Chapter Seventeen: Scary Saturday.
It was the day after Hera's visit to the park. Isabel was drawing out in the weekend sunshine, feeling good about life. She saw Francesca clear the weeds from the flowers down in the garden. The brunette wasn't feeling well as the neighbors were much too near for her liking.
Isabel stepped back from her drawing of a parent and child fishing, and smiled. She then headed downstairs to prepare a lunch of salad and mustard-coated fish steaks. Francesca scuttled indoors to hide from the neighbors.
"Fran, could you help me with the salad?" said Isabel as she fried the fish. The young woman crept over to the pile of vegetables and started tearing them apart. "Something's bothering you," said Isabel. Francesca muttered something in reply as she put the leaves in the microwave and warmed them. Isabel knew it was tough to get Francesca to talk, she would have to coax her over the food later.
The lunch was soon ready, so Isabel set out two plates for food. As the elder Lion wasn't very hungry, she served herself some salad. Francesca picked a fillet of fish and a bit of the salad. They sat down to eat.
"What?" asked Isabel, expecting a normal answer. "Have you suddenly liked Ben Affleck or Justin Bieber or something?"
Attie passed by the two of them after pouring some orange soda for herself. "I hope it's not Bieber," she muttered.
"I'm the one who got the Pink Panther stolen," Francesca said. "I commissioned mister Lytton to steal it from the Louvre years ago."
"Seriously?" said Isabel. "You did that?"
"No no!" Isabel shrieked. "You can't be serious. Stop this nonsense, Fran."
"I am not spouting nonsense," Francesca said with a grin. "We'll be rolling in riches soon."
"You'll get the police knocking down your door and hauling you off to the adult court! You're not a minor anymore!" Isabel gasped. This set Francesca off into a long fit of laughter. Her shrill brassy voice rang in the silence at the table.
|Great story, right?|
"If you had any common sense, Isabel, you'd realize I'm not the Pink Panther Thief," remarked Francesca. "First of all, the diamond isn't real. Secondly, Clouseau would have just muddled his way to a solution if I were the Pink Thief. Thirdly, I wouldn't use my brains for evil. I'd like to be a heroic mastermind instead."
Isabel got over her fright and said, "You can spin a great yarn."
"I'm glad for your support of my way with words," said Francesca.
"Next time, you should warn us before trying to tell tall tales," Isabel said, swallowing the last few leaves of her salad in a hurry.
"What's the point of telling tall tales then, if you already know they're fake?"
Neither of the Lion Twins had a reply for that.
Next chapter: It Was A Sunday.