If you are looking for The Adventures of Danny Meadow Mouse Part 4 you are coming to the right place.
The Adventures of Danny Meadow Mouse is a Webnovel created by Thornton W. Burgess.
This lightnovel is currently completed.
[Ill.u.s.tration: _”I tell you what, you stay right here!” said Peter_]
Danny Meadow Mouse looked at Peter gratefully. “I will, and thank you ever so much, Peter Rabbit,” he said.
And this is how the dear Old Briar-patch happened to have another tenant.
Peter Rabbit Visits the Peach Orchard
“Don’t go, Peter Rabbit! Don’t go!” begged Danny Meadow Mouse.
Peter hopped to the edge of the Old Briar-patch and looked over the moonlit, snow-covered meadows to the hill back of Farmer Brown’s house. On that hill was the young peach orchard of which Tommy t.i.t the Chickadee had told him, and ever since Peter’s mouth had watered and watered every time he thought of those young peach trees and the tender bark on them.
“I think I will, Danny, just this once,” said Peter. “It’s a long way, and I’ve never been there before; but I guess it’s just as safe as the Meadows or the Green Forest.”
“_Oh I’m as bold as bold can be!
I’ll hie me forth the world to see!
My ears are long, My legs are strong, So now good day; I’ll hie away!
And with that, Peter Rabbit left the dear, safe Old Briar-patch, and away he went lipperty-lipperty-lip, across the Green Meadows toward the hill and the young orchard back of Farmer Brown’s house.
Danny Meadow Mouse watched him go and shook his head in disapproval. “Foolish, foolish, foolish!” he said over and over to himself. “Why can’t Peter be content with the good things that he has?”
Peter Rabbit hurried along through the moonlight, stopping every few minutes to sit up to look and listen. He heard the fierce hunting call of Hooty the Owl way over in the Green Forest, so he felt sure that at present there was nothing to fear from him. He knew that since their return to the Green Meadows and the Green Forest, Granny and Reddy Fox had kept away from Farmer Brown’s, so he did not worry about them.
All in good time Peter came to the young orchard. It was just as Tommy t.i.t the Chickadee had told him. Peter hopped up to the nearest peach tree and nibbled the bark. My, how good it tasted!
He went all around the tree, stripping off the bark. He stood up on his long hind legs and reached as high as he could. Then he dug the snow away and ate down as far as he could. When he could get no more tender young bark, he went on to the next tree.
Now, though Peter didn’t know it, he was in the very worst kind of mischief. You see, when he took off all the bark all the way around the young peach tree, he killed the tree, for you know it is on the inside of the bark that the sap which gives life to a tree and makes it grow goes up from the roots to all the branches. So when Peter ate the bark all the way around the trunk of the young tree, he had made it impossible for the sap to come up in the spring. Oh, it was the worst kind of mischief that Peter Rabbit was in.
But Peter didn’t know it, and he kept right on filling that big stomach of his and enjoying it so much that he forgot to watch out for danger. Suddenly, just as he had begun on another tree, a great roar right behind him made him jump almost out of his skin.
He knew that voice, and without waiting to even look behind him, he started for the stone wall on the other side of the orchard.
Right at his heels, his great mouth wide open, was Bowser the Hound.
Farmer Brown Sets a Trap
Peter Rabbit was in trouble. He had got into mischief and now, like everyone who gets into mischief, he wished that he hadn’t.
The worst of it was that he was a long way from his home in the dear Old Briar-patch, and he didn’t know how he ever could get back there again. Where was he? Why, in the stone wall on one side of Farmer Brown’s young peach orchard. How Peter blessed the old stone wall in which he had found a safe hiding place! Bowser had hung around nearly all night, so that Peter had not dared to try to go home. Now it was daylight, and Peter knew it would not be safe to put his nose outside.
Peter was worried, so worried that he couldn’t go to sleep as he usually does in the daytime. So he sat hidden in the old wall and waited and watched. By and by he saw Farmer Brown and Farmer Brown’s boy come out into the orchard. Right away they saw the mischief which Peter had done, and he could tell by the sound of their voices that they were very, very angry. They went away, but before long they were back again, and all day long Peter watched them work putting something around each of the young peach trees.
Peter grew so curious that he forgot all about his troubles and how far away from home he was. He could hardly wait for night to come so that he might see what they had been doing.
Just as jolly, round, red Mr. Sun started to go to bed behind the Purple Hills, Farmer Brown and his boy started back to the house. Farmer Brown was smiling now.
“I guess that will fix him!” he said.
