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Title: Boys' and Girls' Circus Book

Date of first publication: 1939

Author: Enid Blyton (1897-1968)

Date first posted: Feb. 7, 2020

Date last updated: Feb. 7, 2020

Faded Page eBook #20200215

This eBook was produced by: Alex White & the online Distributed Proofreaders Canada team at https://www.pgdpcanada.net

Transcriber’s Note

We believe that the illustrator, Hilda McGavin, died in 1999. Unfortunately, this means that the illustrations will not become Public Domain in Canada until 2050 or 2070. This is unfortunate, as this is the only Blyton novel which contained over a hundred illustrations.



















1.The Coming of the Circus7
2.Pip and Susy-Ann see the Circus14
3.Jerry Has an Idea23
4.In the Little Old Caravan28
5.The First Night with the Circus34
6.Where are those Two Children?39
7.Jerry’s Mother Takes a Hand44
8.The Children’s Caravan50
9.In the Circus Camp57
10.The Circus Animals63
11.The Circus Goes on the Road Again70
12.Poor Madame Clara!76
13.To the Rescue of the Caravan!83
14.A Picnic—and a Surprise89
15.Pip and the Parrots95
16.A Thief in the Camp101
17.The Naughty Chimpanzee108
18.The Escape of the Bear114
19.What happened to Grizzle123
20.Mister Binks Performs129
21.Tom Thumb and his Giraffe137
22.Jinny Makes a Bit of Trouble!145
23.Pip Has a Practice152
24.Mister Binks Gets into Trouble158
25.Mister Binks and the Burglars166
26.The Clowns Quarrel171
27.A New Clown Comes177
28.The Elephants Remember182
29.A Most Unlucky Day187
30.Pip Goes into the Ring!193
31.Pip Does his Best200
32.Lessons—and a Party207
33.Astonishing News!213
34.The Little Phillipino220




“Hie, Susy-Ann, Susy-Ann, come here!” yelled a small boy. “There’s a circus coming into the next field. Come and watch!”

“Oh, Pip, is there really?” cried an excited voice, and a little girl ran out of a tumble-down old cottage and joined the boy in the garden at the back.

“Yes, look!” said Pip, and he pointed to the golden buttercup field. Susy-Ann saw that gay caravans and big travelling cages and carts were passing through the gate into the field.

“Let’s go and sit on the fence and watch,” said Pip. So off they went. Behind Susy-Ann trotted a snow-white goat with a long beard. All three went to the fence. The children climbed up and sat on the top and the goat stuck his head through the bars of the fence.

“Mister Binks wants to watch too,” said Susy-Ann, and she patted her goat, who drew back his upper lip and pretended to nibble the little girl’s leg.

It was very exciting watching the circus getting into the field. There was a lot of shouting and yelling, a great deal of running about, and beckoning. One by one all the caravans got through the gate, and the big travelling cages too.

“Look! Elephants!” said Pip, and he pointed to where three enormous beasts stood under some great elm trees at the farther end of the field. “Oh, Susy-Ann! Aren’t they big?”

“Look! there’s a boy about as tall as you,” said Susy-Ann. “He belongs to the circus. Isn’t he lucky?”

They watched the boy. He had ginger hair that shone in the sun, and his face was so covered with freckles that it was difficult to see a place without one! He was whistling cheerily as he went, carrying two buckets, slung across his shoulders on a wooden bar.

“Hallo, kids!” said the circus boy. “Tell me where I can get some water.”

“There’s a stream in the field over there,” said Pip. “But if you like you can use our well. It’s just here.”

“Oh, thanks very much,” said the boy, and he went to the well. He sent the bucket down the well, wound it up again full of water, and tipped it into one of his own big buckets.

“I’ll help you,” said Pip, and he went to turn the handle. “Do you belong to the circus?”

“Rather!” said the freckled boy.

“What do you do?” asked Susy-Ann shyly.

“What don’t I do!” said the boy. “I do everything—fetch the water, groom the horses, oil the elephants, feed the chimpanzees, scatter the sawdust on the ring, clear up afterwards. . . . My word, I’m the most important person in the circus, and don’t you forget it!”

The two children laughed. The circus boy had the cheekiest twinkle in his green eyes.

“Are you coming to see our circus?” asked the boy, lifting his two full buckets. “It’s a jolly good one! You should see the chimpanzees riding their bicycles!”

“Oooh!” said Pip and Susy-Ann.

“And you should see the three elephants playing hockey!” said the boy.

Pip and Susy-Ann wished they could. They stared at the freckled circus boy and wished with all their hearts that they belong to the circus too.

“I don’t suppose we can come,” said Pip. “We never have any money.”

The boy set down his buckets again. “Listen,” he said, “if you . . .”

But a loud shout from the circus field stopped him. “Jerry! Jerry! If you don’t bring that water at once I’ll come after you with a stick!”

“Good-bye!” said Jerry, with a grin. “I must go. They can’t do without me for a minute, as you see! I’ll be busy till to-night. Come and see me then. I’ll look out for you. So long, kids!”

He went off carrying his buckets. The children watched him take them to a big blue caravan where a plump woman was waiting for them.

“That must be his mother,” said Susy-Ann.

“He’s lucky to have one!” said Pip. “I wish we had! I say—won’t it be fun to go and find Jerry to-night!”

“Can my goat go too, do you think?” asked Susy-Ann, patting Mister Binks. “He won’t like being left behind.”

“Mister Binks will come whether we say he can or not,” said Pip. “That goat follows you everywhere, Susy-Ann. If only he didn’t eat everything the way he does!”

“He ate a duster off the clothes’ line next door yesterday,” said Susy-Ann. “I do hope Mrs. Jones won’t scold me for it.”

The children longed for the evening to come. All that day they watched the circus camp settling into the field. The caravans were together, smoke rising from their little chimneys. All their doors at the back were wide open. The caravan folk ran up and down their steps, shouted to one another, and enjoyed the May sunshine.

The elephants still stood under the big elm trees in the shade. An enormous tent was being put up in the middle of the field, where the show was going to be given. It was a gay scene, and Pip and Susy-Ann loved watching it all.

At last the evening came. The two children ran down their garden, climbed over the fence at the back, and there they were, in the circus field! It did feel exciting.

“I wonder where Jerry is,” said Susy-Ann. “Oh, Mister Binks, you shouldn’t have come! How did you squeeze through the fence?”

The goat snorted and wagged his beard. He pressed close to the little girl and would not go away.

“There’s Jerry!” said Pip. And sure enough there was the ginger-haired boy, jumping down the steps of his blue caravan, waving to them.

“Hallo!” he said. “Isn’t it hot? Let’s go and sit under the hedge and smell the may. I’ve got some buns for us to eat.”

The three children sat down and munched their buns. Mister Binks snorted, but there was no bun for him. So he ate the paper bag in which Jerry had brought the buns.

“I say, look at that! He’s eaten the bag!” said Jerry in surprise. “Will he be ill?”

Ill!” said Pip scornfully. “Good gracious! If Mister Binks ate a coal-scuttle full of coal he wouldn’t be ill. He might get hiccups, perhaps—but he certainly wouldn’t be ill.”

“What a marvellous goat!” said Jerry. “And what a funny name he’s got!”

“Susy-Ann called him Mister Binks,” said Pip. “She thought he looked just like an old man who lives opposite to us and has a white beard like her goat.”

Jerry rolled over and laughed. Mister Binks sniffed at him, but Jerry pushed him away. “No,” he said, “you’re not going to eat my hair. It may look like carrots, but it’s not!”

That made Pip and Susy-Ann laugh.

“There’s a boy we know with hair like yours, and everybody calls him Carrots!” said Susy-Ann.

“I fight anybody who calls me Carrots or Ginger,” said Jerry.

“Oh,” said Pip. He looked at Jerry and thought he would be a very good fighter. He made up his mind never to call him Carrots or Ginger. Jerry was a much nicer name.

“What are your names?” asked Jerry, sitting up again.

“My name’s Philip, but I’m called Pip. And she’s called Susy-Ann,” said Pip. “She’s my little sister. We haven’t got a mother. And our father’s going away to Australia without us, so we soon shan’t have a father either!”

“That’s bad luck!” said Jerry, staring at them. “I’ve got a mother and a father, and they’re both fine. But I say—what are you going to do when your father’s gone away?”

“We’re going into a Home for Poor Children,” said Pip. “And the dreadful part is that I’m to be sent to a Boys’ Home and Susy-Ann is to go to a Girls’ Home. So we shall hardly ever see one another again.”

Susy-Ann gave a great sob. Pip put his arm round her. “Cheer up!” he said. “Perhaps you can take Mister Binks with you.”

Susy-Ann felt sure she couldn’t. It would be so dreadful not to have Pip or Mister Binks. The little girl felt very miserable. Jerry looked at her shining golden head and thought she was like a small sad doll. He felt miserable too, for he was a kind-hearted boy. He wondered what he could do to make the two children happier.

“Don’t cry, Susy-Ann,” he said. “Listen! I’ll get you into the big tent to see the show one night! How would you like that?”

“Oooh yes, Jerry!” said Susy-Ann, her wet eyes shining with joy. Mister Binks pushed Pip away and licked the tears off Susy-Ann’s cheeks. They tasted salt, and the goat liked them.

“Don’t!” said Susy-Ann, and she tried to push the goat away. “Oh, Jerry, I would so love to see the circus! And so would Pip.”

“Well, I’ll manage one night before we leave here,” said Jerry. “We are here for ten days. How long is it before you have to go away to your new homes?”

“We go in ten days too,” said Pip. “We haven’t very long now. Please don’t cry again, Susy-Ann. Look—you can hold my white mouse for a bit if you like.”

The boy made a peculiar squeaking noise, exactly like a squeal of a mouse. Jerry stared at him in astonishment. A small white mouse with pink eyes poked its head out of Pip’s left sleeve.

“I say! Look at that! Does that mouse live up your sleeve all day long?” said Jerry.

“Yes,” said Pip. “Or somewhere about me. She’s called Snowball. You can hold her, Susy-Ann.”

The little girl loved holding the tiny, cuddlesome mouse. She made a little home for her in her two hands, and Snowball snuggled there, her nose woffling up and down and her white whiskers twitching.

“Can I hold her after Susy-Ann?” asked Jerry. “I say, isn’t she sweet! I wish I had a mouse like that!”

But before Jerry could have his turn at holding Snowball he had to go. His father called him and he jumped up.

“Come again to-morrow and bring Snowball and Mister Binks!” he called.


Every day the three children met and talked and played. The circus show had opened and was doing well. Crowds of people went to see it every night, and Jerry told Pip and Susy-Ann that Mr. Phillipino, who owned the circus, was very pleased.

“Sometimes we don’t do at all well,” said Jerry. “If it’s a rainy week and nobody wants to turn out at night to come to a wet field we don’t get much money. Then we have to go short of food if we haven’t saved any money for a bad time!”

Mister Binks the goat snorted, and Pip laughed.

“Mister Binks wants to say that nobody needs to go without food,” he said. “He ate my handkerchief yesterday, and he tried to eat the clothes’ pegs out of the basket.”

“He’s a marvellous goat,” said Jerry. “I wish he was mine.”

“Perhaps I could give him to you if I can’t take him to the Home with me,” said Susy-Ann.

“Don’t let’s talk about that now,” said Pip, seeing that Susy-Ann was suddenly looking very gloomy. “What is that noise, Jerry?”

“That? Oh, that’s the parrots screeching,” said Jerry. “We’ve got three talking parrots, you know. My word, they’re clever! They belong to Madame Clara, and she thinks the world of them!”

Pip suddenly threw his head back and made a noise exactly like the screeching of a parrot. Jerry jumped and stared at him in amazement.

“I say!” he said. “That sounded just like a parrot. How clever of you!”

“Pip can imitate any noise,” said Susy-Ann, proudly. “Be a cow, Pip.”

Pip at once mooed like a cow. Where he got the deep bellowing noise from, Jerry couldn’t think! Two cows in the next field cantered up to the hedge and looked over it. They mooed to Pip.

Pip mooed again and the cows stared in wonder.

“Now do a horse neighing,” said Susy-Ann. So Pip neighed and whinnied, and at once there were answering whinnies from the circus horses at the other end of the field.

“It’s marvellous!” said Jerry. “I say, Pip, I do wish you could teach me.”

“I’ll try if you like,” said Pip. “But I can’t teach you much in a few days.”

“How did you learn all that?” asked Jerry.

“I didn’t learn it,” said Pip. “I just found I could do any noise. Listen—what’s this?”

He made a chuffing sound—a creaking noise—and a clank!

“A train going into a station and stopping,” shouted Jerry. “Go on—do something else!”

Pip made a curious churring noise, then a honking noise, and then another churring noise.

“That’s a motor-car going fast and hooting, and then going slow and stopping!” cried Jerry. “Oh, Pip, you are a real marvel!”

The parrots in their caravan screeched again, and Pip screeched back. A small woman with a very pink face and bright blue eyes came running over to them.

“Jerry! I can hear one of my parrots screeching over here! It must have escaped! Have you seen it?”

“No, Madame Clara,” answered Jerry, politely, trying not to laugh. “Have you looked to see if they are all in your caravan?”

“They were when I was there last!” said Madame Clara, and she ran to see. Pip screeched again, and she turned round in astonishment, looking up into the trees and all around.

“Pip! Don’t!” begged Jerry, who was nearly bursting with trying not to laugh. “You’ll get me into trouble. Madame Clara has a very bad temper.”

So Pip did not screech again, and the three children watched Madame Clara go into her caravan to see that all her parrots were there.

She came out again in a minute and called to Jerry. “They’re all here! It’s very funny—I can’t think what that noise was!”

“That was funny,” said Jerry, giggling. “I say, Pip, could you and Susy-Ann come to the show to-night, do you think? My father says he can get you two seats at the back.”

“Oh, yes!” cried Pip and Susy-Ann together. “Thank you, Jerry!”

“Well, don’t you do any screeching or bellowing or squealing in the show to-night,” grinned Jerry. “Or you’ll have the people thinking one of our show-animals has escaped and is wandering somewhere among the seats!”

Pip and Susy-Ann were very excited all that day. They had never in their lives seen a circus before. They could hardly wait for the time to come.

But at last it came and the two children went in at the gate with all the other people. Jerry was there to meet them and to tell the man at the gate that they were his friends and need not pay.

He took their arms and ran with them to the big tent. “This is the ‘big top,’ ” he said. “That’s what we call our show-tent, you know. Look, here are your seats. They are at the back, but you can stand if you want to, and you’ll see very well.”

“Jerry, do you go into the ring with all the other performers?” asked Susy-Ann.

“No, of course not!” said Jerry. “I’m not much good at anything except feeding animals and doing odd jobs that nobody else wants to do! Well—so long! I’ll see you after the show. Hope you enjoy it!”

He disappeared. Pip made a tiny squeaking noise, and his white mouse put her head out from above the little boy’s collar.

“I thought Snowball might enjoy seeing the circus too,” said Pip to Susy-Ann. “It’s a pity you couldn’t have brought Mister Binks. I hope you tied him up safely?”

“Well, I tied him up with that piece of wire,” said Susy-Ann. “But he may eat it and come.”

“Sh!” said Pip. “The circus is beginning!”

There was a sound of trumpets. The children gazed down at the big red ring in the middle of the great tent. It was spread with sawdust, and was quite empty. The trumpets sounded louder. The great red curtains that swung at one side of the ring, where the entrance was, were suddenly pulled aside.

And in walked or ran or rode all the circus folk! But how different they looked now from the daytime! They no longer wore dirty old jerseys and blouses, caps and shawls, ragged coats and skirts. No—now they were dressed in silks and satins, in glittering silver and gold, in suits and frocks that shone as if they were on fire!

Mr. Phillipino and his daughter Annabella came in first, riding in a golden carriage pulled by four tiny white ponies. Phillipino jumped out of the carriage when it had gone twice round the ring and stood in the middle, cracking his great whip. In came the beautiful black horses he owned, pawing the ground gracefully, tossing their plumed heads, cantering round and round the ring after the carriage.

Annabella leapt from the carriage, which was taken out by the ponies, and jumped on to one of the black horses. A glittering youth rode another. Then in came the three clowns, turning somersaults and cart-wheels among the horses, shouting and yelling.

Out went the horses, and the clowns ran round on the red plush ring itself, whilst a procession of performers came in—Terry the sharp-shooter and his beautiful wife, Juana the famous sword-swallower, Jinks and Jenks the wonderful trapeze-folk, Madame Clara and her three parrots sitting on her shoulder, Mr. Hola and his two chimpanzees who walked by him, fully dressed, holding his hands, Delia and her Dancing Bear, and last of all the three great elephants, Rag, Tag, and Bobtail, with their proud keeper, Mr. Jummy.

They all marched round the ring, whilst Mr. Phillipino stood in the middle, cracking his whip. Then one by one they all marched out again, and the circus began.

Tan-tan-tara! The trumpets sounded outside once more, and in pranced the beautiful horses again. Annabella and the glittering young man were marvellously clever with them.

“Look at them standing on the horses’ backs!” cried Pip in excitement. “Oh, I hope they don’t fall!”

But of course they didn’t—they not only stood on the horses, they jumped from one to another! They made the horses dance with the music, turning round and round as they danced. It was beautiful to watch.

Then the clowns came in again, and were so funny that the two children almost cried with laughing! They fell over one another, they banged each other with big balloons that burst with a pop, and they tried to ride a fat old circus horse that was sent cantering into the ring to them.

They all got on to it, and then the fat horse solemnly stood up on its hind legs and let all the three clowns slip off over its tail with a bang-thud-crash! Then the horse picked up one of the clowns by the belt and trotted out of the ring with him, the other two shouting and following.

“Oh, I do love those clowns,” said Susy-Ann, in delight. “Look—what’s this now, Pip?”

It was the three great elephants who had come to play their game of hockey in the ring. Each elephant held a hockey-stick in his trunk, and when their keeper sent the ball to them, how clever they were at knocking it about from one to the other! There was a small goal set at one side of the ring, guarded by the elephant called Rag, and he didn’t let the others score a single goal!

Everyone clapped the clever beasts as loudly as they could when they went out of the ring. The next turn was Juana the famous sword-swallower. The children watched in astonishment, for his tricks were really amazing.

He swallowed two pocket-knives and a short dagger. It was most astonishing to see them disappear into his mouth and come up again! And then he took a long sword—and, dear me, that went down his surprising throat too, and only the handle was left to be seen!

He flourished the sword in the air as he bowed. Pip couldn’t imagine how anyone could swallow such a very long weapon!

Then came the two trapeze folk, who climbed a long ladder right up into the roof of the tent till they came to their little swings. And on those swings they did the most daring things! They swung themselves from one swing to another, almost seeming to fly in the air as they went!

Susy-Ann was afraid they might miss the swings and fall, but they never did.

“Anyway, there’s a net underneath to catch them if they do fall!” said Pip, watching. Jinks hung by his strong teeth from his swing, and Jenks, his partner, was hanging from his by his toes. He suddenly leapt to the other swing, and, as Jinks fell, Jenks caught his upstretched hands and swung him safely across to the swing he had just left. No wonder everybody clapped!

Then in came the clowns again with a ladder, and the times they put it up and tried to climb it and it fell down! Everyone laughed till they could laugh no more. Then Mr. Phillipino cracked his whip again and the clowns ran out. It was Madame Clara’s turn.

Her parrots were wonderful. They could say the alphabet, and “Jack and Jill” and “Little Jack Horner.” One parrot could sing “God Save the King,” and another could recite all the Kings and Queens of England without a single mistake.

Then they sang “Pop goes the Weasel” altogether, and made a popping sound at the end like corks being drawn from a bottle. They were really marvellous.

And even more wonderful were Mr. Hola’s two amusing chimpanzees, and Delia’s Dancing Bear. The chimpanzees could ride bicycles, work a sewing-machine, and dance the Lambeth Walk, which looked a very funny dance indeed when the two big apes danced it. Delia’s bear wore funny shoes and did a tap-dance, very slow and correct, whilst Delia, in a beautiful glittering frock, danced round too, playing a big concertina.

Terry the sharp-shooter was so clever that Susy-Ann and Pip were quite frightened. He put his lovely little wife against a screen, and then shot all round her with his revolver, making a picture of her head, her shoulders, her arms, and her legs! When she stepped away from the screen everyone could see her outline done in bullet-holes!

Then the circus was over. People cheered and clapped and then went out. Half-asleep, Susy-Ann and Pip went too. They tumbled into bed, and dreamt all night long of the wonderful circus. How they wished they belonged to it too!


The days slid by, and Jerry and the two children became fast friends. All too soon the ten days came to an end.

The next day the circus was to pack up and go on its travels once more. Susy-Ann, Pip, Mister Binks, and Jerry sat under the sweet-smelling hawthorn hedge and felt very sad.

“Our father said good-bye to us to-day and went off to catch his ship to Australia,” said Pip, gloomily. “When he has made a lot of money out there he will send for us. But now we are all alone, and soon Susy-Ann and I will have to say good-bye to one another too.”

Susy-Ann was crying. Jerry put his arm round her and hugged her. He was very fond of the golden-headed little girl.

“I do wish you could come with us,” he said.

“So do I,” sobbed Susy-Ann. “I do hate saying good-bye.”

Jerry took out his handkerchief and wiped Susy-Ann’s eyes. He was very thoughtful. Suddenly he went very red indeed, as he always did when a big idea came into his head.

“What’s the matter, Jerry?” asked Pip, staring at him. “You’ve gone as red as a tomato!”

“I’ve got an idea!” said Jerry, almost in a whisper.

“Well, what is it?” asked Pip in surprise.

“Sh! Don’t talk so loud. It’s a peculiar sort of idea—I don’t know if it will work—but . . .”

“Oh, Jerry! Do say what it is!” said Susy-Ann, her eyes quite round with curiosity.

“Well, listen,” said Jerry, half-whispering again. “What about you two coming away with the circus to-morrow? I could hide you! Nobody would know.”

Pip and Susy-Ann stared at Jerry in the greatest astonishment. They couldn’t think of a word to say. Pip’s heart began to beat very fast indeed.

“Well?” said Jerry, impatiently. “Don’t you think it’s a good idea? You don’t seem very pleased about it.”

“Jerry!” said Susy-Ann, finding her tongue first. “Oh, Jerry! It’s the most wonderful idea in the world. Can we really come?”

“I don’t see why not,” said Jerry. “There is a little old caravan, very dirty and creaky, that we use to store all kinds of odds and ends in. I could hide you in that and nobody would know you were there!”

“But what about Mister Binks?” asked Susy-Ann.

“Oh, he can come with me,” said Jerry. “I can tell people that you’ve given him to me. He’ll be all right!”

“But what will happen when we’re found out?” said Pip.

“Oh, perhaps you won’t be,” said Jerry. “Or, if you are, maybe nobody will bother about you and you can stay with us for always, and perhaps do something in the circus.”

Pip and Susy-Ann stared at Jerry with shining eyes. It sounded too good to be true. To go with Jerry and the circus! To hide away in a caravan! To be together instead of being apart! The children didn’t think of any difficulties. They didn’t think that people might look for them. They just wanted to do what dear old Jerry said!

“We’ll come!” said Pip. Susy-Ann squeezed Pip’s hand. She was so happy that she could hardly speak. Mister Binks gave a little snort, and Jerry patted him.

“Yes, you shall come too,” he said. “You are a bit smelly, and your appetite is dreadful, but you are a beautiful goat, and you shall belong to the circus too!”

They made their plans. Pip and Susy-Ann were supposed to catch the bus the next day to go to Kemmingtown, where somebody was to meet them and to take them to their new homes. They just wouldn’t go! Instead they would slip into the circus field, and Jerry would somehow smuggle them into the old caravan!

“Everyone will be very busy packing up,” he told the children. “They won’t take any notice of you. It’s my job to stack the odd things into the old caravan, so no one will look there but me. You’ll be quite safe there! If you’ve got anything in your larder in the way of food, bring it along, and your clothes too. You may have to live in the caravan for a day or two whilst we are on the road.”

There was no time to say anything more, because Jerry had to go. He took Mister Binks with him, for he thought it would be better to get him used to the camp that night. He tied the white goat outside his own blue caravan and gave him some water.

Mister Binks drank the water and then tried to eat the bucket. He nibbled at the string that tied the handle of the bucket on, for it was an old one, and the handle fell off with a clank!

“Binks!” said Jerry, sternly. “If you belong to a circus you must not do things like that!”

The goat snorted. He lowered his head and half ran at the little boy as if he were going to butt him over. But Jerry only laughed, and patted the goat.

“I know your funny little games!” said Jerry. “You can’t frighten me, Mister Binks! You’re a very nice goat, and I like you, but for goodness sake don’t try and eat the wheels off my caravan in the night!”

The next day Pip and Susy-Ann packed their few clothes into two old bags. Susy-Ann had one rag doll, very dirty, and she took that too. Pip had no toys at all, but he had Snowball, his white mouse.

They looked into the larder. There was nothing much there except for half a loaf of bread and some butter, and a pot of plum jam. Those went into a bag too.

Their next-door neighbour was coming in to see them off to the bus, and to shut up the house when they were gone. They slipped into the garden and over the fence without being seen by anyone. They were certainly not going to tell Mrs. Jones what they were going to do! She would wonder and wonder why they didn’t come along at bus-time, but that couldn’t be helped!

They sat under the hedge with their bags, watching the bustle and scurry of a circus camp breaking up. Oh, how busy everyone was! What shouts when the big tent was taken down! How everyone ran and called and beckoned and worked!

Jerry passed nearby and winked at them. “We shall be ready to go just after dinner-time,” he said. “I’ll slip you in last thing. I’ll have to bring the old caravan over here on its way to the gate, and you can get in then.”

Susy-Ann and Pip nodded in excitement. They thought Jerry was a wonderful boy; and indeed he was, for he worked like a man, helping here and helping there, carrying heavy loads, bringing fresh water to the animals to last them for their journey, and giving everyone a hand when he could. He whistled cheerily all the time, and whenever he passed the parrots’ caravan the birds whistled back, for they liked Jerry.

Mister Binks had seen Susy-Ann, and he did his best to get to her. But Jerry had tied him up with wire, and no matter how he tried to chew through that he could not bite it! So he stamped and snorted, making the grass fly under his sharp hoofs.

Snowball the mouse watched the busy camp from Jerry’s hand. She nibbled daintily at some crumbs, and was not a bit frightened. She could always run up Jerry’s sleeve whenever she wanted to!

Jerry brought the two children some cake at twelve o’clock. They ate it hungrily and drank some water. “Shan’t be long now!” whispered Jerry.

Pip peeped back through the hedge at his old home, wondering if Mrs. Jones was looking for them yet. But there was no sign of anyone. He hoped that Jerry would soon bring along the caravan so that he and Susy-Ann might get into it. He would not feel really safe till then.

The two children saw Jerry putting a big brown horse into the shafts of the dirty old caravan. He did up the straps, and then backed the caravan towards the children. Nobody was looking, for most of the circus-folk were having their dinners.

“Get in!” hissed Jerry. “Hurry!”

Pip and Susy-Ann almost fell up the steps of the little caravan, bags and all. Snowball disappeared up Jerry’s sleeve in a great hurry. Jerry shut the door with a bang and clicked to the horse. It lumbered off to its place in the row of carts, caravans, and cages, ready to go off when Mr. Phillipino gave the signal.

“We shall soon be off!” said Pip, with a great sigh.


Pip and Susy-Ann looked round the old caravan. It was dark, for the door was shut, and as there were only two rather small, very dirty windows, not much light came in. But it was lovely to the two children! They were in a house on wheels! They would soon be rolling away through the countryside with a circus. They were safe; they would not have to catch the bus and go to new homes away from one another.

Pip hugged Susy-Ann in joy. He could hardly believe that it had all happened so easily. They looked round to see what the caravan was like.

At the front of the caravan were piled all sorts of odds and ends—poles, tent canvas, a few benches in need of mending, sacks of sawdust, an old parrot cage—dear me, what a lot of odd things there were!

“Are we going to sleep here to-night?” asked Susy-Ann in a whisper.

“Yes,” said Pip. “There aren’t any beds, Susy-Ann, but I guess we’ll be able to make some with these sawdust sacks and the tent canvas! And look—there’s an old rug to cover us! We shan’t need much covering on these warm nights.”

Susy-Ann stood on a sack and looked out of the little high window. She could see the field gate from there. From the other window she could see the circus camp, with the men and women hurrying now to get ready to pull out of the field.

Then Jerry found a little flap of wood at the front of the caravan, which, when he pulled it back, made a peep-hole to look out in front.

“I suppose Jerry will drive this horse,” he said to Susy-Ann. “Look, we can talk to him through this peep-hole, Susy-Ann. What fun!”

“Here comes Jerry!” said Susy-Ann, in excitement, looking out of one of the windows.

“Be careful that no one sees you peeping, Susy!” said Pip, pulling her back from the window. “If we are seen now we shan’t be able to go with the circus!”

They heard Jerry’s cheerful whistle as he came near the caravan. He patted the big brown horse.

“Well, Brownie!” he said to the horse. “Are you ready to go?”

“Yes!” whispered the two children inside the caravan, knowing that Jerry was really speaking to them, and not to the horse. Jerry climbed up to the driving-seat and took the reins.

Already all the other caravans were moving off through the gate. Soon the field would be quite empty. The three elephants were pulling big travelling cages. They were so strong that they could have pulled the whole circus along! They trumpeted a little as they went out of the gate. They were glad to be able to go for a good long walk again.

Jerry jerked his horse’s reins. Brownie set off sedately, walking in the row of caravans. The old caravan creaked and shook and rumbled as it went. It was difficult to stand up in it. The children sat down on the sacks, enjoying the feeling of moving along.

“Our house is moving!” said Susy-Ann, jumping up and down on her sack. “Won’t it be fun to live in a moving house? We shan’t see the same garden every time we look out of the window, as we did at home; we shall see something different every day we are on the move!”

With the trumpeting of elephants, the screeching of parrots, and the yells of the excited chimpanzees, the circus went on the road. Nobody but Jerry knew that two extra children were with it. Nobody guessed who was in the little old caravan!

“I wonder where Mister Binks is!” said Susy-Ann suddenly. “You don’t suppose he has been left behind, do you, Pip? I can’t see him anywhere.”

But just then a well-known snort came from behind the caravan! The children listened, and mingled with the noise of the trotting of horses’ hoofs they could hear the tiny trit-trot of Mister Binks’ hoofs too.

“He’s tied to the back of the caravan!” said Pip, listening. “He’s all right, Susy-Ann. He will enjoy a walk like this.”

Mister Binks sneezed three times. Susy-Ann looked alarmed. “I hope he hasn’t got a cold,” she said. “I’ve never heard him sneeze before.”

“Don’t be silly, Susy,” said Pip. “You know what a dust is thrown up on a dry day like this—well, I expect the dust is getting into Mister Binks’ nose and that’s why he’s sneezing!”

Pip was right. Mister Binks did not like the dust. He sneezed and sneezed.

Along the country lanes went the circus procession, making all the country folk stand and stare. The elephants went so slowly that they were soon left behind, but as they did not have a rest on the way, as the horses did, they always caught up in the end!

After a while Pip quietly slid back the little front peep-hole and looked out. In front of his caravan was a closed cage, where Delia’s bear was sleeping away the afternoon. Pip whispered to Jerry.

“Oh, Jerry! Isn’t it exciting?”

“Yes!” said Jerry. “So far everything is all right! Be careful when you look out of the windows, in case anyone sees you. Sometimes Annabella rides up and down the procession on her horse, and she might just catch sight of you! And if ever you hear me singing ‘Pop goes the Weasel,’ crouch down at once and cover yourselves with sacks or something. You’ll know there’s danger about.”

“Right, Jerry,” said Pip.

Jerry clicked to the horse and it cantered along more quickly to catch up the travelling cage in front. Mister Binks snorted behind, and sneezed loudly.

Susy-Ann pressed her face anxiously to the peep-hole. “Jerry!” she said, “is Mister Binks having plenty to eat?”

“Plenty to eat!” said Jerry, with a giggle. “Well, he ate both my mother’s dish-cloths last night! She had spread them out on the grass to dry, and Mister Binks found them. That was the end of the dish-cloths!”

“Oh dear!” said Susy-Ann. “I do wish that goat would mind what he eats!”

“Have you got anything to eat in there?” asked Jerry.

“Well, not much,” said Susy-Ann. “Just some bread and butter and jam. Nothing to drink at all.”

“You’ll find a big jar of water in one corner,” said Jerry, clicking to the horse again. “I put it there for you. If you’ll make do with bread and jam for tea, I’ll try and get you something nice for to-night.”

“Oh, thank you, Jerry,” said Susy-Ann. “You are kind to us!”

“Look out!” said Jerry. “Here comes Annabella on her horse! Get away from the windows and shut the peep-hole. You needn’t hide under the sacks, because she won’t come in.”

Pip shut the peep-hole quickly. He pulled Susy-Ann down, and they stayed there whilst Annabella rode past on her magnificent horse, seeing that everything was all right with the people, horses, and animals. She did this two or three times each day that the circus was on the road.

“All right now!” said Jerry, after a bit. “She has gone to the head of the procession, and she’ll stay there for some time. I’ll let you know if she comes back again.”

It was fun watching the roads and the hills and the hedges and fields from the dirty windows of the old caravan. They went along all the afternoon. At five o’clock the horses had a rest. The procession pulled up on the side of a common, and soon kettles were boiling for tea.

“We’d better have something to eat too,” said Pip, and he took the stale loaf of bread out of his bag. He found the butter, and Susy-Ann took the lid off the jam-pot.

Snowball the mouse struggled out of Pip’s collar, which was tight with the heat of the day. She was not going to miss her share of tea-time! She sat on Pip’s knee, waiting for crumbs.

“We haven’t got a knife!” said Pip, in dismay. “How are we going to cut the bread?”

“Ask Jerry to lend us his,” said Susy-Ann. But Jerry had gone to his mother’s caravan for tea and was no longer on the driving-seat in front.

“Well, I’ll break the loaf in half and we shall have to chew it,” said Pip. “What shall we use to spread the butter and jam?”

The children frowned at one another, wondering what to do, but as there was simply nothing to use they dipped their fingers into the butter and jam and spread them with those! It seemed to do quite well.

It was a happy little party in the old caravan, munching bread and butter and jam. Snowball ate her crumbs, and washed her whiskers afterwards with a dainty paw. Mister Binks stamped outside, longing to come in. Jerry had set the caravan on grass so that the goat could feed, but he was so anxious to get to Susy-Ann that he didn’t eat even a mouthful of grass!

Soon the circus was off again. Jerry climbed on to his seat in front. “Open the peep-hole, Pip,” he said in a low voice, looking all round to see that nobody was watching him. Pip opened it. Inside the caravan fell a packet. Susy-Ann picked it up.

“Chocolate!” she said. “Oh, thank you, Jerry! Just what I feel like—with nuts in too! Lovely!”

