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Story and Illustrations © 2001-2004 by Donald L. Brown.
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Chips Adventure Page 9..

    As Chip helps Tasha down, she asks him to not say anything about her falling. “I don’t wish to upset my father. “ Chip nods “I understand. It will be our secret.” He gives her a hug. Then sends the dragon back to the skunk’s farm, afterwards they walk towards the house.

    Moments after Chip sends the Dragon away, Tina comes out of the house shouting “Tashie!Tashie! Chip found you.” She runs up, and hugs her sister tight. Tashas father smiles as he walks up to greet, and hug them as well. “I am glad Chip found you. The village is well for now” The girl bunny nods then hugs her father extra tight. ”It’s good to see you both; I feared the volcano may have caused you all harm.”

    Dinre shakes his head. “All is well my daughter. There is no reason to delay your marriage to Chip, In fact the sooner the better”. With that Lacy walks up “Land Sakes there is no reason to wait. We could be ready by tomorrow.”

    With that Chip steps up and gives Tasha a hug, then looks into her eye as he speaks “That sounds fine with me, is it ok with you love?” The bunny girl looks back at him, her eyes wet with emotion as she nods. “Yes that would be wonderful.”

    Mac waves as he trots in from the barn. Lacy shouts “Mac! Go spread the word, the wedding is on for tomorrow.” The skunk nods “You got it.” As he starts to leave Tina asks if she can go with the skunk. Dinre nods “If it’s ok with him you can. She runs to catch the skunk “Can I go with you mr skunk?” Mac smiles at the bunny then looks at her father who nods. “Sure thing little one.” And they soon disappear from view down the path.

    Lacy walks over, and smiles. “There are some tables in the barn. You two men set them up over by those trees while I help Tasha get ready for her wedding. I am sure the raccoons and a few others will be here soon.” After a quick hug, Tasha goes with her while Chip, and Dinre head for the barn.

    On the path, Tina is excited at meeting all the new people along the way. She smiles at Mac “Mr Skunk sir, in our valley in the mountains I mostly only see others like me. But here I see many different kinds of folks. Thank you for letting me come along.”

    Mac smiles at the very polite youngster. You can just call me uncle Mac if you like little one.” Tina smiles brightly, her long front teeth shining as she does. “I would like that uncle Mac.” She gives him a tight hug. The skunk hugs back wishing he had a child of his own. The skunk fuzzes her hair.” We best get going. We have a lot of folks to talk to yet.” The little bunny giggles and nod nods. “Ok unca Mac.” With that they both hurry along the valley path.

    Evening shadows stretch out across the valley with the setting sun as Mac, and Tina arrive back at Lacys farm. The little bunny hurries inside the farm house shouting “We are back!” Tasha smiles “Did you enjoy seeing the valley sissy?” Tina gives her sister a big hug, and nods “Oh yes, I enjoyed it a lot. Unca Mac n me saw a lot of folks.”

    Mac knocks on the door, and says “We should have a crowd.” Lacy grins as she walks over, and gives the skunk a hug. “Thank you Mac, sit down, and rest your bones. “ The little bunny runs over, and tugs on Lacys apron, “Can I have a drink of water, please?” The badger looks down at the little bunny with a big smile “Land sakes sweetie you sure can. Come with me to the kitchen.”

    The little bunny follows Lacy into the kitchen as the skunk finds a nice spot to sit. Moments later the badger calls out. “Would you like a drink, Mac?” He starts to get up, and says “Yes, Thank you!” With that Tina returns with a cup of water for Mac. She smiles “Lacy said to give you this unca Mac.” He smiles. “Thank you little one.”

    Tina smiles brightly at Mac then turns to the others “Anyone else like any water?” Dinre shakes his head no, “I just had some Tina.” Chip, and Tasha say “No thank you.” The little bunny then quickly hops back to the kitchen where she runs into Lacy. The badger grabs the little bunny keeping Tina from falling, and says. “Land sakes sweetie you better slow down.” She gives Tina a little hug. She hugs Lacy back, and says “You’re a nice lady miss badger, I will be more careful.”

