Looking for Adventure!

Thanks to Jason, from http://jasonfrels.com/2020/11/21/sunset-by-the-river/ for another inspiring photo.

It had been a week now since Henrietta had escaped from the Las Vegas Zoo and she was having a great time! Not only did she have her new turtle friends, Myrtle and Tulag, for travel companions, but she met other friends in the woods as well.

There was Bobo, the brown bear, who was a friendly as could be. They had a lot of fun down at the river, he would catch fish while Henrietta enjoyed swimming and cooling off.

She had met Caramel the rabbit, who had been the Easter Bunny a few months ago and was still hopping around feeling so proud. Caramel had introduced her to his sister Taffy. Taffy was polite to Henrietta but Henrietta got the impression that she still held a grudge towards Caramel for being the Easter Bunny. She didn’t look too happy when Caramel was talking about it with a light in his eyes. Henrietta thought that him being the Easter Bunny was so cool! She secretly wondered if there ever could be an Easter Hippo! She wanted to do something important!

Rascal the raccoon had introduced her to his family, who were all so nice. There were also so many squirrels, chipmunks and foxes that she had met. The squirrels always seemed to be in a hurry to scurry up a tree, so she didn’t talk much to them, but she often heard their friendly chatter to each other in the treetops.

This morning Henrietta had awakened early, she was excited, for they were going to travel more today. They had found a new trail that they hadn’t been on before, and wanted to see where it led.

She was munching grass on the riverbank later that morning when Myrtle and Tulag came to find her.

“Good Morning Henrietta! Are you ready for our adventure today?”

“Yes, oh yes!” she replied. “Lets go! In fact I know the perfect song to sing as we go.”

Myrtle and Tulag silently groaned. They really did like Henrietta, but …. her singing, not as much! Oh well, she was so kind and happy, that they couldn’t help but be happy with her, even if her singing caused a headache. They needed to somehow make their shells more sound proof!

They had been walking for awhile, and Henrietta had just stopped singing, so Myrtle and Tulag poked their heads out to look around. There wasn’t a cloud in the sky, a bright, sunny day. Who knew what possibilities the day may hold. Up ahead it looked like the trail may soon end. They were wondering if they would find anything exciting when Myrtle asked Tulag and Henrietta a question.

“Do you hear what I hear?” asked Myrtle.

“The peace of Henrietta not singing?” Tulag replied, as Henrietta harrumphed.

“No, listen!” said Myrtle.

They all froze for a moment, at what they heard. It was human voices, and Henrietta was afraid it was someone from the zoo looking for her. It didn’t take long though to figure out that whoever these people were, they were not from the zoo. They all sighed in relief as they continued to listen.

It was a man and a woman, and they didn’t appear to be very happy. They were clearly arguing!

“It was your idea!” the man said.

“Well she looked nice and said she needed help, excuse me, for having a heart!” the woman sharply retorted.

“So now what are we supposed to do, thanks to the dilemma that your heart got us into!” the man replied back. “We have NO money! NONE, as in zero! He stuck his hands in his jean pockets, not even any coins to rub together! I hope you don’t mind sleeping out under the sky.”

At this the young lady started to cry and the young man’s voice softened.

“Oh Jade, I am sorry. I know it wasn’t your fault.” He put his arm around her and pulled her close to him.

“We will figure something out.”, he said. “Maybe my truck will break down on her, would serve her right for stealing it and robbing us! I am just so glad that she didn’t hurt you! I can’t lose you!”

Henrietta’s eyes started to fill with tears, she felt bad for this poor couple. Then she closed her eyes, and walked off the trail to give the couple some privacy as they shared an intimate moment. It was silent, they weren’t talking anymore, their lips were busy in another way.

“We should do something?” Henrietta said to Myrtle and Tulag.

“Like what? You are a hippo and we are 2 tiny turtles, what are we supposed to do? We don’t have any money.”

“True!” said Henrietta, and they all were lost in thought.

Meanwhile not far from the woods, was a shiny blue truck on the side of the road with its hood popped open.

Tanya slammed it down with a thud! Just my luck, she thought!

She kicked at the stones along side the dirt road. A broken down truck and out in the middle of nowhere! How long would it take for another car to drive by that Tanya could flag down?

She guessed that she would have to walk to the nearest town. At least she had a wad of cash on her, she smiled at that. She had struck it right, picking a couple heading to Vegas for a honeymoon, with plenty of cash on them.

So she would be fine, she would figure things out. She always did. She might not like being stranded on this dusty road right now, but it sure beat sitting in a cell. They would learn, no one could keep Tanya locked up!

She looked around and saw a trail not too far away, looked like it headed into the woods. Ahh! She had always liked the woods, perhaps she would enjoy following the trail for a little. Take a break from being on the road. She smiled as she walked towards the woods, maybe the woods would help her clear her head, as she decided her next step.

(to be continued….)

Finding a Place to Call Home!

 

This story is continued from yesterday’s post. Journey into the Unknown 

“What are we going to do now? We were following her. I have no clue which way to go now!” Libby moaned, “We are going to die out here, I just know it! We never should have tried to escape, what were we thinking!” 

