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Author's noteEdit

Okay, so this is a story that I actually started a couple of years ago, and still haven't finished, but I think I'm almost done! XP It's inspired by Redwall, (of course) and it sorta takes place down at our pond. Sorry if some of it doesn't really make sense, cause I've changed things so many times and gotten stuff mixed up. :P  Please comment! :)

You can learn more about Salmonberry Pond here. ;) But wait... this is even better; a whole wiki about it!!!. XD

NOTE: I plan to rewrite this book, but I have no idea when I'll actually be doing that, cause I have my fanfics I wanna work on, y'know. ;P But even when I do that, I will still probably keep this here, even though it won't be canon anymore. You can still read this though if you want.;D

List of charactersEdit

Salmonberry Pond freinds

The four friends

Star: The main character, a young mousemaid, with gray fur and a white star-shaped spot on her head.

Pebble: One of Star's best friends. He is a mouse too.

Dipper: A shrewmaid.

Huckle: A funny rabbit with brown fur. He likes to eat.

Glupp: A girl frog. Like most frogs, she is not the sharpest arrow in the quiver.

Flippa: A girl salamander. She is very shy and quiet.

Chip: A silly chipmunk, who often speaks in rhyme. It's weird that I made up this characer before I ever heard about Chip and Dale! XD

Wiseyes the Old: A Spotted Owl, who Star goes to for help.

Sltherback: A water snake who lives in the Deeps.

Chapter 1: Picking BlackberriesEdit

It was late summer at Salmonberry Pond, in Spring Bay. A mouse named Star and her friends Pebble, Dipper, and Huckle were having a mud fight. SPLAT! One of Dipper's mud balls hit Star right in the face. She wiped the mud from her eyes and threw one back at the shrew. It missed her and hit Pebble instead. He leaned over and started to make a mud ball to throw back at Star. But Huckle's mud ball hit Pebble's bottom so hard that he fell over into the water. Then Star, Dipper, and Huckle laughed so hard that they fell into the water, too. Huckle was out first.

“I'm hungry!” he yelled to his friends. “Who wants to come with me?”

“I do!” they all yelled at once.

They rushed out of the water and followed Huckle up the trail to Rabbit Hill. Inside the hill they followed the main passage until they came to Huckle's burrow. Huckle, Star, Dipper, and Pebble went into the kitchen where Huckle pulled a basket off the shelf. Huckle pulled out a string of dried huckleberries.

“These are really good,” he said as he broke the string and split up the berries. They were almost done when Huckle's mom came in.

“Oh, silly Huckle, those were supposed to be for winter. Oh, well, when you're done you can take your friends berry picking, OK?”

“Um, OK, Mom.” Huckle said.

When everyone was done, Huckle got some baskets and they went outside.

“So where to first?” Dipper asked.

Pebble suggested, “We could go pick blackberries.”

Huckle yelled,”Good idea!” and went bounding down the path with Star, Pebble, and Dipper running behind him. They stopped for a drink at the spring and then hopped onto a bark raft. Dipper and Star paddled. They passed the shrew cave, where they saw Dipper's baby brother Paggle padding around in a tiny canoe. He kept bumping into the wall and falling out, but he was getting better. As the four friends on the raft neared Blackberry Bay they waved to some baby salamanders playing underwater tag and a frog named Bogg who was sunning himself. Finally the raft bumped the shore and they all scrambled off, stabbing the stake in the mud. Star jumped when a slimy nose touched her tail and a quiet voice said, “You guys going blackberry picking? Can I come, too?”

She turned around. It was her salamander friend, Flippa.

“Sure,” Star told her. “Of course you can come!”

The five friends scrambled up the steep hill to the big, juicy blackberries. They had been picking awhile when Star noticed that Huckle's basket was not even half full.

“Huckle, what...”

Then she saw the rabbit's face and burst into laughter. A big, goofy grin was on his whole face and his teeth were all purple.

