Ricky was busy. He went around visiting his friends and talked four raccoons into going with him. They were frightened and afraid to break the rules, but Ricky was confident and sure of himself. He said, the other raccoons would see them as heroes.
The raccoons went in the dead of night. Their dark masks made them look like the thieves they were. They crossed over on to the land of the humans and raided their corn fields. Ricky ate some of the corn. It was so delicious, he could not stop. Greed filled his eyes. His friends were eating it too. They carried some of the corn to take back to the community. Just as they started the trip home, some coon dogs caught their scent and barked.
The noise shattered the quiet night. Doors banged, shotguns were loaded, and boots hit the ground running. The raccoons were frightened and could feel their hearts thumping in their chest.They took off running for home, but they had eaten so much corn and carried a heavy load. It all slowed them down. Two of Ricky’s friends were shot and died in the fields. Two of them got away, but Ricky did not feel good about it. They made it home with some ears of corn, but they were filled with grief over the death of their friends. The humans crossed over into the land of the raccoons and started shooting in to the trees. The raccoons scattered until the humans left.
The next morning, the raccoon community had a meeting. They wanted to throw Ricky and his friend out of the group to live elsewhere. The raccoons were angry that the laws had been broken and two of them were dead as a result of Ricky’s disobedience. The theft of corn had endangered the lives of the whole community.
The raccoon King could see the grief in Ricky’s eyes and his tears. He said,” You have broken our rules, involved your friends in stealing, and two have died. I think you have been punished enough. You will have to carry this for the rest of your lives.” Ricky bowed his head to the wise King.
He left the meeting, feeling great sadness and remorse. Last night taught him a valuable lesson: There is always a good reason for a boundary. Rules that are made are always there to keep the raccoons safe. Stealing always carries a price tag. For him it was the death of two of his friends.