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Full Online Book HomeLong StoriesBunny Brown And His Sister Sue Playing Circus - Chapter 19. Hard Work
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Bunny Brown And His Sister Sue Playing Circus - Chapter 19. Hard Work Post by :Kai_Viti Category :Long Stories Author :Laura Lee Hope Date :May 2012 Read :3282

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Bunny Brown And His Sister Sue Playing Circus - Chapter 19. Hard Work

CHAPTER XIX. HARD WORK

Mrs. Brown did not quite understand what Sue said about the storm washing away the circus tents. So she asked the little girl to explain.

"Why, Bunker Blue said," Sue told her mother, "that if the storm was too hard, the brook would get full of water, and wash away our circus tents. And I don't want that, 'cause me and Bunny is going to do an act, only it's a secret and I can't tell you. Only--Oh, dear!" cried Sue, as she saw a very bright flash of lightning. "It's going to bang again!"

"But you musn't be afraid of the storm," said Mother Brown. "See, Bunny isn't afraid!"

"Yes, I _is afraid too!" cried the little boy, who slept in the next room. "I _is afraid, but I wasn't goin' to tell!"

"Well, that's being brave--not to show that you are afraid," said Mother Brown. "Come now, Sue, you be brave, like Bunny."

"But I can't, Mother! I don't want the circus to be spoiled!"

"Oh, I guess the tents are good and strong," said Mr. Brown, who had gotten up to see what Sue was crying for. "They won't blow away."

It was about eleven o'clock at night, and quite dark, except when the lightning came. Then the loud thunder would sound, "just like circus wagons rumbling over a bridge," as Bunny told Sue, to try and make his little sister feel less afraid.

But all Sue could talk of was the circus tents, that might be blown over by the strong wind, which was now rattling the shutters and windows of the farmhouse. Or else the white canvas houses might be washed away by the high water.

While Mr. and Mrs. Brown sat up, trying to comfort Sue, by telling her and Bunny a fairy story, there were sounds heard in another part of the house.

"I guess that's Grandpa Brown getting up to see if his cows and horses are all right," said mother. "The cows and horses are not afraid in a storm, Sue."

"Maybe they are, but they can't talk and tell us about it," said Sue, who was not quite so frightened now.

Grandpa Brown could be heard speaking to some one in the hall.

"Hello, Bunker Blue," he called, "is that you getting up?"

"Yes, Mr. Brown," was the answer the children heard.

"And who is that with you?"

"Ben Hall."

"What are you going to do?" Bunny Brown heard his grandpa ask.

"We're going down to see about our circus tents," said Bunker. "We're afraid they may be carried away in the storm."

"Well, perhaps they may," said Grandpa Brown. "It's a bad storm all right, but we'll be safe and comfortable in the house. Take a lantern with you, if you're going out, and be careful."

"We will," promised Bunker.

Bunny put on his slippers and bath robe and went to the bedroom door. It was open a little way, and out in the hall he could see Bunker Blue and Ben Hall. The two big boys had on rubber boots and rubber coats, for it was raining hard.

"Oh, Bunker!" called Bunny. "May I go with you?"

"What, little shaver! Are you awake?" Bunker asked. "You'd better get back to bed. It's raining cats and dogs!"

"Really?" called Sue, from her father's lap, where she was sitting all "cuddled up." "Is it really raining cats and dogs? Is it raining my dog Splash? If it is I want to see it!"

"No, I didn't exactly mean that," answered Bunker with a laugh. "I meant it was raining such big drops that they are almost as large as little baby cats and dogs. But it is storming too hard for you two youngsters to come out. Ben and I will see about the tents."

"Don't let them blow away!" begged Bunny.

"Or wash down the brook," added Sue.

"We won't!" promised the big boys.

Then they went out into the storm. The wind was blowing so hard they could not carry umbrellas, for if they had taken them the umbrellas would have been blown inside out in a minute. But with rubber hats, coats and boots Bunker and Ben could not get very wet.

Bunny and Sue, looking from their windows, saw the flicker of the lantern, as Bunker and Ben walked with it toward the circus tents.

Harder rumbled the thunder, and brighter flashed the lightning. The rain pounded on the roof as though it would punch holes in it, and come through to wet Bunny and Sue. But nothing like that happened, and soon the two children began to feel sleepy again, even though the storm still kept up.

"I--I guess I'll go to bed," said Sue. "Will you stay by me a little while, Daddy?"

"Yes," answered her father. "I'll sit right by your little bed."

"And hold my hand until I get to sleep?"

"Yes, I'll hold your hand, Sue."

"All right. Then I won't be scared any more. You can hold Bunny's hand, Mother."

"Pooh, I'm not afraid!" said Bunny. "But I like you to hold my hand, Mother!" he added quickly, for fear his mother would go away and leave him.

"All right, I'll sit by you," she said, with a smile.

Bunny and Sue soon fell asleep again. The thunder was not quite so loud, nor the lightning so bright, but it rained harder than ever, and as Bunny felt his eyes growing heavy, so that he was almost asleep, he again thought of what might happen to the circus tents.

