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A Millennial Horror Story

The obnoxious alarm of an iPhone blares incessantly from somewhere across the room despite being muffled under a crumpled party dress removed hastily in a drunken tizzy the night before. 

A designer garment with a price tag nearly double the monthly rent of the girl responsible for it, this pile of fabric guarding the phone’s location from view was borrowed for the occasion thanks to the lifesaving website known as Rent the Runway. How else could a twenty-something impress the college friends she hadn’t seen in years, not to mention her ex-boyfriend, at the wedding of a sorority sister who merely invited our heroine to flaunt her last name change? 

Upon receiving the monogrammed save-the-date months before, she couldn’t help but wonder if the guest list would have been half the size were it not for the M.D. attached to the groom’s last name. The now forgotten dress had been arranged almost immediately to be delivered the day before the blessed day was to occur. 

Unbeknownst to the snoozing girl abruptly being interrupted by the phone, the dress was torn after the rambunctious, alcohol-infused evening on the dance floor. It was a blur of burlap and Mason jars filled with wine from the open bar. The obvious tackiness of the country chic theme a glaring reminder of how the bride refused to do anything that wasn’t on-trend. 

A repair fee would appear days after the return was completed and she would not know why the charge was on her account. Hating confrontation and phone calls in general, she would not fight it.  

Stumbling through piles of discarded clothing items and tripping on a pile of half-read books purchased for the book club her friends insisted on starting only to provide monthly Instagram content, she managed to stop the sound blasting from her phone and fell back into bed. 

She noticed a new crack in the screen as she scanned the flurry of notifications including a text reminding the group chat about their brunch reservation that was set for 45 minutes from now. Shit.

Before she could bring herself to crawl towards the shower and prepare for the onslaught of questions about how the marital event went down, a notification caught her eye and she felt her stomach drop.

A deep breath accompanied by a silent prayer before clicking open the DM time stamped 2:13 AM. 

“Hey sexxyy. Didnt think id here from u. What r u up 2?”

She couldn’t tell if the all too apparent hangover was making her queasy or if it was due to the fact that she was reading the mess of a message due to her own drunk self-sabotage mere hours before. Of course she couldn’t pick anyone else to attempt to booty-call besides the dude she ghosted last month. Idiot. 

Little did she know that this slip-up would turn into continued harassment for the next three weeks. 

After a quick scalding shower to wash off the wine-infused regret, she tossed her still partially hairspray and dry shampoo encrusted hair into a messy bun and fumbled through the piles of clothes on her bedroom floor to find anything that wasn’t coated in cat hair. 

An initial “I don’t need a dog to be cool!” adoption from the local animal shelter last year, Frankie, the fluffy gray kitten, immediately received a name change to something more culturally relevant; Stormi. Yes, of Kardashian/Jenner notoriety. The irony of the whole situation was lost upon Stormi’s owner. 

Successfully clothed and the Uber waiting downstairs, she grabbed her sequin clutch which coordinated with her rental dress much better than her current Lululemon and kitty fur accessorized attire and rushed down to be whisked towards her awaiting crew.  

Fifteen minutes later she waltzed into the brand new gastropub to discover a horrifying scene. 

The lobby of the stylish and overpriced restaurant was packed wall-to-wall with patrons waiting to drown away their Saturday evening sorrows with mimosas and Bloody Mary’s. 

But despite the horde in front of her, she could hear her best friend, Hayleigh’s voice shouting obscenities at the teenage hostess who was trying to maintain order. They had lost their reservation and the wait was pushing two hours. 

The group bickered with the hostess and each other for another ten minutes before finally giving up and opting to wander down the street in hopes of finding a new location with beverages and sustenance worthy of documenting in Portrait Mode. 

Several mimosas and lots of gossip later, the girls decided it was time to continue the festivities and commit to a full-fledged Sunday Funday. The checks arrived, purses and wallets opened, and a gasp escaped from Stormi’s mom’s lips. 

Chills crept up her spine and panic overtook as she fumbled through the contents of the sequin clutch which were now poured over the table amidst the empty champagne flutes. 

Her debit card was missing, she had no cash, and her credit card had never been packed in the bag in the first place.  

She felt dizzy on a combination of confusion and alcohol and slumped back in her chair. Her eyes closed as she tried desperately to remember where the hell her card could be. 

The obnoxious alarm of an iPhone blares incessantly from somewhere across the room despite being muffled under a crumpled party dress removed hastily in a drunken tizzy the night before. 

The girl in the bed is startled awake, torn away from some vivid dream that was more real than any dream she had had before. A moment passes before it clicks that that’s what it really was; a nightmare that wasn’t real. 

Giggling to herself, she haphazardly reaches her phone to silent the alarm and settles back into the blankets to remind the group about their brunch reservation. 

And that’s when she sees it: a notification shining too brightly so as to not be ignored.

It is time stamped 2:13 AM. 

She clicks it open. 

“Hey sexxyy. Didnt think id here from u. What r u up 2?”

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