Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Mary's New Boobs

When they announced the new policy, Mary peed in the cup without a fuss, but there wasn’t any point to coming to work after that. Cashing in all those stupid stock options to pay for her boob job was the best decision she’d ever made. They came with a lifetime guarantee—no sagging—and people finally stopped treating her like a twelve-year-old. She knew a girl whose dad owned a bunch of titty bars; with her perky new C-cups, she could always get a job waitressing.

Who needed a job, though? After she paid the plastic surgeon, she still had something left over, enough to pay the rent, anyway. It wasn’t like she’d ever pay for a drink again. Before she got a new job, maybe she’d just get a rich boyfriend.

She and Bella bought cute sundresses with spaghetti straps and went dancing every night, scorning any guy whose shoes didn’t pass Bella’s test, which was most of them. Mary picked out the perfect spangled purple halter to wear to Jen, Jenn, and Jenny’s triple birthday party. She twirled a plastic wine glass between her fingers, laughed each time someone spoke to her, and used her peripheral vision to check out her silhouette in every reflective surface. Even distorted and upside down in a stainless steel spoon, she looked spectacular.

The more wine she drank, the better Jenn’s cousin Alex looked. Bumping into him accidentally on purpose, she batted her eyes and threw back her shoulders. Oh! Alex had brought a friend who looked good too, but he kept skulking in corners, his eyes darting around like a caged animal’s.

“Who’s your friend?” she asked. “What’s his story?”

“Josh? I don’t know, really. He just moved into my building.”

“Wait, Josh?” Mary’s eyes crossed, focused, and unfocused. “Didn’t he used to live here with Jen, before Jenny moved in?”

Alex tipped his head to the side and rubbed his ear with his shoulder. “Yeah, he said something like that. Something weird. Didn’t move out on good terms, I guess. He didn’t know if it was OK for him to come to this party, but Jen’s cool. I told him to come. No big deal.”

“Right.” She caught Josh’s glance and smiled. He shook his head, but smiled back. Maybe she should just try to for Alex? She already had his attention. His shoes looked OK, and Josh wore sneakers, so Bella wouldn’t approve. She could still wink at Josh if Alex looked away.

More wine. She tugged at her halter and looked around for someplace to sit, but Jen, Jenn, and Jenny didn’t have that many chairs. The floor looked inviting. She sank down and leaned against a coffee table, her nice breasts perched just above the glass, and saw Josh and Alex in the hallway. Josh kept saying something, and Alex kept frowning, and finally Alex walked away, but not toward Mary. He went out on the fire escape and lit a cigarette.

Catching Josh staring at her, she smiled again and wiggled her wineglass in his direction. He didn’t take the hint though, just kept grabbing people as they headed to the bathroom. She couldn’t hear what he said, but everyone he touched gave him a funny look and hurried away. Maybe there was something to Bella’s shoe test, after all. But he looked fine, really.

Another guy brought her some more wine. His shoes were only medium OK: leather, but old and scuffed. It was just a party. She rolled her shoulders in time to the music and smiled when he touched her arm. He totally hung on her story about the losers who tried to pick her and Bella up at the Double Door last week, until someone started yelling on the other side of the room.

Jen, Jenn, and Jenny had made a little semi-circle around Josh, all henpecking him at the same time. His face looked dazed. “Just go!” Jen said. “Jeez. Just get out.”

Josh mumbled something, and Jenny said, “You’re ruining our party.”

“You’re drunk,” Jen yelled. “You need to leave.”

“I just want to know if Mary’s a whore!” Josh shouted. “Is Mary a whore? That’s all I’m asking. Is she a whore or not?”

Then Jenny’s boyfriend grabbed him by the arm and a second later both guys were gone, leaving a vacuum filled by the rushing sound of nervous laughter. Mary stared at the floor.

“Who’s Mary, I wonder,” said the guy who’d brought her the drink.

She shuddered, threw back her shoulders, and shuddered again. “Do you think I could borrow your jacket?” she asked him. “I’m like, really cold just now.”


Anonymous said...

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Anonymous said...

I meant "This is a great story, too".