Little Birdie – Chapter 02



Chapter 02

“Whatcha playing?”

Greg didn’t look up, instead deciding to concentrate on gathering the leaves up.  “Collecting leaves.”

“Duh.  I mean, why?”

“If you help, I’ll tell.”  But even as Greg proceeded to ignore the other, he knew that that was a stupid request.  After all, Tony was a weird kid.  He didn’t really ever play with him.  He was just happy watching.

But, since he was the only person who actually liked being with him, Greg really didn’t mind.

He had appeared out of nowhere one day, and introduced himself.  He was a kind of weird, but Greg was fine with that because Greg didn’t have very many friends, and the new kid didn’t mind hanging out with him when he said he rather liked reading books more than playing soccer outside.

Actually, to be more accurate, his mother wouldn’t let him out of the house for such “rough activities,” but that was neither here nor there.

Either way, the boy was weird.  Even at the itty bitty age of six, Greg had found it odd that the boy refused to tell him his name.  Then again, it was a fun game.  He’d come up with at least twenty different names, like George or Bob or Radcliff (at that point, Greg was just annoyed enough to try out the name of the villain he hated the most).  In the end, by mutual agreement, they decided on “Tony” (after his favorite restaurant.  He loved the spaghetti and meatballs there).

His best friend smiled that weird little smile of his.  He said nothing.

Knowing no response was forthcoming, Greg went on about his own business.  “I found some caterpillars by the big oak tree the other day.  They were on the ground, and I thought that maybe they would be hungry.”

“So they’re food?”

Greg nodded.

Twenty minutes later, the leaves were all gathered and in his arms.  Greg led the way and Tony followed a few steps behind him.  “They like maple leaves.  We should get more next time.”

That’s what Greg liked about his best friend.  He always knew everything, and always knew what information he needed to know.

“I think there’s some by the big tree.  That’s perfect!”

The creepy-crawlies seemed to like the leaves he picked up just fine, as they worked their little jaws down the edge of the green sheets.  Greg watched in fascination as they worked U-shaped arches into each one bit by bit, layer by layer.

“You know sometimes caterpillars are poisonous?”

“Mm?”

“Yeah.  Just a bite, and the bird goes ‘Keh!  Ack!  Bleh,’” said Tony as he made a funny face.  Greg guessed from the tongue lolling out of his mouth and the funny way his mouth was twisted that he was imitating the dead bird … maybe?

Realizing what he’d just said, Greg quickly dropped the leaf he was holding.

Tony laughed.  “I don’t think he liked that.”  Indeed the caterpillar was rolling over and crawling away from the leaf now.  “These aren’t the poisonous ones, anyways.”

Greg glared at Tony as he picked up the bug again carefully.  The furs felt funny, but he liked the fuzzy feeling.  Maybe it’ll start eating again.

“That is kinda cool though…”

“Plus, there’s some weird ones that have horns-”

“Like a cow?”

“Yeah, like that!  And then some that look like bird poop.  That way, the bird think they’re really poop and won’t eat ‘em.  And then there’s…”

Greg listened on intently.  Even if his best friend was a bit weird, he was still the coolest one in the whole wide world!





Onto Chapter 3 >>

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