Thursday, March 6, 2008

Puss In Boots : The Farm

There once was a lovely girl named Anna. Anna’s family was not wealthy and they all had to work very hard on the farm to manage even the meager life they shared. Anna was the youngest of three children, as well as the fairest, kindest, and most helpful. Unfortunately, she was not the brightest. This small failing was easily overlooked considering her genuine good nature and desire to please. Her two older brothers however took advantaged of her simplicity whenever they could. It was not unusual for dear sweet Anna to be found working at her brothers’ chores while they were off fishing or hunting. So it was no great surprise that when her parents passed away, her brothers split the farm between them and gave Anna the cat.

Now, he was an especially nice cat with long gray hair, a fine fluffy tail, and piercing yellow eyes, and for many years he had served the family well chasing mice and lapping up spilt milk and table scraps. However, as far as inheritances go a cat isn’t much of one. Anna, naïve child that she was, was still smart enough to know that her brothers had taken advantage of her yet again. The truth was that Anna was tired of life on the farm, and for sometime had been thinking of traveling abroad. So with a simple smile plastered to her face, and her cat in tow she waved farewell to her selfish brothers and took to the wide, open road.

Anna had never been on her own before, and it wasn’t long before she started talking to the cat to stave off loneliness. Coming upon a crossroad she turned to her furry companion and asked, “Well, Pickles, which way should we go, left or right?” The cat had never had a name on the farm, but it was difficult to carry on conversation with “cat” or “Hey, you,” and Anna thought Pickles was a very good name. Having never before had a name, Anna was even more shocked when the cat answered her.

“Let’s get one thing straight,” Pickles hissed, “My name is not Pickles, it’s Joshua and I am quite capable of walking on my own four legs, thank you so very much!” With that he leaped from her arms and proceeded to clean himself.

Anna fell to the ground in shock. She had only been on the road a day and a night, and that was way too early to start going mad! Nevertheless, her cat, formerly Pickles now Joshua, was giving her a fierce scolding on the finer points of how to properly carry a cat. “And finally one should not haul a creature of the feline persuasion like a sack of potatoes! Among God’s creations we are the most elegant and sophisticated and should be treated like the aristocrats that we are!”

“You talk!” Anna declared.

“Gads! You are simple.” Joshua huffed. “I do talk, and have been doing so for many minutes now. I suppose that every well-crafted word as flitted in one ear and tumbled out the other.”

“Oh, No!” Anna said proudly “Cats shouldn’t be carried like potatoes, and you are one of the finest creatures in the world.”

“Well, at least you got that bit.” Joshua acknowledged with a huff.

“Why haven’t you ever spoken before?” Anna asked, desperately trying to sort out the rather unusual turn of events.”

“For one, there wasn’t much of anyone to talk to, and secondly if those heathen brothers of yours new I could speak I’d still be back at that miserable farm eating soured milk and garbage. I probably would have kept my mouth shut, but it was either speak-up, or let you go on calling me Pickles! Gads, girl couldn’t you think of anything more dignified?”

“I’ve lived on a farm my entire life, ‘Pickles’ is about as fancy as I get.”

“Point taken,” Joshua conceded, staring down the road to the right. “Tell you what, I’ll make you a deal, Anna dear. You let me choose our path, and do as I tell you, and I guarantee that I will increase your fortunes.”

“Sounds fine to me.” Anna said although she didn’t know how a cat, even a talking one was going to accomplish that.

So the two new friends began their life together by taking the road to the right, which, incidentally, took them to town whereas the path to the left landed them at a farm even more miserable than their own. “What books have you read?” Joshua asked trying to pass the time with intelligent conversation.

“I can’t read,” Anna replied.

"Can’t read! Gads! How on earth . . . “ Joshua sighed morosely, “I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised, you are human after all. Alright, let’s start at the beginning. ‘A’ is for apple . . .

Mrs. Fox 3/6/08
Painting "Her First Place," by George Dunlop Leslie


the mother of this lot said...

Love it! I can envisage a cartoon series...

Anna Lea said...

You must finish the whole story so i can give it to my little ones when I have them!