Bunny Brown and His Sister Sue on Grandpa's Farm/3

CHAPTER III


THE BIG AUTOMOBILE


"Bunny! Bunny! Look! Look! The hand-organ man's monkey has run away!" cried Sue.

"Yes!" answered Bunny. "Let's run after him! Maybe we can catch him, and the man will let us play the organ!"

That was all Bunny Brown and his sister Sue thought about—doing whatever they happened to think of first, and this time it was racing after the runaway monkey.

For the hand-organ man's monkey was really running away. He was frightened at Wango, I think, for Wango was larger than he, though Wango was quite gentle, even if he did make lots of trouble, such as upsetting the jars in Mrs. Redden's candy store.

"Here! Come back! Come back!" cried the Italian to his monkey, speaking in what sounded to Bunny and Sue very queer talk. But then the Italian could speak his own language well, even if he could not talk the kind Bunny and Sue used.

"We'll get your monkey for you, Mr. Organ-man!" cried Bunny, "Come on. Sue!"

"Well, don't run so fast—I can't keep up to you!" called the little girl. "Wait for me, Bunny!"

Bunny turned and clasped Sue's hand in his own. He did not want to leave his little sister behind. Each child still held a half-eaten lollypop.

The hand-organ man set down his music box, and he, too, raced down the street after his runaway monkey. Of course the man could run faster than could Bunny and Sue.

All this while Wango was jumping about on the porch, chattering and squealing. He tried to break the chain that was fast to the collar around his neck, but it was too strong for his efforts.

Once, after Mr. Winkler had fastened his pet out of doors, Wango broke away, and hid in Mrs. Redden's candy shop. And, oh! how he did smash the candy jars, and what a lot of lollypops he took! But his master, Mr. Winkler, the old sailor, paid for them, so it was all right. Then Mr. Winkler put a stronger chain on Wango. And that is why the pet monkey could not now get away.

But he tried very hard, for he wanted to run away also, I think, and have a good time with his friend, the hand-organ monkey. Only the hand-organ monkey seemed to be afraid of Wango.

"But he didn't need to be," Bunny said, as he trotted on with Sue, "for Wango wouldn't hurt him."

"Of course not!" said Sue, "any more than our dog Splash would have hurt the little yellow dog he ran after one day."

I have told you about that in the first book, how Splash ran away with Bunny and Sue, hurrying down the street to make friends with a little yellow dog, that once had had a tin can tied to his tail.

And, also in the first book, I told you how Bunny and Sue got their dog Splash. Bunny and Sue were carried away in a boat, and landed on an island in the river. There Sue fell in, and the big dog pulled her out. As no one came for the dog the Browns kept him, and Bunny and Sue named him "Splash," because, as Sue said, "he splashed into the water to pull me out."

On ran the hand-organ man after his monkey, and on ran Bunny Brown and his sister Sue after the hand-organ man. But Wango had to stay behind. He made so much noise, though, with his chattering and screaming, to say nothing of rattling the chain, that Miss Winkler came running out. She was making a cake, and her hands were all covered with flour, while there was a white spot on the end of her nose.

"Oh, what is the matter? What is the matter?" she cried.

"The hand-organ man's monkey ran away because Wango scared him," said Bunny, "and we are running after him."

"After Wango?" Miss Winkler wanted to know.

"No! After the hand-organ monkey," answered Bunny. "Come on, Sue!"

They turned the corner, and there, half way down the street, they saw the hand-organ man standing under a tree.

"Oh, maybe the monkey is up the tree!" cried Bunny.

"Yes, ma monk—he up-a de tree!" said the Italian, in his funny way. "He no comea down! Jacko! Jacko!" he called. "Comea down—pleasa!"

But, though the hand-organ man held up his arms, and begged his monkey to come down, the little furry creature would not come. He sat perched on a high limb, looking with his bright eyes at Bunny, Sue and the man. Several boys and girls, as well as some men, came over to see what was going on.

"I'll climb the tree and get him," offered George Watson.

"Better not. Monkeys can bite and scratch," said Mr. Gordon, who kept the grocery store. "What happened to him, Bunny?"

Bunny told him how Wango had frightened the organ monkey.

"Maybe if you play, Mr. Italian man, he'll come down!" exclaimed Sue, after a bit "Ha! That's a good idea!" said Mr. Reinberg, who sold drygoods in Bellemere. "Go get your hand organ, Mr. Italian."

"Sure. Me maka de nicea de music!" agreed the man. "Maybe Jacko come-a down den!"

Off he ran to get his organ, which he had left on the grass in front of Miss Winkler's house. But, even when the organ was played, the monkey up in the tree would not come down. He chattered, and climbed farther up.

"Oh, I know what let's do!" suddenly cried Bunny Brown.

"What?" asked his sister Sue.

"Let's give him our lollypops—that is, what we have left of 'em. Wango likes lollypops, you know, and this monkey ought to like 'em just as well. I'll give him mine," and Bunny looked at his half-eaten candy.

"And he can have mine, too!" exclaimed Sue.

"Better let the hand-organ man give him the candy," said Mr. Gordon. "The monkey will know him better. I guess it's a good idea though—offering him the lollypops."

"Much-a thank-a you!" said the Italian, smiling, as he took the pieces of candy on the sticks, which the children, gave him. He held them up to Jacko, and said something in Italian. The monkey chattered, just as if he were talking back, and then he began slowly climbing down the tree.

"Oh, Bunny! He's coming! He's coming!" cried Sue.

"He much-a like-a de candy!" said the Italian organ-grinder, who was now smiling. "Come on, Jacko! Come on!"

The runaway monkey did not seem so much afraid now, or perhaps he was very hungry for the candy. Anyhow down he came, until he could jump to his master's shoulder. Then he put one little hairy paw around the Italian's neck, and, with the other, held the lollypops, which he at once began to eat.

"Say, that's the time you and Sue did it, Bunny!" cried Mr. Gordon. "It was a good trick. But the monkey will eat all your candy."

"Oh, I don't mind," Bunny said. But he did care, just a little, and so did Sue. However the Italian was so glad to get his monkey back that he gave Bunny and Sue each a penny, so they could buy new lollypops. Then the organ-man fastened the string on the monkey's collar again, and started off up the street.

"Let's follow him," said Sue to Bunny. "Maybe the monkey will run away again, and we can help get him out of a tree."

"No, we'd better go home," Bunny said. "Mother may be looking for us."

So home they went, and just in time, for Mrs. Brown was about to ask Uncle Tad to look for the children.

Every day, for the next week, Bunny Brown and his sister Sue would ask when they could start for grandpa's farm. And their mother would say:

"Pretty soon now. Daddy hasn't his surprise quite ready."

"Oh, why can't you tell us?" begged Sue.

"Because, then it wouldn't be any surprise," said Mrs. Brown, with a laugh.

Bunny and Sue had some good times while they were waiting, but they were anxious to have fun on the farm. And, one morning, soon after breakfast, they went out in the yard to play, and saw a strange sight.

Into the drive rumbled a big automobile, almost like a large moving van. Bunny and Sue ran out of the way. The big automobile came to a stop. The man on the front seat jumped down, and, going around to the back, opened the doors. Bunny and Sue peeped inside the van.

"Oh, look, look. Bunny!" cried Sue. "It's just like a play-house inside. It's got beds, and a table and even a stove! Oh, what is it all for?"

"My, what a big, queer auto!" said Bunny. "And it's even got windows in it. Why we could camp out in it! Is it ours?" he asked the man.