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Blackberry Bun's Journal: Chapter 30
Quote:Chapter 30: Journey West

Over three days after solving Summer's problem, the weather gradually became cooler, which implied that Summer was finally able to sleep again. I watched the leaves falling outside the window in joy of successfully restoring the natural weather. While I was still watching over the scenery, I heard someone shouting.

"Hey, Blackberry!" the voice shouted. I looked outside the window and I saw that it was Strawberry. "To the club!"

I didn't know what her intention was, but I immediately took Swallow's Flight which was coincidentally lying on a table next to me, put it on my shirt, and jumped out of the window. I landed safely on the ground because of my lighter body, and Strawberry was a little bit surprised.

"Faster than going down the ladder," I said, pointing at the wing-shaped badge. "Shall we go now?" I continued as I removed the badge from my shirt and put it into my pocket.

"Yes, come quick!" Strawberry said in excitement.

Both of us then ran to the clubhouse taking Blueberry, Rainbow, Apricot, and Peppermint along the way. When we arrived at the clubhouse, everybody else had been already there.

"Okay, now that everybody's here, what are you going to say?" Raspberry asked.

"Yeah, Strawberry. What are you gonna tell us?" Angel asked.

"I just thought of a berry great thing, and I can't wait to tell you all!" Strawberry said still in excitement.

"Okay, so what is it? I hope you're not going to waste my time," Peppermint said.

"The good thing about the Friendship Club is that there's always room for more friends," Strawberry said.

"You said that once," Orange said.

"And then we sent invitations to everyone all over the world, am I right? And it was a success, am I right again?" Ginger said.

"Yeah, but this time..." Strawberry said, pausing for a moment. "How about the other way around?"

"The other way around?" Lemon asked.

"Umm, what do you mean, Strawberry?" Huck asked.

"How about we going out there and looking for new friends ourselves? I'm berry sure it will be an exciting trip!" Strawberry said.

"It will?" Lemon asked.

"Well..." Blueberry said with a brief pause. "I don't know, but it doesn't sound that interesting to me. I mean, having new friends is always great, but the trip..."

"Hmph, just as I thought. This is a waste of my time," Peppermint said.

"Why I don't feel that excited?" Raspberry said, thinking.

"Yeah, me too. It's not so cool for me. Why is it?" Apricot wondered.

"Oh, I think I know why," I said. "Lemon, Raspberry, Apricot, Blueberry, and Peppermint. All of you have done such trip with me, and that is why you don't feel so excited about the idea."

"Oh, yes. Now I remember," Raspberry said, and the other girls I had mentioned nodded, which meant that they agreed with me.

"So, how about the rest?" I asked.

"Count me in!" Huck said.

"Me too! That's a great idea!" Angel said.

"Yeah, count me in as well, will you huh Strawberry Shortcake?" Ginger said.

"I will go along too!" Orange said.

"Count me in, matey!" Rainbow said.

"Apple not want," Apple said, which surprised everyone a bit.

"Oh, why is it, Apple? This time you can go with us if you want," Strawberry said.

"Apple did trip, with Blackberry," Apple said.

"Oh, yes. Apple was one of them too," I said.

"Then you can stay with someone who will stay," Strawberry said.

"Okay, then. When will we go?" I asked.

"How about... now?" Huck suggested.

"You must be joking. We need to prepare first, you know," I said.

"Tomorrow morning then?" he said.

"That's better. Anybody else agree?" I asked, which was replied by a nod from the others.

"Okay, now that it is settled, see you t'morrow morning!" Ginger said, leaving the place.

"She sure is enthusiastic," I said.

Soon, I left the clubhouse and went back to my home. Then I spent the rest of the day preparing for the trip next day. I did maintenance works on all my devices and put them all into my backpack, and it was done right before bedtime. After I finished the works I went to sleep. At the next day, all of the kids who participated in the trip gathered in the clubhouse. As I had thought, the participants were the main five plus me and Rainbow.

"So, now that we are all here, shall we go now?" I asked.

"Yeah, what are you waiting for, huh Strawberry Shortcake?" Ginger asked.

