You know when Uncle Wiggily Longears, the old rabbit gentleman, started out to look for his fortune, he had to travel many weary miles, and many adventures happened to him. Some of those adventures I have told you in the book just before this one, and now I am going to tell you about his travels when he hoped to find a lot of money, so he would be rich.
One day, as I told you in the last story in the other book, Uncle Wiggily came to a farm, and there he had quite an adventure with a little boy. And this little boy had on red trousers, because, I guess, his blue ones were in the washtub. Anyhow, he and the rabbit gentleman became good friends.
And now I am going to tell you what happened when Uncle Wiggily met the red squirrel.
“Where do you think you will go to look for your fortune to-day, Uncle Wiggily?” asked the little boy with the red trousers the next morning, after the rabbit had stayed all night at the farm house.
“I do not know,” said the rabbit gentleman. “Perhaps I had better do some traveling at night. I couldn’t find the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, but perhaps there may be a gold, or silver fortune, at the end of a moon-beam. I think I’ll try.”
“Oh, but don’t you get sleepy at night?” asked the little boy’s mother as she fried an ice cream cone for Uncle Wiggily’s breakfast.
“Well, I could sleep in the day time, and then I would stay awake at night,” answered the traveling uncle, blinking his ears.
“Oh, but aren’t you afraid of the bogeyman at night?” inquired the boy with the red hair—I mean trousers.
“There are no such things as bogeymen,” said Uncle Wiggily, “and if there were any, they would not harm you. I am not a bit afraid in the dark, except that I don’t like mosquitoes to bite me. I think I’ll travel to-morrow night, and look for gold at the end of the moon-beam.”
So he started off that day, and he went only a short distance, for he wanted to find a place to sleep in order that he would be wide awake when it got dark.
Well, he found a nice, soft place under a pile of hay, and there he stretched out to slumber as nicely as if he were in his bed at home. He even snored a little bit, I believe, or else it was Bully Frog croaking one of his songs.
The day passed, and the sun went down, and it got all ready to be night, and still Uncle Wiggily slept on soundly. But all of a sudden he heard voices whispering:
“Now you go that way and I’ll go this way, and we’ll catch that rabbit and put him in a cage and sell him!”
Well, you can just believe that Uncle Wiggily was frightened when he awakened suddenly and saw two bad boys softly creeping up and making ready to catch him.
“Oh, this is no place for me!” the rabbit cried, and he grabbed up his crutch and his valise and hopped away so fast that the boys couldn’t catch him, no matter how fast they could run, even bare-footed.