A Wild Goose Chase

Chapter 1: Playing with Costumes

It was a beautiful day at the Peanuts Gang's school and everyone was in the treehouse. Charlie Brown, Heather, Linus, Lucy, Rerun, Peppermint Patty, Schroeder and Franklin were trying on costumes. "Look, guys! I'm a firefighter!" Sally said as the fire hat that she was wearing covered her eyes and her arms couldn't fit in the sleeves. "A real silly looking firefighter." She added as the others laughed.

"Look at me! I'm a fairy!" Heather said, showing off her wings. "Aren't I pretty?"

"You're the prettiest fairy ever." Charlie Brown smiled, putting on a chef hat.

"Forget it!" exclaimed Lucy, putting on a crown. "All you can make is cold cereal and toast without butter. I, on the other hand, am a stylish queen."

"Whatever." Linus thought, putting on a cowboy's hat. Charlie Brown changed his costume for a bumble bee costume.

"What other costumes are in the box, Sir?" a curious Marcie asked, putting away a book on nursery rhymes and skipping towards the dress up chest.

"A lot!" Peppermint Patty said. "What do you wanna pretend to be, Little Friend?"

"Well…" Marcie then froze. She had no idea what to dress up as.

"I'm a cowboy." Linus began.

"I'm a regal queen." Added Lucy with a wave.

"I'm a dog!" Rerun exclaimed.

"I'm a fairy." Added on Heather.

"I'm a firefighter!" Sally giggled.

"I'm a zombie!" Schroeder exclaimed.

"I'm a superhero, like Captain Pickles." Franklin told her.

"I'm Little Red Riding Hood." Peppermint Patty smiled.

"I'm a bumble bee!" Charlie Brown smiled.

"Dang. All the good ones are gone again." Sighed Marcie.

"See anything you like?" Heather asked.

"I love the cowgirl hat, but Linus is wearing it. Same with your fairy wings and Sally's firefighter outfit." Marcie explained with a sigh.

"You'll find something." Linus promised as the rest of the kids headed to the Barney doll sitting by the window. Linus picked it up. "Hi Barney. Do you like our costumes?"

Almost instantly, the Barney doll came to life. "I love your costumes!" Barney exclaimed.

"BARNEY!" the kids cheered.

"Hi everyone. Gee, who are you supposed to be?" asked Barney as everyone answered at the same time. "Wow! What stupendous costumes!"

Marcie sighed, not looking over at the others having fun. None of the other costumes interested her. Barney noticed this. "What's wrong with Marcie?" he asked.

"She can't find a costume." Linus said with a sad sigh. "We all took the best costumes."

"Are you sure ALL the best costumes are gone?" Barney asked.

"Yes." Explained Lucy. "And believe me, if you want best pick, you choose first."

Sighing, Barney walked towards the chest and knocked on it. "Anyone in there?" he asked.

"No, no good costumes are in there." Marcie sighed sadly. "I was too caught up in reading to choose a costume."

"There're still some costumes left." Barney said.

"None are as good as the others'." Denied Marcie, walking away from the chest, grabbing her book from the shelf and climbing up to the lookout sadly.

"She seemed really upset." Franklin noticed.

"She'll come down to talk when she's ready." Barney said. "Let's give her a little time." He added as the kids went to the playground. The dinosaur stayed behind, looking through the chest again. "Let's see here…cat…bird…bunny rabbit…turtle…spider…mouse…ladybug…gee. There're a lot of animal and insect costumes here." He then pulled out a blue dress with white cuffs. "Aha! Not an animal or an insect."

Up in the lookout, Marcie was sadly reading the book she brought along to Scooter and Miss Etta, who decided to listen. "Old mother Hubert went to her cupboard to get her poor dog a bone." Marcie began reading.

"Tell us more! Tell us more!" Scooter eagerly said.

"But when she got there, the cupboard was bare. And so the poor doggy had none." She continued.

"Aww nuts!" exclaimed the squire in disgust.

"Here's another one. There lived an old woman who lived in a shoe. She had so many kids, she didn't know what to do." Marcie continued.

"Just like my family. Me, my sisters and brothers. We were all cramped in one little nest." Miss Etta recounted.

"I think I'll read in the library. There won't be any five second comments there." The bespectacled girl realized, sliding down the slide just as gloomily. She was met by Barney. "Hi Barney." She sadly waved.

"Hi Marcie. Why the sad face?" Barney asked.

