Disclaimer: See Part 1
“What time do you finish today?” Sadie asked, sitting at the table drinking coffee.
“School finishes at twelve-thirty.” Olwyn drank the orange juice. “I am macro glad of that because I don't have to see or talk to Pipperelle for months.”
“I will pick you up at twelve-thirty then. And don't eat anything at school. Do you understand? You weigh one-hundred pounds. You are only supposed to weigh ninety-three pounds.”
“I don't eat anything other than what you pack for me. I bet it's from God because Pipperelle keeps annoying me, and he's giving me extra energy. During the summer though, that weight will come off macro quick.”
“Wait outside and I'll be there.”
Olwyn grabbed her yearbook and a pen, locking the door behind her. Standing on the border between the walkway and the driveway, she watched her mother pull out of the garage.
The last bell rang and Olwyn walked to her mother's car, waiting in line outside.
“Hi, Momma. I love you.”
“Hi, Ollie. We need to do a few things today. I have the crock pot set, so when we get home, we have vegetarian meatballs for dinner.”
“I love love love your meatballs. They are so tasty in that tomato sauce. Mmmm. I can taste them already.”
“How did school go today?”
“Oh. Well. I have every teacher's signature in my yearbook. A place where I can remember them forever and ever. But what major ruined it was Robin's signature. I'd tear the page out but Mr. Tillen's signature is on that page so I can't do that. The teachers said that we'll be getting our report cards in the mail in two weeks. I know I'm getting straight A's. Momma, won't you please reconsider homeschooling me? I macro hate school because there's Robin constantly bugging me, and that girl Pipperelle who I absolutely cannot macro stand because she macro irritates me. Spouting women's liberation and the fact that. . . that everyone has a right to love whoever they want.”
“You only have one more year before you graduate. This will be good practice for you when you enter University of Zianis. I won't be there.”
“You won't?” Olwyn turned toward her mother. “But—“
“We've talked about this. Subject is closed.”
Sadie pulled into the parking lot of Swimsuit Galore Suit Shoppe.
“Go find your suit.” Sadie shooed Olwyn away with her hand.
“It needs to be blue because blue is my best color. It brings out my eyes and I have gorgeous eyes. You always said so. Oh there it is.” Olwyn walked to the back of the store and picked out a bikini. “It's baby blue which is a wonderful color for me and it's my size. I'm ready to go.”
“Don't you think you should try it on?”
“It's my size though. Of course it'll fit.”
“That was before you gained weight, and it's always good that you try something on to be sure it fits.”
“You think so? I just thought since it's my size and my color it's for me.”
“Try it on.”
Olwyn bit her lip as she walked to the fitting room. Standing naked in front of the mirror, I am getting fat. My stomach is major big. I used to be able to count my ribs, I can't even do that. After putting on the suit, she displayed herself for Sadie.
“Well. That is a cute suit. Get that one. How does it fit?”
“It fits perfect.”
“We'll get that one.”
Sadie leaned back in the seat with her hand on the key. “Now to get lunch. We'll get a six inch turkey sub and share that one. Mustard no mayonnaise.”
“But mustard is too spicy.”
“Then we'll get a dry sandwich.”
“Ok. That will be refreshing.”
They walked into the shop, Sadie stepped up front. “I want a six-inch turkey sub, dry with dressing on the side. All of the veggies except onions.”
The cashier pushed a few buttons. “Anything to drink?”
“Water, and I need the sandwich cut in half.”
The cashier nodded, “One turkey sub, no mustard or mayo, all of the veggies with dressing on the side. White or wheat?”
“That will be seven eighty five.”
Sadie gave the cashier eight dollars.
“Fifteen cents is your change and you are seventy three.” The cashier gave her two cups.
Sadie went to the soda fountain and filled the cups. “Here's your water.”
Olwyn sipped the straw. “Mm.”
“Seventy three,” sounded over the loudspeakers.
“Go get it.”
Olwyn brought the tray back to the table. “I think he made a mistake. There's this liquid that's not ours.”
“Oh. What is it?”
“It's dressing to dip my sandwich in.”
Olwyn watched Sadie take the top off the container and dip the sandwich. Mmm, that looks good, licking her lips.
“Let's go,” Sadie said. “I need to fill up my car for the drive tomorrow.”
After filling the gas tank, they turned around and left for home.
