3 On A Moonbeam

Book Two – Moonbeam Series

Excerpt – Chapter 2:

(The story so far: Jake is learning to do something different so he can be the Parade Marshall in the local parade … he is learning how to walk on stilts and juggle at the same time, but he’s finding this is not so easy.)

School was over at last. All over Fairyland, everyone was getting ready for the parade. It was now less than two weeks away.

Paddy was sitting on his front steps and Jake flew by and saw him. He landed on Paddy’s shoulder.

“What’s wrong, Paddy?” he asked. “You look so unhappy.”

“This is harder than I thought,” mumbled Paddy, kicking the stilts.

“Have you been practising?” asked the blue and green parrot.

“Yes! A lot!” declared the leprechaun. “But it’s still hard, Jake.

Their friend, Tara, the magic butterfly, came by and landed on a flower.

“Come on, Paddy. You have to stop worrying. You can do it,” she said. Tara was able to read thoughts. She knew he was having a hard time.

“Do you really think so, Tara?” asked Paddy.

“I know you can,” she replied. “You just have to keep practising, Paddy. But there is something else you should know.”

“Something else?” asked Paddy.

“Yes, you have to believe in yourself,” she said.

Paddy frowned.

“What do you mean, believe in myself?”

“Well, if you think you can’t do it, then you won’t!” exclaimed Tara. “You must believe you can. Then it will be much easier, you’ll see. Remember your math last year, Paddy?”

“Yes … when I practised more, it got easier,” Paddy admitted.

“The math wasn’t really getting easier,” explained Tara. “You practised so much you just learned it. You became more confident, too.”

“Tara’s right, Paddy!” squawked Jake. “Try it!”

“This is very different than math. I know it won’t work for stilts!” groaned Paddy.

“You must stop thinking like that, Paddy,” said Tara. “If you don’t, it will never happen. I have to go now. You don’t have much time to waste. Parade day is only ten days away.”

Tara flew into the air. She pretended to fly away, but she stopped at a nearby tree. She wanted to see what Paddy was going to do. Should I use my magic fairy dust to help him? she thought. But she knew it would be better for Paddy to do this on his own.

“Come on Paddy, try it … please!” Jake pleaded, flying around and around above him. “You can do it. I know you can.”

Paddy stood up. He carefully got back onto his stilts and walked a few steps. Stopping at the end of the sidewalk, he slowly took the balls from his pocket.

I can do it! I can do it! he repeated to himself.

He threw one ball into the air and caught it. Then he put a ball in each hand. He threw them into the air and caught them with the other hand. He did it again, and again.

“I can do it! I can do it!” he said to himself.

Finally, he threw the third ball into the air. He tossed the balls once … twice … three …

“Oh no!” Jake cried as Paddy missed.

Paddy tried to catch it but the ball fell onto the grass. The stilts began to wobble. Then the second ball fell, bouncing on the sidewalk. He took another wobbly step, but it was no use. He fell onto the grass and the stilts clattered around him.

“No way! This is too hard!” he groaned.

“CAREFUL, PADDY!” said a deep voice by his left hand. “You almost squished me! Are you having trouble?”

Paddy peered into the grass. “I’m sorry, Mister Grasshopper. You’re sure lucky you don’t have to use stilts.”

“Oh I don’t know about that, Paddy,” laughed Mister Grasshopper. “If my legs would work better, I would really like to try stilts. It looks like fun!”

Jake flew down to join them.

“Hello Mister Grasshopper. Come on, Paddy. Let’s try it again. You did really well,” he encouraged his friend.

“Yes, go on, Paddy. I’ll cheer you on,” said Mister Grasshopper. “Concentrate hard now. You can do it!”

Jake swooped down to pick up one of the balls. Paddy got up. He didn’t say anything but he looked very unhappy. He thought about what Tara and Mister Grasshopper had said.

I wish I could trade places with Mister Grasshopper! he thought. Could this really be fun?

He picked up the other ball from the grass. He put it into the pocket of his red vest. He slowly climbed back onto the stilts. He balanced himself and held out his hand. Jake flew in closer and dropped the ball into Paddy’s hand.

Tara and Mister Grasshopper watched. It took many tries and many dropped balls, but finally Paddy mastered it! They were all very proud of him.

Paddy is lucky to have such a good friend like Jake, thought Tara. I think he’ll be okay now. Knowing Paddy was feeling better, she flew away. No one had even noticed her.

“That’s enough for today,” sighed Paddy, jumping off the stilts. He was suddenly feeling very tired.

“That was really stupendous,” squawked Jake.

“Thanks for your help. Are you thirsty?” asked Paddy. “Let’s go see if Mom has made some orange juice.”

“Yuck!” replied Jake. “Orange juice is not for this bird. I’ll have a drink from the bird bath instead!”

Paddy grinned as he watched Jake fly toward the back yard. Actually, he was very proud of himself. They were right. He could do it. He was almost ready for the parade.

But Paddy’s troubles are not over yet and how will he deal with them this time?

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