Chapter Six

I would like to thank Aryosi for helping me get out of my writer's block.

This chapter may be a little boring, but it's necessary to set up the next chapter.

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"We contacted some of your parents close friends," Mrs. Carson informed her. It was a rainy Sunday after noon and the two were seated at the Roe's kitchen table.

Lu nodded mutely. One word kept circling in her mind. Why? Why am I so unlucky?

Realizing that Lu wasn't going to respond, Mrs. Carson continued. "They agreed to take you in for awhile. They live about 30 minuets away. Here's their number." She slid a post-it note across the table.

"Molly and Jake Dowell," Lu read out loud. "Tim's talked about them before." She bit her lip, realizing that she would actually be leaving her home for awhile.

"Mrs. Dowell has four kids of her own. I'm sure you'll all get along."

Lu tilted her head down, willing herself not to cry. Despite the effort she could feel hot tears streaming down her face.

Mrs. Carson sighed and started to get up.

Lu's head suddenly shot up. "The horses. What about the horses?"

Mrs. Carson shrugged. "They're find where they are, as far as I know. Anne can decide what to do with them if—when she gets better…" Her voice trailed off.

"When I can I go see them?" Lu asked forcefully.

Mrs. Carson looked uneasy. "I suppose if the Dowells are willing to drive you to the stable can see them after you move in. They're picking you up tomorrow around three, okay?"

She nodded slightly. "I guess. What about Anne? When can I see her?"

"Whenever you can get a ride to the hospital dear. Now if you'll excuse me, I have to go. Call me if you need anything."

"Yeah," she looked at her feet nervously.

"Bye." She walked out the door.

Lu stood there for a moment, her brain processing everything she had just found out. Tim had said the Dowells were good people. The father, Jake, was a bit of a workaholic he said. But that was all she knew.

She pulled out her backpack and began to stuff clothes and books inside it. She picked up a picture of Mercury, and after a moments consideration stuffed that in too.

Moments later she was slowly making her way out to a white Volvo in the driveway. A plump, cheery-looking woman exited the car and rushed over to her.

"Lucinda!" He said, "My god, it's been ages since I saw you! You were only—"She held her hand up to her stomach, "this big!"

Lu smiled weakly, unsure of what to say.

"Come on dear, let's get home." She led Lu over to the car. "Would you like to put your backpack in the trunk?"

Lu shook her head.

"Okay then. Off we go."

The drive to Lexington was fairly uneventful. Molly talked most of the way, telling Lu about her four "darling" children that she was sure she would "just adore!" She asked Lu if she liked animals, and was mildly surprised when Lu told her the only pets she had ever owned were horses.

They finally turned onto small dirt road, and within minuets the house was in sight. Lu felt her jaw drop. The house was huge, with a giant garden and a stone fence surround the property.

"It's—"

"Gorgeous, I know. It's actually my sister Debbie's; we're just leasing it from her."

"Oh."

Molly stopped the car and briskly walked across the lawn. Lu followed, trying to stay calm. A boy about her age appeared in the doorway.

"Hey mom!" He called.

"Tom, go get your brothers!" Molly called. "Tim Roe's daughter is here!"

Lu smiled slightly at this. She liked being called the Roe's daughter, instead of foster daughter.

"Okay." The boy, Tom, disappeared into the hall.

Molly led Lu into the house. "Make yourself at home dear."

Upstairs Lu heard something that resembled a stampede, and seconds later four boys thumped down the stairs.

Molly smiled and ruffled the littlest boy's hair. "Lucinda, I'd like you too meet Tom, he's thirteen, Rob (fifteen), Darren (seven) and Nick (four)."

A chorus of "Hi"s went around.

"Rob, you want to show her where the guest room is?"

"I want to do it!" Shrieked Nick.

"Okay, but Rob has to come to."

"No!" Tears began to well up in Nick's eyes. "I'm a big boy! Daddy said so! I use the toilet now."

Lu let out a little laugh as Nick took her hand and began scrambling up the stairs. The rest of the family followed.

"And dis," Nick said, "is the hallway. It's big big." They turned a corner and Nick opened the first door on the right.

"Hey Nick, we're taking her to the guest room," Darren smirked.

Rob playfully punched him in the shoulder. "Shh—let's see what he says."

"Dis," Nick said, swinging the door open. "Is my room!" He said it with such pride Lu couldn't help but laugh. The floor was littered with action figures, and there were several socks scattered around. "Isn't it the greatest?"

During dinner Lu was the quietest person at the table. Jake and Molly argued about come political thing, and all of the boys were busy teasing each other.

"Tom's got a girlfriend!" Darren sang.

"Tom's got a girl-fred!" Nick copied.

Rob threw a sting bean at Darren. "When you're a teenager, you won't be laughing!"

"Uh-uh! Girls are yucky!" Darren said matter-of-factly.

"Girls are icky!" Nick backed his brother up.

"But what about Lu?" Tom asked, ruffling Nick's hair.

"I changed my mind," the four-year-old said. "Darren's stupid."

"Nick!" Jake scolded. "Who taught you that word?"

An evil grin appeared on Nick's face. "Stupidstupidstupid!"

Molly and Jake sighed and went back to politics.

The night continued much in this manner as the family (except for Rob, who had homework) moved into the family room to watch TV. Lu quickly excused her self and went up to the guest room. Within minuets she was asleep.

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Whoever can figure out what was different about this chapter gets a cookie! Oh, and a quick note—chapters *may* be a little slower coming out because for the first time in this story I don't have at least part of the next chapter already written.