“Thank you so much for coming on such short notice, Danielle. I tried every other woman on the block, but they’re all swamped. You’re a lifesaver.”
“Of course. I’m happy to help,” said Danielle, ignoring the fact that she was literally the last person Harriet had called – or the last woman at least. Danielle decided not to think too much about the implications of that. She supposed it would actually have been more insulting, in Harriet’s own way, if she had called a man before Danielle for childcare services.
“It shouldn’t take long. It’s just a quick checkup to make sure everything is moving along as it should. I’m sure I’ll be back in less than an hour.”
“Don’t worry about it. Take your time.”
“Thanks again. I really cannot tell you what a huge help this is. I’ll make sure to get you your invitation to the book club as soon as I get back. I mean, obviously you’re welcome to come, but I want to make it official.”
“Thank you, I’d love to come. When do you guys normally meet?”
“The last Sunday of the month. We usually meet in the early evening and I provide refreshments for everyone. I’ll get all the information for you as soon as I get back.” She blew a kiss to her kids and was out the door.
“Mom’s book clubs are so BORING,” Caleb said as soon as his mother was out the door.
“What? You mean you don’t join in on the discussion?” Danielle teased.
Caleb rolled his eyes. “Of COURSE not. There’s never a single guy there. Every woman in town comes, but not one guy.” He sighed heavily.
“Every woman in town, huh?” Danielle struggled to hold back the smile that was threatening to creep across her face. “Is it really so bad to be surrounded by the women of your neighborhood?”
“Duh. Well, every woman except Kiera. Obviously.”
“Why not Kiera?”
His blue eyes widened to double their previous size as he leaned towards Danielle. “You mean you don’t know about her?”
“Nope. I haven’t had the chance to meet her yet. I’ve heard she has a lot of cats and apparently doesn’t have a job, but that’s all I know so far.”
“She doesn’t have to work any more because she made a fortune working as a circus freak.”
This time it was Danielle’s eyes that widened. “The circus?”
“Yep. She was so ugly that the circus hired her as their main attraction so everyone could come and see how hideous she was. That’s how she made enough money to retire.”
“Is that so?”
Caleb nodded seriously and Danielle had to struggle not to laugh in his face. “And where did you hear all this?”
“Everybody knows it.”
“Uh huh. And yet that still doesn’t answer my question.”
Caleb looked askance for a minute, considering, then gave up and shrugged his shoulders. “But it’s true,” he said, as if that settled the matter.
Danielle sighed and decided to let it go. “Whatever. Where did your sister get off to?”
“Oh! I know! We should sell HER to the circus.”
“It’s a really good idea.”
“The answer is still no.”
To be continued…
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