Children Fiction posted February 26, 2014

This work has reached the exceptional level
Where has Tommy gone?

I've Lost My Brother!

by sandramitchell

Reggie the Rat moved the large lily pond leaf he had plucked from the water to keep the sun out of his eyes, and stood up. He had been sitting by Popsicorn Bog nearly all morning. It was so peaceful here, but the peace and quiet came to a shattering end when he heard someone shouting; the cry sounded urgent and very upset.

"Timmy! Timmy! Where are you?" the voice called out loudly.

Reggie realised it was Tommy Mouse he could hear, and ran to catch up with him.

"What's up?" Reggie the Rat asked him, puffing after running so fast.

"I can't find my brother," said Tommy Mouse tearfully. "He went out early this morning and hasn't come back yet." He sniffed, wiping his nose on the back of his hand. "I must find him or Mum will be cross with me for not going with him."

"Don't worry, I'll help you to find him," Reggie the Rat told him cheerfully, standing there with his chest puffed out and trying to look very clever. "I wouldn't be surprised if he wasn't already back home looking for you!" He smiled at Tommy, trying to make him feel better.

"I don't think so," mumbled Tommy Mouse. "He would have passed me."

"Right then, we had better not waste any more time talking. We'll look for him together." Reggie the Rat walked off at a brisk pace with Tommy Mouse running alongside him to keep up.

Well, they searched under the bushes, they rummaged in ditches, and looked behind the trees; they even asked the birds that were sitting on the branches if they had seen him. He wasn't anywhere! They both called out his name as loud as they could, hoping he was nearby and could hear them. Nothing!

Now Reggie was getting worried. It was very strange. Where could Timmy have gone? It wasn't like his friend to do something like that. He was always so sensible.

"Why did he go off like that?" he asked, curiously. "He wouldn't have gone swimming on his own, would he? That would be dangerous. And he wouldn't just go out for a walk on his own, either. Has he gone round to see Millie the Mole or Vicky the Vole? What about Cyril the Squirrel, would he have gone to see him? He must have told you something."

Tommy Mouse just kept shaking his head. "No." He was looking sheepishly at his friend, then he let out a big sigh.

"He has gone looking for the elves in the wood. He wanted me to go with him, but I thought he was mad. There aren't any elves in the woods! I didn't tell you because I thought you would laugh!"

"Why would I laugh? Why didn't you tell me straight away?" Reggie the Rat, sounded quite alarmed. "There most certainly are elves in this wood and I know exactly where they are. Follow me, I will lead the way."

Tommy looked at Reggie to see if he was joking, but from the look on his face, he decided perhaps he wasn't.

"You must be very quiet, though," whispered Reggie. "Didn't you know, elves don't like us to see where they play?"

Tommy Mouse shook his head. Why would he know that? He didn't even know there were elves in the wood!

"Just go as quietly as you can. We will tip-toe so they don't hear us." Reggie the Rat was taking no chances. He had heard some terrible stories from some of his other friends.

Tommy Mouse felt his heart thudding in his chest. He moved as quietly as he could, careful not to tread on any dry leaves in case they made a loud crunching noise. "I should have gone with him," he whispered, shaking his head miserably.

They walked on and on, Tommy thought they would never stop. Where were these elves that played in the wood? Were they real?

Suddenly, Reggie the Rat took hold of Tommy's arm, and said, "Shush! The elves play just over there, behind that red bush." He pulled Tommy back a little bit and continued, "You stay here and keep guard. I'm going to go as close as I can to have a quick peek. If he's there, we will have to grab him and run as fast as we can!"

Tommy agreed, and Reggie went off, very slowly and very, very quietly. He didn't get very far when he heard Tommy Mouse sneeze! The sound was like thunder; the birds flew out of the trees making even more noise. It was a nightmare!

Reggie the Rat turned round and stared at Tommy. His eyes were popping out of his head; then without saying a word, he ran and threw himself into a big bush.

Poor Tommy Mouse just stood there, too frightened to move. His eyes were fixed on the elves that were now coming towards him. There were hundreds, no, thousands, millions even! Tommy thought he would scream, he was so frightened.

Just when Tommy thought he would faint away, one of the elves started to laugh! He even said Tommy's name!

"It's Tommy Mouse!" He turned to the other elves. "It's true what Timmy told us. They both look exactly the same!"

The elves all came closer and looked at Tommy standing there, terrified. Then the first elf said, "You could easily be Timmy, and Timmy could be you!"

Then Timmy Mouse was there, grinning. "I told you I'd find them," he said, proudly. "They are really nice. They gave me something to eat, and there is plenty left. Come and see."

Tommy shook his head. "I was so worried about you! I thought you were lost." A strangled scream caught his attention, and he looked past his brother and started laughing.

"Put me down! Put me down!" Reggie the Rat cried out. "I don't like heights!"

The elves had seen Reggie hiding in the bush, and now they were flying with him over the tree tops. Everyone started to laugh and watched as the elves slowly, and very gently, brought Reggie down to the ground.

The elves took the three friends back to their playground and gave them all some nice cakes to eat and a beaker of homemade berry juice. It was delicious.

"We have to ask you something." the eldest elf said, coming over to them. "We want you to promise you won't tell anyone else where we play. You see, if human people get to know we are there, we would have to leave this place forever. It wouldn't be safe for us anymore."

The three friends all promised. "We would never tell anyone. We truly promise you that, not even our best friends!"

The old elf smiled. "Let's finish our cakes."

After they had finished eating and drinking their juice, some of the elves walked with them to the edge of the woods.

"It has been lovely to have you come and visit us," one of the elves told them as they waved goodbye. "We hope we see you again some day." Then without warning, they were gone, just disappeared.

Timmy and Tommy Mouse and Reggie the Rat stood there staring for a moment longer.

"Come on, you two!" yelled Timmy Mouse, making the other two jump. "I'll race you both home!"


This is another Hedgerow story, converted to prose from rhyme. The original is in my portfolio in rhyme called, 'Lost in the Woods.'
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