Phase 3 Verbal Ability Test 3

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                                    THE MINI PROBLEM

Lily’s anger could not have been more palpable.

She awakened Christmas morning and, along with her brother, ran down to see the gifts under the tree.

In the living room sat a magnificent mini bike. It was red with a pearly white gas tank and side panels. For a brief moment, Lily was filled with what seemed like insurmountable excitement.

She couldn’t imagine anything better than getting that bike. Then, her eyes caught sight of a baby doll sitting on the couch with a huge bow. She knew. She knew that the mini bike belonged to her brother and that she had been relegated to that doll. It was par for the course.

Tommy always got cool things: skateboards, gliders, science kits. The mini bike was just the latest cool thing.

Lily always got the boring gifts: a doll with a gown, a doll with a tutu, a doll with a puppy. This doll seemed unusually blah. The doll wore a petticoat. The doll had short, straight black hair.

Tommy had seen that mini-bike in the front window of Moore’s Bike Shop, but hadn’t Lily too? Both had begged for the bike. Both had said it was the only thing they wanted for Christmas.

Hadn’t Lily asked for it with as much fervour as her twin brother?

Tommy’s eyes grew wide at the sight of the bike he knew was his—no doll for him. He ran into his parents’ room and jumped excitedly on the bed. “Thank you, Mama! Thank you, Papa!” he yelled.

Meanwhile Lily simmered in the other room. She was furious. She was enraged. She was incensed. It took a while for anyone to even realize she was missing.

“What’s wrong, Lil?” Papa asked.

“Did you see your pretty doll?”

“I saw it,” she said sulkily.

“What’s wrong?” asked Mama. Silence. Lily’s jaw was fixed. Her hands clenched. Her whole body trembled.

“Oh, Mama, you know Lily is never excited by presents!” her brother laughed.

“Come out and watch me ride!” And so they did.