A Strange Little Band

Every family is dysfunctional in one way or another, but mostly the Blankenships get along in spite of themselves.

A Strange Little Band cover
eBook ISBN 978-1-60174-079-3
A Strange Little Band Cover
Trade Paperback ISBN

"...a tale likely to remind us of our own family in one way or another...a memorable family and the book well worth the read. 4 Hearts!"~~Dee Dailey, The Romance Studio

"Wake up, children. We're here."

CeCe kept her eyes closed and didn't move. Angela was a dead weight against her, hot and sweaty and sticky. She'd been pretending to be asleep ever since they'd left Idaho Falls. If she'd been awake, she'd have had to listen to more of Jennifer's opinions about neglectful fathers and girls who didn't act like ladies.

Oh, Daddy, why did you make me come? I could have stayed with Gretchen. Her folks wouldn't have minded. I could have raced today, instead of having to put up with Jennifer and Eric and their spoiled brats.

"Cecile, keep your eye on Joseph. Don't let him run off until he's met Aunt Cecile." Jennifer stopped gathering kids' toys into the big mesh tote and frowned at CeCe. "This is going to be confusing. It' s unfortunate you were named after her."

"My name is CeCe. 'See-see'. There's nothing confusing about that." She pretended she didn't see Eric's disapproving glance. Honestly! Nobody ever called her Cecile.

The old lady who stepped down from the porch of the Big House opened her arms wide, like she was going to hug them all at once. Instead she cupped CeCe's chin. "You look so much like your mother, darling. So much." Her voice trembled on the last words.

CeCe didn't even mind the hug. It felt, somehow, like Mama's used to.

"Did you bring your bicycle? I know you missed some races, but we don't want you to let your practice slide while you're here."

"She brought her bicycle," Eric said, sounding just as grumpy as he had when he'd discovered he was expected to load the big box on the roof rack. "Silliest thing I ever heard." He stepped back and caught Jennifer around the waist. "Gran, this is my wife. Jennifer."

"No worse than bringing golf clubs or fishing tackle. Hello, Jennifer, it's wonderful to meet you at last. And your lovely children...?"

Jennifer clapped her hands, and the kids lined up like obedient little puppies, tall to short.

CeCe had never seen anything like it.

"Children, this is your Great-aunt Cecile—"

"All the kids call me Gran," the old lady interrupted.

"I'm afraid I can't allow that. So confusing, since they already have two grandmothers." She scowled at Joseph, who was inching out of line. "Norman is the eldest, then Angela, and Joseph and Bartram." She laid her hand on each kid's head as she spoke the names. "Say hello to Great-aunt Cecile, children."

They all muttered something intelligible.

Gran hugged each one like she really wanted to and wasn't being polite. Once she'd finished with the baby, she turned to where Tommy was leaning against the van. "Stephen?"

"I'm Tommy," her brother insisted. Dad still called him Junior, but nobody else did.

"Tommy, of course. I'll remember that. I'm so glad you're here." She sounded like she really was, too.

He didn't move. "Yeah."

"You didn't want to come, did you?"

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