Finding Ricky’s Voice
Once upon a time in the land of Whistle Canyon, a little train named Rollo lived with his family, Mama & Papa Steam Engine and his baby brother, Ricky.
When the weather was sunny and nice, Rollo and Ricky would spend their days choo-chooing along the tracks near Oak Lane, racing around the bends and laughing as hard as the springtime wind as they buzzed by trees and soared past buildings. Regardless of how quickly the two traveled, Rollo and Ricky always had a kind word for Sally Sunflower and her friends. The pair also waved at the neighborhood children that would dart from their houses to greet them as they crossed Thistle Lane in downtown Whistle Canyon. One thing was for certain, Mama & Papa Steam Engine had always made sure their boys were polite and caring, regardless of how quickly the pair traveled through town. All of the townspeople were friendly towards the brothers. Ricky and Rollo were as close as two steam engine brothers could be, best buds for life and impossible to separate. As long as the two were together, magic filled the air and there was nothing in the world that Ricky and Rollo could not do. Unfortunately for the brothers, Chilly Chet had other plans.
Chilly Chet was a large ogre with a small mind. He was a bully and believed the town of Whistle Canyon should be quiet. He would rather hear nothing about Ricky, Rollo, anyone or anything else. Birds chirping, frogs croaking or trains sounding, it didn’t matter; they were all too noisy. To Chilly Chet, sound was not a friend and he was determined to quiet any and all noise, including the happy choo-chooing of Rollo and Ricky.
Chilly Chet knew that if he stole Ricky and Rollo’s voices in one night, someone might find this odd, so he came up with an evil curse to silence one train at a time. On a balmy spring night as Ricky slept with the curtains opened, Chilly Chet sneaked into the young steam engine’s room and cast his spell on Ricky’s choo-chooing. The next morning, when Ricky rolled out of bed and looked in the mirror, he knew something was wrong. His choo-choo sounded like chug-chug. Ricky felt exhausted and slowly strolled back to bed.
Later that morning, Rollo sprinted to his brother’s room and said, “C’mon Ricky, let’s race,” but Ricky rolled over and threw pillow over his head.
“What’s the matter, Ricky?” Rollo asked.
“I don’t have any steam.” Ricky announced, struggling to get the words out.
“Oh, Come on, Ricky. We always have steam. Just blow really hard and let’s go race.” Rollo begged.
“Chug Chug” Ricky strained, unable to muster any steam.
Saddened, but determined to figure out what happened to his brother’s voice, Rollo walked outside, past his brother’s window to see the flowers smiling and happy.
“Why are you so happy?” Rollo asked them, “Ricky is sick.”
“When Chilly Chet was here this morning, he poured water on us to keep us quiet and now we’re happy.”
“Now YOU’RE HAPPY!” Rollo said, “Chilly Chet was here and stole Ricky’s steam.”
All the flowers in the garden bowed their heads, sorry for being happy. Then, Sally the Sunflower had an idea.
“Hey, Rollo! Why don’t you race through town and ask your human friends to boil water in their teapots to restore Ricky’s steam?”
“Do you think that would work?” Rollo asked.
“Could it hurt?” all the flowers said at once.
And so, that’s what Rollo did. He dashed through the town, speeding up and down the tracks along Oak Lane asking everyone that came out to say hello if they boil water to save Ricky’s voice. Of course, all of the townspeople were eager to help their dear friend.
Neighbors and friends joined as one to help Ricky’s hoarseness and by nightfall, the townspeople collected 27 teapots of water to help the ill steam engine. The plan worked like a charm and the townspeople even had a few teapots of steaming hot water to spare, as Ricky’s voice returned to normal.
“Thank you! Thank you! Choo-Choo! Choo-Choo!” Ricky shouted, grateful to his family and friends for their support.
“Maybe we should take the leftover hot water and melt, Chilly Chet.” Sally Sunflower suggested.
“No.” Ricky said, “I have a better idea. Follow me.”
Then, Ricky, Rollo and all their friends raced through town making as much noise as they could possibly make, smiling, happy and carefree.
The best revenge and most potent antidote to evil is found when people come together in the name of good. Love, friendship, and living happily can melt even the chilliest of Chets, always! At the end of the day, that’s all you really need to find your voice again!
Copyright © 2014 - Jill Eisnaugle. All rights reserved.