Oliver sat down at her vanity, arranging her black and white plaid knee-length skirt around her legs. Seeing her reflection, she gulped. This was it. She was really going to do it.
Oliver wasn't a normal girl. She hadn't been born a girl, she didn't have the parts of a girl, but she knew she was a girl. For one, it was hard being a guy. Oliver was always uncomfortable when people talked about what was in her pants, how they'd like to get to know a girl just because she looked good, or called her 'him'. Oliver hated it.
She thought something was wrong with her. Until she came across a show on TV called 'Valid'. It was all about LGBTQIAP+ rights and such. Then, they introduced a transgender female named Harper. She talked all about how she knew she was a girl and with every word, Oliver knew that she and Harper had something in common.
They were both transgender females. Which now led Oliver to this. Throughout two years she had collected an alarming amount of makeup and magazines, which she kept hidden in her closet. However, now, she wasn't going to hide anymore.
First, she picked up her small bottle of foundation and a pink brush. She leaned forward, applying the foundation and spreading it around her face.
Next came the concealer. She applied it over her forehead, under her eyes and cheeks with a purple brush. Then, foundation powder. She picked up her compact of bronzer and blush, adding it to her cheeks, nose, and temples.
Highlighter was the next part. She selected her rose-gold case and opened it with a snap. She dipped her brush into it before bringing it to her cheek.
Suddenly a knock came from her door followed by "Oliver! Honey! Are you ready to go? Your grandpa is picking you up soon. He's very excited for a boy's night out!"
Boys' night out. Oliver swallowed thickly and looked at her reflection again. But I'm not a boy mom. She thought. I'm a girl.
"I'm almost done, mom!" Oliver yelled back and turned back to the mirror, squeezing her legs together and biting her lip, praying she didn't cry.
"He'll be here in half an hour." Her mom responded, walking back down the hall, probably to do laundry. Not at all prepared for her daughter.
You can do this. Oliver reminded herself and brushed on the highlighter, along with the eyeshadow, and then picked up the eyeliner. She closed one eye, drawing a line against the rim of her eyelid. She copied the movement on her other eye and then applied a thin layer of mascara.
Oliver looked at her reflection and smiled. She was almost done. She pulled out her many lipstick tubes and twisted the color up, deciding which would look best with her outfit and makeup.
She chose a soft, sparkly pink named Grapefruit Kiss and pressed it to her lips, running it over the inside of her lip before rubbing them together, making a gradient effect she had seen on YouTube.
When Oliver's mom and dad were gone, she spent her time looking at makeup tutorials, shoe and clothing brands, Harajuku fashion, and interviews with transgender people, like Harper on Valid.
However now, her dreams of walking out of the house, dressed and styled like a girl was finally going to happen. And she couldn't wait.
Oliver applied a little bit of lip gloss as well, and then stared at her reflection. She was an honest-to-goodness girl.
Almost finished, she just needed a few steps to go.
Right after makeup came clothes. Oliver already had her skirt, but her grey 'Team Boy' shirt complete with pizza stains just wasn't going to work. Oliver stood up and made her way to her closet, pulling open her sliding door. She wrinkled her nose at the assortment of blues, grays, and black clothes, all made for a boy, and reached past them all, grabbing her white shirt and rainbow shoes.
She slipped on the white shirt and then matching socks, followed by the rainbow converse. Oliver then walked over to her vanity once more and pulled out her comb from one of the drawers. Her mom thought boys didn't need a 'real' brush, but Oliver's hair was short enough that a comb would get the job done.
She ran the comb through her reddish-brown hair, styling it so it fell in front of her right eye, the way she had seen Harper do her hair when she was transitioning. Oliver smiled, showing off her braces, and twirled in a circle, laughing.
She put her arms out and watched her skirt swirl around her legs. Oliver felt like she was floating on air. Then another knock came from her door and her grandpa Ray's voice followed.
"Hey, Ollie Bear, you ready to go?" He asked. It sounded as if his head was right next to the door. Oliver swallowed and gathered her courage.
'I can do this.' She thought and then opened the door. "Yep." She said, smiling nervously.
Oliver's grandpa's eyes went wide and he looked his granddaughter up and down. Oliver unconsciously took a step back, towards the vanity and tipped over the chair. It crashed to the floor with a loud bang.
Oliver jumped and turned, picking it up and putting it back in its spot.
"Sorry." She mumbled and looked at the ground, embarrassed.
"Well." Her grandpa said. "This is certainly a surprise." But his voice was warm. Oliver looked up and saw the twinkle in his eye.
He leaned over and picked up a sparkly hair clip from a cup on the vanity and slid it into place in Oliver's hair. "But." Her grandpa said, smiling kindly. "It's a good surprise."
Tears stung Oliver's eyes and she swallowed thickly. "Y-you mean-?" She started and her grandpa kissed her forehead.
"I still love you," he said and Oliver felt like sobbing. Then her grandpa pulled back and opened her bedroom door.
"Shall we go?" He asked, smiling widely and Oliver nodded. "After you, Ollie Bear."
"Actually," Oliver said. "Can you call me something else?" Her grandpa nodded.
"What would you like me to call you?" He asked and Oliver smiled. She knew exactly what.
"Then, after you m'lady Emma."