“I think I've finally eaten enough.” he said and went back to work, this time putting most of the berries into his basket. After awhile Star noticed Pebble singing to himself. Huckle, Flippa,and Dipper heard it ,too.


“Down, down, down in the deeps,

Down in the deeps where Slitherback creeps,

Down in the deeps is where Rare Tuse sleeps,

The Rare Tuse is from days of old,

Hidden down deep where the water is cold.”


There was silence.

“Where did you hear that?”

Pebble shrugged. “I dunno. Strange, isn't it? I don't even know what in the Pond it could mean.”

><><

On the way back, Huckle and Pebble got to paddle. Star wondered what the intriguing song meant, or if it meant anything at all. When they got to shrew cave Dipper hopped off the raft.

“I need a nap,” she yawned. “That was fun picking berries. See ya later.” and she went home to her cave.

Back at Spring Bay, Huckle said,”See ya later. Got to take these berries home.” and went home to Rabbit Hill. Star and Pebble said goodbye to each other, too and both went home. Star sat on her bed, wondering what Pebble's song had meant. Then she dropped off to sleep.

Chapter 2: Rare Tuse?Edit

Star woke up. She remembered the song that Pebble had sang earlier. She still hadn't figured it out. What was a “Rare Tuse”? She already knew what “the Deeps” meant. The Deeps was the deepest part of the Pond, where she and her friends were not allowed to go. “Slitherback” was the big water snake who lived in the Deeps. Star had heard tales of Slitherback upsetting boats and eating or drowning the creatures in them. But what was the “Rare Tuse”? She had never heard of that before. It sounded like some sort of creature, because it slept, but if it was “from days of old”, then how could it still be alive? And, she thought, the song said it was “hidden”.

Despite the blackberries she had eaten earlier, Star's stomach started to growl. She got up and went to the kitchen, where she found her dad eating. Would dad know? She plopped down beside him and started sharing his berry mix. “Do you know what a Rare Tuse is, Dad?” She asked with her mouth full. “No idea, what is it?” He answered. Star sighed. ”I don't know either. That's why I asked you.” Her dad noticed his bowl was empty and stood up. “Well, how would you like to go berry-picking with me?” More berry-picking? Thought Star, but she was always willing to help. “Sure.” Her dad got two baskets and gave one to Star. “Let's start with thimbleberries, huh?” Star raced off, yelling “OK! Race you to the boat!”

As Star and her dad paddled along the shore in the canoe and picked the flattish red berries that hung over the water, she thought. If her dad didn't know what a Rare Tuse was, then who would? That was it ! She would ask her mom. But what if she didn't know either? She thought and thought, until an idea began to form in her head. She would ask the owl, Wiseyes the Old! But how? Wiseyes would more than likely eat her on sight. Anyway she could not climb trees very well, and the Spotted Owl lived in a tree.

Suddenly her dad said “I think we've got enough. My basket's full. What about yours?” Star looked at her half-empty basket absentmindedly. “Yeah, my basket is full too. Anyway there's something I need to do.”

Back at home, Star found her mom and asked her what a Rare Tuse was, but she didn't know either. She decided there was nothing else to do but go to Plan C.

Chapter 3: ChipEdit

Star went outside, to find her friends Pebble, Dipper, and a frog named Glupp getting into a canoe. “Hey Star! Want to go pick salmonberries now?” Pebble asked.

“No thanks, I've got something I need to do. Maybe next time.” Star said as she hopped into a smaller canoe.

As she paddled past Frog Bay, a young frog named Ump called to Star. “Where you going? Can I come too?”

“No, sorry, Ump.”she said. “I'm on a special mission. Maybe you can come another time.”

“Ok.” Ump said. “I hope your spenshul mishmush is sukkeskfull.”

What in the Pond did Ump mean? She wondered. Oh, I think he meant he hopes my special mission is successful. Frogs always have trouble with big words, but Ump is the worst!

