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Blackberry Bun's Journal: Chapter 24
Quote:Chapter 24: Little Cherry

At the next day after the trip to Pearis, I went to Blueberry Muffin's house to ask if they wanted to go to Pearis again to look for Strawberry, whom I assumed to be still there.

"Apple Dumplin' not want," Apple said, which surprised me a bit.

"Oh, why is that?" I asked.

"Apple Dumplin' play here. Tomorrow go," she replied, which I could clearly understand.

"Tomorrow then?" Blueberry asked.

"Yeah. See you tomorrow then," I said, and I left the place.

Even though it had been settled, what I had seen at the previous night still worried me. Strawberry couldn't drive a car, and I had seen her driving a bus. Not to mention the man who had been chasing her. Because I was very curious, I decided to go to Pearis again on my own.

Right after arriving home, I took my backpack and got onboard Blackbird. I then turned its engine on, set the destination, and spoke the usual keyword. "Hit it, Blackbird!"

The flight went without any trouble, and 30 minutes later Blackbird arrived in Pearis. I then switched it into manual control and piloted it to land on the lake where I had parked it at the previous day. After completing the landing, I put Speak All on my head, got off Blackbird, and put the vehicle into invisibility. Like in the previous day, some people stared with confused face, but I ignored them and walked away.

While walking towards Chez Crepes, where I expected Strawberry to be, I noticed a bus parked nearby as the bus I had seen at the previous night because the man who had chased the bus was standing right next to it drinking a cup of coffee. I then approached the man.

"Hello, sir," I greeted.

"Good day, how can I help?" he replied.

"Well, I'm curious about what happened last night," I said. "I saw you chasing this bus."

"Oh, that... Two kids accidentally made my bus run while I was sitting at a nearby cafe having a cup of coffee," he replied. "That's why now I have my coffee right here. I don't want it to happen again."

"Oh, but I heard you yelling ``Stop! Thief!'' that time," I said.

"I was surprised and panicked. But when I found out that they were kids, I then understood," he said.

"Did anything bad happen to them?" I asked.

"No, they found the brake at the right time," he replied.

"Glad to hear that," I said.

"Are they your friends?" he asked.

"Umm, yes," I said.

"One of them gave me money for damage, but they only broke the gear shift stick. The amount she gave was too much. Maybe I can ask you to return this to her?" he said, taking some money from his pocket and giving it to me.

"Oh, okay," I said, accepting the money.

"Well, it's time to work again. I better get going," The man said, looking at his watch. "Do you want me to take you to her place?"

"Hmm, no, I'll walk myself. Thanks," I replied.

"Okay, then see you later, kid," he said, getting on his bus, and then the bus went away.

With the information I had just obtained, I had no reason to stay in Pearis for any longer. I then decided to go home immediately and let Strawberry have her good time with her new friend for that day. While walking back to where I had parked Blackbird, Someone called me from behind.

"Hey, Blackberry!" the voice I recognized as Cherry called.

"Oh, hi, Cherry!" I replied, turning around to see her.

"Where Blackberry friends?" she asked.

"They are home. I come alone today," I replied. "And I'm going back home now."

"Why so fast?" she asked.

"I'll come again tomorrow. Don't worry," I replied.

"Cherry can go to Blackberry home?" she asked, which kinda surprised me.

"Uh, well, my house is... far away," I said.

"Cherry can walk far," she said.

"No, I mean, umm..." I said, running out of words.

"Blackberry not like Cherry?" she asked.

"Of course it's not like that. It's just that..." I said, pausing for a moment. I doubted on granting her wish because like how I felt about Apple, Cherry was still too little to do a long trip. However, like before, pity defeated it. "Alright then, come with me."

"Thank you!" she said, clapping her hands in excitement. Then I brought her with me to the place I had parked Blackbird.

"Wait a moment..." I said, digging through my pocket to find Blackbird's remote.

"Okay," she replied as I found the remote. I then put Blackbird out of its invisibility, which then surprised her. "What this?"

"This is Blackbird. Now do you still want to come to my house?" I asked.

"Cherry want," she replied.

