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Children's Stories
by Margo Fallis
A Little Squirt

The morning sun shone down on the grove of citrus trees that stood next to the rapid flowing river, their roots firmly embedded in the rich black soil. Each tree was heavily laden with ripe, juicy oranges, ready to burst open and release their fragrant, sweet tasting flesh.

A LIttle Squirt

Ainsley, the rabbit, climbed out of her burrow, yawned, stretched, and welcomed the rays of the sun as they danced on her soft gray fur and long whiskers. She was feeling hungry this morning. Her nose began to twitch as she sniffed the air for something delicious. The scent of the oranges drifted her way. Her bright pink eyes flickered as the sun danced in them, then off she hopped towards her morning meal.

Ainsley reached the first tree at the edge of the grove and looked up at the many fruits hanging from the heavy, bent over branches. With just a slight springy jump she plucked off several oranges and laid them on the ground next to her. She selected one and carefully peeled back the thick skin. Juice squirted onto her gray fur as each delicious section appeared. Ainsley pulled the sections apart with her large, white, front teeth and popped the fleshy orange into her mouth.

She felt an orange pip inside her cheek and wasn’t quite sure what to do with it, so she spit it out. Cambden, a fluffy, wooly, brown sheep chose that moment to walk by. The spit-out seed hit him right on his black nose. He stopped, looked down at the pip that had bounced off him, and then Ainsley, he walked away. She felt bad but kept on eating her orange.

Each section had a large pip in it. She spit the next one out. It flew through the air and landed right on the leathery ear of Janet, the cow. It stuck to her light coating of fur.

Janet was on her way to be milked at the other side of the grove, when she felt the pip hit her ear. She stopped, looked at Ainsley angrily and mooed loudly. Ainsley had to fold her long ears down because the noise was so loud. Janet glared at her again, shook the sticky pip off her ear, and moved on. Ainsley again felt bad, but was so hungry that she kept on eating the juicy fruit.

She decided to hold one or two in her mouth and looked first to make sure no one was strolling by. Seeing no one, she spit the two seeds out. They went flying through the air and landed right on Kyla, the snake, as she slithered along in the dirt. Kyla began to hiss loudly, very annoyed at Ainsley. She hissed, and hissed, and coiled up tightly, like she was going to bite the rabbit. Ainsley hopped back a few hops, afraid of the angry snake, but felt relief as Kyla slithered into the river.

From then on, Ainsley kept all the seeds in her mouth. She ate one orange after another until her little cheeks were filled with orange pips. The ground around her paws was covered with thick orange rind. Suddenly Ainsley needed to sneeze. "Aaaaaaacccchhoooooooooooooooo!" Dozens of slippery orange pips went flying into the air. They pelted Kenneth, the fox, as he happened to run by at that unlucky moment. Pips hit him on his snout, his beautiful tail, his back and head, and his legs. Kenneth stopped and looked at the rabbit. He ran over to her and growled loudly in her face. His long tail wagged up and down and he was very angry. After he finished his tantrum, off he ran through the citrus grove to the bank of the river to wash himself off.

That was enough for Ainsley. From then on she would not eat any more oranges in the orange grove. She took the rest of her oranges down to the river and sat down. The water sounded peaceful as it rushed by. She peeled her orange and popped the juicy flesh into her mouth. She spit the pip into the water without having to worry about it hitting any animals passing by. Just then, Laird, the bright green fish, came rushing up to the surface, blowing bubbles angrily. Ainsley sighed. After the fish went back under the water, she gently rolled the rest of the oranges into the water and watched as they bobbed up and down, floating away rapidly.

From then on, she never ate another orange or any other fruit with pips in it. Instead of oranges, lemons and limes, she nibbled on apples, pears and crunchy carrots. And all the other animals that lived along the muddy banks of the swift flowing river were happier too.

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