Maxzyne clumsily wrings out the mop and slowly wipes down the floor. “We really made a mess, didn’t we?”
“You sure did, kid.” Gigi gives her a sideways glance. “But not as much as I might have when I was your age.” Her bracelets jangle as she points to the cupcakes, soda flavors, and candies. “All these color choices!”
“But I mixed too many flavors and colors,” Maxzyne admits. “You know what that means?”
“Brown,” they answer together.
Maxzyne wrings the mop one last time and rolls the bucket to the back of the counter. She hands the rubber gloves back to Gigi and together they leave the store. Maxzyne recognizes the deserted underground walkway that links the two buildings.
“I bet you’ll make a good artist someday, Ms. Merriweather,” Gigi chuckles. “Who knows? Maybe your artistic medium will be food.”
“You really think I can be an artist, Gigi? Even if I’m always messing up?”
“Art thrives on mess. Just not in our store!” Maxzyne is thrilled that Gigi talks to her as if she were grown up. She stands taller, feeling older than ten. Almost as if they were equals. “A little organized chaos never hurt anyone,” Gigi continues. “Creativity is like a thunderstorm in your head, right?” She waves her arms dramatically. “Crash! Boom!”
“Yeah, my mother says my head’s in the clouds. That’s what gets me in trouble.”
“And that’s how you’ll make great art someday. A generous spirit, rich imagination, good at making a mess. Oh, and a whole lot of nerve.” Gigi raises an eyebrow at Maxzyne. “You’ve definitely got nerve, Maxzyne.”
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