"Then get inside, otherwise we won't get there at all," I said. She then got inside and sat on the left back seat as I sat on the pilot seat.

"This car? Or this plane?" she asked as I turned the engine on and set the destination.

"I can say... plane. Hit it, Blackbird!" I replied, and Blackbird departed to Strawberryland.

"Aaaa!" she shouted, being pressed by the force of acceleration.

"Hold on! It will pass!" I told her, and soon the acceleration stopped.

"Cherry surprised," she said.

"It's fine, don't worry. We will arrive in 30 minutes," I said.

"Where Blackberry home?" she asked.

"A place called Strawberryland," I answered.

"Strawberryland?" she said. "Many friends?"

"Yes, there are a lot of friends there. You have met Blueberry Muffin, right. She really loves books and she has a lot of them in her house," I said.

"More friends?" she asked.

"Yes. There's also this Angel Cake. She is..." I replied and ended up telling her everything about every friends I knew. Even when Blackbird arrived in Strawberryland, I was not finished yet.

"More friends?" she kept asking.

"It's better to meet them yourself. We're here," I replied, noticing that Blackbird had stopped right above Strawberryland. "Switch to manual."

While piloting Blackbird manually towards my house, I noticed a group of friends, who were Raspberry, Orange, Huck, Ginger, Apple, and Angel, playing ball in the outfield. I then thought it would be better to land there so that Cherry could meet them soon, and i decided so. I then piloted Blackbird towards the group and landed next to them. I could notice their confused face because they hadn't ever seen Blackbird yet, but then I got off.

"Hi, everyone," I greeted them.

"Hi, Blackberry!" Raspberry greeted back. "See? I told you that it must have been him!"

"I thought so too, but that is not the flying car I remember," Orange said.

"So you've made a new flying car, huh Blackberry Bun? What's the difference, huh Blackberry Bun?" Ginger asked. "And what's with that thing on your head, huh Blackberry Bun?"

"Well, we can save that for later. Let me introduce you all to a new friend," I said.

"A new friend? Who? Where?" Huck asked.

"Come here, Cherry!" I said towards Blackbird, and Cherry came out from it.

"Cherry!" Apple said.

"Aww, she's so cute!" Angel commented.

"Cherry not understand," Cherry said, which put everyone else besides me into a confused face.

"Huh? What did she say?" Orange asked.

"I don't understand," Raspberry said.

"Oh, I forgot..." I said, taking Speak All from my head and then putting it on Cherry's head. "There. Now introduce yourself, Cherry."

"Hi, everyone. Me Cherry Cuddler," Cherry said.

"Hi, Cherry. I'm Angel Cake," Angel said.

"The name's Ginger Snap. Like in snap!" Ginger said, snapping her finger.

"I'm Huckleberry Pie," Huck said.

"I'm Orange Blossom," Orange said.

"Raspberry Torte," Raspberry said.

"Cherry know Apple Dumplin'" Apple said.

"Where do you come from?" Angel asked.

"Pearis," Cherry answered.

"Pearis? The place Strawberry is going to?" Orange asked.

"Certainly," I replied, then I told them all about my trip with Blueberry and Apple and how we had met Cherry for the first time. After I was done telling, all of us began to have a fun time playing together. The wonderful time lasted for several hours until Cherry began to look tired and drowsy.

"Cherry tired," she said, yawning.

"Huh? But there are still a lot of time before bedtime," Huck said, looking at the bright blue sky.

"In Pearis it's almost bedtime," I said, looking at my watch. "Come, Cherry. I'll take you home."

"We meet again?" Cherry asked.

"Yes, of course," Raspberry said.

"Let's play again someday," Huck said.

"Come here, Cherry. Let me hug you first before you go," Angel said, offering open arms.

"Cherry love hug," Cherry said, approaching Angel and then the two of them had a big hug.

Cherry then got onboard Blackbird and I followed as well. She waved her hand to the kids and they did the same to her, saying proper goodbye as I closed Blackbird's door. Soon, Blackbird departed to Pearis leaving the kids on the outfield of Strawberryland gazing at the bright blue sky.

