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By Majorie Hill

“Breakfast,” Mama called. “I need to get the children’s attention.”
“I can do that,” Daddy said. Mama folded her arms. He headed into the mudroom off the kitchen, floor to ceiling cabinets on two walls. One cabinet door slammed, then another.
“Well. I found it.” Daddy pulled a peculiar-shaped horn from the top shelf.
“What is that…?” Daddy stepped to the back door, took a deep breath, and blew the horn. Mama covered her ears. “Really, Jonathan. In the house?” She heard running feet. In a matter of minutes, the children stood at their places around the table.
“Thank you. I think,” Mama added, her ears ringing.
“I’d forgotten about this.” He held the horn for all to see. “Dad’s trusty fox horn–called Uncle Jay and me home every evening. The sound can pierce the thickest of walls. But, this is not a toy. Must be handled in the proper way.”
After breakfast, Daddy helped the kids clean the yard. A heavy rainstorm had scattered small limbs and debris. Baby Anna received praise for every twig she picked up.
“Hey,” Bubba said. “One of the limbs on the pear tree is twisted.” He walked over, hand outstretched, to give it a yank when Daddy stopped him.
“Hold on, son. Take a closer look.” Daddy smiled, shook his head. “Ben, you’re something, always surprising me.” As the kids peered at the limb, it snapped back into place, propelling the four kids into the air–slingshot fashion. Bubba, Janie, Billy, and even Baby Anna.
Daddy looked at the pear tree. Ben stood there, a grin on his face.
“Really? All four? Even Baby Anna?”
“Things are never as they seem.” Ben nodded. “And what do you have in your hand?”
“The fox horn,” Daddy said, as he lifted it high.

To be continued.