An ambulance whisked Mrs. Smith to the hospital.
Momma rushed back to our house and grabbed her book of phone numbers. "I just met Mrs. Smith's daughter the other day. She gave me her number. I better give her a call."
I walked to the kitchen door, turned around, and walked to the refrigerator. Then I did it again and again.
Daddy leaned on the counter. He stopped me. "Chloe, stop pacing. It'll be all right." He lifted me onto the counter top and kissed my forehead.
Momma hung up the phone. "Mrs. Smith's daughter is on her way, but she lives about an hour from here. I told her we would be glad to go to the hospital and stay until she can arrive." She grabbed her purse.
Daddy pushed his arms back through his church coat and scooped up his keys. He held out his arms. "Ready?"
I nodded and slid into his arms. He carried me to the car. Since I'm such a big girl, Daddy doesn't carry me much anymore. But I still liked it when he did.
Momma held my hand and we hurried through the Emergency Room doors. They whooshed open.
Daddy talked to a lady sitting behind a desk. He turned around. "I'll be right back. They're going to let me see Mrs. Smith for a moment."
Momma tugged me over to a chair and we plopped down.
"Momma, I know Mrs. Smith is a grumpy-bear but I sure hope she's all right."
"I hope so too." Momma rubbed my back and smiled. "I'm proud of you."
"You saw that Mrs. Smith needed help and you helped her."
"We need to be proud of Rosy. She's the one who led me to Mrs. Smith."
"She is a smart little dog."
Daddy slipped into the chair next to me. "I believe she's had a stroke. She was awake so I told her that her daughter is on the way."
"Mr. and Mrs. Parker?" A lady with long brown hair and a really pretty face rushed up to us. "I'm Sara. You brought my mother in? What's happening?"
Momma and Daddy jumped to their feet and I followed.
"Please, call me Charis. This is my husband, Preston. He's been in to see your mother." Momma's voice was very calm. She smoothed my hair. "This is our daughter, Chloe. She found your mother."
Sara bent down and looked at me. "Thank you, Chloe."
Daddy led Sara to the lady at the desk. He waited until a nurse came to get Sara then he returned to sit with us. "I told Sara we would wait to make sure she didn't need anything."
I swung my legs back and forth, then I stared at the ticker hand on the clock. Momma handed me a little notebook and a small pack of crayons. First I drew a dog like Rosy and used green for grass. I made a blue sky with a big yellow sun in it. On the next page I colored me and Katie on the swings at school. We were swinging high. I swung my legs again, harder, trying to think of another picture to draw.
Momma handed me her thing with the screen. I always forget the name of it. But she keeps books for me to read on there. I flipped through some of my favorites.
Finally, Sara came back out to the waiting room. "Thank you all so much. They don't feel that this was a severe stroke. Thank goodness."
"Is there anything we can do for you?" Momma said.
"There is one thing." Sara looked right at me. "Chloe, could you take care of Rosy until my mother comes home?"
I looked at Momma then Daddy. They both nodded.
"Yes, I will. I'll take good care of her. Only ..."
"Well, Mrs. Smith really didn't like for me to play with Rosy."
Sara knelt. "She's changed her mind. I told her how you saved her."
"I saved her?"
"Yes. If you hadn't found her and gotten help, she might be much worse. She wants you to take care of Rosy until she can come home. If that's okay with your parents?"
"Of course," Momma said.
"Maybe Mrs. Smith isn't a grumpy-bear after all."
Sara chuckled. "My momma can be a grumpy-bear, but I'm glad you're next door to check on her and help her with Rosy since I can't be there."
"Momma says I am getting bigger and can be 'sponsible."
"That's responsible," Momma said.
"Oh yeah, right." I patted Sara's hand. "Don't worry. Chloe Ann Parker is on the job."
What does being responsible mean?
Are you becoming more responsible? How?