"You better put this earrings! This really suit your almond eyes!" she exclaimed as she handed me the long sparkling diamond earring. I did not even got a chance to speak for she immediately turned her back and fixed herself in the mirror, which left me nodding furtively half-heartred. I was currently choosing between an orange or nude lipstick that will suit my simple yet elegant dress. I do not really put heavy make ups, it was really not my thing. I can even go a day without it, a powder and my mannerism of biting my lips will sometimes do.
I glanced at the mirror seeing my pouting sister while putting a thick amount of dashing red lipstick all over her lips. I was also about to get my usual orange lipstick on my pouch when I heard her extremely excited voice, "You better try this, Diane," I wanted to refuse but she was quick to grab and lift my chin. "Bu--," I interrupted but she immediately hush me and continue applying this vibrant liquid lipstick on my thin lips. "Very stunning!" she smiled as soon as she was done.
I stared at my face for a long while. Wearing a simple beige dress with a not-so-me make up and accessories. She has always been like that. A spoiled yet sophisticated lady. She is a year younger than me but her body is way more mature than mine. "I wish my lashes are just like yours," she said while making a very weird expression. I remember when we were younger, she cried telling me that she will burn my lashes for it is making me prettier than her which is something forbidden. That thought made me laugh hard before but turned out to be scary sometimes. She glared when she noticed me disgusted with her cliché wishes again. "Sadly, I got dad's lashes, eh," shrugging her shoulders while flaunting a very insulting smile.
"But I want that one!" Danielle screamed in a very determined manner. It was Christmas eve, time for opening gifts. We got a bunch of gifts but of course, Danielle got way more gifts than me. The only gift I have that she did not was the gift given by my Grade 4 best friend, Kyle. It was a simple yellow handkerchief that has a little red heart sewed at the bottom part. "Danielle, I will get you exactly the same one tomorrow, okay?" mom said reassuringly to my sister. She terribly cried even harder pointing to my handkerchief. "No, I want that one, mommy, daddy," Danielle said in all tears. I stared at my sister wondering what is wrong. For me, this handkerchief is special for it was given by my friend, my best friend, but nothing more than that. Indeed, it is a simple gift made by a nine year old boy for his best friend. Dad looked at me and held my hand, without words being said I already know what he meant. I smiled and give the yellow handkerchief on my sister. She immediately wiped her tears and proudly smile to me. "What will you say?" Daddy asked her. "I will keep this," Danielle said nonchalantly as she hugged me tight. "Thanks, Diane," My mother mouthed and enveloped both of us in a huge hug and kissed the corner of Danielle's head while it kept me bamboozled. I wonder what happened. I wanted to ask my sister for wanting that gift over all that she received. I wanted to ask my parents why Danielle got more gifts. I wanted to know my mother's nor my father's reason for doing that. I also wanted to cry. I wanted to throw a tantrum, as well... but I was afraid. "It's nothing," I said in a very small voice.
"Let's go," Danielle said gripping my wrist. "But wait, how do I look?" she asked smiling beautifully. "You look beautiful, sis," I answered. Her smile faded, "You look good, too!" She said in her small voice. I chuckled and assure her that she is a lot prettier.
It is my parents' 25th year anniversary of marriage. We needed to dress up for this special event. My sister and I were supposed to be taken care by my mother's friend who owns a salon, but I refused so Danielle took care of my look instead. "Diane," my mom called. "I told you to wear a silver dress!" she panicked but uttered in a low manner afraid it might be overheard by others in the party. I bit my lips and apologized. I just don't like such colors, it is too much. Danielle went near us and assure mom that it's fine because I got silver nails, though. My mom laughed and almost rolled her eyes. They both turned their backs on me and both got lost in the crowd. While I was left alone sitting at the table at corner of the hall. I am not sad neither happy. It is like a feeling of huge void inside. Getting used to whatever shit life threw and about to throw you, I might say I got used to it... but it still makes me uncomfortable.
