The Clockwork Mouse's Tail
Once a dear little clockwork mouse called Clicky came to live in Noddy's street. Noddy liked him very much. He ran up and down all day long, visiting here and visiting there, chattering to everyone in his squeaky little voice.
And then one day he came to Noddy looking very scared indeed. "Noddy," he said. "Please help me."
"What's the matter?" asked Noddy.
"Well, Dilly Duck is being very very unkind to me," said Clicky. "Every time she sees me, she waddles after me and tries to pick off my tail."
"Dilly Duck does that?" said Noddy, in surprise. "But she's a very kind toy duck. I can't believe it. If I see her doing such a thing I shall be very cross with her."
Well, the very next day, when Noddy was driving along in his car, he saw Clicky the mouse scampering down the street, squealing, and Dilly Duck after him, waddling at top speed.
Noddy stopped his car at one. He got out. "Dilly Duck!" he called, sternly. "How dare you chase the little clockwork mouse and peck his tail."
Dilly Duck stopped at once, and looked at little Noddy. "I'm not chasing Clicky," she said. "I'm chasing a worm -- a nice long wriggly worm!"
"But that's not a work, that's Clicky's rubber tail!" said Noddy.
"Goodness me -- is it really?" said Dilly Duck, peering down at it. "No -- look, it's a worm, it's wriggling!" And she gave it a peck. Clicky squealed and ran to Noddy.
"There! She did it again! One day she'll peck my tail right off and eat it. Smack her, Noddy. Take her to Mr. Plod the policeman. Lock her up. Horrid Dilly Duck!"
"Now, you must both come with me," said Noddy. "I'm going to buy each of you something that will stop Dilly Duck from thinking your tail is a worm, and chasing it every time she sees you. Come along!"
Well, first he took them to a little shop kept by Mrs. Wooden Doll, who sold ribbons and pins and socks and buttons and things like that.
"I want a nice long piece of bright red ribbon," he said to Mrs. Wooden Doll, so she cut them some from a little red roll. Noddy took it and tied it round the clockwork mouse's tail, and made a fine big bow, right at the end of it.
"Doesn't my tail look grand?" said Clicky, pleased, and he twitched it so that the red bow jumped gaily about. "My tail thinks it must be going to a party!"
"Now, Dilly Duck, you'll not think Clicky's tail is a worm again," said Noddy, "because worms don't wear ribbons."
"Well -- I might!" said Dilly Duck, peering at the lively tail. "I'm very short-sighted, you know."
"Yes, I know," said Noddy. "And that's why I'm going to buy you something too! Come along!"
He took Dilly Duck to the shop that sold eye-glasses, and he bought her a perfectly beautiful pair. She was very pleased.
"Don't I look GRAND!" she said, staring all round, with the glasses perched on her beak. "Oh, thank you, Noddy? I'll never think Clicky's tail is a worm again."
Clever little Noddy. No wonder his head nodded very fast indeed when he drove off again in his car!