Nine Doors
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Emery's neighbor, Richard, is the kind of kid who gets under your skin. When Richard suggests a game of "Nicky Nicky Nine Doors," Emery can't come up with a good excuse not to play. Using chocolate bars as "stunt poo," the boys start playing the classic prank of the burning bag on the doorstep, but this game has a modern twist. They videotape their neighbors' reactions. The naked guy and the man in the apron are highly entertaining, but Emery starts to get cold feet when another neighbor is reduced to tears. Emery wants out, but he's not sure how to stop the game without losing face. Soon the game gets serious, and Emery has a lot more to worry about than his reputation.



Publié par
Date de parution 01 avril 2009
Nombre de lectures 2
EAN13 9781554696772
Langue English

Informations légales : prix de location à la page 0,0470€. Cette information est donnée uniquement à titre indicatif conformément à la législation en vigueur.


The cover photo shows the entrance door of a house with a bulb light lit just above.
Vicki Grant
Copyright Vicki Grant 2009, 2020
Published in Canada and the United States in 2020 by Orca Book Publishers.
Previously published in 2009 by Orca Book Publishers as a softcover ( ISBN 9781554690732) and as an ebook ( ISBN 9781554690756, PDF ; ISBN 9781554696772, EPUB ).
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
Title: Nine doors / Vicki Grant.
Names: Grant, Vicki, author.
Series: Orca currents.
Description: Second edition. | Series statement: Orca currents | Previously published: Victoria, BC: Orca Book Publishers, 2009.
Identifiers: Canadiana 20200321137 | ISBN 9781459827424 (softcover)
Classification: LCC PS 8613. R 367 N 55 2020 | DDC jc813/.6-dc23
Library of Congress Control Number: 2020944970
Summary: In this high-interest accessible novel for middle readers, Emery and Richard discover there are serious consequences to scaring your neighbors.
Orca Book Publishers is committed to reducing the consumption of nonrenewable resources in the making of our books. We make every effort to use materials that support a sustainable future.
Orca Book Publishers gratefully acknowledges the support for its publishing programs provided by the following agencies: the Government of Canada, the Canada Council for the Arts and the Province of British Columbia through the BC Arts Council and the Book Publishing Tax Credit.
Cover image by Firstlight
Author photo by Megan Tansey Whitton
Printed and bound in Canada.
23 22 21 20 1 2 3 4
Orca Book Publishers is proud of the hard work our authors do and of the important stories they create. If you are reading this book and did not purchase it or did not check it out from a library provider, then the author has not received royalties for this book. The ebook you are reading is licensed for single use only and may not be copied, printed, resold or given away. If you are interested in using this book in a classroom setting, we have digital subscriptions with multi user, simultaneous access to our books, or classroom licenses available for purchase. For more information, please contact .
This book is dedicated to my much older brother, Robert G. Grant, QC, in belated thanks for-among many, many other things-making sure I never lost my retainer.
Despite what my math teacher might think, I m not stupid.
I m not mean either. At least I try not to be.
So that s not how I got into this mess.
I got into it because I was bored.
I know that s a dumb excuse, but I bet boredom s the reason lots of people get into trouble. It can drive you nuts. It can make you do stuff you d never do in a million years.
For me, that meant hanging out with Richard.
There s nothing wrong with him-at least, not really. In fact, it s almost the opposite. Spend a couple of minutes with Richard and you end up feeling like there s something wrong with you .
I don t know how he does it. He just stands there all innocent and smiling, but somehow he makes you feel like garbage. It s as if the guy s a pickpocket, only he doesn t take your wallet or your cell phone or anything like that. He takes your brain. When he s done messing with you, you can t even think straight anymore.
It s kind of hard to explain, but here s an example.
My name s Emery. I can t say I love it, but that s my name. Usually, I don t think too much about it one way or the other.
So one day I ran into Richard down by the Snack n Go, and we were having an okay time just talking about music and movies and whatever. I was thinking he s not such a bad guy. He s actually pretty funny. It was the middle of August. Everyone else was away. I figured, why not spend some time with him?
Then, out of the blue, he started calling me Emily. As in, So, Emily, seen Scream 12 yet? Or, Whoa, nice sneakers, Emily. Just kind of dropping it into conversation like that.
I let it go a few times, but then I said, Would you quit it with the Emily stuff?
He got all serious and said, Oh. Sorry. I didn t mean to upset you.
I said, You didn t upset me. I m just saying don t call me Emily. I said it in my normal voice. I didn t scream or anything.
He took a step back and said, Okay, okay, as if I was making a big deal about it.
