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Children's Stories
by Margo Fallis
The Haggis Hunt

Fergus woke up one morning and decided to go on a haggis hunt. It was winter and he was tired of eating barley soup and turnips. He wanted to eat a delicious haggis. He made a roaring fire in the fireplace and put a big black kettle of water on to simmer. When he brought the haggis home, he could toss it into the pot and cook it right away. He grabbed his bow and arrow, put on his boots, gloves, hat, and heavy coat, and headed for the woods.

Fergus walked through the woods. He saw squirrels, raccoons, and chipmunks running up the trees, but didnít see a haggis. "Look at all the thistle. How am I going to get through them?" he wondered. The path he was walking along was covered with the prickly purple plants. "I guess Iíll have to get down on my hands and knees and crawl through them." And that is what he did. "Ouch, ouch, ouch, ouch." The thistles poked him and scratched his face.

"There, Iím out of the thistles," he sighed and continued walking through the woods.

"Look at all the heather. Itís so pretty," Fergus said, seeing the field of purplish-pink flowers. "I guess Iíll have to run as fast as I can through it, get to the other side, and find that haggis. Haggis donít like to play in the heather." He started to run through the flowers. "Ouch, ouch, ouch, ouch. There are bees in here!" Hundreds of bees were sipping nectar from the heather bells and werenít happy about Fergus disturbing them. He swatted them as he ran as fast as he could.

"There, Iím out of the heather," he sighed and continued walking through the woods.

"Look at the loch," Fergus said. He came upon a huge, deep loch. "Itís very wide and a lovely shade of blue. How will I get across it?" he wondered. "Haggis donít like to swim. Iím sure there are a lot of haggises on the other side. Here I go," he said and jumped into the cold water. "Brrrrr. Itís freezing. He shivered as he swam across. Heíd only gone half way when he heard a noise behind him. "Yikes! Itís the Loch Ness Monster!" A huge, green monster stuck its head out of the water and tried to bite Fergus. He swam and swam and swam as fast as he could.

"There, Iím out of the loch," he sighed and continued walking through the woods.

"I canít see any haggis. Maybe if I climb to the top of this rowan tree, Iíll be able to see one," Fergus said. He climbed all the way to the top. He looked to the left and he looked to the right, but he couldnít see any haggis. He slid down the tree, "Wheeeeeeeee," and continued walking through the woods.

"Look at that wall. Itís crumbling in parts, but maybe if I walked across the top of it, I could see a haggis running about in the grass," Fergus said. He jumped onto Hadrianís Wall and started walking across the wobbly stones. "Whoa!" he shouted. He had to sling the bow and arrow across his shoulder and put his arms out to the side to balance himself so he wouldnít fall off the wall. "I canít see any haggis." He jumped off the wall and continued walking through the woods.

"Look at the castle," Fergus said. "Itís got a lot of windows and towers and is made of stone. Maybe if I climb to the top and look over the edge, Iíll be able to see a haggis." So he ran up the steps. He climbed to the top. He looked over the edge of the wall. He looked to the right and then he looked to the left, but he couldnít see any haggis. "This is an old castle. I wonder if any dragons ever lived here?" Just then he heard a roar. "Yikes! Itís a dragon! I guess he still does live here," he shouted. A big, black dragon came charging out of one of the towers. Fergus ran down the stairs. The dragon breathed fire at him, but he ran as fast as he could.

"There, Iíve left the castle and the dragon behind," he sighed and continued on his walk through the woods.

"Look at all the buttercups! Theyíre beautiful and such a pretty buttery-yellow color. I hope there arenít bees in here," Fergus said, as he started walking through the field of flowers. Heíd only gone a few yards when he spotted a highland cow. It had reddish-brown hair that hung down the ground and long, sharp horns that poked out the side of its huge head. The cow began to snort and ran towards Fergus. "Yikes! The cow is charging me. Iíve heard music soothes the savage beast," he remembered. "Iíll pull my bagpipes out of my pocket and play it a song." Fergus took a deep breath and started playing his bagpipes. He pumped his arm up and down as he squeezed the bag. It worked. The highland cow stopped running and started nibbling on the buttercups once again. Fergus kept playing as he walked quickly out of the field.

"There, I made it safely," he laughed, and continued on his walk through the woods.

"Look at all the sheep! Iíve never seen so many wooly creatures in my life," Fergus said. He tiptoed through the animals, being careful not to disturb them as they ate grasses and ferns. "I can only imagine how horrible it would be if all these sheep started to run. Iíd be crushed." He tiptoed past all the sheep.

"There, I made it safely," he breathed a sigh of relief and continued on his walk through the woods.

Something was moving about behind the yellow gorse growing along the path. "Whatís that over there? Why, it looks like a haggis!" Fergus took out his bow and arrow and crept towards the haggis. "I canít wait to taste the haggis after itís boiled in my pot with some tatties and turnips." He was about to shoot it when the haggis turned and saw him. It started to growl and snarl and showed Fergus its sharp teeth. "Yikes! Maybe I donít want haggis after all," he shouted in terror. "Iím getting out of here before it eats me!"

He ran as fast as he could through the woods. He came to the sheep and tiptoed as quickly and quietly as he could past them. He ran towards the field of buttercups and saw the highland cow. It started to snort and chase him, so he grabbed the bagpipes out of his pocket and started squeezing the bag and played a tune. The cow stopped chasing him and Fergus kept running. He ran into the castle, went up the stairs as quickly as he could. He looked to the right and then to the left, but didnít see the haggis. The dragon came out and started to chase him. He ran down the stairs and out of the castle. A roar of flames shot from the dragonís mouth as Fergus jumped over the moat and headed towards home.

He ran until he was out of breath and soon came to Hadrianís Wall. He jumped onto the wall and ran, balancing himself with his arms out to the side. He was so afraid of the haggis that he jumped from the wall. He stopped to rest for a moment or two and then ran toward the rowan tree. He climbed to the top, looked to the left and then to the right. He was still afraid of the haggis, so he climbed down the tree as fast as he could and ran towards home.

When he got to the loch, he jumped into the cold water and swam across. The Loch Ness Monster stuck its head out of the water and tried to bite Fergus, but he swam so quickly that it didnít get him. He climbed out of the water and ran through the field of heather bells. The bees buzzed all around him. Buzz, buzz, buzz. Swat, swat, swat. They tried to sting him but he was running too quickly. Finally he came to the thistle. He got down on his hands and knees and crawled through the prickly plants as fast as he could. "Ouch, eech, ouch, eech, ouch," he shouted. When he got to the other side, he ran towards his croft. He ran inside and slammed the door shut.

Fergus took a few deep breaths. "Iím safe at last. Weíll, I guess tonight Iíll be having barley soup with turnips again."

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