"By the way, where are we gonna go?" Angel asked.

"I don't know. Let's just go wherever the rail will take us," Strawberry said.

"The rail? You mean, the train station in Upper Truffle?" Huck asked.

"Sounds so," Orange said.

"Let's go then, mateys!" Rainbow said.

All of us then walked to Upper Truffle, the only place which had a train station. I was glad that I brought quite an amount of blackberries in my backpack because I would need some of them to trade for the train ticket for me. When we arrived at the train station, we immediately went to the booth where we could buy tickets.

"Each of us has berries to buy the ticket, right?" Strawberry asked, and everyone else nodded. Then we queued in front of the booth.

"One full day trip, please," Strawberry said.

"What berries do you have?" the officer inside the booth asked.

"Strawberries," Strawberry said.

"That would be six strawberries, please," the officer said.

"Here they are," Strawberry said, giving six strawberries to him.

"And here's your ticket. Have a pleasant trip," the officer said, giving a ticket.

It was the first time for me to know that each kind of berries had its own value in trading. I saw next that Orange had to pay with four oranges, Huck with ten huckleberries, Angel and Ginger with six strawberries as well, Rainbow with eight cherries, and finally it was my turn.

"One full day trip, please," I said. "I have blackberries."

"Blackberries? Then it would be five blackberries, please," the officer said.

"Five blackberries," I said, and my backpack threw it into my hands. Then I gave them to the officer. "Here you go."

"And here's your ticket. Have a pleasant trip," the officer said, giving a ticket.

After that, all of us went to the platform of the station. There was a train there which was scheduled to run to the west. All of us agreed to ride that train, and then we went into the train. Inside the train was quite spacious and also comfortable with all the seats. All of us then took our seats and waited for the train to start running. Six of us took two seats facing each other, while one had to sit on the seat across.

"This is the first time I ride a train," I said, sitting next to the window.

"Me too!" Strawberry said, sitting in front of me.

"I believe it's the same for everyone else as well," Huck said, sitting next to me on the right, and everyone else nodded.

"I can't wait for the trip!" Angel said in excitement, sitting in front of Huck.

"Yeah me too! I have never left Strawberryland this far!" Orange said, sitting next to Angel who was on her right.

"That's right. The furthest we have gone was Ice Cream Island, am I right? Or was it the Berry Fairy Fields?" Ginger said, sitting next to Huck.

"I have been much further than that, matey," Rainbow said, sitting on the seat across. "But it was on my boat. I have never done it on land."

"Let's wait and see what kind of surprises we will see," I said.

Soon, the train finally departed. All of us looked through the window, seeing Strawberryland for the last time until our return. Then we spent time talking together while occasionally looked at the scenery outside. Later, we heard a voice.

"Tickets, please!" the voice said. We realized that it was the ticket collector so we immediately had our tickets ready. We waited until the officer came to us, and once he did, I was surprised. The ticket collector looked just like the dog catcher I had met in Pearis. I then remembered that the dog catcher had a twin brother.

"Your tickets, please," the officer asked us, and all of us gave him our tickets.

"Excuse me, sir. Do you have a twin brother if I may ask?" I asked.

"Why, yes! How did you know?" the officer replied.

"I met him some time ago in Pearis. He saved me from a stray dog," I said.

"Ah, now I remember! I met him too, although not much," Strawberry said.

"I see. Did he say anything about me?" he asked.

"Well, he told me to say hello to you if I met you by chance. He's a really nice man," I said.

"I'm glad that he's doing fine. Oh, here are your tickets," he said, returning our tickets.

"Merci!" I and Strawberry said, and then the officer left. The trip continued for a while until we heard an announcement.

"Ladies and gentlemen. Next stop, Watermelon Patch," the announcer said.

"Should we get off there?" I asked.

"We aren't that far yet," Angel said. "But why not?"

"Yeah, I have never been there, and everyone else too, am I right?" Ginger said.

"Yeah," Orange said.

