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Our New Lipstick Will Leave Them Speechless
Free Fiction | Merry Makeup
“What’s this shit, Amy?” asked my husband, Bryan, as he threw a black and white box on the kitchen counter. The little cardboard container smacked into the small bowl of just snapped green beans.
“I don’t know,” I said. I bit my lip. Bryan hated I don’t know.
He narrowed his gaze, his lips thinning. My heart started thudding in my chest. I’d learned the signs of Bryan’s explosive rage. If I didn’t handle the explanation just right, he would hurt me.
He always hurt me, but sometimes, sometimes, I could deflect his anger. For a little while, at least.
“You ordered it,” he accused. “Are you spending my money without permission?”
I took the bowl to the kitchen sink and tipped the contents into the strainer sitting underneath the tap. “I would never do that, Bryan.”
“Well, it didn’t just fucking appear by magic!” He picked up the box and waved it at me. “What the hell is Merry Makeup?”
It took everything in me to stop the flinch. I was good at reading body language, but so was Bryan. I busied myself with rinsing the green beans. “It was supposed to be a surprise,” I said. “F-for you.”
He laughed, but there was no joy in it. “You got me make-up, you stupid bitch?”
“N-no. Remember Ellie Evers?” I asked. I shook the strainer to get off the excess water from the vegetables.
“That loudmouth from the HOA barbecue?” He crossed into the kitchen, picking up the box and tapping it against my shoulder. “She wears too much makeup. And she doesn’t know when to shut up. You telling me you want to look like a whore?”
“It’s just … just a lipstick sample. I want to be pretty for you.”
Oh, my, that’s quite a bruise, my dear. Fell into a doorknob? Because you’re a klutz? Ellie Evers shook her head. That’s such a shame. Is the doorknob named Bryan, by chance? Yes, I met your husband earlier. He’s delightful.
Delightful sounded like more like asshole coming from Ellie Evers’ perfect red lips. She shared a conspiratorial smile. Have you ever heard of Merry Makeup? It’s the perfect way to bring in extra income and … problem solve for you.
No, thank you, I said politely. Over Ellie Evers shoulder, I saw Bryan leave the group of men gathered by the grill. He was staring at me and frowning. I attempted to step past Ellie Evers, but she clasped my wrist.
I’ll drop off a lipstick sample. Trust me, it’ll be the perfect shade for you. Tell your husband you want to be pretty for him. Here’s the fun part, sweetie. Kiss the delights out of him. You’ll like the results. Call me when you’re ready to talk business.
I didn’t want a lipstick sample. Anything showing up to the house without Bryan’s knowledge led to hours of ugliness.
And I didn’t want to be pretty for him.
I wanted to yell at him to fuck off and walk out the door.
But that would never happen.
I knew that he would track me down. Maybe even kill me. This life we had together was worse than death. Death had no pain. No sorrow. Guilt. Sadness. Tears. Maybe ending it all would be a blessing.
“Well?” demanded Bryan. He banged the box against my face. I lost my grip on the strainer and it tumbled into the sink, dumping out all the green beans.
Bryan laughed again, this time with joy. “You’re such a goddamned klutz, Amy.” He offered me the box. “Put the lipstick on. See if it improves your face.”
I took the sampler and headed into the bathroom. I wanted to curse Ellie Evers for creating this situation, but it wasn’t her fault.
Bryan was very good at coming up with reasons to be angry with me. Everything he did to me and said to me was what I deserved because I was a stupid, clumsy, ugly, intolerable bitch.
“Bryan’s the bitch,” I whispered at my reflection in the mirror. I looked pale and tired and I saw the fear in my own eyes. It was a permanent part of my gaze. Maybe Ellie Evers had seen it. If she had, she was the only one who’d ever acknowledged it.
The box had a little tab, making it easy to open. Inside were two small tubes of lipstick. Written above each tube was #1 and #2. The lid had a message from Ellie.
Darling, Merry Makeup is about to change your life. It’s very important that you apply the primer (#1) first. Use it heavily and make sure it goes past your lip line. Then apply the stain (#2) lightly and only on your lips.
Kiss your husband IMMEDIATELY for as long and as hard as you can. Afterwards, clean your lips thoroughly with the enclosed antibiotic moisturizing wipe.
I think you’ll see the benefits of becoming an associate of Merry Makeup right away. And if you do, give me a call!
I followed the directions. I smoothed the primer over and around my lips several times. Then I opened the lipstick tube. The light pink color was beautiful and I had to admit, it looked very pretty on my lips.
I opened the door and found Bryan standing in the hallway, his arms crossed. “It’s fucking lipstick. How long–”
I launched myself at him and threw my arms around his neck, pressing my mouth against his. I’d startled him, but I felt his arms closed around me and he mashed his lips against mine. I wouldn’t let him up for air, kissing and kissing and kissing him.
He groaned. Not in a sexy way. In a way that indicated pain. Then I felt his hands on my arms as he pried me off him. I staggered backward and stared at my husband.
Pink foam emptied from his slack mouth. His eyes widened as he dropped to his knees and clawed at his throat.
I went into the bathroom and grabbed the wipe packet from the box. I scrubbed my mouth and skin raw, then washed my whole face with the gel soap near the sink.
When I returned to the hallway, Bryan had fallen onto his side and was seizing.
I should probably call nine-one-one.
Instead, I picked up the box and looked at Ellie’s message. Underneath her name was a phone number. I took Bryan’s cell phone from the kitchen counter, and dialed the number.
Five minutes later, a perfectly coiffed, designer-dressed Ellie stood on the porch. She carried an oversized bag and beside her was a black rolling suitcase.
“Bryan … the lipstick…”
“Marvelous, isn’t it?” Ellie stepped through with her suitcase and shut the door behind her. “Show me, darling.”
I led her to the hallway, where Bryan was still twitching. Ellie squatted down and eyed him. “A tad disappointing. The poison should’ve worked faster. Ah well. That’s what these little sample kits are for, right? Getting the formulas perfect.”
She stood up and studied me. “Poor dear. You’re probably in shock. Here, let’s go into the dining room so you can sit down. There you go. Honey, I’m sorry to press the issue now, but I need your commitment to Merry Makeup so you can access all of the perks you’ll receive as an associate.”
“A new start, Amy. A life you want. A business you own. No more Bryans, darling. Not. Ever.”
“Sounds amazing.” I nodded. “What do we do now? Call the police?”
“Oh, pish tosh. Who needs them?” Ellie tapped an earbud nestled inside her ear. I realized she was making a call. “Natalie? Yes, I’m at Amy’s house and guess who is our newest associate? I know! Yes, yes, we’ll need the van, of course. Body Gone bag, the usual cleaning supplies. Okay. See you in a few.”
Ellie wiggled passed Bryan in the hallway and returned with a quilt she must’ve found in a linen closet. She wrapped it around me. “Deep breaths, sweetie. Everything’s going to be okay.” She smiled warmly. “Welcome to Merry Makeup.”
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