At six o'clock, “I smell something good,” Oliver said. “Where are my girls?”
Olwyn ran to the front door. “Hi, Daddy.” She hugged him before looking up, “Today was the last day of school. Tomorrow we start having fun. Just us.”
Oliver laughed, “Not just us. There will be other people there.”
“Not with us though. It will be you, Momma, and me. That's it.”
“In that case, it's true. Let's get cleaned up for dinner.”
Olwyn let go and followed Oliver upstairs.
She found her place and stared at the plate. Tomatoes with bell peppers, zucchini, mushrooms, and five meatballs filled the plate. She picked up her fork, and cut the meatball in half, then half again. Eyes closed as the flavors swirled around in her mouth.
As she ate the last meatball, “How was your day?” Oliver asked.
After drinking water, “I got my yearbook signed with all of my teacher's signatures. Now I have something to remember them forever and ever.” Finishing the last meatball, “Robin ruined it though because she signed my yearbook so now I can't tear out that page. Mr. Tillen's signature is on that page. Then Momma picked me up and we went shopping for a new swimsuit for me. It's an adorable baby blue. I can't wait to show you. Then we went to get a sandwich. We shared a six-inch turkey sandwich with veggies. It was dry but Momma had dressing to dip it in. I know it was a boring day but it was a day. Oh I almost forgot."
"You? Forget?” Oliver smiled.
“I know it's hardly likely,” Olwyn said. “Momma said I weigh one-hudred pounds when I'm only supposed to weigh ninety-three pounds.”
Oliver looked at Sadie with a sideways glance. Eyes back to Olwyn, “You'll lose that weight with all of that swimming during the summer.”
“I can't wait. That's what I'm going to do every morning.”
“Go on upstairs,” Sadie said. “Your daddy will tuck you in at eight-thirty.”
“Yes, Momma. I love you.”
Olwyn sat on the bed, with her yearbook in hand. I want to read the signatures again. To Olwyn, have a great summer. Mr. Tillens. May you have a bright future. Ms. Warszawski. After turning the page, what is this? She ruined my book. Olwyn, This may be the last chance we have to speak to each other until school starts again. Could we at least— She slammed the book closed. It's seven o'clock. I have a few minutes before bedtime. I'll set out my clothes to be packed.
There, that's the last of it. Clothes stacked the length of the bed bench.
“It's eight-thirty and you know what that means,” Oliver said, walking into the room.
“Hi, Daddy. I was finishing setting aside clothes to be packed tomorrow.” She hugged Oliver around the waist.
“Now that you're done…”
She climbed into bed as Oliver turned on Mozart.
“Good night, Daddy. I love you.”
“All right, Ollie,” Sadie said. “Get in the car. Everything is packed up and that means we are ready to go.”
“Yay!” Olwyn said. “We're going to the beach.” Olwyn jumped up and down while clapping.
“Your daddy will be there after work.”
Both climbed into the car.
Olwyn stared out the window watching the passing scenery. Good-bye and good riddence.
Two hours later, Sadie pulled into the drive of a beach house. Olwyn stared at the yellow siding. “This house doesn't have asphalt. It's a sandy driveway.”
“And this house has an attic. You see the round structure on top?” Sadie pointed toward the structure from inside the car.
“Oh yeah. It looks like a part of a castle.”
“That is the attic. Only your daddy and your momma have a key. You don't need to go in there. There's nothing in there for you to see.”
“Yes, Momma. I won't go in there unless you tell me to.”
“Let's get going.”
Sadie opened up the back as Olwyn walked up the steps to the front door. She watched as her mother unloaded boxes and suitcases. “Here is the housekey. That's yours. Don't lose it. Open the door so I can get everything in.”
“Yes, Momma. I love you.”
“Love you too.” Sadie walked back to the car and closed the door and trunk.
The front door closed and locked, Sadie said, “Now. The kitchen is in the back of the house. Our room is directly down the hall and yours is the last door on the right. We have a connecting bathroom. I'll take care of the kitchen. You take your bags and get unpacked.”
Olwyn picked up the suitcase, bag and walked down a creamy hallway coming to a stop at the kitchen. It's white and the refridgerator and stuff are metal. I would've wanted white to blend in with everything. I know Momma would too. It's—
“Keep going. These boxes are heavy.” Sadie nudged Olwyn from behind.
