Her second child was born in May. Lloyd was so excited to have a spring baby, but was also disappointed that it was another girl. Charlotte had apologized for making him so unhappy. She knew he had wanted a son so badly. She promised she have him one some day.

She hated herself for promising that.


............
Carol was worried for her new little sister. She was already seven and she knew she would have to protect her from that witch. She knew her mother would treat the little girl badly too. Lloyd had left the decision of naming her up to Carol, thinking it was a cute idea. At first Carol though Princess was cute, but decided against it thinking that if she had that name she would be a spoiled little brat.

So she went with Shirley. She had a Shirley Temple doll and loved it to death. It was such a pretty doll too and she felt it was only suitable for such a pretty baby.

Of course mom had hated the name, she could tell by the look on her face.
"Shirley Marie it is!" Daddy laughed and scooped Carol into his arms and against his chest. "I love you, peanut" Carol giggled and snuggled against her daddy. This was the only time she felt safe.


Carol heard dishes crash inside her house all the way from the down the street. Her ears perked up.
She heard her mother shouting and made a mad dash for the house. She feared for Shirley every moment of the day and she always hurried home after school. Last thing she ever wanted was her mother hurting her. She swung open the door and stopped, seeing a large clump of her sister's hair balled in mother's fist. Shirley cried for her to let her go, and now that Shirley was 11, big enough to stand up to her mother, she grabbed her hand and pulled her away from Mother.

"Come on Shirley, lets go play" Shirley sniffled and held on close to Carol's side. "Okay"

Charlotte huffed and went to her armchair. She turned on the TV and popped a little white pill.
She knew her doctor said she wasn't suppose to take aspirin now that she was pregnant again but she didn't care. Her head pounded. She was always angry. Constantly. She hated her children. She hated them with a passion.

She knew this time it was twins. That made her want to die. She was going crazy. How would she take care of four kids?! Four!

Ginger had come by earlier, and it had been such a surprise. She thought of that woman every second of the day. She so loved her. Ginger had smiled her pretty smile and wrapped her arms around Charlotte as best she could.

"I missed you so much, Ging" Charlotte sighed happily. Ginger pulled away and smiled. "I've missed you too. I'm so happy to be back in town. I was so sick of Hawaii, but I had to go because Charles was transferred there"

Charlotte nodded and put on a fake smile. "Oh yes, Charles, How is he?" Ginger smiled, "Oh he's wonderful! Just wonderful! He's excited to be back too!" Charlotte hated Charles. Only because she knew that he touched her at night, that he owned her heart. She hated that.

"I was thinking maybe you, the girls, and Lloyd could come over for dinner? Say around six or so? We have so much to catch up on!"

She walked to the screen and opened it. "But I have to get home before Billy gets home from school. It's his first day at a new school and I expect to here all about it"

Charlotte waved as she left, pulling out in her big Chrysler. "Bye Ginger" she whispered.

Her daughter tapped her lightly on the shoulder, bringing her out of her trance.
"Mom, the TV isn't even on"

She smiled up at her and touched her arm. "Ginger Peters came by earlier. We're going to their house for supper"