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“I’ll take an iced mocha with a sprinkle of cinnamon on top. I want it done in two minutes or less. If you don’t come back by then, I’ll get antsy,” I told the waitress.
I crossed my legs under the table and held Gigi tightly in my arms. Her warm, brown doggy fur covered my face while I inhaled the sharp smell of Chanel No. 5. I had sprayed it on her earlier today to give her that chic aroma.
Gigi trembled as another person entered the coffee shop. With each swinging of the entrance door, you could feel the surge of icy air blow in from the January cold.
“It will probably take a little bit more than two minutes. It’s busy around here.” The waitress gestured to the excessive amount of people crowding around tables. They all shivered and huddled together to stay warm while they waited for someone to get them something hot.
“I really couldn’t care less. So get away from me and bring it quickly. Go.” I shooed her away with a flick of my wrist and my charm bracelet jingled. I stared straight ahead until she finally moved her skinny figure back to the other side of the room. You would expect someone with that little meat on their bones to move faster.
I turned back to my boyfriend with curious eyes. “Why did you bring me here, honey bunny?” I asked Alexander. “I thought we were going shopping. I need a new ring.”
Alex’s muscles flexed as he fingered the tissue box beside us. He didn’t make eye contact with me, but just kept focusing on the tissues.
“Piper, I’ve been meaning to talk to you for a while. We need to talk about our relationship,” he said. He tossed his curly blond hair out of his face. “I don’t think we’re going to work out.”
I cocked my head to the side. What did those words mean? I didn’t think I’d ever hear them come from a male’s mouth directly towards me. I knew I’d said it to many other guys and a couple of outfits, but never had I been on the receiving end.
“I’m sorry. It doesn’t sound like you’re speaking English,” I said. “Haven’t we been having a great time together? We’re supposed to be perfect for each other.”
Over the past few weeks, we’ve had a couple of tiffs, but I didn’t really think it mattered. All relationships had arguments over silly things. And I knew that rich girls and hot guys worked like black boots and diamond earrings. They were timeless and never to be separated.
“It doesn’t really seem as if we have a relationship. It’s more like a superficial relationship where we just pretend to like each other.”
“Alexander, that’s called a one-up. We have to do that to gain access to the top of the social food chain,” I responded.
“Wait, what’s a one-up and why do we have to do it?” He looked so cute when he scrunched his eyebrows in confusion.
“A one-up is where we use each other to make ourselves more popular. When one PP – it means popular person – dates another PP, it makes those two people indestructible. They’re practically unable to ever leave the food chain. And that’s what I want for us, sweetie.” I placed a hand on his arm. “And you’re also smoking hot.”
“Wow. That makes me feel so much better,” he replied with sarcasm. He leaned back into his metal chair and ran his fingers through his tresses.
“Sweet pea, I’ll be right back. I need to go use the ladies’ room. Okay?” I stood up and placed Gigi on my chair. “It will only take me a quick second.” I shuffled off before he could respond. My high heels tapped on the tile as I strutted past nearby tables. With every step, I could feel the anger and frustration heat up from inside of me.
I ran to the bathroom and placed a sofa chair against the door. The bathroom had a fleshy pink on the walls, and a vanilla scent wafted from the burning candles. Nat King Cole’s L.O.V.E played from the intercom. I felt like I was in a cheap hotel that Daddy would buy to turn into a five-star resort.
I walked over to the mirror and saw that my appearance was becoming wearied out. My purple smoky eye was fading and I didn’t bring my travel eye shadow palette with me. Why would I choose now to make my purse lighter when a crisis to my social development was brewing? I pulled out my phone and called Charlene. I would consider her my best friend (we were generally close), but I really only used her for dirt on other people.
“Hello?” she said when she answered the phone.
“Alex wants to break up with me.”
“Yikes. I’m sorry to hear that. Well, did you tell him that you’re dating for a one-up?”
“I did, but he doesn’t seem to care.” I put a hand in my high-waisted short shorts and chewed on my diamond necklace. I wondered how much bribing it would take to keep him my boyfriend. “Do you think I should break up with him and move onto a better guy or should I convince him to stay with me?”
“I don’t know what you should do. All sorts of things might happen as a result. Especially when Amy has a party tonight with the entire neighborhood being invited . . .” Charlene trailed off.
“What?!” I screamed. My voice echoed through the small bathroom. I could hear the rest of the coffee shop become quiet as the sound reached them.
“Is everything okay in there?” a woman’s voice said through the door.
“Go away, you creep! I’m busy!” I yelled at the woman. I pressed the sofa chair even harder against the door to make sure that no one could come in.
This was the worst day of my life. I didn’t need my boyfriend to break up with me, my archenemy (Amy and I had never gotten on the right foot since I put red ants in her hair in fourth grade) deciding to exclude me from a party where everyone else was invited, and my eye makeup smudging all in the same day.
“When’s the party?” I asked Charlene.
“Piper, you weren’t invited . . .”
“Do you think I care? Tell me it now!”
“Piper . . .”
“Charlene, were you invited?”
“Then spill like a good nail polish.”
I heard a sigh pass through the receiver. Papers rustled and she finally returned to the phone. “It starts at eight, but you can’t come. You have to bring an invitation with you and it has to have your name and picture on it. She doesn’t want any outsiders.”
“What’s this party even for?” I asked.
