Gateway to the Classics: Firelight Stories by Carolyn Sherwin Bailey
Firelight Stories by  Carolyn Sherwin Bailey

How Nutcracker Ran Away

S O Nutcracker and Sugardolly lived at the peddler's house, but the peddler soon found that he had a very bad bargain. Nutcracker was a naughty little dwarf. All day long he did no good to anyone, only mischief. He got into the nuts that were ready to go to market, and he cracked every one with his great mouth. Then he climbed the nut trees outside, and threw shells at the people passing by.

When the peddler's wife tried to catch him with her broom, out from under it he would slide, and jump to the shelf and hide inside the clock, or he would dance a little way ahead of the broom and make faces at the peddler's wife.

He had only two friends—the great red barnyard cock who took him for rides about the garden, and little Sugardolly whom he loved very dearly.

Now Sugardolly was almost as much trouble as Nutcracker, for she would do no work, and she could eat nothing but honey, and sweets from the flowers; and if she could not have all the flowers in the garden she would sit in a corner and cry. It was Nutcracker who brought her sweets, and Nutcracker who comforted her when she cried. But at last, when Nutcracker had eaten all the nuts that were gathered in the house, and all that grew in the garden, he decided to run away, for the peddler's house no longer amused him. So early one morning he buttoned his little soldier jacket tightly about him, hopped on the cock's back, the cock spread his wings, and they went over the wall and far, far away. Nutcracker had decided to make a home for Sugardolly somewhere else.

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