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Maybe Later

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64 pages
Long, long ago, Johnny's grandpa found a bottle on the beach. When Johnny roots it out of the back of Grandpa's closet, he can see a mysterious shadow through the green glass. "We should break it," Johnny says. "Maybe later," says his grandpa. And so the story begins.
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MaybeLater IngridLee
MàYbELàtER ingrid Lee illuSttED bY gàbRIEllE gRImàRD
Orca Book Publishers
Text copyright ©2008Ingrid Lee Illustrations copyright ©2008Gabrielle Grimard All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording or by any information storage and retrieval system now known or to be invented, without permission in writing from the publisher.
Library and Archives Canada Cataloguing in Publication
Lee, Ingrid, 1948 Maybe later / written by Ingrid Lee; illustrated by Gabrielle Grimard.
(Orca echoes) ISBN 9781551437644
I. Grimard, Gabrielle, 1975 II. Title. III. Series.
PS8623.E44M39 2008 jC813’.6 C20079073948
First published in the United States,2008Library of Congress Control Number:2007942395
Summary: Johnny wants to find out what’s inside Grandpa’s old bottle.
Orca Book Publishers gratefully acknowledges the support for its publishing programs provided by the following agencies: the Government of Canada through the Book Publishing Industry Development Program and the Canada Council for the Arts, and the Province of British Columbia through the BC Arts Council and the Book Publishing Tax Credit. Typesetting by Teresa Bubela Cover artwork and interior illustrations by Gabrielle Grimard Author photo by Mackenzie Lee
Orca Book Publishers PO Box 5626, Stn. B Victoria, BC Canada V8R 6S4
Orca Book Publishers PO Box 468 Custer, WA USA 982400468
www.orcabook.com Printed and bound in Canada. 11 10 09 08 • 4 3 2 1
For Clara
CHàPtERONE TheBOTTLe
Oneday, Johnny stuckhis nose inhisgrandpa’s closet andfoundabottle. It was made ofdarkgreenglass. Asandy cork was plugged in the top. The sand was as hard as cement. Johnny took thebottle to the sunroom where hisgrandpa was snoozing. Hejumpedt on he sofa. “What’s in thisbottle?”hedemanded. “Well now, that’s a puzzle,” hisgrandpa said. “I neverdidfigure that out.Johnnyheld thebottle up to the sun. A shadowlurkedinside thegreenglass. There was somethinginside for sure.
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“It’s a pretty good bottle,” said Johnny. “Where’d you find it?” “Well,” said Grandpa, “I found it a long time ago. I was on holiday in the Cook Islands with my mother. In case you forgot, that’s your greatgrandma. My big sister came too. In those days the three of us went everywhere together. “I found that bottle on our last day at the seashore. The beach was wide, with rocks at both ends. There were lots of palm trees. Those trees were so high they scrubbed the sky. “Every day toward dinnertime, the tide went out. The ocean drained off the sand. It left pools of salt water in every nook and cranny. Those pools were like warm bathtubs. We each picked one for a good soak. “My sister was always after a bit of sparkle. She sat in a frothy basin full of pearl cups and shiny stones. “My mother’s pool looked like a bowl of salad. It was stuffed with kelp and grapestone and sea cucumber. Cucumbers are supposed to be good for the skin.
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I guess my mother knew what she was doing. I never saw anyone so beautiful as my mother. “I picked a pothole crawling with crabs and starfish and other critters. I liked to watch the crawdads. They put up their dukes just like boxers in the ring. “I was looking at a winkle when I spotted a bit of green. At first I thought it was an eel hiding in the rocks. I scrambled out of that tub so fast I almost lost my bathing suit. Eels like to stick out their long necks to grab a snack. I didn’t want my fingers to be lunch. “After that I sat by the pool and watched the water. I watched for a long time. The green thing stayed put. Finally I slipped my hand under the water and pulled up that bottle. “I was pretty surprised. There was a cork in the top! The bottle looks the same now as it did then. Except then the bottle was wet. Now it’s dry. When it’s wet, the glass gets as dark and deep as the sea itself.
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Johnny looked at the bottle in his lap. “We should break it,” he said. “We need to find out what’s in there.” “Maybe later,” said his grandpa. “I haven’t finished my story.” Johnny settled back down on the sofa. There was no stopping Grandpa when he had a story to tell.
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