it’s stephanie march’s birthday today and i really hope she has the most amazing day because she deserves the world. i can’t put into words how much she’s helped me with things going on in my head that i don’t quite understand, how inspirational she is, how beautiful she is, how talented she is. i’m so lucky and proud to be able to call her my idol, i love her so much she’s my world.
Days run fast when you’re living in a palace. I
hadn’t realized that we already had been there for some weeks. After the ball,
there was an elimination were some of us had to say goodbye to a close friend
and even when we were 19 girls competing still, you could notice the absence of
the ones who leaved. The Sweet Fire squad loose a member; it was difficult to
see Maddie go so soon, I missed seeing her around taking pics everywhere, but
the thought that anyone can leave in any moment, gave me the motivation to
continue enjoying my stay in this castle.
For some reason weekends in the Angeles’ palace
seemed calmer, maybe it was just my imagination, but I had noticed that when
Saturday’s came, everyone decided to do relaxing activities. I had never been a
fan of relaxing times, but last Saturday after my morning run I have thought it
might be nice to spend some time in the Women’s Room, to chat a little with the
rest of the ladies.
“Lady Debbie, I’m glad you are back, your bath
is ready” Nadine said nicely when she saw me entering the room.
“Thank you, Nadine, you are my favorite!…
Don’t tell the other I said so.” I pointed at her with one finger as I made the
“We know you said that to each one of us, my
lady” She rolled her eyes and giggled
“Well… in my defense, you were not supposed to
tell each other!” I said grinning at her before closing the bathroom door. When
I came out from there, my three fairies were already in the room, we picked a
day dress from the closet and they helped me to get ready quickly and
efficiently like they always did.
“Any special plans for today, my lady?” Lisa
asked suggestively. I knew she was asking this, because in those days some of
the ladies had been having their first dates with Dom, but I hadn’t even come
out with something good, yet. I didn’t tell anyone, but that issue was
stressing me out, and I was doing what I always do with the thoughts that
stress me: I was avoiding it. Like if the moment was going to appear magically.
- When are you going to change Deborah? –
“Now that you mention it, yes! I want to go to
the Women’s room, to chat with the girls, believe it or not there are still
girls, that I hadn’t have the pleasure to talk to” I said with a smile,
pretending I didn’t know what Lisa was expecting to hear while I was putting my
shoes on sitting on the edge of my bed. The three fairies looked at me moving
their heads in disapproval but still smiling back at me. I stood in front of
the mirror to check on my dress one more time, then I waved at them and left
I walked through the halls humming and dancing
a song I got stuck in my head since I woke up that morning. I walked for some
more minutes and I was starting to feel frustrated, the women’s room wasn’t so
far from our rooms hall, I should have been there already. “Should I have
turned left instead of right?” I muttered out loud to myself trying to remember
the correct way. I stopped walking and looked around to see if there was a
guard that could assist me, but in that moment, someone was coming out from one
of the hall’s room. I instantly recognize that nice … brown hair. I speed my step until I reached his side. “Hello, you!” I greeted, walking with him
Dom turned to see me “Hello” I hadn’t seen him much after the ball, for that
reason I was glad to run into him, that, and because He could help me to find
the right way to the women’s room. “How are you?”
“Good. How are you?” he asked. I hesitate about
telling him, that I have been lost for a few minutes, what if we were walking
in the right direction this time and I can be saved from that shame.
“Great! I’m going for some tea at the women’s
room, right now. Do you want some?” I offered, still looking around trying to
recognize a picture on the wall or anything, but it wasn’t happening.
“I’m not allowed in the women’s room, you know”
he acknowledged. Although if I didn’t know better I’d say he probably have been
there before, maybe pursuing some diplomatic lady… I pushed the thought away.
“True, but tea can be taken anywhere else… my
real problem is that…“ I said picking into the room next to me, which I
thought could be the one I was looking for. “… this… isn’t the women’s room” I sighed
and dropped my arms in exasperation.
“No, it’s not” Dom laughed at me like I knew he
would as soon as he finds out about my lack of orientation, but I couldn’t be
mad at him, because I have always loved his contagious laugh. I used to see it
on tv back then and now right in front of me.
