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The Adventures of Princess Pearl, P.O.W.E.R.* Girl! - Chapter Two
by Tonja Taylor
2/10/2020 / Short Stories
Chapter Two — Preparing for Special Guests
Pearl put Vivace down and washed her hands in the kitchen sink, singing like her mother had taught her to do. “Happy birthday to You, happy birthday to You. We love You dear Jesus, You’re always true!”
“Pearl, get the big blue plates out of the hutch and putthem on the dining table in the next room.”
“Yes ma’am. Good thing Uncle Burt thinks big!” said Pearl, as she dried her hands then carefully pulled outseven deep blue plates. “Wow, these are so pretty!”
“You’re right, because I have no clue right now whereour dishes are, and we’d be eating on paper plates if he didn’t have these!” her mother said. “And please get the salad plates too, Sweetie. Put them at the left top of
the big plates. You know how to do it!”
“Yes ma’am,” said Pearl, as she walked into the adjoining room and carefully placed the plates.
Vivace followed her. “No Vivace, I know this is your first day, too, but go back,” she said, and pointed. The dog whined a bit, but returned. She heard her mother tell Vivace to sit on the blanket in the corner of the
Pearl admired the small chandelier over the table. It had many teardrop-shaped pieces that reflected the light shining through the big window and produced little rainbows on the floor.
But back to the dinner, Pearl thought.
The guests would be here any minute! “Queen Mother, Uncle Burt’s at the end, right? Where do you want to sit? And do we get to use cloth napkins tonight?”
“Yes, he’ll be the head of the table, and you and Robert and I will sit on his left side. They’re in the drawer. Bring them and I’ll show you how to fold them to put into the rings.”
Pearl opened the hutch drawer and got the lovely navy blue and white cloth napkins. “Wow, this is fancy! It’s a good thing Uncle Burt must have known that he’d have lots of company one day! So who’s coming?”
“Special friends of his from church,” said her mother, as she demonstrated how to fold the napkins. “He wanted us to meet each other, and thought today was
as good as any.”
“Are there kids? And can we go to church there?” Pearl folder the rest of the napkins and put them in the silver rings.
Her mother smiled as she opened the silverware drawer and gathered forks, spoons, and knives. “The guests are a surprise. We will visit the church, and see if that’s where God wants us. Even though it may seem to make sense to go a certain place or do a certain thing, we need to check with Daddy God first, for He knows everything.”
She pointed toward the cabinet. “Now, if you will get down those lovely blue glasses and put ice in them, I’ll go ask Burt if the steaks are ready. Also, put the dressing and chopped walnuts and cranberries in a bowl and put them on the table for the salad. And you can make sure the oven’s on 200 degrees to keep the potatoes warm,” she said, and headed for the door.
“Mmm—the super-duper potatoes?”
“Yes ma’am, loaded. But with organic butter, organic cheese, and organic kefir, and turkey bacon!”
“Yum! I’m glad we’re having company tonight!”
Pearl found a pretty glass bowl and poured the walnuts and cranberries into it. “Oh, Daddy God, this is so cool,” she said, carrying them to the table. “Visitors
our second day! Thank you! And, I’m excited. I hope I make some new friends!”
She checked the oven, then remembered she needed to go change clothes.
She ran upstairs to her room and looked through the clothes they had managed to hang in the closet earlier in the day. She put on a pair of her new jeans and a sparkly fuchsia top.
“Fuschia is the color of joy,” her daddy had told her years ago. It had been her favorite color since then.
She grabbed her journal and wrote, Dear Daddy God, I am so excited! And maybe there will be kids to play with! She added, New friends—girls, please! onto her Vision List.
She started to run downstairs, then realized she was barefoot. She knew her mother would want her to wear shoes for company. She looked through a box and found her sparkly blue flip-flops, then dashed to the bathroom to wash her face and brush her hair. She smiled at herself in the mirror. “You look like a good friend!” she told herself, and went back downstairs.
“Ah, there’s my favorite niece in the whole universe!” said her Uncle, carrying a big plate of grilled steaks.
“Pardon me, Charlotte,” he told Pearl’s mother as she tossed the salad, “comin’ through!”
Pearl grabbed her uncle’s legs—he was so tall!—and gave them a big hug. “Mmmm, Uncle Burt, can we eat now?”
“Sweetie, Risa and her family will be here in about five minutes. You can wait that long, right?”
