I thought the title of today’s prompt was an apt title for my story. It took me all morning to come up with something and then write it. I kept editing as I wrote it because it was almost too personal, based on a previous experience in my life. Enjoy.
Lost and Found
Laurie thought Todd was perfect. When they met in person she was swept off her feet. He was such a gentleman, always opening doors for her, pulling out her chair at dinner and asking after her needs regularly. They moved in together within a few months of dating.
She always felt she belonged to him. The problem was he felt the same. He showed it when he monitored her calls and checked her text log. If she was late from work he grilled her for an hour. On the rare occasions she went out with friends he would sulk as she got ready and be angry by the time she got home, accusing her of dressing up for other men. In between he would send texts saying how much he missed her and how he hoped she wouldn’t stay out too late.
Laurie learned to walk carefully with him. If she glanced at a man passing her in the grocery store the fight was on. She never understood the jealousy because she’d given herself to him so completely. Eventually she got tired of fighting and met less and less with her friends. Instead she went out with Todd. Every sporting event, music festivals, drag races. You name it, if he liked it she went.
Her career faltered when she stopped working late and she stopped going shopping unless it was absolutely necessary, even sending him to buy groceries so he wouldn’t worry about someone else attracting her attention. She stopped getting dressed up, unless he asked, and in response he praised her natural beauty and her effort to make him happy.
One morning while Todd was out of town Laurie stood at the bathroom sink staring at her reflection. Disgusted, she realized she hadn’t gotten a haircut in six months. She looked like shit. When did she let herself go? She already knew why and in that moment she hated herself for it.
She called her favorite hairdresser, Becca, and made an appointment for after lunch. While she ate and on the way to her stylist’s shop she wondered how Todd would react. When she sat down in the chair and Becca asked how she wanted it cut she faltered but forced herself to not think about what her boyfriend would say anymore.
“Take it all.”
Becca gasped. “What exactly do you mean by all?”
“Pixie short.” Laurie could understand Becca’s shock. Her pale hair was almost down to her waist because Todd liked it long.
“Are you sure?”
“Yes and while we’re at it, let’s go red.”
Becca nodded in understanding, asking no more questions. She’d probably dealt with this kind of thing before. As the locks fell to the floor Laurie felt an oppressive weight, heavier than her hair lifted from her shoulders. When they finished she looked in the mirror and was happy with what she saw.
She went to the beauty emporium next and stocked up on makeup. Shopping for new clothes followed. At the end of her trek she went home and packed her things. Before loading her car she called her boss and asked if there were any extra projects she could pick up.
Laurie was wearing a new black dress and bright red lipstick when Todd came home.
His shocked face quickly transitioned to the decidedly unattractive jealous face she’d come to know and hate. “Who are you dressed up for?” he demanded.
“Me.” With that she handed him her key and walked out the door.
Write about something that has been lost and then found.
All I can really say about this is if you are with someone who weighs you down, get out immediately. It’s not worth losing yourself.
Rough draft 585