When kids heard Carlie and Camilla would be staying with them for some time, they were thrilled. Aunt Camilla was always so funny and Carlie was a good friend of theirs.
At first, everything went well. Carlie was around the same age as her cousins and she enjoyed time spent with them. She liked their toys and games and a beautiful big garden with monkey bars.
Even the food tasted somehow better here.
For a couple of days, they had a lovely time together.
But kids are kids. One minute they are friends and then all of the sudden, they can’t stand being in the same room. And young Carlie Fyres apparently inherited her mother’s temperament.
Especially Seth had a hard time getting along with her, because she was noisy and didn’t let him play with his own toys.
But Seth was never the friendliest kid on earth so nobody was really concerned about his constant rambling and bad mood.
After a while, though, other kids started to behave strangely, too.
First, Etta got really sad.
Etta never thought about it before but now that Carlie mentioned it, her hair were different from Carlie’s. And she suddenly wished they weren’t.
And then one day, Amon got unreasonably angry.
But the real shock came when Tori, the sweetest, kindest, most sociable girl to ever live, started yelling at her cousin and called her an ugly monkey butt.
Melia overheard the argument – she couldn’t help it, the girls were so loud people in Oasis Springs probably overheard it, too – and she was horrified. All those bizarre moods her kids were having lately…They didn’t seem that bizarre anymore.
She didn’t dare to scold Carlie herself. She knew Camilla was overly sensitive about her daughter. She decided to talk to Camilla first. But that was a quest of its own, since Camilla had other things to do:
Melia needed to be observant to catch her in a mood for talking and even then, it was a difficult conversation to have.
Melia sighed and gave up. One look at Camilla’s stubborn face and she understood the conversation was over.
Camilla watched as her sister walked away and finished her drink, frowning angrily.