    The little bunny returns from the kitchen with the badger following close behind. She sits with her father who gives her a little hug. Chip smiles as he gives Tasha hug, and kiss to her cheek. Dinre laughs “Now there will be plenty of time for that after the wedding. “ The little bunny giggles at her fathers remarks while the two young rabbits smile at each other.

    Lacy laughs “Land sakes, there is much to make ready. The sun is setting, and we should get some sleep as tomorrow is a big day. You men folk can sleep in the barn.” Mac nods as he and the others get up. Chip gives Tasha a hug” See you tomorrow love.” She smiles hugging back “I will be here.”

    Lacy, Tasha, and Tina stand at the door as they wave to the men folk walking toward the barn. Tasha stands at the door watching Chip till he is inside the barn. She returns inside, and they are all soon fast asleep dreaming of the big day ahead.

    The next morning breaks clear with Chip standing outside the barn. The adventures of the last few months flow through his mind as he says to his self “I still find it hard to believe such a special girl wishes to be my life mate. I wonder if I am worthy of so much happiness.” He watches as dawns first light clear the stars from the morning sky.

    Mac walks up, and pats the rabbit on the back. “You deserve happiness if anyone does young fellow.” Startled, he jumps a bit, and then turns to the skunk. “It feels good knowing I have friends like you Mac.”

    The skunk smiles “Its time we get started. It will be time for the wedding before you know it.. Chip gulps a little, his mouth drying out a bit as he clears his throat a bit. “That is true.” Dinre walks out with a smile. “It’s a great day for the wedding boys.” With that Chip mouth dries out even more as he responds with a nod, then coughs to clear his throat a bit more “Sorry I could use some water.”

    Mac nods “I am sure Lacy has some water at the house.” The three walk to the house, and knock on the door. Lacy shouts “Come in boys, and have a bite to eat while you all can.” Mac yums “I can always use a bite to eat.” Dinre smiles “Thank you Miss Badger.” Chip nods “Yes, Thank you, Could I have a bit of water?”

    Lacy smiles “It’s always good to see men folk enjoying a meal. There is a bucket with a dipper by the back door.” Chip smiles as he fills the dipper with water, and drinks it. “Thank you I was really dry. Where is Tasha?” Lacy smiles as she walks up to Chip “You shouldn’t see the bride till the wedding.” The young rabbit looks a bit confused with this. “But I only wish to see her for a minute.”

    Dinre speaks up. “It’s for luck young fellow, and tradition too.” Mac nods as Tina runs down the stairs from the loft bedroom. Chip ohhs “I understand.” The little bunny gives everyone a hug. “Morning father, everyone, she whispers to her father then hurries out the door. “

    Moments later Tim and Charlotte Raccoon show up each carrying a large basket of food. Lacy smiles “Land sakes come on in you two. Tim you and the other men folk start setting up the tables.” Tim nods setting down his basket, and hurries out the door nearly bumping into Tina as he does. She hops aside and gets a head pat from the raccoon as he walks past. She runs inside to see if she can help. Lacy smiles “Hon go tell Mac I need some wood for my cook stove.

    Tina nod nods and waves to Charlotte as she runs out again. Charlotte shakes her head. “My goodness she is a busy bunny.” Lacy nods as she gives the raccoon a hug. Just then Sidney Fox and his mother arrive. The badger hurries to the door “Land sakes Mildred I haven’t seen you since this spring, how have you been?”

    Sidney sits the basket down, and excuses his self, Mildred smiles as she hugs Lacy “I am just fine, Thank you. I just couldn’t miss a wedding party.” The badger smiles “I am glad you did, we can use the help too.” Charlotte smiles “It’s good to see you again misses fox.” She gives her a hug too. Mildred smiles “looks like there is going to be a good turnout.”

