Market Day

On Thursdays, we ride the subway train to the skin markets.

Mother says that it's terribly bourgeois of us to ride the subway train, and go to the market, and get out where others can see us with our old skins on. Mother says that we're filthy by Thursday, and the subway train is filthy, and the market is filthy, and we always come back looking like strangers, and it's just not clean to go out that way. Mother says the skins at the market don't fit properly and it takes at least an hour in the sauna before we haven't got muffin tops and love handles and fat everywhere.Mother is a terrible snob.

I like the skin markets because they're full of people, and all the skins are different, and they're really real skins, not the manufactured clone skins she has delivered twice weekly in black boxes. I like the skin markets because there are people there who wear the same skin for a whole month sometimes, and the beggars outside the subway station, they only wear used skins that don't fit right so sometimes their eyeholes are halfway down their cheeks and their fingers are shoved in backwards and it's all very interesting.

St Jane likes the skin markets because they sell meatpies, and Mother says gravy is terribly bourgeois, and anything Mother dislikes St Jane likes as a matter of principle. So every Thursday, St Jane gets a meatpie and eats it and gets bourgeois gravy all over her old skin before we buy new skins and put them on. Because even St Jane wouldn't dare come home on the subway train with gravy on.

That would be going too far.

When we buy our new skins, St Jane goes to a different stall every time. She says that's because if you go to the same stall you don't get the new customer treatment. I think it's because when you go to a different stall, they have to measure you again. St Jane likes to be measured. She is very proud of her measurements, St Jane is, and she likes to hear them out loud.

I am not very proud of my measurements. I am always the same size, and back in the back of the skin markets there is a place where they don't have to measure me and they know exactly who I am. Every Thursday St Jane goes off to find a new stall to buy her skin at and I go off to the back of the market, and every Thursday they are waiting for me with a box already wrapped.

Mother orders her skins from the cloners so they always look the same. St Jane likes to shop for a particular look every time, which usually involves matching her skin palette to some new piece of jewelry she's bought. It takes her hours sometimes, which is all right with me, because I like the markets. I never shop for skins. I just take what they have picked out, and I go in the back behind a curtain, and I take my old skin off and I put the new skin on.

I love the way it always fits. I love the way they prepare the cuts. I love the tiny little stitches that you can't even see. But most of all, I love the way that every Thursday, I open my box and I take out my new skin and I find out who I'm going to be.

We tell Mother that we've turned them in for incineration, but on the way back to the subway train, St Jane and I give our old skins to the beggars. Every Thursday.

After a while, they all look like us.

Prompt: Nightmare Fuel day 3, showing here.



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