F ishel was looking out of the classroom window, wishing the English lesson was over already. He barely noticed the teacher passing out some handouts for the boys to read.

A glare from the teacher prompted him to pay attention. Much to his surprise, the article in the handout actually turned out to be interesting. It was about a man who’d found an old, dusty book in his grandfather’s attic. He decided to show it to an antique collector, hoping it might fetch a few dollars. To his astonishment, the collector greeted the book with great enthusiasm. He arranged for it to be sold at an auction, where it netted the owner the extraordinary sum of half a million dollars. Fishel nearly choked right then and there. Half a million bucks! What an absolute fortune!

On the way home from cheder, he told Faivish about the article. Faivish’s eyes almost popped out of his head.

“We’ve gotta find an old book to sell,” he declared immediately.

“Exactly what I was thinking,” agreed Fishel, forgetting to argue in his excitement.

“Let’s look in our attic. It’s full of dusty old things.”

“Yeah, but clothes mostly. I don’t think there are any books.”

“Bet I can find one.”

“Bet I can find two.”

“Oh yeah? Bet I can find ten.”

“Ha! Bet I can find a hundred.”

“I’m gonna be rich as a king.”

“I’m gonna be rich as ten kings.”

Fishel scowled fiercely at his brother, and then suddenly turned around and took off with a whoosh. It had occurred to him that, instead of standing there arguing, he’d be better off searching the attic right away. Faivish followed on his heels. They arrived home neck and neck.

Sadly, Fishel and Faivish’s high hopes were soon dashed. The attic was sorely lacking in dusty old books.

The only book of any sort they could find was a dog-eared reader, torn and scribbled on, that Fishel and Faivish had used when they were in first grade. (Originally featured in Mishpacha Jr., Issue 662)