Everybody else agreed, so we got off on the train station in Watermelon Patch. When we got out from the train station, we saw that the scenery was not much different than Strawberryland, only that the amount of lollipop trees was much less. However, in their place there were watermelon bushes.

"Do you think we will find a new friend here?" Angel asked.

"I'm berry sure we will! Let's try and look around," Strawberry said.

"You sure are optimistic," I said.

We then walked around the area while occasionally taking photos with Ginger's camera. There was nothing really special at the area other than the abundance of watermelons which had never happened in Strawberryland. Some of us even thought of taking one or two watermelons, but because they seemed to have someone owning them we decided not to do it. We kept walking until we saw a house in a shape of a glass of beverage. Looking at the red color of the ``liquid`` and a watermelon slice placed on top of the house, we could notice that the house was shaped like a watermelon beverage.

"Do you think there's someone in there?" Orange asked.

"I think so," Rainbow said.

"If there is someone there, is that someone gonna be our friend?" Angel asked.

"We won't know until we try," Huck said.

"Let's go there and give a visit," I said, and we all walked to the house. Once we arrived, I pressed the doorbell button I found and waited for a moment. Soon, someone opened the door and it was a girl with green hair and watermelon-themed dress.

"Hi there! Anything I can help you with?" she greeted.

"We are travellers looking for new friends! I'm Strawberry Shortcake, this is Angel Cake, Orange Blossom, Ginger Snap, Huckleberry Pie, Rainbow Sherbet, and Blackberry Bun," Strawberry said.

"I'm Watermelon Kiss. Welcome to my humble home!" the girl welcomed.

"You live alone here?" Orange asked as we all came into her house.

"Well, yes. My friends here are only squirrels, birds, butterflies, and such," Watermelon said. "Oh, please have your seats!"

"Don't you feel a bit... lonely?" Angel asked. There was a silence for a brief moment.

"Well..." Watermelon said. "I kinda feel lonely sometimes, but what can I do? There's nobody around in miles and miles!"

"We can always be your friends!" Strawberry said. "Come to Strawberryland sometime! You'll be berry welcomed!"

"Really? Oh, thank you very much!" Watermelon said. "I sure will come!"

All of us then spent one hour together. During the hour Watermelon Kiss learned about many things in Strawberryland, including other friends there. All in all, Watermelon was a nice new friend.

"Oh, I think it's time for us to go," Strawberry said.

"Why so soon?" Watermelon asked.

"We are travelling to look for more friends," Strawberry replied. "We will be waiting for you to come sometime."

"I will," Watermelon said. "Oh, here, take some watermelons with you."

"Thanks, but..." Angel said, looking at the watermelons. "They're kinda... too big and heavy."

"You bet. If we bring these with us we will be exhausted and fall down really fast, am I right?" Ginger said. "But hey, it's not that I don't like it."

"Okay, leave it to me, then," I said, taking one watermelon and throwing it upwards. My backpack understood perfectly and sucked the watermelon into it.

"Your backpack sure is special," Huck commented as I threw another watermelon into my backpack.

All of us then left Watermelon's house waving hands, and she did the same. We walked to the train station to ride the next train available. We looked at the schedule and saw that the next train going west would arrive in the next five minutes. We also looked at the route map.

"Now we are here at Watermelon Patch. Where should we stop next?" I asked.

"Well..." Rainbow said, looking at the map. "How about here? Corn Country."

"That's a good idea. We never see corns in Strawberryland," Orange said.

"Why not? Everybody else agree?" Angel said, and everyone nodded.

We then got onboard the train which soon arrived and took our seats in the same formation as the previous ride. We didn't have to buy new tickets because our previous tickets could be used for the whole day. The ride lasted for about one hour, and during the ride some of us, to be exact me, Angel, and Orange, fell asleep.

"Ladies and gentlemen. Next stop, Corn Country," an announcement was heard.

"Oh, that's our stop! Wake up everyone!" Strawberry said in excitement.

Soon, all of us got off from the train at Corn Country train station. The scenery outside the station was again not much different from Strawberryland, but it had more country feeling on it.

"Smell that country air," I said after taking a deep breath.

