Then she added: “I can see you are puzzled by the loaves on the floor, well, haven’t you heard the song Bread of Heaven?” Pip hadn’t but at that point he could suddenly hear what sounded like a full choir singing “Bread of heaven, bread of heaven, feed them till they want no more, want no more.”
The song faded out just as suddenly as it had begun and Pip was left thinking that although that explained what all the rabbits lived on, it did not explain how the food got there. “I see,” he said, “but how does it get here?”
“Why, from Heaven of course,” came the answer. It was then that Matt the Hat jumped down from the shelf he was on and said in a squeaky voice: “Let me show you where it is from.” With that the little man ran to the huge open bay windows at the other end of the room, which was where the light flooded in.
Pip followed him and found that the windows served as doors as he stepped out on to a lawn of a well-tended garden. There were borders full of the most glorious flowers of all the colours of the rainbow, a rose garden and tall trees that cast their shadows.
“This is where it comes from every day,” said Matt the Hat. “It comes down from the sky above and is left as a special gift on the grassy lawns.” Saying this he bade goodbye and the little man went back inside the house.
Pip thought it was a very beautiful garden but was still wondering how the bread actually got there. Once again the Great Mother had clearly been reading his mind and he heard her say: “An angel brings it down. Haven’t you heard about the manna in the Bible that God fed the Israelites with? It is a bit like that. It is a divine gift.”
“Yes,” replied Pip, “I have heard about that story, but I am still confused. I am wondering how it gets into the house where all the rabbits are, or do they have to come out and get it?”
The Great Mother went on to explain that it was the Hedgehog’s job to collect the loaves of bread. He managed to get them up the path and into the room by pushing them along with his little snout. The bread came to no harm this way, and any crumbs that fell off the birds came down and feasted on.
Hedgehogs always go out at night and so it was here. The Hedgehog in question went out as soon as it got dark and spent the hours of darkness seeking out slugs and snails and other hedgehog food but on his way back he always came upon the bread that had been left on the lawn. He knew what his duty was and pushed it along and over the ground until it was back in the room where the rabbits were waiting for it. The Angel who brought it had always gone by the time he found the loaves so no one really knew what she looked like but it was believed that she was radiantly beautiful.
Now Pip, as already mentioned in this story, had always wanted to be an explorer and he realised he was actually exploring now. But it wasn’t how he had seen himself though. This wasn’t the sort of adventure he had dreamed of but an adventure it was all the same. The garden looked wonderful but he wanted to know what else was in the house. After all it was where this strange experience had all began and he was wondering how he was ever going to get home again, and what would his mother and family would be thinking when they found out he had gone?
Pip made his way back into the room but as soon as he stepped inside he saw that everything had changed. The rabbits, Matt the Hat and the Hedgehog were all back on the shelves but now a spiral staircase came down into the centre of the room and the door he had first come into the place by had somehow mysteriously vanished.
“What’s up the stairs?” Pip asked, in the hope someone in the room would tell him. “It is different for everyone that goes up there,” Matt the Hat answered. “You'll have to go there to find out,” he added.
To be continued...
Copyright © 2012 Steve Andrews. All Rights Reserved.