><><

Finally the canoe bumped the shore and Star hopped out, beaching it. She began climbing the steep hill to Big Tree. She walked around its huge base, looking for signs of a squirrel or a chipmunk. But she did not look where she was going and walked right into a chipmunk.

“Oops, sorry, Chip.” Said Star. “Hey, you're just who I need right now. I wanted to ask you something.”

“Ok, ask away.” Chip said. He often talked in rhyme. “Bugs are fissening, and I'm listening. Don't ask me what fissening means.”

“I wondered if you could help me with something.” Star explained. “I want to ask Wiseyes something, but I can't climb trees, and she would probably eat me anyway. I wondered if you could carry a message to her for me?”

Chip thought for a moment. “Hmm... sure! What's the message?”

“Well, I think it would be best to write it down. Come over to my house in a few minutes and I'll have the message ready.”

><><

Back at home, Star found a piece of parchment and wrote a message:


Pleese meet me under yor tree in the morning. I want to ask you somthing. I will be wateing there with two big baskets of barrys and won of water striders.

She had heard that Wiseyes always wanted to be paid with food. As Star was adding in an extra “Pleese”, just in case, Chip walked in.

“Ready, Freddy?” he asked. Star handed him the message.

“Here it is. Be careful.”

Chip took it. “Don't worry, I'll be perfectly fine.” And he was gone.

Star sat down to wait for his return.

Chapter 4: Wiseyes the OldEdit

As Star's canoe bumped the bank of Blackberry Bay, one of the big baskets she had brought toppled and fell over her head.

“Nice hat, Star!”

She lifted the basket from her head. It was Pebble. Dipper and Glupp were picking blackberries. She had forgotten they were here.

“Um, yeah. I - came here to pick some blackberries too.” she said distractedly. Pebble went back to his picking. “Come on then, let's get pickin'!”

><><

Awhile later Star came into her house lugging three big baskets. She had filled the first with blackberries, the second with salmonberries, and the third with water striders. Chip was waiting there for her.

“Wiseyes was asleep, so I just slipped the bark in her doorway. And she didn't eat me,” he said.

Star was relieved. “Great! Thanks a lot, Chip!” she said, giving him a hug. “Do you want to come with me?”

Chip pulled himself out of Star's embrace.

“You’re welcome and no thanks, “ he said, and was gone.

><><

Star sat waiting under Owl Tree with the three baskets.

Whoosh! The wind from the great wings of Wiseyes knocked her over.

“Well, little mouse, what did you want?”

Star sat up. “Um, I, I wondered if you knew what a Tare Ruse is?”

The Spotted Owl blinked. “A what?”

“I said, do you know what a Rare Tuse is?”

Wiseyes shook her large head slowly. “I do not know what a Rare Tuse is. Where did you hear about it?”

Star told Wiseyes all about it.

“Hmmmmmm...,” Wiseyes said thoughtfully when Star had finished. “It seems to me the Rare Tuse is really something else. Try turning it backwards.”

“Esut Erare?” Star said. “That makes even less sense.”

Wiseyes thought for a moment. “Hmmm... Try mixing up the letters, it might be an anagram.”

Star thought some more. “How about 'are u rets'?”

Wiseyes shook her head. “No, that doesn't make sense either. How abut 'reur sat'? No, I left out an 'e'.”

They sat for a while, thinking and suggesting but nothing they thought up made sense. Suddenly Wiseyes said, “I think I've got it!”

Star got excited. “What? What is it?”

“Well, I think the answer is treasure!”

Star got even more excited. She sang the song again, putting 'treasure' in the place of 'Rare Tuse.'

“It works! It works!” she yelled, jumping up and down. “It's treasure! Oh, thank you so much, Wise-Eyes!”

And she ran back home.

