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Stories by Laura Lagana
Hamish McWallace and the Leprechaun Treasure - Chapter 18


Grams leaned back in her seat and said to Kate, who yanked the kettle of boiling water from the stovetop. “Careful dear. Don’t bruise the tea leaves. No one likes bitter tea.”

Kate stiffened her spine while pouring the brew into a china cup. Hamish stood in the doorway and leaned against the doorframe, watching his Grams tease his mom, but realizing that his mom never understood Grams’ quirky ways. Before Kate could start an argument, Hamish kissed her on the cheek and joined Grams at the table.

“You look well rested this morning,” said Grams.

He sighed. “I finally had a decent nights sleep.”

Kate slid into the chair across from Grams and sipped at her hot brew. “Where’s Captain Malcolm?” Her gaze darted around the room, searching for a sign of the pirate.

“He left, but wanted me to tell you that he enjoyed your hospitality,” said Grams while grinning behind her tea cup.

“He did?” Kate paused, holding a biscuit to her lips.

“Aye, he did,” said Grams. “I know he’s a bit rough around the edges, but he means well.”

Kate choked on a sip of tea. “Aye, rough around the edges.” She glanced at Hamish and rolled her eyes while Grams reached for a slice of bacon.

Hamish hid his grin and finished the rest of his breakfast. Once he put his plate in the dishwasher, he paused when Grams said, “How is school going for you?”

He stiffened. “I’m not liking it.”

“Why is that?”

“The kids make fun of me because I’m Scottish,” said Hamish.

“Why would they do that? Being Scottish is something to be proud of,” said Grams.

“It’s because I’m different than them.” Hamish left the kitchen with Grams following behind. “Not all the kids are mean. I have several friends, but this one lad, Alec, he’s very annoying.”

She patted his hand. “Don’t worry about him any longer. I have a feeling he will start being nice to you. A grandma knows these things,” she said, pinching Hamish’s cheek. “Now wait here while I fetch your school bag. A moment later she returned and handed the bag to Hamish. When he walked out the front door of the house, he missed Grams waving at his backpack.

#

Hamish stood at the front of the classroom, writing his math problem on the board when Alex called out. “That’s not the right answer.” Alex stormed to the front of the room and shoved Hamish aside. “This is how you work the math problem.”

Hamish returned to his seat and crossed his arms over his chest. A tiny finger poked out from his backpack and made a circle in the air before flinging golden dust on the floor.

Alex shrieked as he started writing uncontrollably on the board that the students were dumb and the teacher was wasting her time.

The teacher grabbed Alex’s arm and tried to pull it away from the board. “Stop it this instant!”

“I can’t! My hand won’t stop writing,” wailed Alex who turned to glare at Hamish. “I know you’re doing this somehow. Make it stop.”

Hamish sat up in his seat. “What are you talking about?”

The teacher’s shout of anger cut into Hamish’s and Alex’s argument. “If you don’t stop this instant, you’ll be in so much trouble,” she said.

The other students in the room glared at Alex. One of the students called out, “What a looser.” Lucy mumbled and shook her head, “I can’t believe he’s dumb enough to blame this on Hamish and expect the teacher to believe him.” Hamish furrowed his brow and glanced around the room while the other children’s voices were drowned out by Alex’s cries.

Lucy jumped to her feet and shook her finger at Alex. “This is just stupid. Quit blaming Hamish. You’re the moron who’s writing on the board.”

A moment later, Alex stopped and fell to the floor. The children’s laughter echoed in the classroom while the teacher helped Alex to his feet.

“I’ve had enough of your disrespect. Stop blaming everything on Hamish. It’s your own fault you wrote all this.” She grabbed Alex by the collar and headed toward the door. “You’re going to the principle’s office.”

As Alex glanced over his shoulder, he spied Finnegan poking out of Hamish’s bag. Finnegan waved his fingers, scattering more leprechaun dust on the floor and blinked, turning Alex’s shoes turn to stone.

Alex gasped. “It was you,” he said, tugging against the teacher’s grip. Hamish is hiding someone in his bag who made me do this.”

Hamish shook his head and chuckled. “Aye, it was the wee folk.”

“The who?” Alex stumbled and kicked off his stone shoes.

Lucy smacked her forehead with the palm of her hand. “They are known as leprechauns, you dummy.” She turned to Hamish and said, “He’s really lost it this time.”

Alex’s shout echoed down the hall as the teacher led him to the principles office.

“This is awkward,” said Hamish to all the children in the class, who stared at him.

One of the boys sitting in front of Hamish said, “Just ignore Alex. He likes to make fun of new people.”

“Yeah,” said a blonde haired girl in pigtails, who sat opposite him. “He’s picked on all of us at some time during the school year. You’re not alone.”

Hamish nodded. “Thanks. I feel better.” He spied the leprechaun dust on the floor at his feet and nudged his backpack, whispering, “You wouldn’t happen to have anything to do with this?”

A faint whisper echoed from the depths of the bag. “Maybe.”

Hamish chuckled and joked around with the students in his class, feeling like he finally belonged in America.


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