Agatha Parrot and the Mushroom Boy (4 page)

BOOK: Agatha Parrot and the Mushroom Boy
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‘I had to give Bubbles a bath,' said Ellie proudly. ‘She had jam stuck in her tummy button.'

‘A jammy tummy button? Oh that's well cool!' said Ivy.

Bah. A jammy tummy button might be well cool but it didn't help me so next we went to number 1. Bianca opened the door holding her trombone and we asked her if she knew who'd won.

‘Sorry, I was traying my plum
bone,' she said.

‘Eh?' said me and Ivy.

‘Like this,' said Bianca and then blew a big blast
BWARB!

‘Oh!' we said. ‘She was PLAYing her TROMbone!'

We love Bianca. Don't always understand her but love her.

The only door left to try was number 3. Ivy got Bianca to point her trombone at the letter box. I held the flap open and Bianca
did a big
BWARB-WABWARRRRB
in through the hole
ha ha wicked!

We could hear Martha laughing even before she opened the door because she's big and jolly and laughs at everything.

‘Agatha! Perfect timing,' she said when she appeared. It was like she was expecting me. ‘Here's that stuff your dad wanted to go on his cake.'

Martha held up a huge carrier bag from the shop her mum works at. It's called Spendless and everything they sell has funny wrappings and
it's made by people you've never heard of. Martha opened it up to show us. ‘There's icing, jam, chocolate sauce, crisps . . .'

‘CRISPS? Honestly Martha you can't put crisps on a cake!'

‘Why not?' asked Martha holding up a packet with strange writing on. ‘They're pink so we think they're prawn cocktail flavour. They go with anything. Besides they're well past their use-by date so Mum
put them in for free.'

‘Free?' said Dad who had just stuck his head out of our front door which is next door. ‘YUM! Do thank your mum for me.'

He reached over the fence, took the bag and went back in. Martha was about to go back in her house too but I stopped her.

‘Did you see
Sing, Wiggle and Shine
?' I asked.

‘Absolutely no way!' said Martha.
‘We're watching the football.'

‘But it's Rovers playing,' I said. ‘You hate Rovers.'

‘Too right I do,' grinned Martha. ‘And they're losing three-nil. It's awesome!'

Martha hurried back inside her house. Ellie had already shut her door and Bianca did another
BWARB
and went back in too. That just left me and Ivy who was swinging on our gate.

‘How come YOU didn't see the programme anyway?' asked Ivy. I told her all about the evilness of James. ‘You can't let him get away with that!' she said.

I must have pulled a face or something because Ivy fell off the gate and banged her head on the fence in excitement. ‘Oh WOW!' she blurted out. ‘You've already done something haven't you? I know. I can tell.'

‘No I haven't,' I said.

‘Yes you have, yes you have, yes you have,' said Ivy. ‘What what what?'

Honestly!
We were standing right outside our house with the door open and James could have been listening. There was no way I was going to tell Mrs Big Mouth Ivy anything.

‘Tell me the truth or I'll HATE you,' said Ivy.

So Ivy just had to go back into her own house and hate me. I can be dead tough like that.

The Famous Cake of Odd Street

W
hen I got back into the kitchen, the cake was out of the oven and cooling on the table. Dad was digging through Martha's bag of stuff, but then he looked up and caught James almost sticking his face in the cake and prodding it
with his finger.

‘James!' said Dad. The Guilty Boy jumped backwards so hard that he crashed into the fridge. ‘Will you stop poking and wiping your nose on that cake? People are going to eat it.'

Dad opened up the bag and lifted out a massive block of bright yellow icing that almost hurt your eyes to look at. ‘What do you think of this, then?' he asked proudly. ‘It was on special offer.'

I bet it was. I think I'd rather eat the bit of cake that James wiped his nose on, but Dad can never resist anything on special offer. He tipped all the other special offers out of the bag. There was about three tonnes of coloured sprinkles, squirty toppings, sweets, chocolate shapes and of course some dodgy pink crisps.
Yahoo,
good old Dad! If you're making a cake for a
Guess the Weight of the Cake
competition, you don't want it to look boring.

Dad and me began rolling out the icing and slapping it on the cake, but James just stood in the corner having a bit of a panic.

‘Do you want to do a bit, James?' I asked him nicely like the lovely sister I am.

‘I'd rather he found that remote,' said Dad as he aimed a strawberry sauce squirter at the cake. ‘Because
James isn't going to get any pocket money till it turns up.'

BLOSH!

SPLUDGE!

SQUIRTY PLOP!