I tried not to laugh but failed. “It’s not
funny, this keeps happening to me a lot” I finally confessed “And I’ve been
living here for a while, now. This palace is huge!” I didn’t say that as a
complain, I was just frustrated with myself, but apparently, I recovered quickly
from that feeling “… I bet even you get lost sometimes”
“Nope, not really. I mapped those halls to the
tiniest details when I was a kid.” He presumed proudly
I gave him a skeptical look “You will have to
prove that” I said as a crazy idea was crossing my mind… If only I had normal
ones! “Do you have any plans for today?” I asked him hoping he didn’t have
anything scheduled, now that he has been dating the ladies, he probably had
someone waiting for him, in that moment.
“Not that I know of” I smiled at his answer.
This day was about to turned into an interesting one, so much better than tea
at a room I can’t even find.
“Great! Do you want to be my tour guide?” I
bite my lip. I wasn’t sure if he would accept, not to mention that I haven’t
told him the complete plan.
It seemed like the date idea did come to me magically, on that side I felt relieved. “Ok, I will go change to be more comfortable and
you go get your rollerblades! Is it ok if we meet at the gardens in 15 minutes?” I
said that way too quickly, it had been a long time since I go rollerblading, I
used to do it a lot back in Sota, Trisha, Jimmy and I used to organize races
between us rolling down through all the highway to downtown, that was before my
father decided it was time for me to take some responsibilities in the farm. This
time is going to be so much different, though.
“Rollerblades?” Dom asked confused
“I have an idea! It will be fun!” I grinned
“Alright then, I guess I will see you in the
gardens in 15 minutes. Are you sure you can find your way without getting
lost?” He asked
“HA, HA! So funny! I will… ask a guard then” I
said laughing. Honestly, I was glad that during our walk we arrived at the
main stairs, otherwise it would had been impossible for me to go back to my
room from the unknown hall we were at before.
As soon as I entered my room, I tried to take
off the beautiful floor length dress I was wearing. Lisa noticed my agony and
run to helped me unzip the dress. “Wait, my lady, I will do it for you…. Wha…
why are you undressing, Lady Debbie? You just got ready some minutes ago” She
looked at me confused.
“I know, I know I’m sorry, but I need to wear
something way more comfortable! … I’m going rollerblading with Prince Dom” I
said running to my closet on my underwear. There were tons of beautiful
dresses, but none of those were comfortable enough.
“Ohh! You are finally having your first date!”
Lisa shouted in excitement. Getting my dressing gown for me.
“Yeah I guess we are…” I stood there for some
seconds, thinking, then I turned and saw the backpack I brought from home, I
opened it and found a black simple dress, of course it was nothing compared to
the ones these talented ladies had been specially designing for me, but it was
one of my favorites before all this. “Lisa, how fast can you iron this dress
for me?” I asked giving her a pleading look.
“I will be back in 7 minutes with it” She said
“You are an angel! Thank you” I said smiling
and feeling proud of the sweetest of my maids. Lisa was back in less than 7
minutes and I got ready as fast as possible. “I have to go” I said, taking my
rollerblades out of my big backpack and my sleep mask that was on my pillow.
“Good luck!” Lisa shouted, but I was already running
to the gardens without shoes. The weather was nice and warm, I could feel the
sun rays on my face as soon as I put my feet outside. Dom was already waiting for me there.
“Okay, I’m here” I sighed and sit on the bench
to put my rollers on.
“So, what are we wearing these for?”
“Well, I think that a normal tour would be too boring, so we are going
one wearing these… also, I brought this” I said showing him the sleep mask I
had on my hand. “…you said you mapped these halls to the tiniest details and to
prove it you will be a blinded guide. I would just tell you to close your eyes,
but … can’t trust you on that. Are you in?” I smirked at him
“Sure, I guess. Just keep me away from any stairs” He said. I had
totally forgot about stairs, it was a logical thing to think of, but, it was
such an exciting and unexpected idea for me, that I had forgot the obvious.
