BILLY BUNNY





STORY XXXVII.

BILLY BUNNY AND LITTLE PEEWEE.

Let me stop for a moment and think where I left off last night. Oh, now I remember. Billy Bunny was in the old woodchuck hollow stump, and it was raining.

Oh, my, yes. cats and dogs, as they say in grown-ups' stories, so we'll say kittens and puppies. Well, after a while the rain stopped and the little rabbit said good-by and hopped away, and pretty soon, not very long, a little bird began to sing:

    "Down the shady Forest Trail,
     O'er the hill and through the vale,
     Billy Bunny hops along
     With a whistle and a song.
     And if you have never heard
     A rabbit whistle like a bird,
     You must ask each little rabbit
     If he has the whistling habit."

"Who's singing?" asked Billy Bunny, and he took his silver policeman's whistle out of his knapsack and blew on it so hard that the little bird began to cry:

"Oh, dear! Oh, dear! You will whistle my ear off!" And then, of course, the little rabbit stopped, for he didn't want to hurt that dear little bird. No sireemam.

"Who are you?" he asked, and the little bird replied: "I'm Peewee, the littlest bird in the whole Friendly Forest."

"What do you look like?" said the little rabbit, curiously, gazing here and there and everywhere and behind a tree and under a stone. "I've never seen a Peewee."

And then that little bird flew down from a tree and Billy Bunny saw the tiniest little bird he had ever seen. Why, it wasn't much larger than a butterfly.

"Goodness, but you're small," said Billy Bunny. "Are you so small that you don't like lollypops?"

Of course, the little bird said no, and so would you, no matter how small you were, but when she tried to fly away with the lollypop, she couldn't. No sireemam. Wasn't that too bad? So the little rabbit gave her some sweet cracker crumbs instead, and after that he hopped away looking for another adventure.

And it wasn't long before he had one. For, just as he was hopping across a fallen log that made a narrow bridge over a brook, a little fish swam up to the top of the water and said:

"Here is a letter from your friend, the Whale," and he held up in his mouth a blue envelope. I guess it was made of some kind of waterproof paper, for it wasn't the least bit damp.

And when Billy Bunny opened it, he found a small coral ring inside, and in the letter it said: "This ring is for you, Billy Bunny.

"The pretty mermaid asked me to send it to you, so here it is. Please tell the little fish that you have received it and that it fits you perfectly." And then the Whale signed himself, "Your great big-hearted friend, the Whale."



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