“Now what does he mean by that?” thought Peter. “Whom will it fix? Can it be me? I don’t need any fixing.”
[Ill.u.s.tration: _All around the trunk of the tree was wrapped wire netting_]
He waited just as long as he could. When all was still, and the moonlight had begun to make shadows of the trees on the snow, Peter very cautiously crept out of his hiding place. Bowser the Hound was nowhere in sight, and everything was as quiet and peaceful as it had been when he first came into the orchard the night before. Peter had fully made up his mind to go straight home as fast as his long legs would take him, but his dreadful curiosity insisted that first he must find out what Farmer Brown and his boy had been doing to the young peach trees.
So Peter hurried over to the nearest tree. All around the trunk of the tree, from the ground clear up higher than Peter could reach, was wrapped wire netting. Peter couldn’t get so much as a nibble of the delicious bark. He hadn’t intended to take any, for he had meant to go right straight home, but now that he couldn’t get any, he wanted some more than ever–just a bite. Peter looked around. Everything was quiet. He would try the next tree, and then he would go home.
But the next tree was wrapped with wire. Peter hesitated, looked around, turned to go home, thought of how good that bark had tasted the night before, hesitated again, and then hurried over to the third tree. It was protected just like the others. Then Peter forgot all about going home. He wanted some of that delicious bark, and he ran from one tree to another as fast as he could go.
At last, way down at the end of the orchard, Peter found a tree that had no wire around it. “They must have forgotten this one!”
he thought, and his eyes sparkled. All around on the snow were a lot of shiny little wires, but Peter didn’t notice them. All he saw was that delicious bark on the young peach tree. He hopped right into the middle of the wires, and then, just as he reached up to take the first bite of bark, he felt something tugging at one of his hind legs.
Peter Rabbit Is Caught in a Snare
When Peter Rabbit, reaching up to nibble the bark of one of Farmer Brown’s young trees, felt something tugging at one of his hind legs, he was so startled that he jumped to get away. Instead of doing this, he fell flat on his face. The thing on his hind leg had tightened and held him fast. A great fear came to Peter Rabbit, and lying there in the snow, he kicked and struggled with all his might. But the more he kicked, the tighter grew that hateful thing on his leg! Finally he grew too tired to kick any more and lay still. The dreadful thing that held him hurt his leg, but it didn’t pull when he lay still.
When he had grown a little calmer, Peter sat up to examine the thing which held him so fast. It was something like one of the blackberry vines he had sometimes tripped over, only it was bright and shiny, and had no branches or tiny p.r.i.c.kers, and one end was fastened to a stake. Peter tried to bite off the shiny thing, but even his great, sharp front teeth couldn’t cut it.
Then Peter knew what it was. It was wire! It was a snare which Farmer Brown had set to catch him, and which he had walked right into because he had been so greedy for the bark of the young peach tree that he had not used his eyes to look out for danger.
Oh, how Peter Rabbit did wish that he had not been so curious to know what Farmer Brown had been doing that day, and that he had gone straight home as he had meant to do, instead of trying to get one more meal of young peach bark! Big tears rolled down Peter’s cheeks. What should he do? What could he do? For a long time Peter sat in the moonlight, trying to think of something to do. At last he thought of the stake to which that hateful wire was fastened. The stake was of wood, and Peter’s teeth would cut wood. Peter’s heart gave a great leap of hope, and he began at once to dig away the snow from around the stake, and then settled himself to gnaw the stake in two.
Peter had been hard at work on the stake a long time and had it a little more than half cut through, when he heard a loud sniff down at the other end of the orchard. He looked up to see–whom do you think? Why, Bowser the Hound! He hadn’t seen Peter yet, but he had already found Peter’s tracks, and it would be but a few minutes before he found Peter himself.
Poor Peter Rabbit! There wasn’t time to finish cutting off the stake. What could he do? He made a frightened jump just as he had when he first felt the wire tugging at his leg. Just as before, he was thrown flat on his face. He scrambled to his feet and jumped again, only to be thrown just as before. Just then Bowser the Hound saw him and opening his mouth sent forth a great roar.
Peter made one more frantic jump. Snap! The stake had broken!
Peter pitched forward on his head, turned a somersault, and scrambled to his feet. He was free at last! That is, he could run, but after him dragged a piece of the stake.
How Peter did run! It was hard work, for you know he had to drag that piece of stake after him. But he did it, and just in time he crawled into the old stone wall on one side of the orchard, while Bowser the Hound barked his disappointment to the moon.