Solving A Problem
: The Tale Of Nimble Deer
Jimmy Rabbit was going to give a party. Up and down Pleasant Valley and
all about Blue Mountain the field and forest people were talking about
Almost everybody had an invitation. There were only a few that weren't
asked. Jimmy Rabbit didn't intend to invite Grumpy Weasel because he was
a rascal. And Timothy Turtle wasn't to be one of the guests because he
would be sure to grumble at everybody and ever
And then there was Nimble Deer. Jimmy Rabbit said that Nimble was too
big to come to his party. And every one told Jimmy Rabbit that it was
a pity. All the neighbors said so much that Jimmy Rabbit didn't know
what to do.
"If I don't ask Nimble you won't be pleased," Jimmy complained to Billy
Woodchuck. "And if I do ask him and he should happen to step on you
during a dance you wouldn't like that."
"Invite him; but keep him away from the crowd!" Billy Woodchuck
"How can I do that?" Jimmy Rabbit demanded.
"I don't know," Billy replied. "But I am sure you can find a way, if
Well, after that remark there was nothing Jimmy Rabbit could do except
to put on his thinking cap. But try as he would, he couldn't hit upon a
Now, Nimble Deer had no idea of all the trouble he was causing Jimmy
Rabbit. To be sure, he knew that he was not invited to Jimmy Rabbit's
party. But he was no person to sulk or feel hurt over such a matter.
However, there was one thing that he thought was odd. Wherever he went
he was sure to come upon Jimmy Rabbit. Sometimes Nimble would hear a
faint rustle. And when he looked around he would catch a glimpse of
Jimmy Rabbit ducking out of sight behind a tree. Sometimes Nimble would
be taking a nap under the shelter of a clump of evergreens. And he would
wake up suddenly with a strange feeling that somebody was watching him.
And almost always he would discover Jimmy Rabbit crouching near-by and
staring at him.
At first, at such times, Nimble only spoke pleasantly to Jimmy Rabbit.
Still he couldn't help noticing that Jimmy Rabbit always acted queerly.
He seemed to be absent minded. If Nimble bade him a cheerful good
morning Jimmy Rabbit was likely to reply with a good evening. If Nimble
said, "It's a fine day," Jimmy would say, "Yes! It does look like rain."
At last, one day, Jimmy Rabbit made the oddest answer of all. When
Nimble spied him peering from behind a stump he called, "Hullo! I'm
glad to see you." To which remark Jimmy Rabbit said, "I hope to see
"Now, I wonder--" Nimble mused--"I wonder what he means." And then
Nimble asked Jimmy Rabbit a question: "Are you feeling well?"
"As well as could be expected!" Jimmy Rabbit told him.
"You don't seem like yourself," said Nimble. "I haven't seen you smile
for over a week."
Then, strangely enough, Jimmy Rabbit jumped into the air and kicked and
"At last," he cried, "I feel better. I have solved the problem. Will you
come to my party and help me a week from to-night?"
Nimble Deer thanked him and said that he would.