Clement and the Mousebird

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Little Clement is different from his peers because he is fascinated by birds, butterflies and insects. But most of all, he longs to fly. Unlike others who gradually forget their childhood dreams, Clement works tirelessly on his passion and invents a previously unheard of thing - the world's first flying machine!

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Clement was an oddball to those around him. While the other children played all kinds of games together in the street, Clement always stood on the sidelines and watched the birds, butterflies or insects. He was especially fascinated by the fact that they could fly. And most of all - how they could do it.

"Look, Clement is dreaming of flying to the sun again," the children would say, laughing at him. "Or that he can fly up the tree and sit next to the sparrow on that branch over there. Ha-ha!"

"That's not a sparrow, you fool, that's a titmouse."

"Tit or sparrow, you'll never fly anyway, Clement. Forget it and come back down to earth!" the children would shout.

But Clement didn't care about their teasing remarks. "And yet I'll fly, you'll see," he always murmured to himself. He wasn't going to give up his dream just like that.

Clement also liked to draw, and he drew really well. He liked to sit somewhere in the wilderness, away from the taunting children, with paper and a pencil in his hand. And he drew, and drew, and drew. Whether it was birds flying over the treetops, or butterflies dancing in the meadow, or bees buzzing above the flower heads.

One morning, sitting with his back against his house, he was looking for a suitable object to draw. He suddenly noticed a strange creature in the shed.

It looked as if it was wrapped in some sort of dark cloak. It was hanging upside down, using its sharply-clawed hind paws to hold onto a wooden beam. And the head of the animal looked like a mouse.

"What is that?" Clement wondered, and immediately stood up. He walked over to the odd creature and stared at it in silence.…

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