Usuki Singing Stars #26: The REAL Style Showdown
"Oh Patricia, your skirt is so cute!” Sparkles gushed. The pink Bruce gripped her notebook as she admired the skirt her friend was wearing. “Wherever did you get it?”
A pink Uni sighed dreamily. “I bet she bought it from the NC Mall,” she suggested. “I mean, where else could one find such a beautiful lavender skirt?”
“The Clothing Shop?” asked Patricia, laughing. The faerie Shoyru wasn’t used to receiving so much attention from her peers before. Today was a different story, however, and it was all because of a lavender-coloured skirt she wore with a matching blouse. She swirled the skirt and felt a little giddy at the sighs of those surrounding her and looking over her outfit.
A blue Kacheek asked, “How much did your entire outfit cost?”
Patricia shrugged. “I don’t know...three thousand neopoints?”
“Pfft! No wonder it’s such an eyesore!” a brown Aisha sneered as she elbowed her way through Patricia’s admirers. “And what’s so great about lavender anyway? I think it looks really hideous on you, Patricia.”
“Thanks Aubri,” Patricia groaned. She rolled her eyes and added sarcastically, “As always, your opinion has really opened my eyes to the realities of the fashion world.”
Aubri flipped her short red bob and smiled. “It is a shame your mother couldn’t have gone to the NC Mall instead.” She twirled, showing off her black and red checked dress. “Don’t you all just adore these adorable white gloves that came with my outfit? And look, my dress has little red buttons on the bodice for décor.”
“Yeah, that’s a very nice dress,” said Sparkles, “but I’d rather have Patricia’s ensemble than yours, Aubri.”
“Me too!” agreed the blue Kacheek. The pink Uni nodded her agreement and beamed a smile towards Patricia.
Disgruntled, Aubri shoved herself out of the group of admirers and strutted down the hallway with her friends Kia and Sophie tagging along. “Can you believe what a poser Patricia is because of her tacky ensemble?” asked Aubri.
Sophie nodded. “I think she needs to find a more fashionable outfit to wear,” commented the speckled Draik. “Her new one should be sent back to Neovia!”
Kia hesitated with her response. “Well…I actually really like Patricia’s new outfit,” admitted the striped Shoyru.
“Oh, who cares about that fashionista wannabe,” Aubri insisted. She opened her compact and admired her reflection fondly. “So that Shoyru thinks she’s Miss Best Dressed and the most fashion-forward pet in Neoschool. What a loser!” Gritting her teeth, Aubri added silently, By tomorrow, Patricia would be last week’s wannabe while I take my rightful place as Neopia’s Best Dressed Pet. Just wait and see, fashion fraud!***
The next day, Aubri showcased a red and white striped dress as she sashayed down the hallways of Neoschool. She showed off her sparkling crimson slippers and red leather purse, hoping a crowd of students would swarm her and admire her outfit. “I look so cute in this cheery striped dress, don’t I?” Aubri asked her friends.
“Totally,” agreed Sophie. “You still appear to be the goddess of customization to me, Aubri.”
Kia pointed to the purse. “Where’d you get that bag?”
“Who knows, who cares,” said Aubri, turning to glare at Patricia as she strutted by. “Look at that fashion faux pas and her tacky pink sweater,” she grumbled to Sophie.
Sophie smirked. “It’s so tacky that it clashes with her jean skirt. What a fashion disgrace.”
Both girls giggled as a purple Uni approached their ‘nemesis’ and asked, “Excuse me, but where did you get that darling sweater?”
“Umm…I think my Mom bought it from a shop in the Marketplace,” said Patricia. “I don’t know which one, though.”
Fuming, Aubri confronted the Uni and twirled, attempting to show off her dress and slippers. “See how my outfit is so well put together?” she pressed. “And look at this darling leather purse I’m holding. Surely you must understand that my outfit is far more chic than Patricia’s.”
“It’s very nice,” replied the Uni, “though I feel the dress makes you look like a candy cane. Besides, I already own two pairs of sparkling crimson slippers.”