Pip and Susy-Ann sat munching the chocolate, very glad that the miles were slipping by. Snowball ran about the caravan floor, picking up tiny bits of chocolate.

“We shall camp soon,” said Jerry, in a low voice; “as soon as we come to Furze Common. Stay in the caravan till I come to you. I’ll bring you something for supper.”


Pip and Susy-Ann were glad when the circus came to a stop again. They were very tired and very hungry. It was still not dark, for the May evenings were long and light.

With a great deal of shouting all the caravans and cages were settled on the side of a common for the night. Not far off ran a clear stream. Soon the circus folk were busy getting water, cooking meals, and settling in for the night.

It was dark in the old caravan. Susy-Ann leaned against Pip, very sleepy. Pip wished that he could get out and stretch his legs. They felt stiff.

Jerry was nowhere to be seen. He was doing his usual jobs. But he had had time to shout to his mother.

“Mother! Cook me three times as much as usual! I can do with it!”

His mother laughed. She was used to Jerry’s enormous appetite. She set to work to make a fire on the common, frying sausages and bacon over it in a pan. All the other folk were doing the same, and a very nice smell blew away on the air.

By the time that the camp was settled in, it was dark. Susy-Ann was half asleep when she and Pip heard Jerry’s voice whispering outside the door.

“Hie, you two! It’s dark now, and I’ve put your caravan so that it backs on to a bush. I’m going to open the door, and you can slip out and run round the bush.”

The door opened. Pip and Susy-Ann ran quietly down the steps, round the big gorse bush, and waited for Jerry, who had disappeared again.

Back he came, carrying a big dish that smelt delicious.

“Come on, this way,” he said in a low voice. “Don’t speak yet.”

With Mister Binks at their heels the three children slipped farther on to the common, where great gorse bushes and slender birch trees stood in the dark. The moon was just coming up, and there was enough of its faint light to see where the bushes were.

“Let’s sit here,” said Jerry, and they all sat down on the dry, springy heather.

“Well, that was an exciting day!” said Pip, sniffing at Jerry’s dish. “Oh, Jerry! What have you got there? It does smell good!”

“It is good,” said Jerry. “It’s sausages and bacon and mashed potatoes! And I’ve got cake too, and some barley sugar in a tin!”

It was a queer meal but a most delicious one! Jerry had brought knives and forks, and the three of them dug into the big dish and ate whatever came up on their forks! How they enjoyed it!

Black bats flew over their heads, and brown owls hooted solemnly in their beautiful trembling voices. Something nearby smelt delicious. It was wild thyme that the children had trodden on and bruised. It sent its sweet smell all around them.

“I do feel happy,” said Pip, leaning back against a birch tree and eating a large piece of ginger cake.

“So do I,” said Susy-Ann, sucking barley sugar. “This is the nicest part of to-day. Oh, Jerry, we’ve really escaped, haven’t we?”

“I hope so,” said Jerry. “I expect people will begin to look for you soon, though, you know. Those people who were expecting you to go to their Homes for Poor Children will wonder what has become of you. And so will Mrs. Jones who was going to take you to the bus.”

“Well, I can’t worry about that now,” said Pip, dreamily. “I wish to-night could go on for ever and ever and ever.”

“Jerry! Could we sleep out here?” said Susy-Ann. “It’s so stuffy and smelly and dark in that old caravan. It’s so beautiful out here.”

“I don’t see why we shouldn’t,” said Jerry. “I often do in the summer. But my mother makes me use a rubber sheet on the ground. Wait—I’ll go and tell her I want to sleep out.”

He disappeared like a shadow round the gorse bushes. Susy-Ann was almost asleep. She had eaten a big supper; she was warm, and she was happy. She snuggled against Pip. Mister Binks lay down peacefully beside them. He had eaten a great deal of wild thyme and his breath smelt sweet.

Jerry came slipping back with a big rubber sheet and a blanket. “Here you are!” he said. “Mother says I can sleep out, but she says I must have the blanket in case it turns cold at dawn. You can share it. It’s big enough for us all.”

Susy-Ann was asleep! The boys had to shake her and wake her.

“Get up, lazy-bones,” said Jerry. “I want to put this sheet under you.”

Soon they were all lying down together, the soft heather beneath them. Jerry pulled the blanket across them, but they did not really need it for the night was very warm.

“We’ll have to be up before anyone else is,” said Jerry, sleepily. “Else you will be seen when you get into your caravan again. Good-night!”

“Jerry, I do hope Mister Binks won’t eat the blanket,” said Pip, half-worried, but so sleepy that he really couldn’t get up and tie the goat a safe distance away.

He didn’t hear if Jerry answered—for his eyes closed and he slept. Susy-Ann slept too, and Jerry lay dreaming of the long white roads he had travelled that day. Mister Binks lay peacefully beside them, snoring just a little.

But Snowball the mouse was wide awake! She ran from Pip’s sleeve and sat up in the moonlight, her little nose twitching. Then off she went into the grass, sniffing and snuffling, happy to smell the heather and the thyme and the blades of green grass.

Not until the moon began to sink once more in the sky did Snowball creep back into Pip’s sleeve to sleep.

The stars shone down on the children. When dawn was near a little wind blew up over the common. It crept round the gorse bush behind which the children slept, and blew over them. Susy-Ann was cold and crept nearer to Pip in her sleep. Jerry awoke and pulled the blanket closer over them. Then he slept again whilst the stars grew pale and a clear light shone in the eastern sky.

Dawn was coming. The sky grew silvery. The stars went out. And now a golden glow crept over the eastern sky, for the sun was coming.

Susy-Ann awoke. She wondered where she was. She sat up, amazed to see the sky above her instead of the dirty ceiling of her bedroom. She saw the golden light in the east, and she stared in wonder for she had never before seen the sun rise.

Some clouds overhead suddenly turned pink. The sun showed a golden rim over the edge of the world and everything at once shone with a pure yellow light. It was wonderful. A little yellow-hammer bird nearby began to sing at the top of his voice, “Little bit of bread and no cheese! Little bit of bread and no cheese!” Then some young sparrows began to chirp loudly. The day had begun!

“Pip! Jerry! Wake up and look!” said Susy-Ann, in a hushed voice. “Everything is so new and clean!”

The boys awoke. They lay looking at the pink clouds, the golden sky, and the shining common. It was just as Susy-Ann had said . . . the world looked fresh and clean and new.

“Just as if it’s washed itself and cleaned its teeth!” said Pip, sitting up. “My goodness, it’s a beautiful day!”

“Yes, and it’s time you two crept into your caravan before anyone else gets up,” said Jerry. “We shall be off fairly early to-day. You’d better get along. I shall stay here and finish out my sleep.”

The two children quietly crept round the bushes. They saw their caravan in the distance, its door facing a big bush. Nobody was about. Not the tiniest thread of smoke came from any caravan. The circus camp slept.

Pip and Susy-Ann went quietly into their dark and musty caravan. They shut the door—just in time, too, for Mister Binks had awoken and followed them, and was coming up the steps behind them!

Pip pulled some sacks about till they made a comfortable bed, and then they lay down, dozing, till the camp awoke and they could hear the calls and shouts as the men and women of the caravans went about their jobs.

“I hope Jerry brings us some breakfast!” said Pip, peeping out of a window. “I feel hungry all over again!”


Jerry did bring them some breakfast. Trust Jerry! It was not so good a breakfast as supper had been, but it was very nice.

Jerry opened the door and handed in a jar of potted meat, some biscuits, and two apples. He took something out of the caravan and went off with it. Nobody guessed that he had been to feed two runaway children! Pip and Susy-Ann ate happily, and took a drink from the water-jar.

It wasn’t very long before the whole circus was on the road again, and the children felt the caravan jolting and jerking as it rumbled over the lanes.

Pip opened the peep-hole. He and Jerry talked as they went along.

“We arrive at our next show-place this afternoon,” said Jerry. “I shall be very busy to-night and to-morrow helping everyone to get ready for our next show. But I’ll bring you food whenever I can, and maybe we’ll be able to sleep out of doors again to-night.”

It wasn’t quite so exciting being in the old caravan the second day. Susy-Ann was rather bored and wished she had something to do. But fortunately the circus arrived at its next show-place about two o’clock that afternoon, so the time was not too long.

Jerry once more backed their caravan on to a hedge. There was a gap in the hedge, and Jerry whispered to Pip that when night came they could slip through the gap into the next field.

The children had eaten some bread and cold sausages that Jerry had pushed in through the peep-hole at twelve o’clock. They looked out of the windows longingly, wishing they could join Jerry as he rushed here and there, helping everyone to settle in.

Suddenly they heard him nearby, and he was singing loudly.

“Half a pound of twopenny rice,

   Half a pound of treacle,

 Stir it up and make it nice,

   Pop goes the weasel!”

That was the signal for danger, as Pip very well knew. In a fright he pulled Susy-Ann down behind the sacks, and covered them both with tent canvas.

“Lie still!” he whispered. “Jerry said someone might be coming into the caravan if he sang that song.”

Pop goes the weasel!” sang Jerry again, loudly, and the caravan door opened.

“I think it’s in here somewhere,” said the voice of Madame Clara.

“What is it you want, Madame Clara?” asked Jerry’s voice, politely. “Can I get it for you?”

“Oh, I can find it myself, thank you,” said Madame Clara, and she stepped over to the front of the caravan, where the two children were hiding.

Snowball the mouse had been squashed when Pip had lain down so suddenly, and with a frightened squeal she had run from Pip’s sleeve. She sat on the top of a sack, looking at Madame Clara with her bright pink eyes.

Madame Clara saw her suddenly and gave a scream! “Oh! Oh! A mouse! Quick, get me out of here. There’s a mouse!”

The parrot-woman was dreadfully frightened of mice, though she would go into a cage of lions without being at all afraid! Jerry grinned, and helped her down the steps. “You tell me what you want and I’ll get it,” he said.

“I want my old parrot-cage,” said Madame Clara. “I think I saw it at the back where that tent canvas was.”

Jerry gave a low whistle of dismay. The children were just by the cage, and to get it he would have to uncover them.

“I’ll bring it along to your caravan, Madame Clara,” he said, hurriedly. “Look out—there’s that mouse again! You’d better go! It’s no trouble to me to bring the cage.”

Madame Clara gave a squeal and fled. Jerry was thankful to see her go. He hauled at the parrot cage and took it to the caravan door.

“She’s gone,” he said to the frightened children in a low voice. “It was a narrow squeak though!”

But it wasn’t long before another frightening thing happened! A strange man appeared at the circus gate and asked to see Mr. Phillipino. Jerry was nearby when he came, and he kept near enough to hear what was said.

Mr. Phillipino came in surprise to talk to the man, and he was even more astonished when he heard what the man said!

“We have reason to think that two children have joined this circus and run away with you,” said the man, looking straight at the circus-owner.

“Nonsense!” said Mr. Phillipino at once. “What would we do with two children? They are not here, I can tell you that!”

“I shall have to search your circus, if you will give me permission,” said the man. “They may be hiding somewhere without your knowledge.”

“Search it all you like!” cried the ring-master, angrily. “You won’t find any children—except Jerry, who belongs to us!”

Jerry ran off to the caravan in a great fright. He slipped inside and told the two scared children about the man who had come to find them.

“Oh, Jerry, are we safe in here?” cried Susy-Ann, tears rolling down her cheeks. “I don’t want to go away. I don’t want to go to a Home. I want to stay with you and Pip.”

“I don’t want you to go either,” said Jerry, very worried. “Look here, I think I can find a good hiding-place for you; but if they don’t find you, we shall have to tell my mother about you. She is a good sort and she will know some way of stopping you from being taken to a Home. Do you agree to that?”

The children were willing to agree to anything. “Can’t we slip out of the caravan, squeeze through the hedge, and hide somewhere in the fields till it’s safe?” said Pip.

“No,” said Jerry. “Everyone is on the look-out for you now. You mustn’t do that. I’ve another idea, but I don’t know if it will work.”

“What is it?” asked Pip.

“Well, I’ve got to store some things on the roof of this caravan,” said Jerry. “I can do it this afternoon, and if you can manage to slip up there I can cover you with some canvas so that you won’t be seen. Nobody would ever guess you were there on the roof.”

“Oh, Pip, what a good idea!” cried Susy-Ann. “But how shall we get on to the roof?”

“Same way as I do—up a ladder!” said Jerry. “Well, I’d better get busy. I’ll go and get our ladder.”

He went off and soon came back with the ladder, which he set up against the caravan at the back. He ran up it, carrying a load of things, which he arranged on the roof. He took a quick look round. The circus folk were busy and no one was looking his way.

“Susy-Ann! Come along up!” he called in a low voice. Susy-Ann scrambled up the ladder. She was flat on the roof among the odd bundles almost at once. Then Pip came up, and Jerry covered them both with some old canvas.

“Lie as flat as you can,” he said. “You can hardly be seen from the ground. I think I can see the searchers coming now.”

It was true—the searchers were coming in at the gate, one policeman and two men. Jerry slipped down from the roof, took away the ladder, and ran back to his own caravan with it. He couldn’t help feeling very anxious for he knew he might get into trouble.

The searchers went into caravan after caravan. They even peeped inside the animals’ cages! Last of all they came to the little odd caravan over by the hedge.

“What’s that caravan used for?” asked the policeman.

“Oh, just for odd things,” said Mr. Phillipino.

“Ah! A likely place for children to hide, then!” said one of the men, and he opened the door.

It was a very good thing that the children were not inside, for every sack, every pole, every bit of tent canvas was lifted up! But nothing was found, for Jerry had had the sense to put the children’s bags up on the roof too.

The men climbed down the caravan steps and brushed the dust from their coats. The policeman looked up to the roof.

“I suppose they wouldn’t be up there?” he said.

Pip and Susy-Ann trembled so much that they were sure they shook the caravan. Now surely they would be found!

One of the men laughed. “Up there!” he said. “Of course not! How would they get up there without a ladder? And there’s none to be seen. Come along. They’re not in this circus, that’s certain!”

They walked off, had a word with the circus-master, and then went off down the lane. Pip and Susy-Ann didn’t know they had gone till Jerry came and whispered the news to them. How glad they were!

“I’ll get the ladder again soon and get you down!” he said. “Better wait till everyone is having a meal. Then I must tell my mother about you.”

So, in fear and trembling, the two children lay still on the roof, wondering what Jerry’s mother would say to them. Would she be angry? Would she send them away? Oh dear, whatever would happen?


After a while Jerry came back again with the ladder. He laid it against the caravan, and whistled to the two children.

“Come on, Susy-Ann,” said Pip. He slid over the roof to the top of the ladder. Then down he went, and Susy-Ann followed. They looked at Jerry.

“You do look dirty,” said Jerry. And indeed they did! The top of the roof had been far from clean. Their clothes, faces, hands, and knees were black! Their hairs were untidy, and Susy-Ann’s golden head was no longer bright.

“Come on,” said Jerry. “We’d better see my mother now. Everybody is having a meal.”

He took the two children over to his blue caravan. Inside, his mother was cutting bread and butter, singing a little song.

“Mother,” called Jerry, “I’ve brought friends to see you.”

“Who are they?” said his mother. “Bring them in.”

Jerry pushed the two trembling children up the steps. His mother turned and saw them. Susy-Ann was afraid, and big tears spilled out of her blue eyes.

“Who are these children?” asked Jerry’s mother in astonishment. She sat down and took Susy-Ann on her lap. “Don’t cry, dear. What’s the matter?”

“I don’t want to be sent away to a Home,” wept Susy-Ann.

“To a Home!” said Jerry’s mother, puzzled. “What does she mean, Jerry?”

Then Jerry told his mother everything—all about how the two children had no mother, how their father had gone to Australia, and how Pip and Susy-Ann were to be separated and sent to different places.

“You see, Mother, I was sorry for them,” said kind-hearted Jerry. “So I brought them along, hidden in that old caravan.”

“Then they are the two children that those men were looking for to-day!” cried his mother. “But how was it they weren’t found? I know they searched that old caravan!”

“I put them up on the roof, Mother!” grinned Jerry. “Nobody thought of looking there.”

Susy-Ann leaned her golden head against Jerry’s mother. She had never sat on anybody’s lap before, and it was such a lovely, comfortable feeling. Mrs. Ronald, Jerry’s mother, looked down at the little girl. She had always wanted a small daughter, and she thought that Susy-Ann was a pet.

“Well, the children had better sleep here to-night,” said Mrs. Ronald. “We must decide what to do later.”

“But, Mother, you won’t send them away, will you?” begged Jerry. “Pip could help me in my jobs, you know, and now that the circus is so big there is plenty to do. Susy-Ann could help you in the caravan.”

“We won’t decide anything more for the present,” said Jerry’s mother, firmly. “I shall have to talk to Mr. Phillipino and your father, to begin with. And, anyway, it may be that the two children would not be allowed to stay here. Their own father would have to be written to.”

So it was left like that, and the two children and Jerry were sent out to sit on the dry grass to have a fine meal of bread and butter, hard-boiled eggs, lemonade, and bananas. They did enjoy themselves!

“When you’ve finished you must come inside the caravan and let me bath you,” said Mrs. Ronald, looking at the two dirty little children, who now had bits of hard-boiled egg round their mouths! “You do look little ragamuffins!”

So after their meal first Pip was well scrubbed and dried and then Susy-Ann. Their hair was washed too, and well brushed. Then Pip put on an old pair of shorts that Jerry had grown out of, and a blue jersey. Susy-Ann had only an old vest and a shawl to wear, for Mrs. Ronald had no girls’ clothes for her, and she said that those in the children’s bags were too dirty and creased to put on.

The circus folk looked astonished to see the two children outside the blue caravan. Susy-Ann sat on a tub, her freshly-washed golden curls drying in the evening sun. She had Mrs. Ronald’s big shawl round her and she looked really sweet. Pip was brushing Mister Binks, and he looked a sturdy little boy, black-haired and blue-eyed. Jerry went to get water for the three elephants.

Soon Mr. Phillipino heard of the two children, and he and Mr. Ronald, who was Juana the sword-swallower, came over to see who they were.

“Are they the two that all the fuss has been about to-day?” asked Mr. Phillipino, looking rather stern.

“Yes,” said Mrs. Ronald. “I’ll come across to your caravan, Mr. Phillipino, and tell you about them.”

So, leaving the three anxious children outside the blue caravan, Mrs. Ronald, Juana, and the ringmaster went across the field to have a talk.

The children watched them. Other men and women joined Mr. Phillipino, and listened to Mrs. Ronald as she explained about the two children. Delia came, and Madame Clara, Terry the sharp-shooter, and his little wife, Mr. Jummy the elephant man, and Mr. Hola, with one of his chimpanzees. They all stood or sat, listening, and joining in.

They were kindly folk, and fond of children. Jerry was a great favourite, and the circus folk loved him. When Jerry’s mother told them how the two children had no mother and no home, and how frightened they were of being separated, the circus folk shook their heads and looked sad.

Delia cried, for she was very tender-hearted. She mopped up her tears, and listened.

“What I want to know,” said Mrs. Ronald, “is whether we could keep the children. We can teach them as they grow, and they may be useful in the circus one day. We can look after them, and they will not be separated if we have them. That poor little Susy-Ann—so small—with no one, not even her own brother to love her. No, we cannot let such a thing happen.”

“You are right, Mitzi,” said Delia to Mrs. Ronald. Mitzi was the name that she was known by in the circus. “We must keep them.”

“We will all help,” said Mr. Jummy, generously.

“I can pay a little each week to help with their food,” said Mr. Hola. “They shall play with my chimpanzees just as Jerry does!”

“First we must tell the police,” said Mr. Phillipino. “And they must ask the children’s father if we may give them a home together until he wants them to go to him.”

“Where will they live?” asked Madame Clara. “I could have one in my caravan, though it is rather crowded with me and my three parrots already.”

“We will have to think about that,” said Juana, Jerry’s father. “Maybe we can squeeze them all into our own caravan. Jerry will be pleased to have friends!”

The three children sat quietly waiting whilst the circus folk talked about what to do with them. Susy-Ann felt certain that everything would be all right. She did like Mrs. Ronald so much. It must be lovely to have a mother like Jerry’s—someone whose knee you could sit on sometimes—someone who would love you and look after you!

“Look!” said Jerry. “They’ve finished their talk. Mother and Dad are coming over. I do wonder what they’ve decided.”

Pip looked rather white. He was older than Susy-Ann, and he wanted to stay with her and look after her. If only the circus folk would let him!

“Well, children,” said Mrs. Ronald, smiling. “It’s all decided. You are to stay here with us—that is, if your father agrees. But where we are going to put you I don’t know!”

Pip and Jerry went quite mad! It seemed wonderful to both boys that everything should suddenly be all right. Jerry danced round, doing a sort of gallop like a pony, snapping his fingers and shouting, and Pip yelled like a gorilla, and jumped up and down in the air as if he were a mad kangaroo! It was funny to see them.

Susy-Ann was very happy too. She took hold of Mrs. Ronald’s big warm hand and held tight. She felt safe now—and oh, how wonderful to live in a circus! Susy-Ann meant to know all the animals soon—she meant to help Mrs. Ronald, and she would live in a house on wheels! What fun!

“The only thing is—I can’t think where to put you all at night!” said Mrs. Ronald, laughing. “My family has grown suddenly, and I haven’t enough beds!”

But Jerry had an idea. Jerry always had. He was a wonderful boy for ideas!

“Mother, can’t we get the little old caravan cleaned and painted?” he cried. “Then we three children could live there together! We could always have it next to our blue caravan, and you’d have far more room in your caravan without me now I’m growing so big!”

“Good idea!” said Juana, Jerry’s father, coming up. “Wife, we will do that! To-morrow we set to work to make that old caravan into a house for the three children!”

“Ooooh!” yelled Pip, turning head-over-heels for joy. “A caravan of our own! What fun we’ll have!”

“Oh, thank you, Mr. Ronald!” said Susy-Ann, in delight, and she gave Juana a hug, which pleased him very much, for he loved little girls.

So it was all settled, and Pip and Susy-Ann joined the circus.


That night Jerry’s father and mother, Jerry, Pip, and Susy-Ann slept in the big blue caravan; and, dear me, what a squash it was! But nobody seemed to mind.

The caravan was a fine one, and had bed-bunks that could be closed up to the wall out of the way in the daytime. There were three bunks. That night Mr. and Mrs. Ronald had one each, the two boys somehow squeezed into the third, and Susy-Ann slept in the big bath, cosily packed with cushions and rugs!

The bath was usually slung under the caravan. But it made a fine bed for Susy-Ann that night, for she was not very big, and the bath was a good size. How the children laughed when Susy-Ann was packed up in it!

“Good-night, Jerry,” said Mrs. Ronald, kissing him and tucking him up. “Good-night, Pip.” Pip had a kiss and a tuck-up too.

Then Mrs. Ronald went to tuck Susy-Ann up. The little girl held out her arms and gave the kind woman a tight hug. She had never had a mother to kiss her good-night before. Mrs. Ronald had to kneel down on the floor to kiss Susy-Ann. She was glad to have the little girl.

All the windows and the door, too, were left open that night to air the caravan, which was stuffy with so many people sleeping in it. The cool night wind blew in. Mister Binks, tied up outside the caravan, nibbled the grass and wished he could find a few dish-cloths to eat. But Mrs. Ronald was beginning to know Mister Binks by now! Snowball the mouse ran about the caravan, hunting for crumbs. She loved to come out at night and play on her own.

The next day the camp was full of bustle, for the first show was to be given that night. Jerry hurried over his jobs, for he was longing to set to work on the little caravan. What fun to have a caravan for the children alone! Jerry had never had any boy or girl friends, for the circus was always on the move—now he had two friends that he was fond of.

Susy-Ann and Pip set to work to clean the caravan with Mitzi, Jerry’s mother. Everything was taken outside and put on the grass. Mrs. Ronald scrubbed and scrubbed. Pip and Susy-Ann fetched fresh water for her from the nearest stream, and helped to clean too.

Even Madame Clara came along to help. She cleaned the dirty little windows till they shone. Delia gave Pip five shillings and told him to go and buy some stuff for pretty curtains.

By lunch-time the caravan was quite clean inside. Juana said that outside it must be well painted, for it was stained and old.

“I will buy the paint and Jerry and I will paint it,” he said. “Susy-Ann, you shall choose the colour!”

“Could we have green paint and yellow wheels?” asked Susy-Ann. Pip was sent off to buy the paint.

Well, you should have seen that caravan when it was painted! The green was as bright as the grass, and the wheels were as yellow as the sun! Jerry and Juana were very pleased indeed.

The inside began to look very exciting too. Mrs. Ronald had made some green and yellow curtains for the window. She had found an old rug for the floor. Susy-Ann had helped her to beat the dust out of it before it was put down.

Mr. Jummy, who was very clever with his hands, brought along some wood, and made three bed-bunks, nailed to the three sides of the caravan. The fourth side, of course, had the door.

Old mattresses were cut up and re-sewn to fit the three little bunks. Really, it was too exciting for anything!

Madame Clara gave a very large green rug to Mrs. Ronald, who cut it into three for three blankets. Delia gave two old pillows. Jerry already had his own, so only two more were needed.

A shelf for each child was made above his or her bunk, and on the shelf they had to put their own belongings and keep them tidy. There was so very little room in the caravan that they had to be tidy or there would be no room to move!

They did not need a cooking stove, because Jerry’s mother did the cooking on her own stove! There was a big enamel basin for washing in, a broken chair, and two stools and a small folding-table. And that was really about all there was in the children’s caravan.

“But we don’t need anything else!” said Pip, looking round joyfully. “Oh, isn’t it lovely!”

Susy-Ann looked round proudly. She had helped to make the pretty green and yellow curtains. She had made the beds and put her rag-doll on to her own pillow, ready for the night. She felt very happy indeed.

“It’s our own caravan!” she said. “Won’t it be lovely to live here by ourselves?”

Jerry was full of joy too. He felt very proud of having his own caravan, for his father had said he must be the head of the three children, and see that everything went all right. Jerry, of course, was to drive the horse when the circus was on the move, though Pip could have a turn sometimes.

All the circus folk came to see the little old caravan now that it was new and clean and fresh. Room had been found at the back of an old cage for the odd things out of the caravan.

The circus folk were generous. Mr. Hola gave Pip a shilling to buy some biscuits to put on the shelf. Madame Clara gave Susy-Ann a tiny clock that struck every hour. Terry gave the children three large pieces of soap for their own, and Jinks and Jenks bought them some apples and bananas.

Really, it looked lovely inside that caravan, with the green and yellow curtains flapping in the breeze, the three bunks so neatly covered with blankets and rugs, the little shelves with a tin of biscuits, bananas, and apples, a few books, and one or two other treasures!

“I shall keep it all tidy and neat!” sang Susy-Ann. “I shall do the washing each Monday like Mrs. Ronald does. I shall mend everything. I shall be the mother in this caravan.”

The boys laughed. They were pleased to see Susy-Ann so happy. Jerry hoped the little girl’s father would say that she and Pip might stay for always. It would be dreadful if they had to go away after all this!

The children had been so excited over getting ready their own caravan that they had hardly had time to explore the circus camp. Jerry, of course, had to do his jobs as usual, but every minute he had to spare was given to painting or getting ready the caravan.

“Can we sleep in it to-night?” begged Pip, after a few days when the smell of paint had gone away a little. “I can hardly smell the paint now.”

“Very well,” said Mrs. Ronald. “To-night shall be your first night! I will bake you hot potatoes in their jackets for your supper, and you shall have a roll of white bread and a bar of chocolate as well! Then you must turn in and go to bed!”

So that night, when the circus show was on, and great crowds of people were in the big tent, clapping and cheering, the three children sat on the steps of their caravan, eating their supper.

It was about half-past eight. The evening was still warm and light, and the may hedges full of sweet-smelling blossom. Flowers of white wild parsley waved like piles of lace in the ditches. Mister Binks had eaten a great deal of it that day, but as usual he was hungry enough to eat anything that came his way.

He roamed free round the children’s caravan, with Pip keeping an eye on him. His snowy coat shone brightly, and he wagged his long beard. He found a few shavings of wood and ate those. He sniffed at a few snippings of the green and yellow curtains and ate those too.

The potatoes were warm in their jackets. The children had cut them in half, and Mrs. Ronald had put a dab of butter and a pinch of salt in each half. They tasted delicious. The children soon ate them up and started on their rolls and chocolate. Lovely!

“Now then, hurry into bed!” called Mrs. Ronald from her caravan. “You go first, Susy-Ann, and wash yourself and clean your teeth. I’ll brush your hair when you are in bed.”

So Susy-Ann skipped into her new caravan and undressed. She washed and did her teeth, emptying the basin into the pail underneath. Then she jumped into her little bunk-bed.

“I’m ready!” she called. Mrs. Ronald shooed the boys into the caravan, and went to brush Susy-Ann’s hair. The boys were not long in getting into bed. They were tired, for they had worked hard the last few days.

“Good-night,” said Mrs. Ronald, kissing Susy-Ann and tucking her up. “Good-night, Pip. Good-night, Jerry. Sleep well in your little caravan; and mind, if I hear too much talking and laughing, I shall come and scold you!”

But she didn’t come in again that night, for she knew quite well that the children would want to talk and laugh a little while in their new home.

“Isn’t it lovely!” sighed Susy-Ann, leaning on her elbow and looking all round the caravan, which was now getting rather dark. Susy-Ann’s bed was at the front of the caravan, and by kneeling up she could see out of the peep-hole that she and Pip had used to talk to Jerry through that first day they had run away.

“My bunk is as comfy as can be,” said Pip. “Much nicer than my hard old bed at home! Isn’t it fun to be on our own?”

“Yes,” said Jerry, very pleased, too, though it was not quite so exciting for him as for the other two, because he had lived in a caravan all his life. “I’m the captain of this caravan—Captain Jerry! Aha! You two will have to obey me and do as you’re told!”

“Right, Captain Jerry!” said Pip, sleepily. He was lying on his back, listening to the people in the big tent clapping the antics of the two chimpanzees in the ring. It was exciting to know that animals were in the field with him—elephants and a bear, chimpanzees and horses!

“Susy-Ann, have you got your rag-doll?” asked Jerry. But there was no answer. Susy-Ann was fast asleep, her old doll beside her. Then Pip fell asleep—and last of all Jerry.

Through the open windows of the little green and yellow caravan came the sounds of many people talking at ten o’clock, when the show ended, and everyone went home. But not one of the three children heard anything. Not one of them stirred. Only Snowball the mouse heard, and ran in fear to Pip’s bed, cuddling down under the blanket with her master.

And soon the circus camp was quiet. Only Mister Binks the goat wandered to and fro, wishing he could find something peculiar to eat. He could not get far because he was tied up; but how he wished he could reach the big tent. What a meal that would make if he began to nibble it round the bottom!


It was marvellous to wake up in the little caravan and see the sun shining in at the left-hand window, making a long shaft of gold across the bunk where Pip lay. Susy-Ann woke first and lay thinking of all that had happened.

“What adventures we have had the last few days!” she thought. She hugged her old doll, and listened to the goat outside the caravan, snorting quietly as he pulled at the grass. She got up and opened the door.

The sun was shining all over the circus field. Nobody was awake yet, though Susy-Ann could hear Delia’s big fat bear grunting in her cage.

“Wake up, Pip! Wake up, Jerry!” said the little girl. “It’s morning! Doesn’t our caravan look lovely? There’s no water to wash in. Shall I go and fetch some in the pail?”

“No,” said Jerry. “We’ll go down to the stream and wash there! That will be fun!”

So down to the stream they went, three tousle-headed little people, with towels round their necks. The water was cold, and by the time they had finished washing all the children were dreadfully hungry.

But when they were dressed a most delicious smell crept into their caravan!

“Sausages and tomatoes!” said Pip, sniffing the air. “Oooh!”

Down the steps they all tumbled, and there was Mrs. Ronald, busy in her caravan, frying breakfast for every one on her stove!

“Hallo, hallo!” cried Jerry, flying up the steps of his parents’ caravan. “Mother! Dad! We all slept well, and it was fun waking up in our own little caravan this morning!”

“Susy-Ann, lay the table out of doors,” said Mrs. Ronald. “You’ll find the plates and everything in that drawer over there, under the table.”

So Susy-Ann laid the breakfast, and soon all five were sitting round on stools and upturned buckets, enjoying their meal.

Juana, Jerry’s father, began to choke. Jerry jumped up and patted his father on the back. Juana turned purple in the face.

“Oh dear, oh dear!” said Mrs. Ronald, looking worried. “One of your choking fits again, Juana! Did a crumb go down the wrong way?”

Susy-Ann stared in alarm at the choking man. It was surprising to think that a man who could swallow pocket-knives and daggers, and put a sword right down his throat, should choke over a bread-crumb!

“Perhaps if you swallowed a spoon or something, it would push the crumb down, Mr. Ronald,” said the little girl, anxiously.

That made Juana laugh, and the laugh sent the crumb down, so he stopped choking!

“How can you swallow knives and swords, Mr. Ronald?” asked Pip, as he munched away at his sausage and tomatoes.

“Oh, it’s just practice, my boy,” said Juana, patting his long throat. “Just look here!”

He took up three knives, and swallowed them one after another! Pip and Susy-Ann stared in amazement. The sword-swallower took them out of his mouth with a laugh.

“Don’t you get trying my tricks, though!” he said to the surprised children. “It’s not so easy as it looks, to do things like that! And, by the way, you can call me Uncle Juana if you like, not Mr. Ronald.”

“And call me Aunt Mitzi,” said Mrs. Ronald in her soft voice. “Then we shall be like one big family!”

After breakfast Susy-Ann helped Aunt Mitzi to wash up and clean the two caravans. The boys went off on their jobs of watering the horses and animals. Jerry told Pip what to do, and the little boy did it well.

After dinner they had time to wander round the circus camp, peeping into the cages and caravans, and talking to the circus folk.

This was fun. Jinks and Jenks were just going into the ring to practise their trapeze tricks. The children went in to watch them.

“They have to practise every day,” said Jerry. “It is a rule made by Mr. Phillipino.”

The three children watched the two men on the swings, far up in the roof of the great tent. They flew from one swing to another as if they had wings. They shouted as they swung, queer sharp shouts in a strange language, for although they had such English names, Jinks and Jenks were not English.

“They haven’t got their net underneath to fall into if they miss the swing!” cried Susy-Ann in alarm. “Oh, quick, Jerry, tell them! They may fall any minute.”

Jerry laughed. “They never have the net up when they practise,” he said. “They don’t need it. They never fall.”

“But, Jerry, they had it up the other night when we watched the show!” cried Susy-Ann, still very anxious. “They did, really.”

“Oh, they always have it up at night when people are watching,” explained Jerry.

“Well, why do they have the net up then and not now?” asked Susy-Ann in surprise.

“It’s for the sake of the people watching the show,” said Jerry, grinning. “People don’t believe that acrobats, like Jinks and Jenks, will never fall, and it makes them worried if there is no net, so we just put up a net at night to keep the people happy—but not for Jinks or Jenks to fall into!”

