Posted in Natalie

Natalie: Part 2- Marshmallow World Installment Twenty-Seven

**

“A play?” I asked Ms. Erin after church.

“Not just any play but a Nativity Play for your mother’s wedding,” Ms. Erin said. “I know that your mother loves Christmas and I just thought that it would be a nice little surprise.”

“I like it,” I said. “And I’ll think my mother will be pleased.”

“Great!” Ms. Erin shouted. “We’ll have auditions Wednesday night after we audition for the Easter play and I’ll email the parents about it and tell them to keep this a secret.”

“What a secret?” Momma asked walking up.

“Oh I was just asking Natalie some questions about my wedding,” Ms. Erin smiled.

“See you tomorrow afternoon,” Momma smiled at Ms. Erin. Ms. Erin winked at me and walked away.

**

“It’s snowing!” Megan squealed looking out the window later that day.

“NO! NO! NO!” Momma shouted running to the window.

“What’s wrong?” I asked. “We’ve seen a lot of snow since we moved here.”

“It can’t be snowing!” Momma cried. “My wedding is in two weeks! It’s a SPRING wedding not a WINTER wedding!”

“Calm down, Riley,” Aunt Clarisse said. “It’s just a light dusting. The snow will melt soon.”

“Well it better!” Momma cried. She stormed up the steps.

“What’s up with Momma?” I asked.

“Just pre-wedding jitters,” Aunt Clarisse shrugged. “She’s going to get more and more frazzled in the weeks to come. Her previous wedding was probably a lot simpler. Did she and your father elope?”

“I don’t think so,” I said. “My father just took her to England for their wedding.”

“Huh?” Aunt Clarisse asked.

“Oh, I’m sorry,” I said. “I’ve been reading my father’s journals and I’m up to their wedding.”

“I wish I could have met your father,” Aunt Clarisse said. She walked away looking sad.

The doorbell rang and Grandma Shirley answered it.

“Who are you?” I heard Grandma Shirley snap.

“Mr. and Mrs. Baldwin,” A deep British voice asked. “You wouldn’t happen to be Donna Edwards the lady who runs the Sunshine B&B?”

“You insult me!” Grandma Shirley cried. “I’m Shirley Walters!”

“You can’t be,” A woman’s voice with a British accent asked. I walked towards the door to find an old looking man and middle-aged/older looking blonde haired lady.

“You’re nothing like your daughter!” The man shouted.

“Tell me something I don’t know,” Grandma Shirley said leaning on the door.

“And who are you?” The woman asked.

It took me a second to answer. What should I call myself? These people were clearly my grandparents. Would they be offended it I used my new name?

“Natalie Matthews,” I decided on. Grandma and Grandpa Baldwin smiled.

“Then you must be our granddaughter,” Grandma Baldwin said. “Where’s your mother?”

“Crying because it’s snowing,” I said. Grandma and Grandpa Baldwin laughed.

“Mom! Dad!” Momma cried running down the steps. She gave Grandma and Grandpa Baldwin a hug. Grandma Shirley scowled. She slammed the door shut leaving Grandma and Grandpa Baldwin along with Momma out on the porch in the snow.

Momma opened the door and looked at Grandma Shirley.

“Whoops, the um doorknob slipped through my fingers,” Grandma Shirley lied.

Grandma and Grandpa Baldwin raised their eyebrows at her and walked into the B&B.

Only two weeks and five days to go.

**

“The dresses are purely ugly.”

Of course Grandma Shirley just said that to be contrary.

Jaci and Mrs. Stewart sighed. I personally thought my dress looked beautiful except for the bow though.

“Mrs. Stewart, the dress are lovely,” Momma said giving Mrs. Stewart a hug. “Thank you Jaci and Mrs. Stewart.”

Sean looks like she wants to disappear. The bridesmaids’ dresses don’t have sleeves. Sean had bunch of scares on her arms and some spilling from her chest. Mrs. Rivers ran over to her and hugged her.

“The dresses are very pretty,” Grandma Baldwin said laying on the British charm. “The hems are very very good.”

Mrs. Stewart smirked at Grandma Shirley, and Grandma Shirley scowled.

“Now go try on your dress!” Abby squealed at Momma. Momma walked into the temporary dressing room and five minutes later walked out of the dressing room.

Grandma Shirley opened her mouth but Aunt Clarisse opened her mouth and talked faster than I ever heard somebody talk in my life.

“Huh?” Momma asked. Everyone else had a confused look on their face but they didn’t say anything.