Jill held her head as it was pounding from lack of sleep and not enough water. Libby’s yelling wasn’t helping any either! “Just eat some peanut butter crackers and let me think for a moment.” Jill snapped at Libby. 

“I would if I could, but it seems that she didn’t just run away from us, but she took all the food too! What little we had. Like I said, we are all going to die!”  Libby kept muttering to herself, as Jill started walking away, to get some peace. 

Jill watched the lizard slither past her. For a moment she wondered what would happen if they were to really get desperate for food, could she eat a …. ? As quickly as the thought entered her mind, she shook her head, making a face. No, she couldn’t do that! Then she heard a sound that sent chills through her, causing her to lose her balance and stumble. 

Oooh! She slid down over the rocks, stopping at the bottom of the hill. Pain coursed through her, and she had a sick feeling in the pit of her stomach when she looked at her foot, that was turned at an awkward angle. It was broken, she was sure of it. Again she heard the sound that brought chills. Was it a mountain lion or was it just her overactive imagination?  Right now she was really praying that her imagination was playing tricks on her. 

Lisette had done another inspection of her Inn. She was nervous, she wanted everything to be perfect for her parent’s arrival. She was so eager to show them the new life she had made for herself and to approve of it. She knew they really missed her, but she hoped that when they saw how happy she was here, that they would agree that she had found a wonderful place to settle down at. Of course, her Mom would want to know how many eligible bachelors were in the town? Lisette shook her head, she hadn’t even given guys a thought, she had been too busy for that! 

The town had been all abuzz again. Luke and his officers had tracked down Miss. Jill and Miss. Libby. They were safely back in prison. There had been no sign of Tanya. Looked like she had eluded them once again, though no one gave her much chance of survival. The peanut butter crackers and apples that she had on her could only last so long. Plus Luke had heard a Mountain Lion in the distance when they found Miss. Jill and Miss. Libby. One could only imagine the dangers that Tanya might encounter. 

it appeared that Miss. Libby was so glad in being rescued that she was spilling out everything. She admitted to threatening Miss. Jill, when Jill wanted to stop with the drug smuggling. Lisette was glad to hear that it looked like Miss. Jill would get a lighter sentence. 

Lisette took the dust cloth over the bookshelves one more time and then put it away. The Inn was spotless, everything was ready for her parent’s arrival tomorrow morning. She only had one guest right now staying at the Inn. A young lady named Sarah, who was an amazing pianist. Lisette enjoyed hearing the music through the Inn in the evenings. She was hoping to get a job at the library. Lisette thought she and Ellen, the librarian would work really well together. Ellen was about the sweetest lady you could meet, and a walking encyclopedia of information. Always interesting tidbits to share. 

The crock pot was simmering and starting to feel the kitchen with a good smell of a tender pork roast. It still had an hour to go, so Lisette thought she would take a walk to the park. 

She had walked a few blocks to the park and just sat down on the bench, pulling out one of her favorite books to read. Opening it up to the 10th chapter, she started to read, when she heard her name being called. 

“Lisette, Lisette, come play with us!”  She raised her head and saw Teddy and Susie looking at her. They were tossing a frisbee back and forth. They were a fun brother and sister that Lisette had babysat before. She did want to know what happened in her book, but the mystery could wait. Laying the book down, she got up and jogged towards them. “I’m coming!” and she caught the frisbee heading her way. Life was good! 

There was a limping figure walking slowly along the side of the road. “Ethan do you see her? She looks like she could use some help?” Jade said, as they were driving down the road. Ethan saw her, but he wished he hadn’t. He was headed to Vegas with the love of his life, he didn’t want to stop for a hitchhiker. 

Jade tugged on his arm, “We have to help her.”  Ethan smiled, Jade had such a caring heart, no wonder he loved her so much. He pulled his truck to a stop on the side of the road. 

Tanya saw the blue truck pull over and stop on the side of the road. Were they stopping for her, she wondered. Her mouth was parched, her throat so sore, and her legs felt like jelly. She felt like she could barely take another step. A free ride was exactly what she needed! 

 

 

Storytime at the Fluffer-Nutter Shop

If you missed Monday’s story, here is the link.  Untangling the Web Enjoy the conclusion, or it might be more accurate for me just to say, the next part of the story. I have found that certain stories seem to never end! 

Where were they? Lisette wondered. They were standing in the middle of a dirt road with lovely Oak trees lining it. She started walking down it, not knowing what else to do. Betsy followed behind her, not saying a word. Not that Lisette expected her too, but she sensed something very different about Betsy, besides the fact that she had an enchanted bell hanging around her neck. 

“There you are! I figured I would find you out here just dilly dallying around, when there is work to be done!” An older woman carrying a bucket was shouting at her as she came towards Lisette, not looking very happy at all! 

“The cows need milked, and there are eggs to be gathered, and … ” the older woman paused in mid sentence, taking notice of Betsy. “Where did you get that cow? Is she the one who trampled my flowers this morning? They are all ruined!” She glared at Betsy, and noticed the cow bell. “What’s that?”, she reached out to touch it and Lisette stopped her.

