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Full Online Book HomeShort StoriesThe Tale Of Jimmy Rabbit - XVI - Red Leggins
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The Tale Of Jimmy Rabbit - XVI - Red Leggins Post by :tonyelmer Category :Short Stories Author :Arthur Scott Bailey Date :April 2012 Read :1566

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The Tale Of Jimmy Rabbit - XVI - Red Leggins

XVI - Red Leggins

It was winter. And you would naturally think that Jimmy Rabbit would be happy, there was so much snow to play in. But he wasn't. I am sorry to say that he was sulking in the house, while all his friends were out of doors, having a good time in the snow.

The trouble was this: Mrs. Rabbit wouldn't let Jimmy play in the snowdrifts unless he wore his red leggins. And Jimmy just hated them. None of the other youngsters had to wear red leggins. And they made all manner of fun of Jimmy, and called him names, whenever he appeared in those bright red things.

The worst name that they called him was one that Fatty Coon made up. It was "Red Legs." And it was a little more than Jimmy could bear. So Jimmy said he would rather not go out at all, than wear those horrid leggins.

"Very well!" his mother said.

But all the time Jimmy kept wishing he was out there with the others. He could hear them laughing and shouting.

"Mayn't I go out without my leggins if I stay in my own yard?" he asked his mother.

"Yes!" she said, "if you won't step in the deep snow." So Jimmy went outside and watched his friends.

"Come on, Jimmy!" they cried. "Tommy Fox has taught us a new game. It's fox-and-geese!"

But Jimmy Rabbit shook his head.

"I can't!" he said. "I'm too busy."

"Ho! Jimmy Rabbit has to work!" somebody cried.

But Jimmy Rabbit smiled.

"Maybe you'd call it work," he said. "But I call it a good deal of fun.... I'm forming a club," he told them.

"A club? What's that?" asked Frisky Squirrel.

"It's a jolly band of fellows," Jimmy told him. "Sort of a secret society, you know. We'll have all kinds of fun."

"Who's in your club?"

"That's one of the secrets," Jimmy answered. "We don't tell."

"I'd like to join," Frisky told him. And the others all said that they would like to be members, too.

"Well, everything has to be very private," Jimmy said. "Anybody who wants to belong to the club has to come and ask me. And I'll tell him what to do, if I want him to belong.... One at a time, now! Don't crowd!" Jimmy said. For everybody was coming inside his yard.

He stood at one side and wouldn't talk above a whisper. And to each of his friends he said:

"You have to have a uniform, you know.... The name of the club is The Scarlet Spies. And everyone who is in it must wear a pair of scarlet leggins."

Just as soon as they learned that, the whole troop hurried away. And by afternoon the woods seemed to have turned red, there were so many pairs of scarlet leggins twinkling almost anywhere you looked.

In fact, there was only one of Jimmy's young neighbors who hadn't been able to get a pair. And that was Fatty Coon. Goodness knows he wanted some scarlet leggins. But his mother simply would not buy him any, in spite of all his teasing.

"Why are we called The Scarlet Spies?" Frisky Squirrel asked Jimmy.

"Because we spy on everybody who doesn't wear the uniform," Jimmy Rabbit explained. "Now, there's Fatty Coon! We'll follow him wherever he goes, and watch everything he does. But we mustn't have anything to do with him, because he's what is called an 'outsider'."

Fatty Coon didn't like it at all when he found that The Scarlet Spies were following him about, hiding behind trees, and peeping at him.

"Shucks!" he cried. "Those are nothing but red leggins! Jimmy Rabbit has played another trick on you."

But Jimmy Rabbit didn't mind what he said. He could play in the snow now without being called names. And that was enough for him.

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