#44 I, Isabel Scheherazade, gather my wits and recount Court Caper Part One: The Beginning–Where I Worry A Lot About What I’m Doing
Court Caper Part One! Successfully executed! Olivia whispers. She checks her watch. 8:32. Right on schedule. She looks back at the school, but it’s around the corner and out of sight. No one will catch us now.
I didn’t used to be a sneak and a liar, I say.
We’re SO not lying. Olivia gets a little huffy. Then she sees me roll my eyes. We’re just SNEAKING!
Olivia hasn’t grown up in a house where the grownups use words like “right and wrong” and “personal responsibility.” And “trust.” Trust was Very Big with Mom and Dad. I sure hope they’re not watching what I’m doing now.
Olivia, let’s be honest here. First: We wear dresses to school so we won’t look out of place in court.
So, Olivia’s got her hands on her hips. That’s not lying.
I sigh. I NEVER wear dresses. Mimi looks at me and says, “Oh, Isabel, you look so pretty. Is something special going on today at school?”
Olivia gasps, Uh, oh, she noticed?
Of course she noticed!
MY mom didn’t notice. Olivia’s hands are off her hips.
Did she see you? Olivia mostly wears variations of black with only the occasional mini skirt—also black. Today she has a flower print skirt and blouse outfit with a stretchy belt that cinches in at the waist.
Olivia frowns. She was sleeping. Then she perks up, What did you say?
I say, “School pictures, Mimi!” and push the twins out ahead of me before Mimi thinks of dressing them in their little blue jackets.
Did that work?
I think so, I say to Olivia. Maybe.
Olivia straightens her scarf–it matches the skirt–and says, Okay. It’s a LIE, but not a Big Lie, is it?
Then, we bring the twins into school early.
Isabel, we HAD to do that if we’re going to have enough time to walk to the courthouse.
We tell them it’s because we need to meet our teacher for a conference on our report.
They believed it.
They always believe me.
So what’s the problem?
Well, the problem is, when they find out I lied, they’re not going to believe me anymore.
I think to myself. Same with Mimi–and Pop. Pop stood behind Mimi and listened to the it’s-a-picture-day-lie. He was doing his (and Dad’s) one-eyebrow-up-this-doesn’t-compute-I’ll-rub-my-chin gesture.
I shrug and say, Let’s just keep moving, Olivia.