Everything about Shannon’s life was a mess: her apartment, her job, her love life. Her boyfriend of nearly three years had just dumped her unceremoniously on the night she thought he was going to propose. She’d been so depressed by this that she’d missed a week of work because she couldn’t get out of bed. When she finally went back to the office, her performance slipped significantly, and now, nearly three months later, she was on a “formal retraining program” at work that basically meant “get your shit together or you’re fired, lady.” And, in that depressive state in which she was still living, she couldn’t get herself to take care of her apartment or her body. Takeout containers and dirty dishes littered the kitchen; clean and dirty clothes mingled over every surface in the bedroom. The half of the bed where her boyfriend had slept was now covered in a mixture of opened bags of chips and packages of cookies, clothes, a TV remote, a “personal remote,” candy wrappers, books, an empty wine bottle, and all sorts of other random things. The bathroom won’t even be discussed.
She spent all of her time outside of work sitting in bed eating snacks and takeout and binge-watching bad reality television. She obsessively scrolled through social media on her phone or laptop, taking special interest in her ex and his new … she didn’t use the word girlfriend, but that’s what this person was, if both their profiles were to be believed. She wasn’t sure she did believe it, couldn’t believe it, not this soon after such a devastating breakup. Inconceivable! She dripped soy sauce from her lo mein onto her laptop and wiped it up with her fingers, then licked her fingers and wiped them on her sheets. She fell asleep that night with her laptop open next to her head, balanced precariously half on a pillow, half on an open bag of Doritos.
Shannon awoke in the middle of the night in a blind panic, knowing instinctively that someone else was in her room with her. For a minute, she thought it was her ex-boyfriend, coming back to apologize and say he’d dumped the new girl and he was so, so wrong to leave her. As her eyes adjusted to the dark, she let out a tentative, “Hello? Babe, is that you?” “Girl, you are not my type,” a gravelly voice answered sassily from the foot of her bed. She quickly turned on her bedside lamp and let out a horrifying scream when she saw who was there. “No! I’m not ready to die!,” she yelled. “Please don’t take me, Grim Reaper!” The reaper left out an exaggerated sigh. “Honey, that’s not me. I’m the Glam Reaper and I’m here because your life is so grim, even my brother wouldn’t set foot in this place. We all have standards.” Shannon was taken aback as he walked over and sat at her vanity, taking a red lipstick and applying it to the void beneath his hood. She could see now that the cloak he was wearing, while black, was covered in crystals so it sparkled. He was still carrying the scythe, but he had heels that were at least 5” tall. He lit up a cigarette as Shannon stared at him. She noticed the filter was getting smudged with her red lipstick. She looked over and, indeed, her favorite red had been left open and uncapped on her vanity.
“So, uh, why are you here, exactly?” she asked him. “If you aren’t going to kill me, what ARE you going to do?” He inhaled on the cigarette, and let out a glorious exhale that nearly filled the room with smoke. “Fix your life, obviously, and make you 1/100th as fabulous as I am, meaning, incredibly fabulous for a normal human.” Shannon’s eyes filled up with glee. “So, uh, what do we do first?” He reached into the cloak and pulled out a huge trash bag and cleaning wipes. “Oh, honey, you gotta start by cleaning this place!” She begrudgingly stood up and started cleaning. He was walking around, using his scythe to form piles of trash for her to scoop up into the never-full trash bag. They went around and did the entire apartment before he made her switch and start scrubbing everything down. Within a few hours, the place was nearly spotless.
As she’d been cleaning, the Glam Reaper had been on her computer, typing furiously. “What are you doing?” she asked, sitting down, exhausted. “I took your credit card and I ordered you a whole new wardrobe, signed you up for meal deliveries, started you an online dating profile on several different apps, submitted your resume to several different companies that won’t treat you like crap, and got you better skincare and some more makeup. Not that you need it, but I love lipstick even if I don’t have lips, and I never get to shop anymore, so I went a little overboard. Don’t be mad; I could’ve killed you instead of helping you get your life back together,” he said. She just nodded, because, how could she argue with that logic? She could be dead now and instead, she was getting a fantastic makeover.