Chapter 5: SlitherbackEdit

Star sat thinking about the treasure. What was in it? If it was in the Deeps, maybe even with Slitherback guarding it, then how could she get it?

“Hey, Star, watcha doin'?” Huckle sat down beside her.

“Thinking.” She answered.

“About what?”

Star stood up. “Well, let's get Pebble and Dipper, and I'll tell all of you.”

><><

When they were all together, Pebble asked sort of sarcastically, “Well, what are we gonna do this time, go on a treasure hunt?” Star's answer surprised him.

“Actually, yes. We are going on a treasure hunt!”

“Do we have any clues?” Dipper asked.

Star told her friends what she knew about it. When she had finished, Huckle jumped up.

“Well, what are we waiting for?! Let's go!” He shouted.

><><

When they met again on their raft, Huckle had brought a snack with him, Dipper had a rope, and Pebble and Star were each armed with daggers. They all loaded themselves onto the raft and set off for the Deeps.

><><

Star hung her head over the side of the raft. She could not see much, only sticks, leaves, and mud, and even a foolish old salamander who was sleeping down there. She heard Pebble say,

“No Slitherback, and no treasure either. Hey, what's that?” He pointed at some ripples on the surface of the water. They were coming in the direction of the raft. Without even looking up, Huckle said,

“Oh, prob'ly just some frog or salamander friend comin' to tell us not to come out here. Just ignore it.”

But Dipper did not ignore it. “Uh, guys, that doesn't look like a salamander, and it's definitely not a frog.” She picked up a paddle. “Let's head for shore.”

But she was too late.

WHAM!

The water snake's head crashed into the raft, sending Star, Pebble, Dipper, and Huckle flying into the water. Star saw Slitherback heading straight for Dipper. She grabbed her dagger and with a yell, threw herself onto the snake. He turned and grabbed her shoulder in his jaws. Star twisted back and plunged her dagger deep into Slitherback's head.

His hold on her loosened a little, then Star felt herself sinking down into the darkness of the Deeps. 

Chapter 6: The IslandEdit

Star woke to find herself laying on the moss-covered ground with Dipper holding some muddy moss and leaves to her shoulder. Pebble was nearby, gathering some more. He looked up, not at Dipper and Star, but in the direction of the Deeps.

“You okay, Star?” Dipper asked anxiously. Star tried to sit up.

“I'm fine. My shoulder hurts, though. What happened?”

“You saved my life, that's what happened!” Exclaimed Dipper. “When I saw that big snake coming straight for me, I thought I was done for! I didn't have a weapon, and I certainly could never outswim that Slitherback! Lucky for me you brought your dagger. Pebble and me grabbed you and swam for land. We're on the Island now. We can't find Huckle. I really hope he's okay. Oh, good, your shoulder's bleeding has slowed down.”

Pebble sat down beside them. “Feeling better, Star?” He asked.

“Yeah, I'm fine. So is Slitherback dead?”

Pebble nodded. “Yep. Your dagger went right through his head. So, good news is: Slitherback's dead, we're alive. Bad news is: We can't find Huckle, I'm hungry, and we're not sure how to get home with you injured. We've lost our raft.”

“Maybe we could build one.” Suggested Dipper. “We have all the materials we need on this island.”

“No need to make a raft, castaways, I've got a canoe right here!”

All three turned around, startled.

“Huckle!”

Huckle sat down by them. “Of course it's me! What did you think I was, a basket of tadpoles? I brought some food too.”

Pebble grinned. “Thanks, I'm hungry! When we couldn't find you I began to get a bit worried. What happened to you?”

“Well,” Said Huckle. “When I was tipped into the water, the first thing I did was to swim for the island. When I got there, I looked back and saw you two coming with Star. I noticed that my snack was gone, and that the raft was too. So I swam all the way back to Spring Bay and grabbed this canoe and food. I brought some skunk cabbage for your shoulder, too, Star. It works great for wounds.”

