by David Lubar
Until she stepped into Dr. Kublanko's waiting room, Shelly had felt pretty good
about getting braces. Half the popular kids in school wore them, and Shelly did
have to admit that her overbite made her look more than a little bit like a bunny.
She'd gotten tons of advice from her friends once she'd spread the news.
"Chew lots of gum now," Sarah had told her, "because you won't be chewing any
once they put the braces on."
"Plan on eating spaghetti for the first few days," Lorie had warned her. "You
won't feel like chewing."
Now, she was just minutes away from her first session in the chair. It was only an
exam, but it brought her that much closer to the moment when it all became real.
The small office, attached to the side of a house on the edge of town, was so dim
and gloomy, Shelly found herself almost wanting to cry.
"Cheer up," her mother said. "They'll be off again before you know it."
Shelly nodded and sat on a couch that was against one wall. Across the room,
another girl was sitting, waiting for her turn. The girl looked up.