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Authors: Dan Gutman

Miss Suki Is Kooky! (3 page)

BOOK: Miss Suki Is Kooky!
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6
Miss Suki Is a Big Crybaby

Everybody clapped and cheered when Miss Suki came out on stage. Then we all got quiet so we could hear what she had to say.

“Hello! Thank you so much for inviting me to your—”

At that very second, the strangest thing
in the history of the world happened. All these bells started clanging so loud that we had to cover our ears. Miss Suki freaked out.

“FIRE!” she shouted. “The school is on fire! Run for your lives!” And then she went running out of the room, hugging her mystery box.

Miss Suki is kooky!

It wasn't a fire. It was just a fire
drill
. Any dumbhead knows that once in a while the bells ring and we all have to go stand out in the playground.

“Line up in single file,” Miss Daisy told us.

We marched out of the school. When
we got to the playground, Mr. Klutz was running around trying to catch up with Miss Suki. All the girls were complaining that the wind was messing up their hair and it wouldn't look good for Picture Day.

“That would be cool if the school really
did
burn down,” I told Ryan and Michael.

“Yeah,” Ryan agreed. “Then we could toast marshmallows.”

Miss Suki was standing near our class, still hugging her mystery box, when Mr. Klutz finally caught up with her.

“Maybe this just isn't my day,” Miss Suki said, shaking her head.

“Oh, don't worry,” Mr. Klutz told her. “The fire drill wasn't supposed to happen
today. Nothing else could possibly go wrong.”

The bell rang again, which meant the fire drill was over. We went back inside to the all-purpose room, and Mrs. Roopy introduced Miss Suki all over again.

“Well,
that
was exciting,” said Miss Suki. “Thanks for inviting me to your school. I love books and reading. Don't you?”

“Yes!” said all the girls.

“No!” said all the boys.

“Books can take you to different worlds,” said Miss Suki.

“So can spaceships,” somebody yelled.

“What's in that box, Miss Suki?” somebody else yelled. Mrs. Roopy jumped up
and grabbed the microphone.

“Please don't call out any questions yet,” Mrs. Roopy said. “Miss Suki will answer your questions at the end of her
talk.” She handed the microphone back to Miss Suki.

“When I was a little girl growing up in Japan,” Miss Suki said, “my mother took me to the library every week. And by the time I was ten years old, I had read every book in that library. That's when I knew I was going to grow up and become a children's book author.”

“Wow,” we all said, even though it wasn't that interesting.

“Ever since I was little, I loved animals,” Miss Suki told us. “That's why I write about them and draw pictures of them.”

Miss Suki drew a picture of a bird on the easel. Well, she didn't really draw a
picture of a
bird on an easel
. She drew a picture of a bird on a tree, and the
picture
was on the easel. Anyway, she drew really fast. Miss Suki is a good drawer.
***

“This is Rappy,” she said as she finished the picture. “He is a raptor, and the main character of my book
The Fearless Falcon
.”

Then Mrs. Roopy dimmed the lights, and Miss Suki turned on this machine that shows pictures on a big screen. We saw pictures of Miss Suki in the rainforest with all kinds of animals like monkeys and weird birds and stuff. It was cool.

“May I read you a chapter from
The
Fearless Falcon
?” asked Miss Suki.

“Yes!” we all shouted.

Miss Suki read us the part where Rappy sees his reflection in a window and thinks it's another raptor, so he attacks himself and crashes into the glass. He nearly dies. It was really sad and exciting when Miss Suki read it.

And then something really weird happened. Miss Suki started to cry. She had to stop reading. Mrs. Roopy gave her a tissue.

“What's the matter, Miss Suki?” asked Emily.

“Remember the letter I wrote you?” Miss Suki asked, wiping her eyes. “I said I
would have a big surprise to show you. Well, here it is.”

She went over to her mystery box and lifted up the latch. Then she opened the door of the box. Do you know what was inside?

I'm not going to tell you.

Okay, okay, I'll tell you. But you'll have to read the next chapter. So nah-nah-nah boo-boo on you.

7
Rappy the Raptor Is Cool

Miss Suki opened the mystery box and took out a big bird. It let out a loud SQUAWK!

“This,” she announced, “is Rappy. He's my inspiration for
The Fearless Falcon
.”

“Wow!” we all said. Now that really
was
interesting.

“I found him on the ground outside a building that was covered with windows,” Miss Suki told us as the bird perched on her finger. “Rappy must have seen his reflection and rammed into the glass, trying to attack it. His parents were nowhere to be found, so I brought him home with me. Poor Rappy nearly died. That's what gave me the idea for my book.” Miss Suki started crying again.

