Lurky Finds a Friend
Lurky was feeling unusually happy one day not long ago. Murky Dismal was busy concocting some Gunky Muck in his lab, and Lurky was free to do what he wanted. He'd finished all of his gloomy chores and was skipping (rather clumsily) through a field of flowers in Rainbow Land.
Suddenly the sound of happy voices drifted across the meadow. Lurky saw that the Color Kids and the sprites were having a picnic. He stood and looked longingly at them, hoping that they'd ask him to join them.
Lurky Suddenly felt very sad. He hung his head and trudged through the flowers. "No one will ever like me," he sighed. The flowers were so tall that they came all the way up to Lurky's chin and tickled him. He giggled, and then stopped in surprise. SOMETHING had giggled back!
Turning around slowly, Lurky looked all around the meadow. There was no one in sight - just flowers bending in the breeze. He shrugged and walked on. Then he stopped again. "Something's following me! I just know it!" Lurky whimpered. He could hear the soft rustle of the grass behind him as he walked. It stopped when he stopped. And it wasn't the wind - it was FEET!
"It's a thing!" Lurky gasped. "And it's after me!" Lurky walked faster. The thing walked faster too. "It's after me!" Lurky cried. "Help!" And he ran out of the flowers, stumbling into the color kids' picnic.
Red Butler stood up, not knowing what to make of this image of Lurky - so scared and shaken. "What thing? What's after you?" The other color kids huddled together to protect each other.
"The thing!" Lurky screamed. "The horrible ugly Thing with big eyes and pointed teeth...and, and CLAWS, and it's coming to eat me up..." He suddenly broke off and stared at the color kids. They were LAUGHING! He couldn't believe it! Lurky wheeled around and his mouth dropped in surprise. The Thing that had followed Lurky, and was sitting right now at his feet, was no Thing at all, but a chubby little puppy with all the colors of the rainbow in it's fur. The puppy jumped into Lurky's arms and licked his big nose.
"Now cut that out," Lurky said, embarassed about having been so scared. The color kids crowded around the two of them.
"Aren't you Lucky?" squealed Patty O'Green. "To have a puppy of your very own! What a nice friend to have!"
"A friend!" Lurky brightened. "I have a friend!" Suddenly he looked confused. He shook his head sadly, then handed the puppy to Red Butler. "Here," he said, "you take him. You guys can give him a much better home in Rainbow Land than I could give him in the Pits. He needs sunshine and colors. He needs laughter and fresh air."
"But, Lurky," Shy Violet said sorrowfully, "the puppy followed YOU. He's really YOUR friend."
Lurky just shook his head again. "No. He's better off with Rainbow Brite. Just..." Then Lurky grinned a tiny grin that made his big sad face light up. "Just tell the little fellow stories about me so he doesn't forget me. Will you?"
"We will," LaLa said firmly, "and we'll all love him and make sure he is happy."
"Let's call him Puppy Brite!" Patty O'Green chimed in. "He can gaurd Rainbow Land. he'll be our watchdog!"
"Yeah!" yelled the other Color Kids.
"Yeah!" Lurky yelled, not thinking that his friend Puppy Brite would be gaurding the castle against his boss, Murky Dismal!
"Let's show our new friend to Rainbow Brite." Red Butler suggested. And they all started out for the Color Castle. Lurky waved goodbye, and Puppy Brite looked back and barked farewell. Lurky smiled a big smile this time, the biggest ever, because he knew his friend would be happy in the colorful world of Rainbow Land.