A/N: Twilight and its characters belong to Stephanie Meyer. Prompt belongs to stolenxsanity.
~Peeks head in slowly~ Hey, gals. Um, sooo... I uh... I don't usually post here anymore, but my lovely beta, Pastich Pen has encouraged me to make some minor edits to this story for the purpose of being postable here. I really hope I edited enough. It's only in two scenes, and I'll give you the links at the top of the respective chapters to my LiveJournal, where you'll find the MA rated, uncensored version.
This was a gift fic for the Twilight Gift Exchange, and this story was prompted (premise created) by stolenxsanity, written by me, and given to ObsessingOverEdward. I'll try to do this right and put warnings where necessary.
WARNING: This story contains Graphic Themes, Violence, Strong Language, Adult Content. Please do not read if this may upset or offend you in any way.
Systematic Failure Blooms a Mystification of Unjustifiable Achievement.
(A.K.A. Paris Hilton is a Whore.)
I despise planes. They are small and stuffy, and they make me feel more confined than an elephant packed into a can of sardines. Walls on all sides, holding me prisoner for prolonged periods of time, making me sweat. There are people in front of me, people behind me, people beside me, and unfailingly, one of them has a wailing infant.
Wailing infants are whores.
Wailing infants are sniveling little creatures who get their way by means of auditory and emotional extortion. They whore out their mucus and their tears and their appallingly well-developed vocal cords. They use their parents' love against them to get what they want, when they wish for it. Somehow, some automatic and instinctual intuition tells them screaming at the top of their lungs will inevitably make their desires come to fruition. I'm not being harsh. I'm just keeping it real. Here. This statement will prove it.
I am a whore.
Not in the sexual sense, of course. I personally detest the usually narrow definition that people give the term when it is actually much broader. Some people call me a socialite. Others like to call me a debutante or priss or spoiled-little-rich-bitch. The real socialites, debutantes, prisses, and spoiled-little-rich-bitches like to call me many things--none of which are repeatable in polite company. It doesn't really matter what name is granted to them or I, because we're all the same: whores.
Our job is to look pretty, say all the right things, get really good press, and never, ever, ever go to any social function without underwear snugly covering our vajayjays. It's a simple concept. And really, the rewards are well worth the effort of wearing heels and dresses and push-up bras that are nearly good enough to convince people I'm not in dire need of an exorbitant boob job. Nearly. I didn't even have to go to college last year when I graduated from prep school. There was no need to when everything would clearly be given to me. It's a good life. A privileged life. A life without challenge, full of ease and luxuries without the expectation of intellect or character, just like Renee's.
In short, I loathe being a whore.
There are whores everywhere I look. Left, right, in front, behind, and then the whore who is front and center, basking in the attention and affections of her John like she hadn't sold her soul for a sixpence and a painful round of botched liposuction. The whore that makes whoring look reputable and decent. She's of the brand of whore that's made me one.
My mother, Renee is like the Queen Bee of all whores. I like to imagine San Diego like a big hive, with her at the center and all the little drones scurrying their wings in order to whore to her standard.
I still recall with perfect clarity the first moment I'd realized what that word truly meant. As I said before, it has nothing to do with sex, though, in all honesty, sex certainly does help. More talented whores can achieve what they want without ever performing a single sexual act. My mother calls it "climbing the social ladder." The first time I'd ever seen her consort with her minions, I could see it plain-as-day, plastered across her fake face that she'd given up her true self to gain the life she desired. That was a true whore: shoving the honesty of your ideals, values, and individuality deep into yourself for the sole sake of any level of reputation, monetary, or social achievement.
Her husband is Phil. This man-whore has no last name. Well, I suppose he technically has one, but no one uses it. It's kind of like Prince or Madonna, except without the musical talent or marketing genius. You can see him plastered on posters all around the country. He's on the bedroom walls of enthusiastic little boys, girls with endearing crushes, and sexually-confused teenage males who claim to have adoration for his team spirit and commendable morals but really end up masturbating to his male physique like jackrabbits on Viagra. He's known as an athletic phenomenon and ideal role model for aspiring athletes everywhere. He's got the highest batting average in the league and a clandestine steroid addiction the size of India—which coincidentally, is where he prefers to procure the "natural herbs" from. He's got the mentality of a twelve-year-old boy, the body of a twenty-eight-year-old man, the testicles of an adolescent rodent, a nine-figure contract with the league, at least twenty sponsorships, five houses, three yachts, ten cars, two snowmobiles, and a flaming case of herpes.
