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Ariane’s strange obsession began, like most things with her, as a question.
“Why do acorns wear hats?” Her parents exchanged thinking faces. Slightly worried faces because they had no answer.
“Because,” her father said after much thinking, “…all acorns keep a secret under their hat.”
“Why under their hat?” she asked, still staring at the acorn.
“Because they don’t have pockets,” her mother replied quickly. This puzzled Ariane. This puzzled her very much so. So much she could not think of another question. It puzzled her for the rest of the day. It puzzled her for the rest of the night. While she puzzled, she tried to take off the acorn’s hat. She tugged at the acorn. She knocked on the acorn. She glared and grimaced at the acorn. When it wouldn’t budge, Ariane went into the woods again to find an acorn she could open. But there were none. Their caps were on very, very tight.
“Well how do you get their hats off?” she asked, very tired from all her trying.
“The secret pops out like a surprise”
“I’m sure magical words have something to do with it”
Naturally, Ariane asked what the special words were, but her parents didn’t know. So she was sitting on a large rock outside her house one day, reciting words she thought were magical like “please, twinkle, twinkle, and banana” when a girl Ariane had never seen before walked by and stopped.