Uncle Carl arrived just after 5:00 that evening, only moments before Astrid’s father stepped in the front door. Astrid led the two brothers to the sitting room, where they discussed the progress of Maxxim Motor Cars. Although hundreds had been produced for testing and promotional purposes, the nationwide launch wouldn’t start until that September, well after Astrid’s race.
“I hope it won’t hurt sales if I lose,” said Astrid.
“I don’t think we need to worry about that,” said Uncle Carl. “But I did want to tell you that I would be happy to make the donation in your name, should the unthinkable happen and you come in second place.”
“That wouldn’t be appropriate,” said Kate Maxxim, stepping into the room. “Astrid must pay for it herself, if she loses. That might teach her not to make hasty wagers in the future.”
“But it’s for a million dollars!” Astrid squeaked. “I just thought the company would pay it. I don’t actually have a million dollars.”