The Narrator and Doodle were introduced and Doodle was born with a birth defect. The setting is in summer in the late 1900's. The family lives in a wooded area with a lot of fields and a nearby swamp.
Doodle is starting to get older and can talk but no walk yet. James has to push him around in a wheel barrel so he can get around and is starting to get tired of not having a normal little brother.
James starts to let his pride take over him and starts to teach Doodle to walk and when that happens he starts to teach him how to swim, run, fight, and try to teach him to be like a normal boy before school starts.
An exotic Scarlet Ibis finds itself in the tree in the yard and dies in front of the family. Doodle then buries it in the garden.
It starts to storm when to boys are out in the forest for Doodle's training. James runs ahead while Doodle is left behind.
James feels guilty for leaving Doodle and goes back for him. When he finds him he is already dead.