Tumtups & Pom Pom

In a departure from the seriousness of my usual posts, I thought I’d share with you the beginnings of a childrens’ story I’ve been writing.  I made it up over a few bedtimes with the girls after we had got bored of reading the same old Mr Man books, great as they are.  I’ll give you a snippet from the start – let me know what you think.

It’s great giving priority to time rather than money.

CHAPTER 1: Tumtups and the Shop with No Name

Tumtups was restless.  School was done for the day and the sun was still high in the summer sky,  so she decided to drag her little sister Pom Pom out of the house and walk to town.  On the way, they went via Alex’s house.  He needed no persuading that a jaunt outdoors beat watching telly, and came along with them.  Ethan took a little more coaxing, as usual.  Once he is comfortable on the sofa he is difficult to shift.  It is just because he is a little scared of the world, really.

So it was that the little group of four were walking along the street in town.  They took a slightly different route than normal, as they got distracted on the way down by the idea of a game of Pooh Sticks (Pom Pom won, using the old technique of throwing the stick under the bridge).

“That’s odd” exclaimed a bored sounding Ethan.  They all looked up and saw the object of Ethan’s uncharacteristically lengthy speech.  There was a shop looking down at them, one that they’d not noticed before.  The strange thing about it was that it didn’t have a name.  It was still an open shop, seemed to be clearly selling things, but it just didn’t have a name.  It seemed more somehow than the sign just not being there – somehow it just didn’t have a name, and the kids got an unsettling feeling that it felt sad about it.  They didn’t say anything to each other about this of course – they didn’t want to appear stupid.

Ever the intrepid explorer, Tumtups allowed her curiosity to hold sway over the unsettling feeling of the nameless shop.  She peeked in through the large shop window, pushing her long, straw coloured hair from her face to get a good look.

“I can’t see anything in there.  There is someone serving, but there doesn’t seem to be anything on sale.  The shop-keeper looks like he ought to be a jolly fellow, but he just looks a little sad, standing there alone behind the counter.  Shall we go in?”

“Oh, no” stammered Ethan.

“Well, I’m not sure” Alex announced decisively.

Pom Pom didn’t say anything.

Tumtups just shrugged her shoulders, and went in through the tall shop doorway.  Even the sound of the bell ringing as the door opened sounded forlorn.

“Hello, Mr Shopkeeper.  My name is Tumtups” she said bravely.  Pom Pom trotted in behind her, with the others sneaking part way in, trying not to be seen.

“Hello, Tumtups.  Pleased to meet you” replied the jolly-but-not shopkeeper.  “I used to have a name, but it’s gone now, just like the shop.  You see, the shop is a magic shop.  But it’s broken – everytime a magician comes in, something magically disappears.  First it was all of the interesting magical nick-nacks, which was bad enough.  But when they were all gone, our names started to go.”

….

I’ll leave it there for now.  Hope it’s left you wanting more.

John Bell

Ordinary Bloke

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