The cold wet breeze cooled Abbey's flushed cheeks as she ran across a bit of brownish lawn to the garden. Geez, sometimes she wished her mother would just yell at her like Pearl's mom did. But no, she had to talk, and ask earnest questions, and poke away at Abbey to make her come up with Appropriate Responses for her Poorly Chosen Actions. But now here she was with permission to poke around in this weird garden; Pearl would be boiling over with envious questions. Cool.

Abbey placed one foot on the path that spiraled in to the middle of the garden. If she held her hands out just a little bit, she could rattle dried stems of — something. She didn't think that Pearl would know what it was, but she'd probably act like she did and make something up. She could ask Ms Jenkins what the plants were — probably she knew more about her own garden than Pearl did.

Just a few steps in the garden, the wind seemed to be abruptly cut off. The stems and stuff must be blocking it, she supposed. Good; she didn't have to squinch her eyes and she could really look at things. The noises seemed muted too; she didn't even hear the yappy dog two houses down that was nearly always barking.

She toed aside a clump of brown leaves and bent down to look at greenish white bumps of something poking up out of damp soil. They looked as if they wanted sun; she started to pull more leaves aside but then stopped as a cloud hid the sun briefly and she felt chilled. Maybe those whatever-they-were needed to be blanketed by leaves a little while longer more than they needed sun. She scuffed the leaves back over the sprouts and walked on into the garden.

From the outside it had looked tangled, overgrown, maybe even kind of creepy. But once she'd started walking on the path she'd felt at ease. The only plants she could identify were the sunflower stalks. Even as Abbey was looking at them, a cardinal whizzed over her head and settled on the edge of a droopy sunflower and pecked at it briefly before flying off. She looked at each of a dozen stalks; each drooped with a head that looked pretty well chewed and pecked-at, but a few had seeds remaining, she could see. She went up on tiptoes to peek at the least droopy flowerhead, and nearly fell as she felt a furry weight brush her calves.

"Rroop." The big white cat sat down and blocked the path, regarding her calmly. He didn't look mean — but he didn't look friendly either. She took one step toward him. He shifted his front paws back and forth and wrapped his tail over them, looking as if he were planting himself more firmly in her way. Did he mean to keep her out of the very center of the garden? Or was he just being a cat, sitting there for no reason at all? One more step. He blinked his greenish-gold eyes but otherwise sat immobile.

Oh the heck with it. Even sheltered from the breeze, it was kind of chilly out here. Might as well go inside and see if her mom and Ms. Jenkins were done talking.


Created by kristin. Last Modification: Saturday 03 of October, 2020 16:58:12 EDT by kristin.