“Oh,” said Susy-Ann. She felt glad that Jinks and Jenks were so clever that they never fell. She watched them as they hung to the swings by their teeth.

“Don’t they ever have toothache?” she said.

“Never!” said Jerry. “Would you like to climb up the ladder and try to swing by your teeth, Susy-Ann? I’ll help you up!”

But Susy-Ann didn’t at all want to do anything of the sort! They left the tent and went to see Madame Clara.

But Madame Clara was in a very bad temper. She was a strange woman, kind-hearted and hot-tempered, and nobody ever knew when she was going to be one thing or the other!

She was scolding one of her talking parrots.

“Oh, you bad wicked bird!” she cried. “You are not trying to do your part this morning! Come now, say your piece properly!”

“Jack and Jill

 Sat in a corner,”

began the bird in a sulky voice. The children laughed. The parrot had got his nursery rhymes mixed up. Madame Clara glared at them.

“No, you naughty bird!” she said, turning to the tiresome parrot. “You know that is not right! I will tap you hard on your beak—so! And again—so! Now, will you be good?”

The parrot did not like being tapped on its beak. It hunched up its shoulder, opened its curved beak, and let out such a screech that all the children jumped.

“You go into the corner!” shouted Madame Clara, angrily, to the naughty parrot. She picked up the parrot’s stand and perch, and put him into a dark corner of the caravan.

“Little Jack Horner

 Sat in a corner,”

said the parrot in a gloomy voice. The children shrieked with laughter.

“He thinks he’s Jack Horner!” cried Pip.

The other two parrots heard the children laughing, and they opened their beaks and screamed with laughter too, imitating the children perfectly. Really, it was as noisy as the parrot-house at a Zoo in Madame Clara’s caravan!

“Ah, you think you will upset my parrots, you bad, naughty children!” cried the little plump lady in a temper. “They are not bad enough for you; you want to make them worse! I will sweep you out of my caravan like rubbish!”

She caught up a broom and swept at Jerry’s legs. He fell over and rolled down the caravan steps.

“Come on!” he called to Pip and Susy-Ann, who were scrambling down the steps after him, looking really frightened. “It’s no use going near Madame Clara when she’s in a rage!”

Madame Clara stood at the top of her caravan steps with the broom, screeching like one of her parrots, her face as red as a tomato. When they were safely out of reach the children couldn’t help giggling.

“She just wants a crest of feathers on her head and a curved beak and she’d be exactly like a screeching parrot!” grinned Jerry, dusting himself down.

“I feel a bit afraid of her,” said Susy-Ann.

“You needn’t be,” said Jerry. “She’ll be sorry she chased us away presently—you’ll see!”

“Oh, look, there are the two chimpanzees!” cried Pip, in delight. “Oh, aren’t they lovely? They are dressed like twins. Are they going for a walk?”

“Just round the field two or three times,” said Jerry. “They must have a bit of exercise. Come and say how-do-you-do to them.”


The children ran up to Mr. Hola, who was walking solemnly round the field with Yanky and Doodle, his two big chimpanzees. The animals held one hand each. They were dressed exactly alike in yellow jerseys, red trousers, and blue berets on their hairy heads.

“How-do-you-do, Yanky?” said Jerry, holding out his hand to the first chimpanzee.

“Orra-burra, boo,” said the chimpanzee, politely, shaking hands.

Pip and Susy-Ann stared in surprise. Mr. Hola laughed. “You shake hands with Doodle, little girl,” he said to Susy-Ann. But Susy-Ann was afraid to! So Pip put out his hand instead; but he didn’t say “How-do-you-do?”

No; he said “Orra-burra, boo!” in exactly the same voice as Yanky had spoken to Jerry! Mr. Hola looked startled—it was astonishing to hear chimpanzee language coming from a small boy. He didn’t know that Pip could imitate any noise in the world!

Both the chimpanzees stared at Pip in delight. “Orra-burra, boo! Google, oggle, yah!” they cried, dancing about round Pip, and digging him in the back with their fingers. “Oggle-yah, yah!”

“They’re saying that I’m a fine fellow and they like me!” grinned Pip. “Oggle-yah, yah!”

Yanky put his arm round Pip and tried to make him dance with him. He really thought that the little boy must be some sort of ape if he could speak chimpanzee language.

“Now, now, Yanky,” said Mr. Hola, pulling the chimpanzee away. “That’s not the way to behave.”

“Orra, orra, orra,” said the ape, crossly. He did so want to walk with Pip.

“Can I walk round the field with you and talk to Yanky and Doodle?” asked Pip, who thought the two chimpanzees were great fun. Mr. Hola nodded.

“Yes, if you like,” he said. “My word! I’ve never heard anyone give such a good imitation of chimps talking before! You’re a marvel at that, Pip. Can you do anything else?”

Pip took Yanky’s hand and walked with the two chimpanzees and their keeper. Jerry and Susy-Ann went to visit the elephants.

Pip gave Mr. Hola a little concert as they walked round and round the field. He screeched like a dozen parrots, and made Madame Clara come to the door of her caravan in the greatest astonishment. He trumpeted like an elephant. He mooed like a cow and crowed like a cock. Mr. Hola was delighted.

“It is a real gift you have!” he said to Pip. “Yes, a real gift. You practise your noises, Pip, and one day we shall see you in the circus ring.”

“Oggle-yah,” said Yanky, in delight, just as if he knew what Mr. Hola was saying.

They came near the circus gate. Outside was an ice-cream man with his tricycle-cart. Pip gazed longingly at him. How he would love a cold ice-cream!

Mr. Hola did not seem to notice the ice-cream man, but suddenly, behind Pip, there was the sound of footsteps. It was Madame Clara, who had forgotten her bad temper and now wanted to make up for it!

“You would like an ice-cream, little boy?” she said to Pip, smiling kindly at him, looking quite different from the angry woman who had swept Jerry down the steps of her caravan with a broom a little while before! “Here are two pennies for you, and I will buy two ice-creams for your little sister and for Jerry too!”

The ice-cream man cycled up, ringing his bell. Madame Clara gave him four pennies, and took two ice-creams to Jerry and Susy-Ann. Pip bought himself a chocolate ice-cream and began to eat it.

Yanky and Doodle stared at him longingly. “Orra-burra,” said Yanky, licking his big lips.

“Yes, you can have a bit if you like,” said Pip, and he broke off a tiny piece. Yanky put it into his mouth and rolled his eyes round in delight. Doodle had a bit too.

Mr. Hola grinned. “Don’t you waste your ice-cream on Yanky and Doodle, Pip,” he said. “They have plenty themselves. People are always buying them one! Watch now—see, Yanky, here are two pennies. Ice-creams, ice-creams!”

Yanky snatched the two pennies away from Mr. Hola’s hand and ran to the ice-cream man. “Yiggle-yiggle,” he said, and pressed the pennies into the man’s hand. The man grinned. He was used to Yanky and Doodle by now. He handed the big chimpanzee an ice-cream. Yanky sat on the fence and tasted it.

Doodle tried to snatch it from him, and Yanky gave him such a punch that the other chimpanzee fell on his nose. He was very angry.

“Do give Doodle two pennies too,” said Pip. But Mr. Hola shook his head.

“Doodle isn’t as clever as Yanky,” he said. “He wouldn’t know what to do with them. Look!”

He gave two pennies to Doodle, but the chimpanzee did not give them to the ice-cream man. He put them in his mouth and tried to eat them.

“No, no, Doodle,” said Mr. Hola. “Give them back to me.”

So Doodle gave them back, and Mr. Hola bought an ice-cream for him. He was very pleased, and went to sit on the fence beside Yanky.

“Chimpanzees are like human beings,” said Mr. Hola. “Some are cleverer than others, and can learn much more! Yanky uses his brains. Doodle doesn’t.”

Yanky, Doodle, and Mr. Hola went back to the big cage where the chimpanzees lived together. Mr. Hola put them in and locked the door, putting the key into his pocket. He threw a bunch of bananas into the cage.

Yanky and Doodle tore the bunch in half, sat back in their corners, and began to peel each banana carefully, biting bits off just as we do when we eat bananas ourselves!

“I wonder where Jerry and Susy-Ann are now,” said Pip to himself, as Mr. Hola disappeared into his caravan, which was set by his chimpanzees’ cage.

They were still with the elephants, and, dear me, how Pip stared when he saw what Susy-Ann was doing! She was sitting on the neck of one of the elephants, looking as proud as could be!

“Susy-Ann! How did you get up there?” cried Pip, running over to the great animals. He stared up at the little girl in astonishment. He could see no ladder to get up by. How could Susy-Ann have got up there?

“Did you climb up, Susy-Ann?” called Pip. “Aren’t you afraid?”

“Would you like to get up there too?” asked Mr. Jummy, smiling at Pip’s surprise. “Ho there, Tag—up, up, up then!”

Mr. Jummy pushed Pip forward. The big grey elephant flapped his ears, twisted his great trunk around the little boy’s waist, and then gently but strongly lifted him right off the ground, and placed him carefully on his broad neck, holding him steady there.

“Oooh!” said Pip, more surprised than he had ever been in his life. “What a funny thing to do! Is that how you got up on your elephant, Susy-Ann?”

“Yes,” laughed Susy-Ann. “But I don’t want the elephant to go walking with me, or I might fall off!”

“Take them down, Rag; take them down, Tag,” ordered Mr. Jummy, after a minute. Gently Rag and Tag lifted the two children down with their trunks, setting them firmly on the ground. Rag blew down his trunk at Susy-Ann’s golden curls, and they flew round her head as if a wind was blowing!

“That’s his way of telling you he likes you,” said Mr. Jummy, smiling. “Now, I am going to take them down to the stream for a drink. Good-bye!”

Mr. Jummy and his three gentle beasts moved off. Pip thought that Mr. Jummy walked just like an elephant himself, slow, heavy, and plodding. “I suppose it’s because he has walked with them for so many years,” thought the little boy.

The sound of a concertina being played to a very merry tune made the children begin to dance about.

“That’s Delia playing for her dancing bear to practise his steps,” said Jerry. “Want to see him?”

They peeped inside the big tent again. Jinks and Jenks were gone now, and in the ring was Delia, playing her big concertina. With his queer shoes on his feet, Grizzle the bear was dancing slowly and loudly, his shoes tapping as he went. When he saw the children he gave a loud grunt. He loved people to watch him. Pip gave a loud grunt back.

“Ooooomph!” It sounded just like the bear’s grunt. Grizzle looked startled. He stared all round as if he expected to see another bear.

“Ah, I know that is you, Pip,” said Delia, laughing. “Mr. Hola has told me of your noises. Now, don’t grunt again at Grizzle, there’s a good boy, or he will do no more practising this morning. Will you, Grizzle?”

“Ooooooomph,” answered the bear, still staring all round, very puzzled by Pip’s grunt.

Round and round the red plush ring itself the three clowns were practising somersaults, and were turning head-over-heels as fast as ever they could, trying to keep on the plush ring without falling over. It was funny to watch them—it looked so easy—and yet when Pip tried it he fell on to the sawdust floor at once!

The clowns did not look like clowns at all in the daytime. They all wore grey flannel trousers, very dirty, and coloured jerseys. They cracked no jokes, and they did not even laugh. Pip and Susy-Ann thought they really couldn’t be the same clowns!

Grizzle grew tired of dancing. He suddenly began to go head-over-heels too! The clowns cheered him, and tried to get out of his way, but they fell over one another with a bump, and, dear me, when they tried to get up, those three clowns had tied themselves together in such a knot that they simply couldn’t get their legs undone!

That did make the children laugh, which was just what the clowns had done it for, of course!

“Come on, kids, it’s time for tea,” said Jerry, at last. “I’m hungry, if you’re not!”

But they all were, and they scampered off to Mrs. Ronald’s caravan, hoping very much that there was something good for tea.

There was—brown bread and butter and a jar of shrimp paste between them. It wasn’t long before the plate and the jar were both empty. Mister Binks tried to lick out the shrimp jar, but his tongue wouldn’t go in. So he tried to eat it, but that was too much even for Mister Binks!


The days went by very happily. The circus did well, and Mr. Phillipino was pleased. Everybody shared in the money that was taken, so Juana had his good share too, and he bought a roll of linoleum for the children’s caravan. It was a warm red colour and looked very nice when it was down.

The children helped to put it down, fitting it neatly into the corners. Jerry nailed it, and Susy-Ann handed him the nails. Pip polished it till it shone like red tiles. The old rug was put down on top of it. Now the caravan was very cosy indeed!

Soon it was time to go on the road again. Whenever the show came to an end everything must be packed up once more and taken to the next camping-place. Mr. Phillipino always planned ahead where they were to go. He sent one of his men to the next show-place to arrange for a big field outside the town if possible.

This man put great coloured pictures of the circus up everywhere. “Mr. Phillipino’s Circus is Coming!” said the posters, and gave pictures of the elephants, the chimpanzees, Juana the sword-swallower, and all the others.

“We’re off again to-morrow,” said Jerry to the others. “It will be fun to drive away in our own caravan, won’t it! We haven’t far to go this time. We shall be there by night-time.”

“I wish Mister Binks could ride in our caravan with us,” said Susy-Ann. “I’m sure he hates walking such a long way.”

“He’s too smelly to go inside the caravan,” said Jerry. “A long walk will do him good.”

Jerry was not feeling pleased with Mister Binks, for the goat had eaten his best handkerchief the day before. So Mister Binks had to walk!

There was nothing much for the children to pack up. They hung a few things under the caravan—the pail and a basket of odd things. But the circus folk had plenty of packing to do! The big tent had to be taken down. The trapezes in the roof and the ladder had to be carefully taken to pieces and packed. All the benches that the people sat on when they watched the show had to be piled closely together and strapped on to a cart.

Mr. Phillipino always had a bonfire burning on the last day before the circus moved, and on it was put all the rubbish that had collected, or was blowing about the field.

“We must leave the field as clean as when we came to it,” ordered the circus-master. And so the circus folk, untidy as they were, had to be tidy for once. It was one of the children’s jobs to collect the bits of paper, the cigarette packets, the sweet bags, and odds and ends that littered the field. Jerry watched the bonfire and stirred it well.

He let Susy-Ann stir it, too, for a treat, but the smoke went into her eyes, and she thought she would leave it to Jerry after that! Jerry always stood on the windward side of the fire, so that the smoke blew away from him.

At six o’clock the next morning the circus camp began to break up. First went Mr. Jummy with his three elephants, drawing one of the cages, and the great van in which were packed the tents and poles. They plodded out of the field-gate, and were soon lost to sight down the winding lane.

The circus horses went next, trotting neatly in a row, their black coats shining like satin. They did not pull any carts. They were too valuable to use for that kind of work. The old brown horses did that. The four white ponies trotted out, too, pulling Mr. Phillipino’s golden carriage. But it was covered with a tarpaulin sheet now, in case the rain might come and spoil it.

When he wished to show himself off in a town, Mr. Phillipino would order his golden carriage to be unwrapped, and would sit in it grandly, brandishing his great whip and bowing from right to left as if he were a king!

But usually he rode on one of the horses, like Annabella, his beautiful daughter, who was as sharp as she was lovely. She was always the first to see if any horse was limping; the first to see if anyone in the circus was being lazy; the first to scold if anything went wrong!

“Don’t the horses look lovely, trotting out of the gate!” said Pip, who was sitting on the fence, watching. Delia’s caravan went next, with the small cage belonging to her bear just behind it. Then went Mr. Hola in his smart shining caravan. His chimpanzees’ cage had gone in front with the elephants, but Yanky and Doodle were with Mr. Hola in his caravan!

He would never be parted from his two chimpanzees, and if Mr. Phillipino ordered the cages to go first, Mr. Hola quietly led his two apes out of their cage, and locked them in his caravan!

They looked out of the windows at the passers-by, and people were very astonished to see the two hairy faces peeping out and grinning at them!

One by one all the caravans, cages, vans, and carts went out from the field, Jerry’s among them. Jerry was driving the old brown horse. Clip-clop, clip-clop went the horse, a nice friendly sound to hear.

Pip and Susy-Ann sat on the steps of the caravan at the back, watching the countryside as they passed it. They were happy this time, for they were not hidden under smelly sacks, afraid of being found!

No, they belonged to the circus now, and could sit at the caravan door and look out at everyone! What fun to move to another place! A house on wheels was exciting to live in.

In front of Jerry’s caravan was his mother’s blue one. His father was driving it. Inside was his mother, doing her cooking. Smoke streamed from the little chimney on top. Behind Jerry’s caravan trotted Mister Binks, very angry. He couldn’t even stop to eat a chocolate paper on the ground because his rope pulled him on and on and on. He snorted as he went.

Through the hot dusty lanes went the circus procession. When they came to a small town the children felt as proud as could be, for the towns-folk crowded round to see the circus procession.

Boys and girls gazed up at Pip and Susy-Ann. “Do you ride those lovely horses?” yelled a small boy to Pip. How Pip wished he could say that he did!

“Hey! Are those your brothers in there?” yelled another boy, pointing to where the two chimpanzees were peeping from the window of Mr. Hola’s caravan.

Pip laughed. “Don’t be rude!” said Susy-Ann. On went the caravan, stared at by all the people they passed. Susy-Ann really felt very grand. She wished she could wear a beautiful frock like Annabella, and ride up and down the line on a fine black horse! That would make people stare! Perhaps one day she would, but she would have to learn to ride a horse first.

“Well, I can ride an elephant,” thought Susy-Ann, stroking Snowball, who had crept down Pip’s sleeve to have a look at the world.

“Hie, Pip, would you like to have a turn at driving now?” shouted Jerry.

“Oh, yes!” called back Pip. He jumped down from the steps at the back, ran round the caravan, and climbed up beside Jerry. He took the reins.

“That’s right,” said Jerry. “Just hold them loosely but firmly. Don’t drive too near the next caravan or we’ll be breathing their dust all the time!”

So, for the first time, Pip drove a horse, and he felt very big indeed!

The old horse gave the little boy no trouble, for he knew exactly what to do. He jerked his head a few times when Pip took the reins, for he felt that he had a new driver. After that he trotted on just as before.

It was grand sitting at the front, driving. “You’re all right,” said Jerry, and he slipped down and round to the back to talk to Susy-Ann.

“You can have a turn at driving, too, if you like,” he said to her. “It’s quite easy. Oh, look, there’s an ice-cream man. Would you like an ice, Susy-Ann?”

“I’d like a hundred!” said Susy-Ann, who was very hot and hungry. Jerry beckoned to the ice-cream man, who cycled up close. He handed three ice-creams to Jerry. Mister Binks wanted one, too, and snapped at the man’s hand.

Down went the ice-creams on to the ground. Jerry yelled to Pip to stop the horse. He did so, and Jerry jumped down to get the ice-creams. But Mister Binks had got them first. He ate them, paper wrapping and all!

“You greedy goat!” said Jerry, crossly. He bought three more ices, being careful that Mister Binks was nowhere near them this time! He gave one to Susy-Ann and went inside the caravan to the peep-hole. He pushed his arm through, and Pip got a pleasant surprise to see an ice-cream just under his nose.

“Hrrrrumph!” said the old brown horse, turning his patient head round.

“Hrrrrrumph!” answered Pip, exactly like the horse. “Gee up!”

So on they went, jogging along the roads all the day, with a rest for dinner-time. When evening came, the circus arrived once more at its camping-place; and oh, what fun, it was on a cliff by the sea!


It was fun settling into camp again. A strong sea-breeze blew all the time, and the sun was warm. The circus folk had to be careful not to leave their rugs and cloths about, for in no time the wind blew them over the cliff!

“Oh, there goes my tablecloth!” wailed Madame Clara, as the wind took it rudely out of her hand and blew it over the cliff.

“And my best red handkerchief is somewhere in the sea too,” said Juana, sadly.

“You children must not go too near the edge of the cliff,” said Mrs. Ronald, warningly. “Especially you, Susy-Ann, for you are little enough to be blown right over.”

So the children kept away from the cliff-edge, but Mister Binks the goat wandered about all over the place, and went right to the edge of the cliff.

Susy-Ann saw him and screamed to him. “Binks! Mister Binks! Come back!”

The wind took the words away. Mister Binks peered over the cliff-edge, and in another second he had vanished!

Susy-Ann began to scream, and Mrs. Ronald came running to her. “What’s the matter?” she cried. “Have you hurt yourself?”

“It’s my goat, it’s my goat!” wailed poor Susy-Ann. “He’s fallen over the cliff! Oh, save him, save him!”

“Good gracious!” said Mrs. Ronald. “Juana! Jinks! Jenks! Come and help. Susy-Ann’s goat has fallen over the cliff!”

They all hurried to the cliff-edge and looked down. Mister Binks was half-way down the cliff on a ledge, eating some pink flowers that grew there. He didn’t seem hurt at all!

“I say! How can we get him back?” asked Juana, looking worried.

“I’ll get a rope and go down the cliff with it,” said Jinks at once. “We are used to swinging and climbing about, Jenks and I!”

He ran off to get a rope. Susy-Ann was crying, for she loved Mister Binks very much. Very soon the two acrobats had fetched their rope, and Jinks was being let down the steep cliff-side by Jenks.

He swung down to where Mister Binks was quietly eating the pink thrift. The goat seemed surprised to see Jinks. He slid down to another ledge and wagged his white beard at the acrobat.

“You’re a nuisance!” said Jinks. He made a loop in his rope and let it down towards the goat. Mister Binks sniffed at it and then began to eat it! Really, he was a dreadful goat!

Jinks slid down to the goat’s ledge, though there was really hardly enough room for the goat to stand. Very carefully Jinks slid the rope round the goat’s body and tightened it so that he could be drawn up to safety.

“Pull!” he yelled to Jenks, who was lying down on his front, peering over the cliff. Jenks pulled, but as soon as Mister Binks felt the rope pulling round his middle, he was cross.

He gave an angry snort, and then what do you think he did? Why, on his small, sharp hoofs he bounded up the cliff from ledge to ledge until he stood safely on the top. He didn’t need any help.

Mr. Phillipino came up to see what the excitement was, and when he heard the story, he laughed till he was red in the face.

“A goat is a mountain animal!” he said. “Mister Binks didn’t fall over the cliff, Susy-Ann—he jumped down! You needn’t worry about him—he’ll jump up and down these cliffs quite safely, and have a lovely time!”

Susy-Ann dried her tears and patted the goat. She had had Mister Binks since he was a tiny cuddly kid, and she could not bear to think of him being hurt. The goat wagged his beard at everyone and thought of the pink flowers he had enjoyed half-way down the cliff.

Before anyone could stop him he jumped over the cliff-edge once more, bounded down the steep side, and stopped at a big green cushion of thrift. Jinks, who was being pulled up by Jenks, got the surprise of his life when the goat jumped right over him!

“That’s the last time I go goat-saving!” he grumbled. “Your goat is a nuisance, Susy-Ann.”

But Susy-Ann gave him such a hug that Jinks forgot to be cross, and he carried the little girl all the way back to the camp. Mister Binks was left behind on the cliff-side, still playing at mountain-climbing!

The big tent had to be very firmly pegged down in the field, for the wind tried its hardest to blow it away! How it flapped and creaked! How it groaned and wheezed!

“It does want to fly away!” said Pip, and he began to make all the noises that the tent made, until Delia came out of her caravan in surprise, thinking that the tent must really be blowing away!

The children were always very hungry, for the strong sea-winds gave them large appetites. Jerry’s mother complained that they ate more than the three elephants! She was always cooking for them, and baking cakes in her little oven; and no sooner had she baked a large cake than it was eaten!

“It’s a pity you are not like Mister Binks,” she said. “If you could make a meal of chocolate papers, newspapers, and cigarette packets it would be much cheaper than cold ham and salad and fruit and puddings and cake!”

The circus show opened well. Crowds of people came to see it the first night, and as it was really a very good circus they all told their friends, and the next night even more people came! Mr. Phillipino was very pleased.

On the third day a storm blew up. Great black and purple clouds towered up over the cliff, and the wind grew to a gale! Storms of rain came down, and the three children sat in their caravan and watched it.

Jinks, Jenks, Terry, Mr. Hola, and Mr. Jummy were busy roping down the big tent even more firmly, for Mr. Phillipino was really afraid it would be blown away. The five men were wet through, and the rain was so cold that they shivered. They were glad to go back to their cosy caravans and get dry.

Madame Clara’s caravan was on the edge of the field. She was usually not very near the other circus caravans, because her three parrots screeched and disturbed the circus folk. Madame Clara didn’t mind the noise; she was so used to it that she slept all through it!

She had gone to have tea with Delia, leaving her parrots shut safely in her own caravan, each on his perch and stand, chained by the leg. They did not like the storm, and screeched every time the rain slashed the windows.

The wind rose higher and higher. Mr. Phillipino anxiously watched the big tent. It pulled at all its ropes and pegs, but it held fast. He was watching the tent so closely that he didn’t see what the wind was doing to Madame Clara’s caravan!

It was taking it away from the field! It was pushing it on its four wheels, nearer and nearer to the cliff! Not the steep part, where Mister Binks had gone, but a lower part, down which a path ran for people to go to and from the beach!

Suddenly Pip caught sight of the moving caravan. He stared in the greatest astonishment. Was Madame Clara’s caravan really moving? He caught hold of Jerry’s arm.

“Jerry! Look at Madame Clara’s caravan!”

Jerry looked. He leapt up at once with a shout. “The wind is blowing it away! It will be over the cliff in a minute! Dad! Mother! Quick, quick!”

Juana and Mitzi came to the door of their caravan in fright.

“Come and save Madame Clara’s caravan!” yelled Jerry. “Terry! Mr. Jummy! Quick!”

At Jerry’s shouts everyone came to their caravan doors to see what the matter was. Jerry raced over the field in the pouring rain, followed by his mother and father, Pip, and Susy-Ann. Mister Binks galloped along too.

The caravan moved faster and faster, for the wind had hold of it properly now. Jerry reached it just as it was going down the steep cliff-path. He caught hold of one of the shafts. The caravan was running backwards quite fast now.

Juana knocked Jerry’s hands off the caravan shafts. “Do you want to go down the cliff with the caravan, foolish boy?” he panted. “It would pull you down with it! We are too late to stop it.”

Everyone stood and watched the gay little caravan running down the steep path. It bounced over the stones. It leapt over a rock. It went faster and faster.

Madame Clara came running up, her plump face white with fright. “My parrots!” she cried. “My parrots!”

But nothing could be done. Crash! The caravan rushed to the bottom and stopped there, lying on its back, with its shafts sticking stupidly up in the air.

Everyone tore down the cliff-path in the slashing rain. It was difficult to see. The path was slippery mud, and Jerry fell flat on his face. Pip nearly fell on top of him. It was really dreadful.

They reached the caravan at last. Mr. Phillipino walked all round it.

“It is not much damaged,” he said. “It can be mended.”

“What about my parrots?” shrieked Madame Clara. “What about my three parrots? Let me get into my caravan!”

“You can’t, Madame Clara,” said Juana. “It is lying on the door!”

“I can’t hear my poor parrots screeching!” wept Madame Clara. “Oh, do you think they are all killed?”

“We can look in through the windows,” said Mr. Jummy.


Mr. Jummy peered in through the windows. He could see nothing of the parrots at all. There was a perfect jumble of everything inside, for when the caravan had turned on its back all the furniture had fallen higgledy-piggledy on top of itself.

There wasn’t a screech to be heard from a parrot. Mr. Phillipino was very worried, for the parrots were valuable, and Madame Clara thought the world of them.

“Get the caravan the right way up,” he ordered. “Where are Jinks and Jenks? We want their strong arms to help.”

Jinks and Jenks were there. All the men went to help to push the caravan back on to its four wheels. They slid about in the sand, wishing that the rain would stop.

“Creeeeeeeak!” The caravan slowly went back on to its wheels. “Clatter, thud!” went the furniture inside, tumbling over again. Madame Clara rushed for the door.

She tugged at it and it opened. In she went and looked all around. What a muddle there was! But not a parrot could she see!

She found the three stands, and the chains that the parrots had had round their legs were broken! “My parrots have gone!” wept the poor little lady. “They’ve all flown away through the broken windows!”

“Squawk!” said a small voice. Madame Clara jumped and looked round carefully. She knew that was the squawk of a parrot!

“Squawk!” said the voice again, and a parrot’s head peeped out at Madame Clara.

“Oh! Oh! The clever bird! He hid in the oven of the stove!” cried Madame Clara. “The stove is screwed down to the floor, so it didn’t fall about, and Screecher is quite safe in the oven! Where are the others, Screecher?”

“A, B, C, D, E, F, G, Pop goes the weasel,” said Screecher the parrot, solemnly, walking out of the oven and perching on Madame Clara’s shoulder. He nipped her ear very gently. He always did when he was pleased. He was glad to be with his mistress again, for he had been very frightened when the caravan ran away down the cliff.

“Beaky! Grey-Boy!” called Madame Clara, in a trembling voice, for she did not think they were in the caravan. But no squawk came in answer. The poor little woman wiped her eyes and went to the door of the caravan.

“I’ve got Screecher, but there’s no sign of the others,” she wept. “Whatever am I to do?”

“You must come and stay with me in my caravan,” said Delia, comfortingly, and she put her arm round Madame Clara. “Your parrots will come back, don’t worry! Bring Screecher with you to my caravan. I will not mind if he makes a noise.”

Everyone left the caravan and went back up the cliff. It was getting near the time for the show to begin. But Mr. Phillipino shook his head.

“There will be no show to-night,” he said. “The animals are upset and frightened with this storm, and no one will come out in the wind and the rain to a circus show to-night. Go back to your caravans, everyone, dry your clothes, and have a good meal or you will all have colds to-morrow.”

Back up the cliff went the circus folk, sad because poor Madame Clara’s caravan was at the bottom of the cliff, and two of her parrots gone. But nothing could be done just then in such a storm.

“To-morrow we will get the caravan up the cliff again,” said Mr. Phillipino. “The elephants shall pull it up.”

Jerry, Pip, and Susy-Ann were taken into Mrs. Ronald’s caravan and made to undress and put on dry clothes. They were wet through. Mrs. Ronald lighted her stove, and soon a lovely warmth filled the big caravan. The children stopped shivering, and sniffed the nice smell of cooking.

“Fried bacon and eggs and tomatoes!” said Mrs. Ronald, smiling at the eager faces round her. “A treat for you for supper because you are so cold and wet! Nothing like a good meal to stop a cold from coming! Juana! Make some cocoa, please, and we will all get nice and warm.”

It was a squash sitting round the little table in the caravan, but how the children enjoyed their unexpected meal! They began to be sleepy when it was finished, for the caravan was warm.

“Off to bed with you!” said Mrs. Ronald. “Pack yourselves up well in your rugs and blankets, for it is very cold for May to-night!”

The rain had stopped, but the sky looked stormy. The wind was dropping a little, but still swept by the caravans with a swishing noise. The sound of the breaking waves came up the cliff, and the world seemed full of the sound of wind and water.

“I hope our caravan is safe,” said Susy-Ann, as she climbed sleepily into her bunk. “It really sounds as if it might be blown over!”

“Dad has fastened it to his caravan with a wire rope,” said Jerry, yawning. “It can’t possibly blow away, so don’t worry, Susy-Ann.”

“What’s that noise?” asked Pip, listening. “It sounds like something knocking against the bottom of the caravan.”

The children listened. So it did! Knock, bang, knock, bang! Jerry threw on a coat and opened the door to see what it was. He was soon back.

“It’s old Binks!” he said. “He’s got into the wooden box under the caravan for shelter, and every time he moves, his horns knock the caravan. But isn’t he sensible to get into the box?”

“I hope he hasn’t eaten the hammer and nails I put there,” said Pip.

“Well, we shall know if he has,” said Jerry, with a giggle, getting into his bunk. “He’ll rattle!”

Pip and Susy-Ann giggled too. They buried their heads into their pillows and were soon fast asleep. The wind might roar and the sea might crash on the beach—it didn’t disturb the children!

The next day was simply beautiful. The wind had blown every single rag of cloud away, and had blown itself away too! The sky was as blue as cornflowers, and looked as if it had been washed. The sun shone down warmly. Only a little breeze played about over the calm blue sea, which shone like a blue mirror.

“Oooh! Isn’t it lovely!” said Pip, sticking his head out of the door. “Who would think we had such a fearful storm yesterday?”

“We could bathe to-day!” said Jerry. “That would be grand! I’ll take the elephants down too. They love a bathe!”

“Do they really?” said Susy-Ann, in surprise. “Well, I shan’t go near them if they start to splash!”

“They will be pulling Madame Clara’s caravan up the cliff to-day,” said Jerry. “That will make them hot, and they will enjoy a cool bathe.”

They had their breakfast in the open air, sitting in the warm morning sunshine. Mrs. Ronald said it was too hot to cook anything, and anyway, they had had their breakfast for supper the night before! So they feasted on sardines and brown bread and butter, and finished up a tin of sweet pineapple chunks between them. Mister Binks came out of his box to lick the tins and gobble a lump of bread.

“Now, let’s go down to the beach and see what Madame Clara’s caravan is like this morning,” said Jerry, when they had all finished. So down the cliff-path they went, but when they got to the beach, what a surprise!

The caravan had gone! Not a sign of it was to be seen!

“Did we dream it all, then?” said Pip, puzzled.

“No,” said Jerry. “Look, there’s a bit of the broken window glass! Look out for your feet, Susy-Ann! We’d better collect it or someone will cut themselves.”

“But where’s the caravan gone?” asked Susy-Ann, in amazement. And then she suddenly saw it!

“Look!” she said. “It’s gone out to sea!”

And sure enough, floating on the water like a Noah’s Ark, there was Madame Clara’s adventurous caravan!

“The tide must have come in extra high last night!” said Jerry, in surprise. “And it took the caravan away with it when it went out. Good gracious! Now, what’s to be done? Come on—we must tell Mr. Phillipino!”

Back they raced with the news. Mr. Phillipino was having his breakfast, and he almost choked over it when he heard the bad news.

“What next, what next!” he wailed. “We lose an evening’s show—and two parrots—and now it seems as if we lose a caravan too!”

Soon everyone was down on the beach, Madame Clara too, looking very pale, for she had worried all night long about her beloved lost parrots. She cried again when she saw her caravan bobbing out to sea.

“I will get a boat and row out to it,” said Mr. Hola. “You come too, Jinks and Jenks, and you, Juana. We shall be able to rope the caravan and tie it to the boat, and maybe we can row it back to land.”

“Can I come too?” begged Jerry. So he was allowed to, though there was not room for Pip or Susy-Ann. The men set off to the nearest boatman’s house and borrowed a boat big enough for the five of them. They rowed out on the sea towards the floating caravan.

It was not long before they reached it. Jerry slipped into the water with the rope and swam the little distance to the caravan. In a trice he was sitting astride a shaft, tying the rope firmly to an iron ring on the middle of the shaft.