I laughed nervously. Maybe, I could find a way to make it work “Trust
me, I will help you. We don’t want to ruin your attractiveness” I joked winking
“Of course not” he agreed
I finished putting on my rollers, now I just had to blind the prince to
start the tour. I took the sleep mask with my both hands “Okay. Can I?” I asked politely
I stood up from the bench and got closer to him, putting my arms over
his shoulders and placing the mask on his eyes. Dom is one of the most
attractive men in Illéa and I couldn’t help but feel an electrifying sensation
for being so close to him, and for perceiving that fresh and delightful smell
he always has. I tried to ignore all that and focused in what I was doing. His
head is bigger than mine, so I had to adjust the mask. “… can you see something? You have to be
“Nope. Can’t see anything” He
“Perfect” I said giving him space to stand up. “So, we are in the gardens and our first
destiny is the library because I have to return this book” I said taking the
book on my hands “…so, you are the captain” I said smiling.
“So, to get to the library we need to turn back around here, and then up
these stairs that you must’ve forgotten about. Luckily! There’s a ramp this
way…” Dom rolls up the ramp like a real expert. Even when he was blinded his
usual confidence was still there. I like that about him.
I stare at him for a while and then followed
rolling faster. “Oops! … Good to know
there are ramps, though. I should use them more often because stairs are harder
with heels and long dresses than with rollers” I scoffed sarcastically.
“Then…” Dom continued giving directions while
we roll leaving some surprised guards and cameras behind, I’m sure they weren’t
expecting to see people rolling blading around the palace halls. “… we go
through these main doors, down this hallway here, and the library is the third
door on the left. Right… here. He said opening the big beautiful door in
front of him.
“That was fast! … hmm maybe this was an
easy one.” I rolled inside the library. I love how easy it felt to roll on the
smooth carpeted floor of the palace, it made the experience much easier and let
us go faster. “I know you are not much of a reader, but do you have a favorite
book?” I said as I placed the book on the nearest table assuming he had been
forced to read lots of book at his private lessons.
“Not that I can think of.” He
answered. I was expecting a good recommendation there, but I guess he just really
hate reading, even more than I do.
I continue rolling around the room, I’m not a book fan, but every corner
of the palace was like a piece of art, even the furniture and shelves were
handmade and carefully decorated. “I don’t like reading either, but I find it
kind of necessary sometimes, so I have to force myself to do it” I frowned
We talk a little more about the subject. Dom didn’t understand why I
said reading books was something obligatory. I explained him that no matter how
boring and tedious it could be, the truth is that we need them to educate
ourselves. My father used to pay for my brother Keelan and I, three classes per
week to learn business administration. Professor Reed forced us to read one
book every single month, I always ignored the book during the first 3 weeks and
in the last 3 nights I had to stay awake drinking thousands of coffee cups to
finish it. The coffee was the good part of those nights, but I have to admit
everything I know about my father’s profession and farms is because of those
It was time to keep going. I think about which room I was hoping to
visit next, this time it has to be one that I hadn’t been before “…Ready? Now we are going to the throne room”
I said excited. We rolled out the library. Dom was still blinded, but he really
knew this place like the back of his hand, he had no problem to move around the
rooms and halls. “I follow you”
“Okay so the throne
room is down to the left here, and then we make a right…” We keep rolling fast
turning corners, some of the maids and guards had to react fast when they saw
us coming through and noticing that Dom wasn’t even able to see them… I had to apologize
with some of them a couple of times. Besides of that, I was enjoying every
second of the date, also I was surprised that Dom was almost as good as me at
rollerblading. “… and then through the big doors at the end of this hall, which
I should be reaching… Now” he said hitting hard the pair of enormous wooden
doors he had right in front of him, the sound of it made me jump a little, even
when I saw it coming.
