February 4, 2010

Evan’s mobile phone pinged with the email alert. His eyes went big. He ran up the stairs, two at a time, to Audrey’s attic studio. She was sitting at her computer.

“Hi,” she said. “Need something?”

His feet couldn’t stay still. “I need you to not invite me. I’m not your friend.”

“You didn’t read it.”

“It said Facebook. It said friend.”

“Of the family! It’s a family page, not my personal page. It’ll be easier to stay in touch.”

Evan rolled his eyes all the way to the back of his head. Audrey heard him clomp down to his room, then clomp back up again. He was jittery now in the doorway.

“Please say you’re not posting pictures,” he said.

“Well, what good is a family page without pictures?”

“It’s public! Millions and millions of people could look at—at—”

“Your little brown bunny?”

“YES! NO!”

Evan rushed over to see what he already knew was there: goofy, hammy photos of his mom and dad, his brothers and himself. He bonked his head on the desk. “You’re invading my privacy,” he said. “Have I mentioned my privacy policy?”

“Not lately.”

“The box remains unchecked. I do not check the box.”

Audrey got up from her desk. She stared out the window, or, rather, at the window, because mostly what she saw was Evan’s reflection in the glass, against the night.

“Okay,” she said.

“Okay? You’ll keep my face off Facebook?”

Audrey agreed. Evan thanked her and clomped down the stairs again, the sound diminishing with each of the thirty steps to the main floor.

The quiet lasted at least three seconds. Audrey answered the phone and immediately looked annoyed.

“Evan, I doubt your brothers have privacy policies but I’ll take that into consideration. Your father most definitely does not have one. I think you should hang up now, or I might make a new page called ‘Boys Who Left Home Unintentionally’.”

Audrey kept her promise. She published a simple Facebook page called “The Pullets” with a few simple photos. Nothing Evan could scream about—



©2010 Pam Wells

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