    Lacy nods “I think so.” Just then Tasha comes down from the loft. Lacy smiles “Here is the lucky bride now “Tasha this is Mildred fox, and Charlotte raccoon. The young rabbit girl shyly smiles “It’s nice to meet you both.” The badger smiles “I best finish my pies or they won’t be ready. You gals can help Tasha get ready for her wedding.” Charlotte, and Mildred agree then go with Tasha up to the loft.

    Outside the others are setting up the tables, and benches. Mac introduces Chip to the guests as they arrive. And by the time the sun was overhead almost 30 couples, and individuals had arrived. Dinre walks to the farmhouse to see if his daughter was ready. Lacy answers the door, and nods “She is about ready we will join you and the others at the falls.” The elder rabbit nods, and walks back to tell the others.

    Mildred fox soon comes down followed by Charlotte, and Tasha who is wearing, a nice yellow dress with pink trim. Covering her hair and ears is a yellow scarf, and pink cap. Around her waist a pink ribbon tied in a large bow in the back.

    Lacy smiles as she looks at the young girl. “You make that old dress look very pretty Tasha. “ Her eyes sparkle as she turns to give all a good view. “Thank you so much for letting me use it.” The badger wipes a tear from her cheek with a cloth as she thinks of a past memory. Tasha walks over, and hugs the badger tight. Lacy smiles returning the hug “You just have a wonderful time my dear.” The young bunny smiles “Thank you, I will.”

    Tina bounces in smiling “Tashie you look so pretty.” Tasha gives her sister a hug “thank you sis.” Lacy smiles “it’s time we started for the falls. The boys left a short time ago.” Charlotte looks out the window, and remarks “I see them entering the forest now.” Lacy grabs Tina by the shoulders “You all get started. Tina and me will tell the folks to make ready for the reception party.”

    They all go out the door and start toward the falls as Lacy, and the small bunny tell the others the wedding party will return soon. With shouts of well wishes sent after them, the girls soon reach the stream where it meets the forest.

    Following the path along the stream Chip, and the others soon reach Shadow Falls.. Dinre climbs up on the large stones near the large pool of water below the falls. Sidney and Mac pick up a few scattered branches blown down by a storm of the previous week. Chip climbs up where the elder rabbit is to talk as Tim raccoon decides to help carry away the broken branches.

    A short time later they hear the voices of the girls in the distance. Chip points, “The girls are coming.” Dinre nods “I see them.” Tim walks over to meet Charlotte as she arrives with the others. Mildred wishes Tasha well, then goes to find her son. Lacy and Tina arrive a few minutes later. Lacy fans her self with her large hat. “Land sakes its hot this afternoon. Tina nods as she steps over and sticks her toes in the water.

    Tasha pulls the little bunny away from the water, telling her to keep clean. Tina pouts a little as she looks back at the water. She spots her father and bounces up next to him on top of the stones. He reaches down to pat her head, and says. “Tina, go pick some flowers for your sister. Ask the skunk to go with you. I don’t want you to get lost.”

    She nod nods. “Okay papa.” She runs over to the skunk. She taps on his arm, “unca Mac.” The skunk smiles at the little bunny. “What is it”? Papa wants me to pick some flowers for Tashie, and would like for you to go with me to find some.” Mac smiles, and says. “I know where some pretty ones are. Follow me.” Tina skip hops after the skunk, and are soon out of sight.

    Dinre walks over to Chip, and his daughter. “As soon as Mac and Tina return with some flowers we will start.” Chips nods, He turns to Tasha “Your very beautiful, I love you. ” Tasha smiles “Thank you Chip. I love you too. It’s so pretty here.”

    Mac and Tina soon return with a large bouquet of red and white wildflowers as the two young rabbits stand together watching the water cascading into the pool. The suns rays breaking through the trees cause rainbows here and there as the mist drifts over the pool.