I entered behind him. “Wow! This is
impressive. I hadn’t seen real thrones before.” I opened my eyes wide staring
at the four majestic golden chairs in front of me, the ones in the middle were
bigger than the other two, all of them had the back and sit upholstered with
some kind of velvet fabric. I can’t help but picture the royal family sitting
on them, as I remember seeing on TV. King Jameson with a sober posture, Queen
Eleanora smiling by his side, Alina looking lovely at the left and the good-
looking Prince Dom sitting at his father right hand. It was kind of funny to
actually be standing in this room with him. I chuckled at that thought. “How
does it feel to sit on one of those?”
“It’s not that comfortable actually” He took the sleep mask off his eyes.
“Did you… want to try?” he offered.
I freeze for a moment. This was an awful time
to show my fears. I have been living one day at a time so far, not thinking
about being Queen, except for the Illéa Social interview, when I tried my best
to look perfectly fine, while I was shaking inside. “Only if you join me …” I
said smiling nervously. After all, if I ever going to sit there will be at his
He raised an eyebrow at me “Did you want to
sit on my lap?”
I blushed. With all the nonsense things, I
was thinking at the moment I haven’t realized how my phrase can be interpreted.
We had had our flirtatious moments and word games before, I would be lying if I
said I enjoyed those, but I was off guarded this time “No! I mean… not no…
just …I didn’t mean it like THAT” -Not
no? what does that even mean? -
I laughed at myself. I should have expected
that reaction from him, silly me. But he distracted my mind making me feel
better, making my stress disappear in seconds, without even realizing it. I
smiled genuinely this time “… we are just not in that part of the date, yet”
“Too bad” Dom said disappointed
“Patience, Prince… this is what I meant” I
took his hand and it gave me that weird electrifying feeling again, so, I let
it go as soon as we reached the thrones “you can sit here…” I said extending my
hand to the King’s throne “…and I will sit on this one” I sat at his left hand.
The shaky anxiety threatened to come back, but I could fight it like I always
have: being … me. “You were right, is not that comfortable, but I do feel kind
of taller sitting here” I said sitting straight. The view over there was quite
good, though. The room was majestic and you can appreciate every detail from
there and although the seat was soft there was something about it that doesn’t
let you rest comfortably, not sure what it was.
“You don’t look any taller” Dom scoffed. Was
he trying to annoy me? If he was that would not be easy at all, because despite
all my deep insecurities and fears I was having so much fun. Besides I don’t
consider myself a short person, I’m 5’9’’ almost as tall as him.
“I said feel! But thank YOU for the
acknowledgement!” I said pretending to be annoyed
“So, should I put this blindfold back on and
head out again? Or have you had enough?” He asked
I didn’t want the day to end, I had so much
energy left and I have to admit that I was enjoying his company as well. “Are
you tired already? … Let’s do one more room. This time you pick the course.
Let’s go to your favorite room of the palace” I said standing up quickly.
“Well that’s an obvious one. But it requires stairs, so maybe the
blindfold isn’t the best idea.” We both agree on that, so he handed the sleep
mask back and we went back to the halls. In some way being out of that room
made me feel lighter and I could feel my muscles relaxing again one by one. I
wondered if Dom feels or thinks anything special about that room, and
everything else about ruling a country or he’s just so use to the idea of being
King that he was taking it like a natural thing, after all he had been trained
for it all his life. That mustn’t had been easy and definitely not fun…
although being a King most has a bright side like everything else has.
This time we weren’t going that fast. Now Dom
was able to see and dodge the people walking through the halls, that’s why the
maids and guards were more relieved. I rolled by his side “…have you ever
think of crazy commands or laws you would love to make when you become king?”
“Not really. Even I have limits to what I could do as king.” He answered
I opened my eyes wide, surprised. “That’s
new!” I hadn’t have heard Dom talking about limits before. Not that it was
wrong, it actually makes me feel more secure, I mean it’s the future King of my
country! “… anyway, I’m not saying you will do it, I’m sure you have thought
of something…. for example, when I see
someone dressed in a neon green dress that can leave me blinded, I think
“ugh, if I were the king I would forbid that color! You know what I mean?”
“I don’t know… I guess I haven’t really thought much about it.”
