Unc’ Billy was singing this to himself as he trotted along the Crooked Little Path, and all the time he was thinking of the great joke that he and his old friend Mr. Mocker, from way down South, were playing on the little people of the Green Meadows and the Green Forest.
This morning he was on his way to call first on Johnny Chuck. Half-way down the hill he met Bobby Coon. Unc’ Billy stopped and held out one hand as he said “Good mo’ning, Brer Coon. How do yo’all do this fine mo’ning?”
Bobby Coon walked right past as if he didn’t see Unc’ Billy at all. He didn’t even look at him.
“What’s the matter with yo’ this mo’ning, Brer Coon?” shouted Unc’ Billy. Bobby Coon kept right on, without so much as turning his head. Unc’ Billy watched him, and there was a puzzled look on Unc’ Billy’s face. “Must be that Brer Coon has something powerful impo’tant on his mind,” muttered Unc’ Billy, as he started on.
Pretty soon he met Jimmy Skunk who had always been one of Unc’ Billy’s best friends. Jimmy was looking under every stick and stone for beetles for his breakfast.
“Good mo’ning, Neighbor Skunk!” said Unc’ Billy in his heartiest voice.
Jimmy Skunk, who never hurries, kept right on pulling over sticks and stones just as if he didn’t see or hear Unc’ Billy at all. In fact, when he pulled over one stone, he dropped it right on Unc’ Billy’s tail and didn’t seem to hear Unc’ Billy’s “Ouch!” as he pulled his tail from under the stone. Jimmy just went right on about his business.
Unc’ Billy sat down and scratched his head. His face had lost the cheerful grin with which he had started out. Pretty soon he started on, but every few minutes he would stop and scratch his head thoughtfully. He didn’t know what to make of Bobby Coon and Jimmy Skunk.
He was so surprised that he hadn’t known whether to be angry or not.
“Ah must find out what Brer Chuck knows about it,” thought Unc’ Billy, as he trotted on.
UNC’ BILLY POSSUM SEES MANY BACKS
Unc’ Billy Possum was very sober as he hurried down the Lone Little Path to Johnny Chuck’s house. He was very sober indeed, and that is very unusual for Unc’ Billy Possum. It was very plain to see that something was bothering him. Johnny Chuck was sitting on his doorstep when Unc’ Billy Possum came in sight, trotting down the Lone Little Path. As soon as Johnny saw him, he turned his back squarely towards Unc’ Billy and pretended to be very much interested in something way off in the other direction. Unc’ Billy came to a stop about two feet behind Johnny Chuck.
“A-hem!” said Unc’ Billy.
Johnny Chuck sat there without moving, just as if he hadn’t heard.
“It’s a fine mo’ning,” said Unc’ Billy in his pleasantest voice.
Instead of replying, Johnny Chuck suddenly kicked up his heels and disappeared inside his house. Unc’ Billy scratched his head with one hand and then with the other, and all the time his face grew more and more puzzled-looking. After a while he started on. Pretty soon he came to where Danny Meadow Mouse was playing all by himself. He didn’t know that Unc’ Billy was about until Unc’ Billy said: “Good mo’ning, Brer Meadow Mouse.”