Sample text for Junie B. Jones is (almost) a flower girl / by Barbara Park ; illustrated by Denise Brunkus.

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Counter Chapter 7: Hope

Mother bought me a beautiful dress for the wedding.

It had golden puffery sleeves. And it came all the way to the floor.

Also, she bought me fancy pantyhose with glimmery shimmers on them. And brand-new shiny gold shoes.

I could not thank that woman enough!

I thanked her the whole time I was in the store.

"Thank you, Mother!" I said. "Thank you for my beautiful dress! Thank you for my fancy pantyhose! And thank you, thank you for my shiny gold shoes!"

I smiled real big.

"Now all I need is my blue fake bunny fur cape. And I will be all set!"

Mother shook her head.

"Oh no. No way," she said. "We've spent quite enough for one day."

I looked and looked at that woman. 'Cause she has no fashion sense, apparently.

"Yes, only I have to have a blue fake bunny fur cape, Mother," I said. "Lucille says a blue fur cape adds elegance to any outfit. Lucille says -- "

Mother interrupted my words.  Her voice sounded scary in my ear.

"I don't care what Lucille says," she grouched. "No...fur...cape."

I quick backed up from her.

"All rightie then," I said kind of nervous.

After that, I helped carry my bags to the car. And I behaved myself all the way home.

Then, I runned to my house with all my beautiful things. And I tried my flower girl dress on for Daddy.

And guess what else?

I walked all the way down the hall!

And I didn't even trip!

Daddy gave me a thumbs-up.

"What a perfect flower girl you are!" he said real proud.

"Thank you," I said. "Only I'm not the real flower girl. Remember, Daddy? I'm just the alternate."

Just then, my shoulders drooped a teeny bit. And I didn't feel that happy anymore.

'Cause at first you're very, very glad to be the alternate.

And after that...

You're not.

That night after dinner, Mother tucked me in bed real snug.

She kissed me good-night on my head.

"Yeah, only don't turn out my light yet. 'Cause I forgot to do something very important," I said.

After that, I quick got out of bed again. And I looked out my window.

"Star light, star bright. First star I see tonight. I wish I may, I wish I might...have the wish I wish tonight."

I crossed my fingers for luck.

"Dear Star, Please make Bo sick for Aunt Flo's wedding. Love, your friend, Junie B. Jones."

I hopped back in my bed.

Mother's eyes got big and wide at me.

"No, Junie B.! Absolutely not!" she said. "We do not wish for people to get sick. You go back to that window. And you change that wish right now."

I raised up my eyebrows at her.

"Yeah, only how can I change it? It already got sent," I explained.

"Fine," said Mother. "Then go back to the window and wish a nicer wish on top of it."

She snapped her fingers and pointed.

"Now, Junie B. I mean it."

I got out of bed real slow.

Then I walked to the window again.

And I looked at my same star.

"Dear Star, Mother says not to make Bo sick. And so maybe you could just give her a case of head lice and that's all. Thank you and good night."

Mother shook her head.

"No, Junie B.," she said. "No, no, no."

I did a mad breath.

"But head lice doesn't even hurt, Mother," I said back. "Head lice just takes a little extra shampoo. And that's all."

But Mother kept on shaking her head. And she made me change my wish again.

"Okay, Star, never mind the whole dumb thing. Only now I won't be a flower girl for my whole entire life, probably. And so I hope my mother is happy. Amen."

After that, I got back in my bed. And Mother turned out my light.

After she left, I did a big sigh.

"Shoot. That lice idea was a beaut," I said real soft.

Just then, my stuffed elephant name Philip Johnny Bob tapped on me.

Don't feel bad, he said. You might still get to be the flower girl.

"Yeah, only how?" I asked him.

He thought and thought.

Maybe Bo's daddy will be driving her to the wedding. And their car will get stucked at a railroad crossing. And the train will be a million bajillion miles long, he said.

I felt a little perkier at that idea.

"Hey, yeah," I said. "Or else maybe his car might get stucked in something else. Like in some ooey gooey mud. Or in a traffic jam. Or in...or in..."

Or in a giant puddle of Krazy Glue! said Philip Johnny Bob.

After that, me and him laughed and laughed.

Then I hugged that guy very tight.

'Cause he's always giving me hope.

Library of Congress subject headings for this publication: Weddings Fiction