On the surface Delilah is perfection personified. But in her case the old saying 'its underneath what counts' really should be taken into consideration. At a party, Delilah's perfect life is shattered, not for the first time and everybody sees her in a completely different light. Can she claw her way back up to the top- and battle her guilt and sorrow- by proving that she has been wrongfully accused?


1. Perfect Smerfect.

Delilah Morris took a small sip from the can of Diet Coke that was at her side. Then she leaned back into the sun lounger that she was sprawled on. She was taking advantage of the rare patch of good weather that  Petworth, the town where she lived in Sussex was receiving. Her Aunt and Uncle had an outdoor pool and whenever the sun even peeked out from around a cloud, Delilah threw on her bikini and submerged herself into the refreshingly cool water.

“Gee it’s got be at least 30 degrees Celsius,” Eleanor Price, Delilah’s best friend, groaned before rolling onto her stomach, inviting the sun’s warm rays to caress her bare back.
“Hmm?” Delilah pulled out her earphones.
“Don’t worry,” Eleanor spoke into the lounger, her voice muffled.
Delilah propped herself up on one arm and took in her surroundings.

Eleanor was on a lounger next to her, wearing nothing but bikini bottoms, her curly, platinum blonde hair tied into a high ponytail.
Her boyfriend Ellis was doing laps of the pool, the water rippling off his back and arms, each droplet sparkling like diamonds as the sun hit them.
The sky was cloudless and blue. Delilah picked up her phone, that was still playing her summer play list and checked the time.
3 O’clock. She flopped back onto the lounger again and studied her tan lines.

The sun seemed to have melted her mind, her thoughts fuzzy, her actions slow and sluggish.
Her bikini was scanty, the top dipped low at the front, the bottoms high and thin, but her tan lines still annoyed her.
How much nicer would an all over tan be? She started to undo the bikini straps.
It wasn’t as if there was anyone there that hadn’t seen it all before and she wasn’t expecting company.
But then it hit her. She was expecting company. Of course she was! It was the day of the big, ‘End of Exams’ party she’d been planning, since, oh, well since she’d started her GCSEs.

She tightened her bikini strings again and shot up.
“ELLIS!” She bellowed, blinking slowly, the heat still weighing down on her actions and thoughts, making her feel lethargic.
Ellis couldn’t hear her and she needed to cool down so slid to the side of the pool and threw herself in. The rush of the cold water across her warm, sticky skin was invigorating and her mind suddenly cleared. She puffed out her cheeks and opened her eyes under the water. She could just about make out the blurry image of Ellis’ legs. She grabbed onto them and he started to thrash around as she pulled him under.  A few moments later, they both resurfaced, laughing and wiping the chlorinated water from their eyes.

Ellis grabbed Delilah around the waist and she wrapped her legs around him, kissing him softly on the lips.
“I was on a roll there De, almost 100 laps! You better have more of those kisses for me or else you’re getting ducked.”
Ellis leaned forwards to kiss her again but Delilah moved her head away.
“No Ellis! Its already 3! We have to get ready for the party.”
“Its three?!” Eleanor shot up from the sun lounger, not bothering to cover herself up.
“I’m off to the shower.” She exclaimed, gathering her things together and almost falling over her own feet in her mad rush to reach the house. Ellis and Delilah chuckled at Eleanor’s retreating figure.

“Well this is going to be stressful,” Delilah observed, allowing herself to fall backwards into the water, her legs still wrapped around Ellis’ midriff.
She had so much she still needed to do for the party but so little energy or time.
Ellis hoisted her back up and kissed her lightly on the forehead.
“You’re Delilah Morris and you’re amazing. Everyone loves you De. You’ll pull this off easily.”  

Three hours later and Ellis, a typical boy, was only just showering and Eleanor was in the guest room getting ready. Delilah sat in her own bedroom, running her fingers through her recently washed and conditioned, honey blonde hair. It fell to just above her waist in thick waves and had already become softly highlighted by the sun. Golden streaks framed her heart shaped face, really bringing out the turquoise colour of her round eyes. She was wearing a short, white, sleeveless shirt dress with a pixie collar and flat pink plimsolls. She’d already applied her makeup- simple and minimal, her full lips a bubblegum pink shade. Her fresh,glowing tan finished off her look perfectly. 

She knew she looked good, yet she paced anxiously back and forth in front of her full length mirror anyway. She wasn’t sure why she was so nervous. 
Maybe it was because she’d only just finished preparing the gigantic modern mansion she lived in, ready for the party, with only 40 minutes to spare before the guests arrived.
Or perhaps it was because her aunt and uncle had expressively forbidden her to have any parties whilst they were away for the week, hiking in France. Or maybe it was something else.

Maybe it was The Issue -as she'd become accustomed to calling it- that she usually refused to acknowledge and just allowed to eat away at her sub conscious.It was harder to let that happen at present though. It was an anniversary of sorts. Delilah stopped pacing and glanced at her calendar. July 18th. Just the date caused every muscle in her body to seize up. Her heart thumped loudly in her ears and tears prickled in her eyes. 

She suddenly felt as if she needed to escape from her own body, the sorrow was too much. Her throat tightened and she let out a dry sob. Her hand clawed the air, trying to find something to grab on to but there was nothing there. Nothing except bitter memories and a longing for the past. She crumpled onto her bed feeling like she was a little girl again, yearning to be comforted, to have a pair of strong arms hold her close and never let her go. 
The aching in her stomach rose into her chest, then her throat and then stabbed her tongue and teeth, forcing her lips apart as an ungodly wail left her body, tears no longer being held back but running free down her cheeks as ferociously as a river after a storm. Her inhibitions were shredded, great wails that seemed unlikely to be coming from her dainty body, echoed around her room. Every part of her body felt like jelly, the moment felt surreal. 

Because although on the outside Delilah seemed to be perfect, she was far from it.
Yes, she had perfect looks and almost enough disposable income to buy her own house. She had an Aunt and Uncle who loved her and spoilt her and the best boyfriend a girl could ask for. She was the most popular girl at her school, loved by everyone. She had mounds upon mounds of character, confidence and knowledge. But underneath it all, she was just a girl, a girl with a hole in her heart from a loss that she couldn’t bring herself to describe and a terrible secret that could possibly haunt her for the rest of her days.  


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