How do Max and Freak regard each other in Philbrick's Freak the Mighty?

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Max and Freak (Kevin) are best friends. They seem like the two most unlikely boys to become friends, but, actually, it works out well for the both of them. In the beginning, Max, who is also the narrator, says that he "never had a brain until Freak came along" (1)....

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Max and Freak (Kevin) are best friends. They seem like the two most unlikely boys to become friends, but, actually, it works out well for the both of them. In the beginning, Max, who is also the narrator, says that he "never had a brain until Freak came along" (1). That is to say that Kevin actually teaches Max how to use his brain to read and to write. Kevin believes in Max when other adults and teachers believed that he should be in the learning-disabled classes. Kevin gives Max the tools to become his own man, gain confidence in himself, and believe that he can learn just like anyone else can. Max, therefore, regards Kevin with great respect, love, and appreciation.

Freak, on the other hand, gets a horse out of the deal. Because Kevin is stricken with the effects of a birth defect, he doesn't grow normally, and he can't walk or even stand like other kids. When Max picks him up and carries him around on his shoulders, Freak has the time of his life! He even accidentally tells Max to raise his hoof at one point, leading the reader to infer that Freak likes to pretend that Max is a horse. Together, they call themselves Freak the Mighty because each one makes up for the other's weaknesses. Furthermore, Max believes Kevin is the smartest boy he knows and Kevin appreciates Max for hauling him around school and on all the quests they go on together.

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