You hold in your hand the key to a shadow world of shivers and screams.Take a step away from the safe, comfortable world you know. Unlock the door to terror. There's always room for one more in...The Nightmare Room.
Say Happy Birthday to Maggie O'Connor. She's that shy, pretty girl standing outside the fortune-teller's tent. Maggie and her friends came to the carnival for fun. But Maggie won't be celebrating for long. The old woman who reads her palm will soon have Maggie scraming in horror. Because Maggie hasn't really entered a fortune-teller's tent. She has stepped into The Nightmare Room.
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October 31, 2000
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Excerpt from The Nightmare Room #3: My Name Is Evil by R. L. Stine
"Maggie, you're so evil!" Jackie Mullen said, laughing.
My mouth dropped open. "Huh? Me? Evil?"
Jackie pointed across the table to the cupcakes on my plate. "You took three cupcakes and only ate the icing."
Her sister Judy frowned at me. "What's wrong with them? I baked them myself -- for your birthday."
I licked chocolate icing off my fingers. "There's nothing wrong with them," I told her. "They're wicked cool cupcakes. I just like icing."
Jackie laughed again. "Are you getting weird? You never say wicked cool."
I sneered at her. "I'm thirteen now. I can say whatever I want. Besides, I need a new image."
"Like a makeover," Judy said.
"Like a personality makeover," Jilly, the third sister, said. "Maggie wants to be sophisticated now."
Jilly was right about that. I've always been the youngest in my class because I skipped second grade. But now I was turning thirteen. Now I was old enough to transform myself into a mature, confident person. And no one would treat me like "the baby" anymore.
"I am sophisticated," I said. "I'm thirteen now, and there's no turning back!"
"Well, you're off to a bad start," Jackie said. She pointed. "You have icing in your hair."
I groaned and reached up and felt sticky stuff up there. For some reason, the three sisters all thought it was a riot. Jilly laughed so hard, she choked on her cupcake.
Jackie, Judy, and Jilly Mullen are triplets, which means that I have three best friends. Everyone at our school -- Cedar Bay Middle School -- calls them the Three J's. And they're very close, although they try really hard to be different from each other.
Jackie and Judy look alike. They both have straight black hair and big, round brown eyes. They both always look as if they're suntanned.
But they're so eager for people to tell them apart, they have totally different styles. Jackie's hair is long, halfway down her back. She wears funky, old clothes, baggy jeans, old bell-bottoms from the seventies, oversized, bright-colored tops she finds at garage sales. She loves clanky jewelry, heavy beads, and dangling, plastic earrings.