Tuesday, 1 May 2012

I'm Back!

So I have been a serious slacker on the old blog front for the last few months due to travelling around Asia and Australasia...I had a fantastic time, thank you very much! I am relocating to Hong Kong in under two weeks to begin another adventure, this time as a writer for a spa magazine, so I will try and keep my eye on the writing prompts and take part, but I will also be starting a new blog about my new life in the crazy city. I'll post the link to it on here once it's up and running.
The most recent prompt from inkpaperpen is to take the first line of whatever you have read most recently, then go away from your screen for 15 minutes. Then come back and use that line as the prompt. Here I go...

'I scowl at myself in the mirror.'

What will she think when she sees me?

I squint judgementally, my eyes carefully probing my appearance for any stray threads or smudges of make-up that I might have missed. My gaze suddenly homes in on a white-ish mark just underneath my arm. Damn, my deodorant must not have been dry when I put my dress on. Oh god, she's definitely going to notice that.

I freeze, listening for any noise. Deciding I'm alone upstairs, I hobble as quickly and quietly as I can in uncomfortable heels to the bathroom down the hall. I am just in the middle of sponging my dress with some tissue in an attempt to remove the offending stain when I jump as I hear her shrill, piercing voice calling me.


Throwing the tissue back into the sink and grimacing at myself in the bathroom mirror I walk as gracefully as I can manage into the lounge where she is waiting for me.

God she's scary. She's sat on the very edge of a sturdy looking armchair looking absolutely immaculate, peering up at me disdainfully as if I've kept her waiting far longer than the full five seconds it has been since she called my name.

I've been putting off this meeting for five and a half weeks. I didn't even really agree to today; Sean tricked me saying he'd arranged a surprise for me so I kept this afternoon open and it turned out that the 'surprise' was me meeting his mother.

When Becky from university's boyfriend told her he had a surprise for her, he took her to Barbados. My surprise doesn't evoke quite the same excitement in me as that would.

To be perfectly honest I've been dreading this moment ever since Sean proposed six weeks ago. It's not that I haven't wanted to meet his mother, it's just that when your fiance has only told you snippets of information about the woman that bore him and those include statements such as 'She made my last girlfriend cry' and 'She doesn't accept anything less than perfection'...Let's just say it doesn't make me want to run round to her house and ask her to help me pick a wedding dress.

I smile and sit opposite her on one of the too-squashy sofas as I see her eye sweep over me taking in every inch of my being. Her expression shifts from that of disdain to thoroughly unimpressed.

Ok this is the part where I am supposed to say something sweet and charming thereby convincing her that I am perfect daughter-in-law material.

"Hi Margaret," is all I manage...which probably would have been fine had I had not needed to cough and it come out unnaturally deep and husky.

I splutter embarrassed and repeat my greeting. She graces me with a nod and the barest hint of a polite smile.

I'm not sure this is going that well...And I've only been in here two minutes...And I'm pretty sure she just looked at the deodorant stain on my dress...Why is she frowning? It can't be that obvious, I sponged most of it out!

"So!" I say brightly, forcing a fake smile on my face, "We're finally meeting!"

"Yes...So, you're marrying my son."

She does not look at all happy about this.

I giggle nervously and fiddle with my engagement ring.

"Yep! Very exciting isn't it? I was thinking maybe June for the wedding and possibly the bridesmaids in plum, what do you think? Do you know what you were thinking of wearing?... I love that scarf, is it Hermes? Coz I saw one just like that in there the other day and it's just lovely!" I babble incessantly, nerves getting the better of my brain.

There's a pause for about a minute in which I glance around anxiously, still with a false grin plastered on my face.

Eventually she does a small cough, brings her cup of Earl Grey tea up to her mouth as if to take a sip, and says, "Did you know you have tissue stuck to your dress?"

Feeling my face flame scarlet I look down and there is a little wet clump of toilet tissue just in front of my arm where I was trying to get rid of the deodorant mark. I grab it, mortified, and ball it up in my hand hoping I am going to be forgiven for this lack of sophistication.

I take a breath to say something witty and right this gone-slightly-wrong meeting, but before I can utter a word, she speaks again.

"Was that there to cover the stain?"

Not my best but going to put that down to being out of practise! Feel free to leave any comments, as I will do on all of yours too :)