TITLE: A Hundred Frogs, Even
GENRE: MG Contemporary
I would have given Mom a good-bye hug, but StepThad’s arm rested across her shoulder. Like the two of them were glued together. Double hug or nothing.
My giant duffel bag and I stood, immobile, in the shadow of the camp check-in tent.
“Have fun this week.” Mom’s smile was directed at me, but I could tell. She was really focused on StepThad.
“We have to go. I can’t be late,” my sister said. “Remember the rules.”
“Don’t tell Grace what to do,” Mom said.
“I’m helping her.”
"She's helping me," I echoed.
Mom and StepThad turned as a unit and headed for the car. Zoe tossed me my backpack.
Too light. I checked. The only thing left inside was Zoe’s Teen Vogue magazine. My mouth fell open.
Zoe grinned. “Much more fun.”
“But I was in the middle--”
“That Laura Ingalls Wilder biography. I know.” She covered a fake yawn. “But--”
“Stop. If you really want people to treat you like you’re a star--”
I whispered the words. “You have to be the coolest all the time.”
“So do it. You’ll have fun.” She whirled and sprinted to catch up with Mom and StepThad, leaving me on my own. My superstar cheerleader sister made everything look easy.
If things had worked out, I would have been going to cheerleading camp in the valley with Zoe. Her junior varsity squad and my rising-sixth-grade squad. All of us together. Except things didn’t work out. Not for me.