William Meets Mr. Romford.
William is in the street. On the corner of the street he sees a man with a basket in his hands. It is Mr. Romford, Ethel’s friend. Mr. Romford comes up to William.
“Are you going home, William?”
“Yes,” says William.
“Will you take this to your sister? It is a present for Ethel. I want to give her this present for her birthday. But you must not open the basket, William. A very valuable white cat is in the basket. If you open it, the cat will scratch you and run away.”
William takes the basket. “All right,” he says.
“Now, William, you must not forget what I tell you,” says Mr. Romford again. “You must not open the basket. The cat is rather wild, you know, it can bite you.”
William Meets Ginger.
William is walking down the street. He has the basket in his hand and the cat is scratching and mewing inside it. Soon he meets his friend Ginger. When Ginger comes up to William, William asks him: “What do you think I have here, Ginger?”
“I don’t know.”
“It’s a present for my sister, Ethel. Mr. Romford is giving this present to her for her birthday. It is a beautiful white cat!” says William.
“Let’s have a look at it,” says Ginger.
“No, no,” says William.
“Please, William, let’s look at It,” Ginger asks.
“All right, Ginger, look at it. It’s such a gentle animal. Oh, yes! Very!” says William.
Ginger cautiously opens the basket. Then he quickly shuts it again, and puts his finger in his mouth.
“Oh!” he cries with his finger in his mouth.
The White Cat Runs Away.
“Oh, Ginger,” says William, “the cat is wild, it will bite you. Please don’t open the basket again.”
Ginger says, “It is not
a big scratch. Let’s have a look at it again,” Ginger opens the basket very cautiously. A white ball jumps out of the basket, scratches William on the face, nearly scratches Ginger’s eyes out, and then jumps over the nearest wall.
“Well,” says William, “what are you going to do now,* Ginger?”
“Who? I?” asks Ginger.
“Yes, you. Please tell me now how you will get another valuable white cat. And, please, tell me what to do. Must I go home with the basket and say that I have no cat in it? Well, you let the cat out and you must catch it again.”
The Boys Try to Catch The Cat.
“Well, what can I do now?” says Ginger. “I don’t know where the cat is. I…”
But at this time, the white ball jumps over the wall again and runs down the street. William takes up the basket and runs after it. “Come on!”* He shouts as he runs. “Come on! Catch it! Catch it!”
They run down the street after the white ball – first the cat, then William, Then Ginger. They run through a garden and frighten the gardener. They run in and out of a house, first the cat, then William, then Ginger. The cat jumps on a wall. William and Ginger run after the cat. The cat falls into some dirty water, but when William and Ginger want to catch it and put it into the basket, it runs away again! It is not a white ball now, it is a dirty grey ball!
The Cat with a Broken Ear*.
Suddenly when they run round a corner, they see a cat with a broken ear, who is sitting in the street. The cat is washing its face. The dirty grey ball runs at it…!
“Get it now!” William shouts. “Get it!”
Ginger takes the basket and runs up to the cats. The cats are fighting and scratching and mewing. Ginger runs round them and then puts the basket over the grey ball.