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|edHelper's suggested reading level:||grades 5 to 6|
|Flesch-Kincaid grade level:||5|
Malkovich the Magnificent
By Mary L. Bushong
1 Robert nibbled on his lower lip while he mentally perused the checklist of things he needed before closing up his neat, black case. A few things looked out of order, but everything appeared to be there. He started to rub his sweaty palms on his pant legs before remembering that he was wearing his good suit. He rummaged through his sock drawer to find a bright red handkerchief. He rubbed his hands with it and stuffed it into one of his pockets.
2 "You ready to go, Rob?" called Dad from downstairs.
3 "I think so," said Robert as he grabbed up the case. His feet tapped a rhythmic beat down the stairs.
4 "You look nice," said Dad. "Where's your magic hat?"
5 "It's in the case."
6 "And your wand?"
7 Robert jerked open his coat to expose the inside pocket. "I have it right here," he said, his voice squeaking slightly.
8 The birthday party was already in full swing. Dad assisted Robert as he carried his paraphernalia into the house. They set up all of Robert's props and tools in the living room while the children were playing outside. He pulled the handkerchief from his pocket and wiped the sweat from his brow. His dream of performing as a magician was about to come true - he only hoped he lived through it!
Paragraphs 9 to 21:
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