"It really feels nice," Angel said.

"I like it berry much," Strawberry said.

"Let's walk around and see if we can find a new friend here," Orange said.

"Yeah, let's go right now, huh everyone?" Ginger said.

We then walked around the area taking photos on the way. On one occasion we came across a farm, but it was empty and looked abandoned. We even went inside it to make sure, but indeed the farm was abandoned looking at the amount of dust inside.

"Seems there's nobody here at all. Nope, not ever," Ginger said.

"Let's just get out of here before..." Angel said, coughing. "Before the dust kills me."

All of us agreed and left the abandoned farm. At first we gave up on looking for a new friend in the area, but soon we could see another farm downhill. The farm we saw seemed more alive than the one we had just left. We then decided to give that farm a visit.

"I'm sure we will meet someone there," I said.

"I sure hope the person will be a nice one too," Huck said.

Soon, we arrived right in front of the farm's door. Strawberry knocked on the door, but there was no answer.

"Hello, anybody there?" Strawberry shouted. There was no answer.

"Ahoy!" Rainbow shouted. There was no answer.

"Maybe the person is on the field?" Huck said.

"Let's try splitting up and look around. Everyone agree?" I said.

Everyone agreed on splitting up to look around and find out if there was anybody on the field. I went towards one fenced area where sheeps were kept, and saw nobody there. I walked around a bit more until suddenly I heard something.

"Everyone! Come quick!" a voice I recognized as Strawberry shouted. I then quickly ran towards the source, which seemed to be the corn field. I arrived there at the same time with others. We saw strawberry in the middle of the corn field, but we only could see her head because the corns had grown quite tall that they covered her from neck to toe.

"What's the matter?" Orange asked, panting.

"Yeah, what's the matter, huh Strawberry Shortcake? Did you find someone, huh Strawberry Shortcake?" Ginger asked.

"Come and help me, everyone! There's someone fainted here!" Strawberry replied.

All of us got surprised and immediately approached Strawberry. Indeed next to her there was a fainted girl with brown hair, blue overall, and white shirt. All of us then carried the fainted girl together towards the house. Fortunately, the door was not locked so we could get inside and put the girl on a sofa we found there.

"Is she gonna be fine?" Angel asked.

"No fever, so I think she will be fine," Strawberry said.

"Let's wait until she wakes up," Huck said.

We waited for a few minutes until the girl finally opened her eyes. When she did, she saw us and got surprised that she jumped into sitting position.

"Relax, matey. We are not here to harm you," Rainbow said.

"We found you fainted at the corn field, so we brought you here," Strawberry said.

"Oh..." The girl said, holding her forehead with one hand. "Sorry, I was just so... surprised. By the way, I'm Carmel Corn."

"It's okay," Angel said. "I'm Angel Cake."

"I'm Strawberry Shortcake. This is Orange Blossom, Ginger Snap, Huckleberry Pie, Rainbow Sherbet, and Blackberry Bun," Strawberry said.

"What happened that you fainted out there?" Huck asked.

"I think..." Carmel said with a brief pause. "I got exhausted while taking care of the corn field."

"You take care of the whole farm all by yourself?" Orange asked.

"Yeah..." Carmel replied. "Before moving here, I thought that living in a farm of my own would be nice, but it was the worst choice I have ever made."

"Worst choice?" I asked.

"All the works are too much for me alone. Chickens, cows, pigs, sheeps, the corn field, everything. This is really the worst place ever. I give up," Carmel said, lowering her head.

"No, you can't give up now," Strawberry said.

"Why shouldn't I? There's no way I can handle all those alone," Carmel said.

"Not if you have helping hands, yessire!" Ginger said.

"Helping hands? Who? How?" Carmel asked.

"Hey, Blackberry. You still bring that dimension door with you, am I right? Could you please lend it to me?" Ginger asked me.

"Time Remote Mark II," I said, and my backpack gave the device to me. "Here it is. But what are you going to use it for?"

"Just wait and see! Back in a flash!" she replied, running off with my remote.

"What is she going to do?" Carmel asked.

