There’s a Stinky Goblin in the Shed – Chapter 22
'There's a Stinky Goblin in the Shed' (Chapter Twenty-Two) by Andrea Kaczmarek.
Gran came up with the suggestion after lunch. “Well, Bob, as you want to see a bit of GiantLand, ha ha, maybe we could take you around and you can see a few things. Only, of course, if you stay invisible, we don’t have many goblins around here, you see.”
And so it was decided to take the invisible Bob on their shopping trip after she had sworn goblin’s honour not to touch anything or give herself away, but Jacob whispered to Jerry as they climbed into Gran’s car, “And we know all about goblin’s honour, don’t we? It doesn’t exist.”
“I am sorry, Bob, I don’t have a goblin seat belt. Just hold tight, will you, dear?” Gran was quite enjoying herself.
Bob loved the car. “Faster than a fairy chariot,” she squealed, “but a lot noisier.”
Bob had great fun in the supermarket where they went first – Gran didn’t.
Bob loved the huge piles of fruit and vegetables. The boys heard her laugh and then they saw tiny bites marks appear in the rows of apples, pears, tomatoes, oranges, everything, in fact!
“Ooops, let’s leave.” Jacob told Bob to follow them quickly, but not before she had pulled out an apple from the bottom of the pile and the whole lot came crashing down.
Did any of the customers notice the two boys being followed by a bobbing apple? And an older lady muttering, “I knew this was a mistake – goblins just don’t know how to behave.”
Gran hurried them out, but not before Bob had taken a bite out of a row of jam tarts in the baker’s shop.
“I’ll come back later, and shop on my own.” Gran mopped her brow as the woman next to her nudged her and said, “Look at that, there are mouse bites in those tarts, mouse bites, that’s disgusting.”
“Let’s go to Rainbirds and get your new sweatshirts.” Gran suggested. “There is no food there, so we should be safe. Now, Bob, we want to show you around, but you have to behave.” Gran had taken over. “Do you have shops in GoblinLand at all?”
Bob, now her visible self, smiled. “No shops, but I like shops a lot.”
Jacob helped Gran out. “Well, there are rules. You must not touch or take things. You need money to pay for things too. Do you have money in GoblinLand?” Jacob held out a handful of coins for her to see.
“Oooh, is that money?” Bob asked. “I like it, it is nice and shiny, like golden elf chariot wheels”
Gran pulled up outside Rainbirds and announced to Bob, “Please don’t touch anything and if you are a very, very good little goblin girl, I will buy you something nice.”
Bob behaved herself as the boys got their new GAP sweatshirts. “Maybe we can change GAP to GOB for goblin?” Jerry grinned as Bob seemed to tug at Gran’s hand and led her off to the small children’s department.
Gran returned carrying a pink glitter T-shirt with a princess crown on the front, a bright bead necklace and a cute Kitty Katty backpack. “They should all fit, they are for three to four-year-olds, pity we can’t try them on.” Gran had a wide grin: she loved the things that Bob had chosen.
The boys looked at each other and scratched their heads as Gran marched off to pay, with an apple still bobbing behind her as if by magic – invisible goblin magic.
“And now we’ll drive to the lake for a walk and an ice-cream, I am sure Bob has seen enough shops for one day.”
Bob said no, she liked shops, but maybe she’d like lakes, too!
The highlight of the afternoon was Bob falling in love with the swans; luckily, there were no people around, so Bob stayed visible and jumped onto the back of a swan. Maybe she used a bit of magic, because the swan swam off gracefully around the lake with Bob seated on his back, laughing, and all the other swans swimming behind.
Later they sat with their ice cream cones on a bench and Bob told them that there were no swans in GoblinLand, and maybe she would take one back.
Gran asked a lot of questions about GoblinLand and seemed keen to know the recipe for goblin guzzle – but there clearly wasn’t one.
Gran plucked up enough courage to ask a question that had been bothering her. “Bob, I know he is your brother, but can you tell me why your brother Hob is so smelly?
Bob politely asked for ice cream number five and began, “Well, he won’t ever have his birthday bath, but it isn’t so bad because we always find him first when we play hiding in the woods. We sniff him out, and he still doesn’t know why. We always get Woz, too, he won’t take his birthday bath either.”
Gran smiled. “Well, that clears that up. Birthday bath, that’s interesting, I’ve got lots of bubbles, if you’d like a birthday bath when we get back.”
Bob smiled and asked, “What’s this bubbles?”