01 - The Hunt For A Red Dress
I always thought that for someone to love we needed to feel that passion inside of us. Feel that warming feeling inside whenever that special person looks into our eyes and rock our world. I hated to admit it to myself, but that’s how I felt with him.
But he never really saw me. I always outshined by my sister and she would make sure I stayed that way. In her shadow where she would keep being the sun.
Pilar always acted like the kindest person there was, but I knew the true her. Just because our parents passed away and I wasn’t supposed to have control over our money, it didn’t mean she could take all of it and control me.
I would say that if I could one day run away I would take it, but she’d find a way to bring me back and make me her slave for life.
We were part of a very important human clan. We were what gave the Werewolves their supplies to keep living in that life deep in the forest.
The Demilune pack was the one we most worked for and I was stuck as Pilar’s assistant and I couldn’t do anything about it. I was a loner, after all, I had no friends so the best I could do was stay with someone who at least didn’t pretend I was invisible for most of the time.
“Tempest! You Idiot! This wasn’t the dress color I wanted! I said Red, not Fuchsia.” I winced watching how she threw the dress on my face making me huff in annoyance and fear.
“I’m sorry...” I knew it was risky to contradict her, but I couldn’t help my tongue. “But you did say you wanted the Fuchsia dress. Not the Red.”
The look in her face the moment those words rolled out my tongue would have put me in an immediate grave. Maybe I should start digging my own. I doubt she’d get me one if I died before her.
“You dare contradict me?” her stomping feet on the wood floor made me take steps back as I closed my eyes. As I expected I felt a stinging pain across my cheek as I gasped holding onto it.
I held back the tears in my eyes burning to come out as I looked down in fear completely terrified. “I’m sorry-”
“Stop saying that and fix this, idiot!” the spat from her made me turn around grab the dress and quickly storm away wanting to get distance from her as I tried to think of a place I could get a dress exactly like this one.
There was no possible way I could get that in two hours. It was only two hours left since the event and I didn’t think that the shop would be open. Town closed for the big Werewolves event.
It was mating season and many clans around the world would come here to Bluestone Town in hopes of finding their mates. Werewolves were a secret to most of the world since they couldn’t all be exposed and humans still lived in this town.
Most of them were forty percent of the population and the rest knew about the Werewolves. The company Bluestone was the ones to fund this town in the first place and we were the source of those wolves that need help, hiding, and were in trouble.
The mediators between packs that were enemies. I never understood why did our ancestors named the town Bluestone nor the company but that story had been forgotten over the generations that have passed.
Right now though, the only ones left are Pilar and I, if one of us dies, our family’s Legacy of keeping this company between blood will too. That’s why I let Pilar take control too.
My parents taught her, they never taught me. I wasn’t built for it. I was just born to keep my head down and follow her. Even my parents thought the same.
They tried teaching me about it but I didn’t have what it took. I don’t really know why, but considering how sometimes Pilar has to cause a storm to get what she wants, I wouldn’t be able to do that.
Yell at people and demand what I wanted wasn’t my strongest suit. I am very aware of how pathetic that is. Trust me.
I head out of our mansion as I try to find one of the drivers to take me to the center of town where the plaza was. “Grimson! Hey, would you please take me to the plaza? I need to return this and find her a red dress. Pilar doesn’t want this one anymore.”
The newly employed guy looked at me with his cigarette in between his lips and blows it on my face causing me to cough uncontrollably for few seconds.
“I don’t think so.”
“Why not? You’re free aren’t you?” he was hired to drive us around whenever we needed I didn’t understand. He chuckled and puffed his cigarette before once again blowing it on my face.
I fanned my face to get that grey cloud away from my body. “Not for you.” he snaps and gets in the car before I could say something else and drives away.
Huffing I looked at my watch to see that I was losing valuable minutes. “Miss?” I turned around to find Boze.
“Boze! Would you please take me to the plaza? I need to get Pilar a new dress.” the old man was possibly the only kind person in this forsaken town that I knew.
Everyone else was so keen on putting me down if they knew who I was. If they were strangers I’d get too nervous and walk away.
