The Secret of Zoom
An Excerpt from Chapter One (continued)

It occurred to her, too, that her father might get blown up someday in his laboratory.  And while Christina didn’t see Dr. Adnoid that often—and when she did, he only seemed interested in her math grades—still, he was her father, and if he died then she would be an orphan.  And orphans, as she well knew, went to the Loompski Orphan Home just down the road, and were taught useful trades like shoe shining and floor mopping and garbage collecting.

Of course that all sounded like fun to Christina.  She had often envied the orphans, watching from her window as they came down the street in their orange and red vests, dumping garbage cans into the rear of a big truck painted with happy faces, and banging the lids back on in a businesslike manner.  And every so often, if she was lucky, she would see the big rear panel come down with a bang, and press all the garbage back with an interesting grinding noise.

She wasn’t allowed out when the orphans came by, though.  In fact, she wasn’t allowed out at all, except for an hour a day when she stood at the tall iron rails that fenced in her yard, and stared longingly through the bars at the world going past.

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The Secret of Zoom