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 “Tad Coon!” Chaik Jay. “What are you doing here? My, but I’m glad you came.” And he dropped down from the trunk of the pickery thorn tree.  
He told Tad all about everything; how the other Woodsfolk had gone up to stay at Tommy Peele’s barn while lived at the pond, and how he’d fooled the mice into leaving it, and scared the birds so the wicked beast wouldn’t find a thing to eat when he did wake up except crawfish and , and angleworms, and he doesn’t like them.
“Te-hee!” snickered Tad into his fur, because he was trying not to make any noise about it. “That’s a wonderful joke. How hungry he’s going to be! And hunger bites the inside of your worse than the with hot tails I shook down on Trailer the Hound bite the outside of them. Not a thing can he eat anywhere around unless he tries to catch the . I believe I’ll paddle out to his and warn him.”
“Yes,” cheeped Chaik, in a discouraged voice, “or unless he catches me. I still can’t use my wing.”
“Oh, you can come up to the barn,” said Tad easily. “There are lots of fine places to perch in.”
“But I can’t get there,” Chaik explained.
“Sure you can,” Tad grinned. “I came down here with Louie Thomson. Watch the Dog said he was coming after his little skin tree he sleeps in. (Tad meant Louie’s blanket tent, you know.) He’s going to live with the house folks until after the big storm that’s coming. Just let him catch you and he’ll take you home and feed you till you can fly.”
“Oh, no! Oh, no! I wouldn’t dare do that! Not even with Tommy Peele,” fluttered Chaik. “I couldn’t stand being locked up.”
“Locked up! How long do you s’pose you’d be locked up while I was running around with my handy-paws? It’s better than being eaten, isn’t it?” Tad demanded.
“Ye-es,” the bird, rather doubtfully.
“Then get on a branch and flutter so he’ll see you,” ordered Tad, as cheerfully as though it were the most natural thing in the world for birds to let themselves be caught by their little boy friends.
So Chaik and sidled out to the tip of a where Louie could see him.
The little boy couldn’t have helped finding him, for there sat Tad Coon right beneath him, with his sniffy black nose turned up, pointing straight at him. And Chaik Jay was fluttering in a scared way.
“You old thing!” scolded Louie. Of course he thought Tad was the one the pretty blue bird was afraid of; he never dreamed any one would be afraid of him any more, because he never dreamed of hurting his wild friends. “Is that the kind of a beast you are? You’re all right while you know you can’t catch him, but the minute he can’t fly you want to eat him. Well, I won’t let you. If you’re so hungry you can’t wait till supper time you can go catch yourself a frog!”
A lot Tad cared! He knew ............
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