Abigail spread some strawberry jam on another piece of toast. Glancing back over her shoulder she looked at the big stack of red jars in the cupboard. Still a lot to eat. It wasn’t her fault that so much food had arrived, the supermarket must have got it wrong. Patrick and Preston had pulled open the drawer to the freezer and were sorting through the food.
‘How many bags of peas did you order Abigail?’ said Preston sarcastically, ‘expecting a worldwide pea shortage maybe?’
Turning her back and crunching down hard on the toast, Abigail ignored him.
‘She was just doing her best,’ said Patrick, pushing another bag of peas to the side. ‘Ohh fish fingers, we like fish fingers.’
Preston looked over in interest. ‘Where, shall we have some for lunch?’
Leaning back Patrick hauled up another box. ‘Maybe dinner as well.’
Abigail climbed down from the table and looked at her plate. Did she want another piece of toast? Perhaps not, she’d already had three. ‘Now that our colds are gone, when are we going to the shop to buy our beds?’ She thought of the pink one and her heart lifted. Although maybe she’d gone off pink, it was all that strawberry jam..
‘Well perhaps tomorrow, we’ll have to look at the bus timetable.’ Grigs bounced into the kitchen. ‘And you’re not coming!’ Patrick waved a tin of beans at the tiger, ‘you’ll get lost, you never stay still and you bounce everywhere.’
‘Tigers bounce!’ said Grigs loudly.
‘No they don’t!’ shouted Patrick and Preston at the same time. They looked at each other and sighed. There was a thud in the hall.
‘Post, I’ll get it,’ Abigail padded down the hall and picked up the pile of white envelopes. ‘There’s one for you Preston with a funny stamp,’ she squinted at it. ‘Shall I open it for you?’
‘No!’ said Preston, ‘give it to me.’ Abigail sniffed and kicked it along the floor towards him. She never got any post.
Carefully opening the envelope Preston pulled out a card. His eyes widened and he nodded slowly. ‘Well… looks like I might be going away for a while,’ he said casually.
Abigails ears pricked up, ‘Really? Like later today perhaps?’
Preston glared at her. ‘No, my uncle has sent me a card, he’s on holiday and he’s asked me to join him. He’s always been fond of me, quite understandably of course.’
Abigail wondered what a holiday was but didn’t want to ask.
Grigs had managed to get the top off of a jar of chocolate, it was quite hard with paws. Looking inside he sneezed and a cloud of chocolate flakes shot up into the air. Sticking out his tongue he tried to catch them. ‘What’s a holiday?’
With her best bored look Abigail stared out of the window, as if she knew exactly what a holiday was.
Preston looked a bit smug. ‘It’s somewhere you go to relax, maybe by the sea so you can swim or walk on the beach.’ A cloud of chocolate wafted down over him and sneezing he brushed it quickly off of his scarf.
Abigail thought about swimming in the bath, the sea must be just like that.
‘Here,’ he said pushing the card towards them, ‘this is my uncle Paisley.’
Abigail turned round and they all looked at the photo. Then at Preston. Then back again.
‘You do look a bit alike,’ said Abigail, ‘but he’s much bigger, does he eat more? And why is he wearing those huge glasses? Are they his?’
Preston rolled his eyes. ‘He’s just bigger, he doesn’t eat more we’re all different you know. And those are sunglasses, it’s very bright on holiday, he must have borrowed them. I might just go and join him for a while once we’ve all got our beds. You’ll need my help choosing them I’m sure.’
‘Very kind of you’ muttered Patrick. He padded over and turned on the oven. ‘Let’s cook some of those fishfingers, we’ve got five boxes of them.’
Swinging her paws too and fro, Abigail glanced at the oven, something was worrying her. What was that smell? ‘Aww…’ clamping her paws over her mouth she jumped down and ran over, heaving open the oven door. The plastic bags hadn’t started to melt but they were getting very hot.
‘Abigail!’ shouted Patrick, ‘not MORE shopping! And what’s it doing in the oven?!’
After lunch, the polars spent most of the afternoon looking at bus timetables. They looked like very boring bits of paper with very small writing on them to Abigail. Patrick said they should make sure they got there just as the shop closed and when it was dark. That would give them all night to look around and then they could leave before it opened. He still wasn’t very keen on going. ‘We mustn’t be seen,’ he kept saying, shaking his head ‘we really should stay here, I don’t think this is a good idea at all.’
‘But the pictures on the screen are so small,’ said Abigail, ‘and we don’t know if the beds are comfy. You said we could go. And we went back to my shop. And the castle.’ She thought about all the strawberry jam and peas, there was still a jar out on the table and she leant her paws on it. ‘And shops get it very wrong when you order things,’ she tapped hard on the jam pot. We’ll probably end up with a table or something.’
‘No you got it wrong Abigail,’ said Patrick, ‘you ordered all the food.’
‘Didn’t.’ muttered Abigail under her breath, ‘and we’re going to the shop to buy a bed tomorrow. Definetly.’