CHAPTER ONE – Mr. Sunshine

Sitting on my bed with my legs crossed, I cleared my throat and announced, "This meeting will now come to order!" Either I wasn't saying it loud enough or I was being completely ignored, everyone in my room continued to chat away. "Ahem! Like I was saying – "

Right in the middle of my sentence, my friend Vanessa Pike interrupted and cried in a shrill voice, "The faster we start on time, the quicker we get to dine!" With a goofy grin on her face, she held up a large bag of Lays Potato Chips and bag of gummy bears. On that note, silence filled the room and everyone turned to look at Vanessa with open mouths and shocked looks on all our faces. Almost at the exact same time, we all burst out laughing.

"I thought you gave up on that whole rhyming thing ages ago!" I said, trying to catch my breath from laughing too much. Vanessa grinned.

"Hey, it got everyone's attention, didn't it?"

"Well, thank you," I said, smiling. "It's 5:30, guys... you know what that means."

Five thirty every Monday, Wednesday and Friday afternoon meant the official start of the Babysitter's Club meeting. A club which I can proudly say I, Charlotte Johanssen, is the president of. Yup, I've taken over the reins which the famous Miss Kristy Thomas, the founder of the club, once held. Let me tell you, they were definitely BIG shoes to fill and even I admit that it was pretty tough at first. After a year though, I think I've done pretty well.

Kristy, Mary-Anne, Dawn, Stacey and Claudia all thought it would've been such a shame if they got rid of the club once they started their senior year at Stoneybrook High. They still loved baby-sitting of course, but they had so many other priorities to take care of, like college applications and graduating. That's when Kristy came to me and a couple of other girls to see if we wanted to carry on the great tradition that was the Babysitter's Club.

First things first, I was kind of surprised that Kristy approached me to be the president of the club. I mean, I'm sort of quiet and can be shy at certain times, definitely the opposite of the loud, take-charge kind of person that Kristy was. But Stacey (who was my most favorite out of all the girls, and who's kind of like my older sister to me) assured me that Kristy had made a good choice. She told me that even though I was kind of quiet, I was smart, had a very strong head on my shoulders and could definitely be counted on in any situation. I knew that Kristy would never leave the club in the hands of someone unworthy, so the fact that she picked me was a really big honour.

Who are the other people in the newly-formed club, you ask? Well, you've met Vanessa Pike. She's our very organized secretary. She loves writing, any kind of literature and poetry – so how could we say no when she practically begged to get that position? Our vice-president is Becca Ramsey, otherwise known as my very very very best friend in the entire world. Her sister Jessi was once part of the club, so Becca kind of already knew the ropes. Becca's the only one in the club who's currently attached. She's been going out with one of the Pike triplets, Jordan, for a couple of months now, and since she is my bestfriend, I'm super happy for the both of them. They make a really cute couple. The other two girls are Karen Brewer (who's our ever-trustful treasurer) and Jenny Prezzioso (our alternate officer). Both Karen and Jenny are both younger than the rest of us (I just turned sixteen last month!), but age isn't really an issue, we're all pretty close friends anyway.

I guess now that you're all caught up, I can take you back to reality!

Today was a pretty big day – the last day of school, in fact. I guess that's why we were all really excited and chatty, now that summer vacations were finally here after all the waiting. We went through what was a fairly regular meeting, talking about swimsuit shopping and pigging out on junk food in between calls. Soon enough, it was six o'clock and we had booked eight jobs for the week. Pretty good, if I do say so myself.

Everyone got up and started to leave so I walked them downstairs and to the door.

"'Bye guys! Have a great weekend!" I said, waving. Becca hung around for a couple of minutes after everyone else left. Sitting on the front steps, she started braiding my hair.

"Do boys have absolutely no concept of time?" she said, scowling. I laughed.

"What do you mean?"

"Jordan said he'd be here to pick me up at six, on the dot. Those were his exact words. Do I see him anywhere?"

"He'll be here! Chill out. It's not like he does this all the time. How are things going between you guys anyway?"

"I don't know. I know it's been a few months, but I guess it'll always be weird just because we all grew up together, you know? I mean, he was there to witness the era of the infamous buck-teeth and nasty neon green tights." She pretended to shudder.

"Yeah – but hey, he's still very into you despite of it, remember? Besides, I think it's sweet." Just then, a dark blue Ford Explorer stopped in front of my house. It was Jordan. He got out of the driver's seat with a very sour look on his face.

"Charlotte, be very glad you don't have brothers. I had to practically rip Adam's hand off these keys. That jerk," he muttered. "He knew I had a date. Sorry about being late, Bec." Becca jumped up and gave him a quick kiss on the lips. That certainly seemed to brighten his sour mood.

"I guess I'll just have to give that Adam a little talking to," she said jokingly, wrapping her hands around Jordan's waist. "So were heading off?" she asked, changing the subject.

"Yup. We'll catch you later, Char?" Jordan said, nodding his head.

"Definitely. Have fun you guys." I watched them walk hand in hand down my front walkway. "Don't do anything I wouldn't do!" I yelled after them. Becca swirled around and stuck her tongue out at me while Jordan just looked back and grinned. They got into the SUV and waved as Jordan pulled away from the curb.

It was almost six-thirty in the evening, but it was still really bright out. I gazed up at the cloudless sky and closed my eyes, just feeling the warm breeze. This was a definite sign that summer was here to stay – for a few months anyway.

"Hello, Mr. Sunshine. Looks like it's just you and me now. I wonder what you have planned for me this summer..." I whispered, smiling.