Short answer and no flirt. That made
me think it must be a hard subject for him, even when I was trying to talk
about the fun side. “Hmm ok, now you have something really important to thought about” I
“Is it really that important if none of these laws are allowed to be
passed?” He answered. Apparently, he wasn’t getting the idea. I wish I hadn’t
to explain it, being that honest had never be my style, most of all because I
had never cared what people think about me that much. But apparently and against
my will this time I was starting to care, so I opened a little window of that
big wall of mine to say
“Not important for Illéa… important cause
I’m trying to get to know YOU better… believe it or not, even the silliest
things could tell me a little something about you. I think that’s important,
“I don’t know…” Dom answered
I laughed because I recognized those easy
ways to avoid subjects like that. “We will have to figure that out too, then” I
said and the big wall’s window closed.
It seemed like we finally arrived at the last
place of our tour, because Dom stopped by a door at the end of a big hall “Here
we are, my favorite room in the palace”
“I’m really intrigued!” I exclaimed excited. There
could be any room at the other side of the door, like an armory, a rocker gallery
with posters and albums or some random room full of motorcycle pieces.
“Open the door and find out then.” He said
I smiled and opened the door slowly.
The room wasn’t anything I had imagined… it was even better. I was at Prince’s
Dom room. I rolled in and give a quick look around. It was twice the size of
the room I was staying at and manly decorated with sober colors “Nice room! You have a lot of space in here,
and…” my eyes couldn’t help but
stopped at the sight of the bed “… an enormous bed! You must sleep really
comfortably on that one” I smirked
He gave me a grin “Oh definitely. And it’s
perfect for… more than one person” Dom raised an eyebrow at me suggestively.
I imitated his gesture “Is that an invitation, your highness?”
I liked the surprised face he made at my answer
because that was the reaction I was looking for. “It can be if you want it to
I couldn’t contain myself anymore and scoffed
letting out a contained laugh “Don’t look so surprised I just need to sit down
a little, I got tired because of all the rolling” I said sitting at the edge of
the big bed and pausing the flirtatious game, because I had always loved to
play with fire, but this is not the time to get burned. No matter how much I
would enjoy it, I must remember I’m not the only one he’s playing this game
“Sure… just tired…” he said sitting on the bed too.
I chuckled. Still looking around the room my
eyes catch sight of a bunch of music albums on the desk. “Hey! can I take a
look at your music albums?”
“Sure” he replied
I rolled to reach them and passed my fingers through them reading the names “You really like
G&R don’t you? Do you have a favorite song by them?”
“Paradise City” he answered instantly
Rock music was never my favorite because I love to dance with the rhythms
and rock is not danceable at all, but my dad used to listen to Rock classics a
lot, when Keelan and I were kids, so I know enough of about them. I thought
about Dom’s answer, because *Sweet Child O’Mine* would be the logical answer
for me, but when I sang “Paradise City” on my head I got it.
Take me down to the paradise city
Where the grass is green and the girls are pretty
“Ohh, right. I can see why… I’m not a
rocker girl, but I enjoy some of these songs. I prefer Bon Jovi, though”
I said still looking at the albums.
“Hmm… not a rocker girl? I might have to change that”
I laughed at the idea that crossed my mind, but it was too late to be
stopped “… I can rock…” I tried to stand like I was holding an electric
guitar, it was difficult because of the rollerblades kept making me lose
balance “I will sing for you, just try not to fall in love with my beautiful
voice, ok?” I said sarcastically. The castes are not the only thing that
stopped me from being a singer/dancer like I always wanted, there’s also the
fact that I do it terribly, but I’m definitely an expert at the air guitar
“Go ahead.” He said rising his eyebrows
I stopped for a second to think which song I should sing, pretending to
be serious about it. I finally decided and sang a piece of one of my favorites
Shot through the heart And you’re to blame Darlin’, you give love a bad name
I would sing more of it, but I wouldn’t want to be
accused of torture or anything like that.
“Well done” Dom said clapping
Of course I knew he was joking. “I know, right?! You should learn to
play the guitar so we can make our rock band” I expend some minutes trying to
convince him to join me singing but he was unbreakable about it
“Well… what else do you do
to have fun in your favorite room?” I asked giving up on the singing thing.
