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Chapter 22


Though Major Monkey tugged and tugged, he couldn't pull his hand out of the pitcher.

To be sure, if he had let go of the lump of maple sugar he might have withdrawn his hand easily enough.

But the Major loved sweets too dearly to loosen his hold on any such toothsome morsel--except to pop it into his mouth.

So he struggled and fretted. He even tried to break the pitcher by knocking it against the floor.

It might as well have been made of iron, it was so strong. And the Major only succeeded in hurting his own hand.

Of course he made a great racket. And the hens, who had become used to his more stealthy visits, began to flutter and squawk. They made such an uproar at last that Major Monkey wanted to hurl the pitcher at them. But he couldn't do that, with his hand stuck inside it. And besides, the pitcher was chained fast to the wall of the henhouse.

And right there lay the Major's greatest trouble. If the pitcher hadn't been fastened he would have run off on three legs, to the woods, where he might have tried in peace and quiet to get at the sugar inside it.

On the whole, Major Monkey spent a most unhappy quarter of an hour in the henhouse. And the worst moment of all came when the window dropped with a loud bang.

Then the sound of steps on the threshold made the Major turn his head.

There stood Farmer Green with a broad smile on his face, and Johnnie Green with his mouth wide open and his eyes bulging.

And with them was a dark-skinned man, short, and with rings in his ears, and a bright neckerchief tied about his throat.

"Aha-a!" cried the little man. "Look-a da monk! He greed-a boy!" And picking Major Monkey up in his arms, jug and all, he patted him fondly, saying, "Ah-a! Bad-a boy! He run-a da way from da ol' man, no?"

Then--for a soldier--Major Monkey did a strange thing. He began to whimper. But there is no doubt that he was weeping because he was glad, and not because he was sorry.

The little, dark man was his master.

And the Major was very, very fond of him. He knew, suddenly, that he had missed the little man sadly while he roamed about Pleasant Valley.

Though Johnnie Green was staring straight at him, Major Monkey clung to his captor and held his wrinkled face close to the little man's cheek.

"He sorra now!" the little man said to Johnnie Green.

"What's his name?" Johnnie inquired.

"Jocko!" said Major Monkey's master. "Dat nice-a name, eh?"

Johnnie Green thought that it was. And Major Monkey himself appeared to like the sound of it. It was a long time since he had heard it. No one had called him "Jocko" since that day--weeks before--when he had run away from his master, the organ-grinder, in the village.

Arthur Scott Bailey

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