In other words, he's the American dream.
Phil had been putting us up ever since this loving relationship between him and Renee bloomed. And by "bloomed," I mean since my mother blew him in the bathroom of the Bellagio. Still, I had little to no room to complain. Renee gives me what I want, when I want it, without question or hesitation. And all I have to do is play the attractively proper little daughter-whore in the public eye. It had all been so easy for a good while. Using the ever-present media attention of her new husband, she had adored thrusting me into the limelight, parading me around as her friends had done with their own daughters. She'd finally felt a sense of belonging as we climbed the cruel social ladder with ease. For a long time, I'd been good at holding it together.
And then, very recently, the downward spiral...
I've been caught tripping on camera more times than I can allow myself to count. At a formal function that I couldn't be seen drinking alcoholic beverages at, I dropped my cup of Dr. Pepper (with a dash of grenadine) and singlehandedly destroyed the governor's ten-thousand-dollar ivory sofa. Arnold had been far more understanding than his painfully present design consultant. Also, there's a photo of me circulating on the internet with my dress ignorantly tucked into the back of my underwear. And after an unfortunate misunderstanding in which I stumbled into Colin Appleby and landed in a very compromising position, I became particularly notorious for my crude sexual prowess.
My press only got worse when I was unknowingly recorded stating my uncensored opinion of the Queen of England on one of those annoyingly inconvenient picture phones. I won't repeat exactly what name I used to describe Her Majesty that was unfairly taken out of context, but here's a hint: it rhymes with "whore."
And last month—the final nail in the coffin known as my social reputation—I "accidentally" discarded Phil's luckiest charm and most revolting superstition—an antiquated jockstrap. As a result, the world attributed the loss to none other than Isabella Swan: the Jock Blocker.
I'd become the laughing stock of the city. I mean, I was no Paris Hilton or anything. The levels of whorage between us were miles apart. Unlike her, I can't get away with that much crap unscathed. It's a free-for-all in which insults and attacks are thrown at me faster than Renee and Phil's bank account could ever reasonably subdue. I'd failed at my only obligation to the lap of luxury, and now I'm running away with my tail tucked between my legs.
I'm going to Forks, Washington to visit my father, Charlie. He's a whore too, but a far more creditable variety of whore than Renee. When Charlie whored, he did it for a purpose greater than that of petty greed and corruption. I mean, yeah, he's a little corrupt. What public official isn't? He's considered fairly wealthy for the small town of Forks where he resides, but he does something with his position and makes a difference in the community. He gives back.
And now I'm hoping he'd give back to me, because I'm about to beg and grovel on my hands and knees for deliverance like the little whore I've been raised to be. I muse silently as I wait to reach Washington about small dreams of finally going to college. I imagine being able to apply to somewhere decent, though not upper-class—not that I could get into any of those places anyways.
Truthfully, I feel as though I can be truly happy going to a laughable community college, majoring in literature and finally writing a book.
All I need is Charlie to give me Forks, and maybe I can be normal again.
The flight from San Diego to Seattle takes much longer than it really should. Regrettably, Renee was not feeling nearly generous enough to extend me the luxury of the private jet, not that I necessarily expected it. At first I found it rather refreshing to mingle with common folk in first-class, but that sentiment only lasted until my ass touched the fabric of the airplane seat.
I've become a rather spoiled whore, I decide.
As the plane begins its descent to Sea-Tac, I hold my breath. It's a nervous habit and commonly confirmed the legitimacy of the old saying, "There's no such thing as an atheist in a foxhole." I can't speak for the wailing whore-fant or the others surrounding me, but Jesus is always my homeboy when my body is falling at a nauseating and fatal velocity towards earth. I always hope he'll forgive the other three-hundred-and-sixty-four days of the year when masturbation and cathartic bathtub cries beat him out for top position. He must either forgive me, or it's true that Jesus loves the little children, because the plane lands safely, and I'm able to relax and expel a shaky sigh when we finally halt on the tarmac in one big, hollow, metal piece.
It takes time for the plane to be positioned at the gate, and even more time for the pilot to screw around with the stewardesses and play with the shiny mechanical buttons. I begin feeling claustrophobic, and the infant seems to be empathizing with me as well. It emits loud and shrill screams that make me cringe. I figure its mother can singlehandedly obliterate the birth-control industry by simply passing the little whore-fant around. God knows that the last thing I want after hearing that is sex in any way, shape, or form. Celibate born-again-virgin? Check. See, Jesus?
There's hope for me yet.