“I said the dress looks beautiful!” Aunt Clarisse shouted walking towards Momma. “It’s exactly the dress you always said you’d marry Steve in.”

“I know,” Momma said. Her face was bursting with joy. “Jaci and Mrs. Stewart got it perfect. I love it!”

“We were happy to do it,” Jaci said. Mrs. Stewart nodded her head. Tears streamed down Momma’s face. Then the tears turned into sobs.

“Riley, what’s wrong?” Mrs. Rivers asked walking over to Momma.

“I have the strangest feeling,” Momma cried. “It’s almost like I’m burying Alexander again.”

Grandma Baldwin gave Momma a hug. Grandma Shirley ran (and in Mrs. Stewart’s sewing room there is no room for running especially with all the girls that were in here) to Momma’s side and embraced her in an awkward hug.

“Mother, you’re choking me,” Momma said. Grandma Baldwin let go probably thinking that would help. Grandma Shirley just hugged Momma tighter.

“Mother, get off of me!” Momma shouted. Her tone was quick, short, and unforgiving. I sensed hurt in it also. Grandma Shirley did not seem surprised by Momma’s voice. She snorted.

“You were always begging for me to hug you and when I did you didn’t want me to touch you,” Grandma Shirley said with such hatred and hurt that I almost cried. “At least that hasn’t changed about you.”

“Nothing’s changed about you,” Momma snapped. “You didn’t seem to get the message I had been sending out for all of my life until I went to high school. You didn’t sense the desire I had to please my mother. To be loved my mother. And even when you seemed to at least grasp a little of that you still pushed me to side. You hugged Clarisse, John, and Cael with all the love in the world but you hugged me like you wished I’d never been born. You just gave me that same cold hug just now. The hug was always too late. I had been begging and begging for you to help me and you’d hug me just after everything had gone wrong. The hug was never sincere. You just hugged me to put on a show. You just hugged me to make it look like you were a good mother. What did I ever do you to? I tried to please you. Papa was always proud of me but you never were. For a time Cael and John were proud of me. Always talking about how I had great expectations and how I was going to be some big name lawyer someday. When Clarisse was little she’d go around telling people that she was Riley Walters’ little sister. But when it came to you. You didn’t even have a picture of me on your desk!”

Momma ran out the door with tears flowing like a river. Grandma Shirley stood there looking surprised but not shocked. Her eyes were trying to focus on the wall but you could still see that there were tears in her eyes. But there was no sense of remorse in her eyes though and that hurt me. Aunt Clarisse, after she got over her shock, walked out the door to go search for Momma. I quickly followed.

I managed to walk out the door just in time to see Mr. Stewart push my mother into the road and be semi-hit by an oncoming car.

Posted in A Moment With Me

A Moment With Me, Ari

I can’t believe February is almost over. There was so much I wanted to do this month and I didn’t do it………..well February is only 28 days in 2013. But there I did things are things I didn’t think I would do. Natalie is now over 40,000 words. Can’t be too mad about that. Goodbye, February 😦 you’re leaving so soon.

Hope your February was full of LOVE! 🙂 🙂 ❤

Posted in Natalie

Natalie: Part 2- Marshmallow World Installment Twenty-Six

**

“Natalie.”

I looked up from my science book. Momma and Mr. Steve were standing in front of me looking serious.

“Yes?” I asked.

“We need to talk to you,” Momma said sitting down on the couch.

“About what?” I asked. My voice sounded shaky and I have no clue why.

“Natalie, how would you feel if I told you that Steve was adopting you?” Momma asked. Her voice also sounded shaky.

“Mr. Steve is adopting me?!” I shouted standing up. I was finally able to stand on my foot again but at this moment my foot was aching and so was my heart.

“Yes, I’m adopting you and Megan,” Mr. Steve said. “And your mother is adopting Jaci and Abby.”

I ran out the door and sat on the porch and started to cry.

“Natalie,” Momma said walking out of the house and sitting on the swing next to me.

“I don’t want to be known as Natalie Matthews,” I sighed. “I don’t ever want to forget my father’s name.”

“Oh, Sweetheart, that is not mine or Steve’s intent,” Momma said squeezing my hand. “If you read this I think you’ll understand better.”

Momma placed a letter in my hand and walked back into the house.

  Dear Natalie,

  If you’re reading this it’s because I’m dead and your mother is getting remarried. Natalie, don’t be upset or hate this man. I want your mother to be happy and I have given her my permission to get remarried if I die.

