The moment they stepped onto the wide porch of the two-storied ranch house, Eileen Porter, Wade's closest neighbor from three miles down the road, scurried through the door looking flustered. "She just started that yellin' when you drove up." Eileen looked beyond Wade to the new nanny, and her eyebrows almost hit her hairline.
Wade said, "Thank's Eileen. I appreciate you watching Zoe while I picked up Ms. Woods." He sighed, and thought, Looks like Zoe's gonna send Ms. Woods packin' sooner'n later.
"I'll call you this evening Wade and check on Zoe." Mrs. Porter gave another curious glance at Fawn before extending her hand and saying, "Pleased to meet ya."
Wade tipped his Stetson. "Excuse me, ladies. I'll leave you to get acquainted." He entered the house and heard Fawn say, "I'm Fawn Woods and I'm pleased to meet you, too, Mrs. Porter, but I should probably go with Wade to help with Zoe."
Halfway up the stairs Wade heard the screen door open and close.
Wade entered Zoe's bedroom to find her sitting in the middle of her pink princess bedspread shrieking like a banshee. She had her hands over her ears, shouting, "Make them stop talking to me. Make the voices stop."
He sat beside her and placed his arm around her thin shoulders. "Honey, it's okay. It's Daddy." She continued shrieking. "Make them stop! Make them stop!"
He glanced up to see Fawn standing in the doorway looking concerned. He shook his head, and said, "It may take some time for her to calm down."
Suddenly, Ms. Woods said sharply, "Zoe, I'm going to make the voices stop!"
Zoe paused in her shrieking.
Fawn said with quiet authority, "Voices, I command you to stop, NOW!"
Zoe studied Fawn and then said, "Okay, they stopped. Are you my new nanny? You're really pretty and so are your colors. I bet my daddy thinks you're pretty, too."
Wade's mouth went slack, but not because of the "pretty" comment. He'd never seen Zoe stop yelling so abruptly. He looked back at Fawn and narrowed his eyes.
Zoe jumped up, seemingly dismissing the two of them, and walked to her book shelves. Pulling out a book and sitting cross-legged on the floor, she started reading as if he and Fawn weren't in the room.