“I wouldn’t touch that if I was you?”  she told her. 

The lady frowned, “Why not, its just an old cow bell.”  Suddenly Betsy let out a loud “MOOOOO!” and pawed at the ground, scaring the older woman so much that she dropped the bucket she was carrying. 

“I will see you back at the barn! Hurry it up!” she spouted out at Lisette, while she quickly headed down the road, back to the barn. 

Lisette started laughing as she watched the older woman hustle down the road while Betsy kept Moooooing. 

Betsy stopped once the lady was out of sight. Lisette looked at Betsy and if she wouldn’t know better, she would say that Betsy had a glint of mischief in her eyes and was smiling! 

Lisette knew that she didn’t want to go back to that older lady’s farm, so there was only one thing to do. She tugged on Betsy’s bell 3x. POOF! The brilliant purple and pink smoke was all around, and once more Lisette had to pick herself up off the ground once the smoke settled. 

They were smack dab in the middle of a town and it seemed to be in an uproar. People were shouting and cops were around. Lisette was confused at first, and then she saw Miss. Libby and Miss. Jill. She was back in their town and they were being escorted out of Miss. Jill’s store by the police! 

Lisette felt sick to her stomach. She had really liked Miss. Jill and she had thought that Miss. Libby was a sweet old lady, but oh, what she hadn’t known! She watched them get into the police car and figured that was probably the last time she would ever see them. They were likely to be in prison for quite awhile. But maybe Miss. Jill was innocent, like she had tried to tell Lisette. If so, she hoped that they would be more lenient on her. 

Soon the police cars were gone and the sirens faded in the distance. The townspeople were still gathered in little groups talking. Lisette overheard one lady say how she didn’t know what the town was coming too. First Anna and the Chicken Man, and now this! 

The Chicken Man! Lisette remembered how Miss. Libby had never shared that story with her, like she had said she would. She figured now she would never know. 

Lisette’s stomach was rumbling, she thought she could really use some coffee with some tasty donuts from the Fluffer Nutter Shop. Then she remembered Betsy, but she didn’t see her anywhere! How did a cow just disappear from the center of a crowded town? There was definitely something strange about that cow. She shook her head and walked across the street to the Fluffer Nutter Shop. 

Opening the door she saw that others had the same idea, there was a long line at the counter. That was okay with Lisette, for she had no idea what she was going to do next so she didn’t mind waiting. Finally it was her turn, everyone else had left. 

“Hi Lisette! Are you okay? Quite the excitement today, eh? Were you in the shop when the police came?” 

Lisette didn’t know how to explain where she had been, so she just said that she hadn’t been working at the time. 

She ordered a peanut butter filled donut with sprinkles on top and some French Vanilla coffee. Then she took a seat up at the counter to enjoy it and visit with Mr. Fluff and Mr. Nutter some. 

“I suspect they will take Miss. Libby and Miss. Jill to the same prison that Anna is in.” Mr. Fluff said. 

“Who is Anna?” asked Lisette. “I have heard her name mentioned quite a few times around town, and I heard Tanya mentioned too. Miss. Libby also told me that it was really sad what happened to the Chicken Man, but she never explained.” 

Mr. Fluff and Mr. Nutter sighed when they heard Lisette mention the Chicken Man, they did still miss their crazy friend. 

“Well if you have time, we can tell you the whole story.” Mr. Nutter said. “But be aware, it can get quite confusing!” 

“I have plenty of time.” said Lisette, with her curiosity piqued now.

“Just give me a minute to put away this Battleship game.” said Mr. Fluff. 

“Battleship? I thought you guys played checkers?” 

Mr. Fluff laughed, “Well we did, but someone got tired of losing all the time, so he decided to try and beat me at Battleship. No more checkers for him.” 

Lisette laughed and remembered some of the games she played as a child. “Have you ever played CandyLand, Mr.Nutter? Perhaps you could win at that.” 

Mr. Fluff and Lisette laughed at Mr. Nutter’s face. He then poured himself some coffee and sat down. “I do believe there is a story you would like to hear?” 

“Yes, please! I am all ears.” said Lisette and Mr. Nutter began. 

 

 

 

Untangling the Web

The following story is a continuation from last week’s post. Here is the link if you missed reading it. Spinning the Web

Lisette had been working for Miss. Jill for a month now and she had no doubt that something strange was going on. Miss. Jill obviously was doing something very secretive, and Lisette was afraid that it was illegal. Why else would Miss. Libby have been so against Lisette working there? 

Customers would come in specifically asking for Miss. Jill and she would take them into the back room while Lisette ran the store herself. Sometimes they were just in the back room for a short amount of time, but other times it got rather long. 

Lisette felt brave a couple times and when Miss. Jill would go to lunch she tried to slip into the back room, but it was always locked. If only someday she would forget to lock it before going to lunch! 

The only thing that Miss. Jill said about the back room was that there would be times she would have to go back there for certain special customers. She told her how she would need Lisette to be in charge of the store when she was back there. When Lisette started to ask some questions, Jill just went onto another subject, like she had never heard her. Miss. Libby was the same way when Lisette tried to bring it up at breakfast one day. 