"I'm sure that everyone here is as clueless as you do," I replied.

We then waited for Ginger Snap to return to us. The wait didn't last that long because half an hour later she came back.

"Hey, everyone! I'm back, yessire!" she said from the front door.

"Where did you go?" Angel asked.

"I went home," Ginger replied. "I made these helping hands. Come outside and see for yourselves, will you huh everyone?"

As told by Ginger, all of us went outside the house and saw that she had returned bringing a four-handed robot and a cart full of materials and tools.

"What is this robot?" Strawberry asked.

"This is The Amazing Helping Hands! It will lend you not just one or two or three, but four helping hands! It can help you in any kind of works, yessire!" Ginger said.

"That's amazing, matey. But what about those things on the cart?" Rainbow asked.

"These? Just wait and see, huh will ya'?" Ginger replied, and then she brought the cart into the cow barn. There was a lot of noise heard from inside, and we could only watch from a distance.

"What is she doing there?" Carmel asked.

"Whatever it is, we will see soon," I said. "When it comes to machines, her speed is unmatched. She could build a huge boat in just one night."

"She did that?" Rainbow asked.

"When did she do that? I don't remember her doing something that amazing," Angel asked.

"I remember..." Orange said. "But it was in a dream, right?"

"Uh oh..." I said with low voice so nobody heard it. "I mean, she is so fast that it seems like she can build a boat in one night."

"Oh, I see," Huck said.

A few minutes later, Ginger came out from the barn with black marks all over her clothes and face. She was really dirty that all of us wondered what she had actually done inside the barn.

"Come inside and look, huh everyone?" she said, and we did as told. Inside the barn, we saw that there were contraptions installed all over it.

"What are these contraptions?" Carmel said.

"This is what I call The Amazing Helping Hands: Cow Caretaker Edition!" Ginger said. "They will do everything for you! Feeding, milking, you name it!" Ginger replied. "Now I'm on to the next part of this farm!" she continued, taking her cart.

"Wait! Hold on!" Carmel said.

"What is it, huh Carmel Corn?" Ginger asked.

"You see, I'm grateful that you made all these for me," Carmel said with a brief pause following. "But if you make these all over the farm, what will I do?"

Carmel had a point. If Ginger made contraptions all over the farm, then Carmel would have nothing to do there, and that would defeat the purpose of living in a farm. There was a silence for the next few seconds.

"I realize that I said about the farm having too much work to do, but I don't want it to have nothing for me to do at all," Carmel said. "So, I'm grateful for the things you have made here, Ginger, but it's already enough for me now."

"Well... if you say so, then okay no problem yessire!" Ginger said.

"But could you leave the materials here? I might want to use them someday," Carmel asked.

"No problem at all! Use it as you like!" Ginger replied.

So, once again we got a new friend on our journey west. Like Watermelon Kiss, Carmel Corn was also a nice new friend. She had difficult times not to give up in bad situations, but she was still a nice one. We spent some hours together until we noticed that the sun was setting.

"I think it's time to take our leave," I said.

"Why so soon?" Carmel asked.

"It's getting dark, and as you can see one of us is really exhausted," I replied, looking at Ginger who was sleeping on a sofa.

"I see. Thanks for everything," she said.

"I didn't do anything," I said. "Hope you will lead a successful farm."

"Thanks," she said.

All of us then left Carmel Corn's farm waving our hands and she did the same to us. We then walked to the train station to see if there was any train available to take us back to Strawberryland. All of us were aware that we could just use my remote to go home, but the trip on train felt so nice that we wanted to do it again. Our tickets were still valid anyway so we would have nothing to lose.

We were lucky that there was a train going to Strawberryland right when we arrived at the station. We then immediately got onboard and took our seats in the same formation as before. From the window we could see a view of sunset, and it was a very nice view. Soon, the train departed and all of us spent time talking together on how our journey west had been a complete success. We enjoyed our trip until we heard an announcement.

"Ladies and gentlemen. Next stop, Upper Truffle. Please don't forget your belongings when you get off,"

--End of Chapter 30--
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