“Imperfection” by Meera Shroff

An Excerpt

An old Honda wearily swerved off of the highway, and the Jones family finally pulled at a cheap, dingy looking motel. They exited the car.

“Robert, open the trunk for me. I need my purse.”

“Yes, yes..”Mr. Jones exhaustedly clicked a button on his key, inattentive to Ms. Jones or their daughter, Amelia. Amelia had jumped out of the car, and her foot was buzzing like bees, and she started hopping around the parking lot on one foot.

Ms. Jones kept a subtle eye on the two of them, and deftly snatched a insignificant looking plum colored bag out of the trunk, along with her purse.

“Let’s go, Amelia!” Ms. Jones grabbed Amelia’s hand and pulled her towards the motel.

“You coming?” She asked Mr. Jones.

“I’ll have a quick smoke, don’t wait for me.” He replied, leaning back into the car to get a pack of cigarettes.

Ms. Jones eyes flashed, “You bet I won’t wait.” She muttered.

***

A Tesla, gleaming with disuse, revved into a small motel parking lot. Ms. Wellington looked disdainfully at the small motel.

“Why here? Why do such talented individuals like ourselves have to go to such a deplorable place?” She wailed. “We are not like such commoners!”

Mr. Wellington looked sadly over at the husk of the woman he had married. The dramatics had always been there, but riches had ruined her. “If you can place a charging station nearby, we wouldn’t have to stay here.”

With a sniff, Ms. Wellington stepped out of the Tesla first. After glancing over at Ms. Wellington, who was currently spritzing some citrusy perfume on her wrist, Mr. Wellington took a small jade bag out of a compartment. He slipped it into his coat pocket, then wrapped an arm around Ms. Wellington who slapped it away.

“You mustn’t ruin my makeup! We’ll show those people how beauty is really done.”

***

Two children, a girl and guy, walked into the motel parking lot. At a passing glance, they looked average, normal even. Upon further looks, that’s not so true.

The girl wore a bright sundress, with a floppy sun hat shielding her face from view. The boy wore a dark leather jacket with a t-shirt advertising some obscure band underneath, and his arms were littered with bracelets.

“Paul, why don’t you wear some color for once? You look so drab with just black.” The girl wondered aloud.

“The same reason that you never wear black, Edith,” He said sharply.

The two walked, continuing their banter, pointing out the obvious opposites between the two. It was almost as if they wore, said and did what they did with only the purpose of annoying the other.

The siblings both held one more accessory, hidden from each other’s view. In Edith’s too tall sunhat, there was a false bottom and an azure bag laid there. Paul had a pale, sky blue bag, merely hidden in one of the leather jacket’s many pockets.

“Sometimes, I just despise you, Paul.” Edith said.

“Oh, I always despise you, Edith.” He mocked.

They walked through the doors in silence.

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