The boy and I did go to prom that April. It was perfect, everything a first prom should be. I spent time with my mom finding the perfect dress, shoes, and jewelry; a forest green, crushed velvet, spaghetti strap, floor length number. Simple, low-key, silver heels, "diamond studs", and a "diamond pendant" completed the look. Simple. No frills. Perfect for me.
The boy picked me up in his shiny pickup, opened the door for me and took me to super at the best restaurant in town with all of our friends. We slow danced every song and attended the after prom party until dawn. I think we even won some good prizes! He dropped me off just as the sun was coming up and my mother insisted he come in and stay for a nap rather than drive the 30 additional miles home. We both napped and when we woke, had breakfast.
After breakfast, the boy gently picked out every last one of the bobby pins holding my thick, mid-back, auburn hair atop my head. He told me he loved me and I knew I loved him too.
I felt safe.