    Dinre calls out to Chip and his daughter. ”Are you two ready to be wed?” Tasha, and Chip nod smiling at each other then walk over to stand on the stones before the elder rabbit. Mac stands with Chip, and Tina stands next to Tasha who takes some of the flowers. Placing a white one through a hole in Chips collar, putting some in her hair she keeps the rest in her hands

    Dinre smiles as he looks at the two young rabbits. “Chip Tasha, hold out your hands.” Then as they do he takes a short piece of rope, and lays it over their wrists. “In this natural world of ours we use this symbol to show a bond made between two that have decided to share their lives together."

    "It is with great pleasure that give my daughter to this young fellow who has risked all to make our lives better. Chip Sty. Do you promise to care for, and stand by Tasha for as long as you exist in this world?” Chip looks at the young girl, and smiles. “I do with all my heart.”

    The elder rabbit turns to his daughter. “Do you promise to care for and stand by Chip for as long as you exist in this world“? With tears of joy she looks into Chips eyes, and smiles.” I do with all my heart.”

    With this Dinre ties their wrists together, and says. “As this rope binds each of you, may this symbol keep you together for as you both exist, and now with hopes of many grandchildren for me I pronounce you mates.“ With that the others cheer and wish the new couple much happiness.

    Tasha and Chip kiss as the others continue their well wishes, tossing leaves and flowers. Tina bounces with excitement as she tosses honey suckle flowers. Dinre smiles, “I think it’s time we return for the reception party. Lots of folks are waiting to see the new couple."

    Tasha gives her father a hug then nods as he, she and Chip follow the others as they all walk back towards Lacys farm. As they do Chip, and Tasha talk with the elder rabbit. Chip says “we planned to have the dragon carry us to the village in the morning. Mac offered to let Tasha and me stay at his home tonight.”

    Dinre hums “We should return this evening. The villagers wish to give a party for you both. It is a special time.” Tasha nods as she turns to Chip “Maybe we should return love. You are a part of our world now, and we will be expected to be the leaders one day.” The elder rabbit smiles “But I think you both deserve time alone. You can return to our village tomorrow. I should return this evening so I can prepare for your reception when you both arrive.”

    Tina smiles “Can I stay till tomorrow daddy?” The elder rabbit shakes his head. “Your sister and Chip don’t need you bothering them tonight.” Lacy smiles “The little one is welcome to stay with me if she likes.” Dinre ums “I don’t wish to impose.” Lacy smiles “Land Sakes it’s no trouble at all sir.”

    The little bunny bounces as she waits for her father to decide. Tasha smiles “Father let her stay. She won’t get a chance to return here for some time.” Dinre grins “Well alright, you can stay. But be a good girl for Lacy. You hear?” Tina yea’s as she hugs her father. “I will be.” The elder rabbit hugs the little bunny back.

    A short time later the wedding party arrives back at Lacys farm where they are warmly greeted by the guests. They are led to one of the tables where Chip is handed a knife to cut a large cake. He, and his new mate share the first slice. Tasha giggles as the frosting covers his nose. Chip grins, and rubs his nose to hers.

    The others laugh, then proceed to cut pieces cake for all.. Tina holds out a paper plate for a slice. “Please, I want a slice too.” Tasha smiles, and then gives her a large piece of cake. The little bunny thanks her sister and finds a place to sit. Shortly everyone is busy eating. The afternoon quickly passes, with many of the guests leaving so to get home before dark.

    With the sun getting lower in the sky Dinre walks over to Chip. “It’s time I left for our village, and It will be dark soon.” Chip responds with a nod as Tasha walks over. She smiles “Ready to go home father?” The elder rabbit nods. “Yes.”

    Chip smiles. “Then we should go.” The young rabbit walks over to tell everyone they need to leave. Tina runs to hug her sister, new brother, and father while the others give their best wishes to the newly weds. Chip waves “Thank you all for everything, we will come by tomorrow to pick up Tina.” Mac nods “No hurry young fellow, see you tomorrow.” Tina walks along for a short distance then returns to stay with Lacy.

