“Kristy, a letter came for you in the mail.” Her mother hollered as she stepped inside and closed the front door behind her.
“Really?” she squealed, and darted down the hallway to the stairs. Her right big toe caught the banister, “ouch!” she screamed as the forward momentum threw her off balance. Her head was leaning too far forward, but she was able to regain her footing. “That was close.” she softly said with a sigh of relief.
“Young lady, there is to be no running in this house!” her mother shouted with a disappointed tone.
“I know, mom. I’m sorry. I was just so excited that I got a letter.” she replied solemnly. “I’m surprised that my toe doesn’t hurt.”she muttered as she cautiously walked down the stairs.
Her mother handed her the letter. Kristy stared at it perplexed, turning it back and forth, back and forth, as if it was going to do a magic trick or something.
“Mom, this letter looks like it is right out of a history book. There is not a return address, and it has a wax emblem to keep the letter sealed.” she said, still turning it from front to back.
“Kristy, will you open your letter, and quit playing with it?” her mother softly said, trying not to sound annoyed.
Kristy opened the letter and stared at it with that same perplexed look in her eyes.
“What does it say, dear?” her mother’s tone was sweet like candy.
Please inform your mother that I am inviting myself to dinner tonight. I will arrive promptly at 6 pm. It is a special occasion, please make certain that dinner, and the setting of the dining room reflect this particular occasion. And, Kristy, this is a black attire occasion. You would be more comfortable in black pants, rather than a dress or skirt.
– See you at 6 pm sharp –
“Mom, I don’t understand. It doesn’t say what type of special occasion this is. And it’s 4 o’clock now. I only have two hours to get ready! By the way, who is this dinner guest?” she frantically voiced.
“Kristy, calm down. Everything is fine. I know what to do. Why don’t you go pick out some nice black slacks.”
5:55 pm Kristy’s mother beckoned her downstairs. Kristy was dressed in a black pencil skirt, white blouse, black heels, and her hair was pulled up in a sophisticated bun.
“You are stunning, Kristy. You should be wearing pants.” her voice sounded concerned.
“Mom, it isn’t proper to wear pants to a fancy, elegant type of dinner.” she said as she rolled her eyes, like she knew better.
The grandfather clock in the living room chimed, “6 pm sharp.” I said. “Where is this dinner guest?”
Just then, there was a small knock on the front door. I quickly turned my head, my eyes wide, almost like I had seen a ghost.
“There is nothing to be frightened of, dear. Open the door.” Her voice was tender.
I only remember her voice being this tender when I’m about to have a traumatic experience, and she’s trying to console me. My mother’s actions were strange, no doubt, but I didn’t really think much of it. I slowly opened the door, peering through the crack.
What I saw on the other side of the door, surely was nothing to be afraid of. I opened the door wide, stepped back, to let the guest in. I turned to my mother and said, “Mom, it’s a tiny, fragile woman. Do you know her?” My eyes expressed confusion.
“Darling, this is your Aunt Florence.” she replied with a mischievous grin.
“My Aunt Florence?” I questioned, still extremely confused. “Mom, I don’t remember you mentioning an Aunt Florence?” My eyes turned upwards as I thought, did she?
“Come over here and give me a hug.” Aunt Florence said, her arms stretched out as far as they could go.
I looked to my mother to rescue me. She did not say one word. “Mom, do I have to?” I said with a gigantic sigh.
“Yes, dear, go on. She won’t hurt you.”
There was that tender voice again, UGH! I took a few steps forward. The closer I got to her, the thicker the air got. The musty stench was making it hard to breath. And my mother wanted me to hug that? UGH! Oh, how do I hate my mother right now! From less than an arms length away, I leaned in and barely hugged this woman that I did not know.
She pulled me in close, and whispered, “welcome to womanhood.” Then she released her hold on me.
I wasn’t sure if I had heard her correctly, but when I went to ask her to repeat herself, she had vanished. I turned to my mother, “Mom, I think she said welcome to womanhood before she vanished.” The look in my eyes was more confused than ever.
Instantly, my eyes widened, and my body tightened. I was afraid to move. Afraid to speak.
“Are you alright, dear?” My mother’s eyes were painted with worry.
“Y-yes, mother.” I could feel something, but I didn’t know what it was. I allowed my head to follow my eyes slowly down my body, until my gaze met the inside of my left thigh, just barely above my knee, and slightly lower than my skirt. I saw a trail of red color liquid making its way down my leg. “Mother!” I screamed.
“Darling, don’t be alarmed, your Aunt Flo has just paid you a visit for the first time. Remember we had this discussion a few months back? You can expect a visit from her each month now.” she giggled.
“I should have worn pants.” I said sadly as I hung my head.
“Go get cleaned up, and we will resume your special occasion dinner when you return.” she said with the biggest smile she could muster.
“Mom, how did you know?”
“Dear, you have been very emotional lately.” She put her hand on her chest as tears filled her eyes, as if this was the moment she has been waiting for since the day that I was born. The mother-daughter moments, have now become woman to woman moments.
– Anneberly Andrews –
Written for The Mysterious Dinner Guest Creativity Contest hosted by the Peregrine Arc Blog. Side note: My husband gave me the idea behind this prompt. 🙂