Looking to the left, nothing that way it must be—
“To the right. Get going.”
Olwyn looked behind and bit her lip. In the room, the bags were set aside and the door closed. My room is yellow and the quilt is country. I would've said lacy like a lady should have. Why didn't they ask? Maybe they forced Momma and Daddy. That's the only explanation. I better start unpacking so I can go swimming.
An hour later, with the bags put away, the swimgear were set on the bed.
Sunblock smeared on, glasses and book in hand, she exited her room, “Momma, I'm going swimming.”
“Stay close to the house,” Sadie's voice echoed from the kitchen.
“Yes, Momma.” She took a towel on the way out.
Olwyn picked up a chair from the patio and set it on the beach. The sand is so pure. Look at the color and the water looks so inticing. I'll go swimming now and then settle to read—
“Hi,” A girl said. “The name's Georgie.”
“Where are your parents?”
“Back at the house.” Georgie giggled, looking behind her.
“Then you better get back. A proper lady always listens to what she is being told.”
“Why?” Georgie's smile deflated when she stomped her foot.
Olwyn took off the outer layers, laying the towel to cover the chair, and entered the water.
Up the length of the house before she stopped in front of her window, this feels so good. Cool and relaxing. She swam back to her prior position. Three more laps. Then I'll get out.
“Excuse me,” A woman said. “Did you see my daughter? Ten years old going on thirty, shoulder length brown hair.”
“Then you must be the one that gave her a lecture on being a proper lady.”
“Who are you?”
“My name is Kallistrate. I'm sorry.” She took off her sunglasses, hanging them on her tank top.
Olwyn swam further away from shore. “You're the one from the salad buffet.”
“Yes it is. Have you ever babysat before?”
“All right. Then please understand that my daughter is excited about being at the beach. She has been looking forward to it quoting from the Little Mermaid for months.”
Olwyn swam out further.
“She ran away because I told her she has chores to do before she gets to play mermaid. You do understand that?”
“A proper lady always does what she's told. That's why God gave us two ears and one mouth. Speaking only when spoken to.”
Olwyn watched Kallistrate shift her body weight before putting the sunglasses on and walking away.
Now that my swim's ruined I'll read my book. Olwyn turned away from the sun, and picked up Little Women .
“I should've known,” Pipperelle said. “Was it necessary to make my sister cry?”
Olwyn sprang up from the chair. “What are you doing here?”
“We're neighbors. Surprise.” Pipperelle pointed to a blue house behind her. “Was it?”
“I should've known she was your sister. She doesn't have any manners. Just like you.”
“Being here is what we do. Every summer. It's been that way since I can remember. Back to the question.”
“You stay on your side.”
Pipperelle laughed as she shook her head. “I should've known you wouldn't answer. And. Just so you know. We are neighbors.”
“Why do you keep following me?”
“Oh gee golly whiz. You found out. Oh well. I'll go back and tell everyone the master plan didn't work.” Pipperelle turned around and walked away.
Olwyn snatched her belongings putting them on the table, going back to the chair.
“Oh and…wait, my daughter just came in.” Sadie held the phone against her chest. “Get cleaned up. Don't come out unless I tell you.” She put the phone back against her ear, “Oh and make sure--”
Olwyn continued to stomp to her room slamming the door. An hour later, the tub drained as Olwyn exited with a smile. Hmm. I think I'll wear the pink camisole with the white capris. That will be nice.
Ten minutes later, “I have lunch ready,” Sadie said, stepping into Olwyn's room. “It's a salad with ham, turkey, carrots, celery…the normal salad veggies.”
“That sounds wonderful, Momma.”
They sat on the front porch overlooking the ocean.
“Now that you're done,” Sadie said. “Stay out here until dinner is done. It's chicken tonight.”
Olwyn sat down. I can see the water coming on to the shoreline. The boats out there—
“Why were you mean to me? I only said my name.” Georgie stood in front Olwyn with her hands on her hips. “I asked why.”
“You have chores to do.”
“Your mother said so. Now leave.”
“Why do you have to so mean?” Georgie turned around left, after sticking out her tongue.
A few minutes later, “Why is it you feel it necessary to terrorize my sister? What did she do?” Pipperelle blocked Olwyn's view of the ocean.
“Because the both of you don't have any manners.”
