“What are you doing, Chester?” asked Suzie.
“I’m collecting acorns,” said Chester. “Look at how many I have.”
Suzie looked into the cap that her brother was holding out.
“You sure do have lots,” said Suzie. “Are you going to be able to eat all of them?”
“Eat them!” exclaimed Chester. “I don’t think so. I’m collecting them.”
“Chester!” screamed Suzie. “Chipmunks eat acorns. They don’t collect them.”
“I don’t think that you’d want me to eat all of them,” said Chester. “I think we may need them for winter.”
“Yes,” said Suzie. “You are right. We will need them for this winter.”
“Suzie, are you alright?” asked Chester, noticing that his sister looked very pale.
“I really don’t feel well,” said Suzie.
“Why don’t you go back up to the den and lie down,” said Chester.
“I was hoping that I could start collecting my acorns, too,” said Suzie.
“Don’t you worry about that,” said Chester. “We have lots of time before winter sets in. Right now, your health is more important.”
Chester followed Suzie up to the den. He made sure that she was settled into bed before he went back outside. A few hours later, Chester came back to the den. He had collected quite a few acorns that afternoon. He stored them safely away and then went inside to check on Suzie. Suzie was having a fitful sleep. Chester noticed that she was soaking wet from sweat and that she was shaking like a leaf.
“Suzie!” exclaimed Chester, shaking his sister. “Suzie, wake up. We’ve got to get you out of those wet clothes before you catch pneumonia.”
Slowly, Suzie woke up.
“Chester,” said Suzie, weakly. “What are you doing here?”
“It’s too dark outside now,” said Chester. “I can’t collect anymore acorns until morning.”
“You mean I’ve been sleeping all afternoon,” said Suzie.
“Yes,” said Chester. “How are you feeling now?”
“I still feel weak,” said Suzie.
“Well, you do look a little better,” said Chester. “By the way, you’d better change your pajamas. Your sheets are wet from sweat.”
Suzie changed her pajamas while Chester fixed them each some acorn soup. Suzie barely touched her soup.
“Suzie, you’d better try to eat a little more,” said Chester. “You have to build your strength back up.”
“I can’t eat anymore Chester,” said Suzie. “I still don’t feel well.”
Suzie went and laid back down again. The next morning, Chester got out of bed. It was raining outside and he noticed that Suzie was still sleeping.
“I’ll go outside and gather some more acorns,” thought Chester to himself. “With Suzie being sick, I’m going to have to collect twice as many.”
Chester bundled up in his rain gear and went outside. Chester managed to collect quite a few acorns that morning because the wind had knocked them onto the ground, where it was easier for him to get them. It rained for most of that next week, but Chester did not let that stop him. He managed to collect enough acorns for both him and Suzie.
“Chester!” exclaimed Suzie, when he came into the den one evening, sopping wet. “You are going to end up being sick, too.”
“I’m glad to see that you are finally better,” said Chester, ignoring his sister’s concern.
“Yes,” said Suzie. “I sure had been sick for the last few days. I am feeling much better now though.”
“That’s good,” said Chester. “Now, I need someone to take care of me.”
“What are you talking about?” asked Suzie.
Chester passed out onto the floor.
“Chester!” screamed Suzie. “Chester, are you alright!”
Chester was very sick for the next two weeks. Thankfully, Suzie was well enough to nurse him back to health.
“Suzie, we’ve got to collect acorns,” said Chester, when he was starting to feel better.
“No we don’t,” said Suzie.
“Well, we’ll starve if we don’t,” said Chester.
“No we won’t,” said Suzie.
“You didn’t do it all by yourself, did you?” asked Chester.
“No, I didn’t have to,” said Suzie. “You did it all.”
“When?” asked Chester.
“I guess you must have collected them all when I was sick,” said Suzie. “That is how you got so sick, Chester. You were taking care of me and collecting acorns for that whole week in the rain!”
“At least we aren’t going to starve this winter,” said Chester.
“No, we won’t,” said Suzie. “Thank you big brother, thank you!”
Moral of this Story: