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"Shhhhhhhh!" Jamie whispered. The babies looked up in surprise, but didn't say a word. Mittens began to sniff the ground, trying to smell what she could no longer hear.
Suddenly, a bird hidden not far from the mouse's nest took flight, climbing into the air just in front of Mitten's face. Although off balance, Mittens jumped up and swatted at the bird with her paw, just missing its tail. Flying low, the bird flapped and flittered across the yard away from the house, with Mittens in close pursuit. Jamie sighed relief, then slipped down beside the nest.
"Where's your Mom and Dad," Jamie asked the babies. The babies looked at each other, but didn't answer. "What's the matter, cat got your tongue?"
Fredrick thought a moment, his eyes darting back and forth, then he said slowly, "We're not supposed to talk to strangers." "Yeah," chimed in the littlest mouse.
"Well, of course not. But I'm not a stranger, not really. I mean, I did warn you about the cat, didn't I?"
Fredrick's eyes moved faster as he thought, but Emily made his decision for him. "Mom and Dad went to find some food. They've been gone an awfully long time." "And we're hungry," added the dirty looking mouse. "Yeah," cried the littlest mouse plaintively.
"Maybe I could find them for you," Jamie offered. "Where did they go?"
"That way," said the four mice said at once. Each pointed in a different direction, then they began a heated argument among themselves. Jamie shook her head in frustration.
"Never mind. I'll look around while you wait here." Jamie left the arguing little mice and began to search for clues.