Half an hour later we arrived in Pearis, and indeed it was already dark over there. I got off Blackbird expecting Cherry to follow, but she didn't. I then had a bad feeling and took a look at the back seat, and indeed the feeling was right. Cherry fell asleep on the seat, and looking at her peaceful face I couldn't make it to wake her up. I then carefully took Speak All from her head and put it on my head. Then I carefully put her on my back and carried her on it.

I intended to somehow find Cherry's house and carry her all the way there, although I still didn't know how. I remembered her saying that her house was close, so I then decided to ask people around if they knew about Cherry and her home. Just as I started to walk away from Blackbird, someone called from behind.

"Hey, kid!" the voice I recognized as the dog catcher called.

"Oh, good evening, sir," I replied, turning around.

"I see that you are indeed a visitor like I thought," he said, looking at Blackbird which I had forgotten to put invisibility on.

"Yeah, I come from a far away place," I replied. "Its name is Strawberryland."

"Strawberryland?!" he said with surprised face.

"You know it?" I asked.

"Well, you see, I have a twin brother and he works there as a ticket collector on trains," he replied. "Anyway, what happened to Little Cherry?"

"Oh, you actually know her?" I asked.

"Almost every people around here know her as Little Cherry. Everyday she walks around and greets every single person she meets," he answered.

"Oh, that's good to hear. She visited Strawberryland and fell asleep on the way back here. Now I'm looking for her house so I can carry her there," I said.

"I see. Then I'll take you there myself," he said.

"Thank you, sir!" I said.

The dog catcher then escorted me all the way to Cherry's house, which was not much different than Chez Crepes in terms of size. It was indeed close from the place I had parked Blackbird at.

"Does she live alone here?" I asked as we stood right in front of her house.

"Yes," he replied. "But with so many friends she has around, I can't say that she lives alone."

"I see..." I said.

"Let's go in. She welcomes anyone to come so she never locks the door," he said, opening the front door.

"Isn't it dangerous?" I asked. I thought that it was possible for someone as mean as Licorice Whip or Purple Pie Man to exist in the city, looking at the amount of people living in it.

"Many people think so too and tried to advise her, but well..." he replied. "She is too trusting when it comes to this."

"Oh, I see," I said.

We then went all the way to Cherry's bedroom, which in my opinion was nice and cozy. I then carefully put her on the bed there and covered her with the blanket on it. I took one last look on her cute and peaceful face and then the two of us quietly left the bedroom and the house as well.

"Thank you for the help, sir," I said, closing the front door.

"It was no problem," he replied. "By the way, the poodle found its owner."

"That's good to hear," I said as both of us started to walk back to my Blackbird.

"The owner is the girl who owns Chez Crepes," he said. "Oh, and I saw the girl in strawberry hat with her too,"

"I see. I'll come again tomorrow to visit her," I said.

Later we arrived at the place where I had parked Blackbird. I then got onboard and turned the engine on, but before closing the door I said my farewell to the dog catcher.

"Bye for now, sir. Once again thanks for your help," I said.

"You're welcome, kid. And say hello to my brother for me if you meet him someday," he said.

I nodded as a reply, and then I closed Blackbird's door. After setting the destination and speaking the usual keyword, Blackbird departed to Strawberryland, leaving the dog catcher gazing at the night sky and waving his hand.

30 minutes later I arrived back in Strawberryland. I saw that the same kids were still playing in the outfield. I then landed next to them and got off.

"She's now asleep in her house," I said.

"I sure hope to meet her again," Orange said.

"Yeah, she's very nice," Huck said.

"She's so cute and cheerful! And hugging her felt so nice!" Angel said.

"You can say that again," Raspberry said.

"By the way, Blackberry. You haven't answered my question, am I right? I bet this new flying car has something special the other car doesn't, am I right again? What is it, huh Blackberry Bun?" Ginger asked.

"Well, alright. This is Blackbird. It is much faster than Falcon and can travel in much longer distance," I replied, looking towards Blackbird. "However, there are many things which Falcon can do while Blackbird can't."