"Oh, then let us put this ribbon here," my mother happily said while combing my sister's long hair. I was inches away from them, I was reading my science book in the couch but I cannot focus because a part of me wish that mom would also do that to me. I stared at my joyful sister's visage, her long black hair, her round chinky black eyes and pouty lips. She looks exactly the same with mom, and they look good goofing around another. I looked down and try to reread Mendel's concept from the book. 'He deduced that genes come in pairs and are inherited as distinct units, one from each parent' It says one from each parent. I glanced at the small heart-shaped mirror in front of my notebook. I wanted to ask why I own this almond brown eyes while they all got black. Why my lips are thin. Why my brows and lashes are thick. And why I got this curly hair. '...Offspring therefore inherit one genetic allele from each parent when sex cells unite in fertilization.' At least inherit one similar trait from a parent... at least one. I sighed and stared at the sight of my mother and Danielle. I always want to ask... but I guess I do not have the audacity to do that. "Are we too loud, Diane?" mom surprisingly asked when she noticed me staring. I almost startled in my thoughts. "No, mom, I actually want to play with you," I almost wanted to speak up but I refuse. I simply nodded and motion that I will go upstairs. A tear rolled down my cheek as I turned my back on them. And for the nth time, I wonder why...
I almost finished the bittersweet red wine with just a single sip when a familiar voice called my name. I tried to straight up my look and realized that Kyle together with Danielle is smiling in front of me. "Hey!" he said again. I smiled back as my eyes went on their intertwined fingers.
A very forceful slap landed on my face. "Can't you do that, Diane? Can't you?" my mom shouted as the look in her eyes terrified me most. She got mad after knowing Danielle likes my best friend. I like him, too and mom asked me to shake my feelings off for my sister. Like the usual I wanted to ask why but I refuse. "I like---" she looked away before even finishing my sentence. "Look, Diane, I want to tell you something..." she said that sent shivers down my spine. For all the years I don't have any idea why my parents have been treating me that way. They care and love me, I know that. They feed me, dress me, sent me to good school, but saying Danielle is just their favorite would be an understatement. She knew, my sister knew about it, and I don't know if I should hate her for keeping it from me, for prolonging my misery, for making me believe about things I should not.
"You saved our marriage, we' were grateful of you," my mother said. All of the sudden everything made sense. They were always favoring Danielle. More gifts given to Danielle by our relatives, their real relatives. My hair and the features of my face had all made sense. "Danielle is crying terribly. Can I count on you?" she asked. As usual, I wanted to ask the further reasons. How I saved their relationship? How come they did not tell but chose to make me feel? How come I got a hint but did not choose to bother believing it? And how painful can it even get? I smiled and nodded. It brightens up her face and very quick to grab my shoulders for a hug. I swear I wanted to scream, to get even, to cry and let it out but I would admit that her hug was warm. "I love you, my dear," she said as she pecked on my cheeks.
I smiled back as my eyes landed on their intertwined fingers. I looked up at his visage and smile as precious as I could. I don't know when was the last time I tried to look pretty in front of him. I still remember how I turned down his proposal after knowing Danielle's feelings for him. I wanted to congratulate them both for hurting me this much, but I know that chunk of this pain was because of me and my lame reasons.
"Tito has been looking for you," he said looking uneasy. My sister chuckled a bit and hold Kyle's hand even tighter. "You're being boring, Diane! Come on, don't just stay here!" my sister reprimanded. She said a lot of things that my mind can no longer process. I sip the last amount of alcohol in my glass. "You know what? I hate myself," I completely uttered as I let my cheeks be drowned with my own tears. I don't have the strength to look up to them to be able to see their reactions but it took as minutes of silence. "What happ--" Kyle said in extremely frustrated voice as he was about to go near me but my sister was quick to halt her. "You're being nonsense!" she said as she grabbed Kyle away of my sight.
All my life I thought that I just don't have the enough accurate words to speak up... but the truth is I am just afraid. I am terrified of what people will respond after hearing what I meant. Maybe I know what I should say but I am afraid to say it, anyway...