in love with henri

Ella meets Henri during summer in December when his family--Ella vaguely knew from church--comes to her home for a New Years party.
No theres no supernatural connection between Henri and Ella and there's no dramatic death to spoil the end for you . . . just two fourteen year olds in love on a cleched Deccember night.
But is Henri really good for her? How could she tell when she's blinded by affection? Oh, it's so annoying . . . .


2. The Fujimoto's

We were on our way to church.
I had a cute grey and black-buttoned up dress with thick noodle-straps and black cotton stockings with brown lace up ankle boots. I wore my red and white poka dot bow with the wire inside for shaping. I'd formally crimped my hair with traditional shower-wet braids and slept in them last night, untangling them in the wall-length mirror this morning.
About half an hour ago I got five bracelets as one present, a new set of earrings, a lightly pixelated Cindy Lauper poster, a new summer outift, two new pairs of shoes, a mobile phone for emergencies only and christmas socks.
Church was air conditioned right before satisfaction and as I sat down, I knew the only thing seperating me and my sweaty thighs from sticking to the pew was the thin black stockings I wore. Why did I wear stockings? Because I couldn't wear this dress without them. And this was my favourite dress. And although we were somewhere past the middle of summer--I was reluctant to wear anything cooler.
"You're hair is wet now, you're sweating too much." Mum nudged my shoulder. I trembled with heat.
"Go to the restrooms or something and take your stockings off. Now."
"I can't," I rebutted, "The shoes won't look good anymore if I do."
"I don't care. No one will care. You're sweatier than a greased pig, Ella. Now go and take them off before the service starts."
Pastor Shaun greeted the conversation, "On this fine Christmas morning," And I smiled--knowing it was too late to go change. But Mum didn't waver.
"But the service has started--"
"Mum, everyone will look at me."
"Everyone is looking at you. You look like I've just poured a bucket of water of you. You're hairs straightening itself and your bows getting droopy with the weight. Can you please just take those darn stockings off?"
"Please don't make me, Mum. I don't need--"
Mum stuck her finger up to stop me. "Now."
I ducked down the aisle before my conscious made me falter.
I locked myself inside the toilet cubicle and wriggled out of my ankle boots. The sweat worked like a subsitute for butter--it helped me squeeze my swollen ankles through the tight hole. Then--I struggled to pull my stockings off my precipiring legs.
Finally, after wringgling my shoes back onto my stinky socksless feet, I jogged back down the outer aisle and back to my seat. I definitely felt a lot better.
I'd ringed out my wet stockings in the toilet now I popped them into my mother's open purse. I knew her purse would smell like feet later but, i was quite relieved to have them off my legs. And now my thighs were sticking to the wooden pews.

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