I liked everything about school, right down to the sound of the pencils scritching on our slate tablets. Most of all, however, I loved hearing the teacher read stories and fairy tales to us aloud. Even the more youthful fare read aloud in the classroom seemed to transport me right out of Hopkinton and into more exciting times and places. Not all the stories the teachers read had been so enjoyable, however. One in particular, a sickening story named Goody Two Shoes, had a heroine so sweet and, yes, so extraordinarily good that she could give real girls the toothache faster than the hard peppermint candy in Mr. Towne’s glass jars. Goody Two Shoes was probably just the sort of person my stepmother wished me to be: the kind of person my cousin Hetty pretended to be when adults were around.
“Hetty is actually more ‘Goody Two-Faced,’” I murmured to no one in particular, turning my mind to the puzzle of why Hetty was so mean to me now.
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