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27 November 2014
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Bedtime Stories

The Monstrous Tale of the Derbyshire Dragocatomous

By Ann Hodgkin of Mickleover
Is it a mouse, a cat or a dragon? Say 'hello' to the new family pet. This story is one of our competition finalists.

Dragocatomous
Dragocatomous

"It's a mouse," exclaimed Letisha, as she peered beneath the shed,
"No, it's definitely a dragon," twin brother Georgie said.

"It's not," replied Letisha, "It's really far too small,
I've seen dragons in my picture book, they're nearly ten feet tall."

"But mice are brown and furry." George's voice was full of scorn,
"You can see that little monster is as green as our front lawn!"

The creature twitched its velvet nose and made a purring sound,
Then blowing smoke from its nostrils, it disappeared underground.

"It's a mouse," Letisha said again. "Dragons don't live round here."
"Let's sit and wait." George answered, "And it may re-appear."

"Bit if you're right and it's a dragon it might bite and sting and scratch,"
Letisha's voice was trembling - "I don't want it to come back!"

"Please don't be frightened, sister," young Georgie bravely said.
"If I see it starting to attack, I'll hit it on the head!

"Like good Saint George from Long ago, the dragon I will Slay
I'll go indoors and get my sword and then I'll save the day!"

Letisha didn't want violence, even though she'd had a fright:
"No George, you can't be cruel to animals - it really isn't right."

"Come and do your homework!" Shouted Dad, "It's getting late."
Before he'd finished speaking a rustle came from by the gate.

"It's a mouse," suggested Daddy, as he strained his eyes to see.
"It's a dragon," said Letisha, "And it frightens George and me!"

But then they heard its purring voice, "Please don't be frightened, child.
I'm neither mouse nor dragon and my manners are quite mild."

"I sound just like a pussy cat and there's no need to fuss...
You see, I am the very last Draocatamous."

"I'm from the hills of Derbyshire and I don't like living on my own.
I don't breathe fire, only puff out smoke. Is there room in your warm home?"

Letisha gently reached her hand out and stroked its furry head.
George was pleased he hadn't fetched his sword... he'd made a friend instead!

"Dad, you can see this little animal is not a scary threat.
Please, can we keep him? Come and shake hands with our new pet."

"Alright kids, you've convinced me, he can move in here to stay.
Three cheers for Dragocatomous: hip hip, hip hip, hooray!"

last updated: 17/01/07
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