Our day starts like all the others. Our pods opening, new born like chicks, blonde hair in fluffy waves, pink pouting lips, perky tits and tiny toes. We move as one to the showers. In unison jets spray us. Soapy foam washes away down the plug hole along with the secrets we keep.
We are air dried, blow dried, pampered and preened. A wash of beige paint camouflages our true selves. We are identical, we are puppets, we are perfect. We march to the warehouse in belted trench coats, heels goose-stepping in time, soles flashing a bloody red wink as we go. We are an army of women. An army of one.
Rows and rows and rows of us. We do not move when he inspects us. Daily, weekly, minutely, subject to his whims. Of which there are many. A brow hair astray, too dark a shade of beige, a hangnail – women have died for less.
But it is an honour to be here, to be part of the Flotus Factory. Only the best are chosen. We’re selected at a young age, taken from our home countries, educated, groomed, refined, moulded and sculpted into an ever-young ideal. We are role-models.
Today he is here. Goosebumps ripple across the room, the tiniest of Mexican waves. A wall of invisible fears. Our hearts beat in unison. Who will it be, who will he choose today? Will it be me? I want it, I am erased with wanting.
He stops by me. I hold my breath. I hold a knife. I hold the world in the palm of my manicured hand.
Rebecca Williams has always wanted to be a writer. She completed the first draft of her novel – about bored housewives on a vigilante crime spree – in August 2017. She is killing time before second draft edits by dabbling in flash and shorter fiction. You can find her on Twitter @stupidgirl45