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Picture Book
Accidents Happen

Merrie Mouse sat at her kitchen table, sipping a cup of tea. Soon all her wee ones would wake up and another busy day would be upon her. She had much work today before then. She had to wash all their wee kilts, mend broken toys, and prepare meals. Merrie had to make sure each wee mouse had a matching pair of socks and shoes, which wasnít an easy task, as there were so many of them. She worked hard and as the sun rose, she finished her chores. She was done just in time. Already five of them were up and came running into the kitchen. "Good morning, my wee ones," she said, hugging each of them. "Good morning, Maxwell, Morgan, Melinda, Misty and Megan. Did you sleep well?" she asked each of them.

They all nodded yes and sat at the kitchen table. Merrie knew she had to quickly feed these first five before the others got up. There wasnít a lot of room at the table. She cut each mouse a thin slice of cheddar cheese and then poured them a glass of milk, which sheíd gotten from Farmer Mackenzieís milk bucket. The five wee mice ate, slipped on their wee kilts, socks and shoes, and ran out to play. "Stay close to the house," she called. "Farmer Mackenzieís doing some plowing today. I donít want any accidents!"

A few minutes later Molly, Macy, Malcolm, Munro and Monty came into the kitchen. "Good morning, my wee ones," she said, hugging her bairns. "Did you sleep well?" Each wee mouse nodded yes and sat at the table, like the first five had. Again Merrie cut them a thin slice of cheddar cheese and poured them a glass of milk. When they finished, they put their kilts, socks and shoes, and then ran out to play. Again, Merrie warned them, "Stay close to the house. Farmer Mackenzie is plowing today and I donít want any of my wee ones hurt."

She cleaned up the kitchen and went to make the beds. She had just finished the last bed when Molly came running into the house. "Mummy, come quick. Wee Macy," who was the baby, "got squished by Farmer Mackenzieís plow. I told him not to go close but he didnít listen."

Merrie ran outside and into the field. She saw wee Macy lying in the dirt. He was crying very loud. She picked him up and held him. After checking to make sure he wasnít seriously injured, she was relieved to find out he wasnít too badly hurt, but did have a broken leg. "Go and get the ambulance to come and take wee Macy to the doctor to get his leg fixed," Merrie told the others.

They ran as fast as they could and soon were back with two bigger mice. "Merrie, weíll take wee Macy to get his leg fixed. Donít worry," one of them said. They put wee Macy on a stretcher and ran as fast as they could to the doctor.

Farmer Mackenzie was standing near his plow with his two large horses. They were taking a break. Plowing is a lot of hard work. Suddenly he saw two mice run by, carrying another mouse on a stretcher. He knelt down for a better look. "I wonder what happened to the mouse?" he said to his horses. "I think that was one of Merrieís bairns." He walked around the bushes and saw Merrie Mouse sitting on a stone, surrounded by all her bairns. "Merrie, what happened to wee Macy?" he asked.

"It wasnít your fault," she said, "accidents happen." She noticed how worried Farmer Mackenzie looked. "I warned the wee ones you were plowing today, but wee Macy didnít listen. Iím afraid the plow broke his leg."

Farmer Mackenzie was very concerned. "Iíll have to be more careful from now on. I hope heís fine."

"Och, aye. Heíll be just fine. Donít you go worrying yourself. The bairns need to be more careful during plowing days." After chatting for a while, Farmer Mackenzie went back to his plowing, watching the ground a little more carefully as he worked.

After several hours, wee Macy came home. His leg was in a cast, but he was doing well. Farmer Mackenzie came back later that evening. Malcolm saw him coming and ran into the house. "Mummy, come outside and see."

Merrie ran outside. Farmer Mackenzie had brought them a special present. "I feel so bad about wee Macy. I hope this helps," he said. He pulled a milk jug out of a brown paper bag. "This is for you and your bairns. Itís milk with a lot of cream on top. Itís all for you." The wee mice ran around the jug, laughing and excited. There was enough milk for a week there. "Every morning from now on, you send one of the bairns to my barn and Iíll give you fresh milk and cheese."

Just then wee Macy came outside. He was using a crutch to help him walk. "This is for you," Farmer Mackenzie said, pulling a big chunk of orange cheese out of the bag. "This is the finest aged cheddar I have. Iím sorry your leg is hurt. I hope you enjoy the cheese," He said to wee Macy, patting him softly on the head. He broke a chunk off and handed it to the injured mouse.

Macy took a bite of it. "Itís delicious," he mumbled with a full mouth. "Thank you, Farmer Mackenzie," he added.

From then on Merrie and her wee mice had all the milk and cheese they wanted. They were much more careful to stay out of the fields when Farmer Mackenzie was plowing and he was much more careful too.

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