 I also have made it a requirement that this man adopt you. Don’t scream my dear, Natalie, I’m going to tell you why I want him to adopt you. If I die it is very likely that it is not an accident. Your mother is also in danger. Now your mother has asked me not to tell you this danger here but has assured me that someday you will find out.

 Natalie, I know that the upcoming days are going to be hard for you but I want you to try to be happy for your mother. That’s an order. I also want you to use your new name with pride. That’s also an order. Through all of this remember that I love you and wish that I could still be with you.

Love,

Your Daddy, Alexander Baldwin

I sighed. How could I say with pride ‘Natalie Zoey Matthews’? I looked down and noticed there was a P.S.

P.S. Natalie, you may think that using your new name will be more than you can handle but I know you can do it. I would never ask you or your mother to do something I didn’t believe you could do.

I let tears escape my eyes. If my father thought I could do it then I could do it.

**

“This is a mighty long list,” I said reading the wedding guest list. Momma, Abby, Jaci, Mrs. Stewart, Emily, Mrs. Rivers, Sean, Ms. Donna, and I were in the restaurant planning the wedding and Momma’s bridal shower.

“It is not,” Momma said. “We’ve gotten lots of RSVPs back which is good since this wedding was such short notice.”

LET ME IN!” Someone pounded on the restaurant’s door.

“I wonder who that could be,” Ms. Donna wondered out loud unlocking the restaurant door.

Grandma Shirley marched through the door and a blonde woman who I had never seen before walked in behind her.

“Clarisse!” Momma shouted jumping out of her chair and hugging the woman.

“Riley!” The woman shouted hugging Momma back.

“Mother told me that you have six children,” Momma said. “It can’t be true.”

“It is,” Aunt Clarisse smiled. “This must be your daughter Natalie.”

Aunt Clarisse smiled at me and I smiled back.

“I cannot believe you Riley Anne Walters!” Grandma Shirley shouted. She pulled the wedding invitation out of her purse.

“I thought you would want to know,” Momma said. “I’m sorry if it offended you.”

“What offends me is that you didn’t tell me about this!” Grandma Shirley shouted. “I could have been helping you all this time! Well what’s been done has been done. Your father and brothers are coming up a little closer to the wedding.”

Everyone in the room just blinked (even Aunt Clarisse stared at Grandma Shirley).

“Who’s your maid of honor and who’s planning your bridal shower?” Aunt Clarisse asked Momma.

“There is no maid of honor,” Mrs. Rivers spoke up. “But I’m planning the bridal shower.”

“Can I help you?” Aunt Clarisse asked. “And I would love to be the maid of honor.”

“It’s been waiting for you,” Momma smiled.

“And of course you can help me,” Mrs. Rivers smiled. “You know more about Riley than I do!”

“Now I must know all the details! The wedding is in a month and I just got the invitation!” Grandma Shirley shouted.

“Here,” Momma said handing Grandma Shirley the wedding planning book.

“You’re dresses are being made by a sixteen year old girl?” Grandma Shirley asked looking disgusted.

“Hey! I’m eighteen!” Jaci shouted getting defensive. I was taken aback. Jaci usually didn’t talk like that to anyone.

“And I’m helping,” Mrs. Stewart said. “And so is Joan and Jessie-Maria.”

“Who’s Jessie-Maria? And why in the world is her name so long and weird?” Grandma Shirley asked.

“I’m Jessie-Maria and I prefer to be called Sean,” Sean said speaking up but her voice still sounded mouse-like.

“Why would you want to be called a boys’ name?” Grandma Shirley asked.

“Um, Mother, you said Papa and John and Cael are coming up closer to the wedding,” Momma said. “Does that mean Clarisse and you are staying in Florida?”

“Oh course!” Grandma Shirley shouted. “Why would I drive from Pittsfield every day when I can just stay at the B&B?”

This was going to be a long three weeks.

Posted in Farm Girl, Gifted, Natalie

Natalie, Farm Girl, and Gifted Notice

At the current moment Natalie is my main priority. Natalie will be slowly getting faster (in regards to time) and we’ll soon be in part three. You may notice that Farm Girl and Gifted are behind and posted less often. Please understand that I am still writing Farm Girl and Gifted but not as much as Natalie.

Writergirlari ❤

Posted in Gifted

Gifted: Chapter 2 Installment One

Chapter 2

I hate waiting rooms especially if it’s in a hospital.

