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The Adventures of Princess Pearl, P.O.W.E.R.* Girl! - Chapter Three
by Tonja Taylor
2/11/2020 / Short Stories
Chapter Three — Steak and Spanish
The door opened to a lovely Latino woman with a big smile and a basket overflowing with goodies. A teenage girl and younger boy were behind her, also
“Risa, Robin, Lucas!” said Burt, all smiles. “So good to see you all! Come in and I’ll introduce you!”
Watchman was behind them, tail wagging. The boy reached down and patted him on the head. Then he pointed to Robert, who was still perched on his uncle’s shoulders and resting his chin on Burt’s head.
“New hat?” said Lucas, and everyone laughed.
“I just picked it up today,” quipped Burt.
“You are so funny!” said Robin, and giggled as she gently poked him in the arm. She waved up at Robert, then walked over to Pearl. “You must be the princess!”
“I am,” said Pearl, in her best royal voice. She took Robin’s hand. “I am Princess Ariel Dominique Walker. But please call me Pearl, as in, ‘Pearl of great price.’”
Vivace barked, dancing around their feet. Pearl reached down and picked her up. "And this is Vivace!"
“Igualamente!” said Risa, in a lovely Spanish accent. “It means, ‘pleased to meet you.’”
“Oh, are you bilingual?”
“Yes,” said Risa. “All three of us are. It’s just practical.”
“I can speak some Spanish,” said Pearl. “La casita de arbol!”
Risa smiled. “Muy bien—Very good! And I hear you like your little tree house.”
“Yes, it’s super!" said Pearl. "Uncle Burt built me and Robert our own, and I’m so glad!”
“Yes, Burt is a really great person,” she said, and smiled at him. “He’s told us lots of good things about you guys, so we brought special gifts to celebrate your new life!” She handed the big basket to Pearl’s mother.
“How thoughtful!” said Pearl's mother. “Thank you!”
“For Princess Pearl,” said Robin, “we have a necklace.” She handed Pearl a dainty box of deep blue satin. Inside was a delicate chain with a tiny silver dove.
“Oh, I love doves!” said Pearl. “They’re so gentle, and remind me of the Holy Spirit. Thank you!” Wow, Daddy God, she thought. You worked fast with my Vision List—number whatever it was—for new friends, and one is a girl! Thank You!
Burt let Robert down off his shoulders, and Lucas handed him a box.
“Hey! It’s a monster truck!” Robert said, tearing into the box. “Mom, can I play now?”
“What do you say?” prompted his mother.
“Uncle Burt, can I chase cows with it?” Robert smiled as wide as he could and raised his eyebrows up and down in anticipation.
“Robert, you know what I mean,” said his mother, then laughed.
Everyone laughed with her.
“Oh, yeah—thank you!” said Robert. He waved at Risa. “Thank you lots!”
His mother hugged him. “Good job, Rob!”
“Why don’t you guys let us take your jackets for the coat closet, and you can wash up,” said Burt. “Dinner and dessert are ready, and we can talk about all this at the table.”
When everyone was seated, Burt blessed the food.
“Dear Father in Heaven, thank You for all Your goodness to us, and for this delicious food You have provided. We thank You that it will nourish our bodies and do us only good. And we thank You for new adventures in all of our lives new friendships formed tonight, and the discovery of new plans You have for us. You are so good! We bless Your Name forever, and in Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.”
Vivace, lying at Pearl’s feet, made a noise as if she agreed.
“Amen!” Pearl said. “Pass the mega-tatos, please! And the bacon and the butter and the cheese and the sour cream. Yum!” She looked at her dog and whispered, “If you’re quiet, I’ll slip you a bite!”
Robin handed her the potatoes and said, “Hey, maybe we can walk our dogs together.”
“Yeah! When can we start? Vivace would love that!” said Pearl.