He handed it to Dipper, who slapped it on Star's injury right away.

“Thanks, Huckle. That feels good.” She told him.


Some time later, all four young creatures were each fast asleep in their own beds.

Chapter 7: Back on the IslandEdit

When she got home, Star had eaten a snack and then gone to sleep for the rest of the day. The next morning she woke up feeling very refreshed. She decided to go see if the treasure hunting crew of frogs her father had organized had found anything yet. Outside, she found Dipper getting into her canoe.

“Hey Star, want to come with me to the island?” Star hopped in. “Sure. That's where I was heading, anyway.”

As soon as the canoe bumped the island, Star jumped out. She ran to her dad and gave him a big hug. “Did the frogs find the treasure yet, dad?” She asked him excitedly.

“No, not yet.” he said. “But those silly frogs keep thinking that they've found it. Look, here comes Glupp with that same old clay pot she keeps bringing up!” Glupp waddled up with a clay pot almost bigger than herself.

“I found it, I found it!” she yelled.

“Uh, Glupp, that's like the fifth time you've brought up that same pot. Sorry, but it is NOT the treasure. This time why don't you put it by that tree over there, so you won't pick it up again.”

Glupp started off towards the tree, but she tripped. CRACK!

“Oopsy, I think I... kinda... broke it.” she said. Star's dad sighed.

“Glupp, it's fine, it's NOT the treasure. It's just an old clay pot.” Glupp picked it up and started for the tree again. Suddenly Star said

“Wait! Glupp, let me see that pot!” She could see something shiny between the crack in the pot. She pulled it out of the crumbling clay, rinsed it off in the water, and held it up.

“Woah! Star said. “This is gotta be it!”

Chapter 8: X Marks the SpotEdit

It was a flat, round metal object, with markings on it. Star looked closer at it.

“Oh hey, it's a map! Of the Pond! And look! There's an X right above Spring Bay! I wonder what it means!”

“Why don't you go get Huckle and Pebble and investigate?” Star's dad suggested.

“Sure! Come on, guys!” Star said, running off.

A little while later, Star, Huckle, Pebble, Dipper, Glupp, and Flippa were climbing up the thorny hillside between Shrew Cave and the path to Rabbit Hill. Up ahead they could see a big, flat, upright, mosscovered rock under a tree. Huckle was there first.

“I've seen this before.” he said, “I think it says something on the rock, but I never bothered to read it before. There's a funny hole too. Goes all the way through the rock. I think there might be a cave or something behind it. I tried digging under the rock once, but there's too many roots.” Star rolled her eyes in exasperation.

“Whaaaaat?! Huckle! Why haven't you told us about this before? Seriously!”

“I don't know, I guess it just didn't seem very important.”

“Let me see it.” Pebble said. He studied the rock. “I wonder what this slit is. Okay, let's see what this is.


“Down, down, down in the Deeps,

Down in the Deeps where Slitherback creeps,

Down in the Deeps is where Rare Tuse sleeps

The Rare Tuse is from days of old,

Hidden down deep where the water is cold.

The leader of Mice

Is the solver of this riddle,

So here is another clue:

Start in the middle.”


There was a pause, then Dipper said, “Uhh... Start in the middle? The middle of what?”

“The middle of the poem?” Pebble suggested.

“No, I don't think that's what it means.” Star said. “We already got the first part. I think... Glupp, would you quit that, please? I'm trying to think!” Glupp was yelling into the slit in the rock.

“Woops, sorry. I just wanted to see if there was an echo. There is! It's pretty cool!” She put her mouth to the hole again. “Coooooooooollll!”

“There must be a cave back there then!” Star said. “But how do we get in?”

“Maybe it has something to do with the hole in the middle of the rock.” said Flippa, sticking her tail in it.

“That's it! The middle!” Star grabbed the map disk from Pebble and stuck it in the slit. “Maybe it's a keyhole!”

