Hildegard Avocado had had a lovely day. She had been able to offer the Mini-mice a refuge from the Gloop Lab, the sun was out, the garden was blooming, all sorts of interesting people had turned up for tea and cake, and as far as she could see, all was right with the world.
Feeling that her guests would be happy left to their own devices for a little while, she wandered off to the furthest part of her garden and began gathering flowers. The sun was just disappearing over the tops of the trees across the meadow, casting shadows through the long grass.
The Mini-mice had lit a mini-bonfire with some dried leaves and a few twigs, and were toasting marshmallows. Hildegard loved the smell of a bonfire and stood for a while, looking at the sunset, and listening to the breeze rustling the long grass in the meadow. Life was good.
She thought for a little while about the charming people she had come across today: Colonel Crackpot (a troubled soul!), Dave the taxi-driving dodo (so chilled!), Snuffles the mouse (so brave!), Clorabella Swish (so small!), Lady Gertrude Gruntblatter (so … greedy?), Peregrine Stumpings and Griselda (so thoughtful! All that effort they had made to save her from her two slightly less charming neighbours, Professor Glooper and Doctor Socks!). How lucky she was to have so many friends!
She gazed up at a balloon passing overhead, and thought how pretty it looked. Something small detached itself from the basket and floated down towards her.
‘Percy! How wonderful to see you!’ exclaimed Hildegard with delight. ‘I had no idea you had taken up parachuting!’
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