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REDDY FOX GETS INTO TROUBLE
EDDY FOX, curled up behind the big pine stump, was dreaming of a
coop full of chickens, where there was no Bowser the
Hound to watch over them. Suddenly something landed on
him with a thump that knocked all his breath out. For
an instant it frightened Reddy so that he just shook
and shook. Then he got his senses together and
discovered that it was Jimmy Skunk who had jumped on
Jimmy was very polite. He begged Reddy's pardon. He
protested that it was all a mistake. He explained how
Peter Rabbit had played a trick on both of them, and
how he himself was just looking for beetles for
Now, Reddy Fox is very quick-tempered, as soon as he
realized that he had been made the victim of a joke, he
lost his temper completely. He glared at Jimmy Skunk.
He was so angry that he stuttered.
"Y-y-you, y-y-y-you, y-y-y-you did that on
p-p-purpose," said Reddy Fox.
"No such thing!" declared Jimmy Skunk. "I tell you it
was a joke on the part of Peter Rabbit, and if you
don't believe me, just look down there on the Green
Reddy Fox looked. There sat Peter, his hands on his
hips, his long ears pointed straight up to the blue
sky, and his mouth wide open, as he laughed at the
results of his joke.
Reddy shook his fist.
"Ha, ha, ha," shouted Peter Rabbit.
Reddy Fox looked hard at Jimmy Skunk, but like all the
other little meadow and forest people, he has a very
great respect for Jimmy Skunk, and though he would have
liked to quarrel with Jimmy, he thought it wisest not
to. Instead, he started after Peter Rabbit as fast as
his legs could go.
Now, Reddy Fox can run very fast, and when Peter saw
him coming, Peter knew that he would have to use his
own long legs to the very best of his ability. Away
they went across the green meadows. Jimmy Skunk,
sitting on top of the hill, could see the white patch
on the seat of Peter Rabbit's trousers bobbing this way
and that way, and right behind him was Reddy Fox. Now,
Peter Rabbit could run fast enough to keep away from
Reddy for a while. You remember that Peter's eyes are
so placed that he can see behind him without turning
his head. So he knew when Reddy was getting too near.
In and out among the bushes along the edge of the Green
Meadows they dodged, and the more he had to run, the
angrier Reddy Fox grew. He paid no attention to where
they were going; his whole thought was of catching
Now, when Peter began to grow tired he began to work
over towards Farmer Brown's corn field, where he knew
that Farmer Brown's boy was hiding, with Bowser the
Hound. Dodging this way and that way, Peter worked over
to the fence corner, where Jimmy Skunk had watched
Blacky the Crow get caught ina snare. He let Reddy
almost catch him, then he dodged out into the open corn
field, and Reddy, of course, followed him.
Reddy did not need to turn to know what had happened.
Bowser the Hound had seen him and was after him. Peter
just ducked behind a big bunch of grass and sat down to
get his breath, while Reddy started off as hard as he
could go, with Bowser the Hound behind him.