by Jake Christie

a story.

Sam Rabbit hopped back to his warren and was surprised to find two rabbit police outside the entrance, wiggling their noses conspiratorially. He tensed when he saw them. The rabbit police didn’t stop by for nothing. He considered turning tail and making a run for it, but by the time he saw them they had seen him, and now all he could do was see what they wanted.

“Hello,” said Sam.

“Morning, Sam,” said the first rabbit policeman. Sam recognized him as office Hooker by the spots on his paws. Hooker had given him assistance once when an ill-tempered weasel attempted to burglarize his home. The other officer Sam didn’t recognize. He had brown fur with a white streak down the back, like a skunk.

“Morning, officer,” said Sam. “What can I do for you today?”

“Hopefully you won’t have to do too much,” said Hooker.

“Where were you last night around sunset?” asked the other officer. Hooker gave him a sideways glance with his beady black eyes.

“Ralph,” said Hooker.

“What?” asked the other officer, who was apparently named Ralph. He flattened his ears against his head.

“You can’t just open up with a question like that,” said Hooker.

“It’s just a question,” said Ralph.

“Nothing is just a question,” said Hooker. “Starting with a question implies more questions, which is either an interview or an interrogation.” He paused to lick an insect off of his stomach. “Last time I checked, Sam isn’t famous.”

“So what did we come here for?” asked Ralph. “If not to ask questions?”

“We just came to talk.”

“Well, I’m trying to talk to him. But now you’re talking to me.”

Hooker turned to Sam. “It’s his first day,” he said.

Sam considered, again, making a run for it. Hooker and Ralph were obviously here about what had happened the previous evening, and if they knew what happened the previous evening they knew what he was up to. Maybe they didn’t have all the facts, sure, and maybe he could talk his way out of it, but getting away in the physical and spatial sense seemed to be the most simple and effective solution. He would have to go away by miles, at the least, and then he would have to dig a new warren. But staying here would mean punishment, and the rabbit police were not known for taking prisoners.

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