Little Brother was the first to spot the Fantasia book that I put at Big Brother's seat at the kitchen table. "Can I go and tell Big Brother he has a new Fantasia? Please?" I told him that it was alright to wake him, as long as he could keep the book a secret. Little Brother wouldn't be Little Brother if he didn't blab, but whatever. "Big Brother, Big Brother! There is a surprise for you! I'm not telling you what is it, only that it's a book!" Big Brother looked at me and uttered "... a ... new ... Fantasia?!!!" And then he ran into the living room and was immediately intrigued by the green ribbon with the Geronimo Stilton charm attached to it. "Is that a bookmark?", he wondered. I replied that it was an amulet, for luck.

Big Brother put his amulet around his neck, packed his Fantasia book and left for school. By the end of the day he was really excited: "Mama! The amulet is working: I've been lucky three times now already! First, I could read in school. Second, I could read outside. Third, I like this dinner you have made!"

And that was only the beginning of the mysterious ways of the Geronimo amulet. Before I knew it, Big Brother was wearing it every day and - obviously - he has been lucky ever since. This afternoon he was hopping around the hallway, paused for a moment to exclaim "I'm so happy!", and hopped onwards. "What's the secret? Why are you this happy?" (Don't blame me for prying, who wouldn't want to know the recipe for happiness?) Big Brother looked at me as if I'd just asked a really dumb question. "I don't know. I simply am."

He is right. He is happy. Just the way he is - with his amulet of course. Funnily enough, Big Brother is always super self-conscious about what he is wearing to school and so I didn't even consider suggesting if he would like to bring his amulet to school with him. But apparently everything Fantasia-related is above the law. "Did you know mama, that you can only enter the Kingdom of Fantasy in your dreams? It says so in the book, it really does, and I believe it!" For a moment I couldn't speak, because I was so overcome by love for my boy.
To see Big Brother count his blessings, and in particular what kind of event he labels as 'luck', is incredibly moving. On one event we unanimously agreed: Big Brother passed another reading test with flying colors. Instead of the AVI-E6 level his teacher was expecting, he landed a magnificent AVI-M7 [midterm 5th grade]!

"This day has been the best day ever", Big Brother just said before he went to sleep. I can't believe what a difference it makes in his life to be able to bring his favorite book with him all day long. Or perhaps the amulet has special powers indeed?

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