"Hi Barney. All the good costumes are taken. See? The cowgirl, the superhero, the fairy, the firefighter, even the bumble bee! They're all gone!"

"I found a costume." He then showed her the blue dress with the white cuffs. "Well?"

"It looks nice…" she sighed. "But it's just a dress, Barney. It's not a costume."

"Oh really?" he then pulled out a black bonnet with white polka dots. "Look familiar?"

Marcie sighed, looking at her book, then at the costume, then at the book again. She gave a small smile of agreement. "Wanna try it on?" he asked as she reluctantly put it on.

Back in the playground, the rest of the kids were enjoying themselves as they listened to the sounds of the day. After a few seconds, Barney came down from the treehouse. Lucy took notice. "The queen of the playground orders you to tell us where you've been, sir Barney." She bossed.

"I was checking in on Marcie." Barney said.

"Is she gonna be alright?" asked a worried Peppermint Patty.

"She'll be fine." Barney promised.

"As queen, I'll go check in on her!" Lucy exclaimed. "Sally, do accompany me. Schroeder's too caught up in his music."

"Okay!" Sally giggled.

Inside, the two spotted Snoopy and Woodstock reading together, but no trace of Marcie-yet. They walked over to the balcony, only to find Marcie in the costume Barney had found and reading a book. "There you are, Marcie Goose." Lucy teased as Marcie jumped in shock.

"Lucy! A little warning, please!" Marcie exclaimed.

"Sorry. What's with the bonnet?" asked Lucy.

"Barney found it, along with the dress. Don't I look cute?"

"I'm cuter because I have a pretty face, Marcie."

"It's a yes or a no, not pompous behavior."

"Of course you look okay."

"I like your outfit, Marcie." Sally giggled. "You look just like Mother Goose." She then pointed at the book cover. "See, Lucy? We have our very own Mother Goose in the treehouse."

"Duh." Lucy said before an idea crossed her mind. "Let's show Peppermint Patty and the others."

Out in the playground, the rest of the kids were playing ball with Barney watching. It was time for Lucy and Sally to put their plan in action.

"HONK! HONK!" came a voice from the treehouse.

"What was that?" wondered Linus.

"It sounded like a goose." Schroeder replied.

"I'LL check it out, everyone." Peppermint Patty suggested, heading up to the treehouse and barging in. The honking continued. "HEY GUYS, THERE'S A GOOSE IN HERE!" she then walked closer to the table to find the source of the honking: Woodstock making Snoopy laugh. "Gee, Woody. You sounded just like a goose. I almost thought you were Mother Goose's goose, Clarence."

Sally and Lucy walked towards the trio. "Prepare to be amazed." The latter said. "For here is Mother Goose, new and improved."

"That's not-" Sally began.

"Go with it." Lucy huffed as Marcie walked towards them, book in hand.

"Hmm..." thought Marcie. "Well how do you do?"

"What're you wearing?" laughed Peppermint Patty.

"I'm pretending to be Mother Goose. See? I've got the bonnet and the dress AND the book too!" exclaimed a happy Marcie.

"Yeah, yeah. I know you LOOK like her. Duh. But can you rhyme like her?" Patty asked.

"Oh I sure can!" Marcie exclaimed.

"This we've gotta hear." Sally told Lucy as the three sat on the floor.

Marcie:

Oh, I'm Mother Goose and I'm here to say

That I love to talk in rhyme.

I've been around for many, many years,

For a very, very, very long time.

I've been around for many, many years,

For a very, very, very long time.

Now what is a rhyme, you ask?

What is a rhyme, you say?

Rhyming words will sound the same,

Sally:

Like fiddle and diddle, name and game.

Lucy:

Like Farmer in the Dell, Kitty in the Well,

Peppermint Patty, Sally and Lucy:

She likes to talk in rhyme.

Marcie:

Oh, I'm Mother Goose and I'm here to say

That I love to talk in rhyme.

I've been around for many, many years,

For a very, very, very long time.

I've been around for many, many years,

For a very, very, very long time.

Now some of my rhymes are funny,

Peppermint Patty:

And some are for sleepy time.,

Lucy:

And others talk about animals,

Sally:

Like the sheep in Little Bo Peep.

Peppermint Patty:

Like sugar and spice and three blind mice,

Peppermint Patty, Sally and Lucy:

She likes to talk in rhyme.

Marcie:

Oh, I'm Mother Goose and I'm here to say

That I love to talk in rhyme.

I've been around for many, many years,

For a very, very, very long time.

I've been around for many, many years,

For a very, very, very long time.