He leans on the bed “Do you really have to ask?” his eyebrows lifted
I stared at him for a few seconds, remembering myself I couldn’t lose my
head for so easy for an attractive face… and body. I scoffed at the number of
girls I bet had been in this room before me. “…Yeah, I should have guessed that one” I shrugged.
I was about to say goodbye at him, but I had a memory on my head that my
curiosity just couldn’t let go since I entered the room and I swear I tried
hard. I sit on the bed again, beside him “There’s just one more thing I really
want you to show me…”
“I wanted to see your Dom is the
bomb poster” I requested biting my lip with curiosity.
“Why would you want to see that?” he asked
I understand his confusion because he didn’t know me enough yet. “Just
curious, also because I thought it was lie” but based on his face and the
question, it wasn’t.
He groans “It’s in the closet.”
He looked kind of tired and it wasn’t that necessary to see it “It’s ok,
I just wanted to know if it actually existed” I said smiling. “… okay, so, the tour is over” I leaned to
take off my rollerblades to go back to my room and walk towards the door. “I
have to admit you really had this palace mapped in your head, you impressed me”
“Did you really doubt me?”
I laughed not wanting to say, yes… “Honestly, I wanted to see you in
action … and of course spend time with you”
“Well I can’t blame you for that”
I rolled my eyes at him chuckling “…anyway, I had a lot of fun, thanks!”
I get closer to him and kiss his right cheek. “See you around” I said opening
“See you.” ———————————————————————————————————–
That night it was being hard to fall asleep,
there were way too many thoughts and flashbacks to ignore. I relieved that day
completely more than four times. I remembered myself the idea of applying to
this competition was because of a stupid bet, then I did it to challenge my dad’s
authority and showed him that he just couldn’t say no out of nowhere with any
logical reason, then I decided to enjoy the experience as much as I could,
which I was successfully fulfilling and of course, I was aware that there was an
incredibly attractive prince in this story, but I had always been in total
control of my emotions, so there was nothing to worry about.
I left my bed to open the big balcony doors.
Once again, I felt thankful for the perfect weather of Angeles, not hot, not
cold but still with a subtle fresh breeze that hit my face every time I stood
in there. My mind wasn’t finished with my torture yet. What was the point of
avoiding these thoughts all day if they were there that night to hunt me anyway?
-Nothing to worry about, huh? Then why am I so interested in knowing Dom
better? Am I the one that said, “I will discover all your secrets”? Why? Was I
only playing with words? Dominic was not easy to read and that intrigues me. He
doesn’t seem to want to be known, so why bothered? But, who doesn’t have walls
and masks waiting to be discovered? I know that more than anyone. -
I walked inside my room again sitting on my
favorite comfortable chair of the room feeling the soft carpet under my feet. - But what made me think The Prince had a
mask? Just because he flirts all the time and hates to talk about deep things
like I do? Can people be genuinely like that? Am I genuinely like that?
Mask or not I like Dom the way he is. What if keep insisting on knowing
him more and I don’t like him anymore? What if you like him more? Do you want
to like him more? You don’t even know if you will stay! Do you want to stay? - There was only one was to stop all this questions with no answers,
taking a decision, the same I took the day I was selected and I probably
forgot: To Live one day at a time
When I told you that my parents were supportive of my coming out, I lied. I had this friend when I was fourteen, Eliza Wilkie. We’d hang out in her parents’ basement watching horror flicks and smoking cigarettes. I- She was the first girl that I knew that I liked in a way that was different. And I thought that she liked me too, so on Valentine’s Day I put a card in her locker declaring my feelings and asking her to the dance. Well, she gave that card to her parents.
alex standall clearly tried to kill himself. i know that a lot of you think that tyler shot him because he took the picture down but i think that he decided to take him off his hit list, because he was the only one who actually stood up for him and listened to him. there were actually multiple signs that showed that alex was suicidal (him speeding, the fights he picks that he clearly can’t win, mentioning suicide more than once, the pool scene, him cleaning his room just before he shoots himself…) but just like it was with hannah: you only realize it when it’s too late.