"If they wash away down the brook, we can't have any show," he thought. "But maybe it won't happen."

Bunny roused up a little later, when some one came into the farmhouse. The little boy thought it was Bunker and Ben, but he was too sleepy to get up and ask. He heard some one, that sounded like his grandpa, ask:

"Did they wash away?"

Then Bunker's voice answered:

"Yes, they both washed away. It's a regular flood down in the meadow. Everything is spoiled!"

"I wonder--I wonder if he means the circus?" thought Bunny, but he was too sleepy to do anything more, just then, than wonder.

In the morning, however, when the storm had passed, Bunny Brown and his sister Sue heard some bad news. After breakfast Bunker and Ben came in and Bunker said:

"Well, little folks, I guess we can't have any circus!"

"No circus!" cried Bunny, and he was so surprised that he dropped his fork with a clatter on his plate, waking up Splash, the big dog, who was asleep in one corner of the room.

"Why can't we have a circus?" asked Sue. She and Bunny had almost forgotten about the storm the night before.

"We can't have a circus," explained Bunker, "because both our tents were washed away during the night. The brook, that is generally so small that you can wade across it, was so filled with rain water that it was almost turned into a river. It flooded the meadow, the water washed out the tent poles and pegs, and down the tents fell, flat. Then the water rose higher and washed them away."

"Where did it wash them?" asked Bunny.

"Oh, away down toward the river, I guess. I'm afraid we'll never get 'em back."

"It's too bad," said Ben. "Just when we were all ready for the nice circus. But, Bunker, we won't give up yet. We'll look for those tents, and maybe we can put them up again."

"Well, maybe we can do it," said the red-haired boy. "But I'm afraid everything is spoiled."

"We'll help you look for the tents," said Bunny. "Won't we, Sue?"

"If--if the water isn't too deep," said Sue. She was always afraid of deep water, though she, like Bunny, was learning to swim.

"Oh, the water isn't deep now," Bunker assured her. "It was a regular flood in the night when Ben and I went out to look at it, but it has all gone down now, since the rain stopped."

"Was it deep when you were out last night?" Bunny wanted to know.

"It surely was," answered Bunker. "It was almost over our boots. We couldn't get near the tents, and we had to watch them be knocked down by the flood, and carried away on the big waves. Then we came back to the house."

"We couldn't do anything in the dark, anyhow," remarked Ben. "But now that it's daylight maybe we can find the tents."

"We'll help--come on!" exclaimed Bunny to his sister.

They finished their breakfast, and, after promising to keep out of mischief, Bunny and Sue were allowed to go with Bunker and Ben to look for the missing tents.

First they went down to the meadow where the white canvas houses had been first put up. The brook was higher than Bunny or Sue had ever seen it before, and the bent-over, twisted and muddy grass showed how high up in the meadow the water had come. There were some wooden pegs still left in the ground, to show where the tents had stood.

"And now they're gone," said Bunny sadly.

"Yes. Carried away in the flood," remarked Bunker.

"But maybe we'll find them," said Ben hopefully.

They walked along the bank of the brook. About a mile farther on it flowed into a small river.

"And if our tents have floated down the river we may never get them back," said Bunker. "Now everybody look, and whoever first sees the white tents, caught on a stone or on a log, tell us, and we'll try to get them," said Bunker.

You may be sure Bunny and Sue kept their eyes wide open, and were very desirous to be the first to see the tents. It was Sue who had the first good look.

As she and Bunny, with Ben, Bunker and some other big boys who had come to help, went around a turn in the brook, Sue, who had run on ahead, saw something white bobbing up and down in the water.

"Oh, there's a tent--maybe!" she cried.

The others ran to her side.

"So it is!" shouted Bunker. "That's the small tent, caught fast on a rock in the brook. We'll get that out first!"

He and the other boys took off their shoes and stockings, and waded out to the tent. It was hard work to get it to shore, but they finally managed to do it. The tent was wet and muddy, and torn in two places, but it could be dried out, mended and used.

"And now for the big tent--see if _you can find that, Bunny!" called Ben.

But Bunny was not as lucky as was his sister Sue. After they had walked on half a mile farther, it was Bunker himself who saw the big tent, caught on a sunken tree, just where the brook flowed into the river.

"Now if we get that we'll be all right," he said.

"Yes, but it isn't going to be as easy to get that as it was the little one," commented Ben Hall. "We'll have to work very hard to get that tent to shore."

"I'll help," offered Bunny Brown, and the other boys laughed. Bunny was so little to offer to help get the big tent on shore.

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CHAPTER XVIII. THE STORM"Bunny! Won't it be just grand!" whispered Sue to her brother, as they walked along ahead of the balloon man. "Fine!" said Bunny. "We'll have him stand outside the tent, and sell his balloons. It'll look just like a real circus then. It wouldn't without the balloons; would it, Sue?" "No. And, oh, Bunny! I've thought of something else." "What is it?" "Pink lemonade." "Pink lemonade?" "Yes, we'll have the balloon man sell that, and peanuts. Then it will be more than ever like a real circus." "But how can he sell pink lemonade and peanuts and balloons?"
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