I like sitting next to Margaret because she never lets her stuff spill onto my desk, wrote Jamaal. And under that, Kyle had written, Margaret is helpfull. Every day she tells me what I do wrong.

Margaret tapped the page. “I had to tell him he’d spelled ‘helpful’ wrong.”


“Wow,” I said. “That’s a great booklet.”

I started to get nervous. Even though I am friends with everybody in my class, nobody was going to write anything like that about me, that was for sure.


“What else did kids write?” I asked. “Anything about being a good draw-er, or good at math?”

“Just more nice compliments,” Margaret said, jumping up suddenly. “Page after page. We should put it back now.”

Margaret walked over to her shelves and closed the booklet. But instead of putting it back, she stared down at it and gasped.


She turned red. If her eyes weren’t squidged down to slits, I bet I could have seen them boil. She looked like a cartoon person about to explode.

“That . . . that . . . that . . . that . . . OH!!!” she sputtered. Then she stomped out of the living room and down the hall and kicked open Mitchell’s door. I followed her.


“Don’t touch anything in here!” she warned me. “This place is crawling with germs!”

Mitchell was on his bed. He said hi to us from behind the sports section. Margaret went over to him and stuck the booklet out, her whole body shaking.


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