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HOME > Short Stories > Neddie and Beckie Stubtail > STORY XIV BECKIE MAKES A DOLL’S DRESS
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 “Beckie! Beckie, where are you?” called Neddie Stubtail, the little boy bear, one morning after breakfast. “Come along! You’ll be late for school. I’m not going to wait for you.” “I’m coming,” answered Beckie from inside the cave-house on the side of the hill. “I’m coming! Wait a minute!”
“I’m not going to wait, and be late!” said Neddie, and he was not quite as polite as he might have been.
“Oh, Neddie!” exclaimed Aunt Piffy, the fat old lady bear, puffing and blowing, for she had been down cellar after some potatoes, and when she came up stairs she always puffed and blew.
“Why, Neddie!” she went on, “you should (puff) wait for (puff) your little (puff) sister. She doesn’t very often (puff) ask you to (puff) do it. More times she has to (puff) wait for you!”
“Oh, well, I’ll wait,” said Neddie, and he felt 112the least little bit ashamed of himself for having talked that way to his sister. “But I don’t want to be late,” he added.
“You won’t be late—I’m coming!” called Beckie. “I just wanted to find my needle and thread.”
“Needle and thread!” cried Neddie. “You don’t mean to tell me, do you Beckie, that you’ve torn your dress and have to stop and sew it? And the last bell will ring in a few minutes! Oh, I’m not going to wait at all any longer! I’m going!” And off the little bear boy started, holding out his little stubby tail as stiff and straight as he could. But at that it wasn’t much larger than your thumb, and you could hardly notice it.
“No, indeed, I haven’t torn my dress, and I don’t have to stop to sew it up,” said Beckie, as she came running out of the cave-house. “Wait a minute, won’t you please, Neddie? I’m just taking my needle and thread and some pieces of silk to school with me so I can make my new doll, Sarah Janet Picklefeather, a new dress.”
“What, make your doll a dress in school?” cried Neddie, stopping and turning around. “Teacher never will let you, Beckie Stubtail—never! And you know it!”
“Oh, but I’m not going to sew in school,” said 113Beckie, sweetly. “I’m taking my lunch with me, and I’m not coming home to dinner, and I’m going to sew on my doll’s dress during the noon recess. And I’ve got some honey cakes for my lunch, too!”
“Oh, wow!” cried Neddie. “So that’s how it is, eh? Then I’m going to take my lunch, too, and stay at school and have some fun. May I have some honey cakes, mamma?”
“Oh, yes, I guess so,” answered Mrs. Stubtail, who, with Aunt Piffy, had come to the door to see the children start for school.
Then Neddie ran back to get his lunch put up. And such a busy time as there was, for a few minutes. Mrs. Stubtail and Aunt Piffy both tried to put the lunch up, so Neddie would not be late, and Mrs. Stubtail dropped the bread, butter side down, and Aunt Piffy lost her breath and could hardly find it again. Then Uncle Wigwag, the bear gentleman, who was always playing tricks, sat down in the fly paper by mistake, and Mr. Whitewash, the polar bear gentleman, had to pull the sticky stuff off his friend, Uncle Wigwag.
And that wasn’t all. For Mr. Whitewash was shaving his whiskers, and when he wasn’t looking, Mrs. Stubtail knocked over the molasses pitcher into his cup, full of soap-suds lather, and 114when Mr. Whitewash went to lather his face again he was almost as badly stuck up as Uncle Wigwag was with the fly paper.
Oh, my! Such goings on!
But, finally, Neddie’s lunch was put up and all this while Beckie waited for him, and she never once said “hurry up!” or “I’m going on, we’ll be late!” Not once did she say it, though she might well have done so, since the last bell had been ringing for some time.
But finally Beckie and Neddie got to school and they were only about one forty-’leventh part of a second late, and that didn’t count.
I wish I could tell you all that happened in school that day—how Neddie went to the blackboard, and wrote a fine story of a poodle dog that could stand on its head. And how Joie Kat drew such a real-like picture of a mouse that Tommie Kat, Joie’s brother, wanted to chase it, and it was all his sister Kittie Kat could do to stop him.
But I haven’t room to tell you any of those things now. I must tell you about Beckie making her doll’s dress. Now, hold on, boys, if you please. You might think this is a girl’s story, but it isn’t—that is not all of it, even if it is partly about a doll’s dress.<............
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