There once was a little chipmunk named Samantha. Her friends just called her “Sammie.” Now all chipmunks are cute. But Sammie was especially cute. When she filled her cheeks with nuts, or looked at you with her big doe eyes, you couldn’t help but comment, “My, Sammie, you are so-o-o-o cute.”
Everyone in the woods where Sammie lived thought so. When the neighborhood squirrels saw Sammie first thing in the morning, they would always say, “Good morning, Sammie. You look especially cute this morning.”
When the deer family saw Sammie by the creek for their afternoon drink, they always said, “Good afternoon, Sammie. You look even cuter today than you did yesterday.”
Sammie’s head soon began to swell. She believed she was the cutest animal in the world. She often spent the day looking at her reflection in the water, admiring herself. She asked the other chipmunks all day long, “Do you really think I’m the cutest animal there is?”
This grew tiresome for the other chipmunks. Still, they forgave Sammie for being so vain. They knew that despite her youth and immaturity, she was a good chipmunk at heart. They also knew that Sammie was too trusting of others, because she believed that everyone else in the world thought she was so wonderful. The other chipmunks agreed to keep a watchful eye on Sammie.
One day, Sammie took a walk into the forest and came upon a fox. Sammie had never seen a fox before. She was instantly impressed by the fox’s red coat. “Someone with such beautiful fur,” thought Sammie, “will certainly appreciate how cute I am.”
“Excuse me, sir,” said Sammie, walking right up to the fox. “Don’t you think I’m really cute?”
The fox couldn’t believe his good fortune. His next meal had walked right up to him, just begging to be eaten.
“I absolutely do,” replied the sly fox. “In fact, I believe you’re the cutest animal I’ve ever met.”
“I thought you’d think so,” replied Sammie, batting her long eyelashes.
“I do indeed,” said the fox. “And not only do you look cute, I bet you also smell very sweet too.”
“You think so?” asked Sammie. “No one ever told me that before.”
“Come closer,” said the fox, as he continued to flatter Sammie. “Let me take a sniff to be sure.”
“Well, of course,” said Sammie. She walked right up to the fox’s nose.
The fox took a long, drawn-out sniff. “Oh, yes,” said the fox, “you smell so nice.” He licked his lips.
“Would you even say that I am cute-smelling?” asked Sammie.
“Oh, brother,” thought the fox to himself. But to Sammie he said, “I would indeed.”
“Thank you,” said Sammie, “I thought you might say that.”
The fox then set his trap. “I bet you taste awful, though.”
“I beg your pardon,” said a surprised Sammie. “I’m sure I taste delicious. How could someone as cute as I not taste good?”
“Well,” said the fox in a smooth, buttery voice, “why don’t you walk up to my mouth so that I can give you a good lick? That way, we’ll know you’re not only sweet looking and smelling, but tasty too.” The fox opened his mouth wide and closed his eyes. His dinner was about to walk into his mouth.
“Well, if you insist,” said Sammie. She took a step towards the fox’s yawning mouth.
Now this is where our story would’ve turned really ugly, were it not for one thing. Luckily for Sammie, her chipmunk friends were keeping a close eye on her. They had watched her walk absent-mindedly into the woods. They followed her from a distance, just in case. The chipmunks couldn’t believe that Sammie was so naïve as to walk into a fox’s mouth. That’s when they stepped into action.
The chipmunks dashed in front of Sammie and stuck a big, stinky toadstool between the fox’s teeth. “Yuck,” said the fox in surprise. He spit the toadstool out of his mouth. “What’s going on?”
Before he could say another word, two more chipmunks charged him from the rear and bit him on his red, bushy bottom.
“Ouch,” the fox roared. He wheeled around to see what had bitten him. “I didn’t know chipmunks could bite. Wait until I get my paws on you pesky rodents.”
The fox lunged for the chipmunks. The chipmunks were too quick for the fox and scampered away. “Just you wait,” screamed the fox, running after them.
Three more chipmunks shouted, “Hey fox, up here.” The fox stopped and looked up. There, in a big oak tree, sat three chipmunks on a branch waving at him. The chipmunks shook the branches and let loose a shower of acorns, pelting him in the eyes and face.
“Enough,” the fox said. “A tiny chipmunk dinner isn’t worth all this aggravation.”
“Does that mean you don’t think I’m so cute after all?” asked a disappointed Sammie.
“No,” yelled the fox, as he dashed off into the woods. “I think chipmunks are definitely NOT CUTE!”
“Whew,” said one of Sammie’s friends after the fox had run away. “That was a close one.”
“I’ll say,” said another chipmunk. Turning towards Sammie, he said, “Sammie, I hope you’ve learned a lesson today.”
“I certainly have,” replied Sammie. “Foxes are not to be trusted. That fox first told me I was cute. Then he told me I wasn’t. Do you know why he lied to me?”
“Because he wanted to eat you?” said one of Sammie’s friends.
“No,” replied Sammie, “because he was jealous of how cute I am.”