Teresa and Katie made many trips back and forth and soon had their little nest organized before Grannie called them for supper.
Teresa entered the steamy kitchen that smelled of corn, potatoes, fresh bread and roast chicken. “Oh yum. My favorites.”
The room was filled with youthful chatter and scrapping of cutlery as the family ate.
Father was moping his plate with a piece of bread when they heard a gently tap tap on the window. “Look who’s back.”
“That pesky crow.” Granny poured hot water in the sink and dropped cutlery with a clatter. “Thought he’d left for good.”
The yard light came on and the moon played peak-a-boo with a fluffy cloud when Robert, Katie and Teresa arranged things in the tent. Robert threw his sleeping bag on the ground.
“The grass is nature’s cushion and there aren’t any rocks.” Robert smoothed out his sleeping bag. “Let’s pretend we’re in the middle of nowhere. I’ll take first watch. You two go to sleep.”
Teresa giggled as she snuggled into her sleeping bag and shone her flashlight at Robert. “King Cole will stand guard outside.”
“Yea,” Katie answered as she tucked her teddies in the sleeping bag.
“Hey, did you leave any room for yourself?” Robert pulled the flap down.
“Lots of room.” Katie climbed into her sleeping bag after she placed the large teddy bear at the foot.
“”We are well protected then,” Teresa said as she snuggled in. “Leave the flap open so we can see the stars.”
“Good idea.” Robert stretched out on his sleeping bag and opened the flap. “Easier to keep watch too.”
Everything was quiet and the girls slept soundly until there was a loud chatter and bang. The moon shone through the open tent flap illuminating the sleeping girls. Katie stirred as the outside noises blended in with her dream. Fully awake she sat up and looked around. “Teresa are you awake? Did you hear that?” Then she heard the loud bang again. Katie’s eyes were as large as saucers as she stared into the darkness. “Where’s Robert? Someone or something is outside.”
“Hear what?” Teresa yawned and sat up.
“Didn’t you hear that banging?” Katie hugged her teddy bear as she climbed into Teresa’s cot. “Teddy is scared.”
A twig snapped as Teresa shone her flashlight around the tent. The hair stood up on her neck. “Someone is out there. Probably Robert playing tricks. His sleeping bag is empty.”
Just then a head popped inside. “Everyone all right?” Father asked as he knelt down. “Robert tripped over the garbage can when he went inside for a snack.”
“Oh.” Katie hugged her teddy bear tighter.
There was a flap of wings as King Cole flew in and settled beside Teresa. She smoothed down his ruffled feathers as he tucked his head under his wing. “Some guard you are.”
“Staying here?” Father backed up.
“Will stay here, ” Teresa answered snuggling in again.
“Flap open or closed?” Father asked.
“Closed please,” Katie answered hugging her teddy bear.
written by M.E. Hembroff