The two bunny children did as they were told. Just then a stone came very close to Jane Fuzzy-Wuzzy, and she went completely beneath the water.
“The muskrat’s gone!” cried a boy.
“No,” said another, “it can swim under water. But don’t bother with the rabbits. They’re little, and their fur isn’t much good. Kill the muskrat, for we can get fifty cents for the skin.”
“Oh, how mean boys are!” thought Susie Littletail. “To talk about selling poor Jane Fuzzy-Wuzzy’s skin! Aren’t they terrible!”
The boys now gave all their attention to throwing stones at the muskrat, but she was very wise, and kept under water as much as possible, so they could not hit her. They did not throw at Sammie or Susie. Presently Jane Fuzzy-Wuzzy swam backward under water and came up near Sammie. She put her sharp nose close to his ear and whispered:
“Down stream a little way is a burrow where I used to live. The front door is under water, but if you hold your breath you can dive down, get in and come up in the dry part. Then you can dig a way out in a field, and we can go home, and escape the boys.”
Jane told the same thing to Susie, and, pretty soon, when they came to the place, the two bunny children took a long breath, and dived down under water. Sammie and Susie took hold of the long tail of Jane Fuzzy-Wuzzy to guide them in the dark, and, though it seemed a terrible thing not to breathe under water, the three suddenly found themselves in a little underground house, much like their own, where they could breathe again.
“Now we are safe!” exclaimed the muskrat. “Just dig a back door and you can get out.”
So Sammie and Susie did so, and, pretty soon, they found themselves in a nice field, some distance back from the water. They could see the boys and their dog still watching near the bank to catch Jane Fuzzy-Wuzzy, and the boys never knew how the muskrat and the rabbit children escaped.
“My! but that was exciting,” said Sammie, when they were on their way home.
“Indeed it was,” agreed Susie. “I’m so frightened that I have almost forgotten how to swim.”
“It will all come back to you the next time you go in the water,” said Jane Fuzzy-Wuzzy. “But I must hurry home now, or dinner will be late.”
They got to the burrow without anything more happening. Mamma Littletail and Uncle Wiggily Longears were much alarmed when told about the narrow escape.
“Those boys!” cried the old rabbit. “If I wasn’t laid up with rheumatism, I’d show them!” and he snapped his teeth in quite a savage manner indeed, for a rabbit can get angry at times.