Beatrix Potter Books

Online Versions

Home Main Menu Order Support About Search

Share page  

Previous Contents Next

Pigling Bland went on alone dejectedly; he came to cross-roads and a sign-post--"To Market Town, 5 miles," "Over the Hills, 4 miles," "To Pettitoes Farm, 3 miles."
Pigling Bland was shocked, there was little hope of sleeping in Market Town, and to-morrow was the hiring fair; it was deplorable to think how much time had been wasted by the frivolity of Alexander.
He glanced wistfully along the road towards the hills, and then set off walking obediently the other way, buttoning up his coat against the rain. He had never wanted to go; and the idea of standing all by himself in a crowded market, to be stared at, pushed, and hired by some big strange farmer was very disagreeable--
"I wish I could have a little garden and grow potatoes," said Pigling Bland.
He put his cold hand in his pocket and felt his paper, he put his other hand in his other pocket and felt another paper--Alexander's! Pigling squealed; then ran back frantically, hoping to overtake Alexander and the policeman.
He took a wrong turn--several wrong turns, and was quite lost.
It grew dark, the wind whistled, the trees creaked and groaned.
Pigling Bland became frightened and cried "Wee, wee, wee! I can't find my way home!"
After an hour's wandering he got out of the wood; the moon shone through the clouds, and Pigling Bland saw a country that was new to him.
The road crossed a moor; below was a wide valley with a river twinkling in the moonlight, and beyond, in misty distance, lay the hills.
He saw a small wooden hut, made his way to it, and crept inside--"I am afraid it IS a hen house, but what can I do?" said Pigling Bland, wet and cold and quite tired out.
"Bacon and eggs, bacon and eggs!" clucked a hen on a perch.
"Trap, trap, trap! cackle, cackle, cackle!" scolded the disturbed cockerel. "To market, to market! jiggetty jig!" clucked a broody white