Flapjax-and-Pilot

Ch. 7, Post 3: Flying Flapjax

Flapjax gulped. A tall woman in a dark suit with gold bands along the sleeves and a cap that looked very official stared down at him.

Flapjax-and-Pilot

“Well, hello,” she said, kindly, bending down to pick Flapjax up. “What are you doing here?” Flapjax proudly pointed to himself and then to the rows and rows of soundly sleeping humans behind him. “Ahh, so you’re a helpful bear?” she asked, and Flapjax nodded seriously. He always tried, at least. “Well then, how would you like to help me fly the plane?” Flapjax nodded again excitedly. Boy, did he ever!

The pilot carried Flapjax into the cockpit and sat him down next to her while her co-pilot stared at Flapjax curiously. She strapped them both in safe and sound with a thick seatbelt. Buttons, dials and levers covered the dashboard in front of them. But Flapjax wasn’t looking at the dashboard, he was staring out the windows that covered the little room. They were on top of the clouds! He couldn’t even see the ground!

Flapjax was scared at first, but the pilot patted his back until he had calmed down. She had everything under control. Flapjax stared at her as she navigated their big plane with ease. He was in awe.

Flapjax watched with wide eyes as the world got bigger and bigger out the windows. They were almost there…although he wasn’t quite sure where “there” was. He had to get back to Mom.

Continue reading “Ch. 7, Post 3: Flying Flapjax”

Flapjax-in-suitcase

Chapter 7, Post 1: Stowaway Flapjax

Libby took really good care of Flapjax, and Flapjax was a good friend right back…well, usually. Sometimes he got them both into trouble, but that was never purposeful! And Flapjax loved his human parents. They watched over him and let him have really good snacks, and they were pretty fun most of the time (as long as they weren’t forcing him into a bath).

So, when Flapjax found out that Mom had to go on a work trip to a place far away – so far away that she would have to go on an airplane to get there – Flapjax knew his duty to the family. He was a cuddly bear, but he was also a protective bear, and he would be there to protect Mom on her trip and make sure she was cozy and comfortable the whole time.

Plus, Flapjax would get to fly…

Flapjax dreamed of flying, of seeing all of the fun places they usually only got to see on the map placemats that caught their spilled Cheerios, and he was pretty sure the states were not really pink and purple and blue and yellow. But if he could fly, he would know for sure. And this was his chance!

Unfortunately for Flapjax, Mom said he and Libby had to stay home with Dad. That meant all kinds of treats like staying up late, watching movies way past bedtime, and eating all the popcorn they could gobble down, so Libby wasn’t too disappointed. But Flapjax had his heart set on flying.

That night, after all his humans had gone to sleep, Flapjax tip-toed to Mom and Dad’s room, found Mom’s suitcase in the dark, and carefully, quietly unzipped it before hopping in and burying himself in a pile of clothes.

Flapjax-in-suitcase

Continue reading “Chapter 7, Post 1: Stowaway Flapjax”

Flapjax-falling-into-water

Chapter 6, Post 3: Fa-bewm!

Estimated read-aloud timing: 5 minutes.

(Have you read Chapter 6, part 1: Downtheback yet? If not, we recommend starting this adventure there.)


Flapjax fixed his ivy hat and grabbed his bow and arrows from where they had landed after his dive from the railroad tracks, and he followed the voices of the neighbor boys to a fort in the middle of the island.

Fort

There was Libby, sitting on a cut-up log on the side of the fort. She was busily drawing away on her notepad. Flapjax smiled. It was just like Libby to be focused on her mission while captive.

The neighbor boys were busy gathering sticks along the edge of the water. Flapjax didn’t know what the sticks were for, but he didn’t want to stay to find out. He crawled over to the fort then tip-toed around, edging along the side of the little fort until he was right behind Libby. He pulled out one of his arrows and gently tapped Libby’s back with the end of the stick. She screeched and jumped, turning around in all directions to find her foe.

“Flapjax!! What are you doing here?” She looked at Flapjax’s muddy face and her eyes grew very large. “You are filthy! Mom is going to flip out!”

Flapjax put his paw to his lips and pointed toward where the neighbor boys were playing beside the water.

“Are you here to rescue me?” Libby asked with a crooked smile. “You’re so brave, Flapjax!”

Flapjax stood up a little taller, proud of his accomplishment.

“But we can’t escape…they have weapons! We’ll be shot!

Flapjax grabbed dirt from the ground around him and threw it at Libby, covering her with mud and bits of leaves. Good, now she was camouflaged too!

“FLAPJAX! What are you doing? Now I’m going to be in trouble, too!”

First Flapjax needed to get them off the island and away from the enemy boys, then he would worry about what his punishment would be. (He was sure it would involve a bath at the very least…)

ivy

Continue reading “Chapter 6, Post 3: Fa-bewm!”

