“Dad, no. We can’t leave. My prom is this Saturday.”
“I’m sorry, Harmony. But he wants us to go.”
“Dad, tell him that we have to stay for something important, please.”
“Harmony, my job is what’s important,” my dad snapped at me.
I was shocked, “so your job is more important than your only daughter?” I asked. He and my mom kept quiet.
“Harmony, it’s not like that. It’s just that this job with Mr. Wasaki is what brings good money into this house,” my mom said and grabbed my shoulders.
“Dad, when do we have to leave?” I asked and held my tears in. No way was I going to let Michael see me cry about this.
“Tomorrow morning at ten sharp.”
“Okay,” I said and walked up to my room. Michael followed behind me and shut the door. “I can’t believe they’re doing this to me, Michael,” I said and got a suitcase out.
“I can’t believe it either. It mean, isn’t it obvious we’re in love? Why would they do that?” He asked.
“I don’t know, but they’re assholes,” I say and go get some clothes.
“Packing already?” He asked.
“Yeah, I have to,” I tell him. I’m only packing clothes enough to last me three days. I’m staying for my prom, whether my parents like it or not.
“You’re in a rush to leave?”
“With you, yeah.”
“Huh?” He asked, confused.
“Michael, I’m packing clothes enough to last me three days so I can stay with you.”
“Wait, what? Harmony, you heard what your parents said. Ten a.m. sharp.”
“Yes, I heard, but I’m staying for my prom.”
“Harmony, no. I can’t let you do that. Where would you stay?”
“At your house.”
“My dad would not let you stay with us.”
“Michael, we don’t have to go there. We can find some place else. Please, I don’t wanna miss my prom and I don’t wanna leave you. I love you,” I say and hug him. I hope I didn’t freak him out.
“Harmony, I love you too,” he said and lifted my chin to kiss me.
“Can we find a place to hide?” I asked.
He thought about it really hard. “Harmony, I… Sure. I have the perfect place,” he finally says.
“Really?” I ask excitedly.
“Yeah. I don’t wanna lose you, Harmony. Now, come on and pack. You still need to go get a prom dress.”
“I do, don’t I? Alright. I think I have everything. Undergarments, toiletries, clothes, and stuff. Alright, I’m ready. Just need my dress.”
“My sisters can help you out with that. Let’s go,” he says and takes my suitcase.
I can gear my parents arguing for the first time ever.
“How could you, Frank?! She’s our only daughter. Your fucking job is not more important than!”
“You went along with, Mary!”
“Michael, wait,” I whisper to him as we sit on the steps.
“I did not. Frank, you know what we went though. Now, you’re pushing our miracle child away!”
“Mary, I would never do that.”
“Well, you are!” My mom shouted and walked away from him.
“Mary!” My dad sighed and followed her.
“Alright. Let’s go,” I whispered sadly and followed Michael out the door.
I can’t believe it. I’m actually running away from my parents. But it’s for a good cause. They probably won’t even notice that I’m gone until tomorrow morning.
*20 Minutes Later*
We arrive at Michael’s house.
“What are we doing here?” I ask and get out the car.
“I’ll stay here and you and the girls can go dress shopping. Is that okay or do you wanna do it another time?”
“Now is perfect,” I say and follow him into the house.
We go up to Janets’ room to ironically find LaToya and Rebbie in there too.
“Hey, Michael and Harmony,” they say as we talk in and sit on Janets’ bed.
“What are you two up to?” Rebbie asks and brushes Janets’ hair.
“Well, I kinda wanted to know if you all would be willing to take Harmony dress shopping,” Michael told them
“Dress shopping for what?” Latoya asked.
“It’s junior prom,” Janet chimed in.
“Ooh,” they say.
“Well, will you? It’s this Saturday and she still doesn’t have a dress.”
“Alright. Right after I finish Janets’ hair, then we can take my car and leave,” Rebbie said.
“Thank you, Rebbie. I’ll be staying here with the guys,” he said and kissed both Rebbie and I on the cheek. “I’ll see you later, beautiful,” he says and runs downstairs.
“Awwh,” the girls say. I blush and turn my head.
“Janet, would you like to go?” I ask.
“Yeah, I wanna try on a pretty dress too,” she says and laughs as we go out to Rebbie’s car.
“What kind of dress were you thinking, Harmony?” LaToya asked.
“Not too dressy and not too plain. Ya know? I’m not girly, so something in the middle.”
“That sounds easy. Rebbie was the same way,” LaToya said and turned on the radio. Ironically, “Off the Way” was on.
“Oh gosh,” Rebbie laughed and turned up the volume.
“‘Live your life off the wall!’” We laughed as we pulled up the dress store.
