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CHATTERER GROWS RECKLESS
CHATTERER saw that a branch of the very tree he was sitting in stretched right over the roof of the little house and the very tips of some of the twigs actually touched it. Chatterer's eyes danced. "If I can't get in from the ground, perhaps I can get in from the air," said he and chuckled. Chatterer looked around hastily to see if any one was watching. No one was in sight but Black Pussy, watching him from the ground. He didn't mind her up there so he ran lightly out along the branch over the roof of the little house and jumped on to it. Swiftly he ran around the edge of it, peeping over. He was looking for au opening big enough to crawl through.
At last, over in one corner, he spied a knothole close up under the edge of the roof. Chatterer dug his sharp claws into the wood to keep from falling and very carefully crept over until he had safely reached the hole. It wasn't quite big enough to push his head wholly through. Gnaw, gnaw, gnaw! The little splinters began to fly. Gnaw, gnaw, gnaw! The hole was big enough, and Chatterer slipped safely inside just as Farmer Brown's boy came out of the house and noticed Black Pussy sitting on the ground, staring up at the roof of the little house.
"Hello, Puss! Did you think you heard a mouse in there?" exclaimed Farmer Brown's boy. "You didn't, because no mice can get in there. Come along over to the barn, and I'll give you some nice fresh warm milk."
"Phew!" exclaimed Chatterer to himself, "that was a narrow escape! I'm glad that pesky black cat can't tell what she saw!"
When they were out of sight, Chatterer turned to see what kind of a place he was in. His eyes glistened with greed. Corn, corn, corn everywhere! It seemed to him there was corn enough for all the Squirrels in the world.
"And it's all mine!" gasped Chatterer, quite forgetting that he was stealing. Then he began to eat, and he ate and ate until he couldn't swallow another mouthful."I believe I'll take a nap right here," said he to himself, and curled up in the darkest corner. In two minutes he was fast asleep, dreaming that all the world seemed to have turned to golden corn and all for him.