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A Tale of Safety: How Billy the Hedgehog Lost His Safety and Found It

Every day of Billy the Hedgehog was similar to each other, and he liked it very much. He woke up around seven, his mother made him breakfast and kissed him on the forehead, he went to school by similar routes. Billy met his friends on the way, they went to class together, listened to the teacher, liked to play football after classes. The hedgehog knew that he could not go beyond his Magical Forest into the Enemy Thicket, but he could travel to other forests or fields with his parents' permission. He never went to the Enemy thicket and lived far from it, so he felt mostly safe. Except that sometimes some fears could appear in his head and startle him with a shadow in the kitchen or a rustling of branches. But mom and dad could always calm Billy down and explain that it was just his imagination. But one day it became scary even for the Hedgehog's parents, as well as all his classmates and neighbors. Suddenly, from the Enemy Thicket, the Magic Forest was attacked by predatory, evil and completely wild dragons. They scared everyone so much that the fairy tale about security was completely destroyed and it seemed to everyone that it would be impossible to restore normal life.

A Tale of Safety: How Bull the Hedgehog Was Awoken in the Morning by a Loud Noise

Billy usually woke up around seven on weekdays to go to school. On weekends, he could wake up either later or, on the contrary, earlier. For some reason, his eyes like to open at six o'clock and he started wandering around the house, and his parents asked him to lie in bed and not wake them up. Sometimes he even cooked breakfast for the whole family if he woke up early. Some of his friends had the experience of waking up at four in the morning because they traveled to other forests on airplanes and had to leave very early. But even if Hedgehog himself flew somewhere with his parents on a plane, he still shouldn't have gotten out of bed at night.

That night, Hedgehog woke up for the first time around five in the morning. First he heard worried parents behind the wall, and then some explosions outside the window. Billy himself didn't know what scared him more - the sounds or the fear on his parents' faces.
“War.” - said dad.
Billy knew that war was something that was a long time ago and that it took the lives of others, but he did not know that it still existed and could come to them. But from the expression on Dad's face, Billy understood that the war was very scary. It was at this moment that something inside him cracked and then shattered. It turned out that it was security. He himself did not know that it was with him all his life and existed inside. Somewhere inside him were many organs - heart, liver, stomach - they helped him coexist with this world, breathe, eat, look at the world. And there was security inside him, it allowed him to feel good about himself and to be confident, to calmly repeat everyday actions. But after Dad's words, the security cracked and Billy was left without her. Fears immediately settled in her place. Billy's spikes immediately climbed to the surface, waiting for danger. The same thing happened with parents. They were tense, and their normally hidden spikes now surfaced to protect them.
“We need to get out of here quickly.” - said dad.
“But this is our home and our native forest.” - mother answered.
Billy could see that her security inside was cracking too. Just like dad's.
“Now it's dangerous here.” - said dad, who also saw that now inside him was only a bunch of fears and no security.
So the family quickly packed their things and left for another forest. On the way, the Hedgehog saw the same hostile dragons that came to their forest and began to burn trees and destroy the huts of his friends and neighbors. Fortunately, Bill could see all this very far away, but he was still very afraid.

He crawled deep into his shell and let out even more spikes. He looked again at the wreckage of the security. How sad he felt for it. It was always with him, and now only fragments remained of it, through which you could even cut yourself like a shard of glass. What was even sadder was that now he would never be able to build a new safety from those ruins, it was destroyed forever, the fairy tale of safety no longer existed. The car drove quickly along the road and lulled Billy to sleep. He did not notice how slowly he passed from reality to the world of dreams.

When Billy the Hedgehog woke up, he saw the sea. He couldn't believe his eyes. Their forest was very far from the sea, had they really come that far.
“Where are we?” - asked the Hedgehog to his mother, seeing her on the terrace.
“We are very far! In the city of Palms and the Blue Sea. Now we will live here!” - mother smiled! – “We are very lucky!”
But Hedgehog did not understand why mother was smiling. He started looking for dad and saw him near the car. Dad was fixing something in the car.
“You slept for a long time! Almost all our long way!”
“Why are you and mom smiling? After all, dragons are everywhere!”
“No, there are no dragons here. They are too weak to reach here and their fire cannot reach here. In addition, the city of Palms and the Blue Sea are guarded by tigers and falcons. That's why we are safe here.”

Saying this, Dad smiled once more. Billy looked at the safety inside dad and saw that although it was broken yesterday, it looked much better today. All the same, it remained in the holes, but it seemed that his wounds were healing and the holes were getting smaller. Unfortunately, the same could not be said for the security inside Billy. There was still nothing there, only debris, and it didn't look like safety would ever be resurrected, as Christ had been resurrected according to his grandmother. Thinking about this, Hedgehog immediately remembered his grandmother, and it seems that the fragments of his security crumbled into even more fragments:
“And how about our grandmother!”
“Do not worry! She boarded the train and is now far away from the dragons with her friends.”
“What about our house? And my school? And our city?”
“Soon it will be freed by the beasts who know how to defeat the dragon. The dragon is strong, but very foolish and wild. Therefore, it takes time to overcome his evil. But for now we will be here, because we are safe here.”
Suddenly, Billy's father noticed that inside his son were only fragments of security, which are still cutting him. Mom, who had just entered the room, also saw the wreckage of Bull's security. She felt very ashamed that she only now saw how vulnerable her son was and how badly he was hurt by the dragon, even though he was far away from them. Mother immediately came to Billy and hugged him tightly. Dad did the same. Billy couldn't believe his eyes, but from the warm embrace, some of the fragments of the security were joined and restored.

Parents spent the whole day with Billy. They walked around the city of Palms and the Blue Sea, ate ice cream and got used to the new atmosphere. Sometimes Billy was very scared, because there was unusual food, language and everything unusual. And sometimes it was very interesting, because there were beautiful trees and the sea, animals laughed and the sun shone, life went on. His parents hugged him very often, rode him on the swing and even looked closely at the bicycles in the shops. The thought that he would soon have a bicycle made him very happy. In the evening, the family returned home and Bull looked in the mirror.
“Can not be!” - noted Billy.
His security was almost restored and once again took on a certain form that protected him even better than the spikes. And although it still had many scars and bumps on it, security suffered a lot from the dragon, but returned to Bull again. He realized that he still needed a lot of time for it to become the same as it was before the dragon. Or maybe it will never be like that. But nevertheless, it was still inside him and made his life much more peaceful. Therefore, Billy was able to confidently go outside after his parents and not think about the fact that the mad dragon might attack him again.

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Маргарита Сурженко

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