Flapjax-new-friend

Chapter 5, Post 4: Finding Flapjax

Estimated read aloud timing: 4 minutes.

(Have you read the other posts in Chapter 5 yet? If not, we recommend starting the adventure at Chapter 5, Post 1: Flapjax for Sale.)


The two humans glared down at Flapjax as he lay sprawled out on the mall floor, holding the hijacked phone in one exhausted paw.

Security-guardThe big human in the police uniform knelt down beside Flapjax. She picked the phone out of his paw and held it up to the human boy. Flapjax tried to grab it back, but the woman held him in a tight grip, so he could barely wiggle let alone escape.

The boy looked at the phone and then back at Flapjax. He had an odd expression on his face, almost like wonder.

“You typed in a number!”

Flapjax nodded. He had been so close!

“But you can’t type! You can’t talk! You can’t read!”

Flapjax shrugged. What did it matter what the boy thought he could or couldn’t do? He knew he would have found a way to get back to Libby. He just needed a few more seconds with the phone!

The boy looked at him curiously. “Who are you?”

Flapjax maneuvered in the officer’s arms until his tail was facing the boy, and then he bent over.

“F-L-A-P-J-A-X,” the boy read the letters stitched across Flapjax’s bottom.Flapjax-tush-tag

The uniformed human picked Flapjax up and looked at his tail where Mom had sewn those letters back when Flapjax had first been adopted. She had also sewn in numbers below it. A phone number. It was almost like Mom knew Flapjax would need rescuing…

“Well Flapjax, I think it’s time we get you home. What do you think about that?”

Flapjax stared up at the human with teary eyes, nodded his head, and gave her a big bear hug.

Continue reading “Chapter 5, Post 4: Finding Flapjax”

Flapjax-on-toy-shelf

Chapter 5, Post 1: Flapjax for Sale

Estimated read aloud timing: 5 minutes


You’ve met Flapjax, right? Well, Flapjax – our extremely lovable and cuddly bear buddy who just occasionally gets into sticky situations – is what his human parents like to call “impatient”. Libby, his human best friend says he just likes activities (she gets him).

Sometimes, Flapjax and Libby have to do things they don’t especially like to do (but you’ve read about Flapjax at church, so you know all about that). Luckily even in the most boring of situations, they still had each other, and that was usually enough to get them through.

Usually.

However, if there was one thing Flapjax couldn’t stand, it was the horrendously, astoundingly, mind-numbingly boring task of shopping for new clothes.

For one thing, Flapjax was perfectly happy with just the occasional hat. For another, his weekly church suits were itchy enough to make him almost want a bath afterwards. (Almost.) And if that wasn’t bad enough, teddy bears were everywhere at the shopping mall. Flapjax much preferred to be one-of-a-kind.

Yankee-Flapjax

And have you ever been to a mall? Unfortunately for Flapjax, malls were everywhere in New Jersey, where he lived with Libby and his parents. Malls are also very large. Flapjax was very small. Walking across very large malls with very small legs is exhausting!

So when Libby snagged Flapjax up from a delightful nap and told him they were going shopping, he knew he was in for a difficult day.

Once in the children’s department, Mom went right to work rummaging through the racks of clothes while Libby and Flapjax bee-lined for the toy section. But it wasn’t long before Mom’s voice rang out to them.

“Libby! Flapjax! Let’s go to the fitting room, come on.”

Libby rolled her eyes at Flapjax, but like the good daughter she was, she scrambled up and ran to join her mother for the terrible task of trying on clothes.

Continue reading “Chapter 5, Post 1: Flapjax for Sale”

Tattood Pirate Flapjax

Chapter 4, Post 3: The Great Escape

Post timing: 6 minutes

(Have you read Chapter 4, Post 1: Flapjax and the Fancy Pants yet? If not, we recommend starting there.)

The evil sea captain, Tommy Bananas (Libby’s cousin and enemy pirate), flashed Flapjax a menacing grin. Flapjax did not grin back — he might have been forced to join the ranks of Tommy’s notorious pirate crew, but he did NOT have to like it. And once he had the chance, he would escape.

Pirate hat

Unfortunately for Flapjax, Tommy Bananas had other plans in mind.

Tommy let out a low, wicked laugh as he tied Flapjax’s paws down to a wooden table lined with colorful markers.

“Yesssssss,” Tommy Bananas sneered, rubbing his hands together with excitement. He uncapped the red marker and poised it above his fluffy canvas. “I have plans for you, Flapjax…”

The pirate laughed and laughed as he began to draw.

*****

Libby paced the little island she was now stranded on. How dare Bananas. How dare he kidnap her best friend. If he hurt Flapjax, Libby would never speak to him ever, ever again. She wracked her brain to come up with a rescue plan, but her mind kept wandering back to poor Flapjax.

