October 10, 201X
There was no girl scout meeting today but that didn’t mean that didn’t mean I wasn’t required to be a girl scout. After school I was assigned to help a couple of daisies ride around and sell their cookies. It was pretty much the perfect cookie selling weather. The light drizzle that had gone on all day had finally let up meaning that we would stay high and dry but everyone in town would still be at home.
Sophie, Madeline, and Rose peddled along in front of me while I rode behind them. I was really just there to make sure they didn’t get kidnapped or eat the cookies they were selling or something. They chose the route we would go on beforehand and they decided which houses we would ask to buy cookies.
Once they decided on a house we would pull into their driveway, squeezing in between their cars and dropping down our kickstands. The girls would go up to the door while I detached the little red wagon from the back of my bike that held the boxes of cookies. And I have to confess diary, I don’t really like girl scout cookies. Maybe after eating them at every party and almost every meeting I’m just sick of them at this point. But for the rest of Fortuna and most of the daisies and brownies they love what’s in those boxes.
Rose was in the middle of giving her pitch when I dragged the wagon up the brick stairs. But it was pretty much useless. It was Mr. Ricch at the door, and he, like pretty much everyone else in town, will just buy cookies regardless of whether he likes them, regardless if he needs them, just because of who’s selling them. That’s really the reason why I’m glad my cookie selling days are pretty much over. As you saw from the many, many people staring at me everyone in town knows how I look out of uniform. And I don’t think anyone would buy cookies from me anymore.
Even before Rose was finished telling Mr. Ricch how delicious the cookies were and how the money would go to charity and to support the girl scouts he was ruffling her kinky black hair and telling Madeline that he heard she won an art contest at her elementary school. I don’t even know if he noticed me standing there also on his doorstep, holding the handle of the cookie wagon. He was just so focused on the little girl scouts. But Sophie was just looking bored, she bent down, scraping her knees on the brick porch of Mr. Ricch’s house in the process and picked up a box of cookies. Sophie really is a little business woman because she just shoved a box of cookies in Mr. Ricch’s hands and took the money that he was getting out.
Once the transaction was done we had no real reason to stay and we headed out once it was done. But I made sure the little girls brushed the fallen leaves on their seats before they sat down.
But the little girls weren’t all on the same page. In fact Madeline was a little mad, “Sophie why did you have to do that? He was talking about the art contest!”
Sophie pulled ahead of Rose and Madeline, she was trying to look like she was above them or something. I just stayed in the back trying to hold in my laughter, “Whatever you only won that contest to impress Steven!”
Madeline blushed bright red, “No I didn’t!”
She totally did, and it was pretty obvious. They could have gone on arguing for the rest of the afternoon, and they almost did.
“Yes you did!”
“No I didn’t!”
“Yes, you did!”
They went back and forth for a few minutes. But then Rose, the oldest in the group being 7 years old instead of 5 and 6, tried to defuse the situation. She almost reminded me of me when I was 7, really mature in some ways but also very seven years old.
“Naomi, do you have a crush on a boy?” She asked me, a great way to change the subject, but a really invasive question nonetheless.
I thought about my response for a second while the little kids hung onto my every word, former argument forgotten. Anything I told them will definitely trickle up the gossip ladder to school and then everyone in town will know. So I knew I had to be vague about whatever I said. But did I have a crush? That was the real question. Steven’s pretty nice I guess but he’s a senior. Willis is my age but he’s more of a friend than anything. Michal’s pretty cute though, and he’s only a sophomore. And we did walk home together…
“I used to have one on one of my brother’s friends.” I told the little girl scouts.
For the rest of the afternoon I didn’t get to live that statement down. Who! Who! Who! They were like a pack of sashed owls. The only time they stopped asking me who my crush was when we were on people’s doorsteps selling cookies. But I managed to keep my wits about me, only giving them the most vague and meaningless information about my crush.
When we got back Sophie and Madeline went immediately to balance their books. Since I had taught them all about decimals and addition and subtraction they knew what to do and what happens if you put off your work for weeks. But Rose needed to get back home, her dad was already there to pick her up and she got in his truck with barely enough time to say goodbye.
I also had work to do though. Inside the YMCA I went behind the desk and into the storage room. Since there were a lot of girl scouts out selling cookies the lock was already open which was great because I didn’t have the key. The red wagon I stacked on top of the others and the cookies I put back in their proper places. Thin mints on the right, samoas next to them near the middle, then trefoils, then tagalongs, and so on and so on. Since I still had some homework to do I was planning on getting back on my bike and going home but who I ran into when I left the storeroom ruined those plans.
“Hey Naomi, come get coffee with me. We should talk about what happened Saturday night.” Evelyn told me.
I needed to get home and do my homework, and besides I don’t even drink coffee. But I went with her anyway. Judging by the fact that she was the one pouring the blood on Michal at the ceremony, she’s the leader of the crazy satan cult. And since I think I want to be part of it I couldn’t just say no when Evelyn basically commanded me to get coffee with her.
Mom once told me that there used to be a small local coffee shop in town. With counters that you could sit at and baristas that would have your drink ready before you even came in. The way she tells it people from all over the county would come to drink coffee from that coffee shop, that coffee shop won coffee awards in the state of Washington! When the store shut down there were protests! There were riots! There was chaos in the streets and stories in the paper! Now I don’t know if all of that is true, Mom told me most of this when I was like ten, but now on the tree shaded corner of Timothy and Obligate there was a Starbucks. And I’m not complaining about that, Charlie and I got there for cookies and hot chocolate sometimes.
When we got to the green tiled counter Evelyn ordered for us while I eyed the pastries in the glass display case.
“One vanilla frappuccino and one mocha latte with a caramel shot, and two splendas,” she said.
