Jan placed the portable record player her family had just bought on the floor in the living room and looked around for an outlet to plug it into. After she found one, she put on Jerry Lee Lewis's "Chantilly Lace". Strains of the familiar song filled the air.
It was the night of Marcia's prom; the prom that Davy Jones was taking her to. She didn't know how long they'd been gone. But she didn't really care.
Jan knew it was wrong to be jealous of her older sister, but there were times it was hard not to be. Marcia was pretty and popular. And now, on top of it all, she had managed to get a celebrity to take her to the prom. But not just any celebrity. Davy Jones.
Marcia is the luckiest girl in the world. I'll never get that lucky. She thought bitterly.
Her mind drifted to earlier that evening. Marcia's beautiful dress, her high heels, and the emerald brooch that mother had never let anyone wear. Jan hadn't even been able to bear going downstairs and seeing Marcia off like the rest of the family had. It would have just made her feel even more inferior than she already did.
I bet I won't even get asked to the prom.
"Chantilly Lace" ended. For a fleeting moment Jan thought about putting on a Davy Jones record, but then decided against it, knowing what it would cause. She decided on "I'll Cry Instead" by the Beatles. It was one of her favorites.
It started playing. She began singing along, substituting a few words as usual, but this time to fit her current situation.
She stood up and kept singing, but also started dancing. It was nothing choreographed; just whatever suited her fancy, a twirl, a tap, a jump. Her school skirt swung around her.
When the song finally ended, Jan was somewhat exhilarated. She lifted the needle off, then stepped backward and collapsed on the sofa.
Or what she thought was the sofa.
She didn't, however, fall against the plump cushions as she had expected to. Instead she hit a body.
"Oh!" she almost screamed, jumping up. She turned around and saw who she'd landed against.
He and Marcia were sitting next to each other on the sofa.
"Oh, I'm so sorry sir. I didn't…"
But the Brit seemed completely unscathed by the entire ordeal. "You dance very beautifully, Jan. Your singing is lovely too."
All three of them were silent. Jan was at a loss for words. She, lonely old good-for-nothing Jan was being complimented by the Davy Jones. She hadn't even been dancing to something choreographed, just however she liked.
"I also heard you're a fan of my music. I'll have my manager send over a copy of my latest album for you."
"Th…th…th…thank y…y…y…you." She stammered.
"You know, you're every bit as pretty as your sister." He informed her. He placed a kiss on her hand.
"Now, I must be going. I had a lovely time Marcia. And Jan," his eyes shifted towards her. "It was very nice to meet you. Keep up the singing, and maybe we'll meet again someday." With that, he walked out of the house and closed the door.
It echoed for a long, long time.
"How did he know my name?" Jan quietly asked her older sister.
"I told him what a big fan you are of his and he asked if you'd like to meet him and I said of course."
"Did you put him up to the niceness bit?"
"No. That was all him." Their eyes met and they started giggling.
"Thank you, Marcia." Jan said, hugging her older sister.
"Well, you're at least as big a fan as me. I only wish he could take you to your prom… But I figured this was the next best thing."
"It was Marcia. It was."
But to Jan it wasn't the next best thing at all. It was the best thing.