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Mallory woke up, ready to take on the day, happy as ever. The bluebirds were chirping, the sun was shining, and the sweet smell of flowers filled the room. Everything was bright, and although it was still early in the morning, she was refreshed and wide awake. The sun peered in through her blinds, creating white stripes along her light blue walls. A strange feeling overcame her, and she felt that today was no ordinary day. That’s when she remembered. She had won the lottery last night. It had been the biggest shock of her entire life, for what was once a silly game with very slim chances had now changed her life forever. She knew that 300 million dollars is an enormous amount of money, and she could barely comprehend the fact that she had won it. She had previously been living in an apartment alone and was doing somewhat well for herself, but could now take this opportunity to invest in the things that she’s always wanted. She got out of bed and made herself a cup of coffee, already planning what she wanted to buy that day. She decided for her first big purchase she would buy a new wardrobe, for she found her old one to be extremely bland. She got ready quickly and drove off to the mall, credit card in hand.
When she arrived, Mallory sped around as fast as a bullet, darting from store to store. She collected as many items of clothing as she could with the highest price tags possible. No longer burdened with having to monitor her spending, she took this opportunity to buy the most extravagant outfits she laid her eyes upon. If she was being honest, she did not even really like the clothing. But, she wanted to live like the wealthy. When she finished her shopping adventure, Mallory picked up her various bags and raced to the car, eager to spend more. She placed the bags into the trunk and hopped inside. Next, she decided, she would buy herself a new car. She thought to herself, someone with my money can’t be seen driving this old thing. As she drove onto the road, the sounds of the radio filling the air, the wind in her hair, the sky a crystal blue, Mallory felt overjoyed by her new life. Suddenly, she heard a loud thump behind her, and when she turned around, she saw her bags flying back into the street behind her.
“The trunk must have opened!” she said alarmed. She considered turning around to retrieve them, but she could not pull over on the busy road, and they had already been destroyed by tires of the cars behind her.
“It’s alright, I’ll just buy more later,” she said, reassuring herself. But little did she know, this was just the beginning.
Mallory’s trip to the dealership proved to be a success, for she quickly found the perfect car for a woman with her new economic status. High tech, a sleek silver, and quicker than she believed a car could be, she knew it was the one for her. She quickly made the purchase, and was speeding off in her new ride before she knew it. She never would have thought she would have been able to afford a car like this, and her happiness quickly distracted her from the unfortunate clothing incident earlier. Once again, the sounds of the radio filled the air, the wind blew in her hair, and the sky was a crystal blue. And once again, things were too good to be true. As she was admiring the view of the streets and the sky and all that she found beautiful that day, a car, seemingly out of control, crashed into Mallory at full speed. The car tumbled across the street, and she heard bump after bump as her car hit the ground over and over. When everything stopped spinning, Mallory got out of the vehicle. She looked down at herself, expecting to see blood or scrapes or shards of glass, but she had gotten out, shockingly, without a scratch. The car, however, was not so lucky. It had been completely totaled in the accident. As she discussed the situation with the police, she couldn’t help but wonder how this could have happened. Two accidents in one day? It was unheard of for Mallory. Then again, so was winning the lottery.
The next day, Mallory, mostly unfazed by what had happened, had only one thing on her agenda. She was going to find herself a new house, for her current apartment was no longer working for her. She looked at numerous houses, searching for the most lavish and upscale places money could buy. Eventually, she found the mansion she had been looking for, and it was, without a doubt, the nicest house she had ever seen. To celebrate the move, Mallory called her parents to meet her for dinner at Ronaldo’s their favorite restaurant. When they met at the restaurant, they sat down to discuss Mallory’s new finances. It was then that her parents dropped the news on Mallory: they were getting evicted from their apartment because they were unable to afford it.
Her mother quietly said, “Mallory, sweetie, we could really use the help right now. We’ve been needing a new place for a while now. Would you be able to help us get back onto our feet and afford a new place?”
“Mom, you know I would, but I really need to focus on me right now. I just got this money, and I want to be able to support myself first” she replied coldly.
“But Mallory, you have so much, and we’re your parents. We aren’t asking for a lot, we just really need you right now.”
“I really don’t appreciate you guys coming to me solely for money. I need to go. Goodbye.” Mallory stormed out of the restaurant and caught a taxi home.
“How could they do this to me? They’re my parents, and all they want is money!” she shouted to herself. “It’s like they don’t even care ab-” She was cut short by the sight in front of her. Her house was up in flames.
She ran up to the firefighters in a panic. “What happened? I was only gone for an hour!”
“We’re not sure. Could have been an electrical fire, but we haven’t seen anything clear yet. One thing we know for sure is that you’re going to have to find a new place to live. The interior to the house is completely destroyed, and its way too dangerous to let anyone live there ever again. I’m sorry, Miss.”
Mallory felt a crushing weight of guilt. She had pushed away her own parents for her money, and everything she bought selfishly for herself was ruined. She knew what she had to do. She called up her mother, smiled, and said, “Mom, I want to buy you guys the house.”
Mallory felt infinitely better after that day, for she learned to use her money for others than herself. She knew, that no matter what it is, everything has a price.