Cynthia was never fond of how she looked. After all, what teenage girl is? There was always something wrong, her makeup was slightly smudged, or her hair wasn't straight enough. And so she would fix it, and be satisfied, until she found something else she deemed unattractive, and set off to fix it, the cycle continuing until she had to go to work at the coffee shop. This had happened since the age of twelve, when she first became self-aware. But there was one thing she could never fix. She always felt that she was fat, even since that cruel brat, Jessica, had labeled her as the unattractive kid, the one that should be shunned by peers. This annoyed her to no end, for it was one thing that could not be fixed with a hairbrush or a bit of makeup. Did anyone say she was fat? No, because she honestly wasn't. But Cynthia was somewhat paranoid, to say the least. And so it annoyed her to no end, continually, until one day she got her solution. Sitting at an outdoor table at the coffee shop, she complained to her boyfriend Brent. Brent loved Cynthia very much, and he didn't think of her as unattractive, but he did grow rather tired of the constant complaining. So on this sunny day, she threw her a bone.
"You could skip meals, if it bothers you that much," said Brent, a tinge of sorrow in his voice.
Cynthia pondered this. It did sound like an acceptable idea, and it would solve her problem. And so it happened, small at first. She would skip breakfast every other day, and the benefits were noticeable, at least in her opinion. But Cynthia, being her paranoid self, still found faults. So she skipped breakfast everyday. But this was still not good enough, and so she skipped more and more meals. This was noticed, as Cynthia had hoped, but not quite as she wanted. Many warned her about skipping meals, even some of her peers, who looked more like scarecrows than human beings. But did Cynthia listen? Nay, for she was naive and stuck in her ways. She skipped more and more meals. And she was fine. But over time, Jessica grew jealous, seeing as time had not served her nearly as well as Cynthia. And so she plotted Cynthia's downfall, for days and nights, seemingly without end. One Thursday, as she sat down to lunch, one of the scarecrows screamed, leaping almost the length of the room. A cockroach scuttled across the cafeteria floor, and Jessica smiled. She had her plan.
The next day, she walked over to Cynthia, smiling cheeringly.
"Cynthia? Looking good! Have you lost weight?" She smiled innocently.
Cynthia was wary, she had still not forgotten the old times, but returned the smile. After all, no one holds a grudge that long, right?
"Hello, Jessica. How're you today?"
Jessica's smile widened slightly, the plan was working.
"Good, I suppose. You look thin. How'd you do it?"
"Skipping a few meals."
"Oh, dear. That can't be healthy. Hey, just between me and you, there's always another option."
Cynthia shot her a quizzical look. "What option?"
Jessica smiles even wider. "The janitor, Mr. Hawthorne, has a little something, a few 100 calorie chocolate bars. I was thinking perhaps you'd want one."
Cynthia ponders this for a moment. "I suppose we could just take some. It's not like they'll go missing, correct?" She smiles mischievously.
And so the two of them head for the janitor's office, slipping past the vigilant eyes of many by blending in with the crowd. They finally reached the door. Cynthia, hungering for food, wanders in. Jessica slams the door behind her, preventing her from escaping, as the door only opens from the outside. Jessica's eyes brighten gleefully as she hears Cynthia's frightened screams:
"Let me out! This isn't funny! Let me GO!"
Jessica laughs. "Don't worry, Cynthia. I'm sure that the chocolate will keep you satisfied, provided you don't mind roaches!" Jessica laughs even harder, and walks off, somehow unnoticed by the eyes of the many and smiling happily.
Two weeks later, when the janitor returns from vacation, he turns down the hall. He reaches the door, twirling his keys. He opens the door, and is horrified by the site inside. Cynthia, now a skinny, brown-haired corpse, lies shriveled in the closet, cockroaches slowly nibbling at her flesh.