Miraculously, twelve monkeys freeze.  Half are wearing masks leftover from Halloween.  Many have lightsabers in their hands.  Many more have whatever stick they could find in the basement ranging from plastic golf clubs to plastic tent poles to miniature pool cues.  There is a group huddled in the corner mashing Star Wars action figures together with intense dialogue.  One kid is just throwing toys out of boxes to cover the three inches of carpet still showing through the wreckage.  The birthday party started a mere five minutes ago.

“If anyone gets hurt and cries, I am taking away ALL the lightsabers.  Understand?”

I stare them all down with dead serious mom-eyes.  Twelve little heads bob up and down.

“Okay.  Have fun!”

I flee the scene speculating that it will take five more minutes until someone gets cracked in the head.  Even with a three-year-old and a little sister tossed in, it somehow took three hours and an entire screening of Star Wars for one little monkey to break the bonds of silence.  The injury was minor.  Victory is mine!