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Welcome Wagon

The Qjxlpbps moved in beside the Joneses in September.

"They're aliens," said little Jimmy.

His mother frowned. "Polite people say ‘extraterrestrial.'"

"My friends will never talk to me again," moaned Donna, who was thirteen.

"Tell them diversity is the key to a galactic economy," said her father.

School started that Monday. The Jones children were surprised to see their new neighbors out bright and early.

"We were told to wait in front of the house and a large vehicle would come to pick us up," beeped Xvbnt, who was standing on the sidewalk looking very square and fetching in the latest in black polycarbonate. Her baby brother Zqrwt was wearing his best wheels.

An engine roared, brakes hissed; levers clanked and gears clashed; and the garbage truck, having shaken the Qjxlpbps children into its maw, drove away in a cloud of fumes.

Donna clutched Jimmy: "What do we do?" The school bus was coming.

Jimmy looked around frantically: "Here!" He thrust the Jones' garbage bins into his sister's hands. The bus pulled up and they clambered aboard.

"Your new friends are awfully quiet," said the homeroom teacher.

"They're just shy," said Donna.

Meanwhile, the garbage company discovered its mistake and rushed the Qjxlpbps home. Mr. Jones drove them and their father to school in his Volvo.

"I hope this little mix-up hasn't negatively impacted your view of our country," he said.

"Oh, no," beeped Mr. Qjxlpbps. "Everyone is so kind."

Story by:

Jessamy Dalton

2 March 2016