Zero and her friend Negative are busted. Busted in that their bras stick out farther than their toes, if you care to measure. (Don’t do that. Don’t actually get out your tape measure and measure the width of their chests compared to the length of their feet. It’s more like a figure of speach. What, are we in a courtroom here? Shoot.)

Neggy wants to curl her own hair, no help from Zero, who won’t release the ironing tool from the grasp of her hand, holds it by the handle, not the heating metal piece, of course. She works her bangs into a curled-under roll, trying to create a matching image to go with her poodle skirt. It’s not really a poodle skirt. Technically it’s a star-and-heart skirt as those are the appliques that are stitched onto it, with embroidered rays coming off each of them. All in contrasting colours to the fabric of the skirt. Won’t give up the curling iron because she wants the monopoly on heat-manipulated hair.

“I’ll do it in a different style,” Neggy complains, rubbing at her limp and shoulder-lenth hair. She can’t even put it up in a pony-tail now, since Zero has already slicked her own easy-to-manage hair into that style with a perfect little flip at the bottom of it.

“Why not put it in a half-pony-tail,” Zero suggests.

This is what Neggy wears to school every day already. She pulls her fingers to the end of a clump hair and turns it up between her first two fingers. “I want to do it like this,” she explains.

Zero glances away from the mirror without moving her head, since there is a hot metal tube attached to to via her hair being wrapped around it. “It’ll never work. Your hair is too thin.”

“I can try.” She reaches for the plastic triangle of jelly product the Zero tossed on the bed after use. “What if I try some of this?”

“Sure. Actually, use a lot of that. I want to use it up. Then we can tease it all into a beehive.”

Neggy wrinkles her nose. “That’ll look wierd.”

“We can at least try.”

After some violent backwards combing on the part of both girlts, Zero’s hair ends up looking more like a big mess. Like Neggy is a crazy lady, Zero suggests, laughing.

“I can’t go out like this.” Neggy panics, looking at the time. They are already late. The party started at 7:30.

Zero attacks her with the comb again. “We just have to shape it.”

“No, brush it out,” Neggy reaches hopelessly for the brush she knows is around her somewhere. Her neck bends backwards as Zero still has the comb caught in her mass of hair. “Ow.”

“Don’t touch I have an idea,” Zero starts combing the hair just abouve Neggy’s forehead smooth. “I saw this in a movie.”

“I look like a reject.” He dress is too big, as well, but it was the only one in Zero’s costume bix that was remotely close to the same period as the poodle skirt. The square neckline doesn’t go very well with her face, and she doesn’t like the wide shoulder straps: not thin enough to be properly fashionable and emphasizing her upper arms. But it fit, even if there is extra fabric where she should have hips. She’ll just keep her elbows down all night.

Zero ties a scarf around her head, smooth above her forehead, gathered behind her ears and tied under the tangle. But there is still a huge tangle beyond the control of the scarf.

“There, I told you.” Zero gives the scarf one last adjustment above Neggy’s scowling eyebrows.

“Why didn’t you just cover it all?”

“Because that’s not the look.”

Neggy presses her hands against the top of her head, getting a sticky residue from the jell. “I should have just done a half pony.” Which would have looked fine, as well, with the dress. Not like she has the proper shoes anyway.

“To late!” Zero exclaims.