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Children's Stories
by Margo Fallis
Ian & Mac Bedtime Stories - Invisible Friend


“Oh look, Mac, there’s the first star out.” Ian pointed to the night sky. “That means I get a wish.”

“You believe in that nonsense, Ian?” Mac yawned and lay on his back. His tail drooped over the branch.

“I sure do. I wish that you’d read me a bedtime story.” Ian grinned at his friend.

“I think I can fill that wish for you. Thank you for not asking for a t-bone steak.” Mac chuckled. “Here we go. There was a wee laddie whose name was Jack. Jack lived in a house with his mum and dad and wee sister, Jill.”

“Oh come on, Mac. You can do better than that. Jack and Jill?”

“Those were their real names. Jill was much younger than Jack and she got a lot of attention because she was the baby. During the long, cold winter days, when Jack was stuck in the house, he’d get very bored.  One morning he woke up to the wind howling. He looked outside and saw a blizzard. He didn’t know what he was going to do. He was tired of coloring in his coloring books and he was tired of reading. He wanted to go to the library and get more books, but he couldn’t. Jill was crying and Jack’s mum was trying to get her to settle down. Jack’s dad went to work. Jack lay on his bed and wished, just like you did, that he had a friend to play with. Suddenly he felt his bed move. He looked over and saw another wee lad.”

“Who was it, Mac? How did the boy get into the house if it was snowing?” Ian rolled onto his tummy.

“The boy was imaginary, except to Jack. Jack saw the boy. When his mum came into the room to see what he was doing, she saw Jack sitting on the floor playing a game of checkers. She laughed because she thought he was playing all by himself. You see, she didn’t see the other boy.”

“What was his name?” Ian held onto his tail as he often did during story time.

“Jack asked the boy his name and the boy said it was whatever name Jack wanted to call him. Jack decided to call him Jock. So Jock and Jack played checkers. They colored in the coloring books and Jack read three story books to Jock. They jumped on the bed and talked about dragons and knights in shining armor. Jack was so happy that Jock was there. Jock had to stay in the bedroom though.”

“Why?”

“Because when he left the bedroom he disappeared and Jack wanted him to stay. After supper Jack took a plate with grapes, toast and a chocolate biscuit into his room for Jock. Jock ate everything! They lay in bed and told more stories. When Jack went to sleep, he had a smile on his face. Every single morning, when Jack opened his eyes, Jock would be lying next to him. Jack always made sure Jock got plenty to eat. Every day they played games and looked at the snowflakes that stuck to the window. Jack and Jock had so much fun.”

“I would too if I had an imaginary friend,” Ian said.

“You don’t need one. You’ve got a real friend, me.” Mac pointed at his own chest. “All winter long Jock came to stay. One day Jack looked out the window and the snow was melting. He saw tulips and daffodils poking through the ground. He showed them to Jock. Jock told Jack now that spring had come that he needed to go. There were other children who needed a friend, but that he’d come back in the winter time for as long as Jack needed him. Jock left that morning. Jack didn’t mind though. He could go outside and play with the sheep and highland cows. He could walk through the bushes and woods and explore. Jack was never bored in spring and summer and even autumn and he knew that no matter what, Jock would come back again with the first snowfall.”

Ian yawned. “I’m glad you’re my real friend and are here with me no matter what time of year it is. Goodnight, Mac.”

“Goodnight, Ian.”


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