“Risa!" said Pearl. "That’s a pretty name. So she’s a girl!”
Her uncle laughed, and put the steaks down and covered them up. “Yes! Go get Rob for me, okay?”
“Do I have to? He’s been so mean to me today!”
“Pearl,” said her mother, “you know all these changes have been very hard on Robert—“
“Well, that doesn’t mean he’s gotta be bad!”
“Pearl,” said her mother more firmly, “go get your brother like your uncle said. Now. And be nice. I expect you to both have big smiles on your face for our
company. I expect you to be nice to them and each other—understand?”
“Yes ma’am,” Pearl mumbled and headed up the stairs. “At least we have our own rooms now!”
She went to Robert’s room. Boxes were everywhere and it looked like he’d been rooting through them. Clothes and toys were scattered across the bed, on the floor, and across the boxes. “Robert you Tasmanian Devil!” she said. “Come down for dinner. The guests will be here in a minute.”
There was no answer. “Don’t play with me, Bub—“
She heard a splash and Robert’s snicker.
“Oh no!” she said. This better not be what it sounds like!
She opened the bathroom door, and there was her littlebrother, water all over his clothes and on the floor, as he pushed several of his toys underwater, with the tub almost full.
“Oh my gosh, Robert! Go get changed, ‘cause our guests are almost here. Hurry up!”
He stuck out his tongue at her.
She turned fast to go tell on him, and ran into her uncle who had just come up the stairs. He laughed when he saw Robert, and shook his head.
“You are one busy seven-year-old, Rob,” he said calmly. “Buddy, I need you to let the water out and change like your sissy said. Your new friends will want
to meet you, so let’s get you ready, okay?”
Robert lit up. “Hey Uncle Burt! Wanna play?”
“Pearl, go tell your mom I’ll be right down,” said Burt. “And don’t tell her about the mess. I know she told Rob he could play with his toys, she just didn’t know
how creative he would be in a new environment!”
“Okay, but Robert, Mom says you have be nice to me and the new people!” Pearl zipped downstairs before her brother could reply.
Her mother was using the ice maker on the refrigerator to put crushed ice into the blue glasses. “Where are the guys?”
“They’ll be right down,” said Pearl. “Can I help you with the cake and get a spoonful of frosting?”
“It’s right there,” said her mom, pointing. The cake towered three tiers high.
“Mmm! Looks delicious!” said Pearl.
“Burt helped me. He ground up some of the fresh pecans from his trees. Just one small spoonful, cause you know it’s not good for you to have too much
Pearl opened the lid and dug in. “Thank you, and I bet the guests will love your cake.”
“Good job, Princess,” she said, and hugged her. “You have been such a blessing to me during this whole move. And thank you for all your help with dinner
“Love you Queen Mother,” Pearl said, and hugged her back. Her mother smelled so good, with the gentle perfume she wore.
“Are you always going to call me that? How about just ‘Mom,’ like you used to?”
Pearl started to answer. “I just—“
“Hey Mom! Look at me!” Burt was coming down the stairs, with a dry Robert
on his shoulders, leaning back so he wouldn’t scrape
the doorway as his uncle walked into the kitchen.
“Son, that’s quite a growth spurt!” she joked.
“Does that mean his brain is growing too?” Pearl said.
Her mother shot her a look that was half amused and half stern.
“Remember, Pearl, a P.O.W.E.R. Princess watches her words and speaks kind things, like the Royal Book says,” her mother said, adopting a queenly sounding voice. “If thou cannot speaketh anything nice, thou shouldst not speak.”
“Yeah, Thumper said it in the Bambi movie,” Pearl said. Help me, LORD!
They heard Watchman’s strong bark. “Ah, there’s our guests, I bet!” said Burt. “Let’s go say hi.”
Robert snickered. “I’ll wave at them from up here!”
The bell rang, and Vivace barked and ran in, sniffing the door.
Pearl felt a little nervous, but excited. “Daddy God, help me say and do right!” she whispered under her breath. “And thank You for all of these new good
things, like Jeremiah 29:11 says!”
Tonja K. Taylor is the author of many works, including THE ADVENTURES OF PRINCESS PEARL, P.O.W.E.R.* Girl! series. She and her husband Clayton minister the Word through teaching, preaching, and the arts, through River Rain Creative Arts (You Tube, God Tube), their church, and beyond.
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