Soli Deo gloria

DISCLAIMER: I do NOT own the Princess and the Frog. It's the Fourth of July in America today, and I was thinking of which of my many favorite movies has American people in the time period of where the Fourth of July exists. Thus, a PATF story!

"Well, don't you look like the purtiest flower in May!" thirteen-year-old Charlotte said in awe. She was leaning out of the window of her father's new car, and was nearly falling out.

"Hm, thank you, Lottie," Tiana smiled as she walked lightly down the stairs of her front porch. She had been working hard as of late and her mother had rewarded her with a brand new dress. She had protested greatly, saying that she didn't need a new dress. Her mother had insisted, though, and had stayed up late the night before sewing it.

It was a blue dress with white trimming and she had even made a hair ribbon. Even though Tiana said it wasn't necessary, Eudora had gone and spent twenty minutes washing, brushing and putting Tiana's hair into a lovely ponytail.

"Just because you're not fifteen yet doesn't mean you can't make yourself look pretty," Eudora had said in a firm voice. Today was the Fourth of July, and she was not about to let her daughter go out with her friend in her ordinary clothes. You see, Charlotte had invited Tiana to go out with her on the Fourth of July. The whole of New Orleans was going crazy with excitement. Banners of red, blue and white hung from every balcony everywhere.

Now Eudora was waving her thirteen-year-old away to the La Bouff car to go to the Fourth of July celebration that was downtown.

Tiana leapt into the seat next to Lottie in the front seat. The La Bouff teen was all set in one of Eudora's dresses. She actually looked like the flag, with her white and red and blue striped dress and her big blue hat with sparkly stars scattered over it.

"We're going to look like the two cutest girls the Fourth of Jewel-lie ever did see!" Charlotte squealed. "Step on it, Daddy!"

"Yes, Charlotte dear," Big Daddy La Bouff said, and the two held onto the car as they whizzed past the broken down shanty houses toward the partying square.

They soon arrived at the square where the parade was. Charlotte had talked a lot on their way there about everything. About her new dress, about the treats they were going to get, about the party itself. Tiana had listened in bright interest, even though she stuck her head out of the window the entire time. It was not often she rode in Big Daddy La Bouff's car, and she enjoyed herself immensely every time she rode in it.

They rode around the quarter for a few minutes, trying to find a place to park. They eventually did, and the two girls piled out of the car.

"Oh, this is so exciting, Tia, I can barely bear it!" Charlotte said, fanning herself. She looked around and back to Tiana, "It's awfully hot today, isn't it?"

"It IS the Fourth of July, Lottie," Tiana pointed out as she stepped out beside her friend.

"All right girls," Big Daddy La Bouff said as he walked around the car toward them, hands on his hips, and said, "Now, I have a couple of rules for you two, all right?" Charlotte eagerly nodded and Tiana gave him a polite nod of her head.

"Number one, don't spend your money on one thing, right?" They both nodded. "Two, don't get lost." How could they? They had only been living here for their entire lives. "Three, screaming gets people's attention if you need help, and four, have a good time!" He laughed at the last part.

"All righty, Daddy, bye, Big Daddy!" said Charlotte. She grabbed Tiana's hand, kissed her daddy on the cheek, and raced off with her friend.

The square buzzed with activity. People walked around, taking in the sights and booths and smells. There were booths upon booths selling mountains of things from sparklers to lemonade to American flags. A jazz band was playing the National Anthem in a corner. People put out more banners. Flags sat stuck in flower pots. Off on one balcony the mayor of New Orleans was beginning to read the Declaration of Independence.

"Oh, Lottie, look, let's listen," Tiana said, holding Charlotte's hand down to keep her steady.

"Oh, but this is BORING, Tia, c'mon, let's go BUY something," Charlotte said excitedly. Tiana looked at her with an amused smile as Charlotte said, "Please, please, please, PLEASE?"

Tiana looked longingly toward the mayor and then said, "Oh, alright."

"Yay! Alright, Tia, c'mon, I'm parched, let's get lemonade!" Charlotte said, dragging Tiana over to one of the booths. Tiana walked cautiously, feeling her little purse in her pocket. It had two nickels and three pennies in it. She taken it out of her savings and hoped to not run out of money any time soon.

They made their way to the lemonade stand, which was a booth with two large barrels filled with lemonade and dotted lemon slices and chunks of ice. A skinny man turned to them and said, "What can I get you?"

