30 Post Writing Challenge: Rewrite a classic fairy tale
Goldilocks and the Three Bears – Modern
Chloe was sitting in an over sized couch in the lobby and marveling at the comfort of the pillows. Everyone was moving about with clear intent, on their cell phone, opening laptops on a table nearby, sipping water from fancy glasses. This sterile and organized environment was a refreshing change from her usual hustle that included, changing diapers, and cleaning, cooking, cleaning, carpooling, cleaning and wiping runny noses. Chloe saw a door cracked open in the hallway that was filled with conference rooms. There were so many people bustling about, she knew no one would notice her peering in so she casually moved towards the door and leaned slightly to look inside the room. The room was empty except for a very well dressed older man who had glasses seemingly hanging from the tip of his nose. He looked at Chloe, then he looked down at his pocket watch, then without looking up he invited her to enter the room. Chloe wasn’t sure what to make of this but she was out of town and enjoying the newness of her surroundings so she happily entered the conference room. The gentleman was very preoccupied with his pocket watch and was speaking in circles about room numbers, check out times, slow workers. He hadn’t looked at her much but he definitely thought she was a hotel employee. He firmly directed her to go to the 21st floor and make certain room 2108 is in in perfect order for a very special guest. With that he shoved a key card into her palm and ran off as he continued talking to himself along the way.
Chloe had nothing on her schedule for the day and the lure of a room prepared for a “very special” guest was more than she could resist. Chloe walked to the elevators and looked down at the key card in her hand. This is harmless, she told herself. She was simply going to take a peek and then be on her way. Besides, she was doing the nice man a favor in making sure that the room was ready, she tells herself as she rationalizes her actions. She rode up the sturdy elevator and walked through the 21st floor hallway looking for room 2108. The rooms were farther apart than she was used to seeing and she wondered if these were conference rooms. Finally she came upon 2108 and slid the card into the slot. The green light smiled at her with a welcoming beep and the lock clicked to open. As she opened the door she was utterly frozen, shocked by the luxury, size and beauty of what was inside. This was not a room this was an apartment the size of her house. The floor before her brown leather boots was marble and looked like it came from a historic castle in Europe. To her right was a table that had the largest vase of flowers on it that she had ever seen.
“Where on earth do they find such tall flowers?” She wondered aloud.
Chloe walked through the pristinely decorated space. As she came upon the kitchen there was a cheese, fruit and cracker display like none other she had ever seen. The knife sitting next to the blocks of cheese was beckoning her. She knew she could cut a sliver off of that cheese and no one would know it was ever touched. The decadence and allure of those exotic cheeses was too much for her to bear. Chloe took the smallest sliver off of the triangular block of cheese. As she put it on her tongue she was quickly disappointed, “Oh no, too sharp!”
This only enticed her further to try the cheese closer to the grapes because she had to know what it tasted like so again she took the smallest sliver of that rectangular block of cheese. Her nose wrinkled and her eyes shut tight when she put that piece of cheese in her mouth.
“This must be one of those stinky cheeses that everyone talks of,” she said aloud to herself.
There was one large round piece of cheese left in the middle of the enormous platter and this one was slightly melted. Chloe knew there was no way of tasting this one without a missing piece being evident but eating the other pieces had emboldened her and she brazenly cut into it. This one was a surprise to her, it had the slightest layer of pastry around the edges and beneath that was a layer of sweet jelly. This cheese was amazing, it was just right!
