Harry the Slug

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Once upon a time, there was a slug called Harry. He was a very happy slug and he enjoyed his life gardening and eating, which sometimes for him were the same thing.

He had lots of friends in the garden and liked to chat with everybody.

One day, Harry was shading himself under a plant from a rain shower when he was joined by Molly the snail.

“Hey Molly, how are you?” chirped Harry.

“Dry, thanks,” said Molly jovially.

The snails were always very smug that they had shells to keep them dry and warm.

“You’re so lucky to have your house on your back, Molly. I have terrible trouble when it rains. Apart from anything else, the patter of the rain always makes me want to go out in it but then I get awfully wet. Do you think I could have a shell, Molly?”

“Ha ha. Don’t be daft Harry. You’re a slug. Sorry Harry,” she chortled and went slowly on her way.

Harry shrugged his body where his shoulders would be and decided that never mind, at least if he didn’t have a house he didn’t have to tidy his bedroom.

The next day Harry was reading. He liked to learn about other animals who he had not yet met. He didn’t move very fast so travelling wasn’t on his list of hobbies so there were lots of species that he didn’t know about.

His book was in alphabetical order. He had just read about Giraffes. They were enormous and Harry couldn’t imagine being able to chat to one of them successfully.

Then he turned the page and saw a crab. He was confused because crab starts with the letter C and that didn’t come after G but then Harry read the title properly. This was a special type of crab called a Hermit crab.

Harry’s tentacles waved excitedly as he read that Hermit crabs had a shell but not one that they were born with. It was one that they found and made into their own home.

“Well that is what I shall do,” thought Harry excitedly, and wandered out onto the lawn to see what he could find.

First, he found a child’s shoe which provided very good shelter but it was too heavy to move. Then he found a frisbee. It was lighter but too wide and he kept bumping into things.

Harry thought he may have to give up for the day but then he saw a shiny speckled mound on the grass. When he finally got to it he realised it was half of the shell from a bird’s egg. The baby birds had hatched this season so they obviously didn’t need them anymore. Harry slid beneath the shell and it fitted perfectly.

“Hurrah”, thought Harry. “I’ve found my home and it’s beautiful”.

Just then Molly and some other snails slid up. “Wow, Harry,” said Molly. “You look amazing and now you’ll be dry and warm too. I’m so pleased for you. Are you going to be a snail now?”

“Um,” said Harry. “Thank you for the offer, but I do like being a slug so maybe I’ll be an honorary snail sometimes for fun but I think really I am the first-ever Hermit slug.”

Molly smiled proudly. “Yes, Harry. You are a very clever and special little slug,” and everybody agreed.

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- Total nr. of readings: 2,916 Copyright © The author [2020] All Rights Reserved. This story may not be reproduced without the express written permission of the author except for personal use.

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