Destiny Washington raced along the hall. She was on her way to the school library. It was movie time at the Zigzag Afternoon Center. And after that, Ms. Katz, her favorite teacher, had promised a surprise.
A sign was tacked up on the wall.
Destiny squinted at the sign. Too bad she wasn’t such a great reader.
RHYME TIME BEGINS. JOIN RIGHT IN!
“Rrrrrrr . . . ,” she whispered.
That animal wouldn’t even fit in the school.
She stood on one foot. “That R word is one tough baby,” she said.
Gina came up behind her. “Are you talking to yourself?”
Destiny crossed her fingers. “Just humming.”
Gina pointed to the sign. “I’m going to join right in.”
“Me too,” Destiny said.
Hmmm. Join in what? she wondered.
Gina kept going down the hall.
“Rrrrr . . .” Destiny spelled it out: “R-H-Y-M-E.”
And then she had it. She really did!
She couldn’t believe it. She’d sounded out one of the hardest words in the world.
That was it. They’d all be rainbows next week!
She’d wear her best butterfly bow. It was red and green and orange, her favorite color.
But she had to hurry. The movie would begin any minute.
She rushed down the hall.
She circled Jake the Sweeper. He was peering into the mop closet.
His face was red. “What a mess in here,” he said.
Destiny was the last one in the library.
A thousand books covered the shelves. All the seats were taken. There was almost no room.
Her friend Beebe was squashed up in front. Beebe wore round aids in her ears to help her hear.
Sometimes she could even read lips!
In back, Yolanda was sitting on a bench. She moved over to make room for Destiny.
“Thanks!” Destiny slung her backpack underneath the bench.
Ms. Katz smiled at them.
“You’re so lucky, Destiny,” Yolanda said. “Ms. Katz is your classroom teacher. And she’s the librarian for the Afternoon Center, too.”
Destiny nodded. Ms. Katz was the best teacher in the school. Maybe in the whole United States of America.
The movie began. It was about a princess and a witch who locked her in a castle.
“That’s what witches always do,” Yolanda said.
Destiny tried to see.
The other kids’ heads bobbed up and down in front of her.
Along came a godmother. She said:
I’ll get you out. Don’t you worry. I’ll think of something In a hurry.
And that was what happened.
The godmother said:
Hop in bed. Say good night. Hold on tight!
The princess and the bed flew out the window. They landed in a river. They sailed away.
The movie was over. Everyone clapped.
Mitchell whistled. Almost whistled. It was more of a shu-shu sound. He was still working on it.
Ms. Katz snapped up the shades. “Here comes the surprise. Think about the movie. What does it have to do with the sign?”
Rainbows, Destiny thought. Colors!
The princess wore a pink and purple gown.
Yes, that was it.
Outside the library, Destiny saw Jake go by. He was shaking his head.
Mrs. Terrible Thomas, Jake’s cat, went by, too. She wasn’t supposed to come to school. But she liked to sneak in.
Now Destiny was ready for the surprise.
What could it be?
Excerpted from Super Surprise by Patricia Reilly Giff. Copyright © 2012 by Patricia Reilly Giff. Excerpted by permission of Yearling, a division of Random House LLC. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.