Hey, little man, Ran says. They do their special handshake, which involves rubbing palms together. I dont think Ran knows or else cares how risky it is to touch Charlies hands. No one knows where theyve been but most likely in some pretty disgusting places. Wanna sundae? Charlie asks.
Yeah! Ran follows Charlie to the ice- cream counter, and they disappear behind it. A few minutes later, they return with a huge banana- split bowl filled with every topping we sell. They each have a spoon but share the bowl.
Thats disgusting, Sara says.
Charlie and Ran ignore her and go to town.
Miraculously, they eat the whole thing. When they finish, Charlies mouth has an almost-perfect chocolate circle around it that slowly drips down his chin. He looks just like the dinosaur on his T-shirt.
Ran carefully wipes his mouth with a napkin from the dispenser on the table. Then, instead of getting a new one, he just folds it over and wipes Charlies mouth for him. Charlie beams.
In the distance, my dad tries to get the line cooks behind the counter to say, See you at Harrys, but they look kind of confused. Instead, Charlie yells it from our table.
I hide my face in my hands.
Whats wrong? Ran asks with his familiar bewildered look.
Cant you tell how lame this commercial is going to be? I ask him.
Well, yes, he says slowly. But thats not your fault.
Since when does it matter if an embarrassing moment is your fault or not? I ask him. Do you not remember the elf cards? It took months for me to live that down.
Only because you let it bother you, he says calmly.
Whatever, I say, staring at the orange letters on his T-shirt. glow. Yeah. Why is it so easy for Ran to just glow, when Im the one wearing the neon T-shirt?
Excerpted from See You at Harry's by Jo Knowles. Copyright © 2012 by Jo Knowles. Excerpted by permission of Candlewick Press. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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