“We don't have manners. I'll make sure I tell my mother that. She needs a good laugh.”
Olwyn changed chairs, but Pipperelle followed. Olwyn sat there while Pipperelle stood. The sound of the waves crashing and the salty air provided a backdrop. Seagulls called from above.
A few minutes later, “Maybe one day you will see. Truly see the world around you without being blinded. Hatred. Hypocracy. Ignorance. Whatever it may be. It is a scary world out there, but it's a little easier with people around you.”
“I have my parents. That's all I need, because God sent me to them.”
Pipperelle walked away.
At five thirty, Oliver walked up the sidewalk. “Hi, Daddy. I missed you. Did you have a good day?”
“Yes I did. Go inside and get cleaned up.”
Olwyn held out her arms.
Arms flapped at her sides, while biting her lip. The door opened and she went inside. After emerging from the bathroom, she sat down at the table.
“I'd like to make an announcement,” Oliver said, holding a fork in his hand. Looking straight ahead at Sadie, “I have one more day before my vacation starts. Then I will take your Momma with me. There are some things we have to do.”
“Oooo.” Olwyn put down her fork. “Where are we going?”
“You are staying home.”
“Yeah but…we always go somewhere together. We're never never apart. Except for work. I could stay at the hotel and wait until you come and get me.”
“I said you are staying and that's final.” Oliver picked up the chicken leg and tore off a piece. “You are on your own.”
Olwyn started to curl into a ball stopping at the backrest.
“The telephone call I had,” Sadie said. “Your grandmom died. There will be no funeral. There will be no memorial service. There will be no grieving. Life goes on.”
“But,” Olwyn whispered. “She was grandmom. Can't we grieve just a little? She helped me with my homework and taught me about poise.”
Oliver shook his head. “You heard.”
Olwyn looked at plate, as tears dropped from her eyes.
“I told you young lady.”
“You're doing the dishes tonight,” Sadie said. “Make sure the kitchen is clean before you go to bed. I will inspect it. It will take you thirty minutes to clean.”
Olwyn looked at Sadie, “I love you.”
“This isn't about love,” Sadie said. “This is about responsibility. It's time you learn.”
Oliver put his napkin on the table and drank his coffee. Sadie did the same. “We're done.” They left the kitchen and closed their door.
The chicken leg in front, mashed potatoes on the left forming a mountain, and corn scattered about like ball bearings. Their plates are empty. I'm not hungry. Momma said I have to clean. I've never never cleaned. How do I—
“I don't hear anything!” Sadie called out from the bedroom.
Olwyn stood up from her seat with plates in hand. Food in the bin, the plates were rinsed off. I don't see any cookware. I guess that's it then.
Olwyn walked into Sadie at the entrance to the kitchen. “I'm done.”
“We'll see about that.” Sadie walked to sink where the dishes were drying. “You're done huh. I see food still on the plate and why is the sponge dry? There's trash in the garbage can yet. Why? You didn't mop the floor either I bet.”
“You never taught me how.” Olwyn stuck out her lower lip with tears brimming the eyes.
“Now I am,” Sadie said. “The reason you took Home Economics is not only to teach you how to cook, but how to take care of the kitchen as well. I see how well you did with that. Come over here and get the sponge.”
Olwyn stood at the entrance biting her lip grasping her hands.
“Do you understand English?”
“Then do as you're told.”
Olwyn baby stepped to the sink and took the sponge.
“Get the sponge wet and put a drop of dishwashing liquid on it.”
Olwyn held it in the air.
“Now in a circular motion, clean the plates until all of the food is off. Then rinse. Then dry and put away. After that, take out the trash. It's on the left side of the house. Then come back and mop the floor. I expect to see the floor sparkle.” Sadie left the kitchen, leaving Olwyn holding the soapy sponge.
A lady doesn't do this and the trash stinks. It's dirty. Five drops of water dripped from the sponge before the plates were washed. I have to take the trash out? But… The top of the bag was pinched between the index finger and thumb on each hand and lifted up. The bag slipped and fell into the trash bin. The bin was lifted and held at arms length as she walked out to the garbage can. Tipping it upside down, the job was done. She reached into the hall closet and pulled out a mop and cleaning cloths. This shows that I have to unfold it and pinch it into the back. S he scratched the middle of the pad. Oh, there's the flap. Now where… the mop head turned back and forth twice. Oh. Okay. The flaps go into those thingies. Starting at the left upper corner of the kitchen floor, finishing with bottom left, the mop was taken out to the garbage to throw away the used cleaning cloth.
