“Boy this is tough work,” Arnold managed, after dropping a stack of wood in place. “This is hard!”
Mitchum looked closely to see if Arnold would object to his last statement. No doubt he wanted him too.
“Well, there’s Kirk,” Arnold said.
“Yes, there is,” Mitchum said. “I’d forgotten about him. But, remember, he can’t help us because Punchy Murdoch said that he can’t work after spraining his little toe.”
“That’s not fair!” Arnold said angrily. “Look at me! I think all my fingers are sprained.”
Mitchum nodded. “And I sprained my nose.”
“Let’s go talk to Kirk,” Arnold suggested.
Both Punchies tramped off towards the meeting room.
Kirk was sitting, with his feet up, at the oak table, sipping—ever so loudly—Cups of Blueberry Jam.
“Ah, Mr. Orange and Mr. Blue,” he said upon seeing them, “hast thou both finished the mission?”
“No.” Arnold said it bluntly, too.
Mitchum nodded. “Nope at all did we finish.”
Kirk sat up suddenly. “But my father, the great Punchy Murdoch, ordered that you stack that wood! I’d help…but…my little toe…”
“Hey, Kirk,” Arnold began, “why do we need wood? We’re in a desert.”
“Yeah!” Mitchum said, finally realizing what he should have realized hours ago. “We’re not going to be starting any fires!”
“Wrong,” Kirk said happily. “Tonight we will burn a huge fire outside the cave in Punchy Murdoch’s honor. It’s his birthday.”
Both Arnold and Mitchum were silent.
“Oh…” Mitchum finally said.
“Gee, Kirk,” Arnold mumbled.
“Now back to work,” Kirk said. “So tonight we can have fun.”
Arnold and Mitchum left.
Kirk laughed to himself. “Imagine when I tell them tonight that they have to drag the wood back outside in order to make the fire.”
Kirk laughed, then he laughed a little more.