The Hunchback of Notre Dame

Quasimodo walked through Paris watching people at the festival. He lived in a bell tower in Notre Dame and rarely left. But today he was outside enjoying the jugglers and the games.

His favorite sight was a beautiful woman in a green dress that danced to cheerful music.

Just then, Quasimodo felt hands on his shoulders. “We’ve found our Monster King!” a man said. “This is the ugliest person in Paris!”

Quasimodo started to weep. He knew he wasn’t handsome. He had a droopy eye and a hump on his back. But was he really a Monster King?

The people put a crown on his head and paraded him around. They laughed and pointed. The festival wasn’t fun anymore. Quasimodo just wanted to go home.

“Hey, stop that!” someone called. It was the beautiful dancer in the green dress.

She pulled the crown off his head and led him away from the festival. “Don’t cry, it’s okay!” she said. “They shouldn’t have been so mean to you.”

She leaned down and kissed him on the forehead, above his drooping eye. “There, there.”

“Are you kidding me, Esmeralda?” a deep voice said to the woman. A burly man pushed Quasimodo away and turned to face the woman. “You won’t give me the time of day, but you’ll kiss this freak?”

“Leave me alone, Frollo!” Esmeralda said. “I don’t like you! How many times can I say it?”

Frollo was a powerful priest. His face went bright red, and his lips curled into a snarl. “You must be a witch to kiss a hunchbacked monster like him while ignoring me. Witch! She’s a witch!” Frollo yelled.

“A witch? Here?” someone asked.

FAZ Reading Level Detail

Lexile Score 450
Word Count 895

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