She ran to the bathroom and washed her hands five times before turning off the water. The door was closed on the other side and the light didn't shine from below. She changed into her nightgown and crawled into bed next to Sadie.
“What?” Sadie asked. “What are you doing here?”
“I love you, Momma. I wanted to snuggle.” Olwyn draped her arm on Sadie's stomach.
“Get back to your own bed.” Sadie elbowed her off the bed.
“You don't love me?”
“Good night.” Sadie turned to the side away from Olwyn.
She stood up from the floor and walked away with her head down. Both doors closed behind her. The knobs reflected a light that became a point of interest. Hearing a motor start broke her concentration and she crawled into bed. The pillow got wet as her eyes closed.
“Aaa!” Olwyn's eyes shot open, reaching for the blinking clock to turn off the alarm. Six-thirty. Time to get up. I wonder if Momma feels better. I know she's sick.
An hour later, she opened her door, “Good morning, Momma.” Not hearing a response, “Good morning, Momma.” She's not here. Maybe she's still sleeping. She's sick you know.
Olwyn stood in the hallway with fingers in her mouth, staring at the clock until the big hand changed from six to seven. I looked in the kitchen. I looked in the back. I looked in the front. I looked in her room five times. She's not home. They couldn't have left already. They didn't even say good-bye. A bowl of cereal was had before cleaning up.
Swimgear at the ready, she left the house.
I can hear the ocean calling me. The waves crashing is God's way of telling me that's where I'm supposed to be. “I'm coming God. I can hear you.”
Olwyn swam ten laps the length of the house before stopping to tread water. Salty water mixed with tears.
“You know,” Kallistrate said. “If you would like, all you have to do is knock on our door and we would swim with you. Afton isn't home at the moment. She has business to finish.” Her shoulders shook, “Two days she said. It's been four but…”
Olwyn swam in the other direction away from Kallistrate. When she looked on shore, there was the neighbor, standing with her hands on her hips.
“No thank you,” Olwyn said. “God doesn't want me to mix with your kind.”
“Be careful about spouting words of God. Someone may take you seriously enough to punish you for telling lies.”
“I tell the truth as I've been told to. God tells my Momma and Momma tells me.” Olwyn did the breaststroke back to the starting point.
“I suggest you study the Bible thoroughly. While doing so, remember that any book will be open to interpretation. The only difference being how that information is used.”
“I macro hate you for following me. I macro hate you for birthing those daughters. I—“
“Now wait just a minute!” Kallistrate walked into the water for Olwyn.
Olwyn turned around and swam away. Something grabbed her ankles. Kicking and squirming, “Aaaa! I'm being attacked! Help me! Help me! She wants to hurt me!”
Kallistrate let go. “I'm not going to hurt you! I draw the line when it comes to attacking my family!”
“Get away! Get away!” Olwyn swam further away from shore. Stopping to tread water, “Aaaa!”
“Stop screaming!” Kallistrate splashed the water.
“Mom. Mom!” Pipperelle called from behind. “Stop screaming and don't hold her. You do she won't stop. There are enough people here that there could be trouble. Just forget about her.”
“I can't do that,” Kallistrate said, turning her head to the side. “Children cannot be forgotten. They need to be protected.”
“She's on her own.” Pipperelle swam, then stopped in between Kallistrate and Olwyn, providing Olwyn the means to escape.
The door slammed shut and she leaned against the door. I don't hear anything. I need a bath. Momma would like that. She always tells me to get cleaned up after I come in.
Clean and changed, she went into the kitchen. “I'll make a sandwich. Momma says I eat too much. So I'll make a dry veggie sandwich. That means no cheese and no mayo.”
About to take the first bite, the doorbell rang. “I'm coming, Momma. I'll get it. I knew you would come back.” The chain came off and the lock turned, the door opened. “You get away.” Olwyn thrust her finger into Pipperelle's chest.
“Olwyn. I don't have a choice. For whatever reason, any reason…I don't know…Mom wants you to come over for lunch. So now that you're cleaned up we can go. It's the grill today. Georgie likes roasted hot dogs.”