Moving away from the counter Chloe took in the living room furnishings and had the sudden urge to feel the chairs and sofas. She jumped on the longest sofa in the room and to her disappointment it was as stiff as a board. Who made this sofa, she thought to herself. She bounced to the loveseat next to it and what she thought would be a bounce turned into a quick sink. The loveseat was like her Mom’s goose feather pillow that should have been thrown out ten years back. Next to that was a small chair with a rounded back. It looked too small to be in this setting and she figured they may have wanted to fill the space but she took a seat in it anyway. Although it looked small her body was enveloped by it and the arm rests were positioned perfectly for her hands to rest on them. It seemed to Chloe that this chair had been custom built for her. It was definitely the coziest chair she had ever sat it and she suddenly wished she could have it for herself. Then she remembered her cozy sofa at home and reflected on all of the material possessions in the world. Chloe saw this perfect chair in a sea of furniture and felt overwhelmed by the endless material belongings that were possible. All of the luxuries in the world were probably beautiful in ways she did not even know but the thought of so many things made her long for her cozy tattered sofa where she watched baseball games with her boys, laughed at videos with her daughters or leaned on her husband’s shoulder at the end of long days.
All of this thinking had made Chloe weary and maybe a touch melancholic. The unreal flowers, the decadent cheese and the rich furnishings had transported Chloe to a place that wasn’t part of her world and in many ways the foreignness was more than she could process. Certainly the opulent surroundings were a treat, they were intoxicating actually. But now Chloe’s mind rushed to thoughts of children in third world countries, homeless people in this country, single parents juggling multiple jobs, children coping with their circumstances. The lavish things around her were of another world and they were amazingly beautiful but to what end she asked herself. Now Chloe found herself downright drained and with the stillness of this empty suite around her, she decided to rest her head on a pillow.
The first room nearest the living room space was a colossal bedroom that seemed more like a studio apartment in itself. The bed frame was so large, Chloe imagined the workmanship that had gone into it and also wondered how many people it took to move it into this space. As tired as she felt, she could not bring herself to rest on this unwelcoming bed so she moved towards the next bedroom. On her way out she spotted the espresso machine on the marble counter near the bathroom. It was beautiful but she headed towards the next bedroom. As she entered that room she found her eyes squinting from the extreme color that was all about. Pink, pink, pink, pink, more pink. How could anyone be in this room much less rest? The excessive pink was discomforting and she had to turn right around and walk out. She glanced at the sheer pink canopy that draped over the bed frame posts and imagined that somewhere there was a princess with a room like this one. She headed out of that room and across the living room space to a closed door. Chloe was still hoping for a place to lay her head down so she walked to it and opened the door. This room was less dramatic, elegant yet tasteful. She loved office supplies and wanted to explore the leather top desk and all of the matching desk accessories but she could barely hold her head up now. Chloe put her head on the pillow and was asleep before she could think about the furnishings, the colors or the décor.
It could have been ten minutes or two hours later, Chloe had no concept of how long had passed, but she woke up from a sound of people talking and laughing just outside of the bedroom. For a split second she rejoiced in her catnap and then she remembered where she was and panicked. Chloe jumped up and ran to exit but as she reached the door the people who were laughing had walked right up to that area. She thought she would slip by them and run for the exit but now they were staring right at her with blank faces.
“Oh, well, hello,” he said with his velvet purple jacket and eccentric eyeglass frames. He was adorable and Chloe wanted to reach out and give him a hug, ask him if she could have a photo with him, get his autograph. Wait, she was an unauthorized intruder in his VIP hotel suite. Think fast, think fast, her flustered thoughts said.
“Hello Sir Elton John, it is such a pleasure to see you, I was checking on your accommodations and I hope you will find them acceptable. It is such an honor to have you stay with us. If you need anything at all please do not hesitate to call the concierge,” she said as she smiled nervously and walked past him and towards the exit while she was talking.
“Well then,” he said as he cracked a very modest but friendly smile.
Chloe thought to say something else (I love you, I love your music, Can I stay and chat, Will you be my friend, will you sing me a song?!?) but she anxiously walked backwards out of the front door as she nodded and smiled. What just happened, who could she tell and would anyone even believe her? Chloe ran down the hall, pressed the elevator button and rode down to the lobby with a mix of fear and joy in her belly and a memory that she would cherish for the rest of her life. The key card was still in her pocket and she thought of it and knew she would hold it many times over, touching it and reliving what she had just experienced, reminding herself that it really did happen and it was not just a dream.