So Uncle Wiggily went to bed, red spots and all, and Nurse Jane made him hot carrot and sassafras tea, with whipped cream and chocolate in it. The cream was not whipped because it was bad, you know, but only just in fun, to make it stand up straight.
All the next day the bunny uncle stayed in bed with his red spots, though he wanted very much to go out in the woods looking for an adventure. And when evening came and Nurse Jane was sitting out on the front porch of the hollow stump bungalow, she suddenly heard a quacking sound, and along came Lulu, Alice and Jimmie Wibblewobble, the duck children.
“Where is Uncle Wiggily?” asked Lulu.
“He is in bed,” answered Nurse Jane.
“Why is he in bed?” asked Jimmie. “Was he bad?”
“No, indeed,” laughed Nurse Jane. “But your Uncle Wiggily is in bed because he has the red-spotted measles. What did you want of him?”
“He promised to meet us in the woods, where the green moss grows,” answered Lulu, “and play tag with us. We waited and waited, and played tag all by ourselves tonight, even jumping in the bush, as Uncle Wiggily accidentally did when he was chasing me, but he did not come along. So we came here to see what is the matter.”
The three duck children came up on the porch, where the bright light shone on them from inside the bungalow.
“Oh, my goodness me sakes alive and some paregoric lollypops!” cried Nurse Jane, as she looked at the three. “You ducks are all covered with red spots, too! You all have the measles! Oh, my!”
“Measles!” cried Jimmie, the boy duck.
“Measles? These aren’t measles, Nurse Jane! These are sticky, red berries from the bushes we jumped in as Uncle Wiggily did. The red berries are sticky, like burdock burrs, and they stuck to us.”
“Oh, my goodness!” cried Nurse Jane. “Wait a minute, children!” Then she ran to where Uncle Wiggily was lying in bed. She leaned over and picked off some of the red spots from his fur.
“Why!” cried the muskrat lady. “You haven’t the measles at all, Wiggy! It’s just sticky, red berries in your fur, just as they are in the ducks’ feathers. You’re all right! Get up and have a good time!”
And Uncle Wiggily did, after Nurse Jane had combed the red, sticky burr-berries out of his fur. He didn’t have the measles at all, for which he was very glad, because he could now be up and play tag.
“My goodness! That certainly was a funny mistake for all of us,” said Dr. Possum next day. “But the red spots surely did look like the measles.” Which shows us that things are not always what they seem.
And if the—Oh, excuse me, if you please. There is not going to be a next story in this book. It is already as full as it can be, so the story after this will have to be put in the following book, which also means next.
Let me see, now. Oh, I know. Next I’m going to tell you some stories about the old gentleman growing cabbages, lettuce and things like that out of the ground, and the book will be called “Uncle Wiggily on The Farm.” It will be ready for you by Christmas, I think, and I hope you will like it.