Second grader Andrew Marcus wants freckles more than anything in the world. His classmate Nicky Lane has the perfect set of freckles. One day Andrew counted 86 of them! If only Andrew could find out how to get them, he wouldn’t have to wash his neck and he’d never be late for school! He probably wouldn’t get in as much trouble with Ms. Kelly either, because he wouldn’t be so distracted by Nicky’s freckles. The only problem is, freckles seem impossible to get.
That is, until his obnoxious classmate Sharon lets Andrew in on her secret: the recipe for "freckle juice" has been in her family for years. It’ll only cost Andrew fifty cents. Although Andrew would rather not pay Sharon for anything, he can’t stop thinking about it. He decides it must be worth a try. Things don’t go smoothly during the recipe exchange. After paying up, Sharon throws the recipe across the classroom, and Andrew falls on the floor trying to grab it. Ms. Kelly confiscates the recipe. Luckily (or unluckily) for Andrew, she returns it to him at the end of the school day.
Andrew can’t contain his excitement, and runs home from school to mix the recipe. Andrew mixes up the recipe, using some substitute ingredients, ignores the foul smell, and gulps it down. Soon, Andrew is feeling strange, but more of a sick strange than a freckle strange. When Mrs. Marcus comes home, Andrew is in rough shape. At first she is concerned, but after seeing the mess of ingredients in the kitchen, she sends Andrew to bed.
There was no way Andrew was going to let Sharon get away with tricking him. He comes up with a plan: he’ll simply draw the freckles on! His classmates get a kick out of his blue magic markers freckles, but Andrew doesn’t care. Soon, his kind teacher lets him in on her little secret. She quietly gives him a secret formula for removing freckles – for free! Andrew finds a bar of soap and instructions wrapped neatly in the secret box. When he sheepishly returns to class, Nicky Lane can’t believe it. He asks Ms. Kelly if he can use her secret formula. Andrew can’t believe Nicky would want to get rid of his freckles. The story ends with a lesson about self-esteem for Andrew, and one last offer from Sharon. She wants to sell a secret recipe for freckle remover to Nicky Lane. The recipe has been in her family for years...