Pumpkin Mice Tales (3)
When the colder weather came, the Pumpkin Mice decided to move to a warmer shelter. They found a lovely hole deep underground between the roots of an old oak tree.
One morning, White Mouse with the exceedingly long and beautiful green tail peeped out of the den. She squeaked with excitement. The other Mousekins scurried across to look.
They saw that visitors had arrived on the Tall Tower. Big Brown Mouse joined them. He had eaten a lot of books in his life and digested a lot of information. He told the Mousekins about the new inhabitants.
‘They have travelled from Antarctica,’ he said. ‘The black and white birds are penguins and the white animals are seals.’
The Mousekins gazed at Big Brown Mouse in awe, wondering if they would ever be as wise as him.
Big Brown Mouse continued, ‘Seals and penguins don’t like each other because seals eat penguins.’
In this, though, Big Brown Mouse was mistaken for these particular penguins and seals were great friends. There are exceptions to every rule.
The penguins were brothers. The oldest, the one with the bobble hat, was called Bob Bobble. The first thing he and his brothers did was to build an igloo. They chipped the ice off the puddles and fashioned a rather fine dwelling just big enough for all the penguins to live in.
Mysteriously, the seals created a pond and stocked it with fish. They enjoyed watching Blue Scarf hauling fish from the icy pond. He was generous and shared his catch with them.
His brother, Rufus Red, was the youngest penguin and he was excited every night by the coloured lights that twinkled so brightly on the Tall Tower, lighting up the snowman he had built. ‘They’re better than the Northern Lights,‘ he said.
Little Grey, the smallest Mousekin, asked, ‘How long will they stay?’
Big Brown Mouse smiled kindly at him and answered, ‘I think they will stay until the weather starts to get warmer, then they will return to Antarctica.’ Seeing the disappointment on the Mousekins’ faces he added gently, ‘That will be a long time.’
White Mouse with the exceedingly long and beautiful green tail said, ‘How did they get here?’
Big Brown Mouse sighed and said, ‘Nobody knows, ‘Tis a secret never to be told,’ and they all wiggled their whiskers and skittered back into the warmth and safety of their nest.