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Children's Stories
by Margo Fallis
Bicyclists, Stampeding Shoppers and Fish

POP! POP! The balloons burst. Suddenly Bruce and Bonnie found themselves flying through the air with only balloon strings and bits of popped balloon in their hands. "What happened?" Bonnie asked.

"I think the balloons got tired of carrying us along. Well, now that weíre flying on our own again, we might as well find out where we are. I see a town below. Follow me," Bruce called and headed towards the town surrounded by hills. They landed on a tree branch, growing next to a statue. "Thatís a big horse," Bruce said, looking up at it.

"I wonder why thereís a statue of a man on a horse," Bonnie said.

"I think itís called, The Horse. One of my pals told me about it. It represents the days when a group of Scots, called the Callants, captured a flag that belonged to a band of English soldiers. The English were always coming over and attacking the folks here. I think it happened in 1514. The men were all from Hawick, which is the name of the town we are now in," Bruce explained.

"It sounds like you are calling it Hoy-ick? But the sign says it is called Ha-wick," Bonnie wondered.

"The locals pronounce it that way."

"Thatís an unusual name. No matter. Itís a nice statue and a nice town." With only one thing on her mind, Bonnie blurted, "Oh look, Bruce, primroses. I can taste the nectar already." She flew over to the small pink flowers and started sipping nectar.

Bruce joined her. "Bonnie, I know some more things about this place. A long time ago, the Saxons called it Haggawick."

"What a funny name that is. Hag-ga-wick? Why did they call it that?" Bonnie said, gulping down some more sweet nectar.

"Haggawick means Ďthe settlement hedged around by hillsí. Look at the hills here!"


"What was that?" Bruce asked. Something had flown past and knocked him to the ground. He stood up, brushed off his wings and looked around.

"It was a bicyclist. Watch out. Here comes another!" Bonnie warned. Somehow sheíd managed to hold onto the primroses.


"Iím not sure which is more dangerous, a horse, or a bicycle whizzing past. I think we should find somewhere a little less crowded," Bruce said. He flew into the air.

Bonnie wiped the nectar of her proboscis and followed him. "Where are we going?" she asked.

"Letís just fly around and see what is here. Oh, look down there. Itís a mill. Hawick is also famous for its knitwear. Maybe we can go and find a pair of mittens or socks," Bruce chuckled.

"I donít think they make socks small enough for butterflies, do you?" Bonnie laughed.

They flew into the mill. There were tables stacked high with woolen cardigans and jumpers, socks and blankets. "This one is soft," Bruce said, landing on a cardigan. It was pale purple. "Itís the color of heather," he noticed.

Suddenly the room was filled with noise. Bruce and Bonnie looked up. The room was filling up with people. They were running in the front doors, coming towards the tables near them. Each table had a sign on it that read, ĎSALEí. There was a lot of pushing and grabbing. Soon Bruce and Bonnie found themselves under the table, lying on the ground. "What is this all about?" Bruce asked.

"Itís a woolen sale. Everyone wants a bargain," Bonnie explained. Shoe-covered feet were going everywhere. "Watch out, Bruce. Donít get stepped on."

"Yikes! This is more dangerous than the bicycles. A woolen mill is no place for a butterfly," Bruce said. "Come on, Bonnie." He flew into the air, well above the hordes of people, and found their way outside through an open window.

They flew until they came to a small river. "It looks safe here," Bruce sighed.

"Heather!" Bonnie called out. "Delicious, purple heather. I must have some nectar." She stuck her proboscis into a heather bell. "Delicious."

Bruce flew over to the heather and joined her. A fish that was swimming in the river, spotted the butterflies. It came flying out of the water and grabbed hold of Bruceís leg. "Help! Bonnie! A fish has my leg!"

Bruce and the Fish

Bonnie lifted her head from the heather bell. She saw the fish slithering back into the river with Bruce in its mouth. "Hang on. Iíll help you," she called. She flew over and grabbed hold of Bruceís hands. She pulled and pulled. The fish was nearly underwater, along with the butterfly. "Iím pulling as hard as I can, Bruce." She was getting tired. The fish was very big. It went under the water. Bruce went under the water too. Bonnie, using all her strength, was able to pull him out. The two butterflies flew high into the air. The fish stuck its head out and spat water at them, but they were near the treetops by then. The water spurted towards them and then fell back into the river. The fish, seeing its meal fly away, swam down the river in search of something else to eat.

"Thank you, Bonnie. That was a close one. This town is not safe for a butterfly. There are too many bicyclists, stampeding shoppers, and big fish! Letís find a field of fluffy, purple thistle, growing in a nice, quiet, peaceful part of the country."

"Good idea," Bonnie agreed and the butterflies flew off in search of a place of serenity.

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