Betsy Butterfly in "Solomon Owl's Idea"

 

 

Solomon Owl's Idea


Freddie Firefly actually did send a message to Betsy Butterfly, telling her that Dusty Moth wanted to see her, and saying that unless she would agree to meet him in the meadow some night soon, Dusty was afraid he would lose his appetite entirely.But Betsy thought the whole affair was only a joke. So she merely laughed—and sent Freddie no answer at all; for she hardly believed that she needed to explain to him that nothing could induce her to stir out after sunset.

Freddie Firefly was much upset because he received no answer to his message. Perhaps he would not have cared so much had Dusty Moth not made his life miserable each night from dusk to dawn. But that persistent fellow kept asking Freddie every few minutes if he had "heard from her" yet. And naturally anyone would grow tired if he had to keep saying "No! no! no!" all night long.At the same time Dusty Moth kept insisting in a most annoying way that if he lost much more of his appetite he would be ill, and it would be Freddie Firefly's fault.

So Freddie Firefly began to worry. He came finally to detest Dusty Moth. And Freddie's family noticed that he was growing quite thin, because Dusty Moth left him little time—between questions—in which to eat his meals comfortably.
"I declare, I wish Betsy Butterfly would move away from Pleasant Valley!" Freddie Firefly exclaimed at last, quite out of patience with everybody and everything. "I'm in a pretty fix, I am! And since I don't know how to get rid of this annoying Dusty Moth, I'm going to ask Solomon Owl what I'd better do." That, at least, was a comforting thought.

So the following morning, just before dawn, he made what might be termed a flying call on Solomon Owl who lived in the hemlock woods beyond the swamp.And luckily wise old Solomon thought of a good plan at once. As soon as he had heard Freddie Firefly's story he said to him:
"If Betsy Butterfly refuses to meet your friend, why don't you ask her for her picture?"
"That's a splendid idea!" Freddie cried. "How in the world did you ever happen to think of it, Mr. Owl?"

Solomon Owl hooted at that question."That's my secret," he said. "If I told all I know, everybody else would be just as wise as I am." And after giving another long string of hoots, which he followed with a burst of loud laughter, Solomon Owl popped into his house.Anyhow, Freddie Firefly couldn't complain, for he now had a remedy for his trouble. And he felt so carefree and happy again that on his way across the meadow he stopped to talk with Jimmy Rabbit, who was taking a stroll in the direction of Farmer Green's cabbage patch.

Freddie Firefly quickly told Jimmy all about his affair with Dusty Moth. He even explained how he had gone to ask Solomon Owl's help, and related what that wise bird had advised.
"There's only one thing that worries me now," said Freddie Firefly anxiously. "I'm wondering whether Betsy Butterfly has ever had a picture made of herself."
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