I hate hospitals. It smells too clean to me. I believe that germs make the air smell good. When I told Mr. Jenkins (he’s a doctor) that he called the state and told them that they gave him a crazy child.

But Mrs. Rivers had an appointment today. Turns out Mrs. Rivers is having a baby. Why they took me in amazes me. The day Mrs. Young announced she was having a baby they called Mr. Bill.

I’d been with the Rivers’ for two weeks now. They were nice and all but Mrs. Rivers and I didn’t talk much and it was just us in the house during the day but things might be looking up. I’m going to be a bridesmaid in a local wedding.

“Jessie-Maria?” Mr. Rivers asks walking out the door.

“The air smells germless,” I blurt. I felt my cheeks blush. Why did I have to say a stupid think like that? Mr. Rivers just chuckled.

“Come on,” Mr. Rivers says. “We got a surprise for you.”

“What kind of surprise?” I ask following Mr. Rivers down the hall. Mr. Rivers didn’t say anything. He just opened a door to where Mrs. Rivers was sitting down. She smiled at me.

“Mr. Rivers said something about a surprise,” I say walking in. Mrs. Rivers nodded her head.

“Honey,” Mrs. Rivers says reaching out for me to hug her. I walked over to her and let her squeeze me.

“I’m having twins,” Mrs. Rivers smiles. I frown.

“What’s wrong?” Mr. Rivers asks. I don’t know why but I go fly out the door and ran outside.

“JESSIE-MARIA!” Mr. Rivers calls. I turn around.

“Are you ok, honey?” Mr. Rivers asks me. He takes my hand and gets down to my height.

“I guess I’ll be leaving ya’ll soon,” I say. Yes, I know that ‘ya’ll’ is not a word but I’ve spent a considerable time in the South.

“Do you not like it here?” Mr. Rivers asks.

“No. You and Mrs. Rivers are really nice and I like being back in Massachusetts and I expected to stay here at least until the baby came but now that you’re having twins I guess I’ll be leaving after Mrs. Baldwin’s wedding,” I sigh.

“Jessie-Maria,” Mr. Rivers sighs. “I know that you’ve lived in quite a few foster families and that you’ve probably had something similar happen to you but Joan and I like you and if it’s all right with you, we’d like for you to stay.”

“Under one condition,” I say.

“What is it?” Mr. Rivers asks.

“That you stop calling me Jessie-Maria and call me Sean. Everybody else does. Even your wife sometimes calls me that,” I said. Mr. Rivers smiled.

“Deal,” Mr. Rivers smiles.

*

“Aren’t these cute?” Mrs. Rivers asks.

I nod. We’re baby shopping. We’re also shopping for me but Mrs. Rivers made a beeline for the baby clothes the minute we walked into the store.

“Are you having two girls, two boys, or a boy and a girl?” I ask.

“Tom and I want to be surprised,” Mrs. Rivers says.

“I like surprises,” I blurt. Mrs. Rivers smiles.

“So do I,” Mrs. Rivers says. “For now we’re looking at things in yellow and green.” I nod.

“What do you want?” I ask.

“In regards to what, honey?” Mrs. Rivers asks.

“Do you want two girls, two boys, or one of each?” I ask. “Oh and do you want them to be identical.”

“I’m not too crazy about identical twins, but I’ll take whatever the Lord gives me,” Mrs. Rivers said. “We can go baby shopping in a minute. You need a new dress. One that covers your knees.”

Right now I’m wearing one of Mrs. Rivers’ old pants. They’re too big for me and this belt I’m wearing is killing me.

“This one looks my size,” I say picking up a black and white dress.

“Go try it on,” Mrs. Rivers says taking a pink one off the rack.

“I’m pretty sure it’s my size,” I say. Mrs. Rivers hands me the pink dress and walks away. I walk towards the dressing room.

I hate dressing rooms. With all those mirrors around the scorn you. I haven’t been in one for over a year. I walk into the dressing room and the lady gives me a number two.

There’s only one left. The big one with all the mirrors around.

“Go on,” The woman says. I walk into the dressing room and tears stream down my face. I slowly undress.

My scares laugh and mock at me. My tears flow down like a river.

“Sean, are you ok?” Mrs. Rivers asks through the door. I guess I’m crying loud now. I put my shirt back on and walk out the dressing room.

“I can’t do it! I just can’t do it!” I cry. I run to the baby section and cry as if I was a baby.

