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To the Stage (Pep Talk)

“Mary, you are so pretty.”
“Oh, well, thank you,” I said, embarrassedly. “I’m not really…”
“No, you are,” Ashly declared. “You have the best figure in class.”
“Thank you for saying so, but I don’t. Emma’s way skinnier.”
“Yeah, but she’s JUST skinny. You’re slender but you have curves. So your figure is best.” Ashly twirled a finger around my one of my newly hair-sprayed curls. “I think you’re the prettiest.”
“Thank you, Ashly,” I said, embarrassed. Secretly I was pleased, but still, how does one say that? What does one say to that? “You’re really pretty, Ashly. You’re beautiful.”
“I’m short! I’m not beautiful.” She let the curl bounce. “Your hair is so fun.”
“Thanks for doing it. You and Morgan and Bekah. I could never have done this on my own.” That was so true. Two hours and a can of hair spray earlier I had my regular, strait hair. Morgan, Ashly and Bekah had pounced on me, determined to make my hair curled and ringlet-ed for a play. I had walked into the classroom and the boys didn’t recognize me with my glasses off. Tyler’s eyes had gotten huge, and Jake (who was supposed to be in a different class) exclaimed “Is that Mary?! Seriously?!”

“I think you are really pretty, Ashly. Really. You are fun and full of energy, and you have such pretty make up and long hair and everything. You are definitely beautiful.” I held her makeup as she put it on in the mirror, preparing for the play: mascara, eyeliner, blush, lip gloss.
“I love you Mary. You’re so sweet, even when people don’t deserve it.”
“You deserve it! I’m not making it up!”
“Thank you for saying so, but I don’t.” She straitened up, tossed her colonial apron over her shoulder and marched out the door. To the stage.





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