Lisette sighed, feeling frustrated! Did she really want to work for someone who could be involved in something illegal? Not to mention the fact that she was lodging with someone who was also possibly involved in illegal activity! What would her Mama say if she knew of this? Oh it would cause her gray hairs for sure! 

One day after work Lisette stopped by the Fluffer Nutter Shoppe. She could use a sweet Salted Caramel Latte and a powdery cream filled donut to go with it. That would lift her spirits. Today had been extra busy at work. Not with paying customers, but Miss. Jill’s special customers! She was in the back room for a large part of the day! 

The bell dinged as she walked into the Fluffer Nutter Shoppe. Mr. Fluff and Mr. Nutter were involved in what appeared to be a serious game of checkers. They looked up and smiled and said they would be right with her, if she didn’t mind waiting. 

“I am just about ready to beat this old guy”, said Mr. Fluff. 

“Who are you calling old?” 

“Who do you think? Checkmate!” Mr. Fluff smiled big as he successfully took all of Mr. Nutter’s remaining checkers off the board. 

Mr. Nutter muttered under his breath and Lisette laughed. Poor guy, he never seemed to win. 

“What can I get you? My treat today in honor of another winning game!” Mr. Fluff said. 

“Oh, well in that case I will have 2 powdery cream filled donuts please and a Salted Caramel Latte. Thank you! ” replied Lisette. 

It didn’t take long at all until Lisette’s taste buds were savoring the taste of the creamy donuts. While she was sitting there eating, Mr. Nutter asked her how she liked working for Miss. Jill. 

“Its going fine, she is a very nice lady.” said Lisette. 

“Yes, yes that she is”, replied Mr. Nutter, “Do you ever notice anything strange going…” 

Mr. Fluff interrupted him. “Don’t bother the girl with questions.” he said, but Mr. Nutter ignored him and repeated the question. 

“Do you ever notice anything strange going on at the store?” 

Lisette bit her lip, should she confide in them her suspicions? How did she know if she could trust them? Maybe they were involved too. 

“Ummm…No, not really.” she replied. 

“Not really?” Mr. Fluffer asked, as he raised his eyebrows. 

“Welll…” and before Lisette could stop, she was pouring out the story to them and her suspicions. 

Mr. Nutter walked over to the door and turned the sign to close and said. “We should talk.”  Lisette’s stomach turned. What was he going to say, was she in trouble now? 

Lisette could hardly sleep that night. Her mind was swimming with what Mr. Nutter and Mr. Fluff had told her. She had to see for herself. Tomorrow she was going to find a way into the back room. Seeing was believing! She fell into a fitful sleep. 

Lisette’s stomach was full of butterflies. She had barely eaten breakfast. She was so nervous about this afternoon and the truth that she may find in the back room. Time seemed to pass so slowly. Finally Miss. Jill left the store for her lunch break, now was her chance. Lisette went outside and around to the back of the store. She found the door and squeezed her eyes shut as she tried the knob. Yes! It was unlocked! She didn’t know why she hadn’t thought of the back entrance before. 

She entered and she gasped. It was just like Mr. Fluff and Mr. Nutter had described. It looked like a quilt shop. There were quilts stacked on the table and some looking like they were still being sewn. Lisette’s hands were shaking as she took her scissors and started to cut into one of the quilts that had been neatly folded and stacked. It was true! She found the secret pouch between the folds of the quilt and the contents of the pouch. She held the pouch in her hands in disbelief! They were smuggling drugs! 

“LISETTE!” Lisette froze hearing her name. She looked up and saw Miss. Jill standing in the doorway. Lisette turned as pale as a ghost. 

“Oh Lisette what have you done!”

Lisette had no words, she didn’t even think she could scream if she needed too, she couldn’t move! 

“You have to believe me, this wasn’t my idea! Miss. Libby conned me into it, and once I knew what she was doing, I couldn’t get out. I want to stop, I do, but….but…she’s made threats, I just can’t!”  Miss. Jill put her face in her hands as she started to cry. Lisette started to feel sorry for her, but at the same time she knew she had to get out of there. What if  Miss. Libby dropped by and found her there. She ran out the back door and with her adrenaline pumping she kept running! 

Once again she found herself at the peaceful meadow, by the creek. Oh what was she to do. How could she face Miss. Libby now that she knew the truth. Miss. Libby would see the truth written all over her face, she would know that Lisette knew, and then what would she do?? Would she threaten her, like she did to Miss. Jill? She wanted to run far away, she couldn’t go back to town, she just couldn’t. 

Lisette felt eyes on her and she was afraid to turn around. Someone was behind her, she could feel it. Her nerves were so tight, she almost screamed when turning around. Relief ran through her when she saw that it was only Betsy. Betsy with the deep dark, brown eyes, that bore into her. Like she knew all her secrets. Betsy with the enchanted cow bell hanging around her neck. The enchanted… Suddenly Lisette knew what she had to do, she yanked on the cow bell with all her might, ringing it 3x, praying that it would work!  

