Time Limit

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Banquets and Ballroom Dances

"Okay, okay." I said, a little stunned. This was strange. Who is Sage? How is she going to help me? "Calm down. I'll go now." I tried prying her hands off my arms. She was cutting off my circulation.

"No!" She gasped, her grip increasing. I winced in pain. Seeing my expression, she let go. "Sorry. You have to go to that ceremony."

"I'm not going. I'm not wearing that watch. I don't want anyone else knowing."

"You have to go. I can't tell you any more right now. Sage will explain everything. Trust me." She said. I could see the desperation in her eyes. I didn't understand, and that made me even more terrified, but I knew she wouldn't do anything to put me in harm's way.

"Always." I said. She stood up, abruptly.

"Go, get ready for the ceremony tonight." She smiled, but it didn't reach her eyes. "Dress nice, they'll be watching."

I had 3 hours before the ceremony. I walked home, wondering what I was going to do with all this time. I am not one of those girls who takes three hours to do my make-up and put clothing on my body. I take 30 minutes on a slow day.

I knew what was waiting for me in my room before I even walked in. Lainey Lantanoe. Lainey had her hair twisted up into a knot on the top of her head. Her eyelids shimmered and her lips shone. She was so beautiful she didn't need make-up, but with it, she was stunning.

"What is this?" She said, gesturing to me. "You only have 3 hours to get ready. What am I gonna do with you?"

"Unlike you, I don't have anyone to dress up for." I said, jokingly.

"Ahem, Oliver. Your knight in shining armor. And I don't have to impress Taylors any more. He's seen me looking my worse." She said, grabbing my wrist and sitting me down in one of my plastic chairs.

"Yeah, my knight in shining armor who doesn't know I like him. Or even that I exist for that matter." I said. She had started ruffling up my hair and making pouty faces in my mirror.

"Oh, he knows you exist, honey. What were y'all talking about when I was with Nathan." She gave me a smile in the mirror. "Up or down?" She asked.

"Down. You know if you put it up, I'm just gonna take it down. And we were just talking. He felt bad that I was the third wheel." I said. Ever since I can remember, whenever there was a big event where we were expected to look nice and formal, Lainey did my hair and make-up. She was my personal stylist.

"Up it is then." I sighed. My own personal stylist, that doesn't listen to my opinions. "Tonight, he won't pity you. He'll want to be with you."

"Lainey, you are an excellent hairdresser and make-up artist, but you aren't a miracle worker." I said, playfully.

"Time will tell." She laughed. "Time will tell."

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