The man with almost grey hair completely smiled at me and opened the door. “Hop in.” grateful I do as he says and we drive off to the plaza.
Passing by the many houses from the neighbors, everyone was getting ready to settle since most of the stores closed for the Mating event.
The excuse was to pass time with family and at home, without having to worry about work for a week for those who didn’t know about the Werewolves.
“Miss Highland,” Boze calls me looking through the rearview mirror. I hum at him to keep going. “May I ask about the event. Two whole weeks for the wolves to find their Mate. After last year’s complications, I’m concerned if I should keep my daughter from going this year.”
I deflect my eyes from looking at him and stare back at the road, thinking of how to answer him. His daughter was only sixteen and he was afraid for her life. His wife had her when she was thirty-eight and died at childbirth.
Sighing I adjust the dress on my lap. “Truly it doesn’t matter what I think, but if I were you...” I hesitated. “I’d keep her in the house as you best can. Rogue wolves are coming this year and you know how reckless they are.”
We didn’t really have much of an option other than to allow the wolves that had become Rogues to attend. Even if we were the ones to afford this event wolves had to agree on who they wanted.
It was this or war.
Nodding he parks on one of the parking lots at the center of the plaza making it easier for me to check out most of the stores. “Thanks so much, Boze, really. I’ll check as fast as I can.” I tell him.
“Don’t worry. I’ll be waiting, but do remind you. You’ve got one hour and thirty minutes before the stores close.”
With that final warning, I run inside the store where I bought the dress. I could as for a refund and the dress was in a perfect state so she might allow me to return it and get the money back.
It cost four hundred dollars and that could not go to waste if I never used what I bought with them. I heard the bell at the top ring announcing me.
“The stores closed!” the woman snapped at me from behind the cashier counter and I still walked further in. “It says you don’t close until seven.” I corrected her seeing the schedule on the door when I walked in.
She had black hair with perfect make up and black lipstick. A red blouse and white jeans as she gave me a glare. “For tonight’s events, we close early.” that was not allowed.
Stores had to be open until their respected schedule of closing time. They’d have a week off. People needed the most time needed to prepare.
Slamming her hands down on the desk with an attitude made me jump a little not expecting that. “I don’t care. I own this place. Goodbye.” her sassy words did cause me to get annoyed but I needed a refund and a new dress. I couldn’t just snap at her.
“I just need to return this and a refund. And a new Red dress.” I quickly say before putting the dress down on the desk where she looks at it and scoffs.
“I don’t do refunds. You gave me the money. It’s mine now.” even though I was one of the daughters of the founders of Bluestone, I always seemed to be irrelevant. If she dared to speak like this to Pilar, she’d be gone already.
I tried to relax. “I need a Red dress and that money. Please make an exception. It’s for Pilar Highland.” I begged her but all she did was look at me up and down.
Scoffing she shove the dress back in my arms. “Stores closed. Goodbye.”
I huffed giving her the strongest glare I could but she seemed unfazed and kept looking at her chapped white nails. Turning to go I walked out feeling the strong breeze of the night coming to take over the day warning me that my time was running up.
With hope, I headed to the next boutique. Once again a bell rang on top and I saw some clients walking around looking for clothes. At least they wouldn’t pull the ‘We’re closed’ card.
Quickly I skimmed over the many dresses trying to find the perfect red dress. But it was odd how most red dresses seemed to have disappeared.
“Where are they!” I muttered angrily. When I spotted one last red dress with glitter and one sleeve, Pilar’s preferred style. I quickly ran for it only for another woman to rip it away first.
Turning to a girl around my age she looked at it smirking. “Hey! I was coming for it first.” the girl scoffs looking at me up and down and laughing.
‘Great a brat’
“Don’t think it’ll fit you. Considering it may be too big for you.” I was aware of what she meant. I knew I wasn’t the biggest girl in town. But she looked fake and clearly had plastic surgery. No judging those who get it, but no need to offend the ones who are smaller.
Putting the dress over my chest embarrassed, I gave her an annoyed look. “It’s not for me...it’s for Pilar Highland. For the event tonight.”
