Post timing: 4 minutes
(Did you read Flapjax at Church? If not, we recommend starting there.)
Flapjax knew he couldn’t escape completely – not only was the doorknob several feet above his head, but he also didn’t really want to leave. You see, Flapjax knew he would not survive out in the wild. He had been domesticated for far too long and was no longer a wild bear. Flapjax was generally okay with this…he had gotten used to his warm cozy bed and eating all the food he wanted without having to travel any further than the kitchen. Plus, he loved Libby and his family…even if they annoyed him from time to time.
So instead of leaving, Flapjax padded around the lobby of the church, looking for something to occupy his time.
Soon his stomach began to growl, and he realized he had not eaten anything for breakfast before church. He wondered if there were snacks anywhere to be found.
Flapjax began hunting through the rooms attached to the church lobby. There, he noticed what looked like a small gold-colored cubby in the wall above his head – like a safe in the movies! His imagination began to run wild. What could the church be hiding in there? It must be very valuable to be hidden in a golden safe. Could he figure out how to get into it? He had to at least try, of course.
Flapjax spotted a bench perfect for climbing on the far side of the lobby. It was quite heavy, and he was out of shape (it was winter, give him a break). It was slow going, moving the bench across the floor. Some of the carpet came with it across the lobby to where Flapjax aimed it under the golden safe. Well, he would have to deal with that mess later…
The golden safe was decorated with carved images of people. They must be important people, Flapjax thought as he pawed at the edges of the safe, trying desperately to open it. He pawed and pawed and finally the door opened.
Flapjax stared at the precious contents inside. He knew what they were. He’d been to church enough to know what the priest handed out for the Communion meal. He wondered for the second time that morning why in the world everyone would wait in that long line for a small piece of stale bread. But then his stomach rumbled fiercely and Flapjax reached for the golden bowl filled with the round crackers.
His first bite was a timid one – the crackers were not tasty, but they also weren’t terrible. Flapjax actually liked the satisfying crunch of the thin wafers. He kept eating. And eating. He ate until the only thing left in the heavy golden cup was a few crumbs.
Now Flapjax was thirsty. So thirsty!
And that was when he noticed another golden cup sitting behind the crackers. He peeked over the brim of the cup and looked inside. It was filled with some kind of red juice. Flapjax sniffed…it didn’t smell like juice, but it certainly looked like it. Shrugging to himself, Flapjax grabbed the cup with both paws, took a big gulp, and immediately spit out the juice as his eyes teared up — it must have gone sour. Ick.
Stuffed and happy, Flapjax decided it was time to leave. He yawned. Definitely nap time.
He was hanging from the safe, trying to find the bench with his tippy toes when Libby burst through the doors of the church and into the lobby. She gasped when she saw the scene before her — the rug askew, the safe opened, and the two golden cups emptied and fallen on their sides. And then there was Flapjax, who finally lost his grip and belly-flopped onto the hard bench below him.
“Flapjax!” Libby whispered angrily. “You are in so much trouble!”
Suddenly, loud gasps and yelps echoed through the church as Flapjax’s unknowing shoelace victims stumbled and fell.
Later that day as Flapjax was lying in bed, keeping out of sight of the adults, Libby came in and sat down beside him.
“Well,” she said. “Everyone is mad at us. As usual, you got me in trouble too.”
Flapjax felt bad, he hadn’t meant to get Libby into trouble. Somehow that always happened. He crawled up onto her lap and hugged her in an attempt to apologize. Libby could never resist his cuddly bear hugs. Sure enough, she hugged him back.
“Don’t you want to know what our punishment is?” she asked, putting Flapjax back on the bed so that she could look at him. “Thanks to your naughty behavior, we will be going to church every morning this week.” She paused for dramatic effect. “And yes, that means you get a bath every day.”
Flapjax groaned. It was going to be a very long week…
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