Authors: Lauren Baratz-Logsted
"What are you going to put inside it?" Zinnia asked when Rebecca opened it and we saw there was nothing inside except two empty spaces for pictures.
"I'm not sure yet," Rebecca said, slipping it over her head. "I'll have to give it some thought."
Rebecca giving something some thought? This was such a new Rebecca, we didn't know what to do with her!
"I think I'll go check and see if my note's here," Rebecca said, heading off to the drawing room.
We followed her.
Sure enough, Rebecca was right ... again!
Fourteen down, two to go. I must say, with you involved, it was touch-and-go if this day would ever arrive. Good show.
"Aren't you going to get mad at the note?" Georgia said. "It sounds to me like the note was insulting you, with all that stuff about 'with you involved.'"
"I'm not bothered by it," Rebecca said. "The note seems to know me pretty well."
This Rebecca was so new and so confusing to poor Petal that of course Petal fainted.
The rest of the month passed with the household oddly serene; Rebecca kept her word and did not set anything else on fire.
On the last day, which was a Thursday, Pete offered to take us all out to dinner as a treat.
"Are you sure?" Annie asked. "That could get expensive."
"Mostly," Georgia said, "when restaurants see us coming, restaurants run the other way."
"I could use a night off from the kitchen," Durinda said.
"I'm sure," Pete said.
"Don't you ever work anymore?" Marcia asked Pete. "I'm not complaining, but I have noticed that you do seem to be around all the time since you moved in."
"I just think that maybe you need me a bit more than you used to," Pete said.
"You need us more," Mrs. Pete added, "which is why we've stayed on."
"Shall we go?" Pete said.
We arrived at the restaurant and told the person there that we needed a table for ten, and eventually we settled into our seats.
"This is such a treat!" Zinnia said, giddy.
We ignored her.
"I decided what to put in my locket," Rebecca said.
"What?" Jackie asked.
"Pictures of Mommy and Daddy," Rebecca said, opening the locket to show us. "It's to remind myself not to worry so much about the little stuff and to keep my mind focused on what's really important."
We all got tears in our eyes at that, even Pete.
"I've been thinking," Marcia said when we'd all re-covered, "and what I've been thinking is that this month has been the oddest month yet."
"You mean because of Rebecca basically getting two powers?" Jackie asked.
"Marcia, are you still obsessing about the note leaver?" Georgia said.
"Those things too," Marcia said, "but that's not what I meant."
"Then what did you mean?" Annie asked.
"It's just that when others of us have gotten our powers, we've somehow used our powers to help save the day," Marcia said. "But unless I missed something, Rebecca only ever used her power of fire to destroy things."
"I don't know if it's so strange." Rebecca shrugged. "That week I spent in the steel structure, all that time I had to think and to gain knowledge about stuff..." Rebecca shrugged again. "Sure, power is power. But knowledge is an even greater power."
That sounded so ... wise.
This Rebecca was so new, our heads were spinning!
At last, the waitress arrived to take our drinks order.
"Mango juice for all the others, please," Rebecca ordered before anyone else had the chance to.
"And for you?" the waitress asked.
"A giant glass of pulp, please," Rebecca said, her grin splitting across her face. "The biggest glass of pulp you've got."
Then, for good measure, Rebecca rose from her seat, threw her napkin on the table, and shouted at Petal, "I'm going to Wife-Carry you!"
As Rebecca chased Petal through the restaurant and Petal shrieked in what could have been panic or could have been glee, Zinnia rose from her seat. And then Zinnia began spinning happily where she stood, joyfully crying out, "Yay! Tomorrow's August first.
It was a good night.