 

Posted in Natalie

Natalie: Part 2- Marshmallow World Installment Twenty-Five

**

“When I found out that the world famous Ned Davis was moving into the apartment next to me, I almost moved out,” Ms. Erin said as she told the story of how she met Ned. “I was appealed at the time that I was going to be living next to a man who played the Devil and was a Stewart.”

“You played the Devil?” Virginia asked.

“And won an Oscar for it,” Ned said.

“So I guess you were pretty famous,” I said.

“Yup. I’ve got two Oscars and five Golden Globes,” Ned said.

“Then why did you leave Hollywood?” Nelson asked.

“I got in trouble a lot. Fights at clubs and bars. And when my daughter Emma was born I knew I had to change,” Ned said. “So Emma and I left Hollywood and came back to where I grew up.”

“If I was a famous actress making lots of money I wouldn’t leave,” Virginia said. Ned smiled.

“Well I’m glad Ned left,” Ms. Erin said hugging Ned.

“We about ready to go?” Zach asked. We nodded.

“It’s really snowing out there,” Darcy said looking out the window.

“Again?” Emily asked also looking out the window. “We just had that terrible blizzard.”

“Let’s get home before it gets worse,” Zach said.

We piled into Zach’s car and started on the road for home.

“Honey, can you see?” Abby asked.

“Nope,” Zach said.

“Pull over!” Emily shouted putting her hands over her eyes. Nelson hugged her.

“I think we’re almost home,” Zach said. Abby groaned.

“What?” Ms. Erin asked.

“Nothing,” Abby laughed.

“LOOK OUT!”

Zach slammed on the breaks and just barely missed hitting another car.

“Seriously!” I shouted throwing my hands up.

Mr. Stewart walked from the other car and Emily looked at Timmy.

“Don’t worry,” Timmy said squeezing her shoulder.

“Mr. Stewart, what are you doing?” Abby asked rolling down her window.

“I could ask you the same question,” Mr. Stewart said.

“Zach, Erin, Ned, Natalie, Darcy, Emily, Nelson, Jaci, Timmy, and I went out on a group date,” Abby said. “What are you doing?”

“If you have to know I’m coming from Pittsfield,” Mr. Stewart said. “I don’t remember giving Emily and Timmy permission to go out this evening.”

“Grandma said we could go!” Emily screamed loud enough that Mr. Stewart could hear her. Mr. Stewart nodded.

“Uncle Fowler, why were you spending?” Zach asked rolling down his window. “And why are driving on the wrong side of the street?”

“Zach Davis!” Mr. Stewart shouted. “I’ll get on the right side of the road.”

Mr. Stewart got in his car and got out of the way.

As we started to drive towards the street where Ms. Erin and Ned lived, I had a strange feeling that Mr. Stewart was out to get me.

**

“Meehghneojgsosanivgsnhiigsiogils.”

“Huh?” I asked Mrs. Stewart. Mrs. Stewart took some pins out of her mouth.

“Hold still,” Mrs. Stewart said. I tried to stand still.

“Ow!” I shouted.

“I said hold still,” Mrs. Stewart said. “Now I don’t want to poke you but if you keep moving I’m going to.”

“Are you sure about this bow in the back?” I asked Jaci.

“I’m positive,” Jaci said. “I think the daughter of the bride’s dress should be a little different from the other bridesmaid’s dresses.”

“Darcy better not laugh at me,” I sighed.

“I’ll have a talk with him,” Mrs. Stewart winked.

I sighed.

“I feel like a princess,” Abby said. “OW!”

“Sorry!” Momma said. “I’m not the world’s best pinner. I still can’t believe Jaci talked me into letting her and Mrs. Stewart make my wedding dresses and my bridesmaids’ dresses.”

“We will not disappoint,” Mrs. Stewart smiled.

“Well I was impressed when Mrs. Stewart put the pattern instructions in her pattern drawer without even reading it,” Momma laughed.

“I’ve made these dresses a thousand times.” Mrs. Stewart said. “Ok not a thousand but I know what I’m doing and so does Jaci.”

“I’m just glad you were able to find the color pink I wanted in fabric,” Abby smiled.

“I feel like a penguin,” Mrs. Rivers sighed. Sean smiled.

“You should,” Momma smiled. “You’re carrying twins.”

“We should start planning your baby shower,” Regina said.

“Riley, you know the only reason I’m doing this is because you’re getting married next month,” Mrs. Rivers said. Momma smiled.

“How are we going to get these dresses made by April 20th?” Emily asked.

“I can help,” Sean said in a low voice.

“Do you know how to sew?” Jaci asked.

