Chapter 22: In which another Christopher Robin comes to the forest, and we….
“You know it’s bad luck to see the bride before the wedding Christopher.” Diane teased me.
“It only counts if it’s after midnight, now come on. We’re meeting them at this bridge.” Christopher Robin and Diane Silvereye arrived at the wooden bridge which crossed the lazy river, and lifted her onto the highest wooden railing.
“Who are we meeting?” Diane asked.
“You’ll see in just a moment. They probably stopped by to see some other friends on the way over. You might meet them later.” Christopher Robin leaned over the edge of the bridge and looked down at sticks passing under the bridge.
“It seems odd to be meeting them now.” Janet commented. “Do you not bring these friends round much?”
“Well, I bring them around to certain people, but not everyone understands about friends like this. So it’s only the right people who get to meet them.” Christopher said.
“And you had to be sure that I was the right person that you waited until the day before our wedding?” Diane asked.
“Yes. It’s rather important.” Christopher said.
“I’ll be on my best behavior.” Diane assured him, giving him a peck on the cheek. Encouraged by this Christopher walked over to the edge of the bridge. He picked up a toy bear stuffed with sawdust, and a smaller pig-like doll that seemed to be made in a similar manner. He set them down on the bridge next to each other, and walked back to stand next to Diane.
Diane was confused. The dolls looked familiar, but they were so old she couldn’t tell what they were supposed to be. Christopher looked nervous as he walked back, like he wasn’t sure if the bridge might fall out from under him at any moment. She hadn’t seem him like this since the first date. He hadn’t even looked like this when he had asked her to marry him.
Christopher turned to face the two dolls, and tried his best to smile and wave.
“Hello Pooh, hello Piglet. Nice day for a game of pooh sticks isn’t it?” Oh, they were a Winnie the Pooh doll, and a Piglet doll. It couldn’t be. Could it? They had always joked about his name being the same one from the book, and the dolls did look old enough.
Christopher Robin adopted first a low rumbly voice. He was starting to sweat. “Hello Christopher Robin, it is a lovely day. The creek is in a friendly sort of mood. Just the right sort of mood for pooh sticks.” Christopher now switched to a hi squeaky voice. “Yes Christopher robin, a most lovely sort of day indeed. We met owl on the way over and he was just telling us what a grand day for pooh sticks.”
Christopher glanced nervously at Diane, and she looked first from him, and then to the dolls. It was her turn to speak. She kicked her legs nervously against the bridge and waved back to them. Unsure how to proceed.
“Hello Pooh and Piglet.”
“Hello Diane.” Christopher robin responded in a low squeaky voice. Well, mostly low and squeaky. His voice cracked at the beginning of the word Diane. It had been a while since Christopher and Diane had a awkward moment
Then a breeze passed through. It was not a strong breeze. Diane barely felt it, but it was just enough to pick up the ears on the two animals and make them twitch around a bit. Then, suddenly, Diane understood what to do.
She hopped off the bridge smiling, and went over to shake the hand of the Pooh doll.
“Oh I’m sorry for being awkward Pooh. It’s been a frightfully exciting day. Can you tell me what’s all this about Pooh sticks?” She heard Christopher Robin take a breath behind her to respond, but she didn’t let him. In her best rumbly voice Diane responded.
“Oh you’ll love it Diane. Me and Christopher Robin play all the time. Eyeore’s the best, but I invented it right on this very bridge.”
“Did you now Pooh?” Diane asked Pooh in her regular voice.
“Oh yes Diane. It was on a day like this that I was wondering about carrying some fir cones. Here there are just a few over there.” Diane then picked up the doll and went over to grab a few fir cones and put them in the dolls hands.
“And I stumbled and watched them splash into the stream. I was sad because they were such nice fir cones. Then, then what happened next Piglet? I’ve got a bit of fluff in my brain just now.”
Christopher piped up in his squeaky voice.
“Then we played Pooh sticks Pooh. Here, let’s show Diane how to play.” Piglet then dashed off into the woods to grab some fir cones to show Christopher Robin’s new friend.
Pooh and Piglet then stood by the side of the bridge and counted to three before dropping the fir cones in. They explained to Diane that sticks worked better, but fir cones would do just fine for now.
Diane cheered eagerly as Piglet’s cone came out first. Piglet was a small sort of animal that didn’t get to win many games, so it was good that he had this little game to himself. All four of them then went about collecting sticks and throwing them into the creek to see whose would come out first.
They played many games until the sun started to sink, and Piglet had to go pick some haycorns for dinner.
“Pooh, would you come with me and Diane for a moment?” Christopher asked Pooh.
“Of course.” Pooh told Christopher Robin. The three of them then walked to the enchanted spot at the top of the forest where you could never tell if there were 67 pine trees or 68. They sat down in a familiar space, and looked out at the trees as the sun set.
“Pooh you remember the last time we sat here?” Christopher Robin asked.
“Yes Christopher Robin. I told you that if you lived to be 100. I wanted to live to be 100 minus 1 day so that I would never have to live a day without you.”
“Well now Pooh.” Christopher Robin said. “Now you’re going to have to live be to 100 minus 2, because Diane is going to live to be 100, and I can’t live a day without her.”