"You're not going to make me dance, are you?"
Aaron grinned. "No promises. But not tonight. Lesson Zero is pretty basic. I'm starting you off at the very first level. Most five-year-old girls are already dreaming of balls and weddings and prince charming, and do you know why?"
"Because they are naive and their parents have lied to them about Santa and the Tooth Fairy and where babies come from?"
"Close. It's because of Cinderella."
"We have popcorn, chips, chocolate, and some pizza in the oven, and we are going to watch Cinderella."
"I've seen Cinderella."
"That's okay. It's even better the second time. And then later we are going to watch Sleeping Beauty and Beauty and the Beast and Aladdin."
"How is this going to make me a better writer?"
"I'm not sure, but I do know that a writer that doesn't believe in love will never write anything worth reading. And obviously you've had a messed up childhood in which your parents did not teach or show you enough love, and so this is the only way I could think of to teach the basics of true love. Don't worry, we won't stay on fairy tales long, soon you will graduate to chick flicks and then maybe some Jane Austen or Shakespeare..."
"You're having a lot of fun with this aren't you?"
"My sister's think that this is the best experiment I've ever done."
"Are you going to write an article about this once you've cured me?"
"Only with your permission. Actually, it would probably be sweeter written from your own pen."
"What were you expecting with the makeover? How did you know I'd even go for it?"
"Oh, that's simple. Makeovers are every girl's favourite thing. All the best movies have a girl go from ugly and frumpy to beautiful, and then there's the scene where the boy drops his jaw - totally classic. Every girl wants to surprise a boy like that. My sisters swear that nothing gives you confidence like a total makeover. I knew you'd go for it because you're curious. It's an important quality in a writer."
"Huh. You're good." Shelly admitted.
"Thank you." He took a little bow. "Now, while we're watching Cinderella's dreams come true, I want you to really believe that the magic is real and I want you to watch the prince's face as they're dancing, and watch him chase her when the clock strikes twelve."
"You know what, before we even start, I think we should meditate."
"I need you to become a child again. You're a writer, embrace your inner kid. Breathe out your sarcasm, breathe in innocence and youth."
Aaron tilted his head. "Come on, just try it. Breathe out all your dirty thoughts and doubts, breathe in magic and hope."
Shelly blew out through pursed lips, imagining all her doubts and disappointments floating away on her breath, then sucked in cool air, imagining sweet life and candy and innocence filling her lungs.
"Good! Breathe out, breathe in."
"Are you going to sing along to all the songs?"