Mister Rabbit resulted from a set writing prompt: a children’s story for 5-8 year-olds, no more than 500 words, containing rabbit, ice cream, river; third person, past tense, containing both description and narrative.
The river flowed gently by, sparkling in the sunlight, as Daisy licked her ice cream. She took care not to let any drip onto her yellow sundress, or her favourite red sandals.
“Excuse me,” a voice said down by her feet.
She looked down. There sat a large, brown rabbit, all fur and whiskers, and two long, long ears, curled over at the tips.
Daisy looked around to find who spoke to her.
“Excuse me, said the rabbit.
Daisy almost dropped her ice cream.
“Careful. Don’t drop it. It’s hard to get ice cream out of my fur.”
The rabbit looked up at her with large brown eyes.
“Hello, she said. It seemed a polite way to begin. “Would you like some?”
“No thank you. I don’t think ice cream is good for rabbits.”
The rabbit hopped up onto the bank she sat on.
“Do you like my river?” the rabbit asked.
“Yes. It’s very pretty.”
The rabbit raised a paw and straightened one of it’s ears. The tip flopped over again. Daisy tried not to laugh.
“I’m Daisy,” she said.
“I know,” said the rabbit.
“What’s your name?”
“Do you speak rabbit?” asked the rabbit.
“Then you won’t be able to say my name.”
“Then what should I call you?” Daisy said, disappointed.
The rabbit raised one shoulder, like a shrug.
Do rabbits shrug, Daisy wondered? Well, if a rabbit can talk, he can probably do anything.
“I know, I’ll call you Mister Rabbit.”
“Very good,” said Mister Rabbit. “Eat your ice cream, before it melts.”
They sat side by side on the bank for a while, Daisy eating her ice cream, the rabbit brushing the fur on his ears with his paw.
Some ducks floated by on the river, just going with the flow. One of them let out a loud quack that might have been hello. Daisy waved a hand. Mister Rabbit waved a paw.
Daisy had a question. She didn’t want to appear rude, but it simply wouldn’t wait any longer.
“Mrs Johnson at school says animals can’t talk. Not even rabbits.”
Mister Rabbit wrinkled his nose.
“Has she ever tried to talk to a rabbit?”
“I don’t know. I don’t think so.”
Mister Rabbit let out a sigh.
“That sort never do.”
“The ones with no imagination.”
Daisy wasn’t sure what the rabbit meant, but didn’t like to ask.
Daisy finished her ice cream.
“Mister Rabbit, why did you stop here?”
“I saw you sitting on your own. I thought you might like a friend.”
“Oh. Thank you.”
“Daisy,” a voice called. Her mother hurried through the gate from the park and along the path. She looked very unhappy.
Daisy stood up to meet her. Her mother was out of breath.
“Daisy, you mustn’t wander off like that. What are you doing?”
“I’ve been talking to Mister Rabbit.”
Her mother was confused and slightly alarmed.
Daisy looked down to introduce her new friend.
Mister Rabbit was gone.