It was a lovely, warm day outside, and Lumpy was taking a walk. He didn't have to go to work today, so he thought it would be a good idea to go out and get some fresh air.
As Lumpy was walking, however, he heard a deep growl coming from somewhere. Stopping in his tracks, Lumpy turned his head this way and that. The growl continued, even though Lumpy couldn't see it at first. It sounded like it was coming from a dog.
Finally, Lumpy looked forward again, only to see a dog - a Rottweiler with a spiky collar - right in front of him, glaring at him threateningly. Lumpy's eyes widened and pupils shrunk until they could barely be seen. He knew what he was in for.
"Oh, no..." he whimpered in fear.
Lumpy turned and tried to run, but the dog responded with a fierce bark and lunged at him, pinning him down with all four of its clawed paws on his back. The dog bent down and bit at the collar of Lumpy's shirt - nobody knew it was a shirt, as it was the same color as Lumpy's fur - and pulled it upward as Lumpy winced from the pain.
The dog was treating the back of Lumpy's shirt as a bone, sinking its canines and front teeth into the fabric and tearing some of it apart as it gnawed and chewed. It sometimes shook its head as real dogs do when they chew something up, bringing quite a bit of pain to Lumpy's neck.
"Hey! Get offa me!" Lumpy begged, but the dog didn't. It continued to chew up the back of his shirt, so the only thing Lumpy could do now was scream for help. "HELLLPPPP!"
Unbeknownst to Lumpy, three young girls were noticing his situation from a few feet away. The first girl, Audrey, had light skin with brown hair, as well as a little gap in her teeth, and wore a pink top; the second girl, Dot, had darker skin with black hair and wore a light blue top; and the last girl, Lotta, who was much larger than Audrey and Dot but no older, had light skin, blonde hair and wore a sky blue top. The girls had been watching the dog terrorize Lumpy from this distance, and although none of them were familiar with the light blue moose, all three of them were worried about his safety.
"Oh, my goodness! That poor moose is in trouble!" Lotta said.
"Quick, we've got to get on our bike and save him!" Audrey replied.
And so the girls ran over to their bicycle, assembled into their positions as they mounted it and started pedaling over to their obstacle.
"Harvey Girls to the rescue!" they called.
The dog was scratching and biting at Lumpy's neck, pulling on his shirt with its teeth, causing varying amounts of pain as it did so. Lumpy's eyes were filled with tears from how much it hurt. All he wanted was for this to end, right here, right now. Fortunately, help was on the way.
Once the bicycle had gotten close enough to Lumpy and the dog, the girls stopped and hopped off. Audrey pulled out her jump rope and waved it about like a lasso, then tossed the end of it toward the dog. It wrapped around the Rottweiler's collar, causing it to stop and look confused. Then Lotta grabbed onto the other end of the jump rope and pulled, forcing the dog toward the girls. When it got close enough to them, Lotta picked the dog up by the collar, loosening the jump rope from it as she did so.
"You could use a lesson in manners..." Dot pulled out a dog whistle. "...you big, mean bully of a mutt!"
She blew on it as hard as she could, causing the dog to flinch, yelp and whine. It plugged its ears with its paws, but couldn't block out the awful noise that only it could hear. Finally it broke out of Lotta's grip and bounded away, yelping for mercy.
"Mission accomplished!" the girls cheered as they shared a group high-five.
Lumpy lay where he was, gave a weak groan, then sat up, rubbing his head in pain. He rolled his eyes involuntarily, seeing stars. His neck had quite a few noticeable scratches from the dog's claws, although none of them were bleeding.
"Are you okay, Mister Moose, sir?" Lotta asked, innocently.
"Hm?" Lumpy's vision cleared as he looked over at the girls. He didn't recognize any of them.
"Are you alright?" Audrey asked, more or less echoing Lotta's words. "You gave us quite a scare there..."
"Yeah, I'm fine," Lumpy replied. He rubbed his neck with his hand, still feeling a bit of tenderness from where the dog had scratched him. "I'm a little hurt, but I'm fine."
"Although I don't think I've met you girls before..."
Audrey held out her hand, which Lumpy took as she and Lotta helped him back onto his feet.
"Allow us to introduce ourselves. My name is Audrey," Audrey started, then gestured to Dot and Lotta. "And these are my best friends, Dot and Lotta."
Dot smiled as Lotta waved politely, causing Lumpy to smile as well.
"You can call us the Harvey Street Girls, or just the Harvey Girls," Dot went on. "We're in charge of protecting all the kids in Harvey Street."
