Mr. Sturgeon's head emerged from the second-floor window. The Headmaster regarded Bruno and then Boots a cautious distance behind him. "Good day, Walton -- O'Neal. Welcome back."
There was an uncomfortable pause. "So, Mr. Sturgeon --" Bruno began. "What's new?"
"The staff and I are looking forward to the upcoming academic year," the Headmaster replied briskly. "And no doubt you have noticed our new football facility. It is quite outstanding. Now, if you boys don't mind, there are many things to which I must attend."
"Well there is one thing Boots -- uh, Melvin -- and I are concerned about. Sir, do you remember the petition we gave you last year along with the plan for our new rec hall?"
"I certainly do," Mr. Sturgeon called down sternly. "It was with great surprise that I discovered that Napoleon Bonaparte is a registered student at Macdonald Hall. I don't suppose you boys considered that falsifying signatures is illegal -- even if most of the signatories are deceased."
"We're sorry," Boots shuffled.
"Well, how about the plan?" Bruno persisted.
The Headmaster suppressed a smile. "A trifle elaborate, don't you think? Particularly the wave pool and the spiral staircase."
Bruno shrugged. "All right. We can lose the staircase."
"Walton, Mr. Carson's endowment has already been spent. You will be informed all about it at the opening assembly tomorrow morning. Good day." He shut the window, indicating the interview was over.
- from The Zucchini Warriors by Gordon Korman