POOF! Purple and pink smoke filled the air and she was knocked off her feet. The smoke cleared and Lisette got up on her feet. She was definitely not in the meadow anymore, but where was she? “MOO!” Lisette jumped, she was not alone! 

 

 

 

Spinning the Web

Miss. Libby was sitting in her bright sunflower yellow kitchen, deep in thought. Lisette had left to do some shopping, so she was all alone. She still couldn’t get over the fact that Lisette had gone and applied for a job at Miss. Jill’s Dress Shop. The fact that Jill had actually hired her was an even bigger surprise!  How could she have hired her? Wasn’t she afraid that Lisette would find out and if Lisette found out, who knew what would happen. What would she do with the information?  Libby shook her head, taking another drink of her Vanilla Chai tea. Perhaps she needed something a little stronger. Her stomach was in knots. 

Things had been going so smoothly. She had the perfect set up with Miss. Jill, and now some stranger from out of town, just appears and risks ruining everything. All the hard work that Miss. Libby had put into the lucrative side business. She needed this business, as her Inn wasn’t doing very well presently. She set her cup down hard making some of of the tea splash out onto the white tablecloth. Something had to be done, and she was going to do it. She was going to make a phone call to Jill and give her a piece of her mind. 

Miss. Jill was pacing the floor with the phone in her hand. “Yes, I know but…”  “She is a nice la…”  Jill rolled her eyes, she could barely get a word in. “Just calm down and listen!” she finally said in a little sterner of voice, finally Libby got quiet. 

“I am not firing her, the girl didn’t even start yet! I think this could be a very good thing. I could really use the extra help in the store, especially when the special customers come.  Lisette can stay out front with the other customers, as I take the special customers to the back room. 

Jill sighed, as Libby ranted again, but by the time they ended the conversation, Libby did seem a little more warmed up to the idea. She would come around, thought Jill, at least she hoped she did. Dealing with an irritable Libby was not pleasant.

There were times Jill wished that she had never got involved with this side business in the first place. All she had wanted to do was own her own Dress and Fabric store, and then she met Miss. Libby. Before she knew it, she was caught up in a tangled web of secrets, and she kept getting deeper entwined. 

Miss. Libby hung up the phone feeling a little better. Perhaps Jill did know what she was doing. Lisette did seem pretty innocent and naïve, so she might be the right one to help out at the store. It would free up Jill. Maybe business could increase if Jill had more time. Libby saw dollar signs in her head and her smile grew bigger. This really may be a good thing, a very good thing, she thought.  She was thinking of what all she could do with the extra money, as she headed upstairs with her silver Persian cat following right behind her. 

Lisette was dumbfounded. She had come back to the Inn, because she forgot her wallet and she had overheard Miss. Libby on the phone. She didn’t mean to eavesdrop, but when she heard her name spoken, she couldn’t move from her spot in the hallway. 

Miss. Libby wanted Miss. Jill to fire her!? Why? Did she have that strong of dislike for Miss. Jill? She listened some more and things just weren’t adding up. Miss. Libby said that Lisette couldn’t find out about their other business dealings. That they all would be in jeopardy then. What other business? 

Lisette’s mind was swirling. Something wasn’t right and suddenly she was uncertain about working for Miss. Jill. Maybe she should rethink this whole idea of staying in this town. What was she getting into? She needed to take a walk to clear her brain about the troublesome conversation she had heard. 

She didn’t really have a destination in mind she just left the Inn and kept walking, pondering things over. 

When she finally decided to pay attention to her surroundings, she figured out where she was. She was near the creek where she had met the little Annie before.  She had walked out of town. Perhaps sitting by the creek was just what she needed to relax and think straight. 

Walking a little ways more she saw the babbling creek and it didn’t look like anyone was around. Lisette relished the idea of sitting alone for a bit. She slipped off her shoes and dangled her feet in the water. The cool water felt good, she hadn’t meant to walk so far and her feet were a little sore. She found a pebble in the grass and skipped it across the water. She was beginning to relax, when she heard a “MOOOOO!” right behind her! 

Jumping up, she almost lost her balance!  She caught herself and turned around to see Betsy, the cow staring at her, with her deep brown eyes. 

Lisette tried to catch her breath and calm down when she noticed something hanging around Betsy’s neck. It was the enchanted cowbell! Oh Lisette was really tempted to grab it off her neck and shake it for all it was worth! It just had to work again. She went to grab it, but something stopped her from touching it. Never had she been so intimidated by a cow’s eyes before. 

Betsy continued to stare at her and then just as quickly as she had appeared she turned her back on Lisette and walked back towards the barn. Lisette stared after her. Oh how she wanted that bell, but … She sighed. No, she wasn’t going to give up, she would go to work for Miss. Jill and see what she could find out. Perhaps all those Nancy Drew books that she had read as a child would finally pay off! 

(to be continued….next week) 

Secrets Abound

Sometimes I think I am finished with a story but sometimes I am not. Here is a link to 3AM Thoughts! in case you missed it, and here is the rest of the story. 

