Just for Fun: Serendipity

Ashes. CC 2.0 photo by Dannebrog.

Ashes. CC 2.0 photo by Dannebrog.

Serendipity

by Rebekah Postupak

“If you step on my toes again, I’m going to POP you.”

I suppressed a sigh. “Aggressive.”

“Get OFFA my toes or I’ll SMASH YOUR HEAD IN.”

Forget suppression. I sighed loudly. “No. No, I’m sorry; that just won’t do, Dominique.”

“WHAT’S WRONG WIFFIT?”

“If a gentleman steps on your toes, the ladylike thing is to ignore it.”

“IGNORE stepping on my TOES?”

“Yes. I’m afraid so. It is generally considered ill-mannered to point out another person’s faults, and this is doubly true on the dance floor.”

“So it’s not bad manners to STEP ON MY TOES?”

“Yes, of course it is. But one does not respond to poor manners with more poor manners.”

She huffed and threw herself on the floor. “It’s not fair. If he steps on my toes, I oughta be able to pop him.”

“Relax, my dear. Think of the orchestra, the gowns, the jewels—it’s glorious, and well worth whatever slight discomfort you must endure.”

Her scowl only grew. “I FOT YOU SAID THERE WAS DINNER.”

“Yes, yes, of course; as I said earlier, there’s a buffet. You will likely be too busy dancing to eat, however. Please remember the very short window of time—”

“I wanna eat! You said I could eat!”

“Well, I—”

“I WANNA EAT!”

“Believe me, I fully understand the value of a good meal. There is just so little time, and the prince will be—”

“If I cain’t eat, I ain’t going.”

“Perhaps something small. Quickly.”

My offer was met with a furious glare. “You cain’t tell me how much to eat. I’m gonna STUFF MY FACE.”

“Remember you’ll be in a corset.”

“A what?!”

“A corset. It’s a little thing you’ll wear underneath your gown to help—dear child, please refrain from picking your nose.”

“My nose got itself a BOOGER!”

“Here. Please. Take my handkerchief. No, here—please! Take it.”

She stared at the delicate square of lace suspiciously. “Whassat for??”

“For your nose, dear.”

“I gotta dress up my nose too?! This big fat gown ain’t enough?”

“It’s for—oh, nevermind. Just be quick. It’s almost time to leave.”

“But the booger’s STUCK.”

I closed my eyes. Breathe. Just breathe. For the first time in a hundred years I questioned the Council’s wisdom. What had they been thinking?? Rags to riches isn’t for everybody. They must know this. Or they would, if they’d leave the clouds and mingle with humans every so often…

Just then the door opened and a voice spoke, her words falling gracefully, like chimes. “Dominique? I came in early to cover your shift tonight. Is there anything I can do to help?”

Her work clothes were ragged, but she had scrubbed her face and her eyes glowed with intelligence and warmth.

“Yeah, take this stuff and clean out that grate. I gotta take care of this here BOOGER.” Dominique threw the tools at the newcomer and flounced off.

I stared at the girl, whose nametag read “Cinderella.”

Hope bloomed.

***

Written for the flash contest “Finish That Thought,” using the required opening sentence and the judge’s special challenge of incorporating one-word song titles. 499 words.

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3 thoughts on “Just for Fun: Serendipity

  1. Have you cornered the market in re-imagining fairy tales? You do it so well!
    This is wonderfully paced, with the lack of social graces piling up to overwhelm the FGM.
    One of the best of this kind I have read – I laughed all the way through.
    Just one problem: who is this character, Hope, mentioned in the last line? 😉

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