Tiana stopped to catch her breath while Charlotte said, "Two lemonades, extra ice." She turned to Tiana and said continued kindly, "That work for you, Tia?"

Tiana nodded and straightened as the man whisked two cups toward them. Charlotte pulled out her purse and put down three cents and Tiana quickly took out three pennies and placed them on the stand.

"Move over, little ladies, I got more customers," the lemonade man said as they grabbed their cups and he swept the money into his hand. The two nodded and both turned to see a crowd coming toward them.

"Oh!" Charlotte said, and Tiana, smiling, grabbed her friend's wrist and pulled to the side of the stand. They would need to return their cups once they were done.

They both sighed happily and looked around.

"Isn't this just so excitin', Tia?" said Charlotte. "I can hardly contain my excitement!"

"It looks exciting, Lottie," Tiana said quietly as she sipped her lemonade. She was never one to go out and about around these sort of things. She was a quiet, hardworking girl, set on getting her and her daddy's restaurant, and she didn't go out a whole lot.

She sighed and placed the cup back on the stand behind her. Her daddy had passed a few years ago back in the World War. He had gotten a badge for his work, though, which was nice for her and her mother to have in honor of him.

That was what they were celebrating today, right? Freedom for America. Her daddy had defended their free America. Tiana smiled to herself softly. That's right. He helped defend America to keep it free from the other countries.

She turned to Lottie, who was draining her lemonade and tapping the end of it, and said, "What next?"

Charlotte placed the cup onto the stand and then clasped her hands excitedly. "That's gettin' into the spirit, Tia!"

They both started to walk around the square, excitedly looking around.

"What shall we do next?" Charlotte wanted to know. Tiana shrugged. She was game to go wherever Charlotte wanted to go. Charlotte, frowning to herself, said, "Let's go get flags!"

They both walked to the booth and Charlotte requested two flags.

"How much are they?" Tiana asked, pulling out her purse.

"They're two for one, and I'm buying," Charlotte said easily, and as the flags were passed to her, she said, "We'll look so patriotic when the fireworks come, with us waving our flags and all!"

Tiana raised an eyebrow as Charlotte handed her the flag. Lottie knew that she didn't like taking things for free.

Charlotte saw her face and said, "Oh, Tia, look at the deal!" She pointed to the sign on the booth which said, 'Two for one.' "I'm buying one for me and I had an extra and I wanted you to have it, so stop lookin' so sour. Now," she straightened her skirts, "let's go party, New Orleans style!"

Tiana sighed and smiled. Even at thirteen, Charlotte could act like such a child; just another reason to love being friends with Charlotte.

"Alright, where to?" Tiana asked. Charlotte grinned and dragged her friend off.

They spent the rest of the afternoon enjoying themselves. They split beignets and flavored ice and bought sparklers and ran around, nearly terrorizing the horses that were pulled carts.

They went by the store windows to gaze at the decorated displays the store owners put up. They passed booths that sold fireworks. Kids were buying them and setting them off, causing sparks to fly and adults to get angry. Charlotte and Tiana just hid and watched.

That name they ate fried chicken at a restaurant with Big Daddy at one of the classic restaurants where everything was immature and classy and there was a jazz band in the corner. After that, it was dark, and Big Daddy had a speech to make at the parade.

Charlotte and Tiana found a spot near the parade. There was a marching band that played American classics and people spinning batons and Americans flags. Charlotte squealed and kept reaching out and Tiana had keep a hold on her.

Then, at around ten, when the two were getting tired yet everything was still alive as could be, the fireworks started. The two were standing on a bench when they appeared. Charlotte, surprisingly, was yawning, and Tiana was as wide awake as one could be.

"Look, lookit, Lottie!" Tiana said, pointing to the magnificent bursts of lights. She turned to her friend to see that she was sitting now, her head leaning to one side, arms slightly folded, her eyes close, a bit of drool hanging from her mouth as she snoozed.

Tiana grinned as she sat down next to her. She brought her knees up to her chest and held them close as she watched the fireworks.

"Happy Fourth of July, Lottie," she said.

Sorry for any historical inaccuracies, 'cause I'm not too good with them. Isn't Charlotte and Tiana's friendship one of the best things ever? I dunno, I think so. Let me know if you liked it!