Lisette heard her alarm clock ringing at 8am. She groggily shut it off, once she could find the right button! With the way she felt now she would be needing an afternoon nap, instead of sharing tea with Miss. Libby today. 

The smell of bacon being fried and coffee perking, did awaken Lisette’s senses and she walked into the dining room with a smile on her face. 

“Good Morning Miss. Libby!”, she called out to her in the kitchen. 

“Good Morning Lisette, I hope you are hungry. I made French raspberry crepes today. ” 

“Sounds delicious!” Lisette replied, thinking to herself that she may need to jog around the block a few extra times today due to this big breakfast. 

“You spoil me!” she said, as Miss. Libby came out of the kitchen with a bowl of scrambled eggs and a plate of crepes. 

Miss. Libby laughed. “I love doing it, and remember you can stay here as long as you like! What are your plans for the day?” she asked, as she took a seat at the table with Lisette. 

“I thought I would apply at some stores today for a job.” 

Miss. Libby clapped her hands together. “Great! So you are planning on staying in town then?” 

Lisette’s heart was warmed by the light in Miss. Libby’s eyes, and her genuine smile, that seemed to really want Lisette to stay. It gave her a boost of confidence. 

“Yes, I am planning on staying, at least for a while, this seems like such a wonderful town. ” 

“Oh it is, it is! The town is finally getting back to normal after the tragic mystery of … Oh, I don’t want to hold you up. You finish your breakfast and we can talk another time. You have a job to find.” 

“But, but what mystery? Does this have to do with the Chicken Man?” 

“Oh dear, I forgot to bring out the bacon. Let me go get it.” and Miss. Libby bustled into the kitchen, returning with the bacon. 

“So what kind of job are you looking for?” she asked. 

Lisette inwardly sighed, Miss. Libby was very nice, but she could be a mystery herself at times, the way she would close up about certain topics. She guessed she was just going to have to be patient, when Miss. Libby was ready to talk she would talk. 

“I was going to see if Miss. Jill needed any help. There wasn’t any  “Help Wanted” sign on her door, but she was so friendly when I visited her shop and she had the most beautiful dresses.”

“Hmm…I know the coffee shop is hiring. They are always busy in there! You may inquire at the Fluffer-Nutter Shoppe as well. You would be laughing yourself through the day if you worked there.” 

Lisette laughed, she had met the owners of the Fluffer -Nutter Shoppe and they certainly were characters. She wondered though why she so quickly talked about other places to look for work besides Miss. Jill’s Dress Shop. She took another bite of her crepe. “This is divine!” 

Miss. Lily blushed with pride. 

“I may check out those places, but I do think I will go to Miss. Jill’s Dress Shop first. ” 

Miss. Lily stared down at her plate and just quietly ate for a few moments.  Lisette was curious now, what was it about Miss. Jill’s place? 

“Umm…Is there a reason that I shouldn’t apply at Miss. Jill’s place?”

Miss. Lily still kept looking at her plate, and when she did look up , her eyes were serious. “Being a respectable lady, you should probably look somewhere else for a job.” 

Lisette took her last sip of coffee to wash down the salty bacon. Miss. Libby was a great cook, but she Lisette wouldn’t mind if she cut back on the salt! 

“Wh-What are you saying? Are you saying that Miss. Jill isn’t…?”

Miss. Lily interrupted her.  “I am not saying anything more, Lisette dear, we do have a great town, but every town has its secrets and well …. lets just leave it at that.  I need to go now and start cleaning up the kitchen.  Good Luck with the job search and we will talk more this afternoon at tea.”

Saying that, she excused herself, leaving Lisette sitting at the trouble with questions circulating in her mind. “Every town has its secrets…” Miss. Lily’s words came back to her. What exact secrets did this town hold? 

She sat at the table holding her water glass and thinking. She hoped that Miss. Lily would tell her more this afternoon at tea, so much for her grabbing a nap. Her curiosity was piqued now, she needed to hear. 

Finishing her water and popping the last strawberry into her mouth she got up from the table and headed out the door. 

It was a beautiful day to be walking downtown. Fall was in the air and the big Maple trees that lined the sidewalks looked lovely. She paused at the Coffee Shop, seeing the sign on the door.  She opened up the door and the bell jangled, but then she turned right back around and walked out again. 

Miss. Jill was busy with a customer when Lisette walked in. Lisette browsed through the clothes, but kept one ear tuned into the conversation going on between Miss. Jill and the customer. They had hushed their tone, and she could barely hear. She then noticed the customer follow Miss. Jill to the back of the store through a door. 

Lisette went back to browsing through the dresses, an emerald green one caught her eye. She was debating about it when Miss. Jill returned just a few minutes later with the customer behind her. 

“Thank you Mrs. Gray, I hope you have a wonderful day now! And please come again!”  

Mrs. Gray smiled and said “Thank you! May you have a great day too.” 

Lisette watched Mrs. Gray exit the store. 

Miss. Jill seemed almost nervous as she approached Lisette, but her voice was calm. 

“Sorry to keep you waiting. How can I help you? Great to see you back again.”

