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Full Online Book HomeLong StoriesSix Little Bunkers At Mammy June's - Chapter 20. Goosey-Goosey-Gander
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Six Little Bunkers At Mammy June's - Chapter 20. Goosey-Goosey-Gander Post by :louis1899 Category :Long Stories Author :Laura Lee Hope Date :May 2012 Read :3285

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Six Little Bunkers At Mammy June's - Chapter 20. Goosey-Goosey-Gander


The Bunker children, especially Russ and Rose, felt truly anxious because of Mammy June's unhappiness about her absent son. The boy they all called Sneezer should have been home now when his mother was crippled with rheumatism and had lost her home and all her little possessions.

She worried audibly and continually about Sneezer. Russ and Rose took counsel together more than once. They had hoped that their signs put up at the site of the burned cabin would have satisfied Mammy June that her son would come up to the big house whenever, or if ever, he returned to his old home. Now the Bunker children were not so sure.

When Russ and Rose told Philly Armatage what they had done she said:

"Mebbe he'll think the writing is just to keep ha'nts away. He can't read writing. He always worked in the fields or up here at the house. Those signs aren't any good--just as Mammy June says."

This opinion caused Russ and Rose additional anxiety. They did not know what to do about it. Even the boy's inventive mind was at fault in the emergency.

While the older Bunker brother and sister were troubled in this way and Laddie and Vi were recovering from their adventure with the red fox, Margy and Mun Bun were, as usual, having their own pleasures and difficulties. The littlest Bunker was a born explorer. Daddy Bunker said so. And Margy was quite as active as the little fellow.

Hand in hand they wandered all about the big house and out-of-doors as well. There was always supposed to be somebody to watch them, especially if they went near the barns or paddocks where the horses and mules were. But sometimes the little folks slipped away from even Mother Bunker's observation.

The gardener often talked to the littlest Bunkers, and he saw, too, that they did no more mischief around the greenhouse. When he saw them that afternoon trotting down the hill toward the poultry houses he failed to follow them. He had his work to do, of course, and it did not enter his head that Mun Bun and Margy could get into much trouble with the poultry.

Margy and Mun Bun were delighted with the "chickens" as they called most of the fowl the Armatages kept. But there were many different kinds--not alone of hens and roosters; for there were peafowl, and guineas, and ducks, and turkeys. And in addition there was a flock of gray geese.

"Those are gooseys," Margy announced, pointing through the slats of the low fence which shut in the geese and their strip of the branch, or brook, and the grass plot which the geese had all to themselves.

"Goosey, goosey gander!" chanted Mun Bun, clinging to the top rail of the fence and looking through the slats. "Which is ganders and which is gooseys, Margy?"

As though in answer to his query one of the big birds, with a horny crown on its head, stuck out its neck and ran at the little boy looking through the fence. The bird hissed in a most hateful manner too.

"Oh, look out, Mun Bun!" cried his sister. "I guess that's a gander."

But Mun Bun, with a fence between him and the big bird, was as usual very brave.

"I don't have to look out, Margy Bunker," he declared proudly. "I am already out--so he can't get me. Anyway if he came after us I wouldn't let him bite you."

"I guess he would like to bite us," said the little girl, keeping well away from the fence herself.

"That's 'cause he must be hungry," said Mun Bun with confidence. "You see, he hasn't got anything but grass to eat. I guess they forgot to feed him and it makes him mad."

"That is too bad. He is a real pretty bird," agreed Margy. "Wonder if we could feed him?"

"We can ask that nice cook for bwead," said Mun Bun doubtfully.

"They don't feed gooseys bread, I guess," objected the little girl.

"What do they feed 'em?"

"I guess corn--or oats."

"Let's go and get some," said Mun Bun promptly, and he backed away from the fence, still keeping his gaze fixed on the threatening gander.

They both knew where the feed was kept, for they had watched the colored man feed the stock. So they went across to the stables. And nobody saw them enter the feed room.

As usual it did not trouble Margy and Mun Bun that they had not asked permission to feed the geese. What they had not been literally forbidden to do the little folks considered all right. It was true that they were great ones for exploring and experimenting. That is how they managed to get into so much mischief.

In this matter, however, it did not seem as though Margy and Mun Bun could really get into much trouble. They got a little dish and filled it with corn and trotted back to the goose pen. This time the gander did not charge Mun Bun. But the whole flock was down the slope by the water and the little folks had to walk that way along the edge of the fenced lot.

They came to a place where a panel of the fence was crooked. It had been broken, in fact, and it was much easier to push it aside than not. Why! when Mun Bun leaned against it the strip of fence fell right over on to the grass of the goose yard.

"Now see what you've done, Mun Bun!" exclaimed Margy.

"Why--oh--I didn't mean to," sputtered Mun Bun.

"What do you s'pose Mr. Armatage will say?"

"He won't say anything," said Mun Bun briskly. "For he won't see it. And now, Margy, we can throw the corn to those gooseys and ganders much better. See!"

He grabbed a handful of shelled corn out of the dish and scattered it as far as he could toward the flock. At once the gray birds became interested. They stretched their long necks and the big gander uttered a questioning "honk!"

"It's corn--it's real corn!" cried Mun Bun. "Don't be afraid, goosey-goosey-gander," and he shouted with laughter.

Margy threw a handful of corn too. At once the geese drew nearer. When they reached the first kernels they began grabbing them up with that strange shoveling motion with their bills that all geese and ducks make. The children watched them with delight.

But as the geese waddled nearer the old gander began to wiggle his head from side to side and to hiss softly. Margy and Mun Bun looked at each other, and both drew back.

"I don't like that one much," said Margy. "Do you, Mun Bun?"

"I don't like him at all," confessed the little fellow. "I guess we'd better go back. Maybe Mother will be wanting us."

Margy turned as quickly as he did. She had not thrown out all the corn, but as she turned away a few kernels scattered from the dish. Instantly the gander saw this. With a long hiss he started after the two children, and many of his flock kept right behind their leader.

"Oh! Come quick, Mun Bun!" gasped Margy.

Mun Bun seized her hand. As they ran up the slope the corn scattered from the dish. This was enough to keep the flock following. But the big gander did not chase the little boy and girl because of the scattered corn. He was really angry!

The chubby legs of Mun Bun and Margy looked good to that old gander. He ran hissing after them and began to flap his wings. One stroke of one of those wings would knock down either of the children.

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