Flying Books This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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   I reached my mother, breathless, in front of our car. I plunked my library books onto the hood. "Let's go," I gasped. We quickly climbed into the car. My mom turned the ignition on, and it began to hum softly.

I turned to my mom. "Thanks so much for waiting for me. I couldn't find all my books. We'd better hurry, or the library will be closed."

My mom smiled and started to back out of our driveway. Out of the corner of my eye I thought I saw some kind of fluttering, like the wings of a large bird. I chose to ignore it, thinking it as of no importance. I turned my attention to watch for cars at the intersection.

Mom turned the steering wheel slightly to the right, and we rounded the wooded traffic triangle. We stopped to let other cars pass, and then proceeded down the road. Again, I noticed that peculiar fluttering somewhere around our car.

What the heck? I thought. If only I had decided to look earlier.

Then it happened. A whole curtain of paper seemed to wrap the windshield. Something like "hunh?" escaped from our lips. My mom quickly, but carefully, maneuvered the vehicle to the side of the road.

"I think you left your books on hood of the car," said my mom, in a sort of astonished whisper.

"I guess I'll go out and get the books," I suggested, and jumped out of the car.

I started to jog down the road, toward our house. The whole area looked as if we just had a block party. All my library books lay strewn along the curb. I was so dumbfounded at what I had done. I prayed that none of the books were ripped or ruined. I scolded myself for forgetting them as I picked them up.

As soon as I collected all I could find, I dashed back to the car. I noticed a man walking toward us. I reached my mom, and I breathlessly told her that I couldn't locate one book.

"Let's drive back to the house and see if there are any along the other side of the road," she said, and we made our way back.

We didn't have any luck finding the missing book. "What's the name of the book?" asked my mom.

"I don't remember," I began, "but I do know the author's name. It's Laurence Pringle."

We drove back down the road, discouraged. I was especially in a bad mood since I would have to pay for the book.

Then we caught sight of the man I had seen earlier. As we drove toward him, we recognized him. He was the husband of my elementary school art teacher. My mom slowed the car. He held a book in his hand.

"This must be yours," he held it out to me.

I started to express my relief and my thanks, but then I noticed the title of the book. I looked at my mom, and then at him. We all burst out laughing. The book's title was Throwing Things Away. c


This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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