Headnote: This is the second installment of the kids' story begun in the previous post. In that segment, two little bears, Honey and Beezer, disregard their mother's advice to nap for the winter. Instead, they want to stay awake to see snow and ice for themselves, because their friend Squirmy Squirrel has told them all about ice skating and snow ice cream. At this point in the story, they have just escaped from their beds into the winter wonderland outdoors.
Sure enough, a layer of ice topped the pond like cake frosting. Squirmy was already gliding and sliding on tiny skates made of walnut shells. Snow was falling all around, and its soft whiteness made the world appear magical.
Suddenly a most interesting creature appeared before Honey and Beezer. She wore a shimmery white gown and a lopsided crown. A long sparkly veil hid her face.
"Who are you?" Honey asked. "Are you our fairy godmother?"
"I am your Hairy Fairy Bearmother," said the strange creature. "Is it true that you want to stay up all year and see what winter is really like?"
"Oh, Yes," Beezer exclaimed. "Can you show us how to ice skate?"
The Hairy Fairy Bearmother raised her magic wand (which, by the way, resembled a plain, ordinary stick). She cleared her throat and chanted:
If you think that ice is nice,
Think again not once but twice,
For you might cringe and hear a thump
And find you've landed on your rump!
"Ouch!" said Beezer. Just thinking about that made his bottom hurt. "Maybe I don't really want to skate. But I sure would like to eat some snow ice cream!"
The Hairy Fairy Bearmother seemed to know a lot about winter. Once again she raised her wand, cleared her throat, and chanted:
You may think in your wildest dream
That you would relish snow ice cream,
But just when you are saying, "Yum!"
The frosty cold will freeze your tum.
Hearing this sent a little shiver rippling through Honey's hair. "I'm already a little cold," she said, pulling her night cap down over her ears. "Let's go home, Beezer."
Just then Beezer saw Squirmy tumble head over heels on the frozen pond. The cold air seemed to whistle right through his new night shirt.
"Well . . . OK," he agreed. "We'll go home for now. But next year, we'll wear warmer clothes."
To Be Continued . . . .
Footnote: Originally, I had planned to make the character they encountered a talking snowman who would impart some kind of wisdom to the bear kids. But halfway in, I saw that doing that would put me over the word limit imposed by the contest I was writing the story for. Hence, the Hairy Fairy Bearmother appeared, and I thought it would be fun to have her talk in rhyme.
In a day or two, I will post the story's surprise ending (Can you guess it?) along with a few observations on the process of writing it. Oh yeah--I will also let you know how I fared in the contest. Thanks for your feedback.