Frances the Firefly
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Transcript of Frances the Firefly
eep in the middle of aforest far away was theKingdom of the Insects.They were a friendly
bunch who workedtogether to build a land
where everyone had a purpose.
The spiders spun silky, silvery webs to decorate the land and fill it withsplendour.
The ants, who were immensely strong,built all the houses. And the bees ran the
honey factories,making sure thateveryone hadenough delicioushoney to eat.
Frances the Firefly wanted to grow up quickly, butthere were one or two things she had to learn first
he fireflies had a veryspecial job. Because theycould make theirtails glow,they lit upthe forest
at night time, so that theother insects could seein the dark.
Every evening,after the sun hadsunk below thetrees, they flew
up into the sky with their tail torchesglowing, and shone like rays of sunlight.Nobody needed street lamps in theKingdom of the Insects!
here was one little fireflycalled Frances, whowanted to join the othersin the sky at night.
She watched them take off and beggedto go with them. But they told her shewas too young. You cant make your tail glow brightly enough yet,they said kindly.
I shall practise until I can make it glowproperly,she thought. She flapped herwings furiously, trying with all her might,but her tail hardly glowed at all. Thismade her feel very sad.
The other fireflies said, Dont worry,Frances. One day you will be old enoughto join in with thegrown-ups.Frances felt that daywas so far off, itwould never come.
few nights later,Frances was sitting on a twig in theforest, feeling very sorry forherself. Suddenly,
something tappedher sharply on the shoulder.
It was Cocky Roach. Cocky was a naughtyyoung insect who was always getting
into trouble. He knew why Frances wasupset, and he thought he would
play a trick on her.
ve got something exciting toshow you, Francessaid Cocky.Come with me. He led her tohis hiding place, pushed a leafto one side and pointed. It wasa box of matches!
Oh Cocky, where did youget these?asked Frances.Matches are dangerous,Mummy said so.
I found them on thekitchen table athome,Cockychuckled. Andnobody hasnoticed that theyremissing yet.
Cocky leaned over and whispered inFrancess ear. If you strike one, you canhave a tail torch of your own, and be likethe grown-up fireflies.
rances wanted to be grownup, so with Cockys help she lit the match. At once a bright
glow shone allaround
Fly up,fly up with it!yelled Cocky withdelight.
Frances flew up and up. Just wait till everyone sees what I can do,she thought. But she was too pleased with her lovely bright light to notice thatthe flame was growing larger and larger.It came creeping up the match until itreached her wings and burned them.
The flamehurt Frances so
much that she dropped thematch, which fell down to the
he match landed on some dry leaves and twigs on the forest floor, and of course they started toburn. The flames spread
quickly, and it was only a matter of minutesbefore the whole forest was alight.
All the good work that the insects haddone was ruined.
The houses were destroyed,and the honey factories burnt to cinders.
ext morning, when thefire had finally been putout, the insects held anemergency meeting.Many of them hadbeen badly
burned, including Frances,whose blackened wingswere still very painful.
King Chrysalis,a grand butterflywho ruled theKingdom of theInsects, rose to speak:We must rebuild ourland at once, and make itbeautiful again.He lookeddown at Frances, who wasfeeling very ashamed of herself.
I hope you now understand how dangerous fire canbe,he said to her in a stern voice.
rances had indeedlearned her lesson.She helped the rest of herfriends rebuild the housesand factories, but she wasalso given a special job
to do. Every now and then she gatheredtogether all the younger insects and toldthem her story.
nd what about CockyRoach? He was sentaway from the InsectKingdom in disgrace.
Even today, youcan sometimessee him scuttlingamongst thelitter in townsand villages,looking for something to eat.
They would sit and listen to her tale, andunderstand why they should never playwith matches.
DONT FORGET NEVER PLAY WITH MATCHES!
Points for grown-ups to remember:
Always keep matches out
of childrens reach.
Never leave children alone at home.
Dont let children play near a fire,
or leave their toys too close to a fire.
Children:If you see matches lying around, tell yourmummy or daddy or another grown-up.You should never play with matches, asthey can be dangerous and, like Frances,you could be badly burned.
Published by the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister. Crown copyright 2004. Printed in the UK, February 2004,on paper containing 75% post-consumer waste and 25% ECF pulp. (03DOCF01874) Product code FB5