“No.” Olwyn started to close the door but it was stopped.
The door opened up.
“Put aside whatever it is, and come over,” Pipperelle said. “We're next door so it won't be a long walk. Come on.”
“This is just another game. I macro hate games. Any lady—“
“Any lady would welcome the invitation. Yeah, I got the lady lessons along with the lessons in manners.” Pipperelle held out her hand.
“I have to get my key.” Olwyn closed and locked the door. All of the curtains closed, windows and doors double-checked, she went into her room. Sitting on the bed, she listened to the birds outside.
Hmm, ten minutes passed. God made her go away. He did.
Olwyn's bedroom window opened up, Pipperelle jumped in. “I can't go back empty handed and if it's one thing I've learned, patience really does pay off. So…” Pipperelle walked to Olwyn's nightstand picked up a set of keys. “Now that we have the keys, we can go.” Opening her arms in the direction of the door, “After you…”
Olwyn stood still with her arms crossed.
“All right.” Pipperelle walked toward her and fireman carried Olwyn out of the house.
“Aaaa! Aaaaa! I'm being kidnapped! Call the police! She wants to torture me!” Olwyn kicked and hit Pipperelle along the way.
After putting Olwyn down, “You can stop screaming now. The neighbors are deaf.” Pipperelle made a motion for Olwyn to walk into the house. “You first. I'll follow.” Olwyn didn't move. “Why are you being difficult? It's free food for crying out loud. You can't beat that and it's Mom's cooking.”
“Oh,” Kallistrate said. “I see you were successful. Come along then.” Olwyn rooted herself. Kallistrate took hold of Olwyn's hand and pulled her along. “And no screaming. It won't work. The neighbors are completely deaf and there's nobody else on this block. You. Me. Them. That's it for the neighborhood.”
Olwyn stood three feet away from the backyard bench, waving away the smoke.
“Yes, it is smoky out here at the moment,” Kallistrate said. “Why don't you go inside until this is done.”
Olwyn walked into the kitchen, slamming the sliding door.
“Aaah. Let me guess, Mom told you to come inside?” Pipperelle set a pitcher on the island. “Look. Olwyn. Whatever bug crawled up your ass, forget about it.” Gingerale was taken out of the fridge and set aside.
Olwyn walked to the sliding glass door. Pipperelle intercepted, “Nuh uh. You're here now. We've gotcha.”
Olwyn turned around with her arms crossed.
Pipperelle walked to the pantry and took out a jar of Maraschino cherries. “How do you think you did on your finals?” The liquid was poured into the pitcher, followed by the Gingerale.
“I'm going home. I'll call the police and charge you with kidnapping.”
“You'd have to explain why your parents are gone.”
“They are not gone. They left on a mission for God.”
Pipperelle put the jar down and started laughing. “You,” More laughing, “You actually believe that?”
“They are my parents,” Olwyn said. “They would never never do anything without bringing me along. They macro love me. I'm their Baby Doll.”
“Ok. Baby Doll.”
“You cannot use that name. Only Momma can.” Olwyn attempted to push the door open. “It won't open! You locked me in! Heeeeelp!”
“Have you stopped screaming?” Pipperelle picked up the pitcher and unlocked the door. “You see?”
Olwyn ran away stopped by the locked gate. “Open it now! I major command you!”
“Olwyn. Darling. Calm down and eat. The food is ready and Pipperelle made Shirley Temple.”
“I macro hate you. I macro hate your daughters. You are nothing but a pig disguised as a man! Only a man wears their hair short! You kidnapped me!”
Kallistrate walked over and unlocked the gate. “Go home then. Let the company of God keep you safe.” The gate slammed shut.
Olwyn ran home, stopping to get the key.
“You are really something you know that?” Pipperelle panted as she stood at the bottom of the steps. “Not only do you manage to make Georgie cry but my Mom as well. Have a nice life.”
Once the door became unlocked, she slammed and locked the door, running into her room. “Momma! Momma! Moooomaaaa!”
The sun was set and blackness covered the room. Olwyn lifted her head and looked side to side. “I want Momma! She's supposed to be here! God, send them home!” She looked at the clock, six thirty. I'm late for dinner. After washing her face, she went into the kitchen. The sandwich still sat there with tomatoe and lettuce peaking out from under the bread. The light reflected on something by the coffee machine. “It's a tiny cassette recorder. I missed that this morning.”
