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Flamingos and Cokes, Part 4

The fourth part in a series, Sadie and Lana discuss plans until an old enemy of Sadie's interrupts their lunch. Will 'Little Miss My Daddy Owns the Town' have the last word?



Catch Up on Parts 1-3 at the links below:


Part 1: Click here.

Part 2: Click here.

Part 3: Click here.

 

“Sadie, what in heavens are you doing to my drink? You don’t have to spike my drink, I am already rather stuck with you for the foreseeable future,” Lana said with a smile.


“Just try it. I promise you will like it,” Sadie replied.


“You do realize that you have just poured peanuts into my glass bottle of soda? And you did so on purpose?”


Sadie rolled eyes, “Yes Lana.”


Lana took a sip, furrowed her brow, chewed and slowly swallowed. “You know, the texture is a bit odd, but it works. Amazingly it one hundred percent works.” Lana took another sip and continued, “You know, I might have to get another before we go.”


For lunch, Sadie had taken Lana into town—well what passed for a town. Surrounding the town square, a couple restaurants and some assorted shops occupied the historic storefront buildings. They had walked into The Front Stoop, a sandwich shop which offered local baked goods and jams, along with a wall of old-time candy and snacks. Sadie couldn’t resist grabbing a bag of salted peanuts to toss into Lana’s soda.


“Now back to this business of you and Brady. All you two need is a chance to talk. It’s more than obvious that there is something there to explore,” Lana said.


Suddenly, Sadie’s eyes took notice of something, and she put her head in her hand and turned to look towards the wall of their booth.


“Whatever are you doing? What is it?”


“Shh, that’s Chelsea, the one I told you about,” Sadie said. “You know, Little Miss My Daddy Owns The Town?!”


“Ohhh. So tell me, why you are hiding your face and looking at the wall then?”


“Lana I can’t stop once I start, and the last thing I need is to make a scene. Here. In the middle of the town center.


“Right, well perhaps I shouldn’t tell you that she’s headed directly towards us.”


“Jesus take the wheel,” Sadie said in exasperation.


“Is that you Sadie? My, I haven’t seen you since you hightailed it out of here years ago. I never thought to see your kind here again,” Chelsea said in an overly high-pitched, poisonously sweet voice.


“I beg your pardon. May I ask what you mean by ‘your kind’?” Lana directed towards the viper in a cotton candy pink dress.


“Oh, I almost didn’t see you there. I’m surprised Sadie has company—that’s a new development. She was always to herself all the time. Poor little ole thing. I am Chelsea Hightower, of the Hightowers. You’ve probably noticed our name all around town by now,” she said as she looked haughtily at Lana.


“Hightower did you say? Well my dear, where I’m from we don’t have any Hightowers; we do have Astors, Carnegies, and Vanderbilts though. Perhaps you’ve heard of them? Likely not, I’m sure the distribution of the society pages never quite made it down here. Just as it is apparent that the fashion magazines haven’t either,” Lana retorted as she cocked an eyebrow and looked at Chelsea’s dress from the top to the very bottom.


“Is that right? Well, there is no accounting for taste, now is there?” Chelsea replied.


“Good taste and manners have never been your strong suit, Chelsea. Did you need something?” Sadie asked her pointedly.


“Why yes, I did. As you know the annual Hightower Ball is the biggest event of the year. It happens to be in two weeks, and the Planning Committee would like to auction one of your—um, art pieces. As you know all proceeds go to the Hightower Charity Fund,” Chelsea said.


Sadie started to reply when Lana cut her off. “The Hightower Ball, what an opportunity Sadie! Chelsea, as Sadie’s agent, I must let you know that there are minimum thresholds that must be met and information sent to me in advance. Here’s my card. We’ll need to discuss things such as number of attendees, minimum and expected bid, and the approx. net worth of the top twenty percent. Mere formalities. One has to protect the brand, you know,” Lana responded.


“I will forward this along to the Committee. We’ll be in touch,” Chelsea replied as she spun on her heels and exited the building.


“What are you doing? I don’t want to have anything to do with that stupid ball!” Sadie hissed at Lana.


“Give me some credit, I’m not doing it to appease that little nitwit. We just solved two issues. One being another opportunity for you to connect with Brady after he tows my car from its current deplorable state in the ditch.”


“And what’s the second issue?”


“Neutralizing the Madeline Wray of the South—Little Miss Chelsea Hightower,” Lana said with a mischievous gleam in her eye.


“I like the way you think. Maybe I should hire you—oh right, I already did.” Sadie said.


“Cheers to that! And to peanuts in soda,” Lana said as they clinked near empty soda bottles.


“Seriously though, what piece would I auction off at a Hightower Ball of all things?”


“It could be a new piece; we don’t need the crème de la crème.”


Sadie started laughing, “Do you remember when I was speaking with you on the phone before you came down here?”


“Um, yes. How could I not? I had to put out the proverbial fire you started in New York. And then you disappeared literally off the map.”


“Do you remember when I said that I had an idea for my next piece?”


Lana took a moment and as the memory returned, she started laughing, “That’s perfect.”


“It is my pleasure to present for the consideration of all present, drum roll please. Garden Hoses and Bare Feet,” Sadie said in a mockingly pretentious voice.


The small bell over the door jingled and a customer entered to place an order. “C’mon Lana. We can wander around a little bit before we head back. There’s a stand on the side of the road where we can stop and buy some boiled peanuts.”


“Boiled peanuts? Do you put those in soda too?” Lana asked.


“Definitely NOT,” Sadie answered.


 

About the Picture



"House of Finery is located in the gorgeous Old Stone Store located at the crossroads of Centerville-Rosebud Road and Rosebud Road. The building was erected in 1902 as Upshaw’s General Merchandise Store, though alternate names included Upshaw’s, Rosebud Store, and, of course, the Old Stone Store.


The general store was originally founded by Preston Upshaw in 1894, and expanded into the main building seen today in 1902. In 1907, Preston’s son Olin took over the accounting for the business, and was running the store as proprietor by approximately 1911. Sometime after 1914, Olin added on the room to the left of the building as a millinery for his wife Mabel, who was known to make a $5 hat. She was so successful with her hat business, as well as the making of baby clothes and other items, that she employed a small staff of approximately 2-3 other women during her peak business operations.


Upshaw’s General Merchandise Store remained in business until sometime in the 1960’s under the guidance of Mrs. A.B. Cartwright, though the true date is relatively unknown. However, Olin and Mabel retired from the business in 1958, and the advent of more modern shopping experiences contributed to the demise of the Rosebud store as they knew it. Following an auction of the building and all of its contents in the 1970’s, the store became the home to several businesses, including a cabinet shop, a print shop, and most recently an antique store, until House of Finery moved in in May of 2017. We are truly blessed to continue the story of Rosebud Store and to work toward establishing a sense of community with our neighbors akin to that fostered by the Upshaws."

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