It’s time for Tuesday Tales!
Today we have an excerpt from Off the Rack, an upcoming novella that I’m serializing for my newsletter readers.
Please do bear in mind that these snippets are unedited so please be kind if you find any mistakes.
This story may have gay erotic scenes, strong social issues addressed and mature language. If those things offend now is the time to move onto another Tuesday Tales blog. Thanks for stopping by!
“Whatever. Who cares?” I told the window. “Life is just a long, terrible slog until you get to the end and die.”
“Morgan, you’re far too young to be so bitter.” I spun from the window at the sound of Joy Ann’s meek voice. She was in one of her typical fluffy outfits, a pink jumper over a yellow tank top. Her shoes were bright pink loafers paired with lacy ankle socks. Her hair was in two plaits today, both pushed back over her shoulders. She was wearing dangly banana earrings that no-one but Joy Ann could have made work. The diminutive Chinese woman literally came to my chest. But her small stature hid a massive drive to succeed.
I adored Joy Ann. She inspired me. It was amazing to see a fellow Asian become so famous and well-respected in a field that was dominated by Caucasians. If you think racism isn’t an issue in the fashion world then you’ve not spent much time in it. Take interns for example. Most are unpaid positions and so the only people who can fill them are those who are subsidized or rich. Can you guess how many POC can fill internships at top fashion houses? And yes I know how lucky I am. And so does Joy Ann which is why she pays all her interns and works ridiculously hard to ensure inclusivity is priority number one here.
“It’s been a bad day. I have faulty thread,” I replied then gave her a small bow. It was not required but it was a sign of respect that had been drummed into me from a very young age. Joy Ann was the only person I bowed to in America. She smiled and returned the gesture then pattered over my waiting Juki. She placed her hands on her knees and perused the situation before sitting down to tinker. I closed the distance, coming up behind her to watch.
“The thread is strong. Your upper thread tension is too tight. Also, make sure to clean off the fuzz along the way as you sew.” She puckered and blew across the pink corduroy fabric.
“Ugh, I thought I checked that. Thank you. If you give me another hour I can have this sewn up.”
She nodded as she fingered the fabric. “You are determined to have this at Milan.” She glanced up at me as I lingered behind her. I nodded. That made her smile. She looked like a pixie when she smiled. No wonder her new girlfriend was so smitten with her. “I’m not sold yet.”
“I’ll sell you on it, trust me.” I wasn’t about to give up the fight for corduroy yet.
“I do.” That made me puff up just a bit. “Did you go to Jackie Blue’s wedding?”
Yuck. Wedding talk again. “I did, yes. It was…interesting.”