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Beauty

There once was a girl and all she ever wanted was to be beautiful. She wanted flawless skin, hair of satin, and eyes that sparkled in the sun. She wanted to be adored for her beauty and she wanted to be envied for her beauty. She wanted to be loved and praised and she just knew that beauty would solve all of her problems. Beauty would stop people from mistreating her, from brushing her off. She knew the ways of the world and knew that beauty also meant power.

Her lust for exquisiteness turned her mind to mush and no longer could she see her other traits, no longer could she even acknowledge them. She was not as sharp as she’d once been, no longer as comforting a friend and no longer as nice a girl. Her hunger for beauty made her belch at those who did not embody it. She became shallow. All the while, however, she was still not beautiful.

But over time, all of her obsession with beauty started to pay off and in her reflection, she could see the traces of beauty developing. One day, by the will of fate, she woke up beautiful. Her wish had come true. Elated, she stepped outside into the world; she was finally ready to be adored, respected, and feared.

“Look at your hair! How does it fall like that?” enchanted girls would ask her as mindless boys tripped over themselves to see who would be the one to charm this damsel. Her rosy lips in a smile only served to captivate them even more.

But soon she met envy disguised as a peer, “You think you’re so much better than us, don’t you?” one girl had said bitingly.

“Who me?” the exquisite one responded, slightly tilting her head to make her curls fall off her shoulders and looking up through her alluring lashes, “Of course not!” And she’d get a sick sense of satisfaction when she eyed the girl looking at her in a way that conveyed doubt and inferiority when her boyfriend stared at the stunning girl.

But ever so slowly, things changed. Her beauty was hardly a source of adoration anymore and one of resentment. “Here comes the resident goddess,” the same one who’d accused her of her pride said viciously. She did nothing except respond with a steely smile. It was as if they’d developed an immunity against her perfection, they’d become accustomed to it and no longer was it awe-inspiring.

Then she met the men who claimed they had a burning desire for her, their hot breath in her ears, wandering hands under her shirt. Unable to say no for the sole reason that it felt good to be treasured, wanted, she found herself giving more and more of her soul to keep them enchanted by her.

But now she was mute, no one cared for her words. After all, what could a pretty face have to say that could be of any value? She was nice to look at, but hardly someone who made a nice conversation partner. She wasn’t a worthy person, just a nice work of art. Even when she tried to be with them, her hollow words drew no attention for she was utterly dull and overwhelmingly generic.

And then she came along. A girl who cared not one bit for her appearance and it showed in her rumpled clothes, matted hair, and blistered skin. But everyone loved her. Why did they love her? Was it because of her love for living life? Because she was funny and smart and beautiful in ways she could never be?
Either way, the misery that had been slowly seeping in returned in pulses. She could no longer pretend that she was satisfied with beauty. She could no longer pretend that she always wanted to be envied, because in truth, she just wanted to be accepted. And no longer could she pretend that she liked having men years older suck her neck with their slimy lips or having their clammy hands crawl up the insides of her thighs. In all reality, apart from her body, she was worthless.

And a few weeks later, when they all found out what the once-divine one had done, none could understand it. Hushed rumors spread the halls asking why someone who had it all would want to lose it all. And if she really hated her life that much, why not just change it? Why not move away and start fresh? But they would never, could never, understand that she hadn't done it because she loathed her life, loathed the people around her. The only reason one would ever take their own life would be to escape their own vicious, ugly thoughts.



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