Chapter 7

Written by: Iliena Bosu

The evening weather was balmy and the air inside fragrant with a heady concoction of expensive perfumes. The elite assemblage, in their high fashion ensembles and broad smiles, looked dreamy as attendants brought them luxurious food and drink. It was a special occasion and the venue was abuzz with excitement; they were all waiting for Lucy.

As she sauntered into the hall, all heads turned towards her. But when they saw her, their smiles vanished from their beaming faces. The buzz of excitement soon turned to whispers of dismay, some even sniggered eyeing her from head to toe. As Lucy saw her reflection in one of the glass windows, she understood why. Instead of an elegant and stylish garb and Jimmy Choo high heels, she wore her dirty, worn store uniform with old, scruffy shoes. Her messy blond locks, runny make-up and unmanicured hands gave the impression that she had escaped from an asylum. “This can’t be real,” Lucy kept repeating to herself. “This is a dream!”

A heavy-handed tap on her shoulder rescued Lucy from her worst nightmare. She woke up with a start and was relieved to find herself sitting in the cafeteria of the store where she worked. She remembered coming there to get a cup of coffee. But the cool hum from the air conditioner added with her fatigue and lack of sleep had made her doze off during work hours. She felt the weight of a man’s hand on her shoulder. Glancing at the ringed fingers from the corner of her eyes she knew it was the store manager, Mr. Shah.

“How long have you been working here, Lucy?”

“Five months, sir.”

“And how many times have I spared you, young lady?”

“I’m sorry, sir, I didn’t mean to sleep. Pease don’t fire me. I need this job.”

“Isn’t that your go-to excuse each time?”

Lucy remained silent. Mr. Shah was right. He would’ve let her go had she – her doe eyes filling with crocodile tears – not appealed to his empathetic side. 

“I’m a patient man, Lucy, not a fool. I don’t have time for your incompetence in my store anymore. Now, get the hell out of here.”

Lucy stepped out of the store happy that she was finally free from her dead-end job. She had stuck around for so long because it paid  the rent and her bills. After moving in with Toby and his wife, he  had been managing her finances. He was very stingy when it came to giving Lucy her allowance. Maybe that’s why she hadn’t been able to move out of his house. But she was no longer heartbroken though. She had been saving money to start afresh in New York.

Preoccupied, Lucy didn’t realise that she had wandered on to  the road until a car knocked her to the ground. Before losing consciousness, she saw a handsomely dressed woman get out of  a car and rush towards her.

Comments

What a really good chapter Iliena. You make Lucy's dream sound real and it moved into reality very smoothly. Your description of her uniform is perfect and her new dream fits with her character. Even walking out onto the road seems like the Lucy we have come to know. .
Thank you, Ms. Dewing. :)