"Really? What are those things, huh Blackberry Bun?" she asked again, and I replied telling her the same things I had told Blueberry at the day before. The rest of the day passed without anything special.

At the next day, as I had promised, I went back to Pearis with Blueberry and Apple. On the way of the flight, I told Blueberry about the bus chase which happened to Strawberry, and the money I had to return to Crepes Suzette. After we arrived I landed Blackbird on the usual spot, and then the three of us walked towards Chez Crepes. However, while we were getting close, at a distance we saw Strawberry's balloon floating up leaving the city.

"Binoculars!" I said, and my backpack gave me the item which I used to take a closer look at the balloon. Indeed the passengers were Strawberry and her pets, although I noticed Strawberry wearing a different outfit.

"I think we are a little too late," Blueberry said.

"Late," Apple said.

"Let's go there anyway. We haven't seen the new friend, right?" I said.

"You're right. Let's go there," Blueberry said.

"Apple want see new friend," Apple said.

The three of us continued walking until we arrived at Chez Crepes. We noticed one mannequin in the display wearing Strawberry's outfit and then we went inside. There was a girl looking away from us, seeming not to notice us entering. The girl wore Strawberry's outfit, but because of her long pink hair I could notice that she was not Strawberry.

"Strawberry Shortcake? Is that you?" Blueberry said, seeming not to notice the difference. The girl then looked at us.

"Good day! 'ow can I 'elp you?" she said.

"Oh, you're not Strawberry," Blueberry said.

"No. I'm Crepes Suzette. Strawbelly S'ortcake iz my friend and ze 'az gone 'ome," she said.

"Is my Speak All not functioning well, or is she trying to speak in our language? It's kinda hard to understand her," I whispered to Blueberry.

"She's trying to speak in our language," Blueberry said.

"I see," I said, then I put Speak All off from my head.

"We are friends of Strawberry too. I'm Blueberry Muffin," Blueberry said to Crepes. "Nice to meet you, Crepes."

"Apple Dumplin' is Strawberry sister," Apple said.

"I'm Blackberry Bun," I said. "Oh, before I forget. Please take this," I continued, giving her the money from the bus driver.

"What iz zese money?" Crepes asked.

"The one you gave to the bus driver. I met him yesterday, and he said it was too much so he asked me to return this," I answered.

"O' I zee. T'ankz," she said, accepting the money.

"So, are you coming to the festival?" I asked.

"Feztival? W'at feztival?" she asked, pausing for a brief moment. "Oh, Strawbelly's friendz'ip feztival! I zure will!"

"That's good to hear," I said.

"But not now! You zee, t'ere iz a fas'ion contezt t'morrow and I'm going to be t'ere!" she said. "After t'at I will write 'er a letter and t'en I'll come!"

"I see. Then I wish you luck on the contest," I said.

"Merci!" she said. "T'at means t'ank you!"

Soon, the three of us left Chez Crepes. There was not much left to do because we had walked around town two days before, so at first we intended to go home. However, I soon remembered something.

"By the way, how about visiting Cherry's house?" I asked.

"That's absoloo-tely a great idea!" Blueberry said.

"Where Cherry house?" Apple asked.

"It's close from Blackbird like she has said," I replied, putting Speak All back on my head.

"Then let's go there," Blueberry said, and then we walked towards Cherry's house.

The trip towards Cherry's house didn't take long. Soon we arrived in front of her house, and I knocked on the door. We waited for a moment but there was no answer. I knocked the door once again, but like before there was no answer at all. I then tried opening the door, but it was locked.

"It's locked..." I said. "That's weird."

"Probably she's walking around town like before," Blueberry said.

"No. I was told that she never locks her door," I replied. "I have a bad feeling... Vision!"

My backpack then gave me the device I had asked for, and then I replaced my glasses with it. Using the device, I observed the inside of Cherry's house. At first I only saw empty rooms, but once I got to see Cherry's living room I got surprised. I saw a man whose face was covered in cloth and shades digging through all shelves, cabinets, and drawers in the house. In the same room I saw Cherry sitting on the floor leaning to the wall. Her arms and legs were tied up and her mouth was gagged with a cloth.

