A Story for children and animal lovers
Several hours later, the driver of a large black cab was unloading luggage onto a trolley outside a very smart building. He spotted the little bear and thinking it belonged to his passenger, placed it onto the trolley in the side pocket of the smallest of the bags.
A porter came and took the trolley through the gleaming glass doors to a big polished desk where a lady was writing something in a book. Then all of the luggage but the one small bag was lifted onto a moving platform and carried away into a dark tunnel.
The lady went down a long corridor and into a long room filled with seats and sat down. She reached into her bag and saw the little bear and wondered where it had come from. She asked the stewardess if a child had lost a bear, but of course the stewardess didn’t know. The stewardess asked the purser, but of course he didn’t know either. He took the bear and put him into a cardboard box labelled
The bear sat up and looked around. With him in the box there was an odd shoe, three scarves, a book and a tiny pink backpack. He wriggled around so that he could reach the top of the box.
As he leaned on the backpack a tiny voice said "Ouch - Look out you clumsy oaf!" The bear looked at the backpack closely and saw that the zip was slightly undone.
He prodded the pack, "Is someone there?" he whispered.
"Of course someone's here!" snapped the voice "And you should be more careful where you put your big furry feet." then after much scrabbling a little black nose appeared, followed by a set of whiskers and one beady eye.
"I am very sorry," said the little bear, "I didn't know anyone was in here." With some more scrabbling a small grey mouse squeezed out through the opening in the zip and sat looking up at the bear.
It scratched its nose and said, "That's okay - So, how did you manage to get yourself lost? You will be here a long time if you are waiting to be found."
The little bear told the grey mouse all about running away and his journey so far, and why he had run away. He told of his search for other bears like him and how he was trying to find a hairy-plain so that he could find them.
"Well! You have come a long way but you've done well so far," said the grey mouse, "This is the hairy-plain you have been looking for."
The bear looked up at the sides of the cardboard box doubtfully, "Are you sure?" he said eyeing the odd shoe and the scarves, "I thought it would be much bigger." He sounded disappointed.
"Oh no, no" said the mouse, "You don't understand. The box we are in is on the hairy-plain." The grey mouse scrambled up the sides of the box and beckoned the little bear to climb on the backpack and grab hold of the edge of the box so that he could pull himself up. Just as the bear leapt for the edge his weight toppled the box over. He and the grey mouse were sent sprawling across the floor.
"Quick hide!" said the grey mouse "If I am seen they will chase me!" The grey mouse ran under the nearest seat closely followed by the bear.
Everywhere the little bear looked there were human feet, all in rows. There were big feet, small feet, feet with shoes and feet without. He waved a nervous paw at them and whispered to the grey mouse, "What are they doing?"
The grey mouse giggled and said, "They are not doing anything. They just sit there until the hairy-plain goes back down."
"What do you mean, back down?" said the bear.
"Well, we are really high in the sky now." said the grey mouse, "They cannot get off the hairy-plain until it goes back down to the ground. Look I'll show you" and with that the mouse was scuttling along under the seats until he reached a curtain. "Climb up here," he said, "but make sure you stay this side of the curtain or the humans will see you."
The little bear did as he was told, and when he got up to where the mouse was, he found a window. Outside the window was a very strange sight indeed. There appeared to be snow everywhere, with tiny mountains peaking through it, a bit like the pictures in his owner's books. But this snow was different somehow, sort of spooky and wispy.
"What has happened?" cried the little bear in fright, "Where has the world gone?"
"It is underneath." said the mouse laughing "These are the clouds; I told you we were high up." The little bear slid back down the curtain. He was suddenly feeling very tired and felt that he really had come a very long way from home.
"I need to rest for a moment," he told the grey mouse, and with that he curled up in the hem of the curtain and fell fast asleep. The grey mouse thought he had better keep watch.
Some time later the little bear was woken up by a set of sharp teeth nipping his ear. "Ooh! Ow! What's that?" he yelled.
"Ssshhh, it's only me." whispered the grey mouse. "The hairy-plain has come down and all the humans have gone." The little bear sat up and looked round the curtain and sure enough the feet had all disappeared.
"What do we do now?" he asked the mouse.
"Well, we have to get out of here because the other humans will come and take everything out, and if we are seen they will catch us," said the mouse. "Come on, this way." The little bear followed his friend wondering where they were.
They hurried along past the seats, through the door and down a long corridor, but just as they reached the end of the corridor they saw two humans coming the other way with a trolley loaded with buckets and brooms.
The mouse stopped and looked around for somewhere to hide. All he could see was a tall radiator. He nudged the little bear and they ran to hide. The grey mouse crawled behind easily, but the little bear was bigger and didn’t fit.
"Try breathing in," said the mouse. The little bear breathed in hard and the mouse pulled at his paws, but it was no good; he just could not get behind the radiator and the humans were getting closer.
The humans were level with the radiator now. The little bear kept very still hoping he would not be noticed, but he was. One of the humans picked him up, straightened his ears and showed him to the other, then put him on top of the trolley.
The grey mouse got ready to follow them. He ran as fast as his little legs could go, but he was getting left behind. "I can't keep up!" he shouted to the little bear.
"Maybe we will meet again." The little bear called back.
"But what is your name?" cried the grey mouse. It was too late. The big doors swung closed and little bear was gone.
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|Reviewed by Regis Auffray
|Yes. I think this is a great story for children and, since I've been told many times that I never "grew up," I am certainly enjoying it too. Thanks, Ruan. Love and peace,