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The Not So Wise Owl
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Jelly Bellys Adventure
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Suzy had lots of toys and cuddly animals, but there was only one that she always took to bed with her and that was 'Jelly-Belly', her teddy bear.
Suzy's mother had laughed when she told her what she wanted to call her teddy bear.
"Why Jelly-Belly?" she had asked smiling.
"Because he has such a soft fat belly and is so cuddly," Suzy replied.
Every night just before she went to sleep Suzy snuggled her teddy and laid her cheek on his soft tummy.
Within minutes she drifted into dreamland.
Jelly-Belly liked this part of the day the best as he had Suzy all to himself. During the daylight hours he had to share Suzy with her other toys and friends but nighttime was for him alone.
He loved her soft cheek resting on him and could have laid there forever. Sometimes, if Suzy was restless in her sleep, he ended up at the bottom of the bed or even on the floor but he didn't mind as long as he was close to her.
One day Jelly-Belly heard an excited Suzy telling a friend that she was going on a train to see her grandad.
"I hope she doesn't forget me," Jelly-Belly thought to himself.
Suzy was packing her rucksack and it was so full Jelly-Belly could see there wasn't any room left for him.
Just as he felt tears well up in his eyes Suzy grabbed him by the arm.
"Oops, nearly forgot Jelly-Belly!" she exclaimed.
Jelly-Belly didn't mind how Suzy carried him, as long as he was going with her.
Suzy sat by the window with Jelly-Belly on her lap.
It was the first time either of them had been on a train and both watched in fascination as houses and fields flashed by.
The journey was quite long and with the constant 'clickety clack - clickety clack' noise the train made on the rails, Suzy and Jelly-Belly soon fell asleep.
The train pulled into their station; in a rush Suzy and her mother got off the train and left Jelly-Belly behind.
Jelly-Belly lay where he had been dropped by Suzy, wondering where she had gone. "Surely she hasn't forgotten me?" he said to himself.
Suzy didn't realise she had left Jelly-Belly on the train until it was time to go to bed at her grandad's house.
One very unhappy little girl had to curl up in bed without her soft Jelly-Belly to cuddle to sleep.
Meanwhile, back on the train, two men sat where Suzy had been sitting and one of them used Jelly-Belly as a pillow for his head.
After them came a family who decided it was great fun to use him like a ball and threw him backwards and forwards to each other.
At last the train came to a halt for the night, instead of peace and quiet, several people jumped on the train and started to clean it, ready for the next day.
"Oh," one cleaner said, "some kid has left its teddy on the train."
"Just hand it in to lost property," suggested another.
Jelly-Belly was put with all the cleaning materials on a trolley and stayed there for the rest of the night.
Early the next morning he was handed over to a man who clipped a tag, with a long number onto his leg.
"I wish I had a pound for every toy that was left on trains," laughed the man. He placed Jelly-Belly on a shelf with dozens of other toys, some of them thick with dust.
"Hey mate," a purple dinosaur said, "you might as well settle down, you could be here for a very long time, if not forever."
"I won't be here long," Jelly-Belly said with a catch in his voice, "my owner will soon come looking for me."
"Yeah," smiled a dusty old giraffe, "we all said that and we are all still here."
Jelly-Belly knew how much he was loved and was certain Suzy would search for him.
He told the other toys but they laughed and one said, "we thought we were loved too but we were soon forgotten, eh mates?"
Jelly-Belly stayed hopeful all that day, and the next.
The days then turned into weeks and he realised that no one was coming for him.
"Maybe Suzy's mum has bought her a new teddy bear?" he asked himself sadly.
Jelly-Belly sat on the shelf and started to gather dust, just like the others.
A doll named Maisy whispered to the giraffe, "It doesn't do to get fond of humans you know, they love you one day and the next you are put in a box because they have a better toy."
Jelly-Belly heard what Maisy said, but he knew his Suzy wouldn't just forget about him.
The days were long and boring with no children's laughter and no cuddles at night time. Jelly-Belly felt as though he was going to be there forever and his hope started to fade like the other toys.
Had he known how hard Suzy and her mother were looking for him, he would have been a very happy bear.
They had phoned the station where they left the train and several others, but were told every time that no bear had been handed in.
Suzy never gave up hope, even though she was now back home and had dozens of other cuddly toys.
None, however, were her soft and beautiful Jelly-Belly.
Suzy's mother was advised to go to the big lost property office in London by her friend, as most items from all the smaller stations were sent there.
Every day Suzy would ask if anyone had rung about Jelly-Belly, her mother hated to see the disappointed look on her daughter's face when she had to say no.
One morning Suzy's Mother woke her up and told her to hurry with her breakfast as they were going 'bear hunting'.
They took a train to London and then a taxi to the lost property office.
The man in charge went up and down the aisles and brought lots of teddy bears for the little girl to look at, but she shook her head sadly because her Jelly-Belly wasn't one of them
Jelly-Belly had fallen backwards when the man had taken some other bears from the shelf and lay there with his feet sticking up in the air.
"I'm so sorry darling," Suzy's mother said gently.
"But I want my Jelly-Belly Mummy." Suzy cried out and burst into tears.
Jelly-Belly heard the crying.
"That's my Suzy!" he shouted to the other toys, "I told you she would find me.
An old battery powered car, that had sat on the shelf for years, knew he would never be collected, but there was no reason why at least one of them couldn't find happiness.
He used the last tiny drop of power in his battery.
He started his engine and slowly pushed Jelly-Belly to the edge of the shelf.
The man in charge was just about to put the other teddies back on the shelf when Jelly-Belly fell to the floor at his feet.
"Hey teddy, where did you come from?" he said as he picked him up and dusted him down.
Suzy and her mother had just left and were walking across the station when the man came running out shouting.
"I found another one; I don't suppose this is yours is it?"
Suzy turned round and saw the man holding her precious Jelly-Belly.
Both the man and her mother looked on with huge smiles on their faces as Suzy hugged her bear and rubbed her face on his soft, cuddly belly.
That night Suzy and Jelly-Belly both slept cuddled together very tightly. No one was ever going to separate them again.
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