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Morris the Monkey
16+

Morris the little monkey woke up when the sun was high up in the sky. Another lovely day. Perfect for playing hide and sneak. Off he went to find his friends.
First he came across Henry the hippopotamus. “Let’s play hide and sneak!” he called out from the top of a tree. “Not today Morris,” boomed Henry. “There’s only three more days till the big fishing competition. I’ve got to clean my boat and check for leaks. You should be doing the same, don’t you think?” “Nah, I’ll do it tomorrow.”

Just then, who should come along but Lucas the lion. “There’s no way you’d get me anywhere near the water, even in a boat,” he shivered. “Come on Morris, I’ll play.”
So they played hide and sneak until the sun went down. The next day was sunny again, perfect for racing games. Morris came across Rose the rhino first. “Let’s race Rose,” he chattered excitedly. “Not today thanks Morris. It’s only two more days until the big fishing competition. I have to fix my motor and get my gear together. I don’t want to forget anything! Shouldn’t you be getting ready?” “Nah, I’ll do it tomorrow. Today’s a great day for racing. I’ll go find Lucas.”

Lucas the lion was nearby, lounging in the sun. He loved racing games too, so they played until dinnertime. Morris woke up next morning to another hot day. Perfect for sliding down Big Hill on banana leaves. Off he went to find Zach the zebra. He loved sliding down Big Hill. “No, not today,” said Zach when Morris found him. “Only one day until the big fishing competition. I have to untangle my lines and mend my net. Shouldn’t you be getting ready?” “Nah, I’ll do it tomorrow, before the competition starts. It’s the best day today for sliding down Big Hill.”
As he was leaving he came across Lucas again. They spent the rest of the day sliding down Big Hill. What a blast! The day sped by all too quickly and it was a very tired Morris who climbed into bed that night.

When he woke up late the next day, he noticed the sun so bright in the sky again. A perfect day for playing, he thought to himself. Then he remembered! It was the day of the big fishing competition! He loved the fishing competition. Last year he’d won a prize. He’d better get his boat sorted out. He found it where he’d left it after his last trip. It was full of old leaves because he hadn’t covered it over properly. It took him quite a while to tidy it up. Luckily Lucas came by as he was finishing and helped him drag it down to the water. All his friends were there with their smart looking boats glistening in the sun.

“Morris, we thought you wouldn’t make it!” said Rose the rhino. “The competition is about to start. You did check your boat for leaks didn’t you?” “Oh no, I forgot! Will you help me?” “I’ll do it with you tomorrow Morris. I’ve got to go line up now,” and off she went. Morris checked over his boat. He saw three tiny holes. He stuffed them with old leaves scrunched up in mud.

As he was finishing the starting buzzer went off and all the motors of the boats zoomed into life. Everyone took off to their favourite fishing spot. Morris pulled on his motor cord. It coughed and spluttered, but wouldn’t start, no matter how hard he tried. So he took out his oars. He could make it to his nearby fishing spot by
rowing. When he got there he picked up his fishing rod. It was all tangled up — and he didn’t have any bait.
Henry the hippopotamus came past in his boat. He’d already caught a huge fish and was taking it back to be weighed. “Can you help me Henry?” called Morris. “My lines all tangled and I’ve no bait.” “I’ll help you tomorrow Morris,” came Henry’s reply. “I’ve got to get back. Here’s some bait though.” He passed him a small packet before motoring off as fast as a big hippopotamus in a small boat could. It took Morris ages to untangle his lines. He was concentrating so hard that he didn’t notice the water slowly leaking into the bottom of his boat until he’d finished. It was only then that he realised his feet were covered in water!
“Oh no,” he groaned. “I better start bailing out the water.” He looked around for his bucket, but it wasn’t there.

Zach the zebra motored over to him. “Please help me Zach,” called Morris. “I’m taking on some water.” Zach looked into his boat. “You’ll be all right, I can’t stop now. I’ll help you fix the leak tomorrow. Here’s my bucket though.”

Off zoomed Zach. Morris bucketed and bucketed. He had nearly got rid of all the water when all of a sudden the hole burst and turned into a gaping mouth gushing water faster than Morris could bail it out. He was about to sink so he tightened the straps on his life jacket, stood up and jumped into the water. Brrr, it sure was cold! He rolled over onto his back and starting to kick himself back to land. Suddenly he heard Lucas calling out to him, and then there he was in a dinghy, reaching out
to help him up.

“I thought you didn’t like the water?” gasped Morris. “I don’t, but I saw you jump out of your boat through my binoculars, and I knew that rescuing you was the one job I couldn’t wait till tomorrow to do.” Morris shook his head sadly. “I think there are lots of jobs I won’t be leaving till tomorrow from now on.”

Copyright © Karen Cossey

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