It was a gorgeous Autumn afternoon. The sun streamed down, the wind blew softly, and all was well at the Workshop in the Woods. Lynn and Lemon were collecting grasses to be used as kindling for the upcoming winter. They were not working very quickly because it was too beautiful of a day to take anything too seriously.
“Maybe we’ll skip winter this year. It’s November and still not a speck of snow!” Lemon mused as he snipped a blade and added it to the bunch.
“Wouldn’t that be something”. Lynn replied “But It never hurts to be prepared”.
They both turned their head towards a rustling sound behind them.
From the long grasses by the riverbank emerged what appeared to be a tiny dwelling.
It slowly rocked side to side until it made its way through, stopping with a large huff and a puff, as it creaked to a halt.
Lynn and Lemon stared in awe as this aged amphibian plunked himself down on the riverbank. A small cricket chirped a “See ya” and leaped from a window on the small hut on the turtle’s back. It jump-flew until it disappeared from sight.
Lynn and Lemon glanced at each other and before they could say anything...
"The name’s Rover” the visitor croaked.
“Just dropping off my last customer. The season’s pretty much done, I’d say’. He tiredly rubbed at his red-rimmed eyes with a clawed foot.
"May I ask what you are in the business of?” Lynn asked.
"Think of me as a home away from home. I transport those to where they need to go, real slow. The Red Rover, I’m called and I am willing to travel anywhere along the Red River." The turtle recited in a low voice.
Lynn glanced at the sagging walls, shabby front door and bare windows.
"Well, it’s nice to meet you". Lynn extended a hoof and Lemon waved.
Rover slowly greeted them and then made his way to turn back to the river, “Well, I better be off. Like I said, the season's done."
He dug a single claw into the ground, stalling.
"Not that I had many customers,even during the summer season. Business is not what it used to be. Anyhow, I need to find a muddy hole to crawl into for the long winter ahead. It gets real lonely you know “ Rover paused “with me being on my own and all..” He stood where he was but slowly turned his long neck towards the river.
Lemon whispered something into Lynn’s ear.
As Rover began lifting his foot to take a step, Lynn piped up::
“Mr. Rover, wait!” Lynn clomped closer.
“Why don’t you think about staying here over the winter?”
"Your umm…..Hotel is, well” Lynn considered her words carefully. “It could use some paint and I know that there is plenty of paint in the Workshop!” Lynn tried to hide the urge to dust off the grimy walls.
"You'll like it here!" Lemon added.
"Hmmm…..I wouldn’t want to be a bother” Rover considered and then his eyes lit up. “Oh and I almost forgot. I believe this belongs to you..I found it by the river”. Rover unrolled a muddy, crinkled poster.
“I thought that maybe…well it’s a long shot but…”
Rover paused and cleared his throat. “Maybe you have seen someone I’ve been looking for”.
“Well!” Lynn exclaimed. “We'd be happy to help. Let’s go meet the others and we’ll have a chat!”
Lynn Lemon, and Rover slowly walked towards the Workshop in the Woods, talking as they went.
Thank you for reading this episode. I'd like to know, who do YOU think Rover is looking for? Please leave comments on this blog post or on the Facebook post. Your suggestion might end up in one of the upcoming episodes :)
Stephanie McGregor from the Workshop in the Woods