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JIMMY SKUNK IS VERY MAD INDEED
When Jimmy Skunk is angry
Then every one watch out!
It's better far at such a time
To be nowhere about.
IMMY SKUNK was angry this time and no mistake. He was just
plain mad, and when Jimmy Skunk feels that way,
no one wants to be very near him. You know he is one of
the very best-natured little fellows in the world
ordinarily. He minds his own business, and if no one
interferes with him, he interferes with no one. But
once he is aroused and feels that he hasn't been
treated fairly, look out for him!
 And this time Jimmy was mad clear through, as he got to
his feet and shook himself to see that he was all
there. I don't know that any one could blame him. To be
wakened from a comfortable nap by being rolled over and
over and shaken nearly to death as Jimmy had been by
that wild ride down the hill in the old barrel
was enough to make any one mad. So he really is not to
be blamed for feeling as he did.
Now Jimmy can never be accused of being stupid. He knew
that an old barrel which has been lying in one place
for a long time doesn't move of its own accord. He knew
that that barrel couldn't possibly have started off
down the hill unless some one had made it start, and he
didn't have a doubt in the world that whoever had done
it, had known that he was inside and had done it to
make him uncomfortable. So
 just as soon as he had made
sure that he was really alive and quite whole, he
looked about to see who could have played such a trick
The first person he saw was Reddy Fox. In fact, Reddy
was right close at hand. You see, he raced down the
hill after the barrel to see who was in it when he
heard the strange noises coming from it as it rolled
and bounced down. If Reddy had known that it was Jimmy
Skunk, he would have been quite content to remain at
the top of the hill. But he didn't know, and if the
truth be known, he had hopes that it might prove to be
some one who would furnish him with a good breakfast.
So, quite out of breath with running, Reddy arrived at
the place where the old barrel had broken to pieces
just as Jimmy got to his feet.
Now when Jimmy Skunk is angry, he
bite and he doesn't scratch. You know Old Mother Nature
has provided him with a little bag of perfume which
Jimmy doesn't object to in the least, but which makes
most people want to hold their noses and run. He never
uses it, excepting when he is angry or in danger, but
when he does use it, his enemies always turn tail and
run. That is why he is afraid of no one, and why every
one respects Jimmy and his rights.
He used it now, and he didn't waste any time about it.
He threw some of that perfume right in the face of
Reddy Fox before Reddy had a chance to turn or to say a
"Take that!" snapped Jimmy Skunk. "Perhaps it will
teach you not to play tricks on your honest neighbors!"
Poor Reddy! Some of that perfume got in his eyes and
made them smart dreadfully. In fact, for a little while
 he couldn't see at all. And then the smell of it was so
strong that it made him quite sick. He rolled over and
over on the ground, choking and gasping and rubbing his
eyes. Jimmy Skunk just stood and looked on, and there
wasn't a bit of pity in his eyes.
"How do you like that?" said he. "You thought yourself
very smart, rolling me down hill in a barrel, didn't
you? You might have broken my neck."
"I didn't know you were in that barrel, and I didn't
mean to roll it down the hill anyway," whined Reddy,
when he could get his voice.
 "Huh!" snorted Jimmy Skunk, who didn't believe a word
"I didn't. Honestly I didn't," protested Reddy. "I ran
against the barrel by accident, chasing Peter Rabbit. I
didn't have any idea that any one was in it."
"Huh!" said Jimmy Skunk again. "If you were chasing
Peter Rabbit, where is he now?"
Reddy had to confess he didn't know. He was nowhere in
sight, and he certainly hadn't had time to reach the
dear Old Briar-patch. Jimmy looked this way and that
way, but there was no sign of Peter Rabbit.
"Huh!" said he again, turning his back on Reddy Fox and
walking away with a great deal of dignity.