Azalea looked at her watch and said, "One minute. Look, let me completely finish before you respond, please?" Not waiting for an answer, she continued, "I'm leaving on a trip tomorrow. I plan on surprising your father while he's doing his publicity tour, by spending the next two weeks with him. Normally, I let you kids know way in advance when I'm taking a trip, so that you can decide on where you want to stay. Because this was a spur of the moment thing, my friend Malibu Miller will be staying here to do the adult supervision thing."
"And we have no say in this?"
"This? No. But because I gave you kids no choice about it, lets meet in about thirty-five minutes to discuss what rules should be relaxed while Ms. Miller is here. Deal?"
For the next fifteen minutes while the children talked amongst themselves, Azalea was sweating bullets in anticipation of the children being pissed off enough to start calling her, 'Miss Azalea'. Or even worse, being completely pissed off and given the silent treatment. Finally, they were ready to give their decision.
"Until you get back from your trip, we have a deal."
Damn! I'm not out of the woods yet. "Okay, we'll meet at the kitchen about twenty. In the meantime, while I'm packing my suitcases and calling the travel agent, you order some takeout for the family."
Calling the agent again, Azalea was soon confirmed on a morning flight, with a car rental waiting when she arrived. After haggling over the payment terms, she then thanked him for his work and wished him a good weekend. Hanging up, she quickly dialed Malibu to tell her that she was staying over tonight because she had an early a.m. departure time.
"What do you mean I have to stay over tonight?"
I hate it when she whines. "Look, it's because..."
Reading Azalea's mind, she said, "I am not whining!"
Briefly losing her train of thought, Azalea quickly rebounded and started over. "Look, it's because I have an early flight and I don't want to be late."
"Fine. I'll be there around 11:30, no earlier."
"NO! I do have a social you know!"
Wincing at the phone being slammed, Azalea glanced at the clock and realized it was time for her to do the meeting thing with the kids.