About the Book
If magic is supposed to set things right, why is it about to ruin Miri and Molly’s life? Miri and Molly have outwitted nasty cousins, a mean aunt, and time itself to become sisters. Now they’re finally united in one of the world’s most extraordinary families, so it must be time for the happy ending, right? Wrong! Magic has other plans for them. When the girls step through a door and find themselves in a brand-new, very old time, they come face to face with a puzzle that threatens to break them apart. Add their wayward brothers Robbie and Ray into the mix, and Miri and Molly are having trouble in three centuries. The girls must use their imaginations, their detective skills, and the inadvertent assistance of their new kitten to solve the problems magic has made for them.
[an excerpt from Chapter One]
. . . An hour later, when their father came in, they were still at the kitchen table, all six of them, doing their homework.
“These are my kids,” he said, waving his hand casually at the kitchen table.
“Kids, this is Ollie.” He gestured to a wiry man beside him. “Ollie’s going to be helping me with the porch stairs.” He continued toward the back door.
Ollie didn’t. Ollie came to a halt in the middle of the kitchen and frowned. Miri watched him counting. Comparing heights. Comparing faces. And then counting again. His frown got squintier and squintier.
Why not get it over with, thought Miri. “Three sets of twins,” she called helpfully.
He shook his head. “No way.”
“Way,” said Ray.
“Way,” echoed Robbie.
Nell and Nora nodded. Way.
Their father’s head reappeared in the door frame. “Um. Ollie? The porch is back here.”
Ollie swung around. “Three? Three sets of twins?”
Dad grinned. “That’s right.”
Miri and Molly looked up, waiting. Ray and Robbie did the same. Even Nell and Nora paused in midst of their massive pasting project. What was it going to be this time? Ollie didn’t look like the kind of person who would say, “Oh my! What a lovely surprise that must have been!” Mostly, it was little old ladies who said that.
He also didn’t look like he was going to say “Better you than me, man,” which is what a waiter had said one time, probably because Nell had dropped two enchiladas on the floor at the exact same moment that Nora had thrown up.
Once, a man had kissed their mother’s hand. “Madame,” he had said, “you are magnificent.” She had liked that.
Ollie continued to inspect them, chewing on his moustache thoughtfully. “Huh,” he said, waggling a finger from Ray and Robbie to Nell and Nora. “Those ones look alike.” The finger waggled toward Miri and Molly. “And those ones don’t.”
“That’s right,” said their father. “Identical, fraternal, identical. Statistically rare. Actually, statistically anomalous, with an incidence of—”
Ollie obviously didn’t care about statistics. His eyes roved over the six children as their father spoke, and finally he made his pronouncement: “There’s always something been funny about this house. Guess you’re it now.” And with that, he turned and slouched toward the back porch.
“That was random,” said Ray, rolling his eyes.
Nell looked with satisfaction at the mountain of sticky paper in front of her. “I like homework.”
“I like paste,” said Nora.
As their brothers and sisters bent over their work, Miri and Molly exchanged quick sideways glances tinged with alarm. Something funny about the house? How did Ollie know about the house? And what did he know? Was it possible that he knew the truth?
Impossible. Only Miri and Molly knew that.