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Bunny Brown and His Sister Sue in the Big Woods By Laura Lee Hope Characters: 9703

Updated: 2017-12-04 00:03

"Sue! Sue! Where are you?" called a lady, as she stood in the opening of a tent which was under the trees in the big woods. "Where are you, Sue? And where is Bunny?"

For a moment no answers came to the call. But presently, from behind a clump of bushes not far from the tent, stepped a little girl. She held her finger over her lips, just as your teacher does in school when she does not want you to say anything. Then the little girl whispered:

"Sh-h-h-h, Mother. I can't come now."

"Then let Bunny come. He can do what I want."

"Bunny can't come, either."

"Why not?" and Mrs. Brown smiled at her little girl, who seemed very much in earnest as she stood in front of the bushes, her finger still across her lips.

"Bunny can't come, 'cause we're playing soldier and Indian," said Sue. "Bunny's been shot by an Indian arrow and I'm his nurse. He's just got over the fever, same as I did when I had the measles, and he's asleep. And it's awful dangerous to wake anybody up that's just got to sleep after a fever. That's what our doctor said, I 'member."

"Oh, Bunny is just getting over a fever, is he?" asked Mrs. Brown.

"Of course it's only a make-believe fever, Mother," said the little girl. "We're only pretendin' you know"; and she cut her words short, leaving off a "g" here and there, so she could talk faster I suppose.

"Oh, if it's only a make-believe fever it's all right," said Mother Brown with a laugh. "How long do you think Bunny will sleep, Sue?"

"Oh, not very long. Maybe five minutes. 'Cause, you see, when he wakes up he'll be hungry and I've got some pie and cake and some milk for him to eat. Sick folks gets awful hungry when their fever goes away. And it's real things to eat, too, Mother. And when Bunny got make-believe shot with an Indian arrow he said he wasn't going to play fever more'n five minutes 'cause he saw what I had for him to eat."

"Oh well, if he's going to be better in five minutes I can wait that long," said Mrs. Brown. "Go on and have your fun."

"What do you want Bunny to do-or me?" asked Sue, as she turned to go back behind the bush where she and Bunny were having their game.

"I'll tell you when you've finished playing," said Mrs. Brown with a smile. She sometimes found this a better plan than telling the children just what she wanted when she called them from some of their games. You see they were so anxious to find out what it was their mother wanted that they hurried to finish their fun.

Bunny Brown and his sister Sue were at Camp Rest-a-While with their father and their mother. They had come from their home in Bellemere to live for a while in the forest, on the shore of Lake Wanda, where they were all enjoying the life in the open air.

They had journeyed to the woods in an automobile, carrying two tents which were set up under the trees. One tent was used to sleep in and the other for a dining room. There was also a place to cook.

With the Brown family was Uncle Tad, who was really Mr. Brown's uncle. But the jolly old soldier was as much an uncle to Bunny and Sue as he was to their father. Bunker Blue, a boy, had also come to Camp Rest-a-While with the Brown family, but after having many adventures with them, he had gone back to Bellemere, where Mr. Brown had a fish and a boat business. With him went Tom Vine, a boy whom the Browns had met after coming to camp.

Bunny Brown and his sister Sue liked it in the big woods that stretched out all about their camp. They played many games under the trees and in the tents, and had great fun. Mrs. Brown liked it so much that when the time when they had planned to go home came, she said to her husband:

"Oh, let's stay a little longer. I like it so much and the children are so happy. Let's stay!"

And so they stayed. And they were still camped on the edge of the big woods that morning when Mrs. Brown called Bunny and Sue to do something for her.

After telling her mother about the pretend-fever which Bunny had, Sue went back to where her brother was lying on a blanket under the bushes. She made-believe feel his pulse, as she had seen the doctor do when once Bunny had been really ill, and then the little girl put her hand on Bunny's cheek.

"Say! what you doin' that for?" he asked.

"I was seeing how hot you were," answered Sue. "I guess your fever's most gone, isn't it, Bunny?" she asked.

"Is it time to eat?" he asked quickly.

"Yes, I think it is. And I think mother has a surprise for us, too."

"Then my fever's all gone!" exclaimed Bunny. "I'm all better, and I can eat. Then we'll see what mother has."

Never did an ill person get well so quickly as did Bunny Brown just then. He sat up, threw to one side a blanket Sue had spread over him, and called:

"Where's the pie and cake?"

