It was very late when they reached the Tall Pine Tree. The good Professor was sound asleep after a hard day's work in the Shady Forest Schoolhouse and a long search for his little lost crow. He had hunted for him until it grew so dark that he had been forced to give it up.
But Mrs. Crow was wide awake and the little crows were crying softly over their little lost brother. Disobedience makes others unhappy as well as the one who disobeys.
All of a sudden Mrs. Crow heard the gentle flap of wings, and looking over the edge of the nest, she saw Old Parson Owl in the dim moonlight. The next moment the sight of little Jimmy Crow hopping after him made her heart go pitter-patter.
"Here's our little boy!" she cried, fluttering down to the ground, while all the little crow brothers and sisters looked over the edge of the nest, and Professor Jim Crow woke up with a start.
But, dear me! Didn't they have a dreadful time getting the little crow up in the tree. You see, he could only flutter now that his wings had been clipped, and if Old Parson Owl hadn't carried him on his broad back, I doubt if Jimmy Crow ever would have reached the nest.
By this time Mrs. Moon had crossed over the sky, and Mr. Merry Sun was getting out of bed in the gold and purple East.
The Shady Forest was beginning to awake. The birds were chirping to one another, and the Little Four-footed People were racing up and down the trees and scampering over the ground.
Parson Owl waited to see that everything was all right, and then, turning to Professor Jim Crow, said:
"If Little Jack Rabbit hadn't come to tell me that the Farmer's Boy had stolen Jimmy Crow, your little son would still be in the cage on the farmhouse porch."
"My dear Parson," said Professor Jim Crow gratefully, "I shall never forget what you and Little Jack Rabbit have done."
"Don't mention it," said the kind old Parson, hurrying back to the Big Oak Tree before the light grew too strong for his big round eyes.
Oh, children, never disobey,
And never break a rule,
And never tell what is untrue,
Nor run away from school.
Perhaps if all the little boys and girls who read this story will learn this verse, it will keep them out of trouble. If Jimmy Crow had, maybe he never would have disobeyed his mother.