I tell my kids stories every night before bed, nearly always based on a two topics that they request. (When I get three kids making requests — that's going to get really tricky.) I forget what they requested for the night I told this story, but this is the story they got. Deborah says it's the same plot as a Pixar short. Pooh. I wasn't thinking of that when I told the story, and Deborah likes my version better, anyway. So there.
Once upon a time, there was a magician, and he lived in the circus and he loved to go out and do tricks in front of the audience, and make them laugh, and make them cry in astonishment.
But the magician wasn't magic.
His hat wasn't magic. His wand wasn't magic. The thing that was magic was his bunny!
Truth is, it was the bunny doing all the tricks. The magician would reach in his hat and pull out a bunny and the audience would applaud. He could make it appear out of thin air or show up in a balloon. Or pull it out of his coat sleeves. But the magician got tired of not really doing the tricks and he got lazy. The last straw came when he forgot to buy carrots for the bunny.
The magician went out on stage and he flashed his biggest smile and waved his shiny wand and his shiny hat around. He wiggled his fingers dramatically and plunged it into his hat. SNAP! A rat trap snapped aorund his fingers. Ow, ow, ow, ow, ow, ow! The magician hopped around holding his hand in pain and grinned sheepishly at the audience as if to say, "Now that shouldn't have happened." The audience howled with laughter. The magician, with some apprehension, wiggled his fingers again and stuck them in his hat again. Eeeeeewww! He just stuck his hand into a pile of dirty underpants! As he pulled them out, the audience said "Eww!" too and they laughed and laughed and laughed. The magician was very downhearted but he tried to put his best face on it. He grinned painfully at the audience and very carefully stuck just one finger into the hat. The rabbit bit him on the finger. The magician was so discrouraged and sad that he ran off the stage.
"What are you doing?" roared the magician. And the rabbit said, "I'm the one doing all the tricks! Why don't you take care of me and spend time with me any more? You even forgot to feed me today!" The magician realized he was right, and he was very sad and sorry.
The magician walked out on stage carrying his hat, carrying his wand and carrying his rabbit. He put the rabbit down on the little table and he said, "My lovely audience! I would like to show you the real secret of my magic. It's not my hat! It's not my wand! It's not my special sleeves!" — the audience gasped — "It's my bunny!" And with that he gave the wand to the rabbit, and put his top hat on the rabbit, and the bunny wiggled his nose, and the magician disappeared! The audience leaped to their feet. They applauded and they whooped and hollered. They threw money and roses. And the curtain came down on what had been the best show ever.
Then Aiden asked, "Where did the magician go?"
The storyteller said, "The rabbit sent him to the store to buy carrots."