First he looked this way, and then he looked that way, to be sure that no one saw him, for what he was planning to do was a very dreadful thing, and he knew it. Happy Jack was going to turn burglar. A burglar, you know, is one who breaks into another’s house or barn to steal, which is a very, very dreadful thing to do. Yet this is just what Happy Jack Squirrel was planning to do. He was going to get into that old stump, and if those big, fat hickory nuts were there, as he was sure they were, he was going to take them. He tried very hard to make himself believe that it wouldn’t be stealing. He had watched those nuts in the top of the tall hickory tree so long that he had grown to think that they belonged to him. Of course they didn’t, but he had made himself think they did.
Happy Jack walked all around the old stump, and then he climbed up on top of it. There was only one doorway, and that was the little round hole through which Striped Chipmunk had entered and then come out. It was too small for Happy Jack to even get his head through, though his cousin, Chatterer the Red Squirrel, who is much smaller, could have slipped in easily. Happy Jack sniffed and sniffed. He could smell nuts and corn and other good things. My, how good they did smell! His eyes shone greedily.
Happy Jack took one more hasty look around to see that no one was watching, then with his long sharp teeth he began to make the doorway larger. The wood was tough, but Happy Jack worked with might and main, for he wanted to get those nuts and get away before Striped Chipmunk should return, or any one else should happen along and see him. Soon the hole was big enough for him to get his head inside. It was a storehouse, sure enough. Happy Jack worked harder than ever, and soon the hole was large enough for him to get wholly inside.
What a sight! There was corn! and there were chestnuts and acorns! and there were a few hickory nuts, though these did not look so big and fat as the ones Happy Jack was looking for! Happy Jack chuckled to himself, a wicked, greedy chuckle, as he looked. And then something happened.
“Oh! Oh! Stop it! Leave me alone!” yelled Happy Jack.
HAPPY JACK SQUIRREL’S SAD MISTAKE
A Squirrel always is thrifty. Be as wise as a Squirrel.
“Let me go! Let me go!” yelled Happy Jack, as he backed out of the hollow stump faster than he had gone in, a great deal faster. Can you guess why? I’ll tell you. It was because he was being pulled out. Yes, Sir, Happy Jack Squirrel was being pulled out by his big, bushy tail.