“You seem miles away, my Dear, is there something going on you’d like to share with us?” Nettie asked Darce, who continued to fidget with her pencil sharpener long after her companions had settled into their afternoon tasks.
“Now I can’t say as I’ve heard anyone ask a question of me like that since...oh, elementary school.” Darce retorted, grimacing, “Teacher, do I hafta?” she squeaked in a child’s whine.
Nettie placed her fists on her hips in mock disapproval, shaking her head. “You can always stay after school, young lady!”
Darce cupped her hand next to her mouth, sticking her tongue out at Nettie in such a way only LeAnne could see it. LeAnne pointed accusingly at Darce and scolded, “Umm! I’m gonna tell!”
“Don’t make me come smack you, now, Darce,” Nettie scowled, wagging her finger in warning.
Darce nodded, slowly, narrowed her eyes, a sly smile crept over her face, “You wanna piece o’ me? You come and get it, Lady. Make my day!” Her hands beckoned Nettie, playfully, who looked dutifully shocked.
“Why, I never,” she gasped indignantly, “After all I’ve done to share the pearls of my wisdom with you girls, and this is the thanks I get!” She turned her shoulder and looked away, doing her best to act hurt and offended, until Archibald’s sock toy hit her on the back of the head. Nettie whirled around, only to see Darce and LeAnne both pointing innocently at Archibald, who seemed to be feigning sleep so well, her lips and eyebrows were twitching.