A Happy Reunion
A beautiful spring-time gift blooms. Introducing the Babblebrook & Redwood families, and Gayle Spotter.

The first scents of spring were in the air; the barren forest landscape had been buried under a thick blanket of snow. Today it had fully melted, and the first plants were beginning to grow. Mrs. Gayle Spotter was enjoying sightseeing from Mosswood Fells' mountain-side balcony after she had set down some flowers she'd grown indoors. "Aaah," she said while stretching, "it's so nice that winter is finally leaving. I can stretch my legs again! I bet Mom and Dad are enjoying themselves out there in their winter camp, giggling at the snowflakes and warming their paws by the bonfire. I wonder what everyone else is up to?" She glanced down. The sight far below gave her a thrill up the back of her neck. Gayle knew it would be some time before spring would fully arrive, but...

Far below, in the shadow of the mountain, a grey rabbit was standing up a gardening site where the soil was dark and would soon be perfect for planting. Gayle squinted her beady little meerkat eyes; her sight was still keen- but was Mr. Babblebrook wearing a dress?! She couldn't believe her eyes. The grey rabbit seemed to be just a little shorter; the soft waft of perfume greeted her nostrils. Mrs. Spotter frowned thoughtfully to herself, then a grin crept across her features. The rabbit was putting baby lettuce seedlings outside in various wooden containers!

Mrs. Spotter knew she had to investigate- and ran back inside the mountain to find Mr. Rocky Babblebrook.

Rocky showed up in Sylvania to the old school house before the Great Migration in a literal rocky place- worn out, starving, and from somewhere further north; as he called it, "the middle of nowhere"- to the Sylvanians. It was Knight Underwood who took him in, and gave the grey rabbit his spare work uniform. His biggest challenge was that the villagers had almost no food between them all! He spent a lot of time with Knight seeking out food. With their combined knowledge of herbs, roots, and culinary know-how, Rocky found his way into the villagers' way of life- through their stomachs and his wits! He and Knight helped relieve their phase of starvation by traveling farther than others. It was Rocky's hope to be reunited with his family soon, as he had traveled to the point of exhaustion to bring resources back to them. Finding the Sylvanians- or rather, Knight finding him- was a lifesaver. The Corntops are looking into any possible shared ancestry with his family line. He followed the Sylvanians and became a resident with them at Mosswood Fells, but still, he yearned...

"Rocky! Rocky!" Gayle said breathlessly, fluidly racing through the halls of the mountain-side castle. "Rocky, you simply must drop what you're doing and come see something I saw!"

"If I see what you saw, can you teach me how to put my hand saw through water and part it?" the grey rabbit smiled amiably at his hyperactive, flexible meerkat friend. Mrs. Spotter was the sort who simply had more energy than he cared to ever spend traveling at great length again. Not after the Great Migration. Oh boy, he fretted silently, I've got to stay with my work of preparing all the seeds for spring! I can't go haring off- Hah! Haring off, that's a good one!

"Rockyyyy!" Gayle wheedled at him, thumping her long, thin tail for emphasis. "Please?! This is really important!"

"Can you give me a hint?!" countered Rocky, setting his packets of seeds down next to him.

"You'll see!" was the immediate reply as Gayle shot down the hall. From the grand living room quarters, the Redwood family peeked their heads out the arched doorway. Curious! all three had thought at the same time. Rufina tugged on her mother's dress; Mr. Redwood smiled at his wife and nodded. Rowena shrugged, paws up in the air cluelessly.

"Where are we going!?" asked Rocky Babblebrook as he bounded down the stairs right at Gayle's heels. The meerkat sure was in better shape, he thought to himself!

"Just outside the base of our mountain!" Gayle explained. She skidded to an abrupt halt. "Shhh now," she warned with a paw to her muzzle. "Look- right around the corner."

Ploof, ploof, ploof! Went the many seeds into their little indents in the soil within their wooden pots. The grey perfumed rabbit before their very eyes wore a pink gingham dress. She looked up. Her ears wiggled. Smiling, the rabbit woman waved! "Hello!" she called.

"Dad?!" called another of their children behind Mrs. Babblebrook; their daughter Breezy. Her brothers and baby Coral emerged from the brush nearby, wide-eyed.

"That- that voice!" exclaimed Rocky. "It can't be! And--"

Gayle Spotter tilted her head, stunned as pieces began to come together in her mind. "Didn't you say you had-"

She didn't have time to finish; from behind her Mr. Babblebrook bounded. He couldn't believe his eyes!

The two grey rabbits stared at each other. "Mom?" came a voice from behind her. "Is that?..."

Mr. and Mrs. Babblebrook's eyes both widened in realizing what had happened. Somehow, Mrs. Babblebrook had traveled all this way north- and simultaneously, Mrs. Babblebrook was realizing her husband had traveled all the way north as well!

Mr. Babblebrook stepped forward to hold his beloved wife for the first time in at least a year or two, when stars danced in his eyes. His body sagged backwards.

Before even Gayle Spotter could react, Rowena Redwood was right on top of things- she caught him with an ooph! Nearby, Mr. Redwood had caught a wooden pot full of lettuce from falling over as well.

The Babblebrook family came streaming over- Uncle Babblebrook, Bubba, Richard,Breezy, and baby Coral. "Dad!" called another of their children behind Mrs. Babblebrook; their daughter Breezy.

"Well I'll be," said Uncle Babblebrook. "Looks like my younger brother's still loving his wife after all this time. Thanks for catching him. He's a hopeless romantic. I can't imagine where he's been to after being gone for so long! We tried to wait for him where we were, but..." he shook his head, scratching an ear thoughtfully.

"-But times were tough, with almost no food, so we had to get a move on. By the time we found the abandoned schoolhouse, no one was there, though we saw plenty of footsteps! We took to the ocean, since it seemed smoother than going it on foot. The ocean fed us," explained Mrs. Babblebrook, hugging her children, "and I hope never to eat so many fish again! Pray tell, would it be alright to live here with my husband?" she asked.

A soft hissing came from nearby. "SSsssssssssSSSSSSSsss...."

Gayle and the Redwood family glanced around, but could not see anyone there. However, the meerkat woman knew. "Ah, it seems the Sibilant Solitaire Siblings heard us!" she grinned broadly. "I'm sure they'll take your request to the Lords of the Mountain who have housed us all so kindly."

Mr. Babblebrook groaned as he came to, and brushed himself off. "So sorry..." he mumbled, ears flushed red in embarrassment.

"My love!" exclaimed Mrs. Babblebrook.

"My dearest cloudy bunbun!" grinned Mr. Babblebrook. The two embraced. Everyone began to share their stories as a beautiful sunset shone down through the trees, making the rocks look golden. Soon the Redwoods, Babblebrooks, and Mrs. Spotter were all merrily making their way back inside the mountain, swapping stories about their travels.

When no one was looking, they held paws and then kissed for the first time in a long, long time!