"Not to mention making sure everyone has a good time!" said Lotta.
It was at this point that Lumpy finally decided to introduce himself.
"My name's Lumpy. I live in a forest with other animals. This forest is kind of far away from here, but I like to take walks and see what new places I can come across."
"Oh, that's cool," Audrey replied. "Would you like to see our headquarters?"
"It's actually our tree house, but it's where we hang out together," Lotta mentioned.
"Oh, yes, please," Lumpy said with a nod.
With that, the Harvey Girls walked away from this part of the sidewalk, with Lumpy following them from behind. They went into a grassy field, which contained a tree house in the center. Audrey climbed up into the tree house first, then Dot, and then Lotta. Lumpy climbed inside as well, with Lotta taking his hand and helping him in once he'd almost made it.
"This is the Harvey Girls' Headquarters," Dot stated.
"It has everything we need, all our favorite games and foods," Audrey went on.
Lumpy turned his head this way and that, looking at the cool and cute decorations as well as the large amount of activities that the Harvey Girls had laid out.
"This is some place you girls got here," said Lumpy.
"I know, right?" Audrey agreed. "But while you're here, how'd you like us to tend to your owies and make them feel better?"
"You mean, the ones that dog gave me?" Lumpy rubbed his neck once more. "Yeah, I suppose I could use a couple of bandages, please..."
Dot pulled out a first aid kit, opened it and pulled out a few bandages. He removed the pieces of paper from one of them, then stuck it onto one of the scratches Lumpy had received on his neck. She did the same to the second scratch she saw, followed by the third and last one. Lumpy sighed with relief, feeling better.
"Thank you, Dot," Lumpy said. "So now that I know you girls live here, may I ask, what are other kids who live on this street like?"
"Sure!" Audrey said.
After a short pause, Lumpy asked, "What are the other kids who live on this street like?"
"Well, there's Lucretia, she's another girl who lives on our street, and there's also Tiny, who's a lot shorter than us. And lastly, there's a group of boys called the Bloogey Boys," Audrey started. "Their names are Melvin, Fredo and Pinkeye."
"We don't get along a whole lot with them," added Dot, "what with Melvin's constant misbehavior. He and his friends must really have a problem with three innocent girls being in charge of our neighborhood..."
"I guess so," Lumpy said.
"And there's also the fact that Pinkeye has... well, pinkeye!" said Lotta.
"That is what I was afraid you'd say," Lumpy replied, a bit worried about what he'd just heard. "But don't worry, girls; I don't even know what they look like, but I'll do my best to steer clear from them."
"That would be a wonderful decision," Dot said, and Audrey and Lotta both nodded in agreement. "That being said, you never know when they're going to turn up..."
"Oh, and there's also a bunch of raccoons that live here," Lotta said. "You better watch out for those, too; they're pretty darn naughty!"
"You mean like Lifty and Shifty?" Lumpy asked.
"Who?" the Harvey Girls asked in unison, out of curiosity. None of them had heard of those names before, let alone raccoons with those names before.
Realizing they didn't have a clue what they were talking about, Lumpy looked away, feeling a bit embarrassed.
"Um, I'd... I'd rather not talk about them," said Lumpy. "I know who they are, but... I think it's best that we don't bring them up."
"Oh, okay," Audrey said.
Lumpy calmed down and looked back at them. "So... Since you girls saved me from that dog, I'd personally like to do something for you. I'm not sure what, though..."
"Oh, that's alright, Lumpy," said Dot.
"What matters is that you're safe and sound," Lotta replied.
"And if it makes you feel better," Audrey mentioned, "you can come over to Harvey Street and play with us anytime you want."
Lumpy couldn't help but smile. He couldn't believe what he'd just heard. "Really?!"
"Absolutely," Dot said with a nod.
"And even if we have someone to help out, we'll always be ready to spend some time with you," Lotta added.
Lumpy could feel tears of joy forming in his eyes.
"Oh... Oh, my..." He struggled to form his words at first, but finally he wrapped his arms gently around Audrey, Dot and Lotta for a group hug. "Thank you, thank you!"
"You're welcome, Lumpy!" Audrey replied. The looks on Dot and Lotta's faces told Lumpy the same thing.
After a few seconds, Lumpy let go of the girls and walked over to the door that led to the outside of the tree house. He opened it up and climbed down the ladder, with the girls following him outside one by one.
