“I can’t keep doing this. I should throw away the rest of the pack right now,” she told herself, but it all seemed a tad ridiculous. Besides, who had ever heard of a piece of bubblegum changing one’s hair? “Absurd.” She shook her head at the ridiculous notion. There had to be another explanation for this.
She opened her locker door, grabbed her coat, and jumped back. Inside, a gray mouse nibbled on half of her peanut butter and jelly sandwich. “Good morning, your highness.” The rodent bowed. “I didn’t realize this was yours. Forgive me, my queen.”
“Ahh!” Alyssa slammed the door shut.
Edna Ginny, the school counselor, heard her screams and walked briskly around the corner. “Is everything all right? What seems to be the problem?”
Suddenly a pair of pink, translucent wings sprung out of Alyssa’s back. “No problem. No problem at all.” She threw on her coat.
“Wow, you look like a fairy princess.” Mrs. Ginny adjusted her glasses. “Is what you’re wearing for Halloween? It’s only September, you know.”
“Huh?” As Alyssa zipped up her coat, she noticed her sparkling dress. It was pink and glittery and just a bit short. It felt as if she were walking around in her nighty. Involuntarily, she swallowed her gum.
“Oh no, not another piece!” Alyssa gasped. At this rate, she wouldn’t need lunch or dinner. She tucked her wings in her coat and finished zipping it up. “Well, look at the time. I think mom’s waiting for me outside.” Alyssa hurried out of the locker room.
“I’m here if you want to talk,” Mrs. Ginny shouted as Alyssa exited.
Suddenly the little girl’s wings popped out of her coat and began beating rapidly. In the blink of an eye, Alyssa was out the door and down the hallway in a trail of sparkling dust. Before she knew it, she was at the school entrance.
Everything was a blur. “Where’s my coat?” She looked around. Fortunately, she still had her backpack, but again felt like she were standing around in her underwear. Then there was the minor inconvenience of those wings. She reached for another piece of bubblegum and stopped herself. “Not a stick more!” She shook her head defiantly.
Abruptly, something came thundering down the hall. A thousand squeaks filled the corridor, followed by the rumble of tiny feet. An army of mice came from every corner of the school to greet her. “Hail, my beloved queen!” they shouted.
“Eek!” Alyssa was out the door in a flash. She gazed down as the dark horde of mice poured out of the building. The air smelled different now: crisp and clean, allowing her thoughts to be more precise. It took a few moments before she realized that she was gliding high above the school on her new wings.
“If I can fly by the aid of a stick of gum, anything’s possible.” She surged forward on a whim. “Anything’s possible!”