Congratulations on finding a better face. I’ve worked in Central Ranking for ten years, and you’re the first three-point increase I’ve seen without experimental surgery. After tracking your improvement, I felt that a form letter wouldn’t cut it. You’ve earned a handwritten welcome to your new life as a seven.
Perhaps you’ve already noticed a change. Rock-bottom restaurant prices. Clubs that you’ve never seen or heard of appearing on maps. General eye contact. The long night is over—you’ll never carry your own bags or professional weight again.
There are, of course, romantic implications. I encourage you to pace yourself. It’s dazzling to know that, with a single word, you can make lesser numbers beg, weep, or enter an open relationship. But it catches up with you. Every broken heart is a potential wrinkle, and I’m sure you don’t want to go back to riding the fake subway. The Stunner Express goes from Gun Hill to Bay Ridge in fifteen minutes.
As for your career, consider it optional. Though, if you insist on working, you’ll find conditions much improved. Your glass ceiling is now a mirror offering a diversion between promotions. That said, I recommend staying out of government. The threes and fours who get in via nepotism seem much happier than the eights snoring through House Oversight Committee meetings. And our latest two Presidents have been a troll and a mummy, respectively.
Watch for a check in the mail. The Aesthete Tax Credit is retroactive, so expect half the income tax you’ve paid over the last decade back. Going forward, feel free to deduct anything that straightens, whitens, or vacuums. Botox, however, is exempt owing to its nonessential effect on migraines and muscle spasms.
Kindly refrain from telling Morlocks (individuals under a five) about the System. It’s all right to gossip with a six or a striving five, but we can’t have the left side of the curve getting too irate. No one wants another French Revolution. While history goes on about bread and estates, Robespierre’s portrait tells you what the real problem was. He ate cake, jaundice treatments, and lead.
While I prefer the carrot to the stick, bylaws require me to mention the consequences for breaking the Masquerade. If a leak is traced back to you, you will be surgically demoted to a four. Appeals are possible, if you can withstand walking into the Hall of Beauty with a mortal face. Most slink into the sewers.
Of course, you could keep whistle-blowing after demotion. But you’d have an easily ignorable face. And, on some level, everyone already knows. Your revelation would be filed away with climate change and alien life.
Finally, there’s the matter of the tens. You’ve never seen a ten, only a nine matching your fetish. True tens live in the subterranean city of Elysia, where the sun can’t damage their skin or arbitrarily limit night-life hours. The Fair Folk live in paradisal bliss, tended to by a dedicated clan of nines. Some say the nines intend to revolt, but that’s all smoke. The only thing nines hate more than a ten is an eight. They’d never risk losing the privilege of walking on our backs to keep their shoes clean. Yet my people will have their day.
I’m including a can of moisturizer infused with elephant tears. Use it twice daily, and I think that we can get you to an eight. Then I’ll tell you all about the real elections.
Helena Troy, 8.43
Senior Case Manager