“Well I was actually wondering if I could help you? I am thinking of staying here but I need a job first. Could you use any help? It doesn’t look like you have any other employees here.” 

Miss. Jill paused, looking uncertain,  and then said, ” Wellll … I pretty much run this shop by myself, always have, but … ” and she paused again. this time she smiled. ” Yes, perhaps I could use an extra hand here, that would leave me free to attend to other business. Let me ask you a few questions and we will see what we can work out. ” 

A hour later Lisette walked out of Miss. Jill’s shop feeling great. She had a job now. Plus, Miss. Lily gave her the emerald green dress, as a gift! Now she could write home and let her parents and friends know that she was staying. They would feel better, knowing she had a job. Life was taking a good turn! 

Meanwhile, back in the meadow by the babbling creek, there was a cow grazing contently on the grass, with an enchanted bell hanging around her neck. 

 

 

 

Trouble by the Creek

I had thought about letting Lisette riding in the gondola, from yesterday’s post Treasure in the Wheatfield , but decided to share one more of her adventure’s. Enjoy! 

Lisette was really enjoying riding down the river on the gondola. She thought she could really get used to this. After a hour the gondalier finished playing his accordion and pulled up to the dock. Lisette thanked him kindly, as she took his hand to help her step out of the boat. 

The sun was shining and she decided to take a walk in the little town. There were open fruit markets and flower and craft vendors, that she enjoyed stopping at. 

After browsing she stopped at an outdoor cafe , thinking she would treat herself to a dark chocolate raspberry latte. She was sitting there savoring the sweet taste when she heard a woman yelling, “There she is! That’s her! She’s the thief!” 

Lisette saw the policeman and the lady coming towards the cafe. She looked around at the other customers, seated outside, wondering who the thief was. 

“Where is my purse?” the lady shouted at her! 

Lisette was startled, the policeman was standing right in front of her! 

“I…I…don’t know what you are talking about?”  Lisette said. 

“She is lying, she looks just like the lady that left the store I was in.” the lady said to the policeman. 

Lisette’s stomach was turning into a big knot, what was she going to do? She looked at the cowbell next to her latte. That bell was starting to cause her trouble. Could she go anywhere without being mistaken for someone else? She didn’t know what would happen if she shook her bell again, but anywhere had to be better than where she was now! She grabbed it and shook it 3x. POOF! Purple and pink smoke again everywhere. 

The smoke cleared and Lisette found herself  sitting by a creek, with a large Weeping Willow tree by it. It was quiet and much more peaceful than having a lady scream at her. She sighed deeply, thinking she may rest here for a bit, and then decide what to do next. 

This cowbell obviously had special powers to take her to different places, but could it make a house appear for her too? Like where was she to go, after resting at the creek? She was almost afraid to walk around town, wondering who she would be mistaken for next? If she could only be mistaken for a famous person, now that might be fun. Living in a mansion? Oh the possibilities that existed with this strange new bell. 

Her thoughts were interrupted by a gentle touch on her shoulder. Lisette jumped, she hadn’t heard anyone coming . She turned her head and noticed a cute little girl staring at her. 
“What are you doing?” the little girl asked. 

Lisette wasn’t sure how to reply. Was she on someone’s private land? She looked around a little more and gasped when she saw a little white cross, not far from the tree. This was someone’s land. 

“Annie, Annie! Time to come in for supper!”  Lisette saw a woman standing in the distance, calling to the little girl. 

The little girl smiled and took Lisette’s hand. “Mommy, can she have  supper with us?” Annie yelled back. 

Annie started pulling her along as she walked towards the house. Lisette didn’t know what to do. What was she supposed to tell Annie’s Mom? That a mysterious cowbell brought her here. The Mom would wonder what kind of strange nut her daughter had found! 

While walking towards the house, Lisette saw a cow grazing, not far from them. 

“Do you want to see Betsy?” asked Annie. 

“Betsy?” replied Lisette. 

“Yes, she is our cow. She is really nice, though she has a habit of disappearing at times, but she always comes back.” 

Lisette couldn’t say No to this sweet, spunky girl.

“Sure, lets go say Hi to Betsy.” 

They started walking towards her and Betsy looked up from her grazing, watching them come. Lisette felt her eyes looking directly at her. The closer she got the more intensity she saw in Betsy’s deep brown eyes. She had never been scared of cows before, but this one was giving her a strange, unnerving feeling. 

Suddenly Betsy started running straight towards her and she did not look happy! 

Fear struck Lisette and she shook her bell 3x! Nothing happened! What was wrong, had the bell lost its power, she shook it again and nothing and Betsy was almost upon her! Lisette dropped the bell and took off running towards the road. 

Down the road she went until she had to stop. She bent over with her hands on her knees trying to catch her breath! Looking behind her she didn’t see any mad cow running after her, much to her relief. But now, what was she to do? How did she get back home? 

It was growing dark, she decided that for now she would follow the sign she saw, heading towards town, hoping she could find a motel. She needed a deep, long sleep after this crazy day! She would figure out her next step in the morning. 

