“What’s the matter Molly?” asked Chi Chi. “Why are you hiding between the house and that tree?”
“The sun is going down and it will be dark soon,” said Molly, her voice shivering when she spoke.
“Are you afraid of the darkness?” asked Chi Chi.
“I am real scared, Chi Chi,” said Molly who was now almost in tears. “I don’t like the darkness. There are too many scary noises and I can’t see what is out there.”
“I’ll stay with you tonight as the darkness settles around us,” said Chi Chi.
“Aren’t you scared of the dark?” asked Molly.
“Oh, no,” said Chi Chi. “There is nothing to be afraid of.”
Molly and Chi Chi huddled together beneath the tree and watched the sun slowly sink away behind the houses as the sky turned a beautiful shade of orange, dotted with the white clouds tinged with the deeper orange and gray.
“Chi Chi,” whispered Molly. “Do you hear that noise?”
Chi Chi listened carefully, but all he could hear were the chirping of the crickets and an occasional hooting of an old owl high above in the tree.
“I don’t hear anything scary,” said Chi Chi. “What does it sound like?”
“You can’t hear the noise?” asked Molly with a puzzled look. “Why do I hear the noise and you don’t?”
“No,” said Chi Chi. “I don’t hear anything scary.”
“Do you hear anything?” asked Molly.
“I hear the crickets chirping and Charlie in the tree,” said Chi Chi.
“Crickets?” asked Molly. “What are crickets? Are they scary things?”
“You have never seen a cricket?” asked Chi Chi.
“No, what are they?” asked Molly. “Is that what is making the noise I hear?”
“They are little black insects that are making the little chirping noises you are probably hearing. They aren’t going to hurt you or anyone else,” said Chi Chi.
“Who is Charlie?” asked Molly.
“Charlie is the owl,” said Chi Chi. “He sleeps during the day and is out at night looking for his food.”
“He isn’t scary either?” asked Molly.
“Oh no, Charlie isn’t scary,” said Chi Chi. “He’s my friend.”
Molly met Charlie and together the three of them found a couple of crickets and Molly was no longer afraid of the darkness when she heard the chirping. The noises in the night were no longer threatening to her. She felt more at ease with her friend’s help.
"You are so brave Chi Chi," smiled Molly.