Sunday, October 21, 2012

The Dobescue Rescue

 From the prompt: How the rabbits were smuggled into the hat

The hunters were coming. We all could feel it well before we heard the dogs. Sins, they’d said; we’d sinned against nature they shouted. It was just lettuce for all that’s holy’s sake, we were hungry! So we don’t have a monetary system that they’d have recognized and couldn’t pay for what we’d taken in a currency they’d have sanctioned; I left a pile of pellets after all. What do they think we trade with? Drachmas? How’d that work for the Greeks of their kind? Not so well I’d venture!

Enough of that, the hunters were coming and we needed a foolproof place to hide or we’d soon be stewmeat. Just then a wagon appeared behind us, that we’d might have heard save the fact that our ears are cupped so we only hear what’s directly before us and we were all concentrating on the dogs (And being cute, but then when doesn’t a rabbit concentrate on being cute).

The driver of the wagon lept from his perch and stood before us, bowing slightly at the waist while doffing his hat and waving it so low that it scraped the ground.

“Ahh, just the creatures I’d hoped to see” he said with a Romani accent and perfectly toothed smile; “don’t be afraid, I won’t hurt you.”

It’s not often a human will speak in rabbit. Hell, we seldom speak in rabbit ourselves as porcupine has been found to far better lend itself to the mechanics of conversation. I knew he must have gone to a lot of trouble to learn our dialect, and so I regarded him seriously and allowed him his due, in spite of the yapping in the near distance.

“And what might we lowly cuniculus  do for a traveled man such as yourself, and hurry with your answer please as we are in the process of running for our lives.”

“Wonderful!” he exclaimed, which made me a little nervous considering I couldn’t be sure of his context. “I may have just the thing for you then! You see, I am a traveling magician, and my wagon was broken into and robbed in the last village I visited.”

“I’m afraid we don’t have time to listen to your biography sir; if you would be so kind as to shorten your anecdote and make your request within the next 20 words we would be much obliged.” I hoped I hadn’t hurt his feelings of course as it would definitely alter my cuteness rating in the negative, but in the circumstances I had to risk it.

“Understood” he said using a compound word, cleverly leaving him a full nineteen words with which to finish. “I need a bunny for my tricks. You’d be fed well, pampered really. You don’t need to sign a contract, if you find you don’t enjoy my company you may leave at will but I would ask you to give it an effort if you agree to join me; say a month perhaps before you decide?”

I almost didn’t hear what he’d said, so busy was I, counting the words that rules breakingly slid past his lying lips. I wanted to smack him for ignoring my demand, but the braying I was now hearing meant the dogs were closeby and our options were becoming more limited.

I looked at Radish. She nodded, quaveringly.

“If you take us both and do it right now, it’s a deal” I said, stating what I assumed was obvious, that I would not leave my partner and mother of a thousand of my children.

“But I only really need…

I scowled. He stepped back. He’d either recognized it was my way or the highway, or he’d never contemplated the fact that bunnies can indeed scowl, and so was staggered.

He looked up. Slathering mutts could be heard crashing through the brush. He looked down, inspecting my firm demeanor and waggling finger (Yes, a rabbit has fingers! What the hell is wrong with you humans?!)

“Done” he said, as he scooped us off the ground and slipped us into his massive top hat, which he then slapped back atop his oblong and balding head, which was relatively comfortable actually, much like a boulder which had been baking in the sun.

He smuggled us out of the wood that day, and I gave him his month in gratitude; and then another month, and then another. And that’s how your grandmother and I became Magic Rabbits and retired onto this lettuce farm that the magician Donnie Dobescue kindly purchased for us.

“Wow” said Punkin. “Gosh” said Furball. “Grampa?” Legolump said, “will you tell us about when you and gramma joined the circus?”

I was tired, but how does one say no to 324 grandkids. I had them gather closer so I didn’t need to raise my voice, and I began.

“The villagers were coming, torches in hand! Donny had stolen a few things and …..

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