Chapter 55 The cake and the carnival

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Flora

Tea time with my BFFs usually took place on Sunday afternoons, but with Sean's basketball games interfering, I had to move the schedule around a little. I wasn't placing him before them; it's only because he was busier and I wanted to be available whenever he was free. It made total sense, right?

The girls weren't very impressed with my priorities, however, especially when I suggested baking a cake for our respective boyfriends (and Carmen's scandal which she refused to talk about). They said I was turning boring.

"Do I look like a Stepford wife to you?" Sandra asked.

"You look more like the kind of wife who poisons her husband's tea," I replied truthfully.

Janet informed me that Brian was lactose intolerant and Carmen claimed she didn't have anyone to bake a cake for, but as the sweetheart of this group she didn't mind helping me. In the end they all came, and as Carmen and I tried mixing the butter with sugar, Sandra and Janet watched TV.

It was harder than it looked, creaming the butter, and Sandra wasn't helping by offering snide comments here and there like she was Gordan Ramsay. It started from my lack of ability in the kitchen, to celebrity affairs, and gradually she waded her way through our senior class.

"Sandy," I interrupted when she was in the middle of tearing apart Jenny's new hairstyle. "Do you think we're being mean by secretly making fun of people?"

"Secretly?" Sandra raised an eyebrow. "If Jenny asks me my opinion, I'd say the exact same thing."

"I don't make fun of people," Janet said. "I make observations. I can't promise it's always going to be positive."

"What's with this newly-discovered conscience?" Sandra asked. "You used to blog about how some actresses should openly apologize for the hideous dresses they wore to the Met Gala."

"Well, Sean says..." I trailed off when she rolled her eyes at me. I coughed. "Sean says it's not nice when I laugh at other people, even if I do it behind their backs."

Carmen smiled. It wasn't easy finding someone who shared her opinion, but St Sean never disappointed. "Amen! I've said so many times that if you don't want to be talked about, you shouldn't do that to others either."

"I'm scared when people don't talk about me," Sandra said, running a hand through her hair lazily.

"I got to think the other day if we're a little like Regina George," I said. She was the antagonist in Mean Girls who made a scrapbook out of bitchy comments about everyone. When the book got out and secrets were revealed, a lot of feelings were hurt.

"Of course we're better than Regina George!" Sandra sat up straight, offended. "We know better than to leave behind physical evidence. Besides, we don't lie and stab people in the back."

Carmen nodded. "As Oscar Wilde said, true friends stab you in the front."

"Sandra is the epitome of a true friend," Janet agreed, walking over to check out my progress. She took the whisk from my hand and helped stir in the eggs. As the mixture turned slowly from the color of custard to canary yellow, she said, "Sean really doesn't like to bad-mouth people. Not even about his exes, which is so boring."

"That's not boring," Carmen said, looking at me. "He's kind, and I think he brings out a very good side of you."

I really wasn't sure about that. I knew Sean was genuinely tolerant of people, but I was just keeping my mouth shut. Are you a better person for thinking mean thoughts but not saying it? Or does that make you fake?

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