Then he climbed up to the top of the caravan and sat there. This was fun!

The four men pulled at the oars, and the rope from the boat to the caravan became tight. The caravan swung round with the pull of the boat, and soon it was bobbing towards the shore, following the boat!


“Hurrah!” cried Jerry, from his place on the top. “Here we come, here we come!”

The caravan bobbed gently after the boat. At last the boat grounded on the shore and the four men jumped out. They pulled hard at the rope, and the caravan’s wheels touched the sand. It ran along a foot or two and then stopped. Its wheels had sunk into the sand.

“We’ll have to get an elephant now,” said Juana. “Jerry, go and ask Mr. Jummy to bring one.” Jerry sped off. Mr. Jummy was already coming down with one of his great beasts, for he had seen that the caravan was stuck. Jerry helped him take it down the slippery cliff-path.

The elephant was backed on to the sea, and the caravan rope was tied to him. “Hup there, hup!” cried Mr. Jummy. The elephant tried to walk up the beach.

“Whooosh!” The caravan came out of the wet sand with a sucking noise and ran up the beach after the big elephant.

“Good!” said Juana. “Mr. Jummy, do you want two elephants to pull this caravan up the cliff or will Rag do it alone?”

“We will see,” said Mr. Jummy. “Hup then, Rag, old boy, hup then!”

The elephant pulled as he went up the cliff. The caravan came after him as if it were a toy pulled by a child! It was queer to watch it trundling up the steep cliff-road, bumping as it went. The men guided it as best they could.

At the top the elephant stood panting. Mr. Jummy stroked his long trunk. “Now, you shall have a bathe,” he said. “Come and fetch the others, Rag.”

Rag trumpeted, for he knew what a bathe meant. Back he went to the field, still dragging the caravan after him. Madame Clara was so pleased to see it, but what a sight it was! Water dripped everywhere from it. Big clumps of seaweed hung in at the windows! A chair was missing. It must have floated out of the door.

Mr. Jummy took his elephants down for a bathe. Jerry and Pip went too. But Susy-Ann stayed behind to help with Madame Clara’s caravan.

How kind the circus folk were! They cleaned out the seaweedy caravan that morning. They hung the linoleum and the carpet out to dry. They gathered up the broken crockery, and Annabella went down to the shops to buy some more out of her own money for Madame Clara.

An oil-stove was put inside the caravan to dry it well. Mrs. Ronald made some new curtains from some stuff she had left over from the children’s curtains. Mr. Phillipino sent a tin of lobster, some sardines, and a bottle of milk from his larder for Madame Clara. All her goods had been spoilt or washed away by the sea.

The little woman was very grateful, but nothing would comfort her for the loss of her two parrots. She would not let Screecher out of her sight, and the big grey and red parrot lived on her shoulder all the day.

“Little Bo-Peep has lost her sheep,” he said, mournfully.

“Lost her parrots, you mean,” said Madame Clara, also mournfully. “How I wish they’d come home, bringing their tails behind them!”

The boys were having a fine bathe with the big elephants. Rag, Tag, and Bobtail kept filling their trunks with sea-water and squirting it over the shouting boys! They enjoyed the fun as much as the children did. Mr. Jummy stood by, grinning. His elephants did not squirt him, for they saw he had no bathing-suit on. They were clever creatures, and really used their brains!

“What about going for a walk this afternoon?” said Jerry, as they ran back up the cliff-path to find Susy-Ann. “We could go over the hills and far away, and take our tea!”

“That would be fun!” said Pip. So they asked Mrs. Ronald if they could have some sandwiches and cake. She nodded, and said she would be glad to get rid of them for a few hours!

“Can Mister Binks come too?” asked Susy-Ann, anxiously. “He hates to be left behind.”

“All right,” said Jerry. “But we’d better be careful where we carry the sandwiches! I wish I could carry them on my head, then they’d be safe from Mister Binks!”

The three children set off, with Mister Binks trotting behind, wagging his beard. He liked running over the short, wiry grass of the downs. He stopped every now and again to pull a few flowers here and there, and chew them. But he always caught up the children before they were out of sight.

The sun soon dried the wet grass. It was very hot. In sheltered places around the blazing yellow gorse bushes grew dozens of bright bluebells. It was really lovely to see them.

“We’ll take some home to Aunt Mitzi,” said Susy-Ann, jumping about in delight. “I do like picking flowers.”

“Well, don’t pick any yet,” said Jerry. “If you do, they’ll die before you get home. Pick some on our way back.”

They went up the green hills and down, up and down, running, shouting, jumping, as happy as could be. Mister Binks frisked about like a month-old lamb too.

“I’m getting tired,” said Susy-Ann at last. “And oh, I’m most dreadfully hungry!”

“You always are!” said Jerry, laughing. “Well, wait till we get to that little clump of birch trees over there, Susy-Ann, and we’ll sit in the shade, and see what Mother has put in our picnic parcel!”

They ran to the birch trees. Susy-Ann flung herself down on the soft grass. A few bluebells grew near, and she sniffed them.

“They smell good enough to eat!” said the little girl.

“Well, you have those for your tea, Susy-Ann,” grinned Jerry. “Pip and I will have the sandwiches!”

But Susy-Ann didn’t mean to have bluebells for her tea! Oh, no; she was going to have her proper share of sandwiches and cake!

Jerry opened the packet. “Egg sandwiches, tomato sandwiches, and slices of seed cake!” he said. “Good! Here you are, Susy-Ann; and here’s your share, Pip. Have you got the bottle of lemonade in your pocket?”

Pip had, with a mug tied on the top. The children munched away at their delicious tea, listening to the nearby linnets singing, and watching a far-away strip of blue, which was the sea. It was a lovely picnic.

“Now, let’s lie on our backs and listen to the birds singing,” said Pip, who loved the notes of the birds, and could imitate all of them. The children lay down, but in a moment Pip was sitting up again, a startled look on his face.

“Did you hear that bird?” he said.

“What bird?” asked Jerry, sleepily. “I hear about a hundred I should think.”

“No, listen,” said Pip. “It was a screech.”

That made Jerry sit up too. “A screech!” he said. “You don’t mean—a parrot’s screech?”

“That’s just what I do mean,” said Pip. “Didn’t you hear it?”

“No,” said Jerry. “You’ve got better ears than mine. Let’s listen again.”

So all three listened, and, mixed with the sweet singing of the linnets, the loud chirrup of excited sparrows, and the call of the yellowhammers, came a screech—and then another!

“It is a parrot’s screech!” said Pip in excitement. “I say! Wouldn’t it be marvellous if we could catch Madame Clara’s parrots! The screech sounded over there. Come on, let’s go quietly.”

Very quietly indeed the three children went across to where, on the opposite hillside, a few oak trees grew. As they drew nearer they could hear screech after screech.

“They are both there!” said Pip, in a low tone.

“However shall we catch them?” wondered Jerry. “If only we could get Madame Clara here!”

“I’ll go and fetch her,” said Susy-Ann at once.

“No, you’d get lost,” said Jerry. “We’ve come too far.”

“Let me see if I can catch those parrots before you think of sending for Madame Clara,” said Pip. “Do you mind sitting down, you two? Leave the parrots to me.”

Jerry and Susy-Ann sat down. They wondered whatever Pip was going to do. Did he really think he could catch those parrots? Why, they were high up in the oak trees!

“They’ll fly away as soon as he climbs the tree,” whispered Jerry to Susy-Ann.

Pip went to the big oak tree in whose leaves the two parrots were hidden. They had seen the children and were sitting quietly.

“Beaky! Grey-Boy!” called Pip in a gentle, soothing voice.

The parrots did not answer. Pip called again. One of the parrots screeched back. And at once Pip gave an answering screech, exactly like the parrot’s!

The parrot was surprised. It looked at the other parrot to see if it had screeched. No, it hadn’t. Then both parrots screeched again, and Pip answered them.

“It’s marvellous the way he does that,” said Jerry to Susy-Ann. “I wish I knew how to!”

“Sh!” said Susy-Ann. “Look, one of the parrots has hopped down to a lower branch!”

Sure enough it had. It was Beaky, his crested head held on one side, peering at the strange boy below, who could talk parrot-language so well.

Beaky began to talk in a low voice—a lot of nonsense with a few words mixed up in it. He was talking to Pip.

“Atcha, jabber, atcha, jabber, chat-chat, poppa, sat on a wall,” said the parrot.

Pip answered at once, in the same kind of talking voice. Then Grey-Boy, sitting above, gave a loud squawk. Pip did the same.

“I believe he’ll get both those parrots to go to him!” cried Jerry, in delight.


“Hush, Jerry,” said Pip, turning round. “Don’t make a sound for a few minutes!”

So Jerry and Susy-Ann sat like mice. Mister Binks wandered up, and Susy-Ann held him tightly in case he should go and frighten the parrots.

But the two big grey and red birds seemed to have no eyes for anything or anyone but Pip. They were both on the lower branch now, their heads on one side, looking at the little boy below with their bright eyes.

Pip talked and screeched and squawked like a houseful of parrots! The parrots talked back. And then, quite suddenly, one of the birds spread its wings and flew down to Pip’s shoulder!

Jerry and Susy-Ann went red with delight and excitement, but they didn’t make a sound. Pip didn’t move. He didn’t even put up his hand to the parrot. He went on talking to the other one. Beaky, who was on his shoulder, gently nipped Pip’s ear with his beak.

Then Grey-Boy flew down too, and there was Pip with both the escaped parrots on his shoulders, as proud as could be!

“Good for you, Pip!” said Jerry, getting up. “Can you take them back to the camp like that?”

“Yes,” said Pip. “But when they get near the field, they may remember the fright they had, and fly away again. So you two must run on ahead and ask Madame Clara to come and meet me. Then the parrots will be all right, for they will go anywhere with her.”

So Jerry, Susy-Ann, and the goat ran on ahead, leaving Pip to follow more slowly. They longed to reach the camp and call out the exciting news, but they had come a long way, and it took them an hour before they came in sight of the camp.

Pip stayed a good way back, on the heathery slope of a hill, still talking to the two parrots, who sat on his shoulders and did not attempt to fly away.

Jerry and Susy-Ann rushed into the circus field, yelling at the tops of their voices.

“Pip’s got the parrots! Pip’s got the parrots! Where’s Madame Clara? Madame Clara, where are you?”

Madame Clara appeared at the door of Delia’s caravan, Screecher on her shoulder. Everyone came running up, leaving their jobs.

“Madame Clara, oh, Madame Clara, we heard your parrots out on the hills when we were having our tea!” panted Jerry.

“And Pip’s caught them for you!” shrieked Susy-Ann, as loud as a parrot! “He’s waiting on the hill over there for you to fetch them, so that they won’t be frightened.”

Madame Clara gave a cry, and ran out of the gate at once, her plump feet twinkling in and out like clockwork. She could see Pip on the hill.

Everybody watched. As soon as Madame Clara got near enough to call to her beloved parrots, she did so, and at once Beaky and Grey-Boy left Pip and flew straight to their mistress! There wasn’t room for both of them on her shoulders, for Screecher was already there, so Beaky perched on her head!

Crying tears of joy, the little woman walked back to the camp with Pip. She didn’t care about her spoilt caravan now! She had got back her parrots that she had taught and trained so carefully, and she was happy.

Everyone wanted to know how Pip had caught the two parrots, and Jerry told them. Mr. Phillipino listened.

“Make some noises, Pip,” he ordered. “It seems to me that you are rather an extraordinary boy!”

So Pip gave a little concert all on his own in the circus field! Everybody listened.

“Hrrrrumph, rumphphphphph!” trumpeted Pip, just like an elephant. At once all the three elephants lifted up their trunks and trumpeted back in excitement. Mr. Jummy stared at Pip in amazement.

Then the little boy grunted like Delia’s bear. He jabbered like a chimpanzee. He whistled like half a dozen birds, screeched like a parrot, crowed like a cock, and grunted like a sty full of pigs.

Everybody cheered and clapped. It was wonderful. How did Pip do it? He seemed to have just an ordinary tongue and throat. Mr. Phillipino made the little boy open his mouth. He looked down his throat, and then shook his head, puzzled.

“I don’t know how you do it!” he said.

“I don’t know either, really,” said Pip. “You see, when I hear any sound, my ears tell me exactly what it’s like, and then my throat knows how to make it. I don’t have to think about it.”

Annabella, dressed in her beautiful shining frock, ready for the evening’s show, tapped her father on the shoulder.

“You should try Pip in the ring,” she said. “He would be a great success!”

Pip’s face went scarlet. Susy-Ann stared as if she could not believe her ears. Jerry gave a shout of joy.

“Hurrah! Pip would do fine in the ring! Good old Pip!”

But Mr. Phillipino would not say yes or no. He laughed, clapped Pip on the shoulder, and went off to see that everything was ready for the show, which was soon to begin.

“Maybe he’ll let you one day,” said Jerry, proud that his friend should be so clever. “Oh, Pip, you would be lucky! I’ve never been in the ring, and I never shall be, either, for I can’t do anything clever. But it would be the next best thing if you could go!”

“I wish I could go too,” said Susy-Ann. “But I’m not clever either. Oh, look at Mister Binks! Quick, go and get him, Jerry.”

Wicked Mister Binks! He had stolen up behind Mr. Phillipino, who was standing talking to Annabella in the field, his long whip behind him. And that mischievous goat was nibbling the end of the whip!

“He’ll eat the crack out of the whip,” said Susy-Ann. “Oh dear! Mister Binks, come here!”

But Mister Binks wouldn’t come. When the ring-master discovered what the goat was doing, he gave a loud roar, lifted his whip, cracked it round the goat’s head, and made him leap six feet in the air with fright!

The goat shot off to the edge of the cliff and jumped down to the ledges there, snorting and wagging his beard. That was the last time he would eat Mr. Phillipino’s whip!

“Jerry! Pip! I want some jobs done,” called Mrs. Ronald from her caravan. “Whilst the show is on you can go round the field and collect the bits and pieces flying about. Then you can fetch me three pails of water. And you, Susy-Ann, can go and pick some buttercups to put in the jam-jar on the table.”

“Oh, I meant to pick you some bluebells on the way home!” cried Susy-Ann, skipping off with a basket to gather up the rubbish. “But we were so excited about the parrots that I forgot!”

Madame Clara was able to take her three parrots into the ring as usual that night, though it was a rush for her to change into her circus frock and get ready. She had been too sad to think of going into the ring when she had thought that her two parrots had gone for ever. But now she was happy, and skipped about like Mister Binks, singing and humming.

She couldn’t thank Pip enough. When she had done her turn in the ring, she went to find the little boy. He was looking very hot and tired, for carrying heavy pails of water was not light work, and he was not as strong as Jerry.

“Pip! Ah, you fine wonderful boy!” cried Madame Clara, rushing at him. She flung her arms round him and hugged him. Pip looked uncomfortable. He didn’t mind Susy-Ann hugging him, and he liked Aunt Mitzi to kiss him good-night, but he felt silly when Madame Clara flung her arms round him.

“It’s all right, Madame Clara,” said the boy, trying to struggle out. “It was quite an easy thing to do.”

“I am your friend for ever!” said Madame Clara, giving Pip a smacking big kiss on the cheek. “Ask me anything you want at any time and you shall have it!”

“Oh! Do you really mean that?” said Pip, wiping his hot forehead.

“Of course! Of course!” said Madame Clara, excitedly. “Ask me what you like and you shall have it, even if it means that I must give you all my money!”

Pip couldn’t help laughing at the plump, red-faced little woman. She was so generous, so hot-tempered, so grateful!

“Well, there’s really only one thing I want, Madame Clara,” said the little boy. “And that’s an ice-cream. I do feel so dreadfully hot!”

So Madame Clara rushed off to the gate where the ice-cream man still sat on his tricycle. She bought the very biggest ice-cream he had in his barrow and gave it to Pip.

“And you come to me any time you want help!” said Madame Clara. “I will always give it to you. Now, I must go, for it is time I was in the ring again.”

Pip thanked her and put the big ice-cream on a cold plate inside his caravan. He grinned to himself when he thought how surprised the others would be.

Mrs. Ronald soon called them to go to bed. They were all tired after their walk and were glad to go. She gave them thick slices of bread and golden syrup for their supper, and they sat on the caravan steps eating it. Then they went inside to bed.

“It’s the hottest night I’ve ever known!” said Jerry, puffing and panting. “I wish I could go to bed in the cool sea!”

“And I wish we could have a great big ice-cream!” sighed Susy-Ann, as she jumped into her bunk. “I might go to sleep if I could get cool with an ice-cream!”

Without either of the others seeing him, Pip neatly placed the big ice-cream on Jerry’s bed. Jerry turned to get into bed—and gave a yell.

“Oooh! Look here! Susy-Ann, you must be magic to-night! Your wish has come true!”

Susy-Ann sat up and gave a scream of joy. “Oh! Oh! I wished for a great big ice-cream, and it’s come! Oh, what a surprise! Oh, I must really be magic!”

“Well, seeing it’s here we might as well eat it before it vanishes!” said Pip, with a grin. He divided it into three, and they all ate their share. It was simply delicious!

“And now I am really cool,” said Susy-Ann, sleepily, lying down in her bunk. “Good-night! I shall do a bit more wishing to-morrow! That was a wonderful surprise!”


The children had a lovely time in the camp by the sea. No more storms came, and the weather was beautiful. Night after night great crowds came to see the circus, and Mr. Phillipino took a great deal of money.

He was pleased, and so was everyone else, for all the circus folk shared in the success or failure of the circus. Juana the sword-swallower had such a lot of money that he bought Susy-Ann the prettiest dress she had ever had. It was made of blue silk, and Aunt Mitzi said she looked like a bluebell in it.

Pip had a cage for Snowball his mouse, and it was very necessary, for Snowball now had seven tiny baby mice, and Aunt Mitzi said she would not let them all live up the sleeve of Pip’s jersey.

“But there’s plenty of room there,” said Pip, quite upset.

“No,” said Aunt Mitzi, firmly. “I just won’t have it, Pip. You’re a little boy, not a walking zoo. You can keep Snowball up your sleeve, if you like, when the babies are big enough to be without her, but they must live in the cage.”

Jerry had a lovely present—a gramophone! “Now, we can have a tune in the evenings!” he said to the others, winding it up for the first time. “Won’t it be fun? My Dad’s a good sort, isn’t he?”

“Yes, and so is your mother,” said Pip, who was getting very fond of Jerry’s kind and sensible mother. “See, Susy-Ann, Uncle Juana has even remembered Mister Binks. Here is a beautiful red collar for him!”

Mister Binks certainly looked fine in his red collar. He did his best to get it off, and would certainly have eaten it if he could. But Pip put it on very firmly indeed.

The day before the show was due to close, a queer thing happened. Mr. Jummy came out of his caravan looking very worried, and went straight to Mr. Phillipino’s caravan. He rapped on the door.

“Come in,” said the ring-master. Mr. Jummy went in.

“Mr. Phillipino, sir,” said Mr. Jummy, “someone has stolen all my money.”

“Stolen it!” said the ring-master, amazed. “But who can have done that, Jummy? There is no thief in this camp. We all know one another well.”

“Yes, sir,” said the elephant man, looking worried. “I know that. But all the same, my money’s gone. I kept it loose in a drawer. I opened the drawer just now to get out some shillings to go shopping—and everything was gone!”

“I will come and see,” said Mr. Phillipino, gravely. He put on his top-hat and went with Mr. Jummy to his caravan. Mr. Jummy pulled out his money-drawer. It seemed quite empty. Mr. Phillipino put his hand in. Something rustled at the back.

“Why, the thief has left all your notes!” said the ring-master, in astonishment, and he pulled out a handful of ten-shilling notes and pound notes that had been pushed to the back of the drawer.

Mr. Jummy stared in amazement. “Well, what a strange thief!” he said at last. “He has taken the silver and the coppers, and has left the notes!”

“It is certainly very strange,” said Mr. Phillipino, thoughtfully. “I wonder, Jummy—could it be the children, do you think? They would not take the notes, but the coins they would like.”

“I don’t know, sir,” said Mr. Jummy, looking dismayed. “I don’t think any of the children would do such a thing. Why, it’s stealing!”

Mr. Phillipino left Mr. Jummy, and went to Mrs. Ronald’s blue caravan. Mrs. Ronald was surprised to see him. He went in and shut the door.

“Mitzi,” he said, “some money has been taken from Jummy’s drawer. Could it be of the children, do you think?

“It can’t be my Jerry!” said Mrs. Ronald, indignantly. “That boy is as honest as anyone! And I am sure it couldn’t be Pip or dear little Susy-Ann! No, Mister Phillipino, I’m sure you’re wrong.”

“Well, you might ask the children,” said the ring-master. “I will make inquiries also of the others, in case strangers have been seen in the camp.”

Mrs. Ronald finished the job she was doing. Then she called the children. They came running to her, astonished at her serious face.

“Have you heard about poor Mr. Jummy’s money?” said Mrs. Ronald, looking at the three surprised faces in front of her.

“No,” the children said. “What’s happened?”

“Someone has stolen all the silver and the coppers,” said Mrs. Ronald.

“Oh, Aunt Mitzi! Poor Mr. Jummy!” cried Susy-Ann.

“Mr. Phillipino has just been here and he wanted to know if any of you knew anything about the money,” said Mrs. Ronald.

“Well, I don’t,” said Jerry at once, “And I know Pip doesn’t. Surely Mr. Phillipino doesn’t think we took it, Mother!”

“He has no idea at all who took it,” said his mother. “But I do hope he finds out soon, because it is horrid not to know. I am quite certain none of you three would do such a thing.”

“I wish we could find out the thief, and get Mr. Jummy’s money back,” said Jerry. “Let’s go and talk to him, Pip.”

So, leaving Susy-Ann with Mrs. Ronald, the two boys ran to where Mr. Jummy was busy with his elephants. He was looking sad, for he hated to think that one of the circus folk should have stolen from him. Mr. Phillipino had heard that no strangers had been in the field at all, so it was quite certain that the thief was someone in the camp.

“But who could it be?” thought the elephant man, worried. “Madame Clara? No, impossible. She has always been good friends with me. Mr. Hola? Of course not. He is as honest as I am! Jinks and Jenks? Nonsense! They are two of my best friends, I am sure of that.”

Just then the two boys ran up.

“Mr. Jummy!” said Jerry. “We are awfully sorry to hear about your money. Haven’t you any idea at all who has taken it?”

“No,” said Mr. Jummy. “And I don’t feel as if I want to find out, either! It must be someone in the camp, and I don’t like to think of one of my friends being a thief.”

“Could it be one of the men who looks after the horses?” asked Pip.

“No,” said Mr. Jummy at once. “They do not come near here. They keep always to their end of the field. They say that if they come near my elephants and then go back to their horses, their animals get restless. They don’t like the smell of elephant on the clothes of their grooms!”

“When did you last see the money there?” asked Jerry.

“This morning at breakfast time,” said Mr. Jummy.

“So it must have been stolen between then and a little while ago,” said Jerry, thoughtfully. “Who has been near your caravan, Mr. Jummy?”

“As far as I know only Mr. Hola and his chimpanzees,” said Mr. Jummy. “You know how he takes them walking round the field each day. Oh yes, and Jinks and Jenks came to speak to me too. But nobody else.”

“It’s very funny,” said Jerry. “And it’s funnier still that the thief should have left the valuable notes behind, and only taken the coins! I do wish we could find the thief for you, Mr. Jummy.”

But think as hard as they might they could not imagine who was the thief. They walked over to where Mr. Hola and his two chimpanzees were sitting basking in the sun. The animals loved the summer heat. They still wore their yellow jerseys and red trousers, but they had taken off their blue berets.

“Isn’t it hot!” said Mr. Hola, fanning himself with his handkerchief. “Pip, you might run into my caravan and get me a drink of water. There’s a jugful there with ice in it.”

Jerry sat down beside Mr. Hola. Pip ran into the caravan. He hunted about for the jug of iced water. He opened the little larder cupboard. It wasn’t there. He opened another cupboard, where he saw some balls and toys belonging to the chimpanzees, who loved dolls and stuffed animals as much as any child did.

Something caught Pip’s eye before he shut the cupboard. He put in his hand, and there, at the back of the cupboard was a loose heap of pennies, silver sixpences, shillings, and half-crowns! A whole heap of them!

Pip stood still in surprise. Surely Mr. Hola did not keep his money there! The little boy felt his heart sinking. Surely, surely, Mr. Hola couldn’t be the thief.

“Hie, Pip! Can’t you find the jug?” shouted Mr. Hola. “It’s on the window-ledge.”

Pip shut the cupboard door. He looked on the ledge and found the jug. He picked it up and went down the steps with it, his face red.

“Thanks,” said Mr. Hola. He drank from the jug, and then offered it to the little boys.

“It’s bad luck about Mr. Jummy’s money being stolen, isn’t it?” said Jerry.

“Very,” said Mr. Hola. “I always keep my money locked up in a little safe. I never leave it lying loose.”

Pip looked at Mr. Hola in surprise. How could he say that when he had such a lot of money loose in the cupboard? Was his own money locked up, and the stolen money pushed hurriedly into the cupboard till he had time to lock it up too?

“You look very serious, Pip,” said Mr. Hola, laughing at the little boy. “What’s the matter?”

“Nothing, Mr. Hola,” said Pip. “I—I just feel upset about Mr. Jummy’s money, that’s all.”

“You’re a kind little chap,” said Mr. Hola. “Hie, Yanky, what are you doing?”

One of the chimpanzees had got up and was going into the caravan.

“He’s hot!” said Jerry. “I don’t wonder! I am cooking, too! Come on, Pip, we must go and see if Mother wants any jobs doing.”

“Yiggle-yiggle, borra!” called Yanky, poking his head out of the caravan as he saw the two boys getting up.

“He wants to come with us,” said Jerry, laughing. “Can he, Mr. Hola? We’ll take good care of him.”

“Very well,” said Mr. Hola, jerking his hat over his eyes and settling down to a nap. “See that he doesn’t take anything he shouldn’t. He went into Delia’s caravan yesterday and ate all her apples!”

Yanky ambled off with the two children, grinning all over his good-natured hairy face. Each boy held a paw.

“Pip, what’s the matter?” asked Jerry, noticing Pip’s sad face. “Do you feel ill?”

“No,” said Pip. “But I’ve discovered something perfectly horrid, Jerry. Listen!”


Pip soon told Jerry what he had seen in the cupboard of Mr. Hola’s caravan. Jerry whistled.

“Whew! And he told us that he always locks up his money, so why is there some loose?”

“Oh, Jerry, Mr. Hola is such a nice chap. He simply can’t be the thief!” said Pip.

“You’re right,” said Jerry, seriously. “He simply can’t be. But it looks as if he is! We’d better go and tell Mr. Phillipino what you saw.”

“No, Jerry, not yet,” begged Pip. “We might be mistaken. Let’s wait a bit.”

“Orra borra,” said Yanky, swinging the boys’ hands to and fro.

They took no notice of him. Yanky was annoyed. “Yiggle Booh!” he jabbered, and pointed to where the ice-cream man sat on his tricycle by the gate. He had just come there, hoping that the circus folk would buy from him, as they so often did.

“I haven’t any money on me, Yanky,” said Jerry.

“Nor have I,” said Pip. “So you’ll have to go without, you greedy chimpanzee! Orra borra booh! Understand?”

The chimpanzee was cross. He dragged the two boys over to the gate. They had to go with him because he was far stronger than both of them put together!

“You are naughty, Yanky,” scolded Jerry. “We told you that we are not going to buy ice-creams!”

“Yiggle-yiggle,” answered the chimpanzee. He put his hand into his trouser pocket and brought out some pennies. He handed them to the man, who grinned. He was used to Yanky by now. He handed out three ice-creams, one to each of them.

“Oh, well, we might as well have them, as Yanky’s so generous!” grinned Jerry, so they all ate them. But Yanky ate his in one gulp, fished in his pocket, and brought out a sixpence. He handed it to the man, who gave him a sixpenny ice-cream. Three bites, and it was gone! Yanky took out a handful of coppers and gave them to the pleased ice-cream man.

“Wait a minute, Yanky!” cried Jerry. “You are not allowed to have so many. Don’t give him any more, please! He’ll be ill and then he won’t be able to go into the ring to-night!”

The man gave the money to Jerry, who put it into his pocket to give back to Mr. Hola. But Yanky seemed to have a store of money, for once more he dug into his pocket, and this time brought out half a crown! He thought it was just a penny, and he handed it to the man with a string of jabbered words.

“No, old fellow,” said the ice-cream man, and he gave the half-crown to Jerry. “I say, that chimp seems to be a millionaire this morning!” grinned the man. The same thought had suddenly struck the two boys. They felt quite sure that Yanky was not allowed to go about with his pockets full of money!

“Give me all your money, Yanky,” said Jerry, firmly, holding out his hand. But Yanky wouldn’t. Money to him meant ice-creams, and he wasn’t going to let Jerry have any of it! He clapped his hands over his pocket and glared at Jerry.

“Oh, naughty!” said Jerry. “Come along, then, we’ll take you back to Mr. Hola, and you’ll have to hand it over to him.”

So back they went to Mr. Hola, who was now fast asleep in the sun, with Doodle tied to his wrist so that he could not wander away.

“Hie, Mr. Hola,” said Jerry, shaking him. “Wake up! We’ve got something to say.”

“Hallo? What? What’s that?” said Mr. Hola, waking up with a jump and sitting up suddenly. “Oh, you’ve brought Yanky back. Sit down by me, Yanky.”

“Mr. Hola, did you give Yanky all the money he’s got in his pockets?” asked Jerry. “He’s got heaps, and he won’t let me see how much. But look, here’s some of it.”

Jerry handed over the coins he had to Mr. Hola. The man looked very surprised. He turned to Yanky. “Let me see what you have in your pockets,” he ordered. The chimpanzee looked sulky, but he let Mr. Hola turn out his pockets. There was a whole collection of silver and copper there! Mr. Hola emptied it out in amazement. “Wherever did he get it?” he said.

“I think I know,” said Pip, excited. “Mr. Hola, when I went to get your jug of water, I looked in the larder for it and in the cupboard just beside it too. And in the cupboard, pushed right to the back, was a whole heap of money. Did you know?”

“Of course not!” said Mr. Hola, leaping to his feet, and jerking Doodle with him. “My word! It sounds as if that’s Mr. Jummy’s stolen money, doesn’t it! Yanky, come and show me where you put the pennies!”

Yanky was still sulky, but he went into the caravan with Mr. Hola. He would not do anything but sit down sulkily on a chair.

“Ice-creams, Yanky, ice-creams!” suddenly said Mr. Hola. Yanky grinned. He felt in his pocket. No money there. He got up and went to the cupboard. He opened the door, and put his hand right at the back.

“Yes,” said Mr. Hola, “Yanky took the money from Mr. Jummy’s caravan, brought it here, and hid it in the toy cupboard! Then, when you took him for a walk, he popped it into his pocket and went with you, hoping you would find the ice-cream man! He’s too clever for words!”

“Mr. Jummy said you and the chimps went by his caravan this morning!” cried Jerry. “Was Yanky loose?”

“Yes,” said Mr. Hola. “He was running around a bit, and I wasn’t taking much notice of him.”

“Then he must have slipped into Mr. Jummy’s caravan, opened the drawer, and taken all the money!” cried Jerry.

“And as he didn’t know that the paper notes were money, he just pushed those to the back!” said Pip. “Oh, how glad I am that we’ve found the thief.”

“But, mind you, I’ll not have people thinking that Yanky really knew what he was doing!” said Mr. Hola, suddenly looking very fierce. “He’s only an animal, and doesn’t know enough about right and wrong to be a real bad thief. He loves Mr. Jummy and wouldn’t do him any harm. So, don’t you go thinking that Yanky is really bad. He’s naughty, and he’s mischievous, but he’s not wicked.”

“Oh, no, Mr. Hola, we know that,” said Jerry at once, seeing that Mr. Hola really was upset. “Anyway, except for a few pence that Yanky has spent on ice-creams, the money is all there. Let’s take it back, now, shall we?”

The money was put into a box. Mr. Hola found a few coins still in the chimpanzees’ toy cupboard and put those into the box too. Then he took Yanky and the boys across to Mr. Jummy.

“We’ve found your money, Jummy,” said Mr. Hola. “I’m sorry to say that Yanky must have nipped into your caravan this morning and filled his pockets from your drawer so that he might buy ice-creams! But it’s all here except for a few pence. Yanky is very sorry. Aren’t you, Yanky?”

“Borra yah,” said Yanky, looking very woebegone, for he didn’t like to see his precious money being given to Mr. Jummy. He did not think he had done wrong.

“Thanks, Hola,” said Mr. Jummy, cheering up at once. “That’s grand! Fancy it being Yanky! I don’t care who it is so long as it isn’t any of the circus folk! I’ll just go along and tell Mr. Phillipino. He’ll be pleased too.”

“But don’t you think any the worse of my chimp, Jummy!” Mr. Hola called after him. “He’s naughty, but he’s not a wicked animal!”

“I know that! Don’t you worry!” shouted back Mr. Jummy, with a grin. Everyone knew that Mr. Hola loved his chimpanzees like children, and was very proud of them.

The whole camp laughed over the tale of Yanky taking the money for ice-creams. Everyone was glad that the money had been found. Mr. Hola went round to each caravan asking people not to leave money about in case Yanky took any again.

“Really, what with Yanky spying round and Mister Binks eating anything he can find, we shall have to be careful,” laughed Delia. “It’s a good thing my bear doesn’t wander about loose!”

It was not long before the circus was on the move once more. Jerry and the others were sad to leave the seaside, for they had had great fun there, and they loved the sea-breezes, the golden sands, and the bathing. But circuses never stay long in one place, and soon everything was being neatly and quickly packed up again.

“Where are we going this time?” asked Pip.

“To Johnstown,” said Jerry, backing the old brown horse into the shafts of the children’s caravan. “Hey up there! Can’t you walk backwards, old horse!”

“Ne-ei-ei-eigh!” said the horse—or was it the horse? No, it wasn’t! It was Pip, looking out through the peep-hole, pretending to neigh in answer. Jerry laughed.

“I thought it was the horse!” he said.

“Now then, now then, hurry up there, Jerry,” said Mr. Phillipino’s voice, rather sternly.

“Yes, sir; yes, sir,” said Jerry, in a fright. He looked round to see the ring-master, but he was nowhere to be seen! Jerry yelled.

“That was you again, Pip, imitating Mr. Phillipino! Just wait till I get this horse in and I’ll come and rub your nose in the grass!”

Pip laughed. It was fun to play tricks on Jerry. Susy-Ann laughed too. She was tying Mister Binks to the caravan, ready for the move.

At last they were all off again, the elephants well in front, the cages and caravans following. Annabella as usual rode up and down the long line on her beautiful horse, scolding, joking, comforting.

“Off to more adventures!” said Susy-Ann, settling herself on the top step. “Hurrah!”


The circus field at Johnstown was near to a castle, where soldiers lived. The children were very excited when they knew.