We'd been decorating the cake for about half an hour, and the yellow icing was completely covered with flowers, stars, hearts, rockets and a rather lovely skull. The whole soggy lump was dripping with so much strawberry and chocolate topping
that it had run off all over the table. There were just a few tiny silver sugar balls left on a saucer.

‘Shall I put these on Dad?' I asked.

‘Hmmm . . .' he said having a deep artistic contemplation to himself. ‘Nah, better not. We don't want to overdo it.'

Just then we heard the front door open. ‘We're home!' shouted Mum and then little sister Tilly ran in
wearing her ballet skirt.

‘What's that?' said Tilly when she saw the cake.

‘It's for the school fete on Monday,' I told her.

‘Oh,' said Tilly wrinkling her nose.

‘Do you like it?' asked Dad proudly.

That was a mistake. You should never ask Tilly if she likes anything, because you always get the same answer.

‘Hmmm . . . bit boring,' said Tilly, then she ran upstairs to get changed.

‘She's wrong,' said Dad sounding hurt. ‘This cake is a legend. In years to come there'll be coach tours going down Odd Street showing people where it was made. It's one of the all-time greats.' He took some photos of the cake on his phone then wrapped a big sheet of cling film round it. Finally he took one more photo
and then went upstairs for a bath because he was covered in yellow icing, flour, cream and squirty toppings. James was still staring at the cake like it was about to bite him.

‘What is your problem?' I asked.

‘The TV remote's in there,' whispered James. ‘It has to be!' He went to the kitchen drawer and got a long metal meat spike out. ‘I'll see if I can feel it.' James was just about
to stick the spike into the top of the cake.

‘Are you mad?' I warned him. ‘Dad will go nuts if you burst the cling film.'

‘Then how can I find out? I have to know!'

 

BBC2 is a Chocolate Flower

A
few minutes later I was keeping watch by the living room door. James was standing in front of the telly which was quietly showing a cooking programme. He was clutching the wrapped cake and was gently prodding the top with his
finger. Suddenly the door opened and James spun round, almost dropping the cake.

‘Relax,' I told him. ‘It's only Tilly.'

‘What's James doing?' asked Tilly.

‘He's trying to see if he can change the telly channel using the cake,' I said.

‘That's a bit boring,' said Tilly. ‘Why doesn't he use the remote?'

‘Don't tell her I lost it!' James snapped bossily. He kept prodding the cake, trying to push as hard as he dared without messing up the fancy patterns. He was just about to give up when the telly suddenly
boomed out:

‘. . . AND THE PUDDING IS CALLED CHOCOLATE SURPRISE BECAUSE . . .'

‘Argh!' cried James, stabbing at the cake even harder. ‘I must have hit the volume button. Shhh! Please shhh . . . !'

‘. . . WHEN YOU DIG YOUR SPOON IN, YOU FIND . . . TWO PAIRS OF TROUSERS AND AN OLD WELLINGTON
BOOT AND . . . NOTTINGHAM RAILWAY STATION.'

‘Now it's changing channels,' said James. ‘The chocolate flower is BBC2 and the green star is Channel 5. The remote is definitely in here!'

‘What did James say?' shouted Tilly, trying to make herself heard over the telly. Before she got an answer, we heard Mum shouting from the top of the stairs.

‘Why is that telly on so loud?'

‘James, she's coming!' I warned him. ‘Try pressing the red Smartie.' So James pressed the red Smartie and to his relief the telly got quieter.* (*You'll find out how I knew the telly would get quieter later on. It's a bit of excitement I'm saving up for you. And anyway it's unfair if I tell you now when I didn't tell Ivy.)

By the time Mum came into the room, the cake was back on the kitchen table and we were all sitting
watching an old man with a big nose talking about train timetables.

‘What programme's this?' asked Mum suspiciously.

‘It's something James wanted to watch,' I told her. ‘Isn't it James?'

‘It's a bit boring,' said Tilly.

Mum knew something was going on, but as the house didn't seem to be falling down, she hadn't the energy to care.

‘Tilly, you get a quick drink and
then up to bed,' she said. ‘And you two, keep that telly quiet.'

A few minutes later James was in the kitchen having a panic. Tilly had gone upstairs to do her teeth, and we could hear Mum walking around the main bedroom telling Dad off for getting chocolate on the carpet.

‘Maybe we could make a list of what sweets to press on the cake to
change the telly,' said James. ‘Then Dad could use it and stop worrying about the remote. We'll just say the cake is magic or something.'

‘So you're expecting dad to sit there every night with that cake on his knee, poking it with his finger?' I asked. James nodded. Honestly, he's such a loser! ‘Forget it. We have to take that cake to the school fete tomorrow.'

BOOK: Agatha Parrot and the Mushroom Boy
13.91Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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