“That moronic little Uni…” Aubri fumed as she stomped down the hallway, Sophie and Kia following by her side. “If I need to design a better outfit for tomorrow, then I’ll do it! Surely Patricia the Fashion Victim will stop her petty efforts and will stop trying to compete with me!”
“She must be running out of semi-good things to wear by the end of the week,” insisted Sophie. “Then this petty showdown she’s staging will stop and you can reclaim your fashion victory.”***
For the next three days, Aubri styled herself in clothing she was certain would out-stage Patricia in whatever she would have chosen to wear. Every day began the exact same way: Aubri would strut down the hallways of Neoschool, hoping to have everybody approach her and fawn over her outfit or her accessories. For an added bonus, she would strut past Patricia, hoping to make her angry or envious of her clothes. And then I would be Neopia’s Best Dressed! Aubri would tell herself. Poor Patricia should just give up today!
Unfortunately, despite her best efforts, Aubri was never able to attract the crowds of admirers she so desperately wanted. Besides a few glances, nobody would approach her and ask where she had gotten an accessory or her pair of shoes. There were no pets who wanted to follow her around or surround her to admire any of her outfits. Though it was a pleasure to see Patricia ‘struggle’ with attracting a crowd of her own, Aubri sometimes felt dissatisfied to see her Neoschool nemesis receive the same lack of attention. After all if there were admirers for Patricia, then who would want to admire anyone else?
“Isn’t she pitiful?” asked Aubri on her fourth day of attention-grabbing, glaring as her Neoschool nemesis stood in front of her locker. With a smirk, she approached Patricia and pointed to the green jumper she paired with a white blouse. “Does this ensemble rock or not, fashion reject?”
Patricia looked the outfit over and shrugged. “It’s okay,” she said, closing her locker.
“It’s a shame you decided to wear that ugly purple sweater,” commented Sophie. “Aubri looks much more stylish than you today and everyday.”
“That’s nice,” said Patricia.
Aubri placed her hands on her hips. “That’s it? You’re not even going to try and insult my outfit one bit?” she snapped.
“Why would I?” asked Patricia. “I’ve never really cared for anything you wear.”
“What a lame thing to say,” Aubri scoffed. “Today you don’t care and tomorrow I’ll see you try and compete with my NC Mall clothing and accessories!”
“Truly pathetic,” said Sophie.
Sighing, Patricia turned to look Aubri in the eye. “I don’t know what you’re obsessing over, but it’s getting petty and really annoying. Yes, I’ve seen you ‘runway walk’ past me with your designer-style clothing and…well, I just don’t care. In fact, like I said just now, I never cared about anything you’ve worn. So for you to get all competitive all of a sudden is too weird and beyond my understanding.” She turned away from Aubri and proceeded to walk down the hallway, only stopping to greet Kia. “See you in English class,” said Patricia.
Kia nodded. “See ya, Pat! Save a seat for me, okay?”
Watching Patricia walk away, Aubri smiled and held her head high. “And that is how you win a style showdown, girls. Notice how defeated she looked when she was whining about being inferior to yours truly?”
Sophie giggled. “As usual, you’ve won this showdown fair and square!”
“With no Neocola-related sabotages needed,” countered Aubri.
“But Aubri,” asked Kia timidly, “aren’t you even going to think about what Patricia talked to you about? You know the whole bit–”
“Oh hush!” Aubri, scowled, waving her hand. “Our duel is hereby finished for good! Now let’s go and track down that royal Uni I swear copied my outfit yesterday.” Leading her friends down the hallway, Aubri opened her compact and smiled victoriously at her reflection. As usual, I always get what I want, she thought, applying a layer of red lipstick. Poor Patricia can now think twice about challenging the Empress of Customization to a style showdown. And once again, I, Aubri, am the Fashion Queen of this pathetic Neoschool for now and eternity!
Kia noticed Aubri’s sly smile and asked, “Have you thought over Patricia words, Aubri?”
“Stop asking me and keep on scouting,” Aubri scolded. “As soon as I find that wannabe fashionista, I’m going to give her a piece of my stylized mind!” She closed her compact and added, "I would also need a can of Neocola, extra shaken. Hustle, girls!"