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Chapter One

Exciting news is supposed to be good, right? Then why did I feel such trepidation when Mrs. Shedd called us into her office?

Adele Abrams, or Adele Abrams Humphries as she wanted to be called now that she'd married Eric Humphries, didn't share my concern and pushed ahead of me to get into the office of Shedd & Royal Books and More, where we both worked. I followed with my fingers crossed that this bad feeling would feel silly as soon as I heard whatever the news was.

Despite her telling me that I could call her Pamela, I couldn't bring myself to call the woman standing in from of me anything but Mrs. Shedd, which was even more laughable now that she had married her partner in the bookstore, Joshua Royal, and officially her name wasn't even Mrs. Shedd anymore. She had briefly considered going by Pamela Shedd Royal but quickly decided that it would make things more confusing and so continued on with just one last name.

I pulled the door shut behind me and looked at my two bosses with their back-to-back desks. Mrs. Shedd was sixty-something with a methodical manner and silky blond hair that didn't have a single gray strand. Joshua was about the same age but wore it differently. There were plenty of gray streaks in his shaggy dark hair, but he always seemed up for an adventure.

"Well," I said, ready to face whatever it was.

"Pamela will tell you all about it," Mr.Royal said, smiling as he gave her the floor.

Mrs. Shedd seemed barely able to contain herself. "It's so wonderful. A dream come true as a way to promote the bookstore and get paid a nice chunk of change too," she said. She was always on the lookout for ways to draw in customers. She took in her breath and sat a little taller. "We've been contacted by the Craftee Channel," she began. "They're starting a new program called Creating with Crochet, and they want to film the premiere show here in our yarn department. It's all happening very quickly-they want to tape the show here two weeks from this Friday. They had another venue, but something happened and it fell through. We absolutely don't want that to happen here." She turned her attention to me. "Molly, you'll be their contact."

And that's when I knew I was right about the trouble.

Adele's head snapped to attention. "Why is Pink the contact? It should be me." She looked at our bosses. "You do remember I did a guest shot on one of Craftee's shows, What's Up With Crafts." Mrs. Shedd put her hand to her forehead and looked to Mr. Royal as Adele went on. "Everybody said I was a standout, and I'm sure they'll want me back for another appearance." Adele turned to me. "And when it comes to crochet, I'm the real expert." She gestured toward her outfit. She was wearing a crocheted tunic in spring green with a ring of pink flowers around her neckline. The same shade of pink was picked up in her beanie. It seemed as though she was going to go on about being more worthy than me, but she suddenly stopped and stared at Mrs. Shedd. "Who's hosting the show?"

"They didn't say," my boss said. She tried to turn her attention back to me, but Adele started muttering to herself something about that must be it. Then she shared her thoughts with the rest of us.

"I'm sure they just haven't contacted me yet," Adele said. "Though it it does seem rather risky on their part. I mean, for them to assume that I'm available and all." The three of us suddenly avoided looking at her, but that didn't stop her from looking at me. "Pink, did you forget to give me a message?"

Gone With The Wool
by Betty Hechtman

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