By Nigar Ataulla
Fluffy Bakery was nestled amidst a thick clump of pine and oak trees up on a hill in Ricky-Rack town. Floppy was the owner and the chief baker of the bakery. Everyday, he baked lovely chocolate cakes and buns and sent them down into Ricky Rack town.
One summer morning, Floppy had neatly arranged a tin of buns and was all set to take it to town. As the hot buns lay in a row, suddenly one of them popped out of the tin and began rolling down the hill! “Goodness gracious! Bouncy, get back into the tray, will you? You are being naughty again!” cried Floppy as he ran after the rolling bun.
“O Floppy! I want to see the world and travel. I don’t want to become a hamburger or be eaten up for tea by a silly kid!” screeched Bouncy in delight. “I don’t want Old Grannie Cookie spreading cheese or jam on me and gobbling me up. So here I go to see the world! Byeeeeeee!” he chuckled, turning back to wink at Floppy as he continued rushing down the hill.
Bouncy had a smile, made of vanilla paste, on his brown face. Floppy had additionally embellished his face by sticking two small cherries for eyes and a small red plum for a nose. Bouncy was a vanilla-fruit bun, just the sort that folks in Ricky-Rack town loved to munch with their evening tea. But Bouncy did not want to land up on someone’s tea-tray! He wanted to live with squirrels, kittens, and birds, and play with caterpillars, snails and other such creepy-crawlies.
Thinking of all the new furry and feathery friends he would make Bouncy continued his ride down the hill. On the way, he passed by Bossy the Barbet. “Hi Bouncy! What’s up?” she called out.
“Hi Ho! I am off to see the world and make new friends,” Bouncy said. Bossy flew after him, merrily chirping, ‘Now do let me have that little plum that you have there for a nose! Hmmm, it certainly looks delicious!”
But Bouncy refused to get scared as he jumped over a gurgling stream.
It was late afternoon and Bouncy, who was only half-way down the hill, was tired. He lay down under the shade of an oak tree and fell asleep. He was woken up by the sound of a burst of giggles. Rubbing his cherry eyes, he saw two little children gazing at him wonderstruck. “Wuppie! A lovely bun! Let’s eat it,” said a fat little boy. “No, Chubby Cheeks, behave yourself. Let’s take it home and show it to Mom,” said Tiny Tickles, his sister.
“Yes, don’t eat me please!”, said Bouncy, interrupting them and introducing himself. He told them how he had run away from Fluffy’s bakery to explore the world. “All my friends have turned into hamburgers and cheese buns. I don’t know how they let cabbage leaves, and bits of tomato and onion sitting on them, the poor little things,” he went on, without obvious disgust. “Will you take me home and let me stay with you?” he asked, turning his plum nose round and round.
“O! a talking bun, and talkative one at that!” squealed the kids in delight. “Of course you can come with us.”
And so Bouncy jumped into their little basket and set off to their little home in Fernhill Farms.
It was tea time when they reached home and the children’s mother had baked fresh biscuits for tea.
“Hi mom! Here’s Bouncy, our new friend. He will stay with us. No one is going to eat him up,” said Chubby Cheeks as he took Bouncy out of the basket and showed it to his mother.
“O dear me! Bouncy, you will have to share the kitchen with Cuddles, the kitten. You both can sit in the warm basket by the oven, if you don’t mind,” said Mother as she picked Bouncy up.
Bouncy stared at Cuddles. She was a golden brown cat with peppermint green eyes. Cuddles looked at Bouncy, and then, somewhat hesitatingly, rubbed her pink nose on his plum nose. Soon she was chasing Bouncy all over the house. What a funny sight it was!
“Cuddles! Bouncy isn’t a ball. He’s a bun,” said Mom as she tried to control them. But Cuddles and Bouncy were now out in the garden chasing each other in the hedges and around the trees. They had become best of friends.
Next day, Bouncy went to school with the kids, who showed him around to their friends. Bouncy soon made a host of new friends, including a pack of squirrels that lived in the loft in the children’s room. He and Cuddles would spend hours running after the squirrels, chasing their bushy tails and having fun. At night, Bouncy and Cuddles cuddled up together in the basket in the snug kitchen and soundly slept after a hard day’s work of running around.
So that’s how Bouncy, the runaway bun, found a loving home where no one ate him up!