Day 14: 300 words. Prompt was Mirror and Vermillion
“I believe we’ll have to tuck things in a bit here.”
Patricia’s mother smoothed a hand down her bare side, pinching the skin by her hip. She looked at the hand in question, the skin dotted with aged spots that didn’t match the seemingly ageless face behind her in the mirror.
Her mother would have her freeze her face in perpetual youth as she’d done hers, as she continued to do. The plastic surgeon was on speed dial, second only to the country club she drank at every day. Her mother took her drinking seriously.
“I’d rather not have anything done, mother.”
The timidness in her voice made her cringe almost as much as her mother cupping her breasts through her brand new vermillion bralet. Her breasts were already overflowing the cups.
The ugly way her mother’s face twisted in the mirror made her stomach twirl. The pinch of nails on the sides of her breasts was unbearable, but she stayed still as was expected.
“Patricia Ann, beauty queens do what’s necessary to stay on top.”
She didn’t want to be on top. Patricia wanted to be sixteen and using her height for playing basketball instead of showing off her legs to gross male judges. She wanted to talk to boys her age instead of being touched by guys her father’s age.She wanted to be anything except a beauty queen.
She wanted to be Patty.
Her mother turned away and then turned back with one of the crowns she’d recently won. The gaudy crown settled on her head and she felt its weight in her soul.
“You’re nothing without your beauty.”
It was obnoxiously big and riddled with diamonds. An ugly reminder, like the trophies and gowns and shoes overflowing her room, that beauty was all there was to Patricia.
Oh, dear. This is one of your better efforts, Cara. I very much enjoyed reading.
Well it involves no sex. I do try to branch out every so often
Your presentation of the mother, the feelings of the daughter. You hit nice notes.
Ah, I aim to make sure the people come across as real and true to how they’d feel in each case. It’s a challenge to do so when it’s not something I know personally
Very powerful piece of writing Cara. And quite chilling.
I’m sure it’s a reality for some
Well written and nice characterisation of both characters here.
Touched on a topic I find particularly gross – not unlike the male equivalent of fathers who try and live their athletic and “macho” dreams through their sons. Except here there is a fetishisation that takes place that has mental scars all its own.
Your non-erotic writing has been getting better and it says something that such is the case even though you pick some fairly uncomfortable topics from time to time.
Haven’t done a whole week of non-erotic writing. Figured it would be worth showing that I’m capable of a lot of things.
As for the story itself, it’s so close to the current climate and past behaviors in real life that it was an important topic to write on.
My kids are young adults now but i remember a time when i saw Mums behave in such a way as you describe – it was at the gymnastics club meet or pushing their child to go for the lead in the drama production. It’s that weird thing where mothers try and live their lives through their children. Very sad way to be. Great writing x
It’s crazy how parents (not just mothers) can be with their children at times. That push to be more when your children don’t want to be is definitely a push to live through them.