One Good Turn
by Dorene Lang 10/19/2011 / Short Stories
Why that...that danged ol' critter, what's he doin there any how?
A hairy nose twitched and whiskers flitted. The old graying mouse scurried down the rest of the old tree stump. His attitude obviously put off by the cat whose paw tossed a can up and about.
Well I'll be darned, there's something in that there can.
The can landed on the soft dirt and rolled just a split second before the cat whisked it up again and tossed it like a leaf tossed by the wind. In the very brief moment that the can rested still, the mouse could see a pointy little nose and two terrified little black eyes peeking out of the can.
Just a moment later the old mouse was running for all he was worth to the nearest apple tree. He huffed and puffed up the trunk. He aimed his nose at the nearest branch which held the largest, hardest, greenest apple in the tree. As his body rushed toward the apple's stem he took some time to whisper a prayer.
Oh my dear Lord in heaven, please make my aim a true one.
The apple fell onto the head of a mighty offended cat. The cat yelled at the injustice of it and ran screeching down the dirt road. A moment later the mouse sat a few feet from the trembling can watching a fearful nose peak out, and then in.
Why that little mouse is afraid to trust that he is safe.
"Go on little guy, go home. You are safe now".
The little mouse hesitated only a second before jumping out of the can with very little grace. He peeked up at the old mouse and with grateful eyes he whispered,
The old mouse chuckled and watched the younger mouse go out of sight.
He began to realize how old he had become. He left the tree with much more difficulty than he had used climbing it.
As he stepped onto the grassy surface of the ground, he noticed that the cat had returned.
Well, just as surely as I am standing here, that cat's gonna have me fer dinner.
Just as the cat began to head in his direction, another apple fell from the tree. Onto the cat's head, the apple landed. The cat in a rage, darted away again.
The old mouse glanced up to the tree, this time to see a blackbird winking as it flew away.
The moral of the story; one good turn does indeed deserve another.