He motioned for her to sit down at the vanity where he’d been occupying space. She did, cautiously. He ran his bony hands … well, his bones, through her hair. Suddenly, he picked up the scythe he’d put on the floor, and swung at her neck. She screamed, closing her eyes, expecting her imminent death. A few seconds passed, and she opened her eyes and saw that he’d given her a fabulous blunt bob haircut. “Oh,” she said. “Oh, I look AMAZING, is what you mean to say,” he said. “Now get your beauty rest, honey.” She turned to thank him, but he had vanished. She went to her freshly made bed, and laid down. For quite a while she laid awake, wondering if she had somehow been drugged and was having the most ridiculous dream.
Indeed, when she woke up to her doorbell ringing a few hours later, she was convinced she’d been dreaming. That is, until she opened her eyes and saw her incredibly clean bedroom. She would’ve laid there in shock had it not been for the doorbell. She put on a robe and answered the door and saw a huge stack of packages. “How…?” she asked, as the delivery guy answered, “I don’t know, ma’am, but maybe hold off on online shopping for a while?” He held out papers for her to sign, and she did. She spent the morning opening all the boxes and putting away her new wardrobe, her food delivery, and doing an elaborate skincare routine. It was Saturday afternoon, and her phone suddenly started pinging with messages. Turns out the dating apps he’d signed her up for were super successful, and she arranged for dinner that evening with one guy, brunch tomorrow with another, drinks tomorrow afternoon with yet another, and dinner with another gentleman tomorrow evening. Wow, a full social calendar for the weekend! That hadn’t happened in … well, a very long time.
Sure enough, her life steadily improved over the next few months. Her outfits were incredible and complemented her figure and her taste exactly; she was going out casually with several men; she left her terrible job for a better one at a rival company with a 25% raise and a higher title; her skin looked amazing thanks to her new skincare routine; and everyone loved her sassy, blunt haircut. She even hired a professional cleaner to come and clean her apartment once a week. Things were amazing, and she was hoping the Glam Reaper would show up in the near future so they could gossip and she could properly thank him.
And then, one night, many months after he’d first appeared, she awoke to the familiar figure at the foot of her bed. Before he could say anything, she started in. “Glam Reaper, you’re back! I’m so happy; you made my life so much better. How can I ever thank you?” But he didn’t answer. She was perplexed. “C’mon, you remember: you gave me a makeover, and this fabulous haircut I’ve maintained, and the skincare, and … and….” She trailed off. She turned on the light next to her bed. “Glam Reaper?” she asked quietly, and the figure shook its head. Its robe was not glittering, and it didn’t appear to be wearing heels. Suddenly, the Glam Reaper came into the room. “Hey girl, sorry I’m so late!” he said. “Obviously this is my brother, the Grim Reaper. He’s not much of a talker.” The Grim Reaper shook his hooded head, then motioned for her to stand up. Shannon burst into tears. “No, please, I’m not ready! Glam, please, tell him it’s a mistake.” But the Glam Reaper was over at her vanity, stealing all her makeup with a swipe of the scythe into a large cloth bag. “Sorry love, you should’ve gone months ago, but I took pity on you. Can’t put it off forever!” He’d finished swiping all her makeup and headed towards the door. “You’ll be fine, it’s not that bad. We can hang out sometimes when I’m not making over poor unfortunate souls. Okay, love you, byyyyeee!” he said, somehow making a kissing noise even though she knew he didn’t have lips. “No, wait, PLEASE!” she yelled at his back. And then there was nothing but Shannon’s screams in the night.
Scent Notes: An array of expensive, luscious lipsticks lazing on a mirrored vanity amongst jars of expensive cold cream. This smells like 1940s glamorous movie starlets getting ready for their close up!