© 2011, by Charles S. Weinblatt
For Fran, Brian, Lauren and Joel
Chapter 1: Leaving Home
It was a sunny October day at the small pond. The wind was strong and nippy; reminding all of the ducks that winter was coming soon. Louie, a young Mallard duck, paced back and forth next to his brother, Sam. Louie was angry.
“Why do we have to stay here, next to this stupid little pond?” he asked Sam. “Nothing ever happens here. I hate it! This pond is so boring. I want to go out and see the world!” The strong wind ruffled his brown feathers, making him appear even angrier.
“But Louie, Mother told us never to leave the pond,” said Sam. He wished that mother was nearby to help him. But, she had gone out looking for food. Sam stretched his long neck high into the air, looking for Mother. He could not see her.
“Mother said that the world outside is dangerous,” added Sam. Sam knew that is was wrong to leave. He knew that whenever Louie got a new idea in his head, he was not to be stopped. Louie was very stubborn. Still, thought Sam, it might be interesting to go to new places and see new things. He had heard many wonderful stories about the outside world from older ducks that had traveled far and wide. Each time they asked Mother if they could go out into the world, she shook her head and sternly told them that it was not safe for little ducks to wander away.
Suddenly, Louie stopped walking and stared into Sam’s eyes. “Come on Sam. We’re leaving!” he said. Sam’s heart jumped into his throat. He always followed Louie. No matter where Louie went, Sam followed. Still, he knew that this time it was wrong. Sam turned and looked desperately for Mother. She was still nowhere to be seen.