 

 

Mystery at the Falls

Bushkill Falls

Trisha sat down on the rock. She had to take a rest. She didn’t know it would be such a hike to the top of the Falls. It felt so good to rest her feet for a little and listen to the water roar.

She watched the water flow, letting her mind drift away. Daydreaming was always relaxing. For a moment she looked away from the water and down at her feet. Her eyes suddenly opened wider when she happened to notice something in the leaves just a little ways in front of her. What was it? Curiosity got the best of her, as she got up from the rock and walked over to the object that she saw. Wow! This was something that she had never expected to find in the woods. What should she do?

Trisha smiled, today was certainly not going to be just an ordinary day.

(to be continued…) What do you think she found?

Her Last Walk

pinterest

All the townspeople were talking, no one could believe it. Miss. Bloomfield was dead! How she died was a mystery. She was found down by the river with flowers around her. She always loved flowers. Had a beautiful flower garden, and you often saw her with flowers in her long, chestnut brown hair. She had been especially proud of the Sunflowers that she had grown this year. In fact she had been planning on entering some of them in the contest at the fair, for they had grown so very tall.

There was no one around her when her body had been found. No one , besides her little dog Clarabelle, running around barking her head off. There had been a couple of hikers walking through the woods to the river and they were the ones who had found her. Poor Clarabelle had been running around Miss. Bloomfield, barking her little head off.

The detectives had not found any clues leading to a suspicion of foul play, it looked like she had just gone out for a walk by the river and died of natural causes. It seemed perplexing though, for she was so young. There was a book lying by her and a picnic basket that had some pieces of Miss. Emily’s prize winning peach pie inside it. She had bought it at the fair, Miss. Emily was well known for her pies.

Had Miss. Bloomfield seen something that had frightened her so badly causing a heart attack? Rumors flew around the town of what she may have run into when going for a walk in the woods. Some had said it was a snake, and Mr. Dallydiddle had said a lion, causing everyone to laugh and shake their heads. It was no secret, that he was known as the crazy man in town.

Miss. Bloomfield didn’t have a very good reputation. It seemed that she was pretty standoffish and kept to herself most of the time. Always wore a frown with her head held high as she walked through town carrying her little Clarabelle with her wherever she would go. The dog was really sweet, but sadly no one said the same about her owner.

Still, no one thought that anyone in the small town would ever think of harming someone. Sure people had their squabbles with each other, but overall it was a really friendly town. Giving out traffic tickets was about the only job the police had to do.

Mr, Snodapple was very popular with the police. He held the record for the most speeding tickets. The police usually would catch him speeding going down Mulberry Hill. He would keep a box of cream filled donuts in the car and would offer the cop one each time, hoping to bribe them. Most times they would take the donut and he would still get the ticket, but sometimes they would be in a generous mood and let him off the hook. Everyone liked Mr.Snodapple, he was an older gentleman that usually had a sparkle in his eye, and a dance in his step. He might be old, but he still could dance a little jig pretty well.

The town was quiet and peaceful for the most part. In fact when that strange cow appeared with sunflowers around her neck, in the dog parade that other night, that was one of the most exciting things that had happened in awhile. No one had seen the cow around town since then.

So what had happened to Miss. Bloomfield by the river? Would anyone ever know? Rumors would keep circulating for a bit, but in time they would probably die down. For now people were enjoying seeing Mr. Snodapple with Clarabelle! He lived alone and the town agreed that sweet Clarabelle would be perfect for him. They were right, his smile was even brighter now while walking around town, with little Clarabelle prancing along beside him.

Saving Jarrett!

painting by Philip Straub

Jarrett was walking through the woods and saw the brightly colored mushrooms, and the purple inchworm. Was that a hat that the inchworm was wearing? Jarrett shook his head, to try and clear his brain, something was obviously not right. Since when did inchworms wear hats? Was he going the right direction?

Perhaps he just hadn’t walked far enough yet. What time was it? He pulled out his phone and it was blank. Oh great, the battery must have died! How long had he been walking? He didn’t think it had been that long and he knew when he started that his phone was still pretty close to being fully charged. Shoving the dead phone back in his pocket he kept walking.

After a little time had passed he stopped again, looking around for a log to sit on. He felt a little dizzy. What was going on? He didn’t see any log so he plopped himself down on the ground, resting up against a tree.

Jarrett thought about how this day had gone so far. He had found a new path in the woods and was surprised what he found when he followed it. There was a beautiful waterfall with purple butterflies flying around it. He sat on a rock and just breathed in the peace. He had dozed off a little in the bright sunshine and then got up to continue his walk.

He was needing to get home now but which way did he go to leave the wood. Jarrett was feeling disoriented and his eyes started growing heavy. The last thing he remembered before falling asleep, was seeing a pink bushy tailed squirrel scamper up a Pine tree.

She looked at Jarrett slumped over by the tree and she slyly smiled. It looked like her plan was working well, quite well indeed. You could hear her chilling laugh as she walked away.

Being so caught up in the glee of her plan working she did not notice what was hiding a few feet away, behind the big Oak tree.

(to be continued…)