After pushing play, “Olwyn, we'll be back next Friday. If you need anything, charge it to your credit card.”
Olwyn pushed play over again, using alternate fingers.
On the last play, the doorbell rang. Kissing the recorder before leaving, she answered the door. “I knew—“
“I want to apologize for my outburst this afternoon,” Kallistrate said. “I shouldn't have let my emotions get to me. I'm sorry. What I would like is for you to come with me so we can talk. Without the verbal bloodshed.”
“I don't want to. I macro—“
“I know. You macro hate me to the major extreme and you would be macro happy when God sends me to Mephistopheles domain. I promise though, there will be peace. And I am a little concerned knowing that your parents aren't here, leaving you here alone.”
“No I'm not.”
“I know you are Olwyn. I saw them leave this morning with packed suitcases. Stop hiding. It will be all right.”
Olwyn stomped her foot, before looking down with her hand in her mouth.
“Come with me. I promise Pipperelle will behave. We talked after you left. I would have left too.” Kallistrate held out her hand. She reached out and tickled Olwyn's palm. “You don't have to suck your fingers. I have food at home as well if you like.”
Olwyn looked up, feeling tears running down her cheek. “I need my keys.”
“I'll come with you.”
Kallistrate followed Olwyn to the hallway. Olwyn went to the nightstand and stared at her keys. She fingered them, these are you keys. Don't lose them . “All right, Momma.”
“Are you ready to go? I threw away the sandwich on the table. Vegetables get old quickly if they're not taken care of.”
Olwyn turned around with keys in hand and left the house.
Kallistrate opened her door from behind. “Go ahead and sit down in the kitchen. I'll make you something. It doesn't look like you've eaten at all. At least not since breakfast from what I could tell.”
“I need to get cleaned up.”
“The bathroom is the first door on the left.”
Olwyn went inside the bathroom and looked in the mirror. Olwyn. Hi Baby Doll. How's Momma's girl? Always stay by me. Just because we don't hold hands doesn't mean you don't have to follow. There was a scream outside the door. Face and hands washed she left the bathroom.
Olwyn opened the door, “Oh.”
“Yeah,” Pipperelle said. “Look. Mom and I had a talk and she said I was wrong for saying what I did. So…I'm sorry.”
“Excuse me.” Olwyn stuck her arm between Pipperelle and the door jam.
“Pipperelle,” Kallistrate said. “Did you apologize?”
“Then let her out of the bathroom.”
Pipperelle stepped aside, letting Olwyn out. Kallistate stood in the hall, watching Olwyn approach. “I have a sandwich ready for you. It's a grilled chicken breast sandwich with potatoe salad.”
“I don't eat spicy food.”
“Well that's a good thing, because it's not spicy.”
Olwyn looked up and nodded. After she finished, she left the plate on the counter.
“That's all you're going eat?” Kallistrate asked.
“I ate what a lady should eat,” Olwyn said. “Just enough to satisfy not to fill.”
“So you know, I have a problem with that theory.”
“And I'm fat.”
“And you're what?” Kallistrate walked to the table. She placed her hands on both sides of Olwyn. “I can feel your ribs and count each of them without trying. That's not being fat.”
“My Momma says I weigh one-hundred pounds when I'm only supposed to weigh ninety-three pounds. I have a lot of weight to lose.”
“To satisfy my curiosity, let's go weigh you.”
Olwyn looked up at Kallistrate. Shaking her head, “No. I'm going home now.”
“I insist. Why? Because you are alone in that house without anybody to look after you. If there's an emergency, what will happen? Whom are you going to call after dialing 9-1-1? In case of an evacuation, your parents aren't here to watch out for you. Let's go weigh.”
“No. I'll go home now. God watched over us and if she lied—“
“Remember what I said about being careful spouting words of God?”
Olwyn turned around and walked to the front door. The knob jiggled but it didn't turn. “I major command you to unlock the door.”
“No. I won't do that. Let's go, Olwyn.”
Olwyn stood there with her arms crossed. She glanced over shoulder and turned so her back faced the door. “She's not lifting me up. Only my Daddy can do that.”
Pipperelle threw her hands in the air before leaving the room.
“The cops will throw you away in jail if you don't let me go home,” Olwyn said.
