Shoes | Teen Ink


March 31, 2015
By Passion4 PLATINUM, Ponte Vedra, Florida
Passion4 PLATINUM, Ponte Vedra, Florida
26 articles 0 photos 6 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Real life sucks losers dry. If you want to f*** with the eagles, you gotta learn to fly." -Heathers

The unwilling socialite clumsily exits the taxi, tripping on the slippery curb. She quickly collects herself, contemplating the long and treacherous ascension up the spiral stairs to the fourteenth floor with those d--- shoes on, versus the judgmental stares at her bare, dirt stained feet by late night party-goers, just now heading out into the toxic night air. With one more pain-inducing step onto the pavement, she makes her decision, frustratedly limping her way to the bench in front of her building to remove her h--- heels. Her ankles blister and bleed. She sighs in relief as she removes her dainty feet from the black sequined prisons. She rubs her ankles therapeutically hoping to alleviate some of the pain before once more embarking on her seemingly endless venture to return safely to her cozy apartment. She reflects with unexpected joy at her own success in blending in at the party. The only thing distinguishing her from the other polished young debutantes were her fingernails. Although she had spent all day shopping for her beautiful disguise, she could not bring herself to sit through an hour of pointless trimming, cutting, buffing, and painting her nails, only to be scratched or damaged within the hour. She had compromised with herself on the shoes. The glossy black fabric and subtle sequins complemented well her elegant red dress, but flats would have suited better her comfort. Her book bag sat beside her on the damp bench- stained temporarily darker by the rain- a horrible match for her outfit, but sensible enough to hold the contents of what was left of her sanity. Her hands begin to shake. From the depths of her cluttered bag, she removes a cigarette, from her soaked jacket pocket, a lighter. She places the cigarette between her sticky, gloss-smudged lips, and, with trembling hands, attempts to light it, hoping the rain won’t extinguish her one solace. After six or seven tries, she gives up, throwing the clearly faulty lighter to the ground in a kind of exasperated disgust that she had become accustomed to over the past three months in Chicago. She keeps the cigarette between her wrinkled lips, hoping that perhaps just the pantomime will suffice to calm her nerves: a self-induced placebo. A man is smoking right around the corner. She can see the smoke, not the man, but she knows it’s him: the man who is known to her only as the man who smokes on the corner almost every night for as long as she can remember. She ponders asking to borrow his lighter. She sits for a moment in her scattered thoughts, planning the encounter beat for beat, scripting dialogue into her brain as it struggles to remain functional under the dizzying, fluorescent street lights. For the first time, she considers that corner-man has a life of his own. This intrigues and worries her as she scripts their engagement. She has lost control of corner-man with the realization that he has a name she doesn’t know. Eve is aware of her nakedness. Images of strange men and date r--- ads fill her fragile, rain-soaked brain. Her mind jumps awake in this unwarranted moment of panic. Her cigarette flails, limp and useless, between her lips, a sad representation of where her good intentions and high expectations have gotten her. She still needs the lighter. After a few seconds spent frozen in indecision, rather than entering the safety of her building, she rummages in her bag frantically for her long forgotten pepper spray. She removes her hand with a second lighter.
    Smoke billows around her head: a cage to isolate her from the bright lights of the busy street. The rain begins to pour down harder. The awning for her building lies only twenty feet or so to her left, but the gentle rain feels surprisingly refreshing as it comes down in waves, penetrating her cloud and engulfing her in Mother Nature's second hand crocheted blanket. It coats the surface of her porcelain skin, sliding down her eyelashes and tracing the sharp edges of her chin. Her sleek straight hair turns wavy in the gentle mist, and forced black tears begin to fall, forming dividing lines, turning her perfect face into an artists grid, simply emulating a real human face. Her body slumps allowing puddles of water to form in the creases of her dress. Her pink skin turns a shade of purplish white, veins making circles around the shape of her body. She grows colder as the rain soaks through her pathetic jacket. She feels the rush of ink seeping through each pore of her body, invading her system without guilt or regret. She lets it flow through her; from her head to her feet Mother Nature pours the ink. She pushes off the bench with her free hand and stands on feeble feet, stripping off her soaking sweater. She stares up to the sky in her warranted misery and begins to speak. Nothing. No words emerge from the body that has become comatose from overexposure. Senses numb her slowly until she can no longer feel the cold rain sliding across her translucent skin. She is a sum of lines: veins and stains visible in the rain, fading with shading of an artist using a grid. The ink has been washed out of the unwilling socialite: debutante for the night. She is reduced to simple framework by the apathetic rain.

The author's comments:

Inspired by a pair of shoes I saw.

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