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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Black (10/15/09)

TITLE: The Sister, The Sick and The Satin Sacrifice
By Lizzy Ainsworth


Anna sat at the sewing machine, chatting amiably to her Mum typing on the computer just across the room. She elbowed away a strand of fine blonde hair and adjusted the rippling black satin under her fingers.
Outside the motors of young men in on their motorbikes and rally cars roared. However it was only the little hum of the sewing machine before her that she was currently concerned about and the surprise project she was delicately supervising.
It was not one of those projects that you sewed and put back in the box, lying forgotten for weeks and when finally remembered was covered in a fine film of dust. No, this project had surprised even herself in the way it had so quickly and beautifully come together.
She tied back a strand of maroon thread and inserted the puffy lace petticoat. Flipping over the doll, she dressed the thin body, deftly tying back the maroon ribbon around the waist. It was not finished, but she had not time she so selecting the longest pins, she brought the dress together. It would suffice for her purpose.
As she tiptoed her way to the closed door, she swirled back the dollís hair into a hairstyle and with one hand squeezed down the handle and tugged the water-expanded door open.
Creak. . . she peaked around. She found her way in and navigated her way through the darkened room to the bookshelf. Her older sister lay in the lumpy bed, quilts and sleeping bag tossed around it in unrecognisable shapes. She had come home from work the night before and dropped into bed with a sore throat and only risen to eat a piece of toast and swallow a tablet before hobbling back to bed with a strained back. Her plans to spend the long weekend with her boyfriend and the other young men from church riding motorbikes and driving rally cars had gradually disintegrated and instead she lay in bed while the roaring motors drifted into the house.
Anna quickly surveyed the shelves covered in books. The corners of each shelf were especially reserved for special trinkets and memories though this space was often threatened, but never sacrificed on the return from bookshops.
Where should she place this newest addition? Every available corner place was already taken; the doll would have to share with another. Should it be on the top shelf nearby Danielle in her gorgeous maroon dress, white ballet slippers and tiara? No, the new dress was too dark and even the white ribbons roses in the other dollís hand would not offset the bold colours well enough.
So, who of the other two dolls in their wedding gowns could share their seat and glory with a prospective bridesmaid? Holly in her frothy white gown, seated on a beautifully packaged glass set, feet resting on a miniature white hope chest or Taryn with her long curling blonde hair, delicate lace dress and exotic selection of flowers, resting on an old jewellery chest?
Holly seemed to beg that her best friend of the childhood years sit by her and as Tammy sat down, the black satin rippled around her and the pale pink rosebuds settled between them. It seemed good that the two friends of old be seated together. Perhaps it might spark some joyous memory of by gone years when Barbie dolls lived and danced all around the home, but had been since been slipped into garage sale boxes, all but the precious few who lived on the shelves guarding over jewellery and precious memories while yet heralding in dreams of womanhood . . . and a prince to sweep away the bride.

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Member Comments
Member Date
Jan Ackerson 10/26/09
How sweet that Anna loves her sister so!

There was a lot about this story that I didn't quite understand, as if there were a larger back story that I'm not familiar with. Why was the door "water-expanded", for example? Who and where and when were these girls? I'm not even really clear on their ages.

Nice alliteration in your title.