When writing stories, characters usually come and go, but sometimes there are certain characters that just stay around! Betsy the cow that can do just about anything and is full of surprises makes another appearance today. Glad to share another one of Jason’s tales with you all. When I wrote When the Bell was Silenced recently I didn’t think about how Betsy may feel about the fact that her magical cow bell was silenced! Well, Jason was nice enough to let Betsy’s voice be heard, its no wonder she confides in him, he cares about her feelings. Enjoy!
Betsy had a problem. Those two love-sick nincompoops ran off with her cowbell and now she was stuck in Bittersweet Creek. She had to find a way to get out of this no-where town and she had come up with an unnecessarily elaborate and ridiculous scheme to make her exit.
In two days the county fair would take place and Betsy intended to win the livestock competition for old man Fuzzywhistle, which would earn them a trip to the state livestock show at the Capitol and there she would make her escape. But for her plan to work, she would need the cooperation of the judges of the livestock show. Luckily for Betsy, one of this year’s judges was Bard Mellow. Bard was far too honest a fellow to be bribed, but Betsy knew Bard’s weakness. He would do anything to keep his dear sweet wife Cara safe, and Cara had a certain addiction that Betsy could exploit. Betsy smiled a cow sort of smile as she began to put her plan in motion.
Old farmer Fuzzywhistle was a simple, somewhat reclusive, and absent-minded fellow. He didn’t really even notice that there was an extra cow in his barn while he prepared his morning deliveries of milk and eggs for the townsfolk. He loaded up his old truck and made his rounds.
“This year.” he thought “This is the year my cow Clarabelle finally wins the livestock contest.” Mr. Tippner’s donkey had won it the last three years and Fuzzywhistle had to admit that Mr. Tippner knows a nice, um jenny, when he sees one. But this year Clarabelle was well fed and groomed and would be the star of the show.
He smiled at this thought as he made his normal delivery to the Mellow house and continued on his rounds.
“What’s this?” Cara wondered as she saw the delivery from Mr. Fuzzywhistle. There was a strange new container labeled ‘Shoo-fly Coffee Creamer’. Mr. Fuzzywhistle must be branching out into a new line of products. She couldn’t wait to try it in her coffee. She made a coffee drink for herself, the third of the morning, and couldn’t believe how wonderful this new creamer was. In fact, she had used it all up by the following day.
Cara had to get more of that special coffee creamer. Fuzzywhistle hadn’t delivered anymore this morning so she set out to his farm to buy some more. Arriving at the farm she saw the door open to the barn and a light on so she went on in. “Mr. Fuzzywhistle, it’s Cara Mellow. I wonder if I could buy some more of that delicious Shoo-fly coffee creamer that you make.”
There was no answer. She looked around the barn and suddenly the barn door shut behind her. Then the light went out. “Mr. Fuzzywhistle?” she said nervously. Just then, she heard rustling in the hay behind her and before she knew it a burlap sack was thrown over her and she was carried away.
She was eventually put down and we she was able to get the sack off of her head, Cara found herself locked in a one-room shed. There was plenty of food, a comfy looking chair, a television, and what looked like the complete DVD collection of The Waltons. Well at least she wouldn’t be bored, but what was she doing here and how long would she be kept in this room.
It was the day of the fair and entire town was busy. Mr. Fuzzywhistle was preparing his produce delivery for the big radish and turnip eating contest and then he must get Clarabelle ready for the livestock show. He was so busy that he didn’t notice that it wasn’t actually Clarabelle in the trailer that he was pulling to the fair. Inside the trailer Betsy’s eyes gleamed with excitement; her plan was ahoof, er afoot.
Bard was distraught. He hadn’t seen Cara all day and nobody else had either. He had checked at Picklefoot’s coffee shop and she hadn’t been seen there. He went back home to see if she had returned and in the kitchen he found a strange note that didn’t appear to have been written by a human hand. He read the note and was shocked. It was simple and straight to the point. It said “If yooo ever want tooo see Cara again, yooou will vote for Fuzzywhistle’s cow at the fair.”
Bard didn’t know what to do. He dare not call that dopey old sheriff. Besides, it was just a livestock show; what harm could it be to just vote for some old cow. Mr. Tippner would be disappointed but Cara’s safety could be on the line.
Later that evening everyone was gathered for the livestock competition. Except the winner of the radish and turnip eating contest; nobody wanted to be near that guy right now. Bard, Mason, and Horace were ready to judge the contest. Betsy took her turn and gave a wink and a subtle grin to Bard. She knew that Horace had a soft spot for cows, and the kidnapping of Cara should secure Bard’s vote. She couldn’t find a way to get to that Mason Picklefoot. “In addition to being so handsome” Betsy thought “he was as honest as a person could be.”
Betsy watched Tippner’s burro parade around like she owned the place and she was clearly the crowd favorite. Even old man Fuzzywhistle was distracted checking out Tippner’s, um, donkey. Betsy patiently waited the judges to reach their decision. They seemed to be having a heated discussion.
Finally, a decision was reached and a hush fell over the crowd. All eyes were on Bard as he stood and prepared to announce the winner of the livestock show.
“This year’s winner of the Bittersweet Creek livestock show is…” Bard said with a nervous look on his face “Mr. Fuzzywhistle and his cow Clarabelle.” The crowd gasped. Mr. Tippner threw down his straw hat, grabbed his ass and stormed off.
“Moooooo….” Betsy let loose. She was finally getting out of this little town.
The next morning Bard and Cara had coffee as Cara recounted her adventures in the barn. Meanwhile, old Mr. Fuzzywhistle drove to the state Capitol pulling a trailer that he thought had Clarabelle in it. Betsy stared out the back, watching Bittersweet Creek fade into the distance. “Now to catch the two nincompoops who took my cowbell” she plotted.