1892: Out of My League

Alcohol has two faces and is fatal: the face of fun, parties, and good times and the face staring back at me. Alarmed and confused, I woke up with sudden knots in my stomach. Last night was all a blur! The smell of alcohol flooded my nostrils, my head spun like an out of control merry-go-round, and spider-like blood vessels protruded from my eyes. The mirror reflected my first intoxication and eclipsed the prestigious twenty-one year old image that I had so methodically crafted. Coming to grips with the horrid choice I had made perplexed my mind. An utterly disgusted sensation overwhelmed me with nausea. A mental paralysis increasingly crept in, induced by the tentacles of fear. I could not produce a single thought– I was paralyzed by fear.

I never thought the girl staring back at me would ever be a filthy, hideous, drunkard. All my life I was sent to prestigious schools such as Columbia University– a private Ivy League research university in upper Manhattan. There I learned how to study anatomy and physiology. I was top of my class and won many medical research awards. Many people esteemed me and told me how proud they were. Kristopher Slater and Grace Granes were my two best friends. Kris had incredible connections with man of inestimable abilities. Dr. Preston always said,

“Smart workers usually have a much better work-life balance, are entrepreneurs, are able to identify their strengths and weaknesses, and manage time effectively.  A smart worker will realize that they are more productive during a certain time of day and will batch their tasks based on difficulty to match with when they are most productive.  A hard worker, has a long list and just checks off tasks one a time as he goes down the list.” (Working)

I gained many people’s trust quickly and had a handful of friends in days of my schooling. I always wanted more. I always wanted and craved love. I had never experienced romance or dates and I was quite ready to. I thought no one was worth my time. Potential lovers came and went, but my heart never agreed to what they had to offer.

Saturday I went to a waltz. There I met Hilton VanBurean. He was a tall, extremely tan, well dressed, green eyed—a brunette hunk. He had a charming smile that could light up the whole room. He looked as toned as a man fighting in the Homestead Strike.

While I was eating dumplings and fresh cooked rosemary bread with one of the doctors, I saw him catching glimpses of me. I couldn’t help but blush because he was breathtaking. I quickly acted like I wasn’t aware and kept conversing with the doctor, as if no man had caught my eye. While I was flagging the taxi, I saw him run through the 5 star restaurant’s doors. It was as if he was running a marathon and had reached the home stretch. In an instant, he was staring eye to eye at me, it was as if we had known each other for an eternity.

He said, “Ma’am I couldn’t help, but notice…”

But before he could utter another word, the taxi driver yelled,

“We don’t got all night ma’am.”

As we drove away, my heart longed to see him again–whoever he was, I was going to find out.


As I was getting ready for my step-mom’s socialite party, Gunnip, my personal butler went to the door to receive a package for me. He told me there was a tall man waiting to speak with me. I quickly put on a dash of powder from my makeup chest of drawers and swiftly walked down the stairs. With every breath, my heart pounded a little faster, my voice was just above a whisper, and my hands shook with the movement of my dress. I was more nervous than Bobby Abel before he carried his bat one hundred and thirty two degrees. I had a feeling–the strongest intuition–that the man downstairs was HiltonVanBurean.


His eyes emanated kindness as his mouth formed the words,

“Nice to see you again Addison, I believe you left this the night I saw you by the taxi.”

“Oh, why yes, it seemed to of been missing. Thank you.”

“Would you care to stay for some tea?”

“Thank you for the offer but I must go. I have dinner with Lilly at eight’ o’clock.” A feeling of disappointment and sadness crept in my mind. I did not want Hilton to be with any other woman. I craved Hilton. Dreamt, desired, deserved him for reasons I could not fully explain. It wasn’t like me to become invested in a man. Emotions to this altitude had never controlled me nor induced a sense of insecurity. I was madly in love with a man I hadn’t even had a conversation with.

“Oh! Wonderful! Very well, then. Have a delightful ride back to New York” I attempted to make the words flow nonchalantly.

“Thank you.”

As Hilton tipped his hat, our eyes locked and he didn’t turn his head. It was like he was trying to tell me what his heart was saying, but not a word was exchanged. He had to go, yet his feet remained planted firmly on the ground.

“You must leave now. Lilly is waiting; you must not keep her waiting.”

“Ahh, of course! Goodbye, Addison.”

The next few days passed by as slowly as molasses dripping from a spoon. I knew that Hilton and I belonged together. Day-after-day passed without a single word or letter from Hilton. I ran by Astor’s house to check and see if she was in need of any more assistance for the socialite party. Naturally, Astor had everything well under control. All of her many assistants buzzed around like bees working on transforming the mansion into the talk of the town. Such opulence rivaled the Gilded Age greats. Yes, it was going to be the biggest party in America. If a woman was to have over 400 guests, she was known as the richest and most affluent in all of America.

I used to be so unhappy that Astor was my step mom, but as time went on I began to recognize her inner and real beauty. The night of my drunkenness Astor told me “One reason I don’t drink is that I want to know when I am having a good time”(Nancy). She was right, drinking didn’t take away pain, but induced more. Her heart was just as beautiful as her face. Astor would house African Americans and have them serve the guests. They got incredible food and service as well. She kept everyone full of food and life. Astor was a real American woman with beauty every woman hoped to attain. There wasn’t a woman who didn’t want to be her and there was no man who didn’t want to be with her.

Soon the iridescent moon suspended in the sky cast perfect shadows on the horse drawn carriages. My heart pounded in sync with each clip clop of the horse drawn carriages. The moment eclipsed me and soon I went back to reality. As I walked up the steps I saw couples from England, German, Norway—all over the world. Women dressed in Petty coats lined the steps eagerly awaiting to be greeted by Eleneaor Astor. As one of the butlers took the guests’ coats, a letter fluttered like a butterfly out of one of the jackets from a tall man. His face was turned and he walked into the hall room. For a brief moment I thought I saw Hilton VanBurean, but he would’ve told me he was coming– there’s no possible way that it is him.

​I picked up the note and averted my eyes from the temptation of reading it. My eyes glimpsed a word that quickly made my eyes wander to the forbidden letter. My eyes feasted over each and every word as if they were a delectable eclair. I was enticed and ready to devour each word. The letter read: I’ve never been so enticed by a woman before. Oh, how I want to tell her that I love her. Oh, how I want to take her to Babes Ruth’s baseball game and show her what it’s like to experience the thrill of a ball park. Oh, how I dream of her silky blonde curls and blue eyes that make me want to be the best man that I can possibly be. Her beauty is of angel like glory and she simply leaves me speechless. Instead of in my head I want her in my arms. To feel her soft lips pressed against my neck. Oh, I crave her to be my companion in life’s journey. Astonished I found a chair and sank into it. Deep in thought, I carefully reread each word. I Addison was loved by Hilton VanBurean. Mixed emotions flooded my brain and the thought numbed me. I, Addison, will go tell the man I love that I love him just as much as he loves me. I ran through the courtyard, but to my dismay saw a table with flowers covering the side and a highly affluent fabric covering the table. As I walked closer, I found a little box. Imprinted on the top were four words, “Will you marry me?” and two tickets to see Opera Werther premier in Vienna. Shocked and astonished, I sat in the chair and wept, for in front of my eyes was in fact the most handsome man who ever lived in my estimation: Hilton VanBurean down on his knee.

Works Cited

Nancy Astor the Viscountess Astor Quotes.” Nancy Astor the Viscountess Astor Quotes. n.p., n.d.          Web. 13 Apr. 2017.

Working Smart: Inspirational Quotes.” CommPRO.biz. n.p., 19 Jan. 2015. Web. 13 Apr. 2017.



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