TITLE: The Dear Jane Letters
GENRE: Young Adult Fiction
Fifteen-year-old Kate hasn't had many positive moments to write about in her journal lately. Not since losing her prime role in the school musical. The ones she does have, though, all seem to involve Henry.
We stood looking awkwardly at each other for a minute, and then he said, “here,” and handed me a small package. It was wrapped in silver paper with a blue bow on top.
I couldn’t believe it. I wished I had thought of bringing something for him.
Now, thinking back on it, I probably should have waited until after the show to open it. At the time, though, I didn't hesitate. I slid my fingernail carefully through the tape, wanting to save that shiny paper as if I could use it to wrap up the moment and slip it in my pocket.
I touched the cover of the box that was inside. It came off easily, as if it had been removed before – maybe a lot – to examine the contents.
There, gleaming softly against a deep blue velvet cushion, was a delicate silver bracelet. A small rectangular plate that read “Kate” was suspended on each side by a chain.
“Turn it over,” Henry urged.
On the back, engraved in script so small I could barely see it in the dim backstage light, was: “#1 Mrs. Paroo, The Music Man, Oliver King High School, 1985.”
It was Henry’s turn to seem flustered. “It’s because I really do think you're the best. The best Mrs. Paroo. I would have totally picked you if I'd been Horowitz and Jasper. And I think I can say that objectively, even though it’s kind of hard to know for sure, because I think I would pick you for just about anything.”