“Oh! the moon! the moon!” Fatty shouted. He had run so fast that, being so plump, he was quite out of breath. And that was all he could say.
“Well, well! What about the moon!” Mrs. Coon asked. “Anybody would think you had found it, almost.” And she smiled.
Fatty puffed and gasped. And at last he caught his breath again.
“Yes—I’ve found it! It’s over in the woods—just a little way from here!” he said. “Big, and round, and shiny! Let’s all go and bring it home!”
“Well, well, well!” Mrs. Coon was puzzled. She had never heard of the moon being found in those woods; and she hardly knew what to think. “Are you sure?” she asked.
“Oh, yes, Mother!” Fatty could hardly wait, he was so eager to lead the way. And with many a shake of the head, Mrs. Coon, with her family, started off to see the moon.
“There!” Fatty cried, as they came in sight of the bright, round thing. “There it is—just as I told you!” And they all set up a great shouting.
All but Mrs. Coon. She wasn’t quite sure, even yet, that Fatty had really found the moon. And she walked close to the shining thing and peered at it. But not too close! Mrs. Coon didn’t go too near it. And she told her children quite sternly to stand back. It was well that she did; for when Mrs. Coon took her eyes off Fatty’s moon and looked at the ground beneath it—well! she jumped back so quickly that she knocked two of her children flat on the ground.
A trap! That was what Mrs. Coon saw right in front of her. And Farmer Green, or his boy, or whoever it was that set the trap, had hung that bright piece of tin over the trap hoping that one of her family would see it and play with it—and fall into the trap. Yes—it was a mercy that Fatty hadn’t begun knocking it about. For if he had he would have stepped right into the trap and it would have shut—Snap! Just like that. And there he would have been, caught fast.
It was no wonder that Mrs. Coon hurried her family away from that spot. And Fatty led them all home again. He couldn’t get away from his moon fast enough.
THE LOGGERS COME
Fatty Coon was frightened; he had just waked up and he heard a sound that was exactly like the noise Farmer Green and his hired man had made when they cut down the tall chestnut tree where he was perched.
“Oh, Mother! What is it?” he cried.
“The loggers have come,” Mrs. Coon said. “They are cutting down all the big trees in the swamp.”
“Then we’ll have to move, won’t we?” Fatty asked.
“No! They won’t touch this tree,” his mother told him. “It’s an old tree, and hollow—so they won’t chop it down. It’s only the good sound trees that they’ll take.”
“But I thought this was a good tree.” Fatty was puzzled.
“So it is, my son! It’s a good tree for us. But not for the loggers. They would have little use for it.”