Hi!  It’s me!  Lily!

Liz and Crystal are here!  We’re about to have another sleepover!  We seem to do that every weekend now, but it’s fun!!!  I have my best friend and Beth has her best friend and we have a bestie mashup!!!

It wasn’t perfect, today.  I mean, school was school, but when Dave got back from the job site, Crystal and her parents showed up soon after!  Beth and Crystal immediately went up to her room to do Beth and Crystal stuff (talk about boys?  I dunno) and we were all sitting down in the living room while Sabby made dinner.  I wanted to ask them about Crystal, but I didn’t know how.  And then Liz and her parents came over too, and the opportunity was lost.

Sabby made something delicious for dinner again.  I couldn’t actually quite identify it, it was some kind of asian fusion dish.  She called it “Beef Ramenoff”.  Sabby is so weird when she gets creative.  It was still delicious, though.

Beth made popcorn and we ate popcorn and snacks and drank soda, and watched a movie.  We let Crystal choose the movie, and she chose “Lolita”.  Everyone looked at her funny, and her parents said that wasn’t an appropriate movie for a girl her age.  She just sighed.  “Oh, like anything that’s happened to me has been appropriate?,” she snarked, and then folded her arms defiantly.

We didn’t watch “Lolita”.  We watched “The Last Mimzy”.

Crystal really seems to resent life.  I’d say I don’t know why, but I know exactly why.  But what’s to be done?

After, though, Liz’s and Crystal’s parents went home (oh did I mention they got a car?  It’s a secondhand one, but it seems to run well) and we all went up to my room.  Crystal was kind of being snippy, but we all had an unspoken agreement to make it a Crystal night.  I brushed her hair, Liz did her nails, and Beth chatted with her.  A few minutes later, Crystal started to relax, and I could see a tear forming in her eyes.

“What’s wrong?,” I said, as she trembled.

“Why are you all so nice to me?”, she asked, her voice quivering.

I frowned.  “Because you’re Crystal, and we love you.”

“But why?”

“Because you’re Crystal!,” I said, and Liz and Beth agreed.  Beth wrapped her arms around and hugged her.  “Why do we need a better reason than that?”

“But I…”

“You nothing!”, I said forcefully.  “Bad stuff happened to you.  I’m so sorry for that!  If I could take it away, I would!  But I can’t, and it’s not your fault!”  I wiped the tear from her eye.  “Just let us love you,” I said quietly, and went back to brushing her hair.  A couple more sobs escaped her, then her head started lolling as she started to truly relax.

“I don’t deserve you,” she said quietly.

“No, but we don’t deserve you either,” Liz said.  “No one deserves anything good, but we can be thankful for it.  Now sit still, I’m trying to apply a clearcoat here and you’re moving too much.”

After Crystal started to relax, we tried to think of a game to play, but we just settled for chatting about everything and nothing.  And that’s the best thing of all.

I’m writing this before we turn in, and this time the girl-pile has four!  Yay!!!

Love you all!!! ❤️

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