Written by Johnny Gruelle
Thumbkins ran beneath the bushes and down the tiny path until he came to where Tommy Grasshopper sat upon a blade of grass swinging in the breeze.
“Have you seen Mrs. Thumbkins, Tommy Grasshopper?” Thumbkins called.
“I have been asleep,” replied Tommy Grasshopper, “And I haven’t seen her!”
“Oh dear! Oh dear!” cried Thumbkins. “She has not been home all day!”
“Perhaps she went over to see Grandpa Tobackyworm!” suggested Tommy Grasshopper, as he flicked his wings and made the blade of grass swing up and down.
So Thumbkins thanked Tommy Grasshopper and ran over to Grandpa Tobacyworm’s house.
Grandpa Tobackyworm was sitting upon a blade of grass, swinging in the breeze and smoking his old clay pipe.
“Oh, Grandpa Tobackyworm! Have you seen Mrs. Thumbkins? She has not been at home all day and I can not find her!” cried Thumbkins.
“Yes, I saw her early this morning going down the path with her acorn basket,” said Grandpa Tobackyworm as he blew a few rings of smoke in the air. “Perhaps she has gone to the Katydid grocery store to buy something,” Grandpa Tobackyworm added as he bounced up and down on his blade of grass.
So Thumbkins thanked Grandpa Tobackyworm and went on down the tiny path.
“Hello, Thumbkins!” cried a cheery voice as Thumbkins ran under a bunch of flowers. “Where are you going in such a hurry?”
Thumbkins saw Billy Bumblebee sitting upon one of the flowers, swinging in the breeze.
“Mrs. Thumbkins has not been home all day!” said Thumbkins. “And I can not find her anywhere!”
“HUMMMM!” replied Billy Bumblebee. “Let me think! HUMMMM!” This was his way of thinking very hard.
“Perhaps she has gone over to see Grandpa Tobackyworm, Mr Thumbkins!”
“No!” replied Thumbkins, “I went there, and also over to the Katydid store, but she was not there!”
“Suppose you climb upon my back, Thumbkins, and let me help you find her!” said Billy Bumblebee, as he buzzed his wings, making the flower sway up and down. So Thumbkins climbed up the flower stalk and took a seat upon Billy Bumblebee’s back.
“Let us fly way up in the air so that we may look down over all the country!” said Billy Bumblebee, as he made his wings whirr and climbed high in the air.
Billy Bumblebee and Thumbkins looked over the country carefully, but they could not see Mrs. Thumbkins anywhere.
Finally Billy’s sharp eyes discovered something shiny down by the side of the pond, so they flew down towards it. It was a new tin can house. The door was closed.
Thumbkins alighted from Billy Bumblebee’s back and knocked at the door.
“GRUMP! GRUMP!” said a deep voice from inside the tin can house. Billy Bumblebee peeped through a chink in a window, and saw a hoppy-toad with his mouth full of pancakes.
So Thumbkins picked up a pebble and knocked louder.
Old Man Hoppy-toad came to the door with a pancake in each hand and another large one in his mouth. “GRUMP! GRUMP!” he said.
“Where is Mrs. Thumbkins?” Billy Bee demanded, as he buzzed around Old Man Hoppy-toad’s head.
“I don’t know!” said Old Man Hoppy-toad when he had swallowed the pancake.
“Yes, you do!” Thumbkins cried as he caught Old Man Hoppy-toad’s hand. “Who made those pancakes for you?”
Billy Bumblebee buzzed closer to Old Man Hoppy-toad’s head and Old Man Hoppy-toad blinked his big round eyes and finally said, “She is locked up in the kitchen!”
So Thumbkins ran to the kitchen and came out with Mrs. Thumbkins. Old Man Hoppy-toad had locked her in the kitchen so she would bake lots and lots of pancakes for him.
Thumbkins was so glad to see Mrs. Thumbkins he came very near crying. And Billy Bumblebee said to Old Man Hoppy-toad, “Now you must leave our neighborhood, for we do not permit anyone to bother anyone else in the Town of Tinythings.”
So Old Man Hoppy-toad had to pack up all his things in a red handkerchief and hustle out of town.
And Billy Bumblebee buzzed right around his head as Old Man Hoppy-toad went down the path “Lickity split-Hoppity hop!” and never once looked behind him.
Thumbkins and Mrs. Thumbkins went back home, and when Billy Bumblebee returned and told them he had made Old Man Hoppy-toad go ‘way down to the river they knew they would never be troubled with him again.
Mrs. Thumbkins said she had fried pancakes all day but she was not too tired to fry more. So she made a lot of pancakes, while Billy Bumblebee flew home and returned with a bucket of honey, and they had so many pancakes Mrs. Thumbkins asked Billy Bumblebee if he would fly around and invite all the neighbors in to help eat them.
Tommy Grasshopper, Grandpa Tobackyworm, and all the other friends of the Thumbkins came and ate the lovely pancakes, covered with the delicious honey.
And, after eating as much as they could, everybody caught hold of hands and danced until late in the night, for the Katydid orchestra was there to play the music.