Mary gazed into the open wardrobe, what to wear she thought. It was ten years since she had left school. Tonight was a reunion dinner with all of her classmates at the posh Queens hotel in town. Having lost her mother when she was ten, money had been very tight. Her father had done his best to bring up Mary and her younger sister Susan, but they never had the trendy clothes their friends had. The long black evening gown she chose to wear had seen many an outing, being her only formal piece of clothing.
After a long soak in the bath makeup was applied carefully and her long auburn hair was brushed until it shone. I dont really want to go tonight she thought. If her best friend Anne had not persuaded her she would not have to face a room full of well dressed elegant people. The door bell rang and Anne was standing there dressed to perfection in a beautiful blue silk evening gown. Her face lit up as she smiled at Mary affectionately, you look nice she said.
The ride into town gave Mary time to ponder on how she looked feeling sick at the thought of entering the opulent dining room. Heads turned as they walked in looking to see who it was. Smiling faced men and women greeted them eagerly and a glass of champagne was pushed into their hands. A man’s voice behind them could be heard saying look at Mary, the ugly duckling has turned into a beautiful elegant swan. As she turned around shyly Tom the boy she had admired from afar was smiling at her warmly. Can I reserve the first dance? he asked walking slowly towards her. This old black dress must not look too bad after all, she thought smiling and nodding her head in acceptance.