“Alright, you ready, Harmony?”
“I guess. LaToya, you look like the girly girl type. Please don’t dress me up like that,” I begged.
“Relax, I won’t,” she laughed as we looked around at the dresses.
“Ooo, how about this one?” Janet asked and showed me a two-piece outfit.
“Oh, gosh no!” I laughed and quickly put it away.
“Why?” Janet asked.
“It’s not prom material and… it’s a little too much.”
“Oh. Yeah. I wouldn’t wanna wear it either,” she shrugged her shoulders and looked at other dresses.
“Harmony, what about this?” LaToya asked.
“I don’t really like red.”
“Yeah,” I say and look around at the other dresses, then I find the perfect one…
“Oh my gosh, Janet, LaToya, Rebbie. Look at this dress! It’s so pretty!” I say and run over to them.
“Are you sure it’s not too girly for you? It looks too girly to me,” LaToya says and takes it from me.
“I’m sure. Just because it’s pink doesn’t mean it’s girly.”
“I agree with Harmony on this one, Latoya. It’s really pretty,” Rebbie holds it up to me.
“Go try it on,” Janet says and pushes me toward the dressing rooms.
“Alright, alright,” I laugh and take it away from Rebbie.
“Harmony, hurry up. We wanna see!” Janet says.
“Hold on,” I say and look at myself in the mirror. It fits me well. Gosh, I look so beautiful. I didn’t know I could actually pull off wearing a dress. “Alright, here I come,” I say and open the door.
They stare for a minute.
“Harmony, you look beautiful!” LaToya smiles at me and instructs for me to twirl around so everyone could look.
“Do I look girly?” I laugh.
“Just a tad bit. But you’re beautiful, Harmony,” Rebbie smiles at me.
“What do you think, Janet?” I ask and twirl around again.
“It looks really pretty. Michael’s gonna love it,” she beamed.
“You think so?”
“I know so.”
“Alright, well… I’m gonna buy it,” I tell them and go change. Just when I come out, I see my mom come in, looking upset.
“Shit!” I say and hide behind Rebbie.
“It’s my mom. I should’ve known she would come here. She loves dresses.”
“Okay…? What’s wrong with that?” Janet asked.
“Long story short, I’m running away for like three days. Please hide me, guys,” I beg.
“Fine, fine,” LaToya says and hides me.
Janet takes the dress as we walk up to the counter.
“You’re buying this?” The cashier asked her.
“No, she is,” Janet pointed to me as I turned around to face them.
“This is the only one. You’re in luck.”
“Really?” I ask as I look at the price and pull out my waller.
“Excuse me, where’s the rare dress that was here yesterday?” I hear my mom ask.
Rebbie and Latoya are standing close to me.
“Well, this young lady is buying it.”
“Really? I was gonna get that for my daughter. I know she would love it,” my mom sighed and looked through the other dresses.
I didn’t know what to feel. My mom was going to buy it for me. But for what? For all she knows is that I’m still in my room getting upset about not going to prom.
As we walk out, I feel relieved and like accomplished a serious mission.
“That was a close one,” Janet says as we pile in the car.
“Ya think?” I ask.
“So Harmony, tell us about this running away plan,” Rebbie looks at me.
“It’s a long story.”
“I think it’ll be a pretty long ride,” she snaps back. I can tell she’s upset about me running away and hiding from my mom.
“Well… my dads’ boss wants us to leave and we’ll be leaving tomorrow morning at ten. But the thing is, Michael is my boyfriend and plus my prom is this Saturday. I wouldn’t miss that for the world. Especially with Michael, so I planned to run away for three days.”
“Three days?!” Janet shouted.
“Yeah,” I said, ashamed. I know I’m setting a bad example for her.
“I guess that’s understandable,” Rebbie says. She softened up about it and that’s good thing.
I can’t wait until prom…
*Two Days Later*
(Harmony’s Parents POV)
“Frank, it’s been three days. Three!” Mary shouts at him.
“I know, Mary, I know. I’m sure she’ll be back. I’m positive about it.”
“You did this! You’re the reason she’s gone. For all I know, she probably ran away.”
“You’re blaming this on me now? Mary, I lost my job. My job because I didn’t give up on looking for her.”
“I don’t care about your job. Frank, that’s my miracle baby out there. What if she never comes back?”
“Mary, I assure you she will.”
This is my time to shine. My time to break free and be myself. Nothing’s holding me back, but the thought of my parents possibly worrying about me.
“Michael is gonna love you in that,” LaToya smiles at me. I believe what she says and walk downstairs.
Michael looks at me in awe and smiles, “Harmony, you look gorgeous.”