“Yeah,” Sean mumbled.

“I can help out too,” Mrs. Rivers said. “It will give Jessie and me something to do.”

“Why don’t you go to school?” Regina asked Sean.

“I…I….I….,” Sean started.

“She already has her high school diploma and is taking online college courses for Oxford. They made a special exception,” Mrs. Rivers said.

“You must be mighty gifted to be get into Oxford at your age,” Emily said. Sean dropped the pin cushion and went running out the door.

“I meant it as a compliment,” Emily said looking hurt.

“I know sweetie,” Mrs. Rivers said hugging Emily. “I know.”

Posted in Natalie

Natalie: Part 2- Marshmallow World Installment Twenty-Four

**

“Where’s Regina?” I asked the next day. Currently at the moment it was just Momma, Jaci, Regina, Mrs. Walters, and me in the house. Momma and Jaci were sitting down in the restaurant.

“I don’t know,” Momma shrugged. “Do you need her for something?”

“Well now that this ‘date’ has turned into a group date I’m starting to worry about what I’m going to wear,” I said.

Momma smiled.

“Are you sure you don’t want to come, Mrs. Baldwin?” Jaci asked Momma. “Zach and Abby are coming. And so are Nelson and Emily, Erin and Ned, Leo and Virginia.”

“No, I wouldn’t want to impose on my daughter’s first date,” Momma said. She squealed.

“Can you please stop with the squealing?” I asked walking off to find Regina. I opened the downstairs bathroom door.

“Regina!” I shouted. Regina was sitting in the corner of the bathroom with a box of hair dye in her hands. Her hair was an interesting shade of Auburn.

“I dyed it,” Regina choked.

“I can see,” I nodded.

“I think I did something wrong,” Regina said. “It was supposed to be Red with a Kiss of Sunshine.”

“It looks like Red with a Kiss of Darkness,” I said.

“It’s more brown than red!” Regina said looking at herself in the window.

“I agree,” I said.

“I look stupid!” Regina cried.

“Why did you dye your hair?” I asked touching it.

“Red heads and girls who dye at least a lock of their hair pink are very in right now,” Regina said.

“Regina………..,” Momma said walking into the bathroom. “What happened to your hair?”

“I dyed it,” Regina cried.

“I can see,” Momma said.

“I think I did something wrong,” Regina said. “It was supposed to be Red with a Kiss of Sunshine.”

“It looks like Red with a Kiss of Darkness,” Momma said.

“Like mother like daughter,” Regina cried. “My mom is going to kill me!”

“She’s not going to kill you,” Momma said. “She’s going to get mad but not mad enough to kill you.”

“I can’t come out of this bathroom,” Regina cried.

“Well you’re going to have to,” I said. “I need help picking out an outfit for tonight.”

“Why don’t you get Virginia to do it?” Regina snapped.

“Cause….cause….she’s getting ready for tonight too,” I said.

“Nobody likes me,” Regina pouted. “Everybody else got a special Valentine but all I get are stupid cheesy ones.”

“Is that why you died your hair?” Momma asked.

“There’s nothing special about me,” Regina said. “I was just a plan ole blonde haired girl. I want to be special.”

“You are special,” Momma said hugging her. “And you don’t need some boy to tell you that. You’re still young. You’re not even in high school yet. You’ll have tons of boys telling you you’re special in no time.”

“It just seems like everybody else is growing up,” Regina said.

“You’re growing up too,” Momma said hugging her tighter. “You just can’t tell because you’re looking at how everybody else is growing up and not noticing you are too.”

“Regina,” Jaci said walking into the bathroom.

“Ok, this place just got crowded,” I said. Regina laughed and then started to cry.

“What happened to your hair?” Jaci asked.

“I dyed it,” Regina said.

“Dyed it?” Jaci asked confusing.

“You dye your hair to change its color,” Momma explained.

“That explains why it’s brown now,” Jaci said. Regina cried.

“It’s not brown is it?” Jaci asked.

“It’s supposed to be red,” Regina cried.

“Like Emily’s hair red?” Jaci asked.

“A little darker,” Regina said. “But I think I left it on too long.”

“Oh,” Jaci nodded.

“I’m back and you should see the dress I’m going to wear tonight,” Abby said walking into the house. “Oh my. Regina, what happened to your hair?”

“I think I left it in too long,” Regina said. “It was supposed to be Red with a Kiss of Sunshine.”

“It looks like Red with a Kiss of Darkness,” Abby said. Regina sighed.