Judy Morgan works as a reporter for The Westfield Gazette. It wasn’t a very interesting job because not much of interest occurred in Westfield. One day a fellow worker told her that his fourth grade daughter was kept after school because of a “secret code” word that the fifth graders had started. He said half the students were kept after school as a punishment for using the word.
Judy decides to investigate. When she first enters the school, she sees a note on the bulletin board outside of the principal’s office about the punishment for using the word “frindle.” She first interviews the principal, Mrs. Chatham, who tells her that the problem is under control, and that Mrs. Granger may have overreacted a little bit. She explains the whole situation to Judy. Then Judy interviews Mrs. Granger. Mrs. Granger tells her,
“I am merely helping my students to see that this foolishness must stop. Such a waste of time and thought! There is no reason to invent a new and useless word.” (pg 61)
Judy asks Mrs. Granger if she knew how this word got started in the fifth grade, and Mrs. Granger gives her the name of Nicholas Allen.
As she walks to her car, some of the students who had been kept after school walk with her. She asks them why they are willing to stay after school in order to use the word “frindle.” They tell her that it isn’t so bad because they are with all their friends. They are to write 100 times that they are writing with a pen, but they have started replacing the word “pen” with “frindle” and Mrs. Granger hasn’t even noticed. Judy asks if she could meet this young man, Nick. A young man tells her that Nick probably wouldn’t want to talk to her because,
“He might say something stupid and get himself in trouble” (pg 65)
The next morning Judy gets a brown envelope delivered to her at The Gazette offices marked “Frindle Story.” When she opens it, it is the group picture of the fifth grade with all the students holding “frindles” or pens. Written on the back it said,
“3rd row, 5th from left” (pg 65)
There was the picture of the same young man who told her that Nick would not be interested in an interview. It was Nick. Judy laughed and said,
“Well,well, well. Pleased to meet you, Mr. Nicholas Allen.” (pg 66)