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Macmillan Childrens Publishing Group

The Fix-It Friends: Eyes on the Prize

The Fix-It Friends (Volume 5)

Nicole C. Kear; illustrated by Tracy Dockray



Chapter 1

My name’s Veronica Conti and I love contests.

Staring contest? Sign me up.

Arm-wrestling contest? Yee haw!

Eating contest? I’m your girl … unless I have to eat broccoli. Or cauliflower. Or arugula. I have never tried arugula, but the name sounds gross. Ar-uguuuuuu-la.

I love contests. Sometimes you win, and sometimes you lose, and it’s fun either way.

But it’s more fun if you win. Especially if you win a trophy.

Trophies! Glorious, golden, gleaming trophies! You put them on your shelf, and they sit there shouting, Hear ye! Hear ye! This person is a winner!

At least, I think they do that. I don’t know for sure, because I, Veronica Conti, have never won a trophy.

Yes, that’s right. I’ve been alive almost eight years, and I have won zero trophies.

What makes it even worse is that everyone else in my family has one!

My big brother, Jude, is only two years older than me, and he has loads of trophies! He won them for chess championships, drawing competitions, sand-castle contests, and other stuff, too. He has so many trophies, they don’t all fit on the shelf above his desk. So Dad had to put up another shelf for the extras. How greedy can you get?

Jude is soooooo proud of his trophies. He polishes them every month. Just to make sure he doesn’t forget, he writes Polish trophies on the calendar hanging by his desk, on the last Sunday of every month. Once I tried to touch one of his trophies, just to see how it felt, and he snapped, “Get your grubby hands off!”

“I’m the only person who doesn’t have a trophy,” I complained to Mom. “Jude has too many to count. Cora has three for spelling bees. Ezra has two for robotic contests. Minnie has a whole matching set from piano recitals. Even Matthew Sawyer has a trophy from the science fair last year! For a project called Fantastic Phlegm! And it’s not even fair, because his mom helped him and she’s a doctor. So of course he won!!”

“It matters not if you win or lose, but how you play the game,” Mom replied.

Easy for her to say! She’s got a bunch of trophies!

Okay, not trophies exactly. Mom has plaques, which are basically just flattened trophies that hang on the wall. She got them in college, and they’re in Latin so I have no idea what they say. For all I know, she got them for winning spitting contests.

Even my dad has trophies from when he was a basketball star in high school.

When I complained to him, Dad said, “You’re not the only one in the family without a trophy. Pearl doesn’t have one, either.”

“Well, that doesn’t count!” I replied. “She’s only two years old!”

And then something totally impossible happened.

Pearl got a trophy.

Text copyright © 2018 by Nicole C. Kear

Illustrations copyright © 2018 by Imprint