I turned around. Some of the kids looked like they were gonna cry too. Sheesh, get a grip! I mean, the bird was still alive.

Rappy showed off his feathers. He must have been four feet from wing to wing.

“Squawk! Squawk!”
squawked Rappy.

“He's intimidating!” whispered Andrea, who likes to show off by saying big words.

“And scary!” whispered Emily.

“They had raptors in that movie
Jurassic Park
,” I whispered to the girls. “One of them ripped some guy's head off while he was sitting on a toilet bowl.”

“Stop trying to scare Emily,” whispered Andrea.

“Rappy is my baby,” Miss Suki said, and she gave Rappy a kiss on his beak. “Isn't he beautiful?”
****

People who kiss birds are weird.

Miss Suki told us that Rappy's talons
are four inches long and as sharp as carving knives.

“If he wanted to, he could kill a lion,” said Miss Suki.

“Wow!” Michael shouted. “Did you bring a lion, too?”

“Yeah,” Ryan said, “we want to see Rappy kill it!”

“Oh, Rappy is harmless,” Miss Suki told us. “He wouldn't hurt a fly.”

I wasn't worried about Rappy hurting flies. I was worried about Rappy flying away from Miss Suki's hand and using those talons to rip my head off.

“I'm sure he wouldn't hurt any of our students,” said Mrs. Roopy.

“Until recently, peregrine falcons were
an endangered species,” Miss Suki told us. “Does anybody know what ‘endangered' means?”

Andrea's hand shot up in the air, of course. Any time anybody asks anything, Andrea's hand is always the first one to go up.

“‘Endangered' means there aren't many of them left,” Andrea said when she got called on. She was all proud of herself. Big deal. Any dumbhead knows what “endangered” means.

“That's right,” said Miss Suki. “Peregrine falcons almost became extinct in the 1960s. Does anybody know what ‘extinct' means?”

Andrea put her hand in the air, but I guess Miss Suki didn't want to call on her twice in a row. So I put my hand up, and she called on me instead.

“‘Extinct' is when something smells really bad,” I said. “Like, ‘Whew, that extincts!'”

Everybody laughed, even though I
didn't say anything funny.

“Good answer, dumbhead,” Andrea whispered.

“Actually,” Miss Suki said, “a species is extinct when there are none of them left. So I must be
very
careful with Rappy.”

Rappy squawked like crazy when Miss Suki put him back in his box. Then she thanked us for listening to her talk. All in all, I'd say her talk was almost not boring.

8
Dumb Questions

We all clapped and cheered again for Miss Suki. You're supposed to clap at the end of an assembly because you're so happy that it's over.

“That was wonderful,” said Mrs. Roopy. “Does anybody have any questions?”

“You're a great arthur!” some kid yelled.

“Thank you!” Miss Suki said. “But I think you mean
author
.”

“I like animals!” another kid shouted.

“Those are not questions,” Mrs. Roopy said. “Remember, we talked about the difference between
questions
and
stories
.”

The kid who said “I like animals” raised his hand again. Miss Suki let him have another chance to ask a question.

“Did you know that I like animals?” the kid asked.

“I didn't know that,” said Miss Suki.

“Can I have your autograph?” some other kid yelled.

“Actually, I just signed four hundred books in the library,” Miss Suki said. “I'm pretty tired.”

“All right!” I said. “She'll sign autographs!”

“Will you sign my cast?” some kid yelled.

“Will you sign my shirt?”

“Will you sign my head?”

Mrs. Roopy jumped up and told us that Miss Suki only had time to answer questions,
not
sign autographs. So everyone started waving their hands in the air.

“What's your favorite color?”

“What's your favorite food?”

“What's your favorite football team?”

“What's your favorite Life Savers flavor?”

“What's your favorite reality TV show?”

It looked like Miss Suki was getting tired of answering questions. But if we stopped asking questions, we'd have to go to math. So everyone kept asking questions.

“Will you write a book about
us
?”

“Did you come here in a limousine?”

“Can I go to the bathroom?”

“When do we get our pictures taken?”

“How much money do you make?”

“How old are you?”

Mrs. Roopy slapped herself on the forehead.

“How old do you
think
I am?” asked Miss Suki, putting her hands on her hips.

“Eighty?” someone guessed.

Miss Suki looked mad. Mrs. Roopy jumped up to tell us there was no more time for questions.

“I'm
forty
!” Miss Suki said as we were leaving the all-purpose room. She had on a mean face. I guess she didn't like our questions very much.

BOOK: Miss Suki Is Kooky!
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