Royally Raised
Page 7

 Emma Chase

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“Okay. Sorry, Riley.”
Chelsea runs a tender hand through Rosaleen’s messy curls. “Now, go upstairs and wash your face, then come set the table.”
With a nod, she hops off the counter and skips past me up the steps.
Her sister vehemently objects. “That’s it? That’s all you’re doing to her?”
Chelsea sighs, a little annoyed. “She’s seven, Riley. What do you want me to do— beat her with a stick?”
“It’s not fair!” she bellows. So much fucking louder than necessary.
“Sometimes life isn’t. The sooner you understand that, the better off you’ll be.”
Riley smacks the counter. “I hate this family!”
In a whirl of brown hair and fury, she stomps up the stairs, glaring at me along the way. Like I ruined her fucking lipstick.
“Sweet girl,” I tell Chelsea dryly.
“She’s fourteen. It’s a tough age.” She looks wistfully up the steps. “She’ll be human again . . . eventually.”