My sister, Brandy, asked for an egg hunt for her tenth birthday party. And Brandy always gets
what she wants.
She flashes her smile, the one that makes the dimples pop up in her cheeks. And she puts on her
little baby face. Opens her green eyes wide and tugs at her curly red hair. "Please? Please? Can I
have an egg hunt at my party?"
No way Mom and Dad can ever say no to her.
If Brandy asked for a red, white, and blue ostrich for her birthday, Dad would be out in the garage
right now, painting an ostrich.
Brandy is good at getting her way. Real good. I'm her older brother, Dana Johnson. And I admit it.
Even I have trouble saying no to Brandy.
I'm not little and cute like my sister. I have straight black hair that falls over my forehead. And I
wear glasses. And I'm a little chubby. "Dana, don't look so serious." That's what Mom is always
"Dana has an old soul," Grandma Evelyn always says.
I don't really know what that means. I guess she means I'm more serious than most twelve-year-
Maybe that's true. I'm not really serious all the time. I'm just curious about a lot of things. I'm very
interested in science. I like studying bugs and plants and animals. I have an ant farm in my room.
And two tarantulas.
And I have my own microscope. Last night I studied a toenail under the microscope. It was a lot
more interesting than you might think.
I want to be a research scientist when I'm older. I'll have my own lab, and I'll study anything I want
Dad is a kind of chemist. He works for a perfume company. He mixes things together to make
new smells. He calls them fragrances.
Before Mom met Dad, she worked in a lab. She did things with white rats.
So both of my parents are happy that I'm into science. They encourage me. But that doesn't mean
they give me whatever I ask for.
If I asked Dad for a red, white, and blue ostrich for my birthday, do you know what he'd say? He'd
say, "Go play with your sister's!"
Anyway, Brandy asked for an egg hunt for her birthday. Her birthday is a week before Ea