Monday, June 13, 2011

The Magic Banana, Part 1

 A Children's Story - Part 1  
by CJ Heck

... I know this is true , because someone who's been there told me to tell you. 

Tucked in somewhere over our stars and under our moon there's a faraway land. This land is lovely and very different from our world. It's called The Land of The Purple Moons because up in the sky at night, it has two large purple moons. There are also two bright suns that shine in the daytime that are always hooked together by a beautiful rainbow. Also in The Land of The Purple Moons, there's a thick magic forest called The Forest of Enchantment. It's called that because sometimes things happen there that just can't be explained.

This is a story about three best friends who lived near The Forest of Enchantment in The Land of The Purple Moons and an adventure that none of them will ever forget.

The first of the friends was Bartholomew Bear. His friends couldn't say that name, so they called him B Bear -- this was just fine with Bartholomew, because he couldn't say it either. B Bear was very smart and, (if anyone should be, he was), the leader of the three best friends. They looked up to him to have wonderful ideas and make important decisions.

The next was Monkey. He, (if anyone had to be, he was), the playful one of the three friends. He loved making them laugh by doing silly things and making funny noises and faces. Monkey was always hungry. Every morning, he filled his pockets with good things to eat before he left home. That was okay though, because he always shared what he brought with his friends.

The last of the three friends was Lambie, a little pink lamb. She was kind and gentle and, (if anyone could be, she was), the very heart of the three best friends. Lambie was the one who always knew when it was time to go home so no one would worry about them. She was the one who always knew when an idea was not a good idea, because she was also the one who made sure the three best friends were always good.

... I know this is true , because someone who's been there told me to tell you. 

One day, the three best friends decided to meet at the edge of The Forest of Enchantment the next day. It would be a nice day for a picnic and B Bear announced that he knew the perfect spot. He told them it was near a babbling brook that whispered poetry and there was a tall gumdrop tree nearby where Monkey could climb and play. Maybe he would even toss some gumdrops down to them!

Now they wondered, what time should they meet? After much discussion, Monkey, being the silly one, said they should meet at three hairs past a freckle, eastern elbow time. The three friends laughed and, of course, Monkey laughed louder than anyone else. With Monkey holding back even MORE giggles and snorts, they finally agreed. They would meet at the o'clock of eleven fourteen.

The next morning, Monkey arrived first. As usual, his pockets were full of food -- just in case he got hungry before lunch. He sat down on a tree stump and munched on cookies while he waited for his two best friends.

B Bear was next to arrive, carrying the biggest picnic basket Monkey had ever seen! When B Bear saw Monkey's bulging pockets and saw that Monkey was already eating, he shouted in a very loud voice, "Monkey! What's wrong with you? You knew I was bringing a picnic basket. You knew it would have plenty to eat inside. Why did you have to fill your pockets with food today?"

Monkey didn't mean to make B Bear angry. He tried to make B Bear laugh by making funny faces, but it only made B Bear even more angry!

In his loudest voice, B Bear shouted, "Monkey! I asked what's wrong with you?"

Just then, Lambie arrived. She was already talking about how she hadn't forgotten to bring lots of juice in case they all got thirsty. Lambie didn't notice the mad face B Bear was wearing or the sad face that Monkey now had on. She DID notice B Bear's loud voice, though, and said, "B Bear, don't use your grumpy voice with Monkey. That isn't nice!"

B Bear told Lambie about Monkey's bulging pockets and his cheeks full of cookies. Then he told her how Monkey made things even worse by making silly faces -- it was like Monkey didn't care that B Bear was upset -- and that was why he was so angry!

Since Lambie was the heart of the three friends, she said, "B Bear, say what you mean, mean what you say, but don't say it mean. Shouting never solves a problem. Let's all sit down and talk about this calmly."

The two suns were very high in the sky by the time the three friends finally worked out the problem and were on their way to the picnic spot. Monkey agreed to put the food from his pockets into the picnic basket, except for one banana (just in case he got hungry along the way), and B Bear agreed to put away his angry voice.

... I know this is true , because someone who's been there told me to tell you. 

After walking for nearly an hour, Monkey began to whine, "When will we be there? How much farther to the babbling brook? Will the gumdrop tree really have enough gumdrops for all of us? I'm tired! I'm hungry! Why do we have to go there at all? Why can't we just eat here?"

Since she was also very understanding, Lambie suggested that they sit down and rest for awhile. She told Monkey that now would be a perfect time for him to eat the banana he had saved.

B Bear was tired, too, and he had worked up a bear of an appetite, himself. His patience with Monkey and his whining was all used up. Before Lambie could stop him, he grabbed the banana from Monkey, pointed it right at him and shouted, "Monkey! Stop whining! Stop asking all of your questions! Sometimes, I wish you would just ... disappear!"

All at once, there was a quiet little sound: ((( p o o f!)))

B Bear was so surprised by what happened that he dropped the banana on the ground where he stood. Monkey was gone! B Bear rubbed his eyes and peeked through his fingers. It didn't change anything. Monkey was exactly nowhere at all! Lambie and B Bear stared at each other. How could this happen? How can this be? Where did Monkey go? Is this one of his silly games to make us laugh?

Because he was so smart, B Bear said, "It must have been the magic of The Forest of Enchantment!" He had heard stories about strange things happening here that shouldn't happen anywhere. Maybe that's it. But the thought didn't make B Bear feel very good. He didn't feel good at all!

The two best friends that were left were very upset. They walked around in circles thinking and wringing their hands. They looked for Monkey again and again, just in case it was all a terrible mistake. Monkey was still gone. Even when they called his name over and over, he didn't answer. B Bear and Lambie were very worried.

"Oh my, B Bear. What have you done? What are we going to do?" cried Lambie.

B Bear felt just awful. He was wishing he hadn't wished. He tried again and pleaded, "Monkey, please come back! You know I didn't mean it. You're my friend and I don't want you to disappear!" But Monkey stayed gone. He was totally and completely gone.

Because B Bear was their leader, he knew he would have to make a decision. He sighed deeply and then said, "I think there is only one thing we can do, Lambie. We have to go and see the great Wallah of Poobah. He's the Keeper of Truth here in The Land of The Purple Moons. Every thought you could ever think is there. Every question you could ever ask is there. Every answer to every question ever asked is there. We have to go right now! We can't wait another minute!"

Lambie knew B Bear was right. He was smart and if he said they needed to do that, then they needed to do that. The truth was, Lambie was afraid. Everyone in The Land of The Purple Moons knew the Wallah of Poobah lived on the other side of Everlie Woods -- a strange and frightening place ... and no one who had gone there had ever returned. Not once.

The two friends knew they had no choice. They put aside their fears and began to walk. They were glad they had packed a picnic because they would need it on their long journey.

B Bear and Lambie felt terrible about poor Monkey disappearing. They were determined they would make it through Everlie Woods. No matter what happened, they would go and talk to the great Wallah of Poobah. He will know what to do. He will help them bring Monkey back, and they would make it back from Everlie Woods! After all, B Bear said they would and B Bear was the smartest one she knew.

... I know this is true , because someone who's been there told me to tell you.

... to be continued ...  Part Two on Tuesday, June 14, 2011.

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