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“No, absolutely not! Pecky will not be used as bait!” Jake exclaimed.
“We don’t have any other options,” said Gilbert. “Whoever is behind this can easily find out where Pecky has gone. It’s only a matter of time.”
No Jake. It’s the only way.
Jake looked at Pecky and then turned and glared at Gilbert.
I have to do this. I don’t want to put you or your family in any more danger than I already have.
Gilbert nodded in silent agreement.
It’s a risk, but we have to take it.
Jake’s shoulders slumped and sadness filled his face. He knew they were right. Setting a trap was a sure way to catch the people bent on capturing Pecky.
“It’s getting late,” Jake sighed, looking at the clock. “We’d better figure out how this trap will work before my mom comes back to get me.”
For the next half hour they talked. Gilbert discarded all of Pecky’s suggestions and Jake poked holes in all of Gilbert’s ideas.
Finally, they decided that Jake’s plan was the best they could come up with.
Don’t worry Jake. The plan is a good one.
“Yes,” said Gilbert. “Pecky will be protected at every step.”
“Ok, let’s go through it one more time before I go.”
“We will put it out that we have a rare, exotic bird at the hatchery,” began Gilbert.
When people start coming to see me, Gilbert will be watching for any…suspicious behavior.
“We’ll watch his pen at night, waiting for them to come back.”
When they come back to get me, Gilbert will catch them and put them in one of the pens.
“Then we’ll be able to question them and find out why they’ve been after these gray chickens with green legs,” finished Gilbert.
“And if they don’t come back?” asked Jake.
Oh, they’ll come back. They’ve put too much effort into finding me to give up.
Pecky turned to Jake with determination in his eyes.
Go home Jake. Gilbert will let you know when it is safe to come back and get me.
Jake felt chilled. He knew that he may be seeing Pecky for the last time.
As though reading his mind, Pecky ruffled his feathers and gave Jake an affectionate peck on the hand.
With one last look at Pecky, Jake turned and walked out the door.