The disk fit perfectly. She tried turning it, but nothing happened. “Uuughh...” Star tried repositioning herself and turning it the other way, but as she did so, she accidentally pushed the disk all the way into the hole. “Noo!” She heard a faint 'clunk' on the other side of the rock. “I lost it!”

She slumped against the rock, but then jumped back a moment later, as it made a grating sound and started to move.

Chapter 9: Just the Beginning! Edit

Star walked through the doorway revealed by the stone, into a dark, dusty room.

“Torch, please?” she said. She tried to remain calm, but her heart sounded like drums at a dance. Pebble ran off and came back a few seconds later with a torch. Star lit it and ventured ino the cave. Somehow, she felt that, whatever she found in here, it would change her life forever. She held up the torch.

“What is this place?” she gasped.

The high roof was lined with tree roots, some of which hung down, along with the cobwebs. In the middle of the room stood a large, round stone table, with something on it, covered by a cloth. On one wall was a shelf, filled with ancient books. Star lit some torches along the wall, then walked over to the table, her friends following close behind her.

There were words on the cloth, reading: “Only the Star-Chief of Mice may lift this cloth and reveal lost secrets of the past.”

“But... but we don't have a Chief.” said Star. “None of the tribes have ever had leaders..., at least as far as I know. So how are we supposed to learn lost secrets of the past?”

They were all silent for a bit, then Dipper said, “What if... Star is supposed to become the chief and lift the cloth?”

“What?! Dipper, that's... crazy!!!” said Star, shocked that it might be true. “I'm only thirteen, and I don't know how to be a chief at all!”

“Oh yes, you do.” said Pebble. “You've been the leader throughout this whole adventure! You were the one brave enough to talk to Wiseyes by yourself, you slew Slitherback, and you got the treasure hunt together in the first place! You're a great leader! And also, the poem said 'the leader of mice is the solver of this riddle', and the cloth says 'Star-Chief'! Obviously you!” Star was stunned, realizing that it was true.

“So, are you gonna lift the cloth?” asked Huckle, impatient.

“I-I guess...” Star took a deep breath, then nervously lifted the dusty cloth. They all gasped.

There lay a beautiful weapon, with a golden hilt, the crosspiece curling up like grapevines, the green pommelstone reflecting the torch flames. The long, straight blade was unmarked, as if it had never been used, still it somehow looked like it had been through a lot.

“Wow...” said Star, lifting it up carefully. “I've never seen anything like it...” It was fairly light, and felt like it was made to fit her paws.

“Dude, that's totally the treasure.” said Huckle.

“And this too.” came Flippa's voice from the direction of the bookshelf. “Look at all these old books, guys!” she said, looking through one gently. “These probably have all kinds of lost and forgotten information. This is amazing!”

“Yeah, this must be what the writing on the cloth meant by secrets of the past.” said Huckle. “I wonder if we could find anything about that big dagger thingy in here.” he pulled a book off the shelf. “Maybe like... this one?” It was titled The Tale of Roland. Pebble looked through it a bit.

“Woah, this must be history that was forgotten over the generations. The history of Salmonberry Pond!”

“Let's read it!” said Dipper.

“Yeah,” said Star, “But first I gotta go tell my dad!” She ran out, taking the weapon with her.

“There goes our new chief.” Pebble grinned. “Feels kinda strange to be saying that. Wow...”

“I think we're gonna have a lot more adventures now.” said Dipper. “And I can't wait for the next one!”


THE END


Final noteEdit

I CAN'T BELEIVE I FINALLY FINISHED IT!!!! After what... two years or something?! Wooooowwwww! OMT!!! Scuse me fer a sec... *goes outside and screams* there. Whew. XD

Anyway. That was a lot shorter than what I wanted it to be, but whateves. Guess you can sort of think of it as a prologue for the rest of the series. XP So... be watching out for the next book: The Tale of Roland! ;D

So, what did you think?
 
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