Operation Beautiful

tumblr_m5n3nnh2MF1rxnumjo1_500When Cassandra exited the bathroom stall, she stood for a solid minute puzzled at the absence of mirrors. Someone had come into the high school bathroom, the unit located in the Andre Hall, and removed each and every mirror from its place. Silver fasteners remained, framing unpainted yellow squares above the dirty sinks. In place of each mirror read the message: YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL.

Well, that’s awfully nice, Cassandra thought. She did not feel very beautiful: she had woken late, tied her hair in a bun, and forgotten to put on make-up. Though she appreciated the message, she regretted that she could not fix her eye shadow which always gooped in the early afternoon. An impulse overtook her to remove her compact from her purse, just to check, but she did not. I am beautiful, she thought, of course I am. Imbued with confidence, she strode out of the bathroom, her head held high.

Screams erupted from each of the passerby’s who saw her. Unfortunately, she had not noticed the massive spider crawling across her face and biting her cheek with poisonous results.

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About Derek Berry

Derek Berry is a novelist and spoken word poet. Derek is the author of Heathens and Liars of Lickskillet County (PRA Publishing, 2016). He co-founded and organizes The Unspoken Word, a literary non-profit based out of Charleston, SC, which provides an intendent home for the poetic arts through regular readings, workshops, and community fundraisers. He is on the Executive Board of the Charleston Poetry Festival, the inaugural production of which will be Fall 2017. His work has appeared in The Southern Tablet, Cattywampus, Charleston Currents, Illuminations, RiverSedge, and other journals.He has performed in venues across the United States and Germany. He has worked as a photographer’s assistant, busboy, and bookseller. He currently works at a curation facility for Cold War History.

Posted on September 3, 2013, in Fiction, Writing and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. I must say I was not predicting that ending!
    –JW

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