Authors: Rebecca Lisle
ABOUT THE BOOK
Ruby wants a pet. She thinks it's very unfair that her older sister Jane is allowed a kitten for her birthday, especially when Jane refuses to let Ruby play with the kitten. So when she finds a very friendly-looking stone, she decides to adopt him as her pet. Jane thinks Ruby is being silly, but Ruby is pleased to discover that her new pet has some appealing characteristics â and she doesn't have to clean up any messes like Jane does! When the girls enter their pets in the school fete pet competition, there is a very surprising result.
For Louisa Meadows, ever hopeful . . .
Ruby's birthday. It was Jane's birthday.
“Happy Birthday, Jane! Eight today!” Mum and Dad clapped and cheered.
“Huh,” said Ruby quietly.
There were seven birthday presents on the kitchen table. There were big parcels and tiny parcels and each was wrapped in different paper.
“You always have more birthdays than me,” said Ruby.
“No she doesn't,” Mum laughed. “It just feels that way.”
“And more presents,” whispered Ruby.
“They're lovely,” said Jane, smiling. “Thank you!”
And Jane hadn't even opened them. This was just the sort of talk that drove Ruby wild. How did Jane know she'd like them? Ruby was always disappointed with
presents. They were never quite what she wanted . . . How could Jane be so different?
Slowly, slowly, Jane opened all the presents. It took ages.
“That was only seven presents, and she's eight years old,” said Ruby, who had been counting.
Mum brought the eighth present in from the other room. A big red box without a lid. It was making a mewing sound.
“It's just what I've always wanted,” said Jane, smiling happily.
“But you haven't looked yet!” roared Ruby,
jumping up and down.
A beautiful black and white kitten with long, long whiskers poked her head over the edge of the box. “Miaow!”
“Wow! Brilliant, Mum!” Jane grinned.
Ruby didn't think it was brilliant. She wasn't grinning. “It's not fair,” she said. “I want one.”
“When you're eight you can have your own pet too,” said Dad.
“You're not old enough to care for an animal just yet, dear,” said Mum.
“Huh,” said Ruby. “I bet I could.”
The kitten was very sweet. Jane took her into the playroom. Ruby followed.
Jane dangled a strand of wool in front of the kitten's nose and the kitten leaped and jumped and somersaulted trying to catch it. When Jane rolled a soft ball across the room, the kitten chased it and rolled on it like a circus cat.
“I want to do that,” said Ruby in a small voice.
Jane didn't seem to hear. She snuggled the kitten under her nose and breathed in her smell. “Mmm, Kittg, Kitty, Kitty,” she crooned.