“All right, Olwyn. All right. We'll do this tomorrow. I'll be by at eight o'clock in the morning.”
Kallistrate unlocked and opened the door, Olwyn ran out and down the hill. She stopped to work the key, slamming the door shut once she was inside.
All of the doors and windows were double-checked before Olwyn got ready for bed.
The sun shone into the room lighting the pillow. “Mm. I don't wanna.” Olwyn shifted her head and opened her eyes. It's seven-thiry. Breakfast time. I have to take a shower I guess.
She opened the cupboard to take out the cereal, opening the fridge to get the milk.
The doorbell rang.
Olwyn got a bowl and spoon and put them on the table. The dishes were washed after she finished.
She left the house with a towel and book.
“There you are,” Kallistrate said. “Good morning.” After a moment, “Hmm. Didn't sleep well huh? That's okay. Come on, we'll go down in front my house and swim over there.”
“We'll swm here then.” Kallistrate turned around, waving her hand in the air. “Over here!”
Olwyn looked up before walking passed Kallistrate. Over here will be nice. Nobody behind us to bother me. Peace and quiet. I can enjoy the water now.
Olwyn stopped to tread water. Water splashed her face.
Georgie laughed, “I gotcha,” continuing to giggle.
Olwyn ducked underwater and swam away, running to shore.
“Hey!” Georgid said. “I was only playing.”
Olwyn covered her head, “AAAAAAAA!”
“It wasn't that bad,” Pipperelle said. “You're not going to melt.”
“Okay. Fine. You are going to melt. Then what? Come up with a spell—“
“That's enough!” Kallistrate said. “You are out of line.”
“Mom, Georgie was only playing. Just like she always does. It was Olwyn that spoiled it yet again.”
“Go watch your sister,” Kallistrate said.
Olwyn removed the towel from her head.
“There. Now that I can see your lovely blue eyes—“
Olwyn slapped Kallistrate. “Aaaaaa!” Up the steps, and in the house, Olwyn showered scrubbing her skin red.
After her clothes were put on, the doorbell rang.
Olwyn stomped to the door. “I don't macro care about you! I don't macro care about your sister! I don't macro care about anything! Good-bye! Good riddance!” It slammed shut.
She went outside again, standing on the front porch looking left, right, then left again. Good they're gone.
She did the breaststroke around the house until exhaustion. She picked up the towel on the chair, mmm, that felt so good. So relaxing. A proper bath, and everything will be perfect.
After the bath, she walked into the kitchen and looked in the refrigerator. Bread, cheese, mayonnaise, lettuce, and tomato were taken out. A glass of milk later, and she was done. Now what to do. I'll finish my book on the beach.
The front porch provided shade and the breeze blew in.
“We try,” Pipperelle said. “At least Mom does and what happens?”
Olwyn turned the page.
“I asked a question.”
Another page turned.
“Why should we even bother? I don't get it. I hope you are happy living all by yourself.”
Can I have peace now?
Five pages later, “Olwyn,” Kallistrate said. “I need to talk to you.”
“What do I have to do to get you to major leave me alone?” Olwyn slammed the book on the table.
“I can't leave you alone. As much as you hurt me, as much as my family is calling me insane…I can't.”
“It's really major easy. You turn around and walk away. Your daughter should teach you how to do that. Oh and never come back.” Olwyn picked up her book again.
“It's not that easy.”
Olwyn put her book on her lap, “What? Your—“
“That's enough of the verbal sparring I think. No matter what is done, no matter what is said, neither of us will win. My hair is short because my sister was undergoing treatment for cancer. All of her hair fell out so in support…I shaved it off and it's finally growing back. Pipperelle, well…I'm responsible for that I suppose. Georgie, she's always had a mind of her own.”
“Never done. Come along with me and I'll make you something for lunch.”
“You need to eat.”
“You need to major leave me alone. I keep saying it and saying it and saying it. You don't listen. So yeah…you are responsible for Pipperelle.”
Kallistrate shook her head before walking away.
Book picked up again, and she continued to read. It's dark out and I didn't even realize. Maybe I'll order a pizza. A cheese pizza sounds major good right now.
The order arrived a half hour later. Trash thrown out in the garbage can outside, and she got ready for bed.
==========Still with me? To be continued in chapter 4
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