“Wake up, sleepyhead. Fresh grass is calling to us. I’m hungry.” Albert hopped over to Eddy to push him with his front paws before rolling over on him, laughing the whole time.
“Leave me alone.” Eddy protested as he bounced on his brother. They wrestled around giggling until their mom came in. She was the fastest rabbit in the family.
“What are you boys doing? Are you two going to play all morning or go with me to get something to eat?” She waited at the entrance to their room in the burrow, thumping her back paw impatiently. “On the way home last night, I saw some new growth that will make a tasty way to start the day. It’s a little far, so we will have to be careful.”
“An adventure,” Albert exclaimed. “Let’s go. I’m ready for an adventure.”
“I’m not sure,” Eddy added. “That sounds fun, but isn’t it dangerous?” He was always cautious. Stories mom told about the coyotes, predatory birds, and the most dangerous of all, humans. Doubt filled him.
“I’ll be with you, Eddy.” Mom tried to reassure him.
“Afraid of a flying rodent? Come on, Eddy, it will be fun.” Albert rolled over Eddy as he teased him.
“Okay, okay.” Eddy reluctantly replied.
Albert waited for Eddy to follow behind his mother so he wouldn’t back out. Finally, they made their way to the surface where they had burrowed down from a fallen tree. The tree trunk rotted out enough, so it was easy going through. Mom stuck her head out first to make sure it was safe.
Mom’s nose twitched as she slowly stepped out of the safety of the tree trunk. Not far away was a trail used by humans. She turned to look at her boys. “Okay, let’s go.” As she started toward the meadow, the boys followed. Carefully, they moved from tall grass to tress and back to tall grass. Eddy was sniffing all the tasty flowers and grasses as they passed some of his favorite weeds. Eddy spotted a family of deer grazing in the grass. He couldn’t watch them because mom was moving fast, and he didn’t want to get left behind.
Soon, they reached the meadow. Mom was right. It was a field filled with new growth of weeds, twigs, and fresh grass with the right amount of morning dew. Eddy quenched his thrust while eating breakfast. What a perfect morning. Suddenly a shadow blocked the sun for a moment. He froze.
“Run, Eddy, it’s a vulture,” Albert warned as he ran past Eddy.
“Run, boys,” Mom called out as she caught up to them. “Hide behind that tree.”
Hopping as fast as they could, all three made it to the tree. Eddy’s heart was racing. He was trembling with fear. He had seen what a vulture could do, and he didn’t want that to happen to him, his brother, or his mom. Albert stopped behind the tree, and Eddy was running so fast he ran into Albert.
“Hey, watch it. You almost pushed me out where the vulture could see me.” Albert exclaimed.
“Sorry,” Eddy replied as his mom peeked around the tree.
“Don’t look, boys,” Mom whispered firmly to them. “Oh.” She exclaimed as the boys heard the cry of a field mouse. “I think it’s time we go.” But, before they could leave, the screams of the field mouse stopped.
Eddy knew what that meant. The joy of the morning faded as they hurried back to the meadow of their burrow. The sun was high in the sky now. Hunger overshadowed the terrible cries of the field mouse as the three of them went about the meadow eating.
Albert finished first and ran over Eddy rolling over him as he was eating. Eddy laughed and did the same thing to Albert. Mom yelled out. “Quite boys. I think I hear something coming.” Mom was on her back legs setting up, twitching her ears, and sniffing the air. “Back to the burrow, quickly.” Mom started back to the burrow behind Albert and Eddy. “ Don’t look back, boys,” Mom yelled as they headed for the hollow tree trunk.
That’s when they heard a dog running toward them through the meadow. It was moving fast. Eddy was frightened and running as fast as he could. When they reached the hollow tree, Albert entered first, with Eddy close behind. That’s when they heard the dog growl. Mom hit the tree hard, scrambling into the hollow before letting out a cry. “Oh.” Humans were yelling outside as the dog growling and scratching at the tree. Eddy turned to look as mom limped down the hollow tree toward him. “Get into the burrow. We’ll be safe there.”
Eddy and Albert waited inside the burrow as mom poked her head down to look at them. “Here I come.” She landed hard, not like the graceful way she usually did. She kicked her leg a couple of times while the boys stared, fearing how bad she got hurt.
“I’m okay, boys. When I crawled inside the hollow tree, I hit my leg. I’ll be fine in a few minutes.
Eddy and Albert went to her sniff her leg as she lay on her side. They didn’t see any blood. Then, after a few minutes, she got up and cuddled with them to reassure them. “Tomorrow, I think we will stay here, in our meadow.”
I hope you enjoyed the short story of Eddy and Albert. Hiking is a passion of mine. A trail by the lake filled with wildlife is inspirational. Red-tailed hawks, vultures, rabbits, and deer are always there, even if they are just out of sight. Nature is a wonder. I hope to inspire you to take a walk through a nature trail near you. Take time to see what wonders God has placed in your area. For me, it can be breathtaking.
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