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Full Online Book HomeShort StoriesThe Tale Of Jimmy Rabbit - XIII - Mr. Crow's Picture
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The Tale Of Jimmy Rabbit - XIII - Mr. Crow's Picture Post by :pompeydas Category :Short Stories Author :Arthur Scott Bailey Date :April 2012 Read :5196

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The Tale Of Jimmy Rabbit - XIII - Mr. Crow's Picture

XIII - Mr. Crow's Picture

In the woods near the foot of Blue Mountain news travels fast. Soon everybody knew that Jimmy Rabbit had become an artist. And many of the woods-people put on their best clothes and hurried to Jimmy's house, to have their pictures painted.

They were disappointed when Jimmy told them all that they would have to wait.

"But after I've made a picture of Mr. Crow you shall each have your turn," he promised.

Some of them grumbled. And Mr. Fox, especially, was very disagreeable.

"I was the first one here," he said. "I don't see why I should have to wait for old Mr. Crow."

But Jimmy Rabbit would not listen to him. He felt quite important.

"I shall have to ask you all to go away now," he said. "Painting pictures is very difficult work. It would make me nervous to have so many people watching me."

So his callers left him--all but Mr. Fox.

"I'm going to stay right here," Mr. Fox said. "And as soon as you finish with Mr. Crow, you can begin my picture." And he looked so surly that Jimmy Rabbit didn't dare object.

At last Mr. Crow arrived.

"I'd have been here before," he said, "but I stopped to get a new hat."

"That's too bad!" Jimmy told him. "You know, gentlemen never wear hats when they're having their portraits painted. But I'll tell you what you can do," he added, for he saw that Mr. Crow was disappointed. "You can hold your hat in your hand."

That seemed to make Mr. Crow feel better. But Mr. Fox almost spoiled everything by saying, "Then he'll have to stand on one leg."

Jimmy Rabbit hadn't thought of that. And Mr. Crow only made it harder for him. For he said in a loud voice, "No hat, no picture!"

Jimmy Rabbit thought very hard. And pretty soon he smiled all over his face.

"It's all right!" he said. "I know how to fix it, Mr. Crow. You can hold your hat, just as I said."

So everybody was happy again--except Mr. Fox, who had hoped that old Mr. Crow would go away.

Jimmy Rabbit showed Mr. Crow where to stand. And then he began to paint. And while he worked, Mr. Fox looked over his shoulder.

It was not long before something seemed to please Mr. Fox, for he smiled broadly.

Mr. Crow noticed that grin.

"What's he laughing at?" he asked. "I don't see anything to laugh at."

Jimmy Rabbit looked around. But Mr. Fox was as solemn as an owl.

"He isn't laughing," said Jimmy.

"Certainly not!" said Mr. Fox. "Your eyes must be bad, Mr. Crow."

"Well, I didn't bring my spectacles," Mr. Crow answered. "I thought I'd look better without them."

After that Mr. Fox managed to keep a sober face. But inside he was laughing as hard as could be.

"What makes him shake so?" Mr. Crow asked, a few minutes later.

"I must have caught cold," Mr. Fox replied. "I've been chilly all the morning."

"You'd better go home," Jimmy Rabbit advised him. But Mr. Fox wouldn't have left for anything.

"Now he's choking!" Mr. Crow said. "I declare, I can't have my picture painted with such goings-on." And he started to fly away.

But Jimmy Rabbit begged him to stand still just a little longer.

"The picture is almost done," he said. "There!" he added, a bit later. "It's finished. And I know you'll be pleased."

It was clear that Mr. Fox was pleased, for he was actually beaming. Jimmy thought he had never seen him look so pleasant. Mr. Crow had to ask him to stand aside, so he could have a look.

"I should think I might gaze on my own picture," he grumbled.

At first Mr. Crow was delighted. Then he seemed somewhat puzzled.

"The face is good," he said. "And no one could ask for a better picture of a hat. But there's something that doesn't look quite right." And all at once Mr. Crow saw what was the matter. And he flew at the picture and ran his bill through it in a dozen places. "The idea!" he said. "I've never been so insulted in all my life!" And without another word he flew out of sight.

It was no wonder that he was angry. For in the picture Jimmy Rabbit had painted him with four legs!

"Well," said Jimmy, "he needn't be so cross about it. It was his own fault. He wanted to hold his hat. And I just had to give him more than one leg to stand on."

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