The bookworm at the party

Submitted into Contest #104 in response to: Start your story with a character saying, “Are you coming tonight?”... view prompt

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Fiction American

“Are you coming tonight?” Maggie asked drying her hair.

“What? I can’t hear you.” Mel replied.

“Are you saying you can’t hear me to avoid the question or can you really not hear me?”

“What? That hair dryer is loud I really can’t hear what you are saying.” Mel shouted.

Maggie turned off the dryer and peeked her head out the bathroom door to look at her twin who was sitting on her bed reading. Shaking her head Maggie walked towards the bed and plopped down on it. Mel looked up at her sister smiled and then went back to her book.

“Melanie! Come with me tonight, it will be so fun.” Maggie said shaking Mel’s arm.

“Margaret! Oh my gosh! No.” Mel deadpanned and went back to her book.

 “Come on sis its tradition and besides we are both suppose to be there.” Maggie said getting up from the bed and walking back to the bathroom.

“Trust me NO ONE with notice if I’m not there.”

“Um I think our parents would when only one twin shows up.”

“Oh please, they will so busy trying to impress everyone they won’t realize if there is only one of us. Plus they are embarrassed by me, that is why they don’t introduce me like they do you.”

“They aren’t embarrassed by you. They just… Um, well… they just don’t know how to talk to you. You are quiet and read all the time, so yeah.”

“Yeah well maybe if they got to know me better I wouldn’t have to read all the time or be quiet. I feel like I have nothing to say to them either so I’d rather just stay in my room reading my books. It’s my safe place.”

“I’m sorry Mel. Just come tonight please and I won’t ask you to come to the next one and I’ll even cover for you.”

“Let me guess you want to do my hair and make- up though.” Mel said side eyeing her sister.

“Well of course! But I will let you pick your own outfit.” Maggie said grabbing Mel’s arm and pulling her off the bed and towards the vanity.

Mel looked at herself in the mirror and was pleasantly surprised. Her hair was curled and put up halfway with tendrils framing around her face; her face had make up on it but it was more natural just the way she liked it. The dress she picked out was just her style it wasn’t to showy but it was still elegant and classy. Mel looked over at her twin and smiled because they both looked great. Maggie did her hair similar to her sister but her make up was more bold and colorful. Maggie’s dress was elegant and classy too but the neckline went down a little further but not too much. Both dresses were a light blue mixed with turquoise in color and they both went down to mid calf in length. Maggie put on heels while Mel chose flats. Maggie grabbed a clutch while Mel got a purse big enough to fit her book, just in case. The family car arrived to pick them up from their apartment and it took them to their parents’ estate.

Looking around the room Mel started getting nervous because there were a lot of people. Usually when her parents throw parties it wasn’t this crowded but she did promise she would come so Mel squared her shoulders, lifted her chin and walked down the stairs. She looked around for Maggie but didn’t see her so Mel decided to go show her face to her parents. When Mel walked up to her parents they were talking with someone so she waited for them to get done. She looked over and saw the man they were talking to and next to him his son, who looked bored. Too bad Maggie wasn’t around she could get anyone to have fun. Just then her parents noticed her and introduced her to the man.

“This is our other daughter Melanie. Melanie this is Mr. Walsh and his son Jeremy.” Father said.

“Nice to meet you, glad you could make it.” Mel replied.

“They do look like each other. How do you tell them apart?” Mr. Walsh said.

“Excuse me?” Mel asked confused.

“He means you and your sister dear.” Mother said, “They are identical twins yes but there are ways to tell them apart. Mel here is a little… well different.”

“Nothing wrong with being different.” Jeremy chimed in giving Mel a smile. Mel blushed and looked away and then excused herself. She found a table in the corner and sat down to read her book. She was lost in the pages when someone sat down beside her. Minding her manners she put her book down to at least say hello but then noticed it was Jeremy, the son of the man from earlier.

“Oh hi… I mean hello… I mean… I don’t know what I mean, haha.” Mel nervously chuckled.

“Is that the dragon series?” He asked pointing to her book.

“Oh, yes it is. It’s my favorite, well right now, haha.”

“Yeah I get that. Can’t have too many favorites though right?”

“Right! My parents don’t get why I read so much and if they catch me doing it here I will never hear the end of it.” Mel said rolling her eyes.

“Yeah I get the same thing. My dad checked me when I arrived to make sure I wasn’t packing.” He laughed.

“Oh dang, haha. Sometimes its good to be a twin, my sister usual takes the spotlight away from me so I can hide and read.” Mel said but Jeremy looked confused, “Oh believe me I don’t like the spotlight so the more it’s on her the better it is for me.”

“Why not?” He asked as Maggie came up to the table.

“Hey Mel… Oh I see you made a new friend and you didn’t want to come.”

“Where have you been? We were supposed to greet our parents together, Maggie.”

“Sorry but someone asked me to dance and Mother told me I had to accept.”

“I thought your names were Melanie and Margaret?” Jeremy asked.

“They are but Mel and Maggie are our nicknames for each other.” Maggie replied.

“Oh well that’s cute.” He said winking at Mel.

“Well… I came over to check on you but it looks like you are doing fine. Holler if you need me.” Maggie said blowing Mel a kiss and walking away gracefully.

“I get what your parents mean now. You sister is outgoing and confident, real life of a party. You on the other hand…”

“I’m awkward and shy, don’t like to talk or stand out, a real introvert.”

“You are classy and smart, subtle but in a good way and might I say quite beautiful.”

“Oh,” Mel said blushing, “Thank you. But wouldn’t you rather be with someone outgoing?”

“To be honest I’m more of a stay inside type of guy. I only come to these things so my dad can brag about me and impress people. It’s exhausting.” He said shrugging his shoulders.

“Oh really? So I know a great place we can escape too if you are interested. It’s kind of my secret getaway during these things.” Mel said while Jeremy looked confused again, “Hahaha, it’s my library. We can read or chat.”

“That sounds better than this, lead the way.” Jeremy said with a smile. Mel got up and put her book back in her purse and led the way through the party to the back room off the kitchen. She opened what looked to be a pantry door but instead it was a massive room filled with all types of books.

“Oh wow! So glad I came to this party, best one yet.” Jeremy said winking at her.

“I couldn’t agree more.” Mel said closing the door.

July 28, 2021 22:27

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