Not too long after Lumpy had made it back onto the grass, however, he felt a tickle in his nose. There must have been a bit too much pollen in the air. Lumpy's eyelids lowered as he held his hand in front of his nose, and he began to inhale. He needed to sneeze.
"Lumpy? What's wrong?" Lotta asked, but Lumpy couldn't respond. His inhales continued, and he tilted his upper body backward as his nostrils started to flare up. The Harvey Girls realized what was going to happen and gasped in fear.
"Oh no! He's going to sneeze!" Dot said.
"HAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHH-" Lumpy tilted his upper body as far back as it could go, but just before he could release the sneeze, Audrey ran up to him and placed her forefinger underneath his nose, plugging her ear with her forefinger that was on her other hand. Lumpy's response was a sigh of relief.
"Phew! Thanks," Lumpy said.
Audrey removed her forefinger as well before she, Dot and Lotta sighed with relief as well.
"Talk about a close call..." Dot commented.
"Yeah," Audrey replied.
But suddenly, her eyes widened and her pupils shrunk, as she felt a borderline intolerable tickle in her nose. With two simple inhales, one small and one large, Audrey tilted her upper body back and sneezed mightily - although for some reason, it came out sounding quite endearing.
Lumpy, Dot and Lotta both cringed in shock as Audrey shot her upper body forwards, with a surprisingly small amount of spray coming out of her mouth. She then sulked as her friends - especially Lumpy - looked at her in disbelief.
"Oh, my..." Upon the next thing Lumpy said, Audrey reached a single forefinger up to rub her nose. "Bless you, Audrey!"
"Thanks..." Audrey sniffled. "And sorry. I don't know where that came from..."
"Oh, it's alright-" Lumpy was caught off by the return of his own sneeze. "AaaaaaAAAAAAHHHHH-" Not wanting to scare the girls, however, he placed his forefinger under his nose before he inhaled. It didn't stop the sneeze, but stifled it instead, making it come out less loud. "Chooooooooo! Ugh..."
"Bless you, too," Audrey said as Lumpy rubbed his nose with his forefinger.
"Yeah, bless you," Lotta replied.
"Bless you, indeed," said Dot.
"Thanks." Lumpy continued to rub his nose, sniffling a couple of times as he did so. "Well, at least that wasn't one of my really loud sneezes..."
"Yeah, I'm glad, too," Dot mentioned.
"Hey, are you the kind of person who usually sneezes really big sneezes?" Audrey asked.
Lumpy blushed a bit before he pulled his forefinger away from his nose. "Actually, I am. Not to mention, lots of things make me sneeze, what with my allergies and my sensitive nose..."
"Oh, you poor thing..." Lotta said in sympathy, but Lumpy did his best to reassure her.
"Not to worry. I'm still working on getting my nose used to smaller sneezes," said Lumpy. "It isn't easy, for sure, but I'm trying. But if you girls decide you want to hang somewhere with flowers or dusty things, just give me a warning."
"Oh, we will, Lumpy," Audrey replied. "Even if you're allergic to things like that, you definitely shouldn't let it keep you from having a blast!"
"And if it helps, we could find a way help you out," said Dot. "Maybe I can build something that'll keep you from sneezing too loud."
"That's okay, but thanks," Lumpy said. "I'll let you know when I'd like you to do that."
"Well, alright," replied Dot. "I'm just saying, I know how to fix something up in a pinch."
"But other than that, thanks for everything, girls! I think we're going to get along just fine." Lumpy could see that all three of the Harvey Girls were quite touched by what he said. "I'm gonna go now, I have to work a bit tomorrow. I'll see you all real soon!"
Lumpy started to walk out of the grassy area, along with out of Harvey Street. His new friends stayed where they were, waving goodbye to him, and Lumpy briefly turned around to wave goodbye to them, too.
As Lumpy made his way back to the forest where the Happy Tree Friends lived, he couldn't stop thinking about Audrey, Dot or Lotta. Even as he made his dinner, took a shower and got ready for bed, he kept them on his mind.
With all honesty, Audrey, Dot and Lotta were three unique little girls. They were so clever, and talented, and loyal... They responded to Lumpy's situation with that dog so quickly and managed to save him in time... Not to mention Audrey's advice about staying positive about his allergy attacks. Lumpy really, really liked those girls. Even now, he was looking forward to the next time he came to Harvey Street to play with them. One could only imagine what they could do to solve a problem, or just have some fun. One thing was for sure, however: Lumpy was going to have a good time with those girls no matter what they did together.