    The threesome stop to wave once more at the top of the first hill, then continue towards the skunks farm. Back at the farm Lacy turns to the others “Mac, Sidney, and Tim. I would appreciate if you all could help me clean up the place. They all nod ok, and quickly get to work.

    The sun is starting to set as Chip, and his new family reach the skunk’s farm. He turns to his new wife, and smiles “You wish to ride with us?” Tasha nods “I would like that.” She gives him a tight hug. Dinre smiles “Then lets go my son, call that fiery beast.” Chip nods “The dragon should be sleeping down by Mac’s barn.”

    They quickly walk towards the barn where they see the great beast as it raises its head snorting a plume of smoke it asks in a low gruff voice. “Greetings small master, what can I do for you?” Chip stops, and says “I would like for you to take the three of us to the mountain village.”

    Tasha takes chips hand with hers as the dragon lays down so they can climb on. Moments later the great beast lifts into the air and quickly rises high above the valley floor, then turns toward the mountain ridges as the first stars appear in the eastern sky.

    Soon the campfires of Coelho village are seen as the dragon crosses the last ridge. Soon it softly touches down just long enough to let the elder rabbit dismount. He waves “See you tomorrow.” Moments later the dragon is again climbing into the late evening sky. Dinre watches till they are out of sight then walks toward the village.

    A short time later the two young rabbits are back at the skunk’s farm. Chip tells the dragon they will need him to carry them back the next day. The great beast nods then says “I will return in the morning small master.” He then lifts into the air flying in the direction of the volcano, and is soon out of sight.

    Chip and Tasha look at each other as a large full moon rises above the eastern mountain ridge. She smiles after giving Chip a hug “It is so beautiful tonight my love.” Chip smiles “This night is one of my dreams. For the first time in my life I feel like I have a future I can look forward to. He hugs Tasha tightly “ She smiles laying her head on his shoulder “Yes a night of dreams for us both my love.”

    Chip looks at her with a smile “Would you like to spend the night in the barn?” She kisses his nose and smiles. “No silly, I am sure your friend wished us to sleep in his house tonight. Besides it’s our first night together, and I wish to sleep in a bed.” Chip nods, and with that they both head for the skunks house, and are soon inside.

    The morning dawns clear over the large valley. At the skunks farm the two young rabbits are still fast asleep, but a short distance away at Lacys farm Tina bounces out of bed and runs downstairs to find Lacy preparing to fix breakfast, and Mac sitting at the table.

    “Land sakes little one you are full of life this morning.” Tina runs up and gives the badger and skunk a hug. “Thank you for letting me stay overnight.” Lacy smiles “That’s quite alright little one. How about a bowl of hot cereal for breakfast for you both”? Tina nod nods “I would like that.” The skunk nods. “Yes that would be fine.” Lacy smiles “And a nice cup of tomato juice too.” The little bunny smiles “Yes, Thank you. “ The skunk nods. The badger smiles giving the little bunny a pat on the head then fixes the cereal “Here you are, and your both welcome.”

    The skunk looks at the bunny “I will be ready to head for home in a bit little one.” Tina nod nods “Ok Unca Mac.” She drinks a bit of juice and eats some cereal. The skunk smiles “You have time to eat little one.” Lacy nods. “I hope you are able to come back soon, hon.” The bunny nods “I would like to see you and Unca Mac again.” Lacy smiles “You are welcome anytime hon.” Mac nods in agreement.

    A short time later Mac Tina, and Lacy hug each other. Mac and Tina wave to Lacy as they walk towards the skunk’s farm. Lacy waves back watching them till they are out of sight, then returns to her small house.

    Back at the skunk’s farm Chip wakes up with the sun shining through a window. He looks over to see Tasha, He leans over to kisses her nose. She blinks for a moment then smiles. “Good morning love.” Chip nods. Good morning. He then sits next to her. “We best get up, Mac, and Tina will be here soon.” Tasha nods as she sits up giving her mate a hug.

Continued once or twice a week.
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