<DIV></div> <B>School-wide sabotage . . .</B></p> Jerry Dooty extended his cupped paws. "I found these on the floor in Maureen’s office."</p><B> </B>We leaned closer. He held a bunch of little-bitty pieces of wood. Headless matchsticks.</p><B> </B>"I thought they seemed a little . . . I don’t know, suspicious?" he whined. "Figured I’d take them to Principal Zero, see what he thought."</p><B> </B>Natalie frowned. "You think he’ll think she’s suspicious?""</p><B> </B>I think he’ll think she’s not thinking," said Mr. Dooty. "Maybe he’ll think she made the stink."</p><B> </B>"The stink?" I snapped. "You think?"</p><B> </B>"I think." Jerry Dooty gave an elaborate shrug.</p><B> </B>"But who cares what I think? I’m just the assistant janitor."</p><B> </B>Could he be right? Could my mongoose pal have sunk so low? I shook my head. Never in a million lunchtimes.</p><B> </B>Mr. Dooty shuffled past us, droning, "But I’ll tell you one thing—"</p><B> </B>Before he could finish his one thing, three things happened.</p><B> </B>First, Natalie sneezed. "Ha-CHOO!"</p><B> </B>Second, an eerie creaking, like the front doors to a thousand haunted houses, filled the air.</p><B> </B>And third, with a loud FOOMPF! the one-story building next to us collapsed. <BR><BR><i>Continues...</i> <!-- copyright notice --> <br></pre> <blockquote><hr noshade size='1'><font size='-2'> Excerpted from <b>Dial M for Mongoose</b> by <b>Bruce Hale</b> Copyright © 2009 by Bruce Hale. Excerpted by permission.<br> All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.<br>Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.