"Here they are," Sue answered, as she took them from a l

ittle box under the bushes.

"And where's the milk?" asked Bunny. "Fevers always make folks thirsty, you know. I'm awful thirsty!"

"Here's the milk," said Sue. "I didn't ask mother if I could take it, but I'm sure she won't care."

"No, I guess not," said Bunny, taking a long drink which Sue poured out for him from a pitcher into a glass.

Then Bunny and his sister ate the pie and the cake which their mother had given them that morning when they said they wanted to have a little picnic in the woods. Instead Bunny and Sue had played Indian and soldier, as they often did. First Bunny was a white soldier, and then an Indian, and at last he made believe he was shot so he could be ill. Sue was very fond of playing nurse, and she liked to cover Bunny up, feel his pulse and feed him bread pills rolled in sugar. Bunny liked these pills, too.

"Well, now we've got everything eaten up," said Bunny, as he gathered up the last crumbs of the pie his mother had baked in the oil stove which they had brought to camp. "Let's go and see what the surprise is."

"I'm not so sure it is a surprise," returned Sue slowly. "Mother didn't say so. She just said she wouldn't tell us until you got all make-believe well again. So I suppose it's a surprise. Don't you think so, too?"

"I guess I do," answered Bunny. "But come on, we'll soon find out."

As the children came out from under the bush where they had been playing, there was a crashing in the brush and Sue cried:

"Oh, maybe that's some more of those Indians."

"Pooh! We're not playing Indians now," said Bunny. "That game's all over. I guess it's Splash."

"Oh, that's nice!" cried Sue. "I was wondering where he'd gone."

A big, happy-looking and friendly dog came bursting through the bushes. He wagged his tail, and his big red tongue dangled out of his mouth, for it was a warm day.

"Oh, Splash; you came just too late!" cried Sue. "We've eaten up everything!"

"All except the crumbs," said Bunny.

Splash saw the crumbs almost as soon as Bunny spoke, and with his red tongue the dog licked them up from the top of the box which the children had used for a table under the bushes.

"Come on," called Bunny after a bit. "Let's go and find out what mother wants. Maybe she's baked some cookies for us."

"Didn't you have enough with the cake, pie and milk?" Sue asked.

"Oh, I could eat more," replied Bunny Brown. In fact, he seemed always to be hungry, his mother said, though she did not let him eat enough to make himself ill.

"Well, come on," called Sue. "We'll go and see what mother has for us."

Through the woods ran the children, toward the lake and the white tents gleaming among the green trees. Mr. Brown went to the city twice a week, making the trip in a small automobile he ran himself. Sometimes he would stay in the city over night, and Mother Brown and Uncle Tad and the children would stay in the tents in the big woods where they were not far from a farmhouse.

Splash, the happy-go-lucky dog, bounded on ahead of Bunny Brown and his sister Sue. The children followed as fast as they could. Now and then Splash would stop and look back as though calling:

"Come on! Hurry up and see the surprise!"

"We're coming!" Bunny would call. "What do you s'pose it is?" he would ask Sue.

"I can't even guess," Sue would answer. "But I know it must be something nice, for she smiled when I told her I was your nurse and you had an Indian fever."

"It wasn't an Indian fever," protested Bunny.

"Well, I mean a make-believe Indian fever," said the little girl.

"No, it was a make-believe arrow fever," said Bunny. "I got shot with an Indian arrow you know."

"Oh yes," Sue answered. "But, anyhow, you're all well now. Oh, look out, Splash!" she cried as the big dog ran into a puddle of water and splashed it so that some got on Sue's dress. That is how Splash got his name-from splashing into so many puddles.

But this time the water was from a clean brook that ran over green, mossy stones, and it did Sue's dress no harm, for she had on one that Mrs. Brown had made purposely for wearing in the woods.

"Here we are, Momsie!" called Sue, as she and Bunny came running up to the camp where the tents were.

"What's the surprise?" asked Bunny.

Just then they heard the Honk! Honk! of an automobile, and as a car came on through the woods and up to the white tents, Bunny and Sue cried together:

"Oh, it's daddy! Daddy has come home!"

"Yes, and he's brought us something!" added Bunny. "Look at the two big bundles, Sue!"

"Oh, Daddy! Daddy Brown! What have you brought?" cried the two children.

"Just a minute now, and I'll show you," said Mr. Brown, as he got out of the automobile and started for a tent, a big bundle under each arm. The children danced about in delight and Splash barked.

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