Chapter 1

It was just another day for the Dopplers. Amelia sat in their living room, reading a new book, while Delbert was up in the library working. It was then that Benjamin, Amelia´s only son, appeared, moving into the living room. Amelia looked up from her reading, and smiled.

"Yes, Benjamin… what is it?" Amelia asked, curious.

"Amanda and the others are doing something they're not supposed to do again," Benjamin informed his mother.

Amelia could only sigh. She loved her daughters very much indeed, but they were quite the handful sometimes. "Yes? What is it this go round?" Amelia asked, pausing to sip her tea.

Benjamin locked his hands behind his back, torn between doing what was right, and telling on his sisters, who'd be furious with him. Benjamin's morals won the battle, and he said, "They're trying on your uniform, Momma."

Amelia choked at that news, inadvertantly spraying her tea everywhere as she did so. Composing herself quickly, she frowned, then looked back to her son.

"T-T-They're up in the attic," Benjamin stammered, wincing as he watched his mother jump to her feet and rush right past him. "Oh, man… those three are so dead," he told himself aloud, shaking his head.

Meanwhile, up in the attic, Amelia walked in and saw her three daughters at work. The redhead Amanda had commandeered her mother's tri-corner hat as well as her gloves. The blonde Angelina had drawn on her mother's boots, though she was having more than a little difficulty standing up straight in them. The raven-haired Alice wore the uniform's jacket and pants, both of which were far too big on her, forcing her to roll back the sleeves and hold up the pants with both hands.

"How in the world does Mom wear these things?" a displeased Angelina demanded of no one in particular, having to hold on to her sister Amanda in order not to topple over.

Amanda ignored her sister's plight, so intent she was on her play-acting. "Hey, you two! Look, I'm Mom," Amanda announced, taking up a rather good imitation of her mother's proud stance and posture. Giving both her sisters a look of authority, Amanda proceeded toin an uncanny imitation of her mother's precise dictionsay, "Cadets… I am Captain Amelia. And, while you are aboard my ship you shall address me as Captain or ma'am."

Alice and Angelina giggled at their sister's antics. "Say, Mandy… you're good. That was so Mom," Alice confessed around another bout of giggles.

"Of course," Angelina informed her sisters a moment later. "You two do know that if she ever caught us like this, she´d kill the three of us."

Amelia watched all three of her mischievious daughters pale at that thought. Well, Amelia thought to herself, they've had their fun… now it was time to pay the piper. She walked silently in on them, coming to rest just behind Angelina, who had last spoken. "Oh my, no, girls… I wouldn´t kill you. I love you far too much to do something quite so drastic as all that," Amelia began.

The three girls screeched, whirling about to spot their mother, and her most disapproving green eyes.

"Oh, man," groaned Amanda, hanging her head. "We are so busted…"

Amelia worked hard to not smile at her daughter's last observation.

"Busted indeed," Amelia agreed. "And as such, you three have just garnered yourselves a well-deserved period of being grounded. I believe a week will be just the ticket, don't you think?"

All three blinked in surprise. A whole week? But, all three knew better than to protest…all that would get them was additional time. "Yes, ma'am," the three girls responded woodenly.

Amelia nodded in satisfaction. She then cast a look to her Amanda. "Oh, I suppose I would be remiss, if I did not at least congratulate you, Amanda dear, on your rather nice imitation of me. Very nicely done," Amelia told her. "Though, in the future, the next time you should try that, do hold your head a bit higher, dear, like this…" Amelia placed her finger under Amanda's chin, and adjusted her just so.

"Very well, then," Amelia continued. "The jig, as it were, girls, is up." She held out her hand to Amanda, who pulled off her gloves, then handed her mother them as well as her hat. "Thank you, Amanda."

Amelia then turned toward Angelina. The girl's brown eyes went wide and she gasped as her mother simply grabbed her by her collar and lifted her easily out of the boots. Amelia then placed her daughter gently down on the floor, and said simply, "Thank you, dear."

"Now, Alice… if you please?" Amelia simply asked, and the girl gave her the jacket and pants in a hurry. The girls now stood at attention before their mother as Amelia stowed her uniform away in the closet.

She then turned back to her three daughters. "Girls… I am very disappointed in you all," Amelia said gravely.

The three looked down at their feet and replied in a very quiet, "Yes, ma'am."

Amelia felt terrible punishing them, but she did what she felt was best for all. "Now, what shall happen if I am to catch you three up here again trying on that uniform?"

Alice gulped, "No more sweets."

Angelina added, rather despondantly, "No more trips on the Legacy."

Amanda then sighed heavily and concluded, "And plenty of chores… for all three of us."

"Very nicely surmised," Amelia concurred, looking down to them sternly. "So, there will be no repeat of this outrageous behavior. Am I clear?"

"Yes, ma'am!" the girls barked, their gazes still not meeting their mother's glare.

"Very well then. Your grounding will begin right after supper. You may go," Amelia said. She turned her back on her truant girls, though she did listen to hear them leave for their rooms.

After they had left, she hung her head. She knew what she had done was necessary, but that didn't mean she had to enjoy it. With a weary sigh, she left the attic, and went to the library in search of her husband.

"Hello, darling," she said upon seeing him at his desk.

"Ah, Amelia! Whatever is the matter? You look as if you've lost your best friend," Delbert observed in concern, before he gave Amelia's hand a hopefully comforting pat.

"Oh, it's nothing. I just wanted to tell you that I am taking a walk over to the Benbow Inn for a time is all," Amelia replied, pausing to caress her husband's cheek fondly.

"Might I ask why?" Delbert asked, putting his quill pen down. "Come now, Amelia. We've been married long enough for me to know that you are upset about something."

Amelia grinned a wan, tired grin. "Oh, very well. I have just caught my daughters upstairs in the attic, trying on my uniform," Amelia simply stated.

"Oh dear," Delbert exclaimed softly. "I assume that you've already awarded them some sort of punishment."

"Yes," Amelia replied, closing her eyes to hide her feelings. "A week's grounding to the house… for the three of them."

Delbert frowned, nodding. "Would you like me to talk with them?" Delbert asked.

"Would you?" Amelia asked. She knew that her husband had a way of talking with his daughters that somehow eluded her.

"Of course, my love," Delbert answered with a smile. "Now, you run along, and leave those three to me."

Amelia watched her husband walk into the next room, then turned and made her way down to the Benbow Inn.

AN: The scene whit the Doppler girls are from a picture called Amelias little angels. I don´t remember the name of the artist or the link to the picture but if you read this send me a mail and i´ll put it upp