"Oh no. There's a thief inside, and he has taken Cherry hostage," I said.

"What?!" Blueberry said, surprised.

"Call the police, quickly!" I said, taking Replicator and copying Speak All to Blueberry's head.

"What about you?" she asked as the copy of Speak All materialized on her head.

"I will go inside to make sure Cherry will be fine," I said, taking Blind Spot and putting it on my shirt.

"Okay, be careful," she said, and then she left with Apple in a hurry.

I then used Key Master to open the door quietly. Once I got inside I closed and locked the door again, and then I quietly walked to the living room. When I got there the thief was still in there searching for things to steal. I had no idea about how to buy time so the police would come before the thief escaped or harmed Cherry any further.

While thinking, I got careless and bumped on a small shelf, resulting the fall of some things which had been put on it. The thief got alarmed and looked towards the place I was standing on. Of course he didn't see me because Blind Spot kept me invisible.

"Who's there?!" he shoutes, and I kept myself silent.

Because there was no answer, the thief then continued searching. I still got no idea at all, so for then I decided to approach Cherry and calm her down, because she seemed very afraid. I then quietly kneeled next to her and started whispering.

"Cherry..." I whispered.

"Mmm?" Cherry mumbled, looking around.

"It's me. Blackberry Bun," I whispered. "Don't worry, Cherry. I'm here to keep you safe. Just calm down, okay?"

"Mmm..." Cherry mumbled, nodding. Her face no longer showed any fright.

"Hey! Who are you talking to?!" the thief suddenly asked.

"Mmmm!" Cherry mumbled, shaking her head.

"Don't say you're talking with a... ghost!? I'm afraid of ghost," he said, starting to show signs of fear.

"Mmm," Cherry mumbled and shook her head again. Then the thief continued his search.

What had just happened gave me an idea. I then took Telekinator and used it to lift a small vase and put it again quickly so it made a noise. The thief noticed the sound and looked at the vase. I then lifted the vase and put it down once again. The thief started to show greater signs of fear.

"G-g-ghost?" he said, trembling. Then I lifted more things with both telekinator and my own hand, and I also shook some furniture in the room. Seeing all those seemed to frighten him so greatly that he became speechless and didn't move at all.

"D-d-don't come near me!" he said, trembling greatly. Another idea came to my mind and I put it into practice immediately.

"I'm the guardian of this house! You have trespassed into my home, and you will be punished!" I shouted with heavy voice.

"N-n-no! Please no!" he begged, running away towards the front door. I followed him and saw him trying to open the door I had locked. He was so afraid that he didn't notice the key of the door hanging in the keyhole.

"What punishment should I give you for breaking in?" I shouted with heavy voice again.

"No! Please don't! I... I have learned my lesson! No more breaking into a house! I promise!" he said, leaning to the door and trembling. I then heard a sound of siren coming close.

"Then turn yourself in to the police outside!" I shouted.

"O-okay! I will!" he said, calming down.

He then opened the door and turn himself in to the police Blueberry had called. One policeman immediately went inside after the thief had confessed to have a hostage in the house. In the living room he saw Cherry still tied up and gagged there, and immediately released her.

"Are you okay, Little Cherry?" he asked.

"Cherry afraid..." Cherry said, hugging the policeman.

"It's okay, Little Cherry. It's over now," he said. "Next time please lock the door and don't open it for someone you don't know okay?"

"Cherry promise..." Cherry said.

After everything had been over and the policemen had left, there were only Cherry, Blueberry, and Apple left inside the house. I then took Blind Spot off from my shirt and threw it back into my backpack.

"I'm glad we were here at the right time," I said.

"Thank you, all," Cherry said. "Cherry promise Cherry lock door."

"That's good to hear," I said.

All of us then spent some fun time together until Cherry's bedtime came. With proper goodbye the three of us then left Cherry's house and walked back to where I had parked Blackbird. Soon, we arrived there, got onboard, and then with the usual keywords Blackbird departed to Strawberryland.

--End of Chapter 24--
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