Story Go Round 6/28/2008, #4

Mean and Meaner

(post-titled by Terry)

There was mean and there was really mean, but Louisa was only three quarters mean. One of her grandparents had been nice, and she supposed that kept her from being a total meanie. But she was content with her meanness, unlike her half-mean father who resented his relative lack of meanness. He would slam a book on the table to make a point, then put it back on the shelf. he would leave dirty dishes out, but then vacuum the rug without being asked. Louisa secretly despised him.

Though less mean than her mother - the full-blood meanie of the family - Louisa shared her mother's acceptance of her nature. At least, she had until her cousin Sally came to visit.

Sally Nice was a pureblood from a long line of Nices. She could even trace ancestors back to Fredrick the Friendly and George the Good. It provoked Louisa to new extremes of meanness - slamming a door on her and breaking her nose, putting tacks under her bedsheets. Sally only declared her new nose shape was an improvement, and that she was glad it was her sleeping in the "prickly" bed and not Louisa.

Louisa found herself wishing she was meaner. But she couldn't help tidying the guest room Sally was staying in - and Sally caught her. "You know, you are such a team player," Sally chirped, her bulbous, purple, broken nose making her voice nasal. "You should join me on the cheerleading team!"

"Argh!" Louisa howled with frustration. "Why do you have to be so nice! It's awful! I can't take it any more!" And so Louisa's epiphany struck. "You're too nice to be mad when I'm mean, and nice enough to notice when I'm nice." Putting her arm over Sally's shoulder she said softly: "This is the start of a beautiful, if unhealthy, friendship."