Brooke took our order but she eyed me and shot weird looks to Evelyn. Brooke’s two years out of highschool but she still embodies everything Evelyn is. High ponytail and snappy smile, thinking that she’s the nicest person in the world and that gives her clearance to do everything and anything. But I guess Brooke’s exactly who Evelyn doesn’t want to be. 20 years old and still living in her parents house, working at Starbucks to get money. So little life of her own that she still keeps up with highschool drama, though I guess that’s everyone in town, that’s how she knows that it’s super weird for Evelyn and I to be hanging out outside of girl scouts.
We got our drinks and sat down near the window at a high wooden table. The vanilla frappuccino was for me apparently, instead of asking me what I wanted she got the most regular thing she could think of for me. I’m glad she was that nice.
I was sipping on the aggressively sweet drink, just to be nice she was paying for it after all, when Evelyn spoke up, “So do you want to join our group.”
She was intentionally being vague but I knew what she meant and I was glad for an excuse to stop drinking my vanilla coffee milk, “Yeah, it sounds fun can I try it for a while?”
Since I still don’t know what it exactly entails I tried to give myself an out if it turns out too intense.
Evelyn gave me some sort of look, like she thought I was lying to myself, “You’re either in or out Naomi and I have a feeling you’re going to be in.”
Wow, I wonder where she got that impression from. I thought our conversation was over then but Evelyn still had something to say.
“Listen Naomi there is something very important that you have to do to be in the group,” she said, “And it’s hard and at first you’re not going to get it but when you do it’ll be amazing.”
“What do I have to do?”
She smiled like we were talking about homework and not the literal devil and a cult. And I think she was trying to infuriate me because before she answered she took a sip of her coffee.
“You have to ignore everything you have ever been taught about morality Naomi. Instead of thinking about your family or your friends, or your town, or your school or whatever you prioritize you have to be selfish. To really be part of the group you have to think of only yourself and Satan.”
She didn’t really say much for the rest of the time until we went our separate ways. Just more talk about the group with the occasional switch into girl scout talk when Brooke came to “wipe down” our table. AKA trying to learn why we were at her starbucks together.
I eventually went back home but I’m still thinking of what she said. I’m already super selfish diary if you hadn’t noticed, I’m already so focused on myself that Derrick was literally too embarrassed of me to take me to Olympia.
All the way home I thought that if all I needed to do to get into the group was be selfish I was already a shoe in for membership. Even with the fiasco at dinner I’m still wondering how many people in this town are as selfish as me. How many people literally pledged their lives to selfishness and Satan. Even if it’s all fake diary, are they bad people? Am I a bad person?
Gosh I don’t think I can take anymore philosophy, let’s talk about what happened at dinner.
I was planning on skipping dinner today actually. Even though I didn’t really drink much of it, the coffee it was still really sugary and I wasn’t really hungry when I walked into my house. As soon as I was in the front door I was walking up the stairs, I was so focused with the satanism that I didn’t even notice what was happening in the kitchen. But Mom definitely noticed me.
“Naomi,” she called me from the kitchen, “Hi girl, how was your day?”
For anyone else I wouldn’t answer, those semi-rhetorical questions people ask you in greeting usually aren’t because they actually care about your day but because they need something to say to you. But Mom’s always cared about me.
“It was weird, but okay I got starbucks!” I called back to her.
“That’s nice, I’m glad you’re finally drinking coffee Naomi. I knew you’d come around!” she told me, “Anyway can you help me with dinner?”
Having conversations entirely through screams from across the foyer wasn’t very nice so I decided to tell her no to her face. I had too much on my mind to really do anything but go to my room and lay down, I didn’t really want to help with dinner.
But when I got to the kitchen all of that flew out of my mind. The pot of pasta was boiling over, the pot of tomato sauce wasn’t even on the stove yet. Mom was furiously chopping onions and I don’t know if her tears were from the vapors or from the state of the kitchen. Once I walked in she turned her head and smiled, tears still streaming down her face.
“Naomi thank heavens your home,” she said, “Derrick’s going to be home soon and I don’t even have the pasta done and I burned the first batch of garlic bread! And Naomi I just don’t know what to do. Derrick will be so disappointed if he comes home and dinner isn’t ready please help me!”
I couldn’t just not help her diary, she just looked so frantic trying to chop up more onions for the sauce. Garlic bread was what I worked on first. It was the easiest and after I brushed the garlic butter on the bread I just put it in the oven and forgot about it. But not literally forget of course, I didn’t want to burn it after all.
After that it was the sauce. Most of it was already in a pot so I just had to put it on the stove, and season it to heck. Mom never put enough spices in, and the only really good food on italian day is the garlic bread. But I made sure to fix that since I was helping out. Since I was taking care of the sauce Mom had enough free time to finish up the angel hair pasta.
By the time Derrick got home from work and Nathan drifted downstairs from his room dinner was ready. The garlic bread wasn’t burnt, the pasta was perfectly cooked, the sauce was flavorful, Mom had even had some free time to make salad. I was sure Nathan would like that.
As usual we sat down to eat and Mom was smiling all the time when we were putting the food on the table. I should say dinner was boring but something I want to write down happened as soon as we started eating.
Derrick had just taken his first bite, “Phoebe this red sauce is better than normal, what did you do with it?”
“Just added some extra love I guess,” Mom laughed.
We just kept on eating after that but I guess that proves that I was right for helping her. Who knows what Derrick would have done if dinner hadn’t been ready. But instead of an argument Mom got a complement, all because I helped her. But I still really don’t want to help out tomorrow. And hopefully I won’t have to. Anyway see you then diary,
Naomi J. Morgan