by Mary Norton
illustrated by Diana Stanley
Mrs. Driver is out for blood. She is going to find out who is responsible for the missing items. She is suspicious of everyone, giving Crampfurl strange looks, and wondering if Great-Aunt Sophy was the culprit, and going through the Boy’s things when he was asleep. She decides to stay up at night to catch the thief in the act. The house is quiet but then she starts hearing noises, a sigh, an echo of movement. She creaks down the stairs but sees nothing. Then she gets a glimpse of light coming from under the floor. She yanks the floorboard up and is startled by the sight of “hundreds” of mice, with faces, hands and feet, running about and squeaking. Crampful arrives in the kitchen after hearing her shrieking. He is not convinced when Mrs. Driver tells him what happened and believes the boy is responsible for hiding things down there. When they start pulling up things from the hole, they are amazed at the collection of items, including a very valuable emerald watch. Mrs. Driver informs Crampful that this is “a case for the police.”
Mrs. Driver must have been a sight jumping around the kitchen and blustering about the hundreds of mice she saw, all “dressed up” when she yanked up that kitchen floorboard. Now seeing that there were only three Borrowers down there, that’s quite a stretch to the imagination!! Still, I would probably do the same thing if it were me that lifted that floorboard. Just the thought that something four-legged was living under there . . . Now if I came to know a Borrower, that would be totally different.
Imagine what Pod, Homily and Arrietty felt when that floorboard was yanked up of their heads. They must have known there was immediate danger because they all scurried away and they don’t do that with the Boy. I wonder what will happen to them now. There is no way they can stay in their apartment. Mrs. Driver is going to bring in the police. They will think she has been into the sherry when she explains to them that there are hundreds of dressed up mice living under the floorboard and stealing household items.
Yeah--and what is worse for
her--seeing miniature dressed people or miniature dressed
I can imagine how Homily felt. She knows there's nothing for it now but to emigrate. Poor Homily!
I would rather see dressed tiny people than dressed mice any day. Good thing she was not quick enough to catch them.
Ha! Me, too. I always wonder at the fascination of dressing up little mice "dolls"...
although I do concede the Beatrix Potter mice to be appealing.
Maybe it depends on the mouse that is being dressed up!!
I feel really bad for Homily now. Pod and Arrietty, I believe, will adjust well to a new surrounding, but Homily . . .