Rose shifted uncomfortably on the tree branch. She had been waiting there for what had felt like days, but was probably only an hour at most. Once again, she cursed her broken watch. She had neglected to check if it was waterproof on the initial purchase, and the endless torrent of rain had taken its toll on the watch, just as it continued to take its toll on her spirits. She didn't dare let her mother find out about it, of course – otherwise, she would passive aggressively buy her some $6,000 masterpiece of engineering that could survive a comet impact, all the while apologizing for her laxness in buying such a poor quality watch. Rose would never let her mother get the better of her like that.
Once again, she refocused on the bright red mailbox flag, still lowered. If she was successful, it would stay that way. She risked a glance down the street. Still no sign of the mailman. It had to come today, she was sure of it. After she had made a discreet note on the calender, her mother had circled the date multiple times in bright neon colors to make sure she would not forget, then repeated the gesture on all the calenders in the house, as well as the dozen extra new ones she had bought to place on every available wall.
She didn't actually care that much about the game, of course. Mostly, she was just curious what Jade had meant back then. Some stupid make-believe nonsense. Jade was always sentimental and imaginative like that. Obviously, nothing could really bring back the dead, and it wasn't like she had anything she wanted to bring back all that much. She was just curious what craziness Jade had meant, for psychological reasons. And, of course, John was totally obsessed with playing it, so she would have to play along, for the sake of friendship.
But if her mother got to the mail first...
She shuddered at the thought. The moment the mail flag went up, her mother would materialize next to it, no doubt with lemonade in hand (for some reason, the mailman never seemed to recognize the depth of her passive-aggressive snub, and seemed to appreciate the beverage), and snatch up the precious cargo to save her daughter the effort. The horror. It would, of course, be delivered directly to her room, no doubt with a plate of cookies and a glass of spiked milk for her enjoyment. At least her mother had yet to offer her a pony during these typical exchanges.
No, victory would go to Rose today. Her keen ears picked up the sound of an approaching van over the sound of rushing water. She watched it pull into the driveway. The mailman stepped out, bag at his shoulder, and walked obliviously under the tree limb. Locking her legs around it, she dropped like a ninja, her skilled hands darting into the mass of paper, snagging the pair of brown envelopes, as well as all the other mail addressed to them, that she would deliver personally to her mother, explaining that she couldn't bear the thought of her beloved parent venturing out in this dismal weather. That'd show her.