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​     “Lucky for you, I say.” Thinking the poor bird was about to bawl, Aegis took the pelican under wing and suggested he stop moaning and try to set things right. “Brace up, old chap. Your lost mouthful did drop in, but never resurfaced. Chances are, she's found the stream feeding our beaver pond, and already made her way back to sea. Why don't you stop railing yourself and go check the seashore. I'll have another look around here.” Buoyed somewhat by that suggestion, the pelican bounded off toward the coastline.
     “Well played,” the cardinal remarked. “That shovel-lip was a bundle of nerves.”
     Daddy long-legs disagreed. “Nerves or not, the pelican might have helped us dredge up his lost fish.” 
     “More likely to get himself eaten,” said Aegis. “His castaway probably has a bone to pick with that bird.”
     “So why send him dashing off right where you figure this 'castaway' is?” wondered Daddy long-legs.
     “I figure she's still here.” The eagle surveyed his forest realm. “This is no place for pelicans and sea monsters. I intend to comb these woods for any intruders. Can't tolerate anyone, or anything, coming into my house, endangering my friends and neighbors.”
     “Bravo!” cheered the cardinal, but then thought of something. “Hold on! This castaway's not likely to be hiding in trees. Undoubtedly she swims better than eagles. You don't even know what this fugitive looks like. Assuming she's still around, how are you ever going to find her?”
     “Could be I already have . . .” For a long time the eagle had been studying the beaver pond. Then he saw something that caused him to cry out and soar toward the pond. “Stay here! Whatever you do—Don't leave the nest!”