What if Tommy did hurt him? What would she do without Flapjax?

She paced some more, and then she started to cry.

Continue reading “Chapter 4, Post 3: The Great Escape”

Flapjax facing Tommy Bananas

Chapter 4, Post 2: Bear-napped!

Post Timing: 4 minutes

(Have you read Chapter 4, Post 1: Flapjax and the Fancy Pants yet? If not, we recommend starting there!)

Flapjax awoke with a start. His paws were tied behind him, and he could not see a single thing. He was a prisoner of Captain Tommy Bananas, the notorious pirate (and Libby’s despicable cousin).

Flapjax fumed.

He tried desperately to untie the knots around his paws. He bent and pulled in all directions, but his efforts were futile! He was never going to escape, not on his own.

He silently screamed for Libby, hoping she could sense his positioning – like when they were playing hide-and-seek and she always knew where he was. (Libby would tell you that was because Flapjax always forgot to hide his tail, but Flapjax was pretty sure she was telepathic.)

Suddenly, Flapjax heard heavy, booted steps approaching. A door on the other side of the dark room opened and the sneering face of Tommy Bananas appeared in front of Flapjax.

Flapjax gulped loudly. He had lost his pirate-y eyepatch in the water when his ship, the Fancy Pants, had capsized (an event maybe – okay, probably – of his doing, but that was beside the point right now). As he stared up at Tommy who sported his characteristic banana bandanna on his head and a long sword at his waist, Flapjax felt significantly less brave than he had at the start of this adventure. How could he fight another pirate without any pirate gear? He felt like a fraud.Flapjax facing Tommy Bananas

Tommy Bananas laughed maniacally at him.

Continue reading “Chapter 4, Post 2: Bear-napped!”

Pirate Flapjax

Chapter 4, Post 1: Flapjax and the Fancypants

Post timing: 5 minutes

“Land, ho!” Captain Libby shouted as waves crashed onto the deck of their glorious ship, the Fancypants. Flapjax peeked through his eyepatch up at Libby, waving.

Pirate Ship“Hard to port!” Libby shouted, and First Mate Flapjax manned the helm. The ship moved to the right.

“Flapjax!!” Libby shrieked. “Port is left. LEFT.” Flapjax scowled up at her, confused. She pointed in the actual direction of ‘port’ and Flapjax grumbled under his breath as he moved the wheel in the opposite direction. How was he supposed to know that ‘port’ meant ‘left’ in pirate? Geez.

The long sail caught a gust of wind, and the Fancypants took off, whooshing across the open sea with grace.

Arrrrrrrrgh, but she was a beaut, wasn’t she? Flapjax stood tall at the helm, smiling in his glory as he navigated through the waves.

Pirate Flapjax

All of a sudden, a loud BOOM echoed across the open seas. A cannonball crashed in the water, just missing their ship by a measly few inches! The crew of the Fancypants (in other words, Flapjax and Libby) flung themselves to the deck in terror.

Continue reading “Chapter 4, Post 1: Flapjax and the Fancypants”

Flapjax in the golden safe

Chapter 3, Post 3: Flapjax and the Golden Safe

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.

Continue reading “Chapter 3, Post 3: Flapjax and the Golden Safe”

Chapter 3, Post 2: Flapjax’s Temptation

Post timing: 4 minutes

(Did you read Flapjax at Church? If not, we recommend starting there.)

Flapjax moved slowly through the rows and rows of people, avoiding all of the feet as he tried to escape. But on his way, he came across a great temptation. Shoelaces. Untied. Just waiting for someone to find…and “fix”…

Flapjax quickly tied the two sets of shoelaces together to opposite shoes before moving on. Every few rows, he would come across more laces, either untied or almost untied, and he repeated this process.

He was almost through the rows of benches when he sensed trouble. He heard the shuffling first, as all of the humans in their puffy winter jackets began to move. Suddenly, as Flapjax was poised in the middle of a row, he noticed a long bench falling quickly in his direction.

He tried to scramble away, but he wasn’t fast enough. (He blamed the cookies from last night.)

The bench fell on top of him, pinning him down to the ground. He let out a loud yelp as he was crushed under the weight of the bench and the humans kneeling angelically on top of it.

Libby heard the yelp and recognized it immediately. She knew Flapjax was in trouble – or (more likely) causing it. She looked around her own bench, but she knew he would not be there. Libby was worried, but also quite mad at Flapjax. She knew what kind of trouble he was capable of, and it was certain to result in no bakery for them that day.

But all she could do was wait…and pray…

*****

Flapjax stuck under the bench

Continue reading “Chapter 3, Post 2: Flapjax’s Temptation”