You’ll Freeze Solid

Roly Rabbit hated winter. Winter was cold, which meant winter was boring. All of the rabbits huddled in their den, sleeping in warm piles of snugly fur. His mother said it was her favorite time of year. Roly shuddered. It was nice to be warm and snugly sometimes, of course, but not day after day.

Roly tried to liven things up in the den. He told jokes and turned somersaults (his somersaults were spectacular, as you might have guessed from his name). His father said to settle down, and his mother gave him rose hip medicine to “soothe his fidgets.” Roly hated rose hip medicine. Almost as much as he hated winter.

“Go away,” said his sister grouchily when he poked her in the side and asked to play.

This seemed like a good idea to Roly. He crept up the tunnel of his family’s home and poked his nose up into the frigid air outside. The cold smell prickled his nose and made his whiskers tremble. It smelled like freedom.

Roly hopped out into the snow.

“You shouldn’t be out here, little bunny,” said an owl on a nearby branch. “You’ll slip on the ice.”

Slipping on the ice sounded quite fun to Roly. He tried it. He slipped and slid and careened wildly across the icy meadow. It was fantastic!

“You shouldn’t go this way,” said a passing fox. “You’ll fall into the icy lake.”

Falling into the icy lake sounded quite exciting to Roly. Anyway, he couldn’t really stop himself now. The ice was whooshing him along too quickly. With a final fast flip off the frozen bank, Roly splashed into the icy cold water.

“Don’t go out in the wild wind,” said a fish as it sank down deeper, “with wet fur in the wind, you’ll freeze solid.

Freezing solid sounded quite interesting to Roly. He wondered if his whiskers would freeze, too. Roly hopped out of the lake. His fur instantly iced over in the winter wind. Roly found that it was hard to move his legs. In fact, it was more than hard. It was impossible. Roly was frozen stiff.

“Don’t let those bear cubs play hockey with you,” said a raven flying by. “They’ve been looking for a hockey puck.”

Roly thought being a hockey puck would be very uncomfortable, but at least then he would be moving. He started to yell as loudly as his frozen lungs would allow. Soon two bear cubs came. They thought Roly looked like a splendid hockey puck. They began to bat him back and forth across the meadow. It really was quite uncomfortable. But after a while the friction thawed Roly’s legs, and he was able to hop toward his rabbit hole.

“Don’t go underground!” Yelled the bear cubs. “We can’t follow you there!”

Roly thought it would be very nice if the bear cubs couldn’t follow him. He slipped down the tunnel and into the cozy den where his family lay piled. It was warm and snugly there, and no bear cubs hit him back and forth.

Cuddled up and feeling sleepy, Roly thought back over his exciting day. Maybe winter wasn’t quite as boring as he had thought. Still, he thought maybe he would just rest here and wait for spring.

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