With the Summer season in full swing, it was the perfect day to be outside. Avery loved the warm weather and all that came with it. The barbecues, the water balloon fights, the sunshine. But mostly, she loved how everyone would gather together and celebrate. In Willow Creek, it was called Summer Fun Day. Alice had spoken about it a couple of days before with sadness in her eyes. It was the one day of the year when her husband would take her and their daughter camping at Granite Falls. But this year, she was excluded. Eric was really being horrible to Alice, and that made Avery mad. Alice was such an amazing person and didn’t deserve to be treated with such disrespect. Avery had a great idea- she would make Summer Fun Day so fun that Alice would forget about missing out on the annual camping trip. She invited Alice, Gunther and Maaike to the park for a fun-filled day in the warm sunshine.
The four of them gathered around a bucket of water balloons. This was the first part of what Avery called Operation: Make Alice forget her mean husband. Of course, she kept the name to herself. As she reached down to grab a balloon from the bucket, Alice and Maaike looked at each other and smiled. They raised their balloons above their heads and, at the same time, they threw them at Avery. The balloons hit her shoulder, exploding and soaking her in cold water. Avery let out a squeal and looked around in surprise. “Who did that?!” Alice and Maaike burst into laughter, almost falling over. Avery smiled. She liked seeing Alice happy.
Avery joined the pair, bursting into a fit of laughter as well. “That.. was.. so.. mean!” Avery tried to catch her breath. She bent over, gasping for air through the laughing fits. When she had caught her breath, she stood up and gave them an evil stare. “It is so on.” Alice and Maaike looked at each other. “I think we’re in trouble.” Maaike grinned. “Trouble? Yeah, right. I bet she couldn’t hit a tree if it was less than a metre away from her.” Avery’s jaw dropped open and they began laughing again. Avery picked up a balloon and threw it at Alice. It collided with her face, sending her stumbling backward.
Alice gasped as she landed on the grass. Everyone stopped for a moment as Alice stood up and brushed herself off. “Well, I guess I was wrong.” Maaike clapped her hands together as she giggled. “Either that, or it was a fluke. I bet she couldn’t do it again.” Avery frowned as she picked up a second balloon and lined Maaike up. She released it and the balloon flew through the air, connecting with Maaike’s torso. She stopped laughing and looked stunned. “Holy Moly, you play dirty!” She smiled at Avery. “Did I forget to mention, I’m the best at water balloon fights?” Avery winked.
While the two were bantering, Alice took the opportunity to catch them both off guard. She threw one at Maaike and, almost simultaneously, she threw another at Avery. Both balloons hit their targets and Maaike and Avery looked at Alice, who was laughing so hard that tears were bursting from her eyes. Maaike and Avery looked back at each other and smiled. It seemed that Maaike had also noticed how sad Alice had been and they were both happy to see her having fun. As the three of them laughed together, Gunther shook his head. “Women.” He muttered. The girls all looked in his direction and he gulped. “Did I say that out loud?”
Avery, Alice and Maaike each grabbed a water balloon and threw them at the same time. Gunther’s eyes widened and he let out a little squeal as he dodged all three. The girls stared in silence, their mouths open. Gunther started dancing around. “You may be the best at throwing balloons, but I’m the best at dodging them!” he sang. As he danced around, Avery threw another one. It hit Gunther in the back and he spun around. “Who threw that?” Avery winked at him. “You mean, you were the best at dodging them.” His face turned bright red as he shook the water away.
Avery won the water balloon fight, and made sure everyone knew it. She pulled faces at them and danced around. “I win! I win! You lose!” The others rolled their eyes and whispered to each other. Avery looked at them. “What are you whispering about?” They looked over at her and grinned. “Oh no.” She screamed as they ran towards her, tackling her to the ground. Avery looked up at them as they cackled, and a smile stretched across her face. Alice reached out and helped her up. “You guys are the best friends I’ve ever had.” Her eyes sparkled as she looked at the three people standing in front of her. “I’m so glad I moved to Willow Creek.”