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Excerpt: 'The Exquisite Corpse Adventure'

The Exquisite Corpse by Jon Scieszka

Episode One

A Very Unusual and Completely Amazing Story
Pieced Together Out of So Many Parts That
It Is Not Possible To
Describe Them All Here So Go Ahead and
Just Start Reading

This story starts with a train rushing through the night.

The full moon lights the silver rails winding around dark mountains, through deep woods, and over steep gorges of jagged rock and one freezing cold rushing black mountain river.

I wish there was enough time to describe all of the funny (and touching) twists and turns - especially the Elephant Clown Party - that led up to now. But there isn't. Enough time. Because there is a ticking clock. And the two passengers we care most about don't know anything about it.

In a sleeping berth, in the third car from the end of the train, are two children, eleven-year-old twins, who have just run away from the circus.

The girl's name is Nancy. The boy's name is Joe.

They have no idea that those are not their true names. Though they will figure it out soon enough.

Up until two hours ago, Nancy and Joe thought they were orphans. That turned out to be not true either.

Copyright 2009 Jon Scieszka

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Jon Scieszka