Lucy Forever and Miss Rosetree, Shrinks

Lucy Forever and Miss Rosetree, Shrinks

by Susan Shreve


Lucy and Rosie are the only psychiatrists in their sixth-grade class. They’re not real psychiatrists, of course, but you might not know if you walked into the office of Shrinks, Incorporated, in the basement of Lucy’s house. Inspired to set up their practice by Lucy’s father, a psychiatrist who specializes in treating disturbed children, Lucy and Rosie worked on imagined cases ranging from “The Parks Divorce” in which Mr. Parks came home from work in a bear costume and threatened to eat his wife for dinner, to the strange case of Samantha and the Zebra,” in which a woman developed black stripes on her belly. But nothing in their varied experiences prepares them for Cinder — a real little girl being treated by Lucy’s father — who walks into their office with her eyes full of terror and a bring red scar across her throat. Her father admits that he is having no success with Cinder, but warns Lucy to stay away from his patient. Ignoring his warning, Lucy begins to investigate. She learns that Cinder lives inf an orphanage, that her that was slashed, possibly by Cinder herself — and that the experience frightened her so much that she is unable to talk. Lucy senses that there is more to the the story, but by the time she discovers the truth about Cinder, she finds that she has put them both in great danger.


When Lucy Forever got home from school, very late as usual because of detention in language arts for daydreaming, Miss Rosetree was already in the office of Shrinks, Incorporated.


Lucy ran up the front steps of her house on Rugby Road, read the note on the hall table from her mother, and rushed to the cornflower blue bedroom — hardly changed at all since her mother had decorated it for the baby boy the doctor had assured her she was having when Lucy Forever was born.


She took off her school clothes, kicked them out of sight under the bed with yeterdays school clothes, two trashey books, and a half-eaten bowl of cornflakes swimming in sour milk.


Then she put on panty hose, an old bra of her mother’s which she stuffed with pale pink toilett paper, a serious-looking gray suit only slightly tooo large that had belonged to her grandmother, and black high-heeled sandals her mother had worn for formal occasions.

© 2019 Susan Richards Shreve | Design by Cynthia Frank Design | Development by Abacus Design