"Told you I wouldn't move," the Muse said as I closed the door.
"She didn't get out of that chair," Miranda said, putting her book on the floor. "I watched her the entire time, and she never got out of it."
"Muse," I said, locking the door behind me.
"Muse. Why are you wearing Miranda's shorts?"
She looked down. "Um."
"And why," I asked, looking at Miranda, "are you wearing hers?"
"Well," Miranda said.
"You just said I couldn't get out of the chair," the Muse said. She put her arms against the computer desk and pushed, rolling herself a good five feet across the hardwood floor. "This thing rolls pretty good."
"It does," Miranda said. "It's a good chair."
"A strong chair," Muse said.
"Very strong," Miranda added. "Takes a lot of abuse."
I held up my hand, palm up. "Enough. I've heard enough. I don't need to know anything else. I don't want to know anything else."
"Um," the Muse said again.
"No. Don't want to know."
Miranda nibbled on her lower lip a moment. "Then you really shouldn't look at the pictures on the camera until I can get them off."
The Muse stifled a giggle with her hand. "'Get off,'" she said.
"Meh!" I barked. "Hush. No more. Don't want to know." I pointed at Miranda. "You. Get in the kitchen and cook this chicken." Pointing at the Muse, I said, "You. Go to your room and don't come out until you've got your own shorts on."
"But she's wearing them!" the Muse protested, pointing at Miranda.
"Go! You brought more, so go put some on."
"Okay, Dad," the Muse grumbled, and stomped off through the beaded curtain. She slammed the door behind her, startling Miranda's cat, who ran out of the bathroom and up onto the sofa.
I turned my eye to Miranda, who just shrugged at me. "Come on. I can't be a tease all the time."
I handed her the plastic bag of groceries. "Don't want to know. Get in there and start cooking."
"Bourgeois!" the Muse shouted from the other side of the bedroom door.
"You don't even know what that means!" I shouted back.
"A person whose attitudes and behavior are marked by conformity to the standards and conventions of the middle class!"
"Oh," Miranda said. "She's found my dictionary."
I pointed. "Go cook, would you? Man. Can't leave you two alone for a minute, can I?"
She smiled. "Ever think that maybe we're just yanking your chain a little? Hmm? Maybe we just changed pants to have a little fun with you."
"Don't want to know," I said.
She patted my arm. "Put the jealous man thing away, baby. That girl's got the hots for you so bad, you wouldn't believe it." She went on into the kitchen and started unpacking the bag.
"Cook, woman. No more talk."
"Bourgeois!" the Muse yelled. "In Marxist theory, a member of the property-owning class!"
"And you quiet down in there!" There was a muffled thump as she threw something against the door. "Jesus. She's like a five year old sometimes."
"Love," Miranda said. "I'm telling you."
"You be quiet too. Let's all just be quiet for a while."
"Whatever you say," she said to me, and then under her breath muttered, "Bourgeois pig."
"I heard that."
She closed her mouth and made a key-turning gesture against her lips, then tossed the invisible key over her shoulder.