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The Story of a Nodding Donkey Laura Lee Hope

The Lame Boy

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When the China Cat said: "Here comes the Policeman!" the Nodding Donkey, who did not know just what a policeman was, was quite curious to see who was coming. So he walked to the edge of the shelf and bent his head as far down as he could in order to see.

"Be careful! You might fall!" mewed the China Cat.

"Ha! If he falls, then I'll pick him up! That's what I'm here for, to help in case of accident. I could ring for the ambulance!" suddenly came in the same voice that had asked if the Nodding Donkey kicked.

"On second thought perhaps it will be just as well to have an accident. It will give us something to talk about," the voice went on. "Go ahead, Nodding Donkey. Fall off the shelf. I'll pick you up and send you to the toy hospital in the toy ambulance with the clanging bell."

"Indeed I am not going to fall!" brayed the Donkey. "Who is he, anyhow?" he whispered to the China Cat.

"That's the Policeman I was telling you about," was the answer. "Here he comes now!"

And suddenly the Policeman's voice went on, saying:

"Come now! Move along! Don't block up the sidewalk! Move on! Don't loiter here!"

The Nodding Donkey looked to one side and there he saw a toy Policeman, dressed just as a real one would be, with blue coat, brass buttons, a white helmet and a club that swung on the end of a leather string. The Policeman walked along, for he could do that when a spring inside him was wound up. And as he walked he swung his club to and fro, and said, just like a real policeman:

"Come now, move along! Don't block up the sidewalk." Then he added, in a different tone: "There is no accident now, but if that Nodding Donkey would only fall off the shelf we might have one."

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"Indeed, and I'm not going to fall off the shelf just for fun!" brayed the Donkey.

"Oh, aren't you? Then we must make fun in some other way," said the toy Policeman. "How are you feeling?" and with that he jumped up on the shelf beside the Donkey and tickled him in the ribs with the club.

"Oh, don't do--ha! ha!--Don't--ha! ha!--do that!" laughed the Donkey. "You make me feel so funny I may fall!"

[Illustration: The Nodding Donkey is Tickled by the Toy Policeman. _Page 50_]

"Well, if you do, I'll pick you up," said the Policeman, and he twisted his club around on the Donkey's ribs in such a funny way that the nodding creature laughed "ha! ha!" and "ho! ho!"

"I thought I'd stir things up and make them rather lively!" said the Policeman, with a jolly grin on his red face. "How are you feeling?" he asked, turning to the China Cat.

"I feel quite good enough without having you tickle me," she answered, as she got up to move away.

"Oh, you'll feel ever so much better after I tickle you!" cried the Policeman, and he reached out his club toward the Cat. But he was not quick enough. She slipped behind a Jack in the Box, where the Policeman could not see her.

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The Story of a Nodding Donkey
Laura Lee Hope

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