“You had better watch out” said Jessica. “Something or someone will get hurt.”
But Roger and Tom weren’t listening. They were playing with the ball in the hall of the burrow, kicking it to and fro – and every so often sideways. On more than one occasion the ball would head off and bounce off Jessica’s head. Luckily she wasn’t drawing otherwise she would have been really angry with the two of them.
“It’s OK” said Roger, “the ball is soft and bouncy… see!” and with that he gave it a really hard kick towards Tom. Only instead of heading towards Tom it went off with a curve and bounced off the vase that was sitting on the shelf.
“Uh oh” said Roger.
“Uh oh” said Tom.
Roger and Tom stood there, watching the vase rock back and forth. The sudden quiet was too much for Jessica and she turned round to see what wasn’t happening – and saw the vase.
“Oh No!!” she cried out.
The vase wobbled just a little more then fell off the shelf and landed on the floor.
Before the last of the shards of the vase had settled Tom said “Bye!” and scampered off as fast as he could. Jessica and Roger look at the pot – and then at each other.
“What are we going to do?” asked Roger.
“We?” replied Jessica, “You broke it!”
“I know” said Roger, “But I don’t know what to do next.”
Jessica thought for a moment then said to Roger “go and get some glue.”
“Yes that will fix it – I’ll glue the bits back together!”
He scampered away as fast as he could. Whilst he got the glue, Jessica carefully gathered up all the parts of the pot. Roger returned and as best as he could muster he stuck the pot back together again. They put it on the shelf.
“Good as new” said Roger.
Jessica didn’t know what to say. There were bits of the pot in places that they never used to be, both on the pot and on Roger – and bits of his fur were all over everything. It didn’t help that he’d managed to stick the glue cap on the vase and leave a puddle of glue on the floor either.
Whilst they stood there, Colin entered the room. He saw the two of them looking at the shelf and without looking at the vase said,
“You know that vase belongs to the Elder Rabbit. He’s had it for years – it was his fathers and his father’s before him. It’s irreplaceable you know…”
Colin then realised that the two rabbits weren’t just looking at the vase – they were staring at it, their eyes big and slowly Colin’s eyes scanned to what it was they were… oh no!
“What have you done?” Colin exclaimed.
Jessica couldn’t help herself. She tried to say quiet, but it wasn’t in her nature.
“RogerandTomwhereplayingwiththeballandithitthevasewetriedtofixitbutweweren’tverygoodwereweit’srubbishIknowwe’resosorry” she blurted before following it with tears that would almost flood the hallway.
“Don’t cry” said Colin, looking at the vase, “We can fix it. But it’s certainly an interesting variation” he added.
Colin carefully picked up the vase and told the two rabbits that he would fix it – but they would need to clear away all the mess that was all around the floor. He looked at Roger, with bits of pot sticking to his fur and realised that he would need cleaning down too. Jessica, pleased that Colin was coming to their help, offered to clear up the mess.
“After all” she said “Roger would probably end up wearing more of it.”
Roger smiled a little. He owed Jessica for this help – and so did Tom.
Colin cleaned Roger down – if only to make sure that he had all the parts of the vase. He then carefully unglued all the shards and cleaned them down whilst Roger watched carefully. Then he carefully glued them all back in the right place. Finally, the vase was ready.
Roger and Jessica watched as Colin carefully put the vase back on the shelf. They didn’t hear the Elder Rabbit enter the room.
“Are you cleaning the vase again, Colin?” asked the Elder Rabbit. “I remember you telling me the vase needed a clean when you knocked it off the shelf when you were a small bunny.”
Jessica and Roger looked at Colin.
“I never said it hadn’t happened before.” He said.
“Mind you” added the Elder Rabbit, “At least you didn’t have to buy a new one like I did when I broke it. I tried to glue it back together, but I couldn’t get all the bits to fit in the right order.”
He peered closely at the vase.
“That’s a very neat repair” he added, “Remembering how well Colin repaired it last time, I reckon this was done by you Jessica – well done.”
Jessica looked at Colin – who just winked.
“Thank you” said Jessica.
The Elder Rabbit walked off. Once out of site, Colin added
“Actually, this is the seventh vase that I know of. You should have just told me when it got broken – we’ve got a stack of replacement vases out back.”
“So why did we have to repair it?” asked Roger.
“Because” smiled Colin, “How else would you remember not to play with the ball in the hallway? Besides, what would you have done if there were no extra vases?”
Roger looked down. “I’m sorry” he said.
“Roger, you need to thank Jessica for helping you. While you do that, I’m going to find Tom – I’ve got a huge stack of plates that will need scrubbing clean for him to do. He really should not have run off.”
Once Colin had left the room, Roger looked at Jessica. Before he could say anything she said,
“I know you’re sorry, but I’ll think of something I’ll need you to do. But it won’t be gluing anything.”