Lock up your daughters

Yesterday was School Picture Day, and Henry looked, if he did say so himself, particularly dashing. On the walk home from school we walked part of the way with a girl from his class. While Charlie peed on every un-peed-upon leaf, I heard her saying to him, "You are handsome in that yellow shirt, Henry. You look so handsome today." Henry nodded and gave her a half-smile as he walked and she skipped in circles around him. Her mom said to me, "She talks about Henry all the time." "That's so sweet," I said, and struggled to remember if he had ever mentioned her before.

As we parted ways, the girl cried out one last time, "You look really handsome, Henry!" He didn't even glance at her as we crossed the street. "Aren't you going to say goodbye?" I asked him. He thought for a second, then turned around and shouted, "You looked really beautiful today!"

A moment later I looked back, and she was still standing there, beaming and waving as he walked away.