Abigail opened her eyes and yawned. A pile of cushions was not as comfortable as a bed. But it felt warm and safe. With a smile she remembered that it was their very own home and she sighed happily. Curled up beside her, snoring quietly was the tiger. His tail was wound around one of her paws. There was no sign of the polar bears, they must have woken up early. Perhaps, thought Abigail hopefully, they were getting breakfast. She did feel a bit hungry. Licking her lips she pushed aside the blue blanket.
“What’s grr’happening,’ muttered Grigs sleepily. He stretched and his paws caught in the blanket. He shook them. ‘Gr’et off.’ Rolling over he disappeared under lumpy blue folds.
Abigail giggled. ‘You’re all tangled up.’ There was another muffled grring sound as the blanket rolled haphazardly across the floor. Every now and then a stripy paw appeared. And then disappeared. The blanket bounced into the wall.
Abigail decided that she wasn’t feeling like a very helpful bear this morning. It was very funny to see a blue blanket bounce around the room. ‘I’m going to have breakfast, I’ll try and save you some. For when you get out.’ Trying not to giggle again, she padded out of the room and down the stairs.
Preston was sitting on the kitchen table drinking a glass of cold milk. Patrick was beside him, leaning over a big white piece of paper. He had a pencil in his paw and on the paper he had written each of their names. There was no sign of breakfast though and she sniffed. The polar waved the pencil at her. ‘Did you really say you wanted pink walls Abigail? And a blue ceiling? I’m making a list of paint we need to buy.’
‘Yes,’ she said, ‘with stars. Or .. maybe blue walls and a silver ceiling. Or…’
‘Here!’ said Patrick quickly. He pushed across a small thin book. Then another.
Abigail opened it with a flick of her paws. She was quite hungry, she’d rather have breakfast than a book. ‘What’s this?’
‘It’s something that shows you all the paint colours you can have.’
Abigails eyes went wide. ‘I can have all these..?’
‘Not together,’ said Preston quickly, ‘tell her she can’t have them all together Patrick. We’ll need sunglasses to go into her room.’
Abigail looked at him hard and wrinkled her nose. If she wanted all the colours she was going to have all the colours. Smoothing out the pages she patted the book. There were hundreds in there. Now where to start…
It took most of the morning to decide on paint colours. Abigail had changed her mind a lot. She still wasn’t quite sure….
‘Abigail,’ said Patrick firmly, taking the book from her. ‘That’s long enough, I need to order the paint now. I’m sure it will look lovely.’
‘I’m not,’ muttered Preston.
‘Well yours is just all blue!’ sniffed Abigail.
‘It matches my scarf!’ said Preston. ‘It’s a very nice colour, Patrick is having the same.’
‘My room will be mainly white,’ said Patrick, ‘but with a strip of blue around the walls.’
‘You mean like your scarf too,’ said Abigail, rolling her eyes. ‘What colour are you having Grigs?’
Having escaped from the blanket, the tiger was staring hard at the book. His ears were drooping. Looking up sadly he shook his head. ‘They don’t have a stripy colour.’
‘Of course they don’t,’ said Preston, ‘stripe is not a colour!’
‘Yes it is!’ said the tiger loudly. ‘What colour am I then? I’m stripy!’
‘And very nice you look too,’ said Patrick quickly, reaching out a paw towards him. ‘We can paint the walls a kind of light brown and then put some black stripes on top. What do you think?’
Grigs sniffed. He still looked a bit sad. ‘I suppose so,’ he glanced at the colours again. ‘Stupid book. They’ve missed out stripy.’
Under each of their names, Patrick carefully filled out the list of the paint colours they all wanted. Abigail noticed that her list looked a lot longer than the others. She’d liked so many of the colours it had been hard to decide. But the room had four walls. And a ceiling. And then of course there was the floor..
Preston opened the laptop and looked at the list written on the paper. Typing things in with a flourish of his paws and an occasional ‘uh huh,’ he finally nodded. ‘Its all there, the paint will arrive tomorrow.’
‘And how will we get it onto the walls?’ asked Abigail in excitement.
‘We put it on with a brush, I’ve ordered a ladder too so we can get up to the ceiling.’
Abigail was confused. ‘A brush? Like the one I use on my fur?’
Patrick shook his head. ‘No a big brush, you dip it in the paint and then brush it onto the wall.’
Abigail sighed happily. She wasn’t quite sure how that would work but she would be very good at painting. She was sure of it. She couldn’t wait for tomorrow…