Listen and read-along with this fun story by Marjie Gold-Vukson
“Mitchell Allen Davis!”
Allen! She used my middle name. That’s not a good sign.
“Mitchell! Don’t make me count to five!”
“What happens when she gets to five?” my friend Benny whispered, as we squashed together behind the couch.
I thought about it. I mean, she’s gotten to three before. Once she even went all the way up to four-and-a-quarter. But five? It gives me the chills just to think about it!
Benny’s flashlight beam slowly searched around and under the sofa for nothing in particular (although, he did find two catnip toys and a nickel).
“I bet when she reaches five,” Benny said, softly, “she’ll unbolt a secret trap door—probably under the rug right in front of this very couch—and send you down a chute to 13 starving crocodiles waiting there.”
And, in his most worrisome hiss—because as you’ve probably realized, Benny is quite a dramatic guy, he added, “And nothing will be seen of you ever again, except the broken pieces of your eyeglasses and your Captain Lightening underpants!” He paused, looked down, and added sadly, “I’ll miss you, pal.”
“That’s two, Mitchell Allen!”
“Or maybe she’ll strap you to the Torture of a Thousand Tickle Machine. She has one, you know. It’s something she created from old cogs and wheels and rotators; pullies and gears and sprockets; with tiny clamps holding feathers and bristles into place.”
Benny’s an expert about rotators and sprockets and stuff. He always says he’s going to be an engineer like his aunt when he grows up.
“With the flick of a switch, the Torture of a Thousand Tickles Machine will launch into motion. Its sensors will buzz and sniff around until they find your bare feet and they’ll tickle your little tootsies until you scream like crazy.”
I listened, spell-bound as he continued.
“Then, it will creep, like a huge hairy spider, up your sides, aiming directly for your stinky little armpits!”
“Three! I’m up to three, Mitchell!”
I wondered what she would do.
Nothing. My big sister once told me. it’s probably just an idle threat.
What? Hadn’t my sister thought about the possibilities of alligators and arm-pits?
“Four! Now you’re going to get it, Mitchell!”
Oh, no! Not, not … IT! (What is it?)
“It’s probably something like a six-course dinner of fried ferret faces,” Benny suggested. “Or llama lips fricassee and eyeballs-in-oatmeal stew or, worst of all, Brussels sprouts and lima beans in curried cilantro sauce!”
“Five, Mitchell! I’m home. I’m tired. And your time is up!
And with that, she walked directly to our not-as-secret-as-I-once-thought hiding place and gave me that look.
Bennie and I crawled out from behind the couch and, true to her word, Mom really let me have it! A big bear hug and a smootchy kiss on my cheek. Right in front of Benny, no less!
Mom smiled as she tousled Benny’s shaggy red hair and gave him a most curious wink.
As she headed into the kitchen to make supper, she put something in Mitchell’s hand.
He looked down.
There was a sprocket.
About the Author
Marjie Gold-Vukson is the mother of five grown children and a former public school teacher. She holds a master’s degree in Elementary Education, a bachelor’s in Early Childhood Education, and is the author of 33 print and 35 electronic publications. Marjie lives in the Midwest with her husband, two German shepherds, one Boston Terrier, a cat, and two birds.
Categories: Audio Stories/Poems