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The Adventures of Tully
By Anne Marie Jenkins Holler
AuthorHouseCopyright © 2011 Anne Marie Jenkins Holler
All right reserved.
Chapter OneTully the worm lives deep in the earth, where he's safe and warm. The seasons were changing, from a long cold winter, and spring was on its way. The earth was warming, and Tully left his cozy home for the outside world to give a big holler. He had only felt the sunshine for a few moments when a gully washer came and hit the ground so hard, it bounced Tully out of the ground, and he landed in a big mud puddle on the side of a country road.
"Wow, this is okay! I needed a bit of a bath! What's that noise?! What's that!" It was Mister Willy in his combine, and it was big and loud.
"Those tires are bigger than the moon!" thought Tully.
Just then, Mister Willy hit the mud puddle, and ran right over Tully.
"Oh me! Where am I!?"
He was in the back tire, in one of the big fat grooves, packed with mud.
Mister Willy came to a stop sign; the combine made a big noise when he put on the breaks. Then he gave it the gas; the big combine's tires span, and so did Tully; like he'd been shot out of a cannon!
Spinning and spinning, over and over, he hit the ground. Lucky for Tully, he landed on a soft pile of oak leaves, in the woods, where a robin was watching from a nearby fir tree.
"Dinner tonight", she thought, "MMMMMM!"
"Where am I?" Tully thought, unaware of Mrs. Robin's intention to turn him into a delicious supper, "I'm lost!" he said, "Oh no ... what's that noise?"
It was a little boy, wearing bibs and pulling a red wagon. His name was Zach. He was looking for worms to go fishing; on his way he would stop to pick up sticks, rocks, and, oh yes, bugs. All sorts of bugs; skinny and fat ones, brown and blue ones, yes all sorts big and small.
As he was walking along, Zach heard a crunch; he stepped on a pine cone.
"Oh this looks like a duck ... or a goose, what do you think?"
As he reached down to put the pine cone that looked like a duck or a goose in his red wagon Zach's eyes got so big! He saw a big, fat worm! It was Tully!
"I'm going fishing with this night crawler!" Zach said
He tossed him in his red wagon, with the other things he'd collected, and away they went. Poor Tully!
Mrs. Robin, who was watching from a nearby fir tree, was startled by the squeak, squeak, squeak of the wagon, and flew away.
"No supper tonight", she said. Lucky for Tully. What do you think?
Zach made his way home, pulling his little red wagon along behind him. However, as he was going down the hill, he hit a big hole! Out came Tully, with his new-found bug friends, the rocks, and the pine cones.
Zach counted, "One, two, three!" and pulled his wagon out of the hole. Zach picked up Tully, the big bugs and little bugs, and rolly polly bugs (putting some of them in the pockets of his bibs), the sticks, the rocks, and the pine cone that looked like a duck or a goose, what do you think?
On the way they went, all safe in the little red wagon.
It was Monday morning; Zach made his way to the secret hiding place where his wagon was hid to visit with Tully and feed him a lot of compost. Zach was feeling sad; his mommy had told him that she, along with Zach and his sister, Hunter, would be moving in a few days. He knew that he wouldn't be able to take Tully and his friends with him.
"I guess we won't be going fishing for a long, long time". Zach said, scooping out more compost for Tully.
It was a long drive to Zach and Hunter's new home; 1,000 miles away. A small town called Etoile, Texas. Hunter, Zach's sister, saw how sad Zach was and told him, "Don't be so sad Zach, remember what grandma Foxy told us! Close your eyes, put your hand on your heart, draw a door, and a door knob, open the door, draw a light, and turn on the light. Guess who's there!? Tully, and everybody we love!"
You see, Tully wasn't just a worm; he was loveable and special. What do you think?
Tully was also feeling sad, but he had a plan! He was going to get big and fat, and nice and strong, and then make his way to Texas to be with his buddy Zach! So he started eating all the compost that Zach had left for him.
Excerpted from The Adventures of Tully by Anne Marie Jenkins Holler Copyright © 2011 by Anne Marie Jenkins Holler. Excerpted by permission of AuthorHouse. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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