I am cosmically rewarded when they finally began allowing the passengers to exit. I stand and stretch as far as the limited space of my window seat will allow, which means that my neck and fingers are the only parts of my body to reap the benefits. I grab my carry-on bag from the overhead compartment and wait for a vacancy in the aisle to make my speedy departure. I am ready to lurch out into the aisle and take every one down—infants included—when some kind-looking elderly lady stops at my seat and allows me to step in front of her.
"Thanks so much," I smile sincerely, my faith in humanity marginally restored. The line moves slowly, and there is a long and tender indention in the flesh of my abdomen that stings painfully as a result of my jeans' tight waist. I adjust them with a grimace, cursing Renee's persistence in forcing me to wear "hip" clothes to a humdrum town like Forks. I anticipate zero media, but she has had my clothing packed, and I know better than to think her assistant was instructed to pack for my comfort.
I long for the relief of the luxuriously plush, velour sweatpants that I know are nestled safely in my carry-on. As I finally exit the plane and file out with the other passengers through the gate, I idly consider stopping in the restroom to change into them. Of course, I simply can't imagine walking around the well-populated Sea-Tac airport with the word "Juicy" written across my ass in pink, even if they are by far the most obnoxious, ugliest piece of clothing that's ever been purchased for me, but I'll be damned if they didn't feel heavenly. Thus, I do as I usually do with my favorite pair of lounge-wear and decide to wait until I'm blessed with the comfort of privacy.
"Hey!" A young female voice calls from behind me as I finally reach open space. I turn with a furrowed brow and zero in on a small girl, maybe fifteen, with short black hair, combat boots, and a conspicuously placed lip piercing. She smiles at me and turns her head a bit to the side. "You're Isabella Swan, aren't you?" she asks in a somewhat disbelieving tone. I force a tight smile and nod, briefly wondering what the polite time limit on these types of interactions could possibly entail. Her face lights up into a huge smile, and she whips her head around to another group of girls. "Hey! I told you guys it was her! The Jock Blocker!" They all begin laughing uproariously, and my tight smile transforms into a sneer as I spin on my heel, their amusement at my expense echoing in my ears as I flee the concourse in search of my driver.
This is something I'm used to by now. The cackling giggles serve as a constant reminder to my many failures. I weave through crowds and hold my head as high as I can, because while I am "Isabella" to them, I know deep down that I am—and always have been—someone else entirely, even though I have difficulty naming her. That person hates the name "Isabella," the reputation attached, and what's expected of her. That someone doesn't give a shit as to what brand of clothing she's seen in or what function can get her the most press. That someone is wearing a skin that is expertly exfoliated and thickened by harsh words and scathing criticism. That someone can be intelligent and has depth than no one would ever guess. Such a pity that I have to shove her deep into myself so that she can't be hurt by the malice of herd mentality.
Once I reach the expanse of outdoors, I gulp the humid air into my lungs greedily before flopping down unceremoniously onto a nearby bench. "Whores," I mutter under my breath as I fish my phone out of my bag. I didn't bring any additional luggage because, truthfully, I haven't the foggiest notion of how long I'll be staying. I brought the essentials and packed light so as not to jinx the situation any. I'd already jinxed an entire major league baseball team. No need to tempt fate. Ideally, I'd be sending for my things within days and relocating to Forks with more permanence. Ideally.
While waiting for my driver, I begin absently flipping through my phone, checking my emails, reading my missed texts, because this is what's expected of me.
102 missed text messages, the screen blinks at me. With a weary exhale, I open the first one, only to quickly delete it. I repeat this action twenty times before I surrendered and angrily throw the phone into a nearby trash can. I decide to get a new one. Really, how many "Jock Blocker" insults can one read before it just gets tedious? I can tell you: twenty-one.
"Swan?" a deep voice beckons from my side, and I jerk my head up in surprise. A young one, intriguing... The man has shoulder length blonde hair that is pulled back tidily and spills over his nape. His dark, beady eyes flash over my shoulders and chest and I recoil infinitesimally.
"That's me," I answer carefully as his leering continues. Despite my every effort.
He grins at me, a small wicked grin that makes my skin crawl, and motions to my carry-on, which I allow him to lift from the ground at my side. I watch him travel to a small, dark sedan and open the trunk, putting the bag inside. He turns to me and tosses me a pair of keys, which just end up falling over my shoulder as I gape at him.
"The whores are making me drive myself," I note with incredulity.
Puzzled, he nods and glances at the keys on the ground before fleeing.