Umbrella War
Early Reader
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from my early reader collection, "Toby Stories"
Mary Ciotkowski




"It is time for bed," said Father.

"I can not go to bed," said Toby.

"You are in your pajamas," said Father.

"I am," said Toby.

"You have washed your face and brushed your teeth," said Father.

"Yes, I have," said Toby.

"And it is late," said Father.

"Yes," said Toby, "it is."

"Are you sick?" asked Father.

"No," said Toby, "but I can not go to bed."

"Why not?" asked Father.

"Because," said Toby.

"That is not an answer," said Father.

"I can not go to bed," said Toby, "because I have the Scaries."

"Oh," said Father. "I think we can take care of that."

"But the scaries are horrible!" cried Toby. "They are awful! They are SCARY!"

"Yes," said Father, "I know."

"I feel scared of the dark," said Toby. "And noises. And shapes. And maybe there is SOMETHING under my bed!"

"Well," said Father, "do you know what I do when I get the Scaries?"

"You can not get the Scaries," said Toby. "You are a Father."

"But I do," said Father.

"Honest?" said Toby.

"Yes," said Father. "And when I get the Scaries, I get into bed."

Toby got into bed.

"And I snuggle under the covers," said Father.

Toby snuggled under the covers.

"And I think about sunshine and flannel shirts and pancakes with syrup," said Father.

Toby closed his eyes. He thought about warm sunshine and his plaid flannel shirt and Mother's hot pancakes on cold winter mornings.

"Father," said Toby, "my Scaries went away."

"I knew they would," said Father. He kissed Toby good night. He turned out the light and went to the door.

"Father," said Toby, "if you get the Scaries, I am here."

Father smiled. "I know," he said.


Click here to read another early reader story!