Jolly was by far one of the most curious and clueless of his kind. An Eastern Gray squirrel with a penchant for the shiney, he was the first of his litter mates to half-climb, half-fall out of the nest his parents had built high in the arms of a large oak tree. His mother was the one to save him from the clutches of a large brown dog who was bent on killing him. While he didn't realize the danger he was in, he was none the less surprised and delighted by his mother's show of enthusiasm when she rescued him. His litter mates had ran up and down the limbs of their great tree, chirpping and squeaking and making all manner of noises. They did this in an effort to try and distract the dog, encourage their mother and save their less than intuitive brother. When she finally managed to get him safely to the tree, just beyond the jaws of the monster, she couldn't decide who needed the chewing out more-her offspring for his unintelligent actions or the dog that had tried to eat him.
When questioned, for he still was unaware he'd done anything wrong, Jolly confessed that it had been a shiney candy wrapper blowing in the wind that had originally caught his attention. His love of bling had almost been the undoing of both he and his mother. His mother had gone a little grayer that day-if such a thing was possible.
Within weeks of his first brush with death he'd managed to accumulate quite a few things whose glimmer and sparkle had caught his attention. Candy wrappers-that smelled just as good as they looked along with a few loose coins and a ladies hair clip. A small shiney quartz stone with sharp edges that sparkled when the sun hit it just so and a large, silver paper clip he'd discovered near a park bench. While his littermates learned the art of locating and collecting food, Jolly was absentmindely discovering the joys of trash cans, gutters and the nearby electrical substation.
It was on a beautiful spring day when he and his family were skittering around the park, his parents busily teaching the family ways to survive everything from cat attacks, avoiding flying predators and Papa Squirrels top three reasons to avoid snakes when Jolly's eyes were suddenly caught by the bright glinter of a ladies necklace. Since his parents had failed to mention humans among the list of "to be feared and avoided" he had no reservations concerning approaching her and appropriating what he thought was a pretty sparkle. Little did he know that his actions and their unfortunate results would end up turning the world of the local human populace upside down for a time.