Cast of Thousands, Chapter 3

Mom offered to take Jessie garage-saleing to cheer her up, but she didn't want to go. She hung around the backyard instead, poking at pebbles and organizing them by their intricate markings.

The two mothers shook their heads over coffee, watching her back turned toward them through the kitchen window.

Moms banged her spoon on the edge of the coffee cup. "Who would have thought it would be the lesbian thing that would get her in trouble with her friends?"

Her wife spoke with some asperity. "I would, Kelly, and you would too if you had thought about it. People don't like it being shoved in their faces."

"But she's so young! All of Jessie's other friends and their families have always just taken it in stride!"

"But she's had all those same friends since she was five. That's what happens when you send your kid through Spanish Immersion; they don't barely even get new kids in their class for seven years. Of course they're okay with our family; they practically ARE our family." Joyce sighed, and pushed her hair back. "This kid, now, she's new. She could be trouble."

Kelly laughed. "You make her sound like a gunslinging stranger at the OK Corral."

"Maybe she is. You know how vicious kids can be." Joyce sipped her drink carefully. "Anyway, you shouldn't worry yourself about that multiple thing. These kids wouldn't ever know enough to notice it if you were Sybil herself."

Kelly made a dubious noise deep in the back of her throat and gazed into her cup as if it would show her the future.

Next: Count Fartula. Previously: Chocolate Chip Pancakes.

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