The shoes were Gianvito Rossi. The problem, all her own.
To be honest, Glory Bunny probably should’ve been more careful about how she treated the stilettos but what was care? What was full? She hadn’t cared about anything since her movie, One Way Ticket to Tarragon, became an international sensation—Glory, its waifishly chic starlet—and she hadn’t been full in … well, years. Her name wasn’t even Glory Bunny (Gladys Bunderklopf didn’t fly with the Tarragon casting directors) but ah, le sigh! Le something-else-vaguely French and exasperating-sounding! Such was the glamorous, sheeny life of a Hollywood actress. This was the burden she had to bear, sitting now in her white-walled, top-floor suite at the Miami Modernaire Hotel, surrounded by little potted cacti and the pale scent of sunscreen drifting from the pool deck ten stories below. Too bad sunscreen and succulents did nothing to fix her dilemma, which stood unseen behind her and just wouldn’t relent, like a swarm of buzzing paparazzi she had to pretend to hate. At least this shoe problem, she genuinely hated.
Here’s what she remembered from last night: When she left her hotel room to attend the premier of the new Jack Corsica movie, she had on two pink-with-black-silk-bow shoes, made to fit her immaculately pedicured feet by Gianvito Rossi himself.
Estimated worth for the high-heeled stunners: $150,000. (Something, her stylist had said, about silk that originated from silkworms purported to have magical powers, squirming for centuries high atop a mountain and below a tiny tree in Northern China that no one had been able to find for centuries and then the tree was found but its roots got mangled two days later because of a heavy rainstorm and the worms died and only a small amount of the satin could be salvaged, which was given secretly under the cover of midnight to Gianvito Rossi or a friend of his or that friend’s uncle or yada yada yada, boring, whatever, yawn.)
It didn’t matter to Glory how the shoes got to her. She only knew that they were priciest silk accessories ever made (probably) and allowed Glory to look very much like the superstar she told everyone in her tiny town of Allegosia, Wisconsin she would one day become.
But there’s more: Dirk Dalionique, a close friend to Rossi and head curator of the Fashion + Style Museum of Miami Beach, received word about the shoes and immediately asked for the left one to be donated the day after it was worn—this afternoon—at an extravagant gala he would throw in Glory’s silk-shoe honor.
“Eet has to be only ze left one,” Dirk told Glory on the phone. “You must know that in Paree, eet eez said that eef you step on ze dog peupe,” (Dirk said poop in the most elegant way imaginable,) “And it eez with your left foot, then you have good luck for ze rest of life!”
Glory wondered what Dirk Dalionique thought about stepping in poop with the right foot because at some time between her fifth tequila shot and her seventh gin, she lost the left Gianvito Rossi shoe.
A soft-focus memory glided across her mind with the buttery sophistication of that Chardonnay (un-oaked, naturally) she had been sipping on yesterday while getting ready for the premier. Glory’s maybe-friend Joanna, radio host for WLIQ Miami, had been with her the whole time! She probably had the shoe!
But when Glory dialed Jo, she only offered this: “Oh my gosh, Glory! You lost your limited edition, zillion dollar, one-of-a-kind Gianvito Rossi stiletto that you need for a fancy museum party today that is literally being thrown for that very shoe? You have the most stylish problems ever! Also no, I don’t have it or know where it is. But we could talk about it on the morning show tomorrow. Or maybe write it up for the station’s blog?”
After the disappointing call, Glory imagined how the rest of the day might go. She’d show up in her white Spella D’Ivine jumpsuit to the museum, looking trendy of course, but undeniably without that left shoe, and just at the moment when Dirk would announce to the rapt audience of fashion bloggers, models and international designers that Glory will now unveil the pink-and-black guest of honor … a collective gasp!
What do you mean you don’t hev ze left shoe, Glory?
Yes, that’s right, Dirk, I’m sorry but I just don’t have it!
Stupid, airhead Glory lost $75,000 worth of shoe the night before the crowd might say and ha! Ha! Ha! What a joke the entire soiree would become, like some terrible cable remake of the Emperor’s New Clothes with a modern, Cinderella-esque twist. Except instead of ending up with the handsome prince and riding off into a fairy-tale forest of bliss, Glory would be left with nothing more than a flurry of online articles about the stupid, embarrassing ordeal and $75,000 (or more) she’d have to pay to Gianvito Rossi & Co.
Oh her publicist was going to just adore this one.
“One Way Ticket to Taragon Actress Loses Footing at Star-Studded Miami Event” was not a headline for Glory Bunny, Zipper Magazine’s 2016 Coolest Young Star.
The left shoe must be found.
It was with this thought in mind that Glory walked toward the bathroom. As she entered the marbled space, she decided that in more glamorous and interesting stories than hers, the heroine never uses the bathroom. Did princesses have iron bladders? Why was that part always left out of the fairy tale?
And this last question above all others allowed Glory to remember a line she told Joanna last night at Jack’s after party, dancing to their favorite band, Premonition X, by the blinky neon lights of the Modernaire Hotel pool. “Much like a real woman,” Glory explained, “the soul of a city is written on its bathroom walls.” (Glory was both nonsensical and prophetic when drunk.)
She looked up to see, scrawled on the wall beside her in rouge lipstick, two smudgy words: “Room service.”
No sooner had she hung up the phone with the snively room service woman did a knock arrive at her door, followed by a white-gloved, white-haired man carrying a silve tray. On the tray were two items she couldn’t explain and another she absolutely could: one inexplicable glass of pink lemonade with a slice of lime, one mysterious white carnation and one Gianvito Rossi silk left shoe.