TITLE: Blackberry Summer
Shelby has recently met her cousins for the first time, and Carrie is having adjustment problems. The girls have borrowed some of Shelby's clothes.
Shelby stared in disbelief at what encircled Carrie's left ankle. "Take it off," she said evenly, her hand held out toward her cousin.
Carrie's eyes went wide and her cat smile grew. "Take what off?"
Shelby's blood boiled. "I said you could borrow my clothes, but I never said anything about my jewelry. That's my ankle chain you're wearing, and I want it back - now."
Carrie's laugh was wicked. "This old thing? You're mistaken. I got it for Christmas . . ."
"No you . . ." Sarah didn't finish her sentence.
Carrie jumped up from the swing. "Shut your face, Sarah." Her head snapped toward Jessie. "And if you don't want to wake up in the morning as bald as Papaw, you'll keep your trap shut, too." Then she turned back to Shelby. "The twins forget things sometimes. But I swear, this is my ankle bracelet."
The twins were crying softly, and Shelby knew where the truth lay. That was her bracelet. A shirt was one thing, but this was going too far. "I say it's mine, and I want it back." She held out her hand.
"I can't believe you're going to stand right here and call me a liar to my face." Carrie looked like she was squaring off for a fight. Shelby hoped not. She knew Carrie would whip her good. But she wasn't going to back down, even if it meant getting beat up.
"I'm not only calling you a liar, I'm also calling you a thief. Now you either take off that bracelet, or I'm going to take it off for you."