The girl’s eyes widen looking around. “Is she here? Is Pilar here?” she looked like my sister’s fan club and it explained her bratty character.
“No, but I could tell her your name and how it was you who gave away the dress for her.” maybe giving her a little hope I’d tell Pilar about her kind gesture would make her give it to me.
The girl swung the dress over her shoulder. “If she’s not here. Then forget it.” she scoffs and walks away with the red dress showing it off to her other bratty friends.
I wanted to cry in frustration. Finding no red dress in here I proceed to go to the next Boutique. And let me tell you after looking through every single store there was I really am amazed how every girl wanted to use red tonight.
I reached back to Boze who saw my face of disappointment. The bad beating I would get home because I didn’t have a Red dress for Pilar.
“Miss Highland are you alright?” I leaned on the car.
“No. Could you believe there was not a single red dress for tonight? Like everyone just decided to use red. I’ll just dye this one red maybe with my own blood after she beats me up about it.”
Boze blinked back surprised but I didn’t care leaning my head back down on the car’s cold roof. Night had fallen already and I only had thirty minutes left.
He patted my back trying to comfort me. “There is still one more Boutique.” I looked up confused and pointed to the far corner at the small structure clearly no a luxurious as Pilar would like. I shook my head.
“Pilar would kill me if she knew I bought a dress from there. I don’t mind but she does.” I didn’t care it wasn’t the most expensive place, but Pilar was very expensive tasted.
“What she doesn’t know, won’t kill her.” he whispers grinning at me. I tilted my head knowing what he meant and nodding determined I passed him the Fuchsia dress and headed over.
This time there was no bell at the top to announce my entrance. The place really did not seem to be in its best state, yet it had pretty acceptable clothing. As I checked over the racks of long dresses finding about five decent-looking red gowns.
“Looking for something in specific?” I jumped holding my hand to my chest startled terribly by the woman. She had grey hair and a smaller height than me.
“Oh Jeez you scared me,” I tried to get my soul back into my body. “But yes. A red dress. Don’t know which one to pick. This might sound odd and weird, but I think I’ll go for the most expensive.”
She gave me a bright and a bit creepy smile. “Oh dear, the price won’t matter if the dress is pretty.” I chuckle at her words.
“You’d be surprised at how expensive my sister can be. She looks at the price tags before the clothes. I mean I do the same but for the opposite reason. My salary isn’t the best.” I get five hundred dollars a month. An entire month! The woman nods.
“Well, in that case, this one is the most expensive. Beautiful and would totally fit someone as pretty as you.” she took out a red long dress with lace and strapless. It was perfect for Pilar’s style. Smiling in accord we head to the cashier desk as she goes behind it and I on the outside.
I looked around while she scanned the tag. “This will be forty dollars.” truly I didn’t expect it to be that cheap. My mouth dropped to the floor hoping that this dress will be strong to last the whole night.
Paying the woman I thanked her grabbing the white bag with the dress in it and heading back towards the door. “Have fun tonight! I’m sure you will.” her words gave me an odd vibe to them but still I thanked her and wished her goodnight.
As I walk out I feel how the cold breeze of the trees grew colder with the night’s fall. As I see Boze waiting for me outside the car under one lamppost I show him the bag proudly. “Found it?” he asks.
“I did. But you’re right, what she doesn’t know won’t kill her.” we both grin as I hop inside the black SUV car and we begin to drive back to the house. I just hope this forty-dollar dress manages to last her the whole night. “Did you buy yourself a dress too?” I slapped my hand against my forehead.
I have been so caught up with Pilar’s crisis that I didn’t find a dress for myself. And none of the ones at home would cut it for such an elegant and extravagant event. “I totally forgot and there are no more stores open. I’ve got at home but they won’t cut it.”
I can’t believe it. I forgot my own dress. “Well, you do have a dress waiting to be worn tonight after all.” he says and motioned to the Fuchsia dress my sister refused to wear. Maybe I could try and use that one.
“Let’s hope it fits me.”