“Dana!” She felt tugging on her skirt, accompanying the shrill whine. “There’s nothing to do!!! I’m boooorrrrred!”
And I’m going to need some aspirin before this day is over…
With a slight frown, she turned her attention from the damp, grey window to look down at her charge.
This was not a normal Wednesday. A Nor’Easter was threatening to hit the town with hurricane force winds and hail. School was shut down, but Charlie’s mom had a twelve hour shift at the hospital, so she called Dana in as a sitter.
On a normal Wednesday, they would both be in school; Charlie secure behind the gates of Lockwood Elementary, and Dana finding every way possible to breach the fences at Hardon County High.
She wasn’t a drop out or anything, on the contrary, she was quite smart and maintained excellence grades despite poor attendance. She was just bored. But as long as her grades stayed high, she turned in her assignments and she wasn’t pregnant or on drugs, her teachers looked the other way. They had bigger problems to deal with and Dana wasn’t one of them.
Dana knelt to look her charge in the eye. “How about we play a game?”
“What kinda game?” Charlie’s eyes narrowed in suspicion. He had recently discovered that half the “games” people played with him were just ways to get him to do what they wanted him to do in the first place. Smart kid…
“How about a guessing game?” Dana relaxed herself fully onto the carpet. “I’m gonna tell you three things, and almost everything I tell you will be true. You have to guess which thing is a lie. What’d ya think?”
Charlie scanned her face looking for signs of a trick. “What do I get if I win?”
“I saw apple pie in the kitchen. How about the winner gets a slice of apple pie?”
More thinking ensued. Dana had never seen a six year old mind working so hard. Finally, Charlie had his counter offer.
“How about we both get apple pie, but the winner gets chocolate chip ice cream to go with it?”
Dana laughed. She loved this kid. “Deal! Ready?”
Charlie leaned forward, staring intently. He obviously had every intention of getting ice cream with his pie.
“Ok, let’s see…” Dana started. “One… Last weekend I stole Kristen’s boots and ruined them wading up Glen Creek. I gave them back to her Monday, and she was furious!
“Two… A pair of cats climbed up my tree and jumped in my bedroom window. They don’t want to leave, so I’m keeping them as pets.
“Three… I haven’t told anyone this yet, but I got a letter back from Yale. I’m in!”
She leaned back and looked at Charlie, “So, what is true and what is a lie?”
Without hesitation, Charlie replied, “You’d better not have cats. Cats freak me out. That’s the lie, it’s the cats!”
“Charlie, I don’t believe you! There is nothing wrong with cats! No! It’s the shoes! Do you think I would be stupid enough to touch Kristen’s shoes? She’d kill, me silly!”
“Ah, man! Ok, do it again! I’ll do better this time!”
Author’s Note: 30 minutes writing (couldn’t stop!), so I just took five minutes for a quick edit, so it’s still pretty rough, but that was fun! Oh, and #35.
Source: TBP’s On-line Writer’s Guild