Friday, February 12, 2010

#82 Jessi and the Troublemaker


Danielle Roberts's leukemia is in remission, and she's been feeling really good. She's got tons of energy, and her family and friends couldn't be happier. The BSC is glad, too, but they can't help but wonder if Danielle might be going a little too far. Jessi is the first one to experience the new Danielle. She's reading to Danielle's brother, Greg, when they hear a big crash in the study. They race back there, and find Danielle sprawled on the floor, wearing her mother's Rollerblades next to a knocked-over bookcase. Danielle's not hurt, so Jessi doesn't say anything to her parents when they get home. After all, the fact that Danielle is feeling good enough to skate at all is a good thing.

Mary Anne is the next one to sit for Danielle and Greg. It SHOULD have been Stacey, but she called Mary Anne at the last minute ans asked her to sub. Charlotte Johanssen and Haley Braddock come over to play, and Mary Anne catches them sledding down the basement stairs on an old crib mattress. No one gets hurt, but they DO get plenty dirty before Mary Anne finds out what they're doing and puts a stop to it. The BSC members talk about Danielle's antics at their next meeting, but they agree not to say anything for the time being. If her parents aren't worried about her behavior, they figure they shouldn't be, either.

Kristy is next up at the Roberts' house. This time, Haley, Charlotte, Becca, and Vanessa all come to play with Danielle. Things are pretty quiet at first, but quiet doesn't necessarily mean that everyone is staying out of trouble, as Kristy finds out. She's busy reading to Greg (he's sick with a cold) when she realizes that she's been hearing running water for WAY too long. Since Greg has fallen asleep, Kristy investigates. She finds the girls in one of the bathrooms...building a swimming pool. They'd sealed up the shower and just let the water run. They'd even put Easter egg dye in the water. There's a flood, of course, but Kristy and the girls get it all cleaned up before Mrs. Roberts gets home. At the next meeting, the girls agree that Danielle is going way too far with her hijinks, so Kristy gives her mother a call. Mrs. Roberts basically just brushes it off as "high spirits," so the girls leave it at that.

Jessi sits for Danielle and Greg again not long after that. Once again, it was supposed to be Stacey, but she flaked out. Charlotte, Haley, Vanessa, and Becca are over again, and Danielle announces that they're going to play a game called "Going on a Car Trip." Jessi thinks it's totally innocent...until she peeks into the garage to check on them and finds the girls and the car missing. She runs outside just in time to see the car slowly turning the corner, with Danielle at the wheel. She makes it to the driveway, but then the car rolls backward and she can't stop it. It smashes into another car across the street. Jessi races over, and although the girls are scared silly, the only one who seems to be hurt is Vanessa. A neighbor calls 911, and while another neighbor watches the other girls, Jessi and Vanessa head to the hospital. Vanessa is fine (just a little cut on the head), but Jessi is a wreck. As soon as her dad picks her up, she basically loses it.

As soon as Jessi gets home, she takes a nap. Then, she calls the Roberts house to check on Danielle, and both Roberts parents apologize for letting their daughter get so out of control. There are other, lasting effects from the accident, though. None of Danielle's friends will speak to her because she got them in so much trouble. Stacey helps them work through it when she's sitting at the Robertes (yes, she actually shows up for a job) by helping them see that they were all at fault, too. It was their choice to get in that car, even though they knew it was wrong.

Subplot: Jessi and Becca over hear Aunt Cecelia talking about a wedding with a (male) friend of hers, and they're convinced that the two of them are planning on getting married. The fact that Aunt Cecelia says nothing about it to anyone doesn't stop them from making plans. On the day of the supposed wedding, the girls dress up, ready to go watch their aunt get married. Too bad she and Mr. Major are IN a wedding, not having one of their own. Jessi is really embarrassed, because she told the whole BSC about the wedding. She doesn't want to have to admit that she was wrong, so she and Becca figure that they should just convince Aunt Cecelia and Mr. Major that they DO want to get married. They cook a romantic dinner for the two of them, but the not-so-happy couple tell the girls that they're just friends, and have no intention of ever marrying each other.

Rating: 1.5

Thoughts and Things
  • Lots of foreshadowing of Stacey's defection....
  • I actually liked the subplot; reading about the Ramsey family is usually pretty entertaining.
  • Danielle on the cover looks an awful lot like a young Scarlett Johansson. She would have been about 11 when this book was published...I wonder if there's any chance that she was the model???

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