Chapter 1

Written by: Ray Stone

David gave Peter a knowing look and yawned. Robin had a bit of a reputation with girls, dumping them when he got bored but this time he wouldn’t get away with it so easily. Francis was spoiled and a big row was looming. Peter flicked a red curl on the back of Francis' head but she shrugged him off.

                Francis pouted. If Robin wanted to throw himself at Lizzie’s feet and make a fool of himself then good riddance to him.  She took a deep breath. With a bit of luck he’d venture into the one hundred acre Kahikatea forest and fall into the Heffalump's trap. With nose in the air, she ran a hand through her short red curls and announced she was going to find a tree to sit under; she wanted to read some of The House at Pooh Corner by herself. With her colorful skirt swirling about her, she flounced off, leaving the guys to pack up the picnic things.

                After reading for several minutes, Francis looked up to see David and Peter disappear into the car park cafe and smiled. A thought occurred to her that she might play a trick on Robin.

*****

The guys looked down at the book on the ground. Peter picked it up. Something very serious must have happened to make Francis leave the book behind.

A few minutes later, after leaving the picnic gear safe, the guys entered the Potaema trail, hoping to find Lizzie and Robin coming back from the viewing platform overlooking the wetlands and Mount Taranaki. David looked at his watch. It was a fifteen minute walk and after leaving the picnic area an hour before, the others would, he hoped, be on their way back.

They walked along the raised wooden trail, brushing past sedge grass and sundews for five minutes until broadleaf Podocarp trees and towering Kahikatea dripping with hanging moss enclosed them in the darkness of the forest. As they turned a corner Peter whooped and jumped with joy. “Look,” he pointed excitedly. “Over there, up in the tree.” Before David could stop him, Peter was rushing headlong through the dense ferns toward a huge Kahikatea.

David jumped and stumbled after him. “A bear!” he shouted, it’s a bear!”

They stood at the foot of the tree looking up into the branches.

“What on earth is going on?”

The guys turned as Lizzie and Robin joined them. David explained Francis was missing and pointed to the bear.

“That’s my bear,” said Lizzie. “Why would Francis put my bear up there?”

Robin laughed. Francis was mad at him and probably playing a joke. It should have been Tigger up the tree looking at piglet’s house in the middle of the forest. “Tiggers don’t climb trees,” he quipped.

Because they can’t climb backwards, their tails get in the way,” chorused the others.

Peter looked up at the bear. “Problem is it wasn’t Francis who put him up there….. She can’t climb.”

 

Raymond Stone (MT)

  

Comments

I know nothing of Pooh. I will have to to a little study it appears.
I liked the story. Mostly the first part though. Interesting little quirks. A buildup of things to come. Nice