Greg started to head away when the bug called out, "Wait! I want to thank you. I
owe you my life! My name's Stickly. What's yours?"
Greg laughed nervously. "My name is Greg. What kind of creature are you?" he
"I'm a stickbug," he replied. "What kind are you?" He had a shrill, high-pitched
voice which made Greg wince.
Greg laughed again. "Oh, I'm not a bug. I'm a human being. How tall are you? Is
that a costume?"
This time it was Stickly's time to laugh. "I'm 7 inches. I'm the smallest in my
family, but I'm going to grow bigger. This isn't a costume. This is my body." His
face turned from happy and gay to serious. "Now we have to get out of here fast
before Spindly catches us!" With that he scooped up Greg's hand and began running.
It was hot and humid, and the farther they ran, the more hot and dry it got.
Greg's lungs hurt and he was wheezing. When they finally stopped, they both fell to
the ground on their knees and took the air in deeply. Through breaths Greg asked
who Spindly was. Stickly replied, "Spindly is a mean spider. He is small and has
sticky powers. He captured our princess last month and our land became his. Many
insects have died of starvation. Others have disappeared when trying to rescue
Gina, our princess. Spindly has taken all our food and our homes to build his
sticky webs on. We were forced to move to this area which is the . . ."