Wooden Animal

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Object No. TK of 100

Object No. 85 of 100

[The auction for this Significant Object, with story by Meg Cabot, has ended. Original price: 75 cents. Final price: $108.50.]

So Brandon was going to Cabo for spring break and I saved up all my tip money for a year to chip in for the rental car to go with him.

But then at my last cleaning Dr. Jones said if I didn’t get my wisdom teeth pulled out right away my incisors were going to overlap, and I might never get my dream job as a television news journalist like Katie Couric.

“When was the last time you ate?” Dr. Jones wanted to know.

And I was all, “At my shift just now at Señora Mexicana.”

“That’s okay!” he yelled.  “We can use a local!”

I tried to say no but Mom was all, “It’s much better this way, sweetie,” because I could recover during the break and not miss any classes.  “Besides, Novocain is cheaper than anesthesia!”

Plus, I don’t think she’s ever liked Brandon.

I couldn’t even reach him in time to tell him what was going on. I could only reach my best friend Kara, who was still at her shift at Señora Mexicana.

Kara was like, “Oh, don’t worry, hon, I’ll find Brandon and take care of everything.” Which made me feel a little better.

And then the next thing I knew this nurse was jabbing needles into my gums and I heard this crunching sound and even though Dr. Jones said it wouldn’t hurt, it hurt a lot!

And then Mom was going, “Don’t worry, sweetie, you can do Cabo next year” as she helped me out to the minivan.

But the whole time I was lying on the couch in front of the TV, trying not to get dry sockets, Brandon never called.  He never once called, or even texted.

The funny thing was, neither did Kara.

And then when he finally did show up, he was all, “I thought of you every minute, babe!”

And then he gave me this authentic wooden cow, or snake, or whatever it is.  Real Mexican villagers carved it, he said.

IMG_1222But if so they must know Kara, because it looks exactly like her.

Especially the empty space where its heart should be.

Because it turns out Brandon found someone to take my place in the rental car.

Not to mention in his bed at the hotel room.

But I had a lot of time to think about it while I was waiting for the swelling to go down, and I decided it’s okay. I’m going to go back to school, and back to Señora Mexicana. I’m going to save up all my tip money.

Only not to go to Cabo. To go to New York City. To get an internship with Katie Couric, or some other empowering woman who knows the pain of betrayal and getting all your wisdom teeth pulled out with just Novocain.

And someday when I am anchoring my own half-hour national news show, Brandon and Kara will turn on their TV and see me and go:

“Wow.  I used to know that girl.”



Meg Cabot is the author of the Princess Diaries, Allie Finkle's Rules for Girls, Airhead series.

20 thoughts on “Wooden Animal

  1. Loved the story, I had to click on “more” on your main page. I was very pleasantly surprised to see Meg Cabot’s name at the end! I usually love her stuff! Thank you!

  2. Dani, we discussed the pros and cons of showing each post’s author on the homepage, and decided we’d only show the author’s name if you clicked onto the post — we wanted people to decided whether or not they wanted to read a story *before* finding out who’d written it. We figured this would create a level playing field for lesser-known authors. Glad you were pleasantly surprised!

  3. You’re right — what I meant to say was we decided we wouldn’t put the author’s name in the post’s title.

  4. The story is really good you wouldn’t be able to exspect that Kara went to Cabo instead. I love how the girl describes Kara the way the figure looks

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