There was this guy in our class that most of the girls like. They even commented, “He’s handsome” “He’s tall” “He’s PERFECT!” Even my best friend coded him as her husband. Yet for me his beauty was ordinary. As days, weeks, months gone by, many events happened that made me hate him. And, one event made it worst. That was when I was singing with my friend, Tina, and he suddenly interrupted and said in vernacular words, “I think it’s better if Tina sang alone.” I was furious and offended by what he said even though to him it wasn’t meant to hurt me. Then on, I don’t talk to him and ignored him a lot. Yet, fate kept playing around. Every time my teacher needed to cluster us into small groups, I always ended being in a group with him. Moreover, whenever my day started great, he come into sight at the same time that something awful had happened to me; like, tripping over the edge and worst, he’d seen me fallen down on my buttocks. I swear I’d seen him laugh so hard. My friends noticed this. Next thing I knew, they frequently sang love songs when he’s around. They made plots in order for e and that guy to bump at each other that made it all the more worst. It was one afternoon that I can’t help myself but burst out to them, “Could you please stop what you’re doing! I don’t like him. In fact, I HATE him. So, stop it before he notices what you’re plotting again.” However, they didn’t believe what I said and with innocent eyes paired with amusing smiles they said, “You’re so defensive.” I said I was not but didn’t argue with them anymore. I’m afraid they’ll misinterpret it with something else.
One night, dressed on a violet velvet cocktail dress, I attended a masquerade debut party of my cousin’s best friend where in I was one of her eighteen treasures. At the entrance hall, there were so many ladies dressed on their best gowns and men in their coat and tie attire. With them wearing their mask, I can’t see where my cousin is. I approached the woman that seems to be the organizer because of the lists she was holding. I gave out the invitation given in to me and she led me the way to where it will happen. But before she let me enter she signaled that I should wear my mask which I realized that I was just holding. It was so frustrating that my identity was already revealed to the crowd back at the hall but the woman smiled and cheered me up. As I entered, my eyes got massive at the very grand venue. The garden of Apo view hotel was decorated with shades of purple, pink and gold. There were so many petals on the red-carpeted aisle. A butler approached, who held what seemed like a fish bowl but in it were small fuchsia colored balls with numbers written on each one of it. He made me pick one that would identify which table I was going to occupy. The ball I picked had the number 13 on it. He called out for someone to lead me the way. While walking, I looked around noticed that most of the tables were good for two persons. Then, my speculations turned out to be true when we reached my table. There sat a man with a mask as well. He stood up and showed gratitude at the butler. He smiled at me and held out my chair in order for me to sit. I expressed thanks and he bowed. What a gentleman, I hope he’s handsome, I said to myself. I looked up at him as he went to take his seat. He’s tall and young. The color of his polo underneath was violet which made it perfect fit to my dress. His dimples were shown as he noticed that I was looking at him. I blushed and lowered my gaze. “Hi!” he said, “I’d like to know your name and I’m sure you feel the same, but it would spoil everything.” “I know. Why don’t we just make our false names first?” I replied. He was hesitating for a second then said, “Then, I’ll be…” he thought for a while, “Mr. Suave.” He made a check with his thumb and index finger, placed it underneath his chin and pose, “don’t you agree?” I feigned a no but giggled. “You’ll be Cinderella.” He said then added, “but don’t you dare run.” And he winked. We became friends in no time at all. I learned that he’s the debutante’s cousin and one of the eighteen roses. When it was his turn to dance the debutante he said, “Don’t you dare blink or else you’ll miss the best macho dance you’ll ever see.” It was true. He danced a happy mood out of the audience. When it was my turn to say something good to her, I made her cry. I was crying as well but then when he said, “That was very touching,” it made me smile. He was fun to be with and we never had dull moments together. We chatted, ate, and laughed all the time. When the music was slow, and the floor was empty, he stood, went to my side, held out his hand and formally said, “Can I have a dance with you?” The spotlight was ours and everyone was looking. I could not turn him down so I placed my hand on his and said yes. He led the way to the dance floor. I warned him beforehand, “I don’t know how to dance. I might step on your foot.” “Good thing I wore steeled shoes,” he laughed, “Don’t worry. I know how.” Then with assurance, he placed his hand on my waist and the other hand holding my hand. He twirled me around so gracefully. It was like he was carrying me. Soon, couples danced with us too. When we finished, I told him that I would visit the powder room for a while before the program starts again. After retouching, I returned but everything seems different. Everyone was not wearing their mask anymore. I missed out the revealing part. I went to look for my table when I saw him – the guy I hated the most. I turned around, grateful that I hadn’t taken my mask off. I saw my cousin and told her that I had to go home and asked if she could just tell the debutante that I wish her the best. So, I walked fast out of the hotel, hailed a taxi and went home. I pulled out my mask and thought of why I hadn’t recognized him earlier. I was so worried that maybe he had recognized me. I looked at my mask and felt positive that I wouldn’t be recognized since it almost covered half of my face. The next day in class, I still ignored him like I usually did but this time it wasn’t because I hated him, but because I was afraid he would realize that the lady he had been with last Saturday was me. I was reading a pocket book when he sat on the chair next to me. He leaned and whispered into my ear, “Why did you run away, my Cinderella?”
***to be continued soon***