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About five thousand, two hundred and forty-six years ago there lived a
caveman called Ug the Thug. He lived at the top of a lonely valley, but
then everywhere was lonely back then. He had a big club and furry
boots and he liked running after things and frightening them best of all.

Ug the Thug was nasty to everyone he met. It didnt matter if the thing
he met was big or small, he liked to give it a fright. He liked making as
much noise as he could.
Raaar!, Aaargh! and Graah! were some of his favourite sounds.

At night Ug the Thug came back to his cave. He sat beside his roaring fire
and ate as much meat as he could. He painted pictures of himself on the
cave and he felt very pleased indeed with himself.

But no-one liked Ug the Thug. Everyone was frightened of him and
stayed away from him as much as possible. No-one ever went to his
cave or even passed near it. They kept themselves to themselves.

Then one night as Ug the Thug sat by the fire in the cave he saw a
shooting star. A great white light streaked across the sky and he gasped.
It was beautiful. Ug the Thug stared at the sky and for the first time in
his life he wished he had a friend so he could tell them all about what he
had seen. For the first time in his life Ug the Thug felt lonely.

The following day he went outside and he didnt roar and thump about
in his boots. Instead he went down to the stream that ran through the
tall grass and sat there looking sadly at his reflection in the water.

It so happened that at that very moment a mouse that had been
crossing the river higher up fell into the water and began squeaking and
waving its paws in the air because it couldnt swim. Ug the Thug looked
down and saw the mouse. Without thinking, he reached out his hand
that was as big as a brick and he lifted the mouse very gently onto the

The mouse shook itself and rushed off into the grass, and Ug the Thug
just sat there by the river with his big head in his big hands. He felt
lonelier than ever. That night he didnt eat a thing, nor did he make a
fire. He just curled up in bed and lay there not able to sleep. He felt very,
very lonely.

But the next morning something happened. Ug the Thug had just got up
when he heard the pitter-patter of tiny paws. Someone was coming. It
was the mouse. And the mouse was carrying in its paws a flower. The
mouse laid the flower down at the feet of Ug and looked up at him with
its big blue eyes.

Ug the Thug fell over backwards. He landed in the sand outside his cave,
completely amazed. He realised the flower was a thank-you from the
mouse. He had made a friend! He felt so happy he began singing. He got
up and danced about the cave for joy. He felt so good he waded across
the river, still singing. He couldnt stop smiling to everyone he met.

At first people were suspicious. Was it possible Ug the Thug could really
be happy and friendly? Wasnt he always angry and loud? But in the end
they began to believe it must be true, and they smiled back and shook
hands with Ug and laughed with happiness too.

And after a time nobody was afraid of him anymore. He left his old,
lonely cave behind and came to live with everyone else. He made lots of
friends and never felt lonely again. And in the end he was given the
name Ug the Hug because that was exactly what he liked doing best.

2015 Kenneth Steven