“It depends on our schedules, Sweetie,” said her mother. “We’ve got to get this house in order first. And remember, that’s healthy organic bacon and butter and cheese and sour cream. It costs more, but you’re worth it!”
“As long as it tastes good!” said Burt.
“Can we help you with anything?” Risa said. “Thanks for having us over. We’re so glad you guys are here.”
“Thank you!” said Pearl’s mother. “That means a lot. And I’m sure you prayers have made this transition much easier than it would have been without them.”
She took a sip of tea. “What time is Bible study Sunday?”
“Nine-thirty, and Pearl would be in my class. We’re learning about harvest. And that reminds me—the Hallelujah Harvest Hayride and Festival is the Saturday before October 31.”
“Cool!” said Pearl, after hurriedly swallowing a big bite of potato.
“We also have AWANA on Wednesday nights,” said Risa.
“AWANA is definitely something Pearl and Robert need, said their mother. "They learned quite a few Scriptures in that club at our old church.”
“Yes, it’s fun!” said Pearl. She looked at the big plateful of meat. “May I have one of your delicious steaks, Uncle Burt?”
“Yes, Darlin’. Here’s the steak sauce to go with it.”
“Mmm!” Pearl got a small one and cut into it. “If there’s any fat or anything, Vivace, you can have it,” she told the dog, now lying on her feet.
Vivace whacked her tail and licked Pearl’s shoe.
“Pearl, don’t throw anything on Uncle Burt’s floor— you know better than that,” said her mother. “Put it in her dish in the utility room.”
Pearl nodded, her mouth full.
“Pass the salad, please,” said Lucas.
“All he eats lately is salad,” said Risa. “I thought boys
“Just wait till he gets to be a teenager,” said Burt. “Or at least I remember Mama complaining that I’d eat her and Dad out of house and home.”
“That’s what they said,” agreed Pearl’s mother. “And I think you almost did!”
Robert looked confused. “You were eating the cabinets and stuff?”
“It’s just a saying, Robert,” said his mother. “But he did eat like a horse!”
Burt pretended to whinny, and Pearl said, “Hey! Uncle Burt, did you grass? Can
we ride horses tomorrow?”
“Not until we get this house in order,” her mother said. “But perhaps next weekend.”
Burt laughed. "No, Bub, I didn't eat grass. And everybody needs a break, Charlotte,” he said. “Why don’t you let the kids get their rooms straight in the morning, then let them ride in the afternoon? You could take a break yourself—maybe even a nap.”
“I don’t want to get behind,” she replied. “I told my clients that I’d be out two weeks to pack and move and get settled, but I don’t want to keep them waiting.”
“Please, Queen Mother?” said Pearl, in her sweetest voice. “We can just ride an hour or two and then come back to help you.”
Burt turned to Risa, who sat on his right. “Would you like to bring the kids? They’ll have to double up for now, but the horses won’t mind. They are both gentle mares and they like kids. In fact, the man I bought them from had five and he said they’d make noise and climb all over those horses and it didn’t bother them at all!”
“That sounds like fun!” said Robin.
“Yeah! Whoopee! Uncle Burt, can we go on a trail ride?” said Pearl.
“I don’t know much about caballos,” Lucas said.
“What’s that?” said Pearl.
“Spanish for horses,” Risa replied.
"I’ll show you, Lucas!” said Robert.
“Robert,” said Pearl, “you don’t know much, dear.”
“Do too! I’ve seen pictures!”
“Burt,” said Pearl’s mother,”They aren’t ready for a trail ride yet. I’d feel better if you just walked them around the pasture first, and taught them how to put on the blanket and saddle and how to sit and such.”
“Deal,” said Burt. “We’ll start after lunch tomorrow. Now, please pass the baked beans!”
Pearl was thrilled. Wow, Daddy God! This is only the second day and it just gets better. I can’t wait to see what You have for us tomorrow!
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, on River Rain Creative Arts (You Tube, God Tube), AnchorFM, their church, the region, and beyond
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