemed to be scanning the room, searching for something, or someone. Was it just her imagination?
Her feelings heightened. Her inner voice screamed to him, "Kevin, I'm right here! Don't search anymore, I'm here!" She even waved her hand, and he noticed her. They locked eyes, and Laura felt her heart jump to her throat.
She ran thorough the crowd, pushing everyone who stood in her way, and stood in front of the guy.
“Hi,” She said, remembering too late that she was unprepared and had nothing else to say.
“Hi,” He replied back, smiling kindly with his brilliant eyes just like a prince.
"I've always meant to talk to you some day," Laura began. "I'm Sasha's friend, and I'm popular, but never had the courage to until a few seconds ago."
Kevin did not reply, but nodded absent-mindedly. She took the silence as a cue to introduce herself, but he interrupted her.
“Oh, there's no need to say your name.  I already know that you are called Laura.”  He said.
Laura felt more pleasure than she had ever felt before. She had never even dreamed that Kevin would have already noticed her. 
“Did Sasha tell you?” She asked while trying to push down the smile that creeped on her lips.
Kevin raised an eyebrow, and made an expression, which suggested that he thought it was a very strange question. “Not really. I only knew because every girl here is named Laura.” He said it in a nonchalant tone, as if he was saying that all girls here are females.
Needless to say that Laura was taken off guard.
For the first time since she arrived to the hall, she looked around to see the people in the room. All of the girls had blond hair and blue eyes, like the ones she had wished for. The ones who were on their mobiles had the latest model of iPhone. They wore dresses in the popular color, turquoise, and had the same designs on them. Laura raised the hem to reveal her shoes - even they were the same as the girls'. 
All of them looked like clones of Laura, or maybe Laura looked like the clone of them.

Laura was looking unbelievably pale, when Kevin sighed in relief. “There she is!” He said with a smile that surpassed all the ones she had seen at school. Laura slowly turned around to face where his gaze was directed at. There a girl was standing, who had brown hair, and was wearing an old-fashioned brown dress.
It did not take Laura half a second to realize her real self.
“What's her name?” She asked weakly, waiting for her name to be said again, but she was shocked once again to hear his answer.
“I don’t know. I've never spoken to her.” He said and added quickly, “But I bet her name is not Laura.”
Laura nodded slowly, because she understood what he meant.
“Today, I'm going to ask her to dance with me. I hope she falls in love with me as I did with her.”
She did not reply, but in her mind she was comforting him. "Sure she will accept it," she thought. She knew more than anybody that she would.
With a feeling on the verge of collapse, Laura watched Kevin walk hastily towards the girl, who was herself but not really. At that moment, she wished more than anything to be back in herself, and to be the one to excite that glittering smile in Kevin. However, all was too late now. She was standing outside of her body, surrounded by blondes who were exactly like her, in all ways.

Laura closed her eyes tightly to stop the tears from coming out without success.
However, when she opened them again, she found herself standing not in the party hall, but in her room. She looked towards the bed, but there was no brand-new stuff. She looked at the floor, but there was no brown dress. Her eyes set in the dressing table's mirror, only to find her normal self. She had lost all of what she always wanted, but she did not feel ill-humored in the least.
 
“Perhaps turquoise is not my style after all.” She told herself and walked off her room.


© Copyright 2019 Veronica Haines. All rights reserved.

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