Of all the mice who lived in the dark cupboard beneath the stairs， there was not one more daring than Willie Brown-eyes. He was leader in all the pranks played by thee young mice， and he would amuse the old mice when they all sat round the kitchen fire after Sally and her Mother had gone to bed.
One night Willie Brown-eyes suggested they should play hide-and-seek a new way.
“Instead of trying to get home before we are caught，” he said， “Let us see who can stay longest in a hiding place.”
Mrs Brown-eyes and her friend Matilda， who liked to join in the games although she was the oldest of all the mice， covered up their eyes while all the other mice ran round the kitchen， looking for a place to hide.
The seekers waited until they had counted fifteen squeaks， then they began to hunt.
Three tiny mice were behind the coal scuttle， and another under the grate， and five more were in the dresser cupboards. One little mouse gave away where she was sneezed and her brother was behind the grandfather clock. Four more were in the dark corners.
“Where is Willie？” asked his mother. “Everyone must help to find him as it is getting late.”
One by one the sleepy mice stole away to their snug beds in the dark cupboard beneath the stairs. Mrs Brown-eyes and Matilda stayed searching until they heard footsteps on the stairs， and they too， went home.
Sally's mother came into the kitchen.
“I'll go and see if the hens have laid some eggs for our breakfast，” she said， sitting down on a chair to put on her outdoor shoes.
“Oh！ Whatever is in my shoe？”
She pulled out her foot and out jumped Willie Brown-eyes！