I looked at him for a second. I wasn t sure how to react. If I said anything more, I figured it really would look like I was turning it into a big deal.
He bit his lip and turned away as if he suddenly had to read the Ice Blaster poster in the store window. I couldn t tell if he was laughing at me or not, but I wouldn t have been surprised. I got the distinct feeling he was trying to bug me-which, of course, just bugged me more.
I could feel my whole face twisting up into a knot. I felt like calling him Ricky or Rachel or Jerk and seeing how much he liked it.
A couple of seconds later, he turned around as if nothing had happened. I was all ready to let it go. I mean, I m a reasonable guy. I m not looking for trouble.
Then he started calling me Emery.
Emery, this. Emery, that. It was my own name, but somehow Richard managed to make it sound even more irritating than when he was calling me Emily.
If the owner of the Snack n Go hadn t come out right then and told us to move along, I seriously think I would have hauled off and punched Richard.
I ve never punched anyone in my life!
See what I mean about the guy?
Richard makes you think things you don t want to think, do things you don t want to do. He s always twisting stuff around in your head.
Sure I was bored, but I knew Richard was like that right from the start. I knew I should have kept my distance. I knew I shouldn't have let him weasel his way into my brain.
I guess that makes me as much to blame as he is for what happened next.
Door Number One
It all started out innocently enough.
A few days later, I was riding my bike around the neighborhood just for something to do. I saw Richard come out of his house. I was only going to say hi and keep moving, but somehow we started talking about school and the closing ceremonies. Richard did this hilarious impression of Mr. Moffatt tripping over the microphone cord and practically flattening Kalli Harvey. (He did a pretty good impression of Kalli too. She s usually so perfect that we were all shocked to hear her swear like that.)
Then the next thing I knew we were hanging out for the day.
We rode our bikes for a while. Then we went to the Snack n Go for a slushie. The owner doesn t like you loitering after you ve finished your food, so we went to the playground. Where else was there to go?
What a barrel of fun that was. The monkey bars were gone because a couple of parents had complained that they weren t safe anymore. Most of the other equipment was busted or boring. A bunch of old people doing tai chi had taken over the field. That didn t leave much for us to do. We found a tree behind the school and chilled in the shade.
It was hot and sticky. The whole subdivision smelled like a parking lot or something. I just wanted to go to sleep and wake up when things got fun again.
Hey, I got an idea, Richard said. He pitched a couple of pebbles at my face. Let s play Nicky Nicky Nine Doors!
I was lying on the dry crunchy grass, trying to remember what cool felt like. I didn t even bother to open my eyes.
I blew the pebbles off my face and said, Nicky Nicky what? If the game was even half as stupid as the name, I wasn t interested.
Nicky Nicky Nine Doors, he said. You know, when you ring someone s doorbell and then run off before they answer it.
I rolled over on my stomach and bugged my eyes out at him.
You mean Ding Dong Ditch? Ring and Run? That thing?
He nodded at me like Won t that be great?
What was he, six years old or something? That game was pathetic.
Why would you want to do that? I said.
He flicked a pebble off his knee and nailed me right in the forehead. It was little, but it hurt. Got anything better to do? he said.
He had a point. I was sick of riding my bike. The public pool would be crawling with toddlers, no doubt all peeing their little hearts out. My mother barred me from the house on sunny days because I was playing too many video games. I couldn t even go to a movie because I d blown all my money on slushies.
Well ? Richard said. Any other brilliant ideas?
I got up before he had a chance to ding me with another pebble.
No, I said.
So you re in? he said.
What could it hurt? If nothing else, I figured, it would kill some time.
Kill is right. Nicky Nicky Nine Doors was even more boring than lying in the shade watching old people pretend they re Jackie Chan. I hid behind a parked car and waited while Richard rang a bunch of doorbells.
Nobody answered.
Big surprise. Who was going to answer? The subdivision was practically empty these days. The kids were all away at camp or on vacation or visiting their noncustodial parent. Most of the grown-ups worked in the city. They were never around anyway.
After the third or fourth doorbell, I was pretty sure Richard would be ready to give up. That just goes to show how little I knew him.
He ran back from the last house and slid down behind the car with me. Okay, he said. Who else can we try?
I shrugged.
He went, Oh, come on. You live on this street. You must know who s home during the day.
I shook my head.
You do so, he said.
No, I don t, I said. I don t know anybody on the street. It was just that kind of place.
Richard squeezed his lips together and looked at me over the top of his glasses. It was like he was a teacher and I d just given hi

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