Rosco the Rascal at the St. Patrick's Day Parade

This time it's not Rosco who's been making mischief - it's the leprechauns! Rosco and his new friend, Sparks, are marching in the St. Patrick’s Day Parade accompanied by Rosco's owners, brother and sister, James and Mandy. But Mandy thinks the leprechauns have jinxed her with bad luck, so when Sparks goes missing, what will it take for Rosco and the kids to find him? And will Mandy be able to restore her good luck, or will the leprechauns ruin her St. Patrick's Day?

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3. The Leprechaun Trap

Mandy was afraid something bad might happen today. Ever since she had decided not to make a leprechaun trap for school, bad luck seemed to be affecting everything in her life. It was like the leprechauns knew that she had turned her back on them and were out to get her.

First, it was only little things that went wrong—like when her pencil broke in half for no reason, and when she tore a hole in one of her new socks, and when she got in trouble because she forgot to feed Rosco one evening.

Then, bigger things started happening. Her dad's car got a flat tire when he drove home from work one night. She left all of her library books at home on school library day, so she couldn't check out any new books for two whole weeks. And then it rained on the day of her school picnic at the park this week, so the picnic had been canceled.

She was worried that the bad luck would get even worse. And now it seemed it had.

Even though Mom said these bad things weren't related to one another—that bad things just happened sometimes—Mandy was sure that the bad luck was all because she refused to make a leprechaun trap.

Every March the children had a bonus assignment—to make a leprechaun trap at home and bring it in the day before the holiday. To be fair, it was optional. She didn't have to make one.

A leprechaun trap was any kind of contraption that a student could dream up that would trick a leprechaun into climbing inside. Some students made traps that looked like top hats with ladders made of sticks. The little leprechauns could climb up and hop in.

Other traps resembled pirate treasure chests or magical looking fairy beds—with real moss, pebbles and sticks to remind them of their homes. The key was to offer a bit of treasure—perhaps some fake gold coins or chocolate candy—anything that would trick a leprechaun into climbing inside.

The teachers at school said the leprechauns would enter their classrooms on the night before St. Patrick's Day in search of treasure. The kids would have left out their traps that night, and the hope was that one of the leprechauns would try to steal some of the treasure and become trapped.

Because if he were trapped inside, the kids would actually be able to see—see a real leprechaun! They wouldn't have held him captive for more than a few minutes. No one wanted to hurt the little guy. The kids only wanted to see one in person, ask him a few questions—about magical things or gold, or maybe some riddles or legends, or where the end of the rainbow is—and then send him on his way, no harm done.

So every year Mandy's teachers would ask each of the kids to make a leprechaun trap and bring it into school the day before St. Patrick's Day. Then, all they had to do was wait for the leprechauns to sneak into their classrooms overnight.

But Mandy had been getting tired of the whole thing. Every single year since kindergarten, Mandy had built a trap, often staying up late with Mom the night before it was due, working hard to do her very best. Almost all the kids made one, in fact. But the problem was—no leprechauns ever became trapped.

Now she was in second grade, and she was sure it would be the same story all over again. The only thing the leprechauns ever did was leave a big mess all over the classroom—tiny, green footprints and overturned desks, piles of paper thrown about the room, green smudges on the windows. But there was never a leprechaun anywhere to be seen.

Sometimes they left treats, too. But the whole class shared those, so Mandy wouldn't miss out on treats just because she didn't make a trap. Nevertheless, no one ever seemed to catch one.

So Mandy wasn't going to do it, not this time. She wasn't about to pour her heart and soul into her work and wish as hard as she could to see a leprechaun, just to be disappointed again. She would skip it this year. She was done with it.

But ever since she had made that decision, the bad luck had started. St. Patrick's Day was Monday. Today was Saturday—Saturday at the parade.

Yesterday, when the leprechaun traps were due at school, another bad thing had happened. Mandy's best friend Trisha had gotten sick. Trisha had left school early, right before lunch, because she threw up. And now, Sparks—that sweet little pug that Mandy was supposed to look after—was missing.

M-I-S-S-I-N-G!

Everywhere Mandy went it seemed like a black cloud was following her around. It seemed like the leprechauns thought that she didn't believe in their magical powers, and now, she, herself, seemed to be trapped in an endless string of bad luck. The worst thing was: she had no idea how to make it end.

----CONTINUED in FULL BOOK----

Thanks for trying out  my new Rosco the Rascal book! If you'd like to get the full book, it's available at the link below (copy and paste into a browser) for $1.99 ebook (normally $2.99) or paperback $5.99. I cannot publish the entire thing on Wattpad because Amazon's Select program doesn't allow more than 10% of books in their program to be published elsewhere digitally in full.

If you'd like to check it out, here's some more info:

*102 pages

*12 illustrations

*Recommended for ages 6-10

*Bonus extras at the back of the book including quick reference vocabulary list

*Purchase or Kindle Unlimited Rental Link:

https://www.amazon.com/dp/1543135412

*The paperback version qualifies for Amazon Prime (free) shipping

 

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