I’m Maddie Porter. I’m 11 and 3/4, and my grandma is Gerry Porter.
People are asking Grandma to talk about a day in her life. But she’s very shy when it comes to talking about herself. She taught high school for years and years, but she claims that’s different. She knows a lot about English—that means all kinds of reading and writing, like, even old stuff, Shakespeare, and all—and she loves to pass it on, she says. But if it’s about her personal life, she keeps it quiet.
So it’s up to me to do it for her. Talk about her day, I mean.
When I was a kid, I didn’t spend as much time with Grandma and Grandpa because I lived far away in Los Angeles. But now I live in Palo Alto, California, which is very close to Lincoln Point and I have my own bedroom in Grandma’s house. Grandpa was sick for a long time and then he died but I still remember a little bit about him. He was an architect and that’s what I might want to be. Either that, or I’ll get a job building dollhouses because that’s my favorite thing to do with Grandma. She has lots of friends and they come over and work on projects that they give away. Like to kids in shelters. I guess that means that they can’t afford real homes. The kids, I mean.
I’m very lucky that I have 2 homes, almost. My best friend in Lincoln Point is Taylor. Taylor’s grandpa, Henry, and my grandma are going to get married soon.
Or else, I might be a cop, like my first-cousin-once-removed Skip, but I can tell nobody wants me to do that, because . . .
Uh-oh, I think I’m doing that unfocused thing my teachers are always ragging on me about. I’m supposed to be talking about a day in Grandma’s life. But I only know about the days I’m with her, so what can I do?
Maybe I’ll just tell you about last Saturday, even though it was the worst day of my life. I did something really stupid and Grandma got mad at me. And she never gets mad, even when my ‘rents are really mad at me, so you know it must have been bad.
I’ll try to explain why it happened. I was at soccer practice with Taylor and when Henry took us back to Grandma’s house she was all upset. The place where their wedding was going to be, I forget her name, called and said someone died in their pool! Then it turned out the dead person was Grandma’s friend Mr. Templeton’s wife! He’s part of Grandma’s group that comes and builds dollhouses with us.
The second best thing I like to do, well maybe it’s the first, is help my cousin Skip solve cases like this. I know a lot about computers and I might be a computer specialist when I get to college. It’s hard to decide.
So, everyone’s trying to figure out why Mrs. Templeton, the dead lady, was even at the place where Grandma and Henry were going to get married, plus who pushed her into the pool? It’s like a hotel but they call it Bee and Bee, I think. I don’t know why.
Why Grandma was mad at me: I had an idea for how to find out something about one of the suspects. I was only trying to help, but it turned out to be not a good idea because I could have gotten hurt and some other people might have gotten hurt, too.
I don’t have time to explain it all, but I just wanted to tell you about that one day in Grandma’s life when I thought she didn’t love me anymore. Everything’s okay now, though. The end.
[Note from Gerry: Maddie wants me to correct her essay before she submits it, but I’m leaving it as is. I’m not even going to read it. I hope she didn’t reveal too many family secrets!]
[Note from Margaret Grace: For the full story of Maddie’s misbehavior, read Matrimony in Miniature, recently released on September 9, 2016!]
Matrimony in Miniature is the 9th book in the Miniature mystery series, published by Perseverance Press, September 2016.
When murder happens in the small town of Lincoln Point CA, there aren’t many degrees of separation between the victim and retired teacher Gerry Porter. How can she stay away from the investigation when the crime scene is the venue for her marriage to Henry Baker? But this time, nephew Detective Skip Gowen tries to discourage Gerry’s and granddaughter Maddie’s efforts to solve “The Case.” He couldn’t live with himself if the murderer learns of their efforts and comes after them. . .
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About the author
Margaret Grace is the pen name of Camille Minichino, the author of short stories, articles, and more than twenty mystery novels. They include the Miniature series, the Professor Sophie Knowles Mysteries (as Ada Madison), and the new Postmistress series (as Jean Flowers). She’s past president of Northern California MWA, Northern California Sisters in Crime, and the Mt. Diablo California Writers Club. She teaches science at Golden Gate University, and writing at Bay Area schools. Connect with Camille at www.minichino.com.
All comments are welcomed.