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Children's Stories
by Margo Fallis
Room in the River?


Hector, the hippo, lay in the river all day long. He saw birds and bugs and lions and tigers, but he did not care. He was a hippo and he was king of the river. Hector lay in the muddy water. He ate leaves and berries and plants. He never ate fish, or birds, or bugs.

A lion came to the river to get a drink and saw Hector. "Can I lay in the river with you?" The lion put his paw in the water. "Never mind. It's too cold. I think I will not lay in the river after all." The lion roared and ran into the jungle.

Hector did not care. He was a hippo and he was king of the river.

A tiger came to the river for a drink and saw Hank. "Move over, Hector. I want to lay in the river with you."

Hector slid his big body over so the tiger could lie down.

The tiger put his paw in the water. "Never mind. The water is too cold. I do not want to lay in the river with you after all." The tiger roared and ran away into the jungle.

Hector did not care. He was a hippo and he was king of the river.

A fat red bug ran down to the river. "Hank, can I lay in the river next to you?"

Hector moved his big body over.

The bug ran into the water. "Never mind. It's too cold. I do not want to lay in the river after all." It flew off into the jungle.

Hector did not care. He was a hippo and he was king of the river.

A blue bird with an orange belly landed on a tree trunk near the river. "Hector, I do not want to lay in the river. I want to eat a fish. Is there a fish in the river?"

Hector said, "A lot of fish live in the river."

The bird stuck its beak in the water, poked a fish and flew off into the jungle.

Hector did not care. He was a hippo and he was king of the river. He shut his eyes and went back to sleep.


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