“I don’t know. It’s just some dumb party that isn’t even good enough for you to think about.” Kissing my butt wasn’t going to make me change my mind. I would tell her that, but I liked it too much.
“I’m going to that party. Alexander is becoming dull for me. I need a new guy.” I sat on the sink counter with my arms across my chest. I moved the phone to my other ear. “And I’ll just bring Alex with me so I don’t go without a date. Don’t worry about the details, just leave it to me. Amy will wish she was as cool as me once I find a new guy. I’ll become even more popular in this neighborhood than I am now.”
“Piper, I’m really getting tired of all this competition . . .”
“Charlene, shut up and give me the address.”
Alexander and I arrived at the party fashionably late by an hour and a half. By this time, the party would be in full-swing and I would be able to see how it was actually doing. Before we were able to enter Amy’s house, we were stopped by a boy who demanded our invitation. The name tag on his striped shirt said, “Usher.”
“Here’s my invitation.” I handed it to him with eagerness.
“Why is your picture glued onto it and not in it?” he asked.
“Why does the Earth spin?” I asked back.
“Because that’s the way it is, sporty.”
He handed the invitation back to me and pointed back to the driveway. “I’m not an idiot. It’s fake, so that means you have to leave.”
“Um . . .” I stalled. I thought-processed a bunch of ideas quickly until one came to mind. I placed a hand on his cheek and kissed his other one. Before getting a reaction, I grabbed Alex’s hand and squirmed into the doorway. I could hear him yell after me, but there was no way I was going to turn back after I was able to make a clean getaway.
“Why did you do that?” Alexander asked.
“Forget about that, honey. Think about this party. Why is it already looking so boring? Everyone is just standing around doing nothing. And this house is so tiny. What is it, like, ten thousand square feet?” I looked at him.
“Uh, I don’t know,” he replied. “It looks pretty nice to me. It’s only a little smaller than mine.”
“That’s the point, Alexander. Your house is bigger. Hers is smaller. So that means that she’s poorer. Get it? Got it? Good,” I said.
“Well, it could also mean that her family just doesn’t want to buy a house that could mean more money and maintenance when they don’t really need it,” he said.
“Alex, can you get me something to drink? Just make sure it’s not spiked. I don’t need to become tipsy right now,” I commanded him.
“Sure.” He slid between the mass of people in the crowd and disappeared from sight.
I looked around the party. There were a lot of people I knew and some that I could only wish of making an acquaintance with. Amy actually did a pretty good job, considering there was no class in her entire body. Different colored bright lights shined from the ceiling and snacks were at every turn. It was too bad that there wasn’t that much to do. The only things going on at the moment were a couple of drinking games in the living room. It wasn’t even a good idea to do so because there were huge glass windows that covered the walls from top to bottom in there and we were all minors in twelfth grade.
A hand tapped me on my shoulder and I turned to look at Amy. She wore an ugly strapless dress that only emphasized how flat-chested she was. Her brown hair hung loosely at her shoulders. I probably would have mistaken her for a homeless girl.
“What are you doing here, Piper? Get out!” she said.
“What’s the big deal? I’m the only person that’s going to make your party any better.”
“It’s perfectly fine without you.”
“Not really. It looks like a complete dud,” I replied.
“Just leave. You’re only going to make that dress look more repulsive than it is on its own. What is that? JCPenney?” she whispered as a person nudged by us.
“Amy, why don’t you make like a bird and flock off?”
I walked away from her as she tried to interpret what I had said. Scanning the room, I finally found a specimen that could fit my requirements for a boyfriend. He was well-dressed, muscular, and handsome. To make matters even better, I remembered his father being an extremely wealthy billionaire, a new favorite to the Sterling Heights community. I ran towards Jack and made sure to fall right on top of him.
“Oh, Jack, I’m so sorry,” I gasped. I sat up properly and wrapped my arms around his neck without getting off his lap.
“It’s fine,” he said. He tried to pull my arms off of his neck, but I kept a strong hold.
Looking into his beautiful deep brown eyes, I could feel a connection bonding between us. This was something special. This might not become like my plethora of other relationships that were usually ended in my breaking up with the guy. This could actually become something real. This might be true love.
“Is your dad rich? And if so, is he a billionaire like my father told me?”
“Piper! Get off my boyfriend’s lap!” Amy screeched as she bolted towards us. I sprung off Jack’s lap and looked at Amy innocently. “What do you think you’re doing?”
“I’m watching Saturday Night Live at home. What do you think I’m doing?” I planted my hands on my hips and smiled at Jack as he laughed.
“I am sick and tired of you ruining my life, Piper . . .”
“You need to have a life, Amy, in order for me to ruin it.”
“. . . and I just want to enjoy my party without you barging in and sitting on my boyfriend.”
“I can see your point, but I don’t seem to care. It’s a free world, so deal with it.” I placed myself back on Jack’s lap. I looked up at Amy as I ran my fingers up and down his neck. Jack didn’t seem to worry about his girlfriend’s feelings in the least bit as he enjoyed my affectionate attention.
“Piper, get up.”
I stood up and gave her a what-do-you-want-freak expression. “Need something?”
“Yeah. Why don’t you make like Santa Claus and leave my presence?” Amy said softly.
She moved back and slapped me hard across the face. My head hit the wall beside me with incredible impact and everything became black as I heard the party grow quiet.
I just hoped that no one would steal my Prada purse that flew off my shoulder as I fell onto the cold wooden floor.
I got it in Paris.