Because of Winn-Dixie
by Kate DiCamillo
Because of Winn-Dixie Chapter 12 Summary
- When Opal and Winn-Dixie get to work super early, Opal pushes past the 'Closed' sign and wonders about the beautiful music she hears.
- All the animals are out of their cages… but they're not running amok. Instead, they're sitting quietly, listening to Otis play a guitar, smiling, with his eyes closed. Kind of like the Pied Piper history of Gertrude's Pets.
- Even Winn-Dixie falls into the musical trance, and Gertrude the Bird lands on his head.
- Otis notices Opal. He stops playing. Oops.
- Without the music, the animals go berserk. Otis and Opal go berserk themselves, running around the store trying to catch them.
- Any creature she actually gets her hands on, Opal tosses in the first cage she sees… until she remembers that Otis is an animal charmer.
- She yells at Otis to play again. Sure enough, the animals calm down so Opal can put them away like a sane person.
- Otis says he plays to make them happy, and he lets them out of their cages to help them escape being locked up. He knows what it's like to be locked up because he was once in jail himself. Sorry, what?!
- But he changes the subject and starts Opal sweeping—although he accidentally holds out his guitar to her first, instead of the broom. Oops again.
- Opal sweeps the whole place clean with Winn-Dixie and Gertrude the Bird following. She figures the preacher won't want her working for a criminal.
- Sweetie Pie Thomas is outside and asks if Otis is magic.
- Opal figures he is, in a way. Unless, of course, he's a creepy criminal. Just sayin'.
- Sweetie Pie asks her again if she's coming to the party and reminds her of the theme: pink.
- Then she points to her house and mom and runs home to tell her everything.
- Seeing Sweetie Pie and her mama makes Opal think of her own mama, and all the stories she's been collecting to tell her someday: Otis and his music, Miss Franny and the bear, and Gloria Dump, who Opal almost believed was a witch.
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