“We shall see the soldiers, and tanks, and guns, and all kinds of things!” said Jerry. “And we ought to do well here, for the soldiers are sure to come. What fun!”

The camp settled in. The show was to start the next day, so there was very little time to get everything ready. Everyone worked hard. The big tent went up. The benches were set out. The ring was strewn with sawdust. The three clowns were sent somersaulting and cart-wheeling through the streets of the town, shouting and calling to everyone to come to the circus.

It began well. The soldiers came to the show and shouted and cheered and stamped and clapped. Yanky and Doodle were quite alarmed at all the noise. Delia’s bear stood and clapped, too, whenever the soldiers clapped, and that made them shout all the more! The three clowns did madder tricks than ever, and were cheered again and again.

“To-morrow the Duke is coming to inspect the castle!” said Jerry in excitement one morning. “That means that a great many visitors will be coming to Johnstown to-day to catch sight of the Duke, and they will be sure to come to the circus in the evening! We shall have a fine time!”

But something went badly wrong before that show, as you will see. It happened that the big cannon on the castle wall was to be fired three times to welcome the Duke. Mr. Phillipino did not know this, or what happened might have been prevented.

As soon as the Duke’s carriage was seen at the town-gates the big cannon went off.

Boom! Boom! Boom!

It made a tremendous noise. The townsfolk were used to it, and expected it. But the circus people had no idea that the cannon was going to go off, and everyone jumped in fright. Susy-Ann fell down the steps of her caravan. Pip upset the glass of lemonade he was drinking. Jerry leapt to his feet as if he had been shot.

All the circus horses plunged and reared in fright. The two chimpanzees went mad with fear, and Mr. Hola had to go into their cage and comfort them. Madame Clara’s parrots screeched the place down, and Madame Clara screeched too!

Only Delia’s bear was quite calm. He sat in his cage, grunting. But Mr. Jummy’s elephants were really terrified. One of them was so frightened that he snapped the great rope that tied him to a tree and ran trumpeting round the field.

“Quick! Jerry, Pip, Susy-Ann, look out for Tag!” shouted Mrs. Ronald, in fear. “He’s mad with fright. He doesn’t know what he’s doing or where he’s going. Get behind those trees and keep there till Jummy has caught him safely.”

The children rushed behind the trees, trembling, for the big elephant looked a frightening creature trumpeting loudly and tearing round the field, kicking up great hummocks of grass as he went.

He just missed the yellow caravan belonging to Jinks and Jenks. He nearly knocked down Terry the sharp-shooter, who only just dodged to one side in time. He almost ran into the big tent, but not quite, for his foot caught in one of the ropes and stopped him. With a bellow of rage he broke the rope and pulled up three or four stout wooden pegs.

Then he went on again, with Mr. Jummy racing after him, shouting and calling. Tag took no notice at all.

“Look! He’s making for Delia’s cage, where Grizzle the bear is!” yelled Jerry. “He’s right into it! He’s knocked it over! Oh, I say! I hope he won’t hurt the bear!”

The great elephant was mad with rage when the cage got into his way. He knocked it over with a crash, and then he stamped on it with his great feet.

The wood splintered and broke. The iron bars bent. Delia gave a scream.

“Grizzle! Is he killed?”

No, the bear was not killed, but he was very frightened indeed to have a great elephant charging down on top of him and smashing up his cage. He climbed out of the mess and lumbered down the field by himself, grunting loudly.

Nobody dared to go after him, not even Delia, whilst the big elephant was still loose. Only Mr. Jummy was in the open field, shouting to Tag. Everyone else had gone behind the trees, for it was not safe to stay in the caravans in case the elephant treated them as he had treated Grizzle’s cage.

Grizzle disappeared behind some bushes. Delia gave a shout and tore out from behind her tree. Tag was at the other end of the field, and she thought it was safe to go after her bear. But as soon as Tag saw her he began to rush towards her angrily, and Delia was forced to hide behind her tree again.

Mr. Jummy did not know what to do. At last Mr. Phillipino called to him. “Get Rag and Bobtail, Jummy, and walk them slowly down the field. Maybe Tag will see them and will join them and calm down.”

Mr. Jummy obeyed. He took Rag and Bobtail and walked them down the field. Tag saw them. He trumpeted. Bobtail trumpeted back. She was a calm, peaceful elephant, and Tag was fond of her.

Tag stood still, watching. Mr. Jummy turned the elephants and plodded up the field again. Tag lumbered up to them. He joined the row and began to walk with them.

“Go on, Jummy, walk them up and down till Tag has calmed down!” yelled Mr. Phillipino. So Mr. Jummy did so, and after a while Tag was all right again. Mr. Jummy was able to take him to a tree and bind one of his back legs with a thicker rope than before to the trunk of the tree.

And now, what about Grizzle the bear? He had disappeared! When Delia and Jinks and Jenks ran to the bushes behind which he had gone, there was no sign of him. Delia called him, but not a single grunt answered her.

“Poor Grizzle!” said Delia. “It was dreadful for him to have his cage smashed on top of him like that! He is such a good-natured animal, too. Those horrid guns! What a dreadful fright they gave us all!”

Mr. Phillipino was worried about the bear. People would not like a big bear roaming about loose. They would be frightened.

“But, surely, they would not be frightened of poor old Grizzle, who is as tame as a dog!” cried Delia.

“Yes, indeed they would, Delia,” said Mr. Phillipino. “I am very much afraid, my dear, that the townsfolk will set the soldiers after him—with guns.”

“No, no—not with guns!” cried Delia, in a terrible fright. “Not with guns! Grizzle is quite harmless. He would not hurt a fly! He will come back to me if only we wait.”

“Delia, we can’t wait,” said Annabella, gently. “If we wait, he may be shot.”

So the circus folk were sent out to hunt for the lost bear. Soon a report came in that some children playing in a wood above the circus field had seen a large brown animal, which must have been Grizzle.

When the town heard that a bear was loose, everyone was scared. Mothers called in their children. Nobody went about alone. The soldiers were asked to go hunting for him.

“But he is quite harmless!” Delia kept saying.

“We circus folk know that,” said Mr. Hola to her. “But other people don’t. Cheer up, Delia. We’ll find Grizzle all right!”

Presently it was heard that Grizzle had been seen by soldiers hunting through the wood. Jerry, Pip, Susy-Ann, Terry, Juana, Jinks and Jenks went to the woods together to see if they could find Grizzle too.

But no matter how they looked they could not see any sign of Grizzle. Where could he have hidden himself? With about a hundred people beating the wood, which was not very large, it seemed impossible that he should not be found.

Grizzle had found a very good hiding-place indeed, one that pleased his bear-heart! He had been very frightened when Tag had come charging down at him, and had clambered out of his smashed cage unhurt. He had run behind the bushes and then up the hill behind, keeping to the trees as much as he could.

He wanted Delia, but she did not come. He grunted to himself. He wanted to go back to the camp, but he did not dare to yet, in case Tag came charging at him again. So he made up his mind to hide till night-time. Then he would go back to the camp in safety.

He went into the woods. He found a big bush and hid under it. Then he heard the sound of children talking and laughing, and he peeped out, thinking that they might be Jerry and the others.

The children saw the big bear and ran away in fright, shouting and yelling. Grizzle was frightened again and lumbered farther into the wood.

At last he came to a dark cave in the hillside. It was not very large, but Grizzle could just squeeze into it. It opened out into a nice large space behind.

It suited Grizzle very well. He sat down and waited for the night to come.

Outside he heard the sound of voices, and the crash of sticks on bushes as they were beaten to see if the bear was there. He did not stir. He felt perfectly safe.

And then somebody gave a yell.

“Look! Here are the bear’s footprints! He must have gone into this cave!”

All the soldiers who were near there crowded round the one who had shouted. A tiny spring of water fell down the hillside just there, and in the muddy ground round about it the footprints of the bear were plainly to be seen, going towards the cave.

“He’s in there. Not a doubt of it!” said the first soldier.

“Well, we’ll wait till he comes out, and then we’ll shoot him,” said another. “Better send a message to the circus folk so that they can come and take his body away. It’s a good thing we’ve found him, before he does any harm!”

So a message was sent to the circus folk. The soldier who was sent met the three children, Terry, Juana, Jinks and Jenks, and stopped them.

“We’ve found the bear!” he said.

“Where is he?” cried Jerry.

“In a cave,” said the soldier. “We’re going to shoot him as soon as he comes out.”

“But you mustn’t!” cried Juana. “He’s quite harmless and very valuable. He wouldn’t hurt anyone.”

“Sorry. Those are our orders,” said the soldier. “You can come back with me now, if you like, and I’ll show you where he is. If any of you like to go in and get him, you can. But if he comes out before we get there, he’ll be shot.”

Very anxiously the circus folk and the children followed the soldier through the wood, hoping that Grizzle would stay safely in his cave until they came.

“I shall go in and get him out safely with Pip,” said Jerry. “He knows me, and he loves Pip because Pip can talk to him in bear-language. Hurry, soldier, do hurry!”

But it was a long way to the cave up on the hillside, and once or twice the soldier lost his way. How Jerry hoped that Grizzle would be sensible and stay safely in his cave!

Grizzle would certainly have done so if the soldiers hadn’t had a sudden idea.

“I say! Let’s smoke the bear out!” cried a soldier. “It looks as if we might be here all day waiting for him to come out, but if we smoke him out he’ll soon be shot!”

“Good idea!” said the others. So they gathered together a heap of dry twigs and branches and pushed them into the small opening of the cave. One of the soldiers opened out a newspaper, and pushed the sheets among the twigs. Then he struck a match.

The paper flared up at once. The twigs caught light and began to crackle. The branches caught fire, and soon there was a roaring, crackling, smoking bonfire at the mouth of Grizzle’s cave.

The breeze blew the smoke right inside the cave. The bear, who was half asleep at the end of it, opened his little eyes. He began to splutter and choke with the thick smoke. His eyes smarted terribly. He could hardly breathe. Poor Grizzle!

Soon he knew that he must get out of the cave or choke. He couldn’t breathe at all. The fire at the entrance to the cave frightened him, but it soon began to die down. Grizzle got up and lumbered slowly to the entrance, choking and coughing. The bonfire was out. Only smoke poured from it.

“Here he comes!” said a soldier, raising his gun. “I’ll shoot as soon as he peers out!”


Through the wood hurried Jerry and the others. Terry the sharp-shooter was beside him, and behind pushed Pip, who was very anxious about poor Grizzle.

“The cave’s somewhere near here,” said the soldier. “Ah, yes, there it is, look! Goodness, they’ve had a bonfire at the entrance to smoke out the bear. I believe he’s just coming out!”

The children and the others saw everything at a glance, and stopped in horror. They saw the soldier with the raised gun; they saw the bear just on the point of poking out his great head; and they knew that in a second poor Grizzle would be shot.

But Terry did not mean him to be. Terry took out his own revolver, which he carried always at his waist, and in a trice had pointed it at the soldier. He shot—a half-second before the soldier pressed his own trigger—and the barrel of his gun fell to the ground, broken!

The soldier was not hurt at all—only his gun was spoilt. He stared round in the greatest surprise and anger.

“Who did that? How dare you shoot my gun out of my hand? I was just going to shoot the bear!”

“Sorry,” said Terry, stepping forward, his gun still in his hand. “I don’t want that bear shot, and as I saw you were just about to press your trigger, I did the only thing I could—shot your gun from your hand!”

“But you might have wounded me!” cried the soldier, picking up his broken gun.

“Not I!” said Terry, laughing. “I never miss. See the topmost branch of that tree right over there? Watch!”

His gun cracked, and the topmost twig of the tree fell off!

The soldier lighted a cigarette. His hand was trembling, for he had had a fright. Terry pointed his gun at him. Crack! The cigarette flew out of the man’s hand! Crack! The match he was holding flew to bits!

The circus folk laughed. They were used to Terry’s marvellous shooting. The soldier stared in amazement at his empty hands. He glared at Terry.

“You think yourself very clever, don’t you?” he growled.

“I do, rather,” said Terry, putting his gun back into its case. He took out a cigarette case and a box of matches. He offered a cigarette to the angry soldier. All the others had been watching in astonishment.

They had forgotten the bear, but Pip and Jerry hadn’t! Poor Grizzle had shot back into the smoky cave at the crack of the gun, and was there at the back, choking and trembling. Pip ran to the cave and groped his way in, followed by Jerry. Neither of the boys was in the least afraid of the good-natured bear, though it was possible that he might be dangerous now, after his frights.

Pip talked to him in comforting grunts. Grizzle trembled and grunted back. “Come along out, Grizzle. You’re safe with us now,” said Jerry, taking hold of one of the bear’s great front legs as he sat on his haunches at the back of the cave.

Pip began to cough and choke, for the smoke was still thick. The bear would not move.

“I’ll have to go to the entrance for a breath of fresh air,” choked Pip. “I’ll come back when I’ve stopped coughing.”

He went to the entrance of the cave, and as soon as Grizzle saw that the little boy was going, he got up and followed him. He did not want to lose sight of the boy who talked to him in his own grunting language!

“Good,” said Jerry, giving Grizzle a good push as he went. “He’s coming, Pip. Go right out of the cave.”

So Pip went right out of the cave, and the big brown bear followed him. Pip was glad to be in the fresh air again, and took deep breaths of it. So did the bear. He stood looking round at the crowd of soldiers and circus folk in astonishment. He was still very frightened.

Mister Binks the goat trotted up and sniffed at Grizzle. He was quite friendly with the bear. Then he ran to the entrance of the cave, where Jerry stood, gulping in the fresh air too. He ran inside, but he was soon out again, for he did not like the smell of the smoke there.

The soldiers laughed at the goat. The bear did not like the sound of their laughter, for it frightened him. He lumbered back to the cave again, meaning to hide.

“Grizzle, Grizzle! Come here!” cried Pip. But the bear took no notice. Back he went to the cave, but Mister Binks stood there at the entrance.

“Binks! Don’t let Grizzle in!” cried Susy-Ann, suddenly. “Butt him out! Butt him out! Go on, Binks!”

The goat put down his horned head and ran at Grizzle, who turned in fright. The goat butted him, slap, on his broad back, and the bear gave a grunt. He was sent forward a few steps. Everyone laughed.

“Go on, Binks, butt him along!” cried Susy-Ann. “Then he’ll come all right!”

So Mister Binks butted Grizzle along through the wood. Slap! Thud! The goat’s hard head kept butting the bear, though it didn’t really hurt him. But it did send him down through the trees, and get him away from the cave!

Soon the circus folk had left the soldiers behind. Grizzle became calmer, and allowed Jerry and Pip to take a front paw each. Susy-Ann told Mister Binks to stop butting him.

But Mister Binks had had such a fine time at butting the bear that he wanted to go on with the game. He couldn’t butt Grizzle now, so what should he do?

He ran behind Jinks, and the acrobat suddenly found himself flying through the air! Bump! He landed on some bracken, and picked himself up, very angry.

Mister Binks butted Jenks next, before Susy-Ann could stop him. He really was behaving very badly. Jerry left Grizzle and ran to the goat. He twisted a rope round his horns and led him sternly through the trees, talking to him severely. Mister Binks listened meekly, wondering if he could possibly butt Jerry too. But Jerry gave him no chance!

Back to the camp went the little procession, Pip and Grizzle leading, and Jerry and the goat and Susy-Ann behind. The others came at the back, talking of the adventurous day they had had.

Delia, who had heard that her bear had been tracked to a cave, met them half-way through the wood. She had been running anxiously to rescue her bear before harm came to him. How glad she was to see him!

She threw her arms round the big shaggy creature and hugged him. Grizzle hugged her too, but very gently, for he knew that a real hug from him might squeeze Delia to bits!

Everybody began to talk at once. When Delia heard how clever Terry had been at shooting the gun from the soldier’s hand just as he was about to kill the bear, she went quite pale. “Poor Grizzle!” she said. “He is so harmless and good-natured. It would have been terrible if he had been killed. You are very good, Terry, to have saved him for me.”

“Oh, we had a bit of fun,” said Terry, who didn’t want Delia to be too upset about everything. “You should have seen the soldier’s face, Delia, when I shot his cigarette and his match out of his hands!”

“And you should have seen Mister Binks butt old Grizzle when he wanted to go back and hide in the cave!” cried Susy-Ann, who wanted her goat to get Delia’s praise too.

“That goat!” said Jinks, in disgust. “He butted me so hard that I went flying through the air as if I had wings!”

Everybody laughed, Delia too. They were soon back in the camp after that, and everyone came to pat Grizzle, and to hear the surprising story of his rescue. Mr. Phillipino was pleased. He did not like the circus animals to be frightened and lost.

“It was nobody’s fault,” he said. “We did not know that the castle guns would go off like that when the Duke came. Not much damage has been done, except that Grizzle’s cage has been smashed. Where will you put Grizzle till we get a new cage made, Delia?”

“We could have one of the chimpanzees in our caravan,” said Jerry, eagerly. “Then, if Mr. Hola could put a partition across the chimps’ big cage, Doodle could live in one half and Grizzle in the other, for a time. They are quite good friends. I’d love to have Yanky with us.”

But Mr. Hola would not hear of that. Yanky was too mischievous to live anywhere but in his own cage or in Mr. Hola’s caravan.

“Three monkeys in one caravan are quite enough without adding a chimpanzee,” said Mr. Hola, which made everyone laugh. “No, I will have Yanky in my caravan, and Doodle and Grizzle can be together in the cage for a time. I can easily get iron bars fixed between them.”

So Yanky went to live with Mr. Hola for a little while, and the circus carpenter fixed strong bars down the middle of the chimpanzees’ cage. Grizzle was put one side and Doodle the other.

The chimpanzee was astonished to have the bear for a companion. Grizzle took no notice of him, but Doodle talked to the bear, pulled his fur whenever he came near, and pushed banana skins through into Grizzle’s half of the cage.

Grizzle did not like banana skins. He put them back into the chimpanzee’s half. Doodle pushed them back again, jabbering.

Delia saw them and laughed. “It is quite good for them to have different company for a while!” she said. “It will wake Grizzle up a bit, and will make Doodle use his brains too! Anyway, the carpenter will soon finish another cage for Grizzle, and then things will be all right again.”

“And now,” said Mr. Phillipino, “I hope that we shall have a successful time here. Everyone will want to come and see the bear who escaped, and the elephant who smashed the bear’s cage. Perhaps we shall have a splendid evening to-night!”


Mr. Phillipino’s words came true, for on the first evening of the show the big tent was crowded out! Money poured in, and every single seat was taken. People stood behind the last row of benches, and some could not get a seat or standing room either.

The children were allowed to stay up that evening to see the show. Usually they were sent to bed when the show was on, but that day had been so exciting that all three children were quite sure they would never go to sleep if Mrs. Ronald sent them to their caravan as usual.

“Do, do let us see the show again, Aunt Mitzi,” begged Pip. “You know, Susy-Ann and I have only seen it once before, so it is all new to us, though we know that Jerry has seen it often.”

“Very well,” said Mrs. Ronald, with a laugh. Then she stared sternly at Pip. Pip looked uncomfortable.

“Pip,” said Aunt Mitzi, “how many of your mice have you got up your sleeve? By the funny lumps I can see there I am quite sure you have more than just Snowball.”

Pip went red. He never told Aunt Mitzi a lie, so he owned up at once.

“I’ve got Snowdrop and Snow-White there too,” he confessed. “But only just for a treat for them. Aunt Mitzi, I meant to put them back in a little while.”

“Go and put them back at once,” said Aunt Mitzi, “or you will certainly not see the show to-night.”

Pip went off to his own caravan. On the way Delia called him, and he went to her caravan. She wanted to give him a little bonnet she had made for Susy-Ann to match her new blue frock.

Pip ran up the steps, but as soon as he was in the caravan Delia gave a scream, pushed by him, and tore from her caravan, still screaming.

Pip was startled. He stared after Delia, wondering whatever the matter was. Did she suddenly feel ill? Perhaps he had better go after her and see. So the little boy ran down the steps and went after her.

Delia saw him and screamed again. “Go away! Go away! Don’t come near me!”

Madame Clara came along to find out what was the matter with Delia, and Annabella ran up.

“Don’t go near that dreadful boy!” shouted Delia. “He is full of mice! Owowowow!”

Madame Clara screamed too, and Annabella looked in surprise at Pip. Peeping out of the front of his shirt were two small white mice, Snowdrop and Snow-White. They were not so well trained as Snowball, who hardly ever poked her nose out anywhere when people were about.

Pip stopped and stared at Delia in the greatest astonishment. “What’s the matter with mice?” he asked.

“I’m afraid of the creatures!” cried Delia, looking at Pip as if he were something out of a dustbin. “Don’t come near me, you dreadful boy! Ugh! There are mice peeping out all over him!”

“But, Delia, you aren’t afraid of great big bears!” said Pip, puzzled. “You train them, and they are far bigger and more dangerous than tiny mice that couldn’t possibly hurt you!”

“Oh, I’d rather have a dozen bears, a score of lions, and a hundred tigers than one mouse!” said Delia. And Madame Clara and Annabella nodded their heads and agreed with her.

“All right,” said Pip, rather sulkily, for he couldn’t help being puzzled by Delia’s words. How could anyone be afraid of tiny white mice? It did seem silly to him.

He went to his own caravan. Susy-Ann was there, putting on her blue silk frock, for she thought she would like to look grand when she went to see the circus.

“What’s the matter?” she said, seeing Pip’s sulky face.

Pip told her, as he put Snowdrop and Snow-White into the cage with the others.

“Delia screamed and ran away from me because she’s afraid of my white mice,” he said. “It does seem silly, because she trains bears, which are far more dangerous than mice.”

“It is rather funny,” said Susy-Ann, trying to button her frock. “But Uncle Juana is funny too, Pip. He’s always choking over crumbs and fish-bones, and yet he can swallow swords and knives! And Terry, who shoots so marvellously, can’t catch a ball as well as I can! He played cricket with me yesterday, and he missed every catch!”

Pip soon cheered up. He told Susy-Ann to fetch the blue bonnet from Delia, and then he washed himself and did his hair. Jerry came in and did the same. They heard the trumpets blowing and the band playing as they finished.

“Come on,” said Jerry, jumping down the caravan steps at one leap. “You don’t want to miss anything.”

The children had been given three seats at the side of the ring, just near to the entrance, where all the circus folk came in to perform. Pip and Susy-Ann felt excited. They had loved the show before, but now that they knew everyone in it, now that they, too, belonged to the circus, it was even more exciting for them!

Terry waved to them as he came in to do his turn, shooting all round his pretty little wife, and making a picture of her in bullet-holes. The three clowns called out to them, and Delia, who had quite forgotten about the mice now, made Grizzle wave a heavy paw.

Yanky and Doodle came up and jabbered to Pip when it was their turn in the ring. They wanted him to come into the ring, too, but of course he couldn’t. All the people wondered who the little boy was who seemed so friendly with the chimpanzees. Pip couldn’t help feeling proud.

“I do love the three clowns,” said Susy-Ann, who laughed till she ached each time they came in and fell over each other, and chased one another about the ring, making silly jokes.

And then, oh dear, whoever do you think came trotting all by himself into the ring, looking as cheeky as could be! Guess!

Mister Binks the goat! The three children stared at him in horror.

“We forgot to tie him up,” said Pip.

“We shall get into trouble,” said Jerry.

“Oh, what’s he going to do?” cried Susy-Ann.

Yes, what was he going to do? Mister Binks was remembering what a wonderful time he had had that day butting bears and people, and he just thought it would be a fine idea to try that trick again! So into the ring he trotted, looking for somebody to butt.

He had been brushed well that day, and he looked a very fine goat, with his snow-white coat, his red collar and wagging beard. He stood in the ring and looked round at everyone.

The people laughed and clapped. They really thought that Mister Binks was part of the show. And then the goat saw the three clowns, who were playing leapfrog, bending down for one another to jump over. Mister Binks gave a happy snort and cantered up, his head well down. Biff! He butted a clown hard. Over went the surprised man, and sat up wondering whatever had happened!

The watching people shouted with laughter. They didn’t know that this wasn’t part of the show. They thought that the goat was meant to do it.

Mister Binks liked all the shouting and clapping. He butted another clown. Over he went too. The three clowns got together then, and looked at Mister Binks. What were they to do with that goat?

Mister Binks chased them round the ring. He tried to butt them whenever he could. They jumped up on the red plush of the ring itself, but Mister Binks jumped up too. They all ran round the ring in fright, the goat chasing them and having a really lovely time!

Everyone laughed till the tears ran down their cheeks. The clowns were not hurt, but they were very cross! Mr. Phillipino came into the ring and beckoned to Susy-Ann. “Come and get the goat!” he shouted. Susy-Ann scrambled over the ring, and jumped down on to the sawdusty floor. She was rather frightened, for she thought that she and Mister Binks would be sure to get into trouble.

Susy-Ann looked a pet in her blue silk frock. Her hair shone like gold as she ran across the ring to Mister Binks. She took him by one of his horns and led him out. Everybody clapped and cheered. They thought it was the funniest turn that they had seen for a very long time. The clowns bowed and ran out too. In went Madame Clara with her parrots, but Susy-Ann stayed outside with Mister Binks, wondering what Mr. Phillipino was going to say.

Jerry and Pip slipped out to see what was happening. They did not want Susy-Ann to be scolded.

But, very surprisingly, Mr. Phillipino was smiling! He patted Mister Binks, and said, “Ah, he is a clown of a goat, and clowns are worth their weight in gold! He shall go in the ring each night now, Susy-Ann, and you shall fetch him out when I tell you! He made the people laugh very much!”

“Oh!” said Susy-Ann, beaming. “I thought you would be cross, Mr. Phillipino! He is a clever goat, isn’t he! I shall be proud if he goes into the ring each night; and, oh, what fun it will be for me to fetch him out! I am glad I had on my best frock to-night!”

“Well, we shan’t be quite so pleased if Mister Binks comes into the ring,” said Pashi, one of the clowns, grinning. “I shall get Madame Clara to sew a cushion inside my trousers if he’s going to butt me like that! I shan’t be able to sit down for a week!”

“Oh, I do hope you aren’t really hurt,” said Susy-Ann. The clown picked her up and put her on his shoulder. “No, of course I’m not,” he said. “We’ll have a fine time with the goat, don’t you worry! We’ll teach him tricks, for he is a clever creature. He’s a real circus animal.”

The children went back to their seats after they had tied up Mister Binks safely. Delia said she did not want him to butt Grizzle any more that day, and as Mister Binks would have loved to chase the bear, it was just as well that he was tied up again!

It was three very sleepy children who got into their bunks that night. What an adventurous day it had been, but everything had turned out well after all!

“And I’m to go into the ring and so is Mister Binks!” sang Susy-Ann, as she snuggled under the clothes. “Oh, I really do feel so happy.”

“I wish I could go into the ring too,” said Pip. “I can’t see why my white mice can’t do tricks as well as Mister Binks.”

“Well, you wouldn’t find Delia or Madame Clara or Annabella going into the ring if they thought any of your mice were there,” grinned Jerry. “Good-night! I’m almost asleep already!”


The days went by quickly. The children liked being at Johnstown. They went over the old castle, they looked at all the guns, and the big cannon, which Jerry longed to fire. But nobody would let him.

They bought ice-creams by the dozen, for that summer was very hot indeed. Mister Binks grew to know the ice-cream man’s bell too, and every time he heard it he cantered off to him, hoping that he would be lucky enough to get one. Sometimes he did and sometimes he didn’t!

The circus did very well indeed. Mr. Phillipino bought himself a new white top hat and a new whip that cracked even more loudly than his other one. He gave Jerry his old one, and the boy was very proud of it indeed.

Juana was clever with the whip. He could whip a bottle off a tub even when he was standing a long way away. He could even whip the chimney smoke in half as it came out of the caravan chimney!

But Mrs. Ronald soon stopped that. “Juana!” she called. “You will whip off the little tin chimney! Don’t do that! If you want to play with Jerry’s whip, do something else with it!”

So Juana went farther away from his blue caravan, and played with the whip to amuse the three children. Once Susy-Ann put a hat on her doll, and sat the doll on an upturned pail. She ran to get another doll, and Juana called to her.

“Susy-Ann! Watch me take your doll’s hat off!” Susy-Ann turned round and watched. Juana cracked his big whip loudly, and the thin end of the twine reached out to Susy-Ann’s doll and took off her hat! Susy-Ann was very astonished.

“How clever you are, Uncle Juana!” she said. “Now put my dolly’s hat on again with your whip.”

But not even Juana could do that. So Susy-Ann had to put the hat on again herself.

Mr. Phillipino was so pleased with the way his circus was going that he thought he would get another performing animal to join it. So he talked it over with Annabella, Mr. Hola, and Mr. Jummy.

“We could get monkeys perhaps,” he said.

“They are always funny,” said Mr. Hola. “But perhaps as we have two chimpanzees it would be better to get an animal that is quite different.”

“What about seals?” asked Annabella. “They are nice creatures to have in a circus. They love their tricks, too. It is always good to have animals that love their work.”

“Well, don’t let’s have tigers or lions then,” said Mr. Jummy. “They hate tricks. I always think it’s a pity to train animals that dislike the circus life. Now, my three elephants wouldn’t be happy anywhere except with me in a circus.”

“And my chimpanzees are just the same,” said Mr. Hola, patting Yanky, whom he had brought with him. “They love being one of the circus. As for Madame Clara’s parrots and Delia’s bear, I believe they would pine away if they were sent off.”

“What about dogs?” asked Annabella, who was very fond of both dogs and horses.

“Or a few more goats?” said Mr. Hola, with a grin.

“One goat is enough in a circus,” said Mr. Phillipino. “One Mister Binks is funny. Two or three would be most annoying.”

“Let’s put a notice in the circus paper and ask for trainers to send us a letter if they can join us here with their animals,” said Annabella. “Then we can choose.”

So this was done, and very soon Mr. Phillipino had plenty of letters to choose from. One amused him very much. He called a meeting of the circus folk and read each letter to them. Then he came to the one that amused him.

“Here is a letter from a little man who calls himself Tom Thumb,” said Mr. Phillipino, “and what animal do you suppose this little man has trained to perform with him? A giraffe!”

“A giraffe!” cried everyone in surprise.

“I have never heard of a performing giraffe before,” said Madame Clara, astonished.

“I thought giraffes were savage creatures, quite likely to swing their heads down and hit you,” said Terry.

“So they are,” said Mr. Phillipino. “But I suppose some are better than others.”

“I have seen this little Tom Thumb,” said Delia, suddenly. “Yes, and his giraffe too. He is very funny, Mr. Phillipino, and a nice little fellow—not very much bigger than Jerry. He has never grown properly. But his giraffe is very clever, and will let Tom Thumb do the most surprising things with him.”

“Then I think I will have him,” said Mr. Phillipino, pleased. “A performing giraffe is very rare. It will bring many people to the circus. Soon I must buy a bigger tent!”

The meeting broke up. Mr. Phillipino wrote to Tom Thumb. It was arranged that the giraffe and his trainer should join the circus just before it broke camp again and went on the road. Then, by the time they settled into their next camp, the giraffe would be used to its new circus.

The children were very excited about the giraffe. Neither Pip nor Susy-Ann had even seen a real one.

“I wonder what sort of a noise it makes,” said Pip. “I hope I shall be able to talk to it in its own language. Do you suppose it bellows, Jerry?”

“I don’t know,” said Jerry, grinning. “Perhaps it mews or squeaks!”

“Don’t be silly!” said Susy-Ann. “Big animals never squeak, and only cats mew.”

“What about the sea-gulls we heard by the sea?” asked Pip. “They made a real mewing sound.”

“So they did,” said Susy-Ann, remembering. “Well, I’m quite sure giraffes don’t mew, anyhow. Oooh! Won’t it be fun to see one!”

At last the day came when the giraffe was supposed to arrive. The children swung on the field-gate, watching for it to come. And suddenly Susy-Ann gave a squeal, and pointed down the road.

“Look! That’s it! Oh, do, do look! It’s so big that its head is sticking out at the top of the van!”

Really, it was a very funny sight to see! The giraffe was in a travelling van, and this van had an opening in the roof through which the giraffe’s long neck stuck out! It looked as if it were made of spotted wood! Its little ears stuck out on its head, and its little horns too. It was a very queer-looking creature.

Drawing the travelling van was a powerful little car, very bright and shining. Driving it was a small man, not much bigger than Jerry. He had bright twinkling eyes, and was very neat and trim. He drove the car and the van carefully in at the gate when the children had swung it back for him, and he saluted Susy-Ann smartly.

“The giraffe has come, the giraffe has come!” sang Pip, running into the camp. “Its head is sticking out of the top of the van!”

Everyone turned out to see the newcomers. Mr. Phillipino strode up in his new top hat, looking very grand. He shook hands with Mr. Tom Thumb.

“Meet Jinny, my giraffe!” said Tom Thumb, and he waved his hand to where the giraffe looked solemnly out of the van, its long neck rising up and up! The giraffe nodded its head gravely to Mr. Phillipino.

“I had her when she was no bigger than a rocking-horse,” said Tom Thumb. “She used to like to try and snuggle up to me then. But, my word, when she tries to snuggle up now, over I go, wallop!”

Everyone laughed. Tom Thumb was a funny little man, and people always liked him.

“Does she mind having her head out of the van like that?” asked Jerry.

“Not a bit,” said Tom Thumb. “But she’s only in the van when she travels. She lives in the open in camp, tied to a tree or a post. Have you any elephants, Mr. Phillipino? Ah, I see you have. Jinny is very fond of elephants, so, if you don’t mind, I’ll put her near them. Sometimes I think she imagines she is an elephant!”

“She’ll get a shock when she sees herself in the glass, then!” said one of the clowns. Everybody laughed. Tom Thumb opened the door of the van, took off part of the roof with Juana’s help, and led out the giraffe.

Susy-Ann looked at it in amazement.

“Is it real?” she asked. “I didn’t think there could be an animal like that? It isn’t just clockwork, is it, Mr. Tom Thumb?”

Tom Thumb laughed. He climbed up the giraffe’s back legs, got on to her back, and began to climb up her long neck. The giraffe didn’t mind a bit. When Tom Thumb got up to her head he slid down her long neck again with a bump, to the giraffe’s back. It was one of his tricks.

“Gee-up!” he cried to Jinny. The giraffe set off solemnly round the field.

“Oh, she goes like a rocking-horse!” squealed Susy-Ann, in delight. “Look! Backwards and forwards, backwards and forwards, all her legs sticking out as she goes!”

Tom Thumb rode Jinny to the elephants, and then slid off her back. He soon tied her up safely. The elephants lifted their trunks and ran them daintily over the giraffe’s body. They did not know her smell. Jinny went as close to them as she could, for she always loved elephants.

“She’ll soon be used to everyone,” said Tom Thumb.

“Is she dangerous?” asked Mrs. Ronald, thinking of the three children.

“Not a bit,” said Tom Thumb. “Quiet as a kitten. Just wants to snuggle up to you sometimes, and that’s a bit of a nuisance!”

“Where are you going to live?” asked Pip, for Tom Thumb had no caravan.

“In the van!” said Tom Thumb, with a grin. “Come along and see it. It’s specially made for me and Jinny! It takes her when we travel, and takes me when we’re in camp!”

The children went along to look, and sure enough the van could be made into a big caravan by shutting up the hole in the roof through which the giraffe’s neck had stuck out, and by arranging the furniture inside, which had been packed under the van to allow room for the giraffe to travel. It was all very clever.

Soon smoke rose from Tom Thumb’s caravan. He was cooking his dinner. His giraffe made a fine meal of oak leaves, pulling them off the high branches of the tree she was tied to. She pulled them off with her strong, curling tongue and chewed them. The children watched her for a long time.

“Did she get freckled all over like that because you stood her in the sun?” Pip asked Tom Thumb. “Jerry is freckled because he’s always in the sun.”

“No,” said Tom Thumb, who had come out to give Jinny some water. “Giraffes are always spotted like that. It helps to hide them when they live among trees. You’ve often noticed the freckles of sunshine and shadow that dance between the leaves of a tree in the wood, haven’t you? Well, if an animal’s body is spotted like that, it is difficult to see it in a wood.”

Jinny straddled out her long legs and bent down her long neck to the pail of water. It was very difficult for her to reach down so low! She groaned a little. Pip at once made the same noise.

Jinny raised her head and looked at the little boy. Tom Thumb laughed.

“You be careful she doesn’t try to get on your knee, my boy! If she takes a liking to you, she will snuggle up to you, and you’ll be sorry!”


The children were sorry to leave Johnstown. They had had a lovely time there. The soldiers had come to know them, and often treated them to sweets, cakes, and ices. Mister Binks was well known, too, and had many a good meal, so that he became very fat. At last Susy-Ann had to tie him up all the day, for if she didn’t he ran into the town by himself.

Once he went into a newspaper shop and ate the newspapers out of the rack. Another time he disappeared into a shoe-shop, and was chased out by the angry shopman after he had eaten a whole box of shoe-laces.

Really, you never knew what Mister Binks was going to eat next.

The last show was given at Johnstown. Then the next day the camp broke up and packed as quickly as possible. They were to start as early as they could, for the next camping-place was a long way away. It would take two days to reach it, perhaps three.

Jerry and Pip put Brownie into the shafts of their own little caravan. Susy-Ann tied Mister Binks as usual to the back. She helped Mrs. Ronald to pack up all the odd things that were usually put outside the caravans to use when they were in camp. Pails were hung underneath. The big tin bath went under the children’s caravan, hanging on a nail.

“Now, where’s my clothes’ line?” wondered Mrs. Ronald, looking all round for it. “I’m sure I rolled it up and put it down just there.”

“Oh, Aunt Mitzi, Mister Binks has got it!” shouted Pip in a great way, for Aunt Mitzi became very angry with the goat at times. He rushed to Mister Binks and pulled the rope from his mouth, scolding him sternly.

“You bad animal! You greedy creature!”

But Mister Binks had not eaten any of the rope. He was just saving it for his dinner! Mrs. Ronald packed the line away safely, and went to see if everything was packed up in the children’s caravan too.

The elephants set off first as usual. Then all the other caravans, cages, vans, and carts followed, lumbering out of the gate. Annabella mounted her beautiful horse and cantered off last of all, making sure that nothing was left behind. The circus was on the road once again!

All that day they travelled fairly fast, only stopping for a little time to have dinner and to give the horses a rest. The children were very hungry. So was Mister Binks. He pulled the nettles from the wayside and ate dozens of them. Susy-Ann gave him a drink from a pail, for the goat was dusty and hot.

Then off they all went again, Pip driving Brownie, and Jerry and Susy-Ann sitting on the top step of the caravan watching everything that passed. Susy-Ann was sleepy, and leaned against Jerry. He woke her up.

“Susy-Ann, get into your bunk, if you want to sleep. You’ll fall down the steps!”

So the little girl climbed into her bunk and Jerry went to join Pip on the front seat, where the two boys talked quietly to one another. Pip always loved being on the road. It was so exciting moving to another place, never knowing where it was, or what was going to happen.

“Jerry, do you know if your mother and father or Mr. Phillipino have ever heard from my own father?” Pip asked Jerry, as the old horse jogged along the road, following the long line of caravans and carts.

“No, they haven’t,” said Jerry. “It takes a long time for a letter to go to Australia and back, you know. But Mr. Phillipino has heard from the Head of the Children’s Homes you were going to, and they are still trying to get you away from here! They say that a circus life is not right for children.”

“Oh, Jerry!” said Pip, in dismay, almost driving into the hedge in his fright at hearing what Jerry said. “Jerry! You don’t really mean to say that Susy-Ann and I might have to leave you after all?”

“Well, you see,” said Jerry, seriously, “the people at the Home say that if you go to them they can train you for a good job when you grow up. And they say that here in the circus you don’t even go to school, or learn anything at all. They say that when you grow up you won’t be able to get a good job, and they think that they should have you both and teach you and train you.”

Pip was very upset. He had got so used to thinking that he belonged to the circus, and he loved the people in it. He couldn’t possibly leave them now!

“But, Jerry, why couldn’t I work in a circus when I grow up?” he asked eagerly. “Couldn’t I train for something now? Would they let me stay if they thought I could do some work here?”

“Perhaps they would,” said Jerry. “You know, Pip, I’ve often thought that those wonderful animal noises you make, and the other noises too, are really a marvellous gift of yours, and maybe if you practised hard and got very, very good, Mr. Phillipino might give you a chance to perform in the ring. Annabella did once say he might, didn’t he?”

“Yes, she did,” said Pip, thoughtfully. “Well, I will try, Jerry. I’ll try very, very hard. If I got a chance to go into the ring, Mr. Phillipino would pay me, wouldn’t he? And that would be proper work. So the people at the Home couldn’t say then that if I stay in the circus I wouldn’t be trained for a job, because I’d already have one!”

“Well, you do your best,” said Jerry, and he put his arm round his friend and hugged him. “I’ll help you. I don’t want to lose you and Susy-Ann.”

The caravan in front stopped with a jerk. Pip pulled Brownie to a stop, too, wondering what had happened. Jerry leaned out to the side.

“Everything’s stopped!” he said. “I can see all the caravans and horses and carts in a long line! I wonder what has stopped them!”

The two boys waited and waited. So did everyone else. At last Jerry got impatient and climbed down to run to the front of the procession to see what had happened.

Soon he came back, laughing. “Oh, Pip!” he said, “it’s so funny! We’ve come to a rather low bridge, and Tom Thumb’s giraffe can’t go under it, because her neck is too long!”

“Well, can’t she bend it?” asked Pip, in surprise.

“Of course she can!” grinned Jerry. “But she just won’t. There she stands in her van, her long neck sticking up, and Tom Thumb daren’t drive on under the bridge in case Jinny gets her head knocked against it!”

“Let’s wake Susy-Ann and go and see,” said Pip. So the boys waked her up, and the three of them hurried along to where the giraffe’s great neck stuck out of its travelling van. It was just by a low bridge. Tom Thumb was on the top of the van, trying his hardest to persuade the obstinate giraffe to duck her head down.

But she wouldn’t. She enjoyed holding up the procession. She liked being the centre of attention. She was a very naughty, obstinate giraffe at that moment, and everyone was in despair. Mr. Phillipino was angry, for he had wanted the circus to travel as quickly as possible that day, and now it looked as if it would arrive late!

“Can’t you make her bend her head?” yelled the angry ring-master, cracking his whip impatiently.

“Sir, I’m trying to,” answered poor Tom Thumb. He pulled at Jinny’s neck. He patted her and stroked her, trying to get her to bend down to him. He scolded her. Nothing was any use at all.

The bridge was in the middle of a town. Hundreds of people came round to see what the matter was. They laughed and chuckled when they saw the naughty giraffe that wouldn’t go under the bridge.

Pip watched Jinny. He saw that she kept looking longingly at something. He wondered what she could see. The little boy clambered up on the roof of the van, and tried to find out what Jinny was gazing at.

She was looking at a greengrocer’s shop a little way off. It had baskets of carrots set at the front, and Jinny was looking at these as if she couldn’t see enough of them.

“I say, does the giraffe like carrots, Tom Thumb?” Pip asked the worried little man, suddenly. Tom Thumb nodded. Pip slid down the side of the van, jumped to the road, and ran to the greengrocer’s. He bought a basketful of the red carrots.

Back he staggered, carrying the heavy basket. Mr. Phillipino glared at him.

“What do you suppose you’re doing with those carrots just now?” he asked, crossly.

“Please, Mr. Phillipino, sir, I think I may be able to put things right,” said Pip, eagerly. “Would you hand me the basket of carrots when I’m up on the van again?”

The surprised ring-master took the basket that Pip pushed into his hand, and held it whilst the little boy clambered up on to the roof again. Then Mr. Phillipino handed up the carrots.

Pip made the small soft groaning noise that was the only sound that the giraffe made. Jinny looked down at him, and she saw that basket of carrots!

In a trice she bent her long neck and began to eat the carrots which Pip had set on the roof of the van! Tom Thumb gave a yell of delight, slid down to the ground, and ran to his car.

“Keep her eating, Pip, keep her eating!” he cried. He started up his car. With a jerk the travelling van set off under the low bridge. Jinny took no notice. She licked up one carrot after another with her strong tongue, and crunched them in her mouth. Pip sat by her, feeding her.

She passed safely under the bridge, with everyone cheering! How pleased the circus folk were, and how they patted Pip on the back when the van stopped on the other side of the bridge to let the little boy get down.

“You’re a smart lad, Pip,” said Mr. Phillipino, pleased. “A very smart lad. We might have stayed here all day if it hadn’t been for you! Good boy! Take the basket back to the greengrocer, and here’s the money you paid for the carrots and a shilling over for yourself!”

Susy-Ann was so proud of Pip! Her face shone as they hurried back to their caravan with Jerry.

“Oh, Pip! Even Tom Thumb couldn’t make his giraffe bend her head, but you did!”

“It was just because I happened to see her staring hungrily at some carrots,” explained Pip. “And I suddenly thought, of course, if we can get her to eat, she’ll have to bend her head! Look, I’ve got a shilling. What about some ice-creams?”

So that shilling soon went, and the three children sat on the front seat of their caravan together, licking their ices, talking about silly old Jinny and how funny she looked going under the bridge. There wasn’t really room for the three of them on the driving-seat, and Pip nearly fell off every time the caravan went over a stone, but it was nice to chat together.

Susy-Ann went to talk to Aunt Mitzi at the next stop. Pip turned to Jerry.

“Jerry,” he said, “don’t tell Susy-Ann we might have to leave the circus after all. She would be so unhappy. Let’s just see if I can’t work up a good turn and get Mr. Phillipino to let me go into the ring. See?”

“Right,” said Jerry. “I’ll help you all I can. Good luck to us, Pip!”


Once the circus was settled into its new camp on a common outside a big country town, Pip made up his mind that he would do as he said, and practise his queer noises as much as he could.

Usually the circus folk practised their turns and their tricks in the ring each day, and arranged different times to have it to themselves, but Pip did not need the ring. He could practise anywhere! So he went for walks by himself, and sometimes with Jerry, and, sitting under a bush far away from anywhere, the little boy would make all sorts of strange and wonderful noises.

If you had been sitting on the other side of the bush, you would have felt as frightened as two peaceful ladies did one day.

They had gone for a walk, and had taken their knitting with them, meaning to sit down in the shade when they felt tired. Pip had no idea they were there. He thought he was quite alone, and he meant to practise hard.

He sat down beside a gorse bush that smelt like hot coconut cakes in the blazing sunshine. He sniffed the lovely smell, and then, shutting his eyes, began to practise what the others called his “noises.”

From his rather wide mouth came the sound of a cow mooing. “Moo-oo-oo!” bellowed Pip, “Moo-oo-oo!” He stopped and remembered how he had heard a cow mooing sadly for its calf, which had been taken away from it. He opened his mouth and mooed again, very sadly and mournfully.

The two ladies on the other side of the bush dropped their knitting and stared at one another.

“A cow!” said one. “I’m so afraid of them. Do you suppose it will come round to us?”

“It’s funny,” said the other lady, looking all round. “I didn’t see a single cow anywhere when we came to sit here. I don’t like cows either. It sounds as if it is on the other side of this bush. Oh dear, what a dreadful noise!”

“Moo-oo-oo-oo!” went Pip, enjoying hearing himself. Then he decided that he had done enough mooing, so he began to crow like a cock and then to cluck like a hen. He made a hen and a cock have a nice long talk.

“Cock-a-doodle Doo-oo-oo! Kuck-kuck-kuck-kuck! Caw-awrk, caw-awrk-caw-awrk! Kuck-kuck-karrrrrrk! Cock-a-doodle Doo!”

“Good gracious!” said the first lady, in surprise. “Cocks and hens now! Really, there must be a farm or something near here! I’m sure those birds are under this bush! How very strange!”

“Kuck-kuck-kuck-kuck!” went on Pip, and then began to cheep like tiny chicks. “Eeep-eeep-eeep! Eee-eeep!”

“Dear me, those birds have got their young ones with them too,” said the second lady. “I’m sure they must have wandered away from their farmyard. Do you suppose we ought to look for them and shoo them home?”

But before they could get up and do this, Pip had begun to baa like sheep and lambs.

“Baa-aa-aa!” he said, in a voice like an anxious sheep’s. “Baa-aa-aa!” Then he made the bleating noise of tiny lambs. “Maa-aaa-aa! Maa-aa-aa-aa!”

The ladies were more astonished than ever. “Sheep too!” they said. “Well, really, who would have thought there was a whole farmyard on this lonely common? It is most extraordinary.”

“Baa-aa-aa!” went on Pip. Then he neighed like a crowd of horses talking to one another, and then brayed very loudly, just like a donkey.

“Ee-yore! Ee-yore! Ee-yore!” He did that very well indeed. He was so pleased with his braying that he went on being a donkey for a very long time. The two ladies got very tired of it.

“What’s the use of coming out for a bit of peace and quiet?” said one, crossly. “Nothing but hens and cocks and sheep and horses and cows and donkeys all round us! Really, anyone would think they were all sitting together just on the other side of our bush! It’s too bad!”

If they had only known it, they were speaking the truth, for the farmyard they heard was sitting on the other side of their bush—but it was only Pip!

Having finished all the farmyard noises he could think of, Pip began to imitate the noises that a train makes. First he was a train coming into a station, slowing down. Then he started up again, chuffing and whistling shrilly. He got faster and faster, and at last his train was so far away in the distance that it could no longer be heard.

The two ladies listened in silence. They simply couldn’t make it out.

“Is that a train we hear?” asked one.

“It sounds exactly like it, but how can it be? There’s no railway line for miles,” said the other.

“I’m beginning to feel rather scared,” said the first lady, in a trembling voice. “We shall hear a motor-car in a minute, and we know we are far from any road!”

Well, that’s just what they did hear the very next minute! Pip began to rumble like a car, and honk most marvellously! He made a noise like brakes being put on suddenly. The two ladies clutched one another in horror.

“It is a car!” said one, in a low voice. “It’s just on the other side of the bush! Oh, whatever shall we do? It’s all like a dream—first a farmyard, then a train, and now a car, all as near as can be—and yet I’m sure there is nothing there at all!”

Well, the next thing Pip thought he would do was to make a noise like an aeroplane coming lower and lower. It did sound so real! The two ladies looked up into the air at once.

“That aeroplane sounds very low,” said the first lady, anxiously. “Do you suppose it is coming down?”

“I’ll tell you when I see it!” said the other one, rather snappily, for she was feeling very hot and bothered. She looked everywhere for that aeroplane. Pip went on churring like a plane, more and more loudly.

The two ladies gave a scream. They really couldn’t bear it any more. “It’s coming down on us, and we can’t even see it!” cried one. Pip heard her voice and was astonished. He didn’t know that anyone was near. He got up and ran round the bush to see what the screaming was about.

The two ladies jumped when they saw him.

“Oh, it’s a little boy,” said one. “For a moment I really thought it was the aeroplane! Little boy, is there anything on your side of the bush? We’ve heard animals and cars and trains and aeroplanes, and, really, we hardly dare to move from here!”

Pip threw back his head and laughed. “Oh!” he said. “How funny! That was only me, you know.”

“What do you mean? Only you?” said one of the ladies, crossly. “We’re not talking about you—we’re talking about the cocks and hens and cows and sheep and things that have been disturbing us all the afternoon.”

“Well, I said it was only me,” explained Pip. “I made those noises. I was just practising them.”

But the two ladies wouldn’t believe him at all. They stared at him angrily.

“You are a naughty little story-teller,” said one, in a horrid, cold sort of voice. “Go away! We shall just get up and see the birds and animals on the other side of the bush, and then perhaps you will feel ashamed that you told us such silly stories.”

They got up and walked round the big yellow gorse bush. But, of course, there was nothing on the other side at all except the heather where Pip had been lying. The two ladies stared in surprise.

“All the creatures have gone!” said one.

“Not quite!” said Pip, who was really cross at being called a story-teller when he had told the truth. “There’s a lion loose somewhere!”

And the mischievous little boy let out a roar so exactly like a hungry lion that the two disbelieving ladies gave a scream of fright and fled away over the common as fast as ever they could go! That made Pip laugh till he cried. He let out one more roar, and saw the two poor frightened ladies rushing away even faster, dropping knitting-needles and wool as they went!

“Well,” said Pip to himself, as he went back to the camp. “I felt rather cross when they didn’t believe that it was only me, but all the same it shows how well I did the noises if they really thought it was the birds and animals and other things! Good!”

How Jerry and Susy-Ann laughed when Pip told them about his afternoon practice. “I do wish we’d been there!” cried Jerry. “It must have been as good as a circus show any day!” And so it was!


Tom Thumb and his giraffe Jinny were soon quite at home in the circus. Jinny was very well behaved, and so long as she was allowed to be near the elephants she was perfectly happy.

But she groaned and grumbled dreadfully when Mr. Jummy took the three elephants off to drink at the river nearby. She wanted to go too! So Tom Thumb had to take her, and she romped about in the water, enjoying the coolness as much as Rag, Tag, and Bobtail. The children did not go near when the four great animals were playing about, for two or three times they had been soaked with water, and Mrs. Ronald had been cross.

Tom Thumb was a great success in the show. He dressed himself up as a little clown in the ring, and, dear me, the things he did with Jinny! She let him climb up and down her long legs and neck, and slide down, bump, from her head to her back, and she let him hold on to her tail whilst she went galloping like a rocking-horse round the ring, with Tom Thumb on roller skates behind her!

But cleverest of all her tricks was the way she could roller-skate herself! Tom Thumb put special small skates on to her four feet, and then away went the tall giraffe skating just as well as Tom Thumb himself!

She always seemed to enjoy her turn in the ring as much as anyone else did, and once or twice she tried to get into the ring before it was her turn, especially when the three elephants were there too.

Tom Thumb was not strong enough to hold her back when she really made up her mind to go into the ring, and Mr. Jummy once got the surprise of his life when he was in the ring and turned round to find Jinny the giraffe trotting round with his elephants, and poor Tom Thumb dragging after her on the end of a rope, trying to get her back!

That made all the people laugh, and Mr. Phillipino thought it might be as well to let Jinny do it each night to get a laugh.

But Tom Thumb shook his head.

“No, sir,” he said. “Once we let Jinny into the ring when it’s not her turn, she’ll think she can go at any time, and we can’t have that.”

So Jinny had to be content with just her own turn, and she grumbled about it quite a lot. Pip listened to her and spoke to her in her own soft giraffe grumble-language. She was delighted, and whenever Pip came near she put down her big head and bumped the little boy lovingly. But her bumps were quite hard, and Pip soon learnt to look out for them and jump out of the way!

“It would be better if I tied cushions on myself, back and front, when I go near Jinny!” he said. “She’s always bumping me with her head!”

“She only wants you to talk to her,” said Tom Thumb.

Another animal who loved his turn in the ring was Mister Binks the goat. He really was a wonderful success, for the people watching the show simply loved to see him chasing the three clowns and butting them over! They laughed and clapped and cheered for all they were worth, and Mister Binks began to think himself a marvellous goat!

He had to be tied up all day because if he was not he went about trying to see whom he could butt. Once he was loose and saw Tom Thumb leaning over a tub of water, washing some clothes. Up galloped Mister Binks and butted poor Tom Thumb neatly on the back. Over went the little man, splash, into his big tub of hot water!

He was angry. He got out, shook himself like a dog, squeezed out his clothes, and then went to find the goat. Mister Binks had disappeared. He always found it best to do this when he had butted anybody.

It wasn’t only that he made a nuisance of himself by butting people, but he would eat such extraordinary things. It was no use hanging clothes on a line to dry if Mister Binks was loose. He simply ate the lot. And if anyone left a caravan door open when the goat was about, he was cheeky enough to run up the steps, poke his head in to see if anyone was at home, and if the caravan was empty, in he would go and eat anything he came across.

He ate Madame Clara’s umbrella—all except the handle and spokes. He ate Delia’s new hat. He nibbled all the buttons off Mr. Jummy’s Sunday coat. And he even drank a pint of green paint that Mr. Hola had bought to paint his chimpanzees’ cage!

Mr. Hola had left the paint outside the cage whilst he had gone to have his dinner. Mister Binks had come up and sniffed it. He licked it. It tasted all right to him. So when Mr. Hola came out of his caravan, he found the paint pot empty, turned on its side!

“Who’s stolen my paint?” he yelled. “Hie, Jinks! Have you seen anyone about who could have taken my paint? It’s all gone!”

Jinks shook his head. “No one has been by so far as I know,” he said. “You must have used it yourself, Mr. Hola. No one would empty out the paint and take it without the tin! They would take the tin too!”

“I did not use it,” said Mr. Hola, in a fine rage. “Wouldn’t I know if I’d used it or not? Who’s got it? It’s a joke played on me, I know it is! Just wait till I get whoever’s done it. I expect it’s one of those children!”

But when he went to find the children he happened to see Mister Binks lying under the blue caravan. And Mister Binks’ nose and beard were both bright green!

“Oh, you wicked goat! Oh, you mischievous, wasteful creature!” shouted Mr. Hola, in a worse temper than ever. “You have drunk my paint, you wicked robber!”

He gave Mister Binks a good whipping with a stick he cut from the hedge. Strangely enough the goat did not even try to run away. He just stood there, with his head down, looking very sorry for himself.

“I expect he is feeling ill with all that green paint inside him!” said Jerry. “Well, perhaps it will be a lesson to him!”

But the goat soon cheered up, and went on with his pranks. The very next time that he managed to get loose he went into Madame Clara’s caravan, and whatever do you suppose he did? Why, he lay down quietly at the foot of her three parrot stands, and began to chew the long tails of the three red and grey parrots!

How they squawked! Madame Clara, who was talking to Annabella in her beautiful caravan, came hurrying to see what the matter was.

When she saw Mister Binks eating her parrots’ tails she flew into such a terrible rage that even the naughty goat was frightened. He scuttled down the steps, his beard wagging, and disappeared under a nearby caravan.

But Madame Clara was not going to let him go as easily as that! She made such a noise that the three children came up to see what the matter was! Madame Clara seemed to think they were bad goats too, for she rushed at them with an old slipper she had picked up, and before Jerry could stop her, she was smacking the three children with it as hard as ever she could!

“I’ll teach you to eat my parrots’ lovely tails!” she shouted. “You bad creatures! Spoiling my parrots like that!”

Smack! Biff! Thud! The slipper fell smartly on the children’s shoulders as they turned to run.

“Stop! Stop, Madame Clara!” Jerry shouted to the hot-tempered little woman. “It wasn’t us! We didn’t eat your parrots’ tails. It was the goat!”

But Madame Clara would not hear any explanations when she was in a rage. She just chased the children away, smacking hard whenever she got a chance. They all tore into Mrs. Ronald’s caravan and slammed the door, panting.

Mrs. Ronald nearly dropped the kettle she was holding.

“Whatever is the matter?” she cried. “Is a lion after you or something?”

“It’s somebody much fiercer than a lion!” said Jerry, locking the door. “Good gracious! Madame Clara is on the war-path to-day! Go away, Madame Clara! We’ve locked the door!”

Mr. Phillipino, whose caravan was not very far away, heard the noise and came out of his door angrily.

“Now, now, what is all this?” he said. “Madame Clara, what are you doing?”

Madame Clara poured out all her woes. She sobbed and cried, she stamped and roared, as she told how the goat had eaten the tails of her parrots. Mr. Phillipino waved her away.

“You are right. That goat is too much of a nuisance to stay in this circus,” he said. “He eats everything. And yesterday he even butted me, the great Phillipino! Ah, he is a bad goat, and he shall go!”

The children heard what he said. Susy-Ann burst into tears, for she loved Mister Binks. Pip was sad too. Jerry did not mind so much, for Mister Binks had often made him cross, but he loved Pip and Susy-Ann, and was sad for them.

“Look here, when Madame Clara’s calmed down a bit we’ll go and say how sorry we are about Binks eating her parrots’ tails, and ask her to forgive him,” he said. “She’s very hot-tempered, but she’s all right afterwards, so I expect she will let Binks stay. Don’t cry, Susy-Ann.”

So, that evening, when Madame Clara had found that not very much damage had been done to her parrots after all, the three children went timidly to her caravan, and spoke to her.

“Please, Madame Clara, we are very sorry about Mister Binks and his naughtiness this morning,” said Susy-Ann, her golden head shining in the evening sun. “Please will you let him stay? I do love him so.”

But Madame Clara was still sulking about her precious parrots. She flashed her dark eyes at the three children and picked up a magazine she was reading.

“I will not have you or your goat in my caravan!” she cried. “Go away, or I will slap you with this book!”

The children jumped down the caravan steps as fast as they could. It was simply no good talking to Madame Clara when she was cross.

Susy-Ann saw Mr. Phillipino walking over to his beautiful black horses, which were being made ready for the show. She ran up to him bravely.

“Please, Mr. Phillipino, do say that my goat can stay in the circus. Please do! I don’t want him to go. You know how clever he is in the ring each night too. It would be such a pity to send him away.”

“Sorry, Susy-Ann,” said the ring-master. “I promised Madame Clara to have him sent away. If she says he can stay, he can; but, if not, he must go!”

Poor Susy-Ann! She knew it was no good then. Mister Binks must go.

She burst into tears. “He’ll g-g-g-go to someone who d-d-doesn’t love him,” she said. “And he’ll be whipped and smacked because he’s naughty.”

Mister Binks stuck his naughty nose into Susy-Ann’s hand. He snorted softly. Perhaps he was sorry for his bad ways—he was certainly sorry for Susy-Ann, who seemed so sad!

“You’ll have to go, Mister Binks,” sobbed the little girl. “Oh, if only you could mend your ways and be good!”


Now, that night, when everyone was asleep, two robbers came to the circus. They knew that the show had been doing well, and they knew also that Mr. Phillipino kept his money in a big box in his caravan ready to share it out each Saturday with his people.

The common where the circus was camped was quite dark. There was no moon at all, and as clouds covered the stars there was not even any starlight to see by.

Not a light was to be seen in any caravan. Everyone was sound asleep. No smoke came from the little chimneys. No one stirred. The three parrots slept peacefully with heads tucked under their wings.

The chimpanzees slept soundly also, curled up in their bunks at the back of their cage. Delia’s bear, his head covered by his big front paws, snored gently.

The three elephants lay peacefully together, with Jinny the giraffe nearby. They were all asleep. The horses slept, too, though one or two were half-awake and stirred a little.

The thieves were two men who had once been in the circus themselves looking after the horses when two of Mr. Phillipino’s grooms were ill. They had been disliked by everyone, for they had been rough and rude, and the horses had hated them. Mr. Phillipino had sent them off before their time was up, and they had always wanted to pay him back for that.

The two men had an electric torch with them. They flashed it every now and then to show them their way. They crept round the bushes and came to the camp.

“Do you know where Phillipino’s caravan is from here?” whispered one man.

“Yes,” said the other. “It’s on the other side somewhere. Quiet now, the elephants are near here and we don’t want them trumpeting and waking up the whole camp before we’ve got what we want!”

They picked their way carefully through the silent camp. Rag, the biggest elephant, woke up, and stared in surprise at the two men going by him in the darkness. He wondered if it were one of the circus folk, so he did not stir. The two chimpanzees did not wake up. Delia’s bear did not stir either, and as for Jinny the giraffe, she was lost in the land of dreams!

The three parrots awoke, though, and took their heads out from their wings. They made small talking noises to one another, but they did not wake Madame Clara.

The men went quietly towards Mr. Phillipino’s big caravan. On the way one of them stumbled over Mister Binks, who was lying snoozing on the dry grass beside the children’s caravan. The man caught his foot in the goat’s rope that was thrown over the post nearby. He took the rope and untangled his foot, but also, without knowing it, he slipped it off the post over which Jerry had thrown the loop!

Mister Binks blinked round, wondering who had stepped on him. He got up. He shook himself, and then pulled gently at his rope, just to see if by any chance it was loose. And to his enormous surprise and delight, it was!

The goat was delighted! Jerry had tied him up so tightly that evening that he had not been able to wander even a little way from the post. Now he was free! He would look round to see what he could find!

His nose picked up the smell of the two men. He decided to follow them. The goat did not know them, and he was very curious about them. So he trotted quietly after them, up to Mr. Phillipino’s caravan.

One of the men was standing on a box outside the open window. He had put in his hand and was groping about in the dark. He knew that the ring-master usually kept his box near his sleeping-bunk. Ah, here it was!

The man found the ring in the centre of the big money-box and pulled on it gently. Soon he had lifted the box up, and was bringing it cautiously towards the open window.

He handed it to the other man, who took it quietly. Then, in a moment or two, the thieves were making their way back silently across the camp, delighted that everything had been so easy. They had a great deal of money in the box! They would be rich for weeks!

Mister Binks followed them, sniffing at their heels. The men thought he was a dog and switched on their torch to see.

“It’s only that silly white goat,” whispered one man to the other. “Give him a kick!”

So Mister Binks suddenly felt a hard sharp kick on his leg. It hurt him. He felt angry, and when a goat feels angry he wants to butt something or someone very, very hard indeed!

So Mister Binks put his head down and galloped on those two men like lightning! Butt! Biff! He butted one of them so hard that the man flew forward and fell on his nose.

He gave a cry, for he was very astonished. “Hush, you fathead!” hissed the other man, and then he, too, gave a surprised cry, for Mister Binks had butted him too, as hard as ever he could!

Biff! The man flew forwards and crashed to the ground with his box of money. It made a fearful noise. The box burst open, and all the money flew over the grass.

“This awful goat!” groaned the first man. “Quick, stuff your pockets with what money you can find, and run off as quickly as you can. The camp will be awake in a minute!”

But Mister Binks wasn’t going to let the thieves go as easily as all that! Oh, no! Once Mister Binks was in a good butting mood he could go on all night! As soon as the two men knelt down on the grass to look for the spilt money, Mister Binks ran at them again.

Biff! One man went on his nose again, sprawling on the common. Biff-smack! The other was butted so hard that he really thought a thunderbolt had hit him! He let out a loud yell that woke everyone at once!

Mister Binks was really having the time of his life! He danced round, butting the men every time they tried to get up, and the goat kept them there safely until Mr. Phillipino, Mr. Hola, and the rest of the circus men had come out with lanterns to see what the noise was all about.

Then they saw the strange sight of two frightened men trying to get away, and Mister Binks butting them to the ground every time they took a step! Really, it was a funny sight, and the circus men roared with delight.

“Ha! It is Lennie and Tom!” said the ring-master, swinging his lantern into their faces. “And I see you have our money-box, and the money is all over the ground. So you are thieves, are you? Well, you will be punished as you deserve!”

Very soon two policemen had been sent for, and Lennie and Tom were marched away, very bruised and sore with the goat’s butting. Everyone picked up the money and put it back into the broken box.

“It is the goat who saved our money for us,” said Madame Clara, suddenly. “Ah, yes, if Mister Binks had not butted the thieves and kept them here for us, yelling and howling, all our money would have been stolen away, and no one would have known who had taken it. You are a good goat, Mister Binks, even though you did eat my parrots’ tails!”

“Madame Clara, do you think you would ask Mr. Phillipino to keep Mister Binks in the circus, please?” Pip asked earnestly. “He can be very good, as you see, and you know, Madame Clara, when I got your two parrots back for you that time they flew away, you did say to me that you would give me anything I asked you, if I wanted help myself at any time. Well, please do say that you’ll ask the ring-master to keep our goat here.”

Madame Clara was no longer cross. She loved an adventure like this in the middle of the night. She patted Pip on the shoulder and smiled.

“Yes,” she said, “I will ask him. I think everyone will forgive Mister Binks for his wicked deeds, now that he has caught the thieves for us!”

And so Mister Binks was allowed to stay on in the camp, much to Susy-Ann’s delight.

“You are a very clever goat!” she said to him, as Jerry tied him up again to the post. “As soon as you are scolded for being naughty, you do something very good, and people love you again! But oh, Binks, please do behave yourself now!”

Everyone went back to bed, but the three children could not go to sleep. They lit their candle and sat up in their bunks and talked and talked. Mrs. Ronald heard them in her caravan nearby and was cross.

The next thing that happened was that she appeared in the children’s caravan, looking very stern.

“What does this mean?” she asked. “Talking like this in the middle of the night! Do you want a good smacking, you naughty children?” She blew out the candle, tucked them up and slipped out. Nobody spoke another word. They knew that Mrs. Ronald was quite likely to keep her word and arrive with a slipper as hard as Madame Clara’s!


The three clowns in the circus had always kept themselves very much apart from the other circus-folk. They were three brothers, much alike to look at, sometimes very nice indeed, but at other times rather bad-tempered.

“It’s funny that a clown should have a bad temper,” said Pip, in surprise, when he first heard Pashi, the eldest clown, shouting at Lem and Monty, his brothers. “Somehow I always thought that clowns would be laughing and joking.”

“Some clowns always are,” said Jerry, who was busy polishing some glittering harness. “But our clown family are a bit moody. You’ve got to be careful of them.”

“What does moody mean?” asked Susy-Ann.

“Oh—sometimes as happy and bright as can be—and sometimes gloomy and miserable,” said Jerry.

“Like the little girl in the nursery rhyme,” said Susy-Ann. “When she was good she was very, very good, but when she was bad she was horrid.”

“Yes, rather like that,” said Jerry, holding up the brass he had polished, and watching the sun twinkling on it. “Clowning often goes in families. Our clowns’ father was a clown, and their grandfather too. They are very clever—but I have heard my mother say that they are too jealous to stay together for long.”

“Look! Pashi is practising his new trick this morning!” said Pip, getting up. “I’m going to watch him. I saw him the other day with Lem, and it’s so funny I laughed till I couldn’t laugh any more.”

“Wait for me,” said Jerry, giving a last rub with his duster. “I’ve just finished. Are you coming too, Susy?”

“Yes,” said Susy-Ann. “We’ll take Mister Binks as well, shall we? He’s been very good this morning.”

Pashi had gone into the ring to practise his new trick. It really was very funny indeed. He had had a kind of hobby-horse made for himself, with a hole in its back that he could get his body through. Pashi’s horse had a head with a mouth that opened and shut, a broad back from which drapery hung to hide the fact that the horse had no legs—and also to hide Pashi’s own legs, which of course, he ran about on, making it look as if it were the horse cantering or galloping! Sewn on to the horse’s back, and hanging down each side was a pair of false legs that made it look as if Pashi were sitting on the saddle.

The children crept in and sat down at the back of the ring to watch. Pashi didn’t see them. He had carried his hobby-horse into the ring, and was now busy getting into it.

First he laid it on the ground. Then he stepped neatly into the hole in the saddle, pulled the horse up to his waist, and fastened it there firmly. The children could just see his feet on the floor, under the horse’s draperies.

“Whoa there, whoa!” cried Pashi, exactly as if the horse was alive! He took hold of the reins, arranged the false legs across the saddle just as if they were real ones, and then began to practise his turn.

He was so very clever with that hobby-horse that in a moment or two the children began to feel that the wooden horse was alive! Its mouth opened and shut as it went round the ring, and, dear me, Pashi could make it canter or trot or gallop in a most remarkable way! Of course it was his own feet that took the hobby-horse around, but it didn’t seem as if it could be!

“Now then, now then!” said Pashi, in a warning voice to his horse, which suddenly stopped and began to back. It was Pashi who was making it back, but it seemed as if the horse was doing it on its own account. The children began to laugh. Pashi heard them and grinned.

“You like my new trick?” he asked them. “It makes you laugh?”

“It’s the funniest trick I’ve ever seen!” cried Jerry. “Go on, Pashi—make your horse do silly things.”

So Pashi went on with his turn, playing to the children and making them laugh till the tears ran down their faces. The things that horse did! It galloped round the ring, stopped to look at the children, and then sat down on the ring itself! It looked so comical. Then up it got again, with Pashi roaring at it, and pretended to run away, with the clown pulling at the reins for all he was worth, as if he were doing his best to stop it—but all the time, of course, it was his own legs underneath the horse that were galloping at top speed.

“Hallo!” said a voice, and Lem, Pashi’s brother, looked in. “Practising again, Pashi? That is a good turn of yours. You will get all the laughs!”

“I have a good idea, Lem,” said Pashi, stopping his horse with a jerk of the reins, so that its mouth opened and shut in a very comical manner, just as if it were gasping for breath.

“What have you thought of?” asked Lem, walking into the ring.

“It would be funnier still if you worked this trick with me, Lem,” said Pashi. “Then I could make my horse jump over hurdles as if it were racing. You could put up the hurdles for me, and I can either jump over them or pretend to fall.”

“Very well,” said Lem. “I’ll go and see what I can find. We shall get plenty of laughs out of this.”

He went off, and soon came back with some hurdles that had been used for other tricks. He waited until Pashi had galloped once or twice round the ring, and then, at a call, he deftly put up the hurdles, shouting encouragingly to the hobby-horse.

“Come on now! Come on! Hup! Hup! Hup!” cried Lem. And the hobby-horse “hupped” and went neatly over the hurdle, galloped to the next, leapt over that—and then shied at the third! Dear me, how that horse backed and shied, shied and backed, whilst all the time Pashi shook the reins and shouted angrily at it.

The children roared with laughter. The horse looked so comically real. “Make it jump, make it jump!” yelled Jerry.

So Pashi set the horse at the hurdle, but the horse fell over it, and knocked it down, which sent the children into even greater roars of mirth.

Even Lem laughed. “Yes, this is a good turn, Pashi,” he said. “I will bring in the hurdles every night and put them up for you, and you shall once or twice run the horse at me and make me run away in fright! That will make the people laugh also.”

Pashi at once set his horse at Lem, who ran away in pretended fear, shouting in fright, and of course Lem pretended to catch his foot in something and down he went with the horse and Pashi on top of him! The children were thrilled. It was the funniest thing they had seen for a long time.

Somebody else came into the ring, but that somebody did not laugh at all. He looked as grim as could be.

“It’s Monty,” said Jerry, in a whisper of fright. “He’s angry! Don’t make a sound, for goodness sake, or he’ll order us out of the ring and give us a slap as we go. You never know what he’ll do when he’s in a bad temper!”

The other two clowns had not seen Monty. They were picking themselves up, laughing.

“Let’s do that hurdle trick again,” said Pashi, shaking his horse’s reins. “I’ve thought of something else as well, that will bring a laugh . . . we’ll . . .”

But what he had thought of nobody ever knew. Pashi caught sight of Monty standing silent and grim at the entrance to the ring. He stared at him.

“What’s up?” said Pashi. “You look like a thunderstorm gone bad!”

Monty stalked into the ring. He was a tall clown, thin and wiry, with a long solemn face that looked extremely funny when he had painted it red and white. But now he did not look funny at all.

“So you are practising another turn with Lem?” he said, in a harsh, angry voice. “You already get more laughs than anyone else, Pashi. It isn’t fair. If you think of more tricks, there will be no time for me. Am I to gambol round the ring whilst everyone looks at you and claps?”

“Why, Monty, you know that Mr. Phillipino said we could have five minutes more each night,” said Pashi. “This new trick will not take away any of your time.”

“And why should you and Lem have that five minutes and not me?” cried Monty, his voice rising high. “You are always selfish, Pashi, and always you try to get the most laughs! Why did you not ask me to help you, instead of Lem?”

“Well,” said Pashi, trying not to lose his temper, “Lem happened to come into the ring whilst I was practising, that’s all. If you practised a bit more yourself, Monty, you’d find you got more of the laughs.”

“And now you say I don’t practise!” shouted Monty, stamping on the ground and waving his fists about as if he would like to hit something. “Why do I work with you? If I went to another circus I would get a better turn and more money! I . . .”

“Well, if you feel like that, GO!” yelled Pashi, losing his temper altogether. He forgot that he was on the hobby-horse and he tried to run at Monty, but the horse prevented him from hitting his brother, which was a very good thing.

“I shall go to Mr. Phillipino this moment!” shouted Monty, and he shook his fist in Pashi’s face and strode out.

“Good gracious! Now what’s going to happen?” whispered Jerry to Pip.


Pashi and Lem stared at one another. They were both angry and dismayed.

“Silly idiot!” said Lem. “Surely he won’t go to Mr. Phillipino? He will spoil our turn in the ring if he leaves us.”

“He will go, though,” said Pashi. “Let’s follow him and see what he says. What a bad-tempered fellow he is!”

The two clowns left the ring, Pashi still on his hobby-horse, looking very gloomy and still angry. The children crept out after them, frightened. It was not nice to hear grown-ups quarrel like that.

Susy-Ann was quite upset. She cried when she went to tell Mrs. Ronald. “They were going to fight each other,” she wept. “They looked horrid.”

“Oh, don’t you worry, Susy-Ann,” said Mrs. Ronald comfortingly. “Those three clowns have been quarrelling among themselves as long as I’ve known them! They belong to a quarrelsome family, just as we belong to a peaceful one. I’ve known them have worse quarrels than that and make it up among themselves! Circus-folk are often jumpy, you know, but they soon get over it.”

Pip and Jerry followed Pashi and Lem, curious to hear what would happen, but they took care to keep well out of sight, for Jerry said that Pashi was given to slapping hard when he was in a rage. As soon as they came near Mr. Phillipino’s caravan they could hear shouting. It was Monty and the ringmaster.

“But I tell you you cannot walk out like this!” said Mr. Phillipino, in a fine temper. “You cannot break your contract. What will Pashi and Lem do without you in the ring?”

“They don’t want me, I tell you,” said Monty sulkily.

“And I tell you that whether they want you or not you are to stay with us,” shouted Mr. Phillipino. “I have to deal with bad-tempered horses sometimes, but bad-tempered clowns are worse. Now go to your caravan and make up your mind to be sensible.”

“I will never . . .” began Monty, and then caught sight of Pashi and Lem coming up. He turned on his heel, gave them a fierce look and walked off in a huff. “Never will I go into the ring with you again!” he shouted, as he disappeared into his caravan.

“This is a storm in a tea-cup, a mountain out of a mole-hill, a fuss about nothing, a . . .” cried Mr. Phillipino to Pashi and Lem. He waved them away. “Go away! I will not speak to any more clowns this morning! To think that clowns make people laugh! They make me rave! They make me roar. Go away, I tell you, go away!”

Mr. Phillipino was so magnificent in his rage that not even Pashi and Lem, cross as they were, dared to say a word to him. Instead, they went off to discuss the matter with Mr. Hola, who looked very grave. Quarrels among the circus-folk were never pleasant, for they were all like one big family.

“Look!” said Mr. Hola suddenly, and he pointed to Pashi’s caravan. “There goes Monty!”

And, good gracious, there went Monty indeed, complete with suitcase! He meant what he said—he was going! Leaving the circus he had worked in so long, without a single good-bye to anyone! He stalked out of the camp without a look at anybody—but Pashi could not let him go like that.

“Monty!” he yelled. “Don’t be an idiot! Come back!”

“Never!” shouted Monty, his face red with anger. He put his suitcase on his shoulder and signalled to a passing bus. He jumped aboard—and in a trice was gone.

Mr. Phillipino also saw him go. He called Pashi and Lem. He was very angry.

“You understand that because of your silly quarrel you have spoilt your turn in the ring?” he said. “We need three clowns—now we have only two. I will not have Monty back after this. I shall get a new clown immediately.”

“Yes, sir,” said Pashi, scared of the ring-master when he was in this mood. It had all happened so suddenly that Pashi was quite taken by surprise. He had not thought for a moment that Monty had meant what he said.

Mr. Phillipino went off to the town to do some telephoning. When he came back his face was brighter. He called for Pashi and Lem again.

“I have engaged another clown,” he said. “He is called Maldi. He will expect to be allowed to perform all his favourite tricks, so see that he gets his fair share of the ring.”

Pashi and Lem said nothing. They had never heard of Maldi. Mr. Phillipino told them that Maldi was coming that afternoon, and would be able to go into the ring the same evening. There would be time for an hour’s practice before the show opened.

The children heard all about everything, for the whole matter was discussed by everyone in the circus. Mitzi and Juana talked about it, and wondered who Maldi was.

“He will need to be good-tempered to get on with Pashi and Lem now Monty is gone,” said Juana, with a grin. “They were fond of Monty though they quarrelled, and they will not be easy to work with, when the third clown is a stranger.”

“They will be all right in the ring, though,” said Mitzi. “Whatever quarrels go on outside, circus-folk never show them when they are performing in a show.”

Maldi arrived that afternoon, driving himself in a fast little silver car. The children watched him get out of it with his suitcase and trunk. He was a small man with a round, solemn face. Susy-Ann didn’t like him.

“Why don’t you?” asked Jerry, in astonishment.

“He doesn’t look kind,” said Susy-Ann. The clown strode past them, and didn’t give the children a single glance. Mister Binks ran up to him, but he pushed him away impatiently.

“Well, I don’t know that I like him very much either,” said Pip. “He looks sort of hard.”

Hard or not, Maldi was a good clown. He was soon in the ring, practising with Pashi and Lem. He had many good tricks, and the children wanted to see them. They crept in at the back again. But Maldi saw them and ordered them out.

“Get out!” he commanded. “You disturb me. Go at once!”

So the children had to go, but they meant to see Maldi that night in the ring. Pashi and Lem said nothing about Maldi to anyone. They knew he was a good clown, but they did not like him.

“Yet if we say anything against him everyone will say it is because we do not want him,” said Pashi to Lem. “Oh, why was Monty so silly? Why did I lose my temper? It would have been so easy for all three of us to have played together in my horse-trick!”

But it was no use groaning and grumbling now. Monty was gone, nobody knew where, and Maldi was there to take his place. Also it was almost time for the show to begin, and Pashi and Lem had to hurry.

Maldi had a very grand suit for a clown. It was sewn all over with sparkling sequins so that he seemed as if he were on fire whenever he went into the ring. He was very funny too, and everyone clapped him heartily. Pashi had to cut short his horse-turn, for Maldi’s tricks took longer than Monty’s had done.

But although the three clowns’ jokes and turns went very well, as they tumbled in and out of the ring at all kinds of odd moments, something else was not going at all well.

Mr. Jummy was worried about his elephants. Rag and Tag were restless and nervous. They lifted their trunks into the air, they stood first on this foot and then on another, they even trumpeted loudly, which they never did whilst the show was on.

“I can’t understand what’s the matter with Rag and Tag,” Mr. Jummy told Mr. Phillipino. “Bobtail is all right—quiet as an old tabby cat—but Rag and Tag are as jumpy as kangaroos! Just won’t wait quietly for their turn. I hope they will be all right when I take them into the ring for their show.”

“They’ll be all right,” said Mr. Phillipino, glancing up at the big elephants. “Maybe the weather has upset them a little.”

But it wasn’t the weather that had upset them. It was something else—something rather strange. It was Maldi the new clown!


When the elephants went into the ring, the three clowns were still there, tumbling about. They were not supposed to go out until the elephants were settled to begin their turn. Sometimes Rag, Tag and Bobtail needed a minute or two to get used to the glaring lights and shouting people, though usually they did not mind at all.

To-night Mr. Phillipino thought they would need a few minutes, so he signalled to the clowns to stay in a little longer. Maldi was turning extraordinary somersaults, throwing himself into the air, and making a complete somersault as he did so. Everyone clapped him loudly.

In walked Rag, Tag and Bobtail, Mr. Jummy beside them, feeling nervous because of the restlessness of Rag and Tag. He walked them once round the ring, and then called to them to take their usual places. Bobtail placidly obeyed, but Rag and Tag stood stock still and threw up their trunks. Then Rag trumpeted in what sounded a very triumphant manner, and Tag followed suit.

Everyone watched in wonder. Mr. Phillipino cracked his whip. But Rag and Tag took no notice. They stared round the ring with their gleaming eyes, and watched the three clowns. Maldi suddenly saw that their eyes were fixed on him. He stared back, fear coming into his face.

He bowed, and made as if he would run out of the ring, but with a movement astonishingly quick, Rag moved across to him. He caught the frightened clown in his trunk and held him fast. Tag lumbered quickly across and felt him over delicately with his trunk too. Then he trumpeted again.

“What’s this?” cried the ring-master in amazement. “Mr. Jummy, take Rag and Tag out. Tell Juana to come in and go on with his turn until we have found out what all the trouble is!”

Mr. Jummy, very worried, hurried out with his three elephants, and yelled for Juana, who came in at a run. The watching people were soon so amazed by the sword swallower that they forgot the elephants.

Outside the ring Mr. Jummy ordered Rag to drop the frightened Maldi, but the great elephant only flapped his ears and held on to him. He was not hurting the clown, but for some reason he wanted to capture him.

“Tell your elephant to let me go!” gasped the clown. “I hate elephants—always have—great ugly creatures! Make him let me go!”

Mr. Jummy looked closely at Maldi. “You remind me of someone,” he said slowly. “What circus were you brought up in?”

“What’s that got to do with you?” said Maldi angrily.

“Quite a lot,” said Mr. Jummy, in a queer, soft voice. “I remember you as a boy, Maldi, but you were not Maldi then—you were Karl, young son of Hermes the acrobat! Isn’t that so?”

“What about it?” said Maldi sulkily, trying to get away from the elephant’s trunk.

“Karl ill-treated the elephants!” said Jummy. “Yes—Karl ill-treated any animal, but he always hated the elephants because they disliked him, so he teased them and once he prodded them with the sharp bar that was kept for the tigers! Do you remember that, Karl?”

“No,” said the clown, with a face like thunder.

“You don’t remember? No? Ah, Karl, but the elephants remember!” said Mr. Jummy, in a loud voice. “Yes—they never forget cruelty, and always they wait until they can punish the one who ill-treated them!”

The circus-folk had gathered round in astonishment, and listened in silence to the queer conversation. It was strange to see Maldi held tightly in Rag’s trunk, Tag keeping guard over him too. Bobtail took no notice. She had not been with Rag and Tag in those old days. She did not remember Karl.

“Why should I be punished now for what I did when I was only a silly young boy?” said Maldi angrily. “I am different now.”

“Not so very different, I think,” said Mr. Jummy. “Your face was hard when you were the young Karl I knew, and it is still hard, now that you are Maldi the clown! I am sorry to know I have to work with you in the same circus, Karl!”

“I wouldn’t work in the same show as these hateful elephants if you paid me a hundred pounds a week!” said Maldi. “Order this elephant to let me go. The ring is waiting for you.”

“Rag, let him go,” said Mr. Jummy. “He is well punished for his cruelty years ago, for he cannot work with you and Tag, so he loses a good job! Our sins find us out, Mr. Karl-Maldi! The evil we do follows us, and the good we do returns in wonderful ways! Let him go, Rag, let him go!”

Rag let him go. Maldi dropped from the great trunk and sped away. He went to pack his bag. Not one moment more would he remain in the same circus as the elephants!

The three children had watched with everyone else. Jerry turned to Pip and Susy-Ann. “What did I tell you about elephants?” he whispered. “They never forget!”

Pip and Susy-Ann had listened open-mouthed. They could hardly believe it was all true.

Mr. Phillipino came out for a moment, anxious and worried. He was told quickly what had happened.

“So Maldi has gone,” he said, vexed. “Well, it is true we want no one like him in our circus, but it leaves us a clown short. Don’t you really know where Monty has gone, Pashi?”

Pashi shook his head. He was very unhappy. As always when he quarrelled with his brothers, he was bitterly sorry afterwards. He would have given anything to get Monty back.

Pashi and Lem had to do the best they could by themselves, but they did not get as many laughs as usual. They cracked their merry jokes, and Pashi performed his ridiculous hobby-horse tricks, but somehow it wasn’t the same as when Monty was there too. The three brothers had worked together too long to be happy when one was missing.

At last the show was over. Mitzi ordered the children to go at once to their caravan for they were all tired out with excitement. They stumbled over the common, and on their way they passed someone standing quietly in the dark shadow of a caravan. Jerry stopped.

Monty!” he cried, in amazed delight. “Have you come back?”

“Sh!” said the third clown. “Don’t let anyone know. Tell me, has Mr. Phillipino got anyone in my place yet?”

“Yes, he got Maldi,” whispered Jerry, “but just listen to what has happened, Monty!” And Jerry poured out the whole story about Rag, Tag and Maldi, who was really Karl.

“And you say he’s gone?” said Monty eagerly.

“Yes, and you can guess Mr. Phillipino will never have him back!” said Jerry. “Oh Monty, go and find Pashi and Lem now. They’re so anxious about you.”

Monty slid away like a shadow to his brothers’ caravan. He went up the steps and into the lighted room. There was a shout—two shouts—and the watching children saw Monty clutched in delight by both Pashi and Lem.

“Good!” said Pip. “Who would have thought of such a happy ending?”

“Oh, I’m so glad,” said Susy-Ann. “Now perhaps they’ll never quarrel again!”

“Oh, they’ll be hard at it this time next week, I expect!” said Jerry, with a grin. “But it doesn’t really matter so long as they stick together!”

“Children,” said Aunt Mitzi’s voice behind them. “Didn’t I tell you to go to bed at once? What do you think you are doing out here like this?”

“Aunt Mitzi, everything’s come right,” said Susy-Ann. “Monty’s back and the others hugged him like anything!”

“You’re dreaming!” said Aunt Mitzi. “Nobody knows where Monty is! Go along to bed at once.”

“All right, Aunt Mitzi, but just wait till the morning!” said Susy-Ann, climbing into the caravan.

Aunt Mitzi didn’t need to wait, for Pashi, Lem and Monty came tumbling out of their caravan as she passed, to tell Mr. Phillipino that there was no longer any need to worry about another clown—the three of them would perform in the ring just as they always had!

“Such a fuss about nothing!” stormed the ring-master, but his eyes were smiling, and he was just as glad as everybody else!


Two days later, just when everything seemed to be going very well, Delia came rushing up to Annabella as she left her caravan.

“Annabella, Annabella, come quickly!” cried Delia. “Grizzle is ill! He lies in his cage, and will not move!”

Annabella, who was excellent with all animals, because she loved them and understood them, went with Delia to Grizzle’s cage. Sure enough, Grizzle did look ill. The big brown bear half sat, half lay at the back of his comfortable cage, his little eyes dull, and his fur untidy.

“Grizzle!” called Delia, softly. “Grizzle! Come to Delia!” But Grizzle did not move. He only opened his small eyes a little wider, and then shut them.

“He isn’t at all well,” said Delia, with tears in her eyes. “But I don’t know what can be the matter with him, Annabella. He seemed quite all right last night.”

“Do you think anyone gave him something to eat that upset him last night?” asked Annabella. “You know, a great many people came wandering round the camp before the show began yesterday. It’s so difficult to keep them out when we have no fence.”

“I did think of that,” said Delia. “I wasn’t by his cage all the time. It’s quite likely that somebody did give him something that is poisonous to him without knowing it.”

“I will get him some medicine,” said Annabella. She ran quickly to her caravan, and whilst she was mixing the medicine for poor Grizzle she told her father, Mr. Phillipino, about the bear.

He was upset. “That means that Delia and Grizzle will not be able to go into the ring to-night,” he said. “What a pity! Well, it cannot be helped. The three clowns must come in a little oftener, and make up for it.”

Grizzle took the medicine, and then sank back into his corner again. Everyone in the circus was upset to hear the news, for all the circus folk were fond of their animals.

“Grizzle won’t die, will he?” asked Susy-Ann, looking sadly into the bear’s cage.

“I hope not,” said Pip. He grunted to the bear, who turned his dull eyes to the little boy at once. He loved Pip.

The next thing that happened that unlucky day was that Juana got a fish-bone stuck in his throat at dinner-time and simply could not get it out! He choked and spluttered; he went purple in the face. Mrs. Ronald banged him on the back. She gave him a piece of thick brown bread to eat, hoping that it would take the bone down with it.

But no, it wasn’t a bit of good! That bone stuck there, making poor Juana cough and cough. And in the end Tom Thumb had to rush Juana off to a doctor to get the bone out of his throat.

“It’s really very queer that a sword-swallower should choke over a fish-bone,” said Pip, watching Tom Thumb’s car swing out of the camp on to the road nearby. “Poor Uncle Juana! He must feel bad with a horrid bone sticking down his throat all the time.”

Juana was soon back, looking rather white. Mrs. Ronald ran to meet him.

“You don’t look very well,” she said. “Has the bone gone?”

“Yes,” said Juana, in a husky voice. “The doctor got it out. But my throat is most dreadfully sore, and he says I mustn’t swallow any daggers or swords this week. So that means that I can’t go into the ring. I don’t know what Mr. Phillipino will say! Delia and Grizzle won’t be able to go, and now I can’t either.”

“I’ll go and tell Mr. Phillipino,” said Mrs. Ronald, very worried. “You lie down in your bunk, Juana. You look ill.”

So the sword-swallower lay down, sucking black currant lozenges to soothe his throat. Mrs. Ronald hurried to the ring-master’s caravan.

Mr. Phillipino was reading a letter and frowning. He looked up when Mrs. Ronald knocked at the open door.

“What is it?” he asked.

“Mr. Phillipino, I’m sorry to say that Juana won’t be able to go into the ring to-night, and perhaps not at all this week,” said Mrs. Ronald. “He got a bone stuck in his throat this morning, and had to go to the doctor. His throat is too sore for him to swallow swords for a while.”

“Misfortunes always come in a crowd,” said Mr. Phillipino, gloomily. “That’s two bits of bad luck in one day. And see, Mitzi, here is a letter about those two children you are looking after. It seems they must go to the Children’s Homes, and leave us. They will be very sad.”

Mrs. Ronald read the letter. It said that as Pip and Susy-Ann were getting no schooling at all, and would not be trained for any work unless they left the circus, they must leave and go to the Homes. Mrs. Ronald was very upset.

“Everything bad comes at once,” she said. “I don’t know how I’m going to tell the two children. They do so love being with us, you know, Mr. Phillipino, and they are no trouble at all.”

“Well, if we could find a way to teach them work here it might be all right,” said the ring-master. “We could easily see that they had school lessons, for Annabella could teach them herself—yes, and your Jerry, too, for he does not know very much. But there is no room for the children in circus work, for they cannot be trained for anything now; they are too old.”

Mrs. Ronald went back to the caravan with a sad heart. This was an unhappy day. Grizzle did not seem to be any better. Juana still lay on his bunk looking white and ill. And how was she to tell Pip and Susy-Ann the sad news?

She made some black-currant tea for Juana to drink. As she was making it, Jerry came in to get some cake to eat. He saw his mother’s face.

“What’s the matter, Mother?” he asked. “Dad isn’t worse, is he?”

“No,” said his mother. “But I’ve just read a letter that Mr. Phillipino showed me about Pip and Susy-Ann, Jerry. They’ve got to leave us. They don’t get lessons here, though Mr. Phillipino says that Annabella could give you and the others lessons if that were all, but it isn’t. The two children can’t be trained for a job here, and at a Home they would both be trained to do work of some sort when they grew up.”

Jerry listened. He didn’t say a word. He went outside to find Pip and Susy-Ann, and he broke the news to them.

Susy-Ann hugged Mister Binks and listened in dismay. Pip stroked Snowball and looked at Jerry.

“You’ve got some plan up your sleeve, Jerry,” he said, quietly. “What is it?”

“Well, I have,” said Jerry. “And it’s this. I’m quite sure that if Mr. Phillipino knew how well you can do your noises now, he’d try you in the ring and give you a job there. Well, that would mean you’d earn money and could pay for your own food and for Susy-Ann’s. And if Annabella is kind enough to teach us our lessons, well, we’d try our very best and learn. Wouldn’t we?”

“Yes, we would,” said both children at once.

“I’ll go straightaway to Mr. Phillipino now and see if he’ll give me a chance in the ring to-night,” said Pip, jumping up.

Off he went. But Mr. Phillipino was just going off into the town, and he brushed the little boy aside.

“Get out of my way,” he said, sharply. “I am busy to-day.”

“Mr. Phillipino, please listen to me for a minute,” begged Pip, anxiously. “You are short of people to go into the ring to-night, and I thought if only you’d give me a chance and . . .”

“Don’t talk rubbish, boy,” said the ring-master, putting on his big top hat. “I’ve no time for you now. I must go down to the town to phone and see if I can manage to get someone else to take Juana’s place and Grizzle’s.”

“But, please, sir, . . .” said poor Pip. It wasn’t a bit of good. Mr. Phillipino pushed him aside and strode over to his horse. He leapt on its back and cantered over the common to the road on his way to the town.

Pip could not face going back to tell Susy-Ann and Jerry. The little boy felt terribly upset and disappointed. Mr. Phillipino would find someone else for the circus that night, and his chance would be gone!

Pip was usually very brave and hardly ever cried. But everything suddenly seemed too much for him at that moment, and he sat down on the steps of Mr. Phillipino’s beautiful caravan and buried his face in his hands. Tears trickled out between his fingers.

Snowball poked her nose out of his collar, but then she heard someone coming and disappeared at once. It was Annabella coming to her caravan. She walked quietly over the soft grass of the common, and Pip did not hear her.

He suddenly felt an arm round his shoulders and looked up to see Annabella looking down at him kindly.

“What is the matter, Pip?” she asked. “It is not like you to cry!”

Annabella looked so beautiful and so kind that Pip found himself pouring out all his troubles to her. She sat down beside him on the steps and listened, nodding her head now and again.

“So my father would not listen to you,” she said. “Well, he is very worried to-day, Pip, for it is a serious thing when performers suddenly fall ill in a circus. But see, I will listen to your noises, as you call them, and I will tell my father to give you a chance if they are good! You are a very clever little boy with animals, and I would be glad to keep you in my circus if I could.”

Pip wiped his eyes. He thought Annabella was one of the kindest people in the world. She smiled at him.

“Come along to the ring now,” she said. “There is no one there.”

So off they went. Jerry and Susy-Ann saw them disappearing into the big tent, and they did hope that Pip would do well! They waited outside, and heard all Pip’s extraordinary noises coming one after another!

And then out came Pip with Annabella, his face one big smile! Annabella was patting him on the back and saying, “It’s marvellous, Pip! Marvellous! You shall certainly go into the ring. People will love all your wonderful noises. You sound exactly like horses and birds and sheep and trains and cars!”

“Do you think I could go into the ring to-night?” asked Pip, eagerly.

“Well, I shouldn’t think so,” said Annabella. “You see, my father will have got other people in place of Juana and Grizzle, and there will be no room for you, but I promise I will tell him about you.”

Just then Mr. Phillipino was seen riding back on to the common, and his face was gloomy and stem. He jumped off his horse.

“No luck, Annabella!” he said. “Not a single person to be got for to-night!”

“Well, Father, let Pip try, then!” cried Annabella. “He’s marvellous! Do give him a chance!”


Well, after Mr. Phillipino had heard all that Annabella had to say about Pip’s wonderful noises, he stood and looked at the little boy for a long time.

He was just about to speak, when he heard a grunting noise, and turned round in surprise.

“That’s Grizzle!” he said. “Is he better then?”

But no Grizzle could be seen. And yet the ring-master could plainly hear the grunting. Jerry burst out laughing. He knew quite well it was Pip.

Mr. Phillipino suddenly grinned. “It is you, Pip!” he said. “You think you will make me give you a chance. Well, you shall have one! Annabella is never wrong; you shall go into the ring and do your best. You shall be Pip, the Boy-Animal!”

Pip let out a yell of joy. Susy-Ann jumped up and down in delight. Jerry grinned all over his freckled face.

“You will have to see that Pip has some sort of suit for to-night, Annabella,” said Mr. Phillipino. “Now, I must go to look at Grizzle. He seems no better at all, so Delia tells me.”

The children rushed to tell the good news to Mrs. Ronald. She was pouring out some black-currant tea for Juana, and they burst up the steps with such a noise that she jumped and poured some of the hot tea on to Juana’s leg. He leapt up with a yell.

“Now, now, all this yelling and shouting!” said Mrs. Ronald, crossly. “Children! Juana! Stop!”

“Well, stop boiling my leg with your tea!” said poor Juana, wiping his leg. The children danced round, all talking at the top of their voices.

“Be quiet, Pip; be quiet, Susy-Ann,” said Mrs. Ronald. “Jerry, what is all this excitement about?”

But when Jerry told her, Mrs. Ronald couldn’t help feeling excited too! “Dear me,” she said. “Dear me! This is a bit of news! So you are to go into the ring to-night, Pip! Well, well, well! We shall have to make you a suit very quickly!”

What an excitement there was after that! Poor Juana was quite left out. He lay in his bunk, wishing that he could join in all the talking, but his throat would not let him.

Annabella rode down to the shops to get some red satin and white velvet to make Pip a suit.

She was very clever with her fingers, and so was Mrs. Ronald.

Between them they cut out the suit and the white cloak for Pip. They measured the little boy, who could hardly keep still in his excitement. He kept practising his noises all the time till Mrs. Ronald got quite nervous.

“Pip! I don’t like cows and sheep in my caravan,” she said at last. “Nor do I like trains rushing through tunnels, and aeroplanes about to land on my head. Now, be quiet for a little while. Susy-Ann! Would you like to try and sew these golden stars on to Pip’s cloak for him?”

Susy-Ann was only too ready! She loved doing things for her beloved Pip. She thought the world of him.

Pip did not forget to go and see how poor Grizzle was getting on. He slipped into the cage and went up to him. Delia was sitting with him, looking very sad.

“He won’t take his medicine now,” she said. “He won’t open his mouth.”

Pip began to talk to the bear in his own grunt-language. Grizzle looked at the little boy and grunted back. Delia was delighted. “It’s the first time he has grunted to-day!” she said. “Oh, Pip, I do wish you could get him to take his medicine. I am sure he would feel better if he did.”

Pip took the bottle of medicine and took out the cork. He grunted to the bear, and pretended to drink some of the medicine. Then he grunted again. It seemed to Delia as if the little boy was really talking to the bear, telling him about the medicine.

Anyway, it was not very long before Grizzle took his medicine like a very good bear! He drank it all down, letting Pip tip the bottle down his big red throat. Then he grunted and shut his eyes.

“Let him sleep for a while, Delia,” said Pip. “Maybe he’ll feel better now.”

They went out of the cage and locked it. Delia was glad to hear that Pip was going to have his chance of going into the ring that night.

“Bad luck for me means good luck for you, Pip,” she said. “Well, make the most of it. I’m very glad for you.”

When Pip went back to the blue caravan he found Mrs. Ronald still very busy sewing away. Susy-Ann was helping her, pricking her finger every now and again, but not saying a word about it. Mrs. Ronald was pleased with her.

“Ah, there you are, Pip,” she said. “Just try on the trousers and tunic. They are tacked together. Susy-Ann, hand me the white cloak.”

Pip got into his red satin trousers and tunic. Goodness, he did feel grand! Susy-Ann clapped her hands when she saw him.

“Doesn’t he look big in long trousers?” she cried. “Oh, Pip, you look fine in your white velvet cloak too. I’ve only got three more golden stars to sew on it for you.”

Mr. Phillipino took Pip into the ring to show him exactly where to stand, and to make him practise his bows. “You must bow all round, as you have seen the others do,” he said. “Don’t leave out anyone, for the people love to see you facing them. Come out at once when I crack my whip, for it will then be someone else’s turn.”

Pip did exactly as he was told. He was very proud and tremendously excited. His knees shook a little when he thought of that evening, but he was quite determined to do everything really well.

The day went on, far too quickly for Annabella and Mrs. Ronald, who were so busy sewing Pip’s circus suit, and far too slowly for Jerry and Pip, who were simply longing for the evening.

At last, after tea, the suit was finished. My goodness, it was grand! There were trousers of red satin with gold braid down each side. There was a tight-fitting tunic with a gold collar and a gold belt. And a fine white velvet cloak that swung grandly from Pip’s shoulders, sewn with shining golden stars.

Jerry and Susy-Ann stood and looked at Pip. They felt quite shy of this grand person.

“You don’t look like Pip!” said Susy-Ann. “Oh, how fine you are! Oh, your golden stars do shine! Look, here are your long black boots!”

A boy arrived from the town at that moment with Pip’s new boots. They were like black riding-boots and came to his knee. He proudly put them on. Then he stamped about, pretending that he had a whip, and making a noise exactly as if he were cracking one like Mr. Phillipino!

Everyone came to admire Pip. Madame Clara thought he looked really beautiful, and wanted to hug him. But Mrs. Ronald wouldn’t let her.

“You’ll crush his new suit,” she said. “Really, Madame Clara, you either want to slap the children with a slipper, or hug them to bits!”

Mr. Phillipino’s whip cracked outside his caravan. It was the signal for the circus folk to go to the big tent ready for the show to begin. They all hurried off. Pip went with them, swinging his velvet cloak very proudly.

Susy-Ann was in her best blue silk frock, for she went into the ring most nights just to fetch out Mister Binks when he performed with the clowns. Jerry was to watch the show that night too, so he and Susy-Ann took their places in seats near the entrance to the ring.

Once again the trumpets blared. Once again the big tent shone brightly from the lights in the roof. Once again the crack of Mr. Phillipino’s whip was heard as all the circus folk got ready to line up for their circus parade before the show began properly. The band played, and in came all the circus performers.

Delia was not there, nor Grizzle. Juana was not there either. But Pip was there instead, walking proudly beside Tom Thumb and Jinny the giraffe. Round and round the ring went all the performers and the animals, bowing to the people, waving and calling.

“Look at that little boy!” said one person to another. “See, the one in red and white, with the gold stars shining on his cloak. He’s new. I wonder what he does!”

Everyone there was disappointed that Juana the sword-swallower and Delia and her bear were missing. Some of them called out to Mr. Phillipino.

“Hey! Where’s the bear? Hey! What’s happened to the sword-swallower?”

Mr. Phillipino took no notice. The time had not yet come for him to explain. In came the fine black horses with Annabella, and went through their graceful tricks and dances.

One by one the turns went on, and then Mr. Phillipino stepped again into the middle of the ring and cracked his whip for silence.

“Ladies and gentlemen,” he began, “we are sorry to have to tell you that Delia and her bear will not appear to-night. Grizzle is ill. And we are also sorry to tell you that Juana, the great and wonderful sword-swallower, has a bad throat, and it would be dangerous for him to perform to-night.”

“Oh!” groaned the listening people, most disappointed.

“Well, who have you got instead?” yelled someone. “Tell us that!”

“Ladies and gentlemen,” said Mr. Phillipino, once more, “I am happy to tell you that I have managed to get someone to take their place—someone with a throat as marvellous as Juana’s, though he does quite different things with it! Let me show you our little friend—Pip the Boy-Animal!”

He cracked his whip. That was the signal for Pip to come in. He was waiting just outside the great curtains beside the entrance to the ring. His knees shook. He was very nervous. Susy-Ann and Jerry were with him, for they had slipped out to wish him good luck.

“Go on, Pip, go on,” said Jerry, giving him a push. Pip took a deep breath. The curtains swung aside and he ran into the ring as Mr. Phillipino had told him.

And lo and behold, as soon as he was in the ring, with the sawdust under his feet, the glaring lights shining down on him, and the people clapping to welcome him, Pip felt a different boy! His knees no longer shook. He smiled. He waved! He bowed to everyone as gracefully as Juana always did.

Mr. Phillipino stayed in the ring with him, for he was not quite sure if the boy would be too nervous by himself. But he need not have worried.

“Ladies and gentlemen,” began Pip in a loud, clear voice that everyone could hear. “I am going to take you to a farmyard. You will hear all the animals and birds there talking to one another quite plainly!”

And then Pip began his wonderful farmyard noises! There wasn’t a sound to be heard from the listening people. Everyone leaned forward and listened to the little boy in the shining velvet cloak. Pip had got his chance at last!


All the circus folk pressed forward round the entrance to the ring, eager to hear what Pip was saying. They heard his little speech, and then they heard a farmyard performing in the ring!

Horses neighed to one another, sheep baaed to their lambs and the lambs bleated in reply, cocks crowed, hens clucked and cackled that they had laid eggs, pigs grunted. Then blackbirds whistled and sparrows chirped, ducks quacked, and turkeys gobbled.

The circus folk, some of whom had not heard Pip’s wonderful imitations, could not believe that it was the little boy who was making all these animal and bird noises. Terry and his little wife were so astonished that they almost went into the ring to make sure it was Pip and not real animals!

Cows mooed, donkeys brayed. Pip went on and on, turning first to one side of the ring and then to the other, so that everyone should hear him. Mr. Phillipino stayed quite still, watching the small boy, who looked very fine indeed in his new circus clothes. He was delighted with him.

When Pip did a talk between an angry cow and an obstinate donkey, the listening people clapped wildly. It sounded so real that they could hardly believe it all. Pip had to stop his noises, because there was so much clapping that nobody could possibly hear what he was doing!

Mr. Phillipino thought it was time for Pip to stop. He stepped forward and cracked his whip. This was the signal for the little boy to bow and run out. Pip obeyed the signal.

He swept his white star-sewn cloak around him and bowed low, first to one side of the ring and then to the other. He waved his hand and ran out.

Madame Clara caught hold of him as he ran through the curtains. “You are a marvel!” she cried. “How do you do it? I am proud of you, Pip!”

Susy-Ann hugged him, but before Jerry could say a word they all heard Mr. Phillipino’s whip cracking twice.

“Go back into the ring, Pip,” cried Jerry. “That is the signal for you to run back. The people want to see you again. Hurry!”

There was such a storm of clapping and stamping that Pip could hardly hear what Jerry said. But he ran back into the ring and bowed to left and right once more. The people would not let him go out; they clapped and roared till Mr. Phillipino stepped over to Pip and spoke in his ear.

“Can you do anything else? What about the train and aeroplane noises?”

Pip nodded. Mr. Phillipino held up his big hand for silence. Slowly the noise of clapping stopped, and the people listened.

“Ladies and gentlemen,” said Mr. Phillipino, “we thank you for the welcome you have given to our new performer. He will now imitate a few more noises for you.”

More clapping. Pip bowed. He was enjoying himself tremendously.

“Ladies and gentlemen,” he said in his loud, clear voice, “this time I shall not tell you what I am going to do. Perhaps you will be able to guess!”

Then he imitated the train noises that he knew so well, and the people shouted in delight. “A train! Do it again!”

But Pip went on to traffic noises, and, dear me, you might have thought the ring was full of buses, cars, and bicycles by the amount of churring and chugging and honking and ringing of bells there seemed to be! It was most extraordinary.

Mr. Phillipino, who had heard Pip before in a few imitations, was astonished that the small boy could make such loud sounds with his small throat. True, he had a very wide mouth, but he was only a small boy after all!

Then came the aeroplane imitation, and when Pip pointed up to the roof as if he were following a plane with his finger, everyone looked up too, quite certain there must be some aeroplane up there. But it was only Pip!

That was the end of Pip’s first performance in the ring. He bowed once or twice and ran out, followed by shouts and clappings and stampings of feet. He had been a wonderful success!

Terry the sharp-shooter went into the ring next with his lovely little wife, and soon the circus folk heard the crack-crack-crack of the pistol-shots. They crowded round Pip and shook hands with him and patted him on the back.

“You were fine!” said Delia. “I am so glad you got your chance, Pip.”

“Splendid!” said Jinks and Jenks, solemnly shaking hands with the excited boy. Susy-Ann hung on to his arm, very proud and pleased. Mister Binks, who was tied up nearby, ready for his turn with the clowns, pawed at the ground and tried to get to Pip too. Mrs. Ronald came up and kissed him.

“Juana will be pleased,” she said. “I am proud of you, Pip!”

Altogether it was a most exciting evening for Pip, and it was no wonder that he couldn’t get to sleep that night! He tossed and turned in his bunk, and lived over again all the happenings in the ring. Jerry and Susy-Ann were fast asleep.

Pip thought of all he had done. He wondered if perhaps he might do some imitations of lions and tigers, but he must go and see some and hear their voices, then he would get their roars really properly.

He opened his mouth and let out a soft roar. That would be a gentle tiger. He let out a louder roar. That would be a hungry tiger, and this next roar would be a very angry one that was pacing the cage to and fro. Such a roar then came from his throat that Susy-Ann and Jerry awoke in a terrible fright and sat up in their bunks trembling.

“Jerry! There’s a lion in our caravan,” said Susy-Ann. “I heard it!”

“It’s all right. It was only me,” said Pip. “I’m sorry. I forgot it was night-time. I say, you two, I’m going to do wonders with big animal-noises like lions and tigers roaring, and elephants and hippos and things like that. I shall be the most wonderful boy-imitator in the world. I shall . . .”

But what he was going to be the others never knew, for a very angry voice came in through the door of their caravan.

“Pip! What in the world do you think you are doing, making a noise like that in the middle of the night? You have wakened Juana, and he is angry. Another sound from you and you will be very sorry for yourself!”

The wonderful imitator became a frightened little boy afraid of a slapping. He snuggled down under the sheets, calling out, “Sorry, Aunt Mitzi.”

And then he fell asleep and did not wake till the morning. In fact he slept so soundly that the other two were up and out of the caravan before he stirred! Aunt Mitzi had told Susy-Ann to let Pip sleep if he could, for she knew he would be very tired after all the excitement of the night before.

The first thing that Pip did when he was dressed was to go and see if Grizzle was any better. He found Delia in the bear’s cage, feeding the great animal with spoonfuls of honey. Grizzle loved honey, and it was always a real treat to him.

“Oh! Grizzle looks better!” cried Pip, in delight, for he saw that the bear’s eyes were brighter, and that his fur did not look so rough.

“Yes,” said Delia, pleased. “Poor Grizzle! He has been very sick! I am sure that someone gave him something to eat that made him ill the other day. But to-day he eats his favourite honey, which he would not even touch yesterday, so I think he will soon be better.”

“Oooomph, oooomph,” said Grizzle to Pip.

“Ooooomph, oooomph,” grunted back Pip. The bear put out his great paw and Pip held it. He was very glad to see Grizzle looking better.

“Do you think you’ll be able to take him into the ring to-night, Delia?” he asked.

“Oh no,” said Delia. “Perhaps to-morrow, though, if he is better.”

Pip said good-bye and ran out of the cage. He had suddenly thought of something. Would Mr. Phillipino say that he must not do his turn any more, once Delia and Juana were ready to go back into the ring again? It would be a bitter disappointment if so!

He found that Juana, too, was much better, though his voice was still weak.

“He will be better in a few days,” said Aunt Mitzi. “He can eat bread and butter to-day. So he and Grizzle are both doing well!”

“Aunt Mitzi, do you suppose Mr. Phillipino will still let me go into the ring when Uncle Juana and Delia go back?” asked Pip.

“I shouldn’t think so,” said Aunt Mitzi. “There will not be time for you to do a turn when the others are in the ring each night too. You may be allowed to go in sometimes for a few minutes as a treat.”

But Aunt Mitzi was wrong. Mr. Phillipino sent for Pip that morning, and made the little boy sit down with him in his caravan. Annabella was there too.

“I was pleased with you last night, Pip,” said Mr. Phillipino. “You shall go into the ring each night until Delia and Juana are back. And very soon after that Terry and his wife will be leaving us to go to another circus, so if you would like it, you can take Terry’s place and do your noises in the ring.”

Pip stared at the ring-master in delight.

“Yes, sir, I should love to,” he said. “I’ve already thought of lots of other noises I can do. Does this mean, sir, that I and Susy-Ann can really stay on with you and not go to the Homes for Children? What about our lessons?”

“I will arrange all that,” said Mr. Phillipino. “Annabella will teach the three of you. She loves children and will be a good teacher. I will pay you for your turn in the ring also, and the money shall be given to Mrs. Ronald to pay for your food and clothes, and to save up for you so that you will have money of your own in the bank as you grow up.”

“Oh, thank you very much, sir,” said Pip, red with joy and delight. He was going to stay with the circus, and go into the ring, and earn money! Could anything be nicer?

“There is only one thing,” said Mr. Phillipino. “We have to get your father to agree to all this too. So I am sending him a long cable to Australia, and will see what he says. If he says no, we can do nothing. If he says yes, things will be all right for all of us!”

“Oh, I do hope he says yes!” cried Pip. He thanked Mr. Phillipino once again and then tore down the steps of the caravan to tell Susy-Ann, Jerry, Aunt Mitzi, and Uncle Juana all that kind Mr. Phillipino had said!


Jerry and Susy-Ann were very proud to hear all that the ring-master had said to Pip.

“Fancy you earning money!” cried Susy-Ann. “Isn’t it marvellous, Pip? Oh, I wonder if our father will say yes, we may stay on. I don’t see why he shouldn’t!”

“Nor do I,” said Pip. “There’s only one thing that’s a pity.”

“What’s that?” asked Jerry.

“Lessons!” said Pip. “I don’t want to have to bother about lessons! I can read. Susy-Ann can’t.”

“And I can’t read very well,” confessed Jerry. “And I’m no good at all at sums. I don’t know further than twice times.”

“Look! There’s Annabella waving to us,” said Susy-Ann. “She wants us.”

The three children ran to Annabella, who was looking quite serious.

“Well, children,” she said, “I hear that you are to have lessons now. And as you cannot go to school because the circus moves on all the time, I am to teach you. Now, if I do that, you must promise me to do your best and to be good.”

“Yes, Annabella,” said the three children.

“We will go down to the town this afternoon and buy some books and things,” said Annabella. “You, Pip, may be a famous man one day in the circus world, so you must certainly do your best at lessons. And you, Susy-Ann, want to help him all you can, don’t you?”

“Yes, I do,” said Susy-Ann.

“What about me?” asked Jerry. “I’m never likely to be much good at anything in the circus. I shall never be famous. I am just ordinary.”

“Well, if Pip becomes famous, he will want someone to manage his business for him,” said Annabella. “You see how I help my father, don’t you? I open his letters and answer them, I arrange things for him. Well, Jerry, maybe Pip will want you to help him some day like that! Then you will be glad you can read and write and do sums.”

“Oh, Jerry! Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we had a circus of our own some day and you could manage it for me?” cried Pip, his eyes shining. “I could be the ring-master, and I could make my noises, even though I could never ride like Mr. Phillipino. And we could find something for Susy-Ann to do!”

So it was three happy children who walked down to the town with Annabella that afternoon to buy school books, pencils, rubbers, pens, and reading books. They came back laden with a big parcel, and even Susy-Ann, who was sure she was not going to like lessons, was quite excited to think of the clean rubbers, the shining pencils, and the nice new books she would soon write in!

Annabella went to talk to Mrs. Ronald about the children.

“When would be the best time for them to do lessons?” she asked. “I thought I could come to their little caravan and teach them. What about ten o’clock in the morning?”

“Yes, that will do very well,” said Mrs. Ronald. “Their jobs are all done then. It is very kind of you, Annabella.”

“We will begin to-morrow,” said Annabella. So the next morning you should have seen how busy the three were arranging a table in their caravan for their lessons, and dragging in two extra chairs to sit on!

When Mrs. Ronald peeped in later on she found them all hard at work, with Annabella leaning over Susy-Ann, showing her how to make the letter S for her name.

“We’re getting on well!” said Annabella. “The next lesson is reading, and we are coming outside for it, because it is really very hot here.”

Once again things went on smoothly in the circus. Juana got better and went into the ring. Delia’s bear was quite all right by the next night, and Delia was able to perform with him too. Pip only went once more into the ring before the circus left its camping-place, but he was just as great a success again.

Lessons went well, for all three children tried very hard. Pip was not so good as Jerry, who worked very well indeed. Susy-Ann was behind the others, but she was younger. Annabella was pleased.

The time came all too soon for the circus to pack up again and go. This time there was a good-bye to be said. Terry the sharp-shooter and his little wife were to go on to another circus. They had been for a year with Mr. Phillipino, but now Terry’s brother needed him in his circus.

The last night before the camp moved there was a great party given after the show, so that everyone might say good-bye to Terry and his wife. The children were allowed to stay up for it and were very excited. An enormous camp-fire was lighted and the circus folk gathered round it.

Annabella brought out a guitar and played gay little tunes on it. Madame Clara sang wild songs to the tunes in a strange language that nobody understood. Delia’s bear came and danced for the company, and enjoyed himself immensely, though Delia would not let anyone give him titbits in case he got ill again.

The flames of the bonfire threw big black dancing shadows. Susy-Ann was cuddled on Uncle Juana’s knee, listening dreamily to Annabella’s guitar. She was very happy. Pip and Jerry were playing with Yanky and Doodle who had been allowed to join the party. It was all very gay and exciting.

Terry made a little speech. His wife bowed beside him at the finish. Everyone cheered. They were all fond of Terry and his beautiful little wife, and were sorry they were going. But circus life is always changing, always moving.

Then everyone sang songs, some sad, some merry, till the bonfire died down, and the big moon came up in the sky and hung like a lantern there. Susy-Ann fell asleep.

“Time for bed!” said Mr. Phillipino, getting up. “Ahhhhhhh! What’s this!”

He pulled at his coat, which usually had two long tails to it at the back, and alas for Mr. Phillipino, the two tails were gone!

“It’s Mister Binks!” cried Mrs. Ronald. “He was lying quietly behind you, Mr. Phillipino. He must have been eating your coat-tails all the time!”

Mister Phillipino turned round with a roar, but Mister Binks had disappeared as usual.

“Please, sir, take the money for a new coat out of my earnings when I go into the ring,” begged Pip, running up to the angry ring-master. But Annabella laughed, and patted her father on the shoulder.

“Now, now,” she said, “it is only your old coat. Your new one is hanging in the caravan. This one is nearly worn out!”

So it wasn’t too bad after all. Everyone went to their caravans, and Yanky and Doodle and Grizzle were locked safely into their cages. Susy-Ann was carried to her caravan and undressed, still asleep, by Mrs. Ronald. The two boys tumbled into their bunks tired out.

The next day the circus began to pack up to move once again. But this time there was not so much hurry as there were three or four days before it was due to open at its next show-place. So everyone went about moving in a very leisurely manner. Terry and his wife left first in their orange caravan. They shook hands with all the circus folk, and Terry’s wife cried because she was so sorry to leave them.

Then off they went down the road, waving to the camp. Pip felt sorry they were gone, but rather grand, too, for he was to take Terry’s place! Now, he could go into the ring every single night—now, he would really be one of the circus folk themselves! He would belong even more than Jerry belonged, because he would be in the ring, and dear old Jerry wouldn’t. Oh, Pip felt very grand indeed!

“No lessons to-day!” called Jerry, with a grin. “Ha, ha! A holiday, Pip!”

But it wasn’t a holiday, for Annabella suddenly appeared and said that all three were to take it in turns to sit in their caravan whilst it was on the road and do their reading.

“And I shall come and hear it sometime in the afternoon,” said Annabella.

“Well, I hope I’ve caught Snow-White by then,” said naughty Pip, in a solemn voice. “She was loose in our caravan this morning, the bad little mouse, and I couldn’t catch her.”

Annabella gave a scream. “What! One of those mice loose in your caravan! Then I shan’t come near it till the mouse is caught! You naughty boy, Pip!”

“That’s one way to get out of lessons!” said Pip to Jerry, with a grin. But all the same the three children did as they were told, for they knew that it was very good of Annabella to give up her time to teach them.

Soon the caravans, cages, and carts moved off the green common. Down the winding road they went, the horses’ hoofs clip-clopping, and the wheels creaking. It was a fine sight to see the long procession.

Jerry drove his caravan. Juana drove the one in front. Mister Binks trotted behind as usual, snorting with pleasure whenever he thought of how he had eaten the ring-master’s coat-tails. Pip and Susy-Ann sat inside their caravan with their books. Pip had to help Susy-Ann. Snowball peeped out of his sleeve and wondered if the paper would be good to nibble. All the other mice were safely in their cage. Snow-White had been caught. Pip meant to sell the mice soon. Then he could buy a fine present for Susy-Ann, who would soon be having a birthday.

On they jogged and on. They were used to the moves of the circus folk now.

“It seems as if we’ve belonged here all our lives now,” said Pip to Susy-Ann. “I wonder what our father will say when he gets Mr. Phillipino’s cable, don’t you, Susy-Ann?”

It was a great surprise to everyone when at last the answer came! Pip could hardly believe his ears when Mr. Phillipino read the answering cable to him!


One of the first things that Mr. Phillipino did when he came to any new camping-place was to send to the post office of the town and collect any letters that were waiting for him there.

So, when the circus arrived once more at its new show-place, Mr. Phillipino rode on his horse to the post office and went inside to ask for his letters.

A whole pile was waiting for him—not only his own letters, but two for Madame Clara, two for Mrs. Ronald, one for Mr. Jummy, three for Jinks and Jenks, and some birthday cards for Mr. Hola, who had a lot of little nephews and nieces who loved him and were proud of him and his wonderful chimpanzees.

“Are you Mr. Phillipino, sir?” asked the man at the post office.

“Yes,” said the ring-master, gathering up the pile of letters.

“Well, sir, there’s a cable for you from Australia,” said the man, and he handed it to Mr. Phillipino.

“Thanks,” said the ring-master, and he put it unopened into his pocket. He was too busy to bother with the letters or the cable at the moment. He had to ride back to the camp and settle them in. All his beautiful horses had to be seen to, and although Annabella always saw to this, Mr. Phillipino liked to be around too. So off he went with his letters, riding down the lanes until he came to the great field where the circus people were busy setting up their big tent, and pulling their caravans into a rough circle. Madame Clara as usual had put her caravan, which was now properly mended and repainted, away from the others, so that the screeches of her parrots might not disturb anyone.

When Mr. Phillipino got to the field he saw quite a commotion going on. One of the circus horses had been frightened by something and was galloping round the field in fear. Annabella was galloping after it on her own horse, calling to the children to get into their caravan till she had captured it. She was pleased when she saw her father.

“Call Star, call her!” she cried to her father. “She may hurt herself on that barbed wire over there if she tries to gallop over it.”

Mr. Phillipino whistled a curious whistle. All horses loved him and came to him willingly. Star had always been a nervous horse, but she adored the ring-master. Her ears, which she had laid flat back against her head, pricked up again when she heard the whistle.

Mr. Phillipino whistled again, and then Pip, quite without thinking, imitated the whistle. Star stopped in surprise. Two whistles—both the same—but from different places!

Mr. Phillipino was surprised to hear the whistle too. He thought it was an echo of his. He whistled again, and Pip copied it exactly. Star galloped over to the children’s caravan and stared at Pip. The little boy put out his hand and took hold of Star’s bridle. The horse stood by him, trembling, but quite calm.

“Was that you whistling my whistle, Pip?” asked the ring-master, half-cross, half-surprised.

“Yes, sir,” said Pip, going red. “I didn’t really mean to, but I just can’t help copying any curious noise I hear. I didn’t know the horse would come to me.”

“You are a strange boy,” said Mr. Phillipino. “One day I think you will do well in the circus world.”

“If only my father says I may stay!” said Pip, longingly.

That reminded Mr. Phillipino of the cable from Australia that he had in his pocket among his letters. He hurried to deliver the letters he had for the other circus folk, and then found Annabella, who was now in their caravan, cooking a meal.

“Annabella, here are my letters,” said Mr. Phillipino, flinging them down on the table. “See to them when you have time. I have a cable from Australia too. I expect it is from the father of those two children.”

“Well, Father, do open it,” said Annabella, putting some rashers of bacon into her hot pan. “I’m busy for a moment.”

Mr. Phillipino slit open the envelope. He stared at the cable. It was a long one. He stared at it for such a long time that Annabella looked round at him in surprise.

“What does it say?” she asked. Mr. Phillipino’s face had gone very red, and he was still staring at the cable.

“Annabella, a very strange thing has happened,” said Mr. Phillipino. “I can’t believe it!”

“Good gracious! Whatever is it?” said Annabella, taking her pan off the fire and going to her father. “Is it about the two children? Can’t they stay with us?”

“They must stay with us!” said Mr. Phillipino. “Annabella, they belong to us!”

“What do you mean?” asked Annabella, in astonishment, taking the cable from the ring-master’s hand. She read it and gave a cry of amazement. This is what she read:

“To Phillipino, Ring-master,—

“Your cable received. My wife was Fifinella Phillipino, a circus rider, probably a relation of yours. Pip’s full name is Phillipino, Pip for short. Shall be glad to have them brought up in a circus, as their mother always wanted to go back to circus life. Will send money to help keep them as soon as I can. Letter follows.”

Annabella read and re-read the cable as if she couldn’t believe it. She turned to her father.

“Father! Are these children really relations of ours?”

“Of course!” said Mr. Phillipino. “Annabella, you remember your Aunt Fifi, surely? She ran away to get married when she was only seventeen. She was my sister, my favourite one, and one of the most marvellous riders in the world. She could imitate animals just as cleverly as Pip can. And fancy Pip’s real name being Phillipino! Fifi always used to call me Pip, and she has called her boy after me.”

“It’s most extraordinary!” said Annabella, forgetting all about the fried bacon. She sat down and read the cable again.

“I didn’t hear from Fifi again after she ran away,” said Mr. Phillipino. “I only heard that she had died, and I was very upset. But I did not know where she had lived, nor even if she had any children. And now, here the children are—in my own circus—and one of them is going to be a real wonder! I always thought that golden-haired Susy-Ann reminded me of someone, and now I know who it is. She is very like Fifi was.”

“Well, Father, one thing is quite settled,” said Annabella, cheerfully. “And that is—nobody can make them go into any Children’s Homes now, or separate them—they are my little cousins—your own nephew and niece! They belong to us and to our circus. Their mother would want them to be here and live our life. We can look after them ourselves and bring them up.”

“How surprised they will be!” said the ring-master, getting up. “We must tell them, Annabella.”

So, leaving the bacon to get quite cold, the two ran down the caravan steps and went to Mrs. Ronald’s caravan. Outside sat Juana and Mitzi and Jerry and Pip and Susy-Ann, eating pineapple and cream. They were surprised to see Mr. Phillipino and Annabella.

“Will you have some pineapple?” asked Mrs. Ronald. “There is plenty left.”

“No, thank you,” said Mr. Phillipino, “I’ve come to tell you some surprising news.” He picked up golden-haired Susy-Ann and sat her on his knee, looking at her closely. Susy-Ann smiled at the big man, for she was very fond of him.

“Mitzi, these children both belong to the circus!” said Mr. Phillipino. “They are my sister Fifi’s children! You remember her? She ran away about nine years ago to marry somebody we had never heard of!”

Mr. and Mrs. Ronald stared in the greatest astonishment at the ring-master. They were so surprised at first that they couldn’t say a word. Mrs. Ronald put down the big tin of pineapple and stared from Pip to the ring-master.

“He’s like you,” she said. “And Susy-Ann is like Fifi. And, of course, Pip is short for Phillipino! Why, they are real circus children then! How glad their mother would be that they are here!”

“It’s all very strange,” said Annabella. “To think that they are my own little cousins! No wonder I was fond of them and wanted to teach them their lessons!”

Jerry gave such a whoop of joy that his mother jumped. “Hurrah! They’ll stay with us, then! I always thought they belonged!”

Susy-Ann did not really understand quite what all the fuss was about, but Pip understood. He went red with delight. So Mr. Phillipino, the great and kind Mr. Phillipino, was his very own uncle. What a perfectly lovely surprise!

“You take after your mother in those queer noises you make!” said the ring-master, pulling the little boy close to him. “Ah, Fifi could call the birds of the air right down to her hands with her whistling and fluting! She was a wonder! We were bitterly disappointed when she ran away and gave up her life in the circus.”

“Perhaps I can take her place,” said Pip, shyly. “I’ll do my very best, Mr. Phillipino.”

“Not Mister Phillipino!” said the ring-master. “Uncle Phillipino! I am the big Phillipino, and you are the small one. Yes, that is what you shall be called when you go into the ring—the Little Phillipino!”

Everybody was so excited and pleased that no one noticed wicked Mister Binks stealing round. He finished up the rest of the pineapple out of the big tin. He ate all the bread. He licked up all the butter.

And then Mr. Phillipino saw him and roared at him. “Ah, you! You wicked goat! I am not uncle to you, I am Mr. Phillipino the ring-master, and I will punish you well if you come round me and nibble my coat-tails again! See, Mitzi, he has eaten everything you put into the shade!”

Susy-Ann laughed. She knew by now that underneath the ring-master’s roaring voice and angry frown there was the kindest heart in the world.

“I’m glad you are my uncle,” she said. “Now we are safe, aren’t we?”

“You are!” said Mr. Phillipino, and he meant it.


The surprising news flew round the camp, and everybody came to say how glad they were that Pip and Susy-Ann were to stay for always. Some of the circus folk had known the children’s mother, and told them stories about her. Neither of the children remembered her, and they were very glad to know everything that the circus folk had to tell.

They were still to live with Mr. and Mrs. Ronald, for it was happier for all three children to live together in their little caravan. But each Sunday Pip and Susy-Ann were to have dinner with Mr. Phillipino and Annabella.

Not Snowball, please, Pip,” said Annabella. “I shouldn’t be able to eat a scrap of dinner if I thought that mouse was going to peep out of your sleeve at me any minute!”

So Jerry promised to look after Snowball on Sundays. Pip had given his friend two of the other mice, and Jerry now always had a mouse or two up his sleeve, much to Madame Clara’s annoyance, for if Jerry came to her caravan a mouse nearly always popped out of his sleeve to nibble the sunflower seeds that lay on the floor of Madame Clara’s caravan, scattered there by the parrots. Madame Clara always fled out of her caravan then, screaming as if a hundred tigers were after her!

Pip was feeling excited. Now, he was to go into the ring every night, for Terry and his wife had gone and there was room for him. He practised his noises hard every day, and got them more and more perfect. He remembered what Mr. Phillipino had said about his mother—that she had been able to whistle wild birds down to her, and he went out into the woods and fields and made friends with all the birds he could see. Soon he could make every bird within hearing fly down near to him, and he was glad.

The night came for the show to begin once more. Susy-Ann gave Mister Binks a bath, and made him as dazzling white as snow in winter. All Mr. Jummy’s elephants were clean, and their heavy skins well oiled. The chimpanzees had a bath, and splashed each other and Mr. Hola, so that he was as wet as they were.

“I might just as well have got into the bath, too, Susy-Ann!” he said to the little girl, who was watching the naughty chimpanzees. “Look how wet I am!”

Yanky sent a great scoop of water towards Susy-Ann. The little girl gave a scream and dodged to one side.

“Now, now, Yanky, that’s enough!” said Mr. Hola. “Sorry, Susy-Ann, if you’re wet. These two chimps are just full of tricks to-day. They are longing to get into the ring again and show off! They don’t like too long a holiday!”

None of the circus folk really liked a long holiday, only one or two days at most; but this time they had had nearly a week between one show and the next. This show was to be a big one, for it was held outside a great busy town, and Mr. Phillipino expected crowds of people.

The first night the big tent was quite crowded out. People wanted especially to see the two chimpanzees and Juana the sword-swallower and Jinny the giraffe. Big coloured pictures of them had been pasted up in the town for a week past.

“Soon, Pip, we will have a fine picture of you done too,” said Annabella, as she took the little boy a grand velvet hat she had made him.

“We will have you and my father painted together—the big Phillipino and the Little Phillipino. He will be proud of you, Pip. Do your best in the show here, for it is your chance to make a name for yourself.”

Pip nodded his head. The little boy was very happy. He had all he wanted now—an uncle of his own—a kind and beautiful cousin—a job he loved—and a chance to show everyone what he could do! And there was Jerry, too—the best friend anyone could want. Jerry, who had smuggled Pip and Susy-Ann into the circus all those weeks ago. It was all because of Jerry that these wonderful things had happened!

“I’ll certainly make Jerry the manager of my circus one day, when I’m grown-up and rich and have a circus of my own!” said Pip to Susy-Ann. And Susy-Ann quite agreed.

There was the sound of a whip cracking outside like a pistol-shot. It was Mr. Phillipino giving the signal for the circus folk to go to the big tent ready to begin. People were streaming in, taking their seats, laughing, chattering, longing for the circus to start. Pip set out to the tent with Susy-Ann. He was proud. He was the Little Phillipino!

Susy-Ann danced by his side. She was in a new frock, made by Annabella. It was like a fairy’s, with a very short skirt, very full, and sewn all over it were shiny spangles that shone like fire. She had silver stockings and silver wings, and everyone thought she really did look like a fairy.

Annabella meant to teach her to ride a pony and to stand on it as it cantered round the ring. Then she would look just like a fairy flying along on a horse’s back!

“Your mother used to do that,” Annabella told the little girl. “You will be able to do it too!”

But all that Susy-Ann did so far was to run into the ring to fetch out Mister Binks, whose antics with the three clowns always sent everyone into fits of laughter!

And now the trumpets blared once again—tan-tan-tara, tan-tan-tara! The circus folk crowded round the entrance to the ring, ready to go in. The band struck up a gay tune.

The circus began! In went everyone in their turn, and the watching people clapped the circus parade, and laughed at the clowns tumbling about among the other performers.

Who is this, riding proudly with Mr. Phillipino and Annabella in their beautiful carriage? Why, it is Pip—and Susy-Ann too! Yes, they belong to the circus properly now, and the four Phillipinos are to ride together each night in the carriage. How proud the two children are!

“I only wish dear old Jerry was with us in this lovely carriage too,” whispers Susy-Ann to Pip.

“There he is, waving to us!” says Pip, and he waves back to Jerry, who is standing up in his seat at the back, shouting and cheering his two friends, very proud of them indeed.

And now one by one the circus turns begin. Madame Clara brings in her talking parrots, and they sing and talk, screeching every now and again with delight at the clappings they get. The three clowns come in, tumbling and cart-wheeling, shouting funny jokes to one another, and falling over everything in sight. Jinny and Tom Thumb make the people cheer and stamp in delight.

Mr. Jummy’s elephants are loudly cheered, and Mr. Jummy is pleased. Rag trumpets loudly, and mischievously blows Mr. Jummy’s hat right off his head. Tag solemnly picks it up and puts it on the keeper’s head again. Everybody laughs.

Juana does his marvellous tricks, and the watching people are frightened when they see him swallow his long sword. They hardly dare to move! Surely he will hurt himself! But see, he is bowing and smiling, quite safe, his long sword in his hand!

Then the chimpanzees do all their funny tricks, grinning and waving to the people. They are a great success, and Mr. Hola has to bring them back into the ring two or three times to bow once more to the cheering people.

The clowns run in again to play their game of leapfrog, and Mister Binks paws the ground outside impatiently, for he knows it is his turn, too, to go and butt them. Susy-Ann dances about like a fairy, for she, too, wants to go in when her turn comes, and bow to the clapping people, and take out Mister Binks.

And now it is the turn of the Little Phillipino! In he runs, bowing gracefully to everyone. Mr. Phillipino watches him proudly. He is glad that Pip is his own nephew and has his name too.

And there, in the sawdusty ring, stands Pip, the Little Phillipino, making his wonderful noises, whilst we all listen in amazement. That was a donkey braying! And that is a horse, and that is a field of sheep and lambs baaing to one another! How do you do it, Pip?

Well, we must leave him there, bowing and smiling, proud and happy to know that he, like all the others, really belongs to the circus. Perhaps you will go to see him one day when the circus comes to your town.

Give him a clap, won’t you, and wish good luck to Pip, the Little Phillipino!


Mis-spelled